Tuesday, September 30, 2008

South Africa's Nyasha Zimucha For Miss Africa USA 2008

The line up for this year's Miss Africa USA Competition is obviously becoming engaging and the characters quite interesting. 23-year-old Nyasha Zimucha who grew up during the Apartheid era in South Africa knows what it is and as a living witness she learned to forgive and renconcile as did the Truth and Reconciliation Commission established by the Nelson Mandela administration when the curtains of Apartheid fell.

Nyasha, now an activist due to the recent racial attacks in her native land is promoting peace and oneness so xenophobic attacks could be stopped once and for all, and peace could be given a chance. And as Miss South Africa USA 2008, she is definitely using her position to effect that.

Adding to her resume, she is a dancer, a singer, a model and public speaker. She is currently filming a show titled "Little Miss Perfect" about a "celebrity judge on a Pageant show" which airs on WETV in late Fall.

On November 1, at the Clayton County Performance Arts Centre in Jonesboro, Georgia, Nyasha will be joining Esosa Edosomwan (Nigeria), Victoria Njau (Kenya), Daniele Ntahonkiriye (Burundi), Daniele Fochive (Cameroon), Andrea Mvemba (DR Congo), Kristle Simpson (Ghana), Imat Akelo-Opio (Uganda), Tanta Badjan (Gambia), Belloh Julius (Liberia), Mariamma Brown (Senegal), Philippa Lahai Swaray (Sierra Leone), Nathali Zambakari (Sudan) Bita Dioa (Guinea), Aziza Elteib (Ethiopia), Mutinta Suuya(Zambia) and Busi Mlambo (Zimbabwe) in the race for the crown.

Goodluck and I am looking forward to this event.

Go Africa Go!

Photo courtesy of Miss Africa USA

CARTOON: A Government's Oath Of Secrecy


News Desk 09-30-08

Nigeria's Community Outreach Improves Polio Immunization Rates

A grassroots mobilization initiative, the Community Participation for Action in the Social Sector, known as COMPASS, a United States Agency for International Development-funded project, is promoting oral polio vaccines and changing long-held suspicions in polio-endemic northern Nigeria. MORE>>>

Nigeria to set up three training centres for shrimp farming

APA - Lagos (Nigeria) The Director of Nigeria’s Federal Department of Fisheries (FDF), Mr Shola Armire, Tuesday said that the Nigerian government had concluded arrangements to set up three shrimp centres in Oyo, Ekiti and Adamawa states for training in shrimp farming. MORE>>>

Foreign funds cut Nigeria exposure, impact limited - analysts

LAGOS, Sept 30 (Reuters) - Nigeria's buoyant real economy and strong domestic liquidity will limit the damage caused by hedge funds and portfolio investors pulling money out of the country as the global financial crisis bites, analysts say. MORE>>>

Monday, September 29, 2008

News Desk Monday, September 29, 2008

48 Anniversary: Cardinal Arinze urges Nigerians to appreciate God
Cardinal Arinze spoke in an interview with newsmen against the backdrop of the nation’s 48th independence anniversary taking place Wenesday, shortly after arriving the Presidential Wing of the Murtala Mohanmmed Airport, Lagos, aboard the executive jet owned by the Rivers State government. MORE>>

'Our lady of freedom' leaves church after two years

The first thing Felicia (Ola) Abimbola Akinwalere did with her new-found freedom was to pick up her daughter from school. MORE>>>

At 79, Anderson remains Nigeria’s 'iron lady'

Everything here is for sale. Every price is negotiable. And Joyce Anderson negotiates with the best of them. Whether it’s cabbages or cell phone cards, she knows a fair price and rarely pays a naira (Nigeria’s currency) more than she has to. MORE>>>

OIL FUTURES: Nymex Crude Down As Bailout Vote Defeated

NEW YORK (Dow Jones)--Losses in crude oil futures deepened Monday as a historic financial bailout was defeated in the U.S. House of Representatives. MORE>>><

Cynthia Omorodion Wins Nigeria's Next Top Model

20-year-old Cynthia Omorodion from Edo State, Nigeria, last weekend, was crowned Nigeria's Next Top Model held at the NNSM Dome within the Nigeria Air Officer's Mess, Victoria Island-Lagos. Miss Omorodion takes home along with the crown a brand new Kia Salon car. The contest is in its second year and already pulling weight.

From MyNaija News report by Femi Olubosi:

Five other winners emerged during the contest. Of these, 20-year old Macia Okahi, also from Edo State emerged first. She will represent the country at the Best Model of the World Contest in Turkey next year. Funmilayo Arambambi emerged second, Mojisola Akinsanya came third while Chidinma Blessing and Tolulope Howell camde fourth and fifth respectively. Fourteen-year old Seyi Bamgbose, the youngest contestant, will go for the Miss Teen of the World contest next year.

Photo courtesy of My Naija News

Esosa Edosomwan to represent Nigeria in Miss Africa USA 2008

After working her way through Cornell University College of Human Ecology and majoring in textiles and apparel design, and announced the winner of 2005 Heermans-McCalmon one-set playing contest for her manuscript Vivian X, at Cornell, multi-talented 24-year-old Esosa Edosomwan took her talent to another level. The actress/writer/director with a post-graduate degree in business from Columbia University is not taking any chances and has entered her bid for the Miss Africa USA 2008 contest scheduled to be held on November 1, 2008 at the Clayton County Performing Arts Center in Jonesboro, Georgia.

So far, the delegates have been made known and hopefully the casting crew and organizers in this year's glamorous Miss Africa USA would be able to go places and collect series of endorsements from high profile designers and top-notch fashion magazines.

It would be indeed welcoming to see African models display their physique on the runways of notable fashion designers, and what that means is that, the organizers of the show should start moving beyond community service and outreach programs in order to lift the models to newer heights for universal coverage.

For Esosa, she has all it takes to be crowned Miss Africa USA. With her academic credentials, dedication, physique and hardwork, she is worthy. On October 10, 2008, she will be joining 'Words of Choice', a non profit theatre group in a performance at Fort Hays State University, KS, 'as a benefit in remembrance of Jana Mackey, a young activist who was murdered earlier this year.' Her resume speaks for itself.

Go Africa Go!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

News Desk Sunday, September 28, 2008

As Nigerians Look Beyond 48th Independence Anniversary... ‘Our Expectations From Yar’Adua Govt’

Barely three days to the nation’s 48th Indepe-ndence Anniversary on Wednesday, October 1, Nigerians yesterday called for implementation of robust policies capable of making life better for the Nigerian people... MORE>>>

'OIL WAR': How Fresh hostilities in N-Delta were aborted

Clark had got the militants under the aegis of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, MEND, which embarked on the 'oil war' because its positions were attacked in the region, to declare the ceasefire last weekend. MORE>>>

JTF Attacks: 'Please, Save Our Souls'

This is the picture the Tombia communities in Rivers State have presented in a petition to the Presidency and the National Assembly on alleged military expedition aimed at flushing out militants in the area. MORE>>>

N/Delta: Real reasons behind militants’ ceasefire

After a week of destructive activities, trailed by a host of dead oil facilities, dead and wounded militants and about 150,000 barrels per day shut-in in the nation's daily crude output, the face of militancy in the Niger Delta, the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) declared a "unilateral ceasefire" MORE>>>

Buhari’s coup, northern agenda against Ndigbo — Uwechue

Former Presidential Adviser on Conflict Resolutions in Africa, Ambassador Ralph Uwechue, has said that General Muhammadu Buhari’s coup of 1983 that toppled the Shagari administration was actually a plot by some northern elements to stop former Vice President Alex Ekwueme MORE>>>

Saturday, September 27, 2008

PHOTO OP: Nnenna Agba, Chemist and Model

Yes, we saw this face on national TV a couple of years ago when the Houston born Nnenna Agba who was judged to be the favorite in the sixth edition of America's Next Top Model in 2006 made headlines all around the globe. Still a model, a chemist and proud to have shown motherland Africa that Black is Beautiful. I like your courage!

Friday, September 26, 2008

News Update

Russia warship heads to Africa after pirate attack

MOSCOW (AP) — A Russian warship on Friday rushed to intercept a Ukrainian vessel carrying 33 battle tanks and a hoard of ammunition that was seized by pirates off the Horn of Africa — MORE>>>

The start of US fall from world power: Part Two

Last week, the world awoke to a financial crisis that started in the United States and had been unseen in more than 70 years. The question is what is the cause of this crisis? The United States is, after all, the world’s largest economy as well as one of the wealthiest in per capital income terms (above $43,000). MORE>>>

Ericsson to launch mobile Innovation Center in Africa

Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) today announced it will establish an Innovation Center in sub-Saharan Africa to develop mobile applications that will benefit society as a whole, but with a special focus on meeting the needs of poor and rural populations. MORE>>>

Anti-malaria funds availed

World Bank President Robert Zoellick said in a statement that the extra money would help "sharply reduce the numbers of malaria-related deaths and illness" in the next three years. MORE>>>

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Kenya Moore's "Haitian Nights"

Born in Detroit, Michigan and crowned Miss USA in 1993, Kenya Moore has come a long way doing her thing and excelling in all of her projects. She has a movie coming out sometime next year which is about newlyweds in Haiti being hunted by a voodoo priest to please his daughter. She directed part of the movie and played a significant role in its call sheet with all the excitements at the shooting locale in Haiti. Right now, Moore's hands are just full with TV projects, movie contracts and many other shows.

Editorials Thursday, September 25, 2008

Goje’s HIV status

THE recent declaration of his HIV status by the Governor of Gombe State, Alhaji Mohammad Goje, is exemplary and a boost to the campaign on a disease that has decimated the population of Nigeria and other countries of the world. [DAILY CHAMPION]


IT is common knowledge that the Nigerian oil industry is being wilfully mismanaged.This explains why it is bedevilled by an assortment of problems. The painful aspect of the situation is that the ordinary people are being made to bear the brunt. [NIGERIAN TRIBUNE]

Bad news for our education

The nation’s dwindling fortunes in education has come into sharper focus with the damning report that 51 percent of candidates who sat for this year’s national common entrance examination into the Federal Unity Schools could not meet the cut-off points for their various states [DAILY SUN]

CARTOON: Dele Giwa's Past Plays On


Spike Lee's War Movie

When I first watched Eddie Murphy's 'Berverly Hills Cop' back in the day, and Hollywood film critics and reviews describing it as the biggest non summer release, I had thought nothing could surpass that when it comes to a regular black guy making a movie or becoming a big score in Hollywood.

Lee is a big score without a doubt.

Starting tomorrow 'Miracle at St. Anna,' based on the novel of the same name by James McBride and a dozen other war movies and documentaries later on will be playing at theaters near you. Lee's 'Miracle at St. Anna' is about four American infantry men from the 92 Division of US Army who had arrived a small Italian village where massacre was the order in a total of four battles in its quest against fascism and got caught behind enemy lines during World War II.

Like 'Miracle at St. Anna' and other war movies made in Hollywood over the years with more and more popping up, I had requested in many of my moves in persuading my good friend and filmmaker Pascal Atuma to talk Nigeria's Nollywood into making movies of human events and tragic moments of our time as we will be seeing a whole lot of these movies through the Fall and into Winter.

'Miracle at St. Anna' stars Italian actress Valentina Cervi and Derek Luke and rated R.

What's Happening

Well, looks very much like the comic strip has been 'reloaded' and this time around it's going to be more fun when Opa Williams "Night of a Thousand Laughs" echoes at the Shell Center, Muson Hall in Lagos on October 1 for Nigeria's independent anniversary.

According to Williams who sits as CEO of the show, he gave props to the comedy show as:

"the premier and very obviously the premium comedy show in Nigeria. Nite Of A Thousand Laughs has come of age and accordingly it has decided to be more dynamic in its outing. This year, the event which is now a highly accepted show is now a brand of its own and in keeping with that, we have decided to look inward and give it a proper definition of what it is suppose to be; A Nite of A Thousand Laugh- strictly comedy and comedy only with a tinge of music. This is to give it a distinction from other comedy events, which are off shoots of the programme. We intend to feature only the top comedians and nothing else, so what you see is 70 per cent comedy from those that rule the game and 20 per cent music and 10 per cent upcoming comedians."

It's also good to know that afro beat legend Fela Anikulapo Kuti will soon be getting a street in his name in Abuja alongside Ken Saro Wiwa, Wole Soyinka and several others the government now thinks have done something worthy for the country to be recognized.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Nigeria Body Parts Dealers

Tunde Adenuga and Suleiman Ogunyemi excavates human skulls for a living. They are here being paraded by the cops in Lagos for what they do for a living. Read related story

Photo courtesy of The Punch's Olalekan Adetayo

News Desk (Early Edition) Thursday, September 25, 2008

FOI bill: Senate committee introduces stiff terms for access to information
The Senate Committee on Media and Information has introduced fresh conditions into the Freedom of Information bill which, if accepted and passed into law, will hinder journalists and other Nigerians from having access to information. MORE>>>

Iwuanyanwu Blames Yar’Adua’s Health Controversy On Poor Inform

An Abuja-based public communications consultant, Chief Chyna Iwuanyanwu, has called for an immediate overhaul of government information machinery to save Mr. President and the nation from further embarrassment and ridicule. MORE>>>

Culture dictates your boozing level

The study, in seven countries found that young people's views on alcohol and drunkenness were influenced more by culture than by factors such as age and sex. The research, sponsored by the International Centre for Alcohol Policies (ICAP), also finds striking similarities about drinking among young people in different parts of the world including: MORE>>>

Yar’Adua delays cabinet reshuffle

President Umaru Yar’Adua on Wednesday failed to dissolve his cabinet as the Federal Executive Council held its weekly meeting in Abuja with nearly all the ministers in attendance MORE>>>

News Update

Ex-Pa. radio host pleads guilty in NYC
NEW YORK - A former Pennsylvania radio host has pleaded guilty to victimizing the Federal Communications Commission, Bard College and others in a $4.3 million forged check scheme. MORE>>>

Rep. Jefferson's Case Argued in Federal Appeals Court

RICHMOND, Sept. 24 -- Nearly all of the corruption charges against U.S. Rep. William J. Jefferson should be dismissed because prosecutors improperly presented evidence of his legislative activities to a grand jury, attorneys for the Louisiana democrat told a federal appeals court Wednesday. MORE>>>

New Report Finds Green Economy Could Create Millions of Jobs

This is the first comprehensive study on the emergence of a so-called green economy. The new report finds efforts to reduce climate change are underway and are generating new jobs in many sectors and economies. MORE>>>

Terry Venables emerges as Newcastle managerial favourite as odds dramatically fall

Although embattled owner Mike Ashley is desperate to sell the club after conceding defeat to the club's disgruntled supporters, who demanded his departure following the resignation of the popular Kevin Keegan... MORE>>>

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

PHOTO OP: Marah Walter Wins Miss Caribbean World 2008

Last Saturday September 20, at the Multipurpose Sports Complex in Tortola, the British Virgin Islands, 21-year-old Marah Walter from Dominica Republic was crowned Miss Caribbean World 2008.

Photo courtesy of BVI News/SKNVibes

News Desk (Early Edition) Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Yinka Craig, ace broadcaster, dies of blood cancer - Govs, Nigerians mourn

ACE broadcaster and sports analyst, Mr. Olayinka Craig, is dead. He died on Tuesday at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, United States of America. He died of blood cancer which he had been battling since 2006. He was aged 60. MORE>>>

UN meeting on Bakassi put on hold

UN spokesperson, Michele Montas, told UN reporters that the postponement was because "President of Nigeria, Umaru Yar’Adua, will not be attending this year’s ordinary session of the General Assembly’’ MORE>>>

EFCC recorvers fake $2.1m in Kano

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said it had recovered fake $2.1 million (about N247.8million) from a fraudster, Emmanuel Okoro, in Kano. MORE>>>

Newcastle FC’s Nigerian consortium place deposit of £200 miilion

Football circles in Nigeria and the United Kingdom are buzzing over the mysterious eight man consortia that are said to be in talks to purchase the English Premiership side Newcastle United. The group said to be in the Nigerian oil industry are represented by UK football agent Chris Nathaniels. MORE>>>

Nigeria improves on corruption ranking - Now 121st in the world

The efforts of the Federal Government at ridding the nation of corruption may have started yielding results as Nigeria further improved in the latest assessment of nations with corrupt practices globally. MORE>>>

Nigerian patients love to deny illnesses – CMD, others

Medical experts, including the Chief Medical Director of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Prof. Akin Osibogun, recount their experiences about patients who prefer spiritual homes to orthodox medicine. NIYI ODEBODE writes. MORE>>>

Exit of Mbeki

In a subdued television address he announced that he had submitted his letter of resignation to the speaker of parliament and would officially leave office once parliament chooses an interim successor, as it is expected to do within a month. MORE>>>

News Desk Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Govt names streets after Fela, Saro-Wiwa, Dele Giwa, others
There is a major rethink by the Federal Government, which has named major streets and roads in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), a symbol of Nigerias unity, after these eminent citizens, who are often regarded as the nation's "forgotten icons." MORE>>>

West Africa's wars leave scars on cultural heritage experts say

DAKAR (AFP) — West Africa's wars have taken their toll on the region's cultural heritage, both in terms of tangible artifacts as well as knowledge that doesn't get passed on, museum officials said Tuesday. MORE>>>

Oil settles lower for first time in a week

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Oil prices declined Tuesday as investors refocused on how the struggling economy thwarts demand for energy and wait for more developments concerning the government's proposed $700 billion bailout plan. MORE>>>

Nigeria militants report military attacks

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta said in an e-mailed statement that the reported attacks on the bases of Ateke Tom would not undo their unilateral declaration to end six days of violence that roiled the southern region last week. MORE>>>

PHOTO OP: Life in Lagos

The oil rich nation claims to be the most populous African nation and the giant of Africa coupled with its human capital, yet, squatter camps and run of the mill houses are spread everywhere. Only in Naija!

Well. I guess, life goes on in the 21st Century.

Photo courtesy of The News

Monday, September 22, 2008

News Update

San Jose police auditor to advise Africans with police oversight

The non-profit CLEEN Foundation invited Independent Police Auditor Barbara Attard to join an international police oversight training panel in Nigeria, and has offered to pay the transportation and lodging costs of the five-day trip in November. MORE>>>

The Nigerian national blindness and visual impairment survey: rationale, objectives and detailed methodology

Despite having the largest population in Africa, Nigeria has no accurate population based data to plan and evaluate eye care services. A national survey was undertaken to estimate the prevalence and determine the major causes of blindness and low vision. MORE>>>

Editorials Monday, September 22, 2008

Police roadblocks and Ndigbo

POLICE roadblocks are back with renewed vigour in Nigeria especially in the Southeastern states. There is no part of the Southeast geopolitical zone today that the pains of road travels have not increased because of reinforced police roadblocks sometimes mounted very close to each other. DAILY SUN>>>

Reflating the Stock Market

THE past three weeks have witnessed a flurry of measures by the Federal Government, regulatory authorities and other stakeholders, in a determined bid to shore up the eroded fortunes of the Nigerian capital market. On August 26, after a meeting with stakeholders [GUARDIAN NEWSPAPERS]

The closure of Channels Tv

The television station’s offence was that it caused to be broadcast a news bar that Nigeria’s President, Umaru Yar’Adua might resign from office on health grounds at a future date. The station claimed that it sourced the news item from another government body, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) [DAILY CHAMPION]

The Ministry of Niger Delta

THE Federal Government last week announced the creation of Ministry of Niger Delta to directly handle the affairs of the oil-rich region. The agitation for resource control has resulted in insurrection, thereby creating opportunities for criminals to take over the struggle. [NIGERIAN TRIBUNE]

CARTOON: A Banana Republic


Uganda And Tanzania Gets Its Pick For Face Of Africa

23-year-old Lucy Torr of Uganda

19-year-old Hellen Avelinus Ambrose of Tanzania

While Ugandan's pick Lucy Torr, a bi-racial of Canadian and Ugandan parents whose identity is yet to be known since she was selected over a week ago, 19-year-old Hellen Avelinus Ambrose was Tanzania's choice in M-Net Face Of Africa beauty contest, making her the fifth finalist to head to Zanzibar's Scenic Island in October for the Boot Camp where the top 10 finalists will emerge for the final showdown in Sun City, South Africa. Lucy and Hellen now joins Totwana, Albertina and Maria in the quest for the crown.

Friday, September 19, 2008

M-Net Face Of Africa 2008 Call Sheet

When M-Net Face of Africa casting crew and scouts finally announced Totwana 'Tito' Tema as the choice from Botswana and the first pick in this year's contest followed by the picks of Albertina Shigwedha and Maria Hiwilepo from Namibia, the good guess was other picks would be made public as soon as possible.

Apparently, the contest seems to be going through a lot of careful examination since its cross continental expedition began when Tema was selected in Botswana. Whatever the process, the results from Kampala, Uganda on September 6; Dar'es Salaam, Tanzania on September 9; Nairobi, Kenya on September 13; and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on September 16 are yet to be announced (Lucy Torr of Uganda rumored to have been the pick) with its next move to Lagos, Nigeria on September 20. It is becoming interesting and the nosy public wants some lights to be shed and we all wish this prestigious event the best.

Go Africa!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

PHOTO OP: Victoria Njau, Kenya's Rising Star

Victoria Njau was born in Kenya 23 years ago and has a double major -- Biology and Business Management -- at the University of Texas in Dallas and aspires to enlist in medical school when she gets over her first degree.

She has submitted her bid for the 4th Annual Miss Africa USA Pageant 2008 which will be held at the Clayton County Performing Arts Center in Jonesboro, Georgia on Saturday, November 1, 2008. Njau said as the new Miss Kenya her 'desire' would be focussed on the Kenyan community in the United States and in the event she is crowned Miss Africa USA 2008, that she will "seek more sponsorship and support to continue making positive changes in the lives of Africans."

You go girl, and goodluck!

To check the schedule of events, visit Miss Africa USA

Photo courtesy of Dave McKeen

News Desk (Early Edition) Thursday, Sept 18, 2008

David-West seeks amnesty for militants
Former Minister of Petroleum, Professor Tam David-West has called on the Federal Government to grant amnesty to militants in the Niger Delta as a way to bringing about a lasting peace in the region and other parts of the country. READ MORE>>>

Navy sinks militants' boats, kills 12

Spokesman for the Navy, Lieutenant Way Olabisi, said the naval men were on routine patrol when the militants suddenly opened fire on them at a spot on the waterway. In the ensuing gun battle, the Navy sank the militants boats. READ MORE>>>

Anti-Jew, Muslim attitudes rise in Europe-survey

The Washington-based Pew Research Center's global attitude survey found 46 percent of Spanish, 36 percent of Poles and 34 percent of Russians view Jews unfavorably, while the same was true for 25 percent of Germans, and 20 percent of French. READ MORE>>>

NBC suspends Channels TV licence

THE National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), the regulatory body for the broadcast industry, yesterday, suspended the operational licence of Channels Television following its Tuesday airing of the false report that President Umaru Yar’Adua might resign on health ground. READ MORE>>>

Iwu's recipe for sustainable democracy

At a recent lecture given at the behest of the Department of Political Science of the University of Nigeria , Nsukka, Professor Maurice Iwu, the Chairman of INEC, proposed a roadmap for the sustenance of the nation's democratic future. READ MORE>>>

Nigerian Born Ifetayo Fakoya For Miss Teen Queen UK Contest

Ifetayo Fakoya, 17, came to Hatfield, England when she was ten years old and attended all girls school in Hatfield. She is currently in the sixth form and working for her A-Levels and aspires to be an accountant by the time she's done with academics. If everything goes her way, it's anybody's game and she could be the next Miss Teen Queen UK.

She appeared on the cover of a local newspaper, Welwyn & Hatfield Times, her neck of the woods in England and she's enjoying every attention as the contest heats up.

She bumped into the Teen Queen UK Contest via its website and made up her mind to enter the 2009 contest in July next year and as a contestant, she has been to a professional photo shoot at Fairlight Studios in London. To vote for her, visit Teen Queen and text her first and last name.


Photo courtesy of Welwyn & Hatfield Times

News Desk Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Nigerian Militants Step Up `Oil War' With Niger Delta Attacks

The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, in an e-mailed statement today, said it attacked the Orubiri pumping station in Rivers state at 10 p.m. yesterday. A Nigerian military spokesman confirmed the raid. MORE>>>

Nigerian Government Closes Major TV Station

"The government is really serious about this report. It has shut down one of the main private TV/radio stations in Nigeria. It is called Channels TV. And not only that, the government also descended on the station with plainclothes security people, who chased out all the staff and sealed up the station... MORE>>>

Oil prices gain on US energy report

The US Department of Energy said Wednesday that crude reserves sank 6.3 million barrels in the week ending September 12 when US energy production was severely hampered by hurricane weather in the Gulf of Mexico. MORE>>>

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Editorials Tuesday, Sept 16, 2008

The President's health and an anxious nation

THE return of President Umar Musa Yar'Adua to the country about a week ago is obviously a big relief to Nigerians, following speculations about ill-health that trailed his 17-day absence. [GUARDIAN NEWSPAPERS]

Oba Adeolu: exit of the ‘second calabash’

FIRST, it was Mrs. Elsie Olusola (Sisi Clara) who was snatched by death. She was followed by Joseph Layode (a teacher who, sometimes, deputised for the headmaster) and Oba Oluwole Amele, the Alara of Aramoko Ekiti (Councillor Balogun). [NIGERIAN TRIBUNE]

CARTOON: Naija Wahala


News Desk Tuesday, Sept 16, 2008

CHRONOLOGY-Conflict in Nigeria's oil delta
The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) is responsible for attacks that have cut a fifth of the OPEC member's output since it emerged late in 2005. Below is a chronology of conflict in the Niger Delta since then. MORE>>>

Nigerian presidency denies resignation claim

LAGOS (AFP) — A report Tuesday by Nigeria's official news agency that President Umaru Yar'Adua may resign because of ill health set off renewed speculation about the leader and brought a furious denial from the presidency. MORE>>>

Nigerian economy grows 6.65 pct in Q2 2008-cbank

LAGOS, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Nigeria's economy grew by 6.65 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, against a lower revised figure of 5.54 percent in the first quarter, the central bank said on Tuesday. MORE>>>

From hellion to helper

Young Etim was miserable in the parochial school she attended beginning in kindergarten. The middle of seven children, she was ridiculed for her hand-me-down clothing. Most of the other kids were mean, she said, and also took potshots at her natural hairstyle. The teachers, Etim said, were racist and not much more understanding. MORE>>>

AIMS’ to Promote Islamic Banking and Finance in Africa

The Academy for International Modern Studies (AIMS), a Catham based Islamic Banking and Finance Institution has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Green Oasis Associates Ltd (GOAL) MORE>>>

Wenger changed my life - Kanu

The Nigeria legend is grateful to Arsenal manager Wenger, who signed him from Inter in 1998 and helped him bounce back to form and continue his career at the highest level. MORE>>>

Monday, September 15, 2008

PHOTO OP: Ugandan Model Salma Nassanga

Former Ugandan Beauty Queen was the first Ugandan model to have cleared the hurdle up to the Boot Camp two years ago in M-Net's Face of Africa Contest. The pick from Uganda in this year's contest which was held on September 6 is yet to be announced. So far three models --Totwana 'Tito' Tema, Albertina Shigwedha and Maria Hiwilepo -- have been selected for the finale of the new season's show which will be held in Sun City, South Africa on November 29.

The scouting team's next stop will be in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on September 16, followed by Lagos, Nigeria September 20; Accra, Ghana September 23; Maputo, Mozambique, September 27; Lusaka, Zambia, October 1; Johannesburg, South Africa, October 4; and Luanda, Angola, October 7 before the booth camp and final showdown.

Go Africa!

Photo courtesy of SOHU

Editorials Monday, Sept 15, 2008

The Technical Committee on Niger Delta

THE sudden flurry of activities in government circles in response to the dangerously worsening Niger Delta problem is a very welcome development. First was the announcement of a 40-person Technical Committee set up by the Federal Government [GUARDIAN NEWSPAPERS]

Yar’Adua’s 17 days’ absence

President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s 17-day absence from the country expectably elicited diverse reactions, some of which ought not to have been expressed if the situation had been handled properly. [DAILY CHAMPION]

News Update

Nigeria's MEND Claims Responsibility for Shell Attack (Update2)

Sept. 15 (Bloomberg) -- The Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, the main militant group in Nigeria's oil region, said its fighters destroyed a Royal Dutch Shell Plc flow station in a third day of attacks against oil installations. MORE>>>

Shell reduces staff at Nigeria fields after attacks

ABUJA, Sept 15 (Reuters) - Royal Dutch Shell has reduced the number of employees at some of its Nigerian oil fields after militants attacked several of its facilities in the last three days MORE>>>

Wall Street pulls oil down to $94

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Oil prices fell sharply Monday as Wall Street's latest tale of woes added fuel to the economic slowdown that has been crippling demand for energy. MORE>>>

Oil Prices Going Down below 93 dollars

LONDON: Oil prices plunged on Monday to seven-month lows below 93 dollars on prospects of weaker energy demand amid a worsening global financial crisis after Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy, analysts said. MORE>>>

Thursday, September 11, 2008

News Desk Friday, Sept 12, 2008

Eight million children not in school, says Aja-Nwachuckwu

The Federal Government said yesterday that a total number of eight million children who have reached the primary school age are not in school, while about 60 percent are not attending secondary school, particularly amongst girl children in the northern states of the country. MORE>>>

CSUB professor to teach in West Africa

A California State University, Bakersfield, communications professor has been accepted into the Fulbright Scholar Program for lecturing and research in Nigeria, West Africa. MORE>>>

Police declare labour leader wanted over exam fraud

ENUGU—POLICE detectives are now on the trail of a trade unionist said to be on the run in connection with his alleged involvement in examination malpractices during last Saturday’s Direct Entry Screening Test conducted by the University of Nigeria Nsukka (UNN). MORE>>>

Church continues reaching out after 24 years

After 24 years of continued growth and success, some organizations would be satisfied to rest on their laurels, to continue following a tried and true formula. But Gilroy's South Valley Community Church practices quite the opposite philosophy. MORE>>>

The Nigerian Rave in Germany

“I got sacked once and restated after the Supreme Court ruled in my favour. Despite the fact that I came out tops in a stiffly contested interview in the German police in 1989, I have had to fight several battles these past 27 years to retain my employment,” says Mr. Grey Okute MORE>>>

Editorials Thursday, Sept 11, 2008

The fake baby food alert

The National Agency for Food Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has raised an alarm over the circulation of fake infant formula, SMA Gold packaged in 450g cans, by some unscrupulous individuals in some parts of the country. [DAILY SUN]

Oba Funsho Adeolu (1931 - 2008)

The Alaye of Ode Remo, Oba Funsho Adeolu, Sataloye II, died recently in a London hospital. He would have been 77 in December. We condole with the people of Ode Remo, Ogun State, and the cast and audience of Village Headmaster [GUARDIAN NEWSPAPERS]

Murder of PHCN’s manager

AS Nigerians savoured the joy of the silver medal won by the Dream Team in the just-concluded Beijing Olympics in China, one family that would ever scorn the day the semi-finals of the game was played is the family of Mr. Adetola Babatunde Ademolu [DAILY CHAMPION]

News Desk (Early Edition) Friday, Sept 12, 2008

Nigeria calls for way to track "blood oil"

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — Nigeria's president called Thursday for help finding a way to fingerprint crude oil stocks in order to combat the theft and lucrative overseas sale of unrefined petroleum, aiming at stopping the flow of "blood oil" from Africa's biggest producers. MORE>>>

Nigeria to Issue $500 Million Bonds to Finance Infrastructure

Approval for the 10-year bonds, to be raised from the international capital market, was given yesterday by President Umaru Yar'Adua's government, Odey said on state-owned Nigerian Television today. MORE>>>

Mobile giant expects to exceed its initial subscriber growth targets

CEO Phuthuma Nhleko says the company is confident that it will exceed its targets for this year as a result of the brand performing well, the strong image of MTN in Iran, and good average revenue per user, owing to low tariffs. MORE>>>

Voodoo mum's severed finger court shocker

Authorities have ordered a DNA test of the fingers after mother-of-six Remi Fakorede made the gruesome revelation in a last-minute bid to influence a jury listening to her fraud trial. MORE>>>

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

CARTOON: A Prayer For Mr. President


News Desk Wednesday, Sept 10, 2008

Nigeria creates new ministry for Niger Delta
ABUJA, Sept 10 (Reuters) - Nigeria's cabinet approved a new ministry for the oil-producing Niger Delta on Wednesday and the demerging of the Energy Ministry into separate portfolios for petroleum and power. MORE>>>

EU allocates 580 million euros for Nigerian power projects

Abuja - The European Commission will spend 580 million euros (814 million dollars) on Nigeria's power sector in the next five years MORE>>>

Bird Flu infects Togo

Over 235 people have lost their lives world wide since 2003 for bird flu infections according to World Health Organisations figures. The virus was also detected in Two States in the Northern towns of Katsina and Kano MORE>>>

The Return of U. S. Death Squads

United Nations officials charge that secret “international intelligence services” are conducting raids to kill Afghan civilians, then hiding the perpetuators behind an “impenetrable” wall of bureaucracy. MORE>>>

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Joyous Festivities and Merry-Making at the 2008 African Marketplace Festival in Los Angeles

by Ambrose Ehirim

It was a weekend of a two weeks event which climaxed the Summer and folks from all walks of life had trooped in to get a feel of motherland Africa which has been since its inception -- the stuff of life and a great stuff of African cultural heritage. It is, in fact, the stuff of great literature.

Once more, the event took me aback to the days of Orie Amigwe, the once notable marketplace for second hand clothes, produce from organics, poking around and bargains for better deals haggling for money and things like that when a plundered and demolished Igbo nation had begun to start life anew after Yakubu Gowon's-led Genocidal campaign against a desperately starved Igbo children including infants and women.

But somehow the 2008 African Marketplace and Cultural Faire was a unique event considering an economy that has gone so bad and people are still happy at a time of going through the pains of hopelessness was very obvious. Sitting on the playgrounds of Dorsey High School in Los Angeles, there were bargains and selling and trading of artifacts from all cultural backgrounds in Africa.

I took a tour and talked to several people including merchants who had paid over a thousand bucks for a booth. And some of the booths so small one will be wondering the purpose of trying to make a brisk business in these hardtimes of an economy completely destroyed by the Bush-Cheney administration.

America is still a great country and the pains of economic hardship does not stop an outgoing public from having fun and moving on to do the best out of a very bad situation never mind what the Bush administration did fighting a not relevant war in Iraq resulting to America losing its value as an empire after Ronald Reagan dismantled the Soviet bloc. I guess empires come and go. So they say.

I had thought the Bush era had destroyed this country in its entirety in terms of commerce until I walked in to the carnival which had the same resemblance of Woodstock reflecting the 60s hippies and the outfits unveiled by the legendary Jimi Hendrix when pot-smoking was seen as a normal thing in an era of rage against the establishment.

Founded twenty three years ago by James Burks, the African Marketplace and Cultural Faire has become one of the best organized forums where you can feel mother nature Africa. A whole lot was on display and whether you were just window shopping, bargaining or selling one item or the other, and you are a merchant making a brisk business and the faces of Africa all in your face, the African Marketplace is just home.

On the eastside of the facility Nigerians and their neigbors tapped leather while the tennis courts around the corner was open to all and sundry. The swimming pool on the southside was full to capacity due to the Summer heat and all that summer jams flowing from the Balkanized forums where trade by barter and complete bargains took its course.

The forum had all sorts of African related restaurants serving African traditional dishes. The ginger root beer and jollof rice coupled with fried plantain sold by one Sierra Leonean lady had customers lick their fingers, perhaps an indication the food was really tasty. I would rather recommend a Michelin Star to the owner of Stone Market and Restaurants who has served the African and Caribbean communities in Los Angeles for many years now and whose stand at the festival had a very long line noted for its cowfoot soup, a combination of seasoned curry goat, ox tail and rice. There were no Nigerian food stands for consumption of isi ewu, nri ji, amala, ngwo ngwo and things like that in a festival every culture represented.

Stone Market and Restaurants was the real deal among the restaurant chains which sat on the southwest corner. Smiling all the time and speaking with an accent that immediately reveals his Jamaican origin, Stone has shown how being consistent and persistent pays off in the long run.

Leaving the restaurant zone takes you to the arena where all kinds of music pops up. I bumped to an arena where jazz was the theme and we had formed a circle to discuss jazz and its scholarship. We talked about the days of Joe Zawinul and Wayne Shorter when Weather Report had created a theme that left a mark in modern jazz. We talked about the Modern Jazz Quartet, Lee Morgan, Coleman Hawkins, David "Fathead" Newman and the days of the Village Vanguard Concerts. We talked about the Kudu years when Creed Taylor had assembled jazz greats Johnny Hammond, Grover Washington Jr., Hank Crawford, Eric Gale, Billy Cobham, McCoy Tyner, George Benson which came to be known as the cross over era.

It was real fun and a fantastic way to end the Summer when reggae great Gregory Isaacs closed the show with that hell of a smash hit called "Night Nurse" which vibed from the stage and everybody sang along:

Tell her try her best to make it quick
Woman tend to the sick
Because there must be something she can do

This heart is broken in two
Tell her it's a case of emergency
There is a patient by the name of Gregory

Night nurse
Only you can quench this here thirst
My night nurse
Oh God oh the pain is getting worse...

If you missed it this year keep your head because next year is just around the corner and time flies by, remember?

News Desk Tuesday, Sept 9, 2008

EU sees security in Sahara gas pipeline - Piebalgs

BRUSSELS, Sept 9 (Reuters) - A giant gas pipeline carrying Nigerian gas north across the Sahara desert could help the European Union diversify its energy sources, the EU's energy commissioner said on Tuesday. MORE>>>

For many living in the world’s poorest countries, the future seems irrelevant when the present is already so bleak

Despite the breakdown of UN climate-change talks in Bali last December, the same themes were still being pushed at this week’s meeting in Ghana — but now developing countries have begun to question the effects on the world’s poorest. MORE>>>

Aki & Paw Paw Fame On Suicide Watch

Nollywood star, Osita Iheme of the ‘Akin and PawPaw’ fame, is on suicide watch. According to Sources close to the talented actor, who played John Okafor’s son in ‘Mr Ibu’, Iheme had proposed marriage to the vivacious Brenda Gowon. MORE>>>

CARTOON: 'Playing Safe'


Monday, September 08, 2008

Three Down And Twenty-One To Go On Face Of Africa

19-year-old hairdresser Albertina Shigwedha

24-year-old student pilot Maria Hiwilepo Photo courtesy of Faith Models

The heat is definitely on with choices going through rigorous scrutiny giving Africa's most vibrant beauty contest a mark that is beginning to set its tone globally. Since no one was picked in Malawi and while the identity of the girl from Uganda in Saturday's search is yet to be known, two more names have been added --Namibia's 19-year-old hairdresser Albertina Shigwedha and 24-year-old student pilot Maria Hiwilepo, joining Botswana's Totwana 'Tito' Tema in the quest for an Africa beauty queen to be held in Sun City, South Africa in November.

The pick from Uganda during the weekend scouting will be announced later this week. Go Africa Go!!

News Update

Bunmi Adeoye’s “Unbreakable Heart” Named September “Best Song Of The Month”

Bunmi Adeoye, a promising, acoustic/pop singer/songwriter based in Toronto. ON, Canada, has won the SongwriterUniverse “Best Song Of The Month” Contest for September, for her song “Unbreakable Heart.” This song is featured on Adeoye’s debut 10-song album, Paper Dolls, Glass Houses, which she released independently in June (2008). MORE>>>

Stanley in Africa: Former Halliburton exec’s history of bribes and kickbacks

In the world of Big Oil, Albert “Jack” Stanley was legendary for winning billion-dollar contracts in Third World countries as the Halliburton (HAL, news, msgs) executive who knew all the secrets of deals in places like Malaysia, Egypt and Yemen. In the wake of his admission in a guilty plea last week MORE>>>

Iran leads calls for OPEC oil cut

VIENNA (AFP) Iran led calls on Monday for OPEC to cut output ahead of a meeting of the oil producer group, with analysts expecting the cartel to begin scaling back production to help support prices. MORE>>>

CARTOON: Uncle Sege Complains

SOURCE: The Port Harcourt Telegraph

Editorials Monday, Sept 8, 2008

Repair Aba roads

I sometimes engage in reasonable discussion with experienced travellers who are aware of the conditions of some cities and towns. This exposure has led me to conclude that Aba is one of the worst (if not the worst) cities in Nigeria, in terms of roads. [DAILY SUN]

The sorcery scandal at the NDDC

THE sorcery saga involving the suspended chairman of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Sam Edem marks yet another bizarre and disgraceful episode in a crucial segment of the country's public sector. [GUARDIAN NEWSPAPERS]

N1.5 trillion diverted revenue

The confirmation by Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Dimeji Sabur Bankole, of the diversion, between 2003 and 2008, by about 200 federal revenue bodies, of up to the tune of N1.5 trillion brings to the fore [DAILY CHAMPION]

News Desk Monday, Sept 8, 2008

Nigerian president swears in new military chiefs

ABUJA, Sept 8 (Reuters) - Nigerian President Umaru Yar'Adua swore in new military chiefs at a ceremony in the capital Abuja on Monday, the first time he has been seen in public since returning from medical treatment in Saudi Arabia. MORE>>>

More Chinese enterprises aiming for investment in Africa

XIAMEN, Sept. 8 (Xinhua) -- More Chinese enterprises are investing in Africa with their technological and personnel advantages and the abundant resources in Africa, said Wang Chao, assistant minister of commerce, here on Monday. more>>>

Groundbreaking Chicago Conference to Discuss Abortion's Effects on Men

CHICAGO, Sept. 8 -- The Knights of Columbus and the Archdiocese of Chicago's Office for Evangelization are cosponsoring a national conference to focus on the effects of abortion on men whose children have been aborted. more>>>

Pope names more women than ever to Synod of Bishops on Bible

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Choosing men and women from every part of the world and from a wide variety of professional spheres, Pope Benedict XVI nominated 32 voting members, 41 experts and 37 observers for the upcoming world Synod of Bishops. more>>>

Friday, September 05, 2008

Shut Down This Occupation

By Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe

Last week, MASSOB called on Igbo people to shut down Nigeria’s monstrous occupation of Igboland. Thanks to MASSOB’s month-long exhortation, Igbo people across their great land embarked on a crucial phase of the liberatory journey of defiance of the occupation and a resolute commitment to free themselves thereof. All of Igboland, despite the desperately reinforced intimidatory presence of fanged-footed occupation troops and armour, answered the call whether they were at work, in transit, in the closet of their homes or elsewhere – from the captivating rolling hills and plains of the Nsukka/Eha-Amufu north to the majestic Igbo Atlantic coast of Opobo/Umu-Ubani/Igwe Ocha of the south; from the luscious serenity of the Ugwuta/Onicha/Anioma west to the evocative, meandering Ebonyi/Cross banks that encapsulate the Abakaleke/Ehugbo/Umuahia east panhandle. The Igbo diaspora in Nigeria, west Africa, elsewhere in Africa and the rest of the world were in steadfast communion with the fortunes and expectations of the homeland. On the eve of the launch, an Abakaleke-based businessperson appropriately summarised the strategic goal of 50 million people since 29 May 1966: “We believe in Biafra … we [will] have our freedom.”

MASSOB’s historic mission is stated succinctly and unambiguously: the restoration of Igbo independence. Igbo independence from Nigeria was born during the course of the savagery of the most gruesome genocide in Africa of the 20th century which began on 29 May 1966. Of the five acts of genocide explicitly defined in article 2 of the December 1948 UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, Nigeria has sought tenaciously to specialise on the first three in its sustained and targeted policy of violence on the Igbo people: (a) “killing members of the group”, (b) “causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group” and (c) “deliberately inflicting upon the group conditions of life designed to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part”. Between 29 May 1966 and 12 January 1970, 3.1 million Igbo people, a quarter of the nation’s population then, were murdered by the Nigerian state and its allies. No key institutions of the state were exempt from this crime against humanity: the military, police, politicians/public figures, academia, media, Hausa-Fulani emirs, muslim clergy… The following constituent nations of Nigeria, among others, allied themselves most willingly to the perpetration of this genocide: Hausa-Fulani, Yoruba/Oduduwa, Urhobo, Kanuri, Bini, Jukun, Ishan, Angas, Sura, Berom, Gwari, Idoma, Itsekiri, Nupe, Bachama, Igala, Tiv, Yergam, Jarawa-Kogi. The lyrics below in Hausa, sung against the backdrop of a fiendish cacophony of orchestration, was the haunting signature tune for the countrywide mass recruitment of genocidist operatives that the Gowon/Awolowo regime ordered and deployed to hate, rape, murder, pillage the Igbo... The tune was broadcast repeatedly on Nigerian state-owned radio and television throughout the duration of the genocide:

Mu je mu kashe nyamiri

Mu kashe maza su da yan maza su

Mu chi mata su da yan mata su

Mu kwashe kaya su

(Let’s go kill the damned Igbo/Kill off their men and boys/Rape their wives and daughters/Cart off their property)

Britain, which, until just lately, occupied Nigeria for 60 years and was viscerally riled by the Igbo audacious spearhead of the liberation of Nigeria during the 1940s-1950s, played a central role with the Nigerians in the planning and execution of the genocide right from the outset. The erstwhile Soviet Union and its own key allies as well as the Arab World supported this vicious campaign of murder – all allied to the British strategic goal on the Igbo and Igboland in a rare pact of a triad of otherwise ideological and political adversaries. This development singularly shattered one of the key sites of certainties in post-World War II politics of international alliances.

Rising Sun

Since the presumed cessation of the genocide in January 1970, Igboland has been occupied by Nigeria. MASSOB’s meteoric ascent to the stratospheric heights of Igbo liberatory politics in the past decade has been actuated by its advanced studies of the neurosis that goes by the name “Nigeria” and the movement’s rigorous reading of contemporary international politics, which unprecedently favours freedom of peoples. MASSOB understands that the grave crisis that the Igbo face in Nigeria is occupation – not “marginalisation”, that favourite mantra religiously propagated by the “nku ukwa” planks of contemporary Igbo politics and those of less critical frames of analysis on the subject. MASSOB has indeed made a strategic break with the pulverising “nku ukwa” politics of greed and opportunism that has been the hallmark of the dominant trends in Igbo politics in the post-genocide epoch. A particularly nauseating streak of this orientation occurred only recently when a grouping of self-appointed Igbo “envoys” met the very suzerain of Nigeriana genocide, indolence and retrogression “on behalf of the Igbo”. Of course none of the “envoys” on this doomed mission dared confront the potentate of the slaughter of 3.1 million Igbo. Not one “envoy” asked the chieftain why Igbo businessperson Kingsley Mbagwu Onuoha was murdered in Kaduna in early July 2008 – on the eve of this outrageous “summit”. Why didn’t the Igbo “summiteers” call off this misguided exercise in the memory of Onuoha – and the rest of the illustrious 3.1 million? Having bounced themselves ultimately into the parley’s infamous hall of shame, none of them could proclaim most assuredly to the awaiting suzerain: “The Igbo are a free people. We freed Nigeria from the British when you and your people were trenchantly opposed to this historic enterprise. We are not Nigerians. We ceased to be Nigerians forever on 29 May 1966 when Nigeria embarked on the genocide of Igbo people. Your state murdered 3.1 million Igbo between 29 May 1966 and 12 January 1970. Since then, your state has murdered several thousands more and has imposed on the Igbo and Igboland the most dehumanising raft of socioeconomic package of deprivation not seen anywhere else in Africa. The genocide savagely goes on… On our way to this conference, Kingsley Mbagwu Onuoha was murdered in Kaduna. Have you arrested Onuoha’s murderers? Will they face justice? What justice? Do you realise that all Nigeria’s genocidist officials, including heads of regime, who have since 1966 been responsible for the planning and execution of varying facets of the Igbo genocide will duly be prosecuted in international criminal courts? They will be tried for committing crimes against humanity. Nigeria’s occupation of Igboland emasculates Igbo creative genius. We will end your occupation of Igboland. Your forces must leave Igboland. Yes, your forces will surely leave Igboland.”

“Nku Ukwa” undoubtedly serves the occupation most profoundly. It is at once a tactical and strategic weapon in the occupation’s arsenal. Its aim is principally to disorient the Igbo resistance through two principal ploys. First, it is the ideology of the occupation in precisely what it does not communicate about its grave mission but on ecstatically flashing the mirage of crumbs for the picking that individualised Igbo incorporation in the genocide portends. Secondly, “nku ukwa” is the channel to recruit Igbo personnel at varying levers of public life to help police the occupation. To ensure its success, the personnel is billed to operate within a constricted, debilitating de-Igboisationist/anti-Igboisationist construct. Thus the seemingly mindless hostility to Igbo interests intensely nurtured and implemented in the careers of Udenwa, Egwu, Orji Uzo Kalu, Maduekwe, Okereke-Onyiuke, Orji, Ezekwesili, Odili, Ichie Onwuchekwa, Mbadinuju, Nzeribe, Uba, Uba, Chimaroke Nnamani, Soludo, Okonjo-Iweala, etc., etc., not only underscores the gravity of this emergency but represents the benchmark on which the occupation evaluates Igbo participation in any spheres of public affairs in contemporary Nigeria. This is key to Nigeria’s blanket policy of non-development/degradation of socioeconomic life of Igboland since 1970 – a programme that the world recognises as a cardinal feature of genocide, detailed in one of the acts of the crime in the 1948 UN convention we cited earlier: “deliberately inflicting upon the group conditions of life designed to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part”. The tragic irony of “nku ukwa” is that those depraved crumbs picked by Igbo personnel for their services to the genocide and the occupation come largely from the gargantuan financial resources that Nigeria expropriates daily from occupied Igbo oilfields in the Delta, Rivers, Imo and Abia regions.

If some Igbo incorporation into the prosecuting schema of the Nigerian occupation is crucial for the sustenance of the aggression, then the collective Igbo riposte to this is distinctly unproblematic: “Don’t be a participant in your own subjugation. Be resilient. Remain a free Igbo.” Despite “nku ukwa” or indeed because of “nku ukwa”, the Igbo hold the trump cards for their freedom from Nigeria. Nigeria knows this especially as it trots along to its likely implosion. The Igbo people-Nigeria balance of forces currently is decisively in favour of Igbo freedom. Igbo freedom will herald the much-awaited process of the dismantling of the constellation of genocidal and kakistocratic states embedded in post-European conquest Africa of which Nigeria is a key example. The Igbo are poised to shut down the occupation. They will shut down this occupation. Now is the time.

Herbert Ekwe-Ekwe is leading scholar of the Igbo Genocide 1966-1970

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Face Of Africa goes beyond Beauty in its Pick

Another beauty has been added to the list of Face of Africa Contest. She is Totwana "Tito" Tema, a 24-year-old psychologist from Botswana. She was picked to represent Botswana in the upcoming M-Net Face of Africa Finale on November 29 in South Africa.

And of course, as a psychologist there is no telling that she was dedicated, committed, had discipline and very nice in every aspect to have captured the attention of the selection scouts.

Go Africa!

News Desk Early Edition Friday, Sept 5, 2008

NEXPORTRADE berths in Monrovia on Nigeria's National Day

NIGERIA'S dream of strengthening the economic ties of ECOWAS sub-region seems good as the nation's first shipment of goods will berth at the port of Monrovia on October 1, 2008 to officially launch the operations of NEXPORTRADE MORE>>>

Okah’s arrest: Nigerians in S’Africa blame Angola over N’Delta crisis

The Nigerians, under the aegis of Nigerian Citizens in Diaspora in the Republic of South Africa, made the allegation on the occasion of the first anniversary of the arrest of the leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta, Mr. Henry Okah. MORE>>>

Presidency remains uncertain on Yar’Adua’s return

The Minister of Information and Communications, Mr. John Odey, had told journalists after the Federal Executive Council meeting in Abuja on Wednesday that Vice-President Goodluck Jonathan would, before the close of work on that day, speak on the President’s schedule of return. MORE>>>

Off Broadway

Channeling his human rights activism and outspoken opposition to Nigeria's corrupt, post-colonial military government into his music, Fela declared the Kalakuta compound where he lived with his commune through much of the 1970s an independent republic MORE>>>

Mass importation of kerosene, food items

Ahead of the October 31 deadline for importation of duty-free rice, the bid to resolve the excruciating scarcity of kerosene and the surge in imports associated with end-of-year transactions, the ports will bubble this month with over 87 vessels expected to berth with assorted goods. MORE>>>

Editorials Thursday, Sept 4, 2008

The Africans for Obama Group

THE Africans for Obama group was allegedly put together by the Director-General of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Prof. Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke, ostensibly to sensitise African-Americans and Nigerians in diaspora to their civic responsibility [GUARDIAN NEWSPAPERS]

Teaching hospitals contracts’ probe

The plan by the Senate to probe the award and execution of contracts for the rehabilitation of 14 university teaching hospitals in the country is apt and timely. The contracts, worth 162 million euros, were variously awarded to VAMED Engineering Limited in 2002 and 2006 [DAILY SUN]

Reparations: The Italian example

Many years after late Chief MKO Abiola made it one of the many battles he fought and lost in his checkered life, the issue of acceptance of wrong- doing against Africa in particular and making some restitution by the Western powers that enslaved, colonized and raped the continent, is yet to be settled. [DAILY CHAMPION]

PHOTO OP: Scenes at the 2008 African Marketplace Festival in Los Angeles

With an all round bad economy, this beautiful girl was smiling to the bank selling accessories --body oil, shea butter, cocoa butter, varieties of incense -- and business boomed for her at the African Marketplace.

Like a spiritual revival and despite a bad economy, these women were on their feet stomping, dancing and chanting with their hands up to the vibes of an all women drum session. It was a hell of a jam.

This aspiring model and her friend told me they breezed in to have fun and nothing but fun. Watch out for her at the next American top model.

An artifact on display set up by Obi Onyeador of African Treasures.

Security detail checking in concert goers for the Gregory Isaacs Concert which was full to capacity.

The line up at Stone African-Caribbean Cuisine noted for its fine dishes.

It's all good regardless of a bad economy.

And of course, there was a livestock trade.

Latino soccer players take a break after tapping leather on the football field of Dorsey High School.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

PHOTO OP: Namibian Model Venantia Otto

In August 2006, Namibian model Venantia Otto celebrates when she was announced the winner of the Nokia Face of Africa competition held in South Africa.

The show seems to be gaining ground as this years competition is said to be better and more attractive. According to the Sunday Standard Reporter which reported a week ago that "an unprecedented winner prize of USD 50 000 in cash and a three year modeling contract with Oluchi’s dynamic O Model Africa agency, the new season of Face of Africa is set to be the best yet!"

Venantia did it again. Her steps and walk at this year's Cannes Film Festival in France spoke volumes. Go Africa!

Newsroom Late Edition Wednesday, Sept. 3, 2008

Race to join Nigeria resumes

Twenty teams will line up in the final phase of African Zone qualifying for the 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™. With Nigeria safely through, the scrap to finish top of the other 11 pools or claim one of the eight best runners-up berths will intensify this weekend. MORE>>>

Nigeria refuses to back down against Mugabe

JOHANNESBURG – Nigeria said it does not owe Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe any apology over its position regarding the June 27 run-off elections, adding that it remains convinced the status before the run-off vote was a more inclusive basis for power-sharing negotiations. MORE>>>

Siemens’ new energy contracts and Yar’adua’s zero tolerance for corruption

President Umaru Musa Yar’adua’s special relationship with the Germans was initially thought to be based on his personal health condition as his medical history is very comprehensive in German hospital (s). MORE>>>

I foresee a major crash in Nigeria newspaper industry – Prof Leo Anyanwu

The future of Nigerian newspaper industry hangs on the balance, says Professor Leonard Anyanwu, a professor of Economics and Management Consultant at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in the United States of America. MORE>>>

‘My soccer boots will do the talking’ — Benni

BAFANA Bafana got their biggest boost ahead of their 2010 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Nigeria at the EPRU stadium on Saturday when star striker Benni McCarthy said he was fit and ready to play. MORE>>>

News Desk Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Nigeria signs energy deal with Russia's Gazprom

LAGOS, Sept 3 (Reuters) - Russian gas giant Gazprom has signed an oil and gas exploration agreement with Nigeria, a deal which could strengthen its position as a supplier of natural gas to Europe and North America. MORE>>>

Nigeria opposition want clarity on Yar'Adua's health

LAGOS, Sept 3 (Reuters) - Nigeria's opposition called for clarity on the state of President Umaru Yar'Adua's health on Wednesday, saying his absence from the country for more than two weeks was adversely affecting the workings of government. MORE>>>

This Spam Is Brought to You By the Letter "A"
If your e-mail address begins “ajolie@” or “mphelps," your inbox is likely overflowing with messages sporting subject lines that read “Your Lady Will Become Crayzed” (sic) or “Urgent Request for Business Relationship from Lagos, Nigeria.” MORE>>>

Gunmen kidnap toddler in southern Nigeria: military

Nonso Sharon Ijeoma was abducted on Tuesday, according to Lieutenant Colonel Musa Sagir, the spokesman for the military Joint TasK Force responsible for security in the troubled Niger Delta. MORE>>>

Nigeria protest treatment in SA

Cape Town - Nigeria's Super Eagles are protesting the treatment meted to them at the airport on their arrival in South Africa on Tuesday. MORE>>>