Vanguard Newspaper 15 April 2018
PAGE 16 —SUNDAY VANGUARD, APRIL 15, 2018 That leads me straight to the point of today’s message. Restructuring/Resource Control Is New Mantra: Meet The Apostles Of Both April 25, 2018 “An invasion of armies can be resisted; but not an idea whose time has come.” Victor Hugo, 1802-1885. Aman fighting for his life, or a political party fighting for survival are in no position to fight for anything else. The All Progressives Congress, APC, and its leaders are fighting for dear lives. The last thing they will pursue between now and Election Day 2019 is restructuring. Surely, they will deceive us by claiming “commitment to restructuring” in their election manifesto for the 2019 polls. Only a moron will believe them. First, the largest collection of willful dissemblers ever to rule Nigeria is now gathered in the most famous rock in Africa. Every single day brings a new topic and reveals a new individual whose words should never be believed. If they are not spreading falsehood about an international award; they are releasing figures about looting of the treasury which don’t add up. Recently, Senator Danjuma Goje, an APC Senator, declared that he had not met a single person benefiting from Buhari’s legacy project – the Social Intervention Programme, SIP. Promptly, a rejoinder came from the Rumour Villa. A Senior Special Assistant released a personal attack on Goje without providing an address where the Senator can meet a beneficiary of the scam called SIP. I have also been in search of the recipients to no avail. These guys are not only untruthful; they are uniformly illogical in their thinking. “O! what a tangled web we weave/When first we practice to deceive.” Sir Walter Scott, 1771-1832. Nigerians are now witnessing what happens when deceit is central policy of a government. Special Adviser of Rumour Villa announced that only N110 billion out of N1.1 trillion had been released. Fair enough. But, like all purveyours of halftruths he failed to disclose two important facts about the disbursement of funds for SIP. One, the National Assembly, NASS, approved N1.1 trillion; but Buhari’s government released only N110 billion or one tenth. Whose fault? Second, out of the N110 billion, only N6.6 billion was spent on feeding the school children who were used to get the budget approved. Who swallowed ninety four per cent if the kids got only six per cent? In the last three years, the Federal Government has been engaging in a venture which strictly speaking belongs to the states and local governments. Trillions of naira have been spent and perhaps looted, through SIP, by those not even close to oil territory. Far more than were ever allocated to the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, and the Ministry for Niger Delta combined for as long as oil was produced in Nigeria was spent on this ill-conceived and executed project. And the cheating will continue. There is no single top official from the oil-producing states among the people spending money coming from down south. So, the struggle must continue as well. Now that restructuring has emerged as the idea whose time has come, the nation has been divided sharply into two. This is a non-partisan, nonreligious, non-ethnic struggle. Everyone is on one side or the other. There can be no fencesitting henceforth. "Once to every man and nation comes the moment to decide; in the strife between truth and falsehood, for the good or evil side.”—James Russell Lowell, 1819-1891. Back in 2000 to 2004 three brave leaders of the South South zone fought for RESOURCE CONTROL. Two of them paid terrible prices for daring to challenge President Obasanjo who wanted derivation to remain at 1.5 per cent with onshoreoffshore dichotomy included. If Obasanjo had had his way, the oil-producing states would look a lot different than they do today. Governors Alamiesegha, Ibori and Attah secured 13 per cent derivation for the people of all oil producing states. Even then, these three heroes of the Niger Delta were unanimous in their thinking that 13 per cent was only the beginning of the quest for social and economic justice The oil-producing states were being cheated because they lacked cohesion and it was the fear that Alams, Attah and Ibori might unite the South South which made them marked men for destruction at all costs in Nigeria if federalism means anything. They were not alone. I was willingly drafted into the struggle by ex-Governor Victor Attah who invited me to write the Foreword to the first edition of ATTAH ON RESOURCE CONTROL which was published in 2004. Lagos was not an oilproducing state then. Despite the obvious lack of benefit for my own state, permit me to repeat what was written in that lead to the book. “Resource Control, peace and development, equity and fair play, as well as justice are universal concerns of people throughout history. In…especially Nigeria, the major tribes [Hausa, Ibo and Yoruba] have connived to deprive the people of the Niger Delta of a fair share of the proceeds of the oil produced from their backyards leaving the people of the Delta with only devastated environment incapable of supporting any form of economic activity, not to talk of development. IT IS MERELY STATING THE OBVIOUS THAT HAD THE CRUDE OIL BEEN LOCATED IN THE SOUTH WEST, THE PRINCIPLE OF [50 PER CENT] DERIVATION WITHOUT DICHOTOMY….WOULD HAVE BEEN UNAMBIGUOUSLY ENTRENCHED IN OUR CONSTITUTION TODAY.” In another column written the same year, I went further to state that the rest of Nigeria would have granted the Yoruba 50 per cent or there would have been no Nigeria as we know it today. The oil-producing states were being cheated because they lacked cohesion and it was the fear that Alams, Attah and Ibori might unite the South South which made them marked men for destruction at all costs. For a long time the adversaries of true federalism succeeded in fooling most of the people. They portrayed Alams and Ibori as villains – just as Isaac Boro and Ken Siro-Wiwa were branded criminals. But, truth triumphs at last. “If you shut up truth and bury it underground, it will but grow and gather to itself such explosive power that the day it bursts through, it will blow everything in its way.” (Emile Zola, 1840-1902). We are confronted with stark truth at last. Abuja, as it exists is a national fraud!! Just as the people of the Niger Delta seemed to have resigned themselves to their fate – receiving crumbs, that is – the nation itself woke up to the truth in 2014 after another Constitutional Conference. True Federalism, Restructuring became fashionable. The productive states saw trillions of their revenue getting buried with corpses left behind by Boko Haram and herdsmen. Heads of pension, NNPC, and Ministry of Interior – all from non-oil producing states – were/are in charge of billions carried to Abuja. Clearly, the WAYO GAME we all call Federal Republic of Nigeria must be overhauled before we proceed further. However, before rushing forward, we need to take a look at fourteen years of RESOURCE CONTROL and how much had been achieved for a mere 13 per cent. Then we can appreciate how much more further the states could have gone if they got twenty five per cent and all the stakeholders were united. Two of the heroes of the first effort will be there on April 25, 2018, to lead us as a revised edition of RESOURCE CONTROL is launched in Lagos. Everybody living in an oil-producing state now owes these leaders a debt of gratitude. Given space constraint, only 400 people can be accommodated at the venue. Notices are already going out to some vital guests. All the Governors and elected officials have been sent notices. Invitations will follow soon. Nobody can claim ignorance of the event. However, everybody can participate. A copy of the book purchased at the venue will attract a cover charge of N5000. Copies delivered to any address in Nigeria will cost N6000. So, book your own copy. On April 25, 2018 the second round of struggle for RESOURCE CONTROL will begin in Lagos. The goal is 50 per cent derivation.. The Young and the Powerful “The secret message communicated to most young people today by the society around them is that they are not needed, that the society will run itself quite nicely until they — at some distant point in the future — will take over the reigns. Yet the fact is that the society is not running itself nicely… For society to attempt to solve its desperate problems without the full participation of even very young people is imbecile.” — Alvin Toffle The news that Muhammadu Buhari will be seeking a second term in office in the coming elections next year may not have been a surprise to many. There have been speculations and innuendos across the nation for some months now, speculations are rife with constant derisions and hope that he would or he would not as the case may be. Now the gloves are off and the mudslinging has been ratcheted up several notches by those who have been eyeing the position from a distant. Well, it is a free country and if they feel they are capable enough, then they should throw their hat into the ring. They may want to run for the office and it is up to the people to decide who in 2019 should be given the office of the presidency. I would politely remind those with such lofty ambition to do so, but please look at Trump and what is happening in America today. Not everyone is capable or suitable of the post and when people become frustrated and angry that their voice is not heard or that they are ignored, they tend to vote in anger or are taken in by some idealist maverick who promises to make the country great again! Politicians have often taken the people that voted them in for granted. Be careful of such pipe dreams or, voting in anger as it had such serious consequences and one that cannot be changed until another election or political upheaval. Sadly, money talks and when poverty is rife mixed with an uneducated; gullible majority; the powerful tend to capitalise on their inadequacies, their fear, rational or irrational, a political Molotov devise to divide and conquer. So, thus history continues to repeat itself. The pattern so far, too many people have been let down, too many times by politicians who promise better living conditions, improved infrastructures, access to education, employment and healthcare. Most of these promises do not materialise and once again, politicians are convincing many to once again, put their trust on them. There is a saying; fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. It has been one too many times and it is high time for Nigerians to vote with their conscience, common sense and determination that come 2019, the right person gets their votes. Sadly, many had hoped that PMB would come in and make sweeping changes and uproot corruption, destroy the terrorists, restore law and order in one quick swoop. That is impossibility; this mess has taken decades to permeate every stratum of institution, establishments and people. It will take years and a concerted collective mind set and, this is a tall order. Many are too comfortable clawing money by corrupted means and for them it is important to retain the status quo. So for PMB, it has not been smooth sailing for the president. He has not been the man that many had hope; that he would put Nigeria back in order. That was then, this is now. It is unrealistic to use yester year’s yards stick to measure today. Firstly, his health and speculation of his health have been a distraction, and while reviving treatment many in the opposition have stoked the fire, that he was seriously unwell, that he was too old and unhealthy to run the country. His vice president stepped in while he recuperates and on “medical leave” in the UK for three months for an undisclosed illness, if the mischief makers were expecting a political vacuum, they did not get their wish. The Prof made sure he maintained a dignified composure until PMB returned. PMB‘s absence open old fears; and many were concerned until his return to Nigeria which quelled many of the speculations of his early demise. To the young people, please use your vote and do so wisely and ensure who ever becomes president has got to engage the country’s people young To be frank, far too many things that was promised, has not materialised, much to the disappointment of many and this was capitalised by his political opposition. His return was a disappointment to many and to return to office, was far from what expected by the political mischievous opposition. So this is not the news that they wanted to hear, this has definitely through the political spanner in the works. Of course, the proverbial knives are out and one prominent voice of dissent is that of OBJ, Olusegun Obasanjo. In an open letter he called on PMB not to seek reelection because of his age and alleged poor health. This is disingenuous coming from OBJ. He went on to say that he was disappointed with PMB, that he handled the Nigeria economy poorly. According to PMB’s spokesperson, the president has accepted the criticism in good faith, but it should be noted that significant progress had been made under his rule in tackling Nigeria’s problems. Now, that is up for debate. Without a doubt there have been some progress made but not enough. Ordinary Nigerians are feeling the burden of poverty, hunger and hopelessness and helplessness, most significantly, the most vulnerable and the young people have been disenfranchised and not given been given opportunities to thrive and legitimately participate in politics. They have been sidelined and made political fodder by unscrupulous politicians to fight and agitate their oppositions for pittance and rent a mob existence. They have been denied opportunities to actively participate in an inclusive agenda that is visible and positive that would lead to sustainable growth. This has not been the case, instead, young people who should have been the backbone of working Nigerians are left to fallow and denied their future by the older people, who are unwilling to let go of power or release the reins of power. In the meantime, PMB in his statement said that, he declared his intention to run for another term in office because the issue had dominated political discourse in the country. “I declared before leaving home because Nigerians were talking too much about whether I would run or not. So, I felt I should break the ice. We have many things to focus on, like security, agriculture, economy, anti-corruption, and many others,” To the young people, please use your vote and do so wisely and ensure who ever becomes president has got to engage the country’s young people. The young people of Nigeria should know that they have the power and the future of Nigeria depends on them and their decisions. Nigeria is booming. Well, it is sort of booming, at least, if everything else is flailing, the population is swelling according to the Chairman, National Population Commission, Mr. Eze Duruiheoma, the estimated population of the country is now 198 million. Previous data was 182 million and more than half its people under 30 years of age; this means in the present economic decline, this group have not had adequate access to education, training, health or employment for several decades. Subsequently, administrations have failed to invest and address the shortfall. The actively mobile and potential contributor to the country’s economy -the young people. Currently, Nigeria currently ranks as the 7th most populous nation in the world. Nigeria’s urban population is growing at an average annual rate of about 6.5 per cent, teenagers, women of child-bearing age and the working age population, were more engaged in urbanisation.
SUNDAY Vanguard, APRIL 15, 2018, PAGE 17 I Go Dye to bankroll evicted BBNaija housemate, Rico Swarvey’s business BY ROTIMI AGBANA ACE comedian, Francis Agoda, popularly known as I Go Dye, has promised to bankroll ex- BBNaija housemate, Rico Swarvey’s restaurant business whenever he is ready to establish it Ṫhe humour merchant who extended the same philanthropic gesture towards BBNaija 2017 winner, Efe, by splashing a whooping sum of N1 million in support, made the declaration on his Instagram page during the week. He wrote: “I kindly use this medium to celebrate one of the finest gentlemen, with modest standard, who expressed a pleasant social decorum, an exemplary quality that projected the real values of a young Africa man, as a symbol of respect, dignity, cultured in domestic activities. "You have proven that we still have more responsible youths in Nigeria; your character will change a lot of perceptions about our Nigerian men. My profound respect to you. "Please understand that your eviction, doesn’t stop you from becoming what you desire.Try and maintain this standard, soonest the sky will become your stepping stone, because you are the next stage butterfly. However, I overheard you mention that you will want to embark on a restaurant business. Any time you want to commence the project, please contact me, I will be glad to support with the little I can, towards achieving this goal. Once again, sail on; inspiring many others, proving the point that it is worthy to be responsible, devoid of immoral justification that was expected from you. I shall continually celebrate anyone with your kind of character and humane attitude of purpose. Congratulations”, he wrote. Speaking at the live eviction show, Rico, who was evicted from the Big Brother House, penultimate Sunday, for having the lowest votes among housemates nominated for eviction, revealed plans to establish a restaurant business and focus more on his music and acting career. Meanwhile, housemates, Cee-C, Lolu, Anto, Miracle and Khloe are up for possible eviction today, as the much talked about reality TV show comes to a wrap this week. I Go Dye Regina Chukwu Hotshot Yoruba actress of Igbo descent, Regina Chukwu, has seen all there is to see when it comes to making movies and she’s so fetish about it that no role is a taboo for her. The mother of two revealed to Potpourri in a chat that there’s no role she cannot take on as long as it is something that would not embarrass her children in the future. Sex scenes don’t bother me – Regina Chukwu When asked if that includes doing raw sex scene, the Enugu State-born beauty answered in the affirmative, giving reasons why she would go the full horde. “Why not? I have done it one or two times in the past. Acting is make-belief so you have to be comfortable when you’re doing it and you also have to take into consideration that our society does not really support some things; they may just condemn you for doing some things but that does not mean we would not do it. We only have to be considerate when we’re doing it. There was this movie I shot where we were supposed to be making love; I mean serious lovemaking. After the director did it, and everything, I made sure they did a kind of behind-the-scene shoot to show people I wasn’t really naked as the movie portrayed. I was actually wearing clothes but the editing got people thinking I was really naked. I always make sure this is done because of my children, they are kids and would not understand. I made them do a behind the scene so that when we finish, people can see that so many people were in the room while we were doing it” she said. If he hits you once, don’t marry him —Olajumoke Rhoda Fujah BY ROTIMIAGBANA "D omestic violence against women would reduce drastically if young women would stop getting married to any man who hits them while in a relationship.” These were the words of young entrepreneur, philanthropist and motivational speaker, Olajumoke Rhoda Fujah, during a chat with Potpourri. Speaking on the incessant cases of domestic violence, Olajumoke advised young women to be careful of the men they build relationships with. She argued that most cases of violence against women start while dating or courting and not suddenly in marriage. In her opinion, any man who hits his partner while dating will do so multiple times if they finally get married. She therefore advised young women to consider their safety first before choosing to get married to their spouse. “Ladies, please be watchful before marrying Regina Chukwu is one of the leading household names in the Yoruba movie industry. She has done so many blockbuster movies that her name rings as loud as the very any man, because no marriage is worth your lives. I know love makes us take foolish decisions. But for me, when I see the signs I don’t wait to be proven right. My sister lost her life with her 5- month pregnancy because she kept quiet”, she said. “I advise women going through abuse, physical or sexual assaults in marriage or relationship to come out. Speak up and seek help before it gets too late. Every woman deserves to be respected and loved by her spouse.” As an entrepreneur, Olajumoke believes in the independence of women. To her, women live better when they are independent. They also get more respect from their husbands when they can support the home in their own little way. She thinks every woman needs Olajumoke Rhoda best in the industry. But Regina Chukwu is not a Yoruba woman, she’s Igbo but her footprints in the acting business can only be found alongside top Yoruba acts. Her popular films include Akun, Ewatomi, Idaro, Awolu ati Awalu, Ogunso to name a few. to acquire skills so as to become of assistance, not a liability to their spouse. “If you’re independent, its easier to walk away and start afresh, don’t make yourself an invalid in your relationship or marriage”, she advised. C M YK