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Looking For Jobs, Finding Death – By Femi Fani-Kayode.


By Femi Fani-Kayode

Whether anyone likes to accept it or not the bitter truth is that 80 per cent of our GRADUATES are unemployed in Nigeria today whilst 51 per cent of our PEOPLE are also unemployed. As a frightful and grave consequence of these shocking statistics, which I happen to believe may well be a world record in terms of unemployment, a terrible tragedy occurred in Abuja and other parts of our country on 16th March 2014.

Approximately 68,000 of our youths gathered at the National Stadium in Abuja for an aptitude test for just 3000 jobs in the Immigration Service. 10 of those children were killed in a stampede whilst looking for those jobs. It did not stop there. Another 20,000 youths gathered in the stadium at Port Harcourt, Rivers state for aptitude tests for the same 3000 jobs and there was another stampede there as well in which 4 of their colleagues were killed and four more were so badly wounded that they remain in a coma up until now.

Similar gatherings for the same Immigration aptitude test took place in cities all over the country all for the same 3000 jobs and three young pregnant girls together with three male youths were killed in a similar stampede at the stadium in Minna, Niger state.

The only crime that all these children that were either killed, maimed or injured in these horrific stampedes in the stadiums of all these cities like Abuja, Port Harcourt, Minna, Lagos, Kano, Kaduna, Benin and elsewhere had committed was to try to get a job, to fight for a better life for themselves and to try to secure their future. What a tragedy.

One day Nigerians will appreciate the importance of facts, figures and statistics and the consequences of tolerating atrocious, lousy, insensitive and unaccountable governments. They will also understand the implications of having a government that has no qualms about taking advantage of the pitiful plight of it’s own youths and citizens and scamming them in the most obvious and shameful manner.

Why should anyone be surprised that hundreds of thousands of youths gathered in stadiums all over the country on the 15th March 2014 just to apply for a tiny handful of jobs that are available in Immigration? This is so SIMPLY because there are NO jobs available for these children in our country.

I repeat 80 per cent of our graduates are unemployed and 51 per cent of our people are unemployed. Why won’t they die and be killed or injured whilst looking for the few jobs that are available? Why won’t they gather in stadiums all over the country in their hundreds of thousands just to do an aptitude test for a job in Immigration for which there are only 3000 vacancies? Why should anyone be surprised by this madness and this turmoil? Why should anyone be moved by this horrific carnage when it is now a regular phenomenon in our country for children to be slaughtered. If they are not butchered whilst at school by islamist fundamentalists they are slaughtered whilst they are looking for jobs from a heartless government which has effectively destroyed their future.

Yet look for jobs they must because these children and these youths are desperate and they are suffering. To make matters worse they are also being taken advantage of and scammed by their own government who are desperate to extort money from them by all means available. If this were not the case why would the Comptroller-General of Immigration and the Minister of Internal Affairs order that each and every one of those youths that flooded the stadiums in their hundreds of thousands and that stood in the sun should be made to pay 1000 naira each for the forms that they were to use to do the aptitude test at the various stadiums all over the country.

Someone was set to make a whole lot of money considering the fact that over one hundred thousand youths were involved in this shameless exercise and the amount of cash that they must have made runs into hundreds of millions of naira. The whole thing was just a massive and monuemental scam to extort hundreds of millions of naira from these poor, young and innocent souls and many of our youths have paid for it with their lives.

This is what President Goodluck Jonathan’s Nigeria has done to them. We now have an army of angry, jobless, frustrated, disillusioned and desperate youths on our hands in this country and consequently we are literally sitting on a keg of gunpowder. May God help us and may He forgive us for failing these children and destroying their futures.

Other than this I will say no more on this matter because the truth is that most Nigerians no longer ”give a damn” when blood is shed and when lives are taken. This is so even when those lives are those of children. Permit me to give an example. On the very same day that our youths were dying in stadiums looking for jobs with Immigration another 100 innocent people were being slaughtered by ”unknown gunmen” in southern Kaduna and no-one seems to care. Again only two days before then, on March 12th 2014, 110 innocent Nigerians were butchered by what were described in the press as a group of ”fulani gunmen who were on motorbikes” in Katsina state whilst the President was on an official visit there. What a tragedy.

Under President Goodluck Jonathan we have become a nation of vampires where the death of innocent children and youths means nothing and where we cannot even provide jobs or a decent standard of living for our young ones. Instead we attempt to scam them and to extort money from them. What a government, what a country.

If our government had any sense of decency, justice or accountability the Comptroller-General of Immigration and the Minister of Internal Affairs would have not only been compelled to resign or fired by now but they would also have been arrested and would be facing criminal charges for, at the very best, criminal negligence and manslaughter and, at the very worse, accessories before the fact to murder. Yet we know that that will never happen as long as President Goodluck Jonathan is in power. Far from it.

As a matter of fact instead of bowing his head in shame and showing any sense of contrition or remorse the Minister of Internal Affairs has come out shamelessly and blamed the dead youths themselves by saying that ”they did not exercise enough patience during the exercise”. May God forgive this man. I wonder if he would have expressed such sentiments if any of his own children had been killed in the stampede.

Permit me to end this contribution by quoting from a moving email that I received from a dear Nigerian family friend who herself is a mother and who presently resides in the United Kingdom with her family. She sent it to me the day after the tragic death of the youths in the stadium. I have obtained her permission to share her words in this write-up but for obvious reasons I will not mention her name. She wrote-

”Good morning uncle Femi. I honestly don’t know where to start from. My heart is so heavy. What is it about Nigeria that (or is it we as a nation) nothing  good comes out of the news. I’m beginning to wonder if there is nothing wrong with me when I go through websites expectant of only bad news. Why don’t I ever expect anything good to come out if Nigeria? I don’t even know what to tell my children again. I try to give them a balanced view of the country but something would always come up to make nonsense of that. Why would any sane person want to come and live in that madness called Nigeria where nothing is guaranteed. Life is not guaranteed, jobs are not guaranteed, education is not guaranteed, security is not guaranteed, a decent daily meal is not guaranteed. I could go on and on.

I came to a realization recently which is self-preservation. Abi shebi it’s life/self first. When I saw the early morning pictures of the crowd of youths at the Abuja stadium my heart just sank because I could almost write the script of what would follow. And so I waited (expectantly?)and wasn’t disappointed. Would anything come out of it? No. Would life go on? Yes. Do they care? No. And the moron of a Minister had the gall to say that candidates died because of ”impatience”. Meanwhile the so-called aptitude test was just a ruse. They had handpicked their preferred candidates weeks ago. The crowd alone told me that we have a serious problem of youth unemployment yet Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala would come out and be reeling stupid figures. Please tell her that she’s not fooling anyone. As if the unemployment is not bad enough government is opening more universities like daycare centers and still granting licenses for private universities. Who is going to absorb these teeming unemployed graduates? Where are the industries? Are you creating an enabling environment for investment? In fact I’m just done with agonizing over Nigeria. Self first please!”

Her words and counsel moved me to tears. As far as I am concerned she captured the mood very well and her simple yet succinct submission is reflective of the thinking and deep pain of millions of Nigerians from all over the world that are fast losing hope in their nation. Yet what can we do but just continue to hope and pray. What can we do for the future of our children and to better the fortunes of our nation? This is indeed food for thought. As the bible says, ”may God deliver us from bloodthirsty and evil men” and ”may the balm of Gilead heal our wounds and comfort our mourning souls”.

 

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters

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Ibori’s Kangaroo Judge Retires-PM News, Nigeria.


 

Marcel Awokulehin
By Akin Kuponiyi

Justice Marcellus Idowu Awokulehin, the judge who gave former Delta State Governor, Onanefe James Ibori clean bill of health in the corruption charges file against him, has  retired. He retired Thursday.

In a well attended valedictory service held in Lagos in his honour by judges, lawyers, past chief judges of the Court Justice, Awokulehin thanked the judges and offered his gratitude to the late Bola Ige who recommended him for the post of a judge.

On 17 December, 2009,  Justice Awokulehin in his ruling quashed all the 170-count criminal charges filed against Ibori by  the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC. Ibori was however extradited to the United Kingdom where he was convicted and jailed for the same offence Wokulehin set him free in Nigeria.

Justice Awokulehin was born  16 January, 1949,  in Otan Aiyegbaju in Boluwaduro Local Government Area of Osun State. He started his early education at Holy Cross Primary School, Lagos from 1955-1960 and St.Mary’s Primary School, Lokoja from 1960-1962. From there he gained admission into St. Thomas’s School Kano from 1962-1964.

He later continued his secondary education at the Hussey College, Warri from 1964-1968.

Awokulehin was admitted into the Faculty of Law, University of Lagos as part time student from 1971-1973 and full time student from1973-1975 .

He later proceeded to the City of London Polytechnic from 1975-1978 for his Modular Law and from 1978-1979 and  obtained his Master’s degree having completed a post graduate course in business law. He was called to the Nigerian  Bar in 1982.

He did his National Youth Service with the Federal Ministry of Justice from 1982-1983. He was later made permanent staff from1985-1987.

Between 1987 and 1993, he was Senior State Counsel, Legal Adviser to the Department of Customs and Excise, Chief Legal Adviser Department of public prosecution, Marina, Lagos from August 1998-March 1999.

Awokulehin was the lead Counsel to the Oputa panel during its sitting in Lagos in 2001

He was appointed as Federal High Court Judge on 7 January, 2004 and served five divisions of the court, namely Asaba, Benin, Lagos, Lafia and Kaduna.

In a well attended valedictory service held in his honour by judges, lawyers, past chief judges of the Court Justice, Awokulehin thanked the judges and offered his gratitude to the late Bola Ige who recommended him for the post of a judge.

Obasanjo’s letter: I’m not training snipers, says Asari-Dokubo.


Asari-dokubo-004

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo‘s allegation that President Goodluck Jonathan is training snipers keeps generating the heat.

Although, Obasanjo did not name anybody, the founder of the militant Niger Delta People’s Volunteer Force (NDPV), Alhaji Mujahid Asari-Dokubo, thinks he is the one the former president was referring to.

Asari-Dokubo was recently detained in the Republic of Benin.

He said yesterday that he was not training snipers either in Nigeria or abroad for the presidency.

 

He said although Obasanjo should be bold enough to indict him for a response.

Asari-Dokubo said he was neither flown in a private jet nor in a presidential jet after being investigated by security agencies in Benin Republic.

He said he flew to Abuja from Lagos in an Aero Contractors plane.

He said the last time he enjoyed the luxury of a presidential jet was when Obasanjo sent one to fly him from the creeks as part of the search for solutions to the crisis in the Niger Delta.

He admitted that he had a problem in Benin Republic following what he called a false security alarm and the Federal Government waded in.

Asari-Dokubo, who spoke exclusively with our correspondent, said he was only suspected of being a Boko Haram leader in Benin Republic and after investigations by Beninoise authorities, he was let off.

He said: “I don’t know what is called snipers; I will revisit my dictionary for the meaning of snipers.

“I am not training snipers for either the Presidency or anybody. If ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo wants to point a finger at me, I will know the path to take or the relevant authorities to contact.

“I have not seen my name mentioned directly by anybody, but I know what to do if this is so.

“If I am being invited by security agencies on issues that have to do with denting my image, I know what to do.”

Asked why he was arrested, Asari-Dokubo said: “Information reached Beninoise security agencies that I was a Boko Haram leader. And from all investigations, they said they did not find any clue linking me with Boko Haram.

“Some people gave Benin Republic false information to see that Dokubo dies before the 2015 general election. So, we are in a political era and from all investigations, my encounter in Benin Republic had to do with politics.”

On how he returned to his base in Abuja from Benin Republic, Asari-Dokubo said: “I came in through Aero Contractors plane from Lagos to Abuja. Many people were on board and they saw me.

“I was not flown into the country either in a private or presidential jet at all.

“I had problem in Benin Republic and the government waded in the matter because nothing incriminating was found against me.”

Responding to a question, the founder of the NDPV said: “If I was nobody, why did ex-President Obasanjo send a private jet to convey me to Abuja from Port Harcourt to negotiate for militants? ”

Source: Radio Biafra.

Oshiomhole’s Leadership Qualities In Nigeria: A Model For The Country By Dr. Wumi Akintide.


By Dr. Wumi Akintide

As I gather my thoughts for my new year resolutions, it just crossed my mind to take a look back in time and to show how bad leadership has been a major drag on the progress of Nigeria for much of our 53 years of independence. I want to begin this piece with a self confession about what I need to do better in 2014. I get regular feed backs from fans of this column around the world and I am grateful for them. While the great majority admit and thank me for sharing my thoughts with them, a respectable minority including one or two of my trusted friends and confidants have wondered aloud if I could make those articles shorter. It is a correct observation I plan to work on in the new year.

I am not a trained journalist. I do have some journalists I so much respect for their lucid language and brevity. Three of them include a gentleman named Sonala Olumhense who proudly won “the journalist of the year award from Sahara Reporters on December 21 at their well attended Christmas Party in New York. The other two are Okey Ndibe and Rudolf Okonkwo. They all can write and their articles are never as lengthy or wordy as mine. I have become their student  for the most part, and part of my new year resolution is to emulate them more in 2014 and beyond. I crave your indulgence to let this be the longest article for this year. It is a promise I mean to keep. So help me God.

I make this confession because I have come to realize that “To err is human and to forgive is divine.” Above all I have come to appreciate that the closest that any human being will ever get to perfection as observed by Sigmund Freud, is to admit his or her mistakes. I see Governor Oshiomhole as fitting that bill even though many of you may disagree with me. Many have criticized Governor Oshiomhole of Edo State for losing his cool in the public and openly humiliating a Nigerian widow in Benin for breaking the Law by turning his government’s newly constructed road in Benin into a market place thereby creating a public nuisance. In a moment of frustration or desperation, the Governor, a former trade union leader and activist lost his cool and uttered a few words that are beneath the dignity of office.

For that infraction, the Governor has been ridiculed for weeks in newspapers and on the Internet and television studios around the world for abusing his power in pretty much the same way like the news media came down very hard on Pastor Oyedepo the General Overseer of Winners Chapel in Nigeria for arrogantly and physically abusing a member of his congregation. The nation and the whole world including Pope Francis would be shocked to see such a brutal and judgmental display of power on television cameras by a cleric who should have exercised more restraint if he was of the same mindset with the new hope who cautioned pastors to not judge others.

What I take away and what I hope the readers of this column would take away from the two incidents is how the Governor and Pastor Oyedepo have reacted to public criticisms of their horrendous abuse of power. Governor Oshiomhole did not waste time admitting he did something wrong while Pastor Oyedepo defended his right to so intimidate the little girl who dared to tell the pastor what he did not want to hear. You may disagree with how Governor Oshiomhole had sought to get some political mileage out of what he did to correct the mistake, but I would be the first to submit to you that the Governor did the right thing and he set an example in magnanimity and a heart-felt admission of guilt not easy to find among most African leaders with the possible exception of Madiba Nelson Mandela, Julius Nyerere and Murtala Mohammed who demanded from the press to hold his feet to fire if he departed from what he had promised the nation on taking over from General Yakubu Gowon. That kind of compassion is not something Nigerian politicians and leaders are  noted for. Once in power, most of our leaders act and behave like “tin gods” who are above the Law. I will give a few examples of such leaders in Nigeria and how few of them have handled what many of their subjects or victims would have considered a clear abuse of their position and power.

Once upon a time in Akure, my home town, there was a Deji of Akure named Odundun Asodedero who reigned from 1882 to 1890 as documented in my “Lion King and the Cubs” a biography of Kabiyesi Deji Adesida Afunbiowo the First which has sold more than 200,000 copies as of last Saturday. Deji Odundun once ordered one of his wives beheaded for sharing a joke with him in the bathroom. He gave the order because he could, but worse still, he ordered the woman’s head delivered in cold blood to the parents of his wife to show them he had the power of life and death. He got away with the murder because Pax Britanica and the Rule of Law had not yet taken hold in our own neck of the woods in Nigeria at the time.

Oba of Benin, Ogiso Overamen demonstrated the same feudalistic power in 1897 when he ordered his traditional troops to attack the British invaders who wanted to enter Benin during his “Igue” festival when the city was not supposed to welcome or entertain any foreign elements. Due to some bad communication or foolhardiness, the Benin Expedition led by one Captain Philips ended in total fiasco for the Oba who was captured and exiled to Calabar where he died almost changing the course of history in Benin City before “Afinju Oba Ado Otolu Apara” Eweka, the father of Oba Akensua came on board.

The very same year, on June 22, 1897 Oba Adesida Afunbiowo the First was crowned the Deji in Akure after two futile attempts at getting the nod of the king makers.

3 months after his coronation, the Anglican Missionaries came to Akure followed in quick succession by the emissaries of the colonial Government based in Lagos. Oba Adesida who was a very knowledgeable and versatile Ifa consultant had consulted his Ifa because he had learnt some useful  lessons from what had just occurred in Benin. His Ifa had revealed to him to expect some foreign visitors but that he must welcome them to his domain with open hands and not antagonize them. He was assured their coming was going to forever change the fortunes of his town and his own tenure on the throne like no other Deji before him. As sure as death, the white visitors came and Oba Afunbiowo did precisely what his” Orunmila,  Ifa Atererekaiye, o soro dayo” had told him. That simple obedience to Ifa, the only God he knew and devotedly worshiped had laid the foundation for what Akure later became in the history of Ondo State starting with her initial elevation from provincial headquarters, to state capital and later on in 2004 to the 8th Millennium Center for Development in Africa. Oba Afunbiowo the First came about his oriki or popular cognomen in Akure dialect, “Aga a morire, O toye gboro, O m’oyinbo goke, Iwerepe gbara re gba igi oko, Olori alade a jiwajiwa Ileke, o tori ileke d’oluku Oyo, O beri omo sa gongon t’Oke Eda ro do.”

Oba Afunbiowo became the longest reigning Deji in all of Akure history with his 60 years on the throne and another 46 years added by three of his direct children and one direct daughter and 3 great grand daughters as Regents in Akure. The individuals include Deji Agunsoye Ademuagun Adesida, the first educated Deji and attorney who succeeded Afunbiowo for 16 years from 1957 to 1973, followed by Deji Otitubiosun Adelegan Adesida who reigned from 1975 to 1991 and Deji Ataiyese Adebobajo Adesida who reigned from 1991 to 1999 followed by his daughter, Princess Adeyinka Adesida who reigned as regent from 1999 to 2005 the previous Regents included Princess Adetinu Famotua who succeeded her father in 1957 before Ademuagun came on board. The next was Princess Adebusola Oduntan Odunlami who succeeded her learned Barrister father in 1973. The next was Madam Aina who succeeded her father Deji Otutubiosun Adelegan Adesida for less than a year in 1991. The next Regent in line is going to be” Omo Oba to nfase mutin,” Kabiyesi Princess Adetutu Adesida a licensed Pharmacist in Houston, Texas who is going to take a leave of absence from her big job in Texas, United States to answer the call of duty like all the previous Adesidas before her.

The first “non-omo-ori- ite” Deji Adebiyi Adegboye Adesida Afunbiowo the Second who in 3 years on that throne has done what no Deji  before him has ever done in Akure history made his transition 24 days ago. He built a new Palace all by his own effort and he took to his grave the chairmanship of the Ondo State Council of Obas. The chairmanship was among the many firsts he has recorded in his short but epoch-making tenure in that office. The written history of Akure is by and large the history of the Adesidas on the throne of Akure any way you slice it. The only time in 2005 Akure ever attempted to alter that succession to the Deji’s throne has ended in regret and disaster with the imposition of the so-called Osupatadolaa the Third who cannot tell us when Osupatadolaa the Second ever reigned in Akure. The classification as the Third was a ruse. Nothing more nothing less. You are free to double-check this information from the list of the 46 Dejis who have so far ruled in Akure as listed in the Lion King and the Cubs” which is there for anybody to buy and read. The deposed Deji who is now begging for forgiveness he has always denied others got kicked out of that office by doing something no Deji has ever done in 900 years of Akure history.

I am not making up the story. I am only documenting what happened for generations yet unborn in the interest of History.

Now talking about abuse of power and compassion, Deji Afunbiowo the First was exemplary. As narrated in my “Lion King”, Deji  Afunbiowo belonged to a different kettle of fish as compared to Deji Odundun. Deji Afunbiowo had fallen  in love with “Otubeji , O dumosa luku Aiyegbe” the fiancee of one of his Palace servants named Tapere Famotua. “Adumosa” an Ado-Akure beauty born and raised at  Itaogbolu had come on a visit to Akure Palace to cheer his fiance, Omodeowa Famotua who was taking part in the “Owa Oropo” annual festival, which was  the Akure equivalent of the New York or the Boston Marathon in those days for those of you who know Akure history very well like i do. Who says the black race is inferior to the white race?  Akure has been having her own marathon race hundred of years before you ever hear of the New York Marathon. I can tell you that.

Deji Afunbiowo saw the lady in the crowd and he sent for her like he had the power to do. Without knowing the lady had come to cheer up her boy friend, Kabiyesi made his irreversible pronouncement as the “Ka bi o ko si” meaning nobody challenges your authority or reverse your order. That was how the stunning beauty from Itaogbolu became his Olori (queen) from that moment forward to the total frustration of Omodeowa Famutua who could not say a word because his lord and master has spoken and he was in no position to hold a contrary view. Kabiyesi had what he wanted. He married Adumosha and within a short time he conferred on her the high title of the “Eyelua” of the Oloris in Akure because the Eyelua was an “Afinju Adaba to njeun lawujo Asa” meaning “the gutsy and fearless dove that feeds among the eagles in the wild” Be ni o.Egun Mogaji ni Eyelua. She was an exemplary woman of distinction on her own merit. The woman  naturally rose to prominence very quickly among her peers in the Palace because she quickly captured the heart of Kabiyesi but Kabiyesi became worried after he knew he had snatched the fiancee of one of his Palace servants. He was a Deji who valued loyalty and service like no other Deji n Akure. He therefore decided to do what many of the religious people of nowadays label as “Restitution” even though the man was never a born-again Christian and he never saw the four walls of a school talk less of a University, but he was a very selfless and compassionate Deji of all times who obey the Biblical injunction of “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”.

He admitted his mistakes pretty much like Governor Oshiomhole. He decided to compensate Pa Famotua after  profusely apologizing to him for taking his fiancee. He decided to give his own first daughter, the impeccably beautiful  Mama Tinuade Adesida in marriage to Pa Famotua. He did not stop there. He gave Pa Famotua freedom from his burden as a palace servant and a slave in the Palace up to that point. That was how Famotua  changed from a commoner to become a nobility or a Duke and the husband of a “crown princess” in Akure till tomorrow. That was Oba Afunbiowo at his best. There would never be another Deji like him from now to eternity. God knows it and Akure people know it.

Now let us compare what Afunbiowo had done to what the deposed Deji who is now begging the Ondo State Governor to please reinstate him, even before the last Deji’s funeral rites have been completed and his first daughter, Princess Adetutu crowned as the next Regent of Akure according to Akure tradition and custom. If the deposed Deji had learnt his lesson by now, he would have thought twice before displaying such a poor judgment and lack of traditional restraint to say the least. It was the wrong step to take at a time Akures at home and abroad are still mourning the last Deji and wanting to investigate what killed him and who could have been responsible for taking out his life like “a candle in the wind” while the ovation was loudest and before he has had a chance to spend just one night in the majestic Taj Mahal he has built with his own sweat and blood which the deposed Deji now wants to inherit. “Haba! O ti o. Ki t’Esu ko”.

I trust the Akure Council of Chiefs under High Chief Oteru Oba Ode. O mori J’Oloja mo dade” James Olusoga to do the right thing, I trust Governor Mimiko, the peoples’ Governor to not allow the desperate individual to dent his image in Akure. The less we speak about the full implications and ramifications of what the deposed Deji has done, the better for him and all the aspiring candidates to the Deji’s throne as we speak. We would cross the bridge when we reach it for Heavens’ sake. If the deposed Deji was a leader like Oshiomhole, he would think twice before doing what he was publicized to have done. It’s that simple.

Akure and the whole of Nigeria would need to  go back to his record on the throne and what he did to deserve his exile to begin with. Forget his indiscretions in claiming to be the reincarnation of Deji Odundun. Forget his indiscretion in giving a bounced post-dated check to the king makers before he fooled them into in recommending him as Deji-elect to the Ondo State Government. Forget his suspension, removal and humiliation of arguably the best Olisa Akure has ever produced. I am talking of Olisa Otutuleyowo the Second, retired Colonel, Elijah Folorunsho David whom I am proud to call my In-law and my childhood friend and whose record in that title is second to none above board if you discount his undiplomatic streak of talking and acting like a soldier who meant what he said and said what he meant without fear or favor by appearing to rubbish or tarnish the reputation of the Adesidas in Akure while he had the power. That was his problem in retrospect, but he was a very good Olisa without any question in my mind and all things considered.

Forget the the deposed Deji going around repossessing lands that his predecessor on that throne had sold and canceling any contracts or deals they have signed as Deji-in-Council.  Forget his failure to honor the memory of the greatest Deji  in History when he turned down the invitation to be the royal father at the formal launching of the book honoring the life and legacies of that Deji. Forget the shabby treatment he gave to the Oloba of Oba-Ile, a fellow traditional ruler for giving new space to Hausa Tomatoe traders the deposed Deji had banished from Alafiatayo market in Akure because they could not pay him the inflated royalties he had wanted them to pay him. Forget the shabby treatment he had given to the same Akure Council of Chiefs he is now begging to take him back. Forget his failure to stand up to the Alaiyede of Ogbese when the Alaiyere, the late Bale Olatunde Ogunsuyi he himself has installed in his Palace was disrespected by the present Alaiyede of Ogbese when he instigated Akure North Local Government to not pay the salaries and allowances to her daughter who served as regent of Alayere following the death of her father, Bale Olatunde Ogunsuyi, the shortest reigning Alayere who reigned for only a day or two after his conferment of the title by the deposed Deji.

Kabiyes, the  Alaiyede and retired Professor of Law, Oba Peter Oluyede had claimed that Alayere title was no longer under the Deji of Akure and the new Alayere after Bale Olatunde Ogunsuyi had sided with the Alaiyede saying that the Alayere owed no allegiance to the Deji of Akure because the authority of the Deji does not extend to the Akure North Local Government as deposed by the Alaiyede of Ogbese. The question now begging for answer is how can any candidate with any claim or linkage to the Alayere throne now come forward to claim they have a right to contest and be crowned a Deji in Akure when the rubber meets the road?  What goes around comes around. Now that the Deji’s throne is vacant, we are now waiting to see how this observation is going to play out. The Olu abo of Ilu Abo Bale Oluyemi Falae who did not at any time gang up with the Laiyede to rebel against the Deji and the Olugunshin of course are the only Bales in Akure North Local Government who can stand tall now and claim they have always been loyal to the Deji of Akure.

Forget all the indiscretion of the deposed Deji when he gives chieftaincy titles only to the highest bidder in Akure regardless of those candidate’s entitlement to those titles. We all knew what he did to Yemi Oluwadare, a former President of Akure National Students Union in the United Kingdom when he was just a floor member. Mrs. Gbonjubola Adesida, the wife of Prince Raphel Adesola Adesida was the first and original Iyalode of Akure when he was installed by Deji Otutubiosun Adelegan Adesida. Akure will not forget how the deposed Deji had refused to recognize Gbonjubola as such because the deposed Deji was only looking out for the highest bidder.

Compared that to what Afunbiowo the First had done when he made late Kole Oluwatuyi the Second as the Olisa of Akure without taking a penny from him because he had wanted to compensate him because his own father, a devout CAC believer like late Olubadan Akinyele of blessed memory,  had died within 3 months of his becoming the Olisa. Deji Afunbiowo the First who never went to school for one day had valued education so much that he persuaded his Akure Council of Chiefs to let Kole Oluwatuyi succeed his father without giving any bribe to anybody because he wanted an educated Olisa to be his second-in command.

That was how Olisa Kole Oluwatuyi the Second became” Olisa Abejoye” in Akure history till tomorrow. Let anyone speak up or prove me wrong  with their facts if they have them. Nigeria is in big trouble because nothing is documented. The way we are going an Igbo man with enough cash to throw around, could,one day, be crowned an Olisa, or Odopetu or Sao or even the Deji in Akure because our value system has been bastardized by Corruption. If you remember that Otun Maiyegun of Ibadan was Orji Uzor Kalu, the former filthy-rich Abia Governor who could, one day, become the Olubadan, you will understand what I am talking about. The deposed Deji would have no qualms allowing an Igbo man to become a High Chief in Akure if the price is right. Ofei Day Spring and Chukwuemeka I grew up with in Akure and who have married Akure daughters and get children from them could tomorrow claim they are descendants of Osupa and Odundun or Obabirin Eyearo the first female Deji in Akure History and they may seek to be crowned a Deji or a high chief in Akure if light weights like the deposed Deji ever get a chance to be crowned a Deji one time too many in Akure. That is just the truth.

The deposed Deji is asking Governor Mimiko to reinstate him forgetting what he did. It is true that Olowo Olagbegi regained his throne after Olowo Adekola Ogunoye, after 25 years in exile. The deposed Deji ought to have known that he could not even tie the sachet of the shoes of Olateru Olagbegi talk less of claiming parity with the great Oba. He would be living in self fantasy and self delusion to compare himself to” Igi Nla” Ekun w’olu Olowo Olateru Olagbegi whose first son Kabiyesi Folagbade, a lawyer by profession, was Chairman of the Ondo State Council of Oba to issue a suspension order banning the deposed Deji from attending the meeting of Ondo State Council of Obas even before Governor Mimiko was forced to act on the scandal by forces beyond his control at the time because he thought the deposed Deji could help his political fortunes in the state capital.

Olowo Folagbade Olateru Olagbegi had acted that way because he argued the deposed Deji had disgraced the institution of Obas in Nigeria by going to the market square to go beat up his wife. If the deposed Deji thinks Nigerians and Akure people at home and abroad have forgotten that, then I have an island to sell to him in the Pacific. That the wife he had sent to her grave is no longer around to plead her own cause should give Akure king makers and his Osupa Ruling Line embracing Odundun descendants food for thought. I believe their current Chairman, the highly respected Dr. Adebimpe Ige Aladejana Ogunleye, who fought for the creation of the ruling line more than anybody, dead or alive, would not fail to factor that observation into his decision when it is time to nominate candidates for the vacant stool. We would all be watching from the sideline.

While it is true that Governor Mimiko is rumored to have granted a general amnesty or pardon to ghost workers who have have fraudulently claimed salaries in Ondo State, it will be very naive of the deposed Deji to expect the same kind of pardon, given the enormity of his traditional transgression. I love and care a lot about Governor Mimiko, but I have some misgivings about what kind of message he was sending to Nigerians if it is true he has granted that clemency as rumored on the internet. It would even be more egregious if he entertains the request from the deposed Deji or give it any serious consideration.

I make all these digressions to further emphasize and underscore my respect for Governor Oshiomhole for having the courage of his conviction to admit he fumbled, big time, by saying what he said to the poor widow. He has acquitted himself creditably in my judgment, however, by taking steps to correct his mistakes and finding a more cost-effective way to rehabilitate the woman. If most of our leaders have been so inclined, Nigeria would not be in the mess she has found herself now under President Jonathan.

I recall Obasanjo after taking over from Murtala Mohammed going to an official appointment somewhere in the North and taking out the whip to teach one Nigerian a lesson he would never forget. Obasanjo who is well known for his crudeness, clearly abused his power and authority that day, but he got away with it, and he never for once apologised to the nation or his victim for what he did. That Oshiomhole would go out of his way to openly apologize to the woman before television cameras should be seen as a sign of progress and I applaud him for it. He is letting the whole world know he is not perfect and that he can lose his cool just  like anyone of us.

What the poor woman did was wrong. That she was a widow was no excuse for her to do what she did because two wrongs don’t make a right. A two term Governor who is not seeking re-election could easily have ridden out the public criticism but Oshiomhole did not do that. He did the right thing and he should be commended for it.

As I compare what he did with how our current President has literarily ignored all the criticism he has so far received on Oduahgate, the public example shown by Oshiomhole has loomed larger than life in my book. It is common knowledge that President Jonathan and his first lady have been sending hoodlums and assassins after Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State as confirmed by the Nobel peace laureate, Wole Soyinka. The problems in Rivers state today are all the brain child of the President and the first lady who are clearly abusing their powers of incumbency to intimidate a weaker opponent or their perceived enemies as insinuated in Obasanjo’s 18 page letter to Mr. President.

The Governor of Central Bank, Lamido Sanusi has written volumes on how the NNPC has misappropriated billions of dollars in oil money which has not been fully accounted for. President Jonathan who says he is fighting Corruption is looking the other way and his body language as suggested by the current Speaker of the House of Representative and as corroborated by Obasanjo is a proof that Jonathan has lost all his credibility on fighting corruption in Nigeria and he should be ashamed of himself. He cannot have the courage to fire Stella Oduah or Madueke the Oil Minister when his own first lady is guilty of worse corruption, which is common knowledge in Nigeria.

Governor Oshiomhole is trying to teach his other colleagues in Government how to be a good and responsive leader and I support him one hundred percent. Nigeria of yester years was far superior to the Nigeria of today. Our leaders in Government and the Civil Service are worse off today than our past leaders. I can tell you that because I have seen it as an insider in my 25 years service to the Federal Civil Service before checking out of Nigeria. The little story I am about to tell  as I end this piece, would convince you.
I served in the Federal Ministry of Education as Secretary to the Ministry’s Tenders Board from November 1969 to February 1974 before my posting to the Federal Ministry of Finance while Obafemi Awolowo was Federal Commissioner for Finance and Deputy Chairman to Yakubu Gowon in the Federal Executive Council. As Secretary to the Tenders Board, I wielded a lot of power and could easily have made millions from Federal contractors looking for accomplices to bribe their way to getting lucrative contracts. I was then serving under one of the 4 most powerful Permanent Secretaries in the Federal Civil Service at the time. The 4 were Allison Ayida, Philip Asiodu, Eme Ebong and Ahmed Joda.

The Tenders Board at Education was under the purview of responsibility of Ahmed Joda. Next to me in the chain of command,  was the chairman of the Board, one Mr. Soyode, a heavy-set man who was Deputy Permanent Secretary to Ahmed Joda. Part of my duties as Secretary was to do the shortlist of contractors whose quotations the board had to consider for the award of any contract.

I did my home work thoroughly and I refused to shortlist any of the contractors who had come to offer me bribe. I refused to take not because I did not like money but because I thought it was a wrong thing to do. Unknown to me the particular contractor has offered my chairman his own bribe and he took it. When we got to the meeting, my chairman has assumed the particular contractor had to be on the list to be considered. He got terribly upset with me because the contractor’s name was not on the list. I tried to explain to him as best I could, my reasons for black-listing the contractor but the man didn’t want to hear a word from me. He summarily called for adjournment. And the next thing I saw was a query from him accusing me of dereliction of duty and recommending to Ahmed Joda to fire me.

Whao! My antennas went up. I was furious and livid knowing what must have happened behind my back. Ahmed Joda called me to his office asking me to defend myself and I knew he was not playing. I asked him to give me 24 hours and I went to town showing why I have blacklisted the particular contractor whose quotation was the highest because he knew he had the chairman in his pocket. I presented the photo copies of the money the contractor had offered me and I named the guy that brought the envelope. I told the guy he had to sign for me that he gave me the cash and he did. That was all I needed to prove my innocence. I taped my discussion with the contractor without his knowledge because I had a premonition I might have to defend myself. I provided all the evidence I needed. They were simply overwhelming for Ahmed Joda. I am glad the man is still alive and can testify to what I am saying.

When my response reached his  desk, he read my submission, summoned his Deputy Permanent Secretary, showed him my response and he dressed him down in my presence while asking him to write to me a special letter of apology and another letter of commendation on me to be copied to the Cabinet Office where the late Osemawe of Ondo, Oba  Fesatus Adedinsewo Adesanoye was then Permanent Secretary. It was my finest moment of my career in the Federal Service. That was how I got my promotion to Senior Assistant  Secretary in the Federal  Civil Service. That was how I became a close friend of Oba Adesanoye till he died. He was the Chairman when I established and launched in Ondo State in 1994, an Educational Foundation to immortalize the contributions of my late father, retired veteran of the Second World War, Sergeant Akintide Gbangba  of blessed memory.

I would never for the rest of my life forget Ahmed Joda from Girei in Adamawa State. The great man is retired now but he is one of the unsung heroes of the fight against Corruption in Nigeria. Rather than fire me, he had his Deputy Permanent Secretary humiliated and transferred to another Ministry because he told him in my presence he would have done the same thing to me had I been found guilty. That was then in Nigeria. What obtains today under President Jonathan is a different ball game.

I could not help but write this article eulogizing Governor Oshiomhole for setting a great example in the kind of leadership we all wish to see in Nigeria as we say good bye to 2013 and as we all hope that the American prediction of the break-up of Nigeria  in 2015 should not materialize, just like is currently happening in South Sudan where Corruption has become the “fons et origo” of the downfall of that country.
Need I say more?

I rest my case. Happy New Year till we see again in 2014. All the Best.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters

A Recent History Of Your Sagamu-Benin Road By Sonala Olumhense.


Columnist:

Sonala Olumhense

If you are a Nigerian, chances are you know someone who has spent an entire day, at least once, traveling the 140-mile SagamuBenin City road, or been killed trying to do so.

Sagamu-Benin, sometimes referred to herein as “The Road,” is the only direct link between the eastern and western parts of Nigeria, and between her political and economic capitals, Abuja and Lagos.

It is a thirsty road, guzzling the blood of innocent Nigerians.  In one accident, a friend of mine was able to find only her brother’s head, but no other part of him.  In a well-publicized crash a few years ago, a vehicle ran over tens of people who had been forced to lie on The Road by armed robbers while being robbed.

It is also a hungry road: almost every week, vast sums of money are “spent” on it by federal authorities who pretend not to know that federal authorities are “spending” vast sums of money on it.

On 23 September 2003, the Minister of Works, Adeseye Ogunlewe, announced that the government was losing an estimated N185 billion annually to bad roads, and had awarded 156 road contracts since 1999 at a cost of N302 billion, and describing the situation as “shameful.”

At different times, desperate governments of Ondo and Ogun States have intervened to rehabilitate damaged portions of The Road in their areas, only to come under the attack of federal officials.

Sagamu-Benin is part of the Lagos-Mombasa, as well as Algiers-Lagos sections of theTrans-Africa Highway, and of Nigeria’s East-West Road.   It is probably Nigeria’s most vital road.  That is why it is in many ways a good way to study and analyze Nigeria.

In the 1970s when it was built by Dumez, travelers needed only a comfortable three hours between Benin City and Lagos.  But that joy of easy travel lasted only a few years.  Collapsing sections yielded the phenomenon of full-time, year-round budgeting for endless repair.  Traveling back, in terms of hot air and hot funds, here is some of what we know:

On January 21, 2013, Minister of Works, Mike Onolememen, told a visiting Kogi State delegation led by Senator Smart Adeyemi that The Road, along with three others, would be completed before the end of the Goodluck Jonathan administration, using funds of the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P).

In April 2013, SURE-P was said to have invested N16.5 billion on The Road.  Vanguard newspaper said the agency had (also) budgeted N21.7 billion to cover the dualisation of the East-West road.

In December 2012 , Gabriel Amuchi, the Managing Director of FERMA, said that the “zero potholes” target set for the festive period on critical Federal Highways, naming one of them as the Sagamu-Benin Road.

In October 2012, Solel Boneh won a three-year $390 million contract to widen and pave the Sagamu-Benin road, and rebuild drainage and water channels.

In September 2012, the government awarded a three-year contract for the reconstruction of sections of The Road, worth over N65b.

In September 2011, during a courtesy visit to Edo State Governor Adams Oshiomhole, Minister Mike Onolememen explained that the real problem with the Benin-Ore part of The Road was the water table being very high, and that every construction methodology had been defeated because in the raining season the road would be washed away.   The governor expressed shock that neither contractors nor the Minister’s predecessors had identified and corrected this issue. The N16 billion reconstruction/asphalt overlay of the Benin-Ofosu section, by RCC, continued.

In August 2011, the Federal Government approved an additional funding of N106 billion for the East-West Road, to bring the total sum to N245 billion, up from N138 billion, Minister of Information Maku citing a failed portion of the Sagamu-Benin Road.

In July 2011, Mr. Onolememen announced that Nigeria had decided to concession the Sagamu-Benin Road to capable private investors, using a Public-Private Partnership model.

In December 2010, the House of Representatives Sub-Committee on FERMA asked the government to inject over N500billion as an intervention fund to rescue the country’s roads from collapse, adding that FERMA needed about N100billion annually.

In November 2009, the Federal Government awarded contracts worth N12. 2 billion to RCC and Borini Prono for repairs on the road.

In October 2009, President UmaruYar’Adua directed that unspent allocations to the Ministry of Works, be channeled into road rehabilitation and construction.

In September 2009, Minister Dora Akunyili announced government contracts worth N29.5billion, including an additional N16.67 billion for the reconstruction of The Road, raising the cost of reconstruction to N24.27billion.

In May 2009, N9.7 billion contract for rehabilitation of the Ofosu-Ore portion of The Road was awarded.

In April 2009, the government approved N376.4 billion for 30 road contracts nationwide, including two sections of Sagamu-Benin, part of 26 road projects worth N116.57 billion.

In August 2007, the new Minister of Transportation, Diezani Allison-Madueke, reportedly broke down when she visited and saw the deplorable condition of The Road. Soon after that, she disclosed that the Obasanjo government had spent over N450 billion on roads in its eight years.

About two weeks after her crying act on The Road, something of a reconstruction began.  A top Ministry official, John Ibe, told reporters the first phase of the contract, for N7.5 billion, had been awarded.

In Feb 2007, Solel Boneh International received a $52 million contract for renovating the “Lagos-Benin” expressway.

At the end of 2006, Solel Boneh won a contract to pave a road in Nigeria for $270 million; that road was unspecified.

On 21 December 2006, the government gave RCC a N7.5 billion contract for rehabilitation work on The Road.

In November 2006, President Obasanjo stated that N36 billion had been made available for the construction of the East-West Road, among others.

On October 16, 2006, Olubunmi Peters, the Managing Director of FERMA, announced the government had approved N6 billion for repairs on The Road.

In July 2006, the government said N438.8billion had been made available for three major highways, including the East-West.

In November 2005, the Senate, citing “the deteriorating state of our federal highways and the increase in the spate of road accidents,” specifically on the Lagos-Ibadan and Sagamu-Benin highways, asked its Committee on Works to investigate FERMA and the Ministry of Works.

“The Minister of Works ought to be invited because we can’t explain where all this money is going,” Senator Victor Oyofo said.  “The Benin-Ore road is [the] worst.”

In March 2004, Adeseye Ogunlewe, the new Minister, said the government had approved N15 billion for road maintenance.

In February 2004 , the government announced “Operation 500 Roads,” to rehabilitate a total of 26,400km of roads, including Benin-Sagamu; and in October, “Operation 1000 Roads” and 32,000 kilometres, at a cost of N5.8 billion.

Following a November 2002 request by the Ministry for a virement of N10 billion to enable it make payment for contracts already executed, the House of Representatives agreed to probe how N300 billion disbursed to the Ministry in three years was spent.  In a resolution, the House noted that in the 2002 Appropriation Act alone, the National Assembly made monthly appropriations of over N70 billion to the Ministry.

In September 2000, Minister Anenih said that the Federal Government had set aside N19 billion for the rehabilitation of roads in the South-West.

On 21 August, Information and National Orientation minister Jerry Gana announced a N1.7 billion contract for emergency repairs of the Sagamu-Benin Road to Piccolo-Brunelli Engineering Ltd.

In May 2002, the Ministry announced that the government had already spent over N42 billion nationwide on completed road projects.

In May 2000, at the end of the first year of the Olusegun Obasanjo presidency, the government announced that it had up till that point awarded contracts for 45 road and bridge projects valued at N65 billion.  I presume that somewhere in there was Sagamu-Benin.

There, in shorthand, is partly where Nigeria has been.

Happy New Year, Nigeria!

Source: SAHARA REPORTERS.

Bloody Clash Averted As OPC Inaugurates Itsekiri Chapter In Delta.


OPC leaders during the launch in Itsekiriland
By Saharareporters, New York

SaharaReporters has learned that what could have been a bloody clash between members of the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC), on the one hand, and Nigerian policemen and some hired thugs, on the other, was averted last Tuesday during the OPC’s inauguration of an Itsekiri chapter in Warri, Delta state.

The inauguration was scheduled to take place at the Atuwatse II Model Primary School in Warri, but the venue was cordoned off by stern-looking police officers who forced guests to run for cover. Several sources told SaharaReporters that the police were drafted to the scene on account of a petition by a prominent Itsekiri figure, Rita Lori-Ogbe, who warned that the event could foment chaos and unrest. In addition to police officers, witnesses said the venue was also besieged by rented political thugs who wrecked the canopies, tables and chairs arranged for the event.

The police and thugs prevented the OPC leader, Gani Adams, and several hundred members from reaching the venue of the inauguration. Mr. Adams had arrived in Warri to preside over the OPC’s national coordinating council meeting and inauguration of the group’s Itsekiri chapter. Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State was expected to be the special guest of honor at the event which was disrupted by a team of policemen from “A” Division in Warri. “Some people were under the impression that the meeting could to instigate youths of the state to engage in disorderly behavior and to promote militancy in the area,” one source said.

Our sources disclosed that the heightened tensions in Warri were brought under control when the organizers decided to relocate the inauguration event to the residence of J.O.S. Ayomike, the chairman of Itsekiri Leaders of Thought. The national coordinating council meeting of OPC held at PK Hotels.

Mr. Adams described his visit to Warri as a homecoming, adding that the Itsekiri people shared the same ancestral lineage as descendants of Oduduwa. He said the Itsekiri needed the presence of OPC since the body was created to serve all Oduduwa descendants.

Mr. Adams also eulogized the late Alfred Rewane, a notable Itsekiri leader and co-founder of National Democratic Coalition (NADECO), who played a significant role in the June 12 struggle. He added that the murder of Mr. Rewane created a huge vacuum in NADECO during the struggle against military despotism.

He explained that the OPC was created to cater for the needs of O’dua descendants in different parts of Nigeria as well as Benin Republic and the Caribbean. “We are not in Itsekiri (Warri) to cause problems, and I do not see anything bad in coming to Delta State,” he said. “OPC is a socio-cultural organization set up for the collective good of all Yoruba people.” He regretted that some highly placed persons had misconstrued the purpose of meeting which had been done before in Benin City as well as Port Harcourt.

“We founded the OPC to fight for the identities of all the Yoruba people all over the universe. There are about 46 million Yoruba in Nigeria and over 200 million all over the world. Itsekiri is part of the descendants of Oduduwa. Therefore, they need the support of the OPC. The inauguration of the OPC chapter was to forge closer ties between Itsekiri and Yoruba people.  The Itsekiri nation would be more powerful and formidable politically with the alliance it has cemented with the OPC,” said Mr. Adams.

He added that the Itsekiri people had much to gain from belonging to the OPC. “Our members in this community are more than 2,000. If we had marched them to the field, there would have been chaos. I have to thank the leadership and organization skill of the Itsekiri for the level of understanding,”

Speaking earlier, an Itsekiri figure, Gbubemi Abigor, lamented the misinformation spread about the event. “Our idea is to have contact with our brothers from the Southwest (OPC) and ensure that we can relate socially, economically, politically,” he said. “We deem it necessary that we should avoid anything that can dent this noble relationship we are trying to create,” he added. Another Itsekiri, Lucky Akaruese, celebrated the cementing of the bond between Itsekiri and Yoruba. He condemned the invasion of the earlier venue of the meeting by police officers and thugs. He said, “No government has the right to bar citizens from holding meetings, having peaceful assemblies, when there are international human rights laws that guarantee this kind of peaceful assembly. Hence, we want to let the world know that we cannot be intimidated, it is our right to assemble.”

Edo Court Judge Orders Police To Exhume Four Bodies In The Ute Police Murder Case.


 

David Ugolor of ANEEJ spearheaded the fight to get justice for the Ute 4
By Saharareporters, New York

A Coroner’s Court Judge ordered the Edo and Nigerian State Police on Monday to exhume the bodies of four persons for examination by medical experts to ascertain the cause of death.

The four men will killed by Nigerian Police officers in the Edo State Command in the Ute Community on the Benin by-pass in November.   The police argued the four men were robbers.

The story was reported by SaharaReporters on December 7th 2013

Counsel for the deceased, Benjamin Iluobe Esq who, told reporters it was a landmark judgement, “The order was a proper one because we are tired of the arrogant use of power by the Nigerian Police on citizens.  They killed the Ute 4 to make the public believe they were fighting crime.  This is bad for a democratic society, and a flagrant violation of the right to life and a right to a fair hearing.”

During the hearing, the Nigerian Police Prosecutor, Inspector Adah John requested more time for the police to prepare for the case.  The deceased counsel argued the police were served notices of summons but the human bodies were subject to decomposition, and that was the matter before the Judge.

The African Network for Environment and Economic Justice, Executive Director, Rev. David Ugolor told SaharaReporters, “We’ve been advocating for the end of extra-judicial killing with impunity by the Nigerian Police Force. It was confirmed in court the police didn’t even obtain the necessary documentation to bury the so-called suspects, yet they hurriedly buried them.”

“We urge Nigerians to join the struggle to sanitize the Nigerian Police; if this does not concern you today it will tomorrow when your household, friend or relation is affected.”

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