Monday, 3 July 2017

Tariff on imported vehicles: Osinbajo should fulfill APC's campaign promise

While addressing a town hall meeting of political stakeholders in Ondo State shortly before the 2015 general election, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, then Vice Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), assured Nigerians that General Muhammadu Buhari's government – if voted into office – would slash tariffs on imported vehicles.

Osinbajo made the promise in the face of a 350% hike in the Customs duties payable by Nigerians on imported new and fairly used vehicles by the PDP government.
"We do not agree that there should be high tariffs on imported cars whether new or old ones because Nigeria is not producing cars for now.

Monday, 19 June 2017

The avoidable mess at our airports

The motor park mentality, which is a recipe for chaos, has found its way into our airports. It has always been there but current trends reveal it is assuming a worrisome proportion. 

Travellers will readily attest to irritating solicitations by all sorts of characters canvassing patronage or gifts at the airport’s screening point, passengers’ waiting area and in the toilet. These undue solicitations happen at even the very best of our airport terminals. 

Monday, 12 June 2017

Executive Order: First things first

The zeal and energy with which Nigeria's Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, is working and tackling national issues should not come as a surprise to anyone. I've always been awed by how any one person could rise to the peak of his profession, his career and his religious calling. In academics, he rose to become a professor, which is the summit of scholarship; as a lawyer, he rose to the enviable rank of Senior Advocate of Nigeria and as a Christian, he pastors a big branch of the Redeemed Christian Church of God.

Osinbajo is a genius of our time. Just listening to him talk will leave even the most devious of his critics in admiration. He knows what to say at the right time. His words are always soothing and his steps ever so sure.

Monday, 5 June 2017

Electracy and the modern family

The world is not changing; I think it has changed substantially. The dynamics of family interactions and communication are not what they used to be. More than ever before, Thorstein Veblen’s theory of technological determinism is true holds true in today’s world.
Technological Determinism assumes that people have little or no free will in choosing their means of communication. It suggests that people will naturally embrace the technology imposed on them by the society or one which the society has settled for. The theory explains that media technology shapes how people think, feel and act. It identified the media and technology as the prime movers of social change. If you doubt Veblen, compare how we communicate today with how it used to be two decades ago.

Monday, 8 May 2017

Even Mungo Park will weep for these perambulators

When President Umaru Yar'Adua flagged off dredging of the lower section of River Niger on September 10, 2009, the euphoria that greeted the ceremony resulted from the belief that the project would open up commercial activities on Nigeria's section of West Africa's principal waterway.

Yar'Adua's government expended a princely N43 billion to dredge the river ostensibly to open it up for socio-economic activities. The government also promised to build seven ports along the banks of the river. The ports were to be located in Agenebode, Idah, Yenagoa, Baro, Lokoja, Aguta and Ogbabe. Onitsha River Port was also to be rehabilitated and expanded to accommodate a river training institute. The River Niger dredging was to cover a distance of 572 Kilometres from Warri, in Delta State, to Baro in Niger State to ensure all year round usage.

Monday, 24 April 2017

The Tin Can Island netherworld

I visited the Tin Can Island Port Complex on Wednesday after a long while. I must say that the facilities around the port have continued to disintegrate in a way that should get the authorities worried. The entire stretch of road leading into the port is a complete mess. It is dirty, stinking and looks like anything but a port access road. The front of both first and second gates of Nigeria’s second largest seaport is not any better than a slum with heaps of refuse occupying prominent and sizable portions.

Who wants Bala Usman out?

I observe that in the maritime sector, many have abandoned their duties for rumour peddling. In some quarters, professionalism has been thrown to the dogs while the search for self-gratification and the proverbial stomach infrastructure has been elevated to the level of lunacy.