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Women of 2012 : Kidnap and the Minister’s Mother.

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By Morenike Taire

When the mother of the Minister for the economy/Minister of Finance was snatched  by kidnappers later in 2012, there really was no telling  what the outcome could be. The outpourings of goodwill expressed by friends and colleagues of professor Kamene Okonjo was almost matched by the avalanche of criticism of the minister, who was thought to be one of those responsible for the hike in petrol prices of January 2012, occasioned by the partial removal of  existing government subsidies.

File Photo: The Palace of the Obi of Ogwashi-Uku where  Prof. Okonjo-Iweala's mother, Prof. Kamene-Titi-Okonjo was kidnapped
File Photo: The Palace of the Obi of Ogwashi-Uku where Prof. Okonjo-Iweala’s mother, Prof. Kamene-Titi-Okonjo was kidnapped

In the end, common sense prevailed, and the people were able to make a distinction between bad judgement and dastardly acts of taking advantage of people for financial gain, in this case a senior citizen. In the end, the dear senior citizen was unhurt, and  the minister’s battered reputation was the better for the incidence. Speaking of good coming out of evil.

Worst of the Rumour Mill

Not long after the return of the first lady from a protracted and unannounced vacation, rumours began to spread about a romantic alliance between MTN Project Fame winner and singer of the hit track Kukere Iyanya, and Nollywood sexpot Tonto Dike, who was apparently featured in Iyanya’s track. The sexy singer was to waste no time in vehemently denying this claim both in public and private spaces likely to the disappointment of the lady in question. He had only mentioned her- and two others- in a hit song.

Another rumour that was destined not to see the light of day was the one about the death of the country’s number 1 lady, Patience Jonathan, who was away on vacation for so long that some were convinced she was deceased, or at least on the way to being.

When she eventually showed up, the mouths of the professional pessimists were forced to shut only to open again to cast aspersions on the state of health of the nation’s petroleum minister Dieziani Allison Madueke, who was to put the rumour to paid by celebrating her 50 something birthday during the yuletide period in a private affair.

Richest black woman

Controversy broke loose when Nigerian sultry socialite Folorunsho Alakija suddenly appeared on the Forbes list of Africa’s richest, only to the catapulted to the top of the pack as another online publication, Ventures Africa  has ranked her as the World’s Richest Black Woman. According to the report, she has ousted Oprah Winfrey, worth $2.7billion, from the position.

Ventures Africa claims that contrary to  the Forbes Magazine ranking which pegs her net worth at only $600 million, Alakija is actually worth at least $3.3 billion.

Neither Mrs Alakija, Oprah Winfrey or Forbes have set the  records straight on this; and once the initial thrill has worn off the atmosphere over one of our very own being rich enough to  be so recognized, Nigerians are totally scandalized right now.

The Dearly Deported

A most unproductive diplomatic row broke loose between the governments of Saudi Arabia and Nigeria over the female hajj female pilgrims to the oil rich country in 2012. It proved unproductive, in the main, for Nigeria’s sloppiness and Saudi’s disregard for the very word: diplomacy.

The authorities of Saudi Arabia insisted that the women were unaccompanied by male relations which was considered against laid down rules of the kingdom.

An adamant Saudi Arabia has so far refused to yield any ground to Nigeria on the issue of alleged unaccompanied female pilgrims, in spite of spirited diplomatic efforts by the Federal Government.

It is unclear whether or not Nigerian women have agreed on whether it is all politics or if the Islam being practiced in Saudi is different from the one practiced Nigeria.

Now, a reality Show

It’s a long way from the days when Nollywood veteran OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE appeared first on the big screen and stole the heart of Nigeria. Like other veterans, things might have slowed down on the acting scene, necessitating a redefinition  by these artistes by going into singing and other forms of entertainment.

With a hyped up all new reality show ‘The Real Me,’ Omotola will be in our faces all year long. She’ll also be giving her critics something to talk about when she releases her upcoming music album. It is to be hoped that breaking new grounds will enable her lead others, as usual.

Who is after Ajimobi?

The beautiful Oyo State first lady Florence Ajimobi was hustled in 2012 when she was accused of money laundering.

Ajimobi’s wife was alleged to have been arrested by the London Metropolitan Police over her involvement in the laundering of £400,000 (about N500 million.)

But the Oyo State government denied the report. It went further to institute a N1 billion suit against the Independent Communications Network Limited, publishers of PM News over its report on the arrest of Mrs. Ajimobi on the allegation of money laundering. There was no statement to the effect from the London Met.

The damages suits that have ensued as consequence will prove to be instructive when decided.

In Music

MTN Project Fame season 3 winner, Chidinma won the esteemed KORA Award for Best West African (Female) category. The event was held in Abidjan, Cote D’ Ivoire and was star studded with international superstars Chris Brown and Rihanna in attendance; as well as Nigerian music stars, P-Square. Chidinma’s award was presented by African soccer icon, Didier Drogba.


MTN Project Fame season 3 winner, Chidinma won the esteemed KORA Award for Best West African (Female) category. The event was held in Abidjan, Cote D’ Ivoire and was star studded with international superstars Chris Brown and Rihanna in attendance; as well as Nigerian music stars, P-Square. Chidinma’s award was presented by African soccer icon, Didier Drogba.

2013 Wardrobe Makeover

As the lovely new year rolls by you have only a few weeks to get back down to reality and give the old wardrobe a good old shake up.

With these editor’s choices, you are good to go in  2013

Bolder Jewelry

From the look of things, simple, understated jewelry has become a thing of the past, so much so that makers of expensive jewelry have also moved as far as design is concerned  from demure to devastatingly creative. Since it is very unlikely that we’ll be moving back to simple jewelry anytime soon, the new year is a good time to update this side of your wardrobe.

Chunky pieces are so all over the place these days that you really have no excuse to do classic.- earrings, bangles, pendants, jewelry on your shoe and bag. The trick is to go over the top without looking as if you are actually going over the top. Avoid riotous colours and stick to class rather than  the noisy and if you must do noisy- which you sometimes really have to-be sure to keep things calm and not  too competitive.

The Catsuit

When the catsuit is around, it is the simple opportunity to immediately transform into elegance without your having to spend time on mixing and matching. It’s a good thing then that they seem to be sticking around and 2013 can definitely do with a few.

Pair with medium, not high, heels, contrasting bag and cocktail  ring that matches.

The waistcoat

For the casual look, the t-shirt waistcoat combo of the 90s has made an appearance in 2012 and is bound to be big in the months to come on the casual  scene. With the combo, creativity is the name of the game.

Wide Legged Pants

After sooo many years of the skinnies reigning supreme, they suddenly look like something out of your grandmother’s 70s wardrobe rather than the yummy, must-have basic it had become as at two years ago. Finally you can take a breather if the clown look was never your thing, or if it was but you just got bored.

It doesn’t end there: the wide legged pants you should be adding to your wardrobe can be casual or official- the more creative the better.


It’s been coming back as mere hints, but gold is bound to be all over the place this year with belts, shoes, tops and tops bowing to the rush.

The season’s golds are bold, so stick to one item at a time as well as one tone in order not to outdo yourself. Otherwise it really doesn’t matter how scandalously bold it is.


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