Days after Osinbajo’s visit, ex-VP Atiku Abubakar storms Delta state.

Osinbajo, during his visit to Akwa Ibom directed all international oil companies with head offices outside the Niger Delta to relocate to the area.

Abubakar, the vice president under former President Olusegun Obasanjo, arrived Delta state and was received by billionaire businessman, Ayiri Emami, and others.

It was not known as at press time if his visit was similar to that of Professor Osinbajo who acted as president of the country while Muhammadu Buhari was away on medical leave for 52 days.

It is believed that Atiku’s visit is aimed at helping him to consolidate on his political ambition to run for the presidency. He is yet to announce any plan to contest.

Atiku Abubakar had contested against Muhammadu Buhari under the All Progressives Congress (APC) platform during the primary election in 2015.

Though he lost, he is reportedly still building his support base ahead of the 2019 general election.

The Niger Delta region had, before now, been in crisis with militants and agitators attacking pipelines and other major oil installations.

Atiku Abubakar Welcomes Yet Another Grand Child (PHOTOS)

Look who’s the latest granddad in town. Former vice president to Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar, shares his bundle of joy on Twitter as he heartily welcomes yet another grand child.

The businessman/ politician shared photos of himself holding the baby and gushing over the bundle of cuteness. Congratulations to him and more grand kids to come.

I Switched Loyalty To Atiku Because He Gave Me N500m For Campaign – Bindow

The Adamawa State Governor, Bindow Jibrilla, on Monday gave insight into why he dumped the former governor of the state, Murtala Nyako, and shifted loyalty to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar.
Mr. Bidow, who reportedly rode on the political structure of Mr. Nyako to win the April governorship election, said he decided to pitch tent with Atiku because of a lofty cash gift the former vice president gave him during the campaign.

 
The governor made the disclosure when he hosted indigenes of Jimeta at the Government House, saying Atiku gave him N500million for his campaign.
“I shifted loyalty to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar because of the N500 million he gave to support my governorship campaign.
“During the campaign, Nyako and his son Abdulazziz were in London. I have no regret over my decision,” he said.
Mr. Bindow accused some “powerful politicians” in the state of attempting to smear his image for his refusal to do their bidding.
“Apart from the money from the headquarters, nobody gave me ten naira during the campaign.
“When the former VP asked me if we had any financial problem, I called the then party state secretary, Abdullahi Bakari, to write and put our campaign demand at N300 million to Mr. Atiku Abubakar.
“It was after the submission that Atiku sent me half a billion naira through Jauro,” the governor stated.
Also confirming the governor’s claim, the Chief of Staff to the governor, Abdulrham Abba, who was part of the delegation, said, “when you have two enemies, you join one to fight the other. So what the governor did was right”.
“We are working with Atiku because we believe in him and his political ideology,” he said.
It is unclear whether the governor disclosed the huge donation made by Atiku to the Independent National Electoral Commission as required by law.
The Electoral Act prohibits individuals from making election contributions beyond N 1million.

 

 

Credit : Premium Times

#KakandaTemple: Atiku, and the Cheers of Needy Masses

Atiku-Abubakar

If our historical records are not blown out of proportions, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar was the most audacious civilian that has ever occupied that office. Audacious not only in his guts to rebel against his boss’ excesses when the going got tough, but also for almost creating a sort of mini government to stand his ground to Obasanjo’s victimisation in his efforts to succeed his equally ambitious boss. Despite being in the league of that breed of politicians one could dubiously label “veterans”, his strategies always failed to demolish the fences built around him by loyalists of his former boss. Surviving those political checkpoints at all, from charges of corruption to those of insubordination, owes a debt of gratitude to the clout he established, especially his touted discipleship to the late Shehu Musa Yaradua, which was ever extolled to assert his supremacy in that dirtiest of engagements: political antagonism.

But it’s not the politician behind the name that attracts my attention this time, it’s the philanthropist he aspires to be and this becomes news in gauging the reactions of Nigerians to his proposed scholarship scheme where a single candidate will be chosen in an essay contest open for about 50 million youth. Disappointment is the least to expect from a section of Nigerians on Twitter to whom the scholarship scheme is either a publicity stunt or a cruelly stingy sharing of “looted funds”. These Nigerians have no conscience, even where they pretend to exhibit that, as their excuse ends up as grumblings of the needy. Some were just angry because the politician’s money is not enough to go round. And I ask, To what end?

I think it’s a wrong idea to encourage politicians, especially those still active, to fund or even set up a private cause. Doing so does not only legitimise their loots, for those who see every politician as thief, but makes politicking more expensive such that when contenders for political office finally get elected, their primary concern becomes to recover all they wasted on mere parasites who lose their senses when distracted by easy cash. Prebendalism has done enough damage to us already, so we must let politics be strictly for those who can manage public funds and trust, those ready to bring us desired changes. Politicians aren’t fools, they don’t pluck money from trees. The more you task them with sponsoring your PRIVATE projects, the more PUBLIC funds disappear from the treasury. But this is just the situation the Nigerian elite create to keep the masses needy and also to justify their thefts of the common wealth.

Politics in Nigeria is so expensive that whoever manages to scale past the demands of the sycophantic lots only strategises to recoup his finances on being elected. With interest, in quantum. This is the same thing with every political appointment, seen by needy masses as an opportunity by “one of our own” to bring back “our” share of the nation’s resources. And the psychological unrest of the appointees whose houses become tribal convergence centres inspire them to use public funds to settle their friends and tribesmen  who are always around to receive the aforementioned share of the dividends.

It is, however, needless to pity the politicians and appointees as many actually convert such patronages to their strengths; the ceaseless stipends doled out earn them the trust and political solidarity of the needy masses who find nothing wrong in, say,  a Minister of Education, using funds budgeted for national projects for personal issues. This is the Nigeria the public servants prefer really, a Nigeria of economically dependent masses, a Nigeria where our sycophancy affects policy implementation.

Unless we ally as citizens to demand for a nation of fishermen, not distracted fish-eaters, fishermen who know the boundaries of their rights,  this tradition would remain a drawback. There is no hope that we would realise this Nigeria if such dangerous responsibilities are placed on politicians such that they compromise on a functional Nigeria. Unless we recognise that we lose our right to bully our politicians to work as expected when we see them as our private ATMs, we’re forever chained to the feet of elitism. Unless we recognise that we don’t need a kobo from Atiku or any politician to support private causes, there will be no free democracy, and no sympathy for our sufferings. May God save us from us!

 

By Gimba Kakanda

@gimbakakanda (On Twitter)

OJUKWU, A LEGEND FOR ALL SEASON – ATIKU

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Among the several stories that have been written about Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, the piece I found particularly compelling was an archive interview republished after his very unfortunate death on November 26, 2011. Asked how he would like to be remembered, Ojukwu’s reply was poignant: “I would like to be remembered as a statesman; not just as a rebel leader.”
Indeed, in a world increasingly obsessed with labels, we could so easily become defined by a single action that is by no means a true reflection of our outlook. So, it was common to find Ojukwu’s name almost always preceded by words such as “warlord,” “rebel leader,” or “secessionist.”
These words do little justice to a man who was the first Quartermaster-General of the Nigerian Army, a man who distinguished himself as a member of the Nigerian contingent to the United Nations peace-keeping effort in Congo, a man born into immense wealth and privilege but who never allowed that to dull his humanity and his appetite for service.
Those unflattering labels are products of a gross misunderstanding of the core values that define Ojukwu’s personality. The values were forged in humility, the sort that led the young Oxford Alumnus to take up the job of an administrative officer in the colonial government – a rather humbling career start for the son of a millionaire!
Another value that resonates in Ojukwu’s remarkable life is the virtue of selflessness, a philosophy that recognizes the imperative of service. That is the essential statesmanship; the capacity to place the common good above self, the capacity to stay dignified even in the face of adversity, the capacity for compromise and bipartisanship.
Above all, statesmanship requires an understanding that idealism and pragmatism are not mutually-exclusive. It is indeed difficult to say these of anyone else without tongue-in-cheek. But these values were embodied by the late Dim Odumegwu Ojukwu, Dikedioramma (beloved hero of the masses).
Given the very fickle nature of humans and often unrealistic expectations, remaining a hero in the eyes of one’s people, for a lifetime, especially in our clime, is a near impossibility. It’s, however, gratifying to note that Ojukwu did not only draw accolades in death; he was just as well loved and idolized even more while he was alive.
But he didn’t achieve that feat by being eternally politically-correct. In fact, I doubt there was any conscious effort on his part to be seen as an icon; he emerged a hero by living by his convictions and demonstrating sufficient empathy for the people.
His foray into politics upon his return to the country in 1982 may have fallen short of the expectations of those who wanted him to stay out of politics, but his contributions to the rebirth of democracy and its sustenance cannot be contradicted.
His belief and commitment in the capacity of Nigerians to grow their own democracy without let and hindrance was underscored by his irritation at the military intervention that toppled the Shehu Shagari government in 1983 and led to his brief incarceration.
“As a committed democrat, every single day under an un-elected government hurts me. The citizens of this country are mature enough to make their own choices, just as they have the right to make their own mistakes,” he said.
Today, the imperative of the handshake across the Niger he spoke so eloquently about still strike a resonant chord across the country. It’s a call that evidently repudiates all those hurtful stereotypes, which some tend to readily invoke when discussing the larger-than-life personality of Ojukwu.
The handshake across the Niger was a call to peace, a call to dialogue and a denunciation of hubris in all its form. We owe it as a duty to his memory to strive to enthrone those values that unite us. But, ultimately, this should not be at the expense of justice. It is a right to which we are all entitled.
Atiku Abubakar, GCON ,former Vice President Federal Republic of Nigeria and Turakin Adamawa sent this piece to the National Burial Committee of Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu.

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