13052019 - NSITF: Kokori, Labour tackle Presidency


Companies record

weak earnings

amidst sluggish

economic growth




No money

lost, says



Insecurity: We’re

up to the task


•Army, ISWA engage in claims

and counter-claims over killings

in Borno


VOL. 26: NO. 63801

MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019


Captain Vincent Kompany lifts the Premier League trophy in company of other City players, for the second season running and for the fourth time in his career

. City beat Brighton 4-1 yesterday to finish with 98 points, one point better than Liverpool.

NSITF: Kokori, Labour

FG’ll deal



debtors 8


TUC planning

to plunge

Nigeria into


—TCN tells



SERAP urges

Ganduje to

reject Kano

Assembly bill

• Ardo asks

Sultan, others

to resist

Ganduje 10 13

tackle Presidency

•I was appointed in 2017, Kokori insists

Presidency, economical with the truth, Labour

• NUPENG slams Presidency over Kokori

Adeboye commissions ICU...

From Left:Pastor E.A Odeyemi, AGO Training & Education, Pastor Idowu Iluyomade, SATGO CSR & PIC

Region 20 , Prof Sonni Tyoden , Deputy Governor, Plateau State, Pastor E.A Adeboye, General Overseer

RCCG, Kuden Deyin , Commissioner for Health, Plateau State at the commissioning of the Enoch and

Folu Adeboye Intensive Care Unit donated by His Love Foundation at the Plateau Specialist Hospital, Jos.


31 29 30




Mr & Mrs

2 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 3

4 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019—5


MARK AT 20 IN SENATE—From left: Former Senate President, Sen David Mark; his wife, Helen;

Gov Samuel Ortom of Benue State; former Minister of Interior/Senator-Elect, Comrade Abba Moro;

his wife, Ori, during a Thanksgiving Mass to commemorate Mark’s 20 years in Senate, at St. Augustine’s

Catholic Church in Okpoku LGA, Benue State, yesterday. Photo: NAN.

NSITF: Kokori, Labour

tackle Presidency

By Victor Young &



A BUJA—Veteran

Labour leader,

Chief Frank Ovie

Kokori, yesterday,

disagreed with the

Presidency over his

appointement as

Chairman of the board

of Nigeria Social

Insurance Trust Fund,


The Presidency had,

weekend, issued a

statement saying Kokori

was only appointed as

Chairman of the board

of Michael Imoudu

Institute for Labour

Studies and not the


But reacting,

yesterday, Kokori said:

“I first heard about the

appointment through

an online medium.

Within two hours,

Ngige called to

congratulate me. Not

long after, Chief Emeka

Wogu, the immediate

past Minister of Labour

and Employment, also

called to congratulate


‘’Within that week,

Ngige invited me to a

dinner. I went with my

son to the dinner. We

discussed the

inauguration and other

things concerning the


‘’When President

Buhari, returned,

Ngige called me to say,

now that the President

has come back, let me

get clearance from him

because you know that

the man that appointed

you was acting

president. That took

about three weeks.

‘’After that, he called

to say that the President

said he should

inaugurate me. It was

from then on the cabal

in the Presidency took

over because they are

afraid that I am going

to unearth a lot of

things that have been

going on. I can tell you

that they have spent

over N2 billion to

ensure that I am not

inaugurated chairman

of the board.

‘’On June 12, 2018, I

asked President Buhari

why I was not

inaugurated, he asked

one of his aides, one

Seriki, to see to it that I

was inaugurated as

chairman of the board.

But the cabal refused to

have me inaugurated.

‘’Look, if at the

beginning I was named

chairman of the

Governing Council of

Michael Imoudu

National Institute of

Labour Studies,

MINILS, I would

gladly accept. But I was

appointed chairman of

the NSITF board by the

then acting President,

Yemi Osinbajo.

‘’But the cabal in the

Presidency, including

one contractor of NNDC

in Delta, another of my

friend and a leading

figure in the June 12,

1993, struggle(names

withheld), are involved

in the conspiracy to

stop me from being


NLC reacts

Speaking on the issue

yesterday, President of

Nigeria Labour

Congress, NLC, Ayuba

Wabba, said the

clarification from Femi

Adesina was very

unfortunate, since it

was coming rather too


He said: ‘’I think they

are being economical

with the truth. You can

recall that on March 17,

through the NTA, it was

announced that Kokori

has been replaced as

NSITF board chairman

and named as

Chairman of the

Michael Imoudu

Labour institute

Governing Board.

‘’You cannot replace

somebody you have not

appointed in the first

place. This matter was

on the table for over two

years. We have written

several letters for him to

be inaugurated, nobody

said he was never

Continues on Page 41

By Bose Adelaja,Yinka Latona,

Dickson Omobola, Tolulope Oke,

Erinfolami Abdulkudus, Janet


Banditry, kidnapping occupation of Nigerian youths — Buhari (4)

The President is not

far from the truth

simply because the youths

are often at the receiving

end of the hardship,

poverty and hunger in the

country after contributing

so much in bringing the

government onboard as

the majority and what do

you expect of youths who

are jobless? Of course, all

sorts of evils are expected

of them for survival.

-Wolimoh Olajide

Warehouse Manager

The response to this

is simple, let’s

tackle unemployment,

infrastructural decay,

lack of social amenities

and growing poverty in

the land. All past heads

of state should be held

responsible for this

because the situation did

not start today.

God bless Nigeria.

-Mr Dare Oyedele


The failure of government

in protecting lives and

providing jobs and

security makes youths to

take advantage of the failed

situation to get daily bread.

These youths can be

absorbed in the security

organisations and they will

deliver if employed as

securitymen and women

and then banditry/

kidnapping will become a

thing of the past as everyone

is engaged with daily

activities and earns daily


-Olamide Abbas, Youth


We all understand

the fact that most

of the evil being

perpetrated in the

society are carried out by

youths but lack of jobs for

the youths has made

kidnapping a new

occupation for Nigerian

youths and this must be

addressed before

making such a


-Mr Mufutau Razak

Commercial Driver

Over 30 million

Nigerians have

lost their jobs and basic

means of livelihood;

businesses have

continued to be shut

while cost of essential

goods and services have

persistently increased

with purchasing power

of citizens worsening.

Mr President should

address these first.

-Mr Peter Akinsolu


Iagree with Mr. President.

The youths have become

not just unemployed but

disempowered as a result of

govt's poor economic policies

and political crisis in the

country. As a result, the youths

have resigned to fate by taking

laws into their hands and

empowering themselves

economically by receiving

ransom from kidnapped

victims’ families and other

negative vices. This is all

captured by Frantz Fanon in

his book, The Wretched of the


-Moyosore Lateef Adeyinka

Security operative

6—Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Fire guts





archive in


By Ike



items, relief materials

worth millions of naira,

including mattresses,

vegetable oil, palm oil,

and noodles among other

items were destroyed by

fire, which gutted the

warehouse of Cross River

State Emergency

Management Agency,

SEMA, and Chronicle

newspaper archives.

Vanguard gathered that

the fire, which started at

about 8:30 pm on

Saturday night destroying

everything inside the

warehouse of the agency

located at 17/19, Barracks

Road, Calabar was

caused by vandals who

broke into the warehouse,

carting away bags of rice,

garri and other items.

Confirming the

incident, Mr Princewill

Ayim, Director General of

SEMA in Cross River said

he was shocked about the

report he got at about 8:30

pm while on official duty.

His words : “ We got

report at about 8:30pm

that one of our makeshift

warehouses was on fire

and we called the

emergency toll free line,

122, of Nigeria


Commission, NCC, and

that was when Fire Service

responded immediately

and the fire was stopped

from spreading to other


“From our preliminary

investigations, we

discovered that the fire

was caused while the

hoodlums were trying to

cart away relief materials

from the warehouse.

We claimed to be cultists to rob our victims,

ex-convicts, robbery suspects confess

By Olasunkanmi


TWO ex-convicts arrested for

robbery by operatives of Rapid

Response Squad, RRS, of Lagos

State Police Command, have

revealed how they robbed their

victims under the pretext of being

cult members.

Emmanuel Michael, 20 year-old

and Mohammed Abubakar, 25,

were arrested in Lekki Phase I,

Lekki area of Lagos State after a

robbery operation.

One of the robbers, Micheal, was

released from Oke-Kura Prison,

Kwara State on Friday, April 26,

2019, and re-arrested on Monday

in Lekki, Lagos, with his colleagues

after robbing a 25-year-old lady in

Lekki Phase 1.

Suspects' confessions

According to Michael: “I was

released from Oke-Kura Prison,

Kwara State on Friday. I was

imprisoned for almost four years for

man slaughter.

“With the assistance of my brother,

I came down to Lagos and landed

in Alaba Rago, Ojo. It was in that

ghetto I met Mohammed Abubakar,

who said I should accompany him

to Lekki.

“He paid all the transport fare

from Ojo to Lekki, he didn’t tell me

he was going to rob. He only told

me to play along with him.”

Mohammed Abubakar, 25, who

is also an ex-convict, while

pleading for leniency, stated that

he invited Michael and Simeon

Michael, 27, for a “student parole.”

“We were on student parole. We

saw the lady and our interest was

to scare her into parting with her

mobile phone. We told her we were

Aiye cult members and that the

colour of her dress gave her out as

rival cult member.

“I told Emmanuel to confirm if

she was truly a member of rival cult

member. I, thereafter, threatened to

kill her on the spot if she didn’t cooperate

with me. I took her phone

and asked her to go and get us


“She left to get the drinks and we

took Okada and bolted.

Unfortunately for us, we did not

know that RRS team were patrolling

The suspects.

the area. She called for help and

chased us on Okada. They

caught up with us at Lekki

Phase 1 gate and this was

where the police arrested us.

“In all honesty, we are not cult

members. We only use that code

to dispossess victims. What we did

is common among teenagers

raised in Alaba. It is called ‘student


Abubakar, who is a stylist, was

arrested in Maryland, Lagos in

September, 2018 for robbery. He

was released in December, 2018

from Ikoyi Prison.

He narrated: “It is the source

of my livelihood. I have operated

in Lekki, Agege, Bariga, Shitta,

Okoko, Maryland, among


Fake lovers jailed for Internet fraud

By Evelyn Usman

THREE Nigerian youths that

posed as foreigners to

defraud their supposed foreign

lovers, through Internet, have

been convicted and sentenced to

prison by Justice Fatun Riman

of the Federal High Court sitting

in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

The trio of Daniel Iluobe,

Ifeanyi Chukwudi Paul and

Godwin Joseph Ovboke,

defrauded their supposed female

lovers of $1,600 and 600 pounds,


Iluobe,while posing as a

Chinese, with the name Huang

Guang, sent electronic messages

to a Chinese woman promising

her marriage. In the course of

the conversation, he demanded

$200, which his unsuspecting

victim sent to him via Western


Ovboke, as gathered,

portrayed himself as Lancelot

Degory, a United States citizen

and succeeded in defrauding

one Cheow Lim of $1,400, after

How Ambode’s commissioner, Bamigbetan, driver

narrowly escaped death in auto crash

By Olasunkanmi


FEW days to handing over

to Permanent Secretary of

the ministry, Lagos State

Commissioner for Information

and Strategy, Kehinde

Bamigbetan, weekend,

narrowly, escaped death with

his driver in an auto crash that

occurred in Osun State.

Bamigbetan, who in his last

public official duty represented

Governor Akinwunmi Ambode

of Lagos State at the 2019

Biennial Conference of Nigeria

Guild of Editors, in Lagos,

penultimate weekend,

announced the incident in a

Facebook post, yesterday.

His ash colour Sport Utility

Vehicle, SUV, which he was

travelling in before the tragic

accident had its bonnet smashed

and two airbags blown out after

ramming into Police Armoured

Personnel Carrier.

Bamigbetan posted on his

facebook post, thus: “His mercy

endures forever. The driver drove

into an armoured carrier on our

way from the farm. I was taking a

nap in the rear seat. The impact

flung me at the windscreen. He

dozed off on speed. But our

Creator was in charge. He saved

us from the calamity. To God be the


When Vanguard spoke with him

on phone, he was full of thanks

and praises to God for saving his

life, saying: “It is only by miracle

my life was saved. It can only

be God."

He told Vanguard that he

travelled to Ife, in Osun State,

at the weekend to attend his

secondary school old students’


He explained that after the

meeting he decided to visit his

farm to access the stage of

development and after a tiring

outing on their way back the

tragic accident occurred.

He told Vanguard that he is

recuperating and in a stable

condition, even as he thanked

family members, friends,

relations, well wishers, and all

that took time to send him get

well wishes over his lucky


The suspects.

he lied to her that he was going to

meet her in Singapore where they

were supposed to get married.

Paul on the other hand, claimed

he was a Construction Engineer

based in Syria. He succeeded in

defrauding one Simone Cardoso of

£600 with a false promise of


The convicts were arraigned on

separate charges and all three

pleaded “guilty” to the one-count

charge preferred against them by

Economic and Financial Crimes

Commission, EFCC.

Before they were convicted and

sentenced, the prosecuting counsel,

N.K. Ukoha, prayed the court to

allow his witness take a stand and

review the facts of the cases.

How they were arrested

The prosecution witness, Joseph

Simon Akor, an EFCC operative,

narrated how the convicts were

arrested at different locations and

on different dates, following

intelligence gathered during


He told the court that Paul was

arrested on May 5, 2019 at his

apartment on Charles Effiong

Close, Satellite Town, Calabar,

while Ovboke and Iluobe were

arrested at Itagbor Agbeansa area

of Calabar.

“During investigations,

forensic analysis carried out on

their laptops showed that they

were into Internet fraud as we

saw all the electronic messages

they used to dupe their victims,”

he said.

After leading the witness in

evidence, Ukoha then urged the

court to convict and sentence

them accordingly.

While delivering judgement,

Justice Riman sentenced Iluobe

to two years in prison with an

option of fine of N50,000, and

ordered that the convict must

restitute the entire sum of $200

to his victim.

Ovboke was sentenced to two

years in prison with an option of

fine of N100,000 and ordered to

refund $1,400 to the victim as


Paul was also sentenced to two

years in prison with an option of

fine of N100,000. He was also

ordered by the court to pay back

£600 to the victim he defrauded.

The court also ordered that all

three convicts forfeit every item

recovered from them at the point

of arrest to the Federal


Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019—7

Vigilantes rescue 2 brothers from

kidnappers in Delta, kill 3 suspects

•As mother, aunt of Delta monarch regain freedom

By Perez Brisibe

ISIOKOLO—Two brothers

were rescued from a kidnappers'

den inside Egbo forest of Kokori

by a team of vigilante operatives

from Kokori community in Ethiope

East Local Government Area of

Delta State, killing three of the

suspected kidnappers during a

gun duel.

The incident came as the mother

and aunt of the Pere of Kabowei

kingdom, HRM Shedrack Erbulu

Aduo III, were released by their

abductors three weeks after they

were kidnapped.

According to family sources, the

mother of the monarch, Queen

Elizabeth Erebulu, and her sister,

Mrs. Okee Yawoma, were released

after a ransom of N11 million was

allegedly paid to the hoodlums, who

kidnapped them at their respective

homes on April 17.

The source, who spoke on condition

of anonymity, said: “They were

released on Friday at about 2:35 am

after the payment of N11 million


On the rescue of the two brothers,

a security source at Isiokolo Police

Divisional headquarters, gave their

names as Aaron Iliya and Felix Iliya

adding that they were rescued last

Friday after spending three days in

the kidnapper’s den following their

abduction at Otumara community.

The source, who spoke on

condition of anonymity, said:

“The vigilante operatives

invaded the den of the

kidnappers and a gun duel

ensued leading to the death of

three of the suspected

kidnappers identified as

Richard Omoveke, Onoriode

Madefo and Samson Ezekiel

while a fourth suspect identified

as Efeture Omorite, escaped

with bullet wounds.”

Contacted, Delta State Police

Public Relations Officer, DSP

Onome Onowakpoyeya,

directed all inquiries to the

Divisional Police Officer in

charge of the area for details.

... with Emma'nKen (08163121378)

Men!!! They have ways of calming down

women's nerves

CRASHED: Scene of an accident on Enugu-Onitsha Expressway, Amawbia,

Awka, Anambra State, yesterday. Photo: NAN.

Police arrest 3 suspected cultists with

female underwear in Ogun

•Nab 3 motorcycle snatchers in Lagos

By Daud Olatunji &

Esther Onyegbula

ABEOKUTA—Men of Ogun

State Police Command said

they have arrested three suspected

cultists with one female pant tied

with assorted charms.

The Police Public Relations Officer

in the state, Abimbola Oyeyemi,

said the arrest was made in

continuation of the command’s war

against cultism and other violent


He said the arrested cultists, who

have all confessed their membership

of Eiye confraternity are: Olagboye

Abidemi, 32; Olasemojo Michael,

28, and Wasiu Waheed, 23.

According to Oyeyemi, men of

Ogun State Police Command, last

Friday stormed an initiation hideout

of the Eiye confraternity in Agbowa

area of Ogijo where three members

of the group were arrested.

“The Divisional Police Officer,

DPO, Ogijo division, CSP

Muhammed Baba, while leading

men of Operation Puff Adder on

routine patrol, got information about

the hideout of the cult group where

they usually initiate new members.

“The place was, subsequently,

stormed and three members of the

group were arrested. Recovered

from them were one jack knife, one

blood stained silver knife, one

female pant tied with charms and

other assorted charms.

“Meanwhile, the state

Commissioner of Police, Bashir

Makama, has ordered the transfer

of the suspects to Anti kidnapping/

cultists section of the State Criminal

Investigation and Intelligence

Department for discreet investigation.

...nab 3 motorcycle

snatchers in Lagos

In a related development, three

suspected armed robbers that

specialise in snatching motorcycles in

Ipaja area of Lagos State and environs

have been arrested by the police.

The suspects, Lateef Adeleke, 23;

Lekan Bashiru, 23, and Chinedu

Uzozie, 21 were arrested after they

attacked a motorcyclist.

Police sources said the suspects

waylaid the commercial motorcyclist

identified as Saheed Oloyo in

Ipaja area, weekend, macheted

him on the head and

disappeared with the motorcycle,

a Bajaj with number plate KRD

310 QH while the victim was

taken to a nearby hospital for


Vanguard learned that few

minutes after the attack, the

police at Ipaja was contacted and

the Divisional Police Officer, CSP

Tokunbo Abaniwodo, led her

team to the scene after which they

went on the trail of the fleeing


Luckily, their efforts paid off

after they traced the suspects to

Fagebemi area and arrested

them. One of the suspects was

said to have hidden in a septic

tank before police fished him out.

...Parade 8 suspected illegal

refinery operators in Delta


Special Task Force on

Pipeline Vandalisation, weekend,

paraded eight members of a cartel

that specialises in refining local

AGO, otherwise known as diesel,

along coastal settlements in Warri

South Council areas of Delta


The cartel, whose network was

said to have spread across the

creeks in Delta waterways, have

been the brain behind the

conversion of stolen crude oil to

locally refined products sold to

some major marketers, who in turn

dispense to the public at the

official rates.

Parading the suspects,

weekend, Commander, IGP

Special Task Force on

Pipeline Vandalisation

attached to PPMC, Warri

Depot, SP Mohammed El-

Yakubu, said the arrests were

in line with the Inspector-

General of Police zero

tolerance on pipeline


According to him, “based

on the intelligence gathering

from our Abuja office, the sector

launched an operation to the

scene of crime at Benneth

Island in Warri South last

Friday at about 10pm, where

the suspects and their

equipment were intercepted”.

Hmmmm! Fun spoilers everywhere

8—Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13 , 2019

:Vanguard News :@vanguardnews :@vanguardnews NEWS HOTLINES: 08052867023, 08052867058

FG'll deal

with AMCON




Exchange Plc, Bola Onadele Koko; immediate past President, Association of Asset Custodians of Nigeria, AACN,

Mrs. Kemi Adewole; Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele; CEO, Rand Merchant Bank Limited,

Michael Larbie; and MD/CEO, First Registrars Limited, Bayo Olugbemi, at the 8th Annual Nigerian Investors

Day organised by AACN, in London.

Corruption allegation: PDP, APC in war of words

over Bulkachuwa

By Soni Daniel,

Omeiza Ajayi &

Dirisu Yakubu


Democratic Party, PDP,

yesterday, called on

President Muhammadu

Buhari and the leadership of

All Progressives Congress,

APC, to clear the air on

allegations of corruption

against Justice Zainab

Bulkachuwa, President of the

Court of Appeal.

But Department of State

Services, DSS, also,

yesterday, denied ever

indicting Justice Bulkachuwa

of any financial crime.

However, PDP in a

statement by its spokesman,

Kola Ologbondiyan, noted

that on account of the

allegation and the nefarious

plot to bring its name into its

narrative, charged the

Buhari-led Presidency to

come clear on the corruption

allegation it opened on Justice


The statement read: “The

party says since the Buhariled

Presidency has alluded

to issues of corruption against

Justice Bulkachuwa, contrary

to issues raised in the PDP

petition bordering on bias, it

behoves on the Presidency

and the APC to make public

the corruption issues they

have alluded to.

“The Presidency should

also take a step further by

pursuing these issues of

corruption just as it did in its

case of corruption allegations

against the former Chief

Justice of Nigeria, Justice

Walter Onnoghen, instead of

dragging our party into issues

that have no bearing on PDP.

“Now that the Presidency

has informed the whole

nation that Justice

Bulkachuwa has issues of

corruption, we challenge it to

do the needful rather than

engaging in shadow-boxing

against our party.

“Moreover, in the face of

corruption allegations, as has

now been exposed by the

Presidency, the burden still

lies on the same Presidency

to come clean.

“In doing that, the

Presidency will be ranching

on its established course,

having hit the records of

harassing and intimidating

judicial officials; abuse of court

processes and disregard for

court orders."

We’ve not indicted

Bulkachuwa — DSS

However, the Department

of State Services, DSS, has

denied ever indicting

Bulkachuwa of any financial


The open declaration by the

DSS followed a report by a

newspaper, which claimed

that Bulkachuwa was

purportedly indicted for

bribery and corruption by a

certain secret memo of the


A statement by DSS

spokesman, Peter Afunanya,

read: “Consequently, the DSS

categorically states that the

said memo only exists in the

imagination of the writers and

should be roundly

disregarded by the reading


“It is unfortunate that the

newspaper followed

unethical ways to publish this

falsehood. It is rather curious

and, indeed, condemnable

that the newspaper did not

reach out to the service for its

comments as would have

been expected in a reportage

of this nature.

“The service has,

nonetheless, launched a

detailed investigation into the

controversies surrounding the

said newspaper publication.

“It is the wish of the service

that it is left out of the

•Speak up on Bulkachuwa, PDP tells Buhari, Presidency, APC

•We’ve not indicted Bulkachuwa over financial crime — DSS

•PDP should look for something concrete to bring forward—APC

maneuvers of politicians who

are hereby advised to abide

by the rule of law and respect

the entire process of electoral

litigation regarding the

activities of the tribunal.

“While the service will

continue to collaborate with

the media as strategic

partners in nation building,

it admonishes practitioners to

be lawful and professional in

the execution of their


"However, mischief makers,

intent on causing disaffection

in the polity, are warned to

desist from such acts as the

full weight of the law will be

visited on defaulters."

PDP should look for

something concrete

to bring forward


In his reaction, APC’s

National Publicity Secretary,

Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu,

stated: “Do you think

somebody should be

responding to such hogwash.

When will PDP sit to put

down the names of all justices

at the Supreme Court and

Court of Appeal and trace

their families so that we know

how many of them who have

relations who are in politics

and should be disqualified,

starting from the Supreme


‘’Then they should point to

what aspect of the Nigerian

law that says that if you have

a relation who is a politician,

then you are disqualified.

PDP is indirectly questioning

the integrity of the people in

the judiciary and is indirectly

trying to intimidate that

institution and undermine

the rule of law.

‘’Hardly would you find

anybody in the judiciary

today who does not have a

relation who is a politician.

From the Supreme Court

down to the Magistrate

Court, hardly would you find

any Nigerian who is a judicial

officer who does not have

somebody who is a relation

that is a politician.

‘’The world has become

tired of an opposition party

that has failed in its

TUC planning to plunge Nigeria

into darkness, TCN tells IGP

By Chris Ochayi

A Transmission


Company of Nigeria, TCN,

has alerted the acting

Inspector General of Police,

Adamu Mohammed, to an

alleged plans by Trade Union

Congress, TUC, to cause

industrial unrest, which may

lead to the breakdown of law

and order.

The company alleged that

documents were being

circulated on social media by

TUC purportedly to sabotage

electricity supply in the


It, therefore, invited the

police authorities to take

proactive measures to forestall

any breach of public peace or

breakdown of law and order,

in the unlikely event that

TUC insists on proceeding

with its planned actions.

A statement issued by the

company’s General

Manager, Public Affairs, Mrs.

Ndidi Mbah, in Abuja

yesterday, said: “TCN noted

that issues for which the TUC

has ill-advisedly declared an

industrial action are already

subject to a court action before

the National Industrial Court

Abuja Division, in Suit No.

NICN/ABJ/121/19, which

processes have already been

served the TUC.

“The matter is subjudice

and TCN is constrained, by

responsibility to even

oppose, using logic and

applying sense into what they

are doing. I think they want

to be in the news by all means

but I think they should do

better and look for something

concrete to bring forward.”

respect for the courts, to

refrain from divulging

further details, except to

enjoin the parties to this

pending action - the TUC

and the Senior Staff

Association of Electricity and

Allied Company, SSAEAC, to

show utmost respect to the

hallowed institution of the

court by maintaining the

status quo.

We can still


—TUC President

In his reaction, President

TUC, Bobboi Kaigama, said:

“We are picketing from

tomorrow and if picketing is

what some people called

throwing Nigeria into

darkness, then that is caused

by MD of TCN.

“It has been a trade dispute

case for over one year and he

(MD TCN) has been

recalcitrant. Ministry of

Labour has invited him over

time and he remained


"Obviously, picketing is our

last resort but there is still

room for negotiations. We are

not interested in picketing

what we want is a situation

to find an amicable resolution

to the trade dispute. And if

there is anyone who is going

to throw Nigeria into

darkness, it is the MD of


By Babajide



President, Prof. Yemi

Osinbajo, SAN, weekend

stated the resolve of the

Federal Government to deal

ruthlessly with institutions

and individuals indebted to

Asset Management

Corporation of Nigeria,


Osinbajo, who noted that

one of the measures to be

deployed against the debtors

was stopping them from

doing business with

government, vowed that

government would not fold

its arms and allow AMCON

debtors walk the streets free.

“I think the time has come

for us (Federal Government)

to set some examples with

some of these top debtors of

AMCON, which I believe

will set a good example and

serve as deterrent to others,’’

the vice president said.

He said the debtors had

made it impossible for

AMCON to resolve its

outstanding N5 trillion debt,

thereby holding the entire

nation to ransom with their

bad behaviour.

Osinbajo disclosed this

while addressing some

board members and

management of AMCON,

led by the Board Chairman,

Dr. Muiz Banire, SAN, at

State House, Abuja.

Osinbajo, who is the

Chairman of Economic

Council, said there were

plans by government to set

up an inter-agency

collaboration framework that

would comprise relevant

government Ministries,

Departments and Agencies,

MDAs, and supervised by

the office of the vice

president to ensure that

institutions and individuals

that were indebted to

AMCON were not allowed

to do business with

government henceforth.

He said the Federal

Government under the

leadership of President

Muhammadu Buhari will no

longer fold its arms and allow

a few individuals owing

AMCON huge sums of

money walk freely on the

streets in the country.

Osinbajo, who said he was

impressed with the

performance of the executive

management of AMCON

under the leadership of

Ahmed Lawan Kuru for the

recovery successes that have

been achieved so far against

all odds, also promised that

the Federal Government

would give AMCON

whatever support that was

necessary to enable it go

after the obligors that have

remained recalcitrant,

despite the olive branch

extended to them over the

years by the recovery agency

of the government.

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019—9

CBN dismisses fraud allegations against top officials

By Babajide



Nigeria, CBN,

yesterday, dismissed as

false and misleading

allegations of fraudulent

transactions against its top

officials with respect to a

purported N150 billion bad

loan in its accounts for


In a statement issued

yesterday, Director,

C o r p o r a t e

Communications, CBN,

Isaac Okoroafor, said: “The

Management of the

Central Bank of Nigeria,

CBN, has been notified of

a purported audio

recording of selective

conversations between the

CBN Governor, Deputy

Governor and some senior

UNILEVER'S AGM: From left—Non-Executive Director; Mrs. Abiola Alabi; Non-Executive

Director, Mr. Atedo Peterside; Independent Non-Executive Director, Mr. Mutiu Sunmonu, and General

Counsel, Ghana-Nigeria & Company Secretary, Mrs. Abidemi Ademola, all of Unilever Nigeria Plc,

during the company's 94th Annual General Meeting.

Insecurity: We’re up to task,


By Johnbosco



Presidency has said

despite security challenges

in some parts of the country,

the Federal Government is

up to the task of reversing

the trend.

Special Adviser to the

President on Media and

Publicity, Chief Femi

Adesina, in a statement in

Abuja yesterday,

enumerated efforts by the

President Muhammadu

Buhari-led administration

to tackle the menace and

affirmed that it was


responsibility to safeguard

the lives and properties of

the citizens.

He said: “These are no


“Contrary to the


narrative that the discussion

was about a fraudulent

transaction, this


beginnings of which was

omitted to create a different

impression— was simply to

proffer solutions to a

misunderstanding that

affected the Bank’s balance


“As publicly known, the

CBN was approached in

2015 by the National

Economic Management

Team and the National

Economic Council, NEC,

chaired by the Vice

President, to assist state

governments with

conditional budget support

in the aftermath of the

significant nose-dive in

doubt times of great security

challenges for our country

and the President

Muhammadu Buhari-led

government is not leaving

any stone unturned to

restore sanity and calm.”

The presidential aide also

assured that the

government remained

committed to its goal of

beating the criminals.

Adesina said: “It is the

constitutional duty of

government to safeguard

lives and properties. The

Buhari administration

remains committed to this,

and despite recent spikes

in the spate of crime and

criminality, the evildoers

will be beaten, and badly,


“The ravening clouds can

never be victorious. Soon,

global oil prices and

associated FAAC


“In order to ensure that

ordinary Nigerian workers

got their salaries, pensions

and gratuities, and that the

economy continued to

recover from recession, the

bank provided about N650

billion in loans at 9% with a

two-year grace period to 35

states of the Federation.

“These monies were

distributed to the states

monthly with documented

approval of the Ministry of

Finance and the


“In closing the Bank’s

2018 accounts, external

auditors in their draft

account, erroneously

classified about N150

billion of these loans as

bad, which negatively

they shall no longer possess

the sky.”

He listed some of the

security initiatives taken

since January to include

Operation Puff

Adder (Nigerian

Police), Operation HARBIN

KUNAMA 3 (Nigerian

Army) and Exercise Egwu

Eke 3 (Nigerian Army)

launched to complement



Operations Sharan

Daji (launched in 2016 by

the Nigerian Army)

a n d D i r a n

Mikiya (launched in 2018

by the Nigerian Air Force).

The statement read in

part: “All of these operations

are focused on tackling

banditry and criminality in

the North-West of Nigeria.

“Operation HARBIN

KUNAMA 3 was launched

on April 1, to ensure the

complete defeat of the

bandits fleeing military

affected the bank’s balance

sheet and shareholders


“The selective

conversation being

circulated was simply a

discussion to ascertain why

the auditors took that

position and next steps to

resolving it.

“Obviously, it soon

became clear that a state

government loan cannot be

classified as “bad” or

“irrecoverable” when the

state still exists and getting

FAAC allocations.

“The bank then reached

out to the Ministry of

Finance and they jointly

gave comfort to the auditors

who accepted in writing

that these monies would be


“On this basis, the

auditors reversed the

operations in Zamfara and

escaping into Kaduna,

Katsina, Kano, Niger and

Sokoto states.

“Hundreds of kidnappers

and bandits have been

arrested or killed since

January, several camps/

hideouts destroyed; and

hundreds of hostages


“In a two-week operation

in February (from February

4 to 14), 80 hostages were

freed by the Nigerian Army,

with 37 bandits killed.

“Aerial bombardments of

bandits’ camps have been

intensified in recent

months. A new Air Force

Base — the 271 Nigerian

Air Force Detachment (271

NAF Det)— was commissioned

at Birinin Gwari in

Kaduna State in May, to

complement the 207 Quick

Response Group, QRG,

established in Gusau,

Zamfara State, in 2017.”

negative entry and the

certified that the CBN’s

2018 accounts were a true

reflection of the state of


“Reconciliation of

balance sheet items are

regular conversations

among senior

management of many

agencies and should not

be misconstrued as

anything but that.

“Had the online media

which released the

selective recordings

sought the comments of

CBN as required of

journalism practice, we

would have provided it.

“Clearly, those who

listened to the audio can

easily ascertain that the

conversation had nothing

to do with anything

fraudulent as purported.”


By Sola Ogundipe

Relief for indigestion

WHEN you have

indigestion, your belly

hurts and you may feel sick.

Indigestion affects the

lining of the stomach in the

upper abdomen and can be

caused by lifestyle choices

and medication. If you’re

feeling the unpleasant

symptoms of indigestion,

there are simple tips for


A good start is to be aware

of common causes that

include spicy, greasy and

fatty foods, as well as foods

with a lot of acid like citrus

and tomatoes.

Keep a food diary. Note

that it can take up to 72

hours for food to cause a

flare-up of indigestion.

Note what you ate and the

time you ate it, it can help

you deduce what it is that’s

bothering your belly.

Eat slowly. It’s not just

what you eat that can cause

indigestion; it’s also how

quickly you eat. Sit down

Army, ISWA

in claims,



Borno killings

By Kingsley


& Ndahi Marama

THE Nigerian Army

and the Islamic State

for West Africa, ISWAbacked

Boko Haram

insurgents were,

yesterday, locked in claims

and counter-claims over

killings, weekend, in

Borno State.

While the Army said its

troops, on clearance

operations in the North-

East, engaged Boko

Haram terrorists in

several communities in

Borno, eliminating

several of them and

recovering several arms

and ammunition with two

soldiers sustaining

injuries, the terrorists

claimed that they killed

11 soldiers.

However, the Army

insisted that no soldier


Giving details of the

operations, Col Sagir

Musa, Acting Director,

Army Public Relations,

said: “Troops of 121 and

192 Battalions of

Operation Lafiya Dole in

collaboration with

Civilian JTF and local

vigilantes, on May 10

continued with clearance

operations to end Boko

Haram terrorism.”

when you eat your meals.

Eat less. Over-eating

can also trigger indigestion.

Eating several small meals

throughout the day can

help. Avoid eating right

before bed.

Swallowing too much air

while eating is also a risk.

Avoid that by chewing with

your mouth closed and

talking less while eating.

Avoid drinking with your

meals. Try to limit drinking

fluids to 20 minutes before

or after a meal. Try sips of

room-temperature water.

Avoid taking soft drinks,

alcohol and caffeine with

your meals.

Exercise at the right time

after a meal.

If indigestion flares, try a

cup of peppermint, ginger

or chamomile tea to

neutralise stomach acid.

Listen to your body. Pay

attention to how specific

meals make you feel—and

take it from there.

10 — VANGUARD, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Navy detaining 10 more

Nigerians without trial,

Falana writes AGF

vanguardnews @vanguardnews @vanguardnews





rights lawyer, Mr.

Femi Falana, SAN, has

raised the alarm over the

alleged unlawful detention

of ten more Nigerians by

the Nigerian navy.

In a letter addressed to

the Attorney-General of the

Federation and Minister of

Justice, Mr. Abubakar

Malami, Falana said the

citizens have been in

detention since October,


This comes amid the

criticism trailing similar

detention of 15 other

Nigerians by the security

agency against court order.

In the letter dated May

10, Falana said the ten

citizens were arrested

aboard a vessel in Lagos on

the orders of the Chief of

Naval Staff, Vice Admiral

Ibok-Ete Ekwe Ibas.

He gave their names as

Oloyede Ademola Yisau,

Omogoye Wasiu Bolaji,

Edu Fidelis, Richard

David, Mike Simeon,

Umoren Daniel, Okoghene

Asaiki, Udom Victor, James

Archibong and Umon

Godswill Emmanuel.

Falana noted that the

detainees were crew

members aboard a vessel

known as NESO II, which

was hijacked by a gang of


He said: “However, the

detainees were rescued

while the pirates were

arrested by the Beecroft

Naval Base. Curiously, the

crew members who were

not indicted in the

investigation conducted by

the Nigerian Navy into the

hijacking of the vessel have

since been detained aboard

the ship in Marina, Lagos

in breach of their

fundamental rights to

personal liberty and fair


“Apart from detaining the

crew members in a

dehumanizing military

facility the Nigerian Navy

has compelled each of them

to wear the same dress for

seven months.

“Thus, the fundamental

rights of the detainees to

dignity and freedom of

movement have also been

violated. Since the

detainees are civilians who

are not subject to service law

the Nigerian Navy ought to

have reported them to the

Nigeria Police Force if there

was reasonable suspicion

that they committed any

criminal offence


Falana asked the AGF to

direct the immediate

release of the detainees as

well as the prosecution of

the Chief of Naval Staff “for

subjecting the detainees to

physical and mental torture

contrary to the provisions of

the Anti Torture Act, 2017.”

“Take notice that if you

fail to accede to our request

within 48 hours of the

receipt of this letter we shall

not hesitate to file an

application at the Federal

High Court to secure the

enforcement of the

fundamental rights of the

detainees to personal

liberty, dignity, fair hearing

and movement and seek

an order of mandamus to

compel you to prosecute

of the Chief of Naval

Staff,” he said.

FG tasked on rapid response to

rape cases, child abuse in Nigeria


Government has been

urged to set up a rapid

response squad to swiftly

respond to emergencies on

rape cases, child abuse and

other negative vices against

the girl child in Nigeria.

The Trade Services

Officer, FBN Quest

Merchant Bank Limited,

Mr. Olawale Olawuyi made

the call, weekend, during

an outreach organized by

the Daughters of Africa,

DOA, at Ken Ade

Secondary School, Yaba,


Olawuyi, who spoke on

the theme: Rape Amongst

The Girl Child, lamented

that the incidences of rape

is on the increase on a daily

bases as statistics have

shown that in Nigeria today,

out of 100,000 people, there

are 2,000 cases reported on

rape every day.

Olawuyi said: “The

Federal Government

should set up a rapid

response team, may be a

military squad that can

respond to emergencies

when there is a sexual

abuse. Like the one that

happened in my

neighborhood, I had to call

my military friends because

I know what would happen

if I go to the police station.

There should be a

standby rapid response as

this will mitigate the cases

of rape in Nigeria.”

Also speaking, a

specialist in Guidance and

Counseling, Oyinkansola

Obasorun, stressed that the

government needs to

enlighten the parents of the

girl child to enable them

carter for their children.

Obasorun, who spoke on

the topic: Child Abuse in

Nigeria lamented that

parental neglect often times

lead to the incidences of

rape of children.

BASIC HEALTH CARE PROVISION FUND: Niger State Deputy Governor, Alhaji Ahmed

Mohammed Ketso (left) and the Minister of Health, Professor Isaac Adewole performing the

enrollment of clients for the Basic Health Care Provision Fund in Minna, Niger State weekend.


urges Ganduje to reject Kano Assembly bill

•CACOL boss faults bill


Economic Rights and

Accountability Project,

SERAP, yesterday sent an

open letter to Governor

Abdullahi Umar Ganduje of

Kano State, urging him to

“publicly reject life pensions

and brand-new vehicles for

lawmakers bill by the Kano

State House of Assembly,

and to prevail on the

members of the House to

immediately drop the bill,

and to honour their fiduciary

duties imposed by the 1999

Constitution (as amended)

and Nigeria’s international

anti-corruption obligations.”

This came as the

Executive Chairman,

Centre For Anti-Corruption

And Open Leadership,

CACOL, Debo Adeniran

declared that the current

trend in the state Houses of

Assembly in the country

where members legislate

and approve for themselves

life pension is a dangerous

development for the nation’s


SERAP, in a letter dated 10

May 2019 and signed by its

Deputy Director, Kolawole

Oluwadare urged Governor

Ganduje to “prevail on the

lawmakers to subordinate

their own interests to the

public good, live on fair and

equal terms with their

fellow-citizens, and not to

use their legislative powers

to convert public resources

to their own benefit.”

It, however, warned that

“Should you assent to the

bill as passed, SERAP

will take legal action



internationally to hold your

government to account

andensure that you uphold

the solemn trust committed

to you by the people of


The statement reads in

part: “This bill represents

lawmaking in the interest

and personal satisfaction of

the lawmakers, which

flagrantly offends the

principles of legal justice

and the rule of law. The

lawmakers ought to

subordinate their own

interests to the welfare of

the people of Kano. By

passing the life pensions

and medical trips abroad

bill, the lawmakers have

invariably ‘bought at their

own sales’, and violated

their sacred trust.

“This bare desire by the

lawmakers of the Kano

State House of Assembly to

pass a bill to award to

themselves life pensions,

foreign medical trips and

brand new vehicles every

four years is oppressive, and

violates the obligation of

impartiality to the people of

Kano they are elected to

serve and the ideals of

fiduciary government. The

bill, proposed by Baffa Baba

Dangundi, is a textbook case

of diversion of public

resources to private


“Rather than passing bills

to divert public resources for

personal benefits, the

lawmakers should pass

legislation that will urgently

address the chronic

problem of over three

million out-of-school

children in Kano (the

highest in Nigeria) and

ensure immediate payment

of outstanding pensions

and workers’ salaries, given

that your government has

already received N21.7

billion from the Paris Club

debt refund, and also

reportedly received in 2018

N84.2 billion from the

Federation Accounts

Allocation Committee,


“If assented to, the bill

would lead to a misuse of

trust property and threaten

to affect the welfare of the

people of Kano by diverting

public funds from

development and provision

of access to quality

education, clean water and

healthcare to the personal

benefits of members of the

House of Assembly.”

CACOL boss faults bill

Similarly, Mr. Adeniran

spoke against the backdrop

Justice Bulkachuwa told to recuse self from Atiku/Buhari petition

By Onozure Dania


to Justice, AJ,

has urged President of the

Court of Appeal, Justice

Zainab Bulkachuwa to reconsider

her membership of

the tribunal hearing the

election petition against the

declared winner of the 2019

presidential elections to

avoid conflicting public

perceptions on the petition.

Access to Justice in an

advisory statement by its

convener, Mr. Joseph Otteh

noted that the call becomes

important not because

Bulkachuwa will not be a

fair-minded and impartial

Justice, but because the

perceptions of reasonable

members of the public

matter the more.

It was reported recently

that Justice Bulkachuwa is

married to a Senator of the

All Progressives Congress,

APC, but she has not

publicly denied the claim.

Otteh said: “Many

believe this is the reason

the government worked

hand in glove with the

Code of Conduct Tribunal

and removed Justice Walter

Onnoghen as the Chief

Justice of Nigeria applying

bizarre legal procedures.

The dust has not settled

from that incident.



circumstances, there would

be no question of whether

the President of the Court

of Appeal can, or should

participate in tribunals

adjudicating election

petitions involving her

spouse’s party.

“But these are no normal

times. The judiciary is

facing heightened levels of

public scrutiny and the

performance of some

judicial bodies have

raised red flags concerning

judicial independence

and integrity.

of the Kano State House of

Assembly which recently

approved life pension for its

Speaker and Deputy


He spoke in Osogbo

shortly after he presented a

paper at a one-day

programme by CACOL to

sensitise people of the state

on their rights to make the

leaders accountable for the

resources of the state

allocated to them.

His words: “Approving

pension and gratuity for

principal officers of the

states House of Assembly is

a dangerous dimension to

our national development.

First, public service is ought

to be service to humanity,

service to public without

expecting direct reward. But

since a very long time, that

spirit has changed

where people in the public

service have used their

positions to amass

enormous wealth to


“Politics is not a job but a

service. It is the regular jobs

that people engage in that

should elicit pension and

gratuity because they are

serving a company or an

entity for a period of time

during which certain

percentages of their salaries

would be reserved for them.

“The people that go into

politics are supposed to be

those who have sources of

income and have

something they can rely on

after leaving office, not those

who are trying to make a


“And once you are elected

into political office, you are

not a staff; you are a public

official and you should be

seen as a shining example

of those making

contributions that is not

based on profit.

“Political office holders

don’t deserve the regular

payment they are paid.

They don’t deserve

anything more than

sitting allowance. ''


Life and times of Chief Eddie Ugbomah

What the veteran

film maker would

be remembered for!

By Benjaimin Njoku

Chief Eddie Ugbomah’s

death which rocked not

just the entertainment

industry, but millions of people

across the country, at the weekend,

has left yet another vacuum in the

annals of contemporary Nigerian

movie industry.

Eddie Ugbomah served as a

bridge between the old and

younger generation of Nigerian

film makers. His contributions to

the growth of the Nigerian film

industry cannot be

underestimated. He was one of the

film makers in the class of late

Hubert Ogunde, Jab Adu, Ola

Balogun, Moses Olaiya (Baba

Sala) among other great

filmmakers of yesteryears that

began what is today known as the

Nigerian movie industry,

otherwise called Nollywood in the


While most of his

contemporaries were either dead

or have quit the business of film

making, Ugbomah until his death

was very much involved in the

business. In fact, it was one of his

big dreams to build a world class

film village in Nigeria.

Ugbomah had approached Delta

State government under the watch

of Dr. Emmanuel Udugahan in

2014, for a collaboration to build a

multi-million naira film village in

the capital city of Asaba.

According to Ugboma, the

proposed project, which was

expected to last for five years, and

fashioned after Hollywood, would

be constructed by a United Statesbased

Nigerian company, Califco

Corp Nigeria. But the project never

saw the light of the day, just as the

late film maker did not give up his

dream no matter the odds.

Celebrating his 76 birthday, in

2016, Ugbomah planned to launch

his autobiography and nongovernmental

organisation, as

well as establish two Film Villages

in Lagos and Delta States as a

parting gift to the industry.

The concert, according to him,

would be “a Goodbye Concert”

because I’m just going to end up

with this art foundation. I look

forward to Lagos State

government giving me land to

build a film village. It will be

different from the existing one.

Discussions are ongoing with

investors from America to build it.

In fact, they are already here to

invest in our entertainment sector

and our economy,” he said.

Looking back at his

contributions in the movie

industry, Ugbomah said “I feel sad

that with my over 50 years on

stage, no group is coming forward

to celebrate me or organize a

special event for me, not even the

Association of Movie Producers.

It’s unfortunate that I came from a

minority group in Delta State.

Can't you see how Prof. Wole

Soyinka, Sunny Ade and Ebenezer

Obey are being celebrated? There

is even a Wole Soyinka Week. I am

in the same category of achievement

with them if not more, but I am not

celebrated the same way like them

because I’m from Delta State, not just

Delta State, a minority group in the


Also, his Filmmakers Hall of Fame

was another project that was very

dear to his heart, but which he never

accomplished before his demise. “I

was so impressed to see such

historical records that I began to think

of replicating them in Nigeria. The

idea, however, saw the light of the day

in the year 2000. I am saying the

Movies and Music Makers Halls of

Fame should have been established

since 1960 and not for me to establish

it with my own money. I had the first

induction in 2006 and the second in

2009, which is seven years now. I tried

to move it to Lagos or Abuja, but

nobody wants to give me the money

to hire a movie house, where all the

portraits would be hung for people

to see, “ he said.

Ugbomah would be

remembered for his love for the

industry. In 2015, he initiated a

move to restore peace and

sanity in the movie industry

following the unending

bickering and factionalization

trailing the industry then. The

veteran film maker set up a 15-

man-committee that cuts

across the three major film

markets that make up the

Nollywood industry; Yoruba

movie sector, Kannywood and

the English movie sector.

Speaking on the development,

Ugbomah who doubled as the

chairman, Board of Trustee of

the Association of Movie

Practitioners,AMP, frowned at

the idea of multiplicity of

groups within the industry,

stressing that the ugly

development has seriously

hindered the growth of the


He revealed his plans to

form a unified body which

would be known as Motion Picture

Professionals Council that would

represent all the interests within the

sector. ‘Nigeria is awash with all

manner of names like Kannywood,

Yorubawood and I think we should

put a stop to this. If we want

government to take us seriously in

what we do, then we should be seen

to be unified and speak with one

voice.’ Motion picture covers

Vanguard, MONDAY MAY 13, 2019 —11

pursue a career in film making. The

desire to pioneer a film industry that

will tell the Nigerian story by a

Nigerian to Nigerians led to the

formation of Edifosa Film Enterprise,

Eddie’s film production outfit. He

had directed and produced films such

as the ‘Rise and Fall of Oyenusi’ in

1979, ‘The Boy is Good and Apalara,’

a film about the life and murder of

Alfa Apalara in Oko Awo, Lagos. The

plot of some of his films are loosely

based on real life events, The Rise

and Fall of Oyenusi. In 1979, he

produced Dr Oyenusi, the film’s plot

taken from the headlines is about a

notorious robber, Ishola Oyenusi

who terrorized Lagosians in the early

1970s. The film also delved into the

menace of armed robbery in Nigeria.

Oyenusi featured Ugbomah as the

lead actor. Ugbomah’s next film, the

Mask was released in 1979. The

film’s material was based on looting

of Africa’s artefacts by colonizers

and the quest to return those

artefacts back home. In the

Mask, the protagonist Obi,

played by Ugbomah tried to

sneak into the British

Museum to steal the Benin

ivory mask and return it

to Nigeria. Some critics

likened the character of

Obi to James Bond.

Ugbomah’s career

flourished in the

early 1980s

producing such

films as Oil Doom,

Bolus ’80 and The

Boy is Good.

Most of his

films were shot

in 16mm with

the exception

of The Mask.

Later in his



turned to


video films.

In 1988, he

w a s


chairman of

the Nigerian Film Corporation.

There was also an attempt to raise

N50 million from the sale of his

autobiography, ‘Eddie Ugbomah

by Eddie’, in January to cover for

his medical bills but it did not

materialise. However, the good

news is that Ugbomah lived and

died as an accomplished film


Buhari, others pay tributes...

Eddie Ugbomah was not only a gifted

storyteller but a social commentator, activist




resident Muhammadu Buhari has

joined the entertainment industry to

mourn the demise of veteran filmmaker,

Chief Eddie Ugbomah, who died at the

weekend, at the age of 78. In a statement by

presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina,

Buhari condoled with family, friends and

associates of the ace actor, director and

producer “whose contribution to the

development of Nigeria’s film industry

remains indelible, starting out early with

studies and training in London, before

returning in the 70’s to promote drama and


“The President believes Chief Ugbomah

was not only a gifted storyteller but a social

commentator and activist, as the themes of

his stage and tube presentations explored

narratives that directly impacted on many

lives and advocated better government

policies and programmes.”

“Buhari affirms that the departed, who

served as Chairman of Nigeria Film

Corporation, understood film as a veritable

tool for communication, and used it positively

for national development.

Buhari prayed that God will grant Ugbomah’s

soul eternal rest and comfort his family.

What Ugbomah told me—Shaibu


In a chat with our reporter, Shaibu Hussein,

a member of a committee set up to raise funds

for the treatment of the late veteran film

maker, said Ugbomah told him that he was

tired, and was not sure that he would survive

the surgery.

Narrating further, he said the late veteran

everything in the industry and we

have made extensive contacts

concerning the formation of the

proposed council,” he said.

Ugbomah’s passion for

filmmaking and for Nigeria was

evident in his films. The desire to

expose the ills in the society in order

to bring about positive changes led

the veteran film maker to use

filmmaking as a channel to address

Late Chief Eddie Ugbomah

the ills of the society. He revealed

that his passion for filmmaking was

fanned at age of 18 by a statement

made by the late American actor,

Charlton Heston during the premiere

of Ben-Hur, an American epic

historical drama film at the Glover

Memorial Hall, Lagos Nigeria.

According to Eddie, Charlton said it

was a shame that Nigeria (in 1959)

had no film industry. This led him to

film maker was due to undergo the surgery,

but the doctors advised that they w

ould wait for few days for is health to be

stabilised before undergoing the surgery. But

while he was scheduled to undergo the surgery

on Monday, he died on Saturday afternoon

following complications resulting from

High Blood Pressure.

Eddie Ugbomah: A soldier marches on...

—Zik Zulu Okafor, Former AMP President

I never thought he would die. Too strong,

too resilient, too optimistic. Too, too defiant ,

an epitome of uncommon drama ! May your

buoyant soul and defiant spirit rest eternally

Chief. Sad Chief Eddy Ugboma, OON,

fought all his life to see a better movie

industry. He fought federal, state

governments, agencies, all for the film maker

to find a more conducive space for his trade.

Well over 70, he remained unshaking and

indeed unshakable about his hope and faith

in film. His entire life was a struggle for the

motion picture bloc in Nigeria. He didn’t see

his dream turning a reality, not even

glimpses. From talking, he started agitating,

then got combative with corrosive comments

against all and sundry. He became a lonely

, hoarse voice in the wilderness. None heard.

He got tired but not disillusioned, but then

began to struggle to pay his bills. That was

not the life he envisioned. Not him. Once a

fully comfortable man, his life diminished,

frustration, pain, and agony followed. The

horizon carried a gloomy picture but few saw

the eerie portrait. A pioneer Chairman of

Nigerian Film Corporation, NFC, govt didn’t

see his shadows not to mention see ing his

ailment and intervening. Thanks to Mr

Adedayo Thomas, MD, NFVCB, for his

humane intervention. His awesome efforts

and those of a few others like the ever

committed Shuaibu Hussein, Fidelis Duker,

Seun Olokuntuyi, plus the AMP President

and his Vice were gallantry. Tragically, they

couldn’t stop Chief Ugboma’s journey to a

place called PEACE . I salute you guys for

standing up. You raise our profile amid

blinking hopes of many a practitioner.

Nollywood is still a tragic arena. We give

smiles to people out there and return home

to sit with our family searching for same

smile we give to people. Tragic ! But we will

press on . With people like the NFVCB boss,

Mr Thomas , we can still take a step forward.

He is an amazing protagonist in our

unfolding drama of hope in a fractured

journey. That hope must remain robust and

eternal. Surely, some day, in our time, in our

finest hour we shall stand solid in the theatre

of victory to pay tribute to those who paved

our path. Good bye Chief. Rest Chief

Ugboma. The sounds of your drum will never

be drowned. Now you are the might of

silence. And we shall sustain the magistracy

of your irrepressible office. Accept my final

greeting as i bow for you in loud silence. Peace

!!Eddie Ugbomah was passionate about the

industry—Charles Novia

Chief Eddie Ugbomah was one of the early

filmmakers in the seventies and later the MD

of the Nigerian Film Corporation in the 80s.

He was passionate about the industry, with

the passion sometimes misconstrued for a

cantankerous slant but he was a man who

lived by his visions and never stopped fighting

till he passed on a couple of days ago. He used

to comment on my political posts on

Facebook, now and then.Damn stubborn old

man too! But it was all for a purpose. One of

the last from the stock of toughies has


12—Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Don’t take our peace for

granted, Tompolo’s

kinsmen warns Chevron

By Perez Brisibe demands are met.


Spokesperson for the

kingdom, Chief

people of Godspower Gbenakama

Gbaramatu Kingdom in who spoke to Vanguard on

Warri South-West Local the outcome of the protest

Government Area of Delta by the people of Ugborodo

State, home of Chief against Chevron and

Ekpemupolo alias decisions reached so far,

Tompolo, have warned the said: “If they want to only

state government and oil listen to protest, we would

giant, Chevron Nigeria follow suit until they listen

Limited not to take the to us and this might be

peaceful resolve of inevitable if they do not

indigenes of the kingdom listen to us.”

in presenting their Commending the

demands to Chevron for people and chiefs of

granted as far as the Ugborodo as well as the

neglect by government Ologbotsere of Warri

and company was Kingdom, Chief Ayiri


Emami, for the way the

They noted that their protesters conducted

peaceful disposition over themselves, Gbenakama

the years was as a result said: “Ugborodo and

of the directives by the Gbaramatu are both in the

Pere of Gbaramatu same terrain and are host

Kingdom, HRM Oboro to Chevron in Warri South

Gbaraun II on the need West.

for them not to destabilise “Ugborodo people's

the existing peace in the demands are genuine, but

area, saying they might government should not

be constrained to occupy wait for the people to

oil flow stations in their occupy flow stations before

domain until their attending to them.”

Don’t be distracted from daily ibadah

AMONG the things that

can destroy the rewards of

fasting is allowing oneself

to be distracted by being

engrossed in TV shows,

movies, soap operas,

football matches, especially

the popular European

leagues; playing games,

idle talk and gatherings,

among others.

Most times, these can

lead to missing

congregation prayers

during the day. Some

fasting Muslims also use

most time of the day to sleep

so as to avoid the pangs of

hunger and thus spend the

night in entertainment and

indulging in their desires.

These acts diminish the

rewards of a fasting

Muslim. During the

month, both day and night

should be used to the fullest

in gaining the rewards in

it. It is important we have

to work, though even as we

go about our businesses in

the halaal way, we have

to minimise our mundane

involvements and

maximise our acts of


Plan your day very well,

and use your free time for

acts of ibadah rather than

seeing movies, football

matches and playing


The 29 or 30 days of

Ramadan can be used to

change the sinful lifestyles

that have crept into our

lives. We need to exert

ourselves more in spiritual

matters this period. It is

only a month and must be

used to the fullest.

We know that in this

month the prophet, besides

fasting during the day,

prayed for longer hours at

night, exerted more in

Allah’s dhikr (remembrance),

humbled himself in front of

His Creator, and performed

in a way that showed His

love and fear of Allah and

special reverence for this


This Ramadan we, too,

need to take the minutes

and the hours from our

schedules to exert more in

that worship so it can also

help train us to do so during

other months. This is the

only way Ramadan can

positively change our lives

for better.

May Allah give us the

grace to do what pleases

Him, accept our fasting and

other acts of ibadah and

reward abundantly. Amin.

I won't use state resources to

gratify greedy few—OBASEKI

By Gabriel



simmering crisis

rocking All Progressives

Congress, APC, in Edo

State, the state government

has insisted that the

Governor Godwin Obasekiled

administration “will

never sacrifice the state’s

collective patrimony to

gratify the greed of

individuals who have

constituted themselves into

mischief-makers in the state

chapter of the party to

blackmail the government

and the party.”

In a statement yesterday,

By Harris



State Government

says it is ready to

implement the new

N30,000 minimum wage,

as it had been included in

the 2019 budget, christened

Budget of Industrialisation

for Poverty Alleviation.

State Finance

Commissioner, Nsikan

Nkan, disclosed this in

Uyo, explaining that even

before it assented to,

Governor Udom Emmanuel

had given directive for its

inclusion in the overhead

cost of the recurrent

expenditure component of

Kaigama, not Dongon-Daji, is Rivers election tribunal chair—Secretary

By Egufe



THE Governorship

Election Petition Tribunal

sitting in Port Harcourt,

Rivers State, has said

in Benin City, Secretary to

the State Government, Mr.

Osarodion Ogie, said:

“Only a handful of

individuals whose

insatiable greed the

governor has refused to

entertain at the expense of

the people’s collective

patrimony have decided to

employ malfeasant tactics

to blackmail him, the

government and the party.

“They have since been

advised to accept the fact

that the people’s interest

takes precedence over their

avarice and that is our final

word to them.”

Ogie noted that the state

governorship election was

the 2019 budget.

He said: “The budget is

aimed at actualising the

economic power base of the

state through

industrialisation and

sustainable private-public

sector initiative that would

By Gabriel Ewepu


Non-violent Agitators’

Forum, NDNAF, weekend,

threw its weight behind the

re-appointment of the

Special Adviser on Niger

Delta Affairs and Coordinator

of the Presidential

Amnesty Programme,

Justice G. K. Kaigama and

not Justice Umar Dogon-

Daji, is Chairman of its

three-man panel.

Secretary to the tribunal,

Anefu Simon, in a

statement yesterday, said

the clarification had become

almost a year and half away

and “Obaseki’s focus is to

work for Edo people who

gave him the mandate and

no form of distraction will

dissuade him.

“There is a general

acceptance of Obaseki and

his approach to


He urged the dissenting

persons to sample public

opinion to measure how

Obaseki’s policies and

programmes impact on the

lives of Edo people, noting

that “all that is needed to

gauge public opinion is to

walk through the streets in

any part of the state.

“The revolution in basic

open up opportunities for

wealth generation,

employment and generally

advance the economy.”

Earlier in his opening

remarks, Head of State

Budget Office, Out

Asuquo, said the budget

Professor Charles Dokubo,

for another term.

The group made the call

in an open letter to

President Muhammadu

Buhari, describing

Dokubo's re-appointment

as necessity based on the

achievements Dokubo

recorded in proffering

practicable solutions to

imperative following media

reports crediting the

chairmanship of the panel

to Justice Dogon-Daji,

who was only involved

shortly, but had left for

judicial duties in another


education, transparency in

governance and huge

infrastructure projects are

sufficient to erode the effect

of any fake news or

contrived controversy.

“Edo people restated

their faith in Governor

Obaseki when they voted

en masse for APC in the last

House of Assembly election

in the state, with APC

coasting to glory in all 24

state constituencies, a feat

never before achieved in

our recent political history.

“The message was clear:

Edo people want an APCcontrolled

Assembly to

support the governor’s

vision for the state.”

TROPHY: From left—

Trophy Brand Ambassador,

Femi Adebayo; Managing

Director, International

Breweries, Annabelle Degroot;

Trophy Brand Ambassador,

Joseph Yobo (behind); Captain

of the winning team, Scope

FC, Lagos, Folorunsho

Sunday; Trophy Brand

Ambassador, Folarin Falana

(behind); Marketing Director,

International Breweries, Ms.

Tolu Adedeji, and President

General Worldwide, Nigeria

Football Supporters Club, Dr.

Rafiu Oladipo, during the

grand finale of Trophy 5-aside

tournament at the Campos

Mini Stadium, Lagos Island,

Lagos. PHOTO: Joe

Akintola,Photo Editor.

N30,000 minimum wage captured

in 2019 budget—Akwa Ibom govt

preparation was in line with

the global best practices and

that the state government

had adopted the principle

of International Public

Sector Accounting

Standards, IPSAS, in its


Non-violent agitators back Dokubo

the various agitations in

the Niger Delta region,

which its aid have led to

peace, development and

progress in the region

since he was appointed.

The letter was signed by

the group's President,

Wisdom Ikuli, and

Secretary General,

Bennett Emmanuel.

He enjoined the media

to take notice that a

separate National and

State Assembly Election

Petition Tribunal, also

currently sitting in Port

Harcourt, is being chaired

by Justice K. A. Ojiako.

Vanguard, MONDAY MAY 13 , 2019 — 13

:Vanguard News :@vanguardnews :@vanguardnews NEWS HOTLINES: 08052867023, 08052867058

Secure the lives of Nigerians, JNI

urges FG

By Ben Agande


Islam, yesterday urged the

Federal Government to rise up to

its responsibility by securing the

lives and property of Nigerians.

In a communiqué issued after

the 2019 Central Council’s

meeting and the annual Pre-

Ramadan lecture as well as the

Conference of the council in

Kaduna,said inter agency

rivalry among security

agenices was negatively

impacting on the fight against

insecurity in the country.

The communiqué which was

signed by the conference ‘

Chairman, Prof. S. W. Junaidu

and Khalid A. Aliyu,Waziri of

Sokoto, who is also Secretary-

General of the JNI further

charged the government to brace

up to the challenge of the menace

of kidnappings, armed banditry,

and other forms of social vices

bedeviling the nation.

“In this regards, the use of

technology and intelligence

gathering should be improved

upon by those concerned and

Nigerians are implored to give

credible information regarding

those perpetrating the heinous

acts, as they don’t come from

the sky.

“The watch word should

always remain synergy among

those concerned.Efforts should

continuously be made to secure

the release of all those in the

hands of ransom seeking

beasts,” it said.

According to the

Communique’, the government

of the North were not doing

enough about the issue of

Almajiri in the north.

The group called on the

various governments in the

region to involve the Emirs in

the proper management of

schools being attended by the


Sultan, others should resist

Ganduje — Umar Ardo


former lecturer, Dr. Umar

Ardo, has called on the Sultan and

Muslims to resist last week

creation of four new caliphates by

Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of


He said the move would

destroy the caliphate and accused

the royal house of aiding and

abetting the governor.

In an interview weekend, Ardo

said: “The Sultan, all members of

the caliphate, the Muslim ummah

and the Fulbe people should not

only condemn it but should stand

against it.

“The emirates have already been

created from the time of Shehu Uthman

Dan Fodio. And if you now start

balkanizing them, you are just reducing

the prestige and effectiveness of the

emirate system. It is the caliphate

establishment that is the loser.”

He said the governor was exploiting

divisions in the royal house between

Muhammad Sanusi II, the Emir of Kano,

and his cousins to undermine the

emirate and its heritage.

Ardo said: “Some of the members of

the caliphate establishment are

themselves instigators of the problem

because they are not in good terms with

their cousins who are on the throne.

“They are forgetting that they are

destroying the system of which they hope

to one day benefit from. They are in fact

benefitting from it because you do not

have to be an emir to benefit from the

emirate establishment.”

He said though this was not the first

time the caliphate would come under

attack, silence would embolden the


Taraba Killings: Gov Ishaku orders security

agencies to deal ruthlessly with culprits

•As Red Cross seeks more volunteers for emergency response

By Femi Bolaji


governor, Darius Ishaku has

given directive to security

agencies deployed to troubled

spots in the state to deal ruthlessly

with those found culpable in the

killings recorded in the state.

Ishaku in a statement by his

Senior Special Assistant on

Media and Publicity, Bala Abu

weekend, expressed sadness over

renewed hostilities between the

Tiv and Jukun tribes last Friday

which resulted in the killings

recorded in some farming

communities of Jalingo and

ArdoKola local government areas

of the state.

According to the statement,

“security agencies have been

instructed to deal ruthlessly with

those promoting the crises and

the killings in the state.

“The Jukuns and the Tiv living

in the border communities have

every reason to live together in

peace because they are both

farmers struggling to erk a living

mainly from the produce from

their farms.”

He further urged warring

factions to sheathe their sword for peace

to reign.

This came as the Nigeria Red Cross

Society, NRCS, took to the streets of

Jalingo, the state capital to woo more

volunteers into its fold, to ensure more

hands are available to respond to

emergencies across the state.

The State secretary of NRCS, Martin

Manja who led the procession across

Jalingo metropolis noted that the reason

for training and deploying volunteers,

was to equip and build local capacities

most especially among young people,

with requisite skills and first aid kits within

communities to respond to emergency


CEREMONY: From left — John Kokome, member, Organising Committee, Nigerian Institute of

Public Relations (NIPR), 2019 Annual Lagos Public Relations Week; Mojisola Olurotimi, Secretary

Organising Committee, NIPR 2019 Annual Lagos Public Relations Week; Odion Aleobua, Chairman,

Organising Committee, NIPR 2019 Annual Lagos Public Relations Week; Olusegun McMedal,

Chairman, NIPR Lagos Chapter; Thelma Okoh, Secretary NIPR Lagos Chapter and Ijeoma

Oseji, member, Organising Committee, NIPR 2019 Annual Lagos Public Relations Week, during

the official unveiling ceremony sponsored by Modion Communications in Lagos.

National metallurgical centre repositioned

to meet miners’ need its agencies must be equipped with tools

that will make them perform their roles."

RCCG donates

ultramodern ICU worth

over N70m to Plateau


By Therese Nanlong

By Therese Nanlong

JOS—EFFORTS to reposition the National

Metallurgical Development Centre,

NMDC and make it more responsive to

miners’ needs have received a boost as

equipment to assist it in research and

development of minerals and metal

processing and production chains have

been refurbished and put into use at the


The centre also received a facelift with its

staff’s capacity enhanced to conduct basic

and applied researches which would fasttrack

development, add value to mining subsector

and diversity the economy.

The Minister of Mines and Steel

Development, Abubakar Bwari who

commissioned the completed projects

and inspected ongoing ones executed

in the centre, reiterated that the federal

government is determined to ensure

that the potentials available in the

mineral and metal sectors are fully

realized in order to build a robust


He said, “The Metallurgical

Development Centre is central to

government’s efforts at diversifying the

economy because it provides the critical

research and development work needed

for value addition in the mineral and

metal processing and production

chains. Government is determined to

ensure that the potentials available in

the mineral and metal sectors are fully

realized to build a robust economy.

“As regulators, our job is to provide the

enabling environment for operators to thrive

while also attracting new investors into the

sector to accomplish this, the Ministry and


OS— THE Redeemed Christian Church of

God, RCCG, through its Corporate Social

Responsibility, CSR project has equipped the

Intensive Care Unit, ICU of the Plateau State

Specialist Hospital with medical equipments worth

over N70million .

The ICU named "Enoch and Folu Adeboye

Centre" is also provided with an inverter and a

standby generating set to ensure 24 hours

electricity supply.

Commissioning and handing over the project to

the hospital, The General Overseer of the Church,

Pastor Enoch Adeboye who prayed for the salvation

of sinners and healing of the sick, said the gesture

was the demonstration of practical Christianity

and an expression of love.

Also, the Special Assistant to the General

Overseer on CSR, Pastor Idowu Iluyomade whose

department takes care of social responsibility

disclosed that the project wass one among the

“58,000 projects provided all over states in the

country within a year” and prayed that all who

came in contact with the project would benefit

from it.

Appreciating the gesture, the State

Government through the Deputy Governor, Sonni

Tyoden and Commissioner for Health, Kuden

Kamshak commended the Church’s efforts and

urged others to emulate such as the

Commissioner said the project was a “divine

intervention because it is coming as the State is

contemplating a cardiac centre in the hospital.”

14—Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

No peace in Nigeria until Igbo

becomes President—Nwobodo

By Dennis Agbo

& Chinedu Adonu


Jim Nwobodo has

declared that peace may

continue to elude Nigeria

unless it reverses injustices

being meted on Ndigbo.

Calling for Igbo

presidency in 2023, he

particularly said one of the

major injustices against

Ndigbo was the conspiracy

of denial of Nigeria

President to the Igbo,

noting that peace will only

return to the country when

an Igbo assumes

leadership of Nigeria.

Nwobodo, who spoke in

Enugu yesterday, during

his 79th birthday

celebration organised for

him by Ohanaeze Ndigbo,

said he will continue to

fight for Igbo unity and

wished he will still be an

Igbo in his next life.

Similarly, he advised

governments at all levels to

ensure the provision of jobs

for youths to avoid


He said: “I would be an

Igbo in my next life. Once

we can love ourselves the

sky will be our limit. There

is IPOB because there is no

job. Graduates of 10 years

without jobs can’t just keep


“I have accepted the

challenge of uniting

Ndigbo. Dr Chimaroke

Nnamani now calls me

boss and I am overwhelmed

and surprised at the

marvellous works of God.

“There will be no peace

in Nigeria until an Igbo

man becomes President of

Nigeria. Nigeria should

give Ndigbo their share of

the country. How can you

rotate power just among a

particular set of Nigerians?

“We won’t fight, but peace

will elude Nigeria if it

continues to deny Ndigbo

their due entitlement. I will

not disappoint Ndigbo and

I must always stand by the


He also frowned at the

case of the former Chief

Justice of Nigeria, Justice

Walter Onnoghen, who he

said was not treated fairly

by the government on the

manner he was booted out.

He urged the judiciary to

discharge their duties with

justice, saying it is only the

judiciary that can prevent

the country from collapsing.

AWARD: From left—Managing Director, Mr. Jordi Bel; Sales Director, Mr. Uche Unigwe, both of

Nigerian Breweries Plc; winner, National Champion Award, Mr. & Mrs. Kenneth Maduakor (Ken Maduakor

Group of Companies) and Chairman, Nigerian Breweries Plc, Chief Kola Jamodu, Nigerian Breweries

2019 Distributor Award in Abuja.

How women battled fibroid for 20 years in Imo

By Chinonso




women in Imo State,

have been taking herbs

and other self-help medications

to cure fibroid for

over 20 years.

The development was discovered

during a free medical

treatment at Saint Vincent

De Paul Hospital, in

Ehime Mbano Local Council,

organized by Catholic

Reverend Sisters in collaboration

with Dr. Benjamin

Olowojebutu Foundation.

Dr. Olowojebutu said that

the outcome of the exercise

was a reflection of the society

that it’s leaders ought

to have provided a scheme

to take care of the peculiar

health challenges faced by


Apart from fibroid, other

ailments which some of the

women had carried for

years and were operated on

included breast lumps, lypoma

and others.

He said: “Most of the

women had resorted to selfhelp

using herbs to manage

the pains of carrying

huge mass of fibroid and for

almost two decades. We are

happy and fulfilled to have

contributed to giving these

women their lives back. No

joy can compare to the sincere

gratitude and joy these

people have expressed.

“How could a woman carry

12 kg mass of fibroid for

18 years, gulping assorted

herbs and concoctions?

Why would help be so far

away even as she tried to

raise funds to take out the

mass? And then you wonder

why would such a woman

will learn about a team

coming to Imo on a medical

mission and not believe

that it is indeed for free? I

guess it is a reflection of the


“One particularly strange

thing about this mission is

why someone would doubt

that hernia, fibroid and lypoma

that ordinarily would

cost over N250,000 to remove

depending on the

hospital could be done for

them for fee.


NHRC summons AEPB boss

THE National Human

Rights Commission,

NHRC, has summoned the

Chairman of the Abuja Environmental

Protection Board,

AEPB, to appear before the

Commission on Monday (today)

over alleged raids of

nightclubs and relaxation

centres in Abuja.

The summons followed a

protest visit to the Commission,

Friday by a coalition of

Civil Society Organisations,

CSOs, working in the field

of human rights in Nigeria

which brought a petition of

rights violations of women

against the authorities, FCTA

and the Nigerian Police.

The Executive Secretary of

the Commission, Tony Ojukwu,

issued the summons

upon receiving a statement

of demand by the CSOs led

by the Executive Director

Partner West Africa, Kemi


He said that no human

rights violations will be swept

under the carpet and that the

raids and gender-based violence

against women in Abuja

will not be an exception.

God has been kind to me,

I won’t run for Senate


By Henry Umoru

& Dennis Agbo

Ebonyi launches open

govt partnership

By Peter Okutu



Umahi of Ebonyi State,

weekend, restated his commitment

towards transparency

and accountability in


He stated this during the

inauguration of the 32 member

Steering Committee of

the Open Government Partnership

and launch of the

OGP Action Plan for 2018 –


Speaking during the inauguration,

Deputy Governor,

Eric Igwe who represented

the governor reiterated government’s

commitment to the

Open Government Partnership

Programme and assured

that state government

would support the Steering

Committee to actualise the

state's OGP Action Plan.

He said that government

DEPUTY Senate President,

Senator Ike Ekweremadu,

yesterday, said

that at the expiration of the

9th Senate in 2023, he

would not seek re-election

into the Senate.

According to him, in all

ramifications, God has

been kind to him, having

raised him to address

enormous challenges

faced by his people.

Ekweremadu, who

spoke, yesterday, at an

event to mark his 57th

birthday and to appreciate

God and his constituents

for his re-election and

triumphs, said however,

that it had not been all rosy

as he had also faced serious

political challenges

and persecutions.

Ekweremadu said insecurity,

disunity among

Nigerians, and growing

poverty among others

would form the crux of

matters before the next

session of the National Assembly.

Ekweremadu, however,

said that after the 9th Assembly,

he would honourably

quit the job of a legislator

at the national assembly.

He said that he will

work with every other

member of the legislature

with broad mind and zeal

for statesmanship to ensure

that current national

challenges were resolved.

Saluting his constituents,

he said: “I acknowledge

your kindness in

keeping me in the Senate

for these 16 years; and as I

prepare to further represent

you by your mandate for the

next four years, let me seek

your understanding and indulgence

to now announce

that this will be my last term

as your Senator.

“As we get set for the 9th-

Senate, be assured that I will

focus on the completion of

all ongoing projects we attracted

and ensure that communities

yet to benefit from

our vision in infrastructure

adequately benefit.

“I will work with other patriotic

Nigerians within and

outside the National Assembly

and across party,

ethnic, and religious lines

to address issues of disunity,

insecurity, and poverty

currently threatening our

nation. I believe together

we can pioneer a new order

characterised by peace,

justice, unity, prosperity,

egalitarianism, and boundless

opportunities for all.”

In a statement by his Special

Adviser, Media, Uche

Anichukwu, Ekweremadu

recalled how he became the

Chairman of his age grade

association at age 10, and

served as President-General

of Mpu Town Union, pioneer

elected Chairman of

Aninri LGA, Chief of Staff

of Enugu Government

House, Secretary to Enugu

State Government, fourth

term Senator, third term

Deputy President of the

Senate, and the first Nigerian

Speaker of the ECO-

WAS Parliament.

had always partnered with

anti-corruption agencies as it

had nothing to hide and would

always adopt programmes

that will give value for money

in terms of utilisation of scarce

resources to develop the


He described the OGP programme

as a unique programme

that involved the civil

society and government, and

was confident that the partnership

will be sustained for the

good of Ebonyi people.

In her opening remarks,

the Focal Person of OGP and

Commissioner for Commerce

and Industry,

Ebonyi State, Mrs Ugo

Nnachi, thanked Ebonyi

State government for

joining the OGP Global

family, especially at this

time when the entire world

was talking about transparency,


and good governance.

Why we are protesting

today — WABBA

•Ex-labour leader faults NLC's invasion

of Nigige’s house

By Victor Young &



LEADERS of Nigeria

Labour Congress,

NLC, yesterday insisted that

today's protest in Abuja

would go on as planned,

saying it had nothing to do

with the inauguration of

Nigeria Social Insurance

Trust Fund, NSITF, Board.

Speaking on the protest,

President of NLC, Ayuba

Wabba said: “The protest

has no relationship with the

pronouncement they made.

It is about the brutality

Ngige meted out on our

people. That is why we are

protesting. The

fundamental rights of every

citizen to peacefully

assemble and protest

cannot be wished away. It

cannot be breached and it

is a right that is

fundamental, that is the

essence of the action.''

This came as the Joint

Action Front, JAF, a pro-

Labour Civil Society partner

of NLC in the Labour and

Civil Society Coalition,

LASCO, declared its

support for the protest.

In a statement by its

Secretary, Abiodun

Aremu, the group said

among others, “JAF takes

serious note of the acts of

Minister Ngige, who

hired vulnerable members

of the society as bandits to

unleash untold violence

against defenceless

workers on May 8, 2019,

who legitimately picketed

his official residence to

protest against his failure to

inaugurate the Board of the

National Social Insurance

Trust Fund (NSITF) despite

the official directive of the


vanguardnews @vanguardnews @vanguardnews

“JAF contends that with

this condemnable singular

act of a Labour Minister

employing violent acts to

repress workers in an

industrial relations’

disputation, Ngige has lost

the right to preside over

and represent the Federal

Government as regulator on

Labour matter.”

Meanwhile, a former

secretary of the National

Union of Banks, Insurance

and Financial Institution

Employees, NUBIFIE, Mr

David Azuokwu, has

condemned the recent

invasion of the residence of

the Minister of Labour, Dr.

Chris Ngige by NLC.

Azuokwu said NLC’s

action was alien to labour

laws, describing the

invasion of the Minister’s

private residence and

threat to his life as criminal.

He said among others,

“The NLC actions, led by

its President, AyubaWabba,

are unknown to Nigerian

and international labour

extant laws guiding trade

dispute and grievances.

The illegal invasion in the

guise of picketing the

private residence of the

Minister of Labour is

highly condemnable

and should not be

allowed in the country.”

Azuokwu said the

invasion, which was

supposedly to pressure the

Minister to inaugurate

Chief Frank Kokori as

Chairman of the NSITF,

was a lawless action.

“The appointment of any

qualified Nigerian into

political office at the federal

level is at the prerogative

of the President or by the

recommendation of the

supervisory minister, in this

case, the Minister of Labour

and Employment.''

By Emma Ujah,

Abuja Bureau Chief


administration of

President Muhammadu

Buhari has secured Foreign

Direct Investment

commitments totalling $220


The Minister of Trade,

Industry and Investments,

Mr. Okey Enelamah,

disclosed this weekend,

while chatting with

journalists in Abuja.

According to him, $ 90

billion commitment was

secured last year. In 2017

and 2016, the commitments

were $70 billion and $60

billion, respectively.

“If you look at the

investment commitments

that were announced last

year for the country at every

level, which is tracked by

the Nigeria Investment

Promotion Council, it was

over $90 billion, the year

before it was over $70 billion

and the year before then it

was over $60 billion.

“This shows us that

Nigeria has potentials and

is attractive,” the minister

said in response to a

question on how much FDIs

the ministry attracted in the

period of this

administration. Now the

challenge for us as a country

and definitely for the

ministry is how much of

these will we convert,” he


The minister said the

Special Economic Zones

initiative was very dear to

his heart and that his team

had reached an advanced

stage of its


According to him, three

new zones would be created

at Lekki (Lagos), Enyimba

City (Abia State) and

Funtua (Kastina State).

He noted that the existing

ones in Calabar and Kano

would be revamped to make

the quest for the nation’s

industrialisation a reality.

Put together, Enelamah

said the Special Economic

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 15




We’ve secured $220bn FDI

commitments — MINISTER

DAVID MARK’S 20 YEARS IN SENATE: From left: Assistant Parish Priest, Rev.Fr.

John Okpotu; former Senate President, David Mark; his wife, Helen and Gov Samuel

Ortom of Benue State, during a thanksgiving mass to commemorate Mark’s 20 years

in the Senate, at St. Augustine’s Cath Church, Okpoku LGA, Benue State yesterday.

Zones would generate

about $30 billion in exports,

1.5 million direct jobs, 10

million indirect jobs and

raise the manufacturing

sector’s contribution to the

Gross Domestic Product

(GDP) from10 per cent to 20

per cent.

He said: “This is an

extremely important

THE creation of wealth

in the grassroots as

sure means of stimulating

Nigeria’s economy is one

of the motivations behind

investments by the Dangote


Group Executive Director

and Coordinator of Dangote

Rice Project, Mr.

Devakumar Edwin made

this assertion while

receiving in his office in

initiative of this government

and we have worked on it

with the Senate in the last

two budget cycles — 2017

and 2018.

“We have adopted the

Public Private Partnership

model because of the huge

funds required to

development them. We are

looking at $500 million

Lagos, Iseyin Chiefs and

Community leaders led by

the Aseyin of Iseyin, Oba

Abdulganiyu Salawudeen

Adekunle, Ajinase 1.

The Community leaders

from Oyo State had come

to show appreciation to the

Company over the choice

of Iseyin town for the multimillion

Naira Youth Rice

Farm project being

undertaken by Africa’s

foremost entrepreneur,

out of which the Federal

government will provide 25

per cent. The balance will

come from the private


“Many operators in the

private sector within and

outside the county have

indicated interest and we

are now working on its

quick implementation.“

‘Dangote youth rice project is to create wealth at

the grassroots'

Alhaji Aliko Dangote.

Edwin said the project

was a deliberate business

decision to empower the

youths at the grassroots

bearing in mind that the

youths who are more than

half of Nigeria’s population

are mostly unemployed.

He said: ''Many of the ills

ploughing the nation could

be traced to youths

joblessness and that the

youth rice farm is developed

to address the issue now

that the Federal

Government is diversifying

the economy by upgrading

the agriculture sector to

achieve food self

sufficiency and as a major

foreign exchange earner.''

Edwin stated that the

''Dangote Rice Youth farm is

modeled after the outgrower

scheme to launch

the youths back to farm with

assurance of assistance to

make farming less

cumbersome less stressful

and profitable.''

The project, according to

him was launched

successfully in Kogi and

Jigawa and “its a pure outgrower

scheme, where

Dangote Rice Company

provides seedlings,

chemical, fertilizers, and

give to the youths to

prepare the land, cultivate

the rice paddy which is then

bought over from them by

the company at the

prevailing market rate.''

He stated further that

''The youths are paid

stipend to keep body and

soul together for the period

of the cultivation and

harvest and to stimulate the

interest of the youths to be

dedicated to the project.''

16—Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

LAUNCHING: From left—Director General, LCCI, Mr Muda Yusuf; Chairman, Trade Promotion

Board, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Gabriel Idahosa; CEO, Compass Consulting,

Mrs Tokunbo Chiedu; President, LCCI, Mr Paul Ruwase; Chairman, Specialised Exhibition

Committee, LCCI, Mr Leye Kupoluyi; and Founder, Connectnigeria.com, Mr Emeka Okafor, during

the launch of 2019 ICTEL EXPO in Lagos.

NASS member-elect calls for decentralisation

of police to tackle insecurity

By Alemma Aliu


elected member of the

House of Representatives

for Ikpoba Okha/Egor

federal Constituency of Edo

state, Hon Jude Ise-

Idehen, yesterday urged

the federal government to

decentralize the police force

to effectively combat the

rising cases of serious

crimes across the country

that have resulted into loss

Nigeria lacks political will to implement human rights

agreements — Rights groups

By Emmanuel


ABUJA—A coalition of

the Nigerian Human

Rights Community have

said that Nigerian

government has failed in

the implementation of the

126 Universal Periodic



recommendations because

of lives and properties.

The lawmaker said it

is regrettable that the

Nigeria Police force

saddled with the

responsibility of policing

the Country is still suffering

from inadequate crime

combating tools when other

countries of the world have

acquired modern

technology to check

sophistication in crime.

He said: “There is need

for government to increase

… call for quick composition of HRC governing board

it lacks the political will

to honour the agreement.

They expressed worry

over the inability of the

government to implement

the international human

rights treaties it signed on

behalf of the citizens.

They noted that the

government has been very

slow in the implementation

of the recommendations it

the numbers of policemen

by recruiting more hands,

they need more training

and upgrade the

equipment they have. New

technology in policing this

days is very important and

not our ways of doing


“I strongly believe that

the federal government

should do more for the

police and the army. The

federal government should

begin to think of how to

Aniocha North LG legislative arm

impeaches leader

DELSU Don, Dr Adagbabiri to feature at

Delta strategic political workshop


Administrator and

Head of Political Science

Department, Delta State

University (DELSU), Dr

Moses Adagbabiri, is ready

and shall be at the Strategic

Political Communication

Workshop put together by

the Office of the Executive


to the Governor of Delta


Collaboration with the

Office of the Secretary to

Delta State Government (SSG).

wilfully signed without

duress and urged the civil

society organizations and

the citizens to pile pressure

on government to live up

to expectations.

The group made the

observation at a

sensitization workshop

organised by the

By Elizabeth



Legislative Arm of

Aniocha North Local

Government Area of Delta

State, Nwanoye Francis

The organisers in a statement

by Dr Fred Latimore

Oghenesivbe, said core issues in

politics shall be in the front burner

at the workshop which is why Dr

Adagbabiri vowed to drill

participants on fundamental

issues in constitutional

democracy via a position paper

titled; “Politics, Power and

Authority - The Nigerian

Experience From 2015 to 2019.”

He further asserted that

Adagbabiri’s intellectual

postulations at the workshop will

constitute intensive interactive

Partnership for Justice to

assess the level of

implementation of the UPR

recommendations in

Nigeria held in Abuja.

The UPR is a unique process

which involves a periodic review

of the human rights of all 193

UN member states established in

2006 by the UN General

has been impeached by the

eight-member House. The

impeachment was

preceded by a motion for

dissolution of the

leadership signed by eight

members of the House.

The eight members out of

session while group

presentations and grading shall

enable participants better

equipped intellectually for future

assignment in projecting

government policies, programmes

and achievements; especially as

Gov Okowa's administration

steps into second tenure

christened “Stronger Delta.”

Adagbabiri, is coming to the

workshop with wealth of

experience that cut across politics

and Public administration as well

as practical experience as a

lecturer in the field of political


break down the federal

force by localizing it into

states Police since the

federal government have

failed in protecting the lives

and property of the people”

The parliamentarian also

promised to attract the

presence of federal

government to what he

described as the under

development in his Ikpoba

Okha federal Constituency

in the state.

Assembly in resolution 60/251.

It is a state driven process under

the auspices of the Human

Rights Council, which provides

the opportunity for each state to

declare what actions they

have taken to improve the human

rights situations in their

country and to fulfil their human

rights obligations.

the 14 councillors or the council

converged about 6a.m., on

Friday to impeach the council

leader with a signed letter of


The development may not be

unconnected to the controversy

that has been rocking the

council’s legislative arm with

accusations and counter


The eight members in a

statement alleged that the

offences of the Leader of the

House include operating the

House without House Rule for

16 months, inability to coordinate

the affairs of the House, traveling

outside the country without

approval among others.

The statement further stated

that the dissolution of the House

was to pave way for effective and

efficient legislature in the council.

The members in a unanimous

decision elected Philip

Kawekwune as new leader of

the House, among other

principal officers.

IMF says accord with Pakistan to cut

imbalances, support growth

THE International Monetary Fund yesterday

confirmed that it had reached a staff-level agreement

with Pakistan over a $6 billion bailout package

backed by a series of reforms to cut yawning deficits

and improve growth.

The program would aim to cut Pakistan’s debt through

tax measures to improve revenue collection as well as

reforms to its creaking energy sector, with a “marketdetermined

exchange rate” to help the functioning of

the finance sector, the IMF said in a statement.

US, China at impasse over trade, Kudlow

says new tariffs will remain

THE United States and China appeared at a

deadlock over trade negotiations yesterday as

Washington demanded promises of concrete changes

to Chinese law and Beijing said it would not swallow

any “bitter fruit” that harmed its interests.

The trade war between the world’s top two economies

escalated on Friday, with the United States hiking

tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods after

President Donald Trump said Beijing ‘broke the deal’

by reneging on earlier commitments made during

months of negotiations.

White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told

Fox News on Sunday that the United States needs to

see China agree to “very strong” enforcement provisions

for an eventual deal and said the sticking point

was Beijing’s reluctance to put agreed changes into


He vowed the tariffs would remain in place while

negotiations continue.

Beijing remained defiant, however. “At no time will

China forfeit the country’s respect, and no one should

expect China to swallow bitter fruit that harms its core

interests,” said a commentary, due for Monday publication,

in the ruling Communist Party’s People’s Daily.

Philip Morris suspends social media campaign

after exposure of young ‘influencers’

CIGARETTE maker Philip Morris International

Inc has suspended a global social media marketing

campaign in response to Reuters inquiries into

the company’s use of young online personalities to

sell its new “heated tobacco” device, including a 21-

year-old woman in Russia.

The company’s internal “marketing standards” prohibit

it from promoting tobacco products with youthoriented

celebrities or “models who are or appear to

be under the age of 25.”

The company told Reuters of the decision late Friday,

saying it had launched an internal investigation

into marketing posts and photographs that Reuters sent

to the company for comment earlier this week.

They included a paid post plugging the tobacco product

by social media “influencer” Alina Tapilina in Moscow

- who listed her age as 21 on Instagram - alongside

often seductive photos of herself drinking wine,

swimming and posing with little clothing in luxurious


Uber’s market debut sours most

anticipated IPO since Facebook

UBER Technologies Inc’s conservative initial

public offering could not keep its shares from

sinking in their trading debut penultimate week, fueling

debate on Wall Street over whether the outcome

of the most anticipated listing since Facebook Inc would

weigh on other Silicon Valley unicorns.

Uber considered going public for at least four years.

Yet the ride-hailing company picked a week for its IPO

plagued by market turbulence fueled by U.S.-China

trade worries. Moreover, smaller rival Lyft Inc’s shares

plunged this week after its first earnings as a public


Uber was the biggest of a group of Silicon Valley

startups that have spent years raising money in private

rounds at record prices. Many of these companies

are now looking to follow with their own IPO.

Some, like Uber and Lyft, are unprofitable.

Workplace messaging company Slack Technologies

Inc plans to hold an investor presentation on Monday

in advance of its direct listing next month. Grocery

and food delivery platform Postmates, WeWork owner

The We Company and online mattress retailer Casper

Sleep are among startups seeking to launch IPOs this


All stories credited to Reuters

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 17

18 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

INSECURITY has shoved the

poor economy aside to occupy the

top spot on the priority list of

Nigerians, as violent crimes

threaten to overwhelm the


After the general elections, the

murderous herdsmen are back in

full force.

The “bandits” that had held

Zamfara State by the jugular have

spread their mayhem into

adjoining Niger, Kaduna and

Katsina states, and the fringes of

Sokoto State, though the Army insists

they are fleeing from the ongoing

“Operation Scorpion Sting

III” in Zamfara State.

Kidnappers have also taken the

centre stage, particularly in the

North where they have forced the

elite and commoners alike off the

major highways, thus leading to

crowded railway stations between

Abuja and Kaduna.

Saving Nigeria from violent crimes

A major affront to President

Muhammadu Buhari was the abduction

of a District Head in Daura,

Katsina State, Alhaji Musa Uba,

who is also the President’s in-law.

The Acting Inspector General of

Police, Alhaji Mohammed Adamu,

after attending a meeting of

Northern Traditional Rulers

Council in Kaduna on April 30,

2019, disclosed that violent crimes

have already claimed the lives of

1,071 Nigerians in 2019. Of these,

767 deaths occurred in the North.

Zamfara alone recorded 203

deaths. The number should be far

more, as many incidents are usually

not reported.

Nigerians were dismayed when

President Buhari returned from his

ten-day “private visit” to the UK

and gave an unsatisfactory answer

when newsmen asked him: “Are

we likely to see a different

approach in the fight against insecurity,

especially kidnapping,

which is a big issue now?”. He reportedly

answered: “You know, I

have just seen the IG, he is…I

think he is losing weight, so I think

he is working very hard”.

This response to an unfolding

emergency situation is quite disappointing.

Nigerians, at this moment,

need to be reassured that as

the President prepares for his second

tenure, he has credible solutions

to the twin evils that currently

assail the country and its people:

poverty and insecurity.

We call on President Buhari to live

up to his promise in his inaugural

address in 2015, that he would “lead

from the front” in the war against

Boko Haram and general insecurity

in the country. The situation now is

far worse than it was four years ago.

We strongly believe that a comprehensive

overhaul of the security setup

is needed at this time to arrest

the unsavoury situation. The states

and the various communities

should be accommodated in a massive

push to flush out the armed

herdsmen, “bandits”, kidnappers,

and of course insurgents.

Without this Nigeria risks total


Banditry, abduction on red line

By Carl Umegboro

ROAD trips along the Kaduna-Abuja

highway is becoming more than

nightmares. Simply put, a no-go area. The

increasing rate of armed banditry, kidnapping

and sundry heinous crimes taking place in the

environs demands a state of emergency by the

governments. Figures of casualties are rapidly

rising on daily basis. From Abuja to Kaduna is

approximately 188.7 kilometres, roughly three

hours drive. By implication, Kaduna shares

proximity with the seat of power and possibly

habours some oblique characters that find it

difficult to operate within the Federal Capital

Territory owing to heavy presences of all the

security agencies with their headquarters.

Recently, the acting-Inspector General of

Police, Mohammad Adamu, at a Northern

Traditional Rulers Council meeting in Kaduna

unequivocally attested that crime rate in the

country has alarmingly recorded 1,071 persons

killed, 685 abducted in the first quarter of 2019

with the Northern region leading with 71.62

per cent. From the report, North-West recorded

436; North-Central - 250, largely linked to

armed-banditry, kidnapping and communal

clashes; while South-South recorded 130

casualties. By these figures, indisputably, there

is fire on the mountain. Thus, the nation’s space

is under siege. A salient question to ask the

political-class is: How come such criminalities

are heatedly resurfacing after the general

elections, ahead of inauguration of a new


Nonetheless, it is bizarre that amid security

challenges and despite the fact all the security

agencies: Police, Army, DSS, Navy, Air Force,

Civil Defence have their headquarters in Abuja,

security is lax there. For example, tinted-glass

vehicles are now in vogue in Abuja and

adjacent states and rarely searched as

obtainable in other states. Even pedestrians

with dangerous weapons are hardly ever

subjected to stop-and-search or questioning

by operatives.

There must be obvious justifications to

authorise tinted glasses in cars except when

status substantially and convincingly demands

for it. Authorising cars with tinted-glasses in a

society without digitalised security system is a

blunder. So far, most of the crimes are

perpetrated with tinted-glasses cars, especially

in Abuja where private motorists do

commercial runs most times. Numerous

commuters have been robbed or abducted

with tinted glass vehicles on account they are

usually wound-up without see-through from


Even commercial motorcyclists popularly

nicknamed Okada operate with no

registration numbers in Abuja, hence no means

of identification when necessary. Apart from

the Federal Road Safety Commission, FRSC,

that mounts check-points, it is rare to find Police

on the road operating proficiently as it ought

to notwithstanding that the nation is not yet

technologically advanced to rely on digital

security system. Overtime, these oversights

lead to an upsurge in security challenges.

Presently, crimes detection in the country is

mostly analogue which requires proactive,

physical measures, particularly road-searches

which is seldom done. Assuming the society is

technologically advanced, then digital

detection systems can check people’s baggage

at strategic points as done in advanced

countries. Security agencies should brainstorm

to find a lasting solution to the problems.


Imperatively, the quantum of idle or

undeveloped land in the North, neither for


agriculture nor business activities is

frighteningly as it is indicative that many

from the region may resort to crimes for

means of survival except those that are

employable through education or skilled in

a field. For example, from Niger State to

Kebbi State lies an expanse of idle land that

can comfortably feed the nation and with

enough for export if judiciously put into uses.

Unfortunately, no activities are going on there

– a desert.

Obviously, there’s need for an industrial

revolution. Industrial ideas are critically

germane at this juncture. The National Youth

Service Corps, NYSC, may be reformed to

make the one-year scheme accommodate

industrially-oriented skills acquisition and

economic empowerment. For instance,

factories can be built in those deserts using

corps members as workforces. If this is done,

Authorising cars with

tinted-glasses in a society

without digitalised security

system is a blunder

the oranges, carrots, peers, garden eggs,

tomatoes, cucumber, etc., hawked by children

can be industrially processed for improved

valuable products like in other nations. With

that, scores of youths will acquire diverse skills

that will upgrade them, and put some in

employers status. An economy with majority

of able-bodied youths doing betting is on red


Or, is it possible that agriculture and related

disciplines in our education curriculums are

parables? Despite the number of universities

of agriculture in the country, such neglects

have existed for years. By means of irrigation,

farming activities can thrive in those areas

alongside processing factories which can

ultimately provide jobs to able youths

roaming the streets. This is one unique way a

government can transform destinies of its people.

To provide boreholes within the areas as well as

farming machinery and incentives is certainly

a realistic remedial mechanism against poverty.

By the Federal Government’s stringent fiscal

policies which have blocked leakages in the

system through the Treasury Single Accounts

and others, it is obvious that people who hitherto,

shortsightedly relied on free money or other

sinister means may resort to crimes out of

frustration as the system is tightened up for the

common good.

Hence, governments are equally under

obligations to come up with pragmatic job

creation schemes towards carrying such

population along with skills acquisition for their

survival and essentially, for the general society’s


The numbers of unemployable young persons

roaming the streets are indexes there are time

bombs waiting to explode as education that

empowers people for innovations and selfreliance

is poorly treasured. Thus, governments

at all levels have critical works to do,

particularly skill acquisition and economic

empowerment programmes. Any grown-up

without education, trade or skills for survival

will inevitably survive at the detriment of the

society either through banditry, kidnapping and

other heinous means.

Laudably, UNICEF, pursuant to the UN

Conventions on the Rights of the Child, CRC,

having been making significant impacts in

Nigeria through its Educate-A-Child

programmes, thus, justifying momentum,

synergy and sustainability. Child education

remains a sine qua non to a secured and thriving

society. Most of societal vices are traceable to

poor upbringing of children particularly

negligence on education.

•Umegboro, a public affairs analyst, wrote

from Lagos

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 —19

Liquidity mop up, lower TB rate to persist as N173bn hit interbank

•External reserves maintain upward trend at $44.84bn

By Babajide Komolafe

CENTRAL Bank of Nigeria, CBN,

is expected to continue its liquidity

mop operations this week as well as

further reduce stop rates on treasury bills,


Last week, the CBN, mopped up N630

billion from the banking system by

conducting secondary market, Open

market Operations, OMO, treasury bills

auctions on Monday, Tuesday and

Thursday. The auctions were in response

to inflow of N664.21 billion from matured

TBs during the week.

The CBN, however, took advantage of

the oversubscription triggered by the

inflow to lower interest rate (stop rate) on


At the auction on Monday the CBN

reduced the stop rate for the 364-Days

OMO rate by 10 basis points (bps) to 12.94

percent. The stop rate on the 199-day bill

was also reduced by 7bps to 12.88 percent,

while the 108-day bill rate was

unchanged at 11.80 percent. The apex

bank also reduced stop rates by seven

basis points (7bpts) across all tenors

offered at the auction held on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the liquidity mop up action

of the CBN prompted cost of funds to rise

sharply in the interbank money market

with average short term interest rate rising

by 396 bpts.

According to data from FMDQ, interest

rate on Collateralised (Open Buy Back,

OBB) lending rose by 385 bpts to 9.14

percent last week from 5.29 percent the

previous week. Similarly, interest rate on

Overnight lending rose by 407 bpts to 10

percent last week from 5.93 percent the

Continues on page 21

MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Companies record weak earnings

amidst sluggish economic growth

•Banking, agric, consumer goods sectors under-performed

•As oil & gas, conglomerates sectors lead profitability

By Nkiruka Nnorom

THERE are indications that businesses

are still struggling to stay their head

above water given the figures emanating

from their operations, which also exposed

the fragility in the economy.

Figures extracted from companies

financial reports for the year ended

December 31, 2018, showed a very weak

growth in revenue at 6.4 percent, though

profit before tax, PBT, for the period surged

170.7 percent.

Leading companies totalling 88 quoted

on the NigerianStock Exchange (NSE)

recorded combined revenue of N9.74

trillion, a 6.4 percent growth compared to

N9.16 trillion posted in 2017 financial year

principally due to decline in the banking,

agriculture and consumer goods sectors.

Though marginally higher, but the

numbers are reflective of slowed growth in

the economy during the period under review.

Over 2018, the Nigerian economy grew by

mere 1.93 percent.

However, the pre-tax profit jumped to

N4.14 trillion from N1.53 trillion,

representing 170.7 percent growth, owing

largely to outstanding performance in the

oil and gas and conglomerates sectors.

Market operators, who spoke to Financial

Vanguard attributed the weak growth in

2018 Vs 2017 Revenue (N’trn)

revenue to several factors, including rising

insecurity in the country, massive dumping

of goods from other countries, challenges

at the Apapa corridor, which limits

movement of goods, while regulatory

headwind among other factors posed

challenges to the banking sector.

Best revenue performers

Financial Vanguard’s analysis showed

that the construction and real estate sector

towered above others in terms of

percentage growth in revenue. The sector

recorded 33.4 percent increase in revenue

to N201.1 billion from N150.8 billion,

followed by the oil and gas sector, which

rose by 31 percent to N1.90 trillion from

N1.45 trillion. The insurance and industrial

goods sectors ranked third and fourth with

19 percent and 12 percent revenue growth

to N171.1 billion from N142.6 billion and

N957.9 billion from N850.8 billion

Continues on page 20

FSDH Merchant Bank

projects 11.23%

inflation rate for April

Analysts anticipate dim

equity market outlook as

investors lose N137bn

The famine this year and


— Dele Sobowale

22 24






20 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019



Companies record weak earnings amidst economic fragility

Continues from page 19





The agriculture sector affected

revenue growth the most as the

sector declined by 6.9 percent to

N28.35 billion from N30.45 billion.

This was followed by the consumer

goods and the banking sectors,

which fell 4.9 percent and 0.45

percent to N1.01 trillion from 1.07

trillion and N4.43 trillion from

N4.45 trillion respectively.

Best PBT performers

The oil and gas sector and

conglomerates sectors led in pretax

profit in percentage terms,

posting 80.9 percent increase each

to N1.23 trillion from N67.67

billion and N16.23 billion from

N8.97 billion respectively.

Worst PBT performers

The construction and real estate

sector, which incidentally posted

the best performance in revenue,

led the decliners in PBT, dropping

by 1,302 percent to N8.98 billion

loss against N747 million profit in

2017 on account of worsening

fortune of UAC Property

Development Company Plc and

Arbico Plc. The healthcare/

pharmaceutical sector, closed as

the second worst performing sector

in PBT with 36.3 percent decline

to N1.791 billion from N2.81

billion, while the consumer goods

and insurance sectors recorded

PBT decline of 21.8 percent and

17.5 percent to N132.9 billion from

N169.9 billion and N16.3 billion

from N19.8 billion respectively.

Banking sector in mixed


The banking sector, which

hitherto has been one of the best

performers since Financial

Vanguard commenced this

review, recorded a mixed

performance during the year. The

revenue decreased by 0.45

percent to N4.43 trillion against

N4.45 trillion in the previous year

as all the banks posted only

marginally increase, while four of

them - Zenith Bank, FBN

Holdings Plc, Union Bank of

Nigeria, UBN Plc, and Unity Bank

recorded outright decline in


FCMB Group, Access Bank Plc

and Sterling Bank emerged the

top performers in terms of

percentage growth in revenue,

with their revenues rising by 77.7

percent, 15.2 percent and 14

percent to N177.3 billion, N528.7

billion and N152.2 billion


Unity Bank Plc led profitability

in percentage term, as its pre-tax

profit rose by 109.9 percent to N1.4

billion from N14.2 billion losses in

2017. FCMB followed with PBT

growth of 72 percent to N18.44

billion, while Wema Bank Plc

ranked third with 58 percent

increase to N4.83 billion. Stanbic

IBTC Holdings Plc and UBN

posted 44.1 percent and 33 percent

PBT increase to N88.2 billion and

N18.5 billion respectively.

Consumer goods in negative


The consumer goods sector,

battling with low consumer wallet,

recorded a very abysmal

performance as both revenue and

profitability went down during

the year. The revenue for the year

declined by 4.9 percent to N1.01

trillion from N1.07 trillion as almost

all the companies recorded

revenue decline except Nestle

Nigeria Plc, Unilever Nigeria Plc

and Cadbury Nigeria Plc which

posted marginal increase of nine

percent each.

The pre-tax profit for the sector

was also down 21.8 percent to

N132.9 billion from N169.9 billion

as huge losses in Dangote Flour

Mills, Champion Breweries and

Nigeria Breweries Plc negated the

performance. Of the 10 companies

reviewed in the sector, Cadbury

Nigeria achieved outstanding pretax

growth of 249 percent, while

Nestle and Unilever recorded

marginal increase of 28 percent

and 19 percent respectively.

Industrial goods

Both revenue and PBT in the

sector saw marginal increase of

12.6 percent and 4.8 percent

respectively. Of the nine

companies reviewed, four of them

recorded decline in revenue, while

the rest, with the exception of

Cement Company of Northern

Nigeria, CCNN, that posted 62

percent increase in revenue,

posted just minimal increase in


Meanwhile, Meyer Plc and

Portland Paint Plc led in terms of

percentage growth in PBT, rising

by 168 percent to N182.30 million

from negative N264.8 million and

148 percent to N307.53 million

from N123.9 million respectively.

Insurance sector in a mixed


The insurance sector, which has

always been an under-performer,

recorded a mixed performance as

its revenue rose by 19.98 percent

to N171.1 billion from N142.61

billion. The pre-tax profit for the

period fell by 17.5 percent to

N16.30 billion from N19.76

billion impacted by losses in

Prestige Assurance and Sun

Insurance which fell by 20.3

percent and 96.1 percent


Operators’ remarks

David Adonri, Managing

Director/CEO, Highcap Securities,

in his reaction, said: “The

economy is under-performing, the

growing security in the country

A lot of the

banks are

carrying huge


Loans, NPLs;

secondly, the

sector is

labouring under

huge constraints

is grossly affecting the businesses

of these companies, thereby

reducing their turnover. Again,

there is increase in the rate of

dumping of the products which

are produced here in Nigeria with

imported substitute. Also, the

cost of doing business in Nigeria

is one of the highest in the world

and that cost too is eating into

their profit.

“If you look at Lagos, for

instance, some of the companies

can no longer collect goods directly

from Apapa Port. They have to

make arrangement (like PZ

Cusson) for the goods to be

carried through the Lagoon to

Ikorodu and then to where their

factories are located. So, these are

part of the costs the companies

now have to bear. Those are

factors that have reduced the

turnover of the companies and

their profit.”

He said the performance of the

banking sector is a direct reflection

of happenings in the real sector.

“The banking sector services the

real sector. So, if the real sector is

not performing well, the ability of

borrowers to pay back their loans

from the banking sector becomes


“A lot of the banks are carrying

huge Non-Performing Loans,

NPLs. Secondly, the sector is

labouring under huge constraints.

They are forced under the

monetary policy to keep 22 percent

of their liquid asset with the Central

Bank of Nigeria, CBN, and that

reduces the amount of cash

available to them to do business

coupled with the impact of Treasury

Single Account, TSA. A lot of their

operations are disrupted in several

parts of the country that are in a

state of war.”

Doing a sector-by-sector analysis

of the performance during the

period, analysts at United Capital

Plc, a Lagos-based investment

banking firm, said: “While the

broader economy continued on the

path of recovery in 2018 consumer

goods players were faced with a

different economic reality as

consumer wallets remained


“On a year-to-year (y-o-y) basis,

Nestle and Unilever were the only

two fast moving consumer goods

companies to grow revenue and

profit (Pre and Post-tax) in 2018, a

performance that was largely

supported by the inelastic nature

of their core food segments and

prior efforts at deleveraging their

balance sheet.

“For the brewers, graduated

increase in excise duties by the

federal government impacted

revenue negatively, while for flour

millers and sugar refiners, Apapa

gridlock continued to affect their

performance negatively.”

They opined that fixing the

current infrastructural deficits in the

country would go a long way in

alleviating the problem in the


For the oil and gas sector, they

said: “In 2018, downstream

players struggled with the

challenges of a fixed price regime

(N145/litre) amid rising crude

prices at the global space. A

sustained uptick in oil prices

drove Nigerian National

Petroleum Corporation, NNPC’s

under-recovery to N487.9 billion

between January 2018 to August

2018. This kept private marketers

on the sidelines while the NNPC

carried the burden as the sole

importer of petrol.”

Shedding light on the

performance of companies in the

agriculture sectors, they explained

that 2018 was particularly a

challenging year for oil palm

players as local foreign exchange,

FX, liquidity, declines in global

Crude Palm Oil, CPO, price and a

continued porous border,

encouraged the smuggling and

importation of CPO, thereby

negating the ability of the players

in the industry to grow their


2019 outlook

Continuing, the analysts at

United Capital said: “Our view on

the Fast Moving Consumer

Goods, FMCGs, sector remains

modestly positive on the back of a

gradual recovery in the economy.

However, challenges to volume

growth may persist due to

bottlenecks to distribution. Pressure

on volume growth and transport

cost is likely to persist as the

difficulty associated with the

gridlock at the Lagos Port is

unlikely to go away in the interim.”

For the oil and gas sector, the

analysts stated that a very bright

spot for the industry remained the

private refinery being built by the

Dangote Group - expected to roll

out completely by 2020. According

to them, “the project would alter

the total dynamics of the industry

through lower cost burdens and

reduced exposures to external


“Furthermore, the NNPC is also

involved in negotiations to improve

the existing refining capacity. If

these plans materialize, it would

support domestic supply and

underscore a reduction in


For the agric sector, they said that

players would continue to benefit

from favourable government

policies and cheaper loans this

year, leaving room for further

production expansion.

“Overall, we see slightly higher

global CPO prices in 2019. We also

expect this to translate to local

prices, as the expected slight

depreciation of the naira in 2019

should make CPO imports a little

less attractive,” they stressed.


Liquidity mop up, lower TB rate to persist

as N173bn hit interbank

Continues from page 19

previous week.

This week, the interbank

money market will

experience inflow of

N140.9 billion from

maturing TBs, comprising

maturing primary market

TBs worth N33.8 billion and

maturing OMO bills worth

N107.1 billion. While the

CBN will issue N33.8

billion worth of primary

market TBs to replace the

maturing ones, it is also

expected to conduct OMO

auction to mop up liquidity

from the maturing N107.1

OMO bills.

According to analysts at

Lagos based investment

firm, Afrinvest Plc, “We

expect the CBN to hold

OMO auctions in the

coming week, given that

instruments worth N140.9

billion are expected to


Also projecting, analysts

at Lagos based Cowry

Assets Management

Limited, said: “In the new

week, CBN will rollover T-

bills worth N33.84 billion,

viz: 91-day bills worth

N3.39 billion, 182-day bills

worth N16.92 billion and

364-day bills worth N13.54

billion. We expect their stop

rates to decrease

marginally, given the

increasing preference for

fixed income assets by


External reserves

maintain upward trend at


The nation’s external

reserves maintained its

upward trend last week as

it rose to $44.843 billion on

Wednesday May 8 from

$444.792 billion at the end

of last month. This

translates to $51 million

accretion to the external

reserves in the first eight

days of this month.

Explaining the factors

sustaining the upward

movement of the reserves,

analysts at Afrinvest said:

“We believe that the

sustained increase in

foreign portfolio buying

interest in the fixed income

market is largely

responsible for the

accretions to the reserves

although we also

acknowledge that stable oil

prices and output have

continued to favour

increased forex earnings.”

Naira depreciates in I&E

as turnover fall by 23 per


The naira depreciated in

the Investors and Exporters

(I&E) window last week

following 23 percent decline

in volume of dollars traded

in the window.

Data from FMDQ showed

that the indicative exchange

rate for the window rose to

N360.88 per dollar last week

from N360.65 per dollar the

previous week, translating to

23 kobo depreciation for the


The naira, however,

remained stable at N359 per

dollar in the parallel market

last week.

The volume of dollars

traded in the window

(turnover) fell by 23 percent

to $770 million last week

from $1 billion the previous


•Yields on FGN bonds

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 —21

•External Reserves & Crude oil price

•Foreign Exchange rate

•Interbank Interest rates

22 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019


FSDH Merchant Bank projects 11.23%

inflation rate for April

•Advocates support for investment products

By Babajide Komolafe

FSDH Merchant Bank

has projected further decline

in the inflation rate to 11.23 percent

in April.

The inflation rate dropped for

three consecutive months from

11.44 percent n December to 11.25

percent in March.

This trend according to FSDH

Merchant Bank continued in April

but could be reversed in the

coming months should there an

adjustment to the pump price of


Head of Research, FSDH

Merchant Bank stated this at a

media presentation of the bank’s

monthly economic and financial

markets outlook for May titled:

“Investment Opportunities in the

Nigerian Financial Market”.

He said: “FSDH Research

expects the April 2019 inflation

rate to drop marginally to 11.23

percent from 11.25 percent in

March. Inflation rate may remain

in the low double digit in the

remainder of 2019. Possible

adjustments to the pump price of

Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) and

electricity tariff may shift the

inflation curve by 2.5 percent.”

Meanwhile the bank has called

for increased efforts to enlighten

the public about the savings and

investments products in the

financial market in order to

enhance savings in the country.

Akinwunmi said: “Despite the

growth in the savings and

investment products in Nigeria,

the country still records low

savings and investments

“The ratio of Gross National

Savings to the Gross Domestic

Products (GDP) in Nigeria is one

of the lowest among some selected

countries including Nigeria,

Kenya, South Afica, India,

•From left, Chief Uche Otiora; Chief Hilary Amande; Chief C.Y Onyekaokwu all of Balogun

Business Association (BBA) welcoming the Chief Executive Officer/Managing Director, Fidelity

Bank Plc, Nnamdi Okonkwo to the Annual BBA Market Rally held at Aspamda/International

Trade Fair Complex, Ojo, Lagos State.

Malaysia, China, United

Kingdom, and USA

The ratio of total investment to

GDP in Nigeria is the lowest

among the selected countries

“FSDH Research notes,

however, that these investment

instruments need more supports

than are currently available to

enable existing and potential

investors to fulfil their wealth

creation and developmental goals.

“The first support needed is

enlightenment. But government

FirstBank achieves N1tr transactions on

Firstmonie network

FIRST Bank of Nigeria

Limited said that its

Firstmonie network has

processed transactions worth N1

trillion since its re-launch in

January 2018.

The bank in a statement said:

“The network also achieved

nationwide coverage in record

time, enabling access to financial

services for many locations that

never had a way for its residents

to access financial services.

“This is in line with the Central

Bank of Nigeria, CBN’s

objective of bringing banking

services close to all Nigerians,

irrespective of where they live.

“Firstmonie service provides

financial/banking solutions to

Fidelity Bank signs $50m financing agreement

with AFDB

By Elizabeth Adegbesan

FIDELITY Bank and the

African Development Bank,

AFDB, have signed a $50 million

line credit to support small and

medium enterprises (SMEs), with

30 percent of the fund to be reserved

for female entrepreneurs.

Managing Director/ Chief

Executive Officer, Fidelity Bank,

Nnamdi Okonkwo, disclosed this on

the sidelines of the Balogun

Business Association rally held in

Lagos. Okonkwo said: “My team

and I are actually here to get first

hand information of what our

customers’ need and to do a selfcheck.

Have we satisfied them

service wise? Are there areas we can

support them? As you are aware,

just yesterday, we signed $50 million

service support fund agreement

with the AfDB, 30 percent of this

will be going to female

entrepreneurs. We have a huge

number of such entrepreneurs in this

market. So it is more than just a

coincidence that we are here today

to connect with our customers and

know how we can serve them better.”

On the criteria for accessing the

fund, he said: “Fidelity Bank is a

strong supporter of SMEs. Most of

them are accessing funds at

nine percent under the various

intervention scheme and for those

who do not qualify for the single

digit loans they borrow at the

commercial rate but as much as

possible, we try to make sure we

provide a single digit loan for these

customers using the various

windows available.

“As you know, the world is about

sustainability and inclusion. As you

know as well women are mostly, in

the entire world, by culture,

excluded in a way that they have

been fighting to actually achieve a

balance and Fidelity Bank is very

mindful of this. If you look at our

executive board, we have the

highest number of females than any

other bank in this country in terms

of Executive Directors. That is one

way that Fidelity Bank is saying that

we are a gender-sensitive

organization. Now for that reason

as well, when you get a facility like

the $50 million and thirty per cent

is set aside just for women

entrepreneurs, it is another step by

Fidelity Bank to continue to ensure

gender balance. That is basically

why we are doing that.”

Speaking on the connection

between the bank and BBA,

Okonkwo said: “We simply came

here to connect with our customers.

This is Balogun Business

Association Plaza, Lagos Trade fair

complex. Fidelity as you know, we

do not only serve the corporate end

of the market, we also serve the

middle and the lower class of the

market. We are very strong in SMEs

and most of these people here are

SMEs. They are the engine hub of

trade and commerce in this country

and in line with our customer forum

calendar we do this occasionally, we

come out here.”

through the DMO, SEC, CBN can

embark on publicity, both in the

television and in the print media

to create more awareness. They

have done it before, they can do


rural and semi-urban locations

across the country, such as

account opening, cash deposit,

cash withdrawals, airtime

purchase, bill payments and

much more. Through this

channel, the bank is committed

to providing convenient services

that endears trust and provides

ease of access to banking

products, thereby saving time

and travel costs for users of our


According to Dr. Adesola

Adeduntan, the Chief Executive

Officer, First Bank of Nigeria

Limited; “The Firstmonie scheme

is supporting the federal

government’s empowerment

and job creation agenda as over

22,000 Nigerians, through this

scheme, contributed to the

increased economic activities of

their neighbourhoods. Our

partner network is growing and

we are particularly delighted

about the progress we are

making in actively driving

nationwide financial inclusion,

exposing communities to

opportunities for growth, jobs,

empowerment, and improved

live conditions. Yet again, we are

delighted to score another first

in promoting financial inclusion

in the country.

“We appreciate our partner

network and remain committed

to working together to achieve

even greater impact on the lives

of Nigerians”, he concluded.

Code Wilo: Heritage

Bank empowers

potentials in

creative industry

HERITAGE Bank Plc has

restated its commitment to

empower Nigerian creative

industry, as well boost the economy

by hosting a private screening of

Cut 24 Production’s political

thriller, Code Wilo.

The event took place at the

prestigious Terra Culture recently in

Lagos and was graced by senior

members of staff of the bank, some

of the cast and crew of the movie,

fans, movie critics and some of the

industry’s finest celebrities.

Addressing the audience, Chidi

Agu, Head of Content and Digital

Banking of Heritage Bank, said the

bank hosted the show because it has

recognised the potentials in the

creative industry, both in the ability

to empower the population as well

as to lift the economy generally.

He said the bank has been

involved in some activities that

championed the interest of people

in the creative industry and the

production of creative outputs.

Agu said the bank has also tried

to put their works in better

perspective so that they could be

measured and monetised.

Access Bank

targets 100,000

subscribers with



CCESS Bank Plc has

revealed plans to increase

the subscriber base of its

XclusivePlus, a lifestyle

proposition designed to provide

clients with exceptional services

and exclusive privileges to

100,000 by the end of the year.

The proposition was launched

in October 2018 and already has

11,000 subscribers on the

platform. Subscribers to the

XclusivePlus platform are

entitled to privileges such as

access to 800 premium lounges

globally, 36 exclusive lounges

within Nigeria which are also

located in branches or at the

airport, free multi-trade travel

insurance and medical

assistance, free monthly and

quarterly movie tickets upon

subscription to the platform and

upgrade to a visa signature card.

Dolapo Orelaja, Head,

Consumer Proposition, Access

Bank Plc, speaking at a media

chat, said introduction of

Xclusiveplus followed a survey

conducted among the bank's

customers, which revealed a rise

in customers' expenditure on

luxury travel, luxury experiences

and luxury products.

“We are deepening our

relationship with our customers

as this proposition is our own

little way of adding value to our

customers. Our vision for this

proposition is to grow the base to

100,000 subscribers by December

and I believe we are going to

exceed that number because with

the merger, we will ensure our

customers get to partake in this


Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 23

24—Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019


Analysts anticipate dim equity market

outlook as investors lose N137bn

•Tip insurance stocks to watch

By Peter Egwuatu

AS the equity market ended

bearish last week resulting

to investors losing over N137 billion

in five trading days, analysts have

predicted that the market outlook

for this week is likely to dim, even

as they cautioned investors to take

advantage of the falling prices to

boost their portfolios. They further

tipped insurance stocks to be the

stock to watch this week following

their low trading prices.

Analysts at Vetiva Capital

Management in its market reaction

said: “As the Nigerian Stock

Exchange, NSE All Share Index,

ASI continues to trade comfortably

below 30,000 points, the outlook

appears dim. However, we expect

investors to take advantage of

beaten down prices at week open

but do not rule out the possibility of

further sell-offs.”

On the stock to watch, the

analysts opined: “After losing earlier

last week, Sovereign Insurance Plc

gained 870 bases points, bps,

Friday, to settle at N0.25 as investors

took advantage of the price. The

Insurance sector declined 322bps

in the two opening sessions of the


Bank of Nigeria Plc have

commended the debt recovery

drive by its management as the

bank’s Non Performing Loan,

NPL ratio declined to 8.1 percent

for the financial year ended

December 31, 2018 from 20.8

percent in the corresponding

period of 2017.

While addressing shareholders

at the 50th Annual General

Meeting, AGM, Cyril Odu,

Chairman, Union Bank,

highlighted some major

achievements of the bank in 2018

which included: strengthening

retail and transaction banking

offerings and the launch of the first

Local Letter of Credit to support

local trade; the launch of the

inaugural N13.5 billion Bond issue

and the adoption of the Robotic

Process Automation (RPA)

technology – the first Bank to do

so in Nigeria.

According to Odu; “We have

positioned Union Bank to take

advantage of the emerging

opportunities in the economy and

remain optimistic about the future

of the Bank. We will execute our

week after which we saw bargain

hunting in the following sessions.

The stock has gained 19 percent

Year to Date, YtD, while the sector

has shed 6 percent YtD. Other stocks

include Nem Insurance and

Prestige Assurance gaining 8.7

percent and 7.7 percent


Analysts at Cowry Asset

Management in their reaction said:

“In the new week, we expect the

local equities market to close

marginally in green territory amid

By Nkiruka Nnorom

FOLLOWING the protracted

bearish run in the equities

market, Prof. Uche Uwaleke, Head,

Banking and Finance Department,

Nasarawa State University, Keffi

and a professor of Finance and

Capital Market, has said that some

macro-economic indicators and

other external factors indicate that

the days of bears are fast coming to

an end.

Uwaleke, who spoke as guest

lecturer at the Capital Market

Shareholders commend Union

Bank’s debt recovery drive

announcement of the

reappointment of the CBN

Governor by President Buhari and

the readiness signalled by MTN

to list on the local bourse, given the

registration of its 20 billion shares

with Securities and Exchange

Commission, SEC. Hence, we feel

investors would take advantage of

the low share prices to maximize

their returns.

Meanwhile, analysis of trading

last week showed that investors lost

over N137 billion as market

capitalisation which represents

investors’ worth on the Exchange

declined to N10.842 trillion from

N10.979 trillion recorded

penultimate week.

Similarly, another stock market

gauge, the ASI declined to

28,847.81 points from 29,212.00

points recorded penultimate week.

Amid sustained profit taking, all of

the five indices closed in negative

territory: NSE Banking, NSE

Insurance, NSE Consumer Goods,

NSE Oil/Gas and NSE Industrial

indices fell by 2.77 percent, 1.74

percent, 0.23 percent, 5.29 percent

and 0.36 percent to 370.27 points,

118.63 points, 669.53 points, 264.90

points and 1,096.75 points


Positive internal, external factors point to

equity market rebound in Q3 — Prof Uwaleke

By Peter Egwuatu 2019-2021 strategic objectives -

Sweating our Assets, Digitizing

our Bank, and Positioning for the

Future - towards being Nigeria's

most reliable and trusted

banking partner. We will focus

on embedding disciplined cost

management as well as mining

synergies across business

segments and functions to

improve the profitability of our

business and deliver value to

all our stakeholders –

shareholders, customers,

business partners' and


By Nkiruka Nnorom



Development Company

Plc, SEPLAT, has announced

reduction in its finance cost by 38

percent to US$16 million in its first

quarter 2019 (Q1'19) ended

March 31, 2019, compared to

US$26 million in Q1'18. The

company explained that the

reduction in finance cost was a

positive impact of its 2018 debt

refinancing and subsequent

deleveraging. Its net profit for the

Correspondent’s Association of

Nigeria, CAMCAN, quarterly

forum in Lagos, expressed optimism

that the stock market would rebound

in the third quarter. He said that

swearing in of the newly elected

president and early constitution of

cabinet members, lowering

Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) by

the Monetary Policy

Committee (MPC), increase in

minimum wage, increase in oil

price and continued stability in

foreign exchange (FX) would

impact market positively and aid the


He listed other factors that will

drive stock market reversal in third

quarter to include, continued

moderation in inflation, steady

growth in Nigeria’s Gross Domestic

Product (GDP), early signing and

implementation of 2019 budget,

improved growth in the non oil

sector amongst others, adding that

“all these projections are higher

than what we saw in 2018”

He said that the planned

introduction of derivative

instruments in the market by the

Securities and Exchange

Commission (SEC), which

preparations have reached

advanced stage at both SEC and

the Nigerian Stock Exchange

(NSE), would help investors both

foreign and indigenous investors

to hedge their investments. “The

NSE is really waiting for SEC to

finalise the rule for the derivatives

to be introduced, it will give

investors room to hedge risks”,

Uwaleke said.

He said that the CBN’s MPC

triggered the market supportive

move in March 2019 by bringing

down MPR by 50bps, after 33

successive months, to 13.50 percent

from 14 percent, adding that he sees

prospects of further reduction in the

MPR. “Lower MPR will free funds

for investments or lending to firms

for expansion, which will improve

their earnings and deliver more

value to investors. It has a way of

attracting investors, opening the

market and hedging risks”, he


Speaking on some external factors

likely to drive market reversal in Q3

2019, Uwaleke listed, crude oil

price, declining trend of yield in the

US, which will likely bring about

capital flow to emerging markets,

easing US—China trade tension ,

and easing Brexit tension, among


Seplat drives Q1 finance costs down by 38%

period stood at US$33 million

after adjusting for a tax credit of

US$13 million.

Revenue of US$160 million and

gross profit of US$81 million

represent a 51 percent gross profit

margin, which remained

unchanged year-on-year.

Revenue, according to the

company, reflects the lower oil

production and oil price

realisation of US$61.7/bbl (2018:

US$65.78/bbl). Commenting on

the results, Austin Avuru, Chief

Executive Officer, Seplat, said:

“Our operations have continued

to perform in line with expectation,

with the phasing of our 2019 work

programme such that the

production uplift will be felt

throughout the second half of the

year as we step up drilling

activities to focus on capturing the

numerous high margin and shortcycle

cash return opportunities

within our current portfolio.

“The next phase of growth for

our gas business is now gathering

pace following FID for the ANOH

project, with governments first

tranche of equity investment

received. We have continued to

deleverage the balance sheet and

self-fund investments into the

existing portfolio from operational

cash flow, while retaining the

financial flexibility and available

resources that will enable Seplat

to capitalise on what we expect to

be an increasingly busy pipeline

of inorganic growth opportunities

that fit our acquisition criteria.”

JB rules

out plans

for rights

issue as


equity hits


By Peter Egwuatu

JULIUS Berger Nigeria

(JB) Plc has explained

to investors that there was no

need to float a rights issue at

the moment as the company's

shareholders equity has risen

to N35 billion.

Speaking at the company's

investor forum 2019 in Lagos,

Engr. Dr. Lars Richter,

Managing Director, Julius

Berger, who was represented

by the Finance Director,

Martin Brack, said that 2018

was a very successful and

pivotal year for Julius Berger,

a business year filled with

many positive developments

and achievements.

“In 2018, Julius Berger

successfully overcame many

of the tough challenges faced

in the recent past and made

marked progress across all

aspects of its business,

moving to greater

profitability and success. We

don’t think it is necessary to

float a rights issue at this

moment as our shareholders’

equity has risen by N35


Commenting on the 2018

financial year performance,

he said: “The company's

revenue increased by 37

percent to N194 billion from

N141 billion in 2017.

The Profit Before Tax

increased by 173 percent to

N10.1 billion in 2018 from

N3.7 billion in 2017, while

Profit After Tax also rose to

N6.1 billion in 2018 from

N2.5 billion in 2017.

Similarly, he told investors

that the Company recorded

significant progress in its first

quarter results, saying it

posted revenue of N35.32

billion for the period ended

March 2018 compared to

N34.15 billion reported for

the period ended March


Speaking on the Lagos-

Shagamu Expressway,

which has seen delays and

even work stoppage in the

past, due to funding

challenges, Richter said since

the resumption of work, a

steady pace of progress is

now the reality. He said,

“Considering that the

Expressway is now financed

via the Presidential

Infrastructure Development

Fund, we presume that we

will be able to achieve an

uninterrupted pace of work

with the new funding


Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 25

26 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 27

28 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019


The famine this year and next

Neglect a fire and it will overpower thee—Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.

THERE are several fires

raging in Nigeria today

which will overpower us

unless President

Muhammadu Buhari wakes

up from his slumber, and

moves quickly to put them out.

But, one fire is now on the

verge of breaking out and its

consequences will dwarf all

the others by actually

escalating them. Famine on

an unprecedented scale is

building up in the land and,

if government fails to take

pre-emptive steps, it will

make Boko Haram, herdsmen

and bandits menaces appear

like child’s play. Indeed,

famine will turn virtually the

majority of our people into


Just in case you think this is

an exaggeration and you

doubt if the hungry masses

cannot acquire the arms with

which to unleash mayhem on

the fortunate few who will

continue to feed well

irrespective of what the prices

of foodstuff are, let me remind

you of the answer provided by

a sage over two thousand

years ago. But, before going

into the substantive matter

permit me to draw the

attention of readers to events

occurring right now to which

the governments, Federal and

States, are not paying

adequate attention.

A few weeks ago, several

newspapers carried the news

that children in an Internally

Displaced Persons’ centre

were feeding on only onion

leaves. Before that another

story carried in The Nation

published pictures of mothers

whose children die daily in

their arms on account of

hunger and severe

malnutrition. The United

Nations’ just released a global

report indicating that Nigeria

has the third worst life

expectancy of nations in the

world. We received the

“bronze medal” for this misery

by beating several countries

which have been at war –

Afghanistan, Syria, Libya etc

– for years. The vast majority

of victims died before the age

of five and on account of

dietary deficiencies. Not that

adults are spared the pains of

death at an early age due to

poor feeding habits, but the

kids die first and lower the

average life expectancy more

with each casualty.

Two major factors are now

reducing much further the

food supply available to

Nigerians. One is man-made;

the other is mostly natural i.e

climate change. Together,

they are setting Nigeria on a

course we will not like and

which will likely result in

break down of law and order

– unless governments act now

and decisively. There is no

time to lose.

Herdsmen, Boko Haram,

and now, bandits, have sent

hundreds of thousands of

Northern farmers off the land.

Whereas in the past, as recent

as 2017, one would observe

farmers preparing the land

for planting in February,

many farms are now left


Widespread violence all over

the North have turned

historical food baskets in the

region into wastelands now.

Most of Borno State and a

great portions of Yobe and

Adamawa and even Benue

and Taraba into no-go areas

for hundreds of thousands of

farmers. Having reaped the

harvests of sorrow on account

of invasion by herdsmen and

incessant conscription of what


is harvested by Boko Haram

and bandits, the farmers have

no incentive to start anymore.

FG Moves Against

Herders-Farmers Clashes In

The North—Daily

Independent, Monday, May

6, 2019.

The Federal Government

and its security forces, which

were slow to act when the

Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders

Association of Nigeria,

MACBAN, was terrorising

Benue State and slaughtering

Tiv, Idoma, Bassa and Agatu

with impunity, according to

the news report has now called

for a meeting with the

MACBAN in Kebbi, perhaps


change and its


are global




still have to be

solved locally

because that state is in the

“core North” and it is rice

farmers at Yelwa Yauri, Koko

and Argungu who are now

having their farms invaded.

Meanwhile, several thousand

farmers in Benue, a real food

basket, are hesitant to try

again without firm and

demonstrable assurances that

their labours will not be in vain

once again.

When our national food

security is not threatened by

FG inaction and denials as

well as the combined effects

of violence unleashed by BH,

herdsmen and bandits, we are

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 29

now experiencing the worst

drought in almost forty years.

We are in the second week of

May and farmers nationwide

have not planted because the

early rain this year was

insufficient to start the cycle.

Planting delayed means

harvest also delayed and if

the rain that follows is

devastating, it will mean

lower yields all around at a

time the nation needs more

food produced.

Farmers in Wushishi Local

Government and Zungeru,

Niger State, early this year

expressed concerns over this

year’s food prospects. They

are not alone. Climate change

and its repercussions are

global problems which

nevertheless still have to be

solved locally. To the best of

my knowledge, the FG and

State Governments are not

developing options for

dealing with severe food

shortage in the country this

year. Therein lies the problem.

Anger supplies the arms—

Virgil, 70-19BC.

It is now globally accepted

as an axiom that “a hungry

man is an angry man”. If so,

Nigerian political leaders from

the Aso Rock to all the four

corners of Nigeria are not

planning to avert the dangers

of having millions of hungry

men, women and children

roaming around the streets.

Hunger by itself invariably

induces many of the crimes

which society wants to

suppress - stealing, hijacking

of food items, food

conscription by armed troops

of BH and bandits, traffic in

selling babies, prostitution (a

starving female, including

under-aged ones is an easy

prey for those with a little

money) and even murder and

kidnapping. As serious

hunger creeps silently into

every part of the Nigerian

society, the battalion of

hungry people increases in

size and the number of states

at risk also multiplies.

For those who might be

wondering how the hungry

people will be able to afford

to obtain the arms with which

to fight, Virgil provided the

answer more than two

thousand years ago.

Using the kids in IDPs as

example of what to expect, it

is clear to me that anybody

who thinks that the kids

eating onion leaves in IDPs

will continue to be satisfied

eating that rubbish must have

rocks where brains are

supposed to be. The older

boys will break out first to join

established criminals in their

domains. The rest will follow

when they run out of onion

leaves to consume.


Now that Buhari has

returned from wherever,

instead of indulging in the

childish game of “I told you

so” with media who doubted

his statements, he should

urgently convene a Council of

State meeting with only one

item on the agenda How to

prevent mass starvation in


As usual, he can ignore the

advice because Dele

Sobowale gave it. But, if we

experience hunger on the

scale likely from my trips to

the Northwest this year, then

it is not only the traditional

ruler of Daura who will be

kidnapped. All traditional

rulers in Nigeria will be at


A word is sufficient…


By Providence Emmanuel

THE Nigeria Inter-Bank

Settlement System,

NIBSS, Plc and the National

Association of Microfinance

Banks, Lagos State Chapter,

NAMBLag, have called on

Microfinance Banks, MfBs to

embrace digitisation to enhance

their operations.

They made this call at a one

day capacity building

seminar organised by the two

organisations to train members

of the association on “Banking

and the Digitization


Speaking at the seminar, Head

of Research and Development,

NIBSS, Mrs. Aituaz Kola-

Oladejo, said that Nigeria is

being shaped by digitization

which is why findings show that

its digital economy would

NIBSS, NAMBLag urge MfBs to

embrace digitisation

generate $88 billion and create

three million jobs by 2021.

She said that as the future of

the development of the Nigerian

market, it becomes necessary for

the MfBs to embrace IT, adding

that the most developed sector

in Nigeria is the financial sector.

Oladejo stated: “You are the

future of the development of the

Nigerian market. The scenario

for banking is changing, we

want MfBs to embrace

digitization. The financial

services sector in Nigeria is the

most developed sector and well

regulated, which is why they

embrace all types of technology.

Nigeria is also being shaped by

digitization, the tech sector

contribute nine per cent to

Nigeria GDP.”

Also, Chairman, NAMBLag,

Mr. Omololu Fatunbi, said that

the seminar was organized to

engineer interest in digital

banking, adding that the

association is known for its

capacity building score card.

Fatunbi stated: “It is not that

MfBS are not aware of the need

to improve on their services

through technology, we want to

broaden the scope, that is the

reason for this training.

“Recapitalization is part of the

strategy to get MfBs digitalised.

By the time the banks are fully

funded, there would be

enhanced productivity, they

would be able to service their

customers adequately, more

money would be available for

trading, in the process, the

volume increase that we are

likely to generate from both the

under-banked, micro customers

and other sub-sectors would be

able to help us face the

reccapitalisation target.

“In terms of digitization, we

are not there yet but we are

making steps to meet the

expectations. Competition

would not allow MfBs to be

digitally backward; this is

because they also want to meet

up with the standard. I see a

growth rate in digital banking

in the next five years more

than what we are seeing today.

“With the capitalisation in

place, part of our services

would be direct with the

Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN

which is a challenge. Digital

banking is good for MfBs

because it is going to enhance

competition. I see more banks

going digital even at the MfB

level,” he said.

Also speaking at the seminar,

Managing Director, Supreme

MfB, Mr. Jide Aremo, said that

digitization would help

mitigate against the risk of nonperforming

loan, NPL, and

drive productivity in the sub


30 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019


IN April 2019, CBN made

good it’s over a year old

promise, to tackle the acute

shortage of lower Naira denominations

by flooding the market

with fresh supplies of N50,

N20, N10, N5 Polymer denominations,

to facilitate settlements

and restrain compelled

higher off-the-shelf prices in

millions of retail outlets, nationwide.

It is not clear, if the N100

paper denomination, which is

alleged to bear an offensive religious

symbol, was included in

the fresh currency profile.

However, according to Priscilla

Eleje, CBN Director, Currency

Operations, who spoke at a

sensitization programme in

Abuja in February 2018, “all

you need to do is to take your

higher denomination currencies

to your (Market Association/bank)

and exchange with

mint fresh lower denomination

polymer equivalent.” It is remarkable,

however, that polymer,

which has a modest

lifespan of about 2 years is preferred

to traditional lower denomination

hard wearing coins

with over 30 years lifespan.

The article “Redenomination

of Ghana’s Currency”, (see

www.lesleba.com and


which was first published, on

15/01/2007, discussed the imminent

redenomination and

promise of a successful return

of primary coins (pesewa) in

Ghana. The Ghana pesewa is

counterpart to Nigeria’s kobo

and one pesewa at inauguration

in 2007, was about US$0.12


Thus, one new Ghana cedi

GH¢1 (i.e. 100 pesewa=$1.2 or

N192, when $1=N160). Thus,

while a Nigerian may forego

change of N1, his Ghanaian

counterpart would be reluctant

to forego one cedi change because

of its over 160 times

higher purchasing power than

Naira! Nonetheless, Nigeria’s

Central Bank, erudite Governor,

obviously failed to recog-

Polymer Currency: Waste,

Deceit & Commonsense


nize this commonsense observation

with regard to currency

value and proceeded in 2006

to release the almighty N1000

note (less than $8 at the time)

and also released new 50k, N1

and N2 coins, because the existing

note forms of these denominations

were cumbersome

unhygienic and unsightly, and

were generally rejected by even

lowly beggars on our streets!

However CBN, in its ‘wisdom’

ignored this reality that

the existing 50k, N1 and N2

paper notes were not rejected

on grounds of material of construction,

but as a result of their

negligible purchasing value!

Instead, our Professor ascribed

rejection to the material of construction

and therefore speedily

embarked on production of

coins for clearly valueless currency


That decision must have been

motivated by other factors other

than related professional

knowledge! Not yet done, and

as if to force commonsense out

of nonsense, Soludo directed

that all banks must accept at

least two per cent coin component

for every batch of currency

supplied from CBN!

Furthermore, in addition to

actual production cost, in an

action akin to throwing good

money after bad money. CBN

recklessly spent over N10bn of

tax payer’s money on massive

enlightenment and media campaign

for the public to embrace

the worthless coins!

In another article on 26/02/

2007 titled “Hurray! The Coins

are Back, But…” this column

noted that “the economic wisdom

in coin production is in

their long lifespan (as coins can

last over 50 years)… and that

initial production cost can

therefore be profitably amortized

over its lifespan, if coins

retain their purchasing power

and remain in use”.

Regrettably, however, less

than three years after, CBN

Governor has since admitted

that the introduction of coins

was misguided; consequently

coin denominations were withdrawn

and offered for sale, at

a heavily discounted price! Oh

my country! In October 2009,

as if in demonstration that

Coin denominations

are exceedingly

more cost

effective, because

they can last upto

50 years despite

any rough handling

or harsh


CBN had not learnt its lesson

with regard to profligacy with

public funds, N5, N10 and N50

denominations which were earlier

released as new paper note

issues, were again re-released,

this time, with much more expensive

polymer material,

which has barely 3 years


Meanwhile, inexplicably, the

advantages of cost-effectiveness

and currency security

which were touted as the object

of billions of naira expenditure

on refurbishing CBN

controlled “Nigeria Mint and

Security Co.” were jettisoned.

The promise that the new mint

could supply over 80 per cent

of Nigeria’s currency issues

(with the exception of the then

newly introduced and very expensive

N20 polymer note) became

an empty boast! The introduction

of imported N5,

N10, N50 polymer notes, in

October 2009, to complement

the existing N20 note of same

fabric, probably now means

that, CBN’s newly refurbished

mint will produce far below installed

or efficient capacity!

Again, what waste! Worse

still, some Nigerians will invariably,

lose their jobs to a security

printing company in Australia!

Incidentally, (see Punch

editorial 8/10/2009) Securrency,

the Australian beneficiary

printing company for polymer

notes was lately accused of

bribing, the proxy of some top

Nigerian government officials,

with over US$6m to win Nigeria’s

2006 polymer printing contract!

It is not clear whether the

new polymer notes of N5, N10

and N50 were part of the 2009

contract or if the alleged bribe

relates only to the first batch of

N20 polymer notes released in


The superiority of polymer

notes is canvassed, in ongoing

CBN adverts, as being userfriendly;

they look better and

remain crisp over a long period;

and that they do not stain,

rumple or tear easily. Furthermore,

CBN also claims that

polymer notes will save the

nation huge sums of money

used for reprinting. What, the

adverts do not say, however, is

that coin denominations are exceedingly

more cost effective,

because they can last upto 50

years despite any rough handling

or harsh climate. However,

the Nigerian public, as

noted in our article “The Putrid

Mess Also in CBN – 1-3”

of 28/09/08, (see

www.lesleba.com and


recognize that polymer notes

fade and peel easily, especially

when they are wet or folded

or expose to heat.

But much more importantly,

polymer note denominations,

will also fail because of their

insignificant purchasing power!

I recall that eight months

after this column’s admonition

to CBN to emulate our Ghanaian

brothers in an article titled

“Redenomination of Ghana’s

Currency” - 15/1/2007, Soludo

emerged with his Strategic

Agenda for the Naira in August


The Professor’s agenda also

included redenomination,

which once again entailed the

production of another fresh set

of currencies!! Indeed, Our

eminent Professor displayed

incredible courage in floating

this kite, especially in view of

the fact that he had, in the same

year (2007), produced and lavishly

promoted note and coin

denominations, with a structure

which went against the grain

of wisdom with regard to value

being essential to currency acceptability;


Soludo subsequently, issued

the N1000 note and also

changed the design of all other

note and coin denominations,

at oppressive public expense.

It will be a big tragedy if current

CBN Governor, Lamido

Sanusi, also hopes that Nigerians

won’t notice this inexplicable

folly! Truth is, the Economy

needs coins (including one

kobo) with value! Shikena!


N1000 is regrettably, now less

than $3, even when it was over

$8 in 2007!


Paga partners security agencies to enhance mobile payment

By Esther Onyegbula

Paga, a licensed mobile

payment operator has

commenced partnership

with security agencies to enhance

security of mobile payments in

the country.

To this end the company

organised a security conference

to intimate security agencies

about operations of mobile

payments. Tagged, “Security

Organisations: What you need to

know about mobile money and

payment in Nigeria”, the

workshop is part of Paga’s

initiatives to boost financial

inclusion in the country.

Speaking at the workshop, Co-

Founder and Director of

Business Development, Paga,

Mr. Jay Albraba stated that the

country needs clear perspective

on financial payment processes.

“At Paga, we constantly seek

opportunities to learn and

understand how payments are

processed and other extraneous

variables that could hinder a

successful transaction.

“This security conference which

will be held annually is a great

opportunity for both Paga and

security agencies to rub minds

together and have a smooth

working relationship. As a team,

we are looking forward to this”.

Commenting on its benefit to

businesses, President,

Association of Mobile Money

Agents of Nigeria, AMMAN,

Victor Olojo, explained that, “The

security forum put together by

Pagatech is a major step in the

right direction. Paga as a

responsible company has taken

the lead in sensitising security

operatives and other

stakeholders on how the

payment system works in


“More encouraging for us as

an association, is that the

measures taken will go a long

way in correcting the many

instances of harassment,

intimidation and detaining of

agents across the country over

irregular payment issues beyond

our control.”

Also speaking at the workshop,

the Assistant Superintendent of

Police, Akinwande Ogundana,

said: “This workshop is

expository, informative and

educative. It makes me

understand more about the

importance of mobile money

operators’ in moving forward the

economy of a nation like ours.

The mobile money operators also

enhance ease of doing business

in the country and it made me to

realize that there must be a good

synergy between the operators

and security agencies to enhance

the safety of all Nigerians and

foreigners in their businesses”.

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019—31

Send Opinions & Letters to:


Nigerian leaders sowed the wind

IN my first year at the University

of Ife (now OAU) a ‘National

Sailing’ by a secret confraternity was

scheduled for the campus. On the eve,

the local branch held a procession

at midnight. The procession stopped

an ambulance conveying a student

to the hospital asking it to switch off

its lights. Tragically, the student later

died. A mourning student populace

was enraged when news filtered that

the confraternity had stopped the

ambulance, even though it was for a

few seconds.

The Students Union immediately

banned not only the national

convention of the fraternity, but all

such groups on campus. In those

days, the Union’s decision, was law

amongst students. To further placate

the student populace, the university

authorities instituted a probe and

meted out disciplinary actions on

identified members of the


Such were the powers of the union,

that the Alhaji Shehu Shagari

administration, though elected,

thought it was better to subvert

independent student unionism in the

country. It bribed student renegades;

some with brand new cars. It also

tried to stop the 1980 emergence of

a unified national student body: the

National Association of Nigerian

Students, NANS, which covered

students in all tertiary institutions.

Partly to achieve this, the

administration sponsored the

establishment of a sectarian body,

the Nigerian Universities Students’

Association, NUSA, but it was a still


When NANS was eventually

established, the government, within

three months, expelled its leadership

under Tanimu Kurfi from the Bayero

University, Kano, and tried to impose

an illegal “steering committee”. This

failed. That same period, the Shehu

Shagari government expelled 13

student leaders at the University of

Nigeria, Nsukka and student leaders

at the Polytechnics in Akure and

Bauchi, Kwara College of

Technology and the Schools of Basic/

Preliminary Studies in Keffi and

Makurdi. It also suspended the

student unions in Ibadan and

Kaduna polytechnics and the

College of Education, Ilesa.

But those were not the most

dastardly acts of that government in

its efforts to destroy independent

student unionism. That 1981, at the

Ahmadu Bello University, ABU, it

expelled 30 student leaders and

rusticated 165 others. The

government then turned to the

University of Ife where it killed seven

students during a protest on June 7,

1981. Its follow-up attempt to use

the Justice Salihu Moddibo Alfa

Belgore Tribunal Report to flush out

student leaders was firmly and

successfully resisted by the student

populace and lecturers led by Dr.

Biodun Jeyifo, the then National

President of the Academic Staff

Union of Universities, ASUU. The

Shagari administration also tried to

repress freedom of speech by

banning and occupying the premises

of a number of newspapers.

However, the Shagari

adminstration was a ‘saint’

compared to the succeeding military

regimes under Generals

Muhammadu Buhari, Ibrahim

Babangida and Sani Abacha. The

Buhari regime was a cyclone which

smashed through national

institutions, including the judiciary

and the media. In the case of the


elections are being

settled not by votes,

but bullets; in

election after

election, the

country is drowned

in rivers of blood

press, it enacted Decree 4 of 1984

which made reporting falsehood and

the truth, punishable offences. It

enacted Decree 2 of 1984 under

which Nigerians were detained

without trial. It turned to smashing

the campuses; it introduced school

fees, abolished the Cafeteria System

which subsidised food for students

on campuses, and accused lecturers

of inciting students against its


When students staged a national

protest against its draconian

policies, the Buhari regime not only

went out to smash the protests, but

also kidnapped the then NANS

President, Lanre Arogundade, at the

post office in Ile-Ife. All these were

concerted attempts to destroy

independent student unionism and

consciously or unconsciously make

way for the emergence of cultists who

would not be loyal to students, but

take directives from the regime.

But it was the Babangida regime

that consciously destroyed the

Student Movement; expelling as

many student leaders as it could lay

hands on, and most infamously,

promoting cultists to seize student

unions across the country. In 1986, it

killed “only” four students of ABU

during a protest, and when the NANS

called a national protest over this, it

shut down many tertiary institutions

and banned student unionism across

the country.

The Babangida regime also in

June 1986, occupied the Nigeria

Labour Congress, NLC, premises

because labour decided to stage a

solidarity protest for the students, and

detained a number of Congress

leaders. The detention of labour

leaders was repeated in December

1987 before the regime banned the

NLC in February 1988. In its

attempts to finally smash

independent student unionism, the

regime established two Tribunals of

Inquiry, one led by retired Major

General Emmanuel Abisoye and the

second by Justice Mustapha Akanbi.

Perhaps the most devious move by

that regime was the establishment,

by its security services, of Student

Peace Councils or Peace Committees

to impose ‘peace’ on campuses. This

included the sponsorship of cultists

and sleeper agents to infiltrate the

student unions, take them over or

sabotage them. The arrow head of

these councils was based in the

University of Ibadan, and it was there

an epic battle ensued in which the

student populace took him on,

flushed him from the campus and

burnt his room.

However, it was in the University

of Benin that the most vicious battles

between students and the Babangida

regime were fought. They were so

bloody that the regime issued a

directive to the police and security

forces to “shoot students at sight”.

Lecturers like then ASUU President,

Dr. Festus Iyayi and Professor Itse

Sagay were not even given quit

notices: thugs simply invaded their

homes, broke the doors, threw out

their families and replaced the doors.

By 1999 when civil administration

was restored in the country, cultists,

thugs and security agents had taken

over some student unions. Things

degenerated so much that when a

NANS Convention was held in Abuja,

matters were settled with guns, and

genuine student leaders loyal to the

Student Movement, were overcome.

Cultists, security agents, traders and

street toughies have taken over some

student unions to the extent that a

few years ago, when I was invited to

speak with a cross section of student

leaders, I discovered that the NANS

President was not a student! Many

of the student leaders knew and

whispered it but none was bold

enough to table it.

Now, this later generation of

student leaders have graduated into

political leadership in the country

holding executive and legislative

positions. Increasingly, elections are

being settled not by votes, but bullets;

in election after election, the country

is drowned in rivers of blood,

especially in Rivers State. Youths are

said to be ‘the leaders of tomorrow.’

The youths produced by our leaders

yesterday, are taking over today .

Prophet Hosea might have had

Nigerian leaders in mind when he

proclaimed in Hosea 8:7 “For they

sow the wind, and they shall reap the


Okorocha, Owerri spirit and contemporary lessons

By Collins Obibi

FOR the governor of Imo State, Owelle

Rochas Okorocha, it is the month of May,

time to hand over to another. Indeed whatever

has a beginning will definitely end someday. In

the past few years of his administration this

season looked too far, but it is here already.

Even if his tenure is extended by another four or

eight years through his son-in-law proxy which

he attempted to foist on the state, it will still end

someday. But that is good history, hence it is

easy to see where his disputation of the recent

election of Chief Emeka Ihedioha as governor

of the state is headed.

But what is the hullabaloo in Imo about this

particular hand over? The answer is simple:

Okorocha warmed himself into the heart of

Imo people by courting the church, the

traditional institution and the ordinary man

on the street. He was seen as a lover of education,

Imo’s pride, and began a scheme which reduced

the burden of education on some indigent

families. At a point he sought nomination for

some of the children through the churches. With

this he was then able to defeat an incumbent

governor to enter the Douglas House seat of

government which he so treasures. Today, go

back to these constituencies and ask for an

appraisal of Okorocha’s tenure and get the

answer you seek.

By his acts, he has, even if unwittingly,

strengthened the hand of Ihedioha who will be

sworn in on May 29. Ihedioha’s election is

simply put, a call to duty for Imo people. His

role is basically to utilize the free-flowing

goodwill of the people at home and in the

Diaspora and make them own the government

and achieve the development they need.

Okorocha’s story is like that of a child who ate

fat and decided to challenge the gods. Indeed

he challenged the gods, for instance the

hurricane Owerri spirit that cut stubborn

politicians to size.

The Owerri spirit is more or less the Imo

spirit. It was the same spirit that installed

Okorocha after humiliating his predecessor.

For want of a better definition, I stick to the

one I made a few years ago: “The Owerri spirit

is the spirit of justice, fair play and integrity. It

is conscientious and defends human dignity

with passion. It has enormous capacity to

mobilise all classes of people to fight its cause.

It can be enduring and long suffering, but it

can also move spontaneously and in such a

case with great venom. It moves sparingly, in

fact, only when provoked, but as a virile and

potent force when it moves it teaches the target

hard lessons. It is a force that has cut short the

career of many politicians in the state.” Any

surprise, therefore, as to the turn of events


First, Okorocha has been running a one man

show and has reduced government to a family

affair. He repudiated his entry slogan of “my

people my people” soon after winning the

election, and adopted a new one: “my family

my family,” in government patronage. He

humiliated the first deputy governor, Chief Jude

Agbaso out of office, and has been hounding

the current deputy, Eze Madumere.

Considering Madumere’s sacrificial

contributions towards his election which all

attest to, Okorocha is seen as an ingrate.

Public servants have had a taste of his bitter

pill through cutting and non-payment of

salaries and sidelining. He made retirement a

nightmare for senior citizens and

superintended a scheme that robbed them of

their entitlements. Discountenancing the

sensitivity of the people he lavished public funds

in erecting statues of individuals in the state

capital, many of whom are corrupt African

heads of state some of whom he hosted to state

banquets. The akpuola gi akpuo phrase will

live with Imo much longer after Okorocha,

just as ohashierism which makes its nonadherent

to end up in Iberiberism. Good lexicon

from Imo.

Again, Okorocha did the two terms allowed

by the Constitution and wanted to forcefully

install his son-in-law as successor, an indirect

way of extending his tenure, notwithstanding

that he is from Orlu Zone that has held the

governorship position for 16 of the 20 years

lifespan of the current democratic

dispensation. If it was by consensus as was the

case when he came in eight years ago, it would

not have mattered. But by forcefully pursuing

it and disparaging the people’s call for equity,

justice, fairness, mutual co-existence, peace

and harmony, he stirred the hornet’s nest. Imo

sons and daughters grouse with him is indeed

a catalogue.

Banking on the fact that in this second term,

his party, the All Progressive Congress, APC,

won elections in the state and at the federal

level he converted to an ‘Emperor’ whose words

are law and sacrosanct. Doing so in a state

like Imo would definitely yield unpalatable

results. His quest for a Senate seat, just in a

Okorocha’s story is like

that of a child who ate fat

and decided to challenge the


third of the state is even herculean. Without

prejudice to the exploits of lawyers at the

election tribunal and the Independent National

Electoral Commission final decision on the

matter, what is already in the public domain is

that the returning officer in his zone was held

‘hostage for two and half days’ and he

announced the senatorial election result under


However there are some pluses of his eight

year tenure. For instance, the concept of broad

roads. He has shown that it is indeed possible

to dualise link roads to all the senatorial zones

in the state and have broad network of roads

particularly in the state capital. There are also

testimonial buildings and structures too. Even

if credit is not found in the quality of the

structures, particularly the roads, the concept

is commendable. Okorocha will not easily be

forgotten in Imo. He will be remembered,

quoting his own words at the recent birthday

celebration of Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu,

for “the good, the bad and the ugly”.

For Ihedioha, the starting point is taking a

decision on style - either to be humble and

humane or be proud on the seat. He has living

witnesses in his predecessors. Compare Chief

Achike Udenwa with his successors. The

position of governor is already exalted as the

number one citizen of the state who holds the

yam and the knife. No need to push it further.

Two, times are hard and the governor and

his aides should not be seen to be living in

affluence while the people are suffering. No

matter the projects embarked on, if salaries

and pensions are not being paid, that

government has failed. Salaries have better

spread among the citizens and impact more

than any project. Non-payment of salaries is

bad public relations for any government as

the news reverberates at home and to all

Diaspora relations who care about the well

being of their parents and other relations at

home. The concept of governance as erecting

of gigantic buildings and edifices at the expense

of people’s welfare is faulty.

Ability to identify and embark on policies,

programmes and projects that appeal to the

people makes the difference. This is where

Chief Samuel Onunaka Mbakwe of blessed

memory excelled. Expectations are high on

the incoming administration. But where are

the resources? Has anyone seen the handover

account of the Okorocha administration? If

Ihedioha comes plain and makes Imo people

own the government, improve security and

emphasize production and agriculture, not

taxes, then it will be a new dawn for Imo.

•Obibi is a Lagos-based media professional




32 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Mina Mangal, Afghan journalist, killed in Kabul


Afghan journalist

and parliamentary

adviser has been killed

in Kabul, an Interior

Ministry spokesman told

CNN Sunday.

Mina Mangal, who

had worked as a

television presenter for

popular Pashtolanguage


before entering politics,

was gunned down in

broad daylight Saturday

morning in southeast

Kabul, according to

ministry spokesman

Nasrat Rahimi.

Police investigations

are underway to find the

attackers who shot

Mangal, Rahimi added.

The brazen attack

sparked an outpouring

of anger and sadness

from Mangal’s

colleagues and

women’s rights

activists, who

condemned authorities

for failing to protect her

in the face of threats.

Afghan women’s

rights activist Wazhma

A photo of Mina Mangal shared by the Afghan Presidential Information

Coordination Center on Twitter.

Frogh said that Mangal

had recently posted on

Facebook that she had

been receiving threats

and feared for her life.

“Can’t stop my tears at

the loss of this beautiful

soul. She had a loud

voice, and actively

raising voice for her

people. In this Facebook

status she says she’s

threatened & she says

she she trusts her Allah

& that a strong woman

isn’t scared of death. RIP

Mina Mangal,” Frogh

said in a post on Twitter.

Pilot in Myanmar lands plane without front wheels


A safely landed a jet

without front wheels after

the landing gear failed to


The Myanmar National

Airlines plane skidded

down the runway at

Mandalay airport before

grinding to a stop.

The pilot of the Embraer

190 was praised for the

landing, in which none of

the 89 passengers was hurt.

Captain Myat Moe Aung

circled the airport twice to

allow air traffic controllers

to determine if the landing

gear was down, the airline


The aircraft had departed

from Yangon and was

approaching Mandalay

when the pilot was unable

to extend the front landing

gear. He followed emergency

procedures and burned

excess fuel to reduce the aircraft’s

weight, the airline


A video of the landing

showed the plane landing

on its rear wheels before

the nose touched down on

the runway. The plane skidded

for about 25 seconds

before it stopped.

“The pilot did a great

job,” Win Khant, Myanmar’s

transport minister,

told the Reuters news agency

Ṫhe incident was the

second aviation accident

in Myanmar this week. On

Wednesday, a Biman

Bangladesh Airlines plane

skidded off the runway

when it landed in bad

weather at Yangon’s

international airport,

injuring at least 17 people.

US, China trade impasse:

Kudlow says new tariffs

will remain

THE United States

and China appeared

at a deadlock

over trade negotiations

on Sunday as Washington

demanded promises

of concrete changes to

Chinese law and

Beijing said it would

not swallow any “bitter

fruit” that harmed its interests.

The trade war between

the world’s top two

economies escalated on

Friday, with the United

States hiking tariffs on

$200 billion worth of

Chinese goods after

President Donald Trump

said Beijing ‘broke the

deal’ by reneging on

earlier commitments

made during months of


White House economic

adviser Larry Kudlow

told Fox News on Sunday

that the United

States needs to see China

agree to “very

strong” enforcement

provisions for an eventual

deal and said the

sticking point was

Beijing’s reluctance to

put agreed changes into


He vowed the tariffs

would remain in place

while negotiations continue.

Beijing remained defiant,

however. “At no time

will China forfeit the

country’s respect, and

no one should expect

China to swallow bitter

fruit that harms its core

interests,” said a commentary,

due for Monday

publication, in the

ruling Communist Party’s

People’s Daily.

It said Beijing’s doors

were open to talks but it

would not yield on important

issues of principle.

Kudlow said there was

a “strong possibility”

that Trump will meet with

Chinese President Xi

Jinping at a G20 summit

in Japan in late June.

Until last week, there

were expectations Trump

and Xi would sign a

trade deal at the summit.

However, the trade

talks suffered a major

setback last week when

China proposed extensive

revisions to a draft

agreement. It wanted to

delete prior commitments

that Chinese laws

would be changed to enact

new policies on issues

from intellectual

property protection to

forced technology transfers.

VANGUARD, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 33


Attack on Catholic church in

Burkina Faso leaves six dead

IX people were killed Sunday during mass at a

SCatholic church in central Burkina Faso, according

to state media.

Gunmen on motorcycles stormed the church in Dablo

on Sunday morning, killing six men, including the priest,

before setting fire to the church and buildings in the

area, the Burkina Information Agency reported.

In February, CNN reported that the US was

considering sending additional military advisers as well

as intelligence and surveillance assets such as drones to

Burkina Faso to help combat a growing terrorist threat.

The landlocked country in northwest Africa has been

beset by extremist violence in recent months as Islamist

terror groups expand their reach.

The number of violent incidents in the country linked

to the local affiliates of al Qaeda and ISIS rose from 24

in 2017 to 136 in 2018, according to a report by the

Africa Center for Strategic Studies.

The Trump administration last year announced plans

to cut the number of US troops in Africa by around 10%.

One defense official told CNN that the planned

reductions would eventually lower the number of US

counterterrorism troops and their enablers who support

operations by approximately 20%.

ANC keeps power in South Africa

but scandals cost it votes

HE African National Congress easily won South

TAfrica’s general election on Saturday but its share

of the vote fell, reflecting anger at corruption scandals

and racial inequalities that remain entrenched a

generation after the party took power.

It was the worst electoral performance by the late

Nelson Mandela’s former liberation movement, which

has governed South Africa since the country’s first free

election marked the end of white minority rule in 1994.

The ANC had not previously won less than 60% of the

vote in a national poll.

The ANC’s victory secures it enough seats in

parliament to give President Cyril Ramaphosa another

five-year term in office but may leave him short of

ammunition to battle party rivals who oppose his reforms

to galvanise the economy and counter graft.

“Let us now work together, black and white, men and

women, young and old to build a South Africa that truly

belongs to all that live in it,” he said in a speech after his

party was declared the winner.

Results showed the ANC secured 57.5% of the

parliamentary vote, while the main opposition party,

the Democratic Alliance (DA), also saw its vote share


.... As Ramaphosa targets reforms

after election win

OUTH African President Cyril Ramaphosa led the

SAfrican National Congress (ANC) to victory in

Wednesday’s election, but a drop in its share of the vote

underlines the challenge he faces restoring confidence

in his party.

With opponents in the ANC and an emboldened farleft

opposition party, the former union leader turned

business tycoon may struggle to deliver on his promises

to push through tough reforms.

Africa’s oldest liberation movement won 55.5% of the

parliamentary vote, according to provisional results

from 99.9% of polling districts. That was its worst

parliamentary result since it swept to power at the end

of white minority rule but an improvement on its showing

in 2016 local elections.

Ramaphosa worked closely with South Africa’s first

black president Nelson Mandela to end white minority

rule in 1994. He replaced scandal-plagued Jacob Zuma

as head of state in February 2018 after winning a bitter

contest to become ANC leader and convincing top party

officials to instruct Zuma to resign.

Ramaphosa’s first full presidential term should start

later this month, after nomination by his party’s

parliamentary caucus and an inauguration ceremony.

Iran facing ‘unprecedented’

pressure from Int’l sanctions,

Rouhani says

RAN is facing “unprecedented” pressure from

Iinternational sanctions, President Hassan Rouhani

has said.

Renewed US sanctions had led to worse economic

conditions than during the country’s 1980-88 war with

neighbouring Iraq, Mr Rouhani said.

His comments came amid rising tensions with the US,

which last week deployed warships and warplanes to

the Gulf.

Mr. Rouhani, who has come under domestic political

pressure, called for political unity to face down


“During the war we did not have a problem with our

banks, oil sales or imports and exports, and there were

only sanctions on arms purchases,” Mr. Rouhani told

political activists in the capital, Tehran.

“The pressures by enemies is a war unprecedented in

the history of our Islamic revolution ... but I do not

despair and have great hope for the future and believe

that we can move past these difficult conditions provided

that we are united,” he said.

President Rouhani has personally come under pressure

from hardliners in Iran after the US withdrawal from

the nuclear deal his administration negotiated.

Under the accord, Iran had agreed to limit its sensitive

nuclear activities and allow in international inspectors

in return for sanctions relief.

US sanctions - particularly those on the energy,

shipping and financial sectors - have hit oil exports and

caused foreign investment to dry up.

34— Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

In defence of elite educational institutions

By Ladipo Adamolekun

Continued from Friday

AN essential quick fix (pending the

longer route of constitutional

amendment) is the issuance of

Guidelines on the Application of the

Federal Character Constitutional

Clause with respect to the public services

in the form of an Executive Order. The

Guidelines should include (a)

affirmation of the primacy of the merit

principle in recruitment into the federal

public service (outside positions that are

categorised as political appointments)

and obligation of all recruiting and

appointing bodies to be open and

transparent in the application of federal

character, including explicating whether

states or geopolitical zones are used for

determining quotas and (b) formal and

unequivocal exemption of specific rare

skills from the application of the

principle (as is the case in India) – senior

technical posts in research and

development, specialties in medicine

and engineering, areas of nuclear and

space applications in aviation, and

aspects of electronics.

Finally, it is important to add that the

strong case made here for the primacy

of the merit principle in recruitment of

staff to public services is also dependent,

to a considerable extent, on the

restoration of excellence and meritocracy

in the education sector. This will be a

desirable re-creation of the alignment

that helped ensure good development

performance in the country up to the


C. Reinventing and Sustaining the

Elite Status of Christ's School

I am aware of the steadfast efforts of

Christ’s School Alumni Association to

reinvent the elite status of the School

since the early 2000s. Chapter 12 of In

Deed and In Truth (2013) “Reformation

Agenda: Master Plan, Academic and

Physical” provides an overview of the

Report of “Project Christ’s School

Renewal” Committee constituted in 2003.

The update provided in the book is that

the existing Report needed to be

reviewed, including attention to how

best to ensure sustainability.

The incumbent National Executive of

the Alumni Association has produced a

new Report (with a detailed 25-year

master plan) on the transfer of

proprietorship of the School back to

Anglican Communion, Ekiti (the original

owners) to run it jointly with the Alumni

Association, as a private boarding

school. The Report was submitted to

Ekiti State Government jointly by the

Alumni Association and the Anglican

Communion, Ekiti on June 17th 2017.

Predictably, the emphasis in the Report

is on excellence and meritocracy and

admission into the School will be through

competitive examinations open to

candidates from across the country. This

contrasts markedly with the School’s

virtual localisation in recent decades with

the derisive alternative name, “Agidimo

High School”.

I would like to suggest for

consideration the introduction of a

Degree Foundation Year Programme

(DFYP) in the new Christ’s School.

Concretely, the DFYP will be a one-year

version of the Higher School Certificate

(HSC) programme run successfully in

the School for about two decades

between 1960 and 1981. Students will

be prepared for the General Certificate

of Education (“A” Level) and qualified

•Prof. Adamolekun

to seek direct entry admission into

universities (public and private), that is,

at the 200-level of degree programmes.

It is very likely that a well-run Degree

Foundation Year Programme will both

enhance the visibility of the new Christ’s

School and contribute significantly

towards assuring its sustainability.


I would like to conclude by

highlighting three key messages.

1. Elite educational institutions that are

characterised by excellence and

meritocracy at the higher education level

contribute hugely to the prosperity of

their respective societies. This explains

why emphasis on excellence and

meritocracy at the higher education level

is world-wide. Today, the original elite

higher education institution in the

For elite educational

institutions to impact

positively on national


recruitment into public

services must be based on

the primacy of the merit

principle as is the case in


economies across


country barely merits that categorization

when the country’s goal should be to have

at least six universities that rank among

the top 500 in the world by 2030.

2. For elite educational institutions to

impact positively on national

development, recruitment into public

services must be based on the primacy

of the merit principle as is the case in

well-performing economies across

continents. I have argued that the

subordination of the merit principle to a

constitutional “federal character”

principle interpreted as a crude quota

system needs urgent radical

amendment. And I suggest that a couple

of interim corrective measures should be

introduced through a presidential

Executive Order.

3. Although an emphasis on elite

educational institutions at the secondary

education level is not a world-wide

phenomenon, Nigeria inherited the

practice under colonial rule and

maintained it for a few decades after

independence. I wholeheartedly support

the on-going efforts to re-invent Christ’s

School as a private-owned elite boarding

secondary school run co-jointly by the

Anglican Communion, Ekiti and Christ’s

School Alumni Association.

•Prof. Ladipo Adamolekun writes

from Iju, Akure North, Ondo State.


(Excerpts from a recent Public Lecture

delivered at a Christ’s School, Ado-Ekiti

Alumni Celebration)

No phony statistics on outlandish

report'll derail Akwa Ibom State

By Charles Udoh

ELECTIONS to a large extent have been

won and lost but the drumbeats of political

manipulations and propaganda are still

echoing in the background.

The recent barrage of questionable statistics

released by some otherwise reputable national

agencies including the National Bureau of Statistics

(NBS) raise a lot of concerns about the

professionalism and intentions of such agencies.

It is more of grave concern that the Federal

Ministry of Education is also quoted to have

joined the foray by asserting incorrectly, that

Akwa Ibom is one of the states with the highest

number of out-of-school children. Before then,

the report listing Akwa Ibom as the state with

the highest prevalence rate of HIV/AIDS was

not just hilarious but clearly depicted the skewed

and malicious intent of the proponents of the

orchestrated reports. From all indications, there

are more of such scripted reports and phony

statistics being brewed.

We are inclined to believe that the latest deluge

of negative reports about Akwa Ibom State

is an orchestrated smear campaign aimed at

putting clogs in the wheels of the state government’s

glorious march towards transforming

the state into a destination of choice.

In one of such reports, Akwa Ibom was listed

as one of the states with the highest unemployment

rate of 37.7 per cent (1,357,754) in the

third quarter of 2018. The same report contradicted

itself by stating that between third quarter,

2017 and third quarter of 2018, Akwa Ibom

was one of only nine states to record a reduction

in their unemployment rates despite an increase

in the national unemployment rate.

It is instructive to note that between 2015 and

2019, the National Bureau of Statistics has, at

various times, listed Akwa Ibom as the state with

the highest volume of Foreign Direct Investment

in Nigeria only behind the commercial capital

of Nigeria. During the same period, Akwa Ibom

has been one of a handful of states in Nigeria to

offer its citizens and residents within school age,

free and compulsory education at primary and

secondary levels including an annual average

of N600m expenditure on payment of WAEC

fees for indigenes.

Alleviating poverty, creating wealth

and jobs

In just 4 years, the state has attracted 16 industries

across various sectors, with an impressive

value chain that provides direct and indirect employment.

These industries have elevated the socio-economic

life of their host communities by

alleviating poverty, creating wealth and jobs.

Since the advent of the Udom Emmanuel-led

government, Akwa Ibom has variously been adjudged

by security agencies to be one of the safest

states in Nigeria. This level of security was

exemplified by the peaceful manner the 2019

general elections were conducted in the state.

The agricultural initiatives of the state government

have seen a proliferation of farms and

plantations in every nook and cranny of the

state. If the basic laws of demand and supply

are to be applied religiously, the quantum reduction

in the prices of foodstuff in the state bears

testament to the monumental successes the state

government has recorded in agriculture and

food sufficiency. In 2015, a cup of garri sold for

a whooping N200, today for the same amount,

you take home between 12 -14 cups of garri

depending on where you are buying from.

The spurious reports on unemployment that

indicated over 1.3m people were unemployed

in the state, clearly did not take into account the

over 350 workers in the 11,000 hectares coconut

plantation spanning the 3 local government

areas of Mkpat Enin, Ikot Abasi and Eastern

Obolo; the hundreds of workers in 2,100 hectares

of cassava plantation in 15 LGAs and over

1,200 hectares of rice farmlands in Ini and environs.

The 48,000 rice farmers registered for CBN

anchor borrowers scheme, 450 youths trained

and engaged in cocoa maintenance were obviously

not considered by the NBS as being in


Currently, there are more than 189 road

construction sites in the state with an average of

100 workers at each location. Additionally, there

are over 300 rural development projects across

the 31 LGAs and over 400 inter-ministerial rural

intervention projects with an average of 10

workers at each project site. There is also the

“small matter” of the recruitment of over 5,000

teachers into the education sector.

Also worthy of mention is the fact that the job

creation agenda of the Akwa Ibom State Government

encapsulates youth empowerment and

capacity building. So far, more than 30,000

Since the advent of the Udom

Emmanuel-led government,

Akwa Ibom has variously been

adjudged by security agencies

to be one of the safest states in


•Gov Udom Emmanuel

youths have been trained in various vocational

and entrepreneurial skills while over 317, 000

people have benefited from the state government

funded interest free loan scheme for small

scale entrepreneurs and traders.

Given the scenario painted above, one wonders

why the Akwa Ibom State APC had to import

hundreds of youths as thugs from a midwestern

state if the youths in Akwa Ibom were so

jobless, unemployed and out-of-school as ridiculously

alleged in the phony reports and statistics.

Going by the outlandish reports being bandied

around, there should have been a massive

supply chain of jobless and out-of-school youths

readily available in the state for that nefarious


With reference to the alleged high number of

out-of-school children (OOSC), It is pertinent to

note that the OOSC data on Akwa Ibom State

as purported by the Federal Ministry of Education

is at variance with 2018 National Personnel

Audit (NPA) on the state for children aged 6-

11. The NPA, which was a physical headcount

and not a cursory extrapolation, revealed that

between 2016 and 2018, the state recorded a

40% increase in pupil enrolment. The over

400,000 increase was evidently due to the intensive

and dedicated attention the state government

has given to basic education in the last 4

years. The same audit report also indicated that

the total number of children in Akwa Ibom State

public primary schools, is the third highest in

the country and the highest in southern Nigeria.

Despite these glaring and verifiable facts, the

Federal Ministry of Education curiously listed

Akwa Ibom as one of the states with the highest

number of out-of-school children (OOSC).

As part of its avowed commitment to the development

needs of its people, the Government

of Akwa Ibom State, in the last four years, has

upped the ante in the healthcare sector. From

the general hospitals in Etinan, Ikono, Ituk

Mbang, Ikot Okoro to Iquita, Awa and Immanuel

Hospitals, it has been stories of total transformation

in the secondary healthcare sector.

The state Government has not only renovated

these hospitals but has equipped them with stateof-the

art medical equipment. To date, over 25

containers of equipment have been delivered.

The ongoing medical records digitization of

these hospitals has raised the bar in the secondary

healthcare sector in Nigeria.

From all indications, these remarkable landmark

strides by the Akwa Ibom State Government

have obviously been swept under the carpet

by political antagonists whose only preoccupation

is to mudsling and cast aspersions on

efforts of the State Government.

It is dumbfounding that at a time when our

nation is in dire need of a reference point in

people-oriented and sustainable development,

the strides of the Akwa Ibom Government which

supersede all expectations are still taking a bashing

on the alter of political mind-games.

Despite the recent shambolic statistics, outlandish

reports and stone throwing antics aimed

at distracting the Government of Akwa Ibom

State, His Excellency the Governor, Mr. Udom

Emmanuel, remains undaunted, undeterred and

firmly focused on delivering maximum dividends

of democracy to citizens, residents and

visitors in fulfilment of his social contract with

the electorates. The next four years promises an

even brighter prospect for the state.

*Charles Udoh is the Hon. Commissioner,

Ministry of Information & Strategy, Akwa

Ibom State.

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 35

The challenge of a new Nigerian railways

By Yemi Ogunbiyi

Continued from Friday

THE second key factor of the project

is the scope of its beauty and

modernity. The sheer joy of watching,

before our very eyes, Chinese and

Nigerian engineers ploughing through

thick and swampy equatorial forests,

cutting down giant vegetation, and

painstakingly laying state-of-the-art rail

sleepers with skill and dexterity, and then

proceeding to roll out air-conditioned

passenger coaches in a record two year

time was a sight to behold.

The raw details of the project, quantities

and all, testify to an engineering feat of

considerable proportion. The entire project

involved some 24.26million square metres

of earth work. There are thirty-one

different categories of bridges in all, made

up of extra-long bridges, frame bridges

and steel structure bridges. On its 156

kilometre stretch, it has 207 culverts, 40

other Railway-Crossing bridges and 31

pedestrian overpasses, 708 32m-beams,

168 groups of single drive turnout and

one huge 110m tunnel underpass bridge

at Abeokuta. Apart from the Apapa Habour

Station, there are nine stations along the

line: Lagos, Agege, Agbado, Kajola,

Papalanto, Abeokuta, Olodo, Omu-Ado,

Ibadan and Apapa Port stations. Although,

its design capacity is for a 150km an hour

speed, it could conveniently travel at

120km an hour. So fully equipped are the

trains that some of the Executive and VIP

coaches come with conference rooms and

modern counter bars. The specially

manufactured refrigerated freight

locomotives and livestock locomotives and

wagons are as modern as any, anywhere.

Details of the contract include the supply

of adequate spare parts for the Rolling

Stock and the supply of maintenance

equipment for a substantial period of time.

Knowledge transfer and the

localising of the manufacturing


The contract details even go further. In

order to ensure knowledge transfer and the

localising of the manufacturing process,

President Buhari, on the advice of Rotimi

Amaechi, insisted on the immediate

implementation of two other aspects of the

contract from inception, namely, the takeoff

of the training of young Nigerian

undergraduates in Railway Engineering

and other important Transport-related

disciplines, in China, under a scholarship

scheme to be paid for by the Chinese, and

the establishment of a Transportation

University in Nigeria. As the Lagos – Ibadan

line rolls off its tracks in December, the first

batch of young Nigerian graduates would

be preparing to return home from China to

gradually begin the task of taking over the

eventual running and maintenance of the

industry from the Chinese. And as part of

its Corporate Social Responsibility, but

essentially also in response to government’s

aforementioned demands for local capacity

building and adequate knowledge transfer,

Messrs. CCECC Nigeria Ltd has

established a Transportation University in

Daura, Katsina State. Again, the first intakes

into the University would resume later in


The economic benefits of these

programmes, indeed, of railroad

infrastructure are too numerous to be

recounted here. As the example of India

teaches us, economic miracles come with

expansive rail-road infrastructure.

Obviously, rails can carry larger volumes of

goods, over greater distances, unhindered

by traffic jams or even weather conditions,

making it more economical than road and

even water. In our own unique case in

Nigeria, the savings to be made by radically

reducing the carnage on our roads cannot

be quantified in naira and kobo. It is also

significant to note that the benefits of

railroad access far outweigh the

infrastructure costs. It is even far more

significant to note that World Bank studies

demonstrate that the arrival of rail roads

in many developing nations causes real

Gross Domestic Product (GDP), especially

in the agricultural sector, to increase by

about 20 per cent. Understandably, 20 per

cent of all monies lent from the World Bank

to developing nations is earmarked for

transportation infrastructure projects,

which is more than for Education, Health

and Social Services put together.

Therefore, money expended on the

development of rail transportation in

Nigeria is money well spent.

But there is a consequential sub-text to

the success so far, of the Buhari

government’s attempt to radically revamp

the rail subsector and that is the Rotimi

Amaechi factor which manifests itself in

two ways. There is, on the one hand, the

palpable synergy at play between the local

Nigerian Railway team, led by its

Managing Director, Mr. Freeborn Okhiria,

which is a welcomed departure from

previous projects, where the local Railway’s

staff were side-lined, often to the detriment

of the project. On the other hand, there is

the passion with which Amaechi has driven

the project from inception. Relentlessly

impelled, at all times, by a desire to make

an impactful difference, Amaechi has

directed and managed the affairs of the rail

sub-sector in a practical, down-to-earth style

that has become the hallmark of his

exemplary public service.

Never a man to drift with the tide, Rotimi

Amaechi approaches public service with

passionate convictions and a unique style

and courage that are a counter to cheap

populism. Under his watch, the Chinese

contractors working on the Lagos – Ibadan

project, agree that they have been driven

to meet deadlines as never before in the

execution of that contract. For instance,

barely, months after the commencement of

the project, Amaechi initiated monthly

inspection tours of the project, with each

inspection exercise ending with a Steering

Committee meeting, held, not in the cozy

confines of the Minister’s office in Abuja,

but on the project’s site office at the Ibadan

end of the rail track. At each of those

sessions, thorough reviews of the project

were undertaken, with specific references

made to targets, timelines and scheduled

outputs. During the six sessions where I

was present, the issue of capacity building

and the effective knowledge transfer

recurred again and again. Firmly, but

politely, the Minister put the same question

at the Chinese contractors: “How many

more Nigerians have you recruited since

we last met?” “Are you making sure that

our Engineers are being carried along?”

“Are you sure those young Nigerians we

saw at kilometre 81 site are qualified

engineers and not artisans?” It was clear

at these sessions that the Chinese were

quite unfamiliar with such direct frontal

engagements from a Nigerian Minister!

They seemed usually rattled not only by

•Transport Minister, Rotimi Amaechi inspecting one of the new coaches.

Never a man to drift

with the tide, Rotimi

Amaechi approaches

public service with

passionate convictions

and a unique style and

courage that are a

counter to cheap


the Minister’s practical methods and

approach to these matters, but also by his

grasp of the fine details of the sub-sector!!

Apparently, that method seemed to have

yielded results, because, (again, by their

own admission) the Chinese affirm that that

approach practically pushed them to their

limits and ensured that the rail line was

completed within the two year schedule.

Amaechi, as the Chinese were to learn, never

stops pushing!!!

Unfortunately, Rotimi Amaechi’s methods

and relentless push for results sometimes

presents the erroneous image of a man who

is abrasive, arrogant or even pugnacious!

But the truth is that Amaechi has always

been a man of passionate forthrightness and

deep convictions. When I first met him some

thirty-five years ago, he was a young

nineteen-year old at the University of Port

Harcourt, where I had been invited by my

friend, Dr. Chidi Amuta, to deliver a lecture

to his undergraduate Literature class.

Although, suffused as he was then in his

half-baked leftist ideologies, he stood out,

challenging, with almost combative

forthrightness, some of the tennets of the

literary canons I had thrown at the students!!

It is an encounter that I have never

forgotten!!! I recall that former Bayelsa

Governor, Timipre Sylva was also in that

class and reminded me of that lecture a few

years ago.

In a society where lethargy and

obsequiousness have been elevated to

virtues, being a non-conformist, with the

courage and conviction to sometimes stand

alone, could be equated with recklessness.

In such situations, being brutally frank and

passionately outspoken are viewed with

suspicion. Professor Wole Soyinka captured

this essence of Rotimi Amaechi’s being

better than I could ever do. In his Foreword

entitled “The Tyranny of Courage”, to a book

on Rotimi Amaechi, Soyinka celebrates

Amaechi’s courage to stand up, almost

alone (at least, so it seemed at the time) to

Jonathan’s corrupt-riddled administration,

even as some castigated Amaechi for being

a “reckless spoiler”. Writing about the

‘courage of principled minority’, Soyinka

•Yemi Ogunbiyi.

affirms: “In a nation where the meaning of

courage is the very act of daily survival,

this is perhaps understandable. But it is

necessary also to remind the thinking part

of any electorate that there exist others in

the ranks of leadership who refuse to

pander to the lowest denomination of public

expectations. They lay the foundation for

a viable future, even at the risk of earning

the hostility, even of a violent nature of

others on their, or other rungs, of the shared

ladder of power”.

But back to Rotimi Amaechi and the

Railways! In the end, the real legacy of

the onfolding revolution in the rail sector

might not merely be in the ability of the

Buhari administration to actualise the

revolution, but in laying a solid foundation

that can sustain the achievements for all

time. The future of the sector lies in its full

privatisation. The very idea of a National

Railways Corporation is archaic and

outmoded. The place of the rail industry

in the development of our economy is far

too important to be left to the vagaries of

politics. And one is not even sure that the

proposed Nigerian Railways Authority Bill

would go far enough.

Emergence of regional railway


As one of Nigeria’s renowned

economists, Dr. Teriba, had argued in the

past, the government must carve the

country into zones, allow private firms to

bid for the rights to build and operate

railways under a new regulatory body. That

would lead, hopefully, to the emergence

of regional railway networks. Again, the

Indian example is helpful here. The Indian

railway networks, which is one of the most

complex in the world, is managed at

regional levels, with the complex divided

into seventeen zonal railways that are semiautonomous.

In Great Britain, where our

current model came from, under its 1993

Railways Act, the old integrated structure

was broken up, paving the way for

passenger trains to run under either open

franchise or an open access basis. And

although the Secretary of State for Transport

still has overall responsibility for rail

transportation within the United Kingdom,

neither freight train operators, nor

passenger train operators have any

contracts with government. Even the

Rolling Stock are owned by Leasing


There is work to do here and President

Buhari needs to sustain the momentum of

the past three years. But the Transport

Minister and his team would also have to

do a lot more. The ultimate objectives must

be to modernise the entire rail sub-sector,

no matter how long it takes. In the era of

speed trains, we should be looking beyond

the refurbishment of antiquated narrow

gauge trains and the construction of slow

moving Standard Gauge lines. And fast

trains are already here with us. We should

take full advantage of the latest rail

transport technology and be driven by the

same objectives that characterise the best

prototypes of modern rail travel today:

speed, comfort, safety and costeffectiveness.

Dr. Yemi Ogunbiyi, who is a former

Managing Director of the Daily Times,

is now Chairman of TANUS Books Ltd.

36 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 —37

Arts, culture contents of tourism

– Runsewe

•Seeks development of

Nigerian tourism using

Dubai model

•Stakeholders offer ideas


The Director-General of National Council for Arts and Culture,

NCAC, Otunba Olusegun Runsewe, recently hosted some

stakeholders in the culture, arts and tourism sectors from different

parts of the country in Abuja where they brainstormed on the

theme: Rebranding culture and tourism in Africa: The Nigerian

vision. The NCAC management team, tour operators, and travel

agents were also present.

A video of a trip by NCAC top management to Dubai led by the

D-G was played. Dubai remains a model to any country when it

comes to tourism.

It begins from the Miracle Garden, a floral landscape of 250

million plants and 50 million flowers with the tallest flower in

the world. Then we see the Dolphinarium, a fascinating show of

dancing dolphins; the Global Village, an architectural grandeur

of each country’s aircraft, merchandise, cuisines and so on, the

Old Dubai, and the Dubai Mall with 1,226 restaurants.

Historically, Dubai was a sprawling desert city with an economy

that relied heavily on fishing and pearl diving until the mid-20th

Century when it struck oil in 1966. Oil changed everything for

this sleepy town and eventually transformed it into gleaming highrise

towers that Dubai has become today. The history of Dubai

could be summed up as the popular maxim of nothing is

impossible, from humble beginnings to one of the greatest places

to be in the world.

With tourism, Dubai Government has made everything easy for

her citizens unlike Nigeria that has rich, nature-given cultural

tourism but chose to neglect it. It is unfortunate that Nigeria has

focused on oil, ignoring other sectors which suffer as a result of

high profile corruption among political leaders.

“Everywhere you go in the world,” said Otunba Runsewe in his

opening remarks, “the tourism sector is doing very well. What is

wrong with us? Today, we must find a solution to the problem in

Nigeria. Programs like this begin with a vision of one man. And

every one of us has a role to play in achieving this vision.”

Having set the ball rolling, Otunba Runsewe called on other

participants to ask questions or contribute to the discourse:

Alhaji Rabo Saleh, President, Federation of Tourism Associations

of Nigeria, FTAN:

“Tourism cannot flourish where there’s insecurity. Those

challenges are there but we cannot look at those challenges for

now. All we need to do is focus on driving our country forward

and making tourism one of the things that can turn our country

around.” He commended what NCAC is doing, saying that a team

needs to be created that will come up with ideas. He also said

that Nigerian tourism needs a driver for it to flourish, and that a

minister for culture and tourism needs to be appointed.

Mr. Bankole Bernard, President of National Association of

Nigeria Travel Agencies:

He began his speech by supporting Rabo Saleh’s view on the

need for a minister for culture and tourism which he believes is

suited for Otunba Runsewe. He commended Otunba’s relentless

services starting from when he was the D-G of Nigerian Tourism

Development Corporation, NTDC, to his present position as D-G

Continues on page 38

How Trophy Lager

drove the African

Drum Festival

Pg 38

Omamo Akpo: The

pleasure of a life well

lived in Francis

Ewherido’s Life Lessons

from Mudipapa

Pg 39

IAAAS harps on


development as

panacea for Africa’s

growth Pg 39

38—Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019




Arts, culture contents of tourism – Runsewe

Continued from page 30

of NCAC. “He is making more

than an impact and pushing the

frontiers.” Tourism, he said, is not

an industry that should be

neglected in any way.

Bankole also said that tourism

was wrongly tucked under the

Ministry of Information because

the Federal Government did not

consider it to be important. It is

time, he said, we took our position

and write an open letter to the

President, to let him know the

importance of tourism in the

economics of Nigeria, and that the

ministerial position for tourism

shouldn’t be given to anybody but

a person who has been part and

parcel of tourism.

Akerri Prosper, representative of

Oliver Enwonwu, President of

Society of Nigeria Artists:

Akerri said for a successful

project to excel, it first starts from

the vision of one man and then

gets supported by so many other

people. He went on to say that if a

president of the country is not

interested in tourism, there won’t

be any development in tourism.

He expressed his reservations

about journalists’ reports of the

daily crisis in the country, saying

negative report kills and buries

the country’s tourism because

tourism develops from people

outside, not within.

Mr. Tarzan Ganiyu Balogun,

CEO, Tarzan Boat & Jetty Services

He appreciated Otunba

Runsewe for his kind gesture in

donating 500 live jackets to his

company, then went on to stress

the need for Otunba Runsewe to

be appointed tourism minister.

Hajia Bilikisu Abdul, President

of Nigeria Association of Tour

Operators, NATOP

She asked: “How many of us

have our country Nigeria at heart?

When we tell good stories about

our country, we promote our

tourism,” she said, urging citizens

to love their country. “To make it

right in tourism, people need to

have their country at heart and

stop travelling for pleasure but as

tourists. You don’t necessarily

have to be a tour operator or be in

government (to make a

difference). The D-G travelled to

Dubai and saw something

interesting and nice that he

couldn’t hold to himself. Now he

is trying to sell it to us. I think if

every one of us emulates him, I

believe the government would

look into this matter.”

To the media, Hajia Bilikisu

said: “This is the time to sell our

country with good news.”

John Likita Best

He commended the D-G for

always leaving a good mark, and

urged him to do more. “Tourism

is a huge alternative for financing

the country. Showing us Dubai is

not enough unless we can make a

Dubai in Nigeria.”

Onifiok O. Ekong

Tourism needs law and order to

move forward, he argued. “These

are little things that matter

because a visitor will not condone

the disorderliness we condone in

his country, especially in the

transport sector.” He went on to

say that the government is not

making good use of our natural

tourist attractions, such as Aso

Rock, Zuma Rock and Gurara


Alhaji Badaki Aliyu, former

National President, Hospitality

and Tourism Management

Association of Nigeria,


When the drum is beaten, it

brings out a tone whether it

is wanted or unwanted we leave

it in the hands of the drummer.

The Bata, Omele or Agbamole, the

story being told is better defined

through the steps of the dancer”

– Olumide Akande



Amphitheatre in Okelewo,

Abeokuta, Ogun State, venue for

the African Drum Festival is filled

to capacity and those in the

overflow jostle to have a glimpse

of the action taking place on the

stage. The stage is glamorous, lit

up magnificently and has three

other mini platforms from which

the drummers can perform. The

stage also has two large screens

from which the audience receive

additional information on the

performers introduced by the

masters of ceremony who were

smartly dressed in white and ash

native attires.

As the audience waits patiently

for the event to kick off, one could

tell that many have been through

this exciting experience before

from the way they comported


The African Drum Festival is an

initiative of the Government of

Ogun State and has been

celebrated since the year 2016

when it first held in the state.

Originally dubbed as the

Nigerian Drum Festival, it has

quickly metamorphosed to

African Drums Festival because of

the reception and participation it

received from other African

countries like Benin Republic,

Ivory Coast, Uganda, DR Congo

and a host of others.

This year’s theme is Drumming

the Future and it is premised on

looking at the potential socioeconomic

contribution of

Drumming to the future of Africa.

Senator Ibikunle Amosun,

Governor of Ogun State and the

convener of the festival says that

for development to be meaningful,

the potentialities of culture to spur

social and economic

emancipation and empowerment

of the people must be


The festival celebration

received sponsorships in different

forms from corporate bodies and

one of such is the sponsorship

•Otunba Runsewe and other stakeholders

He encouraged the private

sector to come together and

support the vision of improving

•9ice performing at the African Drum Festival

from International Breweries via

one of its brand, Trophy. Trophy

Lager is popularly referred to as

the pride of the South-West and

widely accepted as the

Honourable beer that is deeply

rooted in the region’s sociocultural

values which explains its

sponsorship of the event.

Legal and Corporate Affairs

Director, International Breweries,

Otunba Michael Daramola

tourism in Nigeria. “It is the duty

of tour operators and tour

agencies to put pressure on

How Trophy Lager drove the African Drum Festival

remarked that “The African Drum

Festival is a cultural showpiece

which demonstrates our

uniqueness, attributes, our rich

culture and tradition of the black

people. Trophy is a beer that is

closely linked with culture and a

brand that believes in celebrating

life and always rising to the

occasion to make connections and

bring people together.” We are so

honoured to be part of this

government to see the importance

of tourism,” he said.

Andrew Okungbowa, President,

Association of Nigerian

Journalists and Writers of

Tourism, ANJET:

He said: “Creative content

drives tourism. With the absence

of content, we have nothing to

entice people with.” Andrew

talked about the manner

government reacts to crisis and

killings in the country, including

travel operators. “In our industry,

tourists have been kidnapped, and

three weeks after, government

didn’t make any pronouncement.

It was some of us that had to force

the government to make a


Otunba Runsewe concluded by

thanking everyone for their

presence and thoughtful

contributions. “There is no

country that doesn’t have its own

Boko Haram or its own slum. The

only strategy of selling any

country in the world is through the

SWOT analysis and focus on

building these tourist facilities in

three or four states.

international epoch-making

event,” he added.

It is now 7p.m. and the

drumming performances are

about to start, but not without the

recital of the National Anthem

first. The Egbedere Band

comprising young boys and girls

with an average age of 12 set the

ball rolling at the concert. They

are smartly dressed for the

occasion and they did not

disappoint the audience. They got

down to their drums and

xylophone from which they gave

scintillating sounds which drew

intermittent applause from the

crowd. The highpoint of their

performance was the rendition of

a cover of Teni the Entertainer’s

hit song Case. While the band

played, the song’s chorus

reverberated from the audience

as they sang “My papa no be

Dangote or Adeleke but we go dey

okay yeah”.

The performance of Moyo Black

Troupe of Ivory Coast was

exceptional. The beats they

produced were so good that the

crowd sang songs that rhymed

with the beats. Showing the crowd

their superb knowledge of

Nigerian music, they played

Abami Eda’s evergreen song

Lady. They achieved this feat by

combining the beats of drums

with the amazing sound of a

Saxophone. The audience

appreciated their efforts by

singing along the refrain “She go

say I be lady oh”.

The Anambra State Troupe

came prepared for the event as

they got dignitaries who graced

the event dancing. Notably, Sally

Mbanefo, a former Director-

General of Nigeria Tourism

Development Corporation danced

with so much zeal that she got

ovation coming her way from the

audience. With the help of two

dancers and local flute players,

their performance left many in


As part of its sponsorship,

Trophy organised a music concert

which was headlined by two

music greats, Pasuma and 9ice

whose genres resonate with the

culture of the Ogun people. They

performed to resounding

applause of acceptance and joy for

the opportunity to watch both

artistes perform.

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019—39




Omamo Akpo: : The pleasure of a life well lived

in Francis Ewherido’s Life Lessons from


By Sunny Awhefeada

Sometime in the late 1980s,

Kole Omotoso, university

teacher, writer and

newspaper columnist, published

Just Before Dawn, a lengthy book

which re-frames the Nigerian

narrative by subjecting it to

imaginative distillation to the

extent that the line between

history (which thrives on fact) and

fiction (which is sustained by

imagination) became blurred. The

initial response to that book was

the question of whether it was

history or fiction. However,

literary aficionados went to work

and located Omotoso’s book in the

hybrid genre called faction which

is essentially a blend of fact and

fiction. Other writers intentionally

or unintentionally have had to

follow Omotoso’s example.

Francis Ewherido’s Life Lessons

from Mudipapa poses the same

challenge as Omotoso’s book.

Although, it is weaned off

historical details, the book is

replete with real life events,

characters, dates and places to the

extent that its appropriation of

facts is not in doubt. Yet, the book

is also sustained by imagination

and anticipatory happenings

which raise the question of

classification as to whether it is

fiction or biography or diary? This

then is the discursive puzzle that

readers and literary

commentators will have to

contend with as the book gets


Ewherido’s Life Lessons from

Mudipapa can be read as a

biographical fiction, a marriage

cum parenting guide and above

all as an inspirational book

providing nuggets for a life well

lived which is omamo akpo in

Urhobo. Among the Urhobo, from

whom the author hails, life is akpo

and the world is also akpo.

Therefore, life and the world in

Urhobo not only intersect, but

they are inseparable. How a

person lives in the world is central

to Urhobo metaphysics and

ontology. And this is virtually the

same the world over. However, the

density and depth of value

attached to life and the world vary

from place to place.

The story’s protagonist is Chief

Julius Ferdinand Mudiaga Orien,

PhD, a retired Accounts Director

of a multinational company.

Married to EseOghene (with

whom he has five children; Tejiri,

Emesiri, Mado, Edirin and Omo),

he is also a proud grandfather and

the nickname, Mudipapa, through

which he is identified in the

narrative was coined from

Mudiaga and Papa by his

grandchild, Temi. The story

details Mudipapa’s early conflicts

regarding the choice of vocation

and life partner. After courtship

misadventures he, through his

elder brother Akpos, meets

EseOghene with whom he settles

down in matrimony. What follows

is matrimonial tension

manifested in the engagement of

a nanny or house-help, the

number of children to be born and

the attendant rigour and strain of

bringing up children by working

class parents in an urban setting

like Lagos. These put a strain on

the evolving family of Mudipapa

and EseOghene.

However, the family is able to

overcome such challenges



complementarities, collaboration,

careful planning and prudent

deployment of resources.

Mudipapa’s changing his job,

setting out on his own, and the

establishment of St. Michael’s

Crèche – which blossoms into

O’rien International Schools –

reflect deliberate planning, focus

and the agenda-setting motions

of a purpose-driven family. The

education of the children, the

problem of juvenile delinquency,

indiscretion among the children

and the choice of future life

partners are to preoccupy

Mudipapa and EseOghene and

test their parenting skills. The

reader encounters Mudipapa in

many rewarding and insightful

counseling sessions with his

children, prospective in-laws, and

even friends; on how life,

especially marriage, should be

lived. Mudipapa’s success can be

hinged on two factors, namely;

deliberate planning and his

commitment to cultivating an

intimate relationship with God.

Both factors reflect in his

character, his choices, his union

with his wife, his work ethics and

reliance on the timely

intervention of The Creator when

it is sought. Both factors also

reflect in the naming of his

children; Oghenetejiri (God is

worthy to be worshipped),

Emesiri (Good children),

Oghenemado (God is the

greatest), Edirinverere (Patience

has rewards), and Omoghene

(Child of God).

One after the other, Mudipapa

and EseOghene watch their

children grow, go to school and

marry. The first is that of Tejiri

getting married to Tosan, a

marriage which foregrounds

ethnic harmony between the

Urhobo and the Itsekiri. The

marriage ceremonies are not only

elaborate and splendorous, but

they are also meant to project the

traditional significance of

matrimony. The nuptials of

Mudipapa’s children also show

signs of conflicts, but his subtle

interventions as an experienced

husband and marriage counselor

help to stir the young families in

the right course. He teaches them

to focus on understanding marital

differences and the meaning of


The story climaxes in a

comfortable retirement for

Mudipapa and EseOghene with

huge investments in real estate,

education and stocks in addition

to heavy retirement and

PENCOM accounts. Life has

become blissful. Their five

children are also well heeled with

stable families. He takes up a part

time teaching appointment with

a university since, like his father,

he has a flair for teaching and has

also obtained a doctorate. Even at

that age, he sets a new target of

becoming a professor. He is also

devoting part of his earnings to

the service of God and humanity.

He is a fulfilled man, but as he

looks back and takes stock of his

life’s sojourn, he spots a weakness

which springs from his inability

to ground his children in Urhobo

lore and culture. But he consoles

himself philosophically, “I guess

you can’t have it all or win on all

fronts. You simply win some and

you lose some.”

Life Lesson from Mudipapa

makes a good read as it benefits

from the author’s formal training

in Mass Communication and his

practice as a newspaper

columnist. The language is

simple, lucid and uncluttered; the

hallmark of a master storyteller.

The book’s narrative style, which

is the third person omniscient

narrative, gives the reader a broad

view of Mudipapa’s life from

childhood to the present. There is

a strong didactic, even moralistic,

bent to the book. The influence of

the Bible, the Catholic Church and

her teachings confront the reader

on every page. This conforms to

the moralistic ideal of literature

which is to refine the moral tone

of society. Periodic authorial

intrusions, which the author calls

“nuggets,” help to reinforce the

didactic import of the narrative in

a way similar to an experienced

teacher’s handling of classroom

lessons. The element of epiphany

which manifests in his choice of

EseOghene as wife is also

religious. Yet, the book also has

many humorous episodes that

make the reader laugh.

The book uses dialogue to give

life, spontaneity and sense of

immediacy to the events narrated.

To give credence to the narrative,

the author mentions real names,

places as well as incidents and

inspirational books and their

authors. This factor will endear

the book to readers as a reliable

guide in life’s journey.

The author’s life also intersects

with characters, places and

incidents in the book. The names

Ukani and Akpos, places like

Ughelli, Ewu, Ozoro, Osubi,

Effurun-Otor, Urhobo College,

University of Nigeria, Nsukka,

are part of the author’s life’s

reality which impinge on the

narrative. The many scenes on

marriage and youth counseling

reflect the author’s engagement

as a family interest newspaper

columnist and marriage counselor

in the church. Mudipapa’s niche

for planning, investment and

target setting are positive effects

of the author as an insurance

broker. The book is enriched by a

deliberate and unmistakable

Urhobo flavor evidenced in

Urhobo names, expressions and


In spite of its artistic and

functional merits, the book has a

weakness; which is that life is “too

sweet” for Mudipapa as he is not

depicted to have grappled with

any serious or tragic existential

crisis to enable the reader see how

he would have responded.

Francis Ewherido has come in

as “writer as counselor”. Life

Lessons from Mudipapa,

published by Laddertop

Publishers and made up of 31

chapters running into 256 pages,

will be useful in a multiplicity of

domains; sociology, psychology,

literature, marriage counseling,

church, education, parenting,

mentoring, and more. The book

will be very useful in a society

grappling with social crises

occasioned by a fast paced

modernity and socio-economic

anemia. The book will help to

consolidate the ideals of marriage

and family values. The end result

will be a stable social order for the

society is made up of families and

if every family is stable then

society will be stable. I

recommend it to everybody; the

young and the old, not just as Life

Lessons from Mudipapa, but as a

guide in the journey of life.

(Sunny Awhefeada is a Professor

of Literature and Dean, Faculty of

Arts, Delta State University,


*Participants at the Career Advancement & Leadership seminar

organised by the International Association of African Authors &

Scholars, IAAAS held in Port Harcourt, Nigeria.

IAAAS harps on leadership development

as panacea for Africa’s growth

The Executive Director of the

United States-based

International Association of

African Authors and Scholars,

IAAAS, Mr. Chinedum Igwe, has

said the socio-economic growth

and development of the African

continent lies in the effective

training of leaders who will take

up the mantle of leadership that

will catapult the continent to the

next level of development and

nation building.

Mr. Igwe made this assertion at

the maiden edition of IAAAS

Career Advancement and

Leadership Skills Seminar held

in Port Harcourt, River state,

Nigeria. The Nigerian-born, USbased

trained author and career/

leadership expert said for Africa

to get it right, new crop of leaders

who will be selfless, committed

and dedicated to the development

of various countries in Africa need

to be trained and given the right

leadership perspective and

mentoring that will impact their

mindset positively.

He emphasized that the

training was in partnership with

two universities in the USA

(Beulah Heights University and

University of West Georgia), two

great institutions who are ready

to accept African students

By Elizabeth Uwandu

In line with President Buhari’s

cardinal agenda of ‘ease of

doing business’,The National

Library of Nigeria, NLN has

launched an app that will enable

publishers who apply for the

International Standard Book

Number and International

Standard Serial Number to get

the number within 48 hours, even

as they have commenced this

year’s national readership

promotion campaign to promote

reading culture.

The Chief Librarian/CEO of

National Library of Nigeria, Prof.

Lenrie Aina, who disclosed this

during a press conference in

Lagos, stated that the application

was developed by staff of the

National Library of Nigeria to

make it easier for book publishers,

authors and other interested

persons or organisations to apply

for, and obtain international

standard numbers(ISSN & ISBN)

for their publications within 24

hours, regardless of time and

location, without necessarily

visiting any of their offices.

According to Aina, the Act

establishing the National library

stipulates that all publications

emanating from Nigeria should

comply with international

standard through the issuance of

ISBN for books and ISSN for

journals, newspapers and

magazines. “Before, if you apply

for ISSN or ISBN, it involves a

desirous to pursue postgraduate

programmes designed to

enhance leadership training that

will impact on organizational

growth and nation-building in


Also speaking at the seminar,

Franklin Obiagwu, a member of

IAAAS and motivational speaker

said the issue of lack of good

leadership has been the bane of

the African continent. In his

presentation, he itemized several

factors responsible for poor

leadership in the African

continent. Amongst the factors he

identified were the issues of

excessive greed and endemic

corruption which have

contributed immensely in

stunting the growth of the

continent. For the upcoming

leaders, Franklin Obiagwu said

such leaders must be ready to

shun corruption and greed,

adding that they should embrace

the virtue of selfless service and

a genuine desire to serve their

organization, community and

their countries.

Aside from organizing seminars

and training, IAAAS programmes

in Africa also include promoting

African authors, book reading and

library services.

National library develops ISBN, ISSN apps

•Commences campaign to promote reading culture

process; you come either to the

headquarters in Abuja or to any

of our branches. We have 27

branches in Nigeria and it takes

a minimum of 10 to 30 days before

you can get the number. But with

this application, all you have to do

is go to our website, stay in your

offices and you will get the ISSN/

ISBN within 48 hours.”

Aina also announced that the

National Library of Nigeria has

commenced this year’s national

readership promotion campaign

with the theme: Reviving

Moribund Culture of Reading in

Nigeria for Sustainable National

Development. The campaign

which has already commenced in

Anambra and Cross River states,

will go around all the 36 states of

the federation and Federal

Capital Territory. The campaign

will feature reading competitions

among secondary and primary

schools; book parties in motor

parks; advocacy visit to maternity

homes to encourage nursing

mothers to introduce reading to

their children at early age and

NLN/NYSC reading forums, a

collaboration that will extend the

campaign to all the local

governments through the corps

members. Aina who pointed out

the need for more people to

cultivate the act of reading said

prizes such as books, shelves,

computers and reading tablets

will be given out to studentparticipants

across locations.

40 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019


By Joshua Adeyemo Phone 08056180139

PISCES; Those of you who are more firmed are in for a

rewarding day. In whatever you do today it is important

you don’t forget both immediate and far future.

ARIES; You will have more to gain keeping both your

personal and financial secrets. Take good advantage of

your sex appeal to enhance your love life positively.

TAURUS; You are becoming more determined to the

betterment of your cause. However this is not the right

time to re-arrange (and/or) re-plan your finances.

GEMINI; Giving priority attention to either day-today

working activities or long term career related issue

is not bad at all but you must be as practical as possible.

CANCER; It will be wrong to drop ambitious plans

along your career line because of minor disappointment.

Take your good friends more seriously.

LEO; Time is fast approaching for an important actions

concerning your career and/or business lines. Don’t

allow friends to mislead you. Be very practical.



Surround yourself with people that reflects

who you want to be and how you want to feel.

Energy is contagious.”- Take Heart Quotes-

Being rejected, let down, or betrayed can trigger feelings

of sadness, anxiety, or anger. It’s important to

acknowledge these feelings and stay away from situations

which triggers such happenings. Ella Randle

TERROR MUDA in “Never say goodbye”



One thread for

the needle,

one love for

the heart. ~



By Kola Fayemi

VIRGO; It is good to express yourself gracefully , but it

is equally good to watch what you tell others so that you

don’t promise what you can not deliver.

LIBRA; The best for you today is to give priority attention

to practical way to improve on your working pattern

and encourage better understanding at work.

SCORPIO; It is nice to rely on yourself but nobody can

be an Island on his own; meaning that you will need to

be as co-operative as necessary to be successful today.

SAGITTARIUS; Good advice from the veterans within

your base of operation will go long way to get things

done the proper way to the betterment of your cause.

CAPRICORN; If you take good advice from your tried

and trusted friends you will not have cause to regret but

if you become reckless it would back-fire. Be loving.

AQUARIUS; Either you like it or not, domestic related

issues will become prominent on your mind. Career and

financial affairs can bring you unexpected success today.



Send your date and place of birth to the Astr


Counselling, P.M.B 100

007, Apapa, Lagos

Was I born on a Tuesday?

Dear Joshua,

I want you to tell me the day of the week I was born, how the

planets lined up when I was born and what both immediate

and far future have for me.

Friday, Mina.


Dear Friday,

You were born on a Monday as indicated by your horoscope

data as given here under. I hope you will take what you will

find seriously and utilise them.



























For the past few years you have entered an endless cycle of

material success. And your 44thyear on earth is meant to be

a powerful turning point with major emphasis placed on

MONEY and LOVE. Talking of money, it will come through

your work . However the great challenge here is how to hold

on to your profits as there are indications of you expending

too much of your funds on either women or woman.

It is not clear if it is on business or your normal responsibilities.

But mind you if it is on business you will need to tarry a

while because such may not yield the desired result. Actually

if you go into joint venture with a woman during your 44th&

45thyears on earth you are more than likely to be cheated; to

be fore warned is to be fore armed.

Romantic aspect of it is if you don’t want another wife you

will need to be very careful; as romantic escapade can result

to avoidable trouble and/or sorrow (God forbid). Please take

me very seriously here, Please! Please!! Please!!!




By Lawrence Akapa

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 —41

NSITF: Kokori,

Labour tackle


Continues from Page 5

appointed. If they are

afraid of Kokori’s

integrity, they should

come out clean.

‘’In fact, I am aware

that Ngige met Kokori

over four times on the

issues of inauguration.

In July last year, a

committee was actually

set up to inaugurate the

board. It was at that

point that Ngige wrote

a memo to the President

that with Kokori as the

chairman, labour would

have three persons on

the board, which they

are not comfortable to


‘’Ngige actually sent

the name of Kokori to

the DSS for screening

ahead of the

inauguration. But if you

said because Kokori is

a man of integrity, and

cannot be bent, it is

alright. We thought that

a government that is

fighting corruption

should have Kokori on


‘’It is not also correct

that the fund is 100 per

cent government. It is

false because employers

contribute to the fund

for the social security of

workers. That is why it

is a tripartite


On why the NLC

nominated Chief

Kokori, Wabba said:

“No, we never

nominated Kokori. Let

me tell you, I have

repeated this severally,

our two nominees were

the Treasurer and the


‘’Kokori was

nominated on his

personal merit to the

Presidential Committee

headed by the Vice

President, that

nominated people into

over 500 boards.

“Through that process,

Ngige was appointed

as Chairman of NDE. It

was the same Ngige

that told us that Kokori

has been appointed into

the board of the Nigeria

Social Insurance Trust


‘’He is not our

nominee but we

thought that having

nominated him from the

rank and file of labour,

we should also find out

why they want to delay

the inauguration of the


“All the other 500

boards have been

inaugurated. All of the

appointments were

done the same time. In

fact, the three executive

directors and managing

director were appointed

through the same


“We have said it

several times that we

were not even aware that

he was appointed but

having appointed him,

they can’t treat him

shabbily because he is

from labour.”

From The


Meanwhile, the

Presidency issued what

it described as

clarification on the issue

yesterday, saying Mr.

Austin Enejamo-Isire

was the person actually

appointed to head the

NSITF Board.

In a statement by the

Special Adviser to the

President on Media and

Publicity, Chief Femi

Adesina, the Presidency

stated that all actions

taken by the Minister in

resuscitation of the fund

as well as the

administrative probe

panel had President

Buhari’s approval.

The statement, entitled

“Facts of the matter, by

Presidency”, read:

“Following the

disagreement between

the Federal Ministry of



Employment and the

leadership of the

Nigerian Labour

Congress, NLC, over

the appointment of

chairman of the board of

the Nigeria Social

Insurance Trust Fund

(NSITF), the Presidency

wishes to clarify as

follows: “That the NSITF

is a hundred per cent,

Federal Government of

Nigeria owned

insurance parastatal,

under the supervision of

the Federal Ministry of



Employment, designed

for the role of insuring

workers (employees) in

the public and private


‘’The organization is

empowered by law to

implement the

Synod —From right: Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa; Lord Bishop of Asaba Diocese,

Rt. Revd. Justus Mogekwu and Bishop, Diocese of Dutse Synod and Guest Preacher, Rt Revd Markus

Danbinta, during the Diocese of Asaba (Anglican Communion) Ecclesiastical Province of Bende, first

session of the 15th Synod, at St Paul's Anglican Church, Ubulu-Okiti, Delta State, yesterday.

E m p l o y e e

Compensation Act

(ECA) 2010 with

mandate to insure

workers and pay them

compensation for

accidents, deaths and

injuries in the course of


“The NSITF was

bedeviled and riddled

with corruption

between 2012 and

2015, which resulted in

a colossal loss and

mismanagement of

about N48 billion out of

the total N62 billion

contributions during

the said period. These

were contributions by

the Employers – viz

government and the

private sector for



compensation to

workers and even to

Employers for loss of

man-hours by their


“This fraud has been

investigated by the

Economic and

Financial Crimes

Commission, EFCC,

and the last chairman

and some members of

the former board and

some officials of the

NSITF are currently

being prosecuted by the


“All actions taken by

the Minister of Labour

and Employment

towards the

resuscitation and

repositioning of this

ailing agency,

including the

Administrative Panel of

Inquiry into the affairs

of NSITF and the

suspension of the

inauguration of the

board in 2018 were part

of the special work plan

approved for the

Minister by Mr.


“The appointment of

the Chairman of this

board, which is in

consonance with Sec.

4(a) of the NSITF Act

CAP N88 of 2004, was

also approved by Mr.

President since 23rd

July, 2018 on the

recommendation of the


‘’Mr. Austin Enejamo-

Isire, a Chartered

Accountant, Fellow,

Institute of Chartered

Accountants of Nigeria

(ICAN) and renowned

Insurance expert,

Senior Member,

Chartered Institute of

Insurance of Nigeria

(CIIN), Chartered

Institute of Bankers of

Nigeria (CIBN) and

Chartered Institute of

Taxation of Nigeria

(CITN) was approved

by Mr. President for

this position.

“Also approved by Mr.

President were the

Managing Director and

three Executive

Directors who had

assumed duties since

April 18, 2017.

“Others also

approved as Non-

Executive Directors are

two members to

represent the Nigerian

Labour Congress, NLC,

two members to

represent the Nigerian

E m p l o y e r s ’


Association, NECA,

and one member each

to represent the Central

Bank of Nigeria and the

Federal Ministry of



Employment. Members

of this board are to be

formally inaugurated at

9 a.m. on Monday May

13, 2019 (today) by the

Minister of Labour and

Employment at the

Banquet Hall of the

Presidential Villa, Aso

Rock, Abuja.

“Comrade Frank

Kokori, our respected

veteran labour leader,

has Mr. President’s

immense respect and

has also been appointed



recommendation of the

Minister of Labour and

Employment to chair

the board of Michael

Imoudu National

Institute for Labour

Studies (MINILS), a

diploma awarding

labour institution.

“Finally, the

Presidency has noted

with deep concern and

regrets, the events that

culminated in a

skirmish at the private

residence of the

Minister of Labour and

Employment, and

condemns it, in its


“However, in the

spirit of reconciliation,

the Presidency appeals

for calm from the NLC

and the Ministry of



Employment officials,

as there are ongoing

efforts to reconcile the

NLC leadership with

the Ministry of Labour

and Employment, led

by their Minister who

has doggedly been

fighting the cause of

Nigerian workers

whenever their issue is

discussed by

government, the latest

being the enactment of

the new National

Minimum Wage Act

2019. “

NUPENG slams

Presidency over


Also, reacting,

President of Nigeria

Union of Petroleum and

Natural Gas Workers,

NUPENG, Prince

Williams Akporeha, said

the claim by the

Presidency that Kokori

was never appointed

was a lie from the pit of

hell, alleging that it was

orchestrated by Ngige to



predetermined agenda.

He said: ‘’The claims

by the Presidency that

Kokori was never

appointed are lies from

the pit of hell. It is part

of the conspiracy by the

cabal that does not want

Kokori because of what

he stands for - integrity,

honesty, transparency

and straightforwardness.

‘’Can Ngige swear

that he never

congratulated Kokori

over his appointment?

Can Ngige swear that he

never met with Kokori

for about four times on

the issue of his

inauguration? Can

Ngige swear that he

never sent Kokori’s

name to DSS for

screening ahead of the


‘’Look, the statement

by the Presidency that

Kokori was never

appointed was

orchestrated by Ngige

for his personal


42 — Vanguard, MONDAY MAY 13, 2019


FG replacing one evil

with another evil

– Attah

•Says fire brigade approach

won't work

By Omeiza Ajayi

The President Muhammadu Buhari

administration, last week, announced plans to begin

direct allocation to local governments from June 1 to stop

state governors from hijacking those funds through their

Joint Account Allocation Committees. In this interview, elder

statesman and former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Obong

Victor Attah described the Federal Government’s move as

unconstitutional, saying it is an attempt to “right a wrong

with another wrong.” While he conceded that most state

governments have behaved less than honourably in

administering the finances of local governments, Attah who

has been a consistent advocate of true federalism, said the

federal government has no right to deal directly with the

third tier of government. He canvasses true federalism as

the only way out of Nigeria’s numerous challenges.


You have been a consistent

advocate of true federalism,

what is your take on the

decision of the Federal Government

to fund the local governments


The issue is, for how long will we

continue to operate a system that

forces us to compound one evil on

another? When you read this

Vanguard headline ‘FG stops Govs

from seizing LG allocations’, it

sounds fantastic because what has

been going on was solely evil. The

governors would receive money and

yet starve the local governments.

They just treated them as if they did

not exist; give the chairman small

pocket money and let him go and

keep quiet. It is completely and

totally wrong because the local

government is the closest to the

people. It has obligations and

responsibilities to the people and

they were not being allowed to

perform their functions in any way

because their funds were being

seized by the states.

But there is no where in the world

where you have federalism that the

federal government relates directly

with the local governments. Local

government administration is

purely and entirely the function of

the state governments and I am

surprised because Asiwaju Bola

Tinubu was the Governor (of Lagos)

with the Vice President, Yemi

Osinbajo as the Attorney General

when Obasanjo did that evil of

seizing Lagos state local

governments funds. I joined them

in the fight because they had also

joined me in the fight for resource


All these things are wrong and

they all come down to the fact that

we are not operating a proper

federal system. So, for how long will

we persist in this attitude of placing

one wrong on another? Is it until the

country explodes. Why don’t we just

stop, put a halt to all these evil and

have a rebirth, complete rebirth and

a complete rethink of what Nigeria

should be and how its federalism

should be operated?

You were a state governor for

eight years. How did you relate

with the LGs?

When I was in government, it was

clear to everybody that the local

government in which the state

capital is located carries the highest

burden of primary school teachers

and running of primary schools is

the responsibility of local

governments. If the federal

government sits and sends money

to my local government, that local

government, Uyo will not have the

funds even to pay half the primary

school teachers in Uyo. While the

others would be awash with money,

Uyo will not even have the money

to pay all. You can say up to 40

percent of the primary school

teachers are concentrated in Uyo

and the other schools are

redistributed to the other 30 local

governments. This is just one aspect

of the responsibility of a local

government not to mention in

developing rural roads and other

things that local governments are

supposed to do. So, we took a

decision that we are educating

Akwa Ibom children and so we

cannot put the burden on Uyo local

government only simply because

the capital is located in Uyo, all the

civil servants are in Uyo, businesses

are in Uyo, so Uyo carries, by far,

the largest number of primary

schools. What we did was to make

salaries of primary school teachers,

first charge. We must take money

and pay every primary school before

we redistribute it. But at least, we

honestly distributed the money

even though I hear there were

complaints about what my

Commissioner for Local

Government then was doing and

the Economic and Financial Crimes

It is illegal and it

cannot happen in

a proper federal

system. There are

laws made that

there should be

an election and

the tenures are

stated and you

must obey. That is

why I tell you,

that when you

apply this


halfway and stop,

there will be

issues. A

governor that

does that should

be impeached

Commission, EFCC, came and

investigated, and till today I do not

know what the result of the

investigation is.

The allocation formula is there

with all the other elements but the

one factor that clearly was lopsided

was the issue of primary school

teachers. All the local governments

participated in designing the

formula. They participated fully in

what we did.

It is so completely and totally

wrong that in a federal system, the

central government should have

direct relationship with the local

government. It should never

happen. It is the state governments

that should even create the local

governments. It is the state

governments that administer the

local governments. The laws for

local governments are made by the

State Houses of Assembly. So, we

just take this federal idea and go

halfway with this and put another

half....and we do not operate it

properly as it ought to be. We really

must change this system. We must

agree and emphasize on a new

arrangement that makes it possible

for local governments to be what

they are, have the correct

relationship with the state

governments and then we will have

a federal system that works for all

of us.

How about the N500, 000 ceiling

on daily withdrawal for the LGs?

What I am telling you is, all those

should be made by the state

assembly. The laws that states make

for their local governments should

be respected. This shouldn’t be a

federal government law.

How about states that have

refused to conduct LG elections?

Should they also benefit from this

direct allocation?

It is illegal and it cannot happen

in a proper federal system. There

are laws made that there should be

an election and the tenures are

stated and you must obey. That is

why I tell you, that when you apply

this federalism halfway and stop,

there will be issues. A governor that

does that should be impeached.

But the Houses of assembly are

like rubber stamps. Would you

advocate financial autonomy to the

Houses first before the LGs?

They should not be rubber stamps

if they were properly elected by the

people. What I would rather we

have is true federalism. We had it

before under the parliamentary

system and the local governments

were there under the regions and

we didn’t have these complaints

because we operated a proper

federal system. When we turn

something upside down, we don’t

know how to turn it back right up,

we just turn it halfway up and then

we have hotch-potch of nonsense.

Total nonsense and more nonsense

will come out of more nonsense

because we are not running a proper

system. Let Nigerians stop trying to

think that we continue to panel beat

this system. Let us go for a proper

federal system and bring back the

parliamentary system that we had.

This is like a fire brigade

approach to just stop those evil

governors from seizing their local

government funds but it is wrong.

That is why I said we are

compounding wrong on wrong, evil

on evil and the only way to kill that

is having a proper system, properly

enunciated and properly run. This

is trying to use wrong to right a

wrong and it makes it very faulty.

Don’t try to use wrong to replace

another wrong.

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 43


SPN blasts Oyo


over comment

By Maryann Michael

LAGOS—THE Socialist

Party of Nigeria, SPN, in

Oyo State has described the

recent comments by the Oyo

State governor-elect, Seyi

Makinde on the

implementation of the N30,

000 new minimum wage as

ambiguous and contradictory,

saying it smacks of insincerity.

SPN in a statement by its

State Secretary, Ayodeji

Adigun contended that the

comments suggested that the

governor-elect, once sworn in

on the May 29, 2019, would

attempt to manipulate the

implementation of the new

minimum wage of N30, 000.

The statement reads: “As a

matter of fact, the comment

is an indication that it may

take a concerted struggle of

workers in the state before a

Seyi Makinde/PDP-led

government could be

compelled to implement the

new minimum wage. The

governor–elect claims that the

state lacks the resources to

support the implementation of

the N30, 000 minimum wage

is not true and highly


“As a matter of fact, such a

claim has not only been

faulted but also refuted and

exposed by the singular fact

that the outgoing APC-led

government in the state has

expressed its readiness to

commence discussion with

the labour leaders over the

implementation of the new

minimum wage and to ensure

that the implementation of the

N30, 000 minimum wage is

effected in the salary for the

month of April and May in the

state. Engr makinde has been

reported to have made

different comments in recent

times concerning the new

minimum wage recently

signed into law by the

President Buhari-led federal

government after a repeated

struggle of the Nigerian


Aare Adams cautions Buhari over

N100bn fund for Miyetti Allah

By Dapo Akinrefon &

Rotimi Ojomoyela



Onakakanfo of Yorubaland,

Aare Gani Adams, yesterday,

condemned the proposed N100

billion allocated to the Miyetti

Allah Cattle Breeders Association

of Nigeria, MACBAN,saying that

such allocation will further

encourage the rise in additional

pressure groups across the


This came as Governor Kayode

Fayemi of Ekiti State expressed his

administration's readiness to

conduct a registration of

herdsmen in the state.

Adams, who cautioned the move

in a statement, said such funds

should be channeled to other

areas that would be benefit the


He noted that the proposed

N100 billion for Miyetti Allah is

much higher than the total budget

for the Niger Delta Development

Commission, NDDC, for three

years, arguing that the move can

trigger avoidable crisis across all

the zones in the country.

He said: “The issue at stake is

about the spate of insecurity across

the nation. It is not limited to the

•As Ekiti moves to register herdsmen

North. Therefore, the Federal

Government needs to be cautious

on the move. Here in the South

West, insecurity is raging.

“For instance, in Akokoland, in

Ondo State, which happens to be

my hometown, there were series

of attacks and kidnapping that

had been raging and still on the

increase. People have been killed,

and kidnapped at will, and the

situation continues till the present


“Last year, Chief Olu Falae’s

farm was invaded and destroyed

by some herdsmen; Chief Alani

Akinrinade also suffered the same

fate. In Ijebu Ode, Ogun State, a

prominent Yoruba son lost several

millions to the activities of these

killer herdsmen. Several other

people in the South-West had had

the bitter experience.''

While reacting to the new

security measures put in place

recently by the Minister of

Defence, Mansur Dan Ali, at a

meeting with traditional rulers

which took place at the Arewa

House, he lamented that

government has not deemed it fit

to extend the olive branch to the

other regions in the country.

He also called on President

Muhammadu Buhari to handle

the issue of true federalism the

way and manner he handled the

June 12 issue, which today made

him a hero.

He said: “With the new situation,

I think the President has an idea

of what we have been saying all

these days about true federalism

and restructuring. Nigeria’s

problems can only be solved with

true federalism.

“Many of the problems plaguing

our nation, especially, insecurity

can be addressed through

federalism. For example, if all the

regions develop at their own pace,

every other issue, including

security, power, and health would

be taken care of at the state level.”

Ekiti to register herdsmen

Meanwhile, in a bid to stem

herdsmen attack on farmers and

residents, Governor Fayemi says

he will conduct a registration of

herdsmen in the state.

Coordinator of the State Anti

Grazing Task Force Marshals, Mr.

Sola Durodola, disclosed this to

reporters at the weekend, saying

the move became necessary to

prevent herder-farmers' clashes

in the state.

MEDIA CHAT: From left; Oluwayomi Abiola-Olawaiye, Brand Manager, Consumer

Propositions, Access Bank Plc; Dolapo Orelaja, Head, Consumer propositions, Access

bank plc; Abiodun Gaffar, Legal Practitioner; Ihuoma Nwigwe, Fitness Trainer; and Deola

Rojaiye, Corporate planning Manager, Consumer Propositions, Access bank Plc at the

XclusivePlus Media chat held at the bank’s head office in Lagos.

No place for

corrupt judges,

says Industrial

Court President


D O - E K I T I —


National Industrial Court of

Nigeria, NIC, Justice Babatunde

Adejumo has told those aspiring

to be judges of the court that it

has no place for corrupt and lazy


Justice Adejumo said lopsided

and faulty ways of appointing the

membership of the court has

adversely affected the capacity of

the court in its duties of settling

trade disputes.

He said this while delivering a

lecture entitled: How to become a

Judge of National Industrial

Court, to mark the 2019 Attorney

General’s Colloquium in Ado Ekiti

in Ekiti State at the weekend.

Justice Adejumo said: “It is

important to hint that anyone who

may aspire to become a judge of

the court must understand the law,

most particularly in the area of

labour and industrial relations

must be of impeccable character

who must abhor corruption and

other related vices, must be

hardworking and dedicated with

no moral or professional blemish.

“The foregoing was in line with

Rule 4 of the 2014 Revised

National Judicial Council

Guidelines and Procedural Rules

for the appointment of judicial

officers of all superior courts of

records in Nigeria.”

He stated that most of the trade

disputes being adjudicated upon

by the court were governmentlabour

industrial feuds, which he

said further predispose the judges

to intensive lobbying and this he

stressed must be resisted to protect

justice and integrity of the bench.

Adejumo revealed that the

industrial court failed to live up to

the expectations of the people

since its establishment via Trade

Disputes Decree No 7 of 1976 by

military regime due to dual

appointment of the members of

bench of the court.

He also urged lawyers

intending to serve as judges of the

court to be apolitical, shun

corruption and live a modest

lifestyle to be able to pass the

judicial scrutiny that would qualify

them to the bench of NIC.

PARIS CLUB FUND: Amosun, consultant set for legal battle

over $11.7m •Govt keeps mum

By Daud Olatunji




to the Ogun State

Government on External

Debt Reconciliation, Bond

Investment and Holdings

Limited has threatened to

drag the state government

to court if its cummulated

consultancy fee running to

$11,740,362.00 is not paid

within the next seven days.

Efforts to get reactions

from the state government

were unsuccessful as the

Commissioner for Finance,

Wale Oshinowo could not be


The consulting firm, which

supervised the securing of

Paris Club fund for Ogun

State Government, said that

the government is owing the

firm in accordance with the

agreement reached with it.

The seven days ultimatum

started from last week

Friday, May 10, 2019.

Counsel to Bond

Investment and Holdings

Limited, Bolaji Ayorinde,

SAN, in his letter to the

government explained that

the demand for payment by

his client has culminated in

pending arbitration

proceedings between the

company and Ogun State


The solicitor, who has

served Governor Ibikunle

Amosun the Commissioner

of Finance, Attorney

General and Commissioner

of Justice, threatened that

the fee must be paid within

seven days, else a legal

action will be taken against




His words: “We are

solicitors to Messrs Bond

Investment and Holdings

Limited (our client), and we

have instructions to write

this letter to you. Our client

by virtue of agreement

dated 23rd day of December,

2009 was appointed as

Consultants to the Ogun

State Government with

respect to Ogun State




“Premised upon the above,

our client has made

monetary demands in the

sum of N6,038,624,816.67 on

the Ogun State Government

and this demand has

culminated in pending

arbitration proceedings

between our client and the

Ogun State Government.

By Rotimi Ojomoyela

“The receipt of the said

payment is directly

connected to our client’s

work with the Debt

Management Office, DMO,

of the Federal Government

of Nigeria and this fact was

specifically acknowledged

in your letter of 1st

November 2016 to the


“We, hereby, require that

you pay to our client

$11,740,362.00 payable in

refund currency being 15

percent of the said sum of

$78,269,08.70 within seven

days upon receipt of this


44 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019


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of Branbaifa



MD will


peace, devt

— Kpodoh

By Onozure



Perekeme Kpodoh,

the former Security

Adviser to the Bayelsa

State Government, has

described as

“misinformed” and

“enemies of the region”

the politicians involved

in the series of

sponsored protests



management of the




Commission, NDDC,

led by Professor Nelson


Kpodoh, a chieftain of

the All Progressive

Congress, who spoke to

newsmen in Yenagoa,

urged President

Muhammadu Buhari to

disregard the series of

sponsored anti-

Branbaifa protest, as

“They are being done by

the enemies of your

administration who do

not want your sincere

development plan to be

carried out by the NDDC

in the region.”

He said, “The widely

accepted position of

stakeholders and youths

of the region favours the

present leadership of the

NDDC led by Professor


“It is on record that,

barely three months

after the Acting

Managing Director

came on board, he was

able to settle all the

outstanding debts which

was incurred by the

previous administration

and hindered the

development in the

region as most project

were either stopped or

abandoned. He has

ensured continuity in

project execution and


“I sincerely applaud

the acting Managing

Director for the approval

and payment of the

water hyacinth jobs and

for approving the

payment of NDDC

volunteer youth


programme which the

previous administration

failed to implement.

“This singular action of

the acting NDDC

Managing Director also

elicited wide jubilation

across the entire Niger

Delta region more so

with zeal of the

commission to partner

with international

organisations in other to

usher massive

development that will

turn around the face of

the region in terms of


Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 45

Nigeria 15 Niger 0:

Super Falcons create history

with biggest win ever

The Super Falcons rained

goals on Niger in the

ongoing WAFU

Women’s Cup tourney in

Abidjan, putting fifteen

unreplied goals past their

hapless opponents on Saturday


A day after thrashing Burkina

Faso 5-1 in their first game of

the tournament, Thomas

Dennerby’s ladies returned to

the Parc Des Sports Stadium to

subject Niger to an annihilation

in the second group B game.

With most of the team’s stars

missing out of the competition

due to club commitments, the

Swedish handed captaincy

responsibilities to Bayelsa

Queens Osarenoma Igbinovia,

with the team dominated by

home-based players.

Uchenna Kanu, Alice Ogebe

and Mary Ologbosere were

some of the players who got on

Ndidi equals Yobo,

Moses' EPL record

Leicester City midfielder

Wilfred Ndidi has become

the third Nigerian player in

history to feature in every

game played in the Premier

League in a single season.

The Super Eagles number 4

started for the Foxes in their

last game of the season against

Chelsea at the King Power

Stadium, his 38th appearance

of the season of which 37 were


Joseph Yobo was the first

Nigerian player to suit up in

38 games in a single season

and he did it with Everton

back in the 2006-2007


The central defender started

and completed each game,

logging 3,420 minutes.

Nigerians had to wait five

years before another of their

beloved player represented his

team in all the matches and

the honour fell to Victor

Moses, who featured in all of

Wigan Athletic’s matches in

the 2011-2012 season; his final

year with the club before

transferring to Chelsea.

After eleven weeks of a

keenly contested

tournament amongst 1,080

teams, Scope FC of Lagos have

won the maiden edition of

Trophy 5-a-side grassroots

tournament tagged, “Field of

Honour” which took place at

the Campos Mini-Stadium,

Lagos Island on Saturday.

Lagos played host to the losersfinals

and final matches, played

at the Campos Mini Stadium,

Lagos Island with full spectators

stand. For the third place match,

Amsterdam FC of Obalende

pummeled Rovers FC 6-0 to

emerge as bronze winners.

In an intensely contested final


Scope FC win Trophy

5-a-side tournament

Champions: Scope FC displaing their trophy

Photo by Joseph Akintola

between Scope FC of Lagos

and Ifayemi FC of Ile-Ife,

Scope put up a good fight,

getting a well deserved 2-0 win

over Ifayemi FC in the second

half after both teams failed to

score in the first half.

Marketing Director,

International Breweries Plc,

Tolulope Adedeji, said that the

tournament had shown the best

of Nigeria’s grassroots football.

“In these 11 weeks of the best of

5-a-side football, we have

witnessed grassroots football

development that is second to

none. This maiden edition had

teams drawn from Ogun, Osun,

Oyo and Lagos States,” she said.

the scoresheet in the huge win.

For the records, the win was

the biggest ever win recorded

by the senior national teams,

surpassing the previous 10-1

victory by the Super Eagles

against Dahomey in 1959.

Nigeria, thus booked a place

in the semifinals of the subcontinental


following their latest result and

will round off group action

against Mali.

I’ll play in EPL next season

– Mikel

Super Eagles captain,

John Obi Mikel whose

short term contract with

Middleborough has come to

an end has said he wants to

remain in England.

The former Chelsea player

who spoke with pressmen in

England said, “I think I will

prefer to stay in England and

continue my education in

football, my family is here and

it is a country that I have lived

for more than ten years, so

preferably I will play in

England next season

hopefully in the EPL”.

Mikel also spoke on his short

spell at Middlesbrough.

“I enjoyed my stay in

Middlesborough, wonderful

teammates and back room staff

Jo Bonfrere to lead

Nigerian Stars at

The Match for


Nigeria’s Atlanta 1996 Olympic

men’s football winning coach,

Johannes-Franciscus Bonfrere has

confirmed that he will be available to

lead former Super Eagles stars in

Saturday’s The Match for Lagos State

Governor Akinwunmi Ambode.

Simply known as Jo Bonfrere, the

Dutch coach was the engine room of

Clemens Westerhof’s all conquering

1994 Eagles that qualified Nigeria for

her first ever appearance at the FIFA

World Cup in USA in 1994.

One of the Organisers of The Match

for Ambode, ex international Waidi

Akanni confirmed at the weekend that

Bonfrere has accepted the invite to

reunite with some of the players that

took the world by storm getting

Nigeria ranked fifth best football

playing country going to USA’94.

“We have Jo Bonfrere’s assurances

already. We have sent his travel tickets

and done all necessary bookings to

make his stay in Lagos memorable

one,” observed the former Nigerian


He said Bonfrere’s return to Nigeria

would be a reunion with some of his

former players who have retired from

the beautiful game.

The Dutch coach was June last year

presented with the three-bedroom

apartment promised him by the Sani

Abacha administration for winning the

Olympic football gold medal for

Nigeria 22 years after the feat.

‘The Match’ aimed to celebrate Gov.

Ambode’s strides in provision of

sports infrastructure for Lagos was

moved from Onikan Stadium under

reconstruction to Agege Stadium,


Super striker, Odion

Ighalo who has scored

seven goals in eight

, but in football mobility is part

of the job”.

The former U 20 World Cup

player concluded, “for now, I

don’t know the club I will be

playing for next season.”



striker Simy

Nwankwo was on

target for his Italian

Serie B side Crotone in

their 3-0 win over

Ascoli at the weekend.

The goal was his

14th in Serie B league

for Crotone who failed

to secure immediate

promotion back to the

top flight division after

their relegation a

season before.

The 27 year old

scored in the 40th

matches will be out for two

weeks after he sustained injury

in the early minutes of the last

match which his club drew the


Ighalo’s injury was expected

to be a major worry for Gernot

Rohr as the Nations Cup

camping draws near. Igalo who

was the highest goal scorer in

AFCON qualifiers with 7 goals

presently has scored 7 goals in

8 matches for his new club,

Shanghai Shenhua in the on

going season before he got

injured in the last match.

Coach Gernot Rohr will be

praying for his quick recovery

as he remains the only goal

poacher in the present Super

Eagles team. His experience

will be needed by Nigeria to

progress in Africa’s prestigious


But there is nothing to worry

about as Ighalo’s participation

in the 2019 Africa Cup of

Nations is within the time frame

for his recovery and his return

date if he does not suffer a

relapse, would be on June 1, a

day before the Super Eagles

players are expected to begin

training for the tournament in


Ighalo is certain to miss

Shanghai Shenhua’s next

league match against

Shandong Luneng, while he is

doubtful to face Dalian Yifang

and Chongqing Dangdai Lifan.

Nwankwo scores 14th 2019

league goal for Crotone

minute to put his side in front,

before Stefano Pettinari doubled

Crotone’s lead three minutes into

the second half and Ahmad Benali

scored the third goal in the three

minute before hour mark.

The win moves Crotone four

points clear of the relegation zone.

By Elizabeth Adegbesan

aliga, a Spanish professional

Lfootball league, grew its

revenue by 21 percent to €4.47

billion in the 2017/2018 season from

€3.7 billion recorded in the 2016/

2017 season.

The President of LaLiga, Javier

Tebas Medrano disclosed this at a

press conference, presenting its

financial report for 2017/18 season,

held in Lagos.

Represented by Guillermo Perez

Castello, LaLiga Global Network

Delegate in Nigeria, Tebas said :

“it is my pleasure to present the

Financial Report of Spanish

Professional Football on the

occasion for the latest complete

Ighalo out for

two weeks

They finished 12th in the Serie B

log with 43 points from 36 games.

Nwankwo finished seventh best

scorer in the Italian Serie B and

will be hoping to a call up in to

Nigeria’s squad to the 2019 Africa

Cup of Nations in Egypt.

LaLiga grows revenue by 21% in

2017/18 season

season, 2017/2018.

“According to the latest Financial

Report of Spanish professional

football, corresponding to the latest

complete season (2017/18), LaLiga’s

clubs posted revenue of €4.479

billion, representing growth of 20.6

percent over the previous season.

“This is the largest positive

annual change in recent years and

particularly notable given that it

occurred following several financial

years in which it has been

consistently posting double-digit

growth rates and in which,

furthermore, we are at the midway

point of the three-year audiovisual

cycle for the national market (and,

by extension without coinciding

with sudden increases in level or


46 — Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019

Burnley 1-3 Arsenal


double in

Gunners win

P ierre-Emerick

Aubameyang scored

twice as Arsenal beat

Burnley at Turf Moor, but

the Gunners failed to

finish in the top four for

the third successive


Unai Emery’s side

secured fifth place

meaning they go straight

into the Europa League

group stage next season.

And they can still

qualify for the

Champions League if

they beat Chelsea in the

Europa League final on

29 May in Baku.

Aubameyang, who

scored a hat-trick on

Thursday as Arsenal beat

Valencia in the Europa

League semi-finals,

finished the season with

22 league goals.

That saw him tie for the

Premier League Golden

Boot with Liverpool duo

Sadio Mane and

Mohamed Salah.

Ben Mee gifted

Aubameyang his first,

miscontrolling a pass

from Jack Cork to allow

the Gabon striker to run

in and slot past Tom

Heaton on 52 minutes.

He then lashed in a

volley from close range

11 minutes later and

should have had a hattrick,

but with the goal at

his mercy, he poked wide.

Burnley, who had

already secured a fourth

straight season in the

Premier League, pulled

one back as Ashley

Barnes met Johann Berg

Gudmundsson’s pass

with a glancing header.

Arsenal’s 19-year-old

forward Eddie Nketiah

added a third with the

last play of the game in

the 95th minute as he

poked the ball through

Heaton’s legs.

Hazard wins

Premier League



This year the award

went to Eden Hazard

after accumulating 16

assists throughout 2018/

19 season with last year’s

winner being Man City

midfielder Kevin de

Bruyne with 16 assists.

The Premier League

playmaker award was

introduced last year to

award the league player

to acquire the most

assists in a season.

Manchester City

retained their

Premier League

title and finally ended

Liverpool’s magnificent

challenge after surviving a

scare to come from behind

and outclass Brighton at

the Amex Stadium.

Pep Guardiola’s side

started the day knowing

victory would ensure they

would be the first team to

retain the crown since

Manchester United 10

years ago - but any slip-up

could let in their relentless

pursuers Liverpool, who

were hosting Wolves at


And when Glenn Murray

gave the Seagulls the lead

with a glancing header

Leicester 0-0 Chelsea

Chelsea draw

at Leicester to

finish third

Leicester and Chelsea

played out a typically

low-key end-of-season

affair which ended

goalless at the King Power


The result ensured that

Chelsea finished their first

Premier League campaign

under Italian manager

Maurizio Sarri in third.

Sarri’s side began

brightly despite the

absence of Eden Hazard,

who started on the

substitutes bench.

Pedro and Willian both

carried a threat, but


City are EPL


from a corner after 27

minutes, anxiety rose in

Sussex and hopes rose at

Anfield that Liverpool

might win their first title

in 29 years.

Manchester City’s

response was instant,

emphatic and ruthless as

they swept Brighton aside

to end the campaign with

Gonzalo Higuain missed

the pick of their chances

from close range before

the contest fizzled out.

Leicester - who have

enjoyed a renaissance

since Brendan Rodgers

took charge in February,

collecting 17 points over

the last nine games - end

the season in ninth.

a record 14 successive

league victories, making it

32 in all, which equals the

record they set last season.

Sergio Aguero pounced

in the area to equalise

inside 83 seconds and

Aymeric Laporte arrived

unmarked on the end of a

corner to put City ahead

before half-time.

Champions League

finalists Tottenham

sealed a fourth-placed

finish in the Premier

League as they ended their

campaign with an

entertaining draw with


Tottenham knew a point

was enough to secure one

of the Champions League

places for a fourth

successive season under

manager Mauricio

Pochettino, but Spurs

missed the opportunity to

record back-to-back thirdplaced

finishes as Chelsea

Salah, Mane, Aubameyang share Golden

Boot award

The Premier

League Golden Boot

for leading goalscorer will

be shared

between Mohamed

Salah, Sadio Mane

and Pierre-Emerick

Aubameyang after all

Van Djik is Player of the

Season winner award after Nemanja

Virgil van Dijk won

this seasons EA

Sport’s Player of the

Season award after

votes from Premier

League panel, peers

(20 club captains) and

the public saw the

Liverpool defender

become the third

defender to receive the

Vidic and Vincent


The Dutch defender

has already picked up

the PFA Player of the

Year award and

replicates Liverpool

teammate Mohamed

Salah who picked up

both awards last


Man City players


three finished on 22 goals.

Liverpool forward Salah

went into the final

afternoon leading the way

but was pegged back after

his team-mate Mane

scored twice in their 2-0

win over Wolves that

proved not enough to win

the title.

Aubameyang scored

twice in Arsenal’s 3-1 win

at Burnley to take his

place at the top of the


It is the first time three

African players have

shared the award.

Manchester City’s Sergio

Aguero scored in their

title-clinching 4-1 win at

Brighton but will have to

settle for second spot in

the Golden Boot race with

21 goals.

Though Salah finished

the season with more

Liverpool 2-0 Wolves

Liverpool finish

second despite


Liverpool’s 29-year wait

to win the league title

continues, despite their 2-

0 win over Wolves at


Manchester City retained

the Premier League title

with a 4-1 win at Brighton

to finish on 98 points - one

ahead of the Reds, who

have the highest final

points total of any runnersup

in English top-flight


Many Liverpool players

looked exhausted at the

final whistle, but Jurgen

Klopp’s team were given a

rousing ovation despite

the disappointing outcome

Tottenham 2-2 Everton

Tottenham seal

Champions League spot

assists than his two rivals,

this isn’t taken into

account so all three will

share the honour.

Indeed, a beaming

Aubameyang was

presented with his

accolade after being

presented with it at Turf


It is the third time this

has happened in Premier

League history - Chris

Sutton, Michael Owen

and Dion Dublin shared

it in the 1997-98 season

and Jimmy-Floyd

Hasselbaink, Michael

Owen and Dwight Yorke

were tied in 1998-99.

Aubameyang’s is

arguably the most

impressive total as his 22

goals came in just 2,731

minutes of Premier

League football this

season at a rate of one

goal every 124 minutes.

were held by Leicester.

Eric Dier capitalised on

poor Everton defending to

open the scoring after just

three minutes as he was

given ample time and

space to convert Erik

Lamela’s corner.

The visitors recovered

well from their slow start

but took until the 69th

minute to level through

Theo Walcott’s fine finish.

Cenk Tosun put Everton

ahead three minutes later,

but Christian Eriksen’s

sublime free-kick after 75

minutes earned Spurs the

point they required.

The result sees Everton

match their eighth-placed

finish of the previous

campaign in Marco Silva’s

first season in charge.

Alisson wins

Golden Glove


The award goes to

Alisson after

Liverpool goalkeeper

kept 21 clean sheets

with Brazilian no.2

and Man City keeper

Ederson was only

able to keep 20 clean


The Golden Glove

award goes to the

Premier League

goalkeeper to keep

the most clean sheets

through-out the


to their bid for a 19th title.

Sadio Mane scored from

close range in each half to

finish the season with 22

goals, as he and teammate

Mohamed Salah

finished level in the race

for the Golden Boot as the

league’s top scorers.

The victory over Wolves

was Liverpool’s ninth

consecutive win in the

league - their only defeat

of the campaign came

when they lost 2-1 to

City on 3 January.

Liverpool will have the

chance to finish an

impressive season with a

trophy when the play

Tottenham in the

Champions League final in

Madrid on 1 June.

Liverpool players

Man Utd 0-2 Cardiff

More misery

for Man Utd

Nathaniel Mendez-

Laing scored twice as

relegated Cardiff City won

their final Premier League

appearance to heap more

misery on Manchester


Mendez-Laing opened

the scoring for Cardiff from

the penalty spot after being

brought down in the box

by Diogo Dalot, before

scoring his second after the


Goalkeeper Neil

Etheridge proved the

visitors’ hero as he foiled

several United chances on

a frustrating day for the

hosts, who fielded six

academy graduates.

Defeat means United have

won just one of their final

seven games of the season

as city rivals Manchester

City won the Premier

League title for the second

season in succession.

Cardiff travelled to Old

Trafford just a week after

confirmation of their

relegation to the

Championship and looked

set to bid farewell to the

top flight with a whimper

as United dominated the

opening exchanges.

But it was United who

finished the match with

their tails between their

legs, unable to defy a

resolute Bluebirds defence

as they rained chance after

chance on Etheridge’s goal.

Cardiff’s victory was their

first over Manchester

United since 3 April, 1954,

when manager Neil

Warnock was just five years


Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019 — 47

Vanguard, MONDAY, MAY 13, 2019







How to Play Sudoku


1 Take away (8)

5 Chilly (4)

8 Umbilicus (5)

9 Silhouette (7)

11 Apart (7)

12 Called (5)

13 Mediterranean island (6)

15 Avoided (6)

18 High-spirited escapade (5)

20 Astounding (7)

23 South African country


24 Rogue (5)

25 Extinct bird (4)

26 Perfect (8)


1 Father Christmas (5)

2 Camp out (7)

3 Annoyed (5)

4 Groups of singers (6)

6 Hatred (5)

7 Greatly feared (7)

10 Latin-American

dance (5)

13 Accomplish a goal


14 Enticed (5)

16 Make a wry face (7)

17 Cask (6)

19 Sixteen ounces (5)

21 Awry (5)

22 Surmise (5)

Place a number (1-9) in each blank cell. (No line can have two

of the same number).

Each row (nine lines from left to right), column, (also nine lines

from top to bottom) and 3 X 3 block within a bold block (nine

blocks) contains number from 1 through 9. This means that no

number can appear twice in any block, column or row.

No mathematics is involved – no adding, subtraction, division or

multiplication, just plain logic and your imagination.

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