Views
4 months ago

12042018 - HERDSMEN/FARMERS’ CLASHES: Blame Gaddafi, irresponsible politicians — BUHARI

30Vanguard, THURSDAY, APRIL 12, 2018 :Vanguard News :@vanguardnews :@vanguardnews NEWS HOTLINES: 08052867023, 08052867058 Oba Ewuare II tasks NIS on protection of nation’s borders By Gabriel Enogholase BENINOBA of Benin, Omo N’ Oba Ewuare II, has called on the Nigeria Immigration Service, NIS, to put in place measures that will protect the nation’s borders against external aggression. The Benin monarch who gave the advice in Benin City, yesterday, in his palace when he received Looters list: Why Edo PDP bemoans Oshiomhole's comment APC By Simon Ebegbulem B ENINALL Progressives Congress, APC, in Edo State has said that the leadership of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the state was angry over comments by the immediate past governor of the state, Mr Adams Oshiomhole, on the looters lists because ¨The names of some of the leaders of the PDP in Edo State will soon be published.” Oshiomhole had urged the Federal Government to be ruthless with looters who allegedly looted the treasury. But his comment elicited attacks from the state PDP. Reacting, yesterday, the state APC, through its secretary, Lawrence Okah, described as unfortunate “The lies we read in the papers by the PDP against the leader of our party in the state. Most of the words used were quite libelous and we are looking into them before we will take action. "It is sad that because of politics, Edo PDP has failed to thank Oshiomhole for the new Edo State Comptroller of Immigration, Mr. Kayode Eniolorunda, said that the reported attacks by suspected criminals disguising as herdsmen may not be unconnected with the state of the borders. He said: “No country can leave its borders so porous. You see what President Donald Trump is trying to do with Mexico. When you revamping the state after they destroyed it in 10 years. The PDP government retrenched thousands of workers in Edo State without paying them gratuities and pension and it was only when Oshiomhole came that the workers started getting their payment and that is why today, we seem to have issues about the payment of pensions because it ran into billions of naira. “All the roads that the PDP leaders are using today see some of the herdsmen with their cattle and stick and at the same time, AK47 (rifles) on their shoulders, it is very disturbing.” Oba Ewuare II advised the Nigeria Immigration Service to do its best to monitor the population, especially in the rural areas, in order to prevent any infiltration and also protect lives and property. Earlier, Eniolorunda including the ones in the village of their chairman, Dan Orbih, were constructed by Oshiomhole and yet because they are shameless, they are still talking. “But we feel sorry for them because we are aware that most of them were involved in the looting that went on during the last fedral administration. And very soon some of them will go for it because the list of looters has started coming out. “We are aware that before explained that the state command of NIS had taken steps to increase security monitoring in the rural areas, with the deployment of personnel to the 18 local government areas of the state. He stated that the officers will work with other security agencies for peace and development in their areas of jurisdiction. EIA SESSION: From left: Prince Chukwumah Igelenyah, General Manager, Operations Support, SEPLAT; Mr. Kevin Ihebinike, Deputy Director, Environmental Assessment, Federal Ministry of Environment; Mr. Effiong Okon, Operations Director, SEPLAT; Mr. K.B Odusanya, Panel Chairman/ Waste Management Expert; Chief Onoriode Temiagin, Acting Assistant Duke/District Head of Sapele; Mr. Ismail Mohammed, Deputy Manager, NPDC and Mr. Lucky Obiuwevbi, Western Assets Base Manager, SEPLAT, at the Environmental Impact Assessment, EIA, panel review session on Seplat Petroleum’s proposed field development activities in Sapele (OML 41), in Asaba, Delta State. the governorship poll in 2016, some of them were visiting the EFCC and the matter is still on. So that is why you see them crying over Oshiomhole´s comment. Oshiomhole did his best for our state and it was the foundation he laid that Obaseki (Godwin) is building upon. “That is what annoys the PDP and if they like they can abuse Oshiomhole who God has blessed till tomorrow, Edo people will never accept them again in this state. They are down and out and that is why they are frustrated,” he stated. 2019: Delta's conquered voter apathy, says Okowa’s aide By Festus Ahon A S A B A EXECUTIVE Assistant to Delta State Governor on Orientation, Mr. Emanuel Uzum, has said that voter apathy has been conquered by the state government through the ongoing voters’ education advocacy it embarked upon across the state. Speaking with newsmen in Asaba, Uzum said: “The state government led by Senator Ifeanyi Okowa deemed it fit to educate the public on the need to be part of government by mandating the state Directorate of Orientation to carry out advocacy on voters’ education across the state. “Though voter apathy in the state was low compared to other states, the governor insisted that everyone must be involved in the electoral process by being armed with adequate knowledge to nip apathy in the bud considering the state’s voting strength.” Reiterating the determination of the of the directorate to reach out to all the institutions of higher learning in the state, Uzum disclosed that the directorate has so far, taken voters education to the colleges of Education at Asaba and Agbor as well as the Delta State Polytechnics Ogwashi-Uku and Ozoro. Shun cultism, A-Ibom govt warns UNIUYO graduating doctors By Harris-Okon Emmanuel U YOAKWA Ibom State Government has advised the 26 doctors graduating from the University of Uyo to stick to the core values of their profession and shun cultism. Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dominic Ukpong, who handed down the warning at the physician’s oath taking ceremony, said: “Medical practice calls for a lot in your character. You must be disciplined and continue to train to acquire more skills. I want to also advise you to run away from cultism as it will destroy you. You must also run away from the vices that have crept into the profession. “I had to sack a doctor for theft and other unethical behaviours. There are certain things that must not be mentioned among you because this profession is noble. You have to dress properly, because to qualify as a doctor, there is a component of character that must be looked at. This profession has its own dress code and your dress says a lot about you.” Vice Chancellor, Professor Enefiok Essien, in his address, urged the graduates to adhere strictly to the ethics of their profession, noting: “Where you fail to keep to it, you fail not only for yourself, your parents, your school, but you also fail your profession and your colleagues." Establish business presence in Rivers, firm urges US govt By Egufe Yafugborhi PORT HAR- C O U R T INDIGENOUS upstream player, Belemaoil, has appealed to the United States government to establish a business liaison office in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, to strengthen investors' confidence in the state capital as West Africa’s oil and gas hub. Jack-Rich Tein Jr, President/Founder of Belemaoil, operator of Oil Mining Lease (OML 55), made the appeal when the US Consul- General in Nigeria, Mr John Bray, visited the Port Harcourt-based firm to hear, firsthand, how the company’s operating model had ensured eradication of vandalism and sabotage of its assets. Tein Jr told Bray that Belemaoil, since acquiring OML 55 assets from Chevron in 2012, had set new standards in corporate social responsibility by changing lives in its immediate host communities through jobs creation, scholarships, amenities and empowerment initiatives even to extraneous beneficiaries in Northern Nigeria. “Our success story will make investors view the Niger Delta as safe and your (US) presence with a liaison US business office in Port Harcourt will strengthen the business atmosphere and prove that Niger Delta is indeed safe for business” 2019: Okumagba drums support for PDP House of Reps hopeful W ARRITHE political leader of Urhobo ethnic nationality in Warri, Delta State, Chief Emmanuel Okumagba, has said that they were solidly behind Chief Thomas Ereyitomi's ambition to contest for the Warri federal constituency seat in the 2019 elections to represent the Ijaw, Itsekiri and Urhobo which make up the constituency at the Green Chamber. Similarly, the Peoples Democracy Party, PDP, Chairman for Warri South-West constituency inhabited by the Itsekiri and Ijaw ethnic groups, Mr. Johnbull Edema, has on behalf of party faithful, pledged their total support for Ereyitomi in the race for the House of Reps seat in the 2019 elections. Both leaders spoke in Warri when Chief Ereyitomi and his team paid a consultative visit to present himself and acquaint them of his intention to vie for the position in the 2019 general election. According to Okumagba, “As a leader in the party and a stakeholder in the politics of Warri and Delta State, I have implicit confidence in Chief Ereyitomi, who I have known for a long time.”

Vanguard, THURSDAY, APRIL 12, 2018 31 Send Opinions & Letters to: opinions1234@yahoo.com Game on HERE is how the New York Times reacted to President Muhammadu Buhari’s announcement on Monday that he would run for a second term: “Nigeria’s 75 year-old president, who spent four months out of the country while getting medical treatment, says he will run for a second term”. The newspaper, which used to write very nice articles and flattering editorials about President Buhari, could not hide derision in this tweet. Firstly, in saner and more civilised societies, a leader who gets sick gets treated in his country’s hospitals and probably by his country’s doctors. But ours spent over a hundred days in London, and it took megaphonewielding protesters heckling him to “resume or resign” before he hustled himself back to Nigeria in August 2017. Secondly, a president who survived that kind of health challenge only seven months ago would most likely opt out of his constitutionally-permitted second term, more so, as Buhari had openly lamented how his old age has greatly incapacitated him physically and mentally. If he refuses to do so he would be rejected by the electorate. But of course, Nigeria is neither politically sane nor civilised. This declaration by President Buhari, once again, brings to focus this now worn tag of “Mr. Integrity” which is used to deceive gullible Nigerians. On several occasions as a presidential aspirant he had given undertakings to spend only one term in office. In February 2014, he granted an interview to Daily Trust, saying because of his old age he would only do one term. Even Hajiya Aisha Alhassan, his Minister of Women Affairs, in September 2017, justified her pledge to join her political mentor, Alhaji Atiku in the pursuit of his presidential ambition on the ground that Buhari had promised to do only one term. Other presidents before Buhari, especially Olusegun Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan, had similarly been caught in the web of promising to do only one term but reneging when the time to walk their talk was up. Their supporters justified their change of mind on the grounds that their constitutional rights to two terms towered over any real or imaginary promise. However, neither Obasanjo nor Jonathan was dressed in the chimeric robe of “Mr. Integrity” like Buhari. “Lesser mortals” (or should I say “lesser animals”, since animals – jackals, hyenas, rats, snakes and monkeys – are now in vogue under The emergence of the so-called Third Force at this juncture is a huge advantage to Buhari because it means the opposition will face him with a divided house the Buhari dispensation) like Obasanjo and Jonathan could be forgiven to give their word and fail. But when “Mr. Integrity” falls into the same trap, it shows that that moniker is just there to deceive the gullible. An APC-friendly newspaper carried a banner headline last Tuesday that Buhari’s declaration “shocked” members of the party’s National Executive Council, NEC. What a joke! Why would they be shocked when Buhari said that he decided to run again in response to a “clamour by Nigerians” including, obviously, the NEC members? When will Nigerian politicians run for office without blaming their ambition on pressure from others? Senator Arthur Nzeribe, the fire you lit with your Association for Better Nigeria, ABN, in May 1993 with a view to “forcing” Military President, General Ibrahim Babangida, to abort the transition programme and continue in office, is still burning! Even Mr. Integrity is scorched by it. Everyone who has ruled this country since Babangida always succumbed to the antics of mercenary clamourers. What a silly joke! Can you imagine a starving man saying: “I decided to eat because I was begged”? Even while Buhari seemed on his death bed eight months ago, I told people that the only thing that would stop him from running for a second term is if he stopped breathing. Because of the level of corruption in Nigerian politics, a person occupying the Office of President of Nigeria is a “bread winner” to millions of those favoured by his being there. Because they don’t want to lose their honeypot, they will do everything in their power to keep the man in power till the last day permitted under the constitution. These clamourers are self-seekers who are not interested the fates of millions of Nigerians who are outside the President’s gravy train. The President’s poor performance on almost all fronts does not matter. What amazes me, however, is that the President is aware that people are clamouring for him to run again. He was not aware that the Inspector General of Police, Alhaji Ibrahim Idris, did not obey his order to relocate to Benue and stop killings by armed herdsmen. When he found out he did nothing, and the killings have continued. He was not aware that pension fund fugitive, Abdulrasheed Maina, had been smuggled back into service, and when he found out, Maina was allowed to escape. Those who brought him back remain in their cozy offices. But when it comes to the “clamour” for him to run for second term, he responds like a wounded lion and throws his hat into the ring. At least, he is aware of that one. There is hope. The upshot of Buhari’s declaration for a second term in office is that the whistle has been blown for the start of the 2018/ 2019 electioneering season. The game is on. Even though the APC is internally fractured and the Buhari government seriously wounded by poor performance, the challenge to snatch presidency from him has been less than convincing. The emergence of the so-called Third Force at this juncture is a huge advantage to Buhari because it means the opposition will face him with a divided house. Secondly, the PDP has not been convincing in its opposition politicking. The PDP governors, save for Ekiti State’s Ayo Fayose, are too chummy with the President for comfort. Contrast this with the anti-Jonathan sabre-rattling that reigned supreme from opposition governors four years ago, in the media, on the streets. You wonder if Buhari will get a run for his money. More on lawmakers as lawbreakers UNEASY lies the head that wears the crown. There is no way that the high position you occupy will not stand you out for public opprobrium, sometimes, most unfairly. It would be restating the obvious to say that if the President of the Senate, Senator Bukola Saraki, were not occupying the exalted position, he would have been in the good books of many. In more concrete terms, if he was a rubber tapper in one remote village in Kwara State, he would have had no business with asset declaration, talk more of under-declaration. As they say in the colloquial, “wetin concern fish with rain coat?” Whatever we do in Nigeria today, no amount of objectivity will totally obviate some aspects of witch-hunt colouration from our anti-graft war. We observed quite early that since corruption is sufficiently widespread in Nigeria, there would be nothing wrong with our leaders diligently applying the anti-graft laws against their perceived enemies. Call it the “punish your enemies approach” to crime causation, if you like. With time, the entire nation would be cleansed. Since Nigeria’s return to the current democratic experiment in 1999, had our Presidents – Olusegun Obasanjo, Musa Yar’Adua, Goodluck Jonathan, and down the line, now Muhammadu Buhari – vigorously used the EFCC to deal decisively with their perceived corrupt enemies, Nigeria would by now have been virtually corruption free. Let every corrupt official know that sooner than later, the law will catch up with him. That’s the only cure for this “my corruption is better than your corruption” syndrome. In the name of freedom, democracy destroys freedom. One disturbing trend that is emerging in Nigeria today is the raw impunity with which our lawmakers disrespect the laws they make. Ordinarily, they are duty bound to accept the legal sanctions and punishments imposed by the laws. Attempts to evade and escape them amount to betrayal of the entire legislative process. The argument of Socrates in the CRITO is particularly valid here – you may disobey the law you detest; but you cannot run away from the sanctions and punishments prescribed for such disobedience. Men have lost their reasons! So soon, we have arrived at the point where a Distinguished Senator, so-called, is appealing to the Supreme Court to debase itself by prevailing on INEC to abandon its constitutionally-assigned responsibility It is the pain, the hurt and the indignity, which the law-breaker voluntarily accepts that stir citizens to compassion towards him. Chief Obafemi Awolowo and his followers in the defunct Action Group, AG, endeared themselves to the hearts of many by the courage with which they faced the treasonable felony trials during the First Republic. When we observe the heroics of disobedience being followed by the dialectics of legal and illegal manipulations geared towards evasion of prosecution, we question their real motives. It is like wanting good teeth while you hate to visit the dentist. By their actions, our lawmakers attract opprobrium and outright cynicism to the entire process of law-making. The moral message they leave is that disobedience to law pays dividends; but invariably, that b r e e d s confidence erosion and total disrespect for the process and practice of law. Enter Senator Bukola Saraki, President Of The Senate: The Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB, accuses him of breaking the law by underdeclaring his assets when he was the Governor of Kwara State – the type of accusation that is normally based on empirical and observable evidence. In some more advanced democracies, a leader would not allow himself to be dragged on. Once he is caught in the act, he throws in the towel and submits himself for trial. He would walk into prison if that is the prescription for his offence. But not in Nigeria. Here, every effort must be made to straddle and obfuscate the course of justice. Saraki came slightly short of starting his defiance from the customary court level, exploring every loophole – legal and notso-legal – to evade prosecution by the CCB. The idea behind the judicial rigmarole may not be an outright win but to buy time – just keep appealing to everywhere and everybody until your tenure expires and the case dies. After all, every problem has an expiry date. The taxpayer is the worse for it all. Each time the court jamboree came up, the entire Senate migrated to the courtroom and legislative sitting was aborted. At what cost to the taxpayer was this legislative rascality? A matter for conjecture! Why is Senator Dino Melaye (APC/Kogi West) running from pillar to post; and taking the entire country for a ride in his merry-goround expedition? The provisions of Section 69 of the 1999 Constitution are quite clear: “A member of the Senate or of the House of Representatives may be recalled… if there is presented to the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission a petition in that behalf signed by more than one-half of the persons registered to vote in that member’s constituency alleging their loss of confidence in that member; and the petition is thereafter in a referendum conducted by the Independent Electoral Commission within ninety days of the receipt of the petition approved by a simple majority of the votes of the persons registered to vote in that member’s constituency”. In the foregoing process, we find no direct role for the courts. Notwithstanding, we find that Melaye has advanced Saraki’s methods some steps further: for a very long time, he was incommunicado, thus making himself unavailable to be served the process, only to reemerge after he thought that the period allowed for service had lapsed. After that, he was constructively engaged in the process of shopping for justice (or injustice?) everywhere. He arrived at the Supreme Court last Thursday to appeal to the apex Court to prevail on INEC to discontinue the process of his recall. Men have lost their reasons! So soon, we have arrived at the point where a Distinguished Senator, so-called, is appealing to the Supreme Court to debase itself by prevailing on INEC to abandon its constitutionally-assigned responsibility. It gets messier by the day. Add to this, the new allegation of the descent to thuggery – all that a lawmaker should triumph over the wishes of the electorate. What a theatre of the absurd! Whither Nigeria? C M Y K