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George Onuorah, Willie Dixon, others get honors from New York’s ‘You Can Go To College Committee’

YCGTC sponsors annual Black Historical College bus tour, PSAT and SAT preparation courses, parent financial program internships, scholarships and financial assistance program. The organization has enrolled more than 3000 students in colleges and universities and more than 1000 graduates all across the U.S.

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George Onuorah, Willie Dixon, others get honors from New York’s ‘You Can Go To College Committee’

By Chido Nwangwu, Publisher of USAfricaonline.com, CLASSmagazine, www.PhotoWorks.TV and USAfricaNewsWire (Houston, Texas)

You Can Go To College Committee (YCGTC), a non for profit organization established in 1996, championed by Executive Director of YCGTC Dorita Clark, Educational Director Sister Shirley Dye  and their team recently hosted its 13th Achievement Awards Benefit Luncheon honoring trail blazers in New York City. YCGTC seeks to ensure a smooth transition from high school to college for first generation students.

Over the years, one of the rewards of community service as seen by the YCGTC is the recognition and respect of community leaders and role models. One of such recognized persons is the Nigerian-American George Onuorah, a political science graduate and founder/CEO since 2007 of the New York-based Youths International Inc. was among those honored on Saturday, November 14, 2009  for imbibing the youth group he mentors with “a better self esteem and helping them to build self-reliance.”

Others honorees were Long Island’s Hempstead Assistant Police Chief Willie Dixon for “The Unity In The Community Award”, Sandra Karkins for “The Christian Achievement Award”, Inspector Jeffrey Maddrey for “Stop The Violence Award”, Leslie Spiegner for “Save The Children Award”. Elder Dr. Michael Baston was honored for “The Christian Leadership Award”, Donna Clapton recieved “The Community Leadership Award”, and Fireman John Coombs “The Humanitarian Award”. The “Outstanding Community Award” went to Verdia Noel of the Council for Airport Opportunities, “Save The Community Award” went to Inspector Timothy Pearson and “The Helping hand Award” to Emily Walton. Some of the honorees got congratulatory messages from  retired Gen. Wesley Clark, Weiner, Meeks, NY Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith, Queens Borough President Helen Marshal and Queens Times Publisher James Lisa.

The event pictures are posted on the largest pictorial events site for Africans in America, www.PhotoWorks.TV, powered by USAfricaonline.com

Onuorah, in accepting the “Youth Service Award” before an audience of almost 600 guests at a banquet hall in New York, called on the youth to place a higher premium on education. He has pursued those goals by supporting the mission of  YCGTC to support “students from 9th grade through 12th grade (and) to provide educational support for those young people whose goal is embracing college education.”

YCGTC sponsors annual Black Historical College bus tour, PSAT and SAT preparation courses, parent financial program internships, scholarships and financial assistance program. The organization has enrolled more than 3000 students in colleges and universities and more than 1000 graduates all across the U.S.

Some elected officials in attendance were Congressmen Gregory Meeks, Anthony Weiner and Gary Ackerman; State reps Leroy Comrie, William Scarborough, State Senator Eric Adams, and Archie Spigner.

Ackerman also gave  Mr. Onuorah a Congressional letter of proclamation which cited him as “a great role model for aspiring young men and women. He is an ardent believer in the limitless potential of youth and his faith in his abilities has immeasurably helped our young people to become successful member of society.” His proclamation also declared the day “George Onuorah’s Day.”

Onuorah who describes himself as a political activist and and aspiring journalist told USAffricaonline.com and CLASSmagazine that “I’m a disciple of the great Nnamdi Azikiwe (Zik) and a Pan-Africanist. His first book “The Political Diary of A Rising Son” is due out before summer 2010.

He recalls “having worked on several political campaigns, namely  the Hillary Clinton 2000 Senatorial Campaign, Obama grassroots effort and I’m a member of several political clubs. He currently serves as a community liason person for Councilmember Helen Sears serves as Vice-Chair of the Neighborhood advisory board of Queens district 4.  Mr. Onuorah, evidently, is drawing remarkable recognition for community service and as one of Africa’s rising sons in America.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 © USAfricaonline.com 2010. USAfrica and USAfricaonline.com (characterized by The New York Times as the largest and, arguably, the most influential African-owned, U.S-based multimedia networks) established May 1992, our first edition of USAfrica magazine was published August 1993; USAfrica The Newspaper on May 11, 1994; CLASSmagazine on May 2, 2003; www.PhotoWorks.TV in 2005

U.S official on ‘Why U.S added Nigeria, Nigerians to enhanced terrorism risk list’ » USAfricaonline.com special report

Obama confirms Mutallab trained by al Qaeda; Republicans attack Obama for “slow response” USAfricaNewswire, Jan 2, 2010. USAfrica multimedia networks, Houston. USAfricaonline.com

http://usafricaonline.com/obama-mutallab-terrorism-alqaeda/

Nigerian Terror suspect’s Houston visit raises questions…. USAfrica’s Publisher Chido  Nwangwu speaks to Houston Chronicle

http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/6788559.html

Also see, The Mutallabs: contrasting terror-bound son Farouk and business mogul father Umar. Special report by Chido Nwangwu.

Alhaji (Dr.) Umar Mutallab is a man whose relatively mild-mannered public persona has been snatched from him; snatched by the most unlikely person: his own son, Farouk Abdul Mutallab.

FULL commentary at USAfricaonline.com http://usafricaonline.com/mutallabs-chido-usafrica

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AFRICA

World SOCCER SHOWDOWN: South Africa backs Morocco; U.S under pressure

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Special to USAfrica [Houston]  • USAfricaonline.com  •  @Chido247  @USAfricalive

“It is an old myth that Africa doesn’t have the capacity, and naysayers should stop using the political argument. Africa hosted the best Fifa World Cup ever and with good support, Morocco can emulate South Africa,” said the SAFA president Jordaan.

Johannesburg – South Africa Football Association (SAFA) president Danny Jordaan has promised Morocco that South Africa will give its unqualified support to secure another World Cup on the African continent in 2026.

Morocco is vying to stage the world’s biggest football prize against a joint bid by Canada, Mexico and the U.S.

The Moroccan delegation comprises ex-Senegal and Liverpool striker El Hadji Diouf and former Cameroonian goalkeeper Joseph-Antoine Bell.

Jordaan said it would be great for Africa to have a second bite of the World Cup cherry, adding Morocco’s bid was Africa’s bid.

Jordaan assured Morocco that he would personally lobby for the Council for Southern Africa Football Associations (Cosafa) and the rest of the continent to rally behind the Moroccans.

In his remarks, Antoine Bell said Morocco had all the ingredients to host another spectacular World Cup.

“South Africa showed the way and I am confident Morocco will follow suit. The country has international standards, from the stadiums to top infrastructure. Morocco can compete with the best in the world,” he said.

By giving Morocco its support, South Africa’s voice would make all the difference on the continent, Bell said.

“When South Africa talks on the continent, the rest of the continent listens hence it is vital for South Africa to support Morocco. South Africa has the experience and Morocco will use this experience to win the 2016 bid,” added Bell. African News Agency

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AFRICA

USAfrica: Catholic priest Etienne killed by militia in DR Congo, after a wedding mass

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Special to USAfrica [Houston]  •  @USAfricaLIVE

Goma – A Catholic priest was found shot dead hours after he said mass in Democratic Republic of Congo’s restive North Kivu province, a member of the church told AFP.

“Father Etienne Sengiyumva was killed [on] Sunday by the Mai Mai Nyatura (militia) in Kyahemba where he had just celebrated a mass including a baptism and a wedding,” father Gonzague Nzabanita, head of the Goma diocese where the incident occurred, told AFP.

The Mai Mai Nyatura are an armed group operating in North Kivu, in eastern DRC.

Nzabanita said Sengiyumva, 38, had had lunch with local faithful before “we found him shot in the head”.

North and South Kivu provinces are in the grip of a wave of violence among militia groups, which often extort money from civilians or fight each other for control of mineral resources.

Last week unknown assailants kidnapped a Catholic priest in North Kivu, demanding $500 000 for his release.

Eastern DRC has been torn apart by more than 20 years of armed conflict, fuelled by ethnic and land disputes, competition for control of the region’s mineral resources, and rivalry between regional powers.

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AFRICA

USAfrica: Nigeria’s LOOTERS LIST and Buhari’s selective corruption targets. By Majeed Dahiru

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PDP vs APC Looters List and Buhari’s selective corruption targets

By Majeed Dahiru

Special to USAfrica {Houston] • USAfricaonline.com • @USAfricaLive

 

Timipriye Silva, a former governor and PDP chieftain, who became a founding member and financier of APC, had his corruption charges quashed by a federal high court and Buhari’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) failed to appeal the N19.5 billion fraud case.

More curious are the missing names of some accused looters with marital ties to Nigeria’s First and Second families. Gimba Yau Kumo, the PDP appointed former managing director of the Federal Mortgage Bank and now son-in-law of President Buhari, who was similarly accused of fraudulent activities amounting to about N3 billion and reportedly being investigated by EFCC, is missing from [Buhari’s Information Minister] Lai Mohammed’s list.

For a party that has been accused of destroying Nigeria by squandering accrued oil revenues estimated at over $500 billion in sixteen years, it is confounding that Lai’s list is not only exclusively comprised of PDP looters but also captures the last two years of PDP’s last lap in power and included just Goodluck Jonathan’s associates, who supported him against candidate Buhari, while also relating only to funds used in the last electioneering campaign of the PDP.

Whenever the obviously abysmal performance of the Muhammadu Buhari administration appears to be gaining sustained attention, and leading to murmuring within the rank and file of his supporters, a tale of humungous looting by opposition elements is usually spun and thrown into the public space to distract people away from the core issue of the failure of governance.

Like a fit of deja vu, the recently unveiled list of looters by Lai Mohammed, a fellow who comes across as more of President Muhammadu Buhari’s chief propagandist than a minister of the federal republic of Nigeria in charge of information and culture, didn’t come as a surprise. The list is all too familiar as the unveiling was a summarised rehash of politically exposed individuals who are members of the opposition party, close associates of former President Goodluck Jonathan, particularly his appointees in government, who have been named and shamed several times in well-coordinated media trials.

First on Lai’s list is Uche Secondus, the chairman of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Lai had this to say of Secondus: “On the 19th of February 2015, he took N200 million only from the office of the NSA”. An unidentified former financial secretary of the PDP was similarly accused of “taking” N600 million from the same office of the National Security Adviser. Lai Mohammed also re-revealed that frontline member of PDP and media mogul, who deployed his media power to promote Goodluck Jonathan by de-marketing the Buhari candidacy in the run up to 2015 presidential election, Raymond Dokpesi, is on trial for “taking” N2.1 billion from the office of the then NSA. Lai also reminded Nigerians that his shouting match and former spokesman of the PDP, Olisa Metuh is on trial for “collecting” N1.4 billion from the same office of the NSA.

Lai Mohammed’s expanded follow up list included the usual suspects – former ministers, PDP state governors, service chiefs, presidential aides, associates and family members of former President Goodluck Jonathan, who were collectively accused of looting Nigeria of close to $2.1 billion through the office of the former NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd.).

The choice of words like “took” and “collected” deployed by Lai to describe the manner in which those named received these monies was deliberate for the maximum effect of propaganda, portraying the accused persons as looters who broke into NSA vault and catered away boxes of cash at something akin to a gun point.

While the clamp down on PDP looters who supported Goodluck Jonathan and are still members of the former ruling party has been heavy handed, others who decamped from PDP to the All Progressives Congress (APC) on the eve of the 2015 elections and supported candidate Buhari’s campaign with their share of loot have been forgiven. For example, former NSA, Sambo Dasuki is being treated as an apostate for his role in the disbursement of funds that were used to oil Goodluck Jonathan’s electioneering effort. He has been kept in detention illegally and in defiance of several judicial rulings. Judging by the Buhari administration’s anti-corruption standard of an accusation being tantamount to guilt, in clear contempt of court proceedings by the resort to the naming and shaming suspects even before investigations and criminal prosecution are concluded and convictions obtained, it becomes curious that Lai’s list didn’t reveal any new name. Rather some names were either missing or omitted from what is a familiar list. This appears so because the bulk of PDP bigwigs who “destroyed” Nigeria in sixteen years of national rule are firmly in control of the APC, from its elected national executives to the National Assembly and appointed members of the federal executive council. The majority of APC-elected governors were also former members of the PDP. Even recently decamped PDP members to APC, such as Musiliu Obanikoro and Sulivan Chime, who have been prominently named and shamed in the recent past, were conspicuously missing from the released list of looters.

More curious are the missing names of some accused looters with marital ties to the first and second families. Gimba Yau Kumo, a former PDP appointed managing director of the Federal Mortgage Bank and now son-in-law of President Buhari, who was similarly accused of fraudulent activities amounting to about N3 billion and reportedly being investigated by EFCC, is missing from Lai’s list. Also missing on that list is Bola Shagaya.

Arguably one of Africa’s richest women, with a reputation for close business and political ties to all first families in the past two decades, Bola Shagaya was exceptionally close to the Goodluck Jonathan family. Often described as a bosom friend of former first lady Patience Jonathan, she has been accused, in numerous instances, allegedly, of acting as Patience Jonathan’s front for the laundering of illicit money estimated at over N13 billion, while engaging in other fraudulent activities involved in state capture. All that may be in the past now as she has found her way back to reckoning with the marriage of her son, Seun Bakare to Damilola, the daughter of Vice President Yemi Osinbanjo. Little wonder then, Bola Shagaya’s name is not on Lai’s looters list.

In a clear display of the arrogance of ignorance, the Buhari administration has narrowed its war on corruption to the hounding of members of the Jonathan administration, other individuals and organisations that were known to have worked against the emergence of the President [Buhari] in the 2015 presidential elections. This is clearly evident in the selective nature of the current anti-corruption effort.

The tone of generalisation of the PDP as the problem of Nigeria, as an indicator of corruption, should make all members of PDP (both former and present) and their collaborators in other parties guilty, hence qualifying them for naming and shaming, while being liable for criminal prosecution.

Therefore, Buhari’s list of looters is devoid of integrity, because his selective war on corruption is indicative of corruption in itself. All that is required of a former PDP looter is to get baptised into APC and profess Buhari as the saviour of Nigeria. This is precisely responsible for the failure and ineffectiveness of the war on corruption. Nothing has changed as the current APC looters continue to loot Nigeria, while the redeemed former PDP looters continue to enjoy their loot in hibernation under the abundant grace of the infallible Buhari.

• Dahiru is based in Abuja 

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