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04/26/11

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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People's Servant Charles O. Okereke

Photo Above: People's Servant (Ps.) Charles O. Okereke

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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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03/29/11

Permalink 11:11:00 am, by lateef lawal, 520 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News

*Nigeria: AON To Hold Service Providers Responsible For Negligence

By Lateef Lawal

Members of the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) will henceforth hold service providers responsible for any damage to their aircraft as a result of culpable negligence by any of the agencies. According to the Assistant Secretary General of AON, Alhaji Mohammed Tukur, the position of the association was predicated on the nonchalant attitude of some service providers in living up to their responsibilities in ensuring adequate security and safety measures at the nation's airports.

He said though members of AON were not shying away from the fact that they were owing some of the agencies appreciable level of old debts, some of the service providers have not been living up to their statutory responsibilities to airlines. Tukur noted that on several occasions, aircraft of member airlines had suffered losses due to bird strikes and intrusion into the sterile areas of airports damaging aircraft on the ramp without any compensation and that the airlines would no longer take it as business as usual. ( Continues below..... )

Airborne Plane

Photo Above: An Airborne Plane

He gave as example, the incident last year when a man drove his car into the sterile area of an airport damaging an aircraft on the ramp, the several incidents of bird strikes which affected many of the airlines and the recent incident in which due to lack of perimeter fence, goats rammed into a chartered aircraft carrying some top politicians.

The AON Assistant Scribe said if the government could not assist the airlines with its much touted financial bail-out for the airlines over a year after the announcement and the Minister of Aviation was not even doing anything positive on the bail out, the association would lose confidence in getting any reprieve under the present administration.

Nevertheless, Tukur assured that domestic airlines were ready to continue to service their historical debts as agreed earlier with the Minister of Aviation, but any accident or incident traceable to the fault of any service provider would no longer be treated with kid glove, as indicted service providers would be made to pay for such loss(es) incurred by any of the member airlines. ( Continues below..... )

An airborne Dana plane

Photo Above: An airborne Dana plane

Meanwhile, Alhaji Tukur has enjoined managements of the various domestic carriers to be wry of some unscrupulous who have been making traveling difficult for passengers by creating artificial scarcity of seats onboard aircraft and attendant extortion through illegal hike in air fares.

He said for example there had been complaints by some passengers of purchasing tickets that officially cost N17,000 for between N20,000 and N26,000 only to get onboard to find out that the plane was not full as claimed by the supposed official(s).

He also enjoined passengers to desist from patronising those staff that usually accost and sell tickets to them off the counter and always ensure that all their transactions are made from the officially designated ticket sale counter of airline of their choice.

Lateef Lawal (NigerianAviationNews)

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03/28/11

Permalink 04:38:00 am, by ifeatuagbu, 1331 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, Nigerian News, South East News
*Nigerians Deserve Quality Education

By Ifeatu Agbu

There is no disputing the fact that education is the key to any country’s significant development. In spite of this, however, many developing countries fail to give priority to the sector. Policy makers in these countries know too well that knowledge is the fuel that fires the engine of growth. It is for this reason that UNICEF recommends that developing countries should appropriate 26 per cent of their annual budget to the education sector. Unfortunately, this has been largely ignored by most of these governments, including Nigeria.

The situation in Nigeria is particularly worrisome because one would expect that a nation with vast oil wealth should use a substantial part of its resources to develop its human capital. It is indeed ironic that Nigeria, despite her oil wealth is sharing the dark basement with highly illiterate societies. A recent Global Monitoring Report on education shows that Nigeria is one of only 10 countries that account for 72 per cent of the global total number of 796 million illiterate adults. It is also one of the 15 countries with more than half of the world’s 23.6 million out-of-school children.

Owing to the rot in our educational system, many young Nigerians are now queuing up in foreign embassies to obtain visas to study abroad, even in fellow African countries like Ghana and South Africa, where the learning conditions are better. Unfortunately, the government appears to be nibbling at the problem rather than tackling it holistically. Just recently, the Federal Government approved nine new federal universities to bring the total of universities in the country to 117. Ordinarily, one would say the more the merrier. But that is not the case here, as the problem of funding the universities and education generally is still largely unaddressed. ( Continues below….. )

Map of Nigeria

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

Logically, there are chances that the new universities would face the same financial predicament as the ones before them. So, increasing the number of universities may not solve any problems for the beleaguered education system. Even those in the system acknowledge this. The Vice-chancellor of Oshun State University, Professor Sola Akinrinade, agrees that new universities would expand access to higher education but reasoned that "the dearth of qualified lecturers and other challenges facing university education ought to have been resolved before the creation of new universities."

The Minister of Education, Ruqqayatu Rufai has a ready explanation. She said that the decision of the Federal Government to establish the universities was informed by the desire to provide access to university education to a larger number of qualified candidates who are annually stranded due to lack of carrying capacity by the existing universities.

As if to buttress this point, the Registrar of the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board, JAMB, Prof. ‘Dibu Ojerinde, said that only 16 per cent of 1.4 million candidates seeking admission in 2011 can be offered placements because of low carrying capacity of the universities. “We are worried. There are children who want to go to university, but cannot go because the carrying capacity is defined by National Universities Commission (NUC), considering personnel, infrastructure, etc”. He gave a graphic example with the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, where 7,000 candidates qualified to study medicine but it had only 150 slots.

The need for more universities notwithstanding, the President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), Professor Ukachukwu Awuzie frowns at the rush to set up new ones. He warned that establishing new universities without commensurate funding would be counter-productive and argued that existing universities could have been expanded to achieve the same objective.

Without exception, all the existing public universities run by the Federal and state governments are in dire financial straits. Mr. Ayo Olowe, the chairman of ASUU, University of Lagos chapter, said that the fund allocated to education is too small for the country to make meaningful progress in the sector. "In a situation whereby they (FG) are spending less than two per cent of the national budget on education, as opposed to UNESCO's standard of 26 per cent; portrays the government as unserious," he said. ( Continues below..... )

Members ASUU protesting in Enugu, Enugu State, Nigeria in September this year.

Photo Above: Members of Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) protesting in Enugu, Enugu State, Nigeria in September last year (2010). Click For Enlarged Photo

The appalling situation in our universities is all too obvious and it shows in the acute shortage of lecture halls, laboratories, libraries, and hostel accommodation. The quality of teaching in the universities is equally below standard. This is even made worse by the influx of unserious lecturers into the academia. Consequently, not one university in Nigeria is among the top 50 universities in Africa, and none is ranked among the top 3,000 universities in the world.

This is totally unacceptable. The federal and state governments that are owners of most of the universities should demonstrate their commitment to quality education by meeting the UNESCO’s standard of 26 per cent allocation to the sector. The government should also set irreducible minimum international standards for private universities, some of which are really no more than glorified secondary schools were anything goes as long as they collect their unmerited high fees.

Time was, when our universities were ranked among the best in the word. For instance, the University of Ibadan was once the fourth best university in the commonwealth. To regain this past glory, engagement of quality lecturers is key. The universities must therefore reinvent themselves by persuading their best graduating students to come back as was the case in the past, to become graduate assistants. The universities should sponsor them for masters and doctorate programmes in some of the best universities in the world.

Producing quality lecturers should not be left for universities alone. Government and their agencies as well as the private sector should also key into it by offering scholarships for post graduate studies. Some of the oil companies and state governments have done well in this regard. Only recently, the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, for the first time since it was established over 10 years ago, instituted overseas post graduate scholarship programme. ( Continues below….. )

President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

Photo Above: President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria

The Managing Director of the commission, Mr. Chibuzor Ugwoha, explained that the scheme was essentially for the people of the region, who wished to pursue Masters and Doctorate degree programmes in science-related courses in foreign universities. Ultimately, the post-graduate training would upgrade the knowledge of the students and make them more marketable.

The commission has also started a Petroleum Engineering/ Drilling Graduate Training Programme for indigenes of the Niger Delta as part of efforts to make the local content policy of the federal government a reality. Mr. Ugwoha said that the trainees would, among others, be equipped with fundamentals of oil and gas exploitation, well site safety, both onshore and offshore, basics of hydrocarbon, well-logging with special emphasis in abnormal pressure evaluation.“The good news about this programme is that all participants are engineering graduates of tertiary institutions and the trainers are experts brought in from the oil fields in the United States and beyond” Ugwoha said.

Another agency of government that is also contributing significantly to producing post graduate students is the Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF). It has so far trained 1,800 scholars at the Masters level and 250 at the Doctoral level in top ranked universities specialising in oil and gas courses in the United Kingdom.

The Executive Secretary of the Fund, Engr. Muttaqha Rabe Darma said the Fund has started domesticating its Masters Degree Programmes following significant progress made in upgrading the physical infrastructure and teaching facilities of some Nigerian Universities. This is good news.

The upgrading should also be extended to our primary and secondary schools which have degenerated to disgraceful levels in recent years. Since something cannot be built on nothing, quality university education can only be achieved with quality primary and secondary education.

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

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03/27/11

Permalink 01:37:00 pm, by callmeike, 712 words   English (US) latin1
Categories: News, South East News

*Nigeria's Coal City, Enugu - Milked & Forgotten?

By Ikechukwu Enyiagu

Enugu State, for some of those born after the 70s, and whose interests in history are nothing of pride, was popularly known as the Coal City. And for those born well ahead of the Nigerian civil war, the Coal City remains a great part of our collective history as a nation. Coal was discovered in Enugu in 1909, almost 50 years ahead of oil discovery. Until the discovery of oil in Nigeria, coal remained our major stay as a country. At that time, when the British were brutish, the workers, amongst whom were some indigenes of the State, couldn’t dare to voice their truest demands even if they had a hint of what their rights were.

Now that oil has force-retired coal in Nigeria, the entire nation, especially the government seems to have little or no use and respect for history. Any nation or person that advertently ignores history is set for an uncertain future. With all the oil and pomp, the Nigeria of today has become more of a must-read for the the schools of the world. It’s even a laughable twist when one remembers that the same coal which the Nigerian government has toyed with and discarded, along with the indigenes where the mines are located, is the very coal which drives China into its super power dreams. China, a country with the largest single population in the world, is being driven by the same coal that the Nigerian government mocks. ( Continues below..... )

Map of Nigeria

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

Billions of Naira have been poured into the so-called Niger Delta regions because of the location of the nation’s oil deposits. The indigenes of the Niger Delta are treated with a high level of care and respect in the nation because of the oil. It’s deserving to acknowledge the source of your stay, but my questions in reference to the Coal City are these:

1. If the Niger Deltans now receive greater attention solely because of the large oil deposits in the region, why has Enugu State constantly been treated like it was never carrying the entire nation-single-handedly?

2. Recently, the salaries of former heads of state were reviewed in their favor, why is it difficult for the country to see that the government has marginalized the Coal City decades before that word got across to the Niger Deltans? Why is the Coal City treated as if it never served any purpose worthy of even greater rewards than the ex-presidents who, in their time, ruled and left without results?

3. If the Niger Deltans are compensated, and the heads of states, promoted, even after their retirement form office, why does the federal government think it not robbery to continue to ignore the Coal City indigenes and to ride on their kindness? ( Continues below..... )

Map of Nigeria's Niger Delta Region showing Port Harcourt

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

By His grace, oil has also been discovered in Enugu State. What does this entail for the nation and the state, and how is the government planning on defrauding, yet again, the good people of Enugu State? This injustice has overstayed its welcome; I, therefore, request that the federal government visit this matter and treat it in the spirit of urgency.

This has nothing to do with the history of Biafra, nor has it anything to do with the seeds that the British planted in Nigeria; it has everything to do with the way the federal government treats minorities, be they of people, resources, or concerns, and, most especially, the way the federal government views Enugu State and its indigenes as a whole.

In spite of all her worth, the Coal City has no direct outlet to the outside world except for the long-overdue minor renovations going on at the state airport. I ask that the same privileges, treatments, and incentives given to the youths of the Niger Delta and our former heads of state be extended to the Indigenes of Enugu, the great Coal City. A stitch in time saves nine.

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

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