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Bob Anikwe

Profile of a statesman (2)

IT took 13 years before the army produced its first statesman. The man, Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo, successfully ended military adventurism into Nigerian politics (for a while) in 1979 when he handed over power to a civilian regime. He thereafter retired to a farm at Ota, but what a farm it turned out to be!

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Profile of a statesman

IN my humble view, Nigeria has had only three statesmen at its highest level of governance. These are Zik, Balewa, and OBJ. A statesman is a senior male politician widely respected for integrity and an impartial concern for the common good. If we go beyond the politician, I would add the names of Ernest Shonekan and Abdulsalami Abubakar, who ruled under a military regime.

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Guns against the journalist

The media war waged by radical journalists from the early 1980s provided the impetus and support for civil society organisations to come into being and join in this fight. The haste with which Generals Obasanjo (1979), Babangida (1993), and Abdulsalam Abubakar (1999) either stepped aside or handed over power to civilians is partly credited to the dogged efforts of the radical media, aided by the civil society groups that they encouraged and empowered.

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The Abuja way

I SAT in a popular fast-food joint the other day and listened to two friends argue over “office” matters. It was obvious that the two were close friends, and from the nicknames they shared, it was also apparent that they knew each other well, long before they came to settle in Abuja and work in the same office.

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The resolution that became law

The job of the National Assembly appears to leave the Constitution and instead ignite a debate over the true meaning of handover, stoke it as we shout and protest in our various trademark fashions, and maintain the tempo for as long as it takes the President to return to his seat.

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