SAY NO CAMPAIGN, CENTRE FOR DEMOCRACY & DEVELOPMENT, BREKETE FAMILY RADIO and OPEN SOCIETY INITIATIVE FOR WEST AFRICA

SAY NO CAMPAIGN, CENTRE FOR DEMOCRACY & DEVELOPMENT, BREKETE FAMILY RADIO  and OPEN SOCIETY INITIATIVE FOR WEST AFRICA

We are taking an exception to blog about this…. Please share with every Nigerian/kindly help publisize this drive……

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In the wake of March 15, 2014 about 20 job applicants were killed in a stampede in some recruitment centres across the country. In the Federal Capital Territory, over 68,000 job applicants were invited to the 60,000 capacity stadium for the botched recruitment exercise. The stampede that resulted in the death of 20 job applicants is reported to have been occasioned by poor planning and negligence on the part of the Ministry of Interior and Immigration service.

The Lives lost and the indignity experienced by applicants are issues that must be treated with utmost importance because a life lost today is termination of a significant generation and a line of national wealth. Every indignity suffered by a Nigerian is a threat to the dignity of every Nigerian.

In a bid to ensure accountability and stem the tide of impunity in Nigeria, the Say No Campaign, Centre for Democracy and Development, Brekete Family and Open Society Initiative for West Africa will on Wednesday, April 16, 2014 at Denis Hotel, Abuja by 9:00am host a Public Hearing on the #NISstampede with the aim of achieving the following objectives;

  1. To gather facts and document experiences of applicants that participated in the recruitment exercise;
  2. To unravel the facts surrounding the involvement of the NIS and the Ministry of Interior in the Stampede;
  3. To demand public accountability and justice for the victims of the recruitment exercise especially those who lost their lives and sustained injuries;
  4. To make recommendations on how to prevent reoccurrence of such incidents and ways of tackling unemployment in Nigeria.

The public hearing is meant for all participants of the recruitment exercise, youth, students, government institutions, media, international community etc. Accredited participants will be expected to make oral or written submission at the public hearing.

The incidence of March 15, 2014 is a clarion call to citizens to rise up to active citizenship by exercising their sovereignty in the demand for good governance, accountability and dignity of the human person. Conveners of the Public Hearing are committed to this process and will consistently engage all relevant platforms to ensure that the issues surrounding the recruitment exercise and the resultant effect of the #NISstampede are followed to a logical conclusion.

Join us as we Say No to Injustice and lack of accountability of our State Institutions and Government. God bless Nigeria.

RSVP

+234 8060763786, 8076501990,  8035939886

You can also purchase a free ticket via this link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/citizens-public-hearing-on-the-nigerian-immigration-recruitment-exercise-stampede-tickets-11166903509?aff=affiliate1

2014 Nigerian Agip Oil Company Scholarship Application

NAOC Scholarship Program

NIGERIAN AGIP OIL COMPANY LIMITED Operator of the NNPC/NAOC/PHILLIPS Joint Venture R. C. 2974

2013/2014 NAOC TERTIARY SCHOLARSHIP SCHEME: APPLICATION/EXAMINATION

The Nigerian Agip Oil Company Limited (NAOC) Joint Venture in pursuance of its corporate Social Responsibility

2014 Agip Scholarship invites suitable qualified applicants for its 2013/2014 session tertiary scholarship scheme effective 3rd February, 2014.

Category of Awards Host Communities Merit Award – For applicants strictly from NAOC host communities National Merit Award – For applicants of non-host Communities To qualify for consideration, applicants MUST be:

Registered Full TIME undergraduates in Nigerian Tertiary Institutions
Certified 100 level students at the time of application

NOTE: The following category of students should not apply:

200 level and above
Current Beneficiaries of similar awards from other companies and agencies
Dependents of NAOC Only Indigenes of NAOC host communities in Rivers, Bayelsa, Delta and Imo States SHOULD apply for the Host Communities Merit Award.

Only candidates studying Engineering, Geology and Geosciences are eligible for the National Merit Award.

Deadline: Closing date for receipt of e-applications is strictly March 10, 2014. NOTE: The aptitude test will take place at designated centres to be communicated to candidates at a later date and Candidates are to fully bear the cost of transportation to and from the aptitude test centres.

Application is open to fresh candidates.

1. Before you start this application, ensure you have clear scanned copies of the following documents Passport photograph with white background not more than 3 months old (450px by 450px not more than 200kb) School ID card Admission letter Birth certificate Proof of Local Government Area of Origin JAMB Result

2. Ensure the documents are named according to what they represent to avoid mixing up documents during upload

3. Ensure you attach the appropriate documents when asked to upload To apply, follow the steps below:

1. Click on “Apply Now” tab.

2. Click on “Register Now” to create an account.

3. Proceed to your email box to activate your account

4. Click on http://www.scholastica.ng/schemes/naocScholarship. to return to Scholarship site

5. Enter your registered email and password to upload your information.

6. Enter your personal information, National Identification Number (if available), educational information, other information and upload required scanned documents.

7. Ensure the name used in applications matches the names on all documentation in same order. Upload a sworn affidavit or certificate if otherwise.

8. Ensure you view all documents after uploading, to eliminate errors during uploading.

9. When asked to upload photo, upload a pass-port photograph with a white background.

10. Recheck application information to avoid errors

11. Click “Apply Now” to submit information

12. You will receive an email and a sms that confirms your application was successful.

13. Return to http://www.scholastica.ng, enter your Email and Password to download your profile and proceed to have your Head of Department sign the document.

14. Upload a scanned copy of the signed profile, this would be used for verification.

15. If National Identification Number (NIN) number was not available in step 6 , to obtain your National Identification Number (NIN) Visit http://ninenrol.gov.ng. to register and learn more about the National Identity Number Click “Create Account” and fill in the required fields Login with Email and Password to complete the form After completion, schedule a date for photo and finger print capture Visit any of the 37 capture centres http://www.nimc.gov.ng/pages/general/enrolmentcentres.htm to complete the registration process and obtain your National Identity Number You can also do your total registration at the NIMC office

16. Return to http://www.scholastica.ng/schemes/naocScholarship and update application with National Identification Number (NIN) to ensure completion
Note: Multiple applications attract a disqualification penalty from the Scholarship board.

For direct access to the companies website copy and paste the link into your browser:

http://naoc.com.ng/scholarship

Is This A Well Written CV?

CURRICULUM VITAE

PERSONAL PROFILE
Adaptable, enthusiastic and ambitious international relations graduate with proven customer service, administrative and research skills, and with a keen drive to take on the challenges and rewards of working within a structured environment.

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE

Assistant Duty Manager (Radisson Hotel, Manchester- June 2012-February 2013), Front of Office Advisor (Manchester Macdonald Hotels and Spa- November 2010-May 2012) Duties, skills and achievements include:

I developed excellent administrative skills from planning and organizing workshops, trainings and other events for my team; involving both staff and external parties. This specifically involved developing budgets, negotiating and liaising with finance and administrative departments and also ensuring prompt communication with concerned parties.

Improving my organizational and management skills- The benefits of managing in-house logistic arrangements, working with deadlines and managing staff in a highly skilled department helped improve my organizational skills.

Leadership skills- I developed the ability man manage, to motivate and inspire team members as part of the management team for a vibrant five star hotel in the heart of Manchester’s city centre. Ensuring that each team members knows their role and performs it to the best of their ability while also promoting a friendly and highly professional environment.

Improving my IT skills- The consistent use of the Opera software, Word, Microsoft Excel spread sheet and the company’s intranet to deliver on my responsibilities helped improve my IT skills.

My communication and problem solving skills have also improved greatly as a result of working in the hospitality industry; a customer driven industry that affords you the opportunity of constantly dealing with customer satisfaction and dissatisfaction.

Key Achievements:
I focused my management on improving guest and staff retention levels. My approach to promote staff growth by improving individual staff capacities through on the job trainings and workshops ensured that staff were encouraged to stay on because they saw an attempt to invest in their futures. In six months, the figures indicated an improvement in staff retention was up by 8%.

Regarding guest retention, I was able to improve on already existing retention levels by encouraging staff to be able to identify each guest that has visited the hotel more than twice by name. Added to that I encouraged them to at least know what chocolate or wine the guest favoured, so we could always have one or the other as a surprise waiting in the guest room as often as possible.

Needless to say in 6 months the percentage rose from 78% when I resumed work to 88% during my appraisal.

Student Helper, University of Sussex, Brighton January-June 2010

I participated in the recruitment of foreign applicants into the school of global studies and also offered a student perspective to varying issues raised by those prospective students.

Responsible for making phone calls and sending Emails to applicants, keeping them up to date with developments at the university.

Preparing monthly reports on Microsoft Excel sheets, recording general progress and confirmation of applicants to the school of global studies.

Field Research Officer for Society For Family Health Nigeria. July-September 2009.

The project aimed to gather information on rural communities lack of exposure to modern and effective ways of treating malaria, with a view to influencing government policies and re-directing investment towards ‘raising awareness’ and new medicines.

Conducting interviews in the Niger-delta region of Nigeria, to measure awareness of malaria and effective ways of treatment.

Working as part of an effective research team for the duration of the survey.
Practical use of quantitative research procedures- PDA’s and questionnaires employed for field analysis and information gathering.

Achieving the research aim of influencing government’s policy towards rural education, awareness and provision of modern malaria drugs.

Administrative/Desk Officer(National Youth Service Corps) at Department of History and Archives, National Defence College, Nigeria. August 2008- June 2009.

General administrative duties: answering telephone calls, receiving visitors, photocopying, typing documents (memos, word, excel) and taking notes at lectures.

I organised, filed and disseminated relevant information of the department.

I assisted in co-ordinating activities and events at the College (helping with budgeting and travel preparation of staff).

Assisting in departmental research projects. Through researching and editing specific assignment or projects.

Sept 2004-July 2008 – Part time jobs while in University:
Part-time holiday jobs for NGO’s and organizations like; National Population Commission, Society for Family Health, Global Hiv/Aids initiative Nigeria. My roles included data analyst, data entry clerk and field researcher.

EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS ATTENDED WITH DATES
University of Sussex, Brighton. Oct 2009- Sept 2010:MA (Hons) Conflict, Security and Development (International Relations).

Modules Included: New Security Challenges, Conflict, Security and Development, Complex Humanitarian Emergencies, Genocide in world politics and Undertaking Research in International Relations.

Skills Developed:
An ability to work independently, research and critically analyse materials from a range of sources.
Improved research techniques: social research methods employed.

Excellent written and verbal communication skills developed through writing clearly structured essays and presenting ideas in tutorials and seminars.

I also developed the ability to investigate and gather relevant information, with the aim of synthesizing this information to construct coherent arguments.

Babcock University, Ogun State. Aug. 2004- April 2008: B.Sc (Hons) Political Science (Second Class Upper)
Thesis/Dissertation
April 2008.‘Nigeria’s Foreign Policy under President Olusegun Obasanjo: A Critical Analysis 1999-2007’ (Thesis Submitted as Final Project for B.Sc Honours in Political Science)

September 2010.‘Resource Conflict in the Niger-Delta: Examining the Role of the Nigerian Government, Multi-National Corporations and the Oil-Bearing Communities’ (Dissertation for MA Conflict, Security and Development)

SKILLS
LANGUAGES: Yoruba (Native), English (Advanced Proficiency)
COMPUTER: Experience with Windows 1998/2000/2003/2007, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 8, Macintosh operating system, and Microsoft Office applications.

Apply, Apply: Washinghton Fellowship 2014

APLICATION DEADLINE: 12:00 MIDNIGHT EASTERN STANDARD TIME MONDAY JANUARY 27, 2014

The Washington Fellowship is the flagship program of President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative.

President Obama launched YALI in 2010 to support young African leaders as they spur growth and prosperity, strengthen democratic governance, and enhance peace and security across Africa. The Washington Fellowship, which begins in 2014, will bring 500 young leaders to the United States each year for academic coursework and leadership training and will create unique opportunities in Africa for Fellows to put new skills to practical use in leading organizations, communities, and countries.

The online application for the Washington Fellowship is currently available. Completed applications, including all supporting documents, are due by 12:00 midnight Eastern Standard Time, January 27, 2014. All applications must be submitted via the online application system. The application instructions provide detailed information regarding the financial provisions of the fellowship, eligibility and selection criteria for the program, and details on applying.

Please read the application instructions carefully prior to beginning the application. We recommend printing these instructions and referring to them while completing the application.

If you have questions about the application, please email washingtonfellowship@irex.org
Participating countries: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Republic of the Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Apply here (copy and paste link to URL)- https://yaliapp.irex.org/Logon

THE BATTLE OF THE SEXES: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender

1996: President Bill Clinton announced he would be signing the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) into law, thus making marriage federally recognized as being only between one man and one woman. At the time Clinton stated, “…this legislation should not, despite the fierce and at times divisive rhetoric surrounding it, be understood to provide an excuse for discrimination, violence or intimidation against any person on the basis of sexual orientation.” Clinton later flipped on the issue, and stated he regretted signing DOMA into law.

Dwight Duncan, associate professor of law at Southern New England School of Law:
Currently, the federal Defence of Marriage Act says that for purposes of federal law (tax, social security, military, immigration, etc.), marriage is only between a man and a woman. It also says that states will not be required to recognize the same-sex marriage of another state under the Full Faith and Credit clause of the United States Constitution. Gay activists have announced their intention to challenge the constitutionality of those provisions. Recent developments in family law, both in the United States and abroad, necessitate a national strategy to preserve marriage’s central role in the creation, and formation, of our posterity.

Homosexual advocates are prepared to litigate tirelessly to force a new national consensus regarding marriage. Those who disagree strenuously with that agenda but who agree with most Americans and the consensus offered by history-across time and space and cultural and religious differences-that marriage is uniquely a relationship between the sexes, naturally related to procreation and the upbringing of children, need a democratic response that is just as national in scope.

Such a response is the proposed Federal Marriage Amendment. The current version endorsed by President Bush makes clear that states can still, if they wish, enact civil unions legislatively and democratically. But the intention is to solidify the national consensus regarding the definition of marriage, and to prevent courts from judicially imposing same-sex marriage, as happened in Massachusetts, through constitutional-amendment-posing-as-interpretation. This approach is actually consistent with federalism: otherwise, one state may well dictate to the rest of the country its preferred definition of marriage, the way Nevada easy divorces once swept the country, giving us our culture of divorce.

Not everyone agrees with George Bush and initially President Clinton. Homosexuals and sympathisers like President Obama encourage the redefinition of marriage to include a union of homosexuals. Whew! I think they will win, the idea is to show they are populist and I know it will backfire on them personally- I don’t think Obama or the PM of Britain will be chuffed if their kids come back home gay.

The whole world is going mad I tell you and it will only take a matter of time for Africa to join in. The headlines in Africa thankfully still read: “Homosexuality still a crime in 38 African countries”. Whaeey! But I ask my self for how long, for how long?
Remember how not too long ago virginity was one major requirement for young people to marry, well that along with numerous other ‘African Beliefs’ have faded away with time and so called ‘civilisation’. So I think sadly Africa will bow to the dictates of the world in time.

It must be noted that:

I do not agree with indiscriminate killings of gays and I also strongly disagree with any society accepting it as a legal partnership recognised by law. I don’t think people should be hounded or hunted down for being gay- I also don’t think gay people should flaunt it by adopting children.

I do not agree with Hollywoods role in trying to brainwash young people into believing everyone can have whatever sexual orientation they want. Hollywood shapes peoples minds and it is wicked of them to do this. They even ban or go after artists who abusively call other people ‘Fags’ or ‘gay’ immediately labelling them homophobic. It seems there is a bid to force the acceptance of gay people down everyone’s throats.

I strongly believe that society has a role to play in maintaining the sanity of future generations, and a recognition of gay marriages will affect the social fabric for a long time. It will become much more difficult for kids to differentiate between what is wrong and what is right. Kids will be trying out homosexual activities as well as heterosexual activities with reckless abandon and the society will be worse for it.

I disagree with the pro-gay campaigners who try to equate discrimination against gays to racial discrimination. I know westerners will disagree with me but being Gay is a choice, on the other hand you cannot choose where you are born into, or can you? No one is born gay 😐

At this rate I think by the year 2050 somebody will come up with an argument for marriage to be recognised amongst masturbators (Woman and toy/fingers, Man and hand or toy) or maybe Man and animal. I mean they can all be deemed sexual orientations can’t they?

I hope somehow we get saved and marriage remains like nature obviously has indicated between a man and a woman.
Adam and Eve not ‘Eve and Elizabeth’ or ‘Adam and Steve’ please.

I leave with a quote from Alibaba(Nigeria) “IF ANYONE HAS A RIGHT TO SAY HE LIKES SOMETHING, I ALSO HAVE A RIGHT TO SAY I DON’T LIKE THAT THING. THATS THE RIGHT TO EXPRESSION”

Have a good week- say no to violence against gays but also say no to it becoming legal.

Lol! Pictures for amusement

Nigeria: Iyabo’s Purported Letter to Father Stirs Controversies

It has been a jolly good season of open letters, coups, arguments, corruption scandals in Africa. It is so unfortunate 😦 Below is a look at the supposed open letter Iyabo Obasanjo sent to her father ‘Olusegun Obasanjo’, it has been as controversial as the letter Obasanjo sent to advise Dr Ebele Goodluck Jonathan. Read and enjoy the letter, remember it is not about how corrupt Iyabo or Olusegun Obasanjo are, the most important thing is that these letters are spark up debates that will contribute to future growth in Nigeria.

“It brings me no joy to have to write this but since you started this trend of open letters I thought I would follow suit since you don’t listen to anyone anyway. The only way to reach you may be to make the public aware of some things. As a child well brought up by my long-suffering mother in Yoruba tradition, I have been reluctant to tell the truth about you but as it seems you still continue to delude yourself about the kind of person you are and I think for posterity’s sake it is time to set the records straight.

“I will return to the issue of my long-suffering mother later in this letter.

“Like most Nigerians, I believe there are very enormous issues currently plaguing the country but I was surely surprised that you will be the one to publish such a treatise. I remember clearly as if it was yesterday the day I came over to Abuja from Abeokuta when I was Commissioner of Health in OgunState, specifically to ask you not to continue to pursue the third term issue.

“I had tried to bring it up when your sycophantic aides were present and they brushed my comments aside and as usual you listened to their self-serving counsel. For you to accuse someone else of what you so obviously practiced yourself tells of your narcissistic megalomaniac personality.

Everyone around for even a few minutes knows that the only thing you respond to is praise and worship of you. People have learnt how to manipulate you by giving you what you crave. The only ones that can’t and will not stroke your ego are family members who you universally treat like shit (sic) apart from the few who have learned to manipulate you like others.

“Before I continue, Nigerians are people who see conspiracy and self-service in everything because I think they believe everyone is like them. This letter is not in support of President Jonathan or APC or any other group or person, but an outpouring from my soul to God. I don’t blame you for the many atrocities you have been able to get away with, Nigerians were your enablers every step of the way. People ultimately get leaders that reflect them.

“Getting back to the story, I made sure your aides were not around and brought up the issue, trying to deliver the presentation of the issue as I had practiced it in my head. I started with the fact that we copied the US constitution which has term limits of two terms for a President. As is your usual manner, you didn’t allow me to finish my thought process and listen to my point of view. Once I broached the subject you sat up and said that the US had no term limits in the past but that it had been introduced in the 1940s after the death of President Roosevelt, which is true.

I wanted to say to you: when you copy something you also copy the modifications based on the learning from the original; only a fool starts from scratch and does not base his decisions on the learning of others. In science, we use the modifications found by others long ago to the most recent, as the basis of new findings; not going back to discover and learn what others have learnt. Human knowledge and development and civilization will not have progressed if each new generation and society did not build on the knowledge of others before them.

The American constitution itself is based on several theories and philosophies of governance available in the 18th century. Democracy itself is a governance method started by the ancient Greeks. America’s founding fathers used it with modifications based on what hadn’t worked well for the ancient Greeks and on new theories since then.

“As usual in our conversations, I kept quiet because I know you well.  You weren’t going to change your mind based on my intervention as you had already made up your mind on the persuasion of the minions working for you who were ripping the country blind. When I spoke to you, your outward attitude to the people of the country was that you were not interested in the third term and that it was others pushing it. Your statement to me that day proved to me that you were the brain behind the third term debacle. It is therefore outrageous that you accuse the current President of a similar two-facedness that you yourself used against the people of the country.

“I was on a plane trip between Abuja and Lagos around the time of the third term issue and I sat next to one of your sycophants on the plane.  He told me: “Only Obasanjo can rule Nigeria”.  I replied: “God has not created a country where only one person can rule. If only one person can rule Nigeria then the whole Nigeria project is not a viable one, as it will be a non-sustainable project”

“I don’t know how you came about Yar’Adua as the candidate for your party as it was not my priority or job. Unlike you, I focus on the issues I have been given responsibility over and not on the jobs of others. It was the day of the PDP Presidential Campaign in Abeokuta during the state-by-state tour of 2007 that Yar’Adua got sick and had to be flown abroad. The MKO Abiola Stadium was already filled with people by 9am when I drove by (and) we had told people based on the campaign schedule that the rally would start at noon.

At 11 am I headed for the stadium on foot; it was a short walk as there were so many cars already parked in and out. As I walked on with two other people, we saw crowds of people leaving the stadium. I recognized some of them as politicians and I asked them why people were leaving. They said  the Presidential candidate had died. I was alarmed and shocked. I walked back home and received a call from a friend in Lagos who said the same and added that he had died in the plane carrying him abroad for treatment and that the plane was on its way to Katsina to bury him.

I called you, and told you the information and that the stadium was already half-empty. You told me to go to the stadium and tell the people on the podium to announce that the Presidential candidate had taken ill that morning but the rest of the team, including you and the Vice-Presidential candidate would arrive shortly.  I did as I was told, but even the people on the podium at first didn’t make the announcement because they thought it was true that Yar’Adua had died. I had to take the microphone and make the announcement myself. It did little good. People kept trooping out of the stadium. Your team didn’t arrive until 4pm and by this time we had just a sprinkling of people left.

That evening after the disaster of a rally, you said you had insisted that the Presidential candidate fly to Germany for a check-up although you said he only had a cold. I asked why would anyone fly to Germany to treat a cold?  And you said “I would rather die than have the man die at this time.”  I thought of this profound statement as things later unfolded against me.  Then I thought it a stupid statement but as usual I kept quiet, little did I know how your machinations for a person would be used against me.  When Yar’Adua eventually died, you stayed alive, I would have expected you to jump into his grave.

I left Nigeria in 1989 right after youth service to study in the US and I visited in 1994 for a week and didn’t visit again until your inauguration in 1999. In between, you had been arrested by Abacha and jailed. We, your children, had no one who stood with us. Stella famously went around collecting money on your behalf but we had no one.  We survived. I was the only one of the children working then as a post-doctoral fellow when I got the call from a friend informing me of your arrest.

A week before your arrest, you had called me from Denmark and I had told you that you should be careful that the government was very offended by some of your statements and actions and may be planning to arrest or kill you as was occurring to many at the time.  The source of my information was my mother who, agitated, had called me, saying I should warn you as this was the rumour in the country. As usual you brushed aside my comments, shouting on the phone that they cannot try anything and you will do and say as you please.  The consequence of your bravado is history.

We, your family, have borne the brunt of your direct cruelty and also suffered the consequences of your stupidity but got none of the benefits of your successes. Of course, anyone around you knows how little respect you have for your children.

You think our existence on earth is about you. By the way, how many are we? 19, 20, 21? Do you even know?  In the last five years, how many of these children have you spoken to? How many grandchildren do you have and when did you last see each of them? As President you would listen to advice of people that never finished high school who would say anything to keep having access to you so as to make money over your children who loved you and genuinely wished you well.

“At your first inauguration in 1999, I and my brothers and sisters told you we were coming from the US. As is usual with you, you made no arrangements for our trip, instead our mom organized to meet each of us and provided accommodation. At the actual swearing-in at Eagle Square, the others decided to watch it on TV. Instead I went to the square and I was pushed and tossed by the crowd.

I managed to get in front of the crowd where I waved and shouted at you as you and General Abdulsalam Abubakar  walked past to go back to the VIP seating area. I saw you mouth ‘my daughter’ to General Abdullahi who was the one who pulled me out of the crowd and gave me a seat. As I looked around I saw Stella and Stella’s family prominently seated but none of your children.  I am sure General Abdullahi would remember this incident and I am eternally grateful to him.

Getting back to my mother, I still remember your beating her up continually when we were kids. What kids can forget that kind of violence against their mother?  Your maltreatment of women is legendary.  Many of your women have come out to denounce you in public but since your madness is also part of the madness of the society, it is the women that are usually ignored and mistreated. Of course, you are the great pretender, making people believe you have a good family life and a good relationship with your children but once in a while your pretence gets cracked.

When Gbenga gave a ride to help someone he didn’t know but saw was in need and the person betrayed his trust by tapping his candid response on the issues going on between you and your then vice-president, Atiku Abubakar, you had your aides go on air and denounce the boy before you even spoke to him to find out what happened.  What kind of father does that? Your atrocities to some of my other siblings I will let them tell in their own due time or never if they choose.

Some of the details of our life are public but the people choose to ignore it and pretended we enjoyed some largesse when you were President.

This punishing the innocent is part of Nigeria’s continuing sins against God. While you were military head of state and lived in Dodan Barracks, we stayed either with our mum in the two-bedroom apartment provided for her by General Murtala Mohammed or with your relatives, Bose, Yemisi and your sisters’ kids in the Boys Quarters of Dodan Barracks. At QueensCollege, I remember being too ashamed to tell my wealthy classmates from Queen’s College, Lagos we lived in the two room Boys Quarters or in the two room flat on Lawrence Street.

No, we did not have privileged upbringing but our mother emphasized education and that has been our salvation.  Of my mother’s 6 children 4 have PhDs.  Of the two without PhD, one has a Master’s and the other is an engineer.  They are no slouches.  Education provided a way to make our way in the world.

You are one of those petty people who think the progress and success of another takes from you.  You try to overshadow everyone around you, before you and after you.  You are the prototypical “Mr. Know it all”.  You’ve never said “I don’t know” on any topic, ever.  Of course this means you surround yourself with idiots who will agree with you on anything and need you for financial gain and you need them for your insatiable ego.  This your attitude is a reflection of the country. It is not certain which came first, your attitude seeping into the country’s psyche or the country accepting your irresponsible behavior for so long.

Like you and your minions, it’s a symbiotic relationship. Nigeria has descended into a hellish reality where smart, capable people to “survive” and have their daily bread prostrate to imbeciles.  Everybody trying to pull everybody else down with greed and selfishness — the only traits that gets you anywhere. Money must be had and money and power is king. Even the supposed down-trodden agree with this.

Nigeria accused me of fraud with the Ministry of Health.  As you yourself know, both in Abeokuta and Abuja I lived in your houses as a Senator. In Lagos, I stayed in my mum’s bungalow which she succeeded in getting from you when you abandoned her with six children to live in Abeokuta with Stella.

I borrowed against my four-year Senate salary to build the only house I have anywhere in the world in Lagos. I rent out the house for income.  I don’t have much in terms of money but I am extremely happy. I tried to contribute my part to the development of my country but the country decided it didn’t need me.  Like many educated Nigerians my age, there are countries that actually value people doing their best to contribute to society and as many of them have scattered all over the world so have many of your children.

I can speak for myself and many of them; what they are running away from is that they can’t even contribute effectively at the same time as they have to deal with constant threats to their lives by miscreants the society failed to educate; deal with lack of electricity and air pollution resulting from each household generating its own electricity, and the lack of quality healthcare or education and a total lack of sense of responsibility of almost every person you meet.  Your contribution to this scenario cannot be overestimated.

You and your cronies mentioned in your letter have left the country worse than you met it at your births in the 1930’s and 1940’s. Nigeria is not the creation of any of you, and although you feel you own it and are “Mr Nigeria” deciding whether the country stays together or not, and who rules it; you don’t.  Nigeria is solely the creation of the British. My dear gone Grandmother whose burial you told people not to attend, was not born a Nigerian but a proud Ijebu-Yoruba woman. Togetherness is a choice and it must serve a purpose.

As for Nigerians thinking I have their money, when it was obvious I was part of the Yar’Adua (government’s) anti-Obasanjo phenomenon that was going on at the time. The Ministry of Health and international NGOs paid for a retreat for the Senate Committee on Health.  The House Committee on Health was treated exactly the same way. The monies were given to members as estacode and the rest used for accommodation, flights and feeding.  While the Senate was on the retreat in Ghana, the EFCC asked the House Committee to return the monies they received for their retreat and asked us in the Senate to return ours on our return which I refused, as it was already used for the purpose it was earmarked for in the budget that year which was to work on the National Health Bill.

The House Committee had not gone on their retreat. I did nothing wrong and my colleagues and I on the retreat did our work conscientiously. I asked the EFCC not to drag my colleagues into it and I am proud I suffered alone. As is usual in a society where people who are not progressive but take pleasure in the pain of others, most Nigerians were happy, not looking at the facts of the matter, just the suffering of an Obasanjo.

As the people that stole their millions are hailed by them the innocent is punished. When the court case was thrown out because it lacked merit even against the Minister, no newspaper carried the news. The wrongful malicious prosecution of an Obasanjo was not something they wanted to report; just her downfall.  But it really wasn’t about me, it was about right and wrong in society and every society gets the fruit of the seeds it sows.

How do you think God will provide good leaders to such a people? God helps those who help themselves. I have realized that as an Obasanjo I am not entitled to work in Nigeria in any capacity.  I am not entitled to work in health which is my training, or in any field or anywhere in the country or participate in any business. I have learnt this lesson well and there are societies that actually think capable, well-educated people are important to their society’s progress. Apparently, unless I am eating from the dustbin, Nigerians and possibly you will not be satisfied.  I thank God it has not come to that based on God-given brains and brawn.

When I left Nigeria in 1989 for graduate studies in America, you promised to pay my school fees and no living expenses. This you did and I am grateful for because, working in the kitchen and then the library at University of California, Davis and later, working on the IT desk and later as a Teaching Assistant at Cornell gave me valuable work ethics for life. I wouldn’t have it any other way.  As a black woman in the early 21st century, I have achieved much and done more than most. My wish is that black girls all over the world will have the capacity to create their lives, make mistakes, learn from it and move ahead.

Moving back to Nigeria, thinking I wanted to serve was obviously a grave mistake but one brought about by the tragic incident of April 20, 2003. This was the day five people were shot dead in my car.  The mother of the children was an acquaintance I had met only one day before the incident.

We had attended the same high school and university but she was there ten years earlier than I. She had also studied public health in the UK as I had in the US. It was these coincidences that made us connect on our first meeting and then she decided to visit on the Saturday of the election of 2003 when the incident occurred. I am scarred for life by that incident and I know the mother was too as we both looked back to see two men on each side of my car shooting.

I understand her trauma and her behaviour since then can be judged from that. Nigeria is a nasty place that pushes people to lose their compass. I participated in the campaigns leading to the elections that day, more because this was my first experience of electoral process in Nigeria. Growing up there were no elections and I was too young in the 1979 and 1983 elections. It was interesting to see democracy at work.  When Gbenga Daniel who I campaigned for offered me a job, I probably would have declined it, if not for the memory of the dead.

I felt I had to engage in making the country progress and to avoid such incidences in the future.  I don’t need to tell you or anyone what kind of governor and person Gbenga Daniel is. As usual when I found out, you would not listen to my opinion but found out for yourself. I also campaigned for Amosun for the Senate in 2003. I have had some wonderful Nigerians do good to me, I will never forget the then Minister of Women Affairs, who saw me talking in the crowd at a campaign event and was alarmed and said “bad things can happen to you out there, I will give you one of the orderlies assigned to my office to follow you”.  This was the police man that died in my car that day.  I never really thought bad things would happen to me, I moved around freely in society until that shooting scarred me and I accepted a police detail.  I was constantly scared for my life after that.

You called me after your vengeful letter as usual, looking out for yourself and thinking you will bribe me by saying the APC will use me for the Senate. Do you really know me and what I want out of life?

Anyone that knows me knows I am done with anything political or otherwise in Nigeria.  I have so much to do and think to make this world a better place than to waste it on fighting with idiots over a political post that does no good to society.  That letter you wrote to the President, would you have tolerated such a letter as a sitting President?  Don’t do to others what you will not allow to be done to you. The only thing I was using that was yours was the house in Abuja where I left my things when I left the country. I eventually rented it out so that the place would not fall apart but as usual you want to take that as well. You can’t have it without explaining to Nigerians how you came about the house?

As I said earlier, this is not about politics but my frustration with you as a father and a human being.  I am not involved with what is currently going on in Nigeria, I don’t talk to any Nigerian other than friends on social basis.  I am not involved with any political groups or affiliation.  You mentioned Governor Osoba when you spoke to me, yes I was walking down the street of Cambridge, Massachussets a few months ago, when I looked up and saw him reading a map trying to cross the street.

I greeted him warmly and offered to give him a ride to where he was going.  This I did not do because I wanted anything from him politically but because that is how I was raised by my mother to treat an adult who I really had no ill-will towards. Some said he was part of the people that manipulated the elections for me to lose in 2011. I don’t have any ill-will to him for that because I think they did me a favour and someone has to win and lose.

I had told you I wasn’t going to run in 2011 but you manipulated me to run; that was my mistake.  Losing was a blessing.  As usual you wanted me to run for your self-serving purpose to perpetuate your name in the political realm and as the liar that you are, you later denied that it was you who wanted me to run in 2011.

In 2003 I ran because I wanted to and I thought getting to the central government I will be able to contribute more to improving lives and working on legislation that impacts the country. I found that nothing gets done; every public official in Nigeria is working for himself and no one really is serving the public or the country.

The whole system, including the public themselves want oppressors, not people working for their collective progress. When no one is planning the future of a country, such a country can have no future.   I won’t be your legacy, let your legacy be Nigeria in the fractured state you created because, it was always your way or the highway.

This is the end of my communication with you for life. I pray Nigeria survives your continual intervention in its affairs.

Sincerely,

Iyabo Obasanjo, DVM, PhD

Massachusetts,

USA.

Culled from Thisdaylive.com

 

 

For a humorous take on the letter and other political controversies in Africa take a look at the video link below (hahaha): 

http://saharareporters.com/video/keeping-it-real-adeola-episode-102-iyabo-obasanjos-letter

 

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year People

YOU WIN Business Competition

The Youwin Project Application for 2013 has commenced, Apply now.

The 2013 YouWIN Business competition is here once again, Apply Now

YouWiN – Youth Enterprise with Innovation in Nigeria – is an innovative business plan competition, by the federal government of Nigeria, aimed at job creation by encouraging and supporting aspiring entrepreneurial youth in Nigeria to develop and execute business ideas.
Click here to see Official procedure for application

https://www.youwin.org.ng/apply-now

It is not open for applications but save it as a reminder 🙂 Goodluck