If Africa is people, Nigeria is Nigerians. And the reality on the ground is that the contribution of the Nigerian people, especially the Nigerian middle class, to Africa’s economic rebirth, has happened in spite of and not because of the Nigerian state. Despite insecurity, despite corruption, despite unimaginative rulership, there is no speaking of Africa’s promise without the Nigerian people. You are going to have to cut through the challenges to deal with us because all 160 million of us are a people before we are a market.
Posts tagged with "commentary"
Governor Mimiko's legacy are about to be written.
To me, Governor's Mimiko's enduring legacies will be written in the next twelve months.
It may be legacies that automatically entitles him to another four years at Alagbaka as Chief Executive, or it may promise a roller-coaster ride that will be rough for him, by the cheer shenanigans of so-called political forces that are aligning against his own.
But the central problem facing Governor Mimiko's tenure will not be that of the political forces. The people of Ondo state are no fools as they have proven time and time again. They know how and when to separate chaff from the real deal.
The problem of governor Mimiko will be himself.
Already, on the official website of the Ondo state government (which reads more or less like OSRC in its glowing sycophancy ), a so-called Iroko 2013 group has already proclaimed Mimiko's achievements as unprecedented in Ondo state. With the report (http://yrn.me/at1r7) you can immediately sense what Mimiko's innermost circle of men are telling him..
Word to the effect that "the only former governor that could be compared to Mimiko in terms of performance was the late Adekunle Ajasin" is quite frankly nonsensical. To think such is being published on the state's official website is unnerving to the appropriately informed mind.
It is nonsensical because, it exposes a frightening misunderstanding on the pact, impact and visionary leadership that the era of Pa Ajasin represents in the political history of Ondo state.
It only takes living in Ondo state to recognise that the state, right from Alagbaka through to Ogbese, to Ibule is a living portrait of stagnation. The quotient of development that is in Ondo state is exactly at the level Pa Ajasin's leadership class of glorious yesteryears left it.
If the people milling around Governor Mimiko and the people responsible for the official website, do not realise that you cannot be the student, be the judge and then be the writer of history all at once, then Alagbaka is in serious trouble.
Here are few simple but telling realities:
Today, If you write an official letter today for-the-attention of governor Mimiko, there are no guarantees you would have any response, nor acknowledgements. What exactly therefore, are the responsibilities of the hundreds of men who mill around the governor day and night?
What guarantees you will receive any response, let alone positive treatment were you to write an official letter to someone in a ministry somewhere? And there are at least twenty three government ministries in Ondo state.
During the era of Pa Ajasin as I learn, it is standard procedure just as it is elsewhere in the world where governance is not about smokescreens, to expect a reply back if you write any letter to any department of state.
As a matter of fact, most government department have minimum service-level-assurances on how quickly they will deal with your correspondence. And you are pretty much entitled to sue if they fail on such service levels assurances.
It is not open to debate further therefore the quality of the leadership that obtains at Alagbaka if official letters, from citizens do not get the appropriate degree of treatment, starting with a due and diligently dispatched response.
Governor Mimiko’s premiership is more than three years old. It beggars the question, how hard can it be to reform the civil service?
Two, there is a feeling that Alagbaka has substituted the launching, or as as they say commissioning of project X and project Y for the notion of development in itself.
To think that a government that cannot connect the dots, and link the chains of interdependent growth in all sectors of her immediate society that actually drive development - true development, is letting herself be compared to the other ones, is quite frankly tragic. It’s bizarre.
Last year, governor Mimiko announced that a 'dome' building project is to be completed to the tune of N1.5B on 34 hectares of land somewhere in Akure. The governor added the project will be completed in five months at the time. (http://yrn.me/8ywh1). It should be time someone asked, where is the dome ?
And in the wider scheme of things, how much sense is it to invest N1.5B in a construction job where most of the raw materials are likely to be imported?
Alagbaka perennially organises one conference or the other in relentless and constant search for the economic blueprint of the state but there are no extractive industries in the state that may reduce the extreme unemployment in the land. Oluwa glass Company remains a proposition of seemingly distant history; And Governor Mimiko's people are busy trumping him as the next best thing since Pa Ajasin?
Perhaps more importantly, why is it inherently hard for the trappings of power in Ondo state - post the golden years of Pa Ajasin, to understand that Ondo state's strongest and most potent assets lies in the vast agricultural bases that underline the state's underbelly and apply more and focused mental thought towards redefining the enterprise and economic model of the state, based on these assets?
To me, it’s either insincerity, laziness or a combination of both. But Ondo state people will always figure that out. And in the case of Governor Mimiko, it will be soon enough.
Take the Gani Fawehinmi’s diagnostic centre [GFDC] inaugurated after a whopping 750Milliion Naira had been expended (http://yrn.me/i4b1y). Now, you cannot speak of Chief Fawenhimi without immediately transporting your brain cortex to the realms of extraordinary and greatest reverence. As such, whatever Ondo state chose to invest in his honour can only be ever so little.
At the commissioning of the centre in February, the Governor stated “This centre parades state of the art diagnostic equipment that can diagnose diseases of unimaginable kind and unbelievable accuracy because first class expertise has been deployed from design to operations”. You can only forgive the pomposity, if not scam of those words. Governor Mimiko is a well-trained medical doctor. There is no such thing as unimaginable disease and he knows it.
However, the real pertinent question is, what has the governor and his people at Alagbaka done in the last few months to ensure that the first-class expertise so deployed from design to operations in the construction of that facility, can replicate itself?
What are the governor’s development plan, for a new, perhaps University Teaching Hospital in Ondo state?
How are the ministries of Health to coordinate the potential for duplication of responsibilities between the GFDC and the rather disgraceful Ondo state central hospital?
The logical questions are limitless.
Development, the health and fate of the people is not a function of the number of mega schools or hospitals that you ostensibly build in itself. What it takes to develop the mind, soul and body of the people is much more than physical structures and the governor knows this.
Despite, having invested billions of Naira on a new healthcare centre, there is no doubt in my mind that if you ask my grandmother to compare the state of healthcare in Akure today, to what she experienced in 1980 – just her general perception - there can be only one winner. In 1980, I was not even in existence…
If you cannot begin to see the problems facing the people of Ondo state, from a holistic angle, and put the machinery of state towards constantly finding a way to solve them, day and night, then it would soon be immaterial the number of pages on the world-wide-web that you or your agent proclaim you as towering with the best of the past.
And in time, you would start to see intellectual jokers as Jimoh Ibrahim and his current PDP fool-mates as credible ‘opposition’ to your second term ambition.
The colour and nature of Governor Mimiko’s legacy, would depend on how well he is able to seize the urgency of now, to rediscover his mission and billing at Alagbaka.
He probably needs to decongest his office and mental space from the myriads of sycophants that surround and delude him daily.
There can be little doubt that he would like to gain a second term as the chief executive of Ondo state.
All he needs to do, between now and the next Gubernatorial election in Ondo state is discountenance the most of his team, most definitely disband the groupings comparing him to Ajasin, and focus on having a full return-on-investment on all those mushrooming projects that he has invested a lot of Ondo state’ petrodollars on. He surely can do more to redefine the concept of service delivery in his government’s civil service. This is so central to the successes, or otherwise of governance that it is key. People talk about Governor Fashola’s brilliance in Lagos – and I am yet to see it, but there is little contention in most quarters whatever trappings of positive impact Fashola’s government offers in Lagos can only be due to some of the structural organisation Mr. Bola Tinubu’s premiership facilitated previously.
The politics of Ondo state is one of the easiest to participate in Southwest Nigeria; Yet it is one that can be easily misunderstood: Act in the people’s greatest interests, and be seen to be so acting, and they will troop in time to validate your entitlement to continue. It took late Governor Adeferati of then AD a lot of years, actually twenty-four hours to the guber elections in 2003, to realise that the people of Ondo state, do not mind to excise so called Awoists, in favour of the sons-and-daughter of Obasanjoism, if they have to go that far to prove they are no fools when contemplating the central management of their affairs. It was too late.
The governor may need to revisit his history books on just exactly why Ondo state ‘boiled’ in the defence of Pa Adekunle Ajasin’s mandate in 1983.
And when he so does, one can only hope he actually takes the lessons therein to heart. He will need a radical change of problem-definition-and-problem-onslaught. And above all, he needs to get the people around him to work for Ondo state, and no more.
Time is already running out and the preamble pages in Governor Mimiko’s legacy sheets are dangerously pointing to nothing but a colossal whitewash…
THE PROBLEM WITH MOST NIGERIANS IS THAT WE PREFER TO TURN A BLIND EYE TO OUR ILLS AND LOVE TO MAKE EXCUSES. SORRY ANIOMA777 WILL NEVER JUSTIFY OR MAKE EXCUSES FOR THESE SUBHUMANS. AS MY PARENTS ALWAYS TOLD BE YOU CAN FOOL OTHERS WHICH IS BAD,BUT TO FOOL YOURSELF IS EVEN WORSE.
The university of Ife / Ibadan / Nsukka / Lagos etc - erstwhile prime-time Universities will be plotting their academic graphs in the negative, and Nigeria's Abuja will create more universities and throw a lot more money at them, to start afresh, and some people will start applauding.
::A president who cannot fix Benin Ore road, a road travelled by hundreds of thousands of people every single hour, months after he took office, will throw N300M or what was the figure at the entertainment industry and some people will start singing Hossana ?
Most Nigerians dont know just how much down the negative charts they have travelled...
There was a marvellous TV shot of three non-playing Manchester United stars at Wigan on Saturday. Ryan Giggs was in the middle, sitting up straight and concentrating on the game.
On one side Gabriel Obertan was staring at his lap while listening to his iPod with those comically inflated headphones beloved of footballers. On the other side Bebe also had his head down, texting. That, gentlemen, is why he's Ryan Giggs and you're not.
In front of Giggs was Bobby Charlton, also watching intently.
I always thought it strange when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer attributed his success as a substitute to the fact that he watched the game. Well you would, wouldn't you?
The thing speaks for itself.
From a pretty sensible article calling out Ashley Cole - Chelsea FC's the Gunner over@Eurosports
The few times I have watched Obertan play, I can't resist calling him what he is. As of now: A_fo_ju. [a football blind]
He cannot pick a pass.
He seems to play with the careless swagger of youth-team footballer most times, and I can't resist thinking of another Theo Walcott rebrand when I watch him play football at England's biggest stage, Old Trafforrd.
You would think, the chance you have to play at the highest level, will spur you to just add more; concentration. willpower. grit. Just stuff that is never taught at the training grounds but goes a long way to making a quality footballer.
As for Bebe - He just appears lazy!
Yet, as Manchester United played Wigan, they couldn't even leave their fancy iApple, iCrap audio/twitter kits for the dressing room, and just watch football & learn ?
If I was any close to either player, I would get someone to make that piece, in print, that they might read and learn. Maybe then, they might just have a Manchester United career.
As for Ashley Cole, I suppose the one liner I ran into somewhere sums it up: Once a gunner, always a gunner...
This is quite frightening, as it is meaningful.
Somebody has been running around saying “I dey laugh”.
His supporters have been running around like him,
like brainless monkeys saying, “I dey laugh”.
It is as if the suffering of 150 million people
is a laughing matter.
But hear this:
you have been laughing and laughing and laughing.
We will have the last laugh and whoever laughs last laughs best.
You laughed and laughed not because anything is funny.
Instead, you are funny.
Your behaviour is funny.
Your mind is funny.
Your existence is funny,
we must have the last laugh at your infantile existence.
Source: SaharaReports commentary
This is not about Professor Aluko .
It is about a warped method of thinking entrenched in that soured agidi called Nigeria
The same way they split up states expecting magically that the average man who went to bed in Ondo state will wake up tomorrow a better Nigerian because he woke up and was told that he is now in Ekiti State and not Ondo.
We celebrate nonsense in Nigeria and these rulers know that so they enjoy creating new things to appease us.
When will this rubbish end?
Even if that university was situated in my village I will say the same thing It is not needed,professor Aluko and all the others are better off at their current posts
We don't need any universities built by the federal government.
The unity schools are in shambles
The existing federal universities are eyesores with no amenities,not even pipe borne water
Students are shaiting inside evil forests risking godzilla nibbling at their butts
Insecurity in and outside college campuses workers are unpaid professors are going on strike every other season
The students spend 6 years in 4 year programs,wait another year to do NYSC then turn to kidnappers and robbers.
...sort of, sums up my feelings.
Really, It all is a classic case of what Fela Anikulapo Kuti tagged, government magic.
/SMH (ironically Professor Aluko's favourite rider)
The final? battle of Nigeria's geriatrics , thick headed zombies - parading as leaders - is about to move into all-action-thriller mode.
Col. Gwadabe ( a time-tested (ex?)IBB boy) fires first salvo, as in the saharaReporters.com expose on here
The President is invited to note that, he should not underrate the capacities of both Babangida and General Aliyu Gusau to cause mischief. For example both of them have collected money from President Gaddafi for their Presidential ambitions. While General Aliyu Gusau us using government avenues to beef up his finances IBB on the other hand is relying on Mike Adenuga to fund part of his campaign from their holdings in GLO and their oil blocks. IBB has also considerable financial interest in Toyota cars that come into this country. IBB has also invested huge funds through proxies in Angola in the oil and Gas sector. These are potential cash calls that he will use for his diabolical moves. That is what is informing their confidence that, incumbency is not a deterrent to their ambitions because money is not their problem. Mr. President should beam his searchlights on Toyota Nig. Ltd and liaise with the Angolan authorities to unravel the extent of IBB’s involvement in that country’s oil and gas sector and to also find out where were the sources of funds for these investments. His holdings in Equatorial Guinea is already a common knowledge, the NNPC should be able to brief you on that.
It is a very interesting, desperate times for Nigeria's collection of gangsters and boy! its just getting started.
I wonder what/how the current placeholder president - Goodluck Jonathan will respond to the extremely-dangerous-dynamite that is being prepared right after him on his convoluted ambition to winning presidential powers, come 2011.
One wish tho: May there be blood...there blood!
After weeks of this uncertainty and not making any headway, I decided to do what I had been reluctant to do initially....call Gani. I hadnt informed him initially as I thought it was a bit of a joke and would be resolved in a matter of weeks and I would be reinstated.
And so I went to see him and narrated the whole story to him and explained that I hadnt told him earlier because I appreciated how busy he was and I didnt want to disturb with what was a small matter as far as I was concerned. He let rip at me for being rather naive and not letting him know from day one....
A few days later I went back to the chambers to get the final copy of the letter to take back to the school with me. I was amazed when I got there and saw that 17 copies of the letter had been drafted and addressed to practically everyone on the school's governing council starting from the Vice Chancellor. I read through the 3 page letter where SK had briefly described the events and then stated my innocence on the matter. It ended with a not so subtle warning that there would be trouble if I wasnt reinstated with immediate effect....a few choice statutes were thrown in for good measure.
It was signed 'Chief Gani Fawehinmi, SAN'.
Some of the most awe-inspiring tributes to Chief Gani Fawehinmi - Nigeria's foremost constitutional lawyer.
Or put another way; The greatest Nigerian ever!
The whole piece can be found here (facebook). Its a terrific glowing read.
So I was scrolling through blogfeeds, jumping from endless techno-articles through the dancing-round-the-circle regurgitation that Nigerian news ultimately is..
Then I ran into this brilliant post from villager Kenn over@theNVS. It is a response to Okey Ndibe - who had done a brilliant if futile job, putting IBB's quest for presidential power in Nigeria in comparative context with the foolery of Obasanjo's 8 years of recent.
I paste Kenn's summation in full:
I am writing this partly as a rejoinder to Prof Okey Ndibe’s piece. I say “partly” because I am also using it as a springboard to propose what I think genuine patriots should be considering now that we have seen, writ large, the handwriting on the wall towards 2011. This is because I believe that Prof Okey Ndibe’s article has inadvertently exposed the helplessness of the Nigerian people in the face of the political farce that is likely to result from whatever they conjure up as election in 2011. It is a well-trodden path. For instance, since the annulment of the June 12 election in 1993, it’s always been the case that the commentariat continues to describe the next election and the one after that and the one after that as the most important in Nigeria’s history – all based on the expectation that we are on the verge of having a free and fair election. Yet, looking at political arrangements and developments before these elections, any discerning person could have seen and can see now that there was and still there is no basis for such optimism. The Nigerian people are always losing out because we have never taken our democratic rights and responsibilities seriously. We are always losing out because we let our mediocre and discredited rulers decide the agenda and run it without our own inputs. Or where we make such inputs, we still let them get away with their own failed ideas at the point of decision-making, because we never bother to insist on ours being part of the agenda. All the thieves have to do to get us recanting is to use the state instruments of violence or coercion (including bribery and corruption of supposed leaders of civil society) to get us off their back. I believe that if we desire to rid ourselves of bad governance, we must do what is required to get good governance, including exercising the discipline, honesty and long-term commitment required. There are no short cuts! Clearly, what Prof Ndibe is talking about in relation to General Ibrahim Babangida’s attempt to juxtapose his record with that of General Olusegun Obasanjo as an argument for his qualification to return to power is what you get when the people themselves have low expectations of public service. For instance, it is not uncommon in Nigeria to hear people make the kind of comparison Babangida was making between himself and Obasanjo. The idea is to limit the circle of possible national leaders, contrive a criterion based on “experience” and then invite the unsuspecting public to make a Hobson’s choice from a depressing list of candidates for leadership. To make this much more difficult, the political space is deliberately asphyxiated to keep out genuine patriots. They do this by ensuring (as they have) that key elements of electoral rules and practice are stringently stacked against them, including heavily monetizing and institutionally corrupting the system. Once this is done, they present the choices of the devil and the devil and invite you to choose which you think is less evil. So, all we get thereafter in the form of political debate is one devil coming to public space to tell us how the other devil is more devious than him and how some of the evil we ascribe to him should actually be ascribed to the other devil. Of course, Prof Ndibe is right to suspect that “Babangida and Obasanjo are locked in some vain psychological brinkmanship”; but the real problem is that such brinkmanship has cost and is still costing the nation dear. Babangida’s attempt to return to power is based on a historically sanctioned sense of entitlement and an unwritten agreement between members of the predatory industrial-military class (of which both are leaders) that they must support one another to always be in charge, because only members of their own class can protect their putrid interests and fend off any genuine attempt at good leadership that will necessarily call them to account. I say “historically sanctioned” because this is what we have historically accepted since the fall of the First Republic. I mean, we were all witnesses to how Babangida and his cohorts moved mountains to bring back Obasanjo in 1999. Thus, from Babangida’s perspective, Obasanjo should be the last person to stop him from coming back the same way in 2011 since he knows both their interests (and those of other members of the industrial-military complex) would be protected. He feels more so since it was the same Obasanjo that negotiated for him to back down in 2007. To that extent, Babangida’s present attempt to place his record side-by-side Obasanjo’s is not only a deliberate attempt to send a message to the latter for his supposed betrayal, but also to win over other members of the industrial-military complex that have a hand in instituting the kind of vile political control over the nation we have always known. Babangida understands that Goodluck Jonathan is an Obasanjo acolyte. He knows that without the support of the industrial-military complex, the man will not “win” any election in 2011. His double-pronged strategy of ‘protecting’ the zoning formula for the North and impliedly attacking Obasanjo’s record is aimed at pulling the rug under Obasanjo (even though Jonathan is the latter’s political face today). The Nigerian people have no role in this type of fight, because most, including Jonathan, know that there will be no free and fair election in 2011. What Obasanjo, Jonathan and Babangida are all angling for is the blessing of the other thieves who rule the roost as part of the industrial-military complex. If Babangida gets it, he becomes President (despite our protests); if Obasanjo gets it on behalf of his minion, Jonathan, then Obasanjo gets it – all to keep us firmly on the road to Golgotha! Fact is there is nothing positive to come out of it for the Nigerian people! I have always said our way to taking control of our nation under a democracy of any sort is through electoral activism; but we have already lost our ace the moment we allowed Jonathan get away with appointing the head of INEC supposedly because the appointee is a “credible” person. We forgot that the problem of elections in Nigeria is not dependent on the quality of persons put nominally in charge at INEC, but the institutional deficiencies in the whole electoral process. We are therefore once again lumbered with an unachievable expectation in terms of free and fair election. We are left to watch as the establishment monsters that are Obasanjo and Babangida (with Buhari on the sidelines) fight it out amongst themselves on who should lead the mission of running roughshod over Nigeria post-2011 elections. Prof Ndibe and the rest of us can take a swipe at Babangida, Obasanjo, Buhari or Jonathan, but that will not address any fundamental question of leadership failure. For these predators, they know the extent they can carry their disagreements between themselves. Jonathan, Obasanjo, Buhari, Danjuma and all members of the industrial-military complex will not lose any sleep if Babangida, by hook or by crook, becomes President, just as Babangida wouldn’t be jumping into the next lagoon if Jonathan continues. The whole game-plan is to ensure that the Nigerian people have no space in the contest for power. Once it remains between them, they are safe, even if their safety means Nigeria is doomed. For me, the answer lies in mobilizing the Nigerian people to reject the political process in place today by attacking the electoral process they have in place now. We need to take a fine comb to the Electoral Act and the so-called constitutional amendments with a view to presenting to the ruling class a people-powered alternative. Once they know that we are not ready to accept any result they give us in 2011, they will negotiate better access to power for true patriots at all levels. There would seem to be no time now, but that is only if we are looking at 2011 as some kind of definitive date. We don’t have to. True patriots and true leaders of civil society must begin now to think of a true democratic revolution. Again, the vehicle for that revolution is a Sovereign National Conference and there is no better time for this than now, considering all we have witnessed with our politics. For instance, the hobbling of the Jonathan presidency has proved that it is not about where the President comes from, but the quality (or lack of it) of people who perennially organise themselves as our leaders. Jonathan’s presidency is doing nothing for the Ezon or the South-South, just as Yar’Adua’s presidency did nothing for the Hausa-Fulani or the North. Babangida’s presidency will do nothing for Nigeria or the North, just like Obasanjo’s did nothing for the Yoruba, South-West or Nigeria. The reason is not far-fetched. Where leadership is based on a consensus amongst a predatory and criminal elite without due consideration of the people; where legitimacy and authority does not come from the ordinary voter but from nation-stripping godfathers, the state can continue to hold on while the nation dies. For the Nigerian people to get real access to power to effect the change they need in their lives, a Sovereign National Conference will need to be convened, so the basis of the nation be properly negotiated with a view to establishing viable structures for responsible leadership based on the rule of law. So, if we are really serious about change, we must begin to educate our people on the fact that a Jonathan, Obasanjo or a Buhari presidency in 2011 offers us no hope. We must begin to tell them that the fundamental movement for change must centre around electoral activism and the convening of a Sovereign National Conference to decide on the direction we need to take our nation. Any other thing would be to postpone the evil day while still giving the thieves the control they need to continue ruining our lives in the name of leadership.
One other thing, I like the compound word industrial-military class. A particularly polite way of describing a set of gangsters - these brainless class who pretend as leaders in jungle Nigeria.
Time to get on with a busy day...
|November 2013January 2014|