23 Mar 2015
WORRIED by the extremely low capacity utilisation in the Nigerian manufacturing sector, caused by huge importation of goods that could be produced locally, the Bank of Industry (BoI) has appropriately advocated the expansion of protectionist policies for indigenous producers to save them from extinction. Most companies in Nigeria, after all, are merely struggling to remain in business due to competition with imported cheaper goods. Nigeria is, embarrassingly, a dumping ground for all kinds of imports ranging from second hand goods to new ones and from disused ones to even toxic others. The result, of course, has been a complete erosion of the homegrown capacity to produce and a sabotage of the nation’s interest. Which is why policies are needed to protect local industrial manufacturing in the country and create jobs.
22 Mar 2015
AS Nigeria grapples with a crisis of leadership, the 90th birthday anniversary of former president, Alhaji Shehu Usman Aliyu Shagari, especially the aftermath of the celebrations which attracted an array of former heads of state and dignitaries, offers Nigerians an auspicious moment to reflect on the quality of leadership this country direly needs.
20 Mar 2015
WHEN he turned 97, Chukwuma Anueyiagu said he was “just three miles from being a centenarian” and the veteran journalist, politician and community leader wished for “extra time” to make the milestone even as he had become visually impaired. Pa Chukwuma Anueyiagu must, therefore, have felt a sense of fulfillment in life as his wish was granted before taking his final bow the other day.
19 Mar 2015
The NYSC has introduced a skill acquisition programme in collaboration with private businesses. But this is open only to youth corps members who can pay the fees. This is discriminatory and wrong because it shuts out those who cannot afford to pay. This is nothing short of a denial of equal opportunity.
19 Mar 2015
In fact, housing, otherwise shelter, is recognised as one of the three basic human needs, together with food and clothing. And in most economies, whether classified as “developed”, “developing” or “underdeveloped”, huge economic prospects are tied to these basic needs. Agriculture and agro-based industries flourish to satisfy the need for food. Textile and fashion industries flourish to satisfy the need for clothing. And the real estate industry or housing sector flourishes to satisfy the need for shelter. So essential are such needs to man’s survival and comfort that the goods and services produced to satisfy them hardly need advertisement. This is an advantage for any system intent on making the most of such goods and services for economic development.
18 Mar 2015
It is also clear to those who can read between the lines that recent suggestions of an interim government are a forewarning of un-governability in the event that the opposition does not win the Presidency. An interim government is anathema to the 1999 Constitution as amended. How persons are to be elected into various offices are spelt out in black-and-white in the Constitution and other relevant laws, including the Electoral Act 2010 as amended. An interim government, as President Jonathan has rightly observed, is treasonable. Yet, the very fact that it is still being canvassed in a variety of not-so-ingenious ways might be a hint of what to expect in the aftermath of the elections. This is why managing the post-election period is an urgent task not to be trifled with.
18 Mar 2015
THE recovery of towns and villages from the rampaging Boko Haram insurgents and the return of many Nigerians to their homes are very comforting news indeed. And President Goodluck Jonathan’s belated morale-boosting visit to troops in the frontline may, after all, have played a part in instilling confidence in them towards containing the insurgency in the North East.
18 Mar 2015
AS the controversy provoked by the six-week postponement of the country’s general elections by the electoral body INEC simmers down, Nigerians have returned to their preparations for Election 2015. Concerning the country’s long awaited but often elusive national development, this will be one of the most consequential elections yet in Nigeria’s democratic experience. The realistic choice facing the Nigerian electorate this time around appears to be rather stark: The one option is to re-elect Goodluck Jonathan of the PDP and have him continue with his policies for the next four years. The other option is for Nigeria to pass the baton to the APC’s Muhammadu Buhari and have him implement a different set of policies.
17 Mar 2015
Integrity matters, doing what is good for the larger society and not just what you want to do for a narrow society to please yourself,” he reportedly told his select audience in a lecture titled, “Imperatives of a national security framework for the development and progress of Nigeria.
17 Mar 2015
The truth is that most Nigerians are neither patriotic nor sincere. The fact on ground is that 50 per cent of oil revenue is not available and we want to pretend it would not affect us
16 Mar 2015
It is not necessarily tribalistic. Because a tribalistic act would be one that insists the ethos of the tribe must command moral value above the standards of the larger society. Still, with or without such a command, simply on the very prospect of an ethnic union, many people feel obliged to withdraw all enthusiasm in favour of a supposedly detribalized ethic.
16 Mar 2015
IT is extremely difficult to count your eggs before they are hatched. This statement is made to controvert the belief that two birds in the bush are better than one in hand. Elections are much like the theory of eggs and hatchery, riddled with disappointments, shocks and miscalculations.