Category: Politics

THE DOUBTING THOMASES 

The piece today is a follow up to my last write up in which I vouched on the character and integrity of Vice President, that he would do the right thing on any state matter devolved to him  by Mr President, I urged my readers who were un settled with the appointment of the VP to chair the committee set up by the President to investigate the graft against the former SGF. a chance. Very few of them agreed with me while many  cried foul that the committee would not come out with a far reaching decisions on the allegations of corruption labelled against the former Secretary to the Government of the Federation Mr Babachir .

I said it then and I still stand by my  statement that the VP is a good man and anybody who doubts his ability to be fair, just, diligent and a political in any State matter is either ignorant of his antecedents or is just playing politics.
Since my last write up on the issue the Vice President has proved me right at least on three occasions.
Firstly, the way he kept the country together at the height of the agitations of the members of IPOB  for the actualization of  independent state of Biafra and the call  by the Northern Youth Group requesting the Ibos to vacate the North. The way he handled the situation with dignity and character was exemplary.

His performance during period  when Mr President was on medical sojourn out of the country for a period of more than 103 days  was commendable, un paralleld in the history of our great country.

To date, since  Mr President, resumed office no single Nigerian Media however critical they have been of the VP have written any single story accusing the VP of fumbling in the discharge of his responsibility as the acting President. This demostrated the general acceptability of the VP stewardship.

Secondly, when the President appointed the VP to chair the   committee to investigate the allegations of financial impropriety labelled against the former SGF, many  doubted the ability of the committee to be fair and  a political in their recommendations. All sorts of hypothesis  regarding the committee’s ability  to come out with conclusions that would be acceptable, became a subject of intense debate among political pundits.

Now that the report is out and  Mr President had acted on it by formally sacking  the former SGF for the thievery in the grass cutting saga. Those who doubted the impartiality of the VP must be bitting their fingers .

As to when  the former SGF will have his first day with the EFCC, the buck still remains with the President.

Thirdly, when the debate on Sukuk Bond dominated the headlines in the Mass Media, the Christian Association of Nigeria, raised  alarm that the Federal Government is trying to Islamatise Nigeria.

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), in a statement issued by its General Secretary, Rev. Musa Asake, demanded the abrogation of the laws and framework behind the bond and threatened to seek legal redress if that was not done.

The group said the FG was trying to sell the nation to Arab countries through the Sukuk Bond, arguing that the government was pursuing an Islamisation agenda.

According to the Christian body, Nigeria is a secular state and the government is expected to be neutral on issues involving religion. It argued that the promotion of a sectional religious financial policy was a violation of the Constitution.

It went on to say, “The recent floating of Sukkuk Bond by the government is not only sectional but illegal and a violation of the Constitution. Every law that has been promulgated to back the Sukuk issuance and promote an Islamic banking system in Nigeria is ultra vires, illegal, null and void.”

“Therefore, the manipulations and scheming to smuggle the country into a full blown Islamic state should stop; these manipulations became apparent with the smuggling of Nigeria into the Organisation of Islamic

“The FG must dismantle all legal and institutional framework established to promote Islamic financing in Nigeria.

“We affirm that the territorial integrity of Nigeria is undermined through the issuance of Sukuk in the country. We hope that the government shall desist from its policies of unbridled religious sectionalism,”
WHAT IS SUKKUK?
Sukkuk is an islamic bonds, structured in such a way as to generate returns to investors without infringing Islamic law (that prohibits riba or interest).

Sukuk represents undivided shares in the ownership of tangible assets relating to particular projects or special investment activity. A sukuk investor has a common share in the ownership of the assets linked to the investment although this does not represent a debt owed to the issuer of the bond.

In the case of conventional bonds the issuer has a contractual obligation to pay to bond holders, on certain specified dates, interest and principal. In contrast, under a sukuk structure the sukuk holders each hold an undivided beneficial ownership in the underlying assets.

Consequently, sukuk holders are entitled to a share in the revenues generated by the Sukuk assets. The sale of sukuk relates to the sale of a proportionate share in the assets.

Since the beginning of 2000, sukuk have become important Islamic financial instruments in raising funds for long-term project financing. 
By 2011 over more than $19bn had been raised through 30 issues of sukuk bonds on the London Stock Exchange. 

The Federal Government in an initially response to CAN, through the Minister of Information and culture denied any plan to Islamitise country.

The Minister Lai Mohammed, said the financial initiative was borne out of the need to include people who are opposed to interest-yielding enterprises.
“Sukuk is not an attempt to Islamise Nigeria in any form. On the contrary, it is an attempt at financial inclusiveness. The difference between Sukuk Bond and other bonds is that if you invest in Sukkuk bond, you earn no interest.

The Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, a senior clergy at the penta coastal church of Nigeria choose the occasion of the Greater Nigeria Pastors Conference convened by Apostle Wale Adefarasin and Rev. Abayomi Kasali to declare that “it was impossible for anyone to Islamitise Nigeria as claimed by Christian leaders

He cautioned that the recent uproar over the country’s subscription to Sukuk Bonds was not justified.

He bluntly stated that “Part of the problem is the failure of Christian leadership to take its rightful place. We focus our minds on something we call the Islamic agenda. We look for it everywhere as if we are looking for demons.

“But where is the Christian agenda. Are we not entitled to one? We are too divided as Christians to have an agenda. The key to the unity and progress of Nigeria is in the church.”

According to him, there were no plans to Islamise Nigeria through the Sukuk bond or the country’s membership of the Islamic Development Bank.

He said that apart from Nigeria, many nations of the world including the United States of America and the United Kingdom had also embraced the system as a result of its progressive nature.

He said, “The Sukuk is an Islamic concept, which enables people to have access to credit. It is essentially like a bond. The US, UK, China, South Africa have all used the Sukuk. Once there is money in the market, let us not get sentimental. The most important thing is for us to use those monies well.

“Some people say there are some hidden things in this arrangement and that one day somebody is going to take us over. Where? How will that happen?

“These are straightforward financial systems used all over the world. I don’t think it presents any real problem. It is a very progressive financial system.

“Nigeria became a member of the Islamic Development Bank in 2005 and the first person to sit as director of the bank was Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala.

“The second person to sit as a director is the current Finance Minister, Kemi Adeosun, and both of them are Christians. So, when people talk about Islamic agenda, sometimes I am lost.

“The person who brought us into the bank is not a Fulani or Northerner, the person was a Christian, so why are we complaining? Nigeria is the fourth largest shareholder in the Islamic Bank.

“This wasn’t Buhari’s making. We must have facts before saying things. But above all, we must ask ourselves if being a member of the bank profits us or not.

“For me, I have no problem with this. We can use what we get there to develop our society. This is the most important thing to me”

By now you can see the reason why I chose these three issues because all have the potential to over heat the polity and they  represent some challenges to our Cooperate existence as Nation.

It also shows the passion, the bluntness, the nationalistic conviction of the VP to address matters affecting the State without mincing words.

Speaking to the Ohanaeze leaders at the height of Kanu agitations for the actualization of independent Biafran state.
The VP demonstrated similar Nationalistic fervour when he said  “I firmly believe that we ought to address these agitations and proclamations urgently and decisively. Burying our heads in the sand and expecting the storm to blow over of their own accord is not an option. But equally not reasonable is falling for the temptation for tit-for-tat. It has never worked or moved us closer to a solution or resolution.

“Government, must  deal with these pressing issues and grievances. And we will never shy away from the responsibility to ensure and uphold the peace and security of Nigeria.
“As leaders, we carry the burden to secure the peace, progress and prosperity of our people, and that is why our voices ought to be heard and heard loud and clear at moments like this in the defense and articulation of what is truly beneficial to the nation and the people, and what is right and patriotic”.

The VP in my view is the type of people we need in leadership in Nigeria. People who can  speak the truth irrespective of their religious tilt, regional or political persuasion. Every time he speaks you feel the sincerity, honesty, patriotism and the nationalistic fervour in his words.
Next you hear the VP is involved in any National assignment   believe in him and expect that the matter would be handled truthfully and deligently as he is not given to frivolity, nepotism and sectionalism.

Today, the VP remains one of the most respected and trusted member of the administration. He commands respect and admired across the political divide. 

 Maina AND MATTERS ARISING 

The dust over the controversial reinstatement of the flamboyant Deputy Director and the fugitive Ex chairman of the Pension Reform Task Team Abdulrasheed Maina, who brags of recovering over two hundred and eighty two billion Naira pensioners money to the corpers of the  government may be settling down, just like the reports of many high profile scandals, that are picking dust in government vaults and shelves un implemented across the country . 

    The saga will die down like many before it. We have seen the hype and frenzy generated by the millions of Dollars recovered at an apartment in Ikoyi, the millions impounded at Kaduna airport, the Babachir  grass cutting scandal, and many allegations against the President’s men, the list goes on and on. But so far no one  has been punished for the alleged crimes. 

    The import of this write up is not to find out who to blame for the reinstatement, the sacking of Maina from the civil service, this will be saved for another discourse when the report demanded by the President on issue is made public. 

    The purpose of this write up is to advice Maina to stand up and clear his name in the light of the claims of evidences he said he has regarding the activities of his committee.

    In the ensuing debate a friend of mine  scastically told us that  if you want steal money in Nigeria, steal “BIG” the Police will send you a senior officer to investigate and in the process you could  cut some deals and matter would go into lacuna forever. However  if one wants to go to prison steal “SMALL” a junior police officer would be sent  to harass your life and you would ultimately end up in prison.

    As if this is not annoying enough, he further added that If you want eat and enjoy your loots in Nigeria make sure you become a conduit,  steal for the bosses and accept to pick the crumbs from the table, you will be guaranteed protection by the “Big Men”

    However, in the event  the media stumble on the matter or a whistle blower decides to speel the beans since the bosses are involved a committee would be set up to  investigate the matter and the report will never see the light of day.

    Equally, the agencies who are responsible to deal with such  issues  will have their hands tied down and rendered prostate since “Oga at the top” is handling the matter. Consequently, the culprit is free the bosses are happy and life goes on. 

    One of such high profile cases that is still drawing the name of the country to the mud is the Malabu oil saga. The Vice President speaking at a conference organised by Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), in Jakarta, Indonesia, on Monday, October 23.
     Said “It is important to underscore the fact that opacity in one section of the globe undermines openness in the other. We need to break down this wall together as we are all at risk of the evil effects of opacity in business ownership.

    To further underscore this statement he added that: “Nigeria is still grappling with the negative consequences of the use of opacity by senior members of government and their cronies between 1993 and 1998 awarding themselves juicy contracts in the extractive industry.”

    The  Malabu oil saga where the high and low in our society were involved is still a subject of litigation internationally, but the government is not keen in persuing the culprits because” Very important Persons” (VIP’s) were involved. The matter should therefore be put under the carpet at the expense of our collective National image and pride.

    Maina a Deputy Director in the civil service with rising profile leaves un precedented flamboyant life style which even the Head of Service can not afford. He is  the cause of his problems. He was too loud and upfront, this makes his bosses perhaps uncomfortable so he must be sacrificed quickly so that he does not speel the beans. The guy may need to read the 21 laws of power. 

    To know who is Maina one needs to look at the background of the officer. If it is true that Maina was just an Assistant Director in the civil service and could buy a house worth Two Million US dollar in Asokoro as is  being alleged then something is definitely wrong somewhere.

    Maina in his defence to the allegations labelled against him In a telephone conversation with presenter of “Radio Barekate”
    He said,  the committee recovered about N282billion pensioners money, established e-payment schemes for pensioners.  He also claimed no body gave him any kobo,  and that the committee had no account of it own. Then how come the Senate committee and EFCC are accusing him of embezzling billions of Naira? 

     In another interview with the press  he said ” the Pension cabal was after his life. “I am fast losing confidence in the country called Nigeria. “Imagine, I have suddenly become a villain for saving the country billions of naira, being stolen daily by pension thieves.
    “I’m saddened, demoralised by the whole mess. It is baffling that the hunter has become the hunted. It is simply ridiculous. How can one continue to fight for the country and the poor pensioners, when the system is so rotten to the effect that the thief catcher is being branded as the thief?” he lamented. 

    I think Maina needs to take some lessons from the EFCC Chairman on how corruption fights back.

    If Maina’s claim to have,  recovered N282 billion, blocked areas of leakages where pension funds are being siphoned, is true then he does not deserve the treatment he is getting, in fact he should be nominated for the National Merit Award.

    The question to ask is why does Maina go into hiding each time the heat is on. With all the documents he claims he has that would exonerate him from all the charnges.  why go under or even ran away from your home country and remain a fugitive forever. Good men never fear or  hide they confront their problems head on, especially when they have the conviction they are right.

    So far in all that  Maina has said, he did not address the main issues the government is accusing of, rather he was just  trying to generate sentiments so that he could be seen as a good man  being innocently persecuted by the cabals and the agencies of the state.

    My advice to Maina if wants to be taken seriously,  he should as a matter of urgency willingly submit himself to the EFCC answer all the queries they would confront him with and clear himself of the allegations against him.  

     I know he is claiming of several attempts on his life but since he can suruptitiously enter the country and resume duty,  nothing can stop him from paying a visit to the EFCC to answer their query. For how long would he remain under and a fugitive?  

    But if he still feels un safe he could  take the  bold step by authorising his lawyer to swear an affidavit and deposit all the documents he has in court and publish same in the National dailies for the records and put the whole matter in the public domain and allow the due process of the  law to take its cause and exonerate him and his committee from blame. 

    Posterity is there to judge him in the event what he fears happens to him. These are part of the hazards of public life,  so be bold and do the right thing. 

    BEFORE THE RACE BEGINS 

    BEFORE THE RACE BEGINS

    The government of President Muhammadu Buhari has passed the half mark of the time allocated it by the Nigeria electorates courtesy the revised 1979  constitution, wether or not it has  fulfilled its promises to the Nigerian people in the 28 month, it has been power, would be saved for discussion another time.

    A lot had been said and written on our  move towards the egalitarian society we all yearn for and wish to bequest to the next generations of Nigerians.

    Our successes and failures down lane in the 57 tortuous years that we passed through as an independent Nation State  speaks volumes about us as a people.

    Nigeria like any of the nation states  that were calibrated by colonialism  had its own fair share of the polemics. and contradictions  in its journey towards nationhood. The path has been  turbulent, and full of uncertainty.

    The polemics and the booby traps along the way, which has arrested our collective desire to move forward, integrate and develop as one indivisible people seems to be with us, in spite of the great strides in western education and relative development we have achieved.

    57 years ago  since we wrangled our selves from the shackeles of colonialism, several years since the military went back to the barracks to allow our nascent democracy to grow, nurture and mature, we are still  pointing accusing  fingers at colonialism and the military for our woes and failures in moving the country on the path of development.

    In spite of the evils of colonialism, we must agree it nurtured our economy  through the development of trade and cormmerce, banking, civil service, transport, rule of law and good governance.

    It has served as catalyts and linchpin of our drive towards building a great nation.
    However it may be argued that the colonial government built institutions which  main goals were to develop their own economies at expense of the settler countries. The relationship was un arguably exploitative, but it served as the bedrock for our journey towards self governance.

    The Military in depending their  incursions in to the national body  politics, claimed the political  class failed to steer the  affairs of the country towards the path of growth and development. 

    They often sighted, leadership deficiet, corruption. nepotism maladministration. bickering and civil strife as the reasons why they had to intervene in order to save the country from abyss and self distruction.

    The antogonist of the military dictatorship also argued their intervention in the polity has trancated our march towards achieving a stable demcracy.

    To them everything about the military is bad and they have no business with governance .  For them the military ethos introduced to the political space are antithesis to all  democratic tenant’s .

    According to them the military only succeeded in militerising  the pysche of the Nigerian people and trancated our journey towards building an enduring democratic structures and government.

    The political class that emerged  during the  colonial  period gained support because their  nationalistic and patriotic desire to wrestle power from the colonial government.

    But soon afterwards they realised the importance of power and its benefits. They clinged to power in order to achieve  their selfish, personal, group and subtreanian interests. They  continued with legacies of the colonial government of divine and rule.

    The country which is now above half a century,  has grown and can longer be considered as young, even though it is still grappling with teething problems of growth. 
    Some still believe Nigeria is an artificial construct  put in place by colonialism with out taken into cognisance our differences as a people, a marriage which is imperfect and must therefore be desolved.

    They hold the view that the arrangement did not respect our cultural and geographical boundaries. And they want us to believe this has been the root cause of our problems and underdevelopment .

    Be it as it may, 57 years since our journeys towards  nationhood and after undergoing a civil war that consumed about one million lives if we are still thinking of succession or redefining how we can  live together, then something must be fundamentally wrong with us a people .

    America hinges it successes as a nation on its immigrants population. China and India the world’s most populous countries  are striving because of their populations. 

    China is not monolithic but today nobody is calling for successions. In fact till today they lay claims on renegade regions of  Taiwan and Hong Kong who are agitating for self rule and wanted to break away. The same thing between India and Pakistan on the Kashmir Province . The  Kurdis movement and Iraq. The latest in western Europe, Spain and the Cataland Province.

    In today’s world where population has become a factor in economic growth and power. Here we are still calling for the valcanization of our society.  Our diversity could be used as a source of strength in the interdependent world system which is  governed by globalisation and world trade.

    The Nigerian problems  are not our linguistic pluralism or diffrences in religion, but rather greed, nepotism, corruption, selfishness  and the docility of the population. The people have over the years mortgaged their conscience to the tiny ruling elites who have understood their psyche. They have come to the conclusion that we can only bark but cannot bite.

    Our docility has given the ruling elites the false assumption that they can leads by the shackles. They have come to believe with the stipends they give during election and the use of the cohesive agencies of the state at their disposal they can determine the course of events in their favour. 
    For how long shall we continue to allow our “leaders” to box us in to submission and blind following.

    In a democratic society, the people have the right to decide and hold their leaders to be accountable. They hold the key can change their leaders every four years.
    We must never again allow the bad and ugly in our society to continue thieving our common wealth with impunity and treating us like the slave and slave matters, while we hold the franchise to determine who will rule us.

    All the heus and and cries about seccessionism, restructuring and whatever acronym the elite would choose to define our existence . They are doing so no out of love for  the masses. But rather their main goal  is to see how they can continue enslaving us in order protect the massive wealth they have stolen from our common wealth.

    They thieved our Treasuries dry  in the states and frustrated the entry in to the political process through anointing their cronies and purchased their tickets to the National Assembly where they can continue to legislate mega salaries and allowances for themselves and cool down to protect and eat their ill gotten wealth while our collective fortunes continue to nose dive to a level of pity .

    The falacy did stop there they continued to  use the instrumentality provided the assembly to keep chocking the system to favours their lust for the good things of life at our expense.

    1. The PMB government which many Nigerians believed would be the messiah in solving to our collective national problems, has so far demonstrated that it too, had been overwhelmed by the cabals that are all over the space watching like the proverbial vultures searching for wherever they can spot our common wealth so that they can swoop and feast on it.

    So before the whistle is blown and RACE BEGINS  for another circle of rituals of selecting our “leaders,” we must ensure that only good people of proven integrity and honesty are returned or elected to the three tiers of government.
    We must not return the kleptomaniacs, the rapists, the amoral , the rogues, the charlatans, the vote stealers back to the States and National Assemblies to make laws for themselves.

    We must not also allow the government houses in the States and Aso Villa to be occupied by indecent people.We have been short changed for too long. 

     Let us take interest  in those that are going to represent and lead us. 

    Join me in this crusade for political correctness  by sending your comments and contributions to yabaniblog.com

    THE DIRT IN THE INFORMATION HIGHWAY

    I usually dont like to join issues with my colleques who comment on public affairs, but where I perceive injustice I tend to be on the side of the oppressed to ensure that fairness and balance which is the hallmark of the journalism ethos is seen to have been done.

    It  is no longer in doubt that
    Mr Kachikwu the Minister of State Petroluem leaked the 8-page letter addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari accusing Mr Baru  the GMD NNPC of “acts of insubordination, humiliation, disrespect and lack of due process in the award of contracts.”

    Neither the Minister no his press crew have come out to deny the assertions being widely circulated in the main stream and social media that the memo was not leaked by him.

    Its clear to me and to every decerning person that the Minister knows once the press got hold on to the document the consquencies of his action would have a huge damage on the image of the government more especially when the issues at stake borders on personalities and procurement processes.

    As a public officer he ought to have known there are several ways he could reach to his boss. The leak to the press must be the last resort, if at all it must be persued.

    In my little knowledge of how government works, the Minister could still use the following channels, if he perceives the Chief of Staff is becoming a stumbbling block to getting to his boss;
    1. He could explore going through the  Vice President, unless if he tried and failed ;
    2,. Convert whatever issues he wanted to discuss with President in to Council Memo. I am sure the minister is aware of the types of council memos they use to communicate among members of the Federal Executive Council.
    3. Go through the National Economic Council of which he is member or at least attends as a revenue generating agency. The Minister knows the Vice President briefs the President on all decisions taken by the council;
    4. Seek the intervention of the Party leadership if it becomes so absolutely neccessary.

    But in all these the Minister choose to  gamble with the image of the government, simply because he feels the Cheif of staff and some other very close associates of the President whose  companies might have  benifitted from the procurement process.

    Aware that  the leak certaintly would give press  the opportunity to pounce on the document and sensationise it with big catchy headlines that may embrass the government.

    Now that he has seen the President and open up the the government to redicule. what kind of  damage control mechanism would the Minister put in place to deal with the situations he delibrately created, now that  Mr President has asked the Minister and the GMD, to find ways to work together?

    In the light of the wanned trust between them how could this possibly happen?
    Lest I forget before the Minister of state was up graded by Mr President he was the Group Managing Director of the same company and operated under the same rules and regulations. He approved contracts under the same threshold, he is now trying to blow whistle as if something  wrong took place.

    Now that NNPc has told  its story, that all their actions were done according to extant rules and regulations.

    In providing an eluminating explanation to the ensueing drama, one Ibrarhim Suleiman extensively quoting the Daily Nigeria said;  “the raging rift between the two oil czars, a senior NNPC official who preferred not to be named exclusively told DAILY NIGERIAN that the fight was beyond what was contained in the letter.
    “The fight between Kachikwu and Baru emanated from two clauses within the NNPC. And these are the NNPC Act and the Clause in a correspondence from the Bureau of Public Procurement (BPP) to the then GMD of NNPC (Ibe Kachikwu) regarding contracts.

    “In the NNPC Act,” the source added, “it was stated clearly that the GMD NNPC will report directly to the Substantive Minister of Petroleum Resources, in this case President Muhammadu Buhari. Sadly for Kachikwu, the Act was silent on the GMD reporting to him.

    “Secondly, in a letter dated June 26, 2015, the BPP clarified a clause regarding the power of the NNPC Tenders Board (and not the NNPC Board) to award contracts without recourse to the Minister of State.

    “The approval limit of the NNPC Tenders Board is $20m. But where such contracts exceed the tenders board’s limits, approval must be sought from the Federal Executive Council (FEC).

    “And in the case of the $26billion Kachikwu claimed Baru spent without due process, it was the same Federal Executive Council, with Kachikwu as a member, that approved the contracts. How would Baru, who is not even a member of FEC, be blamed for side-stepping the minister and bypassing due process?” the insider queried.

    To this effect the  BPP’s clarified this position to Mr Kachikwu on powers of NNPC Tenders Board to award contracts thus;
    “The [NNPC] Governing Board is responsible for approval of the work programmes, corporate contract plans and budget while the [NNPC] Tenders Board is responsible for approval of day to day

    “Strangely, the same Minister who obtained such clarifications from the BPP while serving as GMD NNPC has now turned against it,” the source added.

    According to him, “the whole bone of contention was because while Mr Kachikwu realized he was powerless to influence Baru as Minister of State in terms of contracts and other demands, the Minister could still not stand watching Baru having unfettered access to the President.

    If the CUPSNIGERIA have seen or read the write up of Ibrahim Suleim and that of Daily Nigeria or conducted a more indepth ressearch I am sure they  would have  been a bit rational and circumspect in their write up, that is going round calling the chief of staff names like.
    “ABBA KYARI – THE FACE OF EVIL AT THE PRESIDENCY”
    Dr. Idris Ahmed who authored the article referred to above is a PHD holder I want to believe, he must have known the value of a good researched work for him to play in galary by writting without indept research and impute on the personlity of people is not fair.

    Here are some of the things he wrote;
    “The corrupt and unpatriotic Abba Kyari has a frightening influence at the Presidency, to the extent that most people in the know view him as the second  powerful” man at presdency, after the President himself” Is this true? if Abba is the second most powerful man in the house where then did he place the Vice president who is constitutionally regarded as the number 2 in the heirachy.  At least we witnessed situations when the VP became the acting President a couple of times.
    He also accused the chief of staff of committing crimes against the Nigerian state part the crimes he said Abba committed is; “The latest one being denying the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Emmanuel Ibe Kachukwu, from seeing the President. Regardless of the wrongs or rights of his spat with Dr. Maikanti Baru,  as a Minister of the Federal Republic, Dr. Kachukwu has the right to have audience with his boss and Commander in Chief of the Federal Republic. It is therefore very embarrassing and demeaning to the office of the President and image of Nigeria at home and around the world, for Buhari to learn about the Kachukwu/Maikanti saga through the media!”
    Since Dr Idriss, and his cups group are well educated  I expected them to try finding out what job descriptions and the schedules of the Chief of Staff.
    Allow me deviate and draw the attention  of “CUPS to the international dimension they introduced in to the discussion. Are they aware why the American President dismissed his chief of Staff recently and what happened during the alpointment of a new person?   In accepting his nomination to the office of the chief of staff, General Kerry,  a fine officer and a gentleman. told  President Trump that  he would accept the nomination on the condition that he would be allowed to determine who sees and what goes in to the presidents office. I am sure by now you must started rationalizing some of the duties of the chief of staff. My brother the chief  is a gate keeper, he articulate the President’s programme. The President has alot on his plate. And afterall at the end of the day, it is the President who decides who he sees.
    Dont you think Kachukwu didnt know this? He delibrately choose to leak his letter to the press for personal reasons? He has so many ways to reach to the President, some of which I mentioned in my opening paragraph.
    I was also amazed by the type of venom and out pouring the “cupsnigeria” lampoon the the Chief of staff, the hate was apparent as if the groups has a bone to pick with Abba.

    I can recall similar pattern of behavior were used to force President Jonathan to sacrifice his chief  of staff for un substantiated corruption claims. Thank God President Buhari is not given to such kind of frivolity of pull him down syndrome. He listens but allows due process to take its course, before he takes any decision in respective of who was at the receiving end. 

    “Cupsnigeria” further  claimed in their article that they fearless and this what they said;
    ” Despite the colossal evidence against him, we understand that the Nigerian media are afraid of exposing Abba Kyari, for fear of reprisals. “We at CUPS are NOT. We are ferociously independent and fearless in our reporting. We will always tell the truth, no matter whose ox is being gored”

    while we salute “CUPS” for their resolve to be fearless we expect them to also be social responsible. This is the hallmark of journalism and the goals of public affairs commentators, fairness and balance in dealing with all matters that affect public affairs and public officers, should be handled responsibily.

    A mare statement without coresponding incontrovertible evidence to support any comment on public affairs  are part of the junck journalism we can do without. I therefore appeal to all my colleques in this business to respect the rights of individuals and ensure that what they ditch out  to the public are factual materials devoid of sentiments and personal idiosyncracies.

     HOW DIRTY IS POLITICS?

    I was born in a very small viliage sorrounded by hilly terrain, which according to my grandfather, the location was strategically  selected by our ancesstors to provide fortress and to  shield  the community from attacks by rival commuities. 

    Life was so serene, peaceful and communal, everybody knows one another, a bonded community. The bond was so strong that everyone was a brothers keeper. The elderly were seen as fathers to all, custodians of wisdom, they were reverred and respected. They exude power and authority. can discipline, direct courses of events with an un questionable authority.  Things remained that way until when some groups of people from the cities started coming to the villiages with drum beats, dishing out gifts and making promises they can transform the communities.

    Slightly over half a century since they started coming the lives of my people have not changed. In fact what they succeeded in doing is destroying our communality by introducing individualism, hate and deceit.

    The first change I notice that took place so early since they arrived was the breakage in the bond that kept the community together. The community no longer respect the supremacy of the elders, families now dont talk to each other as a unit of association, brothers are no longer eating together, quarrels between peoples increased,  

    Community disputes are no longer settled through dialogue. By the day everything that made us diffrent as a people was destroyed.

    But since I was so young I dare not ask questions, life went on as usual until one day I surmoned the courage to ask my school teacher in one of our civic class. why are things no longer the same  with us?

    He responded  by saying its “POLITICS” as I was too young to grasp what it means the subject was dropped.

    Several years after my teacher told me it was “POLITICS” I grew up with disdain for “politics and politicians”  I am not a student of politics but my training as a Journalist and Administrator later in life exposed me to know that politics is a noble profession and to some extent we aslo have good politicians. However the way politicians, practice politics makes it dirty and un appealing to people of good conscience. 

    As I grow older and started developing interest in politics, I perceived so early that to be a good politician, you must be very good in deceit, a back bitter, a liar, an ingrate, a betrayer, abusive, arrogant, a cheat and disloyal. 

    Humbled by my background I also found so early that these habits are not noble. In order to find answers to my delima.  I spoke and asked politicians and some few  good  and fine gentlemen who I believed  had  the qualities and capacity to provide good leadership to this country. 

    The responses I got from them were very disturbing and worrying. Many of replied that no descent person would like to enter the political arena with level of vindictiveness, tardiness, and the lack of the undetstanding of the rule of the game by the actors in the political space. 

    They argued that the mess and the rot in the system are so huge and better not contemplated. And this gave rise why most descent people are shying away from politics.

    They reasoned that most of the actors in the field are, uncultured, job seekers, corrupt, inept, morally bankrupt, kleptomaniacs, haters, brutes, insensitive and unware of the  nobility of the profession. Their only stock in trade is to cajole, abuse and amass wealth.This is how good people perceive politics and politicians.

    In my effort to encourage them change their mind set I appeal to them after our discussions that if good people like them would have nothing to do with politics, how can we correct the system. if we continue to allow the chalatants, the bad and the ugly in our society to lead us and continue to determine our fates. Their final reaction often after our conversations were  just a smile.

    These smiles that kept poking my thoughts. I begin to ask myself were they thinking I am mad or something?

    But the reality playing out in our real world by the political class and even from those occupying public offices seems to confirm why our political space is dirty. 

    Until recently, Governor Ahmed el Rufai, some one who I hitherto  loved and believed in as one of the few Northern political elites that can make a diffrence because of his past performance as the Minister of FCT. 

    His venom on the Honourable Minister Women Affairs, when she declared to support the former Vice Presidnet Atiku Abubakar, should he decide to contest the Presidential election come 2019.  As a democrat El Rufai should know that not everyone in the same party share the same ideology and believe in one person or leader. 

    Amina was not wrong to feel the way she did, at least she was bold and frank,  unlike her other colleques who in the mist of the night attend all noctral meetings to strategise their next political move. It is a well known fact that APC is an amalgamation of various shades of opinions nurtured from various camps that make up the party. we have the Buhari’s, the Asiwoju’s, the Turaki’s and the Kwankwaso’s these cleavages still exit and operate amourphrously till today and they are not likely to fizzle out very soon. 

    Another disturbing statement he made was the one against late President Yar’adua while addressing the APC stakeholders meeting at Murtala Mohammed Square, Kaduna. Governor Rufai warned that he was ready to confront whoever tests his will as the leader of the party in the state. That he is a dogged fighter. He added by saying “I had fought with two presidents. Umaru Yar’Adua ended in his grave, while President Goodluck Jonathan ended in Otueke.

     It is ok for the Governor to be a dogged fighter however his comments on the dead was what baffled me, as a muslims he ought to have known that this kind of statements will have consquencies as Islam frawns at speaking of the dead. where has the social,  cultural, religious and campus of the governor gone?

    With these type of statements coming from him, it keeps poking my thoughts, is this the person whom I hitherto would have hero worshipped, looked up to as one of the most enterpring and promising leader that may one day lead us out of the woods?

    My like for him wanned further when I read the comments of his bosses, particularly those from the former Vice President Atiku when el-Rufai accussed him of having a hand in the $40 million Halliburton scandal. This is person whom Atiku was instrumental in bringing into government and making him Director General of the Bureau of Public Enterprises, BPE, and eventually a minister. 

    In referrence to the same El Rufai President Obasanjo also said “A leader must know the character and ability of his subordinates. “”Character wise, Nasir has not much going for him” He continued by saying “My vivid recollection of him (el rufai) is his penchant for lying, for unfair embellishment of stories and his inability to sustain loyalty for long.  “he is a pathological purveyor of untruths and half-truths with little or no regard for integrity. “In all of this, he unwittingly does more harm than good to himself’.

    The question to ask here is Ahmed el Rufai really  doing harm just to himself alone or to even to his generations that  are likely to take the leadership of this country in the future?

    Let me no deviate soo much the import of my writting is not on Ahmed El Rufai, somebody who I still cherish and respect. He incidently became my model in the discourse because he has recently  been in news  for so many bad reasons and  I thought he ought to  have been circumspect. 

    My respect for him must have wanned slightly but it is an undenial  fact that he is fine, gentle, competent and a good man,. Even those who have a pound of flesh to pick with him can not deny the fact that he has first class brain. 

    This is what Atiku said about him “I read his book and it confirmed my impression of him as a man of first-class brain but arrogant, full of himself, immature and nauseating, trying to make up for his diminutive stature in what is called “the small man syndrome” 

    Their boss Pres. Obasanjo also described him as  “a talented young man who can always deliver under close supervision”. 

    What prompted me to write this article is the level of the breakdowm of our communal bondage moral upbringing and respect for the elders and constituted authorities. 

    The north is known for its homeginity, our respect for culture, social up bringing and above all the supremacy our religion that binds us together. But with the introduction of Liberal Social democracy, the thread that keeps us together has broken down. We no longer respect our elders, our religions does not hold us together anymore, greed, individualism, nepotism and lack of respect for our elders and constituted authority keeps tearing us apart. 

    Today we are people without leaders. we do not speak with one voice and in the face of the contradictions in our body polity, how can we hold together to face the seroous challenges. How can we as a people survive the on slaught and peacefully exist within the developing contradictions. 

    We need to step back and take hard look at our current state of affairs and do the needful for our next generations.

    WHERE DO YOU STAND

    The unfolding events in our political space keeps preaking the relative peace, I am falsely begining to enjoy because of the low activity of Boko Harm in the North East Region, where I come from. My hope was once the security challenges are ebbed away, we shall begin to engage in rehabiltations and reconstructions. Little did I imagined that the agitations for resource control and the succession agenda spearded by an unknown quantity called Nnamdi Kanu would overheat the polity. The response by the Northern Youth calling the bluffs of Kanu, giving the Ibos ultimatum to leave the North raised the level of  my discomfort, considering the fact that if the situation is not carefully managed by our Elders and Politacal class, the gullible Nigerians will be loosers.

    Continue reading “WHERE DO YOU STAND”

    Governance – PENCOM 1

    Recently in a lively discussions with my colleagues after attending pre-retirement training session organised by our employers to prepare us for life in retirement. one of our colleague could not hide his disdain why the trainers were asking us, what plan we have for life after retirement? I did not partake in the discussion. My take at that time was that haven attained the age of 60 years and spent 35 years of meritorious service and having been contributing to the National Pension Scheme. what else I do need to do.

    Continue reading “Governance – PENCOM 1”