A former Minister of Defence, General Theophilus Danjuma (rtd) , says if he reveals what is happening in the country, Nigerians will no longer sleep.
He spoke yesterday at the University of Ibadan during the launch of a book, 70 Years of Progressive Journalism: The Story of the Nigerian Tribune and the presentation of Tribune’s Platinum Awards.
He stated: “In Yorubaland, everybody seems to have lost their voice, scared. And people appear not to care about what is happening. If I tell you what I know is happening in Nigeria today, you will no longer sleep.
So, Chief Ayo Adebanjo’s warning and advice are very timely. If you want details, I will give it to you privately.
We are in a big hole as a nation. And people who put us in this hole have continued today. So, we’ve to wake up. Only we can save ourselves.
“The fifth columnists’ activities going on among your people are not helping matters. May Almighty God continue to bless this country, but only we can save ourselves from ourselves.”
Earlier, Adebanjo, an Afenifere leader, had raised the alarm that Yorubaland was in danger, saying “We’ve been submerged.” He said only few governors in the southwest “are responsible for us. They’ve shut down. They cannot face the Head of State because of their own shortcomings.
“Buhari is not ruling the country. He wants to dominate us. I don’t mince words about it. There’s tyranny in the country. There’s anarchy. When the Head of State said there’s no respect for the rule of law, where are the lawyers? The moment there’s no respect for the rule of law, there’s no government again, there’s anarchy.”.
The federal high court in Lagos has sentenced the former governor of Abia State Senator Orji Uzor Kalu to 12 years imprisonment after being found guilty on all the 39-count charges brought against him.
He was convicted of N7.65billion fraud perpetuated when he was Abia State governor between 1999 and 2007.
Kalu was convicted alongside his firm, Slok Nigeria Limited and his former director of finance, Ude Udeogu.
The court also ordered forfeiture of all assets of his company to the federal government.
A former Chief of Defense Staff, Gen. Alexander Ogomudia (rtd.) has expressed about recent negative developments in the country, saying they were indications that the country was overdue for restructuring and in urgent need of a new way of governance.
Ogomudia said he feared for the future of the country and the present security situation in the country, saying “a country where a former Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshall Alex Badeh, was killed in the streets like an urchin, and nothing happened, is a sign that the nation is not moving in the right direction”.
The former Chief of Defence Staff who delivered the keynote address at the Good Governance Lecture organised by the Catholic Church of Warri’s Justice Development and Peace Commission (JDPC) warned that the continued suppression of the agitations for the restructuring of the country could lead to a violent break up of the country.
He urged those opposed to restructuring to borrow a leaf from the break up of Yugoslavia and Sudan saying that even in Spain the Catalonians want to break away and that in Britain, Scotland seeks autonomy.
He said restructuring was a global trend which every right-thinking government should embrace for national integration and development especially in a country like Nigeria, where he said we practice “a fake federal system”.
But a spokesman to President Muhammadu Buhari described Ogomudia’s statement as vituperations of someone who is “yet to accept democracy as a form of government.”
“It is very important to stress that we as a nation, are a constitutional democracy and changes to the country in structure, its systems, policy and politics must abide by the norms of democracy otherwise they would be extrajudicial and therefore unconstitutional,” Garba Shehu said.
Ogomudia equally criticised the death penalty for the hate speech bill. He created a mild drama in the hall when paused to ask anyone who can define hate speech to come forward.
A total of 47 percent of married women in the South South geopolitical zone witness one form of domestic abuse or the other in their marital home. This was one of the key findings revealed at the presentation of the 2018 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) report by the National Population Commission (NPC) in Uyo on Wednesday.
The Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (2018 NDHS) report was implemented by the National Population Commission (NPC) in collaboration with the National Malaria Elimination Programme (NMEP) of the Federal Ministry of Health. Nationally, the report states that 31% of women have ever experienced physical violence since age 15. Jigawa state witnessed the lowest rate of physical violence (4%) with Taraba topping the list with 68%.
The report states that the most common perpetrator of physical violence against ever-married women is a current husband/partner with 58% while among never married women, the most common perpetrator is the mother/stepmother with 35%.
The findings revealed that one-third (36%) of ever-married women have experienced spousal violence, whether physical, sexual, or emotional by their current or most recent husband or partner. By state, the report notes, spousal violence ranges from a low of 13% in Jigawa to a high of 75% in Kogi while spousal violence is 49% higher among women who are divorced, separated, widowed than 35% among married women.
Declaring the workshop open, Governor Udom Emmanuel, represented by the
Executive Director, Agricultural Investment Directorate of Akwa Ibom Investment Corporation, AKICORP, Dr Bassey Umoenoh, commended the NPC for their statutory role in providing data especially on population and health surveys in Nigeria, stating that no society plans or executes polices that reflect the defining layers of the Social Contract without a reliable data.
“To help deepen your knowledge and expand the frontiers of your operations and deliverables, it is imperative that regular workshops and trainings are conducted, which informed the need for this particular workshop”, he declared.
According to the Governor, healthcare is a critical component of his adminstration, which is why the state government have invested huge resources in renovating and remodelling primary as well as secondary medical facilities and equipping them with modern medical equipment. “Some of the hospitals we have remodelled are fully computerized and the standards are comparable with any such hospital anywhere in the world”, he stated.
He noted with delight that almost all the areas the workshop will cover and where public enlightenment exercises are needed are massively covered by his wife, Her Excellency, Deaconesses Martha Udom Emmanuel’s Pet Project – Family Empowerment & Youth Reorientation Path Initiative (FEYReP), “family planning, nutritional needs, HIV/AIDS, sexual education, breast-feeding practices, personal hygiene, blood pressure and blood sugar level management methods, rape, the development of the girl child – all these and more are areas that have been adequately tackled”, he noted.
In his welcome address, the Federal Commissioner representing Akwa Ibom in the National Population Commission, Engr Benedict Ukpong said new, innovative approaches were used in the conduct of the 2018 NDHS. The anthropometry process, he said was improved to collect high quality height and weight measurements from children and women even as a new biomarker checklist was introduced to ensure that no important tasks were missed.
Interviewers he explained also returned to households to re-measure children for flagged cases and random re-measurement for data quality checks.
He observed that these new improved processes piloted in Nigeria, have been adopted as standard procedures in DHS surveys by other nations especially in Africa. Another innovation he said, was the inclusion of the DHS programs disability module in the 2018 NDHS which allowed the commission to collect information on disability status of Nigerians for the first time.
According to Engr Ukpong, the result of the survey shows a number of significant outcomes; few extract of the results with respect to Akwa Ibom State he stated included the fact that women in Nigeria have an average of 5.3 children. Fertility varies by state, from a low of 3.4 children per woman in Lagos to a high of 7.3 children per woman in Katsina. From the foregoing, he said, total fertility indicator for Akwa Ibom (3.6) shows a low fertility rate compared to South zone (4.0) and national average of 5.3.
“Under-5 mortality in Nigeria varied by state, ranging from 30 deaths per 1,000 live births in Ogun to 252 deaths per 1,000 live births in kebbi while Under-5 mortality in Akwa Ibom is 98 deaths per 1,000 live births and 73 deaths per 1,000 live births for the South South geopolitical zone”, he noted.
Other key findings from the report he said indicates that nearly 2 in 5 (37%) children under five in Nigeria are stunted or too short for their age. By state, stunting is lowest in Anambra (14%) and highest in Kebbi (66%). In Akwa Ibom, stunting is 20% which he noted is within south South zone average.
The 2018 NDHS report he said, revealed that 23% of children age 6-59 months tested positive for malaria by microscopy while malaria prevalence in Akwa stood at 23% which is 8% above South South average and same percent with National average. One in five (19%) married woman have an unmet need for family planning while Unmet need for family planning is lowest in Adamawa and Anambra 10% each and highest in Cross River 35% even as Akwa Ibom unmet need for family planning is 32%, compared to South South’s 28 % and national average of 19%.
The 2018 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey, NDHS is designed to provide data for monitoring the population and health situation in Nigeria. The 2018 NDHS is the sixth Demographic and Health Survey conducted in Nigeria since 1990. The objective of the survey was to provide reliable estimates of demographic and health indicators including fertility, family planning methods, breastfeeding practices, nutritional status of women and children, maternal and child health, childhood and adult mortality, women empowerment, domestic violence, female genital mutilation, malaria, HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), disability, and other adult health issues. A nationally representative sample of 41,821 women age 15-49 in 40,427 households and 13,311 men age 15-59 in one-third of the sample households were interviewed for the survey.
A protest this afternoon by the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN), otherwise known as Shiites has left a secondary school student dead. This happened when the police forcefully dispersed members of the movement at the Wuse Market in Abuja.
The girl was returning from Government Secondary School, Wuse, when she ran into the policemen dispersing the crowd.
Unconfirmed report said a witness at the scene of the incident gave the name of the policeman who mistakenly shot the victim as Geoffrey A. Rafah.
About two journalists, who were covering the incident were also arrested by the police. Afolabi Sotunde of Reuters was one of the journalists.
It’s a familiar burden that every leader, from whatsoever circle, be criticized for both genuine and/or manipulated reasons.
The Works’ Commissioner, Ephraim Inyang-Eyen, being a Superintendent-General of a pivotal ministry in the state has been a serial victim of the furnace of ill critique and sorta pillory from those directly or indirectly affected by his works ethos, unassuming personality and towering antecedents in the state.
And like an ardent believer in the School of Thought which avers that ” echoes of criticisms when heard from afar could be liken to applause and goodwill”, the Works’ Commissioner, seemingly, has taken up the mandate of his work up upon his chest; developing thick skin against distraction and an engaging ear-sight for good critique. That, methink, is required of a leader whose job inadvertently exposes him to the bout of mixed critiques. And that, it is observed, the Works’ Commissioner has done to maintain his focus and goal-driven target in the ever-demanding ministry such as his.
In recent times, it’s no more news that many individuals including a state lawmaker from Mkpat Enin Local Government have raised doubt as to the quality of works done by the Works’ Ministry in the past 5 years in the state as well as it’s ability to complete the spate of ongoing projects currently undertaken by the ministry under the supervision of Mr Inyang-Eyen.
The lawmaker, according to reports, however propelled by one failed portion of a road currently ongoing construction in his locality wrapped all the roads constructed under the current administration as lacking in quality and likely to fail in the nearest future.
The said comment, however attempts to rob off the efforts of the government and Works Ministry in the state; and capable of projecting the state road infrastructural edifices in bad light – even when the roads are still under construction?
Conversely, comments like the foregoing especially when it comes from an authority is a potent attempt to open the government to a feast of cankers and undermining the huge efforts of the Works Commissioner who has so far put in his best in the sector.
Again, the insinuation that Ephraim Inyang-eyen is working on the directives of his Boss to flagoff projects it may not possibly execute in the lifetime of the administration is also rife. Fact is, Projects are sited to solve problems, attend to needs. No administration, past and present that can boast of not leaving behind un/near completion of projects. Though this may not be the case here.
Meanwhile, propelled by the misgivings about the ongoing projects undertaken in the state, the Akwa Ibom State Governor, His Excellency Mr Udom Emmanuel, Tuesday 26th November, 2019, took time off his office schedule to inspect on-going intervention and development projects executed across the state. Projects inspected include ; Erosion Intervention Project at the failed portion of Calabar-Itu road, Ntak Inyang Community in Itu LGA, ongoing Fly Over Project at Ikot Oku Ikono/ Ekom Iman roundabout, Uyo LGA, Uyo Etinan road project / Etinan roundabout, Etinan LGA, Ekpene Ukpa Bridge, Etinan LGA, Etinan / Ndon Eyio alinging with the East West road, Onna LGA. Ikot Akpatek/ Ikwe – Odio road, Onna LGA, ongoing Jetty Project at Ikot Abidang, Onna LGA.
The inspection which was led by the Honourable Commissioner for Works, Akparawa Ephraim Inyang-eyen and his team from the Ministry of Works took Gov Udom round the ongoing construction project site in the state.
In appreciation, Mr Udom Emmanuel commended the effort of Akparawa Ephraim Inyang-eyen and the entire Ministry of Works and also appreciated the contractor handling the underground erosion that has cut off some sections of calabar-Itu highway on the level of work done and assured that other failed portion would be rehabilitated.
Gov Udom added that as a road being used by all Nigerians, including Akwa Ibom people, that he needed not to wait for the intervention of the federal government for the sake of Akwa Ibom people and Nigerians in general.
Another issue is that of the state government’s patronage to local engineers/contractors in the state. It is a fact that our local contractors have overtime shown capacity through quality work delivery from the past administrations till date. Going by this antecedence, it would be appalling leaving them in the lurk while they have the needed expertise to deliver. They need to be developed.
The only differentce between foreign and local engineers is the heavy duty equipment that the foreign companies are using of which they included it on their proposals/bills which indirectly is our state government that buys those equipments in most cases and that’s why you’ll see them abandoning it at the site at the completion of the particular work. Reason because they can’t take to everywhere and or go back with those machines. These equipments too could be hired for the same task and or if our local engineering firms if financially equipped properly can also purchase same, while the authorities caution them to ensure quality work delivery.
Much has also been said about timely delivery of projects by contractors. The delay in completion of projects handled by contractors shouldn’t be blamed on the Works’ Ministry, because funding is sourced from the state coffers; and when the state is faced with challenges, the Ministry would be handicapped to act.
The government is a work in progress and needs the support and encouragement of the people to succeed, not the wiping of sentiment which may pull the government and the society down.
Inyang-Eyen has shown capacity, passion and panache in the discharge of his assigned duty in the state. His work rate today stands as a potent evidence of his commitment and delivery and therefore natural refutes insinuations and ill criticism that may attempt to chalk up his performance.
He might not be a saint or infallible, but the Works’ Commissioner has, in the umpteenth time, made a bold statement for the current administration. For reasons of his excellent track record, he has risen above hate and ill critique!
Iniubong ANAKO is a Public/Political Affairs Analysis
It was Jack Welch who said before you are a leader success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others
Senator Chris Ekpenyong’s sojourn so far in the Senate has been a reflection of Jack Welch’s definition of a leader due to his superior ideology of growing his people, providing opportunities for growth and self-development. He believes leadership and philanthropy most go together which in its most basic form, entails being outstanding, affecting the people positively, providing solutions to individual problems, seeking ways to ensure effective representation and leaving a mark in the sands of time and on the people he is leading
Senator Ekpenyong’s ideology is basically, “ALL OF THINE, NONE OF MINE,” like a popular christian hymn. In his political and leadership life, he has shown that all he desires is to see people around him happy, satisfied and celebrating the achievement of a purposeful leadership
As a leader, unperturbed by attacks and blackmail, he has proved that capacity and competence should be the yardstick to measure a leader
As a Senator ,Chris Ekpenyong has offered a visible, impactful, dogged and sterling leadership style in the discharge of his duties of representing the interest, dreams and aspirations of the people of Ikot ekpene senatorial district; effectively presenting the concerns of the senatorial district in the red chambers of the National Assembly
Posterity will always remember this passionate leader and his superior ideology
A 17-year-old boy, Somto and his 16-year-old girl, has tied the knot traditionally according to Nnewi customs and tradition, over the weekend.
Sources say the groom hails from the Nwachukwu family in Okofia Village in Otolo Nnewi. The boy, a last child of his parents, allegedly dropped out of school last month, after insisting that he wanted to get married.
After mounting serious pressure on his family, the family decided to accept his request, and also sponsored the traditional marriage.
Reports have it that after the traditional marriage, his parents opened a retail shop for the couple to manage and possibly take care of themselves. .
Somto’s elder brother works in a Hospital within Anambra State, thus dispelling insinuations that he married early because he is an only son or child.