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Hon. Isa Yakubu Omade, An Uncommon Pacesetter

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” Do not follow where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail ” this is the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson which best describes the personality of Hon. Isa Yakubu Omade.

A banker, who turned politician in his thirstiness to better lives of people around him.

In Kogi politics, before the advent of his Excellency, Alhaji Yahaya Adoza Bello, Kogi was a ground used for purposes of testing failed leaders, who are deprived of good intentions, leaders who are brankrupt of innovative ideas.

Many years of leadership, Kogi has never had it so good as it is currently experiencing under the Leadership of Gov. Bello, because of his exemplary rulership, and Spirit of uniting all tribes as an indivisible entity.

Hon. Isa Yakubu Omade, among others is a core believer of the then Alhaji Yahaya Bello (AYB), a political structure that eventually enveloped into “GYB” despite, the dangling stability, and shaky structure in Kogi political sphere.

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In the process of building solidified political structure to actualize the aspiration of Yahaya Adoza Bello, Omade stood the ground firmly as the Kogi Central Coordinator of ” Kogi Arise ” A platform which created opportunity for ideas, information and gospel of Yahaya Bello to reach the nooks and crannies of the state.

The mysterious happening took everyone by surprise which ushered in Gov. Yahaya Bello as the fourth Executive Governor of Kogi state.

Hon. Isa Yakubu Omade, amidst betray of trust and confidence during litigation by some supporters, while the opposition were earnestly wrestling power from Yahaya Bello, Omade as a leader with versatile mental prowess, his promethean expertise in governance, and administrative methodology earned him the foreknowledge into the Kogi of our dream under the Leadership of Gov. Bello, which was one of the spices that drove him in the pursuit of ensuring Bello is deem fit for the position.

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Rewards for his uncompromising efforts towards the Actualization of the new direction Government, Hon. Isa Omade Yakubu was appointed Deputy Chief of staff to the then Deputy Governor, Simon Achuba.

Hon. Isa Yakubu Omade, a detribalised leader, an astral luminary, pristine, rear germ has used his influence, power and opportunity to secure Jobs at the federal and state level for youths who are often his primary objective, extension of considerate assistance to disadvantaged ones within and outside Kogi, this is a quality rear to find, but joyfully found in abundance in the personality of Hon. Isa Yakubu Omade.

He believes in the belief that he owes his followers enough which is a fundamental reason he always thinks out of the box, also teaches them how to intelligently fish, than giving them fishes, thereby encouraging idleness like so many leaders of the present generation do.

Hon. Isa Yakubu Omade, a leader who practices the rule of conduct, ” Charity Begins at home ” in his services as Deputy Chief of staff, made himself readily available to people of his Community, he bridged a workable companionship with his people. Despite, limited resources at his disposal, through his ” Omade Foundation ” he sponsored Youths on scholarship across the state within and outside Kogi, also many youths made it to his Skill acquisition programs to learn Entrepreneurship proficiency, this in a considerable attempt reduced unemployment by percentage.

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A man who knows the inner pain and yarning of his people, doesn’t need an analysis on how to go about them, through his Foundation, Omade has brought permanent solution to scarcity of portable water to the people of his Community, his foundation made available boreholes which is now a relief for his people.

Leadership position is a true test of one’s ability, Omade justifies with uttermost humility and the fear of God.

Ibrahim J Muhammed
Writes from Lokoja.

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Opinion

YAHAYA BELLO: THE WONDERS OF TIME

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YAHAYA BELLO: THE WONDERS OF TIME.

Youths in Nigeria asked Gov Yahaya Bello to contest the presidential election come 2023

Gov Yahaya Bello at a function in Lokoja, Kogi State capital

Permit me to begin with a couple of scriptures.

The Bible says in Ecclesiastes Chapter 3 verse 11 that “To everything there is a season and a TIME for every purpose under heaven.” A similar Quranic verse says that “Allah has perfect timing, never early, never late. It takes a little patience and it takes a lot of faith, but it is worth the wait.”

Time is the essence of everything.

It is our time. I believe it strongly in my spirit. Never has so many happenings pointed towards an opportunity for the Nigerian youth to take a hold of their own destiny. I struggle to think back at the past electioneering seasons and if we ever had a chance such as this. I think back at the increasing gap between the government and the governed and I feel a righteous indignation in my spirit. Many words clog my throat as I attempt to communicate my thoughts clearly, but I am determined to paint the required picture.

I am ready for change. The question is, are you?

What else do we wait for before we understand that dissatisfaction about the current state of affairs is not enough, but is supposed to spur the youth into actively pursuing change for themselves and the generations yet unborn. The wonder of time ensures that every generation has an opportunity to write their story, and I feel it deeply in my spirit, as do you, that 2023 presents a finger licking opportunity to make that move.

Before then, we must be actively involved in criticizing news and joining a Party that prioritizes youth and women inclusion. We must carefully observe trends before jumping into conclusions and most importantly, give the benefit of the doubt to those who have sought to change the status quo.

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The merchants of time.

In order to restore Nigeria to the order where we will all be proud of, the Nigerian youth must be very serious about what happens in Nigeria, complain less and act more, make drastic moves that will result in credible change of policies and government happenings and also make use of the current pathos to change the narrative of his/her generation.

Nothing else will work. Believe me.

After all, everything we do as human beings has to be guided by a timeframe. Is it business? Once established, work is put in and subsequently, a proposition is made in your heart when you should start recording successes. Is it education? You put in the work and expect to graduate with good grades at the end of that timeline. Is it everyday activities? You wake up by 6am, you want to be prepared for work by 7am, have dropped off your kids by 7:30am and be stepping into work just before 8am in the morning.

Well, that is if you work in any State in Nigeria except Lagos, but I am sure you get my point.

You plan your days and weekends, holidays and travels. You plan everything, and divinity, the master planner, waits at the fringes to give that final push. I say this because even though we have been designed to plan every single thing, there often seems to be a greater plan which aligns perfectly with everything we have in mind. However, even fate waits for you to make a move, before giving the all-important assistance.

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Nigeria, as a whole, has always operated on this principle: a timeline of opportunities.

Right from the amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates, opportunities have been presented to various Nigerians to stake a claim in the bettering of Nigeria’s fortunes. Many have ruled from the North and South, East and West, always seeking to be the one under whom Nigeria begins to make great progress. They have sought, under the proposition of a timeline of expected development, to better Nigeria’s chances. They have tried and toiled, brainstormed and deliberated, yet Nigeria still seems to be lagging behind her neighbours and contemporaries.

Their generation might have been able to improve what they were given to a certain level, yet many Nigerians of that same generation are overcome with nostalgia at the thought of what they used to enjoy in their younger days, and what is available now, whilst the demography referred to as the “youth’ are filled with despair at the current state and what it means for the generations yet unborn.

That remains the failure of a generation that failed to take their opportunities. We must take ours.

At a time in Nigeria’s history, it was thought that Nigeria was ripe for amalgamation: That opportunity was taken. At another point in time, it was seen due to happenings and the body language of the Nigerian people that the time was nigh for Independence: That opportunity was taken. Later on, the Nigerian people began to tire of totalitarianism and started to agitate for a government that recognized the voice of the people, spoke for the people and executed their own desires: The opportunity of democracy was taken. And now, in a time that has been besieged by a certain discomfort at a perceived difference in cultural understanding between the ruling class and her citizens, the Nigerian youth are crying out for a change.

We must not let this opportunity slide.

His Excellency, President Olusegun Obasanjo during a recent chat with the youth, encouraged them to take the opportunity that has been presented to them to take charge of the affairs of their country. The activities and happenings of the past three years have shown just how much a youthful takeover of governance is required, and President Olusegun, a seasoned politician himself, must have studied the terrain before making such statements.

He urged the youth to grab their destinies and ensure that the peculiar manner with which they have splendidly handled numerous activities in this day and age be replicated in politics. A few weeks later, in a move that seemed to resonate strongly with previous statements, he met with the youngest Governor in Nigeria, appreciating him for keeping the peace when many states were in chaos, maintaining security when insecurity had bedeviled others, investing massively in infrastructure when other states were moaning about the economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and most importantly, marshaling a political boat with which he had used to groom, prim and prune young politicians – both men and women – who are now poised to take the Nigerian political and business terrain by storm.

GENERAL YAKUBU GOWON AND GOVERNOR YAHAYA BELLO INTERFACE: THE MESSAGE

That man was Governor Yahaya Adoza Bello.

When Alhaji Yahaya Adoza Bello concocted in his mind the thought of becoming the Governor of Kogi State, many laughed at him. They called him a joker. They called him unserious. They called him all sorts of names and ridiculed his ambition even before the ship was prepared to sail.

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Little did they know that this was a man who had been built up by experience and deep rooted doggedness: building an unrivalled strength of resolve that made criticism only a spur for greater result. He was prepared to do the impossible. He was only able to do this because he understood one thing.

Timing.

He knew that Kogi State needed a change of story. It was highly disconcerting to think of Kogi State, with her vast natural resource and teeming youth – apart from its advantageous position at Nigeria’s epicenter – falling greatly behind many other states in education, infrastructure and human capital development.

He chose to ignore the histrionics that followed his defeat at the APC primary election, pushed further with his immovable desire for the development of Kogi state by offering his availability and service to the winner of the contest, until he was awarded an unfathomable opportunity by divinity to save Kogi from the imbroglio it had submerged itself due to years of bad governance.

He made a move, divinity perfected it.

The political solution at the time of his ascension had reached fever pitched saturation. The people were tired of seeing the same faces, hearing the same old tales and battling age-long, familiar strongholds. Yahaya Bello brought with his shocking rise a breath of fresh air, the verisimilitude of past hope and has used that goodwill to steer the ship away from troubled waters.

Bello understood the wonder of time.

He knew that the level at which Kogi and Kogites had found themselves required every man and woman, teenagers within the voting age and adults to use the time afforded within their generation to change their standard of living. He approached existential issues with the emollience of a seasoned, unifying political leader and built bridges long burnt by ethnic myopia.
Nigeria, in more ways than one, is a type and shadow of Kogi State.

Bello knew when it was time for Kogi to rise, and he knows that Nigeria is next.

I mean, what better time would anyone recommend for a country like Nigeria to be ruled by people who occupy most of her inner spaces. We have been kept at the fringes for too long. It is time to get out and get in. It is important to note that whatever problems we encounter during this time and age is solely created by our abstinence from active politics, and we can only change how things work when we get involved, contribute our quota and take over the reins of governance.

Bello, who was bestowed with the serious task of mobilizing women and youth for the All Progressives Congress, has never wavered in his quest to get the youth involved in politics. His has been a voice that maintained reason, constantly prodding and encouraging. He said in the now viral interview that his desire was to get the youth involved massively in politics – although his primary desire was to see them registered with the APC -, so much so that they will hold the keys to their future in their own hands.

The Siamese Twin brother to Governor Bello and Deputy Governor of Kogi State, Chief Edward David Onoja also made a statement in March which resonated strongly with my spirit. A man of enormous wisdom and depth of reasoning, he accurately captured the points which every Nigerian youth must consider in choosing who must be Nigeria’s next leader. He stated that “the 2023 elections will largely be defined by three issues in order of priority namely Insecurity, Unity-Integration and Youth-Women participation and inclusiveness.”

He went further to say that “Political platforms and persons who can provide solutions to these not by words but by clearly defined antecedents will top the list of potential victors. SEE HOW I DID IT SOUNDS MORE CONVINCING THAN SEE HOW I INTEND TO DO IT”.

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You must have, you SHOULD have a proven track record before aspiring to that seat.

Bello possesses it.

We must understand that the only people capable of changing what goes on in our country in OUR generation remain those who have been born in this time, and understand the special requests of those in this age.

You cannot gift a 99-year old a brand new Ferrari and expect premium utilization. Neither can you take a 79 year old skydiving without risking a heart attack. There are things that must come at a certain age and time.

That is the solution to Nigeria’s woes.

No one can deny that Nigeria remains one of the most blessed countries in the world, certainly the apex in Africa. There is nowhere Nigerians migrate to that they do not excel. Ask yourself this question. Why does it not happen in Nigeria? It is simply because we have all the ingredients to prepare a perfect Pounded yam and Egusi, yet we give it all to a specialist in continental dishes.

A recipe for disaster.
Never again.

A former Nigerian Senator and vastly popular wordsmith, Honourable Patrick Obahiagbon, once described Nigeria as “A country that wallows in a state of menicisetal statism, cankerous tribalism, ethnocentric chauvinism, syphilitic parochialism, epileptic nepotism, catalytic parapoism and state brigandish.”

While whatever that means remains beyond me, it says a lot about where Nigeria currently finds herself that it requires such a mouthful of words to describe. They are words that highlight the failure of a generation. It describes to all and sundry a vivid reflection of how they handled Nigeria when they were bestowed with that task.

It is time to pass the baton.

What do you want to say to your children when they ask what you did to better Nigeria’s fortunes when it was your TIME?

I know what I would like my answer to be. I want to say that I participated actively in putting a bridge builder at the seat of power. I want to be able to say that I supported One Nigeria when others sought its disintegration. I want to say that I was one of the hands that ushered in an age where all Yorubas, Igbos and Hausas thought of themselves as one, and joined their hands towards making Nigeria better for us all.

I want to be able to say that I did all this by supporting Alhaji Yahaya Adoza Bello, the only person capable of making this all happen.

2023 sounds like it.
It looks like it.
It feels like it.
Let’s make it count.

Ramadan Kareem.

Aina Samuel

Aina Samuel

Follow Aina Samuel on Twitter @ainoorh and Facebook @Sam Aina

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Opinion

Between Market Dominance And Sugar Crisis In Nigeria

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AbdulSamad, CEO of BUA Group of Company and Alico Dangote group of company
supervision and regulation of businesses
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Between Market Dominance And Sugar War In Nigeria

AbdulSamad, CEO of BUA Group of Company and Alico Dangote group of company

AbdulSamad, CEO of BUA Group of Company and Alico Dangote group of company

By Lukmon Tajuddeen.

The government of Nigeria through its various laws and agencies ensures the supervision and regulation of businesses in the country. This is to ensure the ease of doing business for investors, entrepreneurs, business-oriented persons as well as safeguarding the interests of the customers.

For almost two decades the country’s supervision agencies of businesses seem to favour Dangote’s establishments anytime at the detriment of other stakeholders, which is pushing the Nation’s economy toward disastrous end, as of Dangote’s business tactics threatening other competitors, US warns.

There is nothing wrong in business competition, but competition should be healthy without eroding the progress made by other active players. Because personification and monopoly is always a threat to other economic movers without recourse to the wider implications government policies guaranteed one mover a solid right over other competitors.

In as much as such policy favour one interest it really presents a dilemma for country’s economic policy, according to a report published in 2010 on Wikileak’s website.

This dilemma allow leading manufacturer engaging other stakeholders in a bitter rivalry on who would control sugar and cement sectors in the country is clearly displaying degree of impunity. which as result of the personalisation of cement and sugar has led to absurdly high prices for the two products, with cement now beyond the reach.

It is in public knowledge three years ago Dangote Group tried it luck by attempting to starts produced noodle but De United Foods Industries (makers of Indomie noodles) neither raised it voice nor lodged complaint against DFW’s to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment for the Group’s attempting to start indomie noodle.

Instead thecompany consolidated its strategist in maintaining its dominance in the country’s noodle market because it share of around 70 percent because the company believed it had already became a household name and is not afraid of any competitors. DFW was left with no option but sold two production lines to rival pasta maker and It’s not exactly clear why Dangote couldn’t compete in the noodles market as it predicted.

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Now bubbles seemed to have burst with recent sugar price dispute in the the country’s as Dangote Sugar and Flour Mills of Nigeria jointly forwarded a petition to the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment asking the Ministry of Trade to shut down BUA Group’s Sugar Refinery in Port Harcourt. Both companies requested the minister to launch a probe into the volume of raw sugar imported by BUA’s Port Harcourt refinery “and the appropriate penalty in terms of duty (60%) and level (10%) to be charged on the company”.

BUA in its own defence sent to the Minister of Trade clarified issues by stating that the company’s sugar refinery in Port Harcourt could stand-in the way of “the attainment of the National Sugar Master Plan (NSMP) and the sustainability of Nigeria’s Local Sugar Industry.

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The law allows him to operate the refinery to support its role as a counter-balance to the Dangote and Flour Mills duopoly in the price manipulation. While his company has been working on backward integration project with BUA’s Lafiagi Sugar BIP, a $250 million sugar refinery set to be completed in 2022.

In additions his Port Harcourt sugar refinery will not affect in any way the backward integration programme adding that “the only way it will affect Nigerians is that Nigerians will pay lower prices for sugar. Therefore the same law allows BUA to sell inside Nigeria. Because his sugar project was approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The reason behind the dispute is nothing but duopoly plan to hike sugar price during the holy month of Ramada they got across and put pressure on him to joint them for the exploitation of the consumers as people had no choice but to buy it. In nutshell his failure to do the bidding of duo companies accused him of breaking the law by selling sugar locally instead of for export.

To other stakeholders in sugar and Flour it was the right time to make good money but he put his feet down. Instead AbdulSamad has threatening to withdraw the dealership license of his dealers who found hiking prices of the commodities.

Last year, before Ramadan, sugar sold for around N18,000 per bag but as Ramadan fasting started the price jumped to 30,000 per bag and now BUA seen there was no reason to increase the price during Ramada and there is need to end in this ugly trend.

Let supervision and regulation of businesses in the country do justice by allowing everyone to compete on the same terms. To the Consumer their don’t care which company control the market what matter to them which company products had fair price because Peoples need affordable sugar and flour if BUA can bring that, surely people will patronise it

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In very ideal open market policies businesses must have to compete against each other but should not be ideal for one one entity single-handedly monopolized every economic products.

As the rest of the world races towards their ever-rising targets for national development and progress, Nigerians remain bemusedly for loitering around the starting line, trying to figure out why its tactic of placing the carts in front of its horses is not working.

Nigeria is trying everything from share of lucky to even prayer, albeit without success. Peoples hope time has come to call all players to true account.

wrote in from Barnawa Kaduna and can be reached at lukmonraymond@yahoo.com

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Opinion

GENERAL YAKUBU GOWON AND GOVERNOR YAHAYA BELLO INTERFACE: THE MESSAGE

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Governor Yahaya Bello and General Yakubu Gowon
Governor Yahaya Bello and General Yakubu Gowon
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GENERAL YAKUBU GOWON AND GOVERNOR YAHAYA BELLO INTERFACE: THE MESSAGE

Governor Yahaya Bello and General Yakubu Gowon

Governor Yahaya Bello and General Yakubu Gowon

There is no gainsaying that the Nigerian political history will be incomplete without General Yakubu Gowon, fondly known as “Jack Gowon”. General Yakubu Gowon was the Military head of State in Nigeria from 1966 to 1975 and ranked the youngest head of state when he took over the leadership of the country at the age of 31 following the counter coup against Major General Aguiyi -Ironsi in July 1966.

General Yakubu Gowon with a root from the North Central political region of Nigeria is known as a nationalist, unifier and peacemaker. He is one of the few former heads of State who still remain relevant in the Nigerian political terrain today. It is on record that, though he spearheaded the Nigerian civil war in 1966, he was also instrumental to the unity and political cohesion and inclusiveness of all Nigerians in the affairs of the country and he promotes healing and reconciliation after the civil war which lasted for about three years.

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He will always be remembered for his “No victor, No vanquished” speech after the civil war. So, without mincing words, General Yakubu Gowon is a symbol of Nigeria unity and the strength of togetherness.

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The meeting between General Yakubu Gowon and Governor Yahaya Bello is both revealing and instructive. There is unmistakable message that must be gleaned from the meeting of the duo; here is once youthful Nigerian leader with unquestionable wealth of experience and knowledge meeting with a prospective Nigerian President with a vision to set the country on the right cause and path. It is meeting of the Nigeria’s history and Nigeria’s potential and it is a meeting of “youthful minds” for the sole progress of the Country.

One of the invaluable traits of a good leader is the ability to learn from the mistakes of the past, improve on the gain of the past and harness potentials for the betterment of the society.

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Governor Yahaya Bello is passionate about steering the country in the right path, not by trials and errors but by understanding our problems as it was in the past, as it is today and avoiding same going forward and to know what happened in the past in an accurate term, requires getting information from the key players and those who had gone before you. This is one of the sure ways to overcome what has been dragging us behind as a country.

This is the message of the meeting; the unmistakable and timely interface between General Yakubu Gowon and Governor Yahaya Bello.

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Written by
Barr Shadrach Emmanuel, FICMC.

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