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Ekiti may sanction husbands who abandon wives

Posted By Theresa Ugwuanyi on Wednesday, 12 February 2014 | 9:04 am

It may soon become a crime punishable by law for any husband in Ekiti to abandon his wife after childbirth.
Mrs Bisi Fayemi, the wife of the state governor, Kayode Fayemi, gave the indication in Ado-Ekiti on Tuesday while on a sympathy visit to one Mrs Bosede Omole.
Omole's husband had run away after she was delivered of triplets at the Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital.
Fayemi lamented the uncaring manner in which mothers were usually abandoned by their husbands soon after delivery of new babies, especially multiple births.
"Such behaviour is not only callous and wicked, but a betrayal of the marriage trust between couples," she said.
Mrs Fayemi promised to sponsor a bill at the state House of Assembly to prevent future occurrence of such behaviour, under her pet project called Ekiti Development Foundation (EDF).
She said the law, while in place, would make it impossible for husbands whose wives were carrying pregnancies to either run away or abandon their responsibilities.
Fayemi assured the mother of the triplets that EDF would take up the children's care, as well as empower her financially to set up a business.
Omole, who could not control her emotion when government plans for her were rolled out, thanked Fayemi profusely.
She said she found it difficult to believe that God could provide her succour through the governor's wife after her husband's disappearance.

Muslim leader charged over wedding of 12-year-old Australian

A Muslim leader was charged to court on Tuesday after he presided over the illegal marriage of a 12-year-old girl to a 26-year-old student visiting Australia from Lebanon.
The sham marriage was performed at the home of her father, who converted to Islam 18 years ago.
The 35-year-old religious leader was charged with conducting an unauthorised marriage.
The Lebanese student was charged last week with 25 counts of sexual intercourse with a child.
New South Wales state premier, Barry O'Farrell, said he was delighted charges had been filed, saying the outcome sent a strong message, whether to religious celebrants or civil celebrants.
The father told Sydney's Daily Telegraph that under his interpretation of the Koran the only way the pair could be in the same room unchaperoned was if they were married.
He also said that he did not want to stop ``her happiness".
The illegal marriage came to light when the 26-year-old tried to enroll the girl at a school near where they were living together in Sydney.

Valentine's Day: how famous couples met

It's the most romantic day of the year, but how did these couples get together?

It's the most romantic day of the year, but how did these couples get together?
These cute couples will celebrate Valentine's Day in each other's arms, but how did they actually meet?
Kate Middleton first fell for Prince William while the two were studying at St Andrews University in Scotland in 2003. They split briefly four years later, before marrying in a fairytale ceremony in 2011.
Find out how other famous couples got together...

Mariah Carey & Nick Cannon

Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon fell in love after she hired him to star in her music video for 'Bye Bye' in 2008. They married just two months later and became parents to twins Monroe and Moroccan in 2011.

David & Victoria Beckham

David Beckham first saw his future wife Victoria performing with the Spice Girls on TV, and then pursued her after they finally met face-to-face at a charity football match in 1997. The couple married two years later and have four children.

Shakira & Gerard Pique

Shakira met her footballer boyfriend Gerard Pique in 2010 when he appeared in the music video for her World Cup song, 'Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)'. Their son, Milan, was born in 2013.

Beyoncé & Jay Z

Music's most famous couple Beyonce and Jay Z met when the singer was just 18. They started dating a year later after collaborating on 'Bonnie & Clyde' for his seventh album and her single 'Crazy in Love'.

Gwen Stefani & Gavin Rossdale

Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale met when Gwen's band, No Doubt, toured as the opening act for Gavin's group, Bush, back in 1995. He threw a party as an excuse to hang out with her, and they had their first kiss that night.

Will Smith & Jada Pinkett-Smith

Jada Pinkett first met Will Smith when she was 19 and auditioning for a part on his TV show, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. They kept in touch and began dating soon after.

Kanye West & Kim Kardashian

Kanye West and Kim Kardashian met through mutual friends in 2004 when she was married to her first husband, Damon Thomas. Romance finally blossomed in 2012 when they decided to take their friendship to the next level.

Tom Hanks & Rita Wilson

Tom Hanks first met his actress wife Rita Wilson on the set of sitcom Bosom Buddies in 1981. The pair reunited while working on Volunteers in 1985 and the rest is history

Buckle up or quit, CAN charges President

Posted By Theresa Ugwuanyi on Wednesday, 1 January 2014 | 6:49 am

Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, has urged President Goodluck Jonathan to buckle up if he is desirous of averting danger in the New Year, else he should quit.
Chairman of the South- East chapter of CAN and the Anglican Bishop of Enugu, Rt. Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Chukwuma gave Jonathan the charge yesterday in a New Year message.
Chukwuma said the President has to demonstrate stronger political will in tackling the myriad challenges facing his administration, especially the alleged cases of corruption in the polity, unemployment and epileptic power supply.
The cleric stated if Jonathan fails to leave up to the billing, he should prepare to exit the presidency in 2015.
Bishop Chukwuma also predicted doom for the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, noting that except the likes of Chief Tony Anenih and Alhaji Bamanga Tukur retired from active politics, the party would face greater calamity in 2014.
He expressed dismay that the duo of Anenih and Tukur as well as other elders above 75 years had refused to heed his advice to quit active politics, noting that the present crisis facing the party would be child’s play to what would happen to the party in the coming year.
“If those elders I warned before to retire don’t retire, then the party will be in trouble in 2014. At 80, Anenih should retire; Bamangar Tukur should retire.
These people should now serve as elders and advisers; if they do that, then PDP will get its dignity back but while you still have these analogue leaders and elders in the party and the polity, forget about PDP in 2015,” he said.
He urged President Jonathan to be focused in the New Year to avoid attracting the wrath of the greater percentage of Nigerians, noting that since the buck stops at his table, all blame of every failing in his government would be completely laid at his doorstep.
Chukwuma said: “The letter between Obasanjo and Jonathan is a boomerang of Obasanjo’s selfish act in enthroning a president of his choice for Nigeria.
There are many better leaders out there than Jonathan who would have been elected but Obasanjo selfishly, because of the people he think he could control, maneuvered Jonathan into leadership by first putting sick Yar’Adua. Because, he couldn’t control him anymore, he started writing letters.
“That is why Jonathan must be focused in 2014 in order to prove himself for 2015.
Failure to do that and he gets distracted and doesn’t prove himself, and Nigeria continues with the way it is today with corruption, no light, poverty, unemployment, I beg him, he should just step aside, let us seek for a better leader in 2015.
He has tried in the last six years, and rather than the thing getting him into trouble, and cause him more tension, I think Nigeria is greater than everybody, all of them should give way and give room for new spirit to rule Nigeria from 2015,” he said.
While urging politicians to eschew violence and bitterness as the nation prepares for a major election in order not to mar the 2015 elections, Bishop Chukwuma called on Nigerians to be more faithful to God, pursue peace and righteousness.
“We should all work dedicatedly for the unity and peace of this nation as we celebrate our century. Any attempt by anybody to fuel violence or confusion will call for the review of our amalgamation,” he said.
He therefore commended Nigerians and security operatives for the peaceful atmosphere that prevailed throughout the Christmas and New Year celebrations and prayed that the year 2014 will bring more blessings and progress for the country.
Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress, APC, has assured Nigerians that the party is ready, willing and determined to make all the necessary sacrifices to reverse the prevailing gloomy situation in the country and bring about the much-needed change for the better in the interest of the long-suffering citizens.
In a New Year message signed by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, in Lagos yesterday, the APC told Nigerians to go into the New Year with “an unyielding commitment to be part of ongoing efforts to set the country on the path of growth and development, rather than get into a state of funk on the basis of the cumulative mis-governance of the past 14 years by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP-led Federal Government.
Mohammed said: “While wishing all Nigerians a great 2014, we hereby solicit their unalloyed support for our efforts to reshape the country’s political landscape, shake off the heavy yoke imposed on them by their selfish, selfserving and clueless leaders and make the country a source of pride not only to its citizens but to all black people in the world.
“As we wrote in the preamble to our manifesto, democracy, to be stable and meaningful, must be anchored on the principle that government derives its powers from the consent of the governed.
This means that governments are instituted on the basis of free, fair and credible elections, and are maintained through responsiveness to public opinion. “In addition, the exercise of political authority is rooted in the rule of law.
The APC believes in the doctrine of social contract between the leaders and the led; which means that the public office holder is a trustee of the people and that power must be used in the interest of the people rather than in the interest of the public office holder.
“We ask all those who are yearning for genuine change to seize the moment and embrace the engine of change, which the APC represents! Our compatriots who have lost faith in our dear country because of inefficient and corrupt leadership can count on us, because we represent committed, transparent and focused leadership.”
APC isnsited that year 2013 was among the worst, if not the worst, for the citizenry, “who have been pauperised and dehumanized” by a government that keeps touting favourable economic statistics in the face of an unprecedented fall in the standard of living of its people.
Mohammed said: “They say President Goodluck Jonathan’s achievement in 2013 is unprecedented, yet Nigerians celebrated the Christmas and New Year holidays in unprecedented pitch darkness and an unprecedented number of our youths are unemployed; they say they are winning the war against corruption, yet key government officials, including the so-called Coordinating Minister of the Economy, do not even know how much Nigeria earns from crude oil and gas sales, and what happened to $12 billion earned from domestic crude lifting; They are so eager to cling to any straw of “achievement” that they are celebrating the revival of the locomotive engine in the 21st century!

National Mirror

Again, aviation minister, Oduah, to splash N750m on vehicles

. Re-imposes N150m monthly ‘tax’ on NCAA
The Minister of Aviation, Stella Oduah, will splash at least another N750 milllion on vehichles this year, even as the N225 million bulletproof car scandal is yet to die down.
This is just as the aviation ministry resumed the collection of N150m monthly from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA.
According to the minsitry’s 2014 budget proposals obtained by National Mirror, Oduah intends to spend N250m on eight operational vehicles for the Accident Investigation Bureau, AIB, and another N500m to buy some trucks for the agency. Also, the budget proposal indicated that the ministry would also spend N137m on trips in 2014.
The ministry also intends to spend another N100m on consultants for the controversial Aerotropolis, the city-airports, she claims Nigeria desperately requires in order to be rated high in the comity of nations.
She has also proposed to spend another N20m on other types of consultancies and another N425m on consultancy of institutional reforms, legal services and commercial.
General consulting and professional services for the Nigerian Meteorological Agency, NIMET, would gulp over N8m.
On airport internal access roads, Oduah would spend about N200m and another N100m on Bilateral Air Services Agreements, BASAs while the sum of N100m would be spent on security gateways on express roads.
The budget proposal also shows that Oduah would spend N100m on airport toll gates and another N100m to paint and repair runways.
The Ministry of Aviation will also spend over N13m on refreshment and meals and another N9m on publicity. In all, the Ministry will spend N26bn on capital projects and over N6bn on recurrent expenditure for a total budget N32.3bn.
Meanwhile, a source close to the ministry confided in our correspondent yesterday that the monthly collection from the aviation industry agancies is raising some dust.
The collections, which previously under the heading, Safety and Security, was stopped in the wake of the N255m bulletproof cars scandal but has now been reintroduced under another heading, Publicity.
The monthly collection from NCAA was suspended in October and November following the brouhaha generated by the cars scandal.
Before then, other agencies like the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, FAAN, and the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, were paying N300m and N160m respectively to a dedicated account provided by the ministry.
With the reintroduction of the N150m collection from NCAA, the agency is now back to the era where it was cash-strapped and unable to meet obligations including staff training.
As at now, payments of at least two local and foreign outstanding claims are yet to be paid by the agency due to paucity of funds. Apart from this, Oduah has also allegedly carried out some minor shakeups in the agency especially among the top hierarchy.
For instance, the minister relieved the former Technical Assistant to the Immediate Past Director- General, NCAA, Dr. Harold Demuren, of his duty.
The Regional Manager (Abuja) for NCAA, A. Adeyemi was transferred to Calabar while U. Ugene from Port Harcourt is to take over from him with immediate effect. Ironically, all these instructions from the minister, according to the ministry source, are being carried out in the absence of the Director-General, Capt. Fola Akinkuotu, who is holidaying in the United States.
Apart from this, Oduah has also purportedly directed the Administrative Department of NCAA to immediately submit the staff list to her with their telephone numbers and e-mail addresses even in the absence of Akinkuotu. The purpose for this directive is not yet known.

National mirror


For four years running the Nigerian equity market has been on recovery process after the global meltdown that hit the world financial sector.
The equity market recorded an impressive growth in 2013 as the market capitalisation of stocks listed on the exchange added N4.252 trillion last year.
The market which opened the year with N8.974 trillion closed it with N13.226 trillion which is the highest so far in the history of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) representing 47.4 per cent growth.
Consequently, the All Share Index which is the barometer of the market movement gained 13,230.38 basis point or 47.2 per cent from 28,078.81 points it opened the year to close at 41,329.19 points.
All the NSE indices gain during the year as NSE 30 index appreciated by 42.7 per cent to close the year at 1,907.17, NSE Consumer Goods Index by 31.1 per cent to close at 1,100.25, NSE Banking Index by 31.9 per cent to close at 447.84, NSE Insurance Index by 29 per cent to close at 152.87. Also, the NSE Oil/Gas Index increased by 122.3 per cent to close at 339.88, NSE Lotus Islamic Index by 61.8 per cent to close at 2,863.12.
However, the analysts believe that the recovery will continue into 2014.
Speaking with Daily Trust, Managing Director of APT Securities and Funds Limited, Malam Kasimu Kurfi said the capital market has done very well in the year 2013.
He said it has consolidated the achievement for the year 2012 by confirming the success of the capital market reform initiated by the current management of the exchange.
“It has been two consecutive years of success. With over 40 per cent All Share Index gain it is a head of other economic indices.”
He believe that the success stories will reassure foreign investors about the market and may stay longer than before.
Another stockbroker, Mr. Tunde Oyediran said capital market activities for 2013 can be said to be impressive. as, he noted, some companies declared good dividend payout.
He believed that the recovery will continue in 2014.

Via Dailytrust

Jonathan, OBJ’s feud will define 2014

The public debate attended by publicised correspondences between President Goodkuck Jonathan and former President Olusegun Obasanjo is said to be a major factor that would define the dimension of politics of the New Year, the eve of the 2015 general elections.
Already, the feud which is supposed to be schism between two chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has polarised the entire political landscape.
Even the opposition All Peoples Congress (APC) has come out publicly to align with Obasanjo on issues he raised in his letter on the economy, national security and phenomenal corruption in public institutions under the Jonathan administration.
Also, state governors are divided over the exchange between the two leaders.
A PDP chieftain, Dr. Alex Obiogbolu revealed that some governors thought it wise to be mute and refrain from coming in-between the two leaders.
The Peoples Democratic Party Governors’ Forum Chairman, Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State, however, said: “The governors did not substantially address the merit or otherwise of the issues that former President Obasanjo raised in his letter.”
But many politicians insisted that the feud or the resolution of it would affect political alignments in the PDP and in the polity at large in the coming months, especially as events build up towards the party’s national convention at the Eagles Square in December 2014.
Specifically, there are politicians who believe that Jonathan and Obasanjo would eventually find a common ground. These politicians also believed  that it is the will of the Nigerian people and not the two leaders nuances that would determine the shape of political events in 2014.
For Prophet Francis Ekpenkhio, the General Overseer of the Worldwide International Miracle Centre, the cold war between Obasanjo and Jonathan, would lead to a full scale political crisis in the New Year, if necessary steps were not taken to reconcile the two leaders.
The Lagos-based cleric made the declaration in a New Year message yesterday, which was personally signed by him.
The cleric, in the message entitled “2014: A year of judgement for sinners and bad leaders worldwide,” said God was unhappy and that the situation could degenerate into bloody crisis if not handled with caution.
He said the will of God for Nigeria in 2014 was for the country to experience economic growth so that the citizenry would be salvaged from the shackles of poverty and joblessness.
“Nigeria leaders should seek God’s guidance now.  They should return to God with all their hearts and make a fresh resolution to do His will by remembering the poor and the needy in their actions.
“Nigerian past and present leaders should be aware of God’s wrath and judgment over them if they fail to concentrate on improving the standard of living for the citizenry,” he said.
He specifically asked President Jonathan to be extra cautious between February and May.
But there have been calls by eminent Nigerians and organisations, including the Arewa Consultative Forum(ACF) that President Jonathan should address the issues in Obasanjo’s letter.
However, there are already moves to reconcile Jonathan and Obasanjo is in the interest of the PDP. Retired Navy Captain Tunji Shelle, the State Chairman of the party in Lagos State, said: “I have always avoided commenting on the letters exchanged by Obasanjo and Jonathan because of the sensation it has generated. All I can say is that it will be good for the electoral fortunes of the party for both statesmen mend fences and work together.”

My dailynewswatch

Stop overheating polity, Mark tells politicians

Against the backdrop of the already charged political atmosphere in Nigeria ahead of the 2015 general elections mostly characterised by toxic letters and verbal missiles from one politician to the other within and across party divides, the President of the Senate, David Mark has counselled all politicians on the turf to reduce the heat just as he saluted Nigerians for their perseverance and resilience of keeping the nation one over the years in spite of the daunting challenges.
Mark made the call in a goodwill message to Nigerians on New Year and centenary celebrations.
The Senate President’s message of warning to politicians came on a day the Anglican Bishop of Enugu, Rt. Rev. Emmanuel Chukwuma, predicted doom for the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2014, if the likes of Chief Tony Anenih and Dr. Bamanga Tukur do not retire from active politics.
Anenih is the Chairman, Board of Trustees (BoT) of the PDP, while Tukur is the National Chairman of the party.
Bishop Chukwuma, who is also the Chairman, South East chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), also urged President Goodluck Jonathan to buckle up and demonstrate stronger political will in tackling the myriads of challenges facing the country or fail in his second term bid in 2015.
The clergyman outlined the challenges to include incidence of corruption in the polity, unemployment and epileptic power supply.
According to Mark, who is himself a PDP chieftain, the challenges have to be tackled by the leaders and laity alike.
He said Nigerians and in particular politicians across the party divides must at this moment in the nation’s history, “remember where we are coming from as far as democracy is concerned and how and why we got it right in May 1999, the journey of which he said must not be derailed regardless of political aspiration of anybody or group of people in the country.
“The situations on ground in the country presently calls for restraint from all stakeholders and in particular, politicians who must guard against overheating the  already charged polity through their actions, inactions as well as utterances because  no matter the level of anger in a man’s mind, he should respect the rules of the game and rights of another.
“For me, I crave for a country where every citizen is a stakeholder, where there is justice, peace, equal opportunities and where no one is oppressed or marginalised. After all, God did not make mistake in keeping us together”, he said.
Mark who reminded Nigerians of the nation’s political history in the message added that “since we got it right in 1999, we must not in any way do anything that would take the nation back to the dark days again.”
On the New Year and centenary celebrations today, he saluted Nigerians for their perseverance, resilience and total commitment to the ideals of nationhood in spite of the daunting challenges facing the nation today.
He praised the indomitable spirit of the citizens and urged them to continue to work assiduously for the peace and unity of our country, noting that Nigeria remains one of the best nations in the world.
“I do not know of any other country that is so blessed with human and natural resources. All we need do, therefore, is to honestly harness these resources for the good of all,” he added.
Mark stressed further in the message that the security, socio-political and economic challenges currently facing the nation are not insurmountable saying other developed nations of the world at various times passed through such difficulties as well.
According to him, “The only difference is that the people themselves resolved to identify the problem and proffered a common solution. This is what we need in our own case, to reason together like one people and to solve our problems like one people.”
In his own New Year message, Chukwuma expressed dismay that the duo of Anenih and Tukur as well as other elders above 75 years had refused to heed his advice to quit active politics, noting that the present crisis facing the party would be a child’s play to what would happen to the party in the coming year.
“If those elders I warned before to retire don’t retire, then the party will be in trouble in 2014. At 80, Anenih should retire; Bamanga Tukur should retire. These people should now serve as elders and advisers. If they do that, then PDP will get its dignity back, but while you still have these analogue leaders and elders in the party and the polity, forget about PDP in 2015,” he said.
He urged President Jonathan to be focused in the coming year to avoid attracting the wrath of the greater percentage of Nigerians, saying since the bulk stops at his table, all blames for every failing in government would be laid at his doorstep.
“The letter between Obasanjo and Jonathan is a boomerang of Obasanjo’s selfish act in enthroning a president of his choice for Nigeria. There are many better leaders out there than Jonathan who would have been elected, but Obasanjo selfishly, because he thought he could control him manoeuved Jonathan into leadership by first putting sick (Umar Musa) Yar’ Adua there. Because he couldn’t control him anymore, he started writing letters.
“That is why Jonathan must be focused in 2014 in order to prove himself for 2015. Failure to do that and if he gets distracted and wouldn’t prove himself, and Nigeria continues with the way it is today with corruption, no light, poverty, unemployment, I beg him, he should just step aside. Let us seek for a better leader in 2015,” he said.

My dailynewswatch

Iyabo’s letter to OBJ

“It brings me no joy to have to write this but since you started this trend of open letters I thought I would follow suit since you don’t listen to anyone anyway. The only way to reach you may be to make the public aware of some things. As a child well brought up by my long-suffering mother in Yoruba tradition, I have been reluctant to tell the truth about you but as it seems you still continue to delude yourself about the kind of person you are and I think for posterity’s sake it is time to set the records straight.
“I will return to the issue of my long-suffering mother later in this letter.
“Like most Nigerians, I believe there are very enormous issues currently plaguing the country but I was surely surprised that you will be the one to publish such a treatise. I remember clearly as if it was yesterday the day I came over to Abuja from Abeokuta when I was Commissioner of Health in OgunState, specifically to ask you not to continue to pursue the third term issue.
“I had tried to bring it up when your sycophantic aides were present and they brushed my comments aside and as usual you listened to their self-serving counsel. For you to accuse someone else of what you so obviously practiced yourself tells of your narcissistic megalomaniac personality.
 Everyone around for even a few minutes knows that the only thing you respond to is praise and worship of you. People have learnt how to manipulate you by giving you what you crave. The only ones that can’t and will not stroke your ego are family members who you universally treat like shit (sic) apart from the few who have learned to manipulate you like others.
“Before I continue, Nigerians are people who see conspiracy and self-service in everything because I think they believe everyone is like them. This letter is not in support of President Jonathan or APC or any other group or person, but an outpouring from my soul to God. I don’t blame you for the many atrocities you have been able to get away with, Nigerians were your enablers every step of the way. People ultimately get leaders that reflect them.
“Getting back to the story, I made sure your aides were not around and brought up the issue, trying to deliver the presentation of the issue as I had practiced it in my head. I started with the fact that we copied the US constitution which has term limits of two terms for a President. As is your usual manner, you didn’t allow me to finish my thought process and listen to my point of view. Once I broached the subject you sat up and said that the US had no term limits in the past but that it had been introduced in the 1940s after the death of President Roosevelt, which is true.
I wanted to say to you: when you copy something you also copy the modifications based on the learning from the original; only a fool starts from scratch and does not base his decisions on the learning of others. In science, we use the modifications found by others long ago to the most recent, as the basis of new findings; not going back to discover and learn what others have learnt. Human knowledge and development and civilization will not have progressed if each new generation and society did not build on the knowledge of others before them.
The American constitution itself is based on several theories and philosophies of governance available in the 18th century. Democracy itself is a governance method started by the ancient Greeks. America’s founding fathers used it with modifications based on what hadn’t worked well for the ancient Greeks and on new theories since then.
“As usual in our conversations, I kept quiet because I know you well.  You weren’t going to change your mind based on my intervention as you had already made up your mind on the persuasion of the minions working for you who were ripping the country blind. When I spoke to you, your outward attitude to the people of the country was that you were not interested in the third term and that it was others pushing it. Your statement to me that day proved to me that you were the brain behind the third term debacle. It is therefore outrageous that you accuse the current President of a similar two-facedness that you yourself used against the people of the country.
“I was on a plane trip between Abuja and Lagos around the time of the third term issue and I sat next to one of your sycophants on the plane.  He told me: “Only Obasanjo can rule Nigeria”.  I replied: “God has not created a country where only one person can rule. If only one person can rule Nigeria then the whole Nigeria project is not a viable one, as it will be a non-sustainable project”
“I don’t know how you came about Yar’Adua as the candidate for your party as it was not my priority or job. Unlike you, I focus on the issues I have been given responsibility over and not on the jobs of others. It was the day of the PDP Presidential Campaign in Abeokuta during the state-by-state tour of 2007 that Yar’Adua got sick and had to be flown abroad. The MKO Abiola Stadium was already filled with people by 9am when I drove by (and) we had told people based on the campaign schedule that the rally would start at noon.
At 11 am I headed for the stadium on foot; it was a short walk as there were so many cars already parked in and out. As I walked on with two other people, we saw crowds of people leaving the stadium. I recognized some of them as politicians and I asked them why people were leaving. They said  the Presidential candidate had died. I was alarmed and shocked. I walked back home and received a call from a friend in Lagos who said the same and added that he had died in the plane carrying him abroad for treatment and that the plane was on its way to Katsina to bury him.
I called you, and told you the information and that the stadium was already half-empty. You told me to go to the stadium and tell the people on the podium to announce that the Presidential candidate had taken ill that morning but the rest of the team, including you and the Vice-Presidential candidate would arrive shortly.  I did as I was told, but even the people on the podium at first didn’t make the announcement because they thought it was true that Yar’Adua had died. I had to take the microphone and make the announcement myself. It did little good. People kept trooping out of the stadium. Your team didn’t arrive until 4pm and by this time we had just a sprinkling of people left.
That evening after the disaster of a rally, you said you had insisted that the Presidential candidate fly to Germany for a check-up although you said he only had a cold. I asked why would anyone fly to Germany to treat a cold?  And you said “I would rather die than have the man die at this time.”  I thought of this profound statement as things later unfolded against me.  Then I thought it a stupid statement but as usual I kept quiet, little did I know how your machinations for a person would be used against me.  When Yar’Adua eventually died, you stayed alive, I would have expected you to jump into his grave.
I left Nigeria in 1989 right after youth service to study in the US and I visited in 1994 for a week and didn’t visit again until your inauguration in 1999. In between, you had been arrested by Abacha and jailed. We, your children, had no one who stood with us. Stella famously went around collecting money on your behalf but we had no one.  We survived. I was the only one of the children working then as a post-doctoral fellow when I got the call from a friend informing me of your arrest.
A week before your arrest, you had called me from Denmark and I had told you that you should be careful that the government was very offended by some of your statements and actions and may be planning to arrest or kill you as was occurring to many at the time.  The source of my information was my mother who, agitated, had called me, saying I should warn you as this was the rumour in the country. As usual you brushed aside my comments, shouting on the phone that they cannot try anything and you will do and say as you please.  The consequence of your bravado is history.
We, your family, have borne the brunt of your direct cruelty and also suffered the consequences of your stupidity but got none of the benefits of your successes. Of course, anyone around you knows how little respect you have for your children.
You think our existence on earth is about you. By the way, how many are we? 19, 20, 21? Do you even know?  In the last five years, how many of these children have you spoken to? How many grandchildren do you have and when did you last see each of them? As President you would listen to advice of people that never finished high school who would say anything to keep having access to you so as to make money over your children who loved you and genuinely wished you well.
“At your first inauguration in 1999, I and my brothers and sisters told you we were coming from the US. As is usual with you, you made no arrangements for our trip, instead our mom organized to meet each of us and provided accommodation. At the actual swearing-in at Eagle Square, the others decided to watch it on TV. Instead I went to the square and I was pushed and tossed by the crowd.
I managed to get in front of the crowd where I waved and shouted at you as you and General Abdulsalam Abubakar  walked past to go back to the VIP seating area. I saw you mouth ‘my daughter’ to General Abdullahi who was the one who pulled me out of the crowd and gave me a seat. As I looked around I saw Stella and Stella’s family prominently seated but none of your children.  I am sure General Abdullahi would remember this incident and I am eternally grateful to him.
Getting back to my mother, I still remember your beating her up continually when we were kids. What kids can forget that kind of violence against their mother?  Your maltreatment of women is legendary.  Many of your women have come out to denounce you in public but since your madness is also part of the madness of the society, it is the women that are usually ignored and mistreated. Of course, you are the great pretender, making people believe you have a good family life and a good relationship with your children but once in a while your pretence gets cracked.
When Gbenga gave a ride to help someone he didn’t know but saw was in need and the person betrayed his trust by tapping his candid response on the issues going on between you and your then vice-president, Atiku Abubakar, you had your aides go on air and denounce the boy before you even spoke to him to find out what happened.  What kind of father does that? Your atrocities to some of my other siblings I will let them tell in their own due time or never if they choose.
Some of the details of our life are public but the people choose to ignore it and pretended we enjoyed some largesse when you were President.
This punishing the innocent is part of Nigeria’s continuing sins against God. While you were military head of state and lived in Dodan Barracks, we stayed either with our mum in the two-bedroom apartment provided for her by General Murtala Mohammed or with your relatives, Bose, Yemisi and your sisters’ kids in the Boys Quarters of Dodan Barracks. At QueensCollege, I remember being too ashamed to tell my wealthy classmates from Queen’s College, Lagos we lived in the two room Boys Quarters or in the two room flat on Lawrence Street.
No, we did not have privileged upbringing but our mother emphasized education and that has been our salvation.  Of my mother’s 6 children 4 have PhDs.  Of the two without PhD, one has a Master’s and the other is an engineer.  They are no slouches.  Education provided a way to make our way in the world.
You are one of those petty people who think the progress and success of another takes from you.  You try to overshadow everyone around you, before you and after you.  You are the prototypical “Mr. Know it all”.  You’ve never said “I don’t know” on any topic, ever.  Of course this means you surround yourself with idiots who will agree with you on anything and need you for financial gain and you need them for your insatiable ego.  This your attitude is a reflection of the country. It is not certain which came first, your attitude seeping into the country’s psyche or the country accepting your irresponsible behavior for so long.
Like you and your minions, it’s a symbiotic relationship. Nigeria has descended into a hellish reality where smart, capable people to “survive” and have their daily bread prostrate to imbeciles.  Everybody trying to pull everybody else down with greed and selfishness — the only traits that gets you anywhere. Money must be had and money and power is king. Even the supposed down-trodden agree with this.
Nigeria accused me of fraud with the Ministry of Health.  As you yourself know, both in Abeokuta and Abuja I lived in your houses as a Senator. In Lagos, I stayed in my mum’s bungalow which she succeeded in getting from you when you abandoned her with six children to live in Abeokuta with Stella.
I borrowed against my four-year Senate salary to build the only house I have anywhere in the world in Lagos. I rent out the house for income.  I don’t have much in terms of money but I am extremely happy. I tried to contribute my part to the development of my country but the country decided it didn’t need me.  Like many educated Nigerians my age, there are countries that actually value people doing their best to contribute to society and as many of them have scattered all over the world so have many of your children.
I can speak for myself and many of them; what they are running away from is that they can’t even contribute effectively at the same time as they have to deal with constant threats to their lives by miscreants the society failed to educate; deal with lack of electricity and air pollution resulting from each household generating its own electricity, and the lack of quality healthcare or education and a total lack of sense of responsibility of almost every person you meet.  Your contribution to this scenario cannot be overestimated.
You and your cronies mentioned in your letter have left the country worse than you met it at your births in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Nigeria is not the creation of any of you, and although you feel you own it and are “Mr Nigeria” deciding whether the country stays together or not, and who rules it; you don’t.  Nigeria is solely the creation of the British. My dear gone Grandmother whose burial you told people not to attend, was not born a Nigerian but a proud Ijebu-Yoruba woman. Togetherness is a choice and it must serve a purpose.
As for Nigerians thinking I have their money, when it was obvious I was part of the Yar’Adua (government’s) anti-Obasanjo phenomenon that was going on at the time. The Ministry of Health and international NGOs paid for a retreat for the Senate Committee on Health.  The House Committee on Health was treated exactly the same way. The monies were given to members as estacode and the rest used for accommodation, flights and feeding.  While the Senate was on the retreat in Ghana, the EFCC asked the House Committee to return the monies they received for their retreat and asked us in the Senate to return ours on our return which I refused, as it was already used for the purpose it was earmarked for in the budget that year which was to work on the National Health Bill.
The House Committee had not gone on their retreat. I did nothing wrong and my colleagues and I on the retreat did our work conscientiously. I asked the EFCC not to drag my colleagues into it and I am proud I suffered alone. As is usual in a society where people who are not progressive but take pleasure in the pain of others, most Nigerians were happy, not looking at the facts of the matter, just the suffering of an Obasanjo.
As the people that stole their millions are hailed by them the innocent is punished. When the court case was thrown out because it lacked merit even against the Minister, no newspaper carried the news. The wrongful malicious prosecution of an Obasanjo was not something they wanted to report; just her downfall.  But it really wasn’t about me, it was about right and wrong in society and every society gets the fruit of the seeds it sows.
How do you think God will provide good leaders to such a people? God helps those who help themselves. I have realized that as an Obasanjo I am not entitled to work in Nigeria in any capacity.  I am not entitled to work in health which is my training, or in any field or anywhere in the country or participate in any business. I have learnt this lesson well and there are societies that actually think capable, well-educated people are important to their society’s progress. Apparently, unless I am eating from the dustbin, Nigerians and possibly you will not be satisfied.  I thank God it has not come to that based on God-given brains and brawn.
When I left Nigeria in 1989 for graduate studies in America, you promised to pay my school fees and no living expenses. This you did and I am grateful for because, working in the kitchen and then the library at University of California, Davis and later, working on the IT desk and later as a Teaching Assistant at Cornell gave me valuable work ethics for life. I wouldn’t have it any other way.  As a black woman in the early 21st century, I have achieved much and done more than most. My wish is that black girls all over the world will have the capacity to create their lives, make mistakes, learn from it and move ahead.
Moving back to Nigeria, thinking I wanted to serve was obviously a grave mistake but one brought about by the tragic incident of April 20, 2003. This was the day five people were shot dead in my car.  The mother of the children was an acquaintance I had met only one day before the incident.
We had attended the same high school and university but she was there ten years earlier than I. She had also studied public health in the UK as I had in the US. It was these coincidences that made us connect on our first meeting and then she decided to visit on the Saturday of the election of 2003 when the incident occurred. I am scarred for life by that incident and I know the mother was too as we both looked back to see two men on each side of my car shooting.
I understand her trauma and her behaviour since then can be judged from that. Nigeria is a nasty place that pushes people to lose their compass. I participated in the campaigns leading to the elections that day, more because this was my first experience of electoral process in Nigeria. Growing up there were no elections and I was too young in the 1979 and 1983 elections. It was interesting to see democracy at work.  When Gbenga Daniel who I campaigned for offered me a job, I probably would have declined it, if not for the memory of the dead.
I felt I had to engage in making the country progress and to avoid such incidences in the future.  I don’t need to tell you or anyone what kind of governor and person Gbenga Daniel is. As usual when I found out, you would not listen to my opinion but found out for yourself. I also campaigned for Amosun for the Senate in 2003. I have had some wonderful Nigerians do good to me, I will never forget the then Minister of Women Affairs, who saw me talking in the crowd at a campaign event and was alarmed and said “bad things can happen to you out there, I will give you one of the orderlies assigned to my office to follow you”.  This was the police man that died in my car that day.  I never really thought bad things would happen to me, I moved around freely in society until that shooting scarred me and I accepted a police detail.  I was constantly scared for my life after that.
You called me after your vengeful letter as usual, looking out for yourself and thinking you will bribe me by saying the APC will use me for the Senate. Do you really know me and what I want out of life?
Anyone that knows me knows I am done with anything political or otherwise in Nigeria.  I have so much to do and think to make this world a better place than to waste it on fighting with idiots over a political post that does no good to society.  That letter you wrote to the President, would you have tolerated such a letter as a sitting President?  Don’t do to others what you will not allow to be done to you. The only thing I was using that was yours was the house in Abuja where I left my things when I left the country. I eventually rented it out so that the place would not fall apart but as usual you want to take that as well. You can’t have it without explaining to Nigerians how you came about the house?
As I said earlier, this is not about politics but my frustration with you as a father and a human being.  I am not involved with what is currently going on in Nigeria, I don’t talk to any Nigerian other than friends on social basis.  I am not involved with any political groups or affiliation.  You mentioned Governor Osoba when you spoke to me, yes I was walking down the street of Cambridge, Massachussets a few months ago, when I looked up and saw him reading a map trying to cross the street.
I greeted him warmly and offered to give him a ride to where he was going.  This I did not do because I wanted anything from him politically but because that is how I was raised by my mother to treat an adult who I really had no ill-will towards. Some said he was part of the people that manipulated the elections for me to lose in 2011. I don’t have any ill-will to him for that because I think they did me a favour and someone has to win and lose.
I had told you I wasn’t going to run in 2011 but you manipulated me to run; that was my mistake.  Losing was a blessing.  As usual you wanted me to run for your self-serving purpose to perpetuate your name in the political realm and as the liar that you are, you later denied that it was you who wanted me to run in 2011.
In 2003 I ran because I wanted to and I thought getting to the central government I will be able to contribute more to improving lives and working on legislation that impacts the country. I found that nothing gets done; every public official in Nigeria is working for himself and no one really is serving the public or the country.
The whole system, including the public themselves want oppressors, not people working for their collective progress. When no one is planning the future of a country, such a country can have no future.   I won’t be your legacy, let your legacy be Nigeria in the fractured state you created because, it was always your way or the highway.
This is the end of my communication with you for life. I pray Nigeria survives your continual intervention in its affairs.
Iyabo Obasanjo, DVM, PhD



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