Author: Charles Okoh

Perhaps, one of the greatest misfortunes that have befallen this nation is the lip service that we pay to issues concerning the welfare of the people and the nation. Nigeria is cursed with bad leadership, selfish, greedy, and inept with no fear of God. For them, Christianity or Islam or whatever faith they profess does not have any link whatsoever with their conduct in public office. I do not have any problem with that because I have come to accept that as our fate and that that will be our lot until we fix the problem of leadership in the…

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Last week, the President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, making his first public appearance after returning from a two-week private visit to France, challenged Nigerians to speak positive things about the country. Tinubu said that optimism about the country will eventually lead to success. The President said this in his speech during the launch of the 3,112 housing units under the Renewed Hope Cites initiative in the Federal Capital Territory, last Thursday. He urged Nigerians not to look back but forward because they have a country that truly cares about them. He also pledged his willingness to commit to the country’s economic…

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Given the strategic and central role of Lagos as a melting point for people of diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds, in the lives of a lot of Nigerians and foreigners alike, it will be unacceptable to think that Lagos would degenerate to a point where anything goes and where lawlessness would be the order of the day. With the increasing population of the state, which grows alarmingly, on a daily basis, it’s imperative that law and order must prevail for there to be meaningful and tangible development and growth. Anything to the contrary would be a recipe for disaster. For…

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Recent events in the country, especially with the Bola Ahmed Tinubu presidency, is becoming very interesting and exposing the very lies that have made our nationhood a mirage. As it is, the glitches we face as a people on our journey to nationhood, will continue to make it impossible for us to build that nation which we seek, as long as one part of the country insists on dominating the rest of us. The unity of this country would remain a fluke so long as the structures of falsehood, deceit, injustice, inequality and hypocrisy upon which this country is built…

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There is a dangerous trend with our uninformed men, especially with the soldiers that has to be checked if we must build a society where the rule of law and complete subservience to civil rule and authority should be the hallmark of the country. Perhaps, we are still suffering and bedeviled by the vestiges of militarism after so many years of military incursion into governance in the country. It also is a problem of the kind of training that our soldiers receive that you wonder if they ever enjoy any form of interaction or relationships with their colleagues from other…

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President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, in the last week sent signals to Nigerians and those who felt that his government will only be a continuation of the lacklustre and uninspiring reign of the Muhammadu Buhari government, that he is not only the head of the government but is also in control. A quality that was completely lacking in the tenure of his predecessor. For those who think former President Buhari should be exonerated from the recklessness and abysmal performance of that government, they have to always remember that the president it was that the people elected and he takes full responsibility…

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For far too long, we have been shedding blood in this country. We, sadly, are becoming so used to killings that it appears as though it is now a common occurrence. People are killed in hundreds and after the initial hue and cry, life returns to normal. This is a clear indication that we have come, as a nation, to internalise this sad reality as a way of life. We have resigned to a state of helplessness and despair. What is even sadder is the fact that the perpetrators of these dastardly acts simply disappear into thin air with no…

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To say Nigerians are experiencing hardship like never before is to state the obvious. Things are excruciatingly difficult as Nigerians have never had it this tough. All indices of assessing the quality of human life are not looking good for Nigerians. What is not in doubt is that while this may be a culmination of the several years of neglect and irresponsible governance, it is also unacceptable that to this day, there has not been any sincere and deliberate attempt to arrest this decline. It has been a case of succeeding governments taking us into deeper decline than their predecessor…

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The disquiet between former Governor of Rivers State and now Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, and his anointed and appointed successor in the state, Governor Siminalayi Fubara, in the last weeks, assumed a proportion that left the political landscape divided in halves among those who have sympathy for the former and a growing population of sympathisers for the latter who are now happy that he has finally stood up to his overbearing benefactor. This face-off between Wike and Fubara would go down as unprecedented because not only did it become public so early, but also there were…

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Erstwhile governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, is easily the most controversial minister in the cabinet of President Bola Tinubu. Some of the controversies he is currently involved in followed him from his eight-eight-year reign as governor of the oil rich state. For many Wike has simply metamorphosed from that governor who was playing the role of the much lacking opposition to then President Muhammadu Buhari to a state today, where it is difficult to say which party between the PDP and APC he belongs to. For the PDP, sacking Wike would not be out of place given his undisguised romance…

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At the coming of the era of mobile telephony with the launch of the Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) into the country by the then President Olusegun Obasanjo administration in 2001, a telephony-starved Nigerian population was so hungry for the service that they literally jumped at the opportunity with little or no protection for the consumer. We needed it and would do anything just to have it. And that we procured at a very high cost to us. Twenty-two years after its launch in Nigeria, the telecommunication sector has remained the biggest driver of the nation’s economy. It’s impossible…

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The Senate and House of Representatives Joint Committee on Electoral Matters, will tomorrow, Tuesday, November 28, be holding a citizens town hall on electoral reforms in Abuja. The Joint Committee, with the support of Yiaga Africa and the European Union, is inviting the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), political parties, civil society organisations, development partners, etc. to the Citizens’ Town hall on Electoral Matters. Ordinarily, this should excite one, but who really cares? Of what relevance are all our electoral reforms since 1999 when we returned to democracy? What is the use of reforming the process with amended Electoral Acts…

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The cat and mouse relationship between the Federal Government, the leadership of the Nigeria Labour Congress, and Trade Union Congress is, to say the least, preposterous. On all sides of this dispute, the fact one can deduce from it all is that these men and women have just not come to terms with the real issues facing Nigerians and the real problems the ordinary man on the street faces every day. To say Nigerians are hungry and angry is to say the obvious. But how can we be talking of the existential threats of the people and some obviously over-fed…

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Retired Justice Musa Dattijo Muhammad, while giving a valedictory speech upon his retirement from the Supreme Court, raised some compelling and pertinent issues around our judiciary and its role in administering justice. Recently, I had written somewhere that the judiciary remains the only problem of the country, and I had barely finished writing when responses started coming countering that position. Some of those responses were so ridiculous that my submission was understood to mean that all I was saying was that all the problems in the society are to be attributed or blamed only on the judiciary. Hell no! Could…

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Islamic scholar, Sheikh Ahmed Gumi, has remained a threat to the unity of Nigeria and has never hidden or pretended about the fact that he would be prepared to do anything and everything to promote his narrow and selfish interests in the name of being an Islamic cleric. His incendiary comments and divisive tendencies can only have endured thus far because he is not alone in this pursuit and has the backing of some powerful sympathisers. Interestingly and in spite of his reckless outbursts and outlandish recommendations this man has continued to enjoy the liberty to do more. How many…

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The unfortunate pronouncements by the Senate in its attempt to justify the purchase of 360 Sports Utility Vehicles (SUVs) by lawmakers in the House of Representatives and 109 SUVs for Senators, is to say the least, sad. It lacks sensibility and wisdom. It is not only insensitive but also highly provocative. Before now, not a few Nigerians were embarrassed and scandalised by the approval of N57.6 billion for the purchase of luxury cars for the legislators. And they have expressed that disappointment in no unmistakable terms. But again, as is always the case, the senators came out to defend the…

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Dear President Bola Tinubu, It is exactly five months since you mounted the saddle as president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Although the controversies around the elections that brought you to the office are yet to settle, what is not in doubt is that you have the responsibility to steer this ship called Nigeria to safety. It is a job you asked for and got. So, I do not pity you because I take it that you were aware of the enormity of the task before you while you were seeking that office. Permit my choice of medium to…

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Last Monday, Justice Ibironke Harrison of the Lagos High Court found a police officer, Drambi Vandi, guilty of one count charge of murder of Bolanle Raheem, the female lawyer who was murdered in cold blood on December 25, 2022. The circumstances around her death would melt any heart except those of these criminals that the police keep recruiting to turn their arms against the same people they are paid and armed to protect. Since I became old enough to read I have always read about the Nigeria Police promising to fish out the so-called few bad eggs in their midst.…

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The spotlight on Nigeria in the last one week is damaging, to say the least. When eventually the dust raised by the inquest into the academic records of President Ahmed Bola Tinubu, in faraway United States settles, and the President is left off the hook, it will be a pyrrhic victory for him and the nation. At some point in his life, the president made some wrong choices that have come back to haunt him; there is no escaping the fact that the scandals around his political career were unforced errors and he must come out clean on this. Perhaps,…

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The shocking news of the death of up-and-coming artist, Ilerioluwa Aloba, aka Mobhad, shook the nation like a hurricane. For many, including yours sincerely, I had never heard that name nor read any material where his name was mentioned prior to his death. I am also not sure I ever listened to any of his songs until the news of his demise took over the airwaves like wildfire in Harmattan. His sad death has brought about global attention to Nigeria. Also, the rumoured circumstances around his death have left tongues wagging and in the process, Marlian Music record owner, Azeez…

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 Politicians will not stop amazing one. How they reason and what they take Nigerians for is what one still finds hard to understand. For the whole of the eight years that Muhammadu Buhari sat as President, he never pretended that he was for the North and the North alone. We cried; sorry, wailed, and were appropriately dubbed as the wailers by some misfiring media aides. After sending something to their banks, or was it prayers to their mails for them to enjoy their holidays, some senators from the North rather than reciprocate the kind gesture, used their break to plot…

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The perennial face-off between governors and their deputies has become a constant feature in our democratic experience. The lack of a constitutional role for the deputy governors leaves them at the mercy of the almighty governors. On the part of the deputy governors, too, perhaps, because of their idleness, they are mostly preoccupied with thoughts of how to unseat or succeed their principals. Since most of the governors also have different ideas about who to succeed them, conflict arises and both would hardly see eye-to-eye. Therefore, the question that becomes pertinent is: What is the need for a deputy governor…

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It was exactly 100 days in office last week for President Bola Tinubu and all governors sworn in on May 29 this year. So far, it has been a bumpy ride for President Tinubu. For reasons not exactly his fault, he has been confronted by a myriad of challenges. For Nigerians too, it has been harrowing experiences living in this country these last 100 days. Perhaps, out of a desire to be seen as being in a hurry to make a mark the president immediately, on being sworn in, pulled off the plug on fuel subsidy, and the nation has…

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Chief Government Ekpemupolo (aka Tompolo), former leader of the Movement for the Emancipation of Niger Delta (MEND), has become subject of controversy since he took on the pipeline surveillance contract between his Tantita Security Service Nigeria Ltd, and the federal government. The federal government in August 2022, awarded the pipeline surveillance contract reportedly worth N48 billion per year (N4 billion per month) to Tantita to check the massive oil theft in the Niger Delta region. Despite the controversy that trailed the contract, the company has discovered several illegal connections into major pipelines. According to reports, the company discovered at least…

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Last Monday, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu inaugurated his cabinet and the newly appointed ministers immediately reported for work. Although, the president’s decision to wait for almost four months to do this came to many as a surprise, especially given that Nigerians roundly condemned the previous regime where former President Muhammadu Buhari had to wait for six months to set up his cabinet. However, like Buhari, President Tinubu seems poised to make the very same errors of his predecessor. Why it took him four months to compile a list of what is at best a roll call of those who played…

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There has never been any love lost between America and Russia. The power tussle for relevance and authority between both superpowers has become very frosty with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. As the war between the two countries rages, America and Europe’s support for Ukraine will only ensure that this conflict will not end anytime soon and that the war theatre would also be extended to other parts of the globe. The ouster of President Mohamed Bazoum in July by General Abdourahmane Tchiani, the Nigerien military leader, has the potential of creating a veritable ground for the re-enactment of the Russia/Ukraine…

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Perhaps, the greatest reason good leadership has continued to elude us is because the executive has consistently cowed the other arms of government into total submission and capitulation. Such that the executive can effectively do without the necessary input of the other more critical arms of government; the legislature and judiciary. Under President Muhammadu Buhari, the legislature and judiciary were reduced to mere appendages and branches of the executive. In fact, Ahmad Lawan’s 9th leadership of the Senate hit an all-time low in that regard. For Lawan, he was even proud to announce to a bewildered nation that under his watch,…

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The craze for anything foreign over locally produced ones has become a reality we will have to live with. Elected political office holders, who are supposed to lead the way, are unfortunately the worst culprits. The basis upon which these rejections are made have less to do with the quality of the local products and more on the inordinate desire and preference for foreign goods over locally manufactured ones. There is an urgent need today more than ever before for this trend to be reversed. It is rather sad and pathetic to think that at a time when the nation…

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Last week, the men of the Department of State Services (DSS) showed to the world the reason things are not working in the country. They displayed the level of barbarism, cruelty and lawlessness that characterizes leadership not just in the country, but also on the continent. On that day, Tuesday 25, the rule of law gave way for an open and brazen display of unruliness. It is not that the display of the DSS within the premises of the Federal High Court in Lagos, was a novelty or that it came as a surprise to Nigerians but it was a…

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The fears entertained by some Nigerians on the worrisome open romance and tolerance of insurgents and bandits by Vice President Kashim Shettima, when President Ahmed Tinubu chose him as his running mate, is appearing justified with his recent recommendation on how best to handle these murderous groups. Shettima’s antidote for ending the protracted war against insurgency and banditry is the very same reason that the effort of the federal government has been unsuccessful till date. Those who like Shettima have continued to compare the Late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s amnesty approach to Niger Delta militants to the problem of the…

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