Monday, 25 July 2016

Dealing with the misguided avengers

When in 2011 the administration of then President Goodluck Jonathan awarded a maritime security contract to Global West Vessel Specialist Nigeria Limited (GWVSNL), a company controlled by an ex-militant, Government Ekpemukpolo a.k.a Tompolo, many of us raised eyebrows to the danger of such arrangement.
My argument at the time was that it was insane to have conceded our waterways security to a former warlord.
We all remember how Tompolo and his cohorts under the auspices of the Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta (MEND) held this country to ransom for several years before a truce was reached with the administration of late President Umar Yar’Adua. Granted that by embracing Yar’Adua’s amnesty programme in 2007/2008, the militants got blanket pardon for bearing arms against the Nigerian nation, it was nonetheless foolhardy to hand over the nation’s security system to any of them but that was exactly what Jonathan did when he became President.

Monday, 18 July 2016

Tracking APC's campaign promise on imported vehicles

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 by the PDP government in the Customs duties payable by Nigerians on imported new and fairly used vehicles.
“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, 11 July 2016

Citizen Emmanuel Chidi Namdi

In case you missed the story last week, Emmanuel Chidi Namdi was a Nigerian killed during a row that broke out in a small Italian town called Fermo.
Fermo, a town of about 37,000 people, is located on a hill at the edge of the Mediterranean Sea. It is a natural destination for many African migrants who manage to survive the perils of travelling through the Mediterranean Sea.
Emmanuel’s killing in the Italian west coast town is believed to be racially motivated; more of a hate crime.
The deceased reportedly fled Nigeria with his partner named Chinyery, 24, after their families came under attack from Boko Haram terrorists. The couple’s only child died as they made their way across the Mediterranean Sea late 2015.

Monday, 4 July 2016

Ojo Maduekwe: Exit of a military apologist

In my days as an active reporter, Ojo Maduekwe was one of those I always loved to interview. He spoke good English, was a newsmaker and he regularly courted controversy. One could be sure to always get a good quote from him.
Maduekwe was Obasanjo’s second Minister of Transport. He was first appointed Minister of Culture in 1999 while Kema Chikwe got the Transport portfolio but when the President reshuffled his cabinet in 2001, he moved Chikwe to Aviation and Maduekwe to Transport. He was dubbed Minister of Ports because he frequently visited the ports, especially the ones in Lagos. Those were the days when Nigerian Ports Authority was responsible for cargo handling operations. The port was a mess. Vessel queues, congestion, theft, strikes and the rest were regular features of our ports.