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Looters’ list: ‘You be thief, I no be thief…’



Looters’ list: ‘You be thief, I no be thief…’

You be thief (I no be thief)
You be rogue (I no be rogue)
You dey steal (I no dey steal)
You be robber (I no be robber)
You be armed robber (No be armed robber)
Argument, argument, argue
Them argue
Everybody dem argue
Dem dem argue
Up and down them argue
– Fela Anikulapo-Kuti – Authority Stealing (1980)

When the late great Afrobeat musician Fela Anikulapo-Kuti released his monster hit “Authority Stealing” way back in the early 80s little did he realise that 38 years after it will leap from just being a song to becoming a major topic for discussion across the land.
For those not familiar with the track let me summarise what the late “Abami Eda” said in the album. The late musician accused those in authority of being worse than armed robbers and deserving of hanging because the impact of their stealing is felt more than those of armed robbers’.

According to the late musician, those who steal by abusing their positions of authority take from the commonwealth of the people while armed robbers just rob a few.
In the past couple of weeks Nigerians and indeed the whole world have been treated to the theatre of the absurd as the two prominent parties – the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) – have exposed their dirty linen in public by revealing their looters’ lists
The APC set the ball rolling by releasing what it dubbed the names of those who had brazenly looted the commonwealth of the people while they were the party in power.
Of course, the list was made up totally of members of the opposition party with no APC member’s name on it.

This immediately brought howls of derision from not only the PDP but a number of other commentators who wondered how it was possible that not a single member of the APC had been caught with his or her hand in the cookie jar.
However, the PDP immediately fired back, first claiming that many of the “thieves” had already left the “umbrella” to pick up the “broom” ahead of the 2015 general elections and then followed up by releasing their own looters’ list with all the names expectantly belonging to those in the APC.

But while the slanging match makes for good copy and headlines for the traditional and social media, the truth is of what purpose has the “looters list” served?
Sadly, long gone are the days when a “good name” meant the world to people. Now it appears that wealth is more important than reputation.

That is how far the nation has degenerated as the years have gone by. If not after what the military did to the politicians when they struck again on the night of December 31, 1983; the new generation of politicians should be terrified of touching money not meant for them for fear of what might happen to them.

But since they (politicians) believe they are above the law and will never have their day in court they continue to dip their hands into the nation’s cookie jar to the detriment of the development of the nation.
Is it little wonder that many of the major infrastructural developments in the nation took place when the military was in power?

It is not as if there was no stealing or corruption; but the simple truth is that those dipping their hands in the cookie jar were not as many as the hands now, which means that in spite of the theft there was still enough money left to carry out major developments across the land.

Thus it was under the military that the nation’s new capital city, Abuja, sprung up, expressways built all over to make connecting cities very easy and such ways which readily spring to mind are the Lagos-Ibadan, Benin-Sagamu, Oshodi-Apapa, Abuja-Kaduna, Enugu-Port Harcourt and Onitsha-Enugu to mention but a few.
But sadly decades after being built, successive civilian governments since 1999 have failed to maintain them leaving many in terrible states of repair.

In fact the Oshodi-Apapa Expressway is virtually a no go area for many, which has prompted many companies and businesses to move out of the prime locale; government is still struggling to finish the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, years after the contract was first awarded during the time of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, whose tenure ended in 2007!

Some other key roads yet to receive major attention include the Onitsha-Enugu and Enugu-Port Harcourt expressways; while the Benin-Sagamu Expressway is yet to be completed, having only been done up to Ore. The stretch from Ore to Sagamu is in a very terrible shape. The Second Niger Bridge, which has been awarded a “million times”, is still a mirage.

Is it in health, power or education or what? The list is endless of failed promises by the various political parties to improve the lot of their people only to leave the stage with the people worse off than when they came into office!
Alas, despite all the of problems besetting the nation, the country’s most prominent parties, which have held sway since the return to civilian rule 19 years ago, are busy engaging in mundane issues – a reflection of the type of personalities ruling us.
It is sad that the same APC, which had for long resisted attempts by the opposition to cajole it into releasing the names of supposed looters on the grounds that it could jeopardise legal actions against them, finally backed down and opted to release the names.
However, in doing so I believed the APC goofed because what they have simply just done is to open a Pandora’s Box of “You be thief, I no be thief”!

Following this example, what stops the next government, should APC lose the next elections, from also coming up with its own list of looters?
Like Fela said in “Army Arrangement,” government can always come up with “evidence” to prove one’s guilt even in the face of obvious facts to the contrary.
Since both parties have opted to fight dirty let’s see where this will lead the nation at the end of the day. However, rather than resulting to mudslinging I would have loved them to come together to tackle the monster once and for all – because like their catch phrase, “if we don’t kill corruption; corruption will kill the country!”

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  1. Adamu Muhammad Julde

    October 14, 2018 at 6:19 pm

    all Nigerian politicians are looters. more especially Baba go slow.

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Insecurity: Will we ever get it right in Nigeria?



Insecurity: Will we ever get it right in Nigeria?

Last week the nation was taken aback when reports filtered in of the murder of Mrs Funke Olakunrin, the 58-year-old daughter of Afenifere leader, Reuben Fasoranti. Mrs Olakunrin had just visited her 93-year-old father and was heading back home when suspected herdsmen attacked her car along the Akure-Ore road.


And what is becoming a very worrying trend (as if was not already) the assailants rather than blocking the road and giving their victims the chance of ‘cooperating’ or being dispossessed of their valuables by force, opted to shoot first and in the process the woman who resides in the US was struck and later died in hospital due to massive loss of blood.


Incidentally before last Friday’s incident a number of videos had been circulating on social media showing people recounting their brushes with death after having their vehicles shot at by the bandits. In one such case for instance, nine suspected armed herdsmen were said to have launched an attack on a Nigerian naval officer who was on his way to Lagos while returning from an official assignment.


The attack on Lt. M. Dahiru took place on July 7 at about 1:30 pm along the Benin by-pass by Ahor community, Edo State. Dahiru was returning from an official assignment on the NNS Burutu, a Nigerian navy vessel, when the attack occurred.


Just like in the case of Mrs Olakunrin, the attackers never gave him the opportunity of stopping but rather reportedly fired several rounds at Dahiru’s vehicle hitting him in the shoulder. While trying to escape from his assailants, the soldier crashed into another vehicle.


Pictures of the incident showed his white Peugeot 307 saloon car full of bullet holes on the bonnet with his boot crumpled from the crash. Sadly in the case of Pa Fasoranti daughter’s death politics crept in with the police insisting that it was a case of armed robbery and kidnapping since their investigation showed that another vehicle and a luxurious bus were also attacked and about eight people abducted.


However, this was hotly disputed by Mrs Olakunrin’s brother, Mr. Kehinde Fasoranti, who told journalists that he visited the police station in Ore town shortly after the incident and was told by officers on duty that those who operated and shot his sister were Fulani herdsmen!


“We need to get the story straight. The way they operated, according to what the police said in Ore, is the way Fulani herdsmen operate…The story that these are just bandits is a lie. If you want records, request the report I made at the Ore police station. They categorically said the attackers were Fulani herdsmen,” he told the media.


But whatever is the true situation, Friday’s incident only further drives home the fact that the security situation in the country is only getting worse by the day and no amount of propaganda by government and her officials can mask this fact!


From Sokoto to Zamfara, Borno to Yobe, Benue to Plateau state, we are constantly bombarded with chilling reports of killings, murders and attacks by herdsmen, bandits or ‘unknown gunmen’ slaughtering fellow Nigerians with reckless abandon. In fact, just a few months ago, the nation’s top police office, Mohammed Adamu, who is the Inspector General, reeled out very chilling statistics of the rising lawlessness in the country.


Speaking during the quarterly Northern Traditional Rulers’ Council meeting which took place in Kaduna State on Tuesday, April 30, 2019, Adamu said that 1,071 people were killed in crime-related cases in the first quarter of 2019. Of course the figures would have drastically shot up considering all the killings, murders and abductions that have taken place after his presentation. It is very clear that the nation did not get to this precarious situation overnight – it is obvious that failure by governments at all levels to face the situation with all the seriousness it required played a big part.


For instance, it still beats the imagination that the same set of people saddled with the responsibility of protecting lives and properties, and who have clearly failed to do so from the daily reports we get, are still keeping their jobs. Like I have noted in previous write ups, the famous German theoretical physicist, Albert Einstein said: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results!” And yet we are still going down the same path. But why security chiefs are on their own not trying anything differently is also a source for concern.


Four years ago, a former Secretary to the Government, Chief Olu Falaye was attacked and abducted on his Ilado farm in Akure. Chief Falaye, who was also a one-time Finance Minister, insisted that it was six Fulani herdsmen who had carried out the abduction. And yet here we are years later still talking about the same set of people who rather than being degraded have become more daring, brutal and more widespread in carrying out their dastardly actions. This is clearly a sign that we have not learnt any lessons from previous incidences and evolved correspondingly to tackle them.


When Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda successfully breached the defences of the US intelligence agencies and carried out their multiple attacks on mainland America in 2001, the agencies did soul searching checked what they did wrong and have ensured that no such large scale attack has taken place since then.


The same thing in the UK, where security and intelligence services working in synch have been able to foil a repeat of the 7/7 (July 7) attacks of 2005, which killed 52 people of 18 different nationalities and injured more than 700 in Britain’s deadliest terrorist incident since the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 near Lockerbie, Scotland, and England’s deadliest since the 1974 Birmingham pub bombings, as well as the country’s first Islamist suicide attack.


While it is good for our leaders to show empathy with the victims when such sad incidents happen, what we will want more than anything else is for them not to have to do so because they would not have to console bereaved families having ensured enhanced security across the land. Intelligence gathering should be stepped up by all those concerned with our security, while they should also be equipped with the latest gadgets in order to successfully carry out the very important task of protecting the lives and properties of the citizens.


Government should also not shy away from seeking assistance from wherever so long as it will improve the performances of our security services and allow citizens go about their daily chores without fearing for their lives. It is a given that an economy can only thrive in a safe and secure environment – of which, unfortunately, Nigeria is far from.

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Hearing impairment



Hearing impairment

A Yoruba nollywood actress fondly referred to as ‘’no network’’ elicits a spinning laughter when she is immersed in her thespian role. It is essentially that of someone that is hard of hearing, someone that echoes and acts ‘’go’’ when ‘’come’’ was the actual instruction………….always hearing and carrying out the contrary.


As funny as her role seems, it’s actually a portrayal of a very disturbing condition. What it is This is a reduced ability to hear sounds in the same way as other people.


• Mild hearing loss: One-on-one conversations are fine, but it’s hard to catch every word when there’s background noise.


• Moderate hearing loss: You often need to ask people to repeat themselves during conversations in person and on the phone. • Severe hearing loss: Following a conversation is almost impossible unless you have a hearing aid.


• Profound hearing loss: You can’t hear when other people speaking, unless they are extremely loud. You can’t understand what they’re saying without a hearing aid.


Deafness: This occurs when a person cannot understand speech through hearing, even when sound is amplified.


Profound deafness: This refers to a total lack of hearing.


An individual with profound deafness is unable to detect sound at all. Types of hearing loss Hearing loss is defined as one of three types:


• Conductive (involves outer or middle ear)


• Sensorineural (involves inner ear)


• Mixed (combination of the two) The act of hearing Sound waves enter the ear, move down the ear or auditory canal, and hit the eardrum, which vibrates. The vibrations from the eardrum pass to three bones known as the ossicles in the middle ear.


These ossicles amplify the vibrations, which are then picked up by small hair-like cells in the cochlea. These move as the vibrations hit them, and the movement data is sent through the auditory nerve to the brain.


The brain processes the data, which a person with functional hearing will interpret as sound. Causes of hearing impairment


• Damage to the inner ear. Aging and exposure to loud noise may cause wear and tear on the hairs or nerve cells in the cochlea (the sense organ that translates sound into nerve impulses to be sent to the brain). When these hairs or nerve cells are damaged or missing, electrical signals aren’t transmitted as efficiently, and hearing loss occurs. Higher pitched tones may become muffled to you. It may become difficult for you to pick out words against background noise.


• Gradual buildup of earwax. Earwax can block the ear canal and prevent conduction of sound waves. Earwax removal can help restore your hearing.


• Ear infection and abnormal bone growths or tumors. In the outer or middle ear, any of these can cause hearing loss.


• Ruptured eardrum (tympanic membrane perforation). Loud blasts of noise, sudden changes in pressure, poking your eardrum with an object and infection can cause your eardrum to rupture and affect your hearing. Risk factors


• Aging. Degeneration of inner ear structures occurs over time. • Loud noise. Exposure to loud sounds can damage the cells of your inner ear. Damage can occur with long-term exposure to loud noises, or from a short blast of noise, such as from a gunshot. • Heredity. Genetic makeup may make one more susceptible to ear damage from sound or deterioration from aging.


• Occupational noises. Jobs where loud noise is a regular part of the working environment, such as farming, construction or factory work, can lead to damage inside your ear.


• Recreational noises. Exposure to explosive noises, such as from firearms and jet engines, can cause immediate, permanent hearing loss. Other recreational activities with dangerously high noise levels include power biking, carpentry or listening to loud music.


• Some medications. Drugs such as the antibiotic gentamicin, sildenafil (Viagra) and certain chemotherapy drugs, can damage the inner ear.


Temporary effects on your hearing — ringing in the ear (tinnitus) or hearing loss — can occur if you take very high doses of aspirin, other pain relievers, antimalarial drugs (chloroquine and quinine) or loop diuretics (drugs that rid the body of water)


• Some illnesses. Diseases or illnesses that result in high fever, such as meningitis, may damage the cochlea. Symptoms In adults


• Have trouble following a conversation when more than one person speaks at once


• Think other people are mumbling or not speaking clearly • Often misunderstand what others say and respond inappropriately


• Get complaints that the TV is too loud



• Hear ringing, roaring, or hissing sounds in your ears, known as tinnitus • High-pitched sounds, such as children’s and female voices,


• The sounds “S” and “F” become harder to make out. In infants


• Before the age of 4 months, the baby does not turn their head toward a noise. • By the age of 12 months, the baby still has not uttered a single word.


• The infant does not appear to be startled by a loud noise.


• The infant responds to you when they can see you, but respond far less or do not respond at all when you are out of sight and call out their name.


• The infant only seems to be aware of certain sounds. In toddlers and children


• The child is behind others the same age in oral communication.


• The child keeps saying “What?” or “Pardon?”


• The child talks in a very loud voice, and tends to produce louder-than-normal noises.


• When the child speaks, their utterances are not clear. What to do Please visit or take your ward to visit the hospital as soon as possible when any abnormality is noted.


The general practitioner will surely make a referral to the ear, nose and throat doctor.

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The marriage of these days (Part 2)



The marriage of these days (Part 2)

One of the vital information required before engaging in marital relationship for instance, has to do with difference in variables in behavioural patterns, even in areas of economics. No two individuals in this whole wide world are the same in everything.


Let us look at family economics for instance. If a man grew up in a home where his father did nothing but left his mother to shoulder all financial responsibilities of the family, the man is likely not to contribute a penny to the financial upkeep of his family when he gets married. You cannot accuse him of not loving his wife and family based on that character because he sees that lifestyle as a norm. If it was his father that shouldered all financial responsibilities when he was growing up, he is not likely to expect any financial contributions from his wife when he marries.


If it was a girl that grew up seeing her father shoulder every single financial responsibility, she is not likely to contribute anything financially to her family when she marries, even when her husband’s income is a peanut when compared to hers.


Don’t accuse her of not loving her husband because she is doing what she believes is right. On the other hand, if it was her mother that shouldered financial responsibilities when she was growing up, she is likely to aspire and actually do the same thing. It is only education, positive social interactions, informal exposure to learning or change of orientation along the path of growing up that can make things happen differently.


These are some of the background checks that ought to be made during courtship. This is why I wonder whether those who get mar- ried without courtship actually understand the meaning and implications of marriage. Wrong orientation about marital relationship is a huge challenge. As a guy or lady, you have a friend of same gender.


You are so close, love each other so well, and you have been able to successfully maintain this relationship for years, even as wretched people. In fact, people have even forgotten that you are mere friends rather than blood brothers or sisters.


The relationship has remained sweet with or without affluence. Now, you have married someone of the opposite sex that you supposedly love.


Because of a minor offence, probably related to money, you are already contemplating separation or divorce. Would you say you are serious with life? For decades, you loved and lived with your parents and blood relatives who frequently offended you and you forgave them.


In fact, as you read this write-up, you know they will still offend you tomorrow. Are you contemplating divorcing them? Is it possible to do away with them? No, of course! So, why are you so embittered that your spouse of a few years relationship offended you? You are already contemplating divorce, forgetting that you made a covenant before your creator as marriage vow.


Development of warped values has also become a huge challenge. As I said in previous editions for instance, the notion that once there is plenty of money, success in marriage is guaranteed, is a wrong notion. I am still waiting for someone to prove me wrong on this stand by explaining to me why divorce rate among popular billionaire couples has continued to increase.


In the midst of growing number of divorce cases today, there are couples in our environments whose level of sweetness and love in marriage have continued to grow, with or without affluence. The truth is that marrying someone is a journey into discovering who the person is. Before you discover someone else however, have you discovered yourself?


There are many people that were ‘very good’ and happy as singles. Their problems started when they got married to someone. In many of such cases, issues of compatibility were not addressed by the couple before choosing to get married to each other. So, the problem cannot be the relationship itself. Relationship is a good thing. In fact, relationship is everything.


The problem is with the operators of the relationship. The ‘relators’ as it were, have a problem.


Today, you can have a happy marriage and family if you want. If your marriage has a challenge, you need to approach the right source for solution. Seeking counsel or a solution from a wrong source can be likened to seeking the services of a carpenter to mend your faulty dress or car.


“For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ” (1st Corinthians 3:11).


If your marriage is approved of God, the solution to any challenge in that marriage is not in any other way, than the way and method of God as reflected in his word. Marriage is so important to God that the very first miracle that Jesus performed in Cana was at a wedding ceremony in John chapter 2.


If you have a marital challenge and someone is counselling you, that counsel must be weighed with the word of God.


“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in his law he meditates day and night” (Psalm 1:1-2).


The day you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and personal saviour, there is no longer a YOU. “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the son of God who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 5:20).


I hope you know that your prayers may never be answered when you mistreat your spouse? (1st Peter 3:7). Your personal relationship with your owner and maker is priority.

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The worrisome Shi’ites’ protests



The worrisome Shi’ites’ protests

After the December 2015 clash between the military and members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) otherwise known as Shi’ites, a friend sent a video clip of 1 minute and 25 seconds detailing the activities of the IMN. The impression I have each time I watch the video is that the Shi’ites have constituted themselves into a government within a government.

They have different paramilitary groups. Each of them has different uniforms, separate flags and all paraphernalia of a paramilitary group. There is a particular group whose members carry wooden swords. And behind El Zakzaky, there are two men in dark glasses wearing suits.

Apart from these two there are men who dress in a similar fashion scattered all over the expansive compound where the Shi’ites hold what looks like a rally or one of the programmes in the group’s calendar. From my understanding of the men in suit, they are like equivalent of NIgeria’s Department of State Security (DSS).

The crowd was very large and their loyalty to their leader appears absolute. Although the event appears to be entirely ceremonial as it lacks the firepower of breecloading rifles and machine guns often seen in a normal military parade, the Shi’ites’ paramilitary groups exhibit decorum, discipline and professionalism. In the said video, the leader of the Shi’ites, Ibrahim El Zakzaky, gave a short address before he went ahead to inspect a guard of honour just like heads of government do in different countries. El Zakzaky has this to say in the video:

“Even if a person has no knowledge of Allah and the hereafter, he will not fail to realise that he cannot just simply KILL A MAN WITH MULTITUDE OF SUPPORTERS AND LIVE HIS OWN LIFE FREELY WITHOUT ANY REPERCUSSION (Emphasis mine).

His reason should tell him this.” Shortly before El Zakzaky left the podium to inspect a guard of honour mounted by one of the groups, another group of men who also dress in a paramilitary uniforms stand in front of the rostrum, raise their hands and pledge loyalty to their leader: “Our allegiance to you El Zakzaky!” They chorused.

What crosses my mind each time I watch the video are: where does the money IMN use in organising such large paramilitary groups come from? What is the intent behind this? Is the training being organised in Nigeria or outside the shores of Nigeria? If IT IS, where are those men being trained? How are they recruited? Have our security agents watched the video? What is their thinking? Are those men security risk or they should be the least of our worries? Since I am not a security agent and won’t pretend to be one, I think security agents should dissipate more energy using intelligence report to unravel what is gradually becoming Shi’ites’ uprising in the country going by what happened at the National As sembly on Tuesday to protest continued incarceration of their leader, who is standing trial and has been in detention since December 2015. My fear is that the Shi’ites may be another keg of gun powder waiting to explode if care is not taken.

Members of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, popularly known as Shi’ites, on Tuesday invaded the National Assembly and allegedly shot two policemen and attacked six others. The sect members who also reportedly armed themselves with sticks and stones went ahead to burn three vehicles and vandalized some others on the premises of the National Assembly. Another report had it that the Shi’ite members overpowered the policemen at the gate of the NASS, collected one of their guns and shot the two security operatives.

They entered the main entrance popularly known as MOPOL gate and allegedly vandalised the gate house. The sect unleashed terror on security operatives when tear-gas canisters were thrown to disperse them. Although the Federal Capital Territory Police spokesman, Anjuguri Manzah, said no policeman died during the clash with the IMN members, He said, “We don’t have any casualty, no policeman died. Why would we hide such a thing? There was no casualty.”

He also denied that the IMN members seized a gun from a policeman. He said, “No police gun is missing, we have no record that the Shi’ite members snatched guns from our men. “ I just hope the police are not behaving like the proverbial man that was clubbed many times by a mob but insisted that he was not clubbed just to cover up and gave a false impression that all was well with him. For the time, the sect members protested in Lagos on Wednesday. One of the sect leaders was quoted as saying: “I was surprised when the IGP claimed that our members attacked the police.

We know where to get guns if we want to get them. ‘’When 21 million of our members contribute funds, I can tell you that we will raise N21 billion. And we all know what that can do if we decide to buy arms with such funds.”

This statement should get us worried particularly because it came from a religious group that has large followership in the country. Our security sgents cannot afford to wave aside this statement that is pregnant with meaning. Religious bigotry and ethnic sentiments are already a double-edged sword piercing the soul of our nation and this explains my worry over the incessant clashes between the Shi’ites and security agents.

I am more worried that on on July 25, 2014, there was a clash between the Army and the Shi’ites resulting in the killing of 35 members of the group including three sons of the sect leader, El Zakzaky. Between 2014 and 2015, report has it that the sect leader lost six of his children to the incessant clashes.

The December 2015 clash between the Army and the sect, resulted in the killing of 347 sect members, and the outcome of the panel set up by the Kaduna State government to probe the killings shows that we have not really learnt anything on past religious uprisings.

The panel indicted the sect and rightly so for operating paramilitary groups while its members do not recognise and disrespect the law of the country and constituted authorities. For years, the sect behaved like a parallel government and politicians encouraged them and their obduracy by showing lack of political will to deal with the recalcitrant group. But the sect has forgotten that there is always a first time and theirs came when they had a clash with the soldiers in December 2015.

The Shi’ites were on a suicide mission by insisting that the convoy of the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), Lt. Gen. Turkur Buratai, should turn back because they were having a possession. Who cares if the Shi’ites trek from Kaduna to China provided their activities do not infringe on rights of other citizens? Sections 38 and 40 of the constitution guarantee the group freedom of thought and worship which must also be done within the confines of the law.

There cannot be justification for the shutting down of a state just because a group wants to embark on religious activities. However, the continued silence on the extra- judicial killings by the soldiers as enumerated by the panel is a cause for concern and this is dangerous.

The panel had revealed that 347 Shi’ites were killed by the soldiers and the majority of them were given secret burial by some state government officials and about 40 soldiers led by a major. If there are consequences for disobedience to the law of the land by the sect, there should also be consequences for the extra-judicial killings by the soldiers. Unless if we want to claim that the Shi’ites were killed by “unknown soldiers.”

The extra-judicial killings of Yusuf Mohammed, the leader of the Boko Haram, and some of his members in 2009 is perhaps the price we are still paying today as the group became deadly shortly after the incident. Although the Federal Government had given the impression that the insurgents had been defeated. But the ability of the terror group to carry out unexpected devastating attacks on the Nigerian troops is a pointer to the fact that the battle has not been won.

This is without prejudice to the tremendous successes achieved so far by our gallant soldiers. The invasion of the NASS complex and the protest in Lagos are cause for concern. While it is not right for President Buhari to order the release of a man standing trial in court as being demanded by members of the sect, the government cannot afford to let him die in prison.

So, he should be given proper medical attention at all times and let members of his family have access to him particularly because the latest protest was fuelled by rumour that the sect leader had stroke in detention during the week. More importantly, his trial should be sped up as justice delayed is justice denied.

The position of the presidency that the December 2015 killing of Shi’ites were purely ”military affairs” is disappointing, and shows that the government does not understand the full import of Karl Marx’s evocative words that ”religion is the opium of the people.” It seems the country is underrating the fact that the Shi’ites can attract sympathy if something is not done to halt these killings. If there are enough grounds to deal with the sect, it is better done using the law instead of these extra-judicial killings. The situation can be handled in a better way.

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The marriage of these days (Part 1)



The marriage of these days (Part 1)

We are in the days when people love things and use people instead of loving people and using things. What does this mean? You love fashion, your dresses, gold, chains, beads, parties, cars, and so on. You use your husband to get them but you don’t care so much about him and his feelings or his challenges.

Do you love things and use people instead of using things and loving people? You are in error. You love your cars, your job, football, your house and your friends but you don’t care that much about your wife. In fact, you love your children that you used your wife to get but you don’t care about your wife, her feelings, challenges, etc. Do you love things and use people instead of using things and loving people? You are in error.

This warped orientation is posing a challenge to the marital institution. This explains why people now rely solely on the social media to shop for wives and husbands just the way they shop for some shoe, handbag or some other domestic items. Perhaps the marriages of our DISCIPLINED grandparents would never have lasted the way they did if they had the internet.

Today, people marry for various reasons outside the right motives for marriage either due to outright ignorance about the right values or due to mass deception. Business partners are coming together to arrange weddings of their children to each other just to sustain their business dynasties.

Someone is marrying someone just to get a travel document to leave the country. Another person is getting wedded to someone just to show competitors or contemporaries that he or she too, can get married. Some other person is getting married for the sole purpose of enjoying sexual pleasure, as if sexual intercourse is the only activity in marriage.

Unknown to such people, sexual urge is a momentary feeling whereas marriage is a lifetime engagement. Even the hype of a wedding ceremony does not guarantee success of a marriage because wedding ceremony is a one-day affair, ceremony. Marriage is a lifetime covenant.

Whenever the motive of a thing is wrong, result is bound to be problematic. For goodness sake. Marriage is a heart affair, beyond documentation and activities. I see people rush to courts to obtain divorce certificates after marriage.

Divorce certificate is just a paper. This is why we also have people who though possess divorce certificates, later go back to the same partner to have sexual intercourse and even live together again. The paper called divorce certificate can never delete the emotional and spiritual connection between the couple involved.

The paper lacks capacity to influence feelings. So, for those who are thinking about divorce certificate or threatening their spouses with this paper, go back and do a sober reflection about how to stop this self deceit and embrace Christ, the solid rock of every successful marriage. Today, there are millions of marriages that are models to copy. Most of the people who are succeeding in marriage based on operation and compliance with God’s word are not public figures. They are most times, not interested in media hype or publicity. Such couples are still very many.

Don’t fool yourself to believe the devil’s lie that marriage begins and ends with the negative marital reports that the mass media feasts on. As a mass communicator, I can explain to you that oddity is a key feature of what constitutes news. You wouldn’t read any newspaper or listen to broadcast media news if all they had to give you were positive reports, especially when they are not religious publications.

For instance, if the media reports that a government official commissioned a project, it might not get LIKES on the social media as much as a report that the commissioner slapped someone during the event. To make high volumes of sales, newspapers MUST report negativities.

That is what gets your attention. It is natural. Therefore, do not use media reports to judge the volume of success of marriages. The married couples that are living happily together are much more in number than the ones you hear about through the mass media.

In this information age, the negative picture portrayed about marriage and what it has to offer has continued to expand, with more unmarried people, resolving never to enrol in the marital institution. This is based on formed perceptions. Many are even asking whether or not, marriage is still a good idea. Many people allow the impact of the information age and the social media to negatively influence their psyche to the extent of truncating their marital destinies.

If it is about social media deceit, don’t begin to feel you have married the wrong person because of the social media photos of happily married couples you see. Such photos hardly have images of people with frowned faces.

That is how deceptive it can be. You may be happier in your relationship than those you are despising your spouse for, over their photographs. Look at this. When you aspire to become a lawyer or medical doctor, you could spend over four years in the university, preparing yourself and gathering knowledge and information to practice a profession that you could dump after some years and make a switch to music, agriculture or some different area of endeavour.

Now, you intend to enter a marital institution where you will spend the rest of your life. You are not interested in gathering information about the institution. Marriage seminars and other educative fora don’t interest you. Why then should you expect surprise when you meet avoidable challenges after getting married? If you have a notion that all men or all women are the same, you can hardly have a happy marriage because no two individuals in this whole wide world are the same in everything.

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When governance goes on vacation



When governance goes on vacation

Early this year Nigerians were the toast of the politicians as those seeking elective office crisscrossed the nation, both at federal and state levels, promising the populace heaven and earth as they strived hard to woo the votes of the electorate. While the Presidential and National Assembly polls took place on February 23, those of the governors and state houses of assembly finally held on March 9, and within about a week of each, the results were announced. President Muhammadu Buhari and his All Progressives Congress (APC) were able to convince 55.6% of the electorate to stick with him for a second term – more than three million votes ahead of the opposition party’s (PDP) candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.

Buhari’s party also swept most of the National Assembly and state governorship positions to further cement their position as the number one party in the land. Incidentally, the quest to get into office actually kicked off on Sunday, November 18, 2018, when candidates’ vying for political offices began their campaigns, in line with the timetable by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

On paper, INEC registered 91 parties but not all of them fielded candidates and in the end, only the two major parties mustered enough votes for their candidates to get elected as either governors or the president.

In his, 2019 campaign manual tagged the “Next Level,” Buhari said his administration had worked hard to fulfill his promises laid the foundations for a strong, stable and preposterous country, particularly in the core areas of economic revival, anti-corruption and fight against insurgency, despite challenges posed by weak oil prices and low oil production.” Now with these ‘fulfilments’ in mind, he and his party are convinced that they are “in good stead to trudge on the next level of the building an even stronger nation for our people.”

The President added that the next level of efforts would focus on job creation across various businesses and help create over 15 million new jobs, overhaul the education sector, remodel 10,000 schools every year to train teachers to impart science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics.

But sadly five months after he won his re-election and about six weeks after he was sworn into office for his final four-year tenure, the nation is still in the dark over what exactly we are to expect from him and his government. Following the criticisms that greeted the long delay in appointing ministers in his first term (ostensibly because according to the President he was looking for “saints”), one would have expected things to be different this time around.

Alas, so far, nothing has changed, and one can only pray that the nation will not have to wait another six months like we did during his first term. Many are of the opinion that he should have had an inclining of the kind of people he can work with from his first tenure in office. Without the appointment of ministers, the nation is stuck in limbo since there is no one to drive the government’s policy direction.

The bug is not just limited to the federal scene. At the state level, it is equally the same scenario. Virtually all the governors are currently on “vacation” with most of them yet to name their cabinets and aides that will help them achieve most of the promises they made seeking office. For instance last December while campaigning; one of the promises made by thengubernatorial hopeful, Jide Sanwo-Olu was the rehabilitation of the Badagry Expressway, and although last week his deputy, Obafemi Hamzat announced that work would soon commence on the 65-kilometer road, however, there are still many areas of the state awaiting his touch, which has negated his promise to “hit the ground running” should he win.

Then a few days to his inauguration while speaking at the “Sanwo-Olu/Hazmat Victory Party” organised by the Independent Campaign Group (ICG), his campaign organisation, Sanwo-Olu once again promised to fulfill all his electoral promises. Sanwo-Olu said he was fully prepared for the challenges of governance and that he would give his best to take the state to the next level.

Then governor-elect, he said he would proffer solutions to the nagging problem of traffic gridlock and deal with the issue of waste decisively. However, traffic gridlocks still remain, while refuse heaps still, dot the landscape. But perhaps more telling is the fact that more potholes appear to have surfaced on all the major roads, while traffic and street lights are still not properly functioning further contributing to the nightmare of driving on Lagos streets.

This slow pace of governance coupled with Sanwo-Olu’s the decision to travel to Egypt to watch the Eagles beat Cameroon last weekend left him open to attack from the opposition PDP, with Publicity Secretary of the party in the state, Mr. Taofik Gani saying trip as a waste of tax payer’s money. He also pointed out that the problems of bad roads, gridlock and others were begging for attention, urging Sanwo-Olu to give governance priority.

In Oyo State, the state chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) accused Governor Seyi Makinde, of making a U-turn on his electoral promises. The party, which noted that it was too early for Makinde to break his promises, asked him to focus on fulfilling them. The Publicity Secretary of the party, Dr. AbdulAzeez Olatunde, said it seemed that the governor and his handlers were unprepared to govern the state, which APC lost in March. Olatunde said: “Makinde said during his electoral campaign that Oyo workers deserved more than N30, 000 as minimum wage.

Now, he was quoted in Abuja as saying that he could not pay the N30, 000 minimum wage. We (APC) decided not to comment on Makinde’s electoral promise U-turn because we want the people of Oyo State to judge him.”

In Imo State, which also has a new government in place, the Deputy Speaker of the Imo State House of Assembly, Okey Onyekanma, has urged the House to probe the former governor, Rochas Okorocha, for allegedly spending about N500m to renovate the state House of Assembly complex. And up North in Bauchi State, Governor, Bala Mohammed, alleged that his predecessor, Mohammed Abubakar, spent N2.3billion to buy materials for burial in the state. But ex-governor Abubakar dismissed the allegation, describing it as laughable.

Weeks after their inaugurations these are some of the things that the electorate across the country are being treated to. From the federal to state levels – nothing yet is being done to form their cabinets and begin the process of improving the lot of the citizenry. It is clear from some of the examples enumerated above the malaise is not limited to any party but is a general problem that cuts across the board. From the look of things, it is very clear that our politicians think of themselves first and foremost, whichever party they may belong too. We can only pray that they will soon end their “vacations” and get down to work trying to sort out the many problems facing us as a nation.

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Pink Eye



Pink Eye

The scene

Mr Okt woke up one fateful morning with red, swollen eyes and associated sharp sensation in same. He could vividly remember that in the early part of the previous day, he shook hands with some colleagues ; two of them having the same symptoms he’s currently experiencing. He could also recollect that not long after the handshake he rubbed his eyes with same hands. Could he have picked ‘’something’’ from the handshake and transmitted it to his own eyes?

What it is

‘’Apollo’’ aka Conjunctivitis aka Pink Eye aka Pinkeye is the most common eye disease. It is inflammation (swelling) of the outermost layer of the white part of the eye and the inner surface of the eyelid. It makes the eye appear pink or reddish. For many victims the disease runs its full course even if you apply medication. ‘’If any member of the family picks it, it literally afflicts other family members. For school pupils it is a nightmare. If your child’s classmate gets it, oh, it is a sure bet your child will get it. the experience can be traumatic. If it happens in the period of examinations, that child is in a dilemma.

  In fact some school authorities stop a child afflicted with Apollo from coming to school until healing is complete for fear of spreading the disease’’. Like the beautiful game (Football), Apollo unites tribes, nations, religions, age groups and sexual orientations. It spares nobody!

The Legend

Though, the circumstances under which it became labeled ‘’Apollo’’ in Nigeria is not too clear but ‘’Legend has it that the disease became more severe in Nigeria at end of year after the United States sent man to the moon in the Apollo spacecraft in 1969. And since then, come December every year, many Nigerians suffer from the eye affliction during the Xmas/New Year period when the cold, dry harmattan wind blows at full throttle’’.


The most common infectious causes are viral followed by bacterial. The viral infection may occur along with other symptoms of a common cold. Viral and bacterial cases are easily spread between people. Allergies to pollen or animal hair is also a common cause


This type of pinkeye often results from the viruses that cause a common cold. Just as a cold must run its course, so must this form of pinkeye, which usually lasts from four to seven days. Adenoviruses or Enteroviruses are the most common cause of viral conjunctivitis , the condition is highly contagious, usually for as long as the eyes are red. Transmission may occur through accidental inoculation of viral particles from the patient’s hands or by contact with infected upper respiratory droplets, fomites (objects or materials which are likely to carry infection) or contaminated swimming pools. The infection usually resolves spontaneously within 2-4 weeks.


The most common causes of acute bacterial conjunctivitis are Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and Haemophilus influenzae.


Conjunctivitis may also be caused by allergens such as pollen, perfumes, cosmetics, smoke, dust mites and eye drops.


Chemical eye injury is due to either an acidic or alkali substance getting in the eye. Alkalis are typically worse than acidic burns. Mild burns will produce conjunctivitis, while more severe burns may cause the cornea to turn white.

What you may notice

It makes the eye appear pink or reddish. There may also be pain, burning, scratchiness, or itchiness. A person afflicted with Apollo can hardly look at sunlight, it can be very painful. The affected eye may have increased tears or be “stuck shut” in the morning and become really painful when exposed to sunlight (photophobia). Swelling of the white part of the eye may also occur. Itching of the eye is more common in cases due to allergies. Conjunctivitis can affect one or both eyes.


To reduce the pain, the Apollo victim wears dark eye glasses.


Viral conjunctivitis usually resolves on its own and does not require any specific treatment.


For the allergic type, cool water poured over the face with the head inclined downward sometimes relieve discomfort in mild cases. In more severe cases, drugs are prescribed.


Bacterial conjunctivitis may resolve without treatment, drugs are prescribed only if no improvement is observed after about 3 days. In those who wear contact lenses, are immunocompromised, have disease which is thought to be due to chlamydia or gonorrhea, have a fair bit of pain, or who have lots of discharge, antibiotics are recommended.


Conjunctivitis due to chemicals is treated via irrigation with saline solution (little amount of salt mixed with moderate volume of water). Chemical injuries (particularly alkali burns) are medical emergencies, as they can lead to severe scarring and intraocular damage. People with chemically induced conjunctivitis should not touch their eyes, regardless of whether or not their hands are clean, as they run the risk of spreading the condition to another eye.


Use a clean towel or tissue each time you wipe your face and eyes.

Wash your hands very often. Always wash them before and after you eat, when you go to the bathroom, or after you sneeze or cough.

Try not to touch your eyes. If you do, wash your hands right away.

Bacteria can live in makeup. This can cause pink eye and even a dangerous infection of the cornea. Do not use eye makeup while your eyes are infected. Replace your makeup if you have an eye infection. And never share eye makeup with others.

Make sure to clean your contact lenses exactly as your ophthalmologist recommends.

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Searching for a perfect spouse to marry



Searching for a perfect spouse to marry

Today, many guys and ladies that are old enough to get married have remained single because they are looking for someone who possesses qualities of a perfect man or woman. They fail to realize that they equally posses certain imperfections they think that others posses. For instance, someone tells me that these days, people don’t marry for love but for money and so, they are searching for someone who would marry them for true love.


Let me assume that the assertion about no more true love is true and it is coming from you. Let us now, examine you, who is making the assertion. 1st Corinthians 13:4-7 explains love. “Love is patient and kind. Love does not envy or boast. It is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way.


It is not irritable or resentful. It does not rejoice at wrong doing but rejoices with the truth. Loves bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” My dear, do you posses this quality? If you do not, you do not have a right to accuse any opposite sex of not possessing it. In other words, your search for a perfect guy or lady to marry is an act of self deception, selfishness because you are not perfect. You must be ready to give what you desire in a spouse before you begin to pray for a perfect spouse.


Emphasis here is on readiness and willingness to offer what you desire. I have not come to actually offering it. There are so many things that have been termed to be love, which are not. This is because each person is offering his or her own definition of love outside scriptures. The number of friends you attract to yourself through the social media for instance, does not necessarily indicate how much you are loved by those friends. There are two categories of friends. Some friends are seasonal friends.


This means that they are meant for a particular season. Just the way you outgrow your shoes or dress as you grow older, you can outgrow your seasonal friends. When this happens, you make new friends. You are supposed to marry a permanent friend. This permanent friend is not perfect as a person, but has the qualities of a friend. So, your search for a permanent human being as your life partner is a futile search. Do not get carried away by emotional sentiments, especially as a single person.


Anybody that tells you he or she cannot live without you is lying because the person is not oxygen. It is only oxygen that nobody can live without, and it comes from God himself. After wedding, two have become one. But before wedding, don’t get carried away by the talk of I can’t live without you. The person has lived for decades without even knowing you. Remember? In searching for a spouse, you have to be real. Your dream spouse is perfect. Your reality spouse is imperfect. Perfection is a lie. Reality is true.


If you really want to marry soon, look for Mr/Mrs Reality. Stop waiting for Mr/Mrs Perfect because perfection is a lie. One of the vital information required before engaging in marital relationship for instance, has to do with difference in variables in behavioural patterns, even in areas of economics. No two individuals in this whole wide world are the same in everything. Let us look at family economics for instance.


If a man grew up in a home where his father did nothing but left his mother to shoulder all financial responsibilities of the family, the man is likely not to contribute a penny to the financial upkeep of his family when he gets married. You cannot accuse him of not loving his wife and family based on that character because he sees that lifestyle as a norm. If it was his father that shouldered all financial responsibilities when he was growing up, he is not likely to expect any financial contributions from his wife when he marries.


If it was a girl that grew up seeing her father shoulder every single financial responsibility, she is not likely to contribute anything financially to her family when she marries, even when her husband’s income is a peanut when compared to hers.


Don’t accuse her of not loving her husband because she is doing what she believes is right. On the other hand, if it was her mother that shouldered financial responsibilities when she was growing up, she is likely to aspire and actually do the same thing. It is only education, positive social interactions, informal exposure to learning or change of orientation along the path of growing up that can make things happen differently.


These are some of the background checks that ought to be made during courtship. This is why I wonder whether those who get married without courtship actually understand the meaning and implications of marriage. When two become one after wedding, it means each one has become half. It does not mean that one of the two has become zero. That is the perfection that you should seek in searching for a life partner. However, the only way you can get this is to have your premarital and marital relationship founded on Christ Jesus (1st Corinthians 3:11). Comply strictly with the word of God. First, surrender your heart to Jesus to posses.


Then, marry a believer. Likes attract likes. I am not talking about church goer or someone with spiritual title. Anybody can be called any title. I am talking about a born again Christian. Don’t tell me you are confused as to knowing the difference. The capacity to decipher the difference itself, is an evidence of your Christianity.

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Boko Haram: Time to ‘jaw jaw’ instead of ‘war war’



Boko Haram: Time to ‘jaw jaw’ instead of ‘war war’




Some 18 years ago, on September 11, 2001 to be precise, the horrors of what modern day terrorism had become was driven into our psyche when the world woke up to the news of the audacious attack on mainland United States of America by militant group, Al-Qaeda. Although previously only on the radar of a number of security agencies, the Tuesday morning attack was to change all that and Al-Qaeda and its now late leader, Osama bin Laden were to become instant household names the world over.


The Saudi-born billionaire, who had conceptualised and bankrolled the operation, had his operatives (19 in number) hijack four passenger planes, turn them into weapons and attack a number of key targets including the iconic twin towers in New York and the headquarters of the US military, the Pentagon among others.


The dastardly attack killed 2,996 people, injured over 6,000 others, and caused at least $10 billion in infrastructure and property damage and left the world’s foremost military and intelligence nation in shock. But showing their remarkable powers of recovery, the United States’ intelligence services immediately rallied and within days had an idea of who was behind the assault; prompting then President George W. Bush to address the nation where he issued a stern warning that those behind the attacks will not go unpunished. Approximately one month after the attacks, on October 7, 2001, the War in Afghanistan began when US and British forces initiated aerial bombing campaigns targeting Taliban and al-Qaeda camps, and then later invaded Afghanistan with ground troops of the Special Forces. This eventually led to the overthrow of the Taliban rule of Afghanistan with the fall of Kandahar on December 7, 2001, by U.S.-led coalition forces.


Two years after the September 11 attacks, the US took the fight to Iraq in continuation  with her “War on Terror”. And although it was finally able to eliminate then ruler, Saddam Hussein after the second Iraqi war, the world’s most powerful army did not really find the same success in its face off with the Taliban in Afghanistan.


According to reports, the “War on Terror” has cost the United States some $6 trillion with the loss of some 7,000 US troops since 2001. And now after spending almost two decades in Afghanistan with no solution in sight, the world’s most advanced military nation, with an active personnel numbering 1,358,193 and 811,000 reservists and with government budgeting $686.1 billion for it last year, the mighty US has finally decided to change tact in its dealings with the Taliban and is now ready to “jaw-jaw” after 18 years of “war-war” had not ended the terrorists. Last weekend, rival Afghans began meeting on Sunday in Qatar, in a fresh attempt to make political headway as the United States sought a peace deal with the Taliban within three months.


The US Special Peace Envoy for Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad has been holding a seventh round of peace talks with the Taliban in Qatar, aimed at bringing the 18-year-old war to an end. Even top US diplomat, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who paid a previously unannounced visit last week to Kabul, had voiced hope for a peace deal with the Taliban “before September 1.” US President, Donald Trump wants to pull all US troops from Afghanistan, believing that the US’s longest war – launched after the September 11, 2001 attacks – no longer makes military or financial sense. But he said the US will “be leaving very strong intelligence, far more than you would normally think,” in an interview with the Fox New Channel’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “It just seems to be a lab for terrorists …


I call it the Harvard of terrorists,” Trump said. So if the mighty US can realise that all their state-of-the-art weaponry backed by a topnotch intelligence service does not match up against a very determined ragtag force and finally decided that perhaps negotiation would be the best way out what is stopping our own government from toeing the same path? Incidentally our own main terrorist headache, Boko Haram kicked off just one year after the September 11 attacks in 2002 under the guidance of its radical spiritual leader, Mohammed Yusuf, whose main goal was to “purify Islam in northern Nigeria.”

However, the summary execution of its leader in July 2009 finally tipped the group into dropping its nonviolence stance and becoming a full-fledged terrorist organisation. Under Abubakar Shekau, who took over after Yusuf’s death, switched to low level insurgency initially against soft targets, but progressing in 2011 to include suicide bombings of police buildings and the United Nations office in Abuja. In mid-2014, the militants gained control of swathes of territory in and around their home state of Borno, estimated at 50,000 square kilometres (20,000 sq. mls) in January 2015, but did not capture the state capital, Maiduguri, where the group was originally based. Of the 2.3 million people displaced by the conflict since May 2013, at least 250,000 have left Nigeria and fled into Cameroon, Chad or Niger. According to reports, Boko Haram killed over 6,600 in 2014.


The group have carried out mass abductions including the kidnapping of 276 schoolgirls from Chibok in April 2014 and followed up with another high profile mass kidnap of 110 Dapchi School girls from the Government Technical Girls College in Dapchi, Yobe, on February 19, 2018. Boko Haram reportedly released all but one of the girls, Leah Sharibu, by March 21 On March 7, 2015, Boko Haram’s leader, Abubakar Shekau pledged allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, rebranding it as Islamic State in West Africa.


And despite repeated claims by the military of the killing of the group’s leader, Shekau has continued to churn out videos mocking them for their inability to actually do so. The group its self has also constantly been a thorn in the flesh of the government which has not only said it was “winning the fight”, but also negating government’s claim that Boko Haram has been “technically defeated. Although government has never disclosed how much it has spent or the number of soldiers lost in the line of duty during the long fight against the insurgents, what is very clear that it has come at a very high cost not just in terms of money and military assets, but also on the lives of the ordinary citizens living in the frontline. Many have been uprooted from their homes and their means of livelihood and have become refugees in their own country.


Although many may never have heard of the late British PM, Winston Churchill, but the immortal words he uttered all those years ago that it is better to talk than to fight is something they would be willing to embrace should it finally return peace to their troubled land. So the billion naira question is: If the mighty US can jaw jaw with their main adversary, why can’t our own government? After all if they are able to settle the Boko Haram issue then government would have one less insecurity issue to deal with; while being able to tackle others.

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The tale of a non contagious Central Nervous System disorder



The tale of a non contagious Central Nervous System disorder

Tt has always been interested in gymnastics, it’s something he’s done up to until 8 years ago when he sustained a devastating head injury that changed his life forever. On a particular morning 4 years ago, he went out to another part of town as usual, having taken his first meal of the day at around 8:30am. About mid way in his journey, he started feeling what he’s never felt before; sudden gush of saliva that seem to have emanated from multiples springs filled his mouth. Then he felt an involuntary twitching of his eye lids but he subsequently felt better. The last memory he had was having alighted from the bus and then a blackout! He regained awareness by hearing noises from a distant land, wet from head downwards and hordes flies around his waist area pointed to the fact that the unfortunate had happened!

He was informed that he suddenly fell, jerked repeatedly, foamed from the mouth and in the process water was poured on him by well wishers. He’s had about 6 episodes of seizures since this baseline experience, He recently commenced the usage of medications and he sincerely hope that the effects will be positively magical.


What is Epilepsy?

It is a long term central nervous system disorder, the hallmark of which is recurrent, unprovoked seizures which may be associated with periods of unusual behavior, sensations, and sometimes loss of awareness. A person is diagnosed with epilepsy if they have two unprovoked seizures (or one unprovoked seizure with the likelihood of more) that were not caused by some known and reversible medical condition like alcohol withdrawal or extremely low blood sugar. Epileptic seizures are the result of excessive and abnormal neuronal activity in the cortex of the brain Anyone can develop epilepsy, but it’s more common in young children and older adults. It occurs slightly more in males than in females.


The genesis

Epilepsy occurs as a result of abnormal electrical activity originating in the brain. Brain cells communicate by sending electrical signals in an orderly pattern. In epilepsy, these electrical signals become abnormal, giving rise to an “electrical storm” that produces seizures. These storms may be within a specific part of the brain or be generalized, depending on the type of epilepsy.



Fluid from a lizard can cause it

Saliva from an epileptic could induce same in others



There are two main types of seizures. Generalized seizures affect the whole brain. Focal, or partial seizures, affect just one part of the brain. Focal (partial) seizure can be either Simple or Complex while Generalized seizure has 6 types ; Absence seizure, Tonic seizure, Atonic seizure, Clonic seizure, Myoclonic seizure and Tonic-clonic seizure.



It can be either by Nature (one could be born with it) or could be Nurtured (acquired causes). These 2 factors may overlap in some cases. Acquired causes include;
Chemical imbalance such as low blood sugar or sodium

Head injuries

Certain toxic chemicals or drugs of abuse

Alcohol withdrawal

Stroke, including hemorrhage

Birth injuries




Seizures are the main symptom of epilepsy. Symptoms differ from person to person and according to the type of seizure.


Focal (partial) seizures

A simple partial seizure doesn’t involve loss of consciousness. Symptoms include:

alterations to sense of taste, smell, sight, hearing, or touch


tingling and twitching of limbs

Complex partial seizures involve loss of awareness or consciousness. Other symptoms include:

staring blankly


performing repetitive movements


Generalised seizures

Generalised seizures involve the whole brain. There are six types:

Absence seizures, which used to be called “petit mal seizures,” cause a blank stare. This type of seizure may also cause repetitive movements like lip smacking or blinking. There’s also usually a short loss of awareness.
Tonic seizures cause muscle stiffness.

Atonic seizures lead to loss of muscle control and can make you fall down suddenly.

Clonic seizures are characterized by repeated, jerky muscle movements of the face, neck, and arms.

Myoclonic seizures cause spontaneous quick twitching of the arms and legs.

Tonic-clonic seizures used to be called “grand mal seizures.” Symptoms include:

stiffening of the body


loss of bladder or bowel control

biting of the tongue

loss of consciousness



What are some commonly reported triggers?

Specific time of day or night

Sleep deprivation – overtired, not sleeping well, not getting enough sleep

At times of fevers or other illnesses

Flashing bright lights or patterns

Alcohol or drug use


Associated with menstrual cycle (women) or other hormonal changes

Not eating well, low blood sugar

Specific foods, excess caffeine or other products that may aggravate seizures

Use of certain medications

The best way to identify a trigger is to keep an ‘’Epilepsy journal’’ which details the dates, events, food etc that are associated with each seizure.



Treatment with medications or sometimes surgery can control seizures for the majority of people with epilepsy. Some people require lifelong treatment to control seizures, but for others, the seizures eventually go away. Some children with epilepsy may outgrow the condition with age.


What to do in a non hospital setting

When a seizure occurs, an observer can do the following to prevent injuries.

Cushion the person’s head.

Loosen any tight neckwear.

Turn the person on his or her side.

Do not hold the person down or restrain the person.

Do not place anything in the mouth or try to pry the teeth apart. The person is not in danger of swallowing his or her tongue.

Observe seizure characteristics-length, type of movements, direction of head or eye turning. These characteristics may help the doctor diagnose the type of seizure.

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