The Society of Young Nigerian Writers (SYNW) has flayed Senator Abiola Ajimobi’s delay to immortalize the late literary icon, Alagba Adebayo Faleti.
The late Adebayo Faleti who wrote, produced and acted a number of movies, which include Thuderbolt, Magun (2001), Afonja (1 &2), 2002, Basorun Gaa (2004), and Sawo-Sogberi (2005) passed on to glory on the 23rd of July 2017 at the ripeful age of 86.
This was contained in a press statement made available to newsmen yesterday by the national president of the organization, Mr. Wole Adedoyin.
The literary body in a statement signed by its President, Mr. Wole Adedoyin contended that the late Yoruba literary sage who it regarded as a great Yoruba literary colossus deserved even in death more honour than he is currently being accorded through press releases from eminent personalities and organizations.
According to Wole Adedoyin “we are not surprised that the past and present crop of Oyo state political administrators are not fond of honoring their outstanding sons and daughters. Till today no government immortalized Baba Supo Kosemani despite his contributions to Yoruba Language and Proverbs. Same thing with Dr. Larinde Akinleye. They are almost forgotten. No epitaphs, statues to immortalize their names by the state government and they were brilliant and outstanding sons and daughters of Oyo state”.
“We are warning the governor not to see the wrath of our pens. We want Mr. Governor to rename either Oyo State Council for Arts and Culture or Oyo State Library Board after Alagba Adebayo Faleti”, Adedoyin added.
Forums reiterate commitment to Africa’s energy future
Emphasizing Africa’s Position on Natural Gas: The African Energy Chamber (AEC) and Gas Exporting Countries Forum’s (GECF) Collaboratively Commit to Africa’s Energy Future
With the GECF introducing a critical discussion on the role of natural gas at the 4th edition of the Workshop on the Promotion of Natural Gas Demand, African Energy Week in Cape Town will expand on dialogue, emphasizing the African position on energy transition and gas.
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, September 30, 2021 — Global debate on natural gas and its place in the world’s future energy sector has taken the world by storm, with dialogue dominated by environmentalists calling for the sudden end to the utilization of the resource and developed countries favoring renewable energy investment and developments.
Yet, the African position within global dialogue is often negated, and the continent’s needs and resources rejected due to unilateral decisions to abandon fossil fuels.
With developed countries granted the opportunity to utilize natural resources to drive development, Africa should be allowed to do the same, and thus, while keeping in mind the current climate crisis, the continent and its stakeholders are committed to exploiting its significant natural gas resources to drive socio-economic growth in a clean, and increasingly sustainable way.
Speaking at the Gas Exporting Countries Forum’s (GECF) 4th edition of the Workshop on the Promotion of Natural Gas Demand on Wednesday the 29th of September, NJ Ayuk, Executive Chairman of the African Energy Chamber outlined the African position on natural gas.
With the virtual workshop comprising a discussion on how natural gas can serve as a catalyst, not just for enhanced socio-economic growth, but for the global transition to cleaner sources of fuel, Ayuk emphasized the value of the resource for Africa, with natural gas serving as a key driver of the continent’s economic development.
Africa faces challenges that the developed world does not. With over 600 million people lacking access to electricity, and 900 million without access to clean cooking, the continent desperately requires accelerated energy sector growth to meet rising demand and lift millions out of poverty. Natural gas offers the best solution, with its considerably cleaner processes, increasing availability, and attainable technology positioning the resource as Africa’s saving grace.
“If Africa had discovered natural gas before crude oil, we would have been able to develop faster than we have already seen. We need to make our voices heard and they need to be heard now, tomorrow and in the future. We need to tell African stories about how gas will change our future and how it will change our continent. With 600 million plus people without access to electricity, energy poverty is real. It is not just a catch phrase,” stated Ayuk.
Meanwhile, with significant resources across the continent awaiting exploitation and development, Africa has the potential to establish energy security and independence for years to come, reducing the continent’s reliance on foreign aid and accelerating socio-economic growth. However, in order for the continent to realize national growth objectives, a collaborative and integrated approach to resource monetization is required, and both the GECF and the upcoming African Energy Week 2021 (AEW) in Cape Town recognize, and will promote this trend, driving Africa’s energy future.
“I think the GECF, with its focus and engagement, will not only shape GECF member states but the entire African continent and world at large. Gone are the days when we have to rely on aid in Africa. We have massive gas resources that can drive development and reshape our economies, and when we talk about a just transition, Africa needs gas,” continued Ayuk.
“The African continent is blessed with so many natural resources as well as great people – which is actually the most important part. Electricity is fundamental to how modern society and economies grow. We have two problems in Africa: the access problem and the availability problem. About 50% of African countries electricity output is 50% less than demand. With over 600 trillion cubic feet of proven natural reserves in Africa, this presents a clean option to address the continent’s power deficit,” stated Akinwole Omoboriowo II, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Genesis Energy Holding.
Within his keynote speech at the GECF workshop, Ayuk emphasized that the continent is positioning itself for enhanced natural gas-directed investment and development, establishing an enabling environment in response to increasing international pressures.
“We are making a lot of changes across the African continent. Nigeria, for example, has passed the Petroleum Industry Bill and despite taking 20 years, it is better late than never. The Bill will drive a lot of incentives and investment into natural gas in the country,” stated Ayuk.
Also speaking at the GECF workshop, Mr Mallam Mele Kolo Kyari, Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, provided further insight into Nigeria’s natural gas potential, emphasizing how the PIB is enhancing gas monetization and investment. According to Kyari, “Nigeria has over 200 trillion cubic feet of reserves and the PIB has opened Nigeria up to investments in natural gas. The regional market is huge, and Nigeria has a role to play, while paying attention to greenhouse gas emissions.”
By incentivizing natural gas developments, resource-rich nations are actively pursuing the creation of domestic gas markets, with the resource offering critical opportunities for economic, infrastructural, and social growth.
“Look at Mozambique. Mozambique has gone from nothing to potentially being the third largest natural gas producer in the world. How dare we look at them and tell them to leave it in the ground. What gas can do for Mozambique, as well as the 600 million without access in Africa is what we should be looking at. With natural gas, we see hope, especially with our young people. These young people will be able to work in a gas driven economy and find a hope and a future in Africa. Let us come back to reality, let us be driven by science and driven by hope that we can use our resources,” added Ayuk.
Emphasizing the role of natural gas in Africa, and providing African stakeholders with the opportunity to not only engage in, but drive the conversation on natural gas in Africa’s energy future, AEW 2021 is committed to driving energy sector growth as well as the transition to cleaner sources of fuel. With GECF Secretary General H.E. Yury Sentyurin coming to Cape Town in November to drive a strong discussion on the role of gas, both the AEC and GECF are reaffirming their commitment to Africa’s position in global dialogue.
“We need a strong commitment to curb greenhouse gas emissions. As Africans, we are connected to our environment. We have an obligation to our environment. The AEC is going to be a partner and stand shoulder to shoulder with [the GECF]. The GECF have not just talked to us, but they have talked with us, and this dialogue is going to bring us to a promised land with natural gas driving our future,” concluded Ayuk.
AEW 2021, in partnership with South Africa’s Department of Mineral Resources and Energy DMRE, is the AEC’s annual conference, exhibition and networking event. AEW 2021 unites African energy stakeholders with investors and international partners to drive industry growth and development and promote Africa as the destination for energy investments.
SERAP writes Buhari, seeks trial of high-profile corruption cases, details of missing files
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sent an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari requesting him to “instruct Mr Abubakar Malami, SAN, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation to take immediate steps to expeditiously, diligently, effectively and fairly prosecute high-profile corruption cases, and to publish details of the whereabouts of allegedly missing case files, as well as the status of prosecution of all the cases being handled by his office.”
The organization said: “The high-profile corruption cases include 103 cases reportedly sent by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission [EFCC] in 2017, and the 15 allegedly missing case files sent by the now defunct Special Presidential Investigation Panel on the Recovery of Public Property, [SPIP] in 2019 to Mr Malami.”
In the letter dated 26 September, 2020 and signed by SERAP deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare, the organization said: “The authorities’ failure to diligently and expeditiously prosecute high profile corruption cases amounts to a fundamental breach of constitutional and international obligations. Continuing failure to prosecute these cases may create the perception of a deliberate effort to protect those considered to be very influential and powerful.”
According to the organization: “The fact that these cases have been pending for several years suggests that your government has not carried out its public, constitutional and international obligations, including the obligations to show that no one is above the law as far as the fight against corruption is concerned.”
The organization said: “Public interest demands that high-profile corruption cases are concluded within a reasonable time so that those guilty are punished and the innocent are set free. The rule of law and the preservation of democracy also require that the authorities duly proceed in accordance with the law against every high-profile person suspected of grand corruption, irrespective of where he/she is placed in the political hierarchy.”
The letter, copied to Mr Malami, read in part: “SERAP is seriously concerned about the apparent inertia by the authorities to diligently and expeditiously prosecute high-profile corruption cases. While many of these cases have been dragging before your assumption of office in May 2015, several of the cases have not satisfactorily progressed, contrary to Nigerians’ expectations.”
“Speedily, diligently, effectively and fairly prosecuting high-profile corruption cases would demonstrate your government’s commitment to enhance probity in public life and willingness to enforce accountability in public life. The basic postulate of the concept of equality: ‘Be you ever so high, the law is above you’, should be your government’s approach to high profile corruption cases.”
“Our requests are brought in the public interest, and in keeping with the requirements of the Nigerian Constitution 1999 [as amended] particularly section 15, and Nigeria’s international obligations, including under the UN Convention against Corruption and the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption, as well as the rule of law.”
“We hope that the aspects highlighted will help guide your actions in acting to ensure the diligent, expeditious and effective prosecution of longstanding high-profile corruption cases, including the 103 cases and the allegedly missing 15 case files of high-profile corruption suspects.”
“We would be grateful if your government begins to implement the recommended action and measures within 14 days of the receipt and/or publication of this letter.”
“If we have not heard from you by then as to the steps being taken in this direction, the Registered Trustees of SERAP shall take all appropriate legal actions to compel your government to pursue prosecution of these longstanding high-profile corruption cases to their logical conclusion, and to regularly report to Nigerians on the progress of prosecution.”
“People get frustrated in the system if the process of justice is not allowed to take its normal course, more so, when apparently deliberate attempts are made to subvert and delay the process.”
“There is a nexus between corruption at high places in public life and threats to the integrity, welfare, security and economy of the country, as well as the rule of law. There is therefore a clear need for an expeditious, diligent and effective prosecution of these cases, which have already been delayed for several years.”
“Expeditious prosecution of those suspected of grand corruption irrespective of the position and status of that person is imperative to retain public confidence in the ability and willingness of authorities to prevent and combat corruption.”
“According to our information, details of about 103 high-profile corruption cases being handled by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission [EFCC] were reportedly made available in 2017 to the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice upon request.”
“Further, the case files of 15 high-profile corruption suspects are allegedly missing. The missing files are among the 23 cases reportedly sent by the now defunct Special Presidential Investigation Panel on the Recovery of Public Property, [SPIP] in 2019 to Mr Malami, and include some charges of fraud involving some former governors and senators, as well as non-declaration of assets and possession of foreign accounts cases.”
SERAP therefore urged President Buhari to instruct Mr Malami to:
- Explain why after several years these high-profile corruption cases have not been expeditiously, diligently, effectively and satisfactorily prosecuted to logical conclusion;
Take immediate and concrete steps to prosecute the cases in close cooperation and collaboration with appropriate anti-corruption agencies;
Publish details of the whereabouts of the allegedly missing 15 case files of high-profile individuals suspected of corruption, including the status of prosecution of the cases, as well as those of the 103 cases reportedly sent to Mr Malami;
Invite civil society groups and international community to monitor the prosecution of high-profile corruption cases, and to periodically report to Nigerians the status of their prosecution
“By Section 1 (1) of the Freedom of Information (FoI) Act 2011, and article 9 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, SERAP is entitled as of right to request for or gain access to information, including information on the details of the whereabouts of allegedly missing 15 case files of high-profile individuals suspected of grand corruption, and the status of prosecution of the cases, as well as those of the 103 cases reportedly sent to Mr Malami.”
“Nigeria is collapsing forward” Femi Adesina tackles Obasanjo
*Adesina is Special Adviser to President Buhari on Media and Publicity
In the past one week, those who think they own Nigeria, and their cohorts, have been making magisterial pronouncements on the state of the nation. What they couldn’t get through the ballot box in 2019, they are attempting to achieve through misinformation, disinformation, malevolence, false narrative, and outright malediction.
Former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, wants us to believe that the country is collapsing, and is now a basket case, with the economy and unity in tatters.
Fine. Nigeria has a lot of challenges. Insecurity. Insularity. Fallen economic fortunes. Rising costs. Huge unemployment. And many more. But are those the only things happening in the country? Not at all. It would be disingenuous, even deceitful to say so. And only the unwary, the undiscerning, would be fooled. And well, including those who choose deliberately to be fooled.
To the applause of ‘sour grapers’ in groups like Afenifere, Ohanaeze, Northern Elders Forum, PANDEF, and some others, Chief Obasanjo spoke, and called his country and its leadership all sorts of names. But am I impressed? No. These were people in the same boat before the 2019 presidential elections. They wanted President Muhammadu Buhari out of office for different personal reasons. But what did they get? A shellacking. Bloody noses, and they went away with their tails between their feet, like a beaten dog. Their boat capsized.
I remember that infamous letter of early 2018, a year before elections, from the professional letter writer. He directed the horse rider (read, President) to dismount, and allow another person to mount. The landlord of the country had spoken, and his word was law.
No sir! President Buhari politely told his former boss in the military. We went to the polls, and the people spoke in a loud voice. The landlord was ejected, thrown out into the cold.
That is why anything Chief Obasanjo says about this government cannot carry weight. It is not a case of accepting the message, and ignoring the messenger, as some people canvass. The jaundice of the messenger can taint and corrode the message, and render it unreliable.
And for the cheerleaders, the different groups Obasanjo spoke to, and who egged him on, they are no better. They all took positions before last year’s elections. They threw in their lots with Buhari’s closest challenger, Atiku Abubakar. They all got beaten together, black and blue. And for all of them, they don’t seem to realize that the elections have been won and lost. Till 2023. They remain in pre-election mode, forgetting that the train had long left the station.
Their strategy is simple. Say so much evil about Buhari and his government, paint him black, confuse and discourage Nigerians, paint the picture of a bleak future, till the people become forlorn and disconsolate. What they lost at the polls, they want to get through some other means, as if Nigerians were fools, incapable of independent reasoning.
The former President says the country is collapsing. I agree. Nigeria is collapsing forward. In diverse ways, under President Muhammadu Buhari, the collapse is in a forward trajectory, despite all the odds.
I love what Temitope Ajayi, a public affairs commentator, posted on Facebook earlier in the week. Under the title ‘When Nigeria Was Not A Failed State,’ he listed atrocious developments that occurred between 1999 and 2007, when Obasanjo was President. His Attorney General and Chief Law Officer of the country, Bola Ige, was murdered in cold blood. A serving Governor, Dr Chris Ngige, of Anambra State, was abducted, and thugs unleashed mayhem on Awka, the state capital, burning and looting for many days. Yet, not a word from the President. Nor any action to restore sanity.
Zaki Biam, in Benue State, and Odi, in Bayelsa, were leveled by soldiers on reprisal missions. Scores were murdered. In Plateau State, which had become killing fields, he called the state chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) a fool, a compound fool, adding, “CAN, my foot!” Today, that same man, Rev Yakubu Pam, has been appointed Executive Secretary of Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission by Buhari, a Muslim bigot, as they claim.
And more. In his eight years in office, roads collapsed, rail became history, Supreme Court judgments were subject to his personal interpretations, Governors were wantonly removed without due process, yet, Nigeria was not collapsing then.
Temitope Ajayi summed it up this way: “Under the man that is turning Nigeria to a failed state, as at today, work is going on at a frenetic pace on Apapa-Oshodi-Oworonshoki-Alausa Toll Gate road, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Lagos-Abeokuta Express, Ikorodu-Sagamu, among others.
“A rail line from Lagos-Ibadan is at final stage of completion. Now that Nigeria is failing, it should be noted that all these projects are in South-West, the same place where the ‘savior’ who couldn’t save himself came from.
“I still struggle to understand the logic of this so-called failed country narrative under the leadership of a man who is doing what his predecessors failed to do, across the entire country, under the most challenging circumstances of low revenue since he took office.”
Thanks Temitope Ajayi, for being so succinct. You nailed it.
And Kurtis Adigba, lawyer, and another good Nigerian, who loves his country dearly, drove the nail further in. Also on Facebook, he posted this week: “For some people, Nigeria is good and doing well only when they are in control of things. They go about sowing seeds of discord and division, and turn round to talk about unity as if unity happens through division and not by coming together.”
Chief Obasanjo talked about the mismanagement of our diversity, saying it is leading to collapse. True? False. Nigeria, since 1914, had been an uneasy Federation. There is hate, mistrust, unkind thoughts, ill will, among the Federating units. If you meet him, kill him. If you can’t catch up with him, poison his footsteps. That had always been the relationship. One government after the other had always done its best to promote cohesion and amity, but hateful things Obasanjo and his collaborators have been saying for months and years divide the country further. They can’t sow the wind, and not expect to reap the whirlwind. When things suddenly go bust, and there’s murder and mayhem all over the place, they are often results of evil seeds of division and hate already sown.
I have concluded that unless Nigerians want this country to work, we would just continue to labor and labor. Government after government would do their bit, but as long as divisive, vitriolic comments continue, there would be no nation in the true sense of the word. Not even after President Buhari leaves office.
Adigba puts it this way: “The next President of Nigeria will face the same problem as President Buhari, if we don’t choose to do things differently and treat the country better. Right now, we see Nigeria as an opportunity, not a country to be nourished.”
Home truth. Nigerians are the greatest problem of Nigeria. We continue to harp on the negative, deliberately closing our eyes to positives. Nigeria is collapsing. Yes it is collapsing forward. Revolution in infrastructure. Roads, rail, bridges, airports, and many others. Corruption is being fought, with verifiable results, insurgency and criminality tackled robustly. The economy is being diversified, agriculture is working, we can feed ourselves. But for the enemies, the country is collapsing. Yes, collapsing forward.
Those who claim to love this country, and pretend to be the landlords, actually may love just themselves, and not the country. Otherwise, they would mind their language, knowing that things they say build up tension and animosity, which eventually boil over, leading to sorrow, tears and blood (dem regular trademark).
We must test and examine our ways, and decide whether we want our country to work or not. There are challenges, stiff ones. But they will be overcome, if we all team up, and eschew evil thoughts and words. “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee.” (Psalm 122, verse 6).
May they prosper that love Nigeria, our own dear native land.
Nigerian steel giant KAM aquires steel plant as FG cuts raw material importation
KAM Steel Integrated Company, a subsidiary of KAM Holding has acquired the Steel Plant Assets owned by the Standard Metallurgical Company, (SMC) in Sagamu, Ogun State, as part of efforts towards boosting its capacities for the Iron and Steel production.
The Nigeria’s steel giant, however promised to create about 10,000 jobs to Nigerians and urged the federal government to expedite actions towards supporting indigenous manufacturers in local capacity building for the Steel Industry in the country.
Speaking on Monday at the official handing over ceremony of the assets, the Chairperson of KAM Holding, Dr. Iyadunni Bolanle Yusuf, stressed that, “If Nigeria must come out of the wilderness of poverty, unemployment and insecurity among other social vices, therefore, the Federal Government must deploy its machineries to support local manufacturers in their bids to survive and grow.”
According to her, “The Steel Industry being a very important integral part of the nation’s economy necessary for speedy economic growth and socio-infrastructural development, there is need for government to focus more on the sector, recognize and declare Iron and Steel as national products to boots our foreign exchange earnings in the face of dwindling price of Oil in the global market.
“In 2016, His Excellency, Vice President of Federal Republic of Nigeria performed the foundation laying of our integrated steel plant with rolling mills in Jimba-Oja, Kwara State and by the last quarter of 2019, the project was completed ready to contribute to the local steel market.
“Today, KAM Steel has acquired the steel plant formerly owned by SMC and we believe that with this milestone, our capacities would increase tremendously and will reposition Nigeria as a self-sufficient nation and we hope that the Federal Government shall continue to provide the enabling environment and support for continuing the actualization of the vision of the highly committed Nigerian behind this project.”
“It is our target to create about 10,000 jobs to promising Nigerians in the next coming months as a way of complementing government’s efforts in tackling youths’ restiveness, boost Internally Generated Revenue, (IGR), as well as promoting our Corporate Social Responsibilities in the society.”
In his remarks, the Minister for Mines and Steel Development, Arch. Olamilekan Adegbite, the Nigeria economy with a GDP of about USD 440billion is one of the fastest growing economies in Africa without the production of liquid steel.
He added that, “Nigeria has over 30 steel manufacturers, it can only produce 2.2million tons per annum using scraps and billets imported mainly from china. It is on record that Nigeria spends an Average of about USD 3.3 billion importing metals annually.”
Representated by the Senior Special Assistant (Technical), Mr. Olu Adedayo, the Minister maintained that, “The decline in GDP as a result of the fluctuating oil prices compelled the present Administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to commit itself to the diversification of Nigeria economy, thereby prioritizing the development of the minerals and metal and agricultural sectors.
“The Management of the Ministry has been working assiduously towards the enactment of the Nigeria Metallurgical Industry Bill in order to have an enabling law for effective regulation of the Metal Sector in Nigeria. The Ministry Solicits the support of all stakeholders’ especially metal sector operators in order to realize this.
“The Ministry is also working hard towards fast tracking the operationalization of ASCL and NIOMCO. The Government is encouraging Metal sector operators, especially local producers of metallurgical Mineral raw materials and steel metal products to synergize with miners towards ensuring local beneficiation of raw materials in Nigeria.
“This would put an end to the dig it and ship it syndrome and boost down stream activities in the metal sector for jobs and wealth creation, the FGN is also encouraging all metal sector operators to comply with set standard for the production of all metal products in order to ensure that our local products compete favorably in the international market. In order to do so, metal operators, artisans and other skilled operators in the metal sector are encouraged to sharpen their skills via the metallurgical training centers in Nigeria.
The FGN is working towards eradicating the import of metallurgical raw materials and products that can be produced locally and support the development of home-grown technologies in line with local content.
“It is therefore with immeasurable joy that I congratulate, MD/CEO, Dr. Kamorudeen and his team for achieving this great Milestone in the history of indigenous effort at steel making in Nigeria. Prior to the take over of standard Metallurgical Company (SMC) by KAM Industries, my metallurgical field officers had reported following their inspectorate duties
“The acceleration of industrial development lies primarily on the private sector while the Government provides the enabling environment. On this note, I want to once again congratulate KAM industry and thank stakeholders’ and everyone present here today. I wish you success in your future endeavors, thank you and God bless.”
Also speaking, the General Controller of Standard Metallurgical Company, (SMC) Mr. Hussein Nourdein, disclosed that the acquisition process was highly competitive stressing that, “At last, the powerful and giant finally have. We are delighted that KAM Steel Integrated Company acquired our steel plant assets and we promise them our continuous working and business relationship.
Lawmakers warned on dangers of forced vaccination bill
…Says It’s Time National Assembly Members Got a Dose of the People’s Wrath
The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) has strongly lashed out at Nigerian legislators who it accused of working to impose a forced vaccination law on the country, warning that “it’s about time for the National Assembly got a dose of the Nigerian people’s wrath”.
The CNPP in a statement issued by its Secretary General, Chief Willy Ezugwu, accused the lawmakers of hiding under the lockdown measures to engage in impunity.
The umbrella body of all registered political parties and political associations in country also accused Nigerian legislators of taking bribe from vaccine producers.
“We have watched with uttermost dismay the speed with which the lawmakers are working on a bill to use Nigerians as guinea pigs for the forced testing of Coronavirus disease vaccines and endanger the lives of over 200 million citizens.
“If the lawmakers want to truly justify the bribe they have taken from foreign producers of COVID-19 vaccines, they should make a law that will provide for compulsory vaccination of all the legislators in the country as a way of proving their patriotism to the Nigerian federation. Let them volunteer to be the guinea pigs.
“It is even more shocking that the Nigerian legislators have not thought of a law to force electricity distribution companies in the country to compulsorily install prepaid meters in households across the country but can force citizens to be vaccinated.
“We recall that Bill for the unbundling of the NNPC, the cash cow of the nation and Bill to end gas flaring in the country are there laying fallow in the achieves of history, yet, because of insatiable appetite for wealth propelled by uncommon greed for mundane things of life, the lawmakers want to turn Nigerian citizens into testing animals for vaccines producers now and in the future.
“Why is the lawmakers opting to work against the interest of those who elected them? Why will Nigerian legislators chose to fulfill the desires of those who cultured and infected the world with Coronavirus disease for economic gains? Are the national assembly members telling us that they are not aware that COVID-19 virus ravaging the world is not natural?
“Why not a Bill for an Act to compel Federal Government of Nigeria to fund research for local production of infectious disease drugs and vaccines? Are we lacking experts in any field as a country?
“Many Nigerians have long claimed to have developed cure for COVID-19 and other infectious diseases, where are the inputs of the National Assembly members towards ensuring that every Nigerian with a claim to a cure of any infectious disease gets his or her claims verified by relevant authorities and certified rather than selling the country wholesale to western nation and their multi-million dollar corporations? They won’t because such local inventors cannot afford millions of US dollars with which to grease the filthy palms of most lawmakers.
“The Republic of Madagascar recently dared the World Health Organization (WHO) and their collaborators by developing locally made COVID Organics (CVO) for cure of Coronavirus. Right now, the use is expanding to other countries after Madagascar had only 149 cases of COVID-19 with zero death record.
“In addition to the COVID Organics (CVO), already being marketed in the form of herbal tea in Madagascar, a new injectable solution of the same product is under clinical trials in the lying off the country southeastern coast of Africa with a population of just 27 million people.
“It then beats the imagination of any sane person that the Nigerian legislators will be this greedy for material acquisition, even at the expense of the Nigerian people who elected them.
“All Nigerians, the media, and all civil society organisations with good conscience should immediately stand up against this evil legislation in the works because everyone will become their guinea pigs and a tool for testing vaccines for deadly all ailments, now and forever if the bill is passed.
“May be Nigerians have forgotten so soon how a secret trial of a pharmaceutical drug in Northern Nigeria killed several children. The company involved, Pfizer, was sued after 11 children died in the clinical trial when the northern state of Kano was hit by meningitis epidemic in 1996. But Pfizer only paid compensation after 15-year legal battle for illegal clinical trials.
“The intolerable Bill for an Act by the Nigerian legislators to make such killing of citizens a legal act must be resisted now or we will all die in like manner someday soon”, the CNPP warned.
COVID-19: SERAP asks Buhari to use confiscated stolen assets as isolation centres
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sent an urgent appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari urging him to “urgently instruct the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Mr Abukabar Malami, SAN to work with appropriate ministries and agencies to identify, publish and use confiscated stolen assets as isolation centres.”
SERAP said: “Using confiscated assets as isolation centres would provide safe and enabling environments for the treatment and care of people, improve the authorities’ ability to respond to COVID-19, reduce the risks to Nigerians and to public health.”
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire had last week reportedly begged Nigerians to donate and temporarily make their buildings available as isolation centres. According to him, more buildings would be needed, as the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) aims to test two million people in the next three months.
In the urgent appeal dated 2 May, 2020 and signed by SERAP deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare, the organization said: “While it is important to ramp-up testing for COVID-19 to prevent the spread of the virus, asking Nigerians to donate their buildings as isolation centres would be counter-productive, as it would put them at greater risk of contracting and spreading COVID-19.
SERAP also said: “Rather than begging Nigerians to donate their buildings as isolation centres, the authorities should identify, publish and use confiscated assets as isolation centres, as a temporary measure. Using confiscated assets as isolation centres would be proportionate, necessary, and serve a legitimate objective, namely to protect public health and public order (ordre public).”
According to SERAP, “The proposed measure would be lawful, and more effective, as it would be in the public interest. Using the confiscated assets as proposed would neither violate the accused’s right to property nor entail a duty to compensate. The proposal by the Minister of Health would pose unnecessary risks to public health.”
The urgent appeal, read in part: “SERAP urges you to ask Mr Malami to urgently work out the details and modalities for implementing these recommendations with the Ministry of Health, Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).”
“SERAP urges you to ask the Minister of Health to drop the idea of begging Nigerians to donate their buildings as isolation centres, and to move swiftly to focus on implementing these recommendations as a step towards effectively reducing the spread of COVID-19, treating and caring for people, and fulfilling the right to health, in line with Nigeria’s human rights obligations and the sustainable development goals.”
“Our recommendations, apart from being entirely compatible with Nigeria’s international anti-corruption obligations including the UN Convention against Corruption, which has been ratified, would also enhance the ability of the authorities to effectively and satisfactorily respond to COVID-19.”
“Reducing health risks associated with Nigerians donating their buildings as isolation centres would complement the authorities’ objectives of ending COVID-19.”
“As the right to health is closely related to and dependent upon the realization of other human rights, including the right to private and family life, asking Nigerians to donate their buildings as isolation centres may also violate this fundamental human right.”
“The recommendations would also enhance the ability of the authorities to effectively implement the country’s international human rights obligations particularly regarding to take effective steps to prevent, treat, and combat epidemic, endemic and other diseases, such as COVID-19.”
“SERAP’s request is also in line with the repeated public commitment by your government to provide details and locations of all recovered stolen public funds.”
“Publishing confiscated assets would also be entirely consistent with the judgment by Justice Hadiza Rabiu Shagari of the Federal High Court, Lagos, which ordered your government to tell Nigerians about the stolen assets it allegedly recovered.”
“The judgment was delivered in July 2017 following a Freedom of Information suit number: FHC/CS/964/2016 brought by SERAP. Your government has refused to obey the judgment, despite Mr Malami publicly promising to do so.”
“We hope that the aspects highlighted will help guide your actions in acting to ensure enabling environments as isolation centres to treat and care for Nigerians, as the NCDC takes steps to ramp up testing for COVID-19.”
Copied in the urgent appeal are: Mr Abukabar Malami; Dr Osagie Ehanire; Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General, NCDC; Professor Bolaji Owasanoye, Chairman, ICPC; and Ibrahim Mustafa Magu, Acting Chairman, EFCC.