Nigeria Immigration Service or Scam?

Over 526,650 youths all around Nigeria left home on Saturday 15th March to write the Nigeria Immigration Service Aptitude test and training. These young men and women only wanted a chance for a better life but mayhem broke soon when so many of them who had paid 1000NGN weren’t allowed into the premises and those who got in were treated in the worst way possible. In the subsequent rush and stampede that ensued over 18 people lost their lives while many are still in th hospital.

The loss of lives is bad enough, but the words of the Minister of Interior, Abba Moro totally threw everyone off rather than take responsibility for their lack of foresight and mal-administration according to him “candidates died because of impatience”. The guts!…Were they impatient when 1000NGN was collected from them? Were they impatient when you lot knew you had just 3000 vacant positions but went ahead to allow over 526,650 applications (when we all know the people who would get the jobs weren’t even at the testing centers that day). Let’s do mathematics here:
1000Naira(application fee) + 500Naira(Kit fee) =1,500Naira/applicant
1,500Naira x 526,650 = 789975000Naira
Someone or some people made this much from innocent jobless youths and all Mr Moro can come up with is that they were impatient?

How will a government seek to profit from a malaise it created by charging helpless job seekers 1,000 Naira each? Why was a huge number of applicants invited for only 3000 vacancies?
Why was such a shoddy arrangement made for the test when so many people were invited? No medical team on ground, no civil defense officers, no policemen, just a bunch of clueless Immigration officers who used tear gas to disperse the crowd. Could the test not have been done in batches to avoid a stampede? What happened to the money made from this extortion?
These and many more questions are begging for answers.
An investigation into the needless deaths of our youth, under a government that has failed them in every respect, must seek to answer those questions and recommend ways to avoid a recurrence. At least if a government cannot create jobs, it must neither profit from its incompetence nor send the victims of its ineptitude to their early graves
We know Mr. President has called for automatic employment of 3 family members of the deceased and those injured immediately they are out of the hospital but offering jobs to the ancestors or yet to be born generation of the unfortunate victims is not enough,somebody needs to be taught a lesson for their greed afterall, another governmental body can decide to do the same and feel all they would get is a slap on the wrist.

For The Love Of Us

It is the season for political gatherings and what not again, summits and rallies come up every other day now. Political watchdogs are on the prowl to call out sneaky moves of opposing parties. Too many allegations and counter-allegations are flying around as also much canvassing is done to get more party members.
It is that period again when Nigerian youths are tricked and endless promises are made to make us give up our votes to people who do not even care about us. They only need the youths because of the huge demographics and possession of power to put them where they are eyeing.
Since 1999 when democracy was re-introduced to Nigeria, we have failed ourselves several times, we have allowed the love for ourselves take the back seat while allowing our country rot away in the hands of greedy men and women. For so long, we have become mere numbers to them, a game of who will “capture” more of them with his use of words and convincing theatrics. these people turn us against ourselves and pull the ethnic/region/religion cards on us as they wish. We bash and fight each other while they smile to foreign countries to lodge their loot.
For the love of us, let’s open our hearts and minds. Let’s make things right,embrace our togetherness and number and put an end to this.

TO SADIQ ABACHA — ON BEHALF OF WOLE SOYINKA | BY AYO SOGUNRO

Ayo Sogunro

Dear Sadiq Abacha,

I do not know you personally, but I admire your filial bravery—however misguided—in defending the honour of your father, the late General Sani Abacha. This in itself is not a problem; it is an obligation—in this cultural construct of ours—for children to rise to the defence of their parents, no matter what infamy or perfidy the said parent might have dabbled in.

The problem I have with your letter, however, arises from two issues: (i) your disparaging of Wole Soyinka, who—despite your referral to an anecdotal opinion that calls him as “a common writer”—is a great father figure, and a source of inspiration, to a fair number of us young Nigerians; and (ii) your attempt to revise Nigerian history and substitute our national experience with your personal opinions.

Therefore, it is necessary that we who are either Wole Soyinka’s “socio-political” children, or who are ordinary Nigerians…

View original post 1,336 more words

How Did We Get Here?

It was a rude shock when everyone woke up to the news of how  Federal Government College Buni-Yadi, Yobe State got attacked in the early hours of Tuesday morning leaving over 40 dead boys and hostels razed down while the nation was still in a pensive mood over the killing and abduction of 20 girls in Borno state. As usual, before the end of the day an official statement from the state house was released where the action was condemned and promises made to put an end to it.

“President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has received with immense sadness and anguish, news of the callous and senseless murder by terrorists of scores of students at a college in Yobe State in the early hours of today.
On behalf of himself and the Federal Government, President Jonathan extends heartfelt condolences to the parents and relatives of the murdered students. 

The President wholly condemns the heinous, brutal and mindless killing of the guiltless students by deranged terrorists and fanatics who have clearly lost all human morality and descended to bestiality.
He assures the nation that his administration will not relent in its ongoing efforts to end the scourge of terrorism in parts of the country which has sadly claimed more innocent lives today.
The Armed Forces of Nigeria and other security agencies will continue to prosecute the war against terror with full vigour, diligence and determination until the dark cloud of mass murder and destruction of lives and property is permanently removed from our horizon.”

Reuben Abati
Special Adviser to the President
(Media & Publicity)
February 25, 2014

The official statement by the Federal Government is not the first of its kind neither would it be the last. How many more of these statements do we need before we are jolted back to reality that our lives and children’s lives are in constant danger in Nigeria? condemning an act would not put a stop to it, not after the avenue is constantly created for its re-occurrence. Is it a coincidence that this attack occurred just hours after security checkpoints where withdrawn in parts of Yobe state? the attacks could have happened anywhere in any of the other federal schools around the nation and who knows the next school they are targeting.

Do we wait in our houses for them to attack us so we become a national statistic? Did the USA not fight and conquer the Al-Qaeda? some may say comparing the Boko Haram to Al-Qaeda is not a fair one, but terrorism is still terrorism even if the region of attack and mode of operation differs. During the peak period of the Al-Qaeda, the president of America did all within his power to bring them down and spent quite a lot to bring them down. Why can’t we have that here in Nigeria? is it too much to ask? why must we always hear “the President is trying his best?” we did not vote for a president who will keep trying, we voted for a president who would DO!

How did it get this bad that children below 18 would be killed and nothing other than a statement would be issued?how do these people sleep at night with the blood of innocent children on their hands? The need the take actions into our own hands has risen, lets all pretend this is a country without capable leaders (that won’t be pretense or would it?) the government has consistently failed its citizens in battling the terrorists from the attacks at eagle square Abuja, ThisDay dome, Police HQ, killing of Corp Members in Bauchi and Kaduna, numerous village attacks in Bauchi, Borno and Yobe and then to this! Do we keep trusting such government?

In a few days, the centenary celebration will commence and our leaders will have the peace of mind to sit, laugh, bestow awards and make merry when the children that would have helped the country see the next 100 years are massacred and abducted. Have we lost our conscience and minds? will this issue turn out to be like the others where monetary compensations are given to the parents and everyone will keep quiet after that? will our anger subside after a few days of discussing this on social media platforms and then we wait for the next attack to occur? what price does Nigeria have to pay for things to be fine? 1.2billion Naira, 20billion Dollars, lives of villagers in Bauchi state or lives of innocent future leader who were in their prime? How long will this go on for and how will it end?

Before we answer all other questions lets honestly check and ask ourselves…how did we get here?

The Presidential Chat That Wasn’t…

Image

Earlier today at 7pm, Mr. President was on a live broadcast across the nation. Naturally, not many people thought much of it as previous chats have not been so engaging. The moderator and 3 journalists from media houses around Nigeria came off as trying to be careful with their questions in fact, the lady from Wazobia FM seem to be awed by the President’s presence and said as little as possible throughout the “chat”.

The chat  started with questions about the upcoming centenary anniversary and National Conference. It would come as no surprise that no projections were made as to the amount the celebration will cost the nation, On projected cost of centenary celebration, Mr President cannot state any amount. Says private bodies are sponsoring….do we believe that? according to Goodluck Jonathan the nation will only pay for the feeding, accommodation and transportation of visiting Heads of State and dignitaries (let’s add souvenirs, accommodation and feeding for PA’s and Aides of visiting HOS, security, thanks for coming arrangements, and so many other unnecessary spending to that).  Awards will be presented to 100 people…well,  just because he wants to honor 100 people and 100 is a good number (right?!). A centenary city construction will commence followed immediately by the National Conference.

Next, the issue of Sanusi Lamido Sanusi came up, in the president’s words “Sanusi is still the governor of CBN” but he went ahead to iterate how he has the power to suspend SLS and as a matter of fact, the suspension was not as a result of the report of the missing 20billion Dollars, rather it was as a result of the 2012 audit report of the CBN which was submitted  February 2013 (approximately one year now). NNPC’s activities were brought to the surface too but swept under the carpet as soon as it reared its head as long as he is concerned due process should take its course…

About 10 minutes to the end of the chat, the topic of the ongoing attacks in Northern Nigeria particularly the most recent ones in Borno state, and the most striking thing the president could say was “We will get over it”. Asked what measures are being taken to end the Boko Haram attacks, the answers were as vague as they could get. Finally, Goodluck Nnaji raised the issue of increased power generation and why after so many years, we are still stuck with the same problems we had about 5 years ago in the power sector, Mr. President’s answers were not a bit satisfying as according to him he cannot give figures.

All of the above would come off as a chat between a president and his people in a country where everything is fine and every sector is in order like it should be. Nigeria presently is in that state where it is no longer okay to pretend things are fine.In a country where people are killed everyday, security level is almost zero, nothing seems to be working well but our president and his committee feel a centenary celebration is what will bring back cheers into the country, why waste so much money on things we can do away with or are we missing something here? should we even be celebrating the 100years of amalgamation when the country is being held together by only the strong-will of the inhabitants?  what exactly can we show for our 100years of existence apart from the name and past glory?

There was no single mention of the 20 abducted schoolgirls in Borno state, Stella Oduah’s corrupt practice was not touched (as per due process i believe), the missing 20billion Dollars from NNPC was treated as if it was 20Naira and we are all expected to adopt the “siddon look” approach. We are not calling for a president who will be pushed around by the citizens, we just want a president who has empathy for the people he governs. We are not calling for DAM’s suspension/sack, but what is good for the geese is also good for the gander. Let Goodluck Jonathan know that Nigerian youths have gone past the days of leaving the activities of national matters and concern to the older citizens, we know what we want and we know when we are being insulted.

If and when next you intend to have a media chat, let it be a chat in the true sense of it. Do not make mockery of our intelligence and rub off your intended lavish spending on trivial matters when serious national issues are pending in our faces.

He Who Pays The Piper…

ImageImage

They say, “He who pays the piper dictates the tune” but what happens when the piper decides to play a different tune?

This is exactly what is playing out between the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the now ex-governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria. Earlier today, a press statement from the state house was released by the Special Adviser on Media & Publicity

 “Having taken special notice of reports of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria and other investigating bodies, which indicate clearly that Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi’s tenure has been characterized by various acts of financial recklessness and misconduct which are inconsistent with the administration’s vision of a Central Bank propelled by the core values of focused economic management, prudence, transparency and financial discipline;
Being also deeply concerned about far-reaching irregularities under Mallam Sanusi’s watch which have distracted the Central Bank away from the pursuit and achievement of its statutory mandate; and  

Being determined to urgently re-position the Central Bank of Nigeria for greater efficiency, respect for due process and accountability, President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has ordered the immediate suspension of Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi from the Office of Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.  

President Jonathan has further ordered that Mallam Sanusi should hand over to the most senior Deputy Governor of the CBN, Dr Sarah Alade who will serve as Acting Governor until the conclusion of on-going investigations into breaches of enabling laws, due process and mandate of  the CBN.

The President expects that as Acting Governor of the Central Bank, Dr. Alade will focus on the core mandate of the Bank and conduct its affairs with greater professionalism, prudence and propriety to restore domestic and international confidence in the country’s apex bank.

The Federal Government of Nigeria reassures all stakeholders in Nigeria’s financial and monetary system that this decision has been taken in absolute good faith, in the overall interest of the Nigerian economy and in accordance with our laws and due process.”

Reuben Abati
Special Adviser to the President
(Media & Publicity)

February 20, 2014

Following this letter’s release, SLS’s immediate suspension commenced, an acting governor and deputy governor were put in place (Dr. Sarah Alade and Bayo Adelabu). Later in the day Mr. Godwin Emefiele’s name was sent to the House of senate for confirmation as the new CBN governor.

Let’s have it at the back of our minds that while all these was going on, SLS was in Niger Republic attending an official ECOWAS event and on arrival had his passport seized, scrutinized then finally released after he protested that he wasn’t a criminal.

Now the verdict – the suspension and subsequent sack of SLS isn’t only illegal and unlawful, it goes a long way to show what gives in a country where the president sees himself as a modern day dictator, the one and only who can make and break his political counterparts without respect for law and due process. We all know Goodluck Jonathan’s regime and cabinet is made up of those who are ready to ask how high when he tells them to jump. If suspending/sacking a man who has been able to diligently carry out his duties and point out the flaws of GEJ’s regime without fear of repercussion while people like DAM are still in office then obviously…SLS’s tunes are not melodious enough for GEJ!

If you were suddenly independently wealthy, how would you spend your time? What positive change would you bring to the world?