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Presidency Calls Obasanjo Desperate, Slams Letter

Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, former Nigerian leader needs a good doctor and in anticipation of a good treatment, a spokesman of President Muhammadu Buhari, wishes he should ”get well soon”.

It was part of the response from the Presidential Villa to Obasanjo following the 16 page letter he wrote to President Muhammadu Buhari and which he released this afternoon in Abeokuta.

Obasanjo, a partisan in next month’s election, is supporting opposition candidate, Atiku Abubakar, who he had savaged in a book and dubbed a ‘corrupt man’ and even invoked God’s wrath upon himself, if he ever backed Atiku’s presidential ambition.

Garba Shehu, the Senior Special assistant to President Buhari regarded Obasanjo’s attack against Buhari as puerile and the “the last push by desperate politicians who can’t handle the President(Buhari) politically and have resorted to subterfuge.

“This language of his 16-page letter, likening President Buhari to General Sani Abacha, a man he dreaded and the one who jailed him under military laws is most unfitting from a former President of Nigeria”, Garba said.

“The claim that President Buhari has put in place rigging machinery is both outlandish and outrageous. We are unable to get the words to describe a 90-year old liar, except to say that by the publication of this tissue of lies against the President, he Obasanjo, not the President will fall from everyone’s esteem.

“As repeatedly said of him, since Chief Obasanjo left office in 1979, he never let every succeeding leader of the country function freely, and this included the one he personally handpicked against all known rules drawn up by the party that put him in the office of the President.

“But Chief Obasanjo is jealous because President Buhari has more esteem than him and the sooner he learns to respect him the better.

“It is a notorious fact that in dealing with any leader that he failed to control, he resorted to these puerile attacks. As the grand patron, more correctly the grandfather of corruption as described by the National Assembly, Chief Obasanjo released today’s letter purely for the reason of rescuing his thriving corruption establishment.

“The elections starting in February will be free and fair as promised the nation and the international community by President Buhari.

“What Chief Obasanjo and his co-travellers in the PDP should expect is that from the outcome, we will teach them a political lesson that they will never forget. This margin will be much bigger than we had in 2015.

“Claims that President Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) have embarked on the president’s “self- succession project, by recruiting collation officers who are already awarding results based on their projects to actualise the perpetuation agenda, in which the people will not matter and the votes will not count” is not only utterly false, but a copious note from the book on the failed third term agenda of President Obasanjo.

“The man, President Buhari who has taken Nigeria’s reputation to a higher level internationally and is working hard to improve on the records of elections he found in place cannot descend to the level that Obasanjo has himself sunk.

“As for his attacks of the administration’s records in fighting corruption, what the former President said is no more than evidence that President Buhari’s war against corruption is succeeding. They thought it is all a joke.

“A leader who took USD 16 billion “upfront” to supply electric power yet failed to add a single megawatt to the national grid and to date, there is no trace of the money is jittery that he will be called to account. He is a coward.

“Chief Obasanjo, manifesting a confused state of mind blames President Buhari for the fall of Libya into a failed state and the unholy alliance between the Boko Haram terrorists and the ISIS, while at the same time calling it an African problem, saying “the struggle must be for all West African, Central African, North African and most East African States,” which really does not amount to saying anything new.

“Nigerians looked up to him as a role model and a ray of hope to ethical and clean leadership until President Yar’Adua called him out to explain what happened to the sixteen billion dollars of taxpayer’s money. It is clear that with him sitting on top of the heap of corruption, he is no different from the crowd he leads”.

We will not retreat until Melaye surrenders – Police

The Nigerian Police Force said its men sent to arrest Senator Dino Melaye in his residence in Abuja will not retreat until the senator surrenders himself for arrest and investigation.

According to police spokesman, Jimoh Moshood, the officers have a duly obtained Warrant of Arrest to pick the senator, representing Kogi West.

“Senator Dino Melaye is wanted by the Police for a case of Criminal Conspiracy and Attempted Culpable Homicide, committed on 19th July, 2018, when Senator Dino Melaye and his armed thugs attacked Police personnel; shot and wounded Sgt. Danjuma Saliu, attached to 37 Police Mobile Force (PMF) on stop and search duty along Aiyetoro Gbede, Mopa Road in Kogi State”, Moshood said.

50 Corpses Burnt To Ashes In Anambra

Not less than 50 corpses deposited at the Enugwu Ukwu General Hospital Mortuary in Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra State have been burnt to ashes.

This followed a fire outbreak which started from a nearby bush, sources say, adding that no less than 50 corpses were burnt in the fire,

The mortuary which is located few metres from other buildings in the hospital, was the only building affected by the inferno.

Governor Obiano says that State government will set up a panel to look into the remote and immediate causes of the fire outbreak at the morgue.

Describing it as double tragedy, the Governor commiserated with those affected and pledged to immediately commence reconstruction of the burnt building.

He urged them to exercise patience with the mortuary attendants. Many people who kept their dead relatives in the mortuary rushed to the scene yesterday on learning of the incident and were seen sobbing uncontrollably as they were unable to identify corpses they deposited.

Among the burnt corpses was said to be that of a prominent man in the area who died in the USA, and was brought home for burial in January 2019, while his relations were renovating his house in readiness for the burial.

President-General of Enugwu Ukwu Development Union, Bonny Nkwoagu said last night that although efforts were made to put out the fire when it started, the harmattan made it difficult.

He said that fire fighters came, they ran out of water and it was when they went to fetch water that the mortuary got burnt.

 

NAN

Jimi Agbaje and freedom misconception

By Olusesan Daini,

“Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”- Martin Luther king Jr.

Being sincerely disposed to error is excusable, but activating ignorance and making deliberate attempt to walk a population of 26 million people into the proponent’s political frenzy will not be accepted in Lagos state of today.

Perhaps, the Jimi Agbaje, Lagos People Democratic Party (PDP) Governorship Candidate, recent utterance in public and inscriptions on campaign banners, that Lagosians needed freedom, at a time when Lagos is been unanimously considered the dominant and major contributor to Nigerian economy,  goes against Oxford Dictionary, which defines freedom as a state of having free will; the power or right to act, speak or think freely.

Could it be that the governorship candidate has separate meaning contrary to world accepted definition  of freedom such that gave him the right to portray Lagosians, the 21st century citizens and indigenes, as having deficiency of free will and lacking the power or right to act, speak or even think freely, the position of which obviously indicated how Mr Agbaje thinks about average Lagosian – a person with no right whatsoever.

Moving away from core issues and riding on emotional chagrin, Mr Agbaje goofed to have portrayed Lagosians as lacking political and democratic freedom. First, it must be noted that democracy is a game of number anywhere in the world. At a point in this country, the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) was the ruling party by majority decision of Nigerians; today, it is the All Progressives Congress. Also, states have been won and lost by both parties as reflection of the freedom Nigerians enjoy to make choices in the political space. Lagos is not different. One Permanent Voters’ Card is equal to one vote, and that Lagosians have continuously preferred the APC government based on conviction on the party’s ability to deliver good governance does not translate to lack of freedom whatsoever.

In APC’s Lagos State that gives no political and democratic freedom to Lagosians in the context of Mr Agbaje’s definition of freedom, six federal constituencies and six state constituencies were won by the PDP candidates in the 2015 general election. Three out of these 12 seats are currently being occupied by Lagosians of Igbo descent. The longest serving Publicity Secretary of the party and longest serving Commissioner of Finance are both of non-Yoruba ethnic origin.

Mr Agbaje’s attempt to launder his political deficit on the threshold of freedom fighting is not a goal! Also, claiming to wash Lagos financial mess under the APC is like wearing a fragrance to perfume shop to impress the owner. On two occasions that Mr Agbaje has contested to become Governor of Lagos State, his main financials were host of popular names on the looters’ directory who were members of the PDP and have participated in mindless looting of our national treasury.

The reign of PDP saw needless blockade of developmental strives such as independent power plan project, creation of additional 37 Local Governments, repair of Federal Government Roads under concessional plans, harmonisation of State traffic enforcement agency to provide assistance to Federal Government’s on federal roads within Lagos and lots more. All these anti-development policies were firmly supported by Agbaje in his several utterances on the matters. In fact, he supported the freezing of Lagos State allocations from federation account for three years during Governor Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administration.

At a point, Agbaje, the proponent of mischievous freedom agenda, threatened Lagosians and the entire Yoruba race that Nigeria would explode should PDP lose Lagos State and Presidency in the 2015 general election. According to him, “Niger Delta militants would unleash terror”, which indeed came to pass before they were curbed at the inception of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government in 2015.

PDP is a party badly damaged leaving no trusted person of integrity as member till date – that is the platform Jimi Agbaje has been running and considers best for the good people of Lagos State.

On economic freedom, only three per cent of the State’s population have their wealth affiliated with earnings around politics and governance as active party members or serving political appointees; the rest 97 per cent are out there succeeding as industrialists, entrepreneurs, career personnel and creative talents. Lagos State is a place where someone with two pairs of shirts and trousers can become a billionaire in another one year due to enormous opportunities and freedom that are abound. No single person is capable of controlling Lagos State’s economy to himself because it is vast, diverse and limitless under a competitive economic atmosphere.

Agbaje’s attempt to divide Lagsosians along emotional line and drag them into campaign of denigration under the guise of freedom advocacy is a ruse, unpopular, uninteresting and does not represent a clear, unambiguous manifestoes for ensuring a greater Lagos, which Agbaje’s has failed to concentrate his efforts on but which APC’s Babajide Sanwo-Olu is critically addressing.

The 21st century thoughts respects facts, evidence, clear vision and deliverables in the political manifestos, which is the key thing that sells before electorates in Lagos State. As a multi-cultural and diverse ethnic base, Lagosians want issues addressed not sentiments capable of dividing the people. Agbaje needs to hearken to President Barrack Obama’s truism that any politician who divides the people for the purpose of winning election will not be able to govern them as divided people; neither would he be able to unite them back as a government.

I don’t see Lagosians trading their peace, continuity, steady development and unity they enjoy for any flimsy coax. That Agbaje thinks Lagosians lack free will, the power or right to act, speak or think freely is the biggest insult to an environment that would have been the fifth largest economy in Africa if it were to stand as a country. Agbaje is tactically misrepresenting thoughts of Lagosians, dismantling their intelligence base, reducing them to C class citizens akin to a war torn societies around the world.

Undoubtedly, Mr Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu has, in his brief media appearances, demonstrated proficiency and ability to take Lagos to a greater level given his vast knowledge for 13 years. Mr Sanwo-Olu has served as Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Commissioner for Establishment, Training and Pensions and Managing Director of the Lagos State Property Development Corporation spanning through three successive administrations of Governors Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Babatunde Raji Fashola and Akinwunmi Ambode consecutively.

Lagos State is the present and future of Nigeria. It is therefore very clear that only a person with clear ideas, experience and proven track records in governance is worthy to assume exalted position of a Governor of Lagos State, not an emotionally riddled and inconsistent fellow.

Daini is the Director, Media and Publicity, Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu Independent Campaign Group (BOSICG) and Chairman, Igbogbo Bayeku LCDA.

Security Guard Remanded For Stealing Judge’s Phone

An Ilorin Chief Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, ordered that two men, Samson John and Ayodele Oluwagbemiga, be remanded in Federal Prison yard for allegedly stealing of a cellphone belonging to a High Court Judge.

Chief Magistrate Ibijoke Olawoyin, gave the order, after the accused persons were charged with four counts of criminal conspiracy, trespass, house breaking, and theft.

Olawoyin adjourned the case until Dec. 20, for further mention.

Earlier, the Prosecutor, Insp Alhassan Jibrin told the court that on Nov. 22, one Sgt. Usman Olayinka attached to High Court Judge in Basin area, Ilorin, reported the case at the Area Command office of the police in Ilorin.

Jibrin said that the complainant, alleged that the accused who is a security guard in the judge’s house, and one other, broke into the judge’s house and stole one Samsung Galaxy phone, valued at N300,000, some jewelries valued yet unknown and the sum of N10,000.

The prosecutor said that the police followed the accused to his home town in Otupa, Benue and arrested him for interrogation.

Jibrin said that during police investigation, the accused  confessed in his statement that he used the security room toilet key to open the main door and gained entrance into the judge’s room, and stole the items.

He said that the accused also confessed to have sold the Samsung Galaxy phone for N10,000 to one Micheal at Asoka village, Benue, who is now at-large, and sold the jewelries at the rate of N7,000 to the second accused person at Fakeye street, Basin, Ilorin.

The prosecutor said that the offence contravened the provisions of sections 97, 348, 288 and 317 of the penal code law.

The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the offence.

Sanwo-Olu flags off campaign, announces Badagry expressway fixing as priority

Lagos State chapter of All Progressive Congress (APC) gubernatorial candidate, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has flagged off campaign as flag bearer of the party running for governorship office in the state.

Besides, Sanwo-Olu assured that fixing of the Lagos-Badargry express way would be one of his priority should he get into office after election in 2019.

The unofficial flag of by the candidate came 24hrs after Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) officially lifted ban on campaigns for governorship candidates and that of other political offices’ seekers, aside  that of presidential,  which as removed barely two weeks ago.

Sanwo-Olu, while speaking before a political gathering at Lagos senatorial Badagry division on Sunday, which has Deputy Governor, Idiat Adebule, in attendance, after a visit to various monarchs in the axis, declared that campaign for his governorship move had kicked off on Sunday and that he would hitting ground running.

He said that those saying Lagos state is behind is very wrong as Lagos state is far ahead, and they do not know Lagos state very well. He said it’s a must Lagos – Badagry expressway is fixed, and it becomes a priority for his administration once he is elected. “I and my deputy will transform the two lanes to ten lanes if we are elected in the 2019 elections’.

Addressing the constituents, Sanwo-Olu said his visit to Badagry is imperative and significant because he will run an all inclusive government when voted in as governor of Lagos state.
He assured that the completion of the 10 lane Badagry expressway will be of utmost importance to his government .
He said his administration will bring succor to the people of Badagry as he promised to fix the Ijeodo road, Iyafin road in BADAGRY, Ijagemo and Ijegun road
Students in that area were not also left out,as Sanwo-olu promised to make free WiFi available for LASU and ACOED students this month.

Man Drowns At Friend’s Birthday Party

A 20-year-old man, simply identified as Chidiebere David, drowned on Thursday night in the swimming pool of a new but popular hotel on Margret Avenue, GRA, Aba in Abia, during a friend’s birthday party.

The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) in Abia, Mr Geoffrey Ogbonna, confirmed the incident on Friday.

“The man is about 20 years old. His name is Chidiebere David. He accompanied his friends to a birthday party in the hotel and got drowned there. That was exactly what happened,’’ he said.

Ogbonna however did not say if the police was foreclosing further investigations into the matter.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) gathered that the deceased went with his friends who were over 16 in number to the hotel to celebrate the birthday of one of them.

Chidiebere who hailed from Imo died at the pool with no one realising that he had drowned until sometimes later.

NAN further gathered that when the deceased colleagues saw his body inside the pool and made frantic efforts to save him, they discovered that he had died.

The relatives of the young man were said to have later arrived at the scene, taken his body and deposited at a morgue close to the hotel.

An anonymous source within the hotel told NAN that the friends of the deceased were arrested and taken into custody same night by policemen from Aba Area Command.

 

NAN

Police arrests Governor over bribery allegation

By Newsdesk

The governor of Rio de Janeiro, Luiz Fernando Pezao, was arrested on Thursday over allegations he received bribes as part of the sprawling “Car Wash” graft probe, according to Brazilian media.

The Globo News television channel showed live footage of federal police at the residence of the governor, who remains in his home in custody.

Pezao is accused of taking bribes when he was vice governor under Sergio Cabral, who is currently in prison.

The police also raided the Guanabara Palace, headquarters of Rio de Janeiro’s government, searching for documents.

The Superior Court of Justice issued the arrest warrant based on the confession of Carlos Miranda, a former Cabral associate, who cooperated in exchange for a sentence reduction.

According to Miranda’s testimony Pezao would have received a monthly payment of 150,000 reais ($40,000) as well as end-of-the-year bonuses of up to one million reais.

The money would have been paid by companies and intermediaries bound by contracts with the Rio de Janeiro government during a period from 2007 to 2014.

The state of Rio de Janeiro is on the verge of bankruptcy and plagued by insecurity.

Wilson Witzel was elected in October to govern the state and is set to take office January 1.

 

NAN

EFCC Denies Receiving N10million Donation From Ganduje

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) yesterday rejected the N10 million donation by Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State for hosting of the National Anti-Corruption Marathon.

Ganduje had reportedly donated the money to EFCC, Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) and other anti-graft agencies for the event.

The governor’s director of media and publicity, Aminu Yasser, stated that Ganduje made the donation in Abuja when he received members of the marathon’s organising committee.

The governor, who allegedly received $5 million bribe recently, explained that his administration placed high premium on the fight against corruption.

Ganduje revealed that investment in the state’s anti-corruption agency led to prosecution and removal of prominent individuals, including former commissioner, permanent secretaries in the state civil service.

The leader of the anti-corruption marathon race delegation, Jacob Onu, told the governor the event was organised by the anti-graft agencies to create awareness and bring together all segments of the Nigerian population in support of federal government’s war against corruption.

 

The anti-corruption body in a post on its verified Twitter handle,@officialEFCC, said that it has not received any amount of money from individual or group to carry out the project.

“#Alert For the avoidance of doubt, no State governor or some other individual or group has donated any amount of money to the EFCC to carry out the Anti-corruption Marathon project or any other project for that matter,” it posted on twitter.

Iya Kabiru and Other Stories

By Reuben Abati

“Iya Kabiru must be the luckiest woman in Nigeria today”

“Who is that? I don’t know anybody so-called”

“You don’t know Iya Kabiru? But you know Baba Kabiru?”

“Do they know me?”

“This is the problem with you. You only think about you, you, you. I am sure when I tell you now who Baba Kabiru is, you will jump up and say you know him”

“Look, just say what you want to say. I have too many things to worry about other than this your D.O. Fagunwa story about Iya Kabiru. Today is a busy day for me not a day for idle talk”

“Hey, don’t get worked up, chill, my friend. Iya Kabiru is the wife of Governor Rauf Aregbesola, the comrade Governor of Osun State who is leaving office today after eight years in office. Kabiru is their first son. He got married last year. Many people who know the Governor call him Baba Kabiru.”

“So, what has that got to do with all the serious issues of survival that Nigerians are worried about. You know you should be more responsible. You can’t go about gossiping about other people’s lives.”

“I don’t gossip. I am trying to say something very serious. By the time I am done, even you will learn one or two things. Essentially, I am trying to review the eight years of Aregbesola as Governor in Osun State.”

“I tried to follow his stories. The man says he did not collect salary as Governor, even though he ate government food, used government cars…Good for him. But as for me.. I don’t like the role he played in the last Gubernatorial elections in Osun State. He practically imposed his own successor on the people of Osun State. We can’t have outgoing Governors behaving like dictators and insisting that they will hold the future of the state in their palms. And to think he is a Comrade like Adams Oshiomhole.”

“That is not what I am talking about. Osun state people are not protesting. I can’t come and be weeping more than the bereaved.”

“I know. But I thought you wanted an assessment of Baba Kabiru’s eight years in office. So, let us do it, since today is effectively his last day in office”

“Yes.”

“For example, he says he has no bank accounts anywhere. He has no money and he has only the house that he built before he became Governor. He is happy that he was able to transform the lives of the people of Osun State.”

“With Opon Imo. The tablet of knowledge. Ogbeni Till Daybreak. Let me help you. He also says he is leaving a state behind that has the lowest poverty incidence rate and the lowest unemployment rate in Nigeria.”

“He built roads and schools.”

“I know. I know. But what are the people of Osun themselves saying? What is the impression of the civil servants who were denied salaries for months? I will prefer to hear from the average man on the streets of Osun. But that is not what I want to talk about.”

“You want to talk about Iya Kabiru”

“Yes. I want to congratulate her. And I say, Iya Kabiru, e ku oriire o.”

“What of the Governor himself? You don’t want to congratulate him on his successful completion of two terms in office?”

“I will leave that to people like you. My big take-away from the exit of the Comrade Governor is the statement he made about his wife, Iya Kabiru. He told the people of Osun State that he has been an absentee husband for eight years. He was so busy as Governor, he had no time for his wife. He wants to go back to Iya Kabiru and “enjoy each other”. He doesn’t want to go to the Senate like others in his shoes, he just wants to go home and spend time with Iya Kabiru.”

“And how does that affect you?”

“You don’t get the point? This is the era of women empowerment. Our Governors should not get to office and become absentee husbands. That is an abuse of human rights and a violation of the integrity of the other room! If I had my way, I will recommend immunity for wives from the absenteeism of husbands. If there was more time, I would recommend that Mrs Aisha Buhari, the wife of the President, should lead a movement to defend the right of women who are married to politically exposed men in office, not to lose their rights of access and enjoyment with their husbands. Public service should not interfere with the rights of wives!”

“You always like to trivialize things.”

“No. When Comrade Aregbesola was asked what his regrets could possibly be, and I consider that an important question, his memorable response was that his being Governor did not allow him to enjoy his wife for eight years. He now wants to go and enjoy his wife. For me that was the most profound thing he said.”

“How profound! I thought you would raise serious questions. Will his successor become his stooge? Will Aregbesola continue to rule over the state of Osun and treat Gboyega Oyetola as his proxy? Is Aregbesola now a Godfather pulling the strings from the corner? Will the new Governor Oyetola be his own man? Is Osun going to revert to its constitutional name, that is Osun State, or will it still bear the strange name: The State of Osun?”

“Why should those things bother me? The one that I want to reflect upon is the absenteeism of Aregbesola as husband for eight years! And I identify with Iya Kabiru on this special occasion, marking the return of her beloved husband to full-time husband duties.”

“It is not your duty to intrude into other people’s privacy. What are you driving at? What the man says about his wife is not our business. He probably was talking more about truancy rather than absenteeism.”

“Na you sabi. I am saying congratulations to Iya Kabiru, all the same. As an advocate for women empowerment, I congratulate her on the many good things ahead: this special honeymoon that awaits her, in the loving hands of Baba Kabiru. And I say Iya Kabiru, e ku amojuba. E ku oriire, lopo lopo. In nine months, please invite us for a rice-and-soup-very-plenty-naming-ceremony. Triplets by the Grace of God!”

“You are very ridiculous. You are off limits”

“My friend, don’t be hypocritical. If our father, the Iku Baba Yeye himself, the Alaafin of Oyo, at 80 plus is still celebrating the arrival of babies, not just babies, multiple twins, Baba Kabiru must show proof of his own statement in nine months as a true son of Osun.”

“You are absolutely incorrigible. Who told you the only way a man can show affection to his wife is to put her in the family way. Is that what you call empowerment”

“I am just very happy for Iya Kabiru. I am overjoyed. Politics turned her husband into an absentee husband. Now, out of office, her husband says she will now be her project. Alihamdulilali!”

“I don’t see how Aregbesola can leave politics. Politics in Lagos and Osun. He will still be busy.”

“But with Iya Kabiru fully attended to. And by the way, Aregbesola should leave Lagos politics alone. He should stay in his own state of Osun.”

“You are crazy. Did you drink anything this morning? Can we change this subject?”

“On one condition”

“What condition?”

“You will congratulate Iya Kabiru”

“Okay, congratulations Ma. Thank you for standing by Governor Aregbesola through thick and thin. One yeye man in Lagos says you are the one we should congratulate”.

“Say it in Yoruba”

“Iya Kabiru e ku oriire o. E ku ti ipadabo Baba Kabiru o.”

“Only God knows how many women out there who have to deal with the challenge of having absentee husbands because their husbands are involved in the public arena. Such women are the true heroes of Nigerian democracy.”

“You know when you say that, what comes to my mind really, is the plight of the wives of the many soldiers who were killed recently by Boko Haram terrorists in Matele, Borno State. It is one thing to have a husband go to the battle-field, if he is absent, you at least know where he is and that he is busy, but to have him die on the battle-field, never to return, that is tragic. I feel for the widows of the fallen soldiers of Matele..”

“I am not satisfied with the way the Nigerian government has handled the matter. Obviously, Boko Haram has not been technically defeated. Has Alhaji Lai come up with anything yet?”

“Alhaji Lai? No, please. I watched a video of the attack that was in circulation over the weekend. I was horrified. The Boko Haram terrorists caught the Nigerian soldiers off-guard. They ambushed them and mowed them down. Sad. Very sad. I later saw a social media tweet by someone who said he saw his father in the video and the family has not yet heard from the Nigerian military. I also saw a post by a woman who cried out over the loss of her husband. Each time a soldier dies at the battle-front, many lives are affected.”

“118 of them. Just like that.”

“The government is obviously overwhelmed.”

“What really can government do? Terrorism is the new tragic reality of the age. It is the worst form of inhumanity known to man. It leaves governments in a bind; it drives society to the edge. It disrupts the order of values.

“There is a lot that the Nigerian government can do.”

“Please, this is not about politics. Don’t bring politics into this.”

“Who is talking about politics? I am saying our soldiers need to be better equipped and better protected. When a man signs up to be a soldier, he knows that he has signed up to die for his country if need be, but that does not mean he must be served up like barbecue to the enemy. Why are our military bases so porous, so poorly defended? Why is it so easy for anyone to get a military uniform? When our soldiers fall at the battlefront, what are the protocols for informing their families and managing the communication process? We need to professionalize the Nigerian military. If we must rely on technical assistance from other countries, let us do so. When our soldiers die, there must be special grants for their widows and survivors, to be paid for life if possible.”

“I will add another point. Any service chief that is not ready to focus on the job should be changed. Nigeria’s security chiefs should stop attending political rallies and meetings. We want soldiers in uniform, whoever wants to do politics should remove his uniform and wear agbada.”

“Anyway, the President has said that the loopholes that led to the fatalities will be blocked once and for all. I take that to heart.”

“Yeah, he spoke a whole week after the incident. I am surprised nobody is making an issue out of that.”

“You never know. May be the President was busy at the time. And a President doesn’t just talk. He has to consult and be briefed.”

“What is that? Busy doing what? Donald Trump talks every day. He is on twitter every morning, commenting on anything that catches his attention. He is involved.”

“This is Nigeria. This is not the United States. We have our own way of doing things here, from the Presidency to the man on the street. The President could have been busy for example, preparing for the 2019 Presidential debate.”

“Which debate? You think he will agree to participate in a debate?”

“Why not? I will like to see him in the debating hall, taking on issues with the likes of Omoyele Sowore, Oby Ezekwesili, Kingsley Moghalu, Tope Fasua, Donald Duke, Obadaiah Mailafia and of course Waziri Atiku Abubakar. Let him defend the “Next level” and let Ezekwesili and Sowore take him on.”

“I see you are not a nice man at all.”

“How? There are things the President can and should talk about. You have been lamenting over the killing of soldiers, for example, but look at what the Federal Government has just done for policemen.”

“And what is that?”

“Yesterday, the President approved more pay for Nigerian policemen. He approved the Rank Salary Structure Adjustment for policemen”

“No wonder”

“No wonder what?”

“There is this policeman that I know. I saw him and his wife yesterday evening. The two of them were laughing like jackass. I have never seen them look so happy. I thought something was wrong. So, it is the salary increase?”

“Let’s just say policemen deserve to be happy too. But it is not enough to increase their pay. Nigeria is heavily under-policed. We need more policemen. Like the military, the police should also be better equipped. They need better training. Clean uniforms. Decent barracks. An average policeman should be a university graduate, not a primary school drop-out.”

“Why are you saying policemen should be graduates, when most of your politicians don’t even have secondary school certificates? Sometimes, I don’t get you.”

“I know what I am saying. Every policeman should be a college graduate. You don’t understand. It is a next level thing. Nigeria can only move to the next level if we all begin to think out of the box.”

“Like your thoughts on Iya Kabiru eh”.

“Ha. Iya Kabiru! A hero. Someday, she should tell her story: the story of the big sacrifice her husband made as Osun State Governor!”