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RingTrue with Yemi Adebowale:The ‘Greek’ Proposal to Goodluck Jonathan

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yemi.adebowale@thisdaylive.com; 08054699539 (text only)
The scheming by some supporters of President Muhammadu Buhari to have former President Goodluck Jonathan run on the platform of the All Progressives Congress for President in 2023 is progressing.
One can safely say that it is now full blown, fuelled by power intrigues and permutations. Some of the APC governors behind the scheme turned out for Jonathan’s 63th birthday nine days ago. Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni; Kebbi State Governor, Atiku Bagudu and Jigawa State Governor, Abubakar Badaru are top on the list.
For these schemers, Jonathan’s candidacy will satisfy the increasing clamour for power shift to the South-east. They want to mask him as an Igbo man. After all, he has “Ebele and Azikiwe” as part of his name. Jonathan is expected to be harmless to the interest of this group and that of the North, and as such, the right person to take over from Buhari. Again, Jonathan is a good product for these plotters because he would be entitled to just one term. So, power can shift to the North quickly. For these conspirators, Jonathan is a safe bet, very amiable gentleman, who will not rock the boat. He represents the shortest route for the north to regain power. They also say Buhari can trust him and that there is a growing friendship between them. Buhari is still struggling to recover from how Jonathan accepted defeat and handed over power to him in 2015. They say he would be so happy to hand back power to Jonathan.
Well, Jonathan has not responded to all these 2023 pressure. If I were him, I will reject this Greek gift and continue to enjoy my retirement in peace. This proposal is an attempt to ruin all that he has achieved. Jonathan is not an Igbo man and cannot be an Igbo man. He cannot take over the slot of the South-east. Honestly, Presidential power should rotate to the South-east for fair play and political inclusiveness.
This country has been unfair to this region for so long and it should end in 2023. Jonathan should not allow himself to be used as a tool to scuttle the dreams of the South-east. Those offering him this Greek gift are just out to protect their selfish interest. The GEJ I know will most likely resist this temptation.
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COLUMNISTS

Your lamentations over Gov. Umahi’s defection is becoming childish, Eze tells PDP

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Chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and erstwhile National Publicity Secretary of the defunct New Peoples Democratic Party (nPDP) Chief Eze Chumwuemeka, has expressed discomfort at the continued lamentations of the People’s Democratic Party over the recent movement of Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State from the badly perforated umbrella that has lost the strength and capacity to maintain its relevance and shield members from the rains, to the progressives family.

 

In a statement made available to media houses, the party Chief restated that it remains within the exclusive preserve of every member of a political party to pitch tent with another political association where his genuine grievances, especially those affecting public interests  are not properly addressed, noting that the unnecessary blabbing of the opposition party on the issue is a gross display of deliberate iconoclasm.

 

Excerpts from the statement read “I have watched with utter disbelief and nostalgia the naked and macabre dance by some PDP bigwigs since Engr. Dave Nwaze Umahi, the Executive Governor of Ebonyi State and South East Chairman of Governors Forum decided to join forces with the ruling party at the centre, the All Progressives Congress, (APC) in order to give political direction to Ndi Igbo”.

 

“By his defection to the APC, Governor Umahi, has proven that he is politically ahead of his peers and especially, considering his developmental strides in turning Ebonyi State, a once neglected and underdeveloped State in Nigeria into the most developed State in the country”

 

The APC chieftain averred that the infrastructural revolution ignited by his administration in Ebonyi state is a very critical tool and determinant factor in governance and justifies his defection from the crippling and sinking People Democratic Party to the progressives family. He said Umahi’s movement has suddenly ignited the daily babbling of misguided leaders of the PDP who have now resorted to acts of ill will in a bid to distract the performing Governor from his determination to make the difference in governance.

 

Chief Eze said Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State kick-started the attacks on the erstwhile exceptional leader of PDP in the South East for defecting to APC and after shouting himself hoarse, the embattled and soon to be sacked National Chairman of PDP, Chief Uche Secondus followed suit with the wrong perception that calling Governor Umahi unprintable names will will win him favour to sustain his office.

 

Furthermore, Kola Ologbondiyan, the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP in the ensuing efforts to disparage Umahi launched a similar attack, although he got lost on what to say.

 

The party stalwart said every true progressive and Nigerian patriot will derive pleasure to learn what vacuum the defection of Governor Umahi has created in the opposition PDP, stressing that with the excruciating pain suffered by the PDP following his exit, the battered umbrella political organization seems to have lost relevance and direction.

 

The latest and most laughable of all the lamentations is the one that came from one funny but irrelevant fellow who claims to be the Publicity Secretary of the collapsed PDP in Ebonyi State, Mr. Silas Onu, who in an effort to justify the monthly peanuts he gets, attempted to disparage the image of Governor Umahi, but only succeeded in making a fool out of himself.

 

In his futile effort, he stated that the PDP is threatening to write US, UK governments alleging that Umahi is plotting to kill some of the PDP bigwigs in the State.

 

Addressing a press conference on Abuja the Publicity Secretary of the chapter, Silas Onu, raised alarm that the present holiday season may be the bloodiest in the state’s history in view of the stockpiling of arms in the state.

 

“The British High Commission, Canadian High Commissioner and the Ambassador of the United States of America are called upon to take a special interest in Ebonyi State as the government have continually resorted to uncivilized methods for political engagements.

 

“Our petitions will be sent to all High Commissions and Embassies to draw attention towards this inhumane leadership style that cares less about human lives.

 

While also noting that the lives of the opponents of the governor are being threatened, he said the arms stockpile discovered in Abakaliki market should be properly investigated, noting: “The location of the interception is not a coincidence as no other authority have access into that market apart from the State government.

 

Taking the laughable lamentation of the PDP higher, the Acting National Vice Chairman of PDP, South-east Zone, Chief Ali Odefa alleged that it has uncovered plans by the State Government to assassinate members of the party that will include the former President of the Senate, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, former Governor of the State, Senator Sam Egwu, Senator Obinna Ogba amongst others

 

Eze condemned Mr. Fred Udogu, PDP Ebonyi Chairman for all the futile efforts to portray the Governor in bad light few who days ago petitioned the new Commissioner of Police, Department of State Services (DSS) and other security agencies in the state just because he is asked to return the vehicle given to him by the State Government as a onetime functionary of the State Government is uncalled for.

 

Clearing the issue of the assumed threat on the life of the PDP State Chairman, Chief Emegha the commissioner for internal security stated that the vehicle which Mr. Udeogu is asked to return was allotted to him as the chairman of the capital territory Board. Now when he is relieved from his duties, did he supposed to go with the official vehicle meant for the commission?”

 

Eze asked does this issue amounts to threat to life and call for the unwarranted noise been peddled about by this mischievous fellow aimed at tarnishing the image of a God fearing Governor, Eze queried. He pleaded that, “we should try to play politics with morality and fear of God if we are to be taken serious as leaders”.

 

Eze described all of the allegations as destitute of reality, merely intended to distract the efforts of the Governor to provide leadership to the people of his State as Governor Umahi had no intention of harming any son or daughter of Ebonyi and as God will have it Ebonyi stands as the safest State during the yuletide period in the entire country.

 

He called on the leaders of the PDP to go back to the drawing board and review the architectural  design of the party to spot the defects and find  ways of fixing and repositioning the dwindling fortunes of the party and desist from politics of smear campaign and spurious allegations, stressing that such carriages will yield them no results.

 

If they think that the only solution to their litany of problems is to continue to raise unsubstantiated allegations against an Apostle of God who detests campaign of calumny and all forms of actions that contradict acceptable standard of human behavior, then their efforts must be exercises in futility.

 

While sympathizing with the PDP and its leadership for losing such a great asset and high ranking political leader like Umahi, Eze admonished the party to come to terms and accept the reality of the fact that the departure of Umahi from the PDP signifies an imminent collapse of the party in the South East.

 

Chief Eze said the PDP has failed abysmally in providing answers to the genuine concerns that prompted Umahi’s exit from the party which among others include the total neglect of the South East during her sixteen years of misrule in Nigeria, stressing that the administration of President Buhari has achieved so much not just for Ebonyi State but the entire South East region including the Second Niger Bridge, the Enugu International Airport, Onitsha to Enugu, Port Harcourt to Enugu and several other federal projects littered across the region.

 

Eze applauded Umahi for his bold step which has earned him the Poster Boy of the politics of South East and one of the revelations of the current political dispensation.

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COLUMNISTS

Why COVID-19 spares the poor….Doyin Okupe

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Have you been wondering why ordinary folks seem to be less affected by COVID-19? Whenever my drivers, house helps and security come back from their leave at home, I always asked them the state of things in their villages. Up till today in the last one year, none has come back with any news of deaths or serious illnesses requiring hospitalisation in their homes or surroundings.
I visited the Sabo Market in Sagamu (Ogun State) and the tomato market at toll gate in Ogere (Ogun State). I questioned many traders if any stall or store owners have been missing, or did not come to the market or have actually died. Responses were always negative.
So clearly the prevalence of noticeable infection with COVID-19 is less among the lower class and fatalities appear to be higher among the upper class. However, It is necessary to make some adjustment for the fact that deaths among the elite class readily get media attention than those of regular folks.
Melinder Gates prediction failed woefully because there was no way she could have foreseen this demographic prevalence factor in the spread of COVID-19. The overall infectivity and fatalities in Africa is disproportionately much lower than the rest of the World!!!
What is the magic here?
Simply put, the magic is SUNLIGHT. People who are daily exposed to sunlight are able to convert some chemicals in their skins to Vitamin D, especially D3. Scientist have incontrovertible evidence that Vitamin D seriously boosts the human immunity and actually have capacity to prevent respiratory and lung diseases. In the case of COVID-19, Vitamin D3 can prevent infection in some people and in others who still get infected , it decreases the severity of the infection and recovery rate is far better.
Recently a petition signed by 120 physicians spread across the globe (I have a copy) has been sent to world leaders and governments to treat vitamin D deficiency common in Europe and Americas, who have effective sunlight for just a few months in a year and hence have large numbers of the populace suffering from vitamins deficiency leading to high rates of susceptibility to covid19 infections and deaths.
Many of us elites in Africa are also Vitamin D deficient and this makes us ready targets for COVID-19 infections also. This is because we are hardly in the sun all year round. Yet a 30 minutes lounge daily in the bright sunlight gives one about 20,000 iu of vitamin D in our blood. This figure is much much more higher than our daily requirement, which is about 4000 iu of vitamin D.
This is why young people, students, hawkers, traders and many who toil daily under the Sun have very high immunity against COVID-19. So my dear elders, VIPs and Ogas please walk leisurely or lounge in the sun for 20 to 30 minutes daily, and with your face masks always on in public and observing normal COVID protocols, with daily supplications to the Almighty, you will place a ban on COVID-19 from affecting you and your household.
God bless you all.
Okupe, a Medical Doctor, was Adviser to former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan.
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COLUMNISTS

Senator Akpabio and NDDC Scavengers

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Written By Obiaruko Christie Ndukwe

A few days ago, some youth groups in the Niger Delta region aired what they termed their resentment in the appointment of Mr Effiong Okon Akwa as Sole Administrator of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) by President Muhammadu Buhari. One of the groups, Uhrobo Youth Leaders Council (UYLC) was said to have dragged the Honourable Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio before a Federal High Court sitting in Warri, Delta State, over the said appointment of the new NDDC helmsman. The UYLC stands commended for its civilised method. Some other youths, who claimed to be of Uhrobo extraction, engaged in a theatre of the absurd by blocking the ever-busy East West road, thereby causing untold hardship on travelers who ply that road. While it is inconsequential to dwell on the cursing spree and death wish on the Minister as they poured libation on the expressway, it must be stressed that much as people have the right to vent their steam, such action should not impinge on the right of way of other law-abiding citizens.

It is trite knowledge that informed Urhobo youths are not part of the said action, but a few disgruntled hirelings masquerading as youths of the revered ethnic nationality. This is a clear case of the hands of Jacob in the garb of Esau.

 

The use of anti-democratic tendencies by overt beneficiaries of democratic norms, to distract the Hon. Minister of Niger Delta and, by extension, President Buhari, must be condemned and stands condemned, by every right-thinking Niger Deltan. One begins to wonder the rationale behind the conscription of youths to block the ever-busy East-West road, if not to discredit President Buhari.

 

Players in the NDDC political industry are not finding it difficult to situate the reason behind the incessant attacks on President Buhari and the Hon. Minister for Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Akpabio. The outright rejection of the ill-fated Obudu and Okumagba Board, even after being screened by the Senate, has remained the albatross on the neck of the Senate Deputy President, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege. He had tactically positioned the two men in order to take absolute control of the NDDC, but according to what we say in the Nigerian parlance, “God pass dem.” The macabre dance steps of those youths are in tandem with the quick drumbeats of Senator Omo-Agege.  Could these be happening on the wrong assumption that President Buhari rarely bite? Sometimes, one is tempted to wish these mundane scripts were being played out in an Obasanjo era. Audu Ogbe’s experience as National Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) during Obasanjo’s administration readily comes to mind here.

How can a man who prides himself as “leader of the South-South APC” continue to exhibit flagrant disregard for the President and Commander-in-Chief, thereby hampering whatever successes the President and his party would have recorded?

 

Recall that the Interim Management Committee under the leadership of Prof. Pondei was made of no effect following what Femi Adesina, Presidential Spokesman on Media, described as “plethora of litigations and a restraining order issued recently against the Interim Management Committee of the NDDC by a Federal High Court in Abuja.” Since therefore there was no room for vacuum in governance, and considering the fact that the leadership echelon in the NDDC have been embroiled, over time, in the obvious rot and stench in the Commission, the President and Commander-in-Chief, Muhammadu Buhari, considered it expedient to appoint an untainted hand to oversee the running of the Commission until the conclusion of the on-going forensic audit.

Worthy of note is the fact that the incessant unease in the NDDC is boiling to a crescendo following President Buhari’s approval of a forensic audit of the Commission from 2001 to 2019. Those who have had unethical dealings in the Commission have left no stone unturned in their efforts to truncate the exercise. Fortunately, Mr. President has, both in words and action, demonstrated unwavering commitment to unearth the itchy fingers behind the stealing of humongous budgets appropriated for the development of the Niger delta region. Sadly, and most shocking, are incontrovertible revelations that most of the infractions recorded in the bleeding commission were brazenly committed by those who, ordinarily, were entrusted to protect the common wealth of the Niger Delta region.

 

That Senator Godswill Akpabio is in the eyes of the storm is therefore no surprise; man that has been mostly misjudged by his party men for their misplaced fear of being outshined. Some of them believe that allowing Akpabio to function without hindrance will open another window to replicate the feat in Akwa Ibom State which earned him the sobriquet, “The Uncommon Transformer”, thereby putting him ahead of other leaders from the region, or at most, give him an edge over many of them.

 

How can we forget, so soon, the “Honourable-Minister-off-the-Mic” incident during the probe of activities of the Commission at the National Assembly? The hunter suddenly became the hunted when the raw truth started coming out, hence the heart-felt appeal for the minister to off the mic. That Senator Akpabio could speak truth to power in the full glare of everybody watching across the globe, is a testimonial that he has nothing to hide concerning the NDDC.

Nigerians have not forgotten the startling revelation that a single senator was awarded 300 contracts, out of which 120 were fully paid for without commensurate job execution? Should Nigerians be reminded that it is the huge number of these phantom contracts that have left a debt burden of over N3 trillion hanging on the neck of the Commission? Should Nigerians be cowed by the blistering undertakers who are desperate to divide the living child because theirs died last night? Certainly not

 

As a sharp contrast from what used to obtain before, the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) has   demonstrated leadership in its determination not to be part of any politically-motivated protest that would destabilise the region. According to the IYC President Worldwide, Peter Timothy Igbifa, “parents should monitor the activities of their children and stop them from engaging in any demonstration, especially the one targeting the occupation of NDDC headquarters using the name of IYC.” It is therefore expected that other youth groups in the region should borrow a leaf from the IYC in the journey to making the NDDC achieve the desired purpose.

Rather than distract the Sole Administrator of the Commission from delivering on his assignment, Niger Deltans, and indeed Nigerians, should be concerned about the overall decrepit infrastructure and downward slope of human capital that abound in the region.  The commission is presently passing through a season of realization and rebirth, and the best Nigerians can offer now is understanding, devoid of any grandstanding by filthy players whose fingers are already soiled by their unbridled love for and commitment to the underdevelopment of the Niger Delta region. The time to check these scavengers is now.

 

Written By Obiaruko Christie Ndukwe

President, Citizens Quest for Truth Initiative

CitizensQuest247@gmail.org

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