31 January, 2015

Chadian soldiers recapture Nigerian town from B'Haram

Chad Fights Boko Haram in Nigeria as Call Goes Out for Regional Force

Chadians Clear Islamist Insurgents from Nigerian Town of Mallam Fatori

Soldiers of the Chadian army at the border between Nigeria and Cameroon on Jan. 21. Chad sent a convoy of troops and 400 military vehicles into neighboring Cameroon to battle Boko Haram on Jan. 17-18. ENLARGE
Soldiers of the Chadian army at the border between Nigeria and Cameroon on Jan. 21. Chad sent a convoy of troops and 400 military vehicles into neighboring Cameroon to battle Boko Haram on Jan. 17-18. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES
Chadian military forces liberated a Nigerian town from Boko Haram militants on Friday, hours after the African Union’s top official called on Nigeria’s neighbors to contribute to a 7,500-strong multinational force to combat the Islamist insurgency escalating beyond the country’s borders and prevent the destabilization of the West African region.
Troops from Nigeria’s neighbor launched their attack on Wednesday, a local military official said. A spokesman for the Nigerian army confirmed the Chadians had cleared Boko Haram from the Nigerian town of Mallam Fatori, and said the operation had been coordinated with Nigeria’s military, also operating in the area.
Chad’s military presence in Nigeria and the African Union’s call for a multinational military operation to push back the militant group underscore both Boko Haram’s reach and the region’s frustration with Nigeria’s failure to contain it.
The call to arms for Nigeria’s neighbors comes at a politically sensitive time for Africa’s largest democracy and top economy.
President Goodluck Jonathan is in a tight contest for re-election, with security being among the main issues in the Feb. 14 vote. Despite having one of the continent’s largest armies, Nigeria’s military has failed to stop Boko Haram from slaughtering thousands of civilians and advancing toward major cities in the country’s northeast.
“The continued attacks in northeastern Nigeria, and the increasing attacks in the Lake Chad Basin, along the border with Chad and Cameroon…have ”far-reaching security and humanitarian consequences,“ Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, the chairwoman of the African Union, said in a statement released late Thursday. ”No efforts should be spared, as part of the AU counterterrorism agenda, to defeat this group.”

It is far from certain that Nigeria would welcome thousands of foreign troops on its soil for an extended period. President Jonathan’s government has largely opposed the idea, though in recent days the government has issued more conflicting opinions.
She asked AU heads of state to approve her proposal for a multinational military force in their meeting Friday afternoon and said the technical details for the mission would be set out Feb. 5-7 at a meeting in Yaoundé, Cameroon’s capital.
On Thursday, the president told a crowd in the northeastern city of Yola that Nigerian troops had liberated the town of Michika again. Warplanes screeched overhead as he spoke.
Nigerian troops have traded control over Michika for months, with Boko Haram slipping into the town, preaching to its residents, recruiting young men and boys, then slipping out as warplanes swoop in, residents said. The Islamic insurgency first overran the town in September: resident James Sunday remembers them going house to house, reassuring the townspeople that Boko Haram wouldn’t harm them, so long as they practiced Islam.
A month later, military jets bombed the area, followed by troops, the military said. Boko Haram left the town—but weeks later, returned, reasserting control. A presidential spokesman told the British Broadcasting Corp. on Friday that the government welcomed the AU’s move to deploy a multinational force to help fight Boko Haram, but days earlier the country’s national security adviser told a conference in London that the foreign force wouldn’t help and wasn’t necessary.
The army has said it is open to foreign military assistance, as long as the entire effort is subordinated into its own command and control structure, a stipulation Nigeria’s neighbors have found frustrating.
Nigeria’s opposition candidate—a retired general tied neck-and-neck with Mr. Jonathan—has made an issue of the incumbent’s reluctance to accept foreign help.
In a recent interview, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari said he would “certainly” welcome an AU force if elected. “If we are in trouble it is only right that we accept their help,” he said Wednesday.
The ramping up of military assistance—from its far poorer neighbors—could be seen as an admission of an inability to cope by the incumbent president. But African leaders appear to have lost patience with President Jonathan, and the Nigerian government to stop the wave of horrific attacks.
“Boko Haram’s horrendous abuses, unspeakable cruelty, total disregard for human lives, and wanton destruction of property are unmatched,” Ms. Dlamini-Zuma said in her statement.
The proposed military force would fight against the Islamist militants, help refugees fleeing their homes because of Boko Haram assaults, and search for the hundreds the group has abducted, including the more than 250 schoolgirls still missing since April last year, according to the statement issued by Ms. Dlamini-Zuma.
She said that the United Nations should finance this new force’s operations through a trust fund and that the setup of the force should follow the template of similar ones in Mali, the Central African Republic and Somalia—all countries that in recent years have teetered on the verge of collapse because of civil conflict.
Still, the force proposed to halt Boko Haram’s rapid emergence as a military threat in Nigeria will be a fraction of the one deployed in Somalia, staffed with more than 22,000 uniformed personnel. The AU’s forces in Mali and CAR are also larger, counting more than 10,000 soldiers each.
The regional army to combat Boko Haram would be staffed with soldiers from Chad, Niger, Nigeria, Cameroon and Benin and be given a year to deploy to begin with, Ms. Dlamini-Zuma said.
—Gbenga Akingbule in Abuja, Nigeria contributed to this article
Write to Drew Hinshaw at drew.hinshaw@wsj.com and Matina Stevis atmatina.stevis@wsj.com

29 January, 2015

Why I won’t be celebrating Nigerian independence

Why I won’t be celebrating Nigerian independence

THIS YEAR I’ve made the decision that I will not be participating in any Nigerian Independence Day celebrations.
And before you raise your glasses and toast to 54 years since we shook off our colonial oppressors, you may want to ask yourself: ‘is there really much to celebrate?’
In April, approximately 276 girls were kidnapped from a boarding school in the area of Chibok, Nigeria – an event that without a grassroots movement would have been silenced and swept under a proverbial rug. Five months later, they are yet to be returned.
When you toast to independence, you are toasting ignorance and a culture of impunity. Your celebration inadvertently implies that you are applauding a nation where, more recently, the failings surpass its successes.
The Nigeria population has been let down when resources as basic as consistent electricity current remain a rarity.
It is a nation sitting in the shadow cast by corrupt and self-serving political figures that pillage its resources like an all-you-can-eat buffet with a two-hour seating time.
The girls of Chibok were failed again when the hashtag #bringbackourgirls was hijacked and revamped as #BringBackJonathan2015 on posters hanging audaciously over the side of buildings to promote President Goodluck Jonathan’s presidential campaign. They were only removed once international criticism began to mount; prompting Jonathan to make a statement that he had never endorsed them in the first place.
Rather than making toasts, throwing parties and tying gaudy geles, what this Independence Day should do is prompt critical thought about what 54 years of self-determination has produced.
In an article on the subject by acclaimed Nigerian playwright Wole Soyinka, he wrote: “If a people must survive, the reign of impunity must end.” This isn’t a critique on terrorism or on corruption; but a critique on ignorance.
Political figures control public resources and are in no genuine manner accountable. Under the fallacy of democracy, continued cultural conflicts have been allowed to divide a nation already historically fragile.
Nigeria is riddled with many inconvenient truths often blanketed by the cloak of patriotism.
The inconvenient truths would identify the number of public figures who manoeuvre and manipulate political circles for personal gain, including an investigation that unearthed and confirmed suspicions of Boko Haram financiers.
Among them, allegedly, is an individual working at the Nigerian Central Bank and another former governor and recent presidential travel companion.
I wonder how the girls of Chibok would have typically celebrated Independence Day; certainly this year would be starkly different to what they’re accustomed to.
If we are toast to anything this year, then let’s celebrate ourselves. Let’s celebrate the enduring nature of the Nigerian people but let’s stop enabling those who are failing the nation with complicit behaviour and premature celebrations.
The next time I celebrate Nigerian independence it will be when the girls of Chibok can celebrate alongside the rest of us and no longer facing a life in captivity, slavery or worse.
Ade Onibada is a freelance journalist, feminist and politics graduate. She is also a proud British Nigerian.


How does the election in Nigeria affect us in the Diaspora?

How does the election in Nigeria affect us in the Diaspora?

IN THE RUNNING: Goodluck Jonathan is expecting another victory in this tight Presidential race
LIKE MANY Nigerian families living abroad, I send money back home at least once every month.
Why? Because, unfortunately, many of these relatives – even those who are graduates and can decorate entire walls with their qualifications – are out of work.
They are unable to work because they cannot find a job.
Who else can we blame but the political party that has ruled Nigeria for 16 years: the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), otherwise known as the ‘People’s Destroying Party’ by many of the country’s citizens.
The World Bank put the unemployment rate in Nigeria at 22 per cent in 2013, while the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has youth unemployment at an unacceptable 54 per cent in 2014.
When translated to an actual human figure, the latter statistic means that at least 64 million out of 170 million Nigerians are unemployed. It’s ridiculous!
Believe me, unemployment has always been an issue in Africa’s most populous country, but it is now at a record high.
Take a moment to think about the sheer amount of people who are unable to sustain themselves. It is no wonder that they depend so much on their relatives living abroad.
As many of us know, Nigeria is a resource-rich country. Why then, can’t its people find jobs? The answer is down to corruption.
Remember Governor James Ibori of the country’s oil-rich Delta state who in 2012 was sentenced by a London court after pleading guilty to fraud and money laundering?
His daughter Erhiatake Ibori will be running as a PDP candidate in the same state as her disgraced father who, according to a judge, acquired his riches “at the expense of some of the poorest people in the world”.
Ibori is one of those people who have participated in the decimation of Nigeria’s economy.
Yet he is currently being considered for extradition under the prisoners transfer programme which the UK government signed with Nigeria.
If this goes ahead, Ibori – perhaps like Diepreye Alamieyeseigha in 2013 (you know, the governor who jumped bail in the UK by allegedly dressing as a woman) – will get to Nigeria and be pardoned by the president.
It leaves many ordinary Nigerians wondering when favours for those with powerful friends will end and a pathway to prosperity for all citizens will begin.

ANTI-CORRUPTION: General Muhammadu Buhari with Professor Yemi Osinbanjo
President Goodluck Jonathan has promised to create two million jobs each year – a pledge I think is unachievable considering his record.
Figures released by the at National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that 500,224 jobs were created across the country in the first six months of 2014.
President Jonathan will fall very short of his target if things follow the same path this year.
For his critics, it is too late.
Two million jobs a year do not solve the backlog of 64 million jobless youth at present and the additional 1.8 million graduates who join them every year.
I’ve done the maths and the numbers don’t add up.
The image of our beloved country is in tatters abroad.
We, who proudly claim to be the giant of Africa, have become the laughing stock of our continent.
The presidential candidate for the opposition party, Muhammadu Buhari, has promised to fix the many problems Nigerians face both at home and abroad.
As an ex-military man who has dealt with insurgents in the past, he and his vice-president, a professor of the law and a former Attorney General of Lagos state, Yemi Osinbajo, pledge to deal with Boko Haram.
They have pledged to eliminate corruption and will also do the same with unemployment by making us less dependent on oil as an income. Oil prices, as the financial markets show, are tumbling.
All things considered, better governance, more transparent and with greater accountability in Nigeria, is beneficial to us in the diaspora.
A safe Nigeria might mean some of us might want to invest in Nigeria. We might want to return back home.
Where there is labour, there will be need for manpower and that means jobs.
If Nigerians want things to change, we cannot do what we have always done. We cannot stay loyal to a political party that since 1999 has held on with little progress to show for it.
Perhaps a change of government is the change Nigeria needs. Maybe, we will see a reverse in fortunes. Instead of us sending remittances back home, our relatives can be in a position to help us here in the UK.

19 January, 2015

Fr. Mbaka resurrects democracy in Igboland.....SKC Ogbonnia:

SKC Ogbonnia: Fr. Mbaka resurrects democracy in Igboland

Any political system without dynamic opposition necessary for the essential competition, accountability, and checks and balances is tantamount to dictatorship and abuse of power. But that has been the case with the presidential politics of the Southeast (SE) zone of Nigeria since the recent democratic transition. The rationale is that a wholesale support for the national ruling party offers best hope, and any counter opinion is a naked sin.
This idea had seemed like the ultimate game-changer. For the various national governments quickly reciprocated, offering rounds of elite portfolios to politicians from the Igbo Southeast. The presidents also backed their agenda with promises and policies that usually appear like the erudite solution to the Igbo’s ageless cries for marginalization. Yet the condition of federal amenities in the zone remains a bad dream told in a hurry.
To make matters worse, the vulnerable masses are usually told to stay the course, with most of the SE governors begging President Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan not to campaign in the zone this time. To them, the Igbos should stand 100% behind the president, regardless of whether he delivered on past promises or not. They would argue that, even if not for performance, the people should lend their support based on the parochial mantra that Jonathan also bears Igbo names—“Ebele and Azikiwe”.
Consequently, there is no strong voice alert to expose the failures of the federal government toward effective leadership in the SE zone. The quagmire becomes more glaring when considered that their two premier pressure groups, the Ohaneze NdiIgbo and World Igbo Congress, have become infiltrated by political buccaneers who sing the president’s praises at home and abroad. Perhaps individuals can raise pertinent issues, but a salient problem with the Igbos is that since the death of Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, the zone has not identified a leader with mass following who could call a spade a spade.
Enter Rev. Fr. Camillus Ejike Mbaka, the dynamic Roman Catholic priest, whose words are enough to mesmerize his fiercest opponents, let alone the Christian faithful, including politicians, who throng day in and day out to his Adoration Ministry in Enugu for spiritual healing—and from far and wide.
One of such faithful is no other person than Dame Patience Jonathan, the ebullient First Lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, who visited the priest on November 9, 2014 to seek heavenly blessings for the husband’s forthcoming 2015 presidential election. Given the dominant support the president enjoys in Igboland and within the Christian Association of Nigeria, Fr. Mbaka glowingly eulogized President Jonathan to the high heavens while invoking the Holy Spirit to stoke a fiery swipe at the opposition, brazenly associating the leading opposition party to the deadly Boko Haram insurgents terrorizing Nigeria. Lo and behold, the First Lady and the teeming congregation roared in agreement. The open aspersions on the opposition and consequent anointment of the sitting president easily served as a pious reminder that there would be no cause for competition for Igbo votes in the presidential polls. Even more, the supporters of the president across the country quickly hailed, lustily drumming the ocassion to further legitimize the reverend gentleman as an unsung saint. But that was then.
As expected, the Prophesy sent shock waves throughout the breath and depth of the Nigerian polity. While the opposition embraced it with pomp and pageantry, the ruling party and its supporters have castigated the priest, now comparing him to the biblical Judas Iscariot.
But the two camps should have no cause for alarm. Prophesies are known to work in miraculous ways. Besides, objective criticism or competition should not discourage but challenge human efforts to greater purpose and possibilities. President Jonathan can overcome the trepidations of the prophesy by doing the needful, exhibiting true leadership, challenging himself to the greater possibilities, starting by Nigeria
Either way, Nigerians, particularly the Igbo masses are the true winners.
The objective fact is that Mbaka’s prophesy is far beyond the simplistic equate of voting for Goodluck Jonathan or Muhammadu Buhari as we know it. Rather, the Prophesy has profoundly resurrected democracy in Igboland for the greater good of the society. For the first time in a long time, the Igbo masses are witnessing in presidential politics a semblance of opposition and the competition vitally essential for democracy, and their votes will not be taken for granted this time. President Jonathan, who was previously dissuaded from campaigning in Igboland, is now truly asking for votes in the zone, rendering accounts of his stewardship, and offering new promises as well as the much needed portions of the presidential war chest. It is also a win-win for democracy that General Buhari, having previously written off the Igbo votes, now sees a huge opening and has begun to vigorously campaign in Igbo cities, offering alternative solutions and his own promises.
The immediate effect is that the Igbos have rediscovered their true DNA and are more emboldened than ever. The Ohaneze, which had maintained a naïve posture, has now discarded its original idea for blanket endorsement and instead opted to list conditions for the people’s votes. The pro-Igbo party, the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), which had already endorsed President Jonathan, is also seriously reevaluating. Even Alexander Ekwueme, an eminent Igbo figure of the ruling party and a former Vice President of Nigeria, never known for careless vituperations, has erupted with his own salvo, admonishing Jonathan for actions instead of mere words.
The Igbo masses are not left behind on the heightened awareness. They have begun to ask pertinent questions, and openly and rightly so, on numerous abandoned or phantom projects, most of which are fully funded but nothing to show on the ground. They are also asking about mass unemployment and kidnapping in the zone, the state of federal universities and teaching hospitals, the quality and state of Akanu Ibiam International Airport, 2nd River Niger Bridge and its PPP/Toll implications, Onitsha Seaport, the sixth state for South East, revitalizing Coal-for-Power, Gas Pipeline across Igbo mainland, inclusion of more Igbo states in OMPADEC, the Southeast/Southwest Rail Line, the endless massacre of Igbo Christians by Boko Haram under Jonathan’s watch; and the state of other infrastructures, particularly the two most important thoroughfares in Igboland: the Enugu/Port Harcourt and Enugu/Onitsha Express roads, constructed under Obasanjo’s military regime, but have remained death traps for decades, even after billions have been allocated.
These dateless but largely ignored projects, ordinarily the anticipated democratic dividend central to the welfare of Igbo masses, are squarely resurrected as part of the national debate; Thanks to the Prophesy of Rev. Fr. Ejike Mbaka!
*Dr. SKC Ogbonnia is the Executive Director, Patriots United for Transparency and Accountability in Nigeria (PUTAN); Phone: 281-802-3449

18 January, 2015

“Black West Africa” and “Boko Haram” Are Not A Priority – White House


If you are still expecting anything from America and 
 probably Europe  ..then watch this interview and analysis.

 Too Bad !!!

Indians handing death and slavery to Nigerians

Indians handing death and slavery to Nigerians

The Indians instructed two Nigerians whom they employed for “cleaning up” such messes for them to use the same forklift to take the dying Tosin out of the company unto the road leading to a hospital
economyThe forklift lifted tons of iron inside the Indian company – African Wires and Allied Industries Nigeria Limited, Plot No. 4-6, Opic Industrial Estate, Agbara, Ogun State. But two heavy discs of iron hooked, so Tosin Olajide, one of the hundreds of casual workers at the company, went up to free the two irons weighing over 1.5 tons each. Suddenly, one of the irons came down on him, trapping him to the ground. No safety helmet was provided for Tosin by the Indians. It took the same forklift to lift the tonnage of iron before the boy could be pulled out.
But the damage had already been done. The iron had chopped off part of his face and broke his foot! His work mates present at the scene of the accident said blood was pumping out of his nostrils as water would rush out of a tap. “Such accidents occur regularly there,” said former safety officer of the company, Mr. Jonathan Abimbola.
Tosin’s life could have been saved if the company had been prompt in providing transport and rushing Tosin to the hospital, eyewitnesses insisted. Unable to find a vehicle in a company whose turnover runs into millions of naira, the Indians instructed two Nigerians who they employed for “cleaning up” such messes for them to use the same forklift to take the dying Tosin out of the company unto the road leading to a hospital. After some kilometers, they saw a pick-up van and transferred Tosin into it. They drove him to one ill-equipped hospital used by the company. But there was no doctor there to attend to the boy. The nurse advised them to take Tosin to the Badagry General Hospital. On their way to Badagry, the pick-up van carrying Tosin broke down. Tosin gave up the ghost before they could reach the general hospital.
Police connivance
With the assistance of the DPO of Agbara police station, said to be at beck and call of the Indians who own the company, Tosin’s body was deposited at the Badagry general hospital mortuary.
Angered by the negligence with which Tosin was handled by management, his colleagues, on the following morning, Thursday 11 December, 2014, gathered at the entrance of the company, refusing to go in. The Indians swiftly reacted by calling in policemen and MOPOLS from Agbara. The DPO of Agbara police station came personally. Together, the policemen fired tear-gas canisters at the workers, beating them and seizing the mobile phones of those who tried to take pictures of the brutality.
Tosin, Saturday Vanguard learnt, could hardly be up to 23 years old, though Mr. Samuel Ogundimu, the personnel manager and one of the most disgusting Nigerian lapdogs of the Indians, according to sources, told our reporter that Tosin was 28.
Tosin had laboured for years for African Wires and Allied Industries under Parco Group of companies for a paltry N850 a day as casual worker, working from 7am to 7pm. Parco Group of
Companies is owned by the Guptas, one of the richest Indians who have lived and done business in Nigeria for more than 50 years, exploiting the endemic circumstances.
Last year, the company employed Mr. Jonathan Abimbola, a chemical engineering graduate from a UK university, as a Safety Officer, “not that the company cared about safety,” said a company source, “but because they wanted to use him as a shield from the harassment of the officials of the
Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity and Federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry.”
Massive exploitation, deadly work conditions
The company thought it could use Mr. Jonathan in the usual way it uses other Nigerians, but that was not to be. Mr. Jonathan was shocked at the way the company uses and exploits Nigerians. For instance, people worked more than the number of hours stipulated by labour laws without any payment for overtime. Moreover, there are no safety measures whatsoever in the company. The Indians expose Nigerians who work for them to all manner of dangers, and whenever accidents occur, the victim or the victim’s family only get a ridiculous amount as compensation.
Death of Tosin’s elder brother
Last year, the chief driver of the company, Tosin Olajide’s elder brother, who drives Mr. Narayan (MD), slumped and died after closing work. Those who should know said “nothing reasonable” was done for the chief driver.
The same year, Onyebuchi, another casual worker, got drowned in a deep reservoir filled with alum water while trying to clean himself up after work. It was not until 12.30 after midnight that Onyebuchi’s body was pulled out of the large body of alum water.
At first, the company was said to have offered Onyebuchi’s family N150,000 as compensation. However, the fiery safety officer, Mr. Abimbola, demanded N5 million for the family. At last, one of the Nigerian lawyers working for the Indians arm-twisted onyebuchi’s family and convinced them to collect N600,000.
Fear of govt agencies
Besides exposing Nigerians who labour for them to danger and making money with their blood and sweat, many don’t understand the attitude of the Indians inside the OPIC Estate any time some kind of inspection team comes around. They can’t explain the pandemonium that occasionally ensues among the Indians whenever officials of the Nigeria Immigration Services, Standard Organisation of Nigeria, Federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity, or other government agencies, arrive at the company’s gate without prior notice to the Indians.
What could be happening inside the OPIC Estate? Have the Indians fully declared to regulatory agencies and the Nigerian government, all the business activities engaged by the four companies rolled into one – the acid plant, the silicate plant, the fertilizer section, and the wire section? Although this may not be said of OPIC there are companies owned by Indians which enjoy duty waivers for the importation of certain goods like irons for the purpose of building factories. But when they import the goods they turn back and sell those goods to Nigerians, forcing the country to continue to be a consumer economy dependent on imported goods, while their home country, India, is known for its booming technology, health export and manufacturing.

But one may blame this on Nigeria’s leaders and government and not those who exploit the circumstances created by Nigeria’s failure.
The Indians make the government believe that their businesses in Nigeria are providing employment to Nigerians. This may appear to be true on face value, but in reality, their exploitative tendencies are a sad commentary. For instance, out of hundreds of Nigerians who work for companies owned by Indians in Nigeria, only a handful of them, probably less than 10, are staffed. Many of them are paid as little as N600 per day, working from 7 am to 7 pm.
The Indian exploitation and enslavement of Nigerians is not limited to their factories.
They select Nigerian young girls meeting their fancies and employ them at home, where they work as cleaners and as sex slaves for Indian men whose wives do not live with them in Nigeria. Sexual harassment of the young Nigerian ladies, even the married ones who work for them, is already viral on the Internet. Nigerian authorities including the police, immigration and Standard Organisation also compromise on matters of compliance to rules as the police demonstrated when Tosin died.
As we write this story, Tosin who died a few days ago has already been buried and forgotten.
“They have completely bought over the Agbara police station,” a company staff told us, adding “you need to see where a policeman is saluting an illiterate Indian. They have also bought over the Federal Ministry of Labour and Productivity. Their contact man at Abeokuta (name withheld) who is on their payroll to make sure that unionism does not take root in the company.”
Tax evasion
Many companies owned by Indians and Lebanese or where they head prefer to bribe tax officials and get tax clearance than to pay their taxes.
Environmental contamination and pollution
There is the issue of environmental pollution and contamination of sources of drinking water supply. Since environmental laws and regulations in Nigeria are porous, hardly enforced, foreigners have field days flouting environmental provisions. Some companies channel toxic waste from the acid and silicate plants directly into gutters. Since the largest sources of drinking water for people nowadays are boreholes, one can almost be certain that the water from those boreholes have been
contaminated by waste water and from factories.
Apart from poor working conditions and pay, it is not surprising that some of the Indian companies are highly insensitive to the environment. In June 2012, an Indian Company, Top Steel Nig. Ltd, in a seeming display of insensitivity to the environment, reportedly erected a transmission pillar and ran a high tension power transmission line directly over the roof of an industrial complex owned by Isocare West Africa Ltd., in which over 100 Nigerians work daily. Both companies are located at the Ikorodu Industrial Estate, Odogunyan, Lagos.
On June 5, 2012, the counsel to Isocare West Africa had met with the General Manager of Top-Steel Nigeria Ltd, Mr. Rajendra Bharadia and explained to him the dangerous implications of mounting a high tension wire directly over the roof of the industrial complex of Isocare West African Limited and advised him to have a rethink.
Mr. Bharadia however, rebuffed the entreaties and went ahead with the project.
Following Isocare’s complaint and petition, the Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency (LASEPA) inspected the project and issued an abatement notice to Top Steel and its General Manager Mr. Rajendra Bharadia to discontinue the project. The order was also ignored by the company.
The Ikorodu Local Government Environmental Task Force also issued a stop work order that and was also ignored.
At the time, the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, in a statement by the Principal Manager (Public Affairs) Mr. Jude Oyenuga, said it portended grave hazards to have buildings or activities under or even within close proximity of a high tension wire.
His words: “The public should bear in mind that these electrical materials are persistently exposed to mother nature which makes them vulnerable to wear and tear. This could lead to the snapping of the line and such accident could happen without notice with dire consequences”.
Mr. Bharadia, after several complaints and directives to him to stop work, was said to have got top officials at the Army Barrack in Ikorodu, Nigerian soldiers and mobile Policemen and stationed them at the construction site, while he personally supervised the erection of the high tension wire. Staff of Isocare West Africa who attempted to take pictures of the erection of the high tension wire over Isocare were reportedly brutalized by mobile policemen.
Culpability of govt agencies, others
Certainly, it would almost be impossible for these companies to succeed without the help of some Nigerians themselves. Beside the officials of the regulatory and law enforcement agencies they keep some faithful Nigerians as members of staff – men who serve as fronts and intermediaries between them and those they compromise.
Reliable sources gave Saturday Vanguard the names of some of those obedient lapdogs in OPIC Estate.
The Personnel Manager, of African Wires and Allied Industries, Mr. Ogundimu, a retiree from a textile company denied that Nigerian workers were being treated poorly. In a telephone interview with Saturday Vanguard, Mr. Ogundimu said Nigerian workers were better treated than what we were told.
- See more at: http://www.vanguardngr.com/2015/01/indians-handing-death-slavery-nigerians/#sthash.IScojVSq.dpuf

06 January, 2015

UK envoy lambasts TB Joshua over AirAsia crash prophesy

Tuesday, December 30, 2014
UK envoy lambasts TB Joshua over AirAsia crash prophesy by Temitayo Famutimi

Internet Punch illustration

The founder of the Synagogue Church of all Nations, Prophet Temitope Joshua, has claimed that he saw a vision of the disappearance of a Singapore-bound AirAsia plane days before the incident. The AirAsia Flight QZ8501, which had 16 children and 146 other passengers and crew members on board, was said to have disappeared from the radar in Surabaya, Indonesia on Sunday. Following the disappearance of the passenger plane, SCOAN released a video on its YouTube page, in which TB Joshua accused Indonesia of failing to heed its earlier warning. "I have a message for the nation, Indonesia. This country, Indonesia – I don't know what is happening. They should pray for Indonesia. That is, the nation Indonesia. When it comes to this disaster issue, I don't want to mention it. It looks so nasty to me to mention – a situation where it will cost a lot of lives, suddenly. "This is a crash. Why should this continue to happen there? I think there is a nature – a geographical atmosphere. There is something there that they should look into," TB Joshua stated in the video sermon which the church claimed had been shot days before the plane's disappearance. The church added that on its YouTube page that in spite of the Indonesia's failure to look into the "geographical atmosphere," TB Joshua and his followers had begun praying "that God would strengthen the family members and friends of all those involved in this tragic incident." But the British High Commissioner to Ghana, Jon Benjamin, urged the general public to dismiss TB Joshua's claims. "But he couldn't prophecy his own church collapsing, killing over 100?" Benjamin, a British foreign service officer of 28 years, who has simultaneous diplomatic accreditationto Togo, Benin and Burkina Faso, said via his Twitter page. Apart from the UK diplomat who carpeted TB Johsua over his claims, an online outrage trailed his prophesy. A Black Briton, based in Croydon, United Kingdom, Melody Badza-Chinouriri, lambasted for claiming to have foretold the air disaster. Badza-Chinourir said, "I will never run to a man who does not even own up to the disaster he failed to avert at his backyard. He even blatantly refused to attend the coroner inquest despite repeated invitations. No accountability whatsoever. "I hope Nigeria will wake up and arrest him this time round. He is putting that country on the spot for wrong reasons. Let him prophesy all the killings happening in Nigeria. Many people have died in Nigeria than Indonesia. You have a prophet; why are you perishing then in Nigeria?" A respondent on Lawyer Omegad queried the credibility of the said video, adding that TB Joshua's controversial prophecies were useless as they had over the years failed to redeem lives. "How come we are only seeing this so-called prophesy today? It's obvious the video was posted many hours after the plane has already gone missing. I doubt this because God revels to redeem," Omegad said. Another online activist, Emeka Martins, said, "Indeed most Nigerians are gullible. Why should they believe in prophesies of end-time fake pastors. TB Joshua should explain to the court what led to the death of those people in his synagogue. Why did he not prophesy his own calamity?" While other online commentators taunted the clergyman strings of prophecies, some Nigerians challenged him to foretell the day in which the abducted Chibok girls would be freed by the fundamentalist Islamist sect, Boko Haram. "We don't want to know which disaster is next, we want a prayer that will bring the Chibok girls back home," a respondent, Samuel David, wrote on SCOAN's YouTube page. However, TB Joshua's followers rallied round him, fending off criticisms of what they described as his divine calling. A Malawian, Elsie PembeKumwenda, insisted on Facebook that the cleric is God sent, saying, "Prophet TB Joshua is doing what no one can do today. Whatever he prophesises comes to pass, yet we don't believe him. We usually regret our actions when it (tragedy) happens. May God give our prophet more of his grace