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04/29/11

Permalink 11:37:00 am, by ifeatuagbu, 1435 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News, Niger Delta( SS ) News

*Niger Delta: NDDC’s Wake-Up Call To Local Councils
( Article submitted April 13, 2011 )

By Ifeatu Agbu

Listening to the chairmen of local governments in the Niger Delta as they discuss the developmental challenges in their councils, one gets worried but in a way begins to understand why they have consistently failed to execute any meaningful projects in their domain. They are all lamenting what they called the huge burden of paying salaries to their staff, especially primary school teachers. It was disturbing, sitting in the midst of local government chairmen, who are supposedly controlling huge budgetary allocations, but were bellyaching over the strangle-hold of re-current expenditure on the resources available to the local governments.

It was an absurd situation as the issue of bloated salary bills was not the business of the day. The Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, had invited the chairmen as key stakeholders in the development of Nigeria’s oil-rich region to work out a partnership arrangement that would spread development to all corners of the region. The commission had set aside N1.35 billion to kick start its proposed collaboration with the local government councils across the Niger Delta region on joint funding and management of projects.

Under the scheme, N150 million would be spent on five identified projects per state at 30 million per local government council. However, while the NDDC would provide the N30 million counterpart funding, the local governments were expected to contribute N15 million to bring the total to N45 million. Raising the N15 million became an issue for many of the local government chairmen. Dr. Omene Odafe, the chairman of Ethiope West Local Government Area in Delta State, lamented “that teachers’ salary alone takes over 50 per cent of the Federal Government allocation to the council and the salaries are deducted at source, such that at the end of the day, my council has virtually nothing left to pay for capital projects”. ( Continues below..... )

Map of Nigeria's Niger Delta Region showing Port Harcourt

Photo Above: Map of Nigeria's Niger Delta Region showing Port Harcourt

Going by his experience, he wondered whether many local governments would be able to benefit from the NDDC scheme. Another council chairman, Prince Timothy Nsirim, of Obio-Akpor Local Government in Port Harcourt metropolis lent his weight to the assertions of his Delta State counterpart. He said that the saving grace for local governments in Rivers State was that the government of Governor Rotimi Amaechi has taken the burden of teachers’ salary off their shoulders. Before then, he said, the council could not execute projects as small as boreholes. He therefore advised other state governments in the Niger Delta to assist their local governments in paying teachers’ salaries so that they would have money to spare for projects.

The position of the local government chairmen would certainly not sit well with most people but that is the reality. Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State confirmed this at an International Conference of the World Mayors Summit held in Osogbo recently. He said that some governors deliberately impoverish local governments through diversion of council funds for other purposes. “Councils have become cash cows as council funds are always within reach. State governments commit council funds for all kinds of projects and at the end of the day, there is little or nothing left for them to embark on anything tangible in their domain”, he said As one would expect, Mr. Chibuzor Ugwoha, the Managing Director of NDDC, was taken aback by what the chairmen put on the table.

He said that it was worrisome that the local governments spend all their money to pay salaries and leave development projects unattended to. “This is very regrettable”. Perhaps, the collaboration the commission was offering would help them to at least contribute something for the wellbeing of their people. Mr. Ugwoha informed the chairmen that NDDC as an interventionist agency does not own projects, stressing that ownership of every development project embarked upon by the commission automatically reverts to the people. Thus, he stressed the need for the involvement of benefiting communities all through the life span of the projects. He said the commission was prepared to assist the local governments to deliver on their mandates. ( Continues below….. )

Map of Nigeria

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

He underlined the fact that NDDC gets only 7 per cent of the funds coming to the region. This point, which has been echoed by other leaders of the Niger Delta in the past, is important to bear in mind. The plain truth is that a sizeable chunk of the funds made available for the development of the region come through the states and local governments. For instance records show that between May 1999 and December 2006, the nine states making up the Niger Delta region received a total of N2.16 trillion, while local governments got a total of N671 billion. Over the same period, the NDDC received only N241.5 billion, representing eight percent of the total amount of N3.07 trillion from the federation Account. With this huge disparity in the distribution of funds, one would expect the two tiers of government to be in the forefront of development projects in the region.

Sadly, that is clearly not the case, as the NDDC with its meager resources is more visible on the ground than some of the states and local governments. Local governments in the Niger Delta cannot blame their poor performance in human and infrastructure development solely on the payment of primary school teachers’ salaries. In most local governments in the country, there are clear signs of poor financial management. Some LG chairmen treat the revenue accruing to their councils as their personal money. They appropriate whatever amount they like to themselves and share the remainder among the councilors. Worse still, some governors, as rightly stated by Gov Aregbosola, hold back LG funds for their personal aggrandizement.

This is most unfortunate. LGs should be held accountable for the money they receive and be compelled to embark on projects that positively impact the lives of their people. That is the only way their existence will be meaningful. What we have from the state and federal governments is more of abandoned projects. Recently, the Niger Delta Professionals for Development, a non-governmental organization, conducted a study with support from the European Union and the National Planning Commission. Its report, called the Citizen Report Card, shows that no fewer than 287 projects have been abandoned in 120 oil producing communities in six states in the Niger Delta region. The nagging question is: where have all the monthly allocations gone? Where are the roads, schools, clinics and hospitals? Where are the libraries and the science laboratories? Where are the waterworks, the bridges and the industries? Where are the social services these governments are supposed to provide their people? These are some of the questions begging for answers. Although some have argued that the current revenue allocation formula is unfair as it is not proportionate to the contribution of the region to the national purse, still the region continues to receive hefty amounts when compared to other regions. The truth is that some governments in the Niger Delta have not judiciously spent what they have been receiving since 1999.

Looking at the projects on ground, it would appear that a huge chunk of the monthly receipts have ended up in private pockets or used to finance poorly executed projects deliberately designed to short change the citizenry. While it may be easy to blame the failure on corruption, there are other critical elements that should also be looked at. For instance, there is evidence that planning and coordination of projects are inadequate. This is where partnership and collaboration come to play. Despite the myriad of financial problems confronting the local governments in the Niger delta, the chairmen should take the offer of partnership by the NDDC seriously, so that they can leave behind projects that people can see and cherish. There is no doubt that developmental agencies in the region need to properly coordinate their activities. It is, therefore, paramount that the various tiers of government, private companies and donor agencies synergize to stop unnecessary waste and duplication of projects in the region.

This was the problem that the Niger Delta Regional Development Master Plan was designed to solve. The core objective of the plan is to promote partnership and harmonize the activities of all development agencies in the oil-rich region. Keying into the plan is still the best option for the region’s rapid socio-economic transformation.

Mr. Ifeatu Agbu ( ifeatuagbu@yahoo.com ) writes from Port Harcourt, Nigeria.

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Permalink 05:15:00 am, by callmeike Email , 1015 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News, World News

*Nigeria As It Is Just Wont Do Anymore
( Article Submitted April 15, 2011 )

By Ikechukwu Enyiagu

Nigeria, as it is, as it has been since it became a name, just wont do anymore. The established structures just wont do anymore. Its history just won’t suffice for our children any longer, and the status quo is no longer a choice. Election is, and both disciples and Judas Iscariot are all in a queue. But, all these-the history of hell and the so-called former leaders in Nigeria-will fizzle out this season; they will die from their roots-be the men, principalities, and powers.

Nigerians went, and are still going to the polls to determine their future; this action is well required of men for what they expect. Having mastered the Nigeria politics of the old(which, of course, doesn’t need any degree to lay hold on), I hereby wish to advice, once again, those who would want to lead in any capacity in the Nigeria setting, to reconsider their plans, ambitions, and schemes before going ahead for the post they seek. This also goes for those already elected: I’m starting, of course, with the incumbent president, Goodluck Jonathan. ( Continues below….. )

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

Photo Above: President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

Your desire to lead Nigeria into a better future is a good thing. Many Nigerians would readily agree that the nation needs the youths for a change as it seems that the old ones are struggling to carry our nation to the grave when they die. However, your name-Goodluck-, and your youthfulness are not exactly what will make a better leader for our dear nation. Your conscience is what will. So, instead of rooting your hope of becoming your dream in these two factors, it would be wiser to place your hope for victory in your truest conscience. What your conscience has determined to accept and reject where Nigeria is concerned is your score points in the new Nigeria, not just the votes.

To our retired general, Mohammed Buhari, I’m also saying that it’s a great thing and a good decision to run for this election, as you have clearly seen that many stones were left unturned years back. Many people who still remember your regime with Babatunde Idiagbon believe you can create the change needed. However, I’m here to advice you not to place your hope in whatever you may or may not have achieved in your time with Babatunde Idiagbon because, then, you were a military man and all you used was force, not democratic principles. And, even at that, the root of corruption was rather protected while the ordinary men suffered, not the other way round.

The people who destroy the country are not the little robbers in the streets or those deceitful in business, the root of corruption lies within the government that runs everything else. And you sat on it in your time but didn’t uproot it. ( Continues below….. )

Map of Nigeria

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

Now, to all those in this race, to everyone who has come out to run for any elective post in Nigeria, from the councillorship to the presidency, I passionately advise and sternly warn:

1. You are cursed when you are coming in to use Nigerians again.
2. You are cursed when you have determined how to embezzle the money in your office if elected
3. You are cursed when you believe that it’s your godfathers who will elect you and not the people.
4. You are cursed when you have a tribe, group or sect that you have mapped out to neglect and marginalize if and when elected.
5. You are cursed if you would encourage nepotism, bribery and corruption if and when elected.
6. You are cursed when you refuse to listen and adhere to godly advice, advice that will drive the nation’s dream upward and forward.
7. You are cursed when you have it in mind to appoint the very people who have embezzled their constituents and offices’ money into your cabinet, especially those who still have different questions to answer in different places.

You are cursed with a great curse that will take effect on you and your entire inhabitation and possession. And, if you are already elected by mistake or ignorance, you are cursed with the plagues of the Egyptians right from the day you allow yourself to be sworn into any of those offices till few days later that your corpse will be carried out. But, to all those who have really come out to make all things new, to bring equal rights for all, and to use the nation’s resources and wealth to develop Nigeria and Nigerians; to fight corruption from its root without fear, and to make yourselves available to bear the burdens of the country and its citizens as your own burdens, I say this:

1. You are blessed and your seeds are blessed.
2. Your works shall establish you and your name shall always precede you.
3. No one will successfully be able to weigh you down, though they keep on standing against you.
4. Peace shall be your and that of your household all your days, the kind of peace that stolen money and false securities will never be able to provide for any evil man.
5. You will have the rare privilege of discovering that the best way to safeguard your future and that of your families is to safeguard the future of your neighbors and that of the country.

You will be blessed from your root right from the day you enter the office till the day your soul goes to rest. The Nigeria of old just wont do anymore for me, my children, my neighbors, and my country; it just wont do for hell, and surely, it wont do for the great heavens above. To all of you would-be leaders, you are now adequately advised…and conclusively warned. A word, it’s rightly said, is enough for the wise.

Ikechukwu Enyiagu can be reached at ike.enyiagu@gmail.com

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04/27/11

Permalink 08:00:00 pm, by admin Email , 158 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News, World News

*ANALYSIS-Nigerian elections seal major power shift

By James Jukwey

A decisive election victory by President Goodluck Jonathan in Nigeria has shifted power firmly to the largely Christian south from the Muslim north and could reopen political fissures in Africa's top energy supplier. Violence swept northern cities, leaving hundreds of people dead and many homeless after Jonathan's crushing victory over his northern opponent Muhammadu Buhari, a former military ruler. "Jonathan's landslide, though on the surface it appears like a resounding pan-Nigeria mandate, has brought back with a vengeance all the religious and sectional cleavage, not to mention ethnic bitterness," Olakunle Abimbola of The Nation newspaper wrote in a column. Many people see the riots as a reaction by the north to being cut adrift from power and say Jonathan will have to tread gingerly to avoid ......Read More

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04/26/11

Permalink 08:13:00 am, by admin Email , 1606 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News

*Live Report: Nigeria Governorship/State Assembly Election Results

By Masterweb News Desk

[ Time in Nigerian Time ] - Election results update from the general public in Nigeria (may be truthful, biased or false) and The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) annoucements.

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011
( Scroll down for Wednesday to Saturday Updates )

9.15 am: Three bomb blasts rock Maiduguri, in northeastern Nigeria as polls opened for the country's gubernatorial and state assembly elections. No casualty reported. 24 of the 36 states vote today, with that of Kaduna and Bauchi scheduled for Thursday. Elections will not take place in 10 states that await clearance by either the court or INEC. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

12.10 pm: Voting about to start across the nation. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

2.00 pm: Fake soldier arrested by combined team of police and army at a polling unit in Amukoko, Lagos. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Lagos ]

2.30 pm:
--Election materials (sensitive & non-sensitive) distributed to almost all the LGAs of Abia State & voting in progress since 12.00 pm in just few polling units.
--Brother to Hon. Stanley Ohajuruka(Abia LP Govt. Candidate) tries bridging electoral peace at Ward 5 Umuahia Urban I Unit 20 Ndagbo Etiti, Afara Umuahia North, but Men and officers of Nigeria Civil Defence restored peace there.
--Group of boys with bus claiming to be PDP monitoring group instituted by the TC Chairman Arochukwu (Sampson Orji) attack ASETA & they are arrested by a team of Police, Civil Defence and Army. They are now in police net as 5 matchets were recovered from them.
--All ballot papers at Amaeke 1 Unit 002 Otutu in Arochukwu LGA thumbprinted in advance (for PDP). Team of NSCDC, NPF & Army arrest youth copper at that unit who claims guilty that it was done under duress.
--Ikechukwu Uwadinma (26yrs) & Joshua E. Ezebuiro, both PDP members are in NSCDC net for manhandling a voter Kalu Igwe C. (24yrs) at Urban School Rd. Primary I, Umuahia North. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

2.45 pm:
--Unknown policemen attempted snatching a ballot box at Umuogba Village Square Unit 008, Ward 4 Ngwa Ukwu, Isialangwa North, Abia State but were interrupted by a group of Police monitoring team.
--An ACN agent pours condemned oil on voted ballot box at Ujari unit 002 Amannagwu, Arochukwu & disappeared, but the EO replaces the ballot & voting continues. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Abia ]

4.38 pm: Nigeria's lucrative state races turn violent as gunfire, ballot box thefts plague polls - Gunfire, ballot box thefts and fleeing poll workers plagued Nigeria's state gubernatorial races Tuesday, as the oil-rich nation struggled to vote amid violence after the country's presidential poll earlier this month left at least 500 people dead. The stability of Africa's most populous nation is at stake as it concludes voting that began on April 9 with parliamentary elections. The gubernatorial races, being held in two-thirds of Nigeria's 36 states, draw politicians hungry for control of state budgets that dwarf those of neighboring nations. In the southern Nigerian village of Ikot Efum, witnesses said gunmen stormed a polling station, fired Kalashnikov rifles into the air and stole the yet-to-be-used ballot papers and ballot box before dragging off an election official as well. The two police officers assigned to the polling center carried no weapons of their own and merely sat down after the attack.( To Read More Visit: http://www.dailyjournal.net/view/story/d0646289cf274a31b20bade411c6c0fe/AF--Nigeria-Election/ ). [ info by Jon Gambrell, Associated Press ]

5.15 pm: In Item, Nkporo, Abam and parts of Isiukwuato of Abia State, no voting has taken place there as at 5.15 pm. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Abia ]

5.26 pm: Election peaceful in Ibadan ward 6 north west. [ info by a Nigerian blogger in Ibadan ]

5.48 pm: In Ikola via Ipaja - outskirt of Lagos everything went smoothly. [ info by a Nigerian blogger in Lagos ]

7.12 pm: APGA wins governorship in Aboh Mbaise, Nwangele, Umuaka/Njaba, Owerri West, Owerri Municipal, Oru West and Ideato North South. Ohakim (PDP) wins Ahaiazu LGA. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Imo ]

9.00 pm: CPC winning Nasarawa governorship vote. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Nasarawa ]

9.30 pm: Gunmen invade Obowo collating center in Imo State shooting sporadically and carting away election materials as results were about to be announced. APGA leading in 8 local governments so far released. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Imo ]

Wednesday, April 27

12.10 am: Anambra Central Senatorial District Unconfirmed Results: Akunyili (PDP) 2998; Ngige (ACN) 4199 - 'Ngige is Senator-elect'. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Anambra ]

9.00 am: ACN wins in Lagos, Oyo, Ekiti and Ogun - Details: With results outstanding from only Oshodi/Soomulu in Lagos State, ACN has 1,373,987 votes and PDP second with 251,556 for governorship polls. ACN wins all Lagos House of Assembly seats and governorship polls in Ogun and Oyo; buy default of winning 24 out of 26 seats in the state assembly elections in Ekiti also wins its governorship. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

11.00 am: Imo Gubernatorial Election: State Under Siege As Ohakim Plans To Manipulate Figures From Okigwe - With Rochas Okorocha, the governorship candidate of the All People’s Grand Alliance (APGA) leading comfortably in yesterday’s polls, embattled Governor Ikedi Ohakim of Imo has put the state under siege, using police and the army to harass and intimidate opponents in a bid to steal the election.( To Read More Visit: http://www.saharareporters.com/news-page/imo-gubernatorial-election-state-under-siege-ohakim-plans-manipulate-figures-okigwe ). [ info by SaharaReporters ]

3.00 pm: Confusion in Imo State as contrary election results announcement give APGA 11 LGAs, PDP 11 LAGs and AC 2 LGAs. Tensions high in Imo. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Imo ]

6.00 pm: Imo election cancelled and declared inconclusive by INEC's Returning Officer for Imo gubernatorial election, Prof. Enoch Akobundu. Based on results declared so far, Ikedi Ohakim (PDP) polled 268,927 votes. and Rochas Okorocha 281,297 votes. Tensions high in Imo. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Imo ]

Thursday, April 28

12.03 am:
--Governorship Election: PDP wins Enugu, Ebonyi, Abia, Rivers, Akwa-Ibom, Katsina, Kano, Kebbi, Jigawa, Gombe, and Kwara states; ACN wins Ogun, Lagos and Oyo states; CPC wins Nasarawa; ANPP wins Yobe, Borno; Labour wins Ondo; DPP wins Delta State
--Many members of PDP did not make it back to the state assemblies in the southwest even though they were in the majority in most of the states going into the polls. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

11.15 am - 1.30 pm:
--Vice President Namadi Sambo in company of his wife, Amina arrived at their Kabala Contain 005 Polling Unit, Kaduna at 11:31 am for accreditation and later came back for voting at 1:28 pm. Security operatives at Sambo's polling unit far out numbered the voters; of the 1,148 registered voters, 488 were accredited.
--Voting underway amid tight security in Kaduna and Bauchi states. Early voter turnout in the two states smaller than during the presidential poll. Some Buhari supporters destroyed their voter cards after declared the presidential poll rigged. Buhari says their action is a mistake and is calling on them to come out for the poll, which he says is an opportunity to "disgrace your oppressors who have stolen your votes". [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

2.00 pm: "It is rigging galore here in Bauchi," Yussuf Tuggar, the governorship candidate for the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), told Reuters by telephone. He said armed men in uniform had attempted to steal two of three ballot boxes at his own polling unit and that he had given chase, filming part of the pursuit on his mobile phone. [ Read Full Article at:- http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Tight+security+north+Nigeria+election/4689045/story.html ]

2.10 pm: INEC says Imo to have runoff gubernatorial (governorship) election between Ohakim (PDP), incumbent governor and Rochas Okorocha (APGA). Tensions remain high in Imo. INEC voids elections in Zamfara. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

6.05 pm: In Abia State gubernatorial (governorship) election, T.A. Orji (PDP), the incumbent governor polled 641,158 votes and Reagan Ufomba (APGA) trailing him with 49,421 votes. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Abia ]

Friday, April 29

12.20 pm: Speculations (unconfirmed reports) ripe that incumbent governor won Kaduna polls. INEC guarding results for release at the appropriate time, in order to minimize rumour mongering that may trigger deadly protests. CPC alleges massive rigging in Bauchi and is pushing for the cancellation of Bauchi polls and not just in 2 LGAs as INEC intends doing. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

1.56 pm: INEC cancels elections in two Bauchi councils - The Independent National Electoral Commission has cancelled the governorship and house of assembly elections in the Misau and Ningi local government areas of Bauchi State. A statement signed by the state’s resident electoral commissioner, Iliya Audu, said INEC’s election monitoring team observed several irregularities during the elections in the two councils. According to the statement, there were cases of ballot box snatching and stuffing, and other malpractices. The actions, Mr Audu stated, contravened the Electoral Act. [ Here's Link (URL) To Article:- http://234next.com/csp/cms/sites/Next/Home/5695617-146/story.csp ]

6.00 pm: Soldiers deployed in Owerri, capital city of Imo State as tensions mount from the inconclusive state gubernatorial election. People are angry and want the results of the election announced amidst accusations of widespread vote tampering, rigging and manipulation. Soldiers are in strategic locations in the capital, some stationed to guard government buildings. They are with camp beds indicative of readiness for prolong stay. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Imo ]

9.00 pm: PDP declared winner in Kaduna & Bauchi guber polls - In Kaduna Patrick Ibrahim Yakowa (PDP) polled 1,339,487 votes to beat his closest CPC rival, Haruna Saeed who polled 1,114,987 votes. In Bauchi the results were:- Isa Yuguda (PDP) 771, 503 votes; Yusuf Maitama Tuggar (CPC) 238,462 votes; Baba Tella (ACN) 157,237 votes; Suleiman Nazeef Mohammed Gamawa (ANPP) 102,093 votes. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

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Permalink 12:25:00 am, by admin Email , 924 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: Nigerian News, African News

*Tuesday - Day To Vote Out Corruption in Nigeria Locally

By Ps. Charles O. Okereke
for People's Mandate Movement (PMM)

Nigerians must rise today, April 26 to take the bull by the horns and vote out all corrupt public office seekers in all states. The closest elections to you (governorship/state assembly elections) come up today and this presents a golden opportunity for you to get rid of corruption in your state once and for all. If you fail to do this, your suffering will go on for another four years. It only costs you your vote to enjoy prosperity, security and freedom in your state -your vote is your right and added together is the people's mandate/power. Do not allow a thief that should be hiding like a pantry rat deprive you your mandate and power. No violence please! PMM is completely against any form of violence no matter the circumstances. You are to take records if you witness any electoral malpractice or fraudulent activity. Deploy what you already legally possess - your hands, your legs, your eyes, handsets, digital cameras, Internet, etc. in teaching corrupt politicians the lessons of their lives. Send all documented evidence of electoral fraudulent activities to fraudalert@nigeriapmm.org These may be in the form of write-ups, photos, videos or any combination of the three.

Criminals do not make good leaders, all they want is your money and resources. Do not allow them any leadership or political role in your state or community. If you do this, your state will prosper which will improve your quality of life. People will then talk of the "Nigerian Dream" which is prosperity when criminals are rejected at polls and honest competent men and women voted for.

Accept enticements in cash or kind aimed at buying your vote, but vote for the right candidates. The right candidate will not try to buy your vote, but has a good track record behind him. Look at how people lived their lives in the past to determine what they will do in future as leaders. If they give you money, rice or any commodity for your vote - know they are not good; reject them. If you do nothing, evil will rule Nigeria.

We are all victims of corruption, which has broken homes and ruined lives. We all have our lengthy tales of abuse, injustice, predation and subjugation in Nigeria. Today I received a tears-causing email from one Dr. Mary A.T. Anigbo, an American Nigerian mother on her untold hardship in Nigeria caused by corruption. I share this email with you below.

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[ Below Is A Copy Of Dr. Mary Anigbo's Email ]

Dear Mr. Okereke,

As a citizen of the Sixth Region, mother of children raised half their lives in Nigeria, and formerly Professor at University of Port Harcourt, I salute your efforts to fight Nigerian corruption. I taught at Uniport, worked hard, devoted myself to the progress of my students (psychology, education) and suffered painfully at the hands of corrupt Nigerian university and government officials.

Firstly, arriving in Port Harcourt expecting to be taken to the house that was part of my contract's fringe benefits, I was not met at the airport - 8 p.m. with three kids - had to find a taxi on my own, only to learn that there was no place for us!! Apparently, money exchaged hands and my house was assigned to somebody else. Then, I found that my monthly pay was at first "delayed" and finally not paid at all!! The bursar took the money and left for Europe!! I finally left and returned to the U.S. - not only because of our suffering, but also because half the time the teachers at my children's schools were busy making money somewhere, and I was forced to fly to the States to buy books so that I could homeschool them. By the time I left I had decided that enough was enough!!

I want you/all to know that my family spent a lot of money tracing our roots and learned that we are of Yoruba heritage. I learned to love Nigeria in spite of the insidious , pervasive corruption. I would return tomorrow if opportunity permitted - but only if I had a return ticket so that I could escape the corruption if necessary.

Nigerians don't seem to understand that it is a giant in the Black World. More of us are in Nigeria than any other place on earth!! Yet Nigerians behave like clowns, casting their pearls to swine and giving up their place in the sun for a few trinkets and a big car. Those of us living in the Sixth Region feel ashamed and, yes, a little angry and disgusted that Nigeria can't seem to get itself together. The world looks at Nigeria's foolishness and ALL OF US are treated with scorn and disrespect as extensions of Nigeria.

Again, I salute you sir. I pray that your efforts will be successful.

Respectfully,

Mary A.T. Anigbo, Ph.D
( Email: jide70@hotmail.com )

_______________________________________

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Signed
People's Servant (Ps.) Charles O. Okereke
for People's Mandate Movement (PMM)
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04/16/11

Permalink 02:34:00 pm, by admin Email , 1239 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News

*Nigeria Presidential Election Results Live Report

By Masterweb News Desk

[ Time in Nigerian Time ] - Election results update from the general public in Nigeria (may be truthful, biased or false) and The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) annoucements.

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Saturday, April 16, 2011 ( Scroll down for Sunday, April 17 )

6.30 pm: Results so far in Kano has CPC winning masively. In one polling unit CPC had 607 votes to PDP's 15. In another CPC had 2,260 to PDP's 129. There is hope for CPC in Kano. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Kano ]

7.30 pm: PDP won Tinubu's ward in Lagos with 82 voles, trailed by ACN with 80 votes. CPC came third with 27 votes. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Lagos ]

8.00 pm: Jonathan (PDP) leads in early results in Ogun State with Ribadu (ACN) in second place. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

8.30 pm: Buhari (CPC) winning most of the north and Jonathan (PDP) winning most of the south. Buhari winning margin in the north higher than that of Jonathan in the south. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

8.40 pm: Buhari (CPC) leads in all the seven polling units in Kano government house, scoring 2,478 votes, ANPP trailing with 456 votes, PDP coming third with 234 votes and ACN fourth with 41 votes. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Kano ]

9.15 pm: Jonathan (PDP) wins 413 of the 424 votes cast at his Otuabula ward. Buhari (CPC) wins his local ward with 494 votes - the other results of the ward were:- ANPP: 4 votes; BNPP: 3 votes; ACN: 2 votes; ADC: 1 vote; PDP: 0 vote. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

9.45 pm: Fashola (ACN) loses ward to Jonathan (PDP) and Buhari (CPC). In his ward Jonathan came in first with 141 votes; followed by Buhari with 90 votes and in third place Ribadu (ACN) with 77 votes. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

10.30 pm: Namadi Sambo loses polling unit - PDP lost Sambo's Kabala polling unit in Kaduna State to Buhari (CPC) that amassed 435 votes to PDP's 208 votes. All the other parties had a total of 13 votes. CPC vice presidential candidate, Pastor Tunde Bakare, loses at his Opebi Polling Unit, CPC getting 91 votes and PDP 181 votes.[ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

11.00 pm: Ribadu (ACN) loses polling unit to Buhari - ACN lost Ribadu's polling unit in Adamawa State to Buhari (CPC) that amassed 250 votes to ACN's 85 votes. PDP came in third with 64 votes. [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

Sunday, April 17, 2011

12.05 am: Early results suggest close election that may lead to a run-off election between Jonathan (PDP) and Buhari (CPC). [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

1.30 am: Jonathan (PDP) sweeps Lagos and Ogun states. In 10 polling units in Lagos, Ogba and Ifako-Ijaiye PDP got 1161 votes, ACN 363 votes and CPC 259 votes. Buhari wins Kano, Nasarawa, Adamawa, Bauch, Katsina, Niger, Zamfara and Kebbi states. Winner of Sokoto State remains unclear. In polling booth in Giginyu ward in Nassarawa local government of Kano State, home of Shekarau, Buhari amassed 231 votes, PDP 67 votes, ANPP 67 votes and ACN 8 votes.[ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

6.30 am: Tensions high in the north amongst Buhari's supporters of plans to rig the vote count. Uncomfirmed reports by SaharaReporters claim PDP is having a field day rigging the presidential polls ( refer to: http://saharareporters.com/news-page/messy-presidential-elections-jonathan%E2%80%99s-team-unleashes-rigging-spree ). [ info by a citizen reporter in Nigeria ]

7.45 am: Notwithstanding early results released so far from a fraction of polling units nationwide, the picture of the margin of victory by each candidate would be clearer in the afternoon today, when more figures would have been released by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). By all indications, it was a close vote that would be decided by the margin of victory in the north for Buhari and the margin in the south for Jonathan, and the extent of votes for each candidate in his opponent's winning section of the country. This would determine if there is an outright winner or a run-off election to decide a winner. [ info by an independent observer ]

4.00 pm: Reuters tally from votes counted so far (mainly in the south), shows Jonathan won enough votes that may avoid a run-off election - that is if he also wins majority of the overall votes cast nationwide. Under the constitution, the winner of a presidential election must have a simple majority as well as 25 % of the votes in two thirds of the states. According to Reuters tally, Jonathan has already won 25 % of the votes in 24 states (17 in the South and 7 in the North). The only way there would be run-off election is if Buhari has majority of the overall votes cast nationwide.

6.00 pm: Below Are Some INEC Official Results:

SOUTH - [ Abia: PDP 117,5954; ACN 4156; CPC 3608; ANPP 1418 ] - [ Abuja (FCT): PDP 253,444; CPC 131,576 ] - [ Ogun State: PDP 309,177; ACN 199,555; CPC 17,654 ] - [ Enugu State: PDP 882,144; CPC 3753; ACN 1,755; ANPP 1,111; Fresh 228 ]

NORTH - [ Kano State: CPC 1,624,543 votes; ANPP 526,310 votes; PDP 440,665 votes; ACN 42,355 votes. ]- [ Abuja (FCT): PDP 253,444; CPC 131,576. ] - [ Sokoto: CPC 540,759; PDP 309, 057 ] - [ Katsina: CPC 1,154,000; PDP 424,527 ] - [ Kaduna: CPC 1,334,244; PDP 1,190,129 ] - [ Kebbi: CPC, 501,453; PDP 369,198 ] - [ Bauchi: CPC 1,315,209; PDP 258,404 ] - [ Jigawa: CPC 663,994; PDP 491,252 ] - [ Nasarawa: CPC 278,390; PDP 40,897 ]

9.00 pm: Results announced by Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) in the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT)gave PDP a total of 22,496,157 votes; CPC 12,214,529 votes; ANPP 917,365 votes; and ACN 2,088,791 votes. Total valid votes are 37,716,842 out of 73 million registered voters, representing 51.7% per voter turn-out.

Below is summary of the results:-

2011 Presidential Election Results

Monday, April 18, 2011

3.00 am: Heavy violence in Kaduna with possible spill-over to other areas. WAEC exam sitting affected in Kaduna. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Kaduna ]

10.00 am: Violence spreads to most of Muslim northern Nigeria, including Kano and Zaria. Government and security officials meet in Abuja to discuss the post-election riots. [ info by a Nigerian reporter in Kaduna ]

1.00 pm: Mark Asu-Obi, an Associated Press reporter describes his harrowing situation in Kano trapped inside his Kano home with his wife and three children. In Asu-Obi's words: "What I am looking for now is rescue, the mob is still outside. I need rescue. There are hoodlums all over the place. It's not just my place that they are attacking. I am not a politician. I am an independent observer."

6.00 pm: Buhari lodges formal complaint over election results - Speaking on Aljazeera, Monday, in reaction to questions on the rising protest and violence in the North where he has a large number of supporters, Buhari said the announced results were false and that he had laid his complaints before the electoral body. He said the body has agreed to check the score sheets manually and compare with the results they inputed to their electronic system. [ info by 234next.com Link: http://234next.com/csp/cms/sites/Next/Home/5690793-146/story.csp ]

8.32 pm: Jega declares Jonathan winner of presidential election - Chairman of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Attahiru Jega at 8:32 pm today declared the presidential candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), President Goodluck Jonathan winner of Saturday’s presidential election. According to Jega, Jonathan amassed a total of 22, 495, 187 votes, Muhammadu Buhari of Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) 12, 214,853 votes, Nuhu Ribadu of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) 2,790,151 votes and Ibrahim Shekarau of All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) 917,012 votes. Only the PDP representative signed the final results as declared by Prof. Attahiru Jega.

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Huge crowd trail Buhari during a campaign rally

Photo Above: Huge crowd trail Buhari during a campaign rally - displaying "Power to the people" sign which is part of PMM logo (photo insert).

Goodluck Jonathan waves to the crowd on arrival at a campaign rally in Kano

Photo Above: President Goodluck Jonathan waves to the crowd on arrival at a campaign rally in Kano, northern Nigeria, March 16, 2011.

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Permalink 12:50:00 am, by admin Email , 234 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News

*Nigerians - Troop Out And Vote For Buhari Today

By By People's Mandate Movement (PMM)

RISE NIGERIA, RISE TODAY APRIL 16

Rise Nigeria, Rise My People!! Nigerians must rise today, Saturday, April 16. Nigerians must take the bull by the horns. Nigerians must vote in mass. Take your destiny in your hands. Vote out evil and reclaim your country. If you do nothing, evil will rule Nigeria. Nothing should scare you this time around and steal your votes.

Let criminal politicians import arms for their thugs - all you need to offset and shame them out of office, are what you already legally have -your hands, your legs, your eyes, handsets, digital cameras, Internet, etc.

Troop out and vote for Buhari. Let them know that power belongs to you and not to imposters. We must vote for change by voting Buhari/Bakare ticket. Mobilize Nigerians for a massive vote for the ticket. Buhari must win today. Let his win be like an earthquake that will rock, jilt and shake the whole nation to a revolutionary change.

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Huge crowd trail Buhari during a campaign rally

Photo Above: Huge crowd trail Buhari during a campaign rally - displaying "Power to the people" sign which is part of PMM logo (photo insert).

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04/15/11

Permalink 03:49:11 pm, by admin Email , 210 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News
*Vote Buhari For President of Nigeria

By By People's Mandate Movement (PMM)

PRESS RELEASE - For Immediate Release

Huge crowd trail Buhari during a campaign rally

Photo Above: Huge crowd trail Buhari during a campaign rally - displaying "Power to the people" sign which is part of PMM logo (photo insert).

Great Nigerians, The D day is Saturday, April 16 when we must vote Buhari president of Nigeria. If we do nothing, evil will rule Nigeria. If we do not act on Saturday, we should no longer complain about the bad situation in Nigeria. We must vote for change by voting Buhari/Bakare ticket. Vote and get others to vote for the ticket. The die is cast - start mobilizing Nigerians for a massive vote for Buhari on Saturday. Let his win be like an earthquake that will rock, jilt and shake the whole nation to a revolutionary change. Let the cry of.... ....Click here to read full Press Release

Muhammadu Buhari and Pastor Tunde Bakare

Photo Above: Muhammadu Buhari -Left, Pastor Tunde Bakare -Right

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04/14/11

Permalink 04:40:00 pm, by martins, 3960 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News

*Buhari/Bakare for President of Nigeria

By Martins Tokode

If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin – Charles Darwin Thank you all for your response to my recent piece on the political situation in Nigeria.

Clearly the most pressing problem that confronts us today as a nation is corruption and indiscipline. We are not under the siege of natural disasters. But that is how far goodluck can carry us. We need to do the rest ourselves; otherwise we would ever remain backward as a nation. Complex problems always have an epicentre. An attack on a complex problem at the epicentre usually resolves the complexities to manageable chunks that can easily be tackled.

Corruption and indiscipline represent the banes of our socioeconomic disasters. We now have very complicated problems that we do not know where to start from. Corruption is in various forms and it manifests in many ways. I neither suggest that it can easily or quickly be eradicated nor suggest that a single person has all the answers to the problem, but we have to start from somewhere. I am not saying these men are perfect for there is no perfect human being. Nigerians know those who are more suited to fight the monster of corruption that besieges us.

The effects of corruption are very obvious for all to see. Many Nigerians are brutalized and dehumanised with associated loss of honour and dignity as they struggle with realities of live below poverty line in their homeland. Those who emigrated in the hope of finding better living have suddenly realised that hope does not always lie in a foreign land. Graduates of first class mental quality have suddenly found themselves on the receiving end of racial discrimination. Many have turned to menial jobs unfit for the unschooled in their native land. The hope of recovery for millions of Nigerians seems very slim. Many are permanently sequestrated in foreign land unable to visit their native home because of shame of unrealised dreams. The groans of Nigerians reach high heavens as they labour under the perplexity and awe unleashed on them by the coalition of the powers that be. ( Continues below….. )

General Muhammadu Buhari

Photo Above: VENUE: Abuja, DATE: December 9, 2010 - Buhari displays a clenched fist (PMM symbol) during his declaration of his intention to stand for the 2011 presidential election.

Based on this monster called corruption, the lots of Nigerians have diminished over the years. In 1964, over 84 per cent of the Nigerian population was living above poverty line. Since then, the poverty rate has assumed an upward trend, from 28.1 per cent in 1980 to 46.3 percent in 1995 to 65.5% (67.1 million of the population) in 1996. The governor of Enugu state, on October 3rd 2003, put the figure of Nigerians living below poverty line at 87% (about 93 millions of the estimated 120 million). On 4th June 2010, the minister of finance confessed that more than 50% of Nigerians now live below poverty line. His estimated unemployment rate was 19.7% and according to him, more than 50% of Nigerians between 15 – 25 years in cities were unemployed. The gross under-estimation of these figures has been decried by Nigerians.

Other figures of national wellbeing tell dismal stories: Infant mortality rate in Nigeria was 109.5 for live births and 187.5 for under-fives in 2009. Nigeria was in the 183 position out of the 195 countries, lagging behind Sri Lanka, Trinidad and Tobago, Gambia, Cameron etc. Nigeria contributes 2% of the world population but donates 10% of world maternal deaths. The maternal mortality rose from 473.4 in 1990 to 608.3 in 2008. Between 1.06 and 1.63 million Nigerian women will suffer disability due to complications of pregnancy and labour. The high maternal morbidity and mortality rates in Nigeria have been attributed to poor governance by the experts.

On 6th December 2010, the zonal commander of Federal Road Safety Commission for Lagos and Ogun states said Nigeria looses a crude estimate of N456 billion ($3 billions) to road traffic accidents per annum. The Executive director, Accident prevention and rescue initiative (APRI) Abuja, Nigeria said a crude estimate of more than 35,000 Nigerians die of road traffic accidents annually (an incredible under-estimation). The life expectancy of Nigerians has deteriorated from 51.01 years in 2003 to 47.56 years in 2011. Based on these figures, Nigeria position shifted from 192 in 2003 to 219 in 2011 on world ranking. Remember these figures are far below the realities on ground.

A few Nigerians have taken over the commonwealth of more than 150 million people. Because of exorbitant running cost of the government and money sharing culture of politicians, very little money is allocated to infrastructure development, and the little that is allocated leaked out through bribery and contract inflation. Nigerians are dying on the roads because of bad roads consequent on poorly executed or unexecuted road projects. Many Nigerians die easily of curable and preventable diseases. Poor funding of health centres leads to lack of diagnostic and treatment facilities. Inadequate and uncoordinated efforts and the syndrome of get rich quick make Nigeria a dumping ground for fake drugs, substandard automobile tyres and parts etc. Poor funding of Universities leads to poorly educated professionals with below par skills. Inadequate funding of education results to a situation where our graduates are devoid of situated skills and are not fit for purpose. Those who have attended schools that blow the trumpet of entrepreneurial education merely graduated without creativity and inventive skills. The curriculum was designed such that it is inadequate to inculcate the skills of abstract thoughts, inventiveness and creativity in the students. Because our schools merely specialise in producing graduates unfit for modern economy, Nigeria has to rely on foreign brains for the establishment and the management of our industries. Recently many industries have relocated out of the country because of hostile economic environment. The brains behind institutions that are functioning in Nigeria today are not even Nigerians.

A corrupt nation like Nigeria is treated like a person with bad credit rating. A bad credit rating person gets loans but at very high rates. The high insurance premiums on employees, equipments and loans as well as the money used to bribe corrupt politicians by foreign companies are passed on to the consumers (i.e. Nigerians). For instance, the telephone tariff in Nigeria is one of the highest in the world. Modern economy is technologically driven; the technology that is not within the reach of Nigerian native level of industrialization. These modern equipments are very expensive even for rich countries of the world. Most of the time, these equipments are leased out by the manufacturers, who maintain them and replace them when necessary. The same arrangement cannot operate in Nigeria because of insecurity and corruption. Lack of these equipments contributes to the underperformance of our industries, schools and hospitals. How many of our Universities have electron microscopes or spectrometers? If they don’t, what is the worth of their PhD degrees in cell biology and chemistry? This may also be part of the reasons why power project is very expensive in Nigeria aside from the inflation by the politicians. Now consider a situation where there is peace in Nigeria and the corruption is low, using this arrangement being enjoyed by developed nations, our hospitals can be better equipped to treat our citizens and our schools can be better equipped to train our youths. ( Continues below….. )

CPC Flag

Photo Above: CPC Flag - *Muhammadu Buhari is presidential candidate of Congress for Progressive Change (CPC).

The indiscipline in our society has no limit. Teachers get drunk and staggered to the classrooms anytime they fancy. Many teachers are not found in school because they have gone in search of extra income to prop up their inadequate salaries. Examination processes are openly corrupted by the coalition of students, teachers and the examiners. Nigerian youths are being modelled by people who should never smell the walls of our schools. Teachers have sex with students and extort money from them in exchange for what they are being paid to do. Our youths have completely lost direction. Our schools have become abattoirs where students slaughter themselves without challenge. The smell of obscene acts in our schools is unimaginable. Our schools are now raising armed robbers, political touts, 491 experts and prostitutes. Politicians seduce the girls in our higher institutions with treasury money that rightly belongs to them in exchange for sex.

Many have graduated with brainwashed mentality rather than informed faculty typical of University graduates. They are cheap prey to religious extremism and hooliganism. The fire of intellectualism has being extinguished from our top Universities. Instead of vibrant, articulate, well read and well informed students with structured mentality that used to emanate from our Universities, our universities now churn out stupid, apathetic, brainwashed graduates fatigued by years of drinking religious orthodoxy. It is so sad. The minds of Nigerian youths are being cultivated with notes formed 20 years before. By the time an average student graduates from our Universities, his mind lag behinds his counterparts in the civilised world by almost 50 years. How can the certificates carried by those graduates of our schools be accepted for employment in civilised world?

Because the state has failed Nigerians on several fronts, many have turned to God in religious institutions. But evidence shows that their socioeconomic salvation may not be in the religious houses. The problems of many are not solved but they kept going for doses of religious opium to enable them cope with realities of Nigerian society. Many have merely become dependent on religious leaders without any personal initiatives and skills at handling the challenges of real life. Economic hardship has driven many men of the cloth to do what is contrary to the law of humanity and the tenets of their religion. The voice of the stomach of many has been louder than thus saith the Lord from above. Many have exploited the large drift to religious houses for gains. What the secular training of many cannot fetch them through the front door of keen competition and sound thinking are now easily available through the back door of religious manipulation and exploitation. We now coerce and intimidate the weak among us into submitting their meagre income for the purpose of building empire and flying in the air. I am not against Christianity; I am a Christian myself but I do not allow religious sentiments to prevent me from following the path of truth. I am yet to see our own type of ecclesiastical practice elsewhere, not even in the days old.

Salvation is now for sale. Discipleship that Jesus and the apostles gave free to their followers now needs to be purchased. The all night meetings that Jesus and the early apostles had with the people without payment are now subject to charges payable at the gate. Christianity has become a pay-as-you go enterprise. The benevolent deeds of God are now stratified by greedy pastors with fees attached to each type of miracle. Many politicians have found haven in our churches in exchange for their loyalty and continuous donation of money stolen from national treasury. Jailed politicians are welcomed back into the society from prisons with societal thanksgiving conducted by men who are supposed to sanitise the society. As politicians are lifting one hand up to worship on our camp grounds, they are using the other to loot the national treasury. The church in Nigeria is practising unholy wealth conversion.

Unlike the ancient prophets and the apostles who spoke openly against the injustice and corruption of their days, our men of God in Nigeria have shut up their bowels of mercy and refused to plead the course of the underprivileged. They are not touched by the wailings and the pains of the widows, the widowers and the orphans who have died in our hospitals, on our roads, in their homes due to generator exploitations, armed robbery, and other causes that may be linked directly or indirectly to corruption. They speak not against the government that rob and trample on the wounds of Nigerians. Politicians are donating to them stolen money to occupy front seats at meetings and crusades. Where are we going! Nigerians are besieged everyday as they are bombarded by the ecclesiastical artilleries of sham miracles and prophesy from the media outlets meant to lure them into religious exploitation. ( Continues below….. )

Map of Nigeria

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

Our children are now branded witches and wizards as these greedy pastors extort money from their parents in the name of deliverance. Ecclesiastical missiles are unleashed on Nigerians on Sundays to intimidate and coerce them into submitting to man-made ordinances poorly constructed by ignorant pastors. Many so called men of God have become ecclesiastical snipers as they set out from Nigeria hopping from one Western country to the other leeching the Nigerians in Diaspora. To these migrant pastors, the problems that Nigerians face are easily attributed to witches and wizards that have become international couriers transferring their files from one nation to the other.

The basic truth is that the poverty and suffering of Nigerians is the wealth of the church. Can you tell an average British to come to church for miracles of healing or prosperity when they have responsible leaders who take care of their people? Can you summon the Germans to hopeless all night prayer meeting because of accidents on the roads when they have intelligent leaders who can use laws and training to control the driving behaviours of the citizens? The socioeconomic afflictions have driven many Nigerians to endure futile all-night meetings under hostile weather in desolate camps and mountains to the joy and festivity of mosquitoes. When they come down with diseases and severe malaria, they reassure them that the devil is on reprisal mission. This represent one of the reasons why many men of God are mute about the political corruption in Nigeria and many are against the political inclination of some men of God. If our nation is socioeconomically better and not many people go to church in search of miracles, how do our pastors in Nigeria extort money from them? This position is not general to all men of God for quite a number of pastors are still decent and committed to divine mandate.

If Pastor Bakare wants wealth, it is far easier for him to attain wealth through pastoral work. I have never seen Pastor Bakare face to face and I don’t go to his church. But I believe that he is one of the credible pastors in Nigeria that speak the truth of the bible. Some people castigate him because of his mistakes but tell me a man that is perfect. A man should be rated based on his principles and not because of his mistakes. It is safer for him to get rich and ride jet by exploiting the congregation in the quietness of his church environment than to risk the bullets of assassins while demonstrating on the road or on a campaign podium. But he knows better. He knows that prosperity does not come by donating money in the churches and intelligence does not come by bathing in the anointing oil.

Some people say he is leaving his flock; but Jesus said it is better for him to leave his flock. Parental anxiety during separation from children is nothing but a marker of prior poor parenting and control instinct. In many churches in Nigeria today, the members cannot function without the leader. The church is structured around a single man: one man show. He is the only lion that roars. Leaders raise leaders, but managers manage people. Under managers people remain who they are whereas leaders make men into leaders. That is what Jesus did. Leaders who have done descent work should not be afraid to leave his followers. Jesus was never afraid of leaving his disciples.

If we accept that our major problem is corruption, then any government that is apathetic towards this national malady does ordinary Nigerians a great disservice. The lack of political will to tackle corruption by the ruling party is disturbing. Since the inception of this administration, many corrupt politicians are walking free on our streets and even contesting for political offices. The politicians in the ruling party demonstrated their no mercy stance for Nigerians when they celebrated the release of a corrupt politician from the prison recently. It is very sad that these men are not touched by the worries of Nigerians; they are less concerned about the cries of the widows and widowers and the orphans of those who lost their lives of causes that could be traced to corrupt practices. Nigerians buy fake electronic products from India, China and Japan with hard earned money. Money is siphoned from poor Nigerians to enrich our politicians and these foreign countries and create employment for their citizens and tax for their government. We need government of the poor in Nigeria! ( Continues below..... )

Muhammadu Buhari

Photo Above: Muhammadu Buhari during an interview with Reuters at a private residence in Lagos, Nigeria, February 19, 2011.

But in all these hope is not lost for Nigeria and Nigerians. The mother Nigeria though emaciated and haggard from years of neglect can still be nourished; milk of prosperity can still flow from her breasts to nourish her children– Nigerians. Recent economic speculation suggests a favourable economic future for certain African countries including Nigeria. It is believed that the recent global economic recession did not affect African nations as much as the Western World had anticipated. Consequently, the investors are considered well disposed to Africa continent. If this conjecture is correct, it is believed that African continent may be the next economic power house.

But any nation that will partake of what is coming needs to prepare well ahead. This will not come by prayers alone but by active involvement of the citizens in the government of the day. This is where your role comes into the political equation of Nigeria at this crucial time.

The youths in Nigeria today stand on the threshold of history. What they do will dictate the outlook of Nigeria in the next few years. The youths constitute the largest percentage of the eligible voters in Nigeria today. They are likely to live longer to enjoy the rewards of their efforts of today or reward of apathy and inactivity in matters of governance. You are the ones who can make revolution happen. You are the ones who can turn around the bad stories of Nigerians. You are the ones who own the power to say enough is enough; we are not prepared to suffer anyone. You are the ones who can make Nigeria a delightsome land, a land of that flows in abundance where hunger will become a tale. You are the ones who can cause that revolution that will put Nigeria in its rightful position in the comity of nations.

If you do it, the chance is high that you will spend your days in plenty and unemployment will be a forgotten dirge in the land. I salute your creative ingenuity that has hitherto been misused; turn the creative virtue of 419 into mechanism to rid our nation of corrupt politicians. Our unfinished business of chasing away corruption from Nigeria must be accomplished. Say it to yourself many times until it becomes a passion. Let the passion propels you to convert it into a slogan. Blow the trumpet of the slogan in the cities, towns, your classrooms, your hostels; say we shall finish the unfinished business to your friend, your family, your employer, your teacher, your pastor, your imam, etc. Let the sister say it to the brother, father to the daughter, mother to the son; noise it in the market places and in the cinema houses. Say it aloud, Nigeria must be delivered from corruption. Send it around in text messages and forward it as emails to your loved ones.

Let the revolution begin now. Not like the revolution in the northern Africa; but quite and intelligent revolution. Note that there is a close link between economic decline and civil war. Shun hooliganism; you are too valuable to be used as instruments of electoral manipulation. But in the quietness of your heart and resolve in your soul, say no to corrupt politicians. How will this happen. It will take only your commitment, your resolve to despise the sun, your determination to disdain the rain, your patience to ensure that you cast your vote intelligently. Shun popular opinion, be a reasonable person, do not be emotional, your life is not about pampering the emotion of somebody else or considering the quiet demeanour of a politician mistakenly taken for humility and uprightness.

Boldly and courageously put your fingers on the appropriates sites of the ballot papers for the progressives. Vote for credible people with past record of courage, resolve, and love of their father land even to the near shedding of their blood. Do not be deceived by the unending promises of power supply; if it has not happened in the last 12 years, 4 years is unlikely to make a huge difference. The issue of power in Nigeria needs a man who is bold and courageous. Good will is not enough and good luck is inadequate. Between the promises of power to its actualisation, there are many obstacles on the way. A man that is completely sandwiched among corrupt politicians is unlikely to achieve despite his good intentions. Nigerians need more than good intentions. We need a leader who can think straight, talk straight and is not afraid of intimidation. Nigerians need men who do what they talk.

The age of laissez-faire leadership is gone; Nigerians need a leader who will take the bull by the horn. How will a passive man overcome the obstacles placed before power project by the generator dealers and importers? How will he, with his passive posture and tolerant for corruption, dissuade his corrupt colleagues from collecting bribes from generator manufacturers and dealers to cripple the power project? How will he withstand the foreign imperial powers that get taxes from generator export to Nigeria? How will he persuade the government of the countries of generator manufacturers to cope with unemployment that will result from loosing electric generator market in Nigeria?

This will only take a man of zero tolerance for corruption. It is only a man who loves Nigerians and completely sold out to them that can do this. One may say none of the aspirants that we have is qualify; but the cure of pollution is dilution, it is not pollution. It is only a fool that continues doing the same thing and expects different results. We have cast our net on the left side for 12 years without end to our woes. It is time to try the right side. Use your votes to say no to corruption, corrupt party and politicians. Use your vote to cause revolution in Nigeria.

Spread this message around; send it to as many people as you know; let the revolution begins with you. We should ride above ethnic and religious sentiments and let us give the job to the people who appear more capable to do it. If Efik or Tapa man appears more suitable I will still be writing what I am writing in his favour. Not every man is well suited to solve a particular problem. Let us give the power to those who can solve our most pressing problem - corruption. If they fail us again, we would kick them out and look for someone else. We have tried the ruling party long enough.

May God bless you and may God bless Nigeria.

Martins Tokode can be reached at martins_tokode@rocketmail.com

Muhammadu Buhari

Photo Above: Muhammadu Buhari

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Muhammadu Buhari and Pastor Tunde Bakare

Photo Above: Muhammadu Buhari -Left, Pastor Tunde Bakare -Right

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03/30/11

Permalink 08:56:00 am, by aviationreport, 307 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News, African News

*Nigeria: Bai Koroma Visits Arik Air Facility

By Nosa Osula-Aituamen

President Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra Leone visited Arik Air Aviation Centre at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Ikeja, Lagos to acquaint himself with operations of the airline. President Koroma, who was on a two-day visit to Nigeria, was received by the top management of the airline led by the Managing Director, Mr. Chris Ndulue.

The Sierra Leonean President was conducted round the facilities at Arik Air including the airline’s state-of-art Operations Control Centre (OCC) and the maintenance hangar. He expressed satisfaction with the facilities in place at the airline’s headquarters. ( Continues below….. )

A Landing Arik Plane

Photo Above: A Landing Arik Plane

Speaking with journalists shortly after the departure of President Koroma, Ndulue said the visit was to cement the existing relationship between the airline and the Sierra Leonean government.

He disclosed that Arik Air has entered into a joint venture agreement with the government of Sierra Leone to incorporate an airline, Leone Airways which will be the country’s national carrier.

Ndulue elaborated on the visit: “President Koroma came on a courtesy visit to Arik headquarters so he can familiarize himself with our operational base. He was very impressed with what he saw.” ( Continues below..... )

Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos

Photo Above: Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, Nigeria.

He stated that the new Leone Air will operate the Freetown to London route and that structures are being put in place to enable the new airline start operations soon.

Arik Air, according to Ndulue, is not new to the government and people of Sierra Leone as the airline has been operating flights between Lagos and Freetown since June 2009. He therefore sees the new joint venture as a vote confidence in the airline.

Nosa Osula-Aituamen (Aviationreport)

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