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EndSARS Protest: Hypocrisy of support & silence as Nigeria squats on precarious centre – By Shola Omilana




Note that, not all Nigerian youths are Internet fraudsters; Nigerian youths are free to dress as they wish; the Constitution guarantees certain fundamental rights that must not be trampled upon, among which is freedom to associate, move, speak among others.

Any Nigerian youth that bears no arm shouldn’t be subjected to embarrassment by any security officer under any guise. Armed officers are not supposed to be deployed to control unarmed protesters, let alone the leaders of tomorrow as in the EndSARS protest. Security operatives do not need to kill to arrest any suspected internet fraudsters that do not bear any harm.

“And he said to the people, who amongst you has not committed similar sin, let him be the one to cast a stone,…and before He looked up, no one among the crowd was left except the accused woman”

The embedded message in the above biblical allusion is that “The crowd lacks the integrity to stone the woman to death, though the tradition stipulates that.

Some of our politicians and security agencies have stained their garments of dignity with the faeces of a chameleon and have also soiled their hands in iniquities and cannot stand to condemn corrupt practices such as internet fraud and others

Government’s idea of milk drying the masses to fund its white elephant economic programmes makes it seem it is preparing a fatalistic and precarious future for the youth, because the gap between the social well being of the masses and Economic growth is egregious.

Government, in its policies, wants the masses to pay and wait till it (government) tills the ground, makes heaps, plants crops, watches them germinate and grow, with no corresponding assurance of machinery to ensure that locusts (corrupt officials/politicians) do not devour, stunt growth and truncate lifespan, making the crops not to mature. The masses lose at the end by paying exorbitant rates for services not enjoyed.

The Nigerian youth in question have explored the outside world physically and technologically, unlike during our grand fathers and fathers’ days that they vainly hoped in government from when they started tying boots till when they were aided by staffs.

Current economic hardship and its attendant effects on the masses is also one of the factors that has made the youths not being able to pacify in their protest against SARS brutality

Government should forget about deceiving these young ones with window dressing or white elephant projects. The youths of this generation have seen and compared social well-being of educated and non-educated youths in America, Russia, Canada, China, Saudi Arabia, lsrael, Hong Kong, Libya and Egypt, and so cannot be deceived or brainwashed. Therefore, internet fraud may not go away anytime soon from this nation until some thorny branches are hewn and roses planted in places of shrubs by government.

Education and religion have largely contributed to lack of hope by the youth of this current generation. First clergymen in this nation have never individually amassed wealth like they have done in this generation, immorality and ubiquitous iniquities have never pervaded the sacred realm as it is now, the more reason some clergymen are hypocritically silent on the matter

Similarly, educated young ones believe they have sacrificed many years of austerity and self-denial to acquire knowledge with hope of meaningful life but later disappointed that it is only where you belong to, or who you know, that can ever offer you that meaningful life.

Parents cannot be blamed for their silence on this matter due to the fact that their avowed hope in government and sermon to their wards to keep off criminality have not stopped them from using their tattered pension dues to mend leakages from their thatched roofs, the reason they are no longer facing the West where the sun sets but facing the East where the sun rises. Can the centre (society )still hold ?

It is only in this nation that you’ll see a security officer in patched uniforms, begging passersby and motorists for breadcrumbs, and government will still expect such officer that is deprived of meaningful welfare packages not to compromise or demean himself. Can the centre (police force) still hold.

Moreso, it is only in Nigeria that you will see police officers, including all other security operatives collecting stipends from motorists along major highways including its Federal Capital city, and their bosses will deceitfully say ‘bribe is a crime’ for the umpteenth time, and you think the centre (security agencies) can still hold.

How can SARS that was formed to tackle robbery and other high profile criminal activities almost turned itself into a cult of internet fraudsters? If care is not taken by the federal government in its reform of this unit, most of the demagogues that have indulged in this illicit acts will find it difficult to desist for they know what they benefit and the force has allowed this to linger.

There are countries today that lack the integrity to stop drug trafficking, insurgency and terrorism, some lack integrity of stopping human trafficking, internet fraud and it goes on and on. They have learnt to live with it until certain explicit corrections are made to restore trust and confidence in the people about their government before perpetrators desist, I doubt if Nigeria will not have to live with internet fraud among the youths, l decide not talk of other illicit activities.

Nigeria and Nigerians need to address bad governance, bad policies, misplacement of priorities, nepotism, joblessness, underemployment, lack of evenly distributed national wealth, money laundering, societal illness, embezzlement of public funds with impunity, religious hypocrisy, reward for education pursuits, before Nigerian youths can be truly pacified.

Internet use, online businesses and other activities should also be regulated or reformed by respective authorities instead of assaulting and humiliating Nigerian youths for their digital dexterity, as well as mastery and cerebral ingenuity of exploring the internet, after all, the alleged youths are toddlers in the act, while the mammoth internet fraudsters and drug barons are always masked.

The agency responsible for certain criminal offences should be allowed to carry out their legitimate operational assignments in a transparent manner and in line with laid down ethics of operations.

With the sophistication of strength that the youths have discovered in the ongoing protest, l fear if government will not be compelled, sometime in the nearest future, to constitute amnesty programmes to make youth jettison illicit internet activities and embrace legitimate online engagements.

If religious centres, parents, government no longer have integrity to mentor and inculcate moral decency in our youths, l wonder what society we are creating for the younger generation.

Olushola Omilana is a broadcast journalist with Murhi International Television (MITV)

He writes from Osogbo.

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Ending Inisa Central Mosque Leadership Crisis: FRMIOS Calls For Constitution of Shuurah Committee




…harps on harmonising Interests among Warring Factions

Muslims have been charged to always embrace peace and uphold the tenets of Islam in whatever they do including selection of a leader or Imam.

The Forum of Ratibi Mosque Imams of Osun State (FRMIOS), a registered Islamic Organization under the leadership of Pa Alhaji Shehik Imaam Illyas Afolabi Alawe gave the charge this weekend.

This was coming against the backdrop of the efforts at resolving the Inisha Central Mosque leadership crisis that kept worshippers away from observing prayers at the mosque for quite a while before last Friday.

In a release signed by the organisation’s secretary, Jamiu omotoso Tajudeen and made available to Daily Mail in Osogbo, FRMIOS called for constitution of a Shuurah Committee as a way to harmonize Interests of the Warring Factions.

The release read in part: “To be an Imam is to lead others in observing Salats and doings of some other religious activities including presentation of regular Sermons. It is a question of one having adequate and sufficient knowledge, wisdom and native intelligence more so that essence of the leadership in Islam is to guide adherents of the faith to the way of Allaah as sent to mankind through all the Prophets.”

“Shuurah Committee is a body always assigned a role to determine and select a leadership in Islam based on the religious criteria. It follows that where such had been in place within the Muslim community in this part of the country, probably closure of the central Mosque would have been averted and an ugly development that did more harm to the Muslims and Islam at large.

“The warring factions should therefore embrace peace and see to amicable resolution of the crisis in the overall interest of the Muslims and Islam which is obviously facing a lot of challenges in the Southwest as a result of inability of the Ummah to be united and speak with one voice.

“We therefore further call on the state government to look into urgent creation of the Shari’ah Court of Appeal in this state as guaranteed by Section 275 (1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Taking into consideration the huge population of the Muslims in the state, creation of such Shari’ah Court of Appeal in the state will definitely avert such a leadership crisis and others which are capable of disturbing peaceful coexistence of the people in the state.

“In addition, creation of such Shari’ah Court will provide jobs and generate more revenue for the government while such religious crises would always be settled in a very civilized manner. Our organization shall not relent in promoting peace, harmony and in a quest to see to the creation of the Shari’ah Court of Appeal in Osun State.

“Meanwhile, intervention of the well-meaningful people such as Chief Imam of Osogbo, HRM Olunisa of Inisa, Our Sheikhs, Alfas, brothers in Islam and Osun State government is highly appreciative and commendable.”

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Cutting Costs of Governance: Presidency Should Lead Way – Ogunwale



Kola Ogunwale

A chieftain of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP in Osun State, Senator Felix Ogunwale has said the Nigerian presidency should lead the way for others to follow in cutting down cost of governance.

Senator Ogunwale spoke on Wednesday in Osogbo while fielding question from a panel at a programme, The Frontliners’ organised by the Osun State Chapter of Association of Veteran Journalists, AVJ.

He said the right thing to be done was for the president of the country to show commitment to changing the narrative by not only asking Nigerians to endure the current hardship but to demonstrate the willingness to also make all arms of government to also feel the impact in their budget.

“I have always said it that we are note being driven by ideas in Nigeria but money. You can’t be asking those in the National Assembly to reduce their pay now when in actual sense the reason for some of them being their is to amaze wealth.

“Do you know what to correct this, it’s if our president, I am not referring to the current president, it’s the day our president decide to be riding bicycle to his office, the day the balance in his account is not more than 10 million, the day our president refuses to take more aides than it’s necessary, the day our president doesn’t believe in amazing wealth.”

The chairman of the event, Dr. Muyiwa Oladimeji who also shared the views of the guest urged the people of the State to continue to support the Administration of Senator Ademola Adeleke to be able to achieve his dream of developing all sectors of the State.

He commeded the AVJ for championing such efforts geared towards charting a way forward on how to achieve all round growth and development of the society and the nation at large.

Earlier, the chairman, AVJ, Adepoju Atobatele had described the programme as another opportunity to get Nigerians engaged on salient issues of national and global dimensions on the Front Liners.

Atobatele said, the association considered it a duty as professionals in the pen fraternity, to deepen democracy by constantly provoking Intellectual disputes that would widen public horizon of issues that are germane to the wellbeing, progress, security as well galvanizing interest in the affairs of the Country.

He said “The FRONTLINERS has been very active in widening discussions and analytical assessments of issues, events and personalities involved in determining the socio-economic and political directions of our dear Country, Nigeria.

“These we are carrying out successfully with the resources available to us in different ways, through the instrumentality of the Media.

“Ours as a professional body of retired media practitioners, still active in the concept of information management, has thus taken it as a sacred duty to act as change agents in a society yearning for objective information dissemination.”

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IMO: Oyetola holds bilateral talks with Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Jamaica



…as Nigeria sets to sign MoU with Saudi Arabia

The minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola, on Tuesday, continued bilateral discussions with ministers and representatives from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Bangladesh, Brazil and Jamaica, expressing Nigeria’s government interest in learning from their knowledge and experiences.

This was revealed through his media aide, Ismail Omipidan, in a statement issued on Tuesday evening.

Recall that Oyetola, on Monday, held bilateral meetings with representatives of Greece, Qatar, and Mexico, on the sidelines of the ongoing 33rd General Assembly session of the International Maritime Organization, IMO, in London, United Kingdom.

During his meeting with the Brazilian Chief of the Navy’s General Staff, Adm José Augusto V. da Cunha de Menezes, the minister said Nigeria would want to learn from the operations of the Brazilian coast guards, as the ministry was desirous of setting up one so as to further secure the maritime space and the country’s waterways.

Oyetola further noted that: “We want to also focus on sectors such as Marine Renewable Energy, Marine Mining, Subsea Cabling and Piping, Marine Genetics, and Biotechnology, so as to grow the marine and blue economy.

“As we continue to expand and develop the activities of the sector, there will be need to deepen security architecture within the maritime space. In this regard, we are considering setting up Coast Guards and we believe that they will complement the existing security architecture to further secure our maritime space.”

The minister while expressing Nigeria’s desire to tap into technology to revolutionalise the maritime sector, further said “technology and innovation are vital for boosting Nigeria’s trade and investment prospects within the Marine and Blue Economy. Advanced marine technologies, including innovations in maritime logistics and smart logistics solutions, will significantly enhance the efficiency and sustainability of maritime transport and port operations, making Nigerian ports more competitive globally.”

Oyetola also met the newly elected Vice President of IMO, who is the Bangladesh High Commissioner to the UK, Saida Muna Tasneem and Saudi Arabia’s Saleh bin Nasser AIJasser, who is the minister in charge of the Ministry of Transport and Logistics Services of Saudi Arabia, Department of Economic and Social Affairs.

Both Saudi Arabia and Nigeria during the meeting agreed to sign a formal Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to cement their corporations, collaboration and partnership in the maritime space.

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