Want to end the poverty cycle? Empower women – By Chioma Dike

Of the 960 million illiterate people in the world, two-thirds are women. Startling? Read on. And in well-functioning economies, we know that the education level often has a direct positive correlation with the economic enrichment of one’s household and professional prospects. To compound that fact, women make up 70% of the world labour but only earn 10% of the world’s income. Meaning women’s labour contribution is uncompensated especially in the rural areas in being caretakers of the sick and elderly, farmers and more. This leads to a greater poverty rate, it slows down economic growth and lowers the standard of living. As if that weren’t enough, women make 30-50% less than men worldwide. With these facts laid out, it is no wonder this article will be tailored toward the female population in addressing ways in which to factor gender into the agenda of poverty alleviation.

What does the future hold for the girl child living in poverty?

A girl living in poverty is statistically likely, to be married off early, lack the funds/resources to continue her education, have children at an early age and to continue the cycle of poverty. The health risks of her children are also heightened not only because her education level is likely low due to poverty, but she would also lack the funds to seek proper treatment and care to aid in preserving the health and the lives of her children. It is a known fact that women and girls invest 90% of their earned income into their families and communities, and for this reason alone women and girls should be empowered economically if a nation is to be brought out of poverty and any other form of economic shortfall.
Unfortunately, pervasive underlying factors, such as inadequate structural conditions, including insufficient policy framework to integrate gender into poverty alleviation efforts and gender norms and discriminatory social norms keep many women from contributing to the household income and national GDP as agents for economic progress.

One of the greatest tragedies of the 21st century is the gender pay parity. In this time in human development it makes absolutely no sense for women to be making a fraction of what men make given the ever-changing household models and unique circumstances of building a home and raising children. Economic empowerment for women through policy insists on equal pay between men and women and also closing the employment participation gap between men and women is crucial to bring women out of vicious cycle of poverty. I repeat, increasing women’s percentage share of the world’s income, and closing gender pay parity will not only substantially bring nations out of economic slumps but also drive sustainable growth and economic power for generations to come.

Service delivery providing women with access to property, assets, and financial services lead to their social protection. Secondly, increasing women and girls’ education, and providing technology tools for digitization skill building and internet access leads to women and girls moving out of poverty at vast rates. Currently, women are more likely than men to report lack of skills as a barrier to Internet use. A survey of women in developing countries found that of women using the internet 75 percent use the Internet to further their education which sustains the wealth-building efforts and prevents future generations from regressing back to poverty.

Speaking of tech, in the age of technology, it is almost impossible to be upwardly mobile without a good grasp on tech skills even at the most basic level. When rural and urban women are provided with technology access and computer skill training, studies show that this increase in internet connectivity leads to a $21 return on investment for every dollar spent on poverty alleviation efforts and giving internet access to women could contribute between $13-18 billion to annual GDP across 144 developing countries.

When women have access to formal financial institutions and avenues to join saving mechanisms like cooperative savings groups and organized sectors they utilize the network for family enrichment. For example, the United Capital Wealth for Women Fund is a great new avenue tailored specifically for women to prevent poverty and make women economically independent.

As mentioned earlier, women do much of the unpaid labor that makes the world go ‘round and by providing a wider variety of occupations and enterprises beyond low-productivity activities and informal sectors, unpaid women can become lucrative service providers and business- owners while enhancing the skills of which they are already accustomed.

Poverty affects the young, the old, the healthy, and the frail and empowering women to break the cycle of poverty is the number one way out.

For more information on The Lagos State Ministry of Women Affairs & Poverty Alleviation and to find your nearest Skill Acquisition Centres in Lagos for free skill training courses and other poverty alleviation tools visit http://wapa.lagosstate.gov.ng/

US supports Nigeria’s fight against poverty with additional $227.3m

The United States of America has announced the release of $227.3million to help fight poverty in Nigeria.

The sum which was announced by the US Agency for International Development (USAID) was in addition to the US developmental assistance to support the five-year $2.3 billion agreement signed with the Nigerian Government in 2015.

According to the US, the additional fund now brings the total provided under the agreement to $702 million.

In a statement from the Public Affairs Section of the US Mission in Abuja, the new funding would continue to help Nigeria reduce extreme poverty by stimulating inclusive economic growth, promoting a healthier, more-educated population, and strengthening good governance.

“Today, we are pleased to announce new funding under the agreement signed with the Nigerian Government in 2015 to provide better access to education and health services and promote democracy and economic growth,” the US Ambassador to Nigeria, Stuart Symington, was quoted as saying in the statement.

He added: “With the Nigerian Government’s leadership, we know this funding will significantly improve the wellbeing of Nigerians.”

The agreement, which would run through 2020, is structured by the USAID in collaboration with the Ministry of Budget and National Planning; Ministries of Health, Agriculture, Power, and Education and their counterparts at the state-level.

In addition to development assistance funding, the US is providing humanitarian assistance to people affected by the ongoing conflict and severe food insecurity in the North-eastern part of Nigeria and throughout the Lake Chad Basin.

The US has provided more than $291 million in humanitarian assistance in the 2016 fiscal year and continues to be the single largest bilateral humanitarian donor to the region.

Climate change is driving millions to poverty in ECOWAS, says Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari says climate change is driving millions of people in the Lake Chad Basin into poverty.

Buhari also said the poor regional integration and the climate change experienced in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is as a result of globalisation.

He said this while speaking at the 50th ordinary session of the ECOWAS summit of heads of state and government on Saturday.

He called for countries in ECOWAS to diversify their economies in the bid to improve on the region’s economy.

“Our modest achievements in regional integration are being challenged by globalization. Today, most of our countries continue to record low volume of trade, occasioned by declining level of economic activities, caused by the sharp fall in commodity prices,”Buhari said.

“While oil prices fell by an astounding 57 percent between June 2014 and January 2015, other commodity prices have also weakened sharply thereby putting pressure on the current account and fiscal balances of our countries.

“This ugly situation demands that we diversify our respective economies from commodities into other sectors such as banking, construction and telecommunications and most importantly agro–processing, manufacturing and services.  As we adjust to a more challenging globalized environment, stronger efforts are required to increase domestic revenue mobilisation in our countries and Community Institutions.

“Member States must diversify their economies away from trade in commodities towards developing robust infrastructure that will support manufacturing and industrialisation. To this end, I urge the Community to invest more in infrastructure and human resources so as to unleash the potentials that exist in our respective economies and in our peoples.

“Another adverse effect of globalization, which we needs to be confronted collectively, is climate change which is affecting our countries in many ways such as desertification, erosion, rise in sea level and flooding. This situation is further worsened by the near absence of response and adaptive capacities in our countries.

“The negative consequences of Climate Change, including the drying up of water bodies are real in the region. For example, Lake Chad, which was once one of Africa’s largest water reservoirs, has over the years shrank to less than 10 percent of its original size, drastically affecting livelihoods of millions of people living in the Basin.

“This has resulted in environmental degradation, poverty, under development and displacement of peoples.”

Buhari said conscious efforts should be made on governance and accountability.

“In addition, the cost of governance must be reduced across all ECOWAS Institutions while resources should be devoted to programs and projects that will have direct bearing on the lives of ordinary citizenry and create jobs  fast enough to absorb our teeming youth population,” he said.

Poverty Contributes to Ill Health – Lagos NMA Chair

The Lagos State chapter of the Nigerian Medical Association has said that there was the need to address the issue of poverty to reduce the burden of ill health in the country.

The association said that poverty contributed to ill health which in turn aggravated and extended the poverty, thereby having adverse effects on the country’s health indices.

Dr Olubunmi Omojowolo, the Chairman of the Lagos State chapter of the NMA, made the assertion at a news conference to mark the 2016 Annual Physicians Week at the state NMA Secretariat, Lagos.

The theme for this year’s programme is: “Healthcare in a Frail Economy: Challenges and Way Forward.”

Omojowolo said: “This topic is very important, given the present economic downturn being experienced by our dear nation.

“The World Bank recognises the relationship between economic development and health.

“It also recognises that the poor health indices in most developing countries are as a result of entrapment in a vicious circle of unrelieved poverty.

“As we all know, the health of a nation is her wealth.

“Therefore, for our economy to recover and become more vibrant, we need to pay more attention to the health of the population and of course the health sector.”

On the goals and challenges of effective healthcare delivery, Omojowolo said: “The goals of effective healthcare delivery are to prevent human diseases, injury and disability.

“As well as protect people from environmental health hazards.

“Effective healthcare delivery should also be able to promote behaviours that lead to good physical and mental health, educate the public about health and assure the availability of high-quality health services.

“Unfortunately, achieving such lofty objectives has been extremely difficult in Nigeria as a result of a lot of challenges facing our health sector.”

According to Omojowolo, some of the challenges include poor facilities, dwindling human resource capacity, intra-professional rivalry, inequalities in healthcare access and cultural barriers.

Omojowolo said: “In a dwindling economy like ours, these challenges are bound to become more compounded and as such, a major concern due to pre-existing poor social and health indices in Nigeria.”

He said that to improve on the poor health indices, healthcare policies must be inclusive of all socio-economic strata.

He said: “There must be universal basic healthcare coverage and provision of health insurance to Nigerians, especially rural community dwellers.

“We must pay close attention to individuals with disabilities by having a comprehensive reform, while mental health issue must be on the front burner of our priorities.”

Omojowolo urged the Federal Government to increase the country’s health budget to approach the 15 per cent as recommended by the World health Organisation.

He also said that the issue of inter-and intra- professional rivalry and incessant industrial action in the health sector should be addressed and resolved in a holistic manner.

On the leadership crisis within the Lagos NMA, he said it was under control.

He said: “Justice Candide-Johnson granted an order restraining any other person or group other than the Omojowolo-led executives of Lagos NMA from parading themselves as officers of the association.

“This is in an originating summons with Suit No. ID/1322GCMW/2016, at the Lagos High court on September 29.”

How $3bn Nigeria-Bound Rice Rots Away In Benin Republic

An estimated $3 billion bags of rice destined for the Nigerian markets are stuck in various warehouses in the Benin Republic due to the Federal Government’s refusal to allow importation through land borders and fierce customs anti-smuggling drive.

The annual routine of importing rice into the neighbouring country from July to December to make massive sales in Nigeria during Yuletide period has hit a brick wall this year as Controller-General of Customs, Colonel Hameed Ali has insisted that his men have tightened the frontiers.

Nigeria shares major border frontiers with the Benin Republic at Seme Border (Lagos), Idiroko (Ogun), Shaki (Oyo),Chikanda (Kwara) and other smaller openings. Prominent among them is Seme where the highest volume of trade and largest smuggling opportunity exist because of its easy access to Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital city.

Seme Border which hitherto was a major transit point for foreign rice importation suddenly became impenetrable for smugglers as almost daily seizures of 50kg bags have taken a good portion of the customs warehouse in the area.

A recent visit to Benin revealed that most of the warehouses where the bagged rice is kept before shipment into Nigeria are now battling for space.

Some consignments of imported rice no longer have storage space at the popular stores and so are exposed to rains, weevils and other unhygienic forms of storage.

Popular warehouses no longer receive rice shipments as thousands of bags earlier delivered to them since July could not be evacuated into Nigeria as planned as was the case in previous years.

Popular Cherika Warehouse in Akpakpa near Cotonou with a capacity to store 25,000 bags is fully loaded with Thailand rice with no hope of evacuating them into Nigeria except government relaxes its policy of rice importation through the border.

Defezi Warehouse close to the Cotonou Port is filled with over 40,000 units of 50kg bags of Indian and Thailand rice. Defezi got occupied earlier due to its proximity to the port but was not evacuated as the owners could not risk entering Nigeria with it.

Cica Warehouse in Missebo area of the Cotonou outskirts that suffered a lack of patronage in the past due to the distance from Seme Border and bad road presently has over 15,000 bags.

Some grains are getting moulded, caked with their bags torn and quantity reduced while endlessly awaiting shipment into Nigeria.

As hope of smuggling them into Nigeria gets slimmer by the day, there is a conscious effort to bring in the commodity without using bags.

The unwholesome method requires pouring grains of rice into various compartments of vehicles like the boots, bonnets, inner parts of the doors, under the seats and other spaces meant for spare tyres and tools.

Sources disclosed that the more the attempt to smuggle hundreds of bags into the country, the more customs in Seme and Idiroko make more seizures.

Unfortunately, some of these grains are no more safe for human consumption and so cannot be donated to Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) as was done in the past.

Over 37,000 bags of rice have so far been seized in Seme and Idiroko between January and September 2016 including the 13 vehicles laden with smuggled rice.

From the owners of the rice to the transporters, loaders, landlords and operators of warehouses, there is a general lull as it has been a season of stockpiling without transiting.

They expressed frustration at the government policy but more on what they described as Seme Customs lack of cooperation.

Nigerian Customs had in an October 2016 press statement reiterated government’s ban on rice importation through the borders. The statement signed by Wale Adeniyi, customs spokesman reinforced its resolve to protect government’s attempt to improve local rice capacity.

Part of it reads: ‘’We like to reiterate the position that importation of rice remains banned through our land borders, and we have the commitment to partner government agencies and stakeholders to enforce this restriction. While this restriction is in force, rice imports through the ports are still allowed subject to payment of extant charges.

‘’It is equally important to restate the confidence of the Nigerian Customs Service in the ability of Nigerian rice producers to fill the existing sufficiency gaps in the supply of the product. The service has noted with satisfaction the ongoing rice revolution undertaken by many state governments, and strategic interventions by the Federal Government agencies.’

‘’The service is convinced that the bumper harvests expected from these efforts will address the supply gap in 2017. It is our belief that continuous waste of scarce forex on a commodity that can be produced locally makes no economic sense, most especially during a period of recession. The service will, therefore, advocate a total ban on rice importation into Nigeria with effect from 2017’’

There are loud cries in Benin over what is going on at Seme and other borders. A respondent simply identified as Mr Sewanu said things have taken a turn for the worse as every attempt to bring rice into Nigeria has failed.

‘’You can see we are idle here because rice is not entering Nigeria through Seme Border. We can’t work. Each day we come here , it is in prayer that the customs should cooperate with our bosses so we can have jobs to do to survive.

‘’By this time in previous years, thousands of bags of rice had entered Nigeria from here and more ships had been discharging at the Cotonou Port. But this year is different, nothing is working.

‘’Seme customs have spoiled the business for us.We don’t want to take the risk of transporting rice through any other border because Lagos is the largest market. Once you enter through Seme,you are already in the market.

‘’If this continues, we may die of hunger. Benin customs in Krake cooperates with us but the customs in Nigeria are our only headache. We want the Controller removed. He is making things difficult,’’ Sewanu lamented.

A visit to the border shows smooth running and processing of imports into Nigeria and there are so many activities in the banks. People were seen paying customs duties for items not on Nigeria’s import prohibition list.

While the stockpiling of imported rice continues to increase in Cotonou and neighbouring towns, there may never be a market for them as they face the risk of either being expired or going bad due to poor storage condition.

The Benin Republic with an estimated population of 11 million persons and closest to Togo with a little above 8 million, there appears to be no market for the stocked rice as these countries lack the population and luxury to consume them.

Prices of rice which presently sells for between N11,000 and N13,000 in Cotonou is expected to crash ahead of the Yuletide period as they continually face difficulties in getting them into Nigeria.

Source :


US Supports Nigeria With Additional $92m To Fight Poverty

The United States of America (US) has announced an additional developmental assistance of $92.73million to Nigeria to help fight poverty.

The sum which was given through the US Agency for International Development (USAID) is meant to support the five-year $2.3 billion agreement signed with the Nigeria Government in 2015.

A statement from the Information Unit of the US Embassy in Abuja added that the amount brings the total of development assistance provided to $474.74 million.

According to the statement, “This funding will continue to help Nigeria reduce extreme poverty in a more stable, democratic society.  Activities will stimulate inclusive economic growth, promote a healthier, more-educated population and strengthen good governance.”

Speaking further, USAID Mission Director, Michael Harvey, who stated that the US is pleased to contribute additional funding in support of the agreement signed with the Nigerian Government in 2015 expressed confidence the funding woud have a significant impact on the wellbeing of Nigerians.

In an effort to align Nigeria’s development plans with sector-specific strategies, USAID collaborated with the Nigerian Ministry of  Budget and National Planning; the Nigerian Ministries of Health, Agriculture, Power, and Education; and state-level government counterparts to structure the agreement, which is in place until 2020.

Read More: thisdaylive

U.S. provides $92.7 million to reduce poverty in Nigeria

The United States Government has announced the sum of $92.73 million in developmental assistance to support the five-year $2.3 billion agreement signed with the Federal Government in 2015.

The U.S. Embassy in a statement on Tuesday in Abuja, said the amount was being provided through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

The embassy explained that the money brought the total of development assistance provided in the agreement to $474.74 million.

“This funding will continue to help Nigeria reduce extreme poverty in a more stable, democratic society.

“Activities will stimulate inclusive economic growth, promote a healthier, more educated population, and strengthen good governance,” the embassy said.

It quoted the USAID Mission Director, Michael Harvey, as expressing the confidence that the funding would have positive impact on Nigerians.

“Today we are pleased to contribute additional funding in support of the agreement signed with the Nigerian Government in 2015.

“With their leadership we know this funding will have a significant impact on the wellbeing of Nigerians,” it said.

The statement also said that USAID had collaborated with the Federal ministries of Budget and National Planning, Health, Agriculture, Power, and Education effort to align Nigeria’s development plans with sector-specific strategies.

According to it, USAID also collaborated with state-level government counterparts to structure the agreement, which was in place until 2020.

“In addition to the developmental funding, the U.S. provides humanitarian assistance to people affected by the ongoing conflict and severe food insecurity in Nigeria and throughout the Lake Chad Basin.

“Since fiscal year 2015, the U.S. has provided more than 366 million dollars in humanitarian assistance and continues to be the single largest bilateral humanitarian donor to the region,” it added.

Almost All Beggars in Lagos Are Fake – Taskforce

The Chairman of Lagos State Taskforce, SP Olayinka Egbeyemi has revealed that a lot of beggars on streets of Lagos are people, who pretend to be sick to deceive innocent people and get money from them. He said this while parading a 40-year-old female suspect Chinagoro Uwenke and her 11-year-old son Sunny, at the Oshodi area of the state.

He said the woman had faked that her son had an injury. The taskforce chairman disclosed that there were many fake beggars pretending and deceiving innocent members of the public with different illnesses and diseases
“The rate at which these fake beggars operate in the state calls for concern. That is why the Agency is collaborating with relevant government Ministries, Agencies and Departments to get rid of these beggars on the streets and roads of Lagos. The Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Fatai Owoseni has directed that the suspect be immediately charged to court,” he said.
The suspect who confessed to the crime said that she bandaged her son’s leg with two rolls of white bandages and poured Gentian Violet (GV) on the leg every day to deceive members of the public to give alms to the boy. Uwenke explained that she abruptly stopped her son’s education at a junior secondary level for street begging when she realised that she can make between N3,500 and N5,000 daily.
The suspect who stays at Oyingbo, pleaded with the government not to charge her to court, saying she was ready to go back to her town and re-unite with her family voluntarily.

Man Reportedly Abandons Wife in Hospital Over Unpaid N520,000 Bill

A mother of seven, Uzoamaka Onu, 39, has been abandoned by her husband at the New Mayor Hospital and Fertility Centre, Nkpor in Anambra over a bill of N520,000.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the woman had stayed in the hospital for four months following the non-payment of the bill.

Uzoamaka, a food vendor from Okpoto community in Ishielu Local Government Area of Ebonyi, told NAN that the husband had absconded and abandoned her to her fate.

She said that she had lived in the hospital for four months and every attempt to reach her husband had failed.

“My husband stopped visiting the hospital after I successfully underwent a surgery on my right breast,” Uzoamaka said.

She said she did not blame her husband for absconding because he had suffered a lot since 2013 when signs of cancer started manifesting.

“My husband sells rat poison and cannot afford the money to pay the balance and I think that is why he has run away. I am appealing to good spirited Nigerians to come to my aid and help me to get back home.

My problem started in 2013 when I started experiencing excruciating pain in my body, specifically in my lungs. I started visiting patent medicine stores for solution, but unfortunately that compounded my problems.

However, it was on the advice of some friends and family members that I decided to visit General Hospital, Abakiliki where I was diagnosed with breast cancer,” Uzoamaka said.

She said she had visited the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), Enugu and Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH) for solution.

Uzoamaka said that she also went to the New Mayor Hospital and Fertility Centre where she had a successful surgery, leading to outright removal of her right breast.

She said that N750,000 was the total amount by the hospital management for the surgery, with her family paying N230,000, leaving the outstanding balance.

The Medical Director of the hospital, Dr. Ben Ossai, confirmed the incident, describing Uzoamaka’s case as pathetic.

Ossai said that the woman’s right breast was in a deteriorating state and was emitting offensive odour due to the devastation the ailment had caused.

“We decided to perform a surgery on her to remove the affected breast,” he said.

Ossai said that Uzoamaka underwent a successful surgery and had long been discharged pending when her family would pay the balance of her medical bill.

“But for four months now, her husband has not visited and we suspected he has absconded,’’ he said.

Man Walks Naked to Earn N10,000 Bet in Abuja

Many residents of Kabayi, Maraba area of Abuja were left stunned when a man, believed to be in his 30s, was seen walking about naked solely to earn N10,000.

According to a report by Daily Trust, the man whose identity drama is yet to be disclosed, started attracting attention when he decided to prove to his friends that he could do anything for money.

It was further reported that after being challenged by his friends, the man accepted the challenge and stripped himself of all clothing materials to walk about naked.

An eyewitness reportedly said: “I couldn’t believe it but it is real. I saw people running to have a
glimpse while others, maybe scared, stayed away.”

After the parade, the man reportedly got his N10,000 prize money and walked away even as residents watched him in dismay.


Source : Pulse

UNICEF: 50 Million Children Uprooted by Crises

War and poverty have forced 50 million children around the world from their homes, according to UNICEF.

Up to 28 million of the children have been uprooted by violent conflict, with nearly as many abandoning their homes in search of a better life, says a report released by the UN agency.

The report, entitled Uprooted: The Growing Crisis for Refugee and Migrant Children, also says that the number of child refugees has more than doubled in the past 10 years from four million to 8.2 million.

UNICEF describes the children as some of the most vulnerable people on earth and gives warning that if governments do not act, the numbers are likely to grow.

Whether it is from war, violence, poverty or climate change, the youngsters have been uprooted by crises they are not responsible for, or have little influence over, says UNICEF.

The report, published on Tuesday, says that children make up about a third of the world’s population as of 2015 and accounted for nearly half of all refugees.

Speaking in Geneva, Ted Chaiban, UNICEF director of programmes, said: “What’s important is that these children on the move are children. And they should be treated as children.

“They deserve to be protected. They need access to services, such as education.”

According to the report, there were 10 million child refugees and one million child asylum seekers whose status had not yet been determined.

The remaining 17 million children displaced by conflict remained within their home countries’ borders.

The report said 45 percent of the children refugees came from just two countries, Syria and Afghanistan.

Increasingly, these children are travelling alone, with 100,000 unaccompanied minors applying for asylum in 78 countries in 2015, three times the number in 2014, the report found.

Because these children often lack documents, they are especially vulnerable.

The report estimates another 20 million children are migrants, driven from their homes by poverty and gang violence among other things.

Refugee and migrant children face a host of risks including drowning during sea crossings, malnourishment, dehydration, kidnapping, rape and murder.

When they arrive in other countries they often face discrimination and xenophobia, the report stated.

“The world hears the stories of child refugees one child at a time and the world is able to bring support to that child, but when we talk about millions it provokes incredible outrage and underscores the need to address the growing problem,” said Emily Garin, the UNICEF report’s author.

The report calls on the international community to provide protection, education and health services to these children and asks governments to address the root causes contributing to the large-scale movements of refugees and migrants.

Nigeria Is One Of The World’s Poorest Countries, 80m Living Below Poverty – UN Report

A United Nations, UN, report on Nigeria’s Common Country Analysis, CCA, has described the country as one of the poorest and unequal country in the world, with over 80m of her population living below poverty line.
This was as the report revealed that the country was deeply divided on the basis of plurality of ethnic, religious and regional identities.
The report was made public during a consultative meeting on the formulation of the UN Development Assistance Framework IV (UNDAF IV) for the South East geo-political zone in Awka.

According to the report, some part of Nigeria had at different times expressed feelings of marginalization, short changed, dominated, oppressed, threatened, and even targeted for elimination.
The report read in part: “Nigeria, with a population of over 175 million, is the most populous nation in Africa and the seventh most populous in the world. Her population will be approximately 200 million by 2019 and over 400 million by 2050, becoming one of the top five populous countries in the world.
“Nigeria is one of the poorest and most unequal countries in the world, with over 80 million or 64% of her population living below poverty line. The situation has not changed over the decades, but is increasing. Poverty and hunger have remained high in rural areas, remote communities and among female –headed households and these cut across the six geo-political zones, with prevalence ranging from approximately 46.9 percent in the South West to 74.3 percent in North West and North East.

“In Nigeria, 37% of children under five years old were stunted, 18 percent wasted, 29% underweight and overall, only 10% of children aged 6-23 months are fed appropriately based on recommended infant and young children feeding practices.
“Youth unemployment which is 42% in 2016 is very high, creating poverty, helplessness, despair and easy target for crime and terrorism. Over 10 million children of school age are out of schools with no knowledge and skills.
“Nigeria’s economy is currently in a recession and it is estimated that government revenues have fallen by as much as 33 percent, which has further resulted in the contraction of the Gross Domestic Product, GDP, by 0.36 percent in the first three months of 2016.
“The vulnerable macroeconomic environment in Nigeria is affecting investors’ confidence in the domestic economy. ?
“Despite the fact that Nigeria is a signatory to a number of protocols on sustainable and renewable environment, the country had, over the decades, failed to protect the environment, ecosystem and natural resources.
“Over-exploitation of natural resources and pollution of the environment, desertification are exposing the population to vulnerability and risks caused by climate change, among others.
“Nigeria is well-endowed with forest resources, accounting for 2.5% of GDP. But Nigeria has one of the highest rates of forest loss in the world. Between 1990 and 2000, Nigeria lost an average of 409,700 hectares of forest per year on average deforestation rate of 3.5% per annum



Nigeria one of the poorest countries in the world, over 80m living below poverty line – UN report

Hungry Villagers Steal Poisonous Grains Which Was Meant For Destruction, In Katsina

Members of Ladanawa village in Katsina state stole bags of poisonous grains meant for destruction in the state. Speaking to journalist on the recent development, the state Commissioner for Local Government, Abdulkadir Ahmed Zakka, said a truck carrying 300 bags of grains from the state Agricultural and Rural Development Agency (KTARDA) main store to another location for destruction, broke down in the village while on its way. The hungry villagers came out in their numbers and began to steal from the grains which had poured out of the bags.

Zakka who paid a visit to the community, appealed to the villagers not to consume the grains and that
they should return it immediately so they can be destroyed. He said security operatives have been mandated to conduct house to house search and that anyone found with the poisonous grains will be punished

Ademuyiwa Adebola Taofeek: ‘Change’ Is A Process And Not A Magical Manifestation

Allow me to reintroduce the subject “Change”; it is a process of becoming different, those with different opinions are those who see it as a ‘fire brigade’ approach. In the real sense, Change is a function of “Process” (series of events to produce a result) which explains why it is not a “Sudden” event.

16 years of this republic is not a sudden event, if those who destroyed this country did it gradually, how then would change come suddenly? With all sincerity, it is a fact worldwide that building is harder and time consuming than destruction. I need not to be a mason to ascertain the above statement. I usually ask myself if Nigerians are sincere with what they want as a people. Do we truly want water on our lands or Mirage, do we seek change or Magic, have we voted PMB or Late Prof. Peller.

For those who don’t know the latter, he was a man that could (according to legends) butcher a man and rearrange in the same vane with the power of magic. The former is a man with the exclusive rights to be called the first citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

To be concise, I, unlike few did a thorough research about his rule few years back which means I was born after his tenure as a Military head of State and I got to know him as a man who knows nothing about magic. My love for him is not far-fetched, it is simply for the love of the state and my only affiliation is to the most populous black nation in the world not of any political party.

I know a few people who wanted our President who contested severally before he was given the mandate to say “abracadabra” after swearing in for them to see a new Nigeria in close resemblance to United States of America.

My enthusiasm to see the Change we voted for is just like yours but on a basis of objectivity and reality. If I were you, I’d look at change from the Yoruba adage which translates thus ; “In pains, the tribal mark is made, but it becomes beautiful to the owner afterwards “

I know preaching patience and endurance as regards this government may make a few question my patriotism but we must say the truth even if things become worse but God forbid.

The budget is an important document to every organisation and society.  It is the biggest working document in an organisation which predicts the success of the organisation or otherwise. The ‘Change’ budget is yet to be passed; the dream of the present administration is (arguably) in the budget.

This is not me throwing stones but the last administration had 5 budgets to work with, we axed them on the fifth. Should we axe the current administration before the passage of its first budget? Doing that would definitely define our confusion.

Obviously, the hardship is bigger than the Change we expect but we must see ourselves as the 160 million Nigerians that are ready to take the sacrifice. If this turns out positive, history will remember us.

I voted for President Muhammadu Buhari not Professor Peller (with all due respect), I voted for Change, not for Magic.

Ademuyiwa Adebola Taofeek


Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Orukotan, Ayomikun Samuel: Begging And Beggars: At A Time Like This!

In any social order, the veracity of pluralism holds in diverse calling. Pluralism is a school of thought that clenches the universal belief of things existing in pair. In the world of algebra, Boolean is akin to pluralism. In any society therefore, this two of a kind trend exist, segregating the rich from the poor, beggars from lenders, villains from heroes, losers from winners etc. such is life in a pluralistic society.

Poverty is the bane of many African countries, including Nigeria. A report presented by the Peace and Security Council (PSC) at the AU summit in Egypt, 2008 has said that poverty fuels separatism wave in Africa. In retrospect, the report informed the need for African policy makers to prioritise anti-poverty initiatives.
According to Professor Yemi Osinbajo, 65 per cent (approximated value) of Nigerians still live below the poverty line despite governments’ intervention programmes to improve the welfare of its citizens. Today, the percentage has increased if only we would be honest with ourselves. Nigerian workers are no longer paid their monthly entitlements and other benefits as and when due in many states of the federal republic of Nigeria. Economic realities have pushed many Nigerians who were once above the poverty line, below it.

In many Nigerian states, the situations of workers are just too pathetic to behold. On top of this, many state governors have become wicked to the plights of these workers who continue to work tirelessly in spite of red bank accounts and empty money bag. Arguably, effectiveness of employees in the public service is now next to zero. Yesterday lenders have become beggars today and yesterday beggars now beg the more either wittingly or unwittingly.

In Nigeria today, the gap between beggars and lenders, the rich and the poor is just too wide. Closing this huge gap should be the headache of any responsive government. In a nation of beggars and lenders, you are either a beggar or a lender. A Lender is the privileged few who has never stolen public funds to enrich themselves but still financially capable at times like this.
It is worthy to note that those people who have enriched themselves with our money are beggars. They may be temporarily rich today but tomorrow time lag for them or their generation in indignity of pain, poverty and sicknesses. The law of karma must surely hold. For the sake of readers who are ardent positivists and optimists, I need to further explain the term begging and beggars.
Begging is an objective subject matter. In an unequivocal term, begging is the process of pleading with someone for help or favour. Begging is not exclusively limited to those who beseech on the street corner, highways and market places from passers-by. Begging is not limited to the physically-challenged-turned-beggar or less-privileged-turned-beggar. In fact, begging is a common ritual among Christians (devoted or not) and Moslems. Christians and Moslems are ‘beggars’. We all ‘beg’ God for one help or the other through supplications, petitions and worship. On that front, there is nothing wrong with begging.
A while ago, the Lagos State Government (LASG) sent packing beggars from streets, major roads and highways in Lagos just because begging has become an eyesore in a place like Lagos. I ask myself after the whole show. What are the plans of LASG for those beggars dislodged from their ancestral homes?
In Nigeria today, many public servants (Health workers, teachers, academics etc.) have become diurnal beggars. Even, in the private sector, beggars are there in leaps and in bounds. In the civil service today, there is little or no longer room for management fraud and its attendant forms of stealing. The salaries are no longer forth-coming like it used to, workers are being retrenched on daily basis due to economic realities and unforeseen contingencies keeps getting out of bed. The only sacred option is to beg instead of stealing from the common patrimony.
Though, many public servants are in this predicament of ‘begging stylishly’ because of poor saving culture, misplaced priorities and poor planning. Of course, beggars are slaves to their lenders.

More, many Nigerians have become temporary or permanent slave due to government’s inadequacies and economic realities. The 2016 national budget padding is a reflection of how desperate some beggars could be. Per Diem, many have resorted to the business of begging just to eke out a paltry living. On the other hand, it is a blessing in disguise because it has taught the “begging” public and private workers not to use the whole of the ten fingers to eat anymore. Notwithstanding, Government at all levels should take workers’ welfare more seriously. After all, it is one benchmark of measuring good governance.

Spiritual leaders should begin to manifest the light in a very dark world. At a time of universal deceit, they should be agents that proclaim only the truth. At a time when Armageddon cites everywhere, they should do the work of God without any form of deceit. Spiritual leaders have holistic assignments to perform at times like this.

Most unfortunately, some of our so called ‘religious leaders’ are now real time beggars. In the name of religion, many atrocities have been committed by ‘servants of God’. Many religious rituals have been commercialized by our so called Pastors, Prophets, Evangelists, Imams and Alfas. One of the best ways of gaining access into a man is through his belly. Because of the belly, lies have been told against God, the Holy Spirit has been grieved severally. Because of the belly, the spirit of hunger is now the driving force, no longer the Holy Spirit. At times like this, these are the fruits.
In the annals of Nigeria history, there was a time when higher education certificates such as B.Sc., M.Sc., HND or even NCE were regarded as “meal-ticket”. Then, holders of such valued certificates were believed to have passed the poverty line. In our day, the reality of time immemorial is no longer plausible. Many graduates with such valued credentials in sundry profession have become first class beggars.

In a survey recently conducted by the Nigerian Chartered Institute of Personnel Management (CIPM), it has discovered that the high rate of unemployment in Nigeria is not due to paucity of Jobs as popularly thought but that: a lot of our graduates are just not employable. This critical unearthing which holds a little truth, boils down to the poor quality of Public education in Nigeria. Our educational system is also begging.

Alas, graduates don’t want to beg. It is overt, many of them hate to beg but who will save them from situations that act against their popular wish? The 2014 immigration Job screening turned National scam is a proof of their tenacity to cross the threshold of poverty as specified by the United Nations. Again, when will they become responsible citizens?

The people should be the concern of any humane government. The government should always ask themselves some basic questions in the course of governing the governed.  How many people are eating from the National cake? Are youth empowerment programmes sufficiently transparent enough, accountable to a fault and reaching the right beneficiaries? What are the yardsticks used by government at all levels to share the dividends of democracy if any?
A report in 2014, as carried out by the Nigeria Security and Reconciliation Programme, NSRP has reported that 79 per cent of Nigerian youths feel that only those close to politicians benefit mostly from seldom youth employment and empowerment interventions. The government of the day needs to prove this otherwise with more proactive measures.

Many factors have enlarged the number of beggars in the country. There is time for everything. This is time to get more serious with the herculean task of governance, not the time to pass the buck when the ticking clock does not trudge. This is the time to pay more attention to; worker’s welfare, continued increase in unemployment, high rate of poverty on mother land, the fight against corruption and everything that speaks badly of us as a nation-state. This Buhari led presidency surely has a lot to do in a country of fewer lenders and plenty beggars. May God help him.
Orukotan, Ayomikun Samuel, a graduate of Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the Federal University of Technology, Akure, writes from Ondo

Mail: orukotanayomikun@yahoo.com   phone No: +2347061926514

Orukotan, Ayomikun Samuel

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Kidnappers Of Samson Siasia’s Mum Demand N150 Million Ransom

The abductors of the 72 year old mother of U-23 National team Coach Samson Siasia, Madam Beauty Siasia, has demanded N150 million ransom for her safe return.

The younger brother of Samson, Moses Siloko Siasia, who is also the Governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM), in the December 5 election, made the disclosure while speaking with The Guardian in Yenagoa.

Moses disclosed that the family had opened channel of communication with the criminals. “We are communicating with them (abductors). It shall be well, we are dealing with it,” he said.

When asked if he thinks the abduction was targeted at his mother in order to distract him, he said: “If that was the plans, then it is bound to fail because I am now stronger in my resolve to come tops in the forthcoming Governorship election.

The old women was abducted on Monday in the riverside town of Odoni, Sagbama Local Government Area of Bayelsa State by about three gunmen who stormed the community in a commando-style operation on motorcycles.

Her abduction occurred less than 24 hours after a leading Ijaw musician, Grandmaster Pereama Freetown, was kidnapped by some yet to be identified gunmen at Polaku in Yenagoa.

The Inspector General of Police, Solomon Aranse assured yesterday that the police was working round the clock to ensure the safe release of Siasia’s mother.

Making Babies In Poverty… Charly Boy Writes..

Go ye into the world be fruitful and multiply, oh! yes that’s what the good book says. However certain people take this literally. They see children as a blessing from God and they view it as their duty to fulfill this prophecy by promoting procreation, rejecting all forms of birth control, including natural family planning.

Children are viewed as a reward from God and the more children one has, the more one has been blessed by God but the big question is, does this put food on the table especially in this hard times?!!

I’m still trying to wrap my head around why the poor have more children when they can’t afford to raise them. And why the rich have fewer children when they can afford to have more. The population demography of any society is vital in Nation building and governments around the world have effected policies to control this growth.

A very good example will be China’s one child per family policy, which has now been upgraded to two. It will be commonsensical to say that people breed their kind this means a rich family is most likely to have rich children, and a poor family, poor children. In Nigeria we have a large majority of low income earners who are multiplying the number of children they have. Children they can not afford to take care of. So wouldn’t it make common sense to say that the less one earns, the less children you should have?

This is one of life’s ironies.

People who are rich and can afford to have more children will not yet those that can not afford it do. Low income spouses spend more leisure time together than families of high income earners. It will be typical in our society today, to see a high income family where both couples are gainfully employed, close work late and get home from a hectic day too tired and stressed to indulge in any intimate act but the lower income earner seem to have more leisure time and less distractions to focus on their love plays with their tomato selling wives. Why is this so?

Breeding children has become a recreational sport for the poor, I feel this is an issue that we all collectively as a society need to address. I use to think that it was mostly in the rural areas that this kind of demography is rampant but that’s not the case, the other day I was shocked to find out that a friend’s security guard who earns 30,000.00 naira monthly has two wives and ten children. Hummmmm, How on earth are they going to survive on that, what type of education, feeding, clothing can he provide for them in today’s Nigeria. Don’t they understand that intimacy between spouses is also an occasion to be savored and pleasurably enjoyed and not just for making babies?

We all need to wake up to the harsh effects that this is having.  Government needs to have more enlightenment and sensitization programs that will address this issue. There is a need to inform the populace about the harmful effects of having children that one cannot afford to raise properly. The most obvious aftereffects are when you see children hawking in the street in order to fend for their families. This is not an issue for the government to tackle alone, the private sector also has to join in. The first solution will be circulating constant information about family planning: Due to a range of factors including education and location of living, poor women don’t have access to as many family control measures as richer women so richer women have substantially fewer “unintended” pregnancies than poorer women.

For all my brothers and sisters coping with survival I urge you all to think more about family planning, I know God blesses us with children but we must learn to plan our family according to our means. By the way, I have 9 children but thank God my school fees days are over or else e for hardooooo. So my simple summary today is, cultivate your sperm according to your pocket size. A word they say, is good for the wise.

Written by Charly Boy

N5,000 Monthly Stipend Not Enough To Alleviate Poverty- PDP Senators

Two senators have urged the ruling All Progressives Congress to increase its proposed monthly allowance for unemployed Nigerians from N5,000, saying the amount was inadequate for alleviating their hardship.

The senators, who are Peoples Democratic Party members, said in Abuja, that APC should evolve a better welfare scheme that would assuage the pains of the unemployed and aged.

According to Foster Ogola (PDP-Bayelsa West), while the N5,000 monthly stipend promised by the APC is a good idea, it is not the solution to the needs of the people.

“The N5,000 palliative promised by the APC led government is not the solution to the endemic problem of poverty in the country; we have to teach Nigerians how to fish, not just give them fish.

“There must be a proper welfare scheme that takes care of the aged, who have served Nigeria; people, who have not received their entitlement, neither gratuity nor pension benefits.

“A soldier, for instance, cannot fight and after 35 years, still have to struggle to get his entitlement.

“As it is done abroad, the moment you are 70 years or more, you are entitled to free medical care; they are called the ‘seniors’ and they don’t pay transport fare,’’ he said.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Retired Army Colonel Arrested For Stealing Lawmaker’s Car

A retired colonel, Bassey Jackson-Umoh, was on Thursday paraded by the Cross River State Police command for allegedly stealing a 2008 model of Toyota Highlander belonging to a member of the Cross River House of Assembly, Mr. Steven Okpupken.

The Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. John Eluu, said the suspect was arrested with the vehicle in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State following complaints from a car dealer.

Punch reports that ,the retired colonel, who allegedly posed as Maj.-Gen Peter Williams, attached to the Aso Rock Villa in Abuja, had issued a dud cheque to the car dealer and left an old Toyota Camry car in the dealer’s custody.

But the suspect while being paraded boasted that he would deal with all those connected with his travail when he regained his freedom.
“At the end of the day, the truth will come out and I will deal with all those connected with this and everybody connected will pay for it,” he boasted.
However, the PPRO maintained that the blue Toyota Highlander with number plate, Cross River BKS 214 AA, was received fraudulently.
He said,
“On October 5, 2015, one Mr. Steven Okpukpen, a member of the state House of Assembly, came to the command with a written petition that he gave out his 2008 Toyota Highlander for sale. He gave the light blue vehicle to the owner of Micah Motors to be placed for sale at the cost of N3m.
“He stated that to his surprise, the manager of Micah Motors informed him that one retired Maj. Gen. Peter Williams came to his car shop and indicated interest to buy the Highlander and another Honda Accord car for N7.5m.
“In his petition, he also stated that the said retired colonel, who introduced himself as Maj. Gen. Peter Williams, had on October 3, issued a post-dated cheque to be cashed on October 5, by the Managing Director of Micah Motors. But on presentation of the cheque to the bank, it was dishonoured by the bank for insufficient funds.”
The PPRO said upon receipt of the information, a team of detective from the Special Anti-Robbery Squad in the state trailed the suspect to Uyo where he was arrested.
He added,
“During investigation, the suspect confessed to the police that his real name was Col. Bassey Jackson-Umoh (retd). He said that Maj. Gen. Peter Williams was his fake business name which he used in duping members of the public.
“He equally confessed that he was fully aware that there was no money in the said bank account. He confessed that since his Toyota Camry car was bad and he needed a new car and had no money to buy a new one, he had to convince the car dealer that there was money in the said bank account. He did this dirty deal so as to allow him take possession of the Toyota Highlander and the Honda car.”
Meanwhile, Okpupken, who is the chairman of the House Committee on Public Accounts, has commended the state police command for the manner with which it handled the case.
In a letter he addressed to the police command, the lawmaker said contrary to the negative impression created against the police, the case had shown that the police had a better image than what was being portrayed.

CBN Forex Policy: Over 40,000 Nigerians To Lose Jobs – Analysts

…Over 40, 000 Nigerians to lose jobs

The federal government’s drive to create jobs for millions of unemployed Nigerians may suffer a huge set back following the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) recent directive excluding some essential raw materials from the list of items valid for forex in the Nigerian Foreign Exchange (forex) markets. According to business analysts, this move will in no time lead to the lay-off of over 40, 000 Nigerians who work in the manufacturing sector.

It will be recalled that the CBN recently excluded some essential raw materials from the list of items valid for forex in the forex markets. According to the CBN, the policy is intended to sustain the stability of the foreign exchange market, “resuscitate local manufacturing” and change the structure
of the economy.

Reacting on the looming danger as a result of the policy, president, Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), Alhaji Remi Bello, said most manufacturers might be forced to shut down and move their operations to neighbouring countries for business activities due to their inability to access foreign exchange for raw materials and other critical inputs. This, he believes, would lead to massive job loss in the manufacturing sector.

“There is pressure on manufacturers to lay off their workforce before the end of the year. Most manufacturers affected have been unable to produce lately due to lack of foreign exchange, delays in the processing of Form ‘M’ to import raw materials in order to meet demands and this has adversely led to loss of market share.

With this continuing, massive job loss is anticipated in no time from now,” he said.

For example, the manufacturing sector using Crude Palm oil as raw material in their daily production of goods like biscuits, noodles, cosmetics among others will be affected as the locally produced and supplied raw material cannot meet the required demand for production.

According to IndexMundi, a data portal, the domestic palm oil produced totalled 930,000 MT in 2014, while the consumption of palm oil in Nigeria amounts to 2.0 million MT per annum in exclusion of the manufacturing sector.

The official figures states that the shortage in oil palm industry is estimated to be around 1.07 million MT annually. This poses a very precarious situation for the manufacturing sector that depends largely on CPO as a major source of raw material. If this shortage is not filled with importation of high quality food grade palm oil, the economy will lose further investment in the manufacturing sector as companies would shut down and staff laid-off.

Among the 41 items marked as ‘Not Fit for Forex’ also include: rice, cement, margarine, meat and processed meat products, vegetables and processed vegetable products, Poultry chicken, eggs, turkey, Private airplanes/jets, Indian incense, Tinned fish in sauce(Geisha)/sardines, Cold rolled steel sheets, Galvanized steel sheets, Roofing sheets, Wheelbarrows, Head pans, Metal boxes among others.

The resultant effect of this is an outrageous increase in the cost of these items locally for consumers and ultimately inflation, which is largely due to inability to access foreign exchange.

The LCCI president further lamented that, for an economy that is largely driven by the private investors, the government should source for alternative means rather than resorting to a total exclusion of certain items from the foreign exchange market.He however urged the FG to prevail on the CBN to review the policy in the interest of the workforce, the private sector and the economy at large.

Source: Vanguard

US To Give Buhari $2.3bn To Eradicate Poverty In Nigeria

Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media and Publicity, Mr. Laolu Akande, disclosed in a statement on Sunday that the Federal Government has signed a $2.3bn assistance agreement aimed at fighting extreme poverty with the United States Agency for International Development, USAID.
Akande said the agreement would help the Nigerian Government combat extreme poverty in the nation over the next five years.
Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo was said to have signed the agreement on behalf of the Federal Government while the USAID Head of Mission in Nigeria, Mr. Michael Harvey, signed on behalf of the US government during a meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, last week.
He said:

“The issue of the extreme poverty of a vast majority of Nigerians is a very important issue for us. It is at the heart of our economic policy. You can’t have that vast number of poor people and don’t plan around that and for us this is crucial and absolutely important,” Osinbajo was reported to have said.

He promised that the present administration would continue to lead a transparent and an open government, improve the economy and address the drop pout rates of school children.
The USAID director said the agreement would provide a solid foundation for the two countries to partner to reduce inequalities across the country.

Lagos Police Arrest Man For Stealing Bridge Rails

A middle aged man identified as Musa Inusa pictured above, was arrested by the Lagos state police command while stealing bridge rails with two other members of his gang who escaped around Costain area of Lagos on September 14th at about 2:30 am. When interrogated, Musa who is from Kano state said

“I am one of the three-man syndicate who are stealing the bridge rails across the state. We have our own market where we sell the stolen rails. I am a native of Pagee Local Government Area in Kano State where my parents live at the moment.
When I got to Lagos in 2010 to search for means of livelihood, all my efforts to secure a job were fruitless. It was Ibrahim who introduced this robbery act to me. The midnight I was arrested, Ibrahim, Abdullahi and I went to Costain by National Arts Theater and stole ten pieces of aluminium bridge rails. On our way back, we were intercepted by the Police. We always sell one pole of bridge rail to one Alhaji Ibrahim at Ijora at the rate of seven thousand naira.”he told Vanguard

The Commander of the Lagos state Rapid Response Squad RSS, Assistant Commissioner of Police, ACP Olatunji Disu, while speaking on the arrest, said policemen on patrol intercepted the suspect and his gang members while carting away the stolen railings.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that the suspect and his gang members were in the habit of cutting down the rails of highway bridges meant to save lives when eventualities occur on the highway within the metropolis,” he said.

Efforts to apprehend the other two suspects is on.

Bauchi Governor Pledges To Reduce Poverty By 50 Percent In 4yrs

Gov. Mohammed Abubakar of Bauchi state on Thursday promised that his administration would reduce poverty level by 50 per cent within four years.
Abubakar made the pledge in Bauchi while exchanging views with officials from the World Bank led by Folusho Okunmuadewa who visited him.
He emphasised that his administration was committed towards reducing the poverty level of the people by 50 per cent considering the high rate of economic hardship in the state.
The governor disclosed that his administration has concluded plans to increase girl-child enrolment in the educational system of the state as one of the programmes being pursued by the World Bank.
He said that in spite of the lean resources of the state, he would ensure that all projects being handled by the bank were assisted.
Abubakar said he had instructed that N80 million outstanding funds for health projects being handled by Bill and Melinda Gate and Dangote foundations be paid to the beneficiaries.
He frowned at the epileptic state of the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state and promised to redeem all his electoral pledges.
The governor urged officials of the bank to initiate additional projects that would reduce the poverty level in the state.
He pledged that his administration would ensure prompt payment of counterpart fund whenever necessary to ensure that the state benefit from various programme.
The Sector Leader, World Bank, Country Office, Nigeria, had earlier said that 27,000 persons in 180 communities from six local government areas of the state have benefitted from the programme of the bank.
Okunmuadewa said that the bank has selected another 2,000 persons out of the 10,000 persons registered in the state have been targeted to benefit from subsequent programmes in six selected council areas of the state.
He said that 5,000 households in the state have benefited from the Cash-Transfer Programme of the bank and the bank has targeted another 2,000 persons.
The team leader said that the bank has selected 420 persons in the state to train them under the bank’s Public Work Programme within nine months.
He advised the state government to pay its N10 million counterpart fund to enable the bank execute one of its programmes in the state. (NAN)

Soldiers In Aba Kill Kidnapper, Arrest 2 Members Of His Gang, Including A Lady

Soldiers of the 144 Battalion of the Nigerian Army, stationed at Asa in Ukwa West local government area of Abia State have shot dead a kidnapper, arrested two members of his gang, including a lady, and rescued a female victim.

Vanguard gathered that an Aba-based business woman, Mrs. Rita Anaekwe, was last Sunday night abducted at her residence on Anaekwe Street, Umuleta village, Obinkwu in Ukwa West local
government area.

Family sources said the hoodlums gained entry into the house through the back fence and shot dead the family dog before gaining access to the main building.

The sources hinted that when the kidnappers got to the lady, whose husband was said to have traveled, they demanded for cash, gold bracelets and other valuables from the woman which she gave them. After collecting the items, the hoodlums were also said to have demanded for the key of the family’s Nissan Pathfinder Sport Utility Vehicle, SUV, with which they whisked the woman away.

News reaching KDB say Soldiers of the 144 battalion who were alerted to the incident, trailed the kidnappers to their hideout.
In the ensuing gun duel, one of the kidnappers was reportedly shot dead, while two others, including a female member, was arrested.

A military source said Anaekwe was rescued unhurt, while her vehicle was later recovered by men of the Police Area Command, Aba.

Speaking with journalists, Anaekwe commended the efforts of the soldiers in rescuing her and the vehicle a few hours after the incident.

Commanding Officer of the 144 battalion, Lt. Col. Kasim Umar Sidi, who confirmed the incident, said investigations were ongoing and promised that fleeing members of the gang would soon be arrested.

Salary: Osun Government, Workers Meeting Deadlocked, Strike Continues

Moves aimed at ending the seven-week-old industrial action embarked upon by civil servants in Osun State over non-payment of their salaries failed to pay off over the weekend as meeting between the labour and government delegates ended in a stalemate.

Tribune Online gathered that the workers insisted that the only thing that could compel them to call off the strike is the payment of at least two months out of their seven months salaries.

Sources at the meeting held between the Chief of Staff to the governor, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola and the labour leaders under the leadership of Comrade Jacob Adekomi, who is the chairman of the state chapter of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC)  at the weekend in Osogbo, the state capital, informed Tribune Online  that the government prevailed on the workers to call off the strike while the labour leaders reportedly insisted that ‘no alert, no resumption.’

According to one of the sources at the meeting, “we could safely aver that the parley was deadlocked as no agreement could be reached between the labour and the government. The  leadership of the union stood their ground that bank alert of salaries payment on their handsets of workers would determine when the strike would be called off.”

He further hinted that they told the government representative that if the workers received payment alert on their handsets on Monday, they would call the strike off and workers would resume on Tuesday and if otherwise, the strike continues.

“At Least, if two months could be paid by the government out of the accumulated seven months salaries owed, the strike will be called off for a while while pressure will be mounted to receive the remaining five months in no distant time,”the source added.

Credit – www.tribuneonlineng.com

See Photos Of The Ikorodu Bank Robbers Being Paraded By Lagos State Police Command

hese are the faces of the suspected criminals who partook in the Ikorodu robbery -attacking two banks and carting away with huge sum of money….The robbers attacked the banks located at Ipakodo Ebute, near Ogolonto in Ikorodu. They were said to have used speed boats in accessing the community, raiding First Bank and Zenith bank in the area. See more photos below…


PHOTO CREDIT: Damilare Okunola

Beninoise Wife Poisons Husband Over Boyfriend In Lagos

A Beninoise, Kwenume Ojo, aka Abiodun, has been arrested by men of the Lagos State Police Command for allegedly killing her husband, Jimoh Ojo, 32, in the Yaba area of the state.
PUNCH Metro learnt that Kwenume put poison in her husband’s soft drink and forced it down his throat while he slept on the bed.
Our correspondent gathered that the 17-year-old suspect took the poison from a relative of her boyfriend after she was forced to marry Jimoh.The incident happened on Friday on Apolo Street, the Makoko area of Lagos.

Jimoh’s in-law, Rotimi Akinlagun, explained that the deceased was retarded, which made it difficult for him to get a wife.He said his marriage to Kwenume was arranged by the two families.
He said,
“Jimoh was a carpenter. When he was born, he fell sick and that affected his health as he became retarded.“When he became mature, we decided to get him a wife. We started asking around for anybody who could give him a wife.“Kwenume’s father heard and he contacted Jimoh’s family. He gave them Kwenume to become Jimoh’s wife. She had no choice in the matter.”
PUNCH Metro learnt that Kwenume’s father took the decision to prevent her from marrying her boyfriend, who he did not like.
The dislike, it was gathered, stemmed from the maltreatment of Kwenume’s sister, who was married into the boyfriend’s family.
“She was brought to me and we took her to Jimoh’s hometown in Yewa, Ogun State. He was going there to make love with her. After six months, she became pregnant and we brought her back to Lagos State.
“The couple moved into a new apartment to start a new family. Their apartment was close to my house so I could monitor them. Abiodun (Kwenume) was assisting my wife to sell food at her canteen,” Rotimi added.
Our correspondent learnt that after giving birth to a baby girl, christened Hannah, the suspect became attracted to her former boyfriend and she started visiting him.
She was said to have met his elder brother, Wensu, an herbalist, who allegedly gave her the poison to put in her hubby’s drink so she could marry the unidentified boyfriend.
Jimoh’s elder sister, Modupe Akinlagun, said the victim had returned from work on the fateful Friday and visited her shop to get food.
She said, “He dished the food himself and ate. After eating, I asked him to go home and rest. When his wife returned from an errand I sent her, I asked her to also return home with her baby.
“I was still there when his wife came to call me that he had slumped in the toilet.
“When we got there, people had surrounded him and were pouring palm oil into his mouth. He was vomiting the oil and a white substance. He kept saying, ‘Iya Hannah has killed me, she opened my mouth and poured drug inside.’
“Iya Hannah (Kwenume) denied Jimoh’s accusation, but he insisted that she forced the poison down his throat.”
Another relative explained that Kwenume put the poison in a bottle of drink that the victim had brought home to share with her.
He said, “They usually shared their food and drinks together. After he finished eating at the canteen that day, he bought a bottle of drink and drank half. He took the remaining home to share with his wife.
“It was when she returned that she put the poison in the drink. She then forced it down his throat.”
Modupe’s husband said Jimoh died around 11.30pm on Friday.
He said the community elders took Kwenume aside to press her for information on where she got the poison.He said after some time, she confessed to the crime, adding that she collected the poison from her boyfriend’s brother who lived in the Sogunro, Iwaya area of the state.
He said, “Around 3am on Saturday, a policeman, together with some of our people went to get the man.”
The two suspects were said to have been kept till dawn until a team of policemen from the Adekunle division arrived in six vans.
PUNCH Metro gathered that some youths attempted to lynch both suspects, but for the intervention of the policemen.
The traditional ruler of the Egun community, Seriki Dito,appealed to governmental and non-governmental organisations, to assist in taking care of the couple’s child, Hannah.
He said, “This is something that has shaken our community terribly. We want the government to give the deceased justice. We also want help for the girl because she is almost an orphan now.”
The Police Public Relations Officer, Kenneth Nwosu, confirmed the incident, adding that it had been transferred to the Department of Criminal Investigation.
He said, “The woman and her accomplice are in custody. The case has been transferred to the DCI for investigation.”

Panel Beater Shot Dead In Attempt To Kidnap Europe Returnee

A panel beater at Obollo-Afor in Udenu Local Government Area of Enugu State has been shot dead while his colleague was badly wounded in an attempt to kidnap a returnee from Europe in his country home at Amube, Enugu-Ezike.

Vanguard gathered that the two kidnappers from Benue State had been terrorising inhabitants of the area, raping and robbing unsuspecting victims of their valuables till the attempt to kidnap the returnee at his building site.

The suspects, identified as Tessy Iyong, 34, sustained bullet wounds and several machete cuts, and Sesso Nyoaku, a panel beater and father of four, was shot dead while fleeing as the police accosted them, with support from local vigilante group in the area.

Vanguard investigations revealed that the kidnappers were dropped by a motorcycle at the building site of the returnee whose identity could not be ascertained at the time of this report, met a young man with a metallic Toyota Camry, and enquired if he was the owner of the building under construction.

It was further learned that when the young man said he came to see the owner of the project, the suspects disbelieved him because of his physical frame, pointed a gun at him and demanded his car keys which he surrendered without hesitation and they drove away.
Workers at the site were said to have immediately put calls across to Igbo- Eze North police division that a car had been snatched at Amube, prompting pursuit of the suspects.

It was gathered that the kidnappers abandoned the vehicle and fled into the bush, exchanging gun fire with the police.

The vigilante group in the community reportedly cordoned off the bush path, making it possible for the police to apprehend the suspects with gunshot wounds, even as an English made pistol was recovered from them.

One of the suspects, Tessy Iyong, told Vanguard that their mission was not to kidnap the returnee from Europe but to rob him of cash as they understood that he carried cash to the site as he paid his workers on daily basis.

Iyong explained that his dead accomplice, Sesso, was the one who brought the job since he understood the terrain as a panel beater who had lived at Obollo-Afor for sometime.

‘’We snatched the Toyota Camry to escape from the area, our intention was not to steal the car but to escape in it because the motorcycle that dropped us had left and we cannot trek to do that kind of work, it is risky.

‘’We know and that was why we took the car from the owner, although we thought he was the actual owner of the building when we struck,” he said.

Senator Boroffice Denies NASS Members Will Be Receiving N8.64bn Wardrobe Allowance, Says It’s For Miscellaneous Expenses

A member of the National Assembly, Senator Ajayi Borrofice representing Ondo North has come out to deny reports that the National Assembly Members will be given N8.64bn as wardrobe allowance.

Speaking to ThisDay, Senator Borrofice said the controversial N8.64bn to be released to members of the National Assembly is for miscellaneous or regular expenses such as motor vehicle fueling and maintenance, wardrobe, domestic staff, personal assistant, constituency office, house maintenance, utilities and entertainment, among other perks, for the entire 469 lawmakers in the National Assembly.

Senator Borrifice said the miscellaneous allowance also includes cost of securing and equipping constituency offices in various local government areas which make up their constituencies and also includes monies to be used by lawmakers to organize town hall meetings in their various constituencies.

He said it was wrong for the public to believe they will be using N8.64 billion just for clothes.

According to him, the wardrobe allowance is the least significant to the assembly members. He stated that the miscellaneous allowance they will receive will be deducted in tranches from their salaries.

The report of the lawmakers collecting N8.64 billion as their wardrobe allowance surfaced yesterday June 16th with most Nigerians strongly condemning it.

Food Prices Getting Too Expensive In Lagos – Report

Stuffs are getting very expensive, yet workers are not making more money. How will Nigerians cope?

Food prices, especially those of yam and soup ingredients like tomato, pepper, etc. in Lagos, are rising too fast to the detriment of average Nigerians. The reason for the rise, according to traders, is a combination of the scarcity and hike in the prices of petroleum products across the country.

While many traders blamed the situation on the activities of insurgents in the North where these items are brought from, others attributed it to high cost of transportation, extra charges at the depot and shortage in supply of the goods, since many farmer in the North are running because of Boko Haram.

At the popular Ketu market, Lagos, which is the depot for tomato coming in from the North, it was observed that the prices of tomato and pepper have increased by over 100 per cent in the past two weeks. For example: a small basket of tomato previously sold for between N5,000 and N6,000 now goes for N18,0000, while the big basket sold initially for N12,000 now goes for between N26,000 and N27,000 depending on the dealers and bargaining ability.

Also, a medium basket of ordinary pepper increased from N8,000 to N15,000 while a basket load of Tatashe pepper now sells for N17.000 instead of N10,000.

When Vanguard visited the Ketu market, it was observed that the prices of melon, yam, crayfish and stock fish are going up. A small paint-plastic of crayfish sold for N1,200 now goes for N2,500 and above, a big tuber of yam that went for N300 before the elections now goes for N600 and above.

A tomato trader at the Ketu depot, Mr. Abdulli Isa, said the problem started before the just concluded general elections, when the supply in tomato and pepper into the depot reduced drastically, such that the shortage greatly affected the quality of tomato coming into the market.

He said, “Also, the dealers bringing in the items from the North incur financial losses due to some factors. These include high cost of transporting the goods to Lagos, the quantity of tomato and pepper that are destroyed due to the distance and method of conveyance. Sometimes we spend two to three days on the road to convey these items to the depot in Lagos, even after bringing them from the farm.”

Meanwhile, two women running restaurants at a motor park in Lagos lamented the hike in the prices of food items, in particular tomato and pepper, saying it was affecting their business as customers were not willing to pay more money than they hitherto paid for food.

9 Pregnant Girls Rescued From Enugu Baby Factory #Photo

The Enugu State police command, yesterday, disclosed that it has discovered a baby factory located within Etiti Amankwo Ngwo, 9th Mile in Udi local government area of the state.

A statement made available by the command’s public relations officer, Ebere Amaraizu, in Enugu, said  operatives of the 9th Mile Division of  the command, through their robust intelligence network and patrols within the area and its environs discovered the baby factory.

Four Men Nabbed At Enugu Airport Trying To Smuggle Hard Drugs To China And Turkey

They are Emmanuel Chukwuebuka Ifeanyichukwu, caught with 1.293kg of cocaine on his way to Istanbul, Turkey. Ukaeji Eric Tochukwu, with 1.408kg of cocaine on his way to Hong Kong. Nwoye Ekene Godfrey, caught with 1.283kg of cannabis on his way to Guangzhou, China.

38-year old Godfrey Nwoye, has been arrested by officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, for concealing 1.283 kilogrammes of cannabis sativa inside garri en route Guangzhou, China.

The culprit, who hails from Ukpommili Village in Dunukofia Local Government Area of Anambra State, said he wanted to sell the cannabis in China and use the proceeds to buy goods.

Another suspect, Samuel Anele, a commercial tricycle rider, who was about to board a flight to Bombay, India, was arrested with 4.892 kilogrammes of methamphetamine, the NDLEA said in a statement Wednesday.

Mr. Samuel Anele, 45, and other suspects were arrested for offences ranging from concealing illicit drugs in their luggage to ingesting the drugs, the NDLEA said.  Samuel said he’s going to Bombay to see how big it really is after Wizkid claimed a girl’s bum bum was bigger than Bombay n her backside was making him throway in his song titled “Bombay” where he featured Phyno

The suspects were arrested on their way to Turkey, China, and Hong Kong with 8.876kg of various illicit drugs.

According to the NDLEA Commander at Enugu Airport, Nsikak-Abasi Udoh “The suspects are helping our team of investigators”.

Mr. Anele was caught with 4.892kg concealed in false bottom of his luggage aboard an Ethiopian Airline on the Enugu-Addis Ababa-Bombay route.

“Life is not fair to me. Every day it is one problem after another and the money I earn is not enough,” said Mr. Anele, from Ichi village, Ekwusigo Local Government Area of Anambra State.

“It was frustration that made me to smuggle drugs. They promised me that the drug has been properly hidden and that when I return they will pay me the sum of one million naira.

“At the airport, my bag was searched and the drug detected. Now I am now left alone to suffer”, he lamented.

The other suspects, Emmanuel Chukwuebuka, was caught with 1.293kg of cocaine on his way to Istanbul, Turkey; while Eric Ukaeji was arrested with 1.408kg of cocaine on his way to Hong Kong.

Mr. Chukwuebuka, 31, who is married with a child and hails Ezioko in Orumba North Local Government Area of Anambra State, ingested 1.293kg of substances that tested positive for cocaine. He was to depart Enugu to Istanbul through Addis Ababa on an Ethiopian Airline flight before he was nabbed.

His reason for trafficking in drugs was to raise more money for his business, according to the NDLEA.

If he had successfully trafficked the drug, he would have received US$ 3,000 on arrival in Turkey.

Mr. Ukaeji, 43, who hails from Ajali in Orumba Local Government Area of Anambra State ingested cocaine weighing 1.408 kilograms.

According to the NDLEA, his route was Enugu-Addis Ababa-Hong Kong on an Ethiopian Airline.

I his confession, Mr. Ukaeji said he wanted to raise money for his business and the treatment of his sick daughter.

“I used to buy clothes from Hong Kong. I am married with three children. I dropped out of school in Junior Secondary class 3”, said Mr. Ukaeji.

“They promised to pay me 5,000 dollars on delivery in Hong Kong, which I would have used to buy goods”, he added.

NDLEA Chairman, Ahmadu Giade, said that the Agency would continue to step up security checks at the nation’s entry and exit points.

Dear Gov. Olusegun Mimiko, You Are Not Working For Ondo People! By Orukotan Ayomikun Samuel

Many of South-Western Nigeria’s political figures today only wear Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s (COA’s) trademark cap but lack a great fraction of his mental strength and administrative acumen. Some even wear his eye-glasses as a pretentious similitude of Chief Obafemi Awolowo’s eagle-likened vision that distinguished him among folks during and after his time of life but guess what, these political opportunists lack foresight. One thing is certain- COA influenced his immediate society. Like father, like son they say but there is a huge difference in this figure of speech. I begin to wonder reasons for the extreme mutation.
Sir, On February 21st 2014, I wrote an article to you via Mr Japheth Omojuwa’s blog (www.omojuwa.com) under the caption “Dear Gov. Olusegun Mimiko, you are not working for the Ondo people.” Sir, this same article was again published in the letter category of the Punch’s newspaper on March 13th 2014 under the polemic tag “Sunshine State, stand up and be counted”. Also, on the 7th of March 2014, Sahara Reporters published in their article category the second part of “Oh ye Sunshine State, Stand up and be Counted (2)”. The intents and content of all these syndicated articles all wind up as to the mere fact that you are not working for the interest of your people. Sir, responses followed those critiques, as usual, mails were equally received by me in which many were of the opinion that you are not actually working for the people of the sunshine state. Mr Governor, from my thorough investigation, they are not from the opposition party neither
do they hate you in person but they actually detest the fact that some of the same people whom you had sworn to protect their very interests are going to bed with empty stomachs. Those denied their legitimate entitlements are becoming irresponsible persons to their immediate families and even community.
Sir, I checked the archives a while ago, I found out you owe pensioners their entitlement, you owe teachers two months’ salary already across the state. Succinctly, you owe almost everybody in the state one thing or another.  Even, your responsible children are still being owed their little annual stipend of N100, 000.00 and N10, 000.00 respectively for year 2014.  Sir, the scholarship merit award for year 2014 have not being received by the Ondo State students who applied, met the stipulated requirements and even wrote the Computer-based exam. Of which, it has been stated otherwise to public ears through the radio media that the payment of scholarship and even bursary was approved by you some weeks before the original date of the presidential elections in the country. Surprisingly, only a few students were even paid the bursary stipend of N 10,000.00 while the scholarship to worthy students has not been paid at all.
This unfathomably neglect of the whole award poses a serious challenge on the integrity of you and your government even when N500.00 and N1000.00 respectively were used to register for these awards.  Sir, as I have always believed, you are a poster-child of one of those cliques of public office bearers in Nigeria that do not joke with the virility of the media- it has even become crystal as you rarely grant too many interviews. All owing to the fact that you tend to lend credence to whatever you say outside politics but this time round, it goes against your usual norm, and so, I suspect a missing link between you, your government and the cheated students. Absolutely, something is wrong somewhere. it is either something is wrong with me or your government being managed by you but sir, the last time I checked, I was still in my perfect frame of mind. So, arguably, something is wrong with the other person aforementioned  but then again before history would
judge you sir, those printed lies of government must be taken back to the court of public hearing so that you can reverse the cloak and wear it with the lining on the outside or you provide the wherewithal to settle these cheated students.
Once again sir, how the land lies is unequivocally deafening to the ears and sickening to the heart. Sir, comparing the debt profile of Osun state with Ondo state is utterly irrational. Lest we forget, there is a 13% derivation principle that governs the allocation of revenue to oil producing states as it was enshrined in the 1999 constitution, Osun state is not rich as Ondo state and yet the government of “I WILL WORK FOR YOU” still shamefully came out to say, Osun state is owing their workers 6 months’ salary while Ondo state lags behind the debt profile of Osun state which means the government is better that some states in terms of prompt payment of salaries to workers.
This is a case in point that gives a formal confirmation that no civility in you or your government anymore. Sir, it seems to me that Ondo state is actually broke, not because there are capital projects being constructed around nor because more people were employed into civil service. Where then is our money? In clear terms sir, you are failing the people so seriously. Even in the last presidential elections, you saw how the “hungry and angry” Ondo state indigenes vested their anger on you by voting massively against your party (PDP). No money, but sir, it has become a public knowledge of how much was spent to prosecute the last House of Assembly elections in the state.  So who is deceiving whom?
Now that the people of the Sunshine state lack in the midst of plenty, your monthly quality worth of security vote should become a part of  the sacrifice to fix some of the burning issues in the present land of agony. Dr Mimiko, the people of the Sunshine state are not happy with you, please put sunny smiles on their faces once again.
Bio: Orukotan Ayomikun Samuel is currently a 500level student of the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo State
Orukotan Ayomikun Samuel writes from the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo via orukotanayomikun@yahoo.com
Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

I’ll Improve Lives Of Ordinary Citizens In My Second Term – Al-Makura Promises

Governor Tanko Al-Makura of Nasarawa State said on Friday said that he would dedicate his second term in office to pursue policies that would impact more on the lives of the ordinary people.

Al-Makura said this in an interview with NAN shortly after the Special Juma’at Servicer at the Lafia Central Mosque.

According to the governor, the policy thrust of his administration will be in the areas that the masses will reap the dividends of democracy, including security and their well-being.

Al-Makura thanked the people of the state for their prayers and support in the last four years.

“Government will continue to sustain those little things we have been doing that add value to the ordinary man and to continue to enhance peace, security and good governance.

“These are our pre-occupations and that is why we are making this Friday a very ceremonial one; it is a Friday that we give gratitude to and praises to Almighty God who has seen us through the past four years and has strengthened our minds to the covenant we have with the people of Nasarawa state.”

He also urged the electorate to have trust in the incoming APC government at the centre as it will save Nigerian from its present predicaments.

“We as leaders of the people in our various states should continue to pray for God’s deliverance, guidance and direction. and above all for Almighty God to direct the affairs of the President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, who will govern this country at a very difficult time,” the governor said.

Al-Makura also prayed God to grant the president-elect the wisdom, capacity and endurance to chart a new course that will lead to the benefit of every citizen.

Meanwhile, the Chief Imam of Lafia, Malam Dalhatu Dahiru, after the Juma’at prayers, prayed for the success of the next political dispensation as well as for peace and unity of the country.

Africans Task China On Fake, Sub-Standard Products In African Markets

Some Africans in China have called on the Chinese Government to curb the smuggling of fake and substandard products to African markets.

Some of the Africans, who are attending seminar on Intellectual Property Right in Beijing, said fake and sub-standard products were undermining the African economy.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that about 25 participants from English Speaking African countries are currently attending training on Intellectual Property Rights in China.

The participants contend that fake and sub-standard products from China were having negative implications on the standard of living of Africans.

Mr Kyenda Stanley, a participant from Zambia, regretted that Africa had become a dumping ground for fake and sub-standard products from China.

Stanley called for collaboration between China and the affected African countries to rid their markets of such products.

Another participant, Ms Maudhoo Purnima from Mauritius, also lamented the negative effects of fake products on the quality of life of Africans.

Purnima said fake and sub-standard goods were killing small and medium-scale businesses in Africa.

He said as long as the indiscriminate smuggling of fake and sub-standard products into African markets are not checked, the industrialisation of the continent would be frustrated.

Responding, Mr Wang Chunye, an official of Trademark Office, China, expressed the readiness of the Chinese Government to collaborate with Africa to curb the smuggling of fake and sub-standard products.

Wang, however, called on the relevant standard regulatory and enforcement agencies in Africa to assist the Chinese government in accomplishing the task. (NAN)

APC Will End The Poverty PDP Failed To Manage- Tinubu

Co-founder of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has assured Nigerians of a better living condition under the party’s administration. He stated this on Thursday at the Ladoke Akintola University, LAUTECH, during his lecture to mark the institution’s 12th convocation ceremony.

Tinubu said an APC government would ensure economic growth, while also providing jobs for the nation’s teeming youths.

Below is full text of his speech



I am delighted to address this assembly for the first time since my investiture as the 4th chancellor of our university. When we assembled here for that memorable event exactly one year ago, many national and international personalities were among our guests.

Read More: dailypost

The Return Of Sai Baba By Tony Ademiluyi

History has been made in the most populous black nation in the world with the election of General Muhammadu Buhari as President of Nigeria. This is the first time since independence that an opposition leader is defeating an incumbent leader. How did this ‘impossible feat’ happen?
President Jonathan was a reluctant boss who became Governor, Vice-President, Acting President and President accidentally. His first name really saw him through without his ever having to contest an election. The first election he contested for on his own steam was in 2011 when he regaled the nation with the tale of his having gone to school without shoes. What he lacked in charisma and colour, he made up with his apparent humble mien and the widespread appeal of his grass to grace story. He swept the polls in the six geopolitical zones of the country. In the south-west for instance he won all the states except Osun. He won five states in the North-Central with the exception of Niger and a substantial number of states in the North-East. Why did he suddenly become so unpopular for him to have only won convincingly in the south-east and south-south?
His decision to yank off petroleum subsidy on January 1, 2012 was clearly anti-people. That was a terrible way to start the New Year with many people especially the easterners still trapped in their villages. This led to the Occupy Nigeria movement that spread rapidly like wild fire using the instrumentality of the social media. Protests were held in major cities like Abuja and Lagos. The Freedom Park in Ojota, Lagos became the hotbed of the fight for the common man. The rich and the poor alike were united in this noble struggle. Prominent artistes lent their voice to the campaign. What irked the populace was the loss of lives of some of the protesters and the insensitivity of the Jonathan led government to hold a town hall meeting in faraway New York in America. This was blown out of proportion by Sahara Reporters and it went viral provoking anger in the land.
Corruption in a magnitude that had never been seen before was apparently tolerated by the Jonathan led government. There were mind boggling allegations of massive corruption leveled against the petroleum minister, Diezani Allison-Maduekwe. Her alleged spending of ten billion naira on private chartered jets, mansions abroad and missing funds in the petroleum sector running into billions of dollars stirred up rancourous debates in the land. Jonathan did nothing to institute a probe of these allegations of his kinswoman. When former Aviation Minister, Princess Stella Oduah who played a key role in the 2011 elections through the neighbour to neighbour campaign was discovered to have purchased two vehicles with 255 million naira, it took severe public pressure to have her dropped from his cabinet. She was never invited by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission for questioning let alone being prosecuted for corruption. To add salt to the injury, she is now the Senator-Elect for Anambra North Senatorial District. It was discovered that the President himself acquired about ninety hectares of land in Abuja for the purpose of farming. This was a clear conflict of interest as he was still in power. How did he get the funds to acquire the land? He further angered Nigerians when he failed to declare his assets and said he didn’t give a damn about what Nigerians felt about it on national television. This was the hubris of pride at its apogee. In February 2014, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi the then Central Bank Governor wrote a letter to him alleging that $20 billion of Nigeria’s oil revenue was not remitted to the federation account. Rather than investigate the allegations, he suspended him and eased him out after his tenure expired. Sanusi not only left office with a high approval rating after cleaning the Augean stables in the banking sector that nearly collapsed, he later became the Emir of Kano – one of the most influential traditional rulers in the country. It is no surprise that Kano gave Buhari the highest number of vote in the country – 1.9 million. He made the former militants extremely wealthy by giving them pipeline protection contracts which ran into millions of dollars surreptitiously usurping the function of the navy. He went ahead to grant a controversial Presidential Pardon to his ex-boss and former Bayelsa State Governor, Diepreye Alameiyeseigha thereby making a mockery of the anti-corruption campaign and caused deep resentment across the country.
The boko haram insurgents have slaughtered well over twenty thousand people leaving about three million internally displaced. Jonathan’s tackling of the crisis was seen globally as lacklustre. When the girls in Chibok were abducted last year April, he initially refused to visit the place of the abduction which was the height of insensitivity. Dame Patience Jonathan, the First Lady made a cruel joke when she told a principal of the affected school ‘Na only you waka come?’ which went viral and portrayed the first family as insensitive. He was later photographed celebrating his niece’s lavish wedding just a few days after the boko haram insurgents killed 200 people in Baga, a town in Borno state. The election was postponed by six weeks to enable the dicey security situation to improve. Even though most of the areas taken by boko haram were recaptured, it was seen as coming too late.
Jonathan made the costly error of alienating Obasanjo and some key leaders of the PDP who were to later work against his second term bid. Obasanjo was so embittered that he wrote a public eighteen page letter containing criticisms of his government in December 2013. Rather than make peace with the man fondly known as Baba Iyabo, his office retaliated and the boom writings by the retired General continued. It later culminated in his resignation from the party where he publicly tore his membership card. Senator Bukola Saraki was alienated from the party which saw him defect him to the opposition APC. Kwara was among the states that the General got in his kitty. The defection of Senators George Akume, Barnabas Gemade and Samuel Ortom a former Minister of State for Trade and Investment in Jonathan’s government which saw Benue fall into the hands of the Daura born General. Kogi state despite being a PDP state fell into the hands of the APC because of the influence of the likes of Dino Melaye, Abubakar Audu and some other rebels who jumped ship. The disenchantment of the people of the south west led them to shift their loyalty to the APC a far cry of what obtained in 2011.
It is up to the General to unite the greatly divided country and to be truly magnanimous in victory. There should be the avoidance of vindictiveness which will do nothing but bring the nation backward and concentrate on the arduous task of nation building.
Congratulations General!
Tony Ademiluyi

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

The Urgent Need To Rebuild By James Ogunjimi

Yesterday, I was going on the road when some ‘boys’ repairing a fictitious pot-hole stopped the guy carrying me. They requested money from the innocent guy and when he couldn’t give them, I gave them N100. When they collected the money, come and see how they started hailing me. They told the guy; “Eeyan lo gbe o.” (Your passenger is a correct human being o). One of them even prostrated, and they continued like that till I left.
I felt very sad. Is this what Nigerians have been reduced to? That moment, I felt a raw hatred for the Nigerian ruling class. In a nation of plenty, people of the same nation are living in abject poverty.
It is sad that the same people that feel the effects of mismanagement and blue-black looting will still continue to harbour hope in this failed system.
This nation has failed so many people. The growth of the economy happens in worlds they don’t belong to. The steady developmental rise is bookish and has no place in their own reality. Yet these same people continue to expect things to get better. These same people continue to hope that at 40 and earning N10, 000, the future is bright. These same people continue to believe the false hope sold to them by religion and its agents. These same people continue to ‘sow bountifully’ every sunday to maintain their preachers’ jets, while waiting endlessly for a bountiful harvest that will never come.
The situation of this nation has never been clearer than it is now. Recycling leaders, changing party names and supervising mergers, perpetuating religious differences and championing regional sentiments will take us nowhere. Post-2015 polls will make it even clearer that the problems of this nation goes beyond individual failures and inabilities; you don’t patch up systemic failures this pronounced, neither do you repair it; you either overturn the system or you continue in the 4-year national delusion that we have been practising for the past 16 years.
Nigerians will have started on the journey to a genuine national liberation when they lose hope in this system and begin to organise to take the nation back from the thieving ruling class and inconsiderate ruling elites who are bent on not just looting the nation dry but also giving their children and friends the go-ahead to run the nation down.
Our salvation lies solely in our hands; not in the hands of any party or any political aspirant. The day we discover that is the day we take the first step in the long and tedious road to a genuine peoples’ national liberation.
James Ogunjimi

Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State, Nigeria
November 2014

Articles on www.omojuwa.com are solely authors opinion