*Atiku’s Road To Abeokuta and The Pranks of The Old Fox*
Whoever is celebrating Obasanjo’s comment on Atiku at their recent meeting in Abeokuta does not understand or have a good knowledge of the old fox. Doing a content and contextual analysis of his speech I find it more indicting of Atiku than exonerating. There is a lot in that speech to use as ammunition against Atiku. Judging by Atiku’s countenance from the photographs that have emerged from the meeting, I could see he was not comfortable with the presentation by his former boss. Perhaps, with the mode of conveyance. Or even with the presence of ’eminent witnesses. How could one easily stomach all that Obasanjo said of a man that proudly aspires to lead Nigeria in the full glare of the world? What kind of ‘endorsement’ was needed? What agenda on the table?
To me, the endorsement Atiku sought was served with a bag-ful of humiliation, seeing that Obasanjo carefully picked his words with telling effect. Let’s examine a few:
1. ” …my former Vice-President has re-discovered … himself
2. … it is not so much what you did against me that was the issue but what you did against the Party, the Government and the country.
3. I took the stand I had taken based on the character and attributes you exhibited in the position you found yourself. I strongly believe that I was right. It was in the overall interest of everyone and everything to take such a position.
4. There are still areas, nationally and internationally, where you have to mend fences and make amends. You will know how to handle what is already out and what may yet be put out by the opposition
5. With Nigerians voting for you, it will mean that you secure their forgiveness and regain their confidence. It will be with the hope or assurance of a Paul on the road to Damascus Conversion. After all, change and conversion are of man. I believe that with a contrite heart, change is possible in everybody’s life and situation.”
Without any doubt, the Old Fox cleverly exonerated himself of any wrong positioning in all he ever said concerning Atiku. He firmly established his case against his former deputy, leaving the latter no room for rebuttal. He pushed Atiku’s case to the court of public opinion and, like Pontius Pilate, washed his hands clean. How peacefully Atiku slept after that visit may never be known, perhaps, until he writes his memoirs. One thing that is sure is that the sequel to Obasanjo’s trilogy – My Watch – will contain juicy details of how he exacted his pound of flesh from the man to whom he was compelled to prostrate to secure a second term in office as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. What is more, the Sermon on the Presidential Library, Abeokuta has further revealed the quality of trade offs that imperil the soul of our nation.
We must ask questions, for, as Pilate famously asked: ‘ What is the truth?’
So, too, must Nigerians now ask Obasanjo before they decide to cast any vote for Atiku. Let the people ask:
1. What, as Obasanjo proclaimed in his speech, did Atiku do against the country that he has to correct?What should he show contrite for?
2. What are those things he did that were not approved of by the International community, which Obasanjo wants to help him remedy? We shouldn’t accept parables in this case but a full disclosure.
3. We knew the sins of Paul before he got on the road to Damascus. What are the sins of Atiku before he got on the road to Abeokuta?
Obasanjo needs to tell us. He can only forgive Atiku for the sins committed against him and his government, certainly not the ones against the country and against Nigerians. Obasanjo should allow Nigerians to decide that.
4. In his several publications in which he indicted Atiku, Obasanjo has made public those ‘characters and attributes’ his former deputy exhibited. We are not sure a single trip to Damascus, or Abeokuta in this case, by Atiku accompanied by the Jonathan clerics could overnight have changed all that.
By the way Atiku’s ‘trip to Damascus/Abeokuta’ has revealed to us where some ‘revered’ “men of God”belong on the issues confronting our nation – especially in respect of graft.
We also now know that our erstwhile hero and Awo associate, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, was not just a worshipper at Jonathan’s altar but is a full blown PDP apologist. We are watching as the game kicks off.
May Nigeria succeed!
_Senator Babafemi Ojudu , Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters writes from Abuja._
Troops of operation lafiya dole neutralized scores of Boko Haram insurgents, recovers several arms and ammunitions
Troops of Operation Lafiya dole neutralized scores of Boko Haram insurgents, recovers several arms and ammunitions
By Madu Mohammed Maiduguri
The troops of Operation Fire Ball under to the Operation Lafiya Dole of the Nigerian Army have in continuation of it’s ongoing war against insurgency in the Northeast neutralized scores of Boko Haram insurgents and recovered many arms and ammunition’s.
The Army in a statement issued by Brigadier General Bernard Onyeuko, the Acting Director Defence Media Operations on Sunday said *troops of Operation FIRE BALL under Operation LAFIYA DOLE has commenced its robust operations meant to rout out the remnants of Boko Haram/ Islamic State of West Province in the theatre. “
.”Consequently, on 21 October 2020 troops of Special Response Area Gajiram deployed at Check Point 3 under Sector 3 decisively dealt a heavy blow on BHT/ISWAP criminal elements. The eagle-eyed troops who were on alert noticed unusual vehicles tailing the convoy of vehicles conveying Internally Displaced Persons from Maiduguri metropolitan City to Baga town in order to infiltrate own position.”
The statement said ” the troops canalized the criminals and inflicted heavy casualty on them. After the ensuing firefight 3 Boko Haram terrorists were neutralized, One Gun Truck, One Anti Aircraft Gun ,One AK 47 Rifle, 3 Shells for making Improvised Explosive Device were captured. Further exploitation carried out by the resilient troops recovered additional 2 AK 47 Rifles. Troops have dominated the area with aggressive patrols.”
“In a related development, troops of Army Super Camp Magumeri decimated several Boko Haram terrorists who attacked the location. After the fierce encounter 11Boko Haram terrorists were neutralized. Items captured from the terrorists include: One Guntruck, One Dushka gun, 2 Guntrucks and 2 Anti Aircraft Gun destroyed. The gallant troops have continued to carry out mop up operation and dominating the general with aggressive patrols and ambushes, the further added.
Similarly, General Onyeuko said “On 24 October 2020 the gallant troops of Army Super Camp located at Mallam Fatori routed elements of Boko Haram/ ISWAP criminal elements who attacked their location. After the the fierce battle 2 Boko Haram terrorist were neutralized others escaped with gunshot wounds as traces of blood of dragged casualties by the criminals were seen during exploitation. The troops captured the following: 3 AK 47 Rifles, One Light Machine Gun, 466 Rounds of 7.62x54mm ammunition, 24 Rounds of 7.62x51mm ammunition and One Tecno cell phone. The troops of Operation LAFIYA DOLE are in high spirit and dominating their Area of Responsibilities with robust fighting patrols.”.
” The troops of Operation Fire Ball under operation LAFIYA DOLE are hereby commended for the resilience, doggedness and commitment exhibited during the above encounters. They are equally encouraged not to rest on their oars but build on the successes recorded.” , the state further stressed.
The Army therefore, assured the entire populace of the North East zone that the High Command of the Armed Forces of Nigeria are determined to finally rout out the remnants of the BHT/ISWAP criminals from their enclaves.
Interior Minister, police affairs counterpart visit Borno to review war against Boko Haram
Interior Minister police Affairs counterpart visit Borno to review war against Boko Haram
- we are against the scrap of FSARS – Borno Governor, NCSO, NLC, others
By Madu Mohammed, Maiduguri
The Minister of Internal Affairs, Rauf Aregbesola and his Police Affairs counterpart , Alhaji Mohammed Dangyadi were on Tuesday visited Maiduguri, the Borno state capital to discuss on how best to bring to an end Boko Haram insurgency and other internal securities challenges such as kidnapping, banditry and Armed Robbery.
Addressing newsmen after a closed door meeting with Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno state, the minister of Police Affairs and other top security officers which held at the Government House, Maiduguri, the minister of Internal Affairs, Rauf Aregbesola said “we have met with critical stakeholders and had a robust discussion with Governor Zulum and others stakeholders. We agreed on resolutions. Our discussions is Frank and engaging. There is a renewed commitment to containing the insurgency”.
“As a matter of fact, We decided to coordinate these new engagements. Enough is enough, we are reviewing the entire process of engaging these criminals who are disturbing our people and spreading grief and misery. There is need for collaboration among all security agencies like military, police, paramilitary and other stakeholders who were involved in the fight against insurgency”, the minister added.
Alhaji Aregbesola said ” we agreed that from State government to the Federal government, we must improve funding of security agencies. We must improve their logistic supports and encourage the people to give adequate support to the state forces that are involved in this exercise. I believe that there will be difference in approach to the fight against insurgency containment and that in no distance future, we will liberate more territories and allow our people to have economic activities that will allow normalcy “.
” I must say I am impressed with the level of development and civility we have in the capital city, I was here few years ago, Maiduguri was not as it is today, Maiduguri can compete favourably or even better than many cities in terms of serenity, calmness and prosperity so I commend Governor Zulum and those working with him for wonderful job they have done to bring peace”, Aregbesola added.
On the issue of Governor Zulum call against the disbandment of Federal Special Anti Robbery Squad ( FSARS), the minister for Police Affairs, Alhaji Mohammed Dangyadi said ” the governor has made it very clear to us that they are in support of FSARS. We will listen to people to make good use of what they say. The federal government has also take a decision to review the structure of SARS, as it is now We are going to involve stakeholders on the way forward”
He further said ” with the Police Trust Fund, we are going to have better funding, better training, intelligence, logistics and welfare”.
Earlier during a courtesy call at the Government House, Maiduguri, Governor Zulum urged the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu ( IGP) to deploy abled SARS men to Borno to fight Boko Haram insurgency
The governor said in Borno state the SARS had made a mark by using their energy and aggression against Boko Haram.
“We are not in support of brutality by any security outfit, but to be sincere, here in Borno State the efforts of SARS operatives in the counter insurgency operations need not to be overemphasized. They are doing a wonderful job in containing the security situation in Borno State. They have greatly supplemented the efforts of the Nigerian Military.”, Governor Zulum stressed.
Also lending their voice, the Network for Civil Society, labour and students unions, as well as artisans in Borno have staged a prittest against the scrap of Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS) by police authority.
The demonstrators who walked through a major highway in Maiduguri, Borno State capital, to the Government House Tuesday morning to deliver a letter of their demands for the re-introduction of another FSARS, were seen with placards bearing “return SARS, We want FSARS, we need SARS, Reform FSARS,” among others.
Workers from organised labour unions, lawyers, market traders, students,women society groups, youth organizations and artisans were among the demonstrators.
State Chairman, Network of Civil Society Organisations (NCSO), Ahmed Shehu said the agitations for the scrap of FSARS in some parts of the country did not represent general position of all Nigerians, adding that on the contrary, FSARS was a blessing to the people of the state.
“FSARS may be bad to people in other regions of the country but to us in Borno, FSARS is good. We haveve seen how the squad has been tackling Boko Haram in complementary role with other security agencies. Their presence alone on our highways which are usually unsafe, give people courage to travel and not fear Boko Haram,”
Shehu said FSARS remains a formidable security outfit that put constant pressure on Boko Haram and even cleared the insurgents from blocking the highways in the state. He maintained Borno did not record the kind of abuses allegedly committed by the squad in other states.
He said the letter of demands brought to the state governor contained demand for the Federal Government to end Boko Haram and re-constitution of FSARS.
Also speaking, the Maiduguri Branch Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association, Bar Abba Ummate said the anti-FSARS agitators did not consider the peculiar security situation in each of the states in arriving at the calls for scrappibg FSARS. He described the ban on the squad as unfair to Borno people.
While receiving the letter on behalf of the Borno state Governor, Babagana Zulum, the State Deputy Governor, Hon. Umar Kadafur urged people to be law abiding.
“We urge you to be law abiding and keep praying for the peace of the state and our governor to succeeds in all developmental
engagement,” he said.
Labour suspends strike, as FG halts electricity hike for 2 weeks
Labour suspends strike, as FG halts electricity hike for 2 weeks
By Daily Hint Abuja
As a result of marathon meeting held and agreement reached between the federal government and the organised representatives of labour unions, the organised labour has suspended the nationwide strike action and protests billed to start today.
The meeting, which started at about 8:30 pm on Sunday and spilled over till Monday morning had Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha; Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed; Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo; Minister of State for Power, Godwin Jeddy-Agba and Mele Kyari, Group Managing Director of the NNPC.
READ ALSO: Governors, labour meet to avert mass action
A communiqué, read by the minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige, after the meeting, disclosed that government agreed to suspend electricity tariff hike for two weeks pending when a committee set up would examine the justifications for the new policy in view of the need for the validation of the basis for the new cost-reflective tariff as a result of the conflicting information from the fields which appeared different from the data presented to justify the new policy by NERC.
He, however, noted that total deregulation in the downstream sector remains, adding that palliatives would be offered to Nigerian workers to cushion the effects of burden.
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