The Mistake of some Sages.

Empires, Emirates and Kingdoms at their heights, that did not prepare for their stay, only ready their fall.  History from time gets us to know that it is only “He that is down, that need fear no fall”.  The best and the worst of them all see their entre’ and exit as time and chance happen to all.  A day to be born and a day to die or should it be for a rebirth, as born againism is not just for Judo-Christian creed this days.

America, is passing through a must watch phase, the world  is entering a season of prophetic actualizations, care must be taken that we do not become the tools of doom fulfilments.  Like the Good is looking for willing hands and minds, so also the bad/evil is looking for evil tools, hands and minds to use.   To be a Judas Iscariot that betrayed Jesus or Peter that denied him three times is a choice selection, so also to be the marys and women that stood with Christ through out His ordeal and followed to see where He was laid, that was also choice.

Get me right here, whether Hillary or Trump, the world stage is set for a season we must all be prepared for.  Yes, All Saints’ days to some is Halloween to others; while some mystics in Africa have arranged grave visits, for what? May be to resurrect the spirits of long gone heroes, for wars/battles that is in need of a this day’s hero.  Correct me, if am wrong, America is a young nation compared to Egypt, the illumination needed to guide/lead America must be such that reflects the exigencies of today.  Adaptations are possible, but becoming a Pharaoh, Attaturk or Atilla the Hun in todays America is close to unfruitful.

When I see african princes, returning to base for invocation of long gone spirits for modern conquests, I quiver and get the more sober.  They drop their learnings and kneel before spiritual mediums/mediators for all sorts, that might be the reason why African Institutions and Ruling Houses are filled with round pegs in squared holes. 

While South Africa battles with the current issues of their land, it is time for the sages there to do the needed, call up yesterdays success and build on the principles that got them that far.  Bring up the dynamo of the present and synerge energies for a better South Africa (easier said, I hear you).

South Sudan should realise the forces from outside will do anything to make them fail and regret the separation from Sudan.  The forces outside need internal crevices to plant their seeds of discord, disharmony and crisis for the benefit of only the perpetrators.  Solutions lies from within and it is only the inhabitants that could know or trace where the roof is leaking.  United Nations, African Union can only help to an extent. The solution lies with the South Sudanese, arising as one to say no to wars, let peace reign.  If of the opposing leaders wants wars, let them use their children and family.  They live outside the war zone and propel more violence, because they do not feel the pangs of it’s effect.

Zimbabwe, Kenya, Conga, Gamba, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Chad, Niger, Benin, Libya, Tunisia, Mali, Ethiopia, and where have you, should realise the strength in together (Unity), can never be achieved without people lowering the highs for moderated acceptable compromises.  The use of forceful colonial, religious, traditional, mystical technics to make zombies of people, enslaved by a cabal for the benefit of the few, will not last long anymore.  Change mantra is not just Nigerian.

Africans must like in Britain be able to stand and tell their leaders, we do not want this or that.  And when the issues are decided, any person should be able to challenge the actions or inactions of their leaders.

The Nigerian scenario is confusing.  A country of divers national ethnicities, brought together by the needs of the colonial lords of ages gone.  Pathetic is it when your Nigerian Child, tells you he is first American before a Nigerian.  Then another tells you his/her loyalty is first to Rome, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Iran or India before loyalty to Nigeria.  Nigerians sing their National Anthem and Pledge with heart and mind, but the actual soul is tied to somewhere else before Nigeria.  I still see the Independence and Christmas/End of Year Celebrations in Ghana, you see love for country, we need some of that in Nigeria.

This season, as the Sultanate, sultanizes, Lagos, Calabar and Abuja Cannibals (cannibalizes???) get ready.  May we begin to think of Nigeria first, the labours of our heroes past should be a guide to ‘Oneness and Greatness’ in the context of Today and not a bring back of practices that no one will be proud to truly unveil in the light of today.

My prayer for all and above all is that, May the Almighty, Supreme, Benevolent Lord and Master, shine on all of us the true Illumination that will bring Freedom, Peace and Plenty to our Lands in ways that will enhance harmonious Sustainable Development of our World, beginning from our homes, villages and cities.  Have a wonderful weekend.

Commercial Bike (Acaba/Okada) Registration–Bauchi State Nigeria in Mind.

On a trip so many years ago to Ghana by road, the Commercial Bikers in Cotonou and Lome amazed us.  They filed orderly along lanes meant just for them and all had visible numbers readable from far on the front and back of their aprons.   They were so organised, that you wonder, if they had high cases of casualties like we do.  Coming home to Nigeria, the emergence of Okada, Acaba or Commercial Bikes was as a result of the down turning of the economy; increase in the population sizes of our towns and cities with the corresponding vehicular traffic issues and Unemployment. 

With so many states banning out rightly the use of motorcycles, with no sustainable alternative(s), is enough for Bauchi State Government to be applauded for the decision to register motorcycle riders in the state.  Suffice to say that every Government have their reasons for decisions taken, but the fact remains that, these class of people are only there because of the service need they provide for.

In Nigeria, Acaba/Okada (motorbike) is associated, (not exhaustive though), with armed robbers, militants, terrorists, kidnappers, bag snatchers, assassins, ritualists, Orthopaedic Hospital and Mortuary service providers  marketers/promoters.

Why is it so? Amongst reasons are:-

1. Most riders are not trained, they learn on the trade.

2. Poverty, it is a very fast way of getting little change to keep body, soul and family together.

3. Joblessness, some riders are graduates with Diplomas, Degrees.  There was a case of a Masters Degree graduate in Abuja, before the El-Rufai ban on riders.

4. Lack of sufficient affordable transport, they act as bridges/gap fillers

5. Lack of accessible roads, they are able to reach un-motorable nukes, corners and crannies.

6. High Traffic Jams / Go slows, they have ability to manoeuvre in-between vehicles reducing the time wastages due to traffic challenges.

7. It is fun and airy, having the breeze blow on your face and skin.

The list can go on and on.   Unfortunately, it has become the most risky form of transportation.

In Bauchi, where people blatantly refused to wear crash helmets and seat belts, any measure to increase the safety of the commuters and citizenry is a noble deed.  Yes the riders are full of complaints, but it is necessary and of more benefit to them if properly executed.  Everyday you will meet a handful of riders, who do not even know the roads, they depend on you to show them, they keep telling you, if care to ask, that they are from neighbouring states.  So anybody from anywhere, (Militant, terrorist, robbers), can carry a motorbike and commercially work/carry out a negative activity, disappear and leave the true service providers to carry the brunt of the crime committed.  So registration is truly needful.

What will we need to do to make the registration, more meaningful and of benefit to the riders and their passengers?

a. Riders Test and Certification – Mental, Physical, Medical, Eye tests and Knowledge of the terrain (Locality)

b. Road Worthiness of Vehicle, not only license plate

c. Basic First Aid Training

d. Security Back ground check

e. Separation of the town into different areas with responsible coordinating heads, reporting to their town/city or state coordinators.

f. Usage of Reflective readable numbers on bikes (Petrol Tanks), showcasing Bike Commercial registration number.

g. Usage of Reflective Readable Riders Registration Number on Aprons (front and Back).  The riders are not necessarily the owners of the Bikes.  Their registration entitles them to have license as a commercial rider.

h. The Uniform / Apron should be non-transferable, as in the case of license/ID card.

i. Ownership change of Commercial vehicles, should be documented with the necessary authorities, before it is enforced, this will reduce the snatching of bikes.

j. Black listed riders, should have their Apron/Uniform seized for the duration of the black listing.

k. Remove multi taxation – form a one channel ticketing/taxation, Local Government & State Inland Revenue people should have a weekly/monthly scheme.

l. Create a weekly/monthly fora for training, retraining, networking and feedback.

m. Have a 3 digit toll free line for Passenger Complaint, emergency or eventuality report.

n. Institute/Support a compulsory basic Health Insurance through National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to cover the rider and his passenger.

o. Create a benefit/reward system where riders through their association/cooperative can finance bike purchase or other projects to increase their channels of revenue generation.

Knowing that Nigeria is not starved of ideas, it is the execution and maintenance that suffers, I rest my case, with a prayer, that the Government will get credible agencies/people to do the needful.  If well implemented, the riders will be presenting themselves for registration and payments of dues, as they know what they are getting from it and later work on making it sustainable and theirs.

May God bless the people of Nigeria.

 

 

 

Ondo Elections 2016.

If you served in Ondo State and did not enjoy your stay, raise your hand?  I bet you the number will be in the minority.  Space will not allow me to mention the joys of being amongst the wonderful, beautiful and peace loving people of Ondo State, irrespective of location, rural or urban.  The memories of Compatriots like Mohammed Sada from Katsina State, Bubemi Pesu, Tony Akhigbe, Femi, Toyin Ajayi, Chigozie Oguine, Kenneth, Ama Agbiji, Nkem, Ochi, Akin, Femi Akintunde Johnson (FAJ), Bidemi, Ramatu, Ms Florence Ahmed, John Daniel, Samson Wakili, Friday, the list goes on.  It will not over Shadow, the likes of High Chief Seinde Arogbofa and the staff of the then Army Comprehensive High School, the late Col Daramola’s family, the R.O. Maxwells (A Mother in Israel), my very own Funmi nee Maxwell (My Sister in Israel). The Wole Adamolekuns, still a mentor, Omoboya NYSC Mama with Mr Atilola’s (Adamu daku ma damu mi) to cover for all my Directors and staff of NYSC.  The Ondo State NYSC Drama Troupe (we need a reunion) and the Ondo State Christian Corpers Fellowship’s Musical Group amidst others are very fresh memories on the platter of my mind.  God will richly bless and remember all those who have laboured to make visitors at home, for no seemingly outward reward.

I am specially remembering my Mother, she taught me in primary one, became a Guardian during my youth corps and now the Wonderful Grand Mother of my Children, with My Father(Rest Well Daddy), he has been like a guiding light and his words echoing and re echoing especially in times of need.  The Ilemobade’s have my Eternal Gratitude for making Ondo a place I can justifiably also call home.  My Oye Lawrence, Sarki, Ayuba (army officers), Sankara, et al and the one that made me an NYSC Guitar boy, by allowing me use his guitar, the then State Police Public Relations Officer Mr Tonye Wakama, thank you again.  I am talking elections, forgive me, that is what happens when you say Ondo.

Elections in Ondo/Ekiti (then Ondo State), were never a child’s play, the relics of violence covered the state during our time, late Col Daramola, the then Chair of the Electoral Commission, told us not to worry.  Ondo people only react when pushed to the wall or when the truth is being denied them. 

As Elections draw close, you see the forming, amending and destroying of alliances, is for want of  fair play.   My prayer for this wonderful State that is the Spiritual Trigger of the Continent, is for the peaceful election of the right persons that will continue in the upgrade of Ondo to be a leading state in Nigeria and Africa. 

Forgive my selling fish (Selfish).  The Bitumen in Ondo can sufficiently make Nigeria a net exporter of the commodity to Africa and the World.  The Ondo Cocoa farms, if well harnessed can make Ivory Coast a secondary exporter of the Chocolate Juice. The Igbokoda Glass factory, can halt our Chinese imports of glasses and china wares.  The best way to decongest the Lagos – Ibadan/Ore roads is the Lagos – Okitikupa water ways.   I am told that the Sapele Water & Palm Wine from the Ode-Aye Okitikupa axis, ‘fit make mallam forget say na from Zamfara e come from’.  Na one corper tell me ooh.

Seriously, Ondo State is like the Turkey of Nigeria and deserves the very best in this electioneering season.  So what have I been saying?  It is time for Ondo people to forget, Party, region or creed and vote for capable hands that can change the status of this regional power.  X-ray the candidates and avoid the Hilary/Trump saga that reminds me of the Abiola/Tofa thing.  If non of the candidates is good enough, do the Lagos thing and get the Ondo Fashola and Ambode to come out and join.  Now that global challenges are not getting any less, it is time to bring out your jokers for the days ahead.

We will not be left out, our Knees are still bent in prayers and God will hear us.  Ondo must rise to champion the development that will transcend to Oshun, Lagos, Ogun, Oyo, Edo, Delta, Kwara, Kogi, Nigeria and the Continent at large.  That is a vision I saw in 1987/88 and the time for fulfilment has just begun.  Arise my dear People at home and abroad and Lead from this your humble peaceful abode.  May we have a peaceful, free and fair elections.  God bless Nigerians and then Nigeria. 

Global Political Correctness or Error?

Taking a look at Iraq, Tunisia, Egypt, Ivory Coast, Libya and Syria, will it have been better leaving the nations unperturbed and silently follow the tenets of power change?  We all shout the need for democracy, where in the world in democracy sincerely genuine?  Agreed, it is the best form of Government.  Elections alone do not define democracy, especially when the needed structures, to sustain it, are not in place.

If you allow the people of Libya to honestly select between the relative normalcy of the Gadhafi days and now that even Libyans are running from their country in modes known for the West and Central African blacks alone, which will they vote for?

An Iraqi situation where Christian and minority tribes were slaughtered like animals and the world silently watched without uttering words for fear of reprisals and/or to be politically / diplomatic correct. I ask again, will this minorities prefer the interventions that brought Iraq to this state or the Saddam Hussein days?

Syria, Samaria, Damascus, in memory, I remember some of my class mates, leaving Amman, Saturday nights, drive to Damascus for night clubbing and return very early Sunday mornings for classes (sorry, wont mention names, if any is reading). Many more transverse those terrains for pilgrimage, study and work.  A very wonderful set of hospitable people, I may say.  Will the people have preferred a yesterday Syria with the bad ruler, than a country with lives, ancient histories, buildings, technologies and businesses destroyed and majority of the citizenry becoming refugees of no nation, as all are afraid of accepting them for fear of ISIS?

Cases without counts, we have, where interventions, even those well intended end up being hijacked by others who for long where unable because of the same persons termed evil by the interveners.  A very disappointing fact is, like Oscars Arias put it long time ago, that the weaponry used are always from the same nations preaching peace/better world.  Some are of the opinion that these nations go into their Military Laboratories / Research Facilities and Industries to create weapons of mass destruction only to come to nations of low intellect and use the leadership, their opponents as laboratory rats for their experiments.  (True or False?  I do not know.).  But ear to ear talks are common of CIA Agents gone rogue, like Saddam Hussein and Osama Bin Laden.

The issue of migration has now so beclouded our judgement, that it is hard to place the line between what is right / wrong.  When Black Africans were traversing the ancient Sahara Desert Trade routes to North Africa for access to Europe through especially Spain.   The world turned deaf ears to our cries for a rethink of the nuances that cause persons to leave their comfort zones for a greener pasture that is more of a mirage than reality.  The number of deaths by natural causes and the inhumane treatment by people of nations along the routes are best not mentioned.     These migrants formed villages in off the grid locations, known to uniformed Government officials for only harassments and collection of illegal dues for such illegal stays.   Transient families emerge, villages with hierarchal structures like self preservation and order.  The cost if you ask me is not worth the story.

I have waited to hear of the Global (as UN) support for the wealthy Egyptian who bought an Island for a particular group of refugees, I am still waiting.  I am also waiting to hear other wealthy Arabs follow the example, I am still waiting to hear.  With the bombings in France, Brussels, Germany and the near coup in Turkey, I am waiting for the American Government, whether Democrat or Republican that will truly open their doors for migrants in the true American Story and Spirit.

My great worry is, the merchants of war will not stop now.  With Drone technology and the Internet becoming an increasingly fearful phenomenon, the future is increasingly bleak for the average and below average persons.  African states have are not learning from the past, brothers killing brothers and neighbours destroying each other are still the norm.  The usage of religion, tribe, regions have becoming increasingly sophisticated that, even infant nations that should be learning to crawl are fine-tuning the blood letting skills on the same people they joined hands to get independence.  Something is terribly wrong, because the war lords and sponsors are in far away safe havens with their families and will be the same persons that will be called to discuss reconciliations after the poor masses without names / numbers are buried in mass or unmarked graves.  When this man’s inhumanity to man stop?

If anybody is hearing, let for once, the United Nations and Region Unions and Association call a spade a spade, by fingering the direct or remote sponsors of these conflicts and let them face the peoples’ court.  The creators of these killing machines be made accountable for there safe keep / misuse.   The rulers of regions and their security be called to face their ability or otherwise to do the right thing at the right time.  Inter / Intra National peer reviews to include possible sanctions on persons and not innocent citizens.  Southern Sudan must not be allowed to go inflames again.

If something is not done fast, I see a time when everybody will arm him/herself for defence against their neighbours and system.  Then the chaotic situation you now see will be a child’s play.  Because computer games will be played live in our neighbourhoods, schools, places of worship and homes.   A global survival reality show will not a beautiful story, a stitch in time saves more than nine.

Our Nigeria–Which way to go?

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The USD$ 30+ or 20Billion, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi – Okonjo Weala/Dieziani GEJ et. al is no more news.  So is the Oil and Gas gate, that got some highly placed Nigerians confessing to Bribery and corrupting a National Assembly Legislator, no court judgement no white paper and all the concerns are moving about free agents in a very corrupt, immoral setting? no in an easy to forget society.

 

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Now the US$2.1Billion Arms gate is raising more heat and courts / health pressures, why?  Wind of Change? Maybe; Nigerians surprise me always.

My expectations is that our statisticians/Press/Academicians will come out and tell us in clear terms, what we lost, what we are looking for and what we as a Nation stand to gain, if we succeed, 50, 80 or 100%.  SLS now Emir of Kano was quoted in a paper to saying, GEJ was loosing as much as US$1Billion monthly to corruption, was that true? Is it still happening? Nigerians need to know and the see how to fix the holes or change the baskets to containers that do not leak.Nigeria-2016-Budget-Projected-Revenue (1)

Do you know that:-

USD$2.1 Billion will amount to NGN546Billion at N260=US$1.  That will be 30.333Million people’s salary on the N18,000.00 minimum wage. (Some Governors have already come out to tell the world that they cannot pay the amount).

* The total budget for all the Northern States Education is N300Billion, that means it can pay to educate the whole Northern States for one year with a change of N246Billion.

* The Nigerian Health Sector has N221.7Billion only for this year, that means it could take care of health sector and have N324.3Billion as change.

* If what SLS and Dieziani / NASS settled for was USD$20.0Billion as unaccounted for, that will be

* N5.2Trillion at the N260=USD$1

* it can give 288.9Million people’s minimum salary (that is more than the Nigeria’s population of 160Million)

* It is more than the total budget of some Countries in Africa and some developing countries.

What should amaze any sensible, responsible person, is the way and manner Nigerians carry on their business of the day, as if, it’s one of those things you know?  No it is not, it is the only wahala (suffering) that right standing people suffer for keeping silent and refusing to ask for their rightful dues.

This is no PDP / APC saga, it is Nigeria.  This is time to stand as one and demand answers, of the whys and how’s of not just the ones we know, but of all the others being kept from the eyes of the public.

Our Citadels and Ivory Towers need to start R&D on Nigeria’s root cause, Reductions or Removal of Temptations and Best Practices.  Ways of celebrating Honesty and reward for right living or whatever can get us sane again should be looked at.  The future of our nation is not good, if the media, external influence and social fora/media is all we have to raise our youth and growing children.  The celebration of ills and carefree attitude to hither to obnoxious issues need a revisit. 

To reduce Corruption, it start from our minds, we need to get our children, youth and growing populace to start renewing our thoughts and minds with the right things.  We need to have an enabling environment that will encourage such, through the materials we read, watch and listen too.  Our Home must be worked to morality stables in all the sense of it and our schools should be returned to the basics, that produced leaders in little and big ways.  Our places of work should be in the fore front of best practices, top down, from resumption time to salary/promotion and file movements.  Employments should return to merits and Federal Character & not sex, creed or tribe.  The time when declaration of age is not monitored and you have a man / woman become 30 years three or four times in his/her civil service career life should stop.  NYSC need to also look at either changing their rules or sought ways to stop the engagement of persons near 50 years as under 30s for youth corps.  If an unemployed female / male member of your church or mosque brings plenty monies as tithes/offering, counsel should be given such and not celebrate same and encourage others to follow example.

What I am trying to say is, we the people of Nigeria should take our future in our hands and start from us (me & you), then get our elected leaders now that they are in office to behave as promised.  That will reduce the need for EFCC tomorrow and it is better that we solve the problem before it happens.  And support the Agencies of Government to correct the already wrong happenings, but in a moral responsible way and not as vendetta.

This is not just Nigeria, Africans should take their future in their hands and call their Governments to action.  They need to account for Yesterday, tell us the Truth about today and consider the good of all for our tomorrow’s actions.  I pray Africa, soon, very soon, look into Africa first, before thing Paris, Brussels, China, India, UK, Dubai, Saudi, Israel, Germany or America.  Happy New Year, ‘which way Nigeria (Africa), Which way to go’.. (Remembering Sonny Okosun).

 

 

 

 

A double Barrel Approach–Interior and Defence.

This is a very short one, it is actually a prayer for peace and security in our dear land.

General Dan Ali (rtd), is a one Gentle man that has traversed the crannies and echelon of the military.  He had very good mentors, like General Gado Nasko, who was a highly respected Officer in all the positions he held especially as Minister of Agric and later FCT.    The new Minister of Defence had all the potential of a rising Crown Prince.  I rejoice with him today as he moves into the highest defence office as Minister.

Gen. Danbazzau, an Academic Military General, I rate with respect like the Powel of Nigeria.  I saw this man, when all his close colleagues were made Military Administrators, and his name missed, we went to congratulate him in error (of then Col. Shuaib as Plateau MILAD).  He rejoiced with us and with high sense of Royal Humility and sense of responsibility accepted and extended our felicitations to the right person.   My prayers has never reduced for him.  He encouraged so many of us to continue reading, with his blessings.  As Chief of Army Staff, on an official visit to Bauchi, amidst the crowd and business of the day, recognised and spent time encouraging us to keep increasing our good works.   His coming into to harness the affairs of Nigeria’s home front, desires our prayers and full support.

Now that the pegs are round in holes that are round, from Sambissa forest to the tributaries of the Niger, militants should beware. The Nigerian Borders, Cattle rustlers, Kidnappers, Oil Bunkerers and Small Arms Dealers beware.

My Prayer, yes my Prayer is that – The Almighty Maker of the Heavens and the Earth, will give this nation peace in our time.  That Nigeria will become a no-come area for persons who have ills in their minds.  That from Maiduguri to Bakassi, Sokoto’s Gobir / Sabon Birni to the Badary, Seme and Owode axis, Smugglers of Arms, insurgencies, kidnappings and all forms of unrests will be sent back to the senders, whether inside or outside our borders.  That the Uniformed and Plain Clothes Security personnel, will be so elevated/motivated to receive respect at home like they do on foreign missions.  That their families, in service and even after, will stand tall and proud that their children, parent served the nation and they have what to show for it.  May our tired, retired, reserved forces and those resting in their graves never have cause again to regret their years in service, because of pension or retirement benefits.

In earnest I pray that the Defence Industries will come alive again and reduce the monies we spend importing and in fact start exporting to other nations.  That the Kaduna Air-beetle dream will grow to become Hercules and the Bauchi Defence Installations, will force the Bauchi Airport to become a defence and manufacturers export Zone or Inland Port.   That Defence Academy/University will increase to have Defence Research Institutes, where we can harness the minds and knowledge of our cream de la cream in the Military, Police, Security and Civil Services after their retirements, instead of allowing them to rot in villages / towns for lack of intellectual challenges or low intellectual usage.

For us we will continue in prayers for you and your officers for success, as we are only able to progress in the midst of Peace and Security.  God bless and Keep Nigeria One and Peaceful.