Thursday, 28 February 2013

‘No Law Empowers Govs To Divert LG Funds’

 Issues of abrogation of State joint Local Government account so that allocation due to the local government would be paid to them directly, creation of additional state, amendment to make the immunity provision for the president, vice president, governor and deputy governor to cover only civil proceeding while in office and other issues dominated the debate by Nigerians in UK yesterday as parts of their contribution to the ongoing constitution amendment process.
During the heat debate that characterised the discussion, there was near agreement by most contributors that there is no law in Nigeria that empowers governors to steal or divert funds met for local government administration.
They said that there was the urgent need for financial independence and transparency for LGA funds to encourage responsible women and men to participate in the affairs of the LGA.
The forum was organised by the Royal Institute of International Affairs otherwise known as CHATHAM HOUSE with financial support from British High Commission, Nigeria, to enable Nigerians in UK to make their input to the constitution amendment in Nigeria.
The forum moderated by Dr. Robin Niblett, the chair of CHATHAM HOUSE, was attended by the deputy speaker, Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, Senate Committee Chairman on Public Account, Senator Ahmed Lawan, Deputy House Leader, Hon. Leo Ogor, Chairman of House Committee on Diaspora, Hon. Abike Debiri – Erewa, Hon. Garba Datti and representatives of different professional groups in UK.
The debate at the forum held at the CHATHAM HOUSE, central London, was robust and at the end the participants voted overwhelmingly for financial independence for local government council administration, true independent electoral commission to guarantee credible elections, financial autonomy for state houses of assembly, more involvement of women in elective positions and right by Nigerians living outside Nigeria to vote during elections.

Extortions, Sex Scandals Rock Delta Poly

Litanies of extortions and sex scandals have hit the Delta State Polytechnic Ozoro, leaving two of its lecturers suspended by the school authorities.
Reports said that apart from the issue of extortions and sex romps allegedly perpetrated by the lecturers, indications are that no fewer than 22 students have been expelled from the school over cult related activities.
Confirming this development, the rector of the school, Dr. Jacob Oboreh said that the expelled students were involved in cultism and examination malpractices adding that the institution was poised to instill discipline in the staff and students.
METRONEWS checks revealed that extortion and sex are rampant among the lecturers who allegedly display condoms before the female students during negotiations for sex while the male students were made to pay between N5, 000 and N10, 000 to get favourable grades.
METRONEWS gathered that sex between the female students and the lecturers has been common and had become the means to guarantee success in examinations.
The suspended lecturers were allegedly caught outside the school premises where they had gone to have sex with two new female students and having satisfied their libido and were coming out when they ran into the rector who had laid siege on them based on a tip-off.
The rector disclosed that the lecturers upon interrogation admitted to the act  while the school resolved to place them on suspension to serve as a deterrent to others.

Oyerinde’s Murder: We Are In Dilemma – AGF

The Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) has stated that it has reached a stalemate in the prosecution of the circumstances surrounding the  murder of Mr Olaitan Oyerinde, the former principal personal secretary of Edo State governor Adams Oshiomhole.
Speaking at the public hearing organised by the House of Representatives Committee on Public Petitions, a representative of the AGF, a deputy director in the Ministry of Justice, Mr O.T. Olatigbe, said the Ministry of Justice was “in a dilemma” on the grounds of the conflicting reports of the police and the Department of State Security Service (SSS) on the same case.
The two security agencies have produced two different sets of suspects for the murder. The two sets of suspects are in police detention.
The disclosure was made during a public hearing on a petition on the allegation by Oshiomhole that the deputy inspector-general of police posted to the state to carry out the investigation on the case, Peter Gana, and the commissioner of police in Edo State deliberately bungled the case to shield the real culprits. The petition was presented on the floor of the House by Hon. Pally Iriase (ACN, Edo State).
In his presentation, Olatigbe stunned the committee when he claimed: “The ministry is in a dilemma on what to do. We received the two reports from the two security agencies on the case but we got that of the police first. The SSS report only came last week. We are still weighing the evidence. We are held down because the prosecutors were not part of the investigation. We are on hold; we don’t know what to do. That is the situation for now. We need more information or for a separate investigation to be carried out.”
He also said they had requested the weapon, iPad and phone of the deceased to aid their work.
This position was received badly by the committee members who raised concern about the competence of the representative.
Chairman of the committee Hon. Azuh Azubuike said, “It is shameful and embarrassing that in a situation like this, the Office of the Attorney-General would be confused and not in a position to advise.”
Meanwhile, Governor Oshiomhole, during his presentation to the committee, took time to take the committee through the circumstances that led to his conclusion that the police was culpable in the death of his aide. Insisting that the police, specifically the commissioner of police in the state and the DIG, were involved in the murder of Oyerinde, he queried the attitude of secrecy of the men assigned to do the job.
They withheld details of the investigation from him till he had to wield his powers as the state executive. He also said the person accused of killing the late principal secretary was already in the custody of the police at the time of the murder while the weapon for the murder as stated by the police was already booked as evidence from an armed robbery scene months back.
Oshiomhole said, “Police murdered Oyerinde if we are to go by what they said because one of the suspects they claimed to have arrested was, according to their crime log, already in their custody before the murder took place while the gun was already admitted as evidence from a crime scene in Esigie police station in Benin City. What this means is that the police must have released the suspect to go and commit the crime.”
According to him, the police were trying to do the biddings of some high-ranking people by covering up the activities of the real culprits. He queried why the police was implicating Rev. David Ugulor in the case when the SSS has exhaustively investigated and produced confessed perpetrators of the murder.
The governor, while informing the committee of inconsistencies in the investigation report of the police on the case, said the contradiction of the police of its own report led him to the conclusion that there is a cover-up attempt somewhere.
“That level of negligence, that level of incompetence does not fit the office of a DIG and that’s why I asked that the DIG must be dismissed,” he stated.
Giving its own angle to the case, the Office of the Director of Prosecution of Edo State Ministry of Justice, Osagie Obayuwana, accused the police of underhand dealings in the matter, saying that the police refused to follow the normal procedure of forwarding its final report of investigation to it for advice, choosing instead to go straight to the AGF office in Abuja.
He identified “four main issues” that, he said, would help to resolve the debacle. The four points were also the same mentioned by the governor as pointers to a cover-up attempt.
The attorney pointed out that:
1. The gun allegedly used by the police’s suspects to murder Oyerinde had been booked in the police log in April, a month before the crime took place.
2. That one of the suspects accused by the police had been in custody before the crime took place.
3. That the police have not been able to produce the call log of the discussion between the suspected coordinator of the murder, David Ugolor, and the accused; and
4. The bye-pass of the state department of public prosecution for advice to the Federal Ministry of Justice.
Giving the summary of the SSS, the director-general, Ekpeyong Ita disclosed how the service was able to use details of the IMEI numbers of Oyeride’s phones that were stolen by the robbers to trace and arrest them, leading to the capture of the suspects paraded by the agency.
The suspects, he said, have been handed over to the police for prosecution.
DIG Peter Gana described the petition by the complainant as “a distraction”, as he and his team had followed a thorough process  to arrive at the set of suspects the police got.
Oshiomhole also raised concern on the insecurity and general apathy of the nation, saying: “I am worried Nigeria is turning into a banana republic where murders go unsolved. I urge the president, Goodluck Jonathan, to set up an independent inquiry committee constituting credible Nigerians and which the Office of the National Security Adviser will midwife.”

Monday, 25 February 2013

Picture! Denrele Weeps As Goldie Is Buried

That they were close while she was alive is never in doubt...infact sge died in his arms,they both rocked the scene together till Feb 14 when death came calling and Susan Goldie Harvey Nee Filani was confirmed dead.
Talking about Goldie in the past is a pain Denrele Edun couldn't hold,he wept like a baby at the Vault and Garden Ikoyi. .... Goodnite Goldie
My super star friend sways away and I stand watching till she fades on the horizon and someone at my side says “she’s gone”…Gone where?
Gone from my sight, that is all. She is just as gorgeous now as when last I saw her.
Her slightly disappearing figure and total loss from my sight is in me, not in her.
And just at that moment, when someone at my side says she’s gone, there are others who are watching her coming over their horizon and other voices take up a glad shout – There she comes! That is what dying id – An horizon and just the limit of our sight.
My lifeline, my lexicon, Therapist and support system…we have known lots of pleasure, at times endured ppai, we have lived in the sunshine and walked in the rain. I had acute malaria (was shaking terribly) but performed “skibobo” with you at the Industry Night and Loud&Proud show, I sprained my ankle but still shot your three videos in a row in S/A.
I left my family house and moved in with you and your family right after all the Big Brother Africa madness, I did all the damage control….
I fought every organizer simply cos I wanted you on the bill with me and split my show earnings with you, I dragged you to the American Embassy even if it meant I had to get up at 4am. I endured negative criticism because shallow minds couldn’t comprehend your brand essence – I started wearing block heels (you got me the most fabulous pair of Jeffrey Campbells) and I damned the consequences. I recorded the reality show “Tru Friendship” with you because you went on and on about it and I wanted to please you.
I have been your fierce-alter ego in all your videos, I have fought your fights, endured countless eccentric P.As with you…I can go on and on and this is how you leave me? You chose an eternal sleep over a fabulous life with me? Lest I forget, I ate the entire box of birthday chocolates Bola sent to you!
Phew, I can’t type anymore, I’m playing “Good To Me” (always disturbed you to release that song) and my notepad is a misty mass of my never ending tears. So sad when people who give you the best memories, become a memory!
The Goldie I knew, despite your success and worldwide recognition, still wondered, “Am I good enough?” “Am I pretty enough?” “Will they like me?” It was this burden that made you great…And that made you stumble in the end.
Goldie if you can hear me now, you weren’t good just good enough – You were abso-frigging-lutely GREAT! You sang the whole damn song without a band- you made the picture of a showbiz star look so perfect!
Your parting has left a void, but I will fit it with remembered joy. A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss and oh yes, these things I too will miss. Even though we are separated and for a time apart, I am not alone cos you’re forever in my heart. I will move mountains to continue your legacy, I will crash ceilings to spread your good works, I will break barriers to sell your “market” but above all, I will cherish the awesome times we spent together…You will forever be my source of infinity!
We wore the same shoe size and had the same body proportions. You made me start strutting lashes and recall I wore that black dress of yours you never got to wear? No masterpiece can ever match your face! To everyone reading this piece, let my dear friend rest in peace! Speak no evil about her, she was too good to be true!
I can hear you say to me…Mbirikoko, do not stand at my grave and weep, I am not there, I do not sleep, Do not stand at my grave and cry…I am not there, I did not die!
Denrele Edun