The Sun News http://sunnewsonline.com/new - Voice of The Nation Sat, 04 Jul 2015 00:13:45 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.0.5 We’ll reclaim points from Dolphins –Wikki http://sunnewsonline.com/new/well-reclaim-points-from-dolphins-wikki/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/well-reclaim-points-from-dolphins-wikki/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 00:13:45 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125947 Wikki Tourists have vowed to reclaim the points they dropped from Wednesday’s 1-1draw with Giwa FC tomorrow when they visit Dolphins at the Liberation Stadium in Port Harcourt. Media Officer of the Bauchi Tourists, Abbas Shehu Gangura, who stated this in a telephone chat, rued the plethora of chances missed by his team in the [...]]]>

Wikki Tourists have vowed to reclaim the points they dropped from Wednesday’s 1-1draw with Giwa FC tomorrow when they visit Dolphins at the Liberation Stadium in Port Harcourt.

Media Officer of the Bauchi Tourists, Abbas Shehu Gangura, who stated this in a telephone chat, rued the plethora of chances missed by his team in the game against Giwa FC.

“We were simply unlucky in the game against Giwa FC. We missed uncountable scoring chances. In fact, we ought to have rapped-up the game in the first half with as many as five goals but the goals refused to come,” he regretted.

“Ironically, Giwa utilized the only chance that came their way in the match to score and escape with a draw. They were very lucky and I believe it was not our day,” Gangura rued.

“But I can assure you that we shall reclaim the points we dropped to Giwa from Dolphins in Port Harcourt on Sunday (tomorrow). We’re going for victory in Port Harcourt because we want remain in contention for the league title this season,” he emphasized.

Wikki shot to the top spot after last Sunday’s stunning away win at Ifeanyi Uba but Wednesday’s draw with Giwa FC saw the Bauchi Tourists drop to the third position with 28 points from 15 matches. Sunshine Stars returned to the summit following the 3-1 thrashing of Akwa United on Wednesday while Enyimba moved to the second spot.

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Fix Lagos National Stadium for Eagles-Egbe tells NSC http://sunnewsonline.com/new/fix-lagos-national-stadium-for-eagles-egbe-tells-nsc/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/fix-lagos-national-stadium-for-eagles-egbe-tells-nsc/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 00:12:28 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125943 BY GEORGE ALUO FIFA match agent and stadium facility expert, Ebi Egbe has decried the home-less face of the Super Eagles even as he urged the National Sports Com­mission (NSC) to end the trend by renovating the National Stadium, Lagos for the team. Egbe said the present situation where the Eagles move from one city [...]]]>

BY GEORGE ALUO

FIFA match agent and stadium facility expert, Ebi Egbe has decried the home-less face of the Super Eagles even as he urged the National Sports Com­mission (NSC) to end the trend by renovating the National Stadium, Lagos for the team.

Egbe said the present situation where the Eagles move from one city to the other playing on sub-stan­dard turfs is affecting the team’s performance.

Throwing his weight, behind the call by former Eagles captain, Sunday Oliseh for the Eagles to return to Lagos which is the traditional base of the team, Egbe said such a move would see the Eagles bounce back in full force when they play at home.

“I perfectly agree with Oliseh,s position that the NFF should bring the Eagles back to Lagos. But for that to happen, the authorities must fix the Na­tional Stadium in Lagos. That arena remains the number one home of the Super Eagles..,” Egbe said. The Bayelsa born soccer buff whose outfit Monimi­chelle has handled some of the best stadium projects in the country said he would be ready to partner the NSC in the task of getting the Lagos national stadium back to life. “I am ready to partner the NSC in the task of bringing that stadium back to life. As a company with the latest technology when it comes to playing turf, Monimichelle would do a job that Nigerians would be proud of if we are given the opportunity.”

Egbe pointed out that the Eagles must play at home on a turf that is as good as what they are used to in Eu­rope to win matches.

“We must create the enabling environment for Keshi and his boys to deliver. We need to take them to a good turf and a city like Lagos where they would be motivated and fired up by the fans. This is what it used to be in the 70s and 80s. And come to look at it, as a nation, we can’t continue to allow a magnificent and gigantic edifice such as the Surulere arena to keep rotting away.”

It would be noted that Monimichelle constructed the Karkanda stadium turf in Katsina, a pitch which the Eagles rated as one of the best when they played there. The company also constructed the Aper Aku Stadium in Makurdi and it is currently handling the Ifeanyi Ubah FC Stadium project in Nnewi and the Re-grassing of the Samson Siasia stadium 100% natural coconut fibre and cork technology pitch in Yenegoa Bayelsa State.

 

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3SC banks on Ogunbote to shock Ifeanyi Uba http://sunnewsonline.com/new/3sc-banks-on-ogunbote-to-shock-ifeanyi-uba/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/3sc-banks-on-ogunbote-to-shock-ifeanyi-uba/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 00:11:18 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125942 Resurgent Shooting Stars Sports Club, 3SC, banks on the magic of Coach Gbenga Ogunbote to shock FC Ifeanyi Ubah at the Ro­jenny Stadium in Oba, near Onitsha tomorrow. “Coach Gbenga Ogunbote has, no doubt, brought posi­tive changes since he took over as the Technical Adviser of the club (3SC). He has played five matches out [...]]]>

Resurgent Shooting Stars Sports Club, 3SC, banks on the magic of Coach Gbenga Ogunbote to shock FC Ifeanyi Ubah at the Ro­jenny Stadium in Oba, near Onitsha tomorrow.

“Coach Gbenga Ogunbote has, no doubt, brought posi­tive changes since he took over as the Technical Adviser of the club (3SC). He has played five matches out of which he won two, drew two and lost one. Most importantly, he has changed the mentality of the players and built confidence in the team,” Media Officer of 3SC, Jubril Arowolo stated ahead of tomorrow’s clash with Ifeanyi Ubah.

“We’re going to FC Ifeanyi Ubah with a positive mentality. We know them because both of us gained promotion from the National League at the end of last season. We met at the NNL pre-season play off, so we know what to expect from them,” Arowolo added.

“We take the matches as they come. We hope to maintain our healthy record on the road and the game against FC Ifeanyi Ubah won’t be an exception. Like I said, we’re going there with a positive mind,” he maintained.

 

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Wike charges CP to fight crime http://sunnewsonline.com/new/wike-charges-cp-to-fight-crime/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/wike-charges-cp-to-fight-crime/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 00:03:07 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125938 FROM CHRIS ANU­CHA, PORT HAR­COURT Rivers State gov­ernor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike , has charged the new Police Commis­sioner in the state, Mr. Chris Ezeike, to inten­sify t he fi ght a gainst kidnapping, robbery and cultism. Governor Wike spoke yesterday, when he grant­ed audience to the new Police Commissioner at the Government House, Port Harcourt. [...]]]>

FROM CHRIS ANU­CHA, PORT HAR­COURT

Rivers State gov­ernor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike , has charged the new Police Commis­sioner in the state, Mr. Chris Ezeike, to inten­sify t he fi ght a gainst kidnapping, robbery and cultism.

Governor Wike spoke yesterday, when he grant­ed audience to the new Police Commissioner at the Government House, Port Harcourt.

The governor noted that armed robbery, cultism and kidnapping had ad­versely affected the image of the state.

He urged the CP not to politicise the issue of se­curity , adding that gov­ernance revolves around security of lives and properties.

He said : “ Do the best you can, to improve secu­rity in the state.

“Crime fighting should not be politicised. All efforts should be geared towards ensuring that in­vestors return to the state.”

He asked the police boss to be professional in the discharged of his duties , urging him also not to be swayed by those in­volved in name-dropping, for the purpose of secur­ing the release of suspects.

Governor Wike also advised him to take im­mediate steps, to address the issue of traffic conges­tion and illegal parking of commercial vehicles in the state capital.

He assured the police command of necessary supports, in the its bid to drastically reduce crimes in the state.

Earlier in his speech, the new CP told the governor that the command would do everything possible to combat crimes in the state.

He identified kidnap­ping, cultism and armed robbery as the most preva­lent crimes in the state, adding that strategies had been mapped out to tack­le security challenges in the state.

He also assured the governor that the police would work towards ad­dressing the traffic prob­lem in Port Harcourt City.

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Boko Haram: Latest attack inhuman, barbaric http://sunnewsonline.com/new/boko-haram-latest-attack-inhuman-barbaric-2/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/boko-haram-latest-attack-inhuman-barbaric-2/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 00:02:23 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125939 FROM JULIANA TAIWO-OBALONYE, ABUJA President Mu­hammadu Buhari has described as most inhuman and barbaric, the murder by terrorist sect Boko Ha­ram of 150 innocent men, women and children in Kukawa, Borno state on Thursday. In a statement by his Se­nior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Gar­ba Shehu, the President further described it as a very [...]]]>

FROM JULIANA TAIWO-OBALONYE, ABUJA

President Mu­hammadu Buhari has described as most inhuman and barbaric, the murder by terrorist sect Boko Ha­ram of 150 innocent men, women and children in Kukawa, Borno state on Thursday.

In a statement by his Se­nior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Gar­ba Shehu, the President further described it as a very heinous atrocity which must be unreservedly con­demned by all people of conscience.

In a his heart-felt con­dolences to families of the victims of Boko Haram’s dreadful killings in Kuka­wa, Buhari expressed the belief that these last desper­ate acts of fleeing agents of terrorism underscore the ur­gent need to bring to early fruition the efforts of his government to form a more effective international co­alition against insurgency and terrorism in Nigeria and neighbouring countries.

President Buhari urged Muslims in Nigeria and across the world to reject with one voice the attack­ers’ claim to be acting in the name of Islam, and tell the terrorists to stop the abase­ment of their religion.

 

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Mama G, Wizkid, AY, Odunlade, others join Glo as brand ambassadors http://sunnewsonline.com/new/mama-g-wizkid-ay-odunlade-others-join-glo-as-brand-ambassadors/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/mama-g-wizkid-ay-odunlade-others-join-glo-as-brand-ambassadors/#comments Sat, 04 Jul 2015 00:00:18 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125935 Telecommunica­tions solutions provider, Globa­com has signed-on Nigerian star actress, Patience Ozokwor, popu­larly called , Mama G as one of its new Brand Am­bassadors. According to company sources, other new am­bassadors include hip-hop sensation Wizkid, popular comedians Ayo Makun (AY) and Bovi Ugboma, award-winning actor OC Ukeje, Odunlade Adekola, fast-rising Marvin Crew of Koredo Bello, Reekado [...]]]>

Telecommunica­tions solutions provider, Globa­com has signed-on Nigerian star actress, Patience Ozokwor, popu­larly called , Mama G as one of its new Brand Am­bassadors.

According to company sources, other new am­bassadors include hip-hop sensation Wizkid, popular comedians Ayo Makun (AY) and Bovi Ugboma, award-winning actor OC Ukeje, Odunlade Adekola, fast-rising Marvin Crew of Koredo Bello, Reekado Banks and Hadizah Blell (Dija).

Other entertainment stars who joined the brand as ambassadors include, Fulani-born trado-hip hop crooner, Sani Danja; foremost gospel musi­cian, Sammie Okposo; comedienne, Helen Paul; electrifying Peter and Paul Okoye popularly known as P Square; popular Nol­lywood diva, Funke Akin­dele of Jenifa fame and her colleague, Ini Edo.

Also in the league are Bezhiwa Idakula (Bez); popular comedian Bright Okpocha (Basketmouth); African Rapper Number One, Jude Abaga (MI ); Koko master, Dapo Oye­banjo (D’banj), Wande Coal, Chinedu Okolie (Flavour); Omawumi Megbele; Ego Ogbaro and veteran broadcaster, Bimbo Oloyede. Others are John Okafor (Mr Ibu); Ime Bishop Umoh; Chin­wetalu Agu and Damini Ogolu (Burna Boy).

Mama G is an accom­plished actress having won the Best Supporting Actress award at the 10th Africa Movie Academy Awards, for Best Actress in Supporting Role. A comprehensive list of its brand ambassadors shows that Glo retained 19 show­biz superstars who have consistently projected the network positively.

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5 houses set ablaze in Anambra http://sunnewsonline.com/new/5-houses-set-ablaze-in-anambra/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/5-houses-set-ablaze-in-anambra/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:59:29 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125934 ■ Landlord’s son stabs tenant to death over electricity bill FROM ALOYSIUS ATTAH, ONITSHA At least one per­son was allegedly killed and about five houses set ablaze yesterday at Aku­zor Nkpor, Idemili North Local Government Area, Anambra State, by irate mob in protest over the killing of a tenant by his landlord’s son. Trouble started when [...]]]>

■ Landlord’s son stabs tenant to death over electricity bill

FROM ALOYSIUS ATTAH, ONITSHA

At least one per­son was allegedly killed and about five houses set ablaze yesterday at Aku­zor Nkpor, Idemili North Local Government Area, Anambra State, by irate mob in protest over the killing of a tenant by his landlord’s son.

Trouble started when a tenant simply identified as, David was attacked by a landlord and his family for allegedly owing electricity bill.

As the tenant was being beaten, one of the land­lord’s sons, Tochukwu, stabbed the tenant with a knife from the back and the knife pierced through and surfaced at his stomach. He slumped and died.

It was gathered that be­fore the stabbing, the land­lord’s daughter had earlier hit the tenant with electric pressing iron on his face which made him to lose his teeth.

Noticing that the tenant has died, sympathisers and passers-by mobilised into a mob and set five houses and a car belonging to the land­lord ablaze.

Consequently, tenants who lived in some of the houses quickly removed their properties before the mob set the entire houses ablaze despite efforts made by the police to stop them.

When Contacted, the Ogidi Divisional Police Officer, DPO, Mr. Hassan Musa confirmed the inci­dent adding that the land­lord has been arrested and case file transferred to the State Intelligent and In­vestigation Bureau, SIIB, Awka for further investiga­tion.

He said the team from his division tried to stop the angry mob from destroy­ing or setting the houses ablaze, but they eventually scaled the wall through the back and set them ablaze

The DPO noted that the corpse of the victim has been deposited at Iyi-enu Morgue, while the police have declared a manhunt for the suspect and his sis­ter that hit the deceased with a pressing iron

As at the time of filing this report, some tenants were seen packing their properties out of the prem­ises under Police watch.

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How I influenced Awolowo to change his will – Osunkoya, Awo’s Chief Librarian http://sunnewsonline.com/new/how-i-influenced-awolowo-to-change-his-will-osunkoya-awos-chief-librarian/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/how-i-influenced-awolowo-to-change-his-will-osunkoya-awos-chief-librarian/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:30:43 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125931 Otunba Gbolade Osunkoya is the former Chairman, Ogun State Library Management Board and erstwhile Special Adviser to the state governor on Library Services (2003- 2011). He was the Chief Librarian of David Sopolu Awolowo Library, Ikenne. In this interview with CHARLES ADEGBITE, the septuagenarian, who retired from the National Library of Nigeria (NLN) ex­plains how [...]]]>

Otunba Gbolade Osunkoya is the former Chairman, Ogun State Library Management Board and erstwhile Special Adviser to the state governor on Library Services (2003- 2011). He was the Chief Librarian of David Sopolu Awolowo Library, Ikenne. In this interview with CHARLES ADEGBITE, the septuagenarian, who retired from the National Library of Nigeria (NLN) ex­plains how he influenced the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, to will the library he built inside his Ikenne country home to the then Ogun State University (now Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago – Iwoye), among others. Excerpts…

How long did you work with Papa Awolowo?

Between 1979 and 1983, I was seconded to David Sopolu Awolowo Library from the National Library of Nigeria (NLN) to organ­ise the Library for Chief Obafemi Awolowo, and get it working. I organised the library and I superintended over the affairs of the library for sometime. But before then I have been with Chief Awolowo since 1955 when I became a card-carrying member of the Action Group of Nigeria. During that period, I was the Secretary of Awo Youths Vanguard for my local govern­ment area, Ilugun-Alaro local government dis­trict. I later became the Chairman of the Awo Youths Vanguard for that my local government district. Through that I interacted so much with Papa Awolowo before I later became his Chief Librarian.

When did you actually start the li­brary?

We started the library in 1982 and concluded the setting up of the library in 1983. I was there until Papa Awo died in 1987.

We gathered that he willed the li­brary to the then Ogun State Univer­sity (OSU) now Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Ago-Iwoye, what was your role?

When we were organising the library, I looked at the whole set-up and I thought with­in myself that if Papa dies this library may die with him (he was then over 70 years old). So, I advised him through a memo that he should please think of bequeathing the library to the then Ogun State University. So, Papa Awo put it in his will like that. And I think it was a good thing at that time because I thought they would keep the library going. By the time we finished organising the library we had 32,000 volumes of books, minus his law books. His law books at that time were in his house in Oke-Ado, Ibadan, Oyo State . And he said those ones should be left for his grand children who studied law. Before and after he died I was still supervising the li­brary. If anything happened Mama, Chief Mrs. HID Awolowo would call me, because after Papa died, Mama went through the records and called me to come and brief her properly on the library. In fact, the conception at that time was to have that library and have a museum along side. The museum was to be built at the back of the library, on the land which Papa purchased at that time for that purpose. But unfortunately the issue of the museum did not come up before he died. And after he died, Mama called me and I briefed her on the matter that the plan was to have a museum at the back of the library, so that when you walk from the library, you can walk into the museum and see a lot of things. Mama took up the matter and built the museum in front of the library near the gate. With that we were able to build all those things Papa conceived at that time for us to do. The things are there with all the paraphernalia. The historical things are there. You see, you can see Chief Awolowo at a glance from that museum.

Looking at the time Papa Awolowo was setting up that library between 1982 and 1983, it was the period he was seriously campaigning for the presidential election he contested in 1983, how often was he able to do se­rious reading at that time?

Papa Awo was a reader any day. It would surprise you to note that whenever Papa was at home he would work Mathematics till night and early hours of the next day. You will think that he has slept but by the time he came around 10 pm, when we were still setting up the li­brary, he would say, “gentle men you are still here ?” And we told Papa that if we don’t work that way we won’t be able to finish on time be­cause we didn’t know it would be so volumi­nous. We thought it would be something that we would be able to finish within three months. But it took a year and three months before we could finish; to classify, catalogue and set it up, and get the catalogue cards. Something that was wonderful at that time was that you know computer was not then that common or easy to see, but then with the little computerization that was going on in the country at that time, the library was fully computerized. We used one Dr. Alabi, now a Professor at the University of Ibadan Library School, he helped us to com­puterise the operations of the library as at that time. We did a lot of documentation that would definitely give anybody who comes in the required information about Chief Awolowo, about his educational appetites, and whatso­ever you want to know about. You can see at a glance, because we documented everything that needed to be documented. And we classi­fied everything that needed to be classified. At that time we had 2000 photo albums of events. We also classified all those things. We had a section for Bibles. He had over 200 Bibles of various shapes and sizes, Concordance, Bible Commentaries, everything. They were there and are still there. The copy of the first edition of Nigeria Tribune published in 1949 is there. You know Papa was the founder of Nigeria Tri­bune newspapers. So, we have newspaper sec­tion, album section, the general collections and, you see, by the time we finished those things any student of Political Science who wants to be rich in knowledge of governance in Nigeria from colonial days till present day, at that time would have to come to that site and get a lot of materials for his research. And there is a build­ing beside that library which Mrs. Oyediran is occupying now. That place was to be convert­ed to a guest house for whoever wants to do research in the library. Papa wanted to equip the place with kitchen utensils and everything, so that if you come for research, you can go there to sleep, prepare your own food and do whatever you wanted to do there. And when you finish your research you will go. And all these for free. That shows the passion which Papa had for education. Unfortunately when we handed over to the Olabisi Onabanjo Uni­versity, Ago – Iwoye, they didn’t manage the place well. In fact there was a time Ogun state government wanted to take it away from them. They pleaded and thereafter posted a profes­sional librarian there, but you will discover that not much activities are going on there as it used to be. Lately, I think in 2012 or 2013, the Law Faculty of Olabisi Onabanjo University came to Mama to say they wanted to make that place a centre of learning for law students. So, Mama called me, and we told them our reservations. But eventually we conceded to let them use the place since it is an arm of the university, to which it was originally bequeathed. That is how far that place is. Presently the Olabisi Onabanjo University is managing the place, while the Faculty of Law is using it, the library is under the management of the Olabisi On­abanjo University Library.

Apart from the university that is us­ing the place, does the library serve any other function or useful to mem­bers of the public, outside the Olabisi Onabanjo University?

It is open to the public. People do come there to read. For some years now people have been coming there to read. Students from the Faculty of Medicine of the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, Sagamu, and Obafemi Awolowo College of Health, Medical Sciences or so in Ikenne also come to use the library. Members of the public also do come there regularly to use the place.

What was Mama HID Awolowo’s attitude to reading before she became nonagenarian?

Reading is part of the culture you can’t take away from the Awolowo family. Mama would read all the national dailies and the magazines which we did supply her that time. After she has gone through them she would send them back to the Library. But now, old age has come. She would soon be 100 years old. She could not read again for about two or three years now.

What of her children, what is their attitude to reading?

Late Chief Mrs. Ayo Soyode, mother of the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s wife, Dolapo, was a lawyer and the one in charge of Papa Awolowo’s chamber, even when Papa Awo was still alive. That should tell you straight away that she was a learned person. She read a lot. Mrs. Omotola Oyediran is the one who takes after Mama HID in terms of being in business. I can not say much about her own reading culture, but you know she is the wife of Professor Oyediran, former Vice Chancel­lor of the University of Ibadan. Talking of late Chief Oluwole Awolowo, he used to stay in the library a lot to read when he was alive and was the Publisher of the Nigerian Tribune, whenev­er he was at home. And you know Dr. Tokunbo Awolowo – Dosunmu who was former Nigeria Ambassador to Switzerland, reads a lot.

As a veteran librarian, what do you have to say on current reading cul­ture in Nigeria?

It is unfortunate that Nigeria is not a read­ing public. When I was in the National Library of Nigeria, I happened to be the Secretary of the National Implementation Committee On Readership Promotion under the chairmanship of Professor Oladele Taiwo of the University of Lagos, now deceased. We went round the country to sensitize people about the culture of reading. We made handouts, T-Shirts, car stick­ers and all sorts of things, which we distributed to people. We met the governor of each state and the Commissioner for Education, with the State Librarian, telling them the importance of reading. We did that for about four years. And the programme is still in the National Library till today. We did a lot. And the National Li­brary has a lot of things to read, but we don’t read, compared to the people in the advanced nations. When I was in Britain, I was in Leeds, I worked briefly at the Leeds County Council Library. There you will see old people coming to the library to read. For those who could not come, there were mobile libraries which we stocked with books. They carried them to all the nooks and crannies of the area. Old people would come, borrow books, take them home and read. In another week we are there again, they will return the ones borrowed earlier and borrow another one. The National Library at a time, during the period of Dr. Aje, the first in­digenous Director of the National Library, the Rivers State Government had boat library. A boat was constructed as a mobile library which carried books to the riverine areas. I don’t know whether they still do that today. And the Nigerian Library Association has done a lot to promote reading culture among our peo­ple. But our children prefer, in fact the parents don’t even take this thing serious. You see, you can create small corner in your house, put some books there instead of leaving them to be watching pornography. They can go there and read. So, parents should encourage their chil­dren to read. In fact, when parents don’t even read how can they encourage their children to read. So, that is the problem.

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Saraki, Lawan, Dogara, Gbajabiamila resolve differences http://sunnewsonline.com/new/saraki-lawan-dogara-gbajabiamila-resolve-differences/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/saraki-lawan-dogara-gbajabiamila-resolve-differences/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:28:52 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125929 FROM IHEANACHO NWOSU,ABUJA The leadership cri­sis rocking the National Assem­bly has been re­solved , All Progressives Congress(APC) gover­nors announced yester­day. Speaking after a mara­thon meeting between the governors and all parties in the National Assembly crisis, Imo State Gover­nor and Chairman of APC Governors’ Forum Chief Rochas Okorocha, said the parties have agreed to work [...]]]>

FROM IHEANACHO NWOSU,ABUJA

The leadership cri­sis rocking the National Assem­bly has been re­solved , All Progressives Congress(APC) gover­nors announced yester­day.

Speaking after a mara­thon meeting between the governors and all parties in the National Assembly crisis, Imo State Gover­nor and Chairman of APC Governors’ Forum Chief Rochas Okorocha, said the parties have agreed to work together.

Present at the meeting include, Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, House of Representatives Speak­er, Hon Yakubu Dogara, Sen Ahmed Lawan, Hon Femi Gbajabiamila, Hon Pally Iriase , scores of sen­ators and Reps members and all APC governors.

It was the first time all the warring parties in­volved in the National As­sembly crisis would meet since the crisis broke out.

Addressing newsmen, elated Okorocha said, “We are aware that the nation has been waiting patient­ly for the outcome of this peace move. I am happy to announce to all of you that peace at the National As­sembly is at sight. We have had discussion and we have all agreed to accept peace, so you will not see any more disagreements as in the past. Peace has returned to our party.

“Both the Senate Presi­dent, the Speaker, Sanator Ahmed Lawan and Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila will work together for the unity of the National Assembly and the progress of our par­ty. By next week, we will give you the details of this our peace arrangement but so far, so good”.

Pressed to give details of the agreement between the two camps in the two cham­bers , Okorocha declined insisting that the party will announce the terms of the agreement soon.

However, a Rep mem­ber who was at the meet­ing claimed that it was agreed that Gbajabiamila will be named the Major­ity Leader. He said: “Some concessions were made by the parties. What is certain as regards the House is that Gbajabiamila will be the Majority Leader”.

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Don’t use govt fund to celebrate my birthday – Okowa http://sunnewsonline.com/new/dont-use-govt-fund-to-celebrate-my-birthday-okowa/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/dont-use-govt-fund-to-celebrate-my-birthday-okowa/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:27:33 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125926 ■ Swears in 12 commissioners, 5 SAs FROM PAUL OSUYI, ASABA Delta State gov­ernor, Ifeanyi Okowa, yester­day in Asaba, the state capital, directed all ministries, depart­ments and agencies in the state not to use govern­ment funds to buy media space to congratulate him as he clocks 56, on July 8. The governor, who handed down [...]]]>

■ Swears in 12 commissioners, 5 SAs

FROM PAUL OSUYI, ASABA

Delta State gov­ernor, Ifeanyi Okowa, yester­day in Asaba, the state capital, directed all ministries, depart­ments and agencies in the state not to use govern­ment funds to buy media space to congratulate him as he clocks 56, on July 8.

The governor, who handed down the order while swearing in 12 com­missioners and five special advisers, also urged his friends and well-wishers who intend to do same to channel such funds to the empowerment of less privileged persons in their communities.

Okowa enjoined the new appointees to be honest, diligent and responsible in the discharge of their du­ties, warning that activities of government will no lon­ger be business as usual.

He said his administra­tion has zero tolerance for corruption in the manage­ment of government busi­ness. He advised the new appointees to join him in the fight against corruption in order to retain the im­plicit confidence and trust of the people.

“Corruption starves the state of valuable resources that could be used for in­frastructural development, improve our educational systems, boost our health­care system and take care of the poor and needy, even worse is that anywhere it is allowed to fester, the cost of doing business becomes prohibitive.

“I want to seek the sup­port and partnership of all public office holders to lead the fight against cor­ruption in their respective offices because that is the only way to retain the trust and confidence the people have bestowed upon us,” he stated. Dr. Okowa who congratulated the new ap­pointees further charged them to shun ethnic poli­tics and sectionalism and regard the entire state as their constituency, stress­ing that they must be fair to all Deltans.

He urged them to key into the S.M.A.R.T agenda of his administration es­pecially the job creation programmes, stressing that, “it is incumbent on you to make the attain­ment of these lofty goals in the agenda your watch­word, they must be the fo­cal point around which all your decisions and actions will revolve.”

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Enugu Federal constituency: Ugwuegede challenges Appeal Court judgment http://sunnewsonline.com/new/enugu-federal-constituency-ugwuegede-challenges-appeal-court-judgment/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/enugu-federal-constituency-ugwuegede-challenges-appeal-court-judgment/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:26:28 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125924 FROM: TAIWO AMODU, ABUJA The impasse over the authentic candidate of the Peoples Demo­cratic Party, (PDP) for Nsukka/Igbo Eze South federal constituency in the last general elec­tions continues to fester as Engineer Ikechukwu Ugwuegede has proceed­ed to the Supreme Court to challenge judgment of the Court of Appeal. Justice Gabriel Kola­wole of the Court of Ap­peal [...]]]>

FROM: TAIWO AMODU, ABUJA

The impasse over the authentic candidate of the Peoples Demo­cratic Party, (PDP) for Nsukka/Igbo Eze South federal constituency in the last general elec­tions continues to fester as Engineer Ikechukwu Ugwuegede has proceed­ed to the Supreme Court to challenge judgment of the Court of Appeal.

Justice Gabriel Kola­wole of the Court of Ap­peal sitting in Abuja had upheld the judgment of a lower court which de­clared Honourable Pat Asadu as the candidate of the party and therefore duly elected federal law­maker to represent Nsuk­ka/Igbo Eze South federal Constituency in the House of Representatives.

Engineer Ugwuegede in his prayers want the apex court to declare him the authentic PDP candidate and winner of the March 28 National Assembly election, having won the party primary conducted by the Senator Anthony Manzo-led Electoral Com­mittee sent to Enugu state by the national secretariat of the party.

Saturday Sun checks re­vealed that at the primary held on December 6, 2014

Engineer Ikechukwu Ugwuegede defeated his only opponent in the pri­mary, Vita Abba to emerge as the party candidate.

Engineer Ugwuegede is claiming that the result sheet presented by Pat Asadu before the High Court and Court of Appeal was fake as the latter never participated in the primary conducted by the Senator Manzo-led Electoral Com­mittee.

Further checks by Satur­day Sun revealed that the PDP National Secretary, Professor Adewale Olaipo, in an affidavit he deposed to claimed ignorance of the result sheet presented before the Appeal Court as he submitted that he never signed nor endorsed the said result sheet.

Engineer Ugwuegede in a separate press statement has appealed to his sup­porters to remain calm and expressed confidence that the Supreme Court would reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeal.

“Being dissatisfied by this ruling of the Court of Appeal, I have directed that an appeal be filed at the Supreme Court of Ni­geria. I am confident that the mandate given by you so freely to me will yet be restored there.

“ I therefore urge all of you to remain calm and steadfast in your support of my candidature and of our Party’s position. You know who you voted for at the party primaries of De­cember 6, 2014 and at the general elections of March 28, 2015. Your votes will not be in vain. The Lord has ordained it that you will be represented by the person you chose. I re­main proud and honoured by the confidence reposed in me by the people in giving me their mandate to represent them and I pledge to defend this man­date until justice is done.”

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Strategic cultural agenda in the season of change(2) http://sunnewsonline.com/new/strategic-cultural-agenda-in-the-season-of-change2/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/strategic-cultural-agenda-in-the-season-of-change2/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:25:26 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125914 REFLECTIONS  BY OLU OBAFEMI SMS Only: 08033341157  Email: omoajon@yahoo.com We may pretend not to know, or are genuinely oblivious of it that there is Ideologi­cal brainwashing and the reversion of the history and values of Ni­geria through foreign hegemonic propa­ganda, generating internalized inferior­ity complex and cultural cringe resulting in cultural alienation within the global context. All [...]]]>

REFLECTIONS  BY OLU OBAFEMI SMS Only: 08033341157 
Email: omoajon@yahoo.com

We may pretend not to know, or are genuinely oblivious of it that there is Ideologi­cal brainwashing and the reversion of the history and values of Ni­geria through foreign hegemonic propa­ganda, generating internalized inferior­ity complex and cultural cringe resulting in cultural alienation within the global context. All of these have the potential of weakening our nation’s sense of cultural identity

For a long time now, piracy and the syndicated theft of Nigeria’s intellectual property, especially in the areas of antiques, artefacts, books, music and film, have ravaged our cultural industry.

Furthermore, we are condemned, so to speak, to art entertainment and education through the Tubes. The unsafeness of the streets at night for theatre productions compels obsession with home videos and popular culture fad. We do not say this to demean the home video culture, but it is its growing dominance co the utter exclusion of other performance traditions that we call at­tention to.

Worse still, and on the sociological and eco­nomic plane, the material poverty of the citizens which makes it difficult for them to patronize leisure and entertainment industries limit the growth potential of our cultural industries, which in paradox, is an important potential source of our national recovery.

We restate the vibrant opportunities that lie in wait for our nation through change of attitude to our culture and its virile, untapped industries. A government which is founded on the premise of change must seize these opportunities which I just, again, highlight below;

Pre-colonial cultural, material commonality. Our diverse cultures bound us and seal our des­tinies. There linguistic interconnection between most Nigerian ethnic groups. For instance, the kwa linguistic family of the Niger- Benue lan­guage groups show that our languages are far less distant and different than we are usually made to believe

These two realities reveal our cultural conti­nuity, evidenced in our on our recoverable mate­rial antiquity remains —Nok, Ife, Benin, Bida, Igbo-Ukwu, Bornu.

  • Our cultures are resilient with a capacity to survive external hegemonic aggression. Our very survival of colonial and imperial history is a veritable evidence of this fact. This was why co­lonialism did not truly conquer us. Achebe once said that you cannot conquer a people whose language you do not speak.
  • Demographic strength of Nigeria wit youth budge. Nigeria is one the fastest growing people in the world, especially in the youth cohort.
  • From pre-colonial times, we have lived a collectivist, communal life as a people. So we can talk of a cultural ideology which is essen­tially prescribes for us a Collectivist/communal­ist humanism.
  • And we carry a long history and heritage which binds our present with ad past and proj­ects into the future inexorably.
  • We have a multi-religious cosmogony that predates and which includes the two Abrahamic religions of Islam and Christianity
  • There is subtending an indigenous technol­ogy across the nation, in spite of Westernization and Globalization, upon which our technological breakthrough can be built. Note that Industrial revolution of Britain in the Eighteen century was built on its indigenous technologies.
  • The richness of the nation in cultural and cre­ative industry with regard to tourism, museum and monuments
  • The widely acclaimed and enduring Nige­rian spirit for skills, entrepreneurship can and should be positively cultivated and harnessed utilizing our cultural resources and endowments.
  • We have mentioned the abundance of topo­graphic landscapes and their aesthetic delight as potential cultural tourist destinies—caves, mountains, valleys, springs, water-falls, grooves, etc This is a skeletal view of the cultural wealth that is buried in our cultural sub-soil and upon which the transformation which we yearn for pe­rennially and which this government can begin to address for now and the future should be built.

In case we forget, we have established instru­ments to build this transformation, through cul­ture upon. We can embark upon the conscious implementation of the provisions of our existing National Cultural Policy of 1988 and its subse­quent Amendment in 2001 through the budget­ary empowerment of the existing culture Para­statals

We should strengthen the Nigeria Copyright Commission as a regulatory body which can de­tect and punish any anti-intellectual property ac­tivities, theft of intellectual property in any form and to censure and regulate all artistic and cre­ative products for distribution and consumption

We have spoken of the urgent need to provide social infrastructure and set aside an appreciable percentage of the GDP to cultural and creative industries as stipulated in both the Cultural Pol­icy of Nigeria (CPN) and the Nigerian Consti­tution. This is how the Policy and the Tourism Grand Plan can become the veritable instrument for socio-cultural and socio-economic transfor­mation of Nigeria.

Through this operational strategy, we should mobilize and motivate the citizenry, disseminate and propagate ideas which promote national pride, solidarity and national consciousness. We can also evolve from our plurality a national culture whose indicators manifest in African and world affairs. It behoves us to promote a cultural educational system which motivates and stimu­lates creativity that draws significantly on our in­digenous and tradition and values such as respect for humanity and human dignity, respect for le­gitimate authority, dignity of labour and respect for positive Nigeria’s moral society

This, in essence, impels the establishment of codes of behaviour which are compatible with our tradition of humanism and disciplined moral society; sustaining disciplined environmental and societal conditions which enhance quality of life, produce responsible citizenship and an ordered society;

Our cultural Parastatals, we must re-iterate, in a restructured or merged form, should be strengthened to re-create the cultural industries to fast-track the growth of rural economies through the boundless body of crafts and ancil­lary industries such as Ivory, Bronze, Leather works, Textiles Brass, Glass casting, basketry, produced in different parts of the country—as a way of addressing poverty and unemployment through cultural enterprises.

Alongside these enterprises and in a secure social polity, we need to sensitize investors to the need to invest in the arts and crafts sector so as to encourage enterprise development and export oriented production

Let me restate for the avoidance of doubt, the need for the nation to deploy her indigenous languages as an important vehicle of cultural expression, national development and cohesion to strengthen national security in the area of cul­tural communication. In stating this, I emphasize the necessity of fully and faithfully implement­ing the long- standing policy embedded in the 1979 Constitution of entrenching three Nigerian Languages, Hausa, Igbo, Yoruba as languages to be deployed for National Assembly business; including the insertion, of many more Nigerian languages inserted in the school curriculum with a mandate that students in primary and second­ary schools should study at least one other lan­guage beside their mother tongue in their WAEC and NECO.

As we seek to counter, terminate and destroy ideology of non—state actors and terrorists like Boko Haram, we need to improve our commu­nication strategies through crafting and carving the indigenous languages most proximal to the zones of insurgency and militancy by deploying news casting, feature broadcasts and interviews to be done on the radio and television to provide counter-terrorist and insurgency narratives and propaganda. Language carries values and basis of a people’s identity, their sense of particular­ity as members of the human race. Language as vehicle of culture, is ‘the collective memory bank of a people’s experience in history. Thus, our indigenous languages need to be codified for the preservation, documentation and expression of scientific and technological innovation, inven­tion and economic transformation.

I have proposed many times the need to build, learning from Emeritus Professor Ayo Bamgbose, a technology culture expressed in indigenous Nigerian language/languages to be facilitated by establishing indigenous languages technology centres where indigenous language laboratories help codify findings and outcomes of our technological and scientific research.

We can then seek collaboration with interna­tional cultural organizations for the promotion of cultural diplomacy and cultural industrial growth. These are just titbits that require studied elaboration in this season of change.

  • This is the concluding part of this article, first published on June 20.

 

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Why I teach despite being the VC – Prof Edeoga http://sunnewsonline.com/new/why-i-teach-despite-being-the-vc-prof-edeoga/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/why-i-teach-despite-being-the-vc-prof-edeoga/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:25:02 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125920 Hilary Odo Edeoga, professor of plant taxonomy and cytogenetics, is the Vice-Chancellor, the fourth since inception, of Michael Ok­para University of Agriculture, Umudike, Umuahia, (MOUAU), Abia State. A post he assumed on March 1, 2011, he hopes to leave on February 28. 2016, to pursue oth­er concerns. In this interview with CHIKA ABANOBI, the one-time [...]]]>

Hilary Odo Edeoga, professor of plant taxonomy and cytogenetics, is the Vice-Chancellor, the fourth since inception, of Michael Ok­para University of Agriculture, Umudike, Umuahia, (MOUAU), Abia State. A post he assumed on March 1, 2011, he hopes to leave on February 28. 2016, to pursue oth­er concerns. In this interview with CHIKA ABANOBI, the one-time Commissioner of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Enugu State (2007-2009), Senior Research Adviser, Shell Petroleum Development Company Nig. Ltd., Port Harcourt (2006 – 2007) and former Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umu­dike (2001-2005) explains why he chose to teach some of the courses, especially, 100 level and 400 level students, despite being the VC. He also talks about steps he has been taking as the institution’s helmsman, to stamp out campus cultism, examina­tion malpractices – a battle which has now brought him into loggerheads with one of the university’s senior lecturers, suspended over an alleged manipulation of some stu­dents results. Excerpts:

You talked of being a lecturer as VC. Given the responsibilities put on your shoulders as the chief adminis­trator of Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, how convenient is it for you to teach?

It gives me joy. It helps me to understand the problems of both the staff and students. For in­stance, in one of the classes, I found out that I needed a public address systems and I had to ask the PRO unit to provide the place with pub­lic address systems. If I was here in the office, I wouldn’t have known that that class needs a public address system. Sometimes I would get to the lecture halls and discover that some of the doors leading to the classrooms had been pulled away. I would draw the attention of the works department to the damaged doors. But if I had continued to barricade myself in here from year to year, I wouldn’t have been able to observe those problems and to take prompt actions on them. In one of the classrooms I was able to see that most of the students don’t have chairs to sit on and take down notes while lec­tures were going on. Of course, we had since installed new seats there. Now, every student that goes in there, have a seat to sit on and write. But if I had been sitting down here in my office, I would wait for report and the report would move from one desk to another before eventually getting to me. So, it has helped me to get first-hand information from both the stu­dents and staff. Tomorrow I have lecture by 2 o’clock. (Shoving some opened files in your face, he says): These are the results which I have compiled and which I am going to sign. That’s for Year 1 students who I teach 101 foundational course and GNS 127. It doesn’t take anything away from me.

You came into the office on March 1, 2011. What can you say about your tenure so far, from that day till now?

So far, so good! On coming on board, I in­herited a good number of abandoned projects. But it is after I had, first of all, completed these projects that I now settled down to execute my own. Today, most of my envisioned projects have been completed while some of them are still under construction. It is a pleasure to know that Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike, Umuahia, often referred as a glori­fied secondary school is now one of the best 10 universities in Nigeria. To God be the glory that TETFund, Federal Ministry of Education and Federal Government of Nigeria, made funds available in order for us to realize these dreams. I know I have about eight months to go but before I go I want to see myself fulfilling all my ambitions.

What challenges are you faced with in a bid to actualize your dreams?

One of my greatest challenges is land acqui­sition leading to aggression by the natives and other people, coming to take portions of the al­ready acquired university land to build private hostels. That had stopped us from expanding to the right places. As it is now, the incursion into the university land has become so embarrass­ing that I don’t know what will be the future of the university if the natives and some people in government are coming here to buy land to build hostels. That’s my greatest challenge, that of land acquisition. And government has not been able to make fund available to solve the problem once and for all and get every­thing resolved. Even as I am speaking to you, this university has no C of O (Certificate of Occupancy), which it is supposed to get from the government and all efforts to get it have not been successful. That’s my greatest chal­lenge. The second is that of funding. We are already in July but no kobo has been released from the budget allocation. Last year, out of 200 and-something-million naira, I only got 80 something. So, paucity of fund is another great challenge. Otherwise, I have been lucky to have good Senate, good Governing Council. They always cooperated with me and encourage me to work harder.

Cultism is a major problem in many tertiary institutions, how have you been handling the issue?

The problem of cultism in the Nigerian uni­versity system has been such that the authorities concerned with prosecuting the culprits have been paying lip service to it. They don’t want to give the correct and appropriate sanctions to those caught. I discovered that each time you take some of the alleged cultists to law enforce­ment agents they would tell you that it is diffi­cult to prove that the students caught are cult­ists. So when I came on board I made sure that it was put there in black and white, in the laws and regulations guiding our University that if you are caught with knife, gun or dagger, you are gone; you will be expelled, whether you are a cultist or not. Come to think of it, all these weapons, are they writing materials? Is gun a laptop? Is it an I-pad? Is dagger a notebook? Are they not weapons? And, you know that those cultists, they cannot operate without dan­gerous weapons. With that, once you are caught with dangerous weapon, you are sacked. If you go to police, SSS or whatever and they are trying to doubt whether you are a cultist or not, we tell them that in our university, we don’t use gun to write. It is not a notebook; it is not a laptop. With that, in the first three months, more than 100 students were sacked because of cultism. Others began to say, ‘this man means business o; we have to be careful.’ So, that’s how I managed to control it. It is the same thing with exam malpractices. If you are caught you are gone. This is not univer­sity of cheating. The same thing with sexual harassments and manipulation of marks by lecturers; if you are caught, you are gone. It is the responsibility of the Senate to enforce the sanctions or to check these vices.

I happen to know that you were one of the last candidates to be inter­viewed for the post of the VC at the end of which you were picked from among other two or three equally qualified candidates. Would it be right to say that you came prepared, giving all that you’ve done so far in the university?

All along, I had been part of the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture system. I was once Head of Department, Dean of Post­graduate Studies and Deputy Vice Chancellor. With all these experiences, I can say that I was more than prepared. I understood the system. I knew there were no hostels; that’s why you saw me build 10 hostels in one year. I knew there was no water. That’s why I made sure that every college was supplied regularly with water because water and light are the major causes of problems between the university and students. Today, you can see solar energy lights throughout the night. In the university, the students have no cause to say there is no light. Besides these, I procured 400 KVA gen sets whereas the three other Vice Chancellors, before me, joined together, procured only two. I procured four in four years. With that, there’s almost constant light here. The reason why we are into solar energy projects is to make sure we have three sources of lights – solar, one from the national grid and one from standby generators. Not only that, every college has single 6 KJVs which they use to run their experiments and all that. So, you don’t need to wait for the central light to come on board before you can actually do whatever project, experiment or seminar you want to conduct. You’ve moved round and saw some classroom infrastructures. Before I came on board some lecturers didn’t have seats to sit on. But today every lecturer is comfortable and well-seated. There is nothing like sexual harassment of female students anymore. When I came on board, one of the lecturers caught in the act was sanctioned. We don’t extort students and we don’t manipulate marks. We don’t condone exam malpractices. We don’t condone cultism or rape, gangsterism and such vices. Nobody is molesting students. With all these, the univer­sity has had an unbroken record of not having student demonstration in the past three and half years. No strike by our staff union except when they have national strike in which case they were expected to join, in solidarity with their national mother union. Otherwise, there is no localized strike. Instead, the unions are giving me commendation letters. I have got one from Association of Pensioners, one from NASU (Non-Academic Staff Union), one from SSA­NU (Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Uni­versities) and one from NAAT (National Asso­ciation of Academic Technologists). So, with all these awards, you can see that everybody is happy.

If you have all these going on, why are two or three of your lecturers picking some holes in your style of administration?

In every 12, there must be one Judas. There’s nobody on earth that can say that everybody likes him or her. These people you are talking about are not more than five. I can count them on my fingertips. The reason is that some of them were directors and were removed. Some of them were handling certain positions and they were asked to allow other people to make their own contributions. But they insist they must be the only people doing it and so they start going around and whipping up senti­ments. All of them that are doing this are either former Directors, Deans or Heads of Depart­ments. Nobody can remain in a position per­petually. Even me as a Vice Chancellor cannot be here forever. In fact, by February 28, 2016, I am gone. On March 1, another person should be taking over. But there are some people who believe that once they are in a place, they must continue to be heard, they must continue to be seen. Fortunately, one of the Directors was there for more than five or six years but no student graduated from that centre, Continu­ing Education Centre, throughout his tenure, forcing students to nickname the centre “Uni­versity of No Graduation.” So after I removed him, a faster, more dynamic person came on board and started graduating students. I have cases of results not being seen for more than 10 years. But now the results are coming out. So, these are the issues. I studied the challenges and then mapped out my vision. I took off as a VC from my inauguration. I did not appoint a committee to give me a blueprint. That’s one of the problems those handful of my colleagues who are against me have. They thought I will now be calling them to have a ‘Committee of Eating Egg-Rolls and Meat-pies’ and all that. I said, no, that’s a waste. The problems are there, the challenges are there, let’s tackle them head-on. And that’s the result of what we are seeing today.

One of the accusations in the peti­tion against you is that you promot­ed lecturers that are junior in ranks to be Directors above their seniors. What do you have to say on this?

It is the same thing I told you. For instance, the former Director of CEC was promoted Professor by me. He was not a Professor when I met him as the Acting Director of CEC. I was the one who promoted him. Then I appointed a Senior Lecturer as acting, to replace him and that was my sin. Why? Because the Senior Lecturer became more active and was able to make sure that students graduated and he saw it as a slight on his part. He is very much involved in union activities and doesn’t have the time to face realities on the ground in that centre. After that they went ahead to write that the person I appointed as the Acting Director has no PhD. The person was appointed in 2010 before I be­came the VC. They said although he parades a PhD, it didn’t come from a recognized univer­sity. I went to Federal Ministry of Education, to verify. They said the man’s certificate is from a university that is not recognized and we sanc­tioned the man by stripping him of his recog­nition as doctor. Then the University Appraisal Committee gave him three years to get another PhD or get demoted. That’s where we are to­day. The three years have not elapsed. So, how did I appoint somebody who is not qualified? They were the people who brought him as un­qualified person But I was the one who went ahead to check properly with the Federal Min­istry of Education on whether he was qualified to be a PhD holder or not. Talking about the so-called junior officers being promoted direc­tors above senior ones, one of the Professors refused to write a proposal for Michael Okpara University of Agriculture to be among one of the centres for optical excellence and that was how we missed billions of naira in grants. In fact, the person who replaced him as director was telling me the other day that he didn’t even monitor those who were using TETFund mon­ey to do research. It is now that a new director is in power that she is monitoring to make sure that the people who signed up for the money as research grants are doing what they said they would use the money to do. Otherwise, under him, they were just collecting the money and bolting away with it as there is no evidence to show that they had done the research. These are the issues.

Your critics also talk about you charging exorbitant fees for the hos­tels. What’s your reaction to this ac­cusation?

Go to the hostels, everything is in-suite. There’s light and water for 24 hours. Even those of them who are professors, do they have light for 24 hours in their individual homes? They don’t. And, living in the hostels is not compulsory for every student. Students don’t even have enough bed space; that’s why they are crying we should do more and make the same environment available for them to pay. It is oversubscribed. In fact, the same people (lectur­ers) who are complaining told me it was wrong to build hostels. They condemned my building of the hostels whereas the problem of this uni­versity was that of hostel accommodation. It was one of the things that made me to become the Vice Chancellor because I have the architectural drawings of hostels I had the intention of build­ing on the day of the interview. With that, they said that this man is more prepared than other candidates, among other criteria. But the lectur­ers who are now criticizing me said I shouldn’t do it, that I should not build the hostels. On the day of the commissioning of the hostels, one of them came and said that I should postpone the commissioning and I told him to go away, that if I see any of them coming to disturb Prof. Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’i, the then Minister of Education, who came to represent President Goodluck Jonathan for the commissioning I am going to use police to arrest them. That’s how they allowed me to commission the hostel. So, why should they be happy that students are now living in the same hostels? And, how much are the students paying? FUTO is charging N40, 000 in NDDC hostels. I am charging N60, 000 per bed space in a room that is in-suite. It has private toilets, apart from having water and light for 24 hours. What would I use to power the diesel that is giving them light for 24 hours? Each borehole in the hostel has gen-set pumping water to the rooms. Even you who is a journalist do you have such luxury? So, as we say in our place, let good things cost me money but let my kinsmen give me the accolades.

How many of such hostels are you building at the moment and what’s their capacity?

It is about six more. Each hostel will accom­modate one thousand, six hundred students. If you multiply it by six, you are thinking of about 9,000 students. The existing ones now can ac­commodate about three thousand. What’s more, we are getting NDDC hostels that will take up about 1,000 plus. So, by the time you add 4,000 you are talking about 13,000, plus this old one that takes about 1,000. So, by the time you know it, 14 or 15,000 students are living on the cam­pus. We would have taken in a considerable number of them and, that way, help to reduce crime, because some of the programmes are part-time. We discovered that most of the challenges that we have as far as cultism and other vices are concerned come from students living off-cam­pus. We don’t have control over them. We don’t go there to check their vices. But if majority of them are living on the campus, then the rate of crimes among them will be reduced, with the in­frastructures that we have on ground, with solar lights everywhere in the night so that you can see somebody very far away

What position does human capital development occupy in your adminis­tration of Michael Okpara University of Agriculture?

Before I came on board, there were about sixty-something PhD holders. Today we have almost 200. Why? Because I encourage people to study abroad and locally. I encourage them to access TETFund for use on such programmes both locally and internationally. Today, if you go to a department you would hear that this man just came back from London. He has MSc. This one just came from Russia, he has PhD. As I speak to you, there are some of them still out there in London, America and different parts of Europe – Netherlands, Finland, India, etc. There’s no part of the world our staff have not gone to either to acquire higher degrees or to attend workshops and seminars. My aim to make ours a global uni­versity. Before I came on board, people hardly associate themselves with the name of this uni­versity. But today it is a brand. In fact, in the first convocation I had when I took over, the AIT and NTA teams that were coming to cover our 50th convocation ceremony missed their way and were almost at College of Agriculture, Umuagwo, in Imo State, because that’s the one they know or are used to hearing, before they were told that Michael Okpara University of Agriculture is not at Umuagwo but in Umu­dike, Umuahia. This is because many people hardly heard of this place but today it is a brand name. In those days, you don’t use to have up to 1,000 students applying to come and study here but today each year you have about 13,000, 14,000, 15,.000 wanting to come. At the end of the day, we don’t admit more than 5,000. That’s why I said that whoever is coming up to be the next VC has a lot of work to do. There should be continuous expansion of the programmes and the infrastructures to make more rooms for people to have access to education.

Apart from the troubles posed by various university staff unions, I also discovered that most Vice Chancel­lors have problems being accepted by the indigenes, who often see them as outsiders. Did you ever encounter such a problem on your assumption of duty?

When I came on board the local indigenes here went about saying that I am not from Abia State. But today, the story has changed. I am now their beautiful bride because they believed that I have done well. Hardly before my assumption of duty do you know that a university of this status existed! But today, everywhere you go, you now have students asking for accommodation in the houses of the indigenes. They are now collecting rents, indulging in small-scale enterprises. In other words, the multiplier effects of the economic benefits of this institution are overflowing in surrounding communities. It is now praises for Edoaga. In fact, some of the Ezes have even been approaching me to give me chieftaincy titles. But I told them I am not cut for that. They have changed that posture because even some of them confessed that their brother, when he was VC never did such. In fact, the pioneer VC came here few months ago and told the whole world in the Catholic Church out there that what I had done in less than four years, that three other VCs before me, including himself, never achieved it. So, that was what helped to change the perceptions of the indigenes. I don’t discriminate in employment, in promotion, in the selection of staff to travel abroad for further studies. I don’t discriminate in the awards of contracts because there is nobody from my vil­lage that is a handling any of the contracts being executed in this university. I always ensure that the contracts go to the most qualified, in spite of where you come from, after due process of bidding.

How much has this job taken out of you personally?

From my family, very terrible and great! In fact, my wife is the worse hit because each time I get home it is another stress of work and also stress of the mind. Of course, you cannot be powerful in all fronts. Again, my children when they needed their Daddy, it is either their Daddy has gone to this conference or that workshop or seminar in Abuja or outside the country. So, I feel for them. Even though they try to coop­erate with me and encourage me, within me I know I am taking much of their supposedly time, the time we are supposed to enjoy togeth­er. I come to work even on Sundays and public holidays because as you can see from my table, all these papers must be seen one by one. Then on the part of my friends, some of them would feel that they are not getting much of me like they used to do because I won’t do the wrong thing to favour my friends. Those of them who would have loved me to favour them through the wrong way must have been disappoint­ed that I am not that kind of person. I believe in integrity. I believe that everything should be done according to the laid-down rules and regulations. I believe that nobody is above the above the law. If the VC does not follow the law he should be sanctioned. If the youngest lecturer fails to follow the law, he should also be sanctioned. These are the two groups of people I know that must have been affected adversely by the work I do here as VC.

Given your challenges at present, especially the funding aspect of it, I understand you want to complete these projects you started before you take your leave. How possible is that given the fact that you still have chal­lenges with funding?

We are hoping that the second tranch of the Needs Assessment fund will be released as soon as possible. If it is done, then you know that some of the projects will be completed before I leave. Some of the projects are being funded by the normal TETFund intervention. So if TETFund is able to release the remaining tranch, because on some of the projects, we have gotten the first and second tranches, so if we can have these monies released by some of these agencies I think we will get some of the projects completed in record time. But the problem is, as it is now, it is becoming difficult to know when such funds are going to be made available. We are praying and hoping that very soon we will get the funds.

As I was visiting places where you have physical structures springing up here and there on your campus, one question that kept coming to my mind is: does your university has need for this? Let me start with the biscuit and bakery factory. Do you have any need for that?

Yes now, this is University of Agriculture. We have Department of Home Economics, Food and Dietary and Human Nutrition. Not only that, we are talking of entrepreneurship. Our students are going to go there to get expe­riences on how to bake and prepare confection­aries. On graduation, instead of going to look for job, the person can go and open small-scale business outfits and start employing other peo­ple, instead of waiting for government to give them civil service job. So, we need it. That’s why the Central Bank of Nigeria is building for us, Centre for Entrepreneurship Studies. My aim is to build an entrepreneurial university and not just a university where you go and get a degree and come back to ask government to give you a job. We want a university that will prepare you as a job creator instead of a job seeker. If a graduate decides to go into bakery, he is not going to work there alone. He is going to employ one or two other persons and there­by creating jobs and stimulating the economy and reducing unemployment and crime. So, we need the biscuit and bread factory. We are also into fishery, piggery, poultry, so that our graduates can be self-employed after they grad­uate. I have one of our graduates that finished from fishery. He made one of the best results and we invited him to come here and become a graduate assistant. He refused because he has his personal fish ponds that he established with plastics around his house. The money he makes from that outfit a month is more than a Professor’s monthly salary here. So, he said he cannot come. Meanwhile, a graduate assistant on his kind of salary may not be earning more than one hundred and something thousand nai­ra a month. So, that’s why we are going into all these outfits.

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Outrage as ex-OAU student transforms to woman http://sunnewsonline.com/new/outrage-as-ex-oau-student-transforms-to-woman/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/outrage-as-ex-oau-student-transforms-to-woman/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:21:55 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125917 ■ Nigerians take to social media over Dapo’s new identity, blame parents  ■ How he was raped at 6 BY CHIOMA IGBOKWE WITH AGENCY REPORT The last has not been heard of Dapo Adaralegbe; the first Nige­rian transgender who was born a boy, but has now transformed into a lady and now referred to as [...]]]>

■ Nigerians take to social media over Dapo’s new identity, blame parents 
■ How he was raped at 6

BY CHIOMA IGBOKWE WITH AGENCY REPORT

The last has not been heard of Dapo Adaralegbe; the first Nige­rian transgender who was born a boy, but has now transformed into a lady and now referred to as Stephanie Rose.

Dapo, who made history as the first Ni­gerian to transform from male to female, recently released her latest photographs looking completely fair in complexion. He was a law student at the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile Ife, Osun State until he was expelled in 2001 from the school due to identity crisis.

After the sad experience, he relocated to Netherlands as Dapo and later underwent surgery to change his gender from male to female. Before he left the country, Dapo granted an interview in which he spoke extensively about his life as a trans-sexu­al, how he is a woman trapped in a man’s body and his ordeal as a student of O.A.U.

He was quoted to have said the follow­ing: “I was studying Law at the Obafemi Awolowo University, (OAU), Ife. I am of the 1995 set, but I had to leave school in 2001 because of pressures. People were too harsh on me; they did not understand me at all.

When I was in school, the school au­thorities got to know that I slept with my fellow male students. There was also an incident when I had to be admitted in the hospital. I was bleeding from the anus and I had bad pile arising from sexual inter­course.

“When the school got to know the kind of person I was, they sent me to meet a Guidance Counselor, Professor Roger Ma­kanjuola, who was the Vice Chancellor, who took care of me. You know he is a re­nowned Psychiatrist. He handled all issues relating to psychiatry with me.

He said I was okay and that nothing was wrong with my preferences, sexual-wise. He said it was just because I lived in an environment that did not tolerate that kind of behavior.

He recommended that I should meet another Guidance Counselor but I did not follow up. Even at that, there seems to be very little assistance one can get medically in Nigeria.

“After a time, I tried going back to school but they told me I have stayed too long away from the system. I applied to change over to University of Lagos (UNI­LAG) and OAU authorities promised to assist with my transcripts, but they did not send it early, that was how I lost the chance of changing to UNILAG. I eventu­ally dropped out of school.”

In the report, he claimed that he started having sex at the age of six, adding that his parents failed to caution him when he was behaving as a girl at a tender age. “I know this will shock you but I started having sex at the age of six. I had this cousin of mine who used to bring his friend to our house. He was the first to make love to me.

“Since I was small, I realized that I had this feeling that I was a woman. I used to paint myself up and wear girls’ clothes. Nobody stopped or cautioned me. My mother later died when I was 11 years old. My father has other wives and no one par­ticularly bothered about me. I am the last child of my mother, she had four of us,” Dapo reportedly said.

On his relationship with men, Dapo ex­pressed his intention to leave the country and go to where he can find real love. In the report, he lamented that the men whom he had affair with in Nigeria, were only in­terested in sex and do not want to identify with him.

“I told you I started having sex at the age of six, but no one in my family no­ticed the problem until I was 14 years old. My father is a Professor of Education. My mother was also a Professor in the same discipline. When my dad got to know, I think he was among the people who made Professor Makanjuola to examine me.

“The truth is that I had gone too far, and I don’t want to talk about my family in this issue.

I have slept with a lot of people but my problem is that they were not faithful to me.

They were not committed; we just have sex and they go away. I wish to have a committed partner that is why I have been trying to get a real lover, one that will care about me.

In the alternative, I will like to relocate abroad where my kind exist.

In the University, I had several lovers but they were not serious. I have several men that I sleep with, I won’t mention their names. They cut across the low and highly placed, just let’s leave it at that. What I want is a committed partner. If I had a choice between getting cured and go­ing for a surgery that will change my sex to a woman, I will prefer becoming a full woman.

“I am already a trans-sexual, the differ­ence between me and other homosexuals are that while they just have the preference for sleeping with fellow men, I feel that I am a woman; I feel that someone should be making love to me the way men do to women. Since I started having sex, I am usually the female, the dormant partner. But do you know that right now, I need two things; a lover that is committed to me or help me to relocate out of this country,” he reportedly said.

His dreams however became a reality years later when Dapo found his way to Europe where he underwent a plastic sur­gery that transformed him into a complete woman.

Nigerians react

Meanwhile Nigerians and some of his colleagues in OAU have taken to the so­cial media to express anger, pity and love for Dapo ever since his recent pictures sur­faced on facebook. Although majority con­demned his new look, some accused his parents of having failed in their role while others simply prayed that God will save his soul from extinction.

Blessing

This is why they say train up a child the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it. I read a story few days ago about a six year old child in UK who now has been officially cleared to have elective transgender surgery because he likes to play with dolls and dress up as a girl. Somebody somewhere is definitely hell bent on turning the world upside down for sure and freedom of choice is their war cry. May God help us all.

Olakunle

I knew Dapo in OAU Ile-ife and it was obvious he had so much going for him, emotionally and academically. It’s easy for me and everyone to condemn or criticize or pass all sort of comments but let’s not forget that we don’t know Dapo’s deep­est fear, pain and all he has been through and as such we only should pray for him and not condemn him. If we all read that story well, it’s clear that Dapo never really had much support emotionally especially whilst growing up, the period that deter­mines how we would turn out as adults. It’s too late now to go back to being male for Dapo, but thank God for God who is mer­ciful and compassionate, I can only pray to God to lead you back to him. I know how it feels like to be emotionally unstable. I un­derstand the impact it can have on human thinking and outlook to life; you begin to seek a sense of belonging in places and op­tions you would normally not consider. I know God will not forsake you, Dapo. So if you are reading this, know that you were not born that way. The Bible says the Lord knew about you even before you were con­ceived, he made you male for a reason but human intervention has made you feel like a female,”

Steve

I heard that some people claim that although they look like a man, but their emotions and way of reasoning is that of a woman. I have done my findings and dis­covered that it is a thing of the mind and demonic domination as a result of idleness and generational curse. God never made mistake about his creation but in this era of computer age, we are turning things upside down. The devil is gradually getting a grip of the world.

Take a look at the life style of some of these western countries that we are imitat­ing, they will tell you that you should not shout or beat your child if he or she misbe­haves. Everyone is lawless. This is part of the reason why the world is getting to the brink of destruction.

Eniola

While you were in Nigeria, we attended an event in Jibowu sometime in 2008 where issues of sexuality were being treated. You stood up that day and said homosexuality and sex is as unique as Jesus Christ. What a blasphemy. I wept in my heart for you because I knew you were a victim of child sexual abuse. In the whole world both men and women have the tendency to cheat. You better remain there, because we Nige­rians will never tolerate your kind till the end of the world. I pray for your soul.

Emmanuel

As long as I am concerned, his father, the so called professor should be held responsible. He should hide his face in shame and should not be allowed to teach in any school. How can you call yourself a teacher when your children are falling apart? Teachers are known to raise the best kids in the world. He was busy with women and forgot his children. May God judge him and other parents who are like the professor?

Cynthia

Nigerians should mind their business.
Most of our influential men in the society are gay. Dapo followed his heart and he is doing well. I know that one day, gay culture will be legal in Nigeria. It is a matter of time. Dapo live your life and concentrate on building yourself academically and financially.

When you become rich, Nigerians will respect you. If you have a major science breakthrough over there, Nige­rian government will identify with you as their son. This could help us resurrect the case again and probably win it. Some of us in Nigeria will remain in the shadows till gay culture becomes legal. Ignore your critics

Azeez

I hope parents will learn from this story. Don’t be too busy to monitor your children. If his mother was close enough to him, she would have discovered that Dapo was defiled at the age of six. It was then that he needed his parents most to explain that what happened to him, was a taboo and should be forbidden. I guess that cousin kept doing it again and again. I pray for his soul that God will deliver him from hell. What is the fun of having your anus perforated in the name of sex? God forbid.

Ade

Has anyone considered the role his environment played on him? A lot of people have recounted how they knew him in the past as someone who has identity crisis. Well, this is what it has led to. For those talking about God making him a man, what about hermaphrodites? I don’t know how he poses a threat to Nigeria when he is isn’t a member of Boko Haram,

Nigeria has so many of Dapo’s in the country, they are in the shadows for fear of stigmatization.

Pricilla

Shame on all of you who are condemning this child of God. What right do you have to pass judgment on an­other human being? You all are not different from Boko Haram.

I remember several times at school he was beaten un­til he fell into coma. Judging from what has been writ­ten here, those who knew him, the treatment he got was no different even at home or anywhere he went. Do you think he is doing this on purpose?

I can only imagine the misery he has experienced in his life at the hands of those who claim to act on behalf of God. The fact that he can find peace and understanding in another man’s land speaks volumes about the type of people we are.

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Eight days after, OOU community still in shock http://sunnewsonline.com/new/eight-days-after-oou-community-still-in-shock/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/eight-days-after-oou-community-still-in-shock/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:20:10 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125912 Gloom pervades university over loss of 12 students in auto crash FROM SEGUN OLATUNJI, ABEOKUTA Friday June 26, 2015 will for ever remain the darkest day in the memory of the students of the Ola­bisi Onabanjo University located in the quiet and sleepy town of Ago-Iwoye in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun State. [...]]]>

Gloom pervades university over loss of 12 students in auto crash

FROM SEGUN OLATUNJI, ABEOKUTA

Friday June 26, 2015 will for ever remain the darkest day in the memory of the students of the Ola­bisi Onabanjo University located in the quiet and sleepy town of Ago-Iwoye in Ijebu North Local Government Area of Ogun State.

The university town was left in anguish and wailing by the end of that fateful day, as an unexpected auto crash claimed no fewer than 12 of its promising students travelling to Lagos on the Sagamu-Benin expressway.

There is no doubt that the fatal auto crash has decimated the university community, given the mournful mood and dour atmos­phere that now pervades the academic envi­ronment. Fewer faculties and departments were spared the loss of a student and the at­tendant agony.

When the students woke up on that fateful day, little did they know that an incident that would engender sorrow, tears and blood was lurking on the Sagamu-Benin expressway. As many of them prepared for their week­end, what would within a few seconds turn into a tragedy occurred.

Twelve students of the institution who were on their way to Lagos, got killed in an auto crash on Sagamu-Benin expressway pe­nultimate Friday.

The gruesome accident occurred when a container-laden truck with Lagos num­ber: BDG 779 XE drove against traffic and collided with the Mazda bus conveying the students and the container fell on the vehi­cle, crushing the 12 students, including the driver.

Only one of the students, Ibukun Akinbo  escaped death in the auto crash. Her cousin with whom she was travelling in the ill-fatescaped death in the auto crash. Her cousin ed bus perished along with the others. ­

Akinbo, a 300-Level Chemistry student is currently receiving treatment at the Bab­cock University Teaching Hospital, Ilishan.

By last Monday, the atmosphere at the in­stitution’s campuses in Ago-Iwoye was still dull and gloomy and the rains came down in torrents for minutes over the university town as if the weather elements actually shed tears to empathise with the lost young souls and sympathize with their families.

Singing sorrowful dirges, the grieving students who were dressed in all-black and carrying placards bearing various inscrip­tions deploring the unfortunate develop­ment, then filed into a convoy of buses and headed towards the scene of the accident.

About 40 minutes later, the students ar­rived at the scene of the crash in a convoy of several long and smaller buses, led by a combined team of armed policemen, FRSC and TRACE officials.

The sober-looking students cried and cried for the sake of their dead colleagues, evoking emotions from even the security and traffic operatives at the scene.

The students then formed a ring holding hands as they held a prayer session and ob­served a minute silence for the repose of the souls of their dead colleagues. The prayer session was conducted in both the Christian and Muslim modes of worship.

Expressing further, one of the students continuously hit his head on the ill-fated container as he wailed uncontrollably, rais­ing fears among his colleagues who felt he could harm himself if not quickly stopped.

Another furiously engaged the ill-fated container in a fisticuffs, dealing the metal several blows as if he was fighting with a sparing partner at a boxing training gym in preparation for a contest.
Some of the placards carried by the stu­dents read: “We Demand Justice for the Lost Souls,” OOU Mourns, OOU Weeps, OOU Cries,” “A Future Lawyer is Gone!,” “Fresh Graduate Gone!,” “We’ve Lost Our Scientists,” “OOUITES Are Not Chickens. Stop Giving us Phobia,” “Police, FRSC, TRACE Must Be Probed.”

As if seized by the spirits of their dead colleagues crying for vengeance, the stu­dents suddenly went wild and headed for the nearby premises of the plastic manufac­turing company said to own the consign­ment of raw materials enclosed in the con­tainer. The company is located a few metres away from the scene of the fatal auto crash.

They also forced open the fallen contain­er and threatened to destroy the contents.

The angry students, wept profusely, hauled curses and abuses at the run-away trailer driver and the manufacturing com­pany.

The students’ protest forced many of the scared motorists plying the expressway to make a quick detour and take alternative routes.

The protesting students who completely took over a long stretch of the expressway, also attacked drivers of two container-bear­ing trailers and another laden with cement. While the two container-bearing trailers escaped amid the missiles being thrown at them by the students, the cement-laden trailer was not lucky.

The students succeeded in bringing it to a halt, vandalizing the vehicle and attack­ing the driver, who immediately fled the scene along with his “motor boy”.

Several pleas by the officials of the po­lice and other security agencies to persuade the students not to be violent or storm the premises of the company fell on deaf ears.

On their arrival at the gate to the com­pany’s premises, the students over-powered the men manning the entrance and forced the gates open.

They rushed into the company premises and vandalised some of its buildings and vehicles, broke window glasses and panes while many of the workers scampered into hiding to escape the students’ wrath.

At the end of the rampage by the stu­dents, no fewer than 11 trucks already load­ed with products and awaiting transporta­tion to the market were vandalised.

The products conveyed by the vandal­ized trucks were also strewn on the ground by the students whose anger rose on sight­ing inside the premises of the manufactur­ing company plastic chemical drums simi­lar to those found in the fallen container which caused penultimate Friday’s acci­dent.

Recalling memories of some of the vic­tims of the fatal accident, many of the stu­dents described the sudden death of their colleagues in the auto crash as an open wound that may take eternity to heal in their minds, nay that of their relations.

One of the students, Benjamin Abayomi wailed uncontrollably throughout the pro­test by his colleagues at the scene of the auto crash while asking anyone who cared to listen to him, “Where is Dami?, Where is Dami?” in reference to one of the victims, Dami Odubanjo, a 200 level Biological Science student.

According to Abayomi, who apparently was very close to Odubanjo, he and the vic­tim got to know each other during their 100 level days and had remained friends until her death penultimate Friday in the auto crash.

As our correspondent spoke with Abay­omi, the student suddenly pointed and ran towards the wreckage of the bus, shouting, “Look at Dami’s textbook! That’s the text­book she was reading in preparation for her GNS course!”

Another student, Precious Okoh, a 300 level undergraduate of the institution said she and her friends would never forget a 100 level Accounting student, Adams Suli­at Oluwatobi who also lost her life in the crash.

Okoh who shed tears profusely de­scribed Adams as “brilliant, obedient. She’s like a daughter to all of us.”

Femi Oluwole regretted that it would be hard for the university to find replacement for the students who died in the auto crash.

Oluwole stressed that the victims con­stituted a generation of the academic com­munity, lamenting that the huge loss would also be palpably felt in many other ways.

Fatai Odewale however said that the po­lice should take part of the blame for the accident.

According to him, the accident was an indictment on the police whose area com­mand is just a few metres away from the scene of the crash.

“There is a company here where the trailers always come to drop raw materials. They always take one-way, facing oncom­ing vehicles. It’s an indictment on the po­lice whose area command is just a stone-throw from here,” he said.

Adeola Adefemi, a 200 level English student expressed regret that it would take the university community years to recover from the loss of the generation of youths who died in the auto crash.

Adefemi added that the university would never be the same again, following the incident.

The President of the OOU Students’ Union Government, Adenola Adegbesan appealed to the state government and other public-spirited persons to assist the fami­lies of their colleagues who died in last Fri­day’s crash.

Adegbesan said although no amount of money could compensate for the lives of the victims, it would give succour to their depressed relations.

The OOU SUG president also called on the state government to come to the aid of the victims’ families in the burial of their dead colleagues.

Adegbesan however disclosed that the students have issued a seven-day ultimatum to the police and the owners of the truck in­volved in the accident to produce the driver who fled the scene after the tragedy.

He said, “As I am speaking with you, I have not received any correspondence from the truck owners not even to commiserate with us for the lives lost. Such acts of reck­lessness cannot be condoned on our roads and we demand that the fleeing driver be remanded and prosecuted.

“It will serve as a deterrent to other mo­torists who fail to obey traffic rules, espe­cially drivers of heavy duty vehicles who drive without regard for other road users.”

He also advised government to regulate the movement of trucks on the highways by restricting their operations to the night times only.

“I would like government to look into how they can reduce the number of heavy duty vehicles on the highways. The sheer number of trucks on the roads these days are alarming and they are always a disaster waiting to happen due to the drivers reck­lessness,” Adegbesan said.

OOU Vice Chancellor, Prof Saburi Ade­sanya condemned the flagrant violation of traffic rules by motorists in the country.

Adesanya who looked distraught and downcast, described the death of the stu­dents as a big loss to the university com­munity and the nation at large.

The OOU vice chancellor spoke when the Ogun State Command of the Federal Road Safety Commission paid a condo­lence visit to the management of the uni­versity.

He commended the FRSC for deeming it fit to commiserate with the university com­munity at a time when it was mourning.

“I’m glad that you have come to pay us this visit. You are actually the first to do this and we really appreciate it.

“It’s a big loss to us here and at this time of our reorganisation. We share the grief of our parents and we will give them a shoul­der to cry on,” he said.

Adesanya urged all motorists to always strive to obey traffic rules, irrespective of their status in the society in order to avoid accidents on the roads.

“The question of anybody, no matter how high or low, who is travelling against traffic is totally condemnable anywhere in the world;it is a recipe for disaster,” he said.

Earlier, the Ogun State Sector Com­mander of the FRSC, Adegoke Adetunji promised that a thorough investigation would be carried out on the incident with a view to apprehending the run-away driver and prosecuting the erring parties.

Adetunji, who led the other officers of the corps also expressed sympathy with the management of the OOU and parents of the dead students.

The Ogun FRSC boss advised motor­ists and commuters to always respect road signs and take other road users into consid­eration while behind the steering.

“Though the driver and motor boy of the truck ran away when it happened, we have swung into action to get the owner of the truck.

“Once we do that, he will produce the driver and he will be charged to court,” the sector commander said.

Earlier, chairman of the OOU branch of Academic Staff Union of University, Dr. Deji Agboola had told journalists that ASUU members and other personnel of the institution were at the scene of the auto crash in solidarity with the grieving stu­dents and also to ensure that they did not go violent in the course of their prayer session at the scene of the crash on the expressway.

Dr. Agboola also said that the manage­ment of the institution had constituted a 5-man committee comprising students and lecturers to ensure that families of the crash victims were adequately compensated.

When our correspondent visited the scene of the auto crash on Tuesday, the wreckage of the bus was still littered with the clothes, books and other torn personal belongings of the dead students.

For now, the scene of the auto crash would remain a sad reminder to the students of the university and the relations of their colleagues who lost their lives on that spot on June 26, 2015.

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Boko Haram: Latest attack inhuman, barbaric http://sunnewsonline.com/new/boko-haram-latest-attack-inhuman-barbaric/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/boko-haram-latest-attack-inhuman-barbaric/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:18:42 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125889 FROM JULIANA TAIWO-OBALONYE, ABUJA President Mu­hammadu Buhari has described as most inhuman and barbaric, the murder by terrorist sect Boko Ha­ram of 150 innocent men, women and children in Kukawa, Borno state on Thursday. In a statement by his Se­nior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Gar­ba Shehu, the President further described it as a very [...]]]>

FROM JULIANA TAIWO-OBALONYE, ABUJA

President Mu­hammadu Buhari has described as most inhuman and barbaric, the murder by terrorist sect Boko Ha­ram of 150 innocent men, women and children in Kukawa, Borno state on Thursday.

In a statement by his Se­nior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Gar­ba Shehu, the President further described it as a very heinous atrocity which must be unreservedly con­demned by all people of conscience.

In a his heart-felt con­dolences to families of the victims of Boko Haram’s dreadful killings in Kuka­wa, Buhari expressed the belief that these last desper­ate acts of fleeing agents of terrorism underscore the ur­gent need to bring to early fruition the efforts of his government to form a more effective international co­alition against insurgency and terrorism in Nigeria and neighbouring countries.

President Buhari urged Muslims in Nigeria and across the world to reject with one voice the attack­ers’ claim to be acting in the name of Islam, and tell the terrorists to stop the abase­ment of their religion.

 

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Our father was killed when we needed him most –Children of Prof Ilemobade, ex-FUTA VC lament http://sunnewsonline.com/new/our-father-was-killed-when-we-needed-him-most-children-of-prof-ilemobade-ex-futa-vc-lament/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/our-father-was-killed-when-we-needed-him-most-children-of-prof-ilemobade-ex-futa-vc-lament/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:17:55 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125909 ■ As family, church members rain curses on killers FROM BAMIGBO­LA GBOLAGUNTE, AKURE We e p i n g , mo u r n ­ing and g n a s h ­ing of teeth have been the order of the day at the residence of the late Prof. Albert Ile­mobade, the former Vice Chancellor of [...]]]>

■ As family, church members rain curses on killers

FROM BAMIGBO­LA GBOLAGUNTE, AKURE

We e p i n g , mo u r n ­ing and g n a s h ­ing of teeth have been the order of the day at the residence of the late Prof. Albert Ile­mobade, the former Vice Chancellor of the Federal Universi­ty of Technology, Ak­ure (FUTA) since the corpse of the 78 year old Professor of Vet­erinary Medicine was found inside his resi­dence.

Friends, colleagues, associates and kins­men of the late Professor Ilemobade have since the death of the renowned university teacher continued to throng his residence lo­cated at Ijapo Estate, Akure, Ondo State cap­ital just as they rained curses on the killers of their benefactor, who many of the sympa­thisers agreed he was too nice to be killed in such a horrible circumstance.

The residence of Ilemobade has tem­porarily turned to a centre of attraction for many people as many residents of the state, especially

Akure now go there to catch a glimpse of where the late former FUTA Vice Chancellor was murdered.

The members of family and church of the deceased who daily gathered at the Il­emobade’s residence to console the widow and his children are always in their number and they often collectively rained curses on the killers of their kinsman.

The family and the church members have also made an appeal to the Police and other security agencies in the country not to allow the killing of the late Professor to be swept under the carpet, lamenting that the loss of the septuagenarian academic was too pain­ful hence the appeal for quick investigation into his killing and subsequent dispensation of justice on those found guilty in the murder case.

This, the Ondo State Commissioner of Police, Mr Isaac Eke assured the family dur­ing a briefing with newsmen at the state Po­lice command, headquarters in Akure when he declared that the killers of the former

FUTA Vice Chancellor will face the full wrath of the law, promising that the killers of the Don who are now in Police detention will be charged to court for prosecution. Mr Eke also noted that the suspected killers of the late Ilemobade have confirmed to the Police their involvement in the murder, adding that, the law will take its full course on their case.

The Police boss who expressed worry on the cause of the death of Ilemobade while sympathising with the bereaved family said the killers are evil minded and should not be allowed to live among human beings, hence the determination of the state Police com­mand to ensure that justice is done promptly on the matter.

Eke who described the incident as painful and touching, said it was another dimension to criminal act in the country, assuring that the Police would ensure that the two suspects arrested in connection with the murder who were domestic staff of the deceased are made to face the music, just as he warned other criminals in the state to desist from their devilish act, saying there was no hidden place for criminals in the state.

However, the eldest son of the deceased who is also a Professor based in South Africa, Adesola Ilemobade said the family was yet to come to terms with the death of the patri­arch of the Ilemobade family, saying “we do not know why he could have been killed in such circumstance, as he was very generous to those that working with him, especially the driver and his security guard who have both confessed to have killed him.”

He recalled that the last conversation he had with his late father was during the last Father’s Day which he said was celebrated in style by the deceased, saying that his last pub­lic function was the father’s day where according to him he played active roles in all the church activities and had per­sonal discussions with all his children after his return from church.

“He specifically told me and my other siblings that came around to celebrate the Fathers’ Day with him that he was happy, and when we asked him why, he said he could not explain the cause of his joy, but felt happy and highly ex­cited. He said he was too happy and could not hide his joy. He expressed the happiness to everyone that came around in the church and at home that Sunday.”

Also, the only daughter of the deceased Mrs Tolulade Ozigbo who described her late father as a disciplinarian stressed that the family has lost a gem and the vacuum left by the deceased would be very difficult to fill by any mem­ber of the family.

She recalled growing up under the tutelage of her late father, saying “my father was a disciplinarian who would ensure that we all woke up by 6.00am for family devotion whether we liked it or not. He was too precious to be missed. Nobody can say any bad thing about him, not even those who worked with him including FUTA.”

The youngest child of the deceased, Adeseni Ilemobade who expressed regrets on the death of his father said one of the suspects arrested in connection with his killing who was his driver had during the last Easter misbehaved to the deceased.

He recalled that “when Daddy travelled to Ondo, our home town for the last Easter celebration, the driver sudden­ly disappeared while the service was going on, and after the service daddy could not find both the driver and the car in the church premises. He reported the case to the Police and after some days the driver was arrested and the car was found. But, daddy after a while accepted the plea of the driver. Now, the driver has done his worst by eliminating him.”

He attributed the recent alleged action of the driver to re­venge, stressing that “the driver later came back on a venge­ancemission. But we thank God our father lived a life well spent in the service of God and humanity. He was a man everybody will like to come across and this makes us happy as his children who are also growing in his counsel.”

Notwithstanding the circumstances surrounding the death of Ilemobade, the family said a befitting burial will be given to the late Professor, stressing that “no matter the way he left, we are still going to celebrate him as a hero that he was.”

Eldest son of the deceased, Prof. Adesola Ilemobade said “regardless of the circumstances that surrounded his exit, our late father will be given a befitting burial. The family is already meeting and planning on the date of the burial”, adding that “our late father will be celebrated by the family whenever we agree to bury him.”

Also, the Vicar of Vinning Anglican Church, Akure where the deceased attended before his death, Dr Ayodeji Fagbemi said “we have lost a very great scholar and it is just too wicked for a man of his caliber to have been killed this way. It is a terrible thing and I believe those behind this kill­ing will not go unpunished.”

He called on the government and the Police to ensure that the killers of Ilemobade face the music, saying the case should not be kept under the carpet, just as he called on the judiciary to give accelerated hearing to the case for the world to have confidence in the nation’s justice system.

Initially, the late Ilemobade was believed to have been kidnapped by unknown gunmen not until his decomposed body was found inside a generator store in his compound, a situation which raised suspicion and later led to the arrest of his suspected killers by the Police.

The suspects were arrested in Ogun state and after inter­rogation by security agents, they confessed to the killing of Ilemobade, hiding his corpse in a store which housed the power generating set before running away with his Vehicle which they planned to sell.They have since been transferred from Ogun State to the Ondo State police command.

One of the suspects, Bamitale, a 36 year old man who claimed to be an indigene of Ekiti state had during interroga­tion said he stopped working as a driver with Prof Ilemobade about four months ago when he attempted to steal the late Prof’s car, adding that Daniel who was also a domestic staff of the late Don contacted him few weeks ago and told him that he had consulted his herbalist on how to steal the car without leading them to trouble.

Narrating how they killed Prof. Ilemobade, he said “after he told me about his herbalist on phone, Daniel asked me to come to the House at Ijapo estate on Sunday by 9p.m. When I got to the place, he told me that he had met his herbalist who told him that if we want to take the car we must ensure we kill Prof and that he must take away some sand from the house so that there won’t be any problem after we might have killed him.

“When I asked him how we are going to kill Prof. who is already sleeping inside, Daniel said he would lure him to the security room that there is a power surge and from there we will strangulate him to death. We will then be able to enter into his room and take whatever we want.

“He went to the sitting room of Prof and he called him that there was a power surge and Baba passed through the kitchen to the security room, it was there that we grabbed his neck until he stopped breathing. We took him to a store be­side his car park and dumped his body there; we put a picture on his chest so that if the body is later found, they will think that it was those who killed him that dropped the picture.

“When we entered his room, we saw the car key and N7000 with his laptop and two phones. Daniel locked the entrance gate from outside and we went away with the Rav 4 Toyota car. When we were about leaving his residence at Ijapo Estate, in Akure, we met some Police Officers who passed us thinking that Prof. sent us out.

“We slept at Alagbaka area of Akure because Daniel’s brother who lived at Arakale in Akure refused to pick up his phone. The following morning, Daniel asked us to take the car to Calabar but I told him that the N7000 with us is not enough to buy fuel to take us to Calabar. We agreed to take the Car to Lagos. But those I know in Lagos did not agree with me to bring the car to them.

“We left the place for Ijebu-Ode, it was then, FRSC offic­ers arrested us that we don’t have the car documents. They took the car to a nearby police station where we were di­rected to pay N3000 at First

Bank. There was no money on us again, and when it was the second day, we took the laptop and the two phones to Epe so as to get buyers in order to secure the release of the car.

“When Daniel saw one of his kinsmen, the guy agreed to buy the phones and he gave us N3000 so that we can secure the release of the seized car. I went to First Bank to pay the money and we took the teller to the FRSC. We were given a letter which we took to the police station and they released the car to us.”

Meanwhile the remains of the late Ilemobade were still in the mougue and may be buried as soon as the family con­cludes arrangements for the burial rites. It was learnt that the church and the family had met on how to give the late Ondo born academic a befitting burial.

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63-year-old man arraigned for infecting step-daughter with HIV http://sunnewsonline.com/new/63-year-old-man-arraigned-for-infecting-step-daughter-with-hiv/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/63-year-old-man-arraigned-for-infecting-step-daughter-with-hiv/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:15:48 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125907 FROM SEGUN OLATUNJI, ABEOKUTA A 63-year old man, Alabi Ibrahim was on Friday re-arraigned be­fore a state High Court in Abeokuta, Ogun State for allegedly infecting his step-daughter with the Human Immuno-deficien­cy Virus (HIV). The court has however remanded Ibrahim in prison custody. A medical examination report tendered in court revealed that the shocking development occurred fol­lowing [...]]]>

FROM SEGUN OLATUNJI, ABEOKUTA

A 63-year old man, Alabi Ibrahim was on Friday re-arraigned be­fore a state High Court in Abeokuta, Ogun State for allegedly infecting his step-daughter with the Human Immuno-deficien­cy Virus (HIV).

The court has however remanded Ibrahim in prison custody.

A medical examination report tendered in court revealed that the shocking development occurred fol­lowing an alleged sexual intercourse the accused had with the 13-year old girl.

The Director of Public Prosecution, Mrs. O. Os­unfisan, who stood for the respondent in the case in­stituted by Child Protection Network, a Non-Govern­mental Organisation told the court that by the medi­cal report, the accused had infected the girl with the HIV virus.

During cross examina­tion in the case with refer­ence number AB/37c/14, the accused admitted that although he was HIV posi­tive, he never had carnal knowledge with his step-daughter.

Ibrahim also said he did not know how the 13-year old girl got infected with the HIV virus.

The accused alleged that the girl had earlier been sexually abused by a rela­tion of his wife before he got married to the victim’s mother.

He added that he re­solved to send the girl away from his house when he ob­served that she had become wayward and corrupt.

However, while present­ing to the court the medi­cal reports conducted in November 2012, as exhib­its 2 and 3, the Director of Public Prosecution stated that the accused had been linked to transmitting the virus into the victim after defiling her.

The DPP added that the accused also set aside a room for the girl in his home to enable him have regular sex with her.

She also told the court that the observation that the accused prevented the victim’s siblings from shar­ing the same room with her, adding that during one of the sex bouts,the accused covered the victim’s mouth with a pillow so that she won’t shout or cry out.

In her statement, The minor insisted that her step father truly had sex with her,having lured her into his bedroom under the guise of helping her with her school homework.

The young girl stressed that while having sex with her, the accused warned her not to tell anybody, “else you would die.”

During cross examina­tion, counsel to the ac­cused, Kizito Roberts, also brought a witness, Saki­rat Mosaku, who told the court that she knew both the accused, his wife and the respondent in the case. She added that at a point in time, the accused wife raise the alarm that her husband had had sex with the vic­tim.

The accused however told the court that his wife and his step-daughter only wanted to nail him because he made up his mind to eject the girl at a point in time. He stated that his wife had also confessed to him that she was pos­sessed with demons and has equally transferred the demons into her daughter.

But the presiding Judge, Justice A. Akinremi re­manded the accused in prison custody Akinremi adjourned further hearing for the conclusion of de­fence and address till July 7, 2015.

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Keep your ambition in your pockets, Buhari tells APC leaders http://sunnewsonline.com/new/keep-your-ambition-in-your-pockets-buhari-tells-apc-leaders/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/keep-your-ambition-in-your-pockets-buhari-tells-apc-leaders/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:13:24 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125904 ■Govs to reconcile NASS warring parties BY IHEANACHO NWOSU, ABUJA President Muham­madu Buhari yesterday ad­monished leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) involved in the current crisis rock­ing the party not to allow their ambition to destroy the party. He said the party lead­ers must learn to tame their ambition and even keep it in [...]]]>

■Govs to reconcile NASS warring parties

BY IHEANACHO NWOSU, ABUJA

President Muham­madu Buhari yesterday ad­monished leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) involved in the current crisis rock­ing the party not to allow their ambition to destroy the party.

He said the party lead­ers must learn to tame their ambition and even keep it in their pockets if pos­sible .The President spoke at the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting held yesterday. The well-attended meeting witnessed some APC members pro­testing outside the party secretariat, chanting songs that nobody should over­ride party supremacy. It was also observed that the party’s national leader, Asi­waju Ahmed Bola Tinubu and Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo did not attend the meeting.

Some of the national leaders in attendance were: Chief Ogbonaya Onu, Chief Tony Momoh, Gov­ernor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun state, Ibrahim Gaid­am of Yobe state, Alhaji Bello Masari of Kastina state, Alhaji Aminu Tam­buwal of Sokoto state, Alh. Bello Bagudau of Bauchi state, Adams Oshiomhole of Edo state and his Kano state counterpart, Dr Abdul­lahi Ganduje, Governor Jibrilla Bindo of Adamawa and Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos. Others include the Senate Presi­dent, Dr Bukola Saraki, and Speaker, House of Repre­sentatives Hon. Yakubu Dogara,

Reminding APC lead­ers of the huge task ahead of them, President Buhari declared that the disaffec­tion among members over the outcome of National Assembly elections must stop. He declared that no member should consider himself as being above the party insisting that the party was supreme.

He words “Please accept the superiority of the party. I cannot confine myself to the cage or Sambisa forest and refuse to participate in NEC or BoT. So I respect, the superiority of the party.”

The president stressed that “Let us as members of the APC no matter our personal dif­ferences get together and use the mandate given to us by this country. This is my personal appeal to you in the name of God. What­ever your personal interest or ambition, please keep it close to your heart and in your pocket. Let APC work, let the system work and let us have a government that will earn the respect of our constituencies.”

The President’s com­ment came as the party’s governors were yesterday mandated to meet warring camps in the National As­sembly leadership crisis to help broker lasting peace . The party also passed a vote of confidence on the leadership of the embattled national chairman of the party Chief John Odigie-oyegun. Reminding APC leaders of the huge task ahead of them, President Buhari declared that the disaffection among mem­bers over the outcome of National Assembly elec­tions must stop .

He said “The elections have come and gone, the APC has won the battle, but lost the war. This is the par­adox of democracy, and we shall see how we can man­age it going forward.

“I have already addressed you through the chairman, through the leadership of the party, through your ex­cellencies, the governors and through our Senators and House of Representa­tives members.

The APC must not dis­appoint its constituency, that’s the nation state. “We have to convince our vari­ous constituencies that we are individually worthy of the sacrifices that they have made. “They stayed awake day and night, travelling all over the country and made sure as a party, we emerged victorious. What subse­quently happened is human, and as human beings we are not perfect, but let our col­lective actions in this party prove that we have won the elections, the battle and we will win the war.

“As for me as a president, I have to clearly understand the constitution of the fed­eral republic of Nigeria, the constitution of APC, and having tried three times and successfully lost three times and successfully ending up at the Supreme Court. I think I have tasted the bit­ter disappointments and the sweetness of success.

“What happened to APC must be given to God al­mighty. The opposition party, has ruled the coun­try for sixteen years, with all the treasuries, literally in their pockets and all the coercing forces under their command, they still meekly conceded defeat.”

Speaking on the for­mation of the party, the President said “I clearly understand the constitution from which INEC was de­veloped with clear terms of reference and one of its important responsibilities is to register political asso­ciations as political parties, and whoever wants to par­ticipate in elective office as a Nigerian must seek a plat­form. That platform is the political party, hence, the superior state of the parties. APC has been damn lucky.

“The way the opposition parties realized, agreed and accepted that the only way through which we can be in the system is for us to come together. The ACN, the ANPP, the CPC, APGA and DPP wanted to come to par­ticipate fully in the nego­tiation, but they have court cases at various levels, and we suspected that if we al­low them to participate ac­tively in the negotiation for merger, their being in court can cause either delay or deny us registration.

“So we persuaded our colleagues in APGA and DPP that please stay out of the negotiation, but when we eventually get the reg­istration, they can join in block or individually.

“Along the line, I as­sure you that nothing is done by impulse in our process to merger. There have been various com­mittees, quite a number of you sitting here have been members of committees ei­ther leading them or being a member and we agreed. At some stage or the earlier stages, we agreed that nine people should form the in­terim committee, that’s the national chairmen of the parties, the secretaries and the treasurers . We thought we have done a wonderful work, so we sent our ap­plication. For the first time in this sixteen or twelve years of my participating actively , I thanked INEC for what they did to us; they sent back our applica­tion and said we must have 25 to 35 people to man­age your interim if you get registration, and they must come from all the geo po­litical zones. Why I thanked INEC in particular was be­cause if it has been bloody minded, they would have kept on raging until it was almost too late for us to get the merger. So they ad­vised us and we sat down, we got I think 35 people to manage us and I here personally, and on behalf of you congratulate Chief Bisi Akande, it’s a pity he is not here, he led the in­terim party with dexterity and integrity. I respect his patriotism. When we got the APC name through the agreement of various com­mittees of the respective parties, we started working from polling units upwards, eventually we ended up in the convention which gave us the leadership of the party.

“After that the election started, and again it started from the bottom top. I have gone to this extent because not all of us here participat­ed in it and for you to reflect and thank the leadership of the party at various stages for going through all this, which is not easy. But God in His infinite mercy has helped by giving us accep­tance. Let us not throw this success to the wind.”He added that “My problem is the constituencies. I thank you very much for listening to me, and I thank the lead­ership across the board, and I appeal to you to please continue to work together.”

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APC crisis: Okorocha meets Lawan, Saraki loyalists, others http://sunnewsonline.com/new/apc-crisis-okorocha-meets-lawan-saraki-loyalists-others/ http://sunnewsonline.com/new/apc-crisis-okorocha-meets-lawan-saraki-loyalists-others/#comments Fri, 03 Jul 2015 23:12:18 +0000 http://sunnewsonline.com/new/?p=125902 On a day when fireworks were expected, it was surpris­ingly calm at1 the Nation­al Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Friday. President Muhammadu Buhari reportedly told his party members to forge ahead with the task of governing the country rather than being bogged down by the leadership crisis in the [...]]]>

On a day when fireworks were expected, it was surpris­ingly calm at1 the Nation­al Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on Friday.

President Muhammadu Buhari reportedly told his party members to forge ahead with the task of governing the country rather than being bogged down by the leadership crisis in the National Assembly.

Although the president harped on “party supremacy,” he also reportedly told them to “forget the past and move forward.”

Meanwhile, shortly after the NEC meeting at the party headquarters in Wuse 11 District, Senator Ahmad Lawan and four of his colleagues in the Senate Unity Forum headed to a meeting with Imo State governor, Chief Rochas Okorocha who is chairman of the APC Governors’ Forum.

Shortly before the Senate President was billed to meet with the 36 state chairmen of the party, he left the premises to join the meeting which held at the Imo Government Lodge at the Asokoro District of the city.

Four Senators also loyal to the Senate President were also at the parley. In a related development, all the state APC chairmen converged on Room 301 for a meeting with the Senate President. Present at the meeting were Senate Leader, Ali Ndume, his deputy, Bala Ibn Na’Allah and deputy Whip, Francis Alimikhena.

Kano State chairman, Umaru Doguwa, who leads the APC Chairmen Forum said the group called to congratulate Saraki and their Senators as well as seek peace in the party.

Doguwa echoed President Buhari, when he also urged Saraki to “uphold party supremacy.”

“We are here to congratulate all APC Senators on their elections. We thank you and congratulate you for attending the NEC meeting which was successful, peaceful and organised well which shamed our detractors.

“As an astute politician, please use your good offices to consolidate the peace moves embarked upon by Mr. President so that we can lead this country for at least, 100 years.

“We want to talk to you about the supremacy of the party. We implore you to uphold the supremacy of our party as contained in the party’s constitution…”

Saraki replied: “I’m happy to report that it’s peace with the different groups. We hope to be back in the next couple of days on the reconciliation and progress we have made. “I want to use this opportunity to reassure you that we are committed to the party, we will work hard to resolve all the issues…we will make sure we live up to be expectations of Nigerians. We will make you proud of us; we will make you proud of the Eighth Senate.

“We reassure you of our commitment to the party, not only at the federal level but also, at the state level. We will not abandon the party.

“We will cooperate with the executive arm led by President Muhammadu Buhari…we must show the difference… President Buhari must succeed and we are committed

Other APC Senators present at the parley were Senators Sani Yerima, Ibrahim Gobir, Mohammed Ohiare and Binta Masi Garba

State chairmen from the South west were not at the parley with the Senate President.

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