Public Administration Reform And Strategic Plan For Nigeria. By Otive Igbuzor, Ph.D.

Nigeria is going through interesting times. With the election of President Muhammadu Buhari and assumption of office in May, 2015, the discourse and expectations in governance has changed completely. Everything now revolves around the expectation and operationalization of the concept of change especially as the governing party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) campaigned on the banner of change. Details


Extreme Poverty In Northern Nigeria And The Need For A Comprehensive Economic Plan For The North. By Abubakar Alkali

It is a well appreciated fact that there is extreme and debilitating poverty in Northern Nigeria which is a time bomb that could explode without notice. It is also a fact that the extreme poverty in Arewa is the root of the major ills affecting Arewa today such as Boko haram and youth restiveness. This calls for the Northern Governors to collectively declare a state of emergency on poverty in Northern Nigeria. Details


My Tribute to Bilkisu Yusuf. By Ado Umar Muhammad

Her last piece for the column was published on the very day she died, September 24, 2015, which was this year’s Eid-el-Kabir or Sallah Day. The second of a two-part serial, it was review of a workshop she attended in Lagos which was organized by the Economic Commission of West African States (ECOWAS) on the “Review and Validation of Training Modules for Political Parties in ECOWAS Member States.” Details


Why Russia Could Not Ignore Isis. By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

To most observers of global politics particularly its murky and shark infested backwaters of the Middle East, the biggest surprise of the year has been Russia’s sudden and decisive pitch into the deadly confrontation between ISIS, the acronym for the Islamic States in Iraq and Syria; the embattled regime of Bashar el-Assad, with its wider implications for Sunni-Shia relations in Iraq and Iran, not to mention the already existing tensions between Israel and its neighbors and America’s much vaunted war against terrorism whether it is perpetrated by ISIS, or Al-Qaeda in the Arabian peninsula. Details


Nigeria - Governance in E Major. By  Oseloka H. Obaze

E is for Expectations.  In Nigeria, E is huge and roiling. Nothing defines governance now, more than expectations and at all levels. The level of expectation is so high, it has become burdensome.  The concern is that if there is a letdown, it would be equally huge. Interestingly, such post-traumatic expectations have direct correlation to unmet needs, missed opportunities, bogus campaign promises, and for older Nigerians, residual knowledge of what good governance and governmental responsibilities were in the so-called good old days Details


Public Administration Reform And Transition From MDGs To SDGs In Nigeria. By Otive Igbuzor, Ph.D.

Despite the poor profile of Nigeria in terms of achievement of the MDGs, there are some actions that have worked well which need to be scaled up in the transition to SDGs Details


Poor Children Love Their Parents More. By Farouk Martins Aresa

Do poor children generally love their parents more than the spoilt brats? It depends on the parents is not the answer. No matter how strict most parents are, rich kids have this notion of entitlement unavailable to poor kids. They develop some resentment if they feel their parents are “stingy” with imagined wealth. It’s like the university graduate that complained bitterly that his father gave him a Volkswagen after graduation while his friends got Peugeot or Mercedes. Details


Consolidating Peace in Africa: Role of the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission. By Amb. Ejeviome Eloho Otobo

Those already familiar with the content and value of this work are full of its praises. The commendations are sweepingly positive, with a flourish of adjectival qualifications. Details


Saraki Sample For Obiano Fayose & Co. As Payback. By Farouk Martins Aresa

Governor Ameachi said: “we steal because Nigerians don't stone us". People of Kwara reacted and Anambra retorted. Saraki was stoned belatedly calling him Ole! Ole! As one of the Saraki’s family that have milked Kwara for a long time, he deservedly got his due at Eid al-Adha in Ilorin. Details


Donald Trump and the American Paradox. By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

Now his latest outrage is sure to vibrate far beyond the shores of America were the various primaries that will produce the leading candidates for next year’s presidential elections are being monitored closely. Can we even begin to contemplate the prospects of what will happen to the Middle East peace process with a Donald Trump in the White House? Details


The Magic Behind The Steady Supply Of Petroluem Products (1). By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

In the past fortnight no issue has captivated the attention of Nigerians more than the important milestone of President Muhammadu Buhari’s first 100 days in office as the democratically elected leader of the nation. In the rabid debates that have ensued, opinions were sharply divided between those who insist on holding the president to account for the many things he allegedly promised to deliver with the period, and those who swear that he gave no particular deadline to deliver on anything. Details


Daring Buhari For Safe Landing Of Looters & Boko-Mend. By Farouk Martins Aresa

It must be made clear that appointment of known and past crooks as ministers, into kitchen cabinet or any position of responsibilities is another form of soft landing. It will be difficult for watchdog agencies to probe such appointees after they have been declared fit for office by the President. People will see such persons as immune to prosecution. If that is the reason it took Buhari so long to appoint ministers, fine, he must not disappoint us at the end of the day. Details


Europe’s Refugee Crisis And Lessons For Africa. By Muhammad Ibrahim

Giving Germany’s history, and its Nazi past, it is highly ironical that the primary destination of the waves upon waves of refugees that have swamped on Europe in the past several months, and which now appears to have reached a crescendo in recent days, is the same Germany, which millions of European Jews and other minorities, struggled in vain to flee from under the Nazi Jackboot less than seven odd decades ago today. Details


EU Migrant Crisis - "If you break it, you own it." By  Oseloka H. Obaze

Despite the obvious interconnectedness, the nexus between the unfolding migrant flow into Europe and the collapse of the nations of Libya, Iraq, Yemen and Syria, are not being discussed openly.   Indeed, the discussion of any such linkages by Western leaders tends to be dodgy. What is also not being discussed in this context is Samuel Huntington's warning many years back, of the clash of civilizations. Details


GSM Communication in Nigeria: The effects and at whose detriment? By Ogu Reginald Ekene

If you give the reason for the wide acceptance of the GSM technology to be that “it is a means of communication and it has nothing to do with the conventional posting of letter done by the NIPOST”, I will prove you wrong by telling you that email is also a means of communication which also eliminated the activities of NIPOST. The question still remains, WHY GSM? Details


Remembering Brigadier Zakaria Maimalari. By Hassan M. Hussein

On the night of Jan 14th 1966 many senior army officers were attending a party in the honor of Brigadier Zakaria Maimalari who had remarried, his first wife had been shot dead in a bizarre accident involving a hunting rifle. The party was attended by the coup plotters themselves and most senior officers based in Lagos. In the  January 15th coup that overthrew the civilian Government, Northern political ( Sir Ahmadu Bello , Sir Abubakar Balewa, Ahmed Ben Musa.) and military leaders (Maimalari, Pam, Kur, and Largema) were murdered by Igbo officers. That means all military officers but one (Gowon), of the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and above of Northern origin, were eliminated. Details


Is the PDP Beyond Redemption? By Raheem Oluwafunminiyi

While the newly formed APC came up with a taintless candidate, using the Change mantra as its campaign slogan and in the process winning even more popularity to its side, the PDP went by the idea of a coronation. President Goodluck Jonathan, who many Nigerians had given up on following a below-par average performance in the last 4 years was picked by the party and never held a competitive primary. This action amidst other political missteps perhaps would turn out to be the political albatross of the party. Details


It’s The Fear Of Invasion Not About Illegals “Aliens”. By Farouk Martins Aresa

Gadhafi warned the Europeans that if they overthrew him, they would regret it since he had worked hard to keep African refugees away. Arab refugees? It is now worse than he predicted. The spread of democracy into culture of oligarchy, theocracy and dictatorship has limits pushed by extremist’s views present in every country, including democratic. The days of spreading Bible, Koran, Torah or any religion alien to a culture are like old wine in new bottles. Details


Growing Into Nigerians. By Leonard Karshima Shilgba

If we seek to build a better union, if we truly intend to enthrone meritocracy over mediocrity in Nigeria, the majority of people from the numerous ethnic and religious groupings that together make up Nigeria must make conscious efforts to grow into Nigerians. That means the Tivs, Igbos, Nupes, Yorubas, Ijaws, Hausas, Idomas, Fulanis, Ibiroms, Jukuns, etc., should stop looking at appointment into public offices through the prism of ethnicity. It means that “Christians” and “Muslims”, for instance, should stop interpreting public policy in religious terms. That is the minimum change we deserve as a people. We must grow into Nigerians, and ought not to remain in the diminutive state of our small ethnic and religious enclaves. Details


Nigeria: Tale of Oil Curse. By Mahmud Malami-Sadiq

Recently, in the wake of the plummeted oil price at the international market (with all the accompanied consequences of that steeped fall in the price per barrel on our fragile oil economy), there has been resurgence of a sober national discourse bordering on  weather oil is a blessing to Nigeria, or just another juggernaut. The salient question hanging in the minds of many Nigerians is: what has so far happened in the nation's political economy that the abundant oil treasure has not been able to affect the nation in positive ways? Details


Buhari’s Appointments: Between Federal Character And Meritocracy. By Kofoworola Ayodeji

If there must be genuine unity in the country, Nigerians must look beyond the federal character and embrace meritocracy. The use of federal character principle or law, as enshrined in the Third Schedule of the 1999 constitution, has done more harm than good. It has only succeeded in breaking rather than building the nation. So far we have appointees who are round pegs in round holes, their religious and ethnic affiliations shouldn’t really count. Or else, we would continue to live in our past. God bless Nigeria! Details


Salvaging Nigeria’s Local Governments. By  Oseloka H. Obaze

Nigeria’s moment of reckoning has arrived and it should be a season for purposeful leadership rather than a season of silly politics. In a nation suffused with developmental and other unmet needs, the best national governance structure required to address those pressing needs -- the local government -- is being systematically truncated. Whereas there is no such thing as a comprehensive strategy for purposeful governance, acknowledged global best practices which are in accord with international standards for democratic governance exist. We need to urgently replicate those values. Details


Stone-Crushing, Tin-Mining, and Bitumen Deposits in Nigeria. By Emeka Inwerogu

As tedious and physically demanding as stonecrushing is, ironically, women and children are the most common participants, spending hours crushing granite and suffering exposure to harsh, unhealthy and unsafe working conditions. But the profits some of them make is enough incentive for them, even though the exercise is mainly subsistent for several others. Details


Choosing The Next Customs Boss. By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

Is the goal of the Nigeria NCS solely about revenue collection for the government or the prevention of smuggling among other cross-border crimes that are inimical to the overall growth of the local economy? The point is important because with the virtual glut in the global oil market the government cannot afford to rely completely on the sale of the product for its export earnings. The price of crude oil in the global market has already fallen below the approved budget benchmark. That means the government is already operating a deficit budget. Details


Is Bishop Kukah Opposed To Change? By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

... the sudden appearance of Bishop Mathew Hassan Kukah of the Sokoto Catholic Diocese on Channels Television last week in which he made some scathing remarks against the on-going probe... For such a man of God, I am certain that the allegation of corruption levelled against him must have hurt the most.... By last Sunday, the anger against the Bishop had become so intense that it resulted in the circulation of an on-line petition to be forwarded to the Vatican!  Like members of the PDP top hierarchy who still appear to be reeling from the pain of defeat, by their comments, Bishop Kukah appears to have also misjudged the current mood of Nigerians and the level of their support for President Buhari. Details


Before We Disallow Begging: A Memo For Northern Governors. By Dr. Abdussamad Umar Jibia

The best way to address the problem of handicapped beggars is to send them back to their local communities. Those who are not Nigerians should be returned to their countries. At local level, a census of such people should be taken and family members should be made to take care of them... If Mr president would listen, his priority in distributing the promised monthly N5000 should be the orphans, widows and the destitute and not just any unemployed. In Nigeria anybody who is not on monthly salary would claim to be unemployed and if care is not taken the scheme will fail from the start. Details


As We Await Buhari's Cabinet... By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

In the dark clairvoyant days when the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) reigned supreme and was in fact the main -if not the only- business in town, today's discourse with its emphatic title, would have been considered unnecessary. All that one required to become a Minister or Head of any juicy federal government agency were the right connections and "investments" in the right places. Details


Nigeria's Development-Discipline Disequilibrium. By Okachikwu Dibia

About two decades now, I have been engrossed in finding the reasons and facts to fault my conviction that Nigeria does not have the requisite level of discipline that matches her development potentialities and aspirations. In other words, Nigeria's level of discipline cannot carry and sustain the level of development she can attain and of which the entire African continent and indeed the World look forward to. Details


Why Corruption Persists In Nigeria. By Mohammed Dahiru Aminu

Nigerians are yet come up with a consensual definition of “Corruption”. This disharmony in our perceptions of the criminal act is even more pronounced between the haves and the have-nots, with the view of the former recently restated by a provocative pronouncement of former president Goodluck Jonathan who, as president addressing a troubled nation, declared, “…stealing is not corruption…” Details


Efficient Management Of The Nigerian Oil And Gas Industry. By Chief Madaki Omadachi Ameh

Since January 2012 when the issue of subsidy became a National scandal after the botched attempt by the then President Jonathan administration to increase the pump price of petrol to N140.00 per litre was met with stiff opposition by the Nigerian public through organized labour and civil society groups, the subsequent probe by the National Assembly revealed that on the average, the country spends about N2 Trillion on subsidizing petrol alone on an annual basis.  This figure accounts for a little under half of the National Budget, which hovers around N4.5 Trillion Naira annually. Details


Rebooting Nigeria. By Oseloka H. Obaze

Nigeria in its present state is analogous to a dysfunctional computer. In both instances, there is  evident systemic failure arising from non-responsive applications and institutions not operating as intended.  Such instances require a reboot in order to overcome the redundancies. As Nigeria’s nascent democracy evolves, it is evident that the nation has arrived at the critical juncture where identifiable governance pitfalls, challenges as well as institutional and infrastructural failings compel urgent directional change. Moreover, Nigeria seems to have deviated from the conventional paradigm of an emerging democracy. Details


Wal-Mart Is Coming To Lagos? Seriously? By Nwike Ojukwu, SJD.

Now, do not get me wrong.  I love and shop at Wal-Mart due to its “Save money. Live better” commercial slogan for which it is known. The corporation has three stores located within about three miles radius in my neighborhood, and that says something about their operation. And because it is a one-stop shop, one could obtain whatever he or she needs from any of its stores, from grocery to home appliances, to pharmacy. My concern with Wal-Mart is that it does not only offer products at competitively low prices, it also captures the retail market to the detriment of the smaller businesses.  When, therefore Wal-Mart enters a third world country like Nigeria, where it could potentially dominate the retail market sector of the economy, I think I should be concerned. Details


In Defense Of Nigeria. By Leonard Karshima Shilgba

In anger, some Nigerians may claim they are not Nigerians, and may even seek others to blame. I will defend Nigeria because I do not have another country to call mine. I will speak for the health of Nigeria. I am not pleased with what some of Nigeria’s public officials use their public offices to do. But I cannot because of that do things that are injurious to Nigeria. Through reading of comments by Nigerian readers, I have come to understand that our words are generally too corrupting rather than edifying, and we are too easily distracted. We are not patient enough to listen, understand, and appreciate other people’s views before we launch our verbal missiles of invectives. Before you know it, we descend into the gutter of ethnic bigotry and feel we are doing service to ourselves. Details


Yoruba Intolerance For Looters Began At Home. By Farouk Martins Aresa

The Yoruba are not perfect, but their tolerance for greed, corruption and vagabonds cannot be compared to the unbelievable excuses other ethnic groups mount in defense of their members. Unfortunately, we have moved from a time when Hausa man can be depended on for honesty, Igbo man for hard work and Yoruba man for fairness and tolerance; to this time where anything goes. People have thrown honesty and integrity out of the window, encouraging vagabonds. Details


America's Leahy Law And Its Hypocrisy. By Muhammad Al-Ghazali

Even before President Buhari's visit to Washington last week, it was apparent that Nigeria was at the mercy of the law authored by the ranking Senator Patrick Joseph Leahy, which prohibits the sale of American military hardware to nations whose forces are alleged to have committed serious human rights abuses in various theatres of operation across the world. That means that at a critical moment in our history, the defence of our dear nations are to be determined by factors beyond our direct control. We must go on bent knees before prospective weapons suppliers for the critical arms required to defend ourselves. It is a collective national tragedy. It is a price we are compelled to pay for the criminal neglect of our military industrial complex by successive regimes for more than five decades. Details


Can We Be Great Again? By Mustapha Ismail Alhassan

In my observation, it is simple we have committed all seven of the  social sins postulated by Gandhi, and we are left behind by nations of the world, just recently Nigeria was placed in the 110th position out of the 143 countries polled in the Global Innovation Index report released in Sydney, Australia. Switzerland, the United Kingdom and Sweden topped this year’s Global Innovation Index. Details


The Age of Unreason. By Malam Ali Garba

There are many idle ‘professionals’ in the eco-system that have raised hyperbole and jargon to the level of an art – it is better to confuse the audience than to admit ignorance.  These idle people try to provide explanation and a way out for this ‘mutual death wish’ situation.  Like the Ajino Moto Economists of the last two decades, these ‘professionals’, are essentially bystanders with no commercial or intellectual engagement with the market. Details


Basketmouth, Fela Durotoye, Funmi Iyanda, Others Deserve National Awards. By Kofoworola Ayodeji

The Afrobeat legend, Fela Anikulapo Kuti was recently honoured by the United States Congress for his huge contributions to music and political activism I received the news with mixed feelings— excitement on one end and anger on the other. I was excited because the music legend was remembered and recognised even years after his death— that’s superb! But again, I was heart-broken that Nigeria as a country does not admire and celebrate her own sons and daughters (both young and old) who have demonstrated uncommon excellence in their areas of interest. Details