Saturday, December 17, 2011

Lagos State Government against the masses

A peaceful protest in Lagos against planned toll gate on Lekki highway by concerened stakeholders and local residents soon degenerated to violence, as the Nigerian police brutally attacked protesters and journalists in Lagos. Many have been injured and two have been reportedly killed. The Lagos state government has decided to take sides with the LCC against the masses who voted massively for the current governor. Sad.

Monday, December 12, 2011

PHCN to go: Professor Barth Nnaji

The tweet meet started past five, he actually came late as he was meant to start by 5 pm as earlier announced. He started by apologising.
Professor Barth started by responding to questions asked, saying there is a plan and it is captured in the power sector road map and that more licenses have been given out and that 40,000MW is targeted. He said there is no policy barring states from generating power that states and anybody can generate power. He cited Lagos and Rivers states as states currently generating power.
The high point came when he said PHCN will stop existing by 31stDecember 2011, replacement wasn’t stated but he assured that all PHCN staffs will not lose their jobs that they will be absorbed by successor companies. PHCN corporate headquarter will be shut down, successful companies in distribution, generation and transmission will function. He went ahead to say a wind farm project in Katsina is expected to completed by the 3rd quarter of 2012. He said there are a lot of policies on ground for prospective investors and that more information will be out by the end of January 2012. Someone asked about metre payments and he said NERC has been contacted and that they have removed extra metre charges.
He proceeded saying three coal-fired station are to be set up in Enugu, Gombe and Benue states with generative capacity of 1000MW each and that in addition, 2600MW hydro plant Mambilla Plateau state and 700MW in Zungeru Niger state. HE also said the installation of thousands of transformers across the country to improve power distribution is ongoing.
In his words “When we came at 2010, the generation was at 2800MW . We have improved it to over 4000MW”, “We have established the Nigerian Electricity Bulk Trading Company”, “We have re-established NERC, a strong regulator has been put in place to regulate the industry”, “The activities of the Bulk Trader are to act as a stand between the generating companies and the distribution companies”, “The activities of the Bulk Trader are to act as a stand between the generating companies and the distribution companies” , “We've gotten World Bank to provide the partial risk guarantee for gas and power. In support of the reform process”, “Increased power supply across the country as reflected in increase of quantum of 2800MW to over 4000MW as of today” ,“We have also got OPIC to provide a 1.5 billion dollars investment window to support the nigerian power sector” , “It takes 3-4 years to complete a power plant if all necessary things are in place.Based on this we project continuous improvements”, “You can also visit our website to find out more about the activities of the ministry” , “CBN has provided the power intervention fund to support the power sector” , “The new tariff will provide a major incentive for new investment in the sector” , “We have paid PHCN workers N57 billion , have agreed on their 50% salary increase, agreed to convert 11,000 casual to regular staff”, “It is our long term goal that the Nigerian power market reaches a point of stability for a willing-buyer, willing-seller mode” .

He went ahead to say there will be new tariffs which will be announced by NERC next year arguing that Nigeria pays one the lowest electricity tariff in Sub Saharan Africa except Zambia. HE replied someone saying Nigeria supplies power to Niger, Chad and Benin.
He ended saying , “I want to assure Nigerians that we are doing everything necessary to boost power generation nationwide. It has been an engaging tweet-meet with you all. Further questions on other aspects of the reform could be forwarded to

The tweet meet lasted about an hour


Just coming in from Professor Bart Nnaji, Nigeria’s Honourable Minister of Power is that the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) will cease to exist after December 31, 2011. This was tweeted by him during the tweetmeet on power reforms currently still on, on twitter with hashtag #NGPower
Full details in due course

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Nigerian President sacks EFCC Chair

President Goodluck Jonathan has unexpectedly fired the head of Nigeria’s anti-corruption agency Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
A spokesman for the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said Wednesday that chairwoman Farida Waziri had been fired. Spokesman Femi Babafemi said Waziri had at least another year left in her tenure.
Babafemi says agency deputy Ibrahim Lamurde has been appointed acting chairman. He said he did not know the president’s reason for firing Waziri.
Waziri and a presidential spokesman could not be immediately reached for comment.
Waziri has been criticized by U.S. diplomats in leaked cables for being unprepared and for apparently being controlled by politicians. Others have leveled corruption allegations against her and operatives of the commission, though none have been proven. Farida has been less than a shadow of the previous anti-corruption czar Nuhu Ribadu who was removed by former President Yar’ Adua to prevent same from trying his friends.
Meanwhile reactions are already trailing the sack. Professor Pat Utomi post thus on his facebook page:

"With this change, let me advise the Federal Government that the only way to ensure that the EFCC is effective in fighting corruption, which is the bane of Nigeria's development, is for the executive to give that agency complete autonomy and independence and this can only be done if the law creating the agency is amended to ensure its independence. PU"

However, Mallam Nasir El Rufai former FCT minister has condemned the process of her removal. He reacted on twitter immediately:

"Farida Waziri has been removed by GEJ before the expiration of her term. This is contrary to the EFCC Act and illegal. We must all stand up for rule compliance even if we do not like the victim. We stood up when Nuhu was similarly treated. It is wrong! Farida Waziri was the instrument of my years of persecution by Yar'Adua & GEJ. I don't like her. But that is personal, her removal illegal! The EFCC Act requires GEJ to show cause - insanity, incapacity, not in public interest, etc. No reasons given. She did not resign. WRONG!! All I am saying is that when leaders do not act in compliance with the law, we must question. It is Farida Waziri today. It will be you soon Let us not celebrate this because we think Farida is a scumbag. Let us stand up & question because of non-compliance with the EFCC Act. Farida's tenure is supposed to end in May 2012. My persecution started the day she took office. So I am not her advocate personally. Farida was neither competent nor honest. Trial by headlines was her landmark. Plea bargains with the corrupt her specialty. But Her tenure had not ended, & if it is to be prematurely terminated, it must be done in accordance with the law. They did it to PCA Salami too .This GEJ administration revels in gross violating the law & surprised that Nigerians are resorting to taking the law into their own hands!! . When leaders break the law with impunity, they should expect that sooner or later, every citizen will join & settle disputes via self-help!! 


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

My take on the proposed fuel subsidy removal

I wrote this article days ago but couldn't post here for some reasons. Enjoy
It is no more news the president Jonathan and his crew are bent on removing oil subsidy, the last thing the masses enjoy from government. Nigerians have reacted and majority have spoken against the planned action but the government seems hell bent on going ahead with the removal. Below is a quote from a Nigerian interviewed by a national daily:

“Removing oil subsidy will make poor people poorer and make life more difficult for Nigerians because the entire economy of this country, not just its revenue is hinged on the pump price of fuel. The cost of doing business will increase by more than 200%  since subsidy will result in over 200% increase of the pump price of petrol. So imagine the effect of that on small business, its catastrophic.

Now my argument of the federal government that subsidy will bring in competition that will send prices crashing as soon as the private sector keys in to take advantage of the abounding opportunities that the removal will bring. Sincerely that’s a good and logical argument. But Nigerians will love to know why the price of diesel that has long been deregulated is still skyrocketing.”

I read the above piece and was convinced the government on self destructive journey. Truly, after the increase in the price of diesel (due to deregulation), cost of production increased (as factories use heavy duty diesel generators for power) which increased the price of locally made products, cost of doing business increased, food stuffs became more expensive because they are transported down south from the north with diesel powered truck/lorries. Telecommunication tariffs remained high because the claim they spend so much on diesel to power their masts. And as widely reported, businesses have moved to neighbouring countries before of the high cost of power in Nigeria.

A government that knows all this will still want to go ahead and to remove subsidy without first tackling the corruption is not a serious government. For example, kerosene is subsidized but do not get to end users at the subsidized rate, this goes to show how corrupts the oil sector is (need I emphasize that???).

President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan should rather fish out the culprits who has frustrated subsidy as he has claimed. But we all know that won’t happen and we know why. Fresh Air Indeed!!!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

A school in dire need : Festac Grammar School

When sometime in '97 when I left primary school, hopes were that I would be admitted into one of the unity schools but as fate would have it, I ended up in FESTAC GRAMMAR SCHOOL. At that period when private secondary schools were for the super rich, I settled down hoping to enjoy my stay (which I did anyway).

A school which many people in my hood had attended, I went in with great expectations. Fot those of us who attended private primary schools, coping was not as easy but we still forged ahead. Right from the onset the school was referred to as a poultry just because it lacked modern structures. As at the late 90's, there was no functional library, the school clinic and computer room were under lock and key. We went to school and were called chickens since our school was referred to as a poultry, very annoying but we still persisted and hoped that government will do something before long.

One thing however that worked for the school was the academic excellence. Little wonder in 1998, the school won the "bournvita brain match" contest, this got the school some computers. People attended from as far mile 2, kirikiri town, satellite town, and other parts of Lagos. That was how popular festac grammar school was despite its shabby structure, the academic standard was good.

From the early 2000s however, academic standards starting falling as reflected in the yearly SSCE result of the school. My class for example didn't have a physics teacher for over a session, we didn't have a chemistry teacher for a while too. All through SS1, we had an english teacher who won't come to class but always sends test and exams as and when due. Only the biology teacher made us feel like students, God bless him wherever he is right now.

So we eventually left in 2003 and for years I did not return to the school until earlier this year when an ALUMNI was formed by different sets as one. It spans from the first set(84/85) to the latest set (2011). Holding monthly meetings since April this year, the alumni has waxed on stronger and stronger. One thing that was brought to our notice is that the school is a Lagos state property and so we can't do anything about it in terms of erecting structures. It was interesting and also sad when we discovered that FESTAC GRAMMAR school is the only school in the whole of Amuwo Odofin Local Education District with such "poultry like structure" and without a modern building. According to an ex student, the only 'manageable' building is a one storey donated to the school in the 80s for its academic excellence. Since then the school has been neglected from further development. The senior school benefited from ICT equipments donated by the government but the junior school could not benefit because there was no room and no electricity, it was taken to another school.

The Alumni which I'm a regular member has done little things from the school in our little capacity but more needs to be done because the school has become a shadow of its old self, population has drastically reduced from our days, structures are life threatning and in need of urgent attention by the Lagos state government who is soley responsible for the development of the school as one of its properties. If the state government won't allow "intruders" on its property then it should be bold enough to tackle the problems facing "our" school.

As I conclude, I want to appeal to the ever dependable Lagos state governor to come to the rescue of the school, unconfirmed source claimed the governor has been to the school before. I, on behalf of the FGS ALUMNI appeal to the Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola SAN to save the school from further degradation.


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Balmoral Hall after the fire

The Balmoral hall events center located at Kudirat Abiola way, hosting the City People Magazine awards got razed by fire. Cause of the fire is still unknown but sources says the place was completely burnt down bringing the program to a halt. No life was lost while the fire lasted.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Commitments of an Extraordinary Leader by Chris Widener

Its been a while I posted here, I apologise. I came across this inspirational piece from motivational speaker,  Chris Widener

Leadership is a continual process of making to commitments... to oneself, to others, and to the organizations we lead and serve.

With this in mind, here are the commitments an Extraordinary Leader makes:

With a desire to become an Extraordinary Leader, I commit to:

  • Continually pursue personal and professional growth
  • Treating everyone I come in contact with the dignity and respect they deserve
  • Finding the way for as many people as possible to benefit from my decisions and actions
  • Be willing to make and carry out hard decisions without regard to personal expediency
  • The highest level of personal and corporate integrity
  • Tell the truth and be honest, regardless of potential personal loss
  • Think "team" first
  • Finding a person who can mentor me
  • Finding at least one person I can personally mentor
  • Help others discover their strengths and function in them
  • Maintain my priorities and organize my life and work according to them
  • Live a life of balance between work, family, and leisure
  • Pursue balanced growth in body, soul and spirit - understanding that each area affects the others innately
  • Pursue what is best - for myself, my organization, and for others - and not settle for that which is simply "good enough"
  • Do work and live a life that leaves behind a lasting legacy of excellence
  • Build a team to surround me in order to enhance my strengths and make up for my weaknesses
  • Surround myself with people who will tell me the truth and not just what they think I want to hear
  • Become a great listener
  • Be an Extraordinary Follower of those who are my leaders
  • Help others develop their skills
  • Dream big dreams and encourage others to do the same
  • Stretch my followers enough to make them grow but not so much as to discourage them
  • Be driven by vision, mission and purpose, not by circumstances or expediency
  • View the world through optimistic eyes
  • Embrace the concept of change as a positive force for improvement
  • Be responsible in my actions as they relate to my commitments to myself and others
  • Be tenacious in my pursuits
  • Give more than I receive and to be characterized by generosity
  • Show courage in the face of challenge
  • Be an example of dedication and commitment
  • Share the privileges of leadership with those who follow me
  • Give power away to those who can share in it responsibly and help the organization
  • Use both my head and my heart when leading
  • Manage my time according to my priorities
  • Be the first to sacrifice when sacrifice is needed
  • Make all short-term decisions with the long-term goals in mind
  • Develop a successor
  • Develop excellent communication skills
  • Use a variety of means of influence
  • Be the primary strategy setter for the organization
  • Teach others
  • Inspire others
  • Keep my eye on the big picture
  • Making the complex simple
  • Motivate others
  • Consider others as important as myself
  • Identify future leaders
  • Train and develop future leaders
  • Regularly reward accomplishment
  • Allow followers to fail in their attempts at growth and innovation
  • Work leadership development into every level of the organization
  • Have a clear vision
  • Remain calm in difficult situations
  • Keep a sense of humor
  • Remove people from their position as soon as I know they need to go
  • Empathize with others

 Chris Widener

As we prepare to elect new leaders in the forthcoming polls, let us watch out for some of these qualities. God Bless Nigeria

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

It's been a while....Register to Vote and Make your vote count

Compliments of the season to everyone (late though). It's been a tough past few weeks for me but I'm gradually getting back to normal. Hope Y'all enjoyed your holidays.

Party primaries have come and gone, some acclaimed free and fair and some accusing of imposition of candidates. The thing is we now have candidates.

As widely reported all over, voters registration started slowly but has picked up in most part of the country. For me I don't understand what the problem because for me I got registered yesterday and what I simply did was to go early enough, got my name written down and when it to my turn they were through in less than ten minutes. The only thing there is I was told to come back for the laminated printed copy.

However, in the past few days I've been having a hard time trying to convince people to why it is important to register. The truth is despite the popularity of the exercise (voters’ registration) most people still don't believe that their votes will count. These are youths who should be the most concerned about this whole electoral process, some agreed to registered but vowed to not to vote.

I implore everyone who's not registered to go and register to vote before the exercise closes in the next few days (heard it might be extended). The first step to encouraging rigging is refusing to register hereby giving chance for multiple registrations by riggers. Also after registering and you refuse to vote you also encouraging as the ballot paper printed for your use will be used to rig.

Let's all participate actively in this; whatever happens to our country lies in our hands. It belongs to us; no one will build it for us.