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Buhari’s rejection of Rolls-Royce ride in London, Obasanjo and lessons of history. By Chido Nwangwu

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 USAfrica:: Buhari’s rejection of Rolls-Royce ride in London, Obasanjo and lessons of history. 

By Chido Nwangwu

Special to USAfricaonline.com,  and USAfrica multimedia networks, Houston. Follow USAfrica at Facebook.com/USAfricaChido , Facebook.com/USAfrica247 and Twitter.com/Chido247

A few days ago, Nigeria’s newly elected president who will be sworn in on May 29,  retired army general Muhammadu Buhari, snubbed and turned away a prestigious convoy of cars including the power establishments’ ultimate car Rolls-Royce from the Nigerian high commission in London, for a modest Toyota Camry from a private arrangement.
It is a matter of fact that the diplomatic corps and influence peddlers around the high commission were shocked by this rare act of dignity and responsibility and example shown by the former military head of state. Buhari ruled briefly from December 1983 to August 1985 before the Gen. Ibrahim Babangida clique forced him and late Brigadier Tunde Idiagbon out of office.
;Second, as a leader Buhari has shown that the paraphernalia of office, the pomp and pageantry of presidential authority and the flamboyant accoutrements of power do not fall into his areas of interest or indulgence. I believe that the man wants to make history as a potentially great Nigerian president.
Third, Buhari is starting well by  sending the right warning message to all those serial swindlers and misappropriation cabal who are clothed and fed and wined by our scarce resources. I believe Buhari’s austere and spartan approach has made very uncomfortable the maniacally greedy and violent gormandizers of Nigeria’s commonwealth and resources. It’s about time for Nigeria– especially after watching the country of 172 million struggled through the blinding bouts of corruption and primitive thieving since the 16 years of the PDP locust and profligacy which formed the end notes of the Goodluck Jonathan indecisive presidency. Before him and with him came the corrupt presidential docility years of the late Umar Yar’Adua.
Fourth,  I know that for Buhari — of the Fulani-Kanuri heritage and a conservative Muslim — to be that great Nigerian leader, he has to profit from the lessons of the mistakes of the previous leaders and presidents from the country. Especially, from one man who is similar to him in some ways.
Remarkably, from 1999 to 2007, the presidency of the man, retired General Olusegun Obasanjo of the political-business animal called the PDP, rolled like a juggernaut.
Fifth, like Buhari’s coming into Abuja to lead, Nigerians held high hopes for Olusegun Obasanjo that, tragically, he thought 8 years in office could also mean 80 years. No!
I recall that Obasanjo’s redemption opportunities to truly perform to historical distinction were squandered in petty fights and punitive expeditions and private appropriations — all wrapped in his torn and incredible garment of ‘Nigeria’s National Interest.’ Consequently, my mentor, the greatest novelist of African descent, Chinua Achebe, protested and rejected Obasanjo’s “national award” as published first on USAfricaonline.com
Sixth, like Buhari, Obasanjo is the only other Nigerian who served as a dictator and as an elected leader.  I met Chief Obasanjo 3 times in Houston when he came out of Sani Abacha’s prison during his first trip after his release; when he decided to run for president in 1999 and after he was victorious; and once in Calabar, Obudu ranch and Tinapa port during the outstanding governorship of Donald Duke.

Seventh, Buhari benefits by taking Objective recommendations from Obasanjo, while looking beyond Obasanjo’s faux righteousness and spin. Regardless and frankly, Nigerians still recall Obasanjo for  the serial corruption of budgeting and spending billions in the monumental failure to give as little as 15% of Nigerians steady supply of electricity or cooking gas or kerosene!

Eight, like Buhari,  Obasanjo is remembered for unlawful and unconstitutional impunity and operational excesses. Both men were foes of the freedom of the media….
In terms of the challenges ahead, as President Buhari is inaugurated on May 29th as a democratically-elected president, it is important that he profits from the lessons of history, and I have to say it, particularly,  the reasons why so many leaders in Nigeria’s history squander opportunities for greatness. Buhari should remember that Nigerians voted for him in high numbers in order to fight corruption, corruption and corruption. Interesting that already the captains of corruption who wickedly reduced Nigerians to children of a lesser god are afraid of the emerging Buhari presidency.
Buhari has the capacity to rise to the challenge of history to be recorded as a man who had a rare second chance and truly turned Nigeria away from being the playground of economic leeches, political gangsters, irreligious murderers, social swines….
He should Chido_Nwangwu-speaking-jan11_2014also note that they would not give up without a fight. Those legions of perversion, those offsprings of Machiavelli who show no fear of God!

Buhari, in my view, has an advantage because he wants to make history instead of coming in to stack mountains of dollars, euros and Naira for his great grand, grand, grand children in Daura, Dubai, Maidugiri, Abuja, Lagos, Aba….  •Dr. Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of USAfrica multimedia networks since 1992, first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the INTERNET USAfricaonline.com; served as adviser to Houston’s ex Mayor on Africa business and recipient of several journalism and public POLICY awards, has been profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news/public policy projects for Africans and Americans.

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VIDEO #CNN special #CHIBOK Girls n #BokoHaram Live intvw wt the Founder of USAfrica multimedia and public POLICY networks Chido Nwangwu. CNN anchors John Berman n Michaela Pereira.  

VIDEO of the CNN International broadcast/profile of USAfrica and CLASSmagazine Publisher Chido Nwangwu.   http://edition.cnn.com/video/#/video/international/2010/07/29/mpa.african.media.bk.a.cnn  

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Forthcoming 2015 BOOK: In this engaging, uniquely insightful and first PERSON reportage book, MANDELA & ACHEBE: Footprints of Greatness, about two GLOBAL icons and towering PERSONS of African descent whose exemplary lives
Mandela-n-Achebe-by-Chido-book-frontcover-Lrs and friendship HOLD lessons for humanity and Africans, USAfrica Founder Chido Nwangwu takes a measure of their works and CONSEQUENCE to write that Mandela and Achebe have left “footprints of greatness.”

 

He chronicles, movingly, his 1998 reporting from the Robben Island jail room in South Africa where Mandela was held for decades through his 20 years of being CLOSE to Achebe. He moderated the 2012 Achebe Colloquium at Brown UNIVERSITY in Providence, Rhode Island.“I’ll forever remember having walked inside and peeped through that HISTORIC Mandela jail cell (where he was held for most of his 27 years in unjust imprisonment) at the dreaded Robben Island, on March 27, 1998, alongside then Editor-in-chief of TIME magazine and later news chief EXECUTIVE of the CNN, Walter Isaacson (and others) when PRESIDENT BILL Clinton made his first official trip to South Africa and CAME to Robben Island. Come to this island of scourge and you will understand, in part, the simple greatness and towering grace of Nelson Mandela”, notes  Chido Nwangwu, award-winning writer, multimedia 
specialist and founder of USAfricaonline.com, the first African-owned U.S-based newspaper published on the INTERNET, in his first book; he writes movingly from his 1998 reporting from South Africa on Mandela. http://www.mandelaachebechido.com/

  Dr. Chido Nwangwu, moderator of the Achebe Colloquium (GOVERNANCESECURITY, and PEACE in Africa) December 7-8, 2012 at Brown UNIVERSITY in Rhode Island and former ADVISER on Africa business/issues to the Mayor of Houston, is the Founder & Publisher of Houston-based USAfrica multimedia networks since 1992, first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the INTERNET USAfricaonline.com; CLASSmagazine, AchebeBooks.com, the USAfrica-powered e-groups of AfricanChristians, Nigeria360 and the largest pictorial events megasite on the African diaspora www.PhotoWorks.TV . He was recently profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news/public policy projects for Africans and Americans. E-MAIL: Chido247@Gmail.com WIRELESS 1-832-45-CHIDO (24436).

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AFRICA

U.S says it will investigate Zimbabwe presidential election violence; MDC disputes result; winner acknowledges there were “challenges”

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Special to USAfricaonline.com

The MDC Alliance led by 40-year-old Nelson Chamisa is disputing the outcome of the polls alleging that they were rigged to the point of having more votes than registered voters.

While the winner, ZANU PF leader and incumbent president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, 75, acknowledged that there were “challenges” he insisted the polls were free and fair.

The US Department of State said Zimbabwe’s 30 July elections presented the country with a historic chance to move beyond the political and economic crises of the past and toward profound democratic change.

“Unfortunately, Zimbabwe’s success in delivering an election day that was peaceful, and open to international observers, was subsequently marred by violence and a disproportionate use of deadly force against protestors by the security forces,” the department’s spokesperson Heather Nauert said in a statement.

Six people were shot dead on Wednesday by soldiers and many others were injured. A seventh person is reported to have succumbed to gunshot wounds on Friday at a hospital in Chitungwiza.

The US said it welcomes the commitment by Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) to release comprehensive election results in a form that provides full transparency. ZEC maintains that the election results were an accurate reflection of the voters’ will.

Former colonial master, Britain, also remained concerned about the developments.

“The UK remains deeply concerned by the violence following the elections and the disproportionate response from the security forces,” said UK Minister of State for Africa, Harriett Baldwin.

She, however, urged electoral stakeholders to work together to ensure calm.

“While polling day passed off peacefully, a number of concerns have been raised by observer missions, particularly about the pre-election environment, the role of State media, and the use of State resources. There is much to be done to build confidence in Zimbabwe’s electoral process.”

Baldwin urged that any appeals against the results or the process be handled swiftly and impartially.– African News Agency (ANA)

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Zimbabwe’s presidential election offers opportunity for post-Mugabe progress. By Wilf Mbanga

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Zimbabwe-Politics-USAfricaonline

Today, Monday July 30, 2018, Zimbabweans [went] to the polls to elect Robert Mugabe’s successor. For pretty much the average life expectancy of many Zimbabweans, one man has ruled the country with an iron fist. Eight elections were held during his rule – and every time, that fist ensured victory for Mugabe.

The current president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, 75, the man who finally ousted Mugabe in a bloodless coup last November, has also crushed his enemies ruthlessly in the past – but his iron fist lies within a well-padded velvet glove.
Mnangagwa goes head to head at the polls with Nelson Chamisa, 40, who took over as leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) after Morgan Tsvangirai died earlier this year.

Whoever wins, this election heralds a new dawn for Zimbabwe. Mugabe has gone. Things will never be the same again. Certainly, Mnangagwa brings a lot of baggage from the Mugabe era – having been the former president’s righthand man.

But he is different in many significant ways – today, Mugabe even urged voters to turn their backs on his leadership, and went so far as to wish Chamisa well. Most importantly, Mnangagwa understands business and is determined to resuscitate Zimbabwe’s moribund economy and give the people what they so desperately want and need – jobs.

He is primarily a soldier, having left Zimbabwe as a teenager in the early 1960s for military training in China. He has fashioned himself after the former communist leader Deng Xiaoping, who modernised China and laid the foundations for the economic powerhouse it has become, while maintaining a strictly authoritarian regime.

Deng abandoned many orthodox communist doctrines to incorporate elements of the free-enterprise system. Mnangagwa seems determined to do the same for Zimbabwe. He is a wealthy man in his own right, having run Zanu-PF’s and his own businesses since the early 1980s. He has been mentioned in a UN report on the plundering of mining and logging resources in the Democratic Republic of the Congo together with General Sibusiso Moyo, who is now the foreign affairs minister.

Over the eight months since he took the reins from Mugabe, Mnangagwa has given clear signals of a clean break with the past – actively courting the west, preaching and practising peace instead of violence, eschewing corruption, meeting business leaders and white farmers, and generally projecting himself as a reformist. He has met personally the many business missions that have visited the country this year, and has promised to get rid of the cumbersome bureaucracy that currently stifles new investment. He has suspended Mugabe’s populist indigenisation act, which required foreigners to cede 51% of their shares to locals (ZANU-PF, of course) in all sectors except gold and diamond mining. He has even made it his election slogan – with party supporters everywhere sporting T-shirts proclaiming “Zimbabwe is open for business”.

While Mugabe was a consummate manipulator, skilfully playing people off against each other and weaving a complex web of patronage, Mnangagwa is a much more of a strategist. He will be prepared to make tough decisions that could ultimately benefit the economy. He has certainly been more successful in attracting foreign investment in the short time he has been in power than Mugabe was in decades of berating the west.

 

The MDC’s Chamisa is just as pro-business as Mnangagwa, and to his credit has surrounded himself with several capable technocrats. There is no whiff of corruption about him and he has been drawing massive crowds in many rural areas which, under Mugabe, were no-go areas for his party. And of course the MDC’s democratic and human rights credentials are well established – while those of Zanu-PF are a constant cause for concern.

Should Chamisa win the election, there is no doubt that the world would welcome Zimbabwe back into the fold with open arms. But Mnangagwa is smart enough to realise that international recognition of his government can only come if this election is acknowledged as free and fair by the global community. While Britain has been unswervingly supportive of the post-Mugabe regime, the US has reserved judgment – recently renewing its sanctions on Zanu-PF leaders and companies, but promising to lift them once credible elections have taken place.

And there’s the rub.

Many believe it is impossible for the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission to run a free and fair poll. It is accused of rigging every election since it was established in 2004; it is still staffed largely by the military and Zanu-PF loyalists; and it has shown shameful bias towards the ruling party in recent months. For example, the law says the ballot paper should be in alphabetical order, which places Chamisa second on the 23-person list. The commission cleverly formatted the paper into two lop-sided columns, in order to place Mnangagwa at the very top of column two.

So this election could bring three possible results: if Mnangagwa wins, the MDC already has enough ammunition against the electoral commission to cry foul.

If Chamisa wins convincingly, it will be a new dawn indeed – but the military might not accept this, as the Generals have already invested a lot in Mnangagwa.

But if there is no clear winner, the most sensible way forward would be for the two protagonists to agree to a marriage of convenience – otherwise known as a government of national unity.
• Wilf Mbanga, once falsely classified by Mugabe’s government as ‘enemy of the people’, is the founder, editor and publisher of The Zimbabwean weekly, published in the UK and Johannesburg

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USAfrica: “Resign! Get out of office!” – Bishop Oyedepo tells Nigeria’s President Buhari

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The founder of the Living Faith Church Worldwide, aka Winners’ Chapel, Bishop David Oyedepo, has called on Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, a retired army General, to resign due to what he considers to be the continuing failure of Buhari to stop  the incessant killings by militant Fulani herdsmen.

Oyedepo who spoke on the theme, “Enough is enough” recalled that “When I was talking in 2015, people were saying my own was too much, now everybody can see what’s happening,” he said. ”What has moved forward in anybody’s life? You don’t know it’s war. Why are they attacking the Christian communities? Why has nobody been arrested? I can tell you this, the authorities and the powers that be are behind them.”

“We must wake up and push this evil back. Not one of those so-called herdsmen – they are jihadists – has been brought to book till date. Herdsmen don’t shoot; they have been here all along. They are just taking cover under the herdsmen to assault innocent citizens. They wake up in the night and slice innocent children to pieces. Yet, you have a government in place. What!

“The most honourable thing for any non-performing leader to do is to resign. The most honourable thing is to resign. That’s my own for Mr President. Resign! Get out of office! Even our Islamic friends in the North are calling on him to resign. Because that’s the noblest thing to do. Or are we going to look at one system destroy a whole nation?”

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