Tuesday March 31st, 2015
Tuesday March 31st, 2015
Latest

Buhari/Jonathan: Saturday’s hard choice

  /   in Talking Point 8:15 am   /   Comments

President  Goodluck Jonathan and Gen. Muhammadu Buhari

IN just a matter of three days the long anticipated 2015 elections would have been under way. What took several years of arduous planning and billions of tax payers’ money that both the government and the election planners may never be able to account for would have come. Six weeks ago Nigerians felt ready for the elections before top members of the Jonathan administration engineered a shift in the electoral date.

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Lessons Dame Jonathan can learn from Simone Gbagbo

  /   in Talking Point 12:58 am   /   Comments

From Left: Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose; Wife of the Ekiti State Governor, Mrs. Feyisetan Fayose and the Wife of the President, Dame Patience Jonathan acknowledging the cheer during the PDP Women Rally in support of the 2nd term of President Goodluck Jonathan in Ado-Ekiti on Monday....Photo. Government House Ekiti.

By Rotimi FASAN THESE are times when every statements made of political figures are read through partisan lenses. This is surely not the first time I will be making this point since the contest for the Nigerian presidency in the elections due next week became a two horse race between Muhammadu Buhari and Goodluck Jonathan.

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Does the PDP really want the 2015 election?

  /   in Talking Point 8:27 am   /   Comments

President Goodluck Jonathan displaying Expression of Interest and Nomination Forms  at the People's Democratic Party's Secretariat in Abuja on Thursday (30/10/14).

IT is important to ask at this time if the ruling Peoples Democratic Party is really interested in contesting the rescheduled 2015 elections. This question has become pertinent in view of what looks like a deliberate attempt by the party to continue to stonewall any attempt to have the election until such time as it feels ready for it. The ‘filibustering’ tactics of the PDP are too obvious to be ignored.

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Petroleum scarcity again?

  /   in Talking Point 12:19 am   /   Comments

Fuel Scarcity at Ogba ijaiye Lagos.PHOTO;AKEEM SALAU

IT’S just been a few weeks since the Nigerian government decided that the pump price of fuel should go down following dwindling oil prices in the international market.

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Joseph Mbu: An officer on rampage?

  /   in Talking Point 1:02 am   /   Comments

Joseph Mbu

By Rotimi Fasan JOSEPH MBU is supposedly a trained police officer and goes around with the rank of an Assistant Inspector General, but he behaves like his high office demands. How this man has managed to make it through the police force all these many years without evidence of ever being made to account for

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Echoes of Chibok

  /   in Talking Point 12:11 am   /   Comments

Chibok-details

AFTER nearly a year from their homes and families, there were intimations a few days ago that the school girls of Chibok might after all be well and alive. This heart warming news which I initially took with cautious optimism first came to me via online media. While I was full of hope that these girls might somehow return home at some point, I was equally cautious of the authenticity of the report.

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This election will be won and lost somehow

  /   in Talking Point 3:26 pm   /   Comments

election-cartoon

IN just a matter of days, the much anticipated February 14 election would be history. Or so Nigerians thought. After much planning, scheming, deliberation and physical and verbal violence, even slander and libel of the most venomous variety, Nigerians thought they would have the chance to choose who would be their president for the next four years, and either of the two leading candidates of the ACP and PDP would win or lose the election. But it was a long journey to this point.

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Did I hear Buhari does not want to debate Jonathan?

  /   in Talking Point 12:39 am   /   Comments

Buhari and Jonathan

These are political times and like in a war the first casualty is truth. There have, in the last few days and the many weeks leading to the February 14 presidential election, been a whole lot of untruths being peddled out there as the Gospel, and that too in the name of God. Not even so-called men and women of God who have become more partisan than the politicians they are ranged behind are exempt.

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When are the 2015 presidential debates?

  /   in Talking Point 9:57 pm   /   Comments

Buhari and Jonathan

ONE of the cherished traditions of developed democracies is the creation of fora for contestants to public office to sell their programmes to the electorate before live audiences. Contestants present their party’s manifestoes and planned activities on attaining power in form of debates that are often transmitted live to audiences via the broadcast media. These events are organized and moderated by select members of the mass media and others, not party partisans. This is especially the case for contestants to high offices like that of president. Since the 1960s, no presidential election takes place in America without a presidential debate. It is just a convention of American democracy that is now widely accepted and practiced the world over. It may not be a constitutional requirement but no candidate into elective office who wishes to be taken seriously spurns it.

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‘Issue-based’ campaign? When, where?

  /   in Talking Point 12:31 am   /   Comments

File: Jonathan and Buhari

ONE can say that the general feeling among Nigerians, even without the benefit of a survey or an opinion poll, is that the February elections will be violent. Those who say this or think this way are not without their reasons. History tells us so. Our recent political experience confirms it. Even now, the fault lines are already manifesting. There have been violent skirmishes among supporters of the leading political parties in different parts of the country. Campaign posters have been torn. Party offices have been invaded, houses have been burnt and lives have been lost.

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Other side of Rev. Father Mbaka’s prayer

  /   in Talking Point 1:40 pm   /   Comments

Rev-Father-Mbaka

REPORTS of Rev. Father Ejike Mbaka’s New Year’s Eve sermon had for a short while been generating excited responses in the media before I looked to know what it was all about. I didn’t think it worth my while to pay attention to yet another religious leader making one of their increasingly forgettable remarks on Nigerian politics and the February elections. I could see that the Rev. Father was supposed to have made what appeared to be this explosive remark at one Adoration Ground.

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A prayer for my land

  /   in Talking Point 12:58 am   /   Comments

Jonathan or Buhari  who will you pick ?

IN just over a month, Nigerians will be going to the polls to elect a new president. Even though the stakes are quite high it does not look like a presidential election is around the corner. The campaign period seems all too short. More so for President Goodluck Jonathan whose presidency seems to be running on oxygen for the few weeks left, with little room to manoeuvre to say nothing of convincing the alienated voter.

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2014, Nigeria’s year of insurgency

  /   in Talking Point 12:18 am   /   Comments

Scene of the blast. AFP

IT was and still is the single most talked-about issue in Nigeria in the last one year. Although its existence predated the Goodluck Jonathan administration, insurgency has been that single elephant of an issue that has dominated the room of national discourse in the last one year. It brought activists campaigning for the return of the Chibok girls out on the roads of Abuja on Christmas day 2014. It was on the lips of the hundreds of thousands of Nigerians that have been displaced from their homes in different parts of the north-east, and their families. The Pope didn’t forget to mention it in his Christmas message. And it would continue to dominate news about Nigeria until an end is put to it.

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To be black, poor and vulnerable

  /   in Talking Point 12:35 am   /   Comments

*Obama

THERE is so much else happening around Nigeria and the rest of the world that the focus on the activities, especially failures of Nigeria’s political leaders, seems obsessive. The tendency to concentrate on Nigeria betrays what might look like a mind-closing narcissism. But then, another look at the matter would reveal that in Nigeria so much, if not everything, is tied to politics

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Between Buhari and Jonathan: A straight race to 2015

  /   in Talking Point 12:10 am   /   Comments

Jonathan or Buhari  who will you pick ?

THE crowded field of presidential aspirants has been cleared up for a straight contest between two individuals, with the emergence of candidates for the two leading parties in the land, the APC and the PDP. The contest for Aso Rock Villa has come to a two horse race between Gen. Mohammadu Buhari and President Goodluck Jonathan. The 14 February, Valentine’s Day presidential battle, will be far from being a lovers’ affair when the two combatants square up for action. If anything, it promises to be full of intrigues, surprises, suspense and a lot of tension.

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Iweala’s economic recipe: Not austerity but panicky measures

  /   in Talking Point 12:50 am   /   Comments

Okonjo-Iweala

THERE’S palpable panic if not fear in the land. For those who know, Nigeria is heading for an economic precipice that should get all of us truly worried and looking beyond the false hope being hawked around by the Goodluck Jonathan government. The price of crude oil, Nigeria’s one and only economic mainstay, is crashing with the rapidity of a pack of cards.

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IG Abba Suleiman, Tambuwal and Jonathan

  /   in Talking Point 12:12 am   /   Comments

Tambuwal and Goodluck Jonathan

THIS may not be the best of times for the Inspector General of Police, Abba Suleiman. He has been cast in what, I would imagine, is the unwanted role of chief enforcer for President Goodluck Jonathan, in his proxy war against Aminu Tambuwal. Why President Jonathan finds it difficult to come out openly against Aminu Tambuwal who, he obviously does not want to continue as Speaker of the House of Representatives, is a mystery only he can resolve. He wants to be seen as a democrat, no doubt.

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Extension of emergency rule, Tambuwal and President Jonathan

  /   in Talking Point 12:52 am   /   Comments

If history is any guide, it almost always starts this way. Like a sick joke or high drama without an apparent plot, full of tension that nevertheless ends in tragedy. I am here talking of the violent attempt by the police to prevent Aminu Tambuwal, Speaker of the House of Representatives, from entering the House last Thursday. The House had reconvened for an emergency session to consider the request by President Goodluck Jonathan for further six months extension of emergency rule in three North Eastern states at the epicentre of insurgent unrest. The Senate which had been in session for two days to consider the same request by President Jonathan, prior to the incident at the House of Representatives, had failed to reach any agreement. Although no less tension-filled, matters had been better managed at the Senate. It was in the House that things fell apart.

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Goodluck Jonathan’s military, local militias and the security of Nigeria

  /   in Talking Point 8:24 am   /   Comments

President Goodluck Jonathan

The United State’s government once more showed its disdain for the Goodluck Jonathan administration and by extension our so-called fight against terror by its last week insistence that it would not sell fighter helicopters to Nigeria. The US government spokesperson was reacting to the claim by the Nigerian Ambassador to the US, Ade Adefuye, that the US had refused to sell fighter aircraft to Nigeria.

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Plenty nonsense dey for Naija

  /   in Talking Point 1:54 am   /   Comments

NAIJA

This is not about President Goodluck Jonathan. But you also cannot discount his input in it. The fact of his own connection, that he is president at this material time in the history of Nigeria, must have a part to play in the mindless direction the country seems to be heading in terms of the security of life and property in Nigeria as a whole, and the North East in particular.

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Performing poverty, Goodluck Jonathan and Mohammadu Buhari styles

  /   in Talking Point 2:49 am   /   Comments

Jonathan and Buhari

Not unaware of the general perception that Nigerians have of them, Nigerian politicians often try to appear above board. But they don’t stop at that, they also want to be seen to be above board. It does not matter to them what actually is the reality of their political life, what counts for them is to be seen to be doing what is expected.

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So much ceremony about Jonathan’s declaration for 2015

  /   in Talking Point 12:26 am   /   Comments

President Goodluck Jonathan

AFTER more than a year since the issue became a major talking point around the country, President Goodluck Jonathan, last week, finally declared his intention to re-contest as president. The President especially, and his aides and supporters had hedged and skirted like practiced lawyers on the question of whether he would seek re-election or not. Most of the talk around Jonathan’s re-election plans was at best academic.

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60 hearty cheers for Bashiru Adekunle Okesina

  /   in Talking Point 12:57 am   /   Comments

Bashiru Adekunle Okesina

It’s not every day that academ-ics celebrate their birthdays. But it was an occasion for celebration a fortnight ago when Bashiru Okesina, medical doctor, professor and current Vice Chancellor of Osun State University, marked his birthday.

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How rich is President Goodluck Jonathan?

  /   in Talking Point 2:36 am   /   Comments

Jonathan

The question of how rich President Goodluck Jonathan is should not come as a surprise to any Nigerian that has been following report of his curious listing by an American publication as the sixth richest head of state in Africa.

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Ebola Virus Disease and America’s funny hypocrisy

  /   in Talking Point 12:35 am   /   Comments

Cartoon-ebola

On September 30, 2014 America recorded its first case of Ebola Virus Disease. The source of this unwanted guest to the American soil was himself a guest to America from one of the countries at the centre of the disease. He was Liberia’s Thomas Eric Duncan who was visiting Texas

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Synagogue Church building collapse: How many Nigerians died?

  /   in Talking Point 9:07 am   /   Comments

TB Joshua-Synagogue Church

SINCE September 12, 2014, when a six-storey building under construction collapsed in the premises of the Synagogue Church of All Nations, there has been a deliberate, even if unspoken, tendency to create the picture that only South Africans died in the unfortunate incident.

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Does Jonathan know Nigeria is now at war?

  /   in Talking Point 8:13 am   /   Comments

President Jonathan

THE upper arm of the National Assembly, the Senate, reconvened from vacation last week to a new realisation, to wit, that Nigeria is at war. Principal officers of the Senate, led by its president, David Mark, made seemingly strong statements that made clear their belief that the escalation of insurgent activities in the North East of Nigeria is a clear indication that the country is indeed at war.

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Fighting Ebola- between “irrational fear” and irresponsible capitulation

  /   in Talking Point 12:45 am   /   Comments

People carry a sick child on a stretcher outside the Elwa hospital run by Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors without Borders) in Monrovia on August 30, 2014. Liberia has been hardest-hit by the Ebola virus raging through west Africa, with 624 deaths and 1,082 cases since the start of the year. AFP PHOTO

THE last time I checked which was about ten hours before I started writing this on the night of Thursday September 11, the news out there was that the Federal Government had decided to stick to its decision to move the resumption date of schools forward.

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Ebola: Not over until it’s over

  /   in Ebola Outbreak, Talking Point 12:07 am   /   Comments

People carry a sick child on a stretcher outside the Elwa hospital run by Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors without Borders) in Monrovia on August 30, 2014. Liberia has been hardest-hit by the Ebola virus raging through west Africa, with 624 deaths and 1,082 cases since the start of the year. AFP PHOTO

AT what point is it safe to declare a place and a people safe from the menace of a dangerous disease? When can a potential plague of devastating proportions be viewed as under effective control?

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From Sambisa forest to Gwoza: Jonathan, seize the moment!

  /   in Talking Point 9:05 pm   /   Comments

Sambisa-Forest1

THESE are dangerous times for Nigeria. They are times that try a nation’s soul and it is the choice of the country’s leaders what they make of the times. The choice we make or that those who lead us make for us have grave implications for the continued existence of Nigeria as it was formerly known. I described Nigeria in the past tense, in the manner I did in the preceding statement, advisedly.

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Ribadu’s politics of defection and Nigerian politicians

  /   in Talking Point 12:29 am   /   Comments

Nuhu Ribadu

TWO phenomena are currently playing out and defining the Nigerian political space. This is the politics of defection and impeachment. Politicians are either defecting, that is changing party affiliations with the sole aim of positioning themselves, literally, for personal aggrandizement. Or they are being impeached from one position or another by erstwhile friends turned foes- also for the same selfish reasons of personal elevation.

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Ebola virus, the absurd and urban legends

  /   in Talking Point 12:25 am   /   Comments

A file photo taken on June 28, 2014 shows a member of Doctors Without Borders (MSF) putting on protective gear at the isolation ward of the Donka Hospital in Conakry, where people infected with the Ebola virus are being treated. Guinea announced on August 9, 2014 it was closing its land borders with Liberia, Sierra Leone over Ebola fears.    AFP PHOTO

THE outbreak of Ebola virus in parts of West Africa, including Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, has rightly sent panic around the world. From Liberia it has found its way to Nigeria and is slowly spreading among health workers and others who had had direct and indirect contact with infected persons. The fear now is that it might continue its slow but steady spread if nothing or enough is done to stem it. Such a devastating killer should not be allowed to continue unchecked, especially since the mode of transmission could be as insidious as shaking hands with an infected person.

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