Saturday April 25th, 2015
Saturday April 25th, 2015
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The fallacies of delusional negative triumphalism (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:03 am   /   Comments

The streets of Kanio ahead of BUhari's declaration as winner of 2015 presidential election.

Another writer confidently claimed that Buhari’s unprecedented fourth attempt at the presidency was borne out of a strong desire to contribute to the well being of Nigerians: that was why he endured all the “mudslinging and outrageous insults directed at his person” without complaints and retaliation

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Consolidating democratic culture in Nigeria (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:21 am   /   Comments

Jonathan and Buhari

As I argued sometime ago, democratic governance is a team effort, not a one-man show. Thus, no matter how disciplined or incorruptible a politician might seem to a certain segment of the population, he or she cannot make solid positive impact if the political structure is as skewed as what we have presently – indeed, it is the single most profound cause of our arrested development. So, expeditious restructuring of the Nigerian federation such that more political and fiscal powers are devolved to the six geopolitical zones is the most urgent political task at this period in our national development.

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Invite Iheanacho, others to Eagles — Nwankwo

  /   in Sports, Sunday Perspectives   /   Comments

Kanu

Ex-Nigerian international, Kanu Nwankwo has urged the Nigeria Football Federation to promote Flying Eagles’ Kelechi Iheanacho and his colleagues that gave Nigeria the 4th FIFA U17 world cup at the United Arab Emirate in 2013 to the senior national team.

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Consolidating democratic culture in Nigeria (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:35 am   /   Comments

democracy

With the ongoing elections, Nigerians are facing one of the toughest challenges in their quest for consolidation and sustenance of the modest political gains achieved since civilian rule was reintroduced in 1999. In other words, form March 28, they would engage in a peaceful and orderly selection of political office holders that would manage the country’s affairs at various levels from May 29 until 2019. Expectedly, the electioneering campaigns, especially the presidential, have been particularly fierce, brutal and bruising.

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Deconstructing Buharimania (3)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:45 am   /   Comments

•Buhari: Decked out

Dyed in the wood Buharimaniacs seem oblivious of the fragility and dangers of APC’s excessive reliance on Gen. Muhammadu Buhari’s reputation for electoral success. No matter how incorruptible a presidential candidate might be, democratic governance is a complex undertaking that requires coordinated efforts from various individuals at different levels of authoritative decision-making to make a meaningful impact.

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Deconstructing Buharimania (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:45 am   /   Comments

CPC Presidential candidate, Gen. Buhari

Keep in mind that one of the reasons Gen. Ibrahim Babangida gave for overthrowing Buhari was that the latter is too rigid and opinionated to preside over a multiply plural country like Nigeria. Because of desperation to win in his fourth attempt to become President, Buhari now campaigns as if he has a magic formula to solve the myriads of problems facing the country within four years. His supporters think that as a retired general he can crush the Boko Haram terrorists at the snap of his fingers.

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Deconstructing Buharimania

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:29 am   /   Comments

Gen Buhari at Chatham House

Politics, according to cynics, is a dirty game. Many Nigerians tend to accept thatnegative characterisation of politics and politicking without question. However, in my view, Aristotle’s depiction of politics as the endeavour for the noblest of human beings is nearer the truth than the cynical standpoint. Briefly defined, politics is the authoritative allocation of power to make decisions and implement them within a geopolitical space.

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The NNPC and its enemies(2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:24 am   /   Comments

Alison-Madueke, Petroleum Minster

It is doubtful whether a purist Muslim like Gen. Buhari would have appointed a woman to oversee the petroleum ministry, let alone support her for OPEC presidency. For unrepentant critics of President Jonathan, his support that enabled Mrs. Allison-Madueke to be both the first female minister for petroleum resources and the first female President of OPEC is nothing.

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Notes on the upcoming national elections (3)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:42 am   /   Comments

According to media reports, Gen. Buhari has rejected invitation to debate with President Jonathan as proposed by the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria (BON). Probably, he is unaware that presidential debate has become an accepted feature of normal democratic practice, given that it offers a great opportunity for aspirants to speak directly to a wide audience and for the electorate to assess spontaneously the intellectual quality of those aspiring to govern them.

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Notes on the upcoming national elections (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 1:18 am   /   Comments

Cross section of voters during the Ondo Governorship election, yesterday.

Glaring lopsidedness in the composition of his Supreme Military Council and citing of Petroleum Special Trust Fund projects in favour of the North, in addition to hisoverarching concern for the promotion of puritanical Islam strongly indicate that Gen.Buhari might be a sectional leader and polarising figure if he becomes President.

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Notes on the upcoming national elections (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 2:01 am   /   Comments

Voting in session at Ophori-Olomu.during the election. Photo: Akpokona Omafuaire.

As the time slated for the upcoming elections draws inexorably closer, politicians and their supporters are doing all they can to ensure victory at the polls. Expectedly, the major focus is on the presidential elections, because whoever is elected President automatically becomes the highest political office holder in the country. That is not to say that other political offices, such as those of the governor and membership of the legislature, are unimportant.

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The anatomy of fundamentalist terrorism (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:27 am   /   Comments

The difference between the Holy Bible and the Holy Koran, therefore, is not that the former does not contain belligerent injunctions while the latter does. Generally, Christians seem more benign than Muslims now mainly because for centuries philosophers and intellectuals some of whom were devout Christians subjected Christianity to severe criticism from every possible angle, thereby exposing its weaknesses and irrationalities.

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The anatomy of fundamentalist terrorism (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 11:36 pm   /   Comments

terrorist

Largely, I am not the kind of person that sheds tears easily. Therefore, I cannot remember the last time I cried – really cried. But on the morning of penultimate Thursday, something quite unexpected happened to me.

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Rendering unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:47 am   /   Comments

happy-new-year1

Already, the year 2015 is up and running. All over the world, people are trying to get themselves together after the razzmatazz of Christmas and Near Year celebrations. Because of unnecessary extravagant spending associated with the festivities, many families find themselves deep in debt at the beginning of the year, just when the time for paying school fees, house rent etc was due.

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Facts, fiction and Christmas (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:21 am   /   Comments

christmas2

In The Holy Blood and The Holy Grail, Michael Biagent et al comment that it is on the strength of Mark’s account that the notion of Jesus’ humble family background originated. That said, it is clear that the two genealogies are so strikingly dissimilar that they might well be referring to two different individuals.

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Facts, fiction and Christmas (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:17 am   /   Comments

christmas

The purported birth of Jesus of Nazareth, commemorated every December 25 as Charismas, is the most popular religious celebration in the world. Even in non-Christian countries such as China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Turkey and Iran, reverberations of Christmas are unmistakable.

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The trouble with Nigerians

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:29 am   /   Comments

Nigerian-fans

Ever since the deceased iconic novelist, Chinua Achebe, wrote the little monograph entitled The Trouble with Nigeria, it has become fashionable to blame Nigerian leaders for all the hydra-headed manmade problems of the country. Indeed, he was unsparing in his acerbic criticisms of respected politicians, including Nnamdi Azikiwe and Obafemi Awolowo, for errors of judgment as political leaders.

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Characteristics of agbata ekee democracy (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:20 am   /   Comments

Successful democratic practice requires wide diffusion of two seemingly conflicting qualities in the citizens, particularly among politicians. On the one hand, the citizens must cultivate an appreciable degree of intellectual self-reliance and willingness to back their own judgment with good reasons inspite of opposition. On the other, they must be prepared to submit to the decision of the majority even when it goes against them. These two dispositions, according to Bertrand Russell, may appear inconsistent at first glance. But they are important for the degree of commitment and tolerance needed for democracy to work.

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Characteristics of agbata ekee democracy (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:19 am   /   Comments

President Goodluck Jonathan and Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd)

In the last series of articles of this column, I tried, albeit briefly, to determine the electability of two major frontrunners in next year’s presidential elections, namely, President Goodluck E. Jonathan and former military head of state, Muhammadu Buhari. From the analysis, I concluded that despite the egregious failings of the incumbent President and the anti-corruption reputation of Buhari, Jonathan who has been chosen by the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as its presidential candidate will defeat Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2015 if the latter emerges as APC’s presidential flag bearer. That conclusion flows from two undeniable facts.

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Jonathan and the 2015 presidential elections (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:11 am   /   Comments

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan (R) and Nigerian Vice President Namadi Sambo greet supporters at a ceremony in Abuja on November 11, 2014. Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan on November 11 declared his bid for re-election, vowing to finally defeat Boko Haram whose rise in strength during his first term has threatened the country's sovereignty. The 56-year-old made the announcement to tens of thousands of supporters in the red, white and green of his ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), at a carefully orchestrated ceremony including patriotic music, dancing, prayers and speeches. AFP PHOTO

The people who drafted the constitution apparently did not envisage that a Vice-President who takes over after a President had died in office and who subsequently gets elected on his own merit might wish to contest for a second term.

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Jonathan and the 2015 presidential elections (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:50 am   /   Comments

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan (R) and Nigerian Vice President Namadi Sambo greet supporters at a ceremony in Abuja on November 11, 2014. Nigeria's President Goodluck Jonathan on November 11 declared his bid for re-election, vowing to finally defeat Boko Haram whose rise in strength during his first term has threatened the country's sovereignty. The 56-year-old made the announcement to tens of thousands of supporters in the red, white and green of his ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), at a carefully orchestrated ceremony including patriotic music, dancing, prayers and speeches. AFP PHOTO

By Douglas Anele In my estimation, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former military President, Ibrahim Babangida and President Goodluck Jonathan are three of the luckiest prominent Nigerians alive today. For one thing, they came from very humble backgrounds and rose to occupy the highest political office in the country, not because they really merited it but because

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The question concerning miracles (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:17 am   /   Comments

Miracle-593x371

In otherwords, when people claim they have received a miracle in one form or another, a sufficient number of critical and well-educated people of trustworthy character and good sense to occlude the possibility of deliberate deception invariably dispute such claims – and for good reasons too, because appearances do not always reflect reality. Human beings, especially in underdeveloped communities where majority of the population are poor and undereducated cling dogmatically to the teachings of Holy Scriptures concerning miracles, even when the phenomena in question are amenable to scientific explanation.

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The question concerning miracles (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:19 am   /   Comments

Archbishop of Freiburg, Robert Zollitsch waves incense during a mass service to mark the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI at the St. Hedwig's Cathedral in Berlin on February 28, 2013. The mass coincides with the final hour of Benedict XVI papacy as his powers formally expire at 19:00 GMT. AFP PHOTO

Since human beings invented religion thousands of years ago, the belief in miracles, that is, in acts of God which contravene natural laws governing phenomena, has been a leitmotiv in the architectonic of religious consciousness.

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The contradictions of Muhammadu Buhari (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:21 am   /   Comments

President Goodluck Jonathan and Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd)

Nevertheless, the key issue is that, as chairman of PTF, the buck stopped on his table, which means that (1) it was his duty to make sure that funds allocated to the trust fund were used judiciously, and (2) he must ensure that any of his staff and contractors guilty of financial malfeasance faced justice. On both counts, Buhari was unsuccessful, which implies that he may not be able to fight high-octane corruption effectively if he becomes President in 2015.

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The contradictions of Muhammadu Buhari (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:50 am   /   Comments

*Buhari

The emergence of All Progressives Congress (APC) after the 2011 presidential elections was considered by many Nigerians fed up with the mediocre performance of the federal government as a great opportunity for credible opposition to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, the PDP.

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Ebola virus disease and belief in an omnipotent good God

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:12 am   /   Comments

A seller of bananas walks past a slogan painted on a wall reading "Ebola" in Monrovia on August 31, 2014. Liberia on August 30, 2014 said it would deny permission for any crew to disembark from ships at the country's four seaports until the Ebola epidemic ravaging west Africa was under control. AFP PHOTO

Ever since the Ebola virus disease (or EVD) bumped into public consciousness worldwide in March this year, a lot has been said and written on the subject both by experts in the relevant fields and those who know very little about the disease.

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Shibboleths and refutations (3)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:01 am   /   Comments

*Ihejirika

The celebrated playwright declared, “In the process of our inquiries, we solicited the help of a foreign embassy whose government, we learnt, was actually on the same trail; thanks to its independent investigation into some money laundering that involved the Central Bank. That name, we confidently learnt, has also been passed on to President Jonathan. When he is ready to abandon his accommodating policy towards the implicated, even the criminalised…we shall gladly supply that name.”

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Shibboleths and refutations (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:42 am   /   Comments

Jega-cartoon-2015

How can Jega or anyone for that matter rationally justify the following: (1) none of the southeastern states got 1,000 new PUs out of the 12 that did;

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Shibboleths and refutations (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:03 am   /   Comments

Igbo-men

Anytime I suggest, with good reasons, that successive federal governments have systematically marginalised south eastern Nigeria since the Biafran war ended in 1970, some critics allege that I am over flogging the marginalisation issue, that I must be a tribalist, and that my claim is tantamount to making excuses for incompetent and corrupt Igbo political leaders.

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On the manifold faces of death (2)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:28 am   /   Comments

If the former Director-General of NAFDAC could resurrect temporarily and read the encomiums from some highly-placed Nigerians, she would be disgusted by the hypocrisy of it all – the very people that truncated her political ambition now eulogising her to high heavens! President Jonathan was very generous in praising Dora Akunyili’s achievements. Yet, he did not include her in his cabinet but merely appointed her member of the just-concluded National Conference at a time she was very ill. Mr. President’s action in this regard is consonant with the hypocritical attitude of members of the ruling class we highlighted earlier. That said, the best way to honour Akunyili’s legacy is by emulating her exemplary performance as a public servant. It is meaningless to praise someone to high heavens without making genuine efforts to exhibit those qualities that made him or her outstanding.

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On the manifold faces of death (1)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:10 am   /   Comments

Death-cartoon

According to Sherwin B. Nuland, author of the illuminating book, How We Die: Reflections on Life’s Final Chapter, everyone wants to know the details of dying, although few willingly acknowledge that fact

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Truth, reason and nation building (5)

  /   in Sunday Perspectives 12:40 am   /   Comments

Collectively, Igbo politicians, especially since the return to civilian rule in 1999 have failed in this regard. Nothing emblematises the decadent political leadership in Igboland today, and therewith the decline of South East as a liveable human space, more than the horrifying decay of Aba, once a flourishing centre of commerce. Presently, Aba is one of the most neglected urban centres in Nigeria, a paradigm example of arrested development, a glorified refuse dump. Former governor Orji Uzor Kalu and incumbent governor Theodore Orji deserve imprisonment for the deplorable state of Enyimba city. I grew up in Aba, when it was one of the most hospitable places in Igboland. Now, after fifteen years of mediocre governance, the city is a grotesque shadow of its former self. In my home state, Imo, the quality of work done by Rochas Okorocha’s agbata ekee administration is decidedly sub-standard; it is as if good governance has gone holiday. Hence, Igbo youths should rise up now and demand responsible leadership from politicians, instead of accepting crumbs from them euphemistically misnamed “empowerment.”

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