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Scenarios with Obadiah Mailafia

Leadership and moral conscience

By Obadiah mailafia THE art of leadership is difficult enough in normal times. In an age of upheavals, the complexities are infinitely more daunting. Political leadership is the one vocation to which many are called but few are really chosen. Today, sadly, the world is truly bereft of great leaders. You wouldn’t, for example, call
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Body of former leader, Mugabe, arrives in Zimbabwe for burial

Robert Mugabe and the verdict of history (2)

Economic sanctions and economic mismanagement, in addition to poor governance, heightened the social and political crisis in Zimbabwe. The struggle for democracy reached a crisis point that led to South Africa brokering a fragile peace. This led to a national unity government with Mugabe as President and Morgan Tsvangirai of the Movement for Democratic Change, MDC, as Prime Minister during 2009-2013. But it was not to last. The old fox bade his time until he could outmanoeuvre his enemies and reconsolidate absolute power.

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P&ID, Nigeria, China

The $9 billion judicial scam against Nigeria (2)

THEY are counter-suing in the United States; arguing that London is not the right jurisdiction on a case of this nature. The EFCC describes it as “daylight robbery” and is launching its own forensic investigation. Attorney-General Abubakar Malami predictably blames the PDP administration for “conniving with local and international contractors in a bid to inflict grave economic adversity on the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the good people of Nigeria”. But P&ID insist that the government and Malami were to blame for their dilly-dallying and prevarication. The beat goes on.

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Political Earth Tremor in Ethiopia

IT was a big relief to all democratic forces in Africa when the Ethiopian military putsch of Saturday, June 22, was crushed by the government of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. It all began ominously enough with the assassination of Amhara regional president, Ambachew Mekonnen, whilst at a security meeting with key officials in the city of Bahir Dar. Almost simultaneously, in Addis Ababa, the Chief of the General Staff, Se’are Mekonnen, was gunned down by his own orderly. The alleged mastermind, Brigadier-General Asamnew Tsige, had apparently intended to instigate simultaneous attacks on prominent political and military leaders across the country so as to bring down the government. 

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If Carthage must be destroyed

THE Gulf of Guinea bore the brunt of the trans-Atlantic commerce in human souls that went on for 300 years, from the 16th century to the 19th century. While the Arabs and Fulanis were raiding the North, the Europeans were wreaking havoc in the South. Glorious kingdoms were weakened, if not destroyed: Benin, Oyo, Kwararafa, Nok, Kanem-Borno and the Hausa City States. When slavery was no longer viable it was replaced with ‘legitimate commerce’. Lagos was annexed in August 1861 and before long the Colony and Protectorate of Southern Nigeria was established. In the North, the feudal Caliphate established by Sheikh Usman Ibn Fodiyo barely a century earlier, was brought down by a British expeditionary force in 1903.

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Is there a global conspiracy against Africa?

LOTS of people believe in conspiracy theories. I am not one of them. Nor do I subscribe to the view of those philosophers of history who believe nothing significant happens in the world without some conspirators lurking behind it. I’m not also saying that most of our problems are caused by foreign powers. We are, in fact, largely the architects of our own misfortunes. This is not to say that conspiracies don’t exist.  I have studied enough political theory since Polybius and Thucydides to know that conspiracies abound. What the philosopher Isaiah Berlin describes as “the crooked timber of humanity” still defines the character of our sinful world.

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Epistle to His Excellency the Governor

CONGRATULATIONS for being sworn into the exalted office of chief executive of your state. Under our Constitution, the governor is not only the principal administrator but also the chief security officer of the state. Some of our jurists opine that, under our 1999 Constitution the governor enjoys wider prerogatives than the incumbent of the high magistracy of our great federal republic. His constitutional immunity gives him power to commit murder and get away with it. It would have drawn the envy of the Roman Proconsuls of old.

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