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2023 Polls Worse Ever – Dele Momodu



Chief Dele Momodu is a renowned journalist, businessman and motivational speaker. He is the CEO and Publisher of Ovation International Magazine. He was also a presidential aspirant  under the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in 2023.

In this interview with Sunday Sun, he talked about the state of the nation. Excerpts:

We just celebrated Democracy Day on Monday, June 12. Looking back, how have we fared  in the development of our democratic practice?

I believe democracy has become a nebulous concept in Africa’s biggest and most important country. Democracy is largely expected to be a much simpler and less complicated system of government, but unfortunately, Nigerian politicians have since turned it into a desperate, despicable and destructive concept. This is why our electoral process continues to get worse and worse. I’m not sure this was the democracy our founding fathers fought for or envisaged when they went all out in asking for independence from colonial rule. It is very sad and unfortunate that the democracy that was meant to make the lives of the people better has actually impoverished them beyond imagination and human compass. The colonial masters that we were quick to deride and describe in lurid pictures actually left behind better legacies than most of our own political rulers. A democracy where the people are forced to prepare for war instead of peaceful elections cannot be celebrated as successful.

Did we learn any lesson from June 12, considering the crisis of credibility that rocked the 2023 elections?

I’m not sure any longer, if we learnt much lessons from the June 12, 1993 crisis. Our collective amnesia stinks to high heavens. We generally behave like victims of mass hypnotism. We have become less humane in our attitudes to fellow citizens. On June 12, Nigerians voluntarily trooped out to vote for a preferred candidate of their own choices without rancour or brigandage. Ethnic considerations were less manifest. Thuggery was absent. Vote-buying wasn’t so ubiquitous. If you ask me, the two party system worked far better than the current conundrum of multi-party cacophony. What we have now with the proliferation of political parties can be likened to the popular phrase “Fuji House of Commotion!” Nigeria has been divided and balkanized along ethno-religious lines and absolutely devoid of principle, philosophy and ideology.

What are your fears for Nigeria?

My fears are real and  palpable. Nigeria may fall into the hands of hijackers and carpetbaggers. Nigeria may be dangerously tilting to a one party state. Nigeria may be speeding towards a monarchical government. But if that’s the wishes of the people, so be it. My fear is that it may conversely result ultimately in anarchy because of the plurality of nationalities and religions. Those who feel shortchanged may be prone to easy and ready manipulations by enemies of Nigeria. We may be heading for Golgotha if we stoically refuse to see the boobytraps and landmines ahead.

What is your take on the removal of subsidy on fuel by President Tinubu during his inauguration?

The phantom “oil subsidy” has become a debilitating and malignant cankerworm that must be urgently excised and excoriated. It must not be allowed to metastasize further. However , we must be acutely aware of the repercussions or side effects of  treatments of such scale and magnitude. It cannot, and must not, be rushed, in the spirit of political correctness or vain-glorification. What is needed is a well-thought out programme by the government of the day because the impact has devastating implications and consequences. I foresee the government fighting a two-pronged war if it is unable to find the correct register for its communications. One is to immediately attract the angst of current beneficiary of the subsidy regime. Second is to ignite the mass anger of citizens who already live below poverty lines, if commensurate palliatives are not considered and put in place.

The leadership of the 10th National Assembly was handpicked by the executive arm of government; what is the implication of that on the country’s democracy?

Democracy in saner climes operates on the principles of separation of powers, but like I mentioned earlier, it has become endangered in Nigeria, where the Executive arm wishes to control life and death and, unfortunately, finds willing tools ready to sell their birthright. The Executive now has humongous powers of controlling the Legislature and the Judiciary, if we do not find enough men and women of conscience and guts in the separate arms of government. The most recent National Assembly, and even the States Assembly and Local Government Administrations, have been aptly described as mere rubber stamp.

The suspension and arrest of the former CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele was received with mixed reactions by a cross section of Nigerians. While some commended the move, others say it did not follow due process of law. What is your take on that?

I have since expressed my personal views on this development on social media and it is worth repeating it here. Only a poor student of political science would not have anticipated the tragedy that befell the suspended Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Emefiele. I believe he had overstretched his luck when he dabbled into politics. He must have been goaded into believing he was doing so well and could easily become the awaiting and anointed Messiah of Nigeria. Again, my take is that he should not be made a victim of political vendetta. His rights must be fully respected and no attempt should be made to humiliate him. Perhaps, he would have averted this tragic fall from grace to grass had he hearkened to my humble advice last year February, when I told him to resign honourably once he compromised his special office and position.

What is your assessment of the ongoing proceedings at the presidential election petition tribunal?

So far so good, I think the Presidential Election Tribunal is going very well. My personal view is that the election was the worst ever. What remains is if our judiciary would be able to take very difficult decisions or simply go for what is expedient and convenient.

Culled from Sunday Sun

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National Day Schools Competition: Aijay Media Celebrates Nigeria’s Rich Heritage




The Aijay Media Annual National Day Schools Competition, held every October 1st, is set to hold this Tuesday.

The event, as always, is programmed to showcase the best of Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage, and traditions as well as celebrate the country’s national day, with varieties of competitions, which have grown in popularity over the years, attracting participation from schools all over Lagos State.

This year’s competition revolves around the “Theme: Nigeria Will be Great If …”, with different schools competing in various categories such as traditional dance, poetry, drama, and music. Students are to display their talents, creativity, and prowess in interpreting the theme.

The CEO of Aijay Media, Mrs. Ijeoma Oka, said that the competition is an opportunity for students to showcase their talents, celebrate their cultural identity and proffer their own solutions to the anomalies in our country.

The Competition is also an opportunity for schools to win prizes, including educational materials. This Last year’s competition saw many schools taking home prizes, with Tenderhands Montessori School, Lagos emerging as the overall winner.

Mrs. Abiola-Seriki Ayeni was the Special guest of honour at the previous year’s competition. Speaking at the event, she commended Aijay Media for organizing the competition and called on well-meaning Nigerians, government, and companies to support this vision. She also urged Nigerian youths to embrace their cultural heritage, promote national unity, and work harder.

Given the success this competition is expected to attract, it is expected that more schools and organizations will participate in the future.

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NLC, TUC Declare Indefinite Strike




The organised labour unions, comprising the Trade Union Congress (TUC), and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), have declared an indefinite strike effective from October 3, 2023.

TUC President, Festus Osifo declared the strike at a joint press conference also attended by the President of the NLC, Joe Ajaero in Abuja on Tuesday.

Ajaero, who spoke first, carpeted the Federal Government over what he described as lackadaisical stance to address demands raised by the unions since the subsidy removal policy took effect.

He accused the government of deliberate refusal to engage in a meaningful and constructive dialogue within the ambits of good faith during the 21 days ultimatum and the subsequent successful 2-day nationwide warning strike on the 5th and 6th of September 2023.

According to the NLC President, the National Executive Councils (NEC) of the NLC and TUC in their various meetings deeply analyzed the current situation in the country, taking into cognisance the extensive hardships and deprivation afflicting the citizens across all states of the federation.

He said both NECs unanimously condemned the government’s apparent conscious lethargy and tardiness in handling the consequences of its petrol price hike on Nigerians.

Ajaero also noted that the NLC and the TUC NEC-in-session observed that there is no disagreement between Labour and Government on the existence of massive suffering, impoverishment and hunger in the country as a result of the hike in the price of Petrol which demands an urgent need for remedial action.

He said the government totally abdicated its responsibility and had shown gross unwillingness to act, thereby abandoning Nigerian people and workers to excruciating poverty and affliction.

He went on to accuse the federal government of continuous grandstanding and forestalling all avenues to peaceful dialogue with organized labour on ways to save Nigerians from the huge hunger and suffering experienced across the nation.

“As a result of the unconscionable hike in the price of Petrol (PMS) by the Government, the Government has continued to demonstrate not just an unwillingness to mitigate the massive hardship in the country but also a complete lack of intention to take positive steps and empathy for the multi-dimensionally impoverished citizens of Nigeria.

“The federal Government has therefore not met in any substantial way, the demands of Nigerian workers and peoples as previously canvassed in our mutually agreed roadmap to salvaging the economy and protecting workers and Nigerians from the monumental hardship.

“The grace period given by the two labour centres has expired but trade unions continue to face severe threat from the State via the brutal and suppressive power of the Police and Government.

“The National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) continues to be illegally occupied by the Government via the instrumentality of the police who have cloned the leadership of NURTW.

“The Road Transport Employers Association of Nigeria (RTEAN) continues to be illegally occupied by the Lagos State government in total disregard to the Courts and the statutes.

“That the State has continued to blackmail and sponsor serious campaigns of calumny against trade union leaders in the social media using its buying and coercive powers instead of making efforts to lift the burden on the masses,” the NLC President stated.

When Osifo got hold of the microphone, he said, consequently, the NLC and TUC NEC-in-Session resolved as follows: “to, in the spirit of the Independence Day celebration and to demonstrate our resolve for a truly independent Nigeria to take our destinies in our own hands and rescue our nation

“To embark on an indefinite and total shutdown of the nation beginning on zero hours Tuesday, the 3rd day of October, 2023. To direct all workers in Nigeria to withdraw their services from their respective workplaces commencing from the 3rd of October.

“To direct all affiliates and state councils to immediately start mobilizing accordingly for action to organize street protests and rallies until Government responds positively to our demands.

“We enjoin all patriotic Nigerians to join hands across the nation to assist this government put the people back at the centre of its policies and programmes.”

Daily Post

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Nigerians Will Be Shocked If Chicago Varsity Releases Tinubu’s Academic Records – Obaseki




A chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and member of the Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) in the last election, Dr Don Pedro Obaseki, has said Nigerians will be shocked if the Chicago State University (CSU) releases the academic records of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu. 

Obaseki who was the Director of Research and Documentation of PDP – PCC in the 2023 election explained that Atiku is seeking an open disclosure of Tinubu’s CSU documents because it is believed that the Supreme Court of Nigeria may be compelled to listen to fresh evidence in the petitions already submitted to it.

Speaking during a zoom conference hosted by Prof. Gold Emmanuel, a psychologist based in London, on Monday, Obaseki said it was because of the nature of the issue and the need for Nigerians to know that the former Vice President Atiku Abubakar is insisting on the full disclosure of President Tinubu’s academic records by the Chicago State University.

He said even though President Tinubu has said the public disclosure of his CSU documents would cause irreparable damage to him, “Nigerians would even be more shocked to know more about the certificate in question.”

He said, “Even when the court of first instance and the appellate court have convicted someone to death minutes before the Supreme Court gives its final judgement and there arose fresh and compelling facts and evidence, the apex court is bound to listen to the fresh facts before making its final judgement.

Daily Trust

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