Vanguard Newspaper 10 january 2018
40—SATURDAY Vanguard, FEBRUARY 10, 2018 Day KUDO ERESIA-EKE cried, resigned over Abiola election story Continues from pg 39 Chemical engineering would provide for me in the oil industry. However, I got the support of Professor Olatunji Dare who had told me of his coming into mass communication from a science related background. He was an excellent teacher of mass communication. I did not have the good fortune of him lecturing me but I was happy to note that . His reassurances gave me much hope that I was not really doing something really mad the way they made me feel. Then we had Professor Alfred Opubor, prof Nwuneli, Prof Ugboaja. I did not want to do a master in mass communications because I felt that I had done almost all there was to do. I was contributing to Dele Giwa’s Page 7 in Daily Times and also did a stint with Radio Nigeria 2 with Jacob Akinyemi Johnson, Jones Usen and a host of the other guys. Dele Giwa made me realize that you could write in an artistic way, I won’t forget one of our great minds Ely Obasi who is no longer with us. I chose Political science for a master’s degree, I felt I needed to sophisticate communication for social change. I needed to understand how society works. It was after my master’s programme that Late Prof Claude Ake came on the scene. It was under his wings that I did political theory which was very rare for several political science students. Ake was my supervisor. While running the doctoral programmes at Uniport where Prof Ake was my supervisor, I was close to Rivers Television. What do you recall of your days at the Guardian? When I graduated from Unilag, I was posted to Enugu to serve in the Customs service during my NYSC. Guardian was being packaged and I do not know who gave them my contacts. I guess it must have been one of my professors at Unilag. I was redeployed and whisked out of Enugu to work at the Guardian as one of its founding staff. I was given a small room in Somolu to live. It was at the Guardian that I met the stars of Nigerian journalism; Chinweizu, Stanley Macebuh, Yemi Ogunbiyi, Eddie Iroh with whom I worked directly. They had read me a few weeks and realized that I was an unusual writer and sent me to Eddie Iroh who was heading a pool of elite crew including Ndayo Uko, Ely Obasi, Taiwo Obe, Afolabi Adesanya and a host of others. Readers would study the Guardian supplements for weeks. Those years were great. You once resigned your appointment as editor of a Nigerian newspaper for reasons some people will not see; what spurred you to resign from Sunray newspapers It was while waiting for my doctoral convocation that I joined Sunray to edit Point Newsmagazine, from the Sunray stable. You must have heard how I resigned the job. It was during that Abiola election period of 1992. I had researched with my colleagues, Late Darlington Eziukwu and others and predicted with data from across Nigeria that Abiola of the SDP would win that election. Rivers state was under NRC and the government had tremendous influence over Sunray. They learnt that The Point Newsmagazine was about to publish that SDP would win the election. We had finished production and I left about midnight for the printers to complete printing. When I arrived early on that day to supervise circulation, I found out that the entire warehouse was littered with shredded pieces of paper. Someone told me that the pieces of paper I was seeing were my newsmagazine shredded in pieces. I was transfixed. All the labour? All the work? All the creativity? All the risk we took. Tears rolled down my cheeks as I stood there motionless. I knew it was truth destroyed. I walked straight to my office and wrote my resignation letter. I could not be part of any destruction of truth. I took While contemplating on which to choose, a mystery letter from my secretary at Sunray got to me. I had been appointed Rivers state Director of National Orientation Agency, Rivers state. Up till today, I still do not know how that job came, who gave my name or anything •Dr Kudo Eresia-Eke my letter to Mr. Bobo Brown, Editor in Chief of Sunray. He advised me not to resign but I had had enough. I had driven to work with the 504 official car but I had to drop the keys and sent a message to my wife to come along with our old Passat car which could not start when I was ready to go except after it was pushed by some of my colleagues. I knew I had no money to fend for my two months old family but it did not matter. It was a matter of principle. I am still very glad I resigned and gave it up. I went back to the University and got a job to teach political science at Uniport. I also got another to teach mass communications at Rivers state University of Technology. While contemplating on which to choose, a mystery letter from my secretary at Sunray got to me. I had been appointed Rivers state Director of National Orientation Agency, Rivers state. Up till today, I still do not know how that job came, who gave my name or anything. In the course of doing that work, then Rivers state Military Governor Col. Dauda Komo appointed me Commissioner for Information. But my boss Prof Elochukwu Amaucheazi didn’t feel I should leave the NOA considering all he thought I had done so we negotiated a way out which saw me doing the two jobs but earning only from the source. The two jobs enabled me to be sincere, to dare and also encourage young ones. It was that period that generated ideas for my book; How to make it. How did the NLNG job come to you and what did you do differently to contain youth restiveness in your area of operation? It was as I was preparing to leave the job as Commissioner that the opportunity to be Community Relations Manager at Nigeria LNG emerged. I wrote the community relations philosophy which was a complete departure from the regular way. Being a grassroots person who loves people, I couldn’t copy and paste what was handed down to me. People were completely disconnected from the community relation plans because they were regarded as objects. The community was a nuisance and not a neighbor. Communities were regarded as impostor while we came to meet them. If anyone was disturbing the environment then it must be us. Before now big men in the communities were awarded contracts to protect these infrastructure. Most of these contractors did not even know the communities well so the companies were alienated from the communities. What we did differently was visit the over 100 communities first hand, break kola with them and we were explaining to them who we were and what we were bringing to the table. In doing this, we found out the real land lords and from there got to the focal points of who became a contractor which was made rotational. In this way the people started protecting their own thing. This brought about peace. It’s as simple as that. It is like showing respect and giving what is due to Caesar to him. The land does not belong to us but to them. It is when there is peace that you could then develop human capacity programmes for the children. That is what NLNG did differently. It was originally challenging because there was no manual to refer to.
PAL Pensions reinfor orces strategy in pension benefits In line with its resolve to inspire confidence and promote a financially secured future among Nigerians, and also to leverage on its 11 years of experience on managing and administering retirement pension, PAL Pensions has unveiled a new campaign tagged, ‘Retire with a Smile’ to encourage more individuals to save towards retirement. The campaign launched in Lagos had its campaign in TV Commercial in three major languages in Nigeria and pidgin English and was warmly accepted as it sparked up positive conversations among media correspondents on the giant stride embarked on by PAL Pensions. The campaign is also expected to run on major TV stations and digital platforms across the country. Speaking at the unveiling of the campaign, Managing Director, Pal Pensions, Morohunke Bammeke, said that the mission of the organization is to secure and deliver retirement benefits with ease. “Our vision is to be the leading pension fund administrator in Nigeria creating values. At Pal Pensions, we are constantly focused on creating value and delivering superior customer service to our clients. We are driven by passion to be the leader in Making money y via snail farming Looking at the situation of the country since the crash of oil price at the international market, followed by recession that hit the economy, many Nigerians had lost their jobs. Presently the economy is on a process of recovery which would take some time. So, the hope for job creation is slim as the few ones can’t serve everybody job seeker especially the youths. However, economic experts, agriculturalists are advising nations to embark on agriculture for self-employment and also solve the challenges of unemployment ravaging nations especially developing counties of Africa. However, snail farming is one area that offers self-employment and financial income. Animal Farm Consultant/Managing Director, Jovana Farms, Prince Arinze Onebunna said that snail meat is white meat with a difference. “It is similar in taste and texture to that of seafood; but unlike seafood, it is characteristically organic. Snail is preferably table meat from the health point of view and is increasingly recommended by nutritionists, especially for the elderly and people living with chronic diseases that require modified diets. Lately, with greater consumer awareness of the implications of high cholesterol levels in the blood and the possible association with increased incidence of heart attacks, cardiovascular and other chronic diseases, the demand for snail meat in the local and international market is rapidly increasing. Commercial snail farming is becoming an alternative for livestock farmers as it offers them new business opportunities. Snail farming is thriving at the moment in Nigeria unlike the past it was neglected”. According to Onebunna, “snail breeding can yield quick money if the farmer understands the nitty-gritty of the modern techniques and type of species that are in high demand in Nigeria, Europe, USA and other developed attracting new clients and retaining old ones. For us, it is crucial that every time our clients interact with us, they can be assured of highest quality service delivery. The Pal Pensions brand exudes empathy, warmth, partnership and integrity. In addition, the Head, Brand Management & C o r p o r a t e Communications, PAL Pensions, Mrs. Sunmisola Mark-Okoma stated that the core of this campaign is the need to encourage youths to secure their future by adopting a retirement savings plan, even as we also emphasize on the importance of the Contributory Pensions Scheme. “According to a 2017 report by the National Bureau of Statistics, only 10.93 percent of Nigeria’s total working population have retirement savings accounts! “This implies that more than 89 percent of Nigeria’s workforce do not have retirement savings accounts. With the campaign launch, we want to underscore the need to choose a credible, customer-focused Pensions Fund Administrator, that would countries. In terms of cost and time, snail farming is a low risk business and profitable unlike many other livestock businesses, its farming requires very little start up and operating costs. Someone can start with N100, 000 or N150, 000 depending on the size of your farm. Snails are a huge part of the diet in many parts of Africa and around the world, although they are not always affordable and available all year round. Fifty thousand (50,000) snails sold at the of N200 each after two years (highly reduced price) will give you about N10 million. Most of the snails supplied to the Nigerian market are picked from forests during the rainy season, which is between April and September. One reason why potential investors or farmers should consider snail business is that during the dry season, snail becomes increasingly scarce and the market is starved of constant supply until the next wet season. This makes the supply of snails very seasonal in many parts of the world where they serve as food. As a result, snails can fetch much higher prices during the dry season, which is December to March when supply does not keep up with demand. This is why you need to cultivate snail at your backyard or compound for profit making. As Nigeria explores possible L-R Director, Pal Pensions, Fola Laoye; MD/CEO, Pal Pensions, Morohunke Bammeke and Director, Pal Pensions, Funmi Omo during the Pal Pensions media campaign tagged Retire With a Smile in Lagos ensure the security and growth of their retirement savings. Our desire is to assure Nigerians that PAL Pensions delivers pensions services and retirement benefits with a smile.” Head, ICT, Oladimeji Kazeem stated that “We are aware that in this digital age, everyone wants to get a product/ service on-the-go, thus the PAL Pensions app provides you with all the necessary information needed at your convenience wherever you are”. Customers can easily access their retirement savings account and obtain updates on happenings in the Pensions Industry by downloading the app from the Google PlayStore. areas of diversifying its economy to rake in more foreign exchange, the country should take a closer look at snail farming. The demand for snails in the local and international market is very encouraging”. However, he said that presently, Archachatina marginata snail specie is highly sought-after both local and international markets. This giant snail breed is the most desirable for farmers because it grows so big to become the biggest snail species in the world. Choose also the nearest seminar venue from the advert box in this page or from our website. SATURDAY Vanguard, FEBRUARY 10, 2018—41 Experts call for urgent diversification of Nigerian economy Experts in the economic sector have suggested that it is imperative to diversify the Nigerian economy. The suggestion was made at a seminar entitled, ‘From Bust to Boom: Fiscal, Financial and Infrastructure Options’, held at the Ibadan School of Government and Public Policy. The seminar which was chaired by Emeritus Professor Ademola Oyejide while Prof. Akin Mabogunje was Chief host, drew examples from Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, United Kingdom, and China among others. The seminar in a communique resolved that, “Unlocking revenues from nonfinancial assets of Government, building foreign reserves through massive privatization, deepening the financial system, land reform as an imperative to making it possible for the majority of Nigerians, especially farmers to have titles to their land. Executive vice chairman, ISGPP, Dr. Tunji Olaopa in his remarks said that the ISGPP think tank is worried that the little measure of success recorded since the exit from economic recession may be traded for cheap political points by the political class. He said that he believes that now is the best time for economic experts and other stakeholders in the business of governance to begin a level of conversation that will deliver an alternative sustainable and inclusive model of development for Nigeria. Lead presenter and a member of the Board of Economists, Dr Ayo Teriba, said that for Nigeria to transit from bust to boom, Nigeria can open up to foreign investor to finance private sector. “The private sector doesn’t have enough finance and Nigeria doesn’t have infrastructure so transiting from bust to boom means the Nigeria has resources they can raise liquidity from to finance government. Nigerian can open up to foreign investor to finance private sector. Nigeria does not have to be doing nothing in the face of the bust. There are things Nigeria can do to unleash government revenue, unleash private finance and unlock infrastructure,” he said. 20 years of Cowbell brand and education development in Nigeria Twenty years ago, Cowbell from the stable of Promasidor realised the importance of quality education to nation building and economic development, hence it introduced Cowbellpedia Secondary School Mathematics Television Quiz Show to help prepare Nigerian students for global competitiveness. However, this empowerment programme has enriched many families since its inception, as the competition has gulped millions of Naira from the purse of management of Promasidor. Presently, a lot of schools are hurrying to register their candidates for the 2018 qualifying examination as February 11 will be deadline for registration is fast approaching. According to Marketing Manager, Promasidor Nigeria Limited, Abiodun Ayodeji, “Our Milk and sponsors of the competition, registration for this year’s Cowbellpedia competition is strictly online via the website and it is absolutely free. “Each participating school, is entitled to put forward five candidates who must be between 10 and 18 years old for each of the junior and senior categories. To encourage Girl Child Education, Mixed Schools are expected to nominate a minimum of two (2) girls for each category to represent such school. BUSINESS GUIDE