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Integrating Biafra: Party supremacy

The original idea was to carve an enclave out of Nigeria in an area mostly populated by the Igbos among other ethnic groups like the Efiks, Kalabaris, Ibibios, Ijaws, Ogonis and others, stemming from a violent disagreement in the Northern part of the country, which put the lives of people sojourning there from the Eastern part of the country in danger. The exodus which ensued when the Southerners, mostly Igbo, streamed back home to save their lives, gave passion to the desire of keeping away from the North. That desire was resisted and crushed by the armed forces of the rest of the country in a war which has been tagged “Biafra” by some people and “Unity by others. That is history. No nation should go through that awesome experience twice. Hardly any nation can.

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The next phase

We can now all admit that we are at war. The proclamation that slapped a state of emergency on three States—Yobe, Adamawa and Bornu—a while back would seem to suggest as much, especially from the launching of all-out hostilities in certain areas of that region. It did not appear that we were really sure of what was going on these past three to four years during which we had borne the scourge of the Boko Haram. Some of course called it “terrorism” which is, in fact, a measure of warfare.

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We, the people born again

We are at the mercy of the politicians who rule us as masters rule slaves. They do not have any consideration for our needs and desires. They do not care to honour even their word to us. They care less still for the pride of the nation, or her progress. They hold us in utter contempt. But should they not hold us in some kind of esteem, no matter how little—some respect, some regard at least? After all, we put them there, didn’t we? It was our votes that helped to elect them into the Houses of Assembly, the House of Representatives, or the Senate.

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The Saraki Issue

A little way back there, it was like we were hardly going to be able to govern ourselves properly. If it was not a free-for-all in the “hallowed” chambers of our law-making elements, among distinguished and honourable men and women, it was that we manufactured an impasse in the progress of governance. And then we would begin to pant, and gasp and point accusing fingers in all directions. Now we seem to be a bit more focused on what is wrong as against who is wrong.

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Still waiting for godot

The list of the ministers has been received by various people in various ways. As usual, the areas of responsibility were not included. This was demanded in the past and would have been welcome in this dispensation now as a mark of the expected change which many people are still waiting to discern in the Buhari government.

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Herdsmen kidnappers: Fatal pilgrimage

Fulani herdsmen now operate quite a distance from home—wherever that may be. Offspring of arid regions, a nomadic lifestyle is stamped on their nature, incensed by the perennial need for water both for themselves and their cattle. But their herds need more than that; they also need food by way of grass and shrubs which do not grow in their native areas.

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The empire strikes back

Dr. Bukola Saraki, the distinguished President of the Senate, believes that the accusation of his alleged false declaration of assets when he was the Governor of Kwara State, is politically motivated. The Code of Conduct Tribunal, before which he had to appear in Abuja, also has before it the consideration of another indictment against Saraki of owning and operating foreign bank accounts contrary to his position as a public officer. But beyond that, he is also held to have acquired some assets which are believed to be beyond his legitimate earnings.

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We wait for the ministers

It would appear that President Muhammadu finds it convenient to make important announcements about his nation when he is away from the country. It could become an inconvenient matter for us to expect important statements from our President usually when he is abroad, especially if he makes a habit of jetting out now and again, as a pattern of what his stewardship is turning out to be.

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The next hundred days: Yorubanness in leadership

To several people, little has been achieved in the past one hundred days by the government of the All Progressives Congress which has been in government under the presidency of Muhammadu Buhari. Many other people, on the contrary, believe otherwise. However, the time frame of that judgment seems to be removed from the consideration of an appreciable number of those who feel disposed or impelled to judge, and that reduces the element of rationality drastically.

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Buhari is working

Buhari is working. As the first 100 days in office approaches, many pundits are presumably getting their pens ready to deliver their judgment on the President’s performance during the period which now seems to have been accepted as a critical point of assessment, at least, in the short term. The President has himself named three critical areas as his initial starting point—economy, security and employment, with no clearly stated priority. His performance will, of course, be examined beyond that.

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the dividends of defection

It tasted sweet on some lips while it lasted, that dish of defection. There were two parties in the main, and so there was only one other to defect to. It was, of course, bitter to the side on which the defection took place. And so, the loss of the Peoples Democratic Party was the gain of the All Progressives Congress. The applause rose from one side to the other.

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