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USAfrica: declaration of independence by Anglophone Cameroon, Biya troops kill 25

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USAfricaonline.com sources informed us that the declaration of independence by the English speaking section of Cameroon today October 1, 2017, has seen a severe clampdown and killing of at least 25 persons by the government of Paul Biya. Developing reports….

 

Buea (AFP) – Police patrolled empty streets in Cameroon’s restive anglophone belt as a separatist group made a symbolic proclamation of independence on Sunday [October 1, 2017], a day after a young man was shot dead by security forces.

“I can’t go out, they asked us to stay home,” said one city resident who identified herself as Nancy.

“Everyone is afraid… it’s not good,” added Thom, another resident.

A young man was shot dead by security forces on Saturday in the nearby town of Kumba, known as a rebellious city since the start of protests by the anglophone minority last November, sparking clashes between security forces and the local population.

“They fired at him during a security operation,” a nurse who requested anonymity told AFP. The incident was confirmed by a security source and several local residents contacted by phone.

On Sunday, “at least one person was injured by live fire” in the northwestern city of Bamenda, where the situation was “very tense”, a source close to the local authorities told AFP.

In nearby Kumbo, three inmates at a prison were shot and killed trying to escape while security forces were mobilised for the deployments in anglophone regions, a source close to regional authorities said.

The majority of Cameroon’s 22 million people are French-speaking, while about a fifth are English speakers.

The legacy dates back to 1961, when a formerly British entity, Southern Cameroons, united with Cameroon after its independence from France in 1960.

The anglophone minority has long complained about disparities in the distribution of Cameroon’s oil wealth.

Cameroon’s long-serving president, 84-year-old Paul Biya, took to social media Sunday to condemn “all acts of violence, no matter where they come from or who is responsible”.

One of the leaders of the opposition Social Democratic Front (SDF), Joshua Osih, told AFP the security forces were “firing real bullets at the protesters” but stressed that he was not a supporter of the secessionist movement.

On October 1, the anniversary of the official reunification of the anglophone and francophone parts of Cameroon, the anglophone separatists wanted to make a symbolic proclamation of independence for Ambazonia, the name of the state they want to create.
The anglophone minority has long complained about disparities in sharing out Cameroon’s oil wealth

“We are no longer slaves of Cameroon,” said Sisiku Ayuk, who describes himself as the “president” of Ambazonia.

“Today we affirm the autonomy of our heritage and our territory,” he said on social media on Sunday.

On Thursday, Cameroonian authorities announced a temporary curb on travel and public meetings across the Southwest Region, adding to a curfew in the neighbouring Northwest Region, also English-speaking.

The European Union called on all sides to be responsible and “respect the rule of law and avoid any act of violence.”

Since November, the anglophone minority has been protesting against perceived discrimination, especially in education and the judicial system, where they say the French language and traditions are being imposed on them, even though English is one of the country’s two official languages.

Most anglophone campaigners want the country to resume a federalist system — an approach that followed the 1961 unification but was later scrapped in favour of a centralised government run from the capital Yaounde. A hardline minority is calling for secession.

Biya opposes any such changes.

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USAfrica BrkNEWS: Invasion of Nigeria’s National Assembly, Trump’s adviser says Daura is Buhari’s enforcer

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@Chido247

The latest disgrace brought upon Nigeria by a mix of masked and armed operatives of the Department of State Security [DSS], acting at the orders of the Director General of the DSS, Lawal Musa Daura, on Tuesday morning of August 8, 2018, prevented  lawmakers and staff from gaining access into the NASS building until voices were raised against the intrusion continues to draw local and international reactions.

One of U.S President Donald Trump’s security advisers on Africa has told Houston-based USAfrica and USAfricaonline.com that “the White House has held cautious reservation about the genuineness of President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to democracy and diversity in Nigeria.”

He made the point that Mr. Daura is an enforcer of the Buhari agenda, spoken and unspoken; “they’re very close….”

Meanwhile, retired General Buhari’s deputy who is currently Nigeria’s acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, a professor of law, has sacked Daura.

Also, the USAfrica News Index show that “U.S President Donald J. Trump, this afternoon Monday April 30, 2018 at the White House, told visiting Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari that his government is not only monitoring but outraged by  “very serious problems with christians who are being murdered, killed in Nigeria.”

The transcription of Trump’s statement by USAfricaonline.com reads:

“We’ve had very serious problems with christians who are being murdered, killed in Nigeria. We’re going to be working on that problem; and working on that problem very, very hard… because we can’t allow that to happen.”

Buhari, a retired army General and dictator/ruler (1984-1986), attempted to minimize those issues when he claimed, contrary to video evidence and eyewitness accounts, that the “farmers and herdsmen” only carry stick and machete; not AK-47s and other deadly weapons. Across the social media, Nigerians share pictures/videos of them brandishing weapons.

Obama administration and Buhari’s started a deal for Nigeria to purchase up to 12 Embraer A-29 Super Tucano aircraft with sophisticated targeting gear for almost $600 million.

By Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of USAfrica [Houston], USAfricaonline.com and author of the soon-to-be-released 2018 book titled MLK, MANDELA & ACHEBE: Power, Leadership & Identity

 

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Saraki: Flagrant persecution by Buhari’s government forced me to quit APC

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By Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, CON
President of the Senate of Nigeria

Special to USAfrica [Houston] and USAfricaonline.com

I wish to inform Nigerians that, after extensive consultations, I have decided to take my leave of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

This is not a decision that I have made lightly. If anything at all, I have tarried for so long and did all that was humanly possible, even in the face of great provocation, ridicule and flagrant persecution, to give opportunity for peace, reconciliation and harmonious existence.

Perhaps, more significantly, I am mindful of the fact that I carry on my shoulder a great responsibility for thousands of my supporters, political associates and friends, who have trusted in my leadership and have attached their political fortunes to mine. However, it is after an extensive consultation with all the important stakeholders that we have come to this difficult but inevitable decision to pitch our political tent elsewhere; where we could enjoy greater sense of belonging and where the interests of the greatest number of our Nigerians would be best served.

While I take full responsibility for this decision, I will like to emphasise that it is a decision that has been inescapably imposed on me by certain elements and forces within the APC who have ensured that the minimum conditions for peace, cooperation, inclusion and a general sense of belonging did not exist.

They have done everything to ensure that the basic rules of party administration, which should promote harmonious relations among the various elements within the party were blatantly disregarded. All governance principles which were required for a healthy functioning of the party and the government were deliberately violated or undermined. And all entreaties for justice, equity and fairness as basic precondition for peace and unity, not only within the party, but also the country at large, were simply ignored, or employed as additional pretext for further exclusion.

The experience of my people and associates in the past three years is that they have suffered alienation and have been treated as outsiders in their own party. Thus, many have become disaffected and disenchanted. At the same time, opportunities to seek redress and correct these anomalies were deliberately blocked as a government-within-a-government had formed an impregnable wall and left in the cold, everyone else who was not recognized as “one of us”. This is why my people, like all self-respecting people would do, decided to seek accommodation elsewhere.

I have had the privilege to lead the Nigerian legislature in the past three years as the President of the Senate and the Chairman of the National Assembly. The framers of our constitution envisage a degree of benign tension among the three arms of government if the principle of checks and balances must continue to serve as the building block of our democracy. In my role as the head of the legislature, and a leader of the party, I have ensured that this necessary tension did not escalate at any time in such a way that it could encumber Executive function or correspondingly, undermine the independence of the legislature. Over the years, I have made great efforts in the overall interest of the country, and in spite of my personal predicament, to manage situations that would otherwise have resulted in unsavoury consequences for the government and the administration. My colleagues in the Senate will bear testimony to this.

However, what we have seen is a situation whereby every dissent from the legislature was framed as an affront on the executive or as part of an agenda to undermine the government itself. The populist notion of anti-corruption became a ready weapon for silencing any form of dissent and for framing even principled objection as “corruption fighting back”. Persistent onslaught against the legislature and open incitement of the people against their own representatives became a default argument in defence of any short-coming of the government in a manner that betrays all too easily, a certain contempt for the Constitution itself or even the democracy that it is meant to serve.

Unfortunately, the self-serving gulf that has been created between the leadership of the two critical arms of government based on distrust and mutual suspicion has made any form of constructive engagement impossible. Therefore, anything short of a slavish surrender in a way that reduces the legislature to a mere rubber stamp would not have been sufficient in procuring the kind of rapprochement that was desired in the interest of all. But I have no doubt in my mind, that to surrender this way is to be complicit in the subversion of the institution that remains the very bastion of our democracy. I am a democrat. And I believe that anyone who lays even the most basic claim to being a democrat will not accept peace on those terms; which seeks to compromise the very basis of our existence as the parliament of the people.

The recent weeks have witnessed a rather unusual attempts to engage with some of these most critical issues at stake. Unfortunately, the discord has been allowed to fester unaddressed for too long, with dire consequences for the ultimate objective of delivering the common good and achieving peace and unity in our country. Any hope of reconciliation at this point was therefore very slim indeed. Most of the horses had bolted from the stable

The emergence of a new national party executives a few weeks ago held out some hopes, however slender. The new party chairman has swung into action and did his best alongside some of the Governors of APC and His Excellency, the Vice President. I thank them for all their great efforts to save the day and achieve reconciliation. Even though I thought these efforts were coming late in the day, but seeing the genuine commitment of these gentlemen, I began to think that perhaps it was still possible to reconsider the situation.

However, as I have realized all along, there are some others in the party leadership hierarchy, who did not think dialogue was the way forward and therefore chose to play the fifth columnists. These individuals went to work and ensured that they scuttled the great efforts and the good intentions of these aforementioned leaders of the party. Perhaps, had these divisive forces not thrown the cogs in the wheel at the last minutes, and in a manner that made it impossible to sustain any trust in the process, the story today would have been different.

For me, I leave all that behind me. Today, I start as I return to the party where I began my political journey, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

When we left the PDP to join the then nascent coalition of All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2014, we left in a quest for justice, equity and inclusion; the fundamental principles on which the PDP was originally built but which it had deviated from. We were attracted to the APC by its promise of change. We fought hard along with others and defeated the PDP.

In retrospect, it is now evident that the PDP has learnt more from its defeat than the APC has learnt from its victory. The PDP that we return to is now a party that has learnt its lessons the hard way and have realized that no member of the party should be taken for granted; a party that has realized that inclusion, justice and equity are basic precondition for peace; a party that has realized that never again can the people of Nigeria be taken for granted.

I am excited by the new efforts, which seeks to build the reborn PDP on the core principles of promoting democratic values; internal democracy; accountability; inclusion and national competitiveness; genuine commitment to restructuring and devolution of powers; and an abiding belief in zoning of political and elective offices as an inevitable strategy for managing our rich diversity as a people of one great indivisible nation called Nigeria.

What we have all agreed is that a deep commitment to these ideals were not only a demonstration of our patriotism but also a matter of enlightened self-interest, believing that our very survival as political elites of this country will depend on our ability to earn the trust of our people and in making them believe that, more than anything else, we are committed to serving the people.

What the experience of the last three years have taught us is that the most important task that we face as a country is how to reunite our people. Never before had so many people in so many parts of our country felt so alienated from their Nigerianness. Therefore, we understand that the greatest task before us is to reunite the county and give everyone a sense of belonging regardless of region or religion.

Every Nigerian must have an instinctive confidence that he or she will be treated with justice and equity in any part of the country regardless of the language they speak or how they worship God. This is the great task that trumps all. Unless we are able to achieve this, all other claim to progress no matter how defined, would remain unsustainable.

This is the task that I am committing myself to and I believe that it is in this PDP, that I will have the opportunity to play my part. It is my hope that the APC will respect the choice that I have made as my democratic right, and understand that even though we will now occupy a different political space, we do not necessarily become enemies unto one another.

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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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Nigeria’s 2019 Elections: U.S groups warn about security threats

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Widespread violence in Nigeria could affect next year’s presidential election, two US pro-democracy groups said on Friday, July 20, 2018.

Voters in Africa’s most populous nation go to the polls in February next year, with President Muhammadu Buhari looking to secure a second, four-year term of office.

The 75-year-old former military ruler in 2015 became the first opposition candidate to defeat a sitting president at the ballot box in the country’s history.

But despite pledging to defeat Boko Haram, whose insurgency has left at least 20,000 dead in the last nine years, violence persists and has erupted elsewhere.

The National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute, which have been on a joint visit to Nigeria, said fears of unrest were commonplace.

“Nigeria faces security challenges from a number of non-state actors that, if unchecked, could disrupt the electoral process,” the NDI and IRI said in a pre-election assessment.

As well as Boko Haram attacks, renewed violence in the long-running resources conflict between cattle herders and farmers in central states has killed 1,000 people this year.

Trading in illegal weapons, the apparent inability of the security forces to stop the violence and the framing of it in political or religious terms were fuelling unrest, they added.

“If not addressed, these security threats could erode confidence in government,” they said.

The high numbers of displaced in the northeast and central states could pose “specific challenges for the conduct of elections in the impacted areas”, they added.

Similar fears about violence and its potential effects on planning, holding and participating in an election in areas wracked by conflict were seen before the last vote.

The vote was pushed back six weeks to allow the military more time to secure areas controlled by Boko Haram, whose leader Abubakar Shekau had threatened to disrupt the election.

Voting eventually took place, with polling stations set up near camps for the displaced, although turn-out was down.

The NDI-IRI praised Nigeria for introducing measures to tackle voter fraud, including biometric identity cards and electronic readers, as well as increased civil society scrutiny.

Efforts to get younger people involved in politics, through new legislation to lower the age of political candidates, were welcomed.

But more needed to be done to increase the number of women involved in politics while “the over-personalisation of politics and of the role of money in elections” were a concern.

The July 14 poll to elect a new governor in the southwestern state of Ekiti, for example, was dogged by claims of vote-buying by the two main parties as well as harsh rhetoric.

“Vote-buying is an electoral offence; it also undermines the legitimacy of elections and weakens representative democracy,” the NDI-IRI said. AFP

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BrkNEWS #BokoHaram overruns army base; hundreds of soldiers missing in northern Nigeria

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AFP: Hundreds of Nigerian troops are missing after Boko Haram jihadists overran a military base in the remote northeast, security sources said Sunday, in the second major assault on the armed forces in two days.

The militants invaded a base holding more than 700 soldiers in Yobe state — where they abducted over 100 girls from a school earlier this year — in an hours-long onslaught Saturday night, a military source told AFP on condition of anonymity.

Fewer than 100 soldiers have returned following the attack, which took place just 24 hours after Boko Haram fighters ambushed a military convoy in neighbouring Borno state on Friday.

The two assaults have highlighted the tenuous hold Nigerian forces have on the ravaged region despite claims by President Muhammadu Buhari’s government that the country is in a “post-conflict stabilisation phase”.

“Boko Haram terrorists attacked troops of the 81st Division Forward Brigade at Jilli village in Geidam district. The terrorists came in huge numbers around 7:30 pm (1830 GMT) and overran the base after a fierce battle that lasted until 9:10 pm,” said the military source.

“The base had 734 troops. Currently the commander of the base and 63 soldiers have made it to Geidam (60 kilometres away) while the remaining 670 are being expected,” he said, without elaborating on their possible fate.

“We don’t know if there were any casualties among the troops. That will be known later,” he said, adding that the base was new and the troops had recently arrived from Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial capital.

A leader of a local anti-jihadist militia said the soldiers sustained casualties, but was unable to give a toll, attributing the attack to the Abu-Mus’ab Al-Barnawi faction of Boko Haram, which is known for targeting Nigerian forces.

“We learned that they drove from Lake Chad through Gubio (in nearby Borno state) and attacked the base,” he said.

Geidam resident Fannami Gana said the jihadists “overwhelmed” the troops.

“We don’t know the details of what happened but we learnt they were overwhelmed by hundreds of Boko Haram gunmen,” said Gana.

Nigerian army spokesman Texas Chukwu said he did not know about the attack.

“I am not aware of the attack because (I) have not received information from there,” Chukwu said in a text message to AFP.

On Friday, 23 Nigerian soldiers went missing after Boko Haram ambushed a convoy outside Bama, leading to the loss of several military vehicles.

According to a military officer, “around 100 terrorists” attacked the convoy.

The sophisticated attacks highlight the continued threat — and evolution — of Boko Haram, an Islamic State group ally, said Yan St-Pierre, counter-terrorism advisor and head of the Berlin-based Modern Security Consulting Group.

St-Pierre suggested the attacks could be because Boko Haram fighters are vying for control of the faction led by Abubakar Shekau, the long-time jihadist leader who is reportedly ill.

“When a near-mythical leader is on his way out there’s always a battle to establish who could be next,” said St-Pierre.

The attacks show the persistent threat of Boko Haram in the Lake Chad region, he said.

As the jihadists exploit rampant poverty in the region, the Nigerian army, which is overstretched and under-resourced, struggles to keep the insurgency in check.

“The supply of Boko Haram fighters is always there, either through kidnapping or economic reasons, they tap into a wide pool of personnel, they find a way to replenish their strength,” St-Pierre said.

Buhari, a 75-year-old former military ruler, came to power three years ago on a promise to defeat Boko Haram.

But while there have been clear military gains since a counter-insurgency was launched in 2015, suicide bombings and raids remain a constant threat, particularly to civilians.

Boko Haram’s Islamist insurgency has devastated the region since 2009, leaving at least 20,000 people dead, displacing more than two million others and triggering a humanitarian crisis.

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USAfrica: Alex Otti to announce he’s running, again, for Abia Governor on July 20

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Special to USAfricaonline.com @Chido247

USAfrica has confirmed that the 2019 governorship battle royale will be in the eastern state of Abia as the two major personalities, namely banker/economist Dr. Alex Otti of APGA and incumbent Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu of the PDP return to the political trenches to compete, again.

Otti is expected to announce his decision to run, again, for Abia Governor next week, on July 20 — at the grounds of Ngwa High School at Osisioma/Aba.

Both men fought a hard fight in 2015 for the top prize which was announced by INEC to have been bagged by Ikpeazu, with ex-Gov. Theodore Orji as his chief sponsor.

Otti and his supporters insist that the former Group Managing Director of Diamond Bank of Nigeria “won the election but was rigged out.” Ikpeazu and his supporters, on the other hand, argue that “we won the election, and we’re ready for them.”

USAfricaonline.com can also report that in the 2019 campaign that Dr. Otti will give high priority to the sanctity of all votes. He told USAfrica that “this time, more than in any other election, all votes, every vote must count.”

*By Dr. Chido Nwangwu who appears as an analyst on the CNN and SkyNews, serves as the Founder & Publisher of the first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet, USAfricaonline.com and author of the 2019 book on Power, Leadership & Identity [MLK, Mandela & Achebe]. He served as an adviser to Houston’s Mayor on Africa business.

 

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USAfrica: PDP, Obasanjo and Jonathan failed Nigeria. By Hafsat Abiola

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

(slightly edited for context by USAfrica)

Please nobody should abuse my late father (MKO Abiola).. with this sudden noise that “Buhari was playing politics” (by honoring MKO through declaring June 12 as Nigeria’s democracy day).

When did it become a crime for politicians to play politics? 

Were they not voted in to play politics? 

Will it be wrong to develop our roads, infrastructure, free education, return oil blocks to the State instead of individuals? 

What is this noise all about? 

Jonathan was voted for by the South West in 2011, the same SW voted for Buhari in 2015, what is all this noise all about the SW going for Buhari? 

Former president Obasanjo, the direct beneficiary of #June12, is from the same State with MKO; why didn’t he play politics and declare June 12? 

Jonathan  had opportunity for 5 years to do same, he rather gave Abacha from the North posthumous honor, pardoned ex-convict from the West, Alams from the South… 

What do you call that? 

Is that politics or chemistry? 

16 years opportunity to acknowledge #June12 they refused to use the #PoliticalUndertone…

So are you expecting Buhari to use Biological or Chemical undertone to take such decision? 

Why are you guys fixated about those supporting Buhari, is it not a choice and must you dictate to others? 

You brought up religious sentiments prio to 2015 election, yet blamed Buhari fr being the religious bigot….

Jonathan was running from one Church to another, Sambo openly told them in the North that they must not vote for Buhari because Osinbajo is a Pastor of a big Church….Who is a religious bigot here? 

I mean, who was running from one religious organisation to another in 2015 because of politics? Pastor Bosun came up with that sudden apostasy, wrapped up Jonathan PDP politics in the name of “wake up call” message.

I’m happy that I’m still here. I asked him when most of you were analyzing that heretic message that “Jonathan is fulfilling prophecy”…..

I asked a simple question: “Which prophecy is Jonathan”? Pastor Bosun went ahead to say “even if the Islamic party (APC) presents a Christian Governor in Lagos, you must not vote for him, you must vote for the other party (PDP)….” Wait, who was using religion?

Obasanjo removed Senate Presidents at will, removed any opposing voice, removed Fayose for a small insult, removed Ladoja with thugs in Ibadan…. Who are you calling “DICTATOR”? Muhammadu Buhari……… 

Obasanjo withheld Lagos State fund for 3 years, not minding how Lagosians would eat. President Yar’adua [Obasanjo’s successor] got there and released the funds.

Nigeria’s National Assembly [NASS] members are abusing Buhari openly, messing up everything at will, Fayose has been abusing Buhari for 4 years now….. 

Not a single State in Nigeria has been denied their constitutional rights because of politics till date, all their funds, Paris fund, bail out, FAAC etc… But who is the DICTATOR? BUHARI. 

Jonathan ensured that NASS opposition members were locked out including Tambuwa the Speaker of the house. They had to climb gate to gain access…..

Jonathan empowered OPCs in Lagos and they were destroying anything in Ikorodu to Ojota that looked like opposition party. Orga of DSS was used to invade APC secretariat, Journalist arrested and Newspapers siezed, we forgot all these….

Ekiti was militarised, Fayose was given power from Aso rock to order Military guys at will. Fayemi the incumbent at that moment was rendered powerless that he was shouting when Police commissioner was used by PDP and a guy was shot…All these videos and pictures are still here (google is your friend)…

But who is the dictator? BUHARI. Jonatahn met FX+ECA at $62 billion+. He DEPLETED it to less than $30 Billion in 5 years Jonathan sold crude oil for 5 years at an average of $100 per barrel of 2.2 million daily (2010-2014). Did he add a DIME to Nigeria purse in 5 years? NO. 

Buhari the ILLITERATE sold oil at an average of $50 of less than 700,000 barrel at some points because of militancy, yet had moved that FX to $47 Billion in 3 years. Don’t say how much did he borrow if you don’t even have the figure borrowed between 2010-2015 without adding a dime to FX. Who is the ILLITERATE? BUHARIIII. 

Jide Omokore, Aluko and oil goddess Alinson made an oil deal of N1 trillion and chose not to remit to Nigeria under GEJ. Did anyone raise eyebrow? INTEL of Atiku refused to remit to NPA, not until last year that “ordinary” Hadiza the NPA boss challenged INTEL and insisted the funds must be remitted. 

A Christian Professor had been leading JAMB all through Obasanjo to Jonathan; yet for 40 years of JAMB, only N52 Million was remitted to FG….A Muslim Professor who was appointed just in two years of handling JAMB remitted over N15 Billion……FIFTEEN BILLION.

So who is following after righteousness?

For five years [of the Obasanjo and Jonathan’s different presidencies as Finance Minister Dr. Ngozi] Okonjo Iweala was paying over 45,000 ghost workers unabated, yet just within 3 years, “ordinary” Kemi Adeosun removed such nonsense.

 

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USAfrica: Chimamanda, Feminism and her Misrepresentation of Igbo Culture. By Nkem Ekeopara

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Chimamanda, Feminism and her Misrepresentation of Igbo Culture.         By Nkem Ekeopara

 

USAfrica [Houston] and USAfricaonline.com  @USAfricaLive

 

Increasingly, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie is becoming more known for her far left feminism advocacy than her fiction writing. The writer of the critically acclaimed novel, Half of a Yellow Sun, and the winner of Orange Prize among other prizes is using the fame she has attained through writing to advance her feminism cause. Absolutely, there’s nothing wrong with this except that she is now using it to manifest her extremely poor understanding of people’s culture, including the culture of her own people, the Igbo of South-eastern Nigeria.

Still smarting out from the controversy she stirred in the interview she had with Mrs Hillary Clinton where she used the undiplomatic word ‘upset’ to describe her feeling about Mrs Clinton’s twitter bio-data (where the superbly accomplished Hillary proudly listed Wife as a key part of who she is!), she quickly moved on to condemning the practice in Western societies where men open and close doors for ladies. For condemning this practice, which is an important aspect of chivalry, Adichie got a robust response from Dana Loesch. Dana Loesch is the National Rifle Association (NRA) spokesperson.

She told Adichie that she does not understand chivalry and that she should go back to her country and take up such causes like female genital mutilation (FGM) that is common in her country, Nigeria, rather than worrying about sexism in America. Some people have accused Loesch of racism. However, what I got from her response is a woman stepping out to defend an age long show of courtesy in her society. If in doing this she indirectly implied that Adichie is not part of that society so be it.

One had expected that after these two incidents that Adichie would become more circumspect in the pursuit of her extreme feminism cause. This expectation was dashed when one read a lot of Igbo people on social media strongly condemning her for denigrating Igbo culture. When I sought and understood what the issue was, I felt let down myself that Adichie could display that level of ignorance about Igbo culture.

The latest issue at stake is the rarely exercised culture [as in 1 out of 1million] where an Igbo woman “marries” another Igbo woman into her family for her husband; not for self. In Adichie’s understanding, this could well be lesbianism at play. This is absurd. Was her assertion meant to portray the Igbo society as tolerant and sophisticated? Whatever was her intent, she got it wrong, very wrong this time. Sure, the Igbo are tolerant and sophisticated, but not in that aspect.

As someone who grew up in a traditional Igbo setting, I’m very familiar with the culture that Adichie sought to misrepresent. Unlike what Adichie claimed, the sole reason for contracting such marriages is for procreation. This practice arose due to Igbo people’s obsession with male children and the way they respond to childlessness after marriage. The culture is and was never for the practice of lesbianism as she speculated during her talk as Keynote Speaker at the 7th Igbo Conference. This is the truth! And it’s absolute. I know several instances, but I shall limit myself to two instances of varied circumstances.

The first one is a woman, who had eight beautiful daughters. Even though the couple were contented and expressed this by aptly naming their last daughter Obumnekegwamachi, which literally means it’s not me that creates, tell God, the woman still hoped to have a male child. Unfortunately, the husband suddenly died. As the daughters grew up and got married off, it dawned on the woman that a day shall come when her household will be empty. So, she married a younger woman. Luckily, that woman had two male children for her. Those children are thriving in that family and relating well with their sisters, who are all married now. The thought of these two women sleeping together never sauntered into the mind of anyone in the community, because it’s not who the Igbo are. Indeed, Adichie is the one who has awakened that ugly thought in me. And it’s strange and very unreal to me. It’s strange and very unreal not just to me, but also to many Igbo people judging from their reactions on social media.

The other instance of this sort of marriage I know about is where a woman was married for many years, without having any child for her husband. The woman who was very industrious went and married a younger woman for her husband. She did it for no other reason than procreation. And they were blessed with children.

Presently, this practice is waning in Igbo land. It’s waning for three reasons.  First, the obsession for male children is decreasing. A lot of the Igbo people are beginning to realize that the female child is very important. Now, they crave for them. This is reflected in such names they give them like Nwanyibuihe, a woman is light/a resource. It is even true in the life of Adichie and many other women of Igbo ancestry like Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iwuala, late Professor Dora Akunyili, Ms. Arumma Oteh just to mention but a few.  Another reason why the practice is waning in Igbo land is due to advancement in science. Through intro vitro fertilization (IVF), a lot of couples hitherto childless are able to have children. And for those, who cannot afford the cost of IVF, they’re opting for adoption. It will just be a matter of time before this culture becomes extinct. Adichie should not through her feminism advocacy manufacture something unheard of in Igbo culture in its place.

Adichie is quite influential.  Her voice resonates with very young impressionable people across the globe. Her speaking engagements put her before highly esteemed and very powerful persons. Therefore, she should speak with utmost clarity when she wants to use the Igbo culture or any culture for that matter to advance her feminism cause. The impression she created in her referred talk titled, ‘Igbo bu Igbo’ which is the source of the current controversy left much room for speculation as to the real intent of the practice of women marrying women in Igbo land. Her question ‘but how do we know?’ during her talk was needless and almost marred her excellent talk for anyone conscious of that aspect of Igbo culture as this sought to create doubt about the real intent of the practice.  

That Adichie is a writer of note is not in doubt. This cannot be overstressed. So, I don’t believe what some people are saying that she is deliberately stirring up these controversies to attract attention. She already has the attention. She has the attention of the Igbo. She has the attention of the world. And as a person, I’m proud of her and her achievements.

However, she should be humble enough to understand that she is not an authority in all areas of human endeavour. She should consult such authorities or research more on issues and be open and detailed with her findings to avoid future faux pas.

•Ekeopara is a columnist here at USAfrica and USAfricaonline.com, first African-owned, US-based newspaper published on the internet.

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USAfrica: FBI cyber-crime sweep targeting U.S., Nigeria lead to arrests in Houston area

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•Follow us on Twitter  @USAfricaLIVE •  @Chido247Facebook.com/USAfricaLIVE •   Facebook.com/USAfricaChido

 

With multiple criminal schemes and enticements awash across the world wide web, the U.S Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has announced, in a news release to USAfricaonline.com, the initial impact of its large-scale, international cyber-crime sweep targeting fraudulent Business Email Compromise (BEC) transactions.

According to the FBI, “The international targeted sweep ran from January to early June 2018 and culminated in two weeks of focused law enforcement activity in the United States and Nigeria.”

In Texas’ Harris County, the FBI arrested 11 persons in ‘Operation Wire Wire’ which involved law enforcement partnership of the FBI Houston Cyber Task Force, the Houston Police Department, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the United States Postal Inspection Service, and the Harris County District Attorney’s Office.

The FBI Houston Cyber Task Force claimed the first domestic arrest in ‘Operation Wire Wire.’ The 11 suspects will face money laundering charges in the State of Texas.

In its description of how the Business email compromise schemes, also known as CEO impersonation schemes work, the Bureau notes they “are sophisticated scams targeting businesses working with foreign suppliers and other businesses that regularly perform wire transfer payments. The Email Account Compromise (EAC) component of BEC targets individuals who perform wire transfer payments. Foreign citizens who perpetrate BEC scams are often members of transnational criminal organizations which originated in Nigeria but have spread throughout the world.

On the implications, “the devastating effects of BEC and EAC scams on domestic victims impact not only the individual but the global economy. Scammers have stolen millions of dollars from individual victims and honest, enterprising businesses around the world,” stated FBI Houston Special Agent in Charge (SAC) Perrye K. Turner. “To avoid becoming a victim of BEC and EAC scams, verify the authenticity of any email you receive, especially those that request you to send money through a wire transfer,” cautions SAC Turner.

Also, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) received complaints from 1,258 victims within the state of Texas with losses of almost $55 million, USAfricaonline.com has been informed, for 2017.                                           •• By Chido Nwangwu, Founder & Publisher of Houston-based USAfrica multimedia networks, first African-owned, U.S-based newspaper published on the internet USAfricaonline.com;  and recipient of several journalism and public policy awards. He has been profiled by the CNN International for his pioneering works on multimedia/news/public policy projects for Africans and Americans. He worked previously for the Nigerian Television Authority, Platform magazine, and the Daily Times of Nigeria; and has served as adviser on Africa business to Houston’s former Mayor Brown. USAfrica, CLASSmagazine and USAfricaonline.com are assessed by the CNN and The New York Times as the largest and arguably the most influential African-owned, U.S-based multimedia networks. USAfrica established May 1992.

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USAfrica: Yoruba leaders in Afenifere say Buhari is the god-father of Fulani herdsmen

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*Communique of the General Assembly of Afenifere, an influential leadership organization championing the interests of the Yorubas of southwest Nigeria, after their meeting of  June 26, 2018, at the Akure home of their Leader, Chief R.F Fasoranti. USAfrica [Houston] and USAfricaonline.com are publishing the communique with minor editing – for clarity:

After exhaustive deliberations on the state of the nation, the following communique was adopted:

1, Plateau Genocide and President Buhari’s conflict of interest: Meeting was devastated by the genocide that took place in Plateau State on Sunday [June 24, 2018] in which over 200 deaths occurred by eyewitnesses accounts deaths but the police admitted 100. These wanton killings and official irresponsibility portrays Nigeria as a barbaric entity and we, [the] Yoruba people, are pained living in the same space with the bestial elements who kill innocent people in cruel manner.

The images of little children killed mercilessly with open skulls make anyone with human blood flowing in his or her veins to shrink.
We are further distressed that the response of President Buhari to the murder of hundreds of our citizens did not attract a word of sympathy or regret .
It is very infuriating that the President’s response and that of Miyetti Allah appeared to have been authored from the same laptop.

The Chairman of North Central zone of Miyetti Allah, Danladi Ciroma, said the attacks were a retaliation for the loss of three hundred cows. Said he “These attacks are retaliatory …. Those who carried out the attacks must be on revenge mission …Fulani herdsmen have lost over 300 cows in the last few weeks…..Since these cows were not found, no one should expect peace in the areas.”

President Buhari who is also the Grand Patron of Miyetti Allah who described the Fulani herdsmen terror as “herdsmen/farmers” clashes (a case of two fighting but dead bodies only on one side) also repeated the missing cows and even added another charge Miyetti Allah did not remember: According to information available to the Presidency about one hundred cattle had been rustled by a community in Plateau State, and some herdsmen were killed in the process. The State Governor, Simon Lalong had had invited the aggrieved groups and pleaded against further action …Less than forty eight hours later violence broke out (a euphemism for the word “retaliation” used by Miyetti Allah Chief).

The President used the word “thugs” thrice to describe protesting residents while admitting that human life was becoming “increasingly cheap ” under his watch without saying what he is doing to make it worthy or bring the herdsmen who have admitted killing people to book.

He also repeated the blame game of “desperate people ” causing instability and chaos” in furtherance of the vain attempt by the administration to divert attention from Fulani herdsmen responsible for the serial murders.
Three months ago, we did say that the President is afflicted by conflict of interests as Grand Patron of Miyetti Allah and the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria . It is the affliction that has seen him now functioning as a Miiyetti Allah godfather at a time he should be presidential .We asked him and we are calling on him to make a choice between the two.
It is pointless at this stage making any demand on this incorrigible administration.

We ask our people to have special prayers for the souls of all those killed and for God to have mercy on Nigeria in all our mosques on Friday 29th June in our churches on Sunday 1st of July, and for Him to see us through the last few months of this administration .

Politically, Nigerians must now gird their loins and see the democratic uprooting of this administration as a task that must be done in 2019 so as to save the the country from utter destruction .There is no land where the blood of the innocent is being shed daily like Nigeria that can make progress in any area of human endeavor. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

2, RESTRUCTURING IS A NATIONAL AGENDA
At a time when the country as at the verge of collapse as a result of structural defects ,we noted that the President while receiving Urhobo leaders on Monday was still da missed the popular call for restructuring of the country when he said “Every group asking for restructuring has got their own agenda and I hope it can be accommodated by the constitution ”
We say without any reservation to Mr President that the call for restructuring is a selfless call borne out of the need to retrieve Nigeria from the brink of collapse and put It back on track .If the President talks about people with personal agenda on restructuring ,it. Can only be those who insert it in their manifestos to win elections and turn around to say they are getting different definitions of restructuring after they came to power .
We insist that for the country to move forward and develop ,it has to be restructured into a proper federation .

3, NO PUBLIC FUNDED RANCHES IN YORUBALAND
Meeting rejects the idea of public funded ranches which is an imperialist agenda of cresting Federal Cattle Territories across Nigeria .We insist that Cattle rearing is a private business and the Government has no business getting involved if there was no sinister.

No inch of Yoruba land will be available for such and no Governor should cede any land for such.

Yinka Odumakin
National Publicity Secretary
Afenifere

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