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BABACHIR,BARU, MAINA & YUSUF: A BEWILDERING TREND

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One of the greatest virtues President Muhammadu Buhari( PMB) is associated with is Integrity. This popularly marketed virtue is the back bone of the faith Nigerians have in PMB to fight corruption. This was the primary promise made to the people of Nigeria and this was also the main reason Nigerians voted him into power. Therefore one would expect that the President would ordinarily not do or permit to be done anything that would impugn his integrity. When the story about his former SGF Babachir Lawal broke, following Babachir's indictment by the National Assembly, many Nigerians were shocked that it looked as if he was being shielded from facing the law. PMB quickly set up an- in house committee to investigate the indictment and he was soon absolved. But the National Assembly stuck to their gun, supported by the civil society and subsequently forced PMB to set up another investigative committee now headed by the Vice President. It took nearly six months for the report to be acted…

IS NIGERIA'S ECONOMY REALLY DOING WELL?

The only defence offered by the FGN to OBJ's letter to PMB was to educate him on the great strides of the government on the economy. The Government asserted that OBJ must have been too busy to notice the wonderful works done by PMB on the economy with an implied presumption, that had OBJ been less busy and more observant he would have seen the signs of a bubbling economy instigated by the wonderful policies, programs and projects being faithfully implemented across the length and breadth of Nigeria. In which case OBJ's verdict would have been different and perhaps he would have advised PMB to seek re-election in 2019 and perhaps attempt a third term as he(OBJ) attempted.
The unassailable truth is that Nigeria's Economy is on the recovery mode. Nigeria's economy that contracted for 5 quarters between Q1 2016 and Q1 2017 precipitating a recession, the first time in 25 years has begun to expand, hence our exit from recession from the Q2 of 2017. The lowest dip in GDP was a…

ACCELERATING BUSINESS GROWTH IN 2018: riding on the wings of a recovering economy

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The Accelerating Business Growth Seminar is organised primarily to open the eyes of entrepreneurs, business leaders, industrialists, business development managers, strategic planning managers, marketing and sales executives, accounting managers ad all operators in the economy to the emerging developments in the Nigerian economy and how to take early advantage of them to prosper and resume growth in 2018. The focus of the seminar are: Assessing Nigeria's economic performance in 2017;Understanding Nigeria's economic outlook for 2018;understanding the drivers of Nigeria's economic recovery and growth;Full understanding of the 8.6 trillion federal government budget and what is in for you;Discovering opportunities in the economy and how to exploit them;Taking advantage of special concessions to SMEs and agri-businesses;Understanding business enablers for 2018 - marketing, sales, cost control, management and governance;optimizing financing opportunities from CBN, BOI, commercial b…

COALITION FOR NIGERIA MOVEMENT: LONG & TOUGH ROAD TO TRAVEL

The emergence of a third force which former President, Olusegun Obasanjo heralded in his recent famous letter to PMB is ordinarily a good development for Nigeria's polity. For now, OBJ  recommends that it remains a movement, a coalition of Nigerians who dislike both APC and PDP or who do not trust that any can save Nigeria from its present dysfunction and descent to anarchy.Or those that do not see any good candidate emerge from these parties in 2019. Or could it be a movement of people who want political power but can not find any space in APC or PDP? Or is it just a movement to ensure PMB does not try 2019 and that if he insists, then the coalition will ensure he does not succeed? For me the idea is good but for it to succeed the motives must be altruistic, not parochial, not selfish.

In most nations of the world with two strong parties, there is always a third significant party where those who lose out in the two parties find shelter. It is also a place where those who do not ag…

OBJ RETURNS TO BEAT & HUMBLES PMB & APC

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Like him or hate him, Olusegun Obasanjo is an enigma. I am convinced that God has granted him a special grace to influence the course of events in this Nation for good or for bad, sometimes for a mixture of both. There is no living Nigerian Leader who is like him and I can not easily remember any past Nigerian leader who was quite like OBJ. He is unique in many respects. When you ask some Nigerians to give you a list of the bad political leaders Nigeria has or has had,you will find Obj's name prominent in the list sharing the podium with leaders like IBB, Sani Abacha, Shehu Shagari, Orji Uzor Kalu, DSP Alamesiagha, Bunu Sheriff, James Ibori, Rochas Okorocha, etc .When you ask what he did to merit such classification,they would readily reel out such actions: he plotted for a third term, he massacred Tivs in Zaki Biam, obliterated Odi Village, wasted so much money to give Nigeria darkness, introduced Ghana-must- go politics to the National Assembly, concessioned Nigeria to himself t…

OPTIMIZING INCOME FROM THE EMERGING ROUND OF OIL BOOM

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When oil prices begin to rise as they have been doing in the last couple of months, particularly in the last few weeks, my heart begins to palpitate. Last week, oil prices crossed the $70 per barrel landmark in a steady recovery from $28 dollars low it hit in January 2016. Not because I play in the Industry and so could be getting excited that more cash and more profit will be flowing in. My trepidation comes from the fact that my Nation would soon get high on petro-dollar and head right back to its past practice of profligacy. From 1967 when the 6-day war between Israel and Egypt led to the first significant rise of oil price and the several rounds of oil boom since then and the inevitable corresponding bursts, Nigeria has shown a frightening inability to optimize the often un-budgeted income.
In 1973 the Yum-Kippur war or the Arab-Israeli war ignited a major growth in oil prices, resulting in high levels of unanticipated income for the Nigerian Nation. This was just a few years after…

FGN: PERFECTING THE ART OF PURSUING SHADOWS

There is trouble in the land. Anywhere you look there is consternation. The people of Nigeria are unhappy. Government seems to be failing in its critical responsibilities to the citizens. Many Nigerians had very difficult Christmas and new year celebrations because of a suffocating fuel scarcity. President Muhammadu Buhari (PMB) threatened to find out the so called saboteurs who caused the terrible fuel scarcity that disrupted the peace of most Nigerians over the Christmas / New year celebrations and to punish them severely. He made this threat in his new year address to the Nation on the 1st of January 2018. Firstly, I was not minded to take him seriously as it is common for government officials to manufacture " enemies" to explain away their failures. Sometimes the threats are merely empty threats, just made to give the citizens false comfort as nothing happens thereafter. For example, look at the several threats issued by government after each orgy of violence by maraudi…

THE PORT HARCOURT VOLUNTEER: NIGERIA’S WAR OF UNITY

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I have often pondered if the Nigeria Civil war 1967-1970 was inevitable. Could we have done anything to prevent or avert it? Considering the colossal cost of that war in man and materials, arguments have continued to rage as to the inevitability of the war. It is estimated that up to 3 million people died during the war, most of whom were Biafrans and predominantly Igbo…the truth is that it was not only Biafrans that paid the price for the war. Several Nigerian soldiers died and the National government diverted resources which could have been used in developing the Nation to prosecuting the war…
…Many of us who saw and experienced the sufferings and pains of Biafra and its aftermath would not wish for another civil war in Nigeria. Nobody will wish to relive some of the experiences…at several points in our national History, the foundations of Nigeria's unity have been tested. The "Kaiama Declaration" and the Niger Delta struggle with its militancy threatened our unity. Aft…

FULANI HERDSMEN MILITANCY: INTERNATIONAL HELP NOW INDICATED

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That the militant Fulani herdsmen have become the greatest security challenge of this Nation must be obvious to all who wish this nation well. In fact many objective watchers have declared that the now regular raids by the militant Fulani herdsmen is the biggest security threat facing Nigeria after Boko Haram. Indeed in 2016, more people died in clashes with militant herdsmen than Boko haram attacks. Records emerging from 2017 indicate there were more casualties this past year than 2016, indicating a festering and intensifying menace. 
Indeed in 2016, more people died in clashes with militant herdsmen than Boko haram attacks.

True the Fulani herdsmen and Farmers clash did not start today. It has been long but was limited to parts of the North East and North Central states. Indeed between 1996 and 2006 (Ten full years) only about 121 farmers were killed by the Fulani herdsmen, largely in Bauchi, Plateau and Gombe States. But since late 2014 and early 2015 and ever since, the intensity an…

NIGERIA AND THE BURDEN OF CHANGE IN 2018

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We must thank God for the gift of life to see a new year. To be fair 2017 was an improvement over 2016 in many respects, even if it is from a psychological point of view. It was a terrible thing to live through a recession, the first in 25 years, but from the 2nd quarter of 2017, Nigeria began the climb out of the black hole. Our exit from recession was propelled largely by the recovery of oil prices in the International market. While the price of crude came down as low as $ 28dollars per barrel in 2016, Nigeria's sweet crude was selling for about $60 dollars per barrel at the end of 2017. The second thing that helped our exit was the change of policy direction by the government. It stopped focusing on managing demand of the dollar to managing supply with the associated policy adjustments.
Many Nigerians ended 2017 in some avoidable agony. Those who owned cars slept in filling stations because of acute refined fuel scarcity or bought PMS at inflated prices reaching 250 Naira per li…