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Showing posts from May, 2018

IS THE NMA A PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATION OR A TRADE UNION?

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I must begin this piece by disclosing that I have many good and long-time friends who are medical doctors and indeed I have many in my family including my own son. Let me also state that Medicine is a very dignified profession and all over the World it is accorded special respect. In our days, if your were a very bright student and you did well in the Sciences, you would be expected to choose Medicine or Engineering as your professional pursuit. Actually before the Nigeria-Biafra War interrupted my education, I had been steam-rolled to choose medicine as my first course, even when my mind was aching for Business Administration, Law or Journalism. My dilemma was that I was doing well in all subjects. So after losing three years in the war I was not prepared to spend one day longer in the pursuit of a degree. To be sincere, I did not know much about Pharmacy as a separate profession, I thought Medicine and Pharmacy were part of the same profession. So when I complained to my uncle that I…

EMASCULATING & HUMILIATING THE SENATE: IN WHOSE INTEREST?

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Since the proclamation of the 8th Assembly, I have noticed a consistent effort to emasculate the National Assembly, particularly the Senate. This matter has assumed an alarming intensity in the recent weeks and I am getting really worried for our democracy.  First effort, was the challenge to the power of the Senate to confirm certain executive appointments. Both the constitution and other extant laws gave powers to the Senate to approve, confirm or ratify specific appointments from ministerial through Commissions, Security service leadership, Boards and Agency leadership. But we have seen some effort to deny this power of the Senate. The classical and subsisting case is the refusal of President Muhammadu Buhari to replace Ibrahim Magu as the Chairman of EFCC after the Senate rejected his nomination twice due to adverse reports from a sister Security agency - DSS. Three years down the line, the President has ignored the Senate and has kept Magu on the job, effectively rendering the Sen…

CODEINE ABUSE, PHARMACEUTICAL INDUSTRY & OFFICIAL OVERREACH

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Recently Codeine has been in the news, essentially for the wrong reasons. Codeine which came into use in 1832 has been a very useful medication for treating pain and more recently as a cough suppressant in cough syrups. Codeine or 3-methyl morphine is an alkaloid found in the opium poppy- Papaver somniferum . In 1848, a German Pharmacist discovered how to isolate morphine from the opium poppy, which eventually gave rise to the discovery of Codeine by Pierre Robiquet, a French Chemist in 1832. Subsequently, Codeine was extracted from the black tar opium which constantly put the drug manufacturers in constant conflict with illicit drug cartels, but later was now synthethised from coal-tar. 
According to the World Heath Organization ( WHO), Codeine is the most widely and commonly used opiate in the World and is also regarded as the safest of all the opioids and seen as least addictive as well. The most common medical use of codeine is related to its ability to suppress chronic cough, henc…

LABOUR DAY, MINIMUM WAGE BROUHAHA & THE POLITICAL SPACE

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I was enthused when I heard Pastor Poju Oyemade of the Covenant Christian Centre talk of political cats and dogs at the Platform which he convenes every year on the 1st of May. By the way, that day is usually observed in Nigeria as public holidays in commemoration of Labour day or Workers day. This year's May Day was very eventful and for me there were a couple of issues that drew my attention. The First was the issue of minimum wage for workers in Nigeria. The Nigerian Labour Congress ( NLC) was pitching for a new minimum monthly wage of 56500 Naira as the minimum wage for labour in the Country. Some other labour leaders were demanding more, up to 90000 Naira and there were arguments back & forth. Some commentators insisted that the demand was unrealistic. To Triple or quadruple  minimum wage at one go would drive inflation up. What of the ability of employers, especially the state governments to pay? They cited the huge unpaid salary backlogs in many States despite several ba…

CAN NIGERIA SURVIVE A CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS IN THIS CLIMATE?

That this Nation is at war has become obvious. As a matter of fact, this Country has faced many war situations in its recent history. The classical war was the Nigeria-Biafra war in which there were two combatants and there was some territorial delineation. Both sides were armed, even if one side was better armed and received more international support. But recent wars in Nigeria have been largely assymetrical. You may never fully identify who the combatants are, what the war is all about and how to determine its end. The Boko Haram war though at one time seemed to have progressed into a typical warfare, when the Nigerian Army supported by the Airforce confronted it head on to recover the territories it had illegally taken, it has returned to where it started, a war against the innocent citizens of the Country. It is daily attacking civilian targets, not military targets and seems to operate without boundaries. And because it has no boundaries and its targets not well defined, it has …