Former Oyo State Governor, Rashidi Ladoja has criticized President Muhammadu Buhari’s recently launched “Change Begins With Me” programme.
According to Ladoja, change must start from Buhari and members of his cabinet.
The former governor made the comments while speaking to journalists at his home in Ibadan, Oyo State, after observing the Eid prayers.
“I think the change starts with President Buhari. Look at what INEC said about the change in date in Edo State election. They said it is colossal waste and nobody has convinced us about the postponement. They cited security reasons. Billions of naira has gone down the drain. We are wasteful,” Ladoja said according to Vanguard.
“I am not in their party. My party has no candidate in Edo. I just know that it is wrong. We have fixed this date for a long time and they first said it was because of WAEC but the date it has been shifted to again also has WAEC exams. Are you now going to ask WAEC to change the date also? We are still playing games. I am sure that if APC were sure that they will win Edo election, they will not have postponed it,” he added.
President Buhari has come under criticism for the programme which many see as telling citizens to change their ways before expecting the change promised by Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) led government.
President Muhammadu Buhari has assured Nigerians that his government is working to bring the Niger Delta militancy to an end.
Buhari also said that only guilty people will be prosecuted in his administration’s war against corruption.
The president made the comments on Monday, September 12, after observing Eid prayers in his hometown, Daura, Katsina State.
According to a statement released by Buhari’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the president said:
“Nigerians can see what we have done on Boko Haram and what we are doing to resolve the problem in the Niger Delta. Before the elections, we identified three major problems confronting our country. The first is security; we need to sufficiently secure our country to manage it well.”
“The second is economy, especially job for the youths and fighting corruption which is continuous. For the youths, graduates and non-graduates who are interested in agriculture, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture in collaboration with the CBN are doing something to provide employment for them.”
Buhari also informed Nigerians that his administration did not inherit anything from previous administrations.
The president had earlier assured citizens that his government is working tirelessly to solve the economic crisis in the country
The immediate past Finance Minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, said on Monday that having a handle on Nigeria’s spiralling inflation, foreign exchange problem, fiscal deficit and debts control were key to resolving the country’s current economic crisis.
Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala, who spoke on Aljazeera TV programme, The Stream, said focusing on the basic issues of macroeconomic stability was crucial to fixing the country’s economic challenges.
“If you don’t pay attention to the fundamentals of having a stable and good exchange rate policy, inflation under control, manageable fiscal deficit and debts, there will continue to be trouble in the economy,” she said.
Nigeria is facing its worst economic crisis in decades. The economy slipped into recession after contracting in the first two quarters of 2016.
Inflation jumped from 16.2 per cent in July to 17.1 per cent in August 2016, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.
Since the introduction of the floating foreign exchange policy by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which freed the Naira from a band of N197-N199 to the dollar, the currency has been in a free fall against other international currencies.
From about N281 to the dollar at the beginning of the policy in June, Naira crashed to about N420 to the dollar shortly before the Sallah holidays on Friday.
Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala, a former World Bank Managing Director, told Al Jazeera that she remained optimistic that solutions to the country’s economic decline could still be found.
Asked what would be her top three priorities to resolve the country’s current economic crisis if she had remained the finance minister, Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala said she would prefer the current managers of the economy talk about it.
“I have contributed the best I could to the country. It is still the most interesting country in the world. It is better to leave those who are managing now to say what they would do.
“All I can say is that there are solutions. Nigeria is a vibrant country. I love it so much. I know it is going to come out of this one way or another,” she said.
On if President Muhammadu Buhari were to ask her to come and help in resolving the country’s economic crisis, Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala said: “One of the things you learn as you get wiser is to talk less as you grow older.
“I have spent my time contributing to the country. It will be better to leave those managing the economy to do what they know how to do.
“I served my country for seven years and it was a great honour. The second time was very tough, but it was still an honour. I am not the only person who is a repository of knowledge. There are other people who can equally try their hands in running the economy.”
On the continental scale, Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala, expressed regrets the economic gains recorded in Africa have started being eroded in the last two to three years.
“On the continent, we have seen a period when the economy was doing relatively well. It’s only in the last two to three years that things have started to go a bit south.”
She spoke about the job initiative of the Goodluck Jonathan government, YOU-WIN.
“The whole idea was to have a business plan competition. Beneficiaries were expected to create jobs to employ six people or more.
“Each created 9-10 jobs. The World Bank did an evaluation of it and found it good. I do believe the government should come in. We started a peer to peer mentoring. Now, one of the things I want to say is that creating employment is not only about struggles, it is about managing success,” she said.
On how the anti-corruption war was fought during her time in government, Mrs. Okonjo-Iweala described it as “a very tough fight”.
“It was tough. I must thank my team. You don’t do it alone. I had the support of an economic team in the Ministry of Finance. At the end of the day, you need to have some principles,” she said.
Crude oil production from Nigeria dropped the most in August among its peers in the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries, paring the gain it recorded in the previous month.
Nigeria had in March lost the status of Africa’s top oil producer to Angola when the country’s production dropped to 1.677 million barrels per day, compared to Angola’s 1.782 million bpd.
OPEC’s Monthly Oil Market Report for September, which was released on Monday, showed that Nigeria’s oil output fell to 1.468 million bpd in August from 1.52 million bpd in the previous month, based on direct communication.
Nigeria had in July recorded the biggest increase in output, but it was not enough to help the country regain the top spot from Angola.
According to secondary sources, OPEC crude oil production stood at 33.24 million bpd in August, a decrease of 23,000 bpd over the previous month.
“Crude oil output increased mainly from Saudi Arabia and Iran, while Nigeria and Libya showed the largest drop,” the 14-member oil cartel said in the report.
Angola saw its oil output rise to 1.775 million bpd in August from 1.767 million bpd the previous month, based on direct communication, according to the OPEC report.
Libya’s production dropped to 292,000 bpd from 313,000 bpd, while Venezuela produced 2.104 million bpd, down from 2.117 million bpd.
Ecuador’s output fell to 542,000 bpd from 549,000 bpd, while Iraq saw its production dropped by 2,000 barrels to 4.354 million bpd.
Saudi Arabia, the biggest producer in the group, recorded the biggest increase in August as it produced 10.605 million bpd, up from 10.577 million bpd in the previous month.
Iran, which has continued to increase output in a bid to snap up more market share after sanctions were lifted, produced 3.653 million bpd, up from 3.631 million bpd.
According to the report, Africa’s oil supply is projected to average 2.12 million bpd in 2016. This represents a decline of 20,000 bpd year-on-year and reflects an upward revision of 10,000 bpd from the August report.
This year, oil production from Congo is only expected to grow by 50,000 bpd to average 320,000 bpd, while output in other African countries, despite increasing output from Ghana’s production start-up in the Tweneboa, Enyenra, Ntomme project and a production ramp-up in Jubilee field in the second half of the year, will decline or be stagnant, OPEC said.
It raised its forecast of oil supplies from non-member countries in 2017 as new fields come online and United States’ shale drillers prove more resilient than expected to cheap crude, pointing to a larger surplus in the market next year.
Demand for crude from OPEC will average 32.48 million bpd in 2017, down by 530,000 bpd from the previous forecast, according to the report.
Oil is trading at $47 a barrel, half its level of mid-2014, as a supply glut that OPEC hoped cheap oil would banish sticks around.
“It is expected that there will be higher non-OPEC production in the second half of 2016 compared to the first half,” OPEC said in the report.
The cartel expects non-OPEC supply to rise by 200,000 bpd in 2017, as against a previous forecast of 150,000-bpd decline.
Near-record OPEC output, and higher supply from outside, could make it harder for OPEC and Russia to come up with steps to support the market. Producers are expected to meet in Algeria on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum from September 26 to 28.
An attempt by producers to agree to a production freeze in April failed as Iran, wanting to boost oil exports that had been restrained by Western sanctions, refused to join and Saudi Arabia insisted all producers took part.
DELTA STATE, NIGERIA - A crude oil delivery line belonging to the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company crossing Afiesere- Iwhrenene communities in Ughelli North Council Area of Delta State has been blown up by suspected militants.
A militant group, the Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate, claimed responsibility for the attack, which occurred at about 1am on Tuesday.
The spokesperson for the militant group, Aldo Agbalaja, confirmed the development in a statement sent to our correspondent.
The group, which is simply called Greenland, threatened further attacks while disclosing that Tuesday’s attack was carried out as part of ‘Operation Crocodile Tears’, a planned series of attacks on oil facilities, which it declared earlier.
It said, “As a mark of our faith to totally grounding the Nigerian oil economy, the gallant “Opudo” strike forces brought down the Afiesere- Iwhrenene major delivery line in Ughelli North, leading to the UPS/UQCC operated by NPDC/SHORELINES at about 1am today 13th september 2016.
“The Niger Delta is not a conquered territory and our people have never succumbed to intimidation before, rather we match force with the oppressor’s brutality.
“The Nigerian government should already know that the people of this part are not fools, who will not be able to see when they are being treated with disdain.”
The militant group reiterated its call to those living and working around oil companies within the upland region of the Niger Delta to vacate such premises to avoid being injured during attacks.
Warning that it was running out of patience with such people, the group said, “For the last time, leave these areas if you live around them and if you love your lives.”
Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn has called for Hungary to be suspended or even expelled from the European Union because of its "massive violation" of EU fundamental values.
He cited the Budapest government's treatment of refugees, independence of the judiciary and freedom of the press.
"Hungary is not far away from issuing orders to open fire on refugees," he suggested.
Hungary said Mr Asselborn "could not be taken seriously".
EU leaders meet in Slovakia on Friday to discuss the union's future.
Mr Asselborn's interview with German daily Die Welt is likely to inflame passions ahead of the summit.
The EU could not tolerate "such inappropriate behaviour", he said, and any state that violated such basic values "should be excluded temporarily, or if necessary for ever, from the EU''. It was "the only possibility to protect the cohesion and values of the European Union,'' he said.
Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto hit back, saying that his Luxembourg counterpart had "long left the ranks of politicians who could be taken seriously". Mr Asselborn was a "frivolous character", he said, adding that he was "patronising, arrogant and frustrated".
Mr Asselborn's remarks also drew condemnation from Latvia's foreign minister, who spoke of "megaphone diplomacy".
And German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, a personal friend of the Luxembourg minister, said while he could understand some in Europe were "becoming impatient, it is not my personal approach to show a member state the door".
GERMANY - Three Syrian men have been arrested in Germany on suspicion of being sent by so-called Islamic State (IS) to launch attacks, prosecutors say.
The men - aged between 17 and 26 - were detained after a series of pre-dawn raids in the states of Schleswig-Holstein and Lower Saxony on Tuesday.
Later, Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere told journalists the suspects may have had links to the men who attacked Paris in November last year.
He called the three a sleeper cell.
The Federal Public Prosecutor's office has said no concrete missions or orders have so far been found, despite the seizure of "extensive material".
The men - identified only as Mahir al-H, 17, Ibrahim M, 18, and Mohamed A, 26 - are said to have travelled through Turkey and Greece on false passports.
Investigators believe they had volunteered for the alleged mission, and that the 17-year-old had been trained in handling weapons and explosives in Raqqa, IS's stronghold in Syria.
They received fake passports, mobile phones loaded with a pre-installed communication programme and four-figure cash sums in US dollars.
The men were arrested when 200 police and security officers raided six locations, including three refugee shelters.
Investigations so far suggest the three came to Germany in November 2015 with the intention of "carrying out a previously determined order [from IS] or to await further instructions", prosecutors said in a statement.
Suspicions of the men were first raised months ago, and the men had been under surveillance including phone-tapping for weeks, reported the German news agency DPA.
Continue on BBC
NIGERIA - At least 4000 civil servants who were employed into the civil service during the Goodluck Jonathan administration may lose their jobs as the acting Executive Chairman of the Federal Character Commission, Shettima Abba, has reportedly queried the chairman of the Federal Civil Service Commission FCSC, Joan Ayo, for alleged violation of the principle of Federal character in the employment of the civil servants.
From reliable sources, the query was issued in early May year. This has led most civil servants to petition the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission ICPC over the alleged plans by the FCSC to sack them. The Executive chairman of the Federal Character Commission had argued that most of the workers recruited were from a particular geopolitical zone, the South South. The query issued to the FCSC chairman in part reads
"The Federal Character Commission has viewed and observed with concern the recruitment exercises undertaken by the Federal Civil Service between 2013 and 2015, which glaringly is lopsided and grossly abused the principle of Federal Character to which all institution have subscribed. The recruitment which recorded the engagement of about 4,904 workers, threw away all common sense and wisdom of national cohesion and integration by favoring some states to the detriment of others. We are worried that if this trend is allowed to continue, then some sections of the country may not only feel alienated but may feel insecure by the action of people in authority. It is inconceivable and a gross injustice for a geopolitical zone to be allocated 33.6 per cent of the total candidates recruited as against 26.2 per cent for three zones combined, North-East, North-West and North-Central.”
Shettima Abba in the query, asked the commission to henceforth adhere to the principle of federal character as contained in the guidelines and procedure for recruitment into the civil service.
NIGERIA - A passionate appeal has gone to the United Nations, UN, to arrange and conduct a referendum soonest, to ascertain the willingness or otherwise of the people to be part of an independent Biafra.
The Owerri Zonal leader of the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB, and a member of the organization’s Elders Council, Chief Canice Anujuru and Chief Okechukwu Nwogu respectively, made the plea during a news conference in Owerri, to mark the 17th anniversary of the birth of MASSOB.
“Conducting this all important referendum for the independence of Biafra is long overdue. Biafrans earnestly await this exercise,” Anujuru said. While recalling that “the UN granted MASSOB observer status since 2000,”
Chief Anujuru also pointed out that “since then, MASSOB has been conducting its campaign for the independence of Biafra in a non-violent manner,”
He expressed regret that despite the group’s non-violent posture, “the Nigerian government and its security agencies had mindlessly killed, maimed, arrested, detained and prosecuted several pro-Biafra agitators over the years.”
The MASSOB leaders also warned that “until Biafran people are granted freedom, things will continue to go wrong in Nigeria.” On how MASSOB loyalists would mark the event, Anujuru said there would be rallies in every major town in Biafran territory, stressing that “the celebration will enable members appraise our gains and challenges.”
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NIGERIA - Former Finance Minister, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala yesterday said it was better to allow those managing Nigeria’s economy to do the best they could, noting that there could be solutions to the present economic decline in the country.
She also noted that she would not be available to serve the present administration if overtures were made to her by President Muhammadu Buhari, noting that Nigeria boasts of competent people, who would offer their services when called upon.
Okonjo-Iweala, who said this while participating in an Aljazeera programme: The Stream, regretted that the economic gains recorded in Africa started eroding a few years ago, noting
that solving macroeconomic question was key to fixing the continent’s economic challenges. She specifically said that having a firm control over the rate of inflation in addition to ensuring a stable exchange rate should be prioritised by African governments.
She said: ‘’ One of the things you learn as you get wiser is to talk less as you grow older. I have spent my time contributing to the country. It will be better to live those managing the economy to do what they know how to do. There can be solutions.
“I am not a typical politician. I went in as a technocrat. I think on the continent we have seen a period when the economy was doing well, in the last two years we have been experiencing challenges. We need to focus on the basics which are macro-economics. You must get the fundamentals like having a stable exchange rate and having inflation under control.
“I served my country for seven years and it was a great honour. The second time was very tough but it is still an honour. I am not the only person who is a repository of knowledge. There are other people who can equally try their hands in running the economy.
“I will advise young people not to wait for employment. They should create jobs to employ six people or more. During my time in government, we had a programme called You Win designed to support young entrepreneurs. The whole idea was to have a business plan competition.
“The idea was that they should create jobs. And each, created 9-10 jobs. The World Bank did an evaluation of it and found it good. I do believe that the government should come in. We started a peer to peer mentoring. Now, one of the things I want to say is that creating employment is not only about struggles, it is about managing success.”
Also, counseling people on accounting, bookkeeping and not falling apart is very important.”
Responding to a question on how the anti-corruption war was fought during her time in government, she said: “It was a very tough fight, I must thank my team, you don’t do it alone, I had the support of an economic team in the Ministry of Finance. It was tough because at the end of the day you need to have some principles.”
On her roles as a Finance Minister, Okonjo-Iweala said: ‘’The average life span of a Finance Minister is two year in a country. No one likes a Finance Minister because it is the business of saying no. It is very difficult and challenging. It was interesting for me. I wish I had seen myself as wielding power. All I saw was the job because I was seeing myself working for the country.”
Get Help Worldwide is one of the World’s most organized Mutual Aid / Crowd Funding / Donation Exchange / Social Financial Platform, Programmed to last forever with innovative features. Some of the features will be listed and elaborated as we proceed.
So many of us are yet to understand the ideology behind Crowd Funding Programs, while others are busy setting themselves up through Crowd Funding communities like Get Help Worldwide. Across the Globe, Crowd Funding has become a major means of raising money among individuals and a lot of successful Companies/Businesses have been set up via Crowd Funding.
What Is Get Help Worldwide All About?
It is simply an online Community where people are helping each other Financially Directly with No Third Parties Involved, whatever Help you give to someone financially grows by 30% if in Local currency or 50% if in Bitcoin in 30 days. In Get Help Worldwide you are not required to pay any money for registration i.e. Registration is FREE, there is NO CENTRAL ACCOUNT where people are required to pay money to. All you have to do is to make a Pledge of an amount you wish to Provide as Help in the Community, you remain with your money and wait patiently till you are Paired with another Participant who needs the help you are offering then you give the help directly to that Participant with no third party involved. The same why on the 30th day when you request for help from the community, you will be paired with another participant in the community who pays directly to you. Example. You give help of 1,000 to a Participant, on the 30th day you receive help of 1,300 if help was given in your local currency or 1,500 if help was given in Bitcoin.
Will Get Help Worldwide Last? This question will be answered clearly with features that will blow your mind. YES, GET HELP WORLDWIDE WILL LAST FOREVER, before I proceed to telling you why it will last forever, I will like to take you back to what a community like this is all about. A Mutual Aid/Crowd Funding Community is NOT (1.) A Business (2.) A Loan (3.) A Networking Business (Where you must invite someone to join before you make money), All three (3) mentioned above are not what we are talking about here. Mutual Aid / Crowd Funding Community is a Community that depends on its Participants to last forever. To last forever, all participants have to be active knowing fully well that they will make 30% or 50% every 30days. Most Mutual Aid Platforms fail after few years because there were no Rules to guide people in the Platform. Let me give you a clear example: In a platform like MMM, One can Provide Help of 1,000,000 naira and in 30day Get Help of 1,300,000. The same person can decide to give 10,000 in his next offer (After he has taken out 300,000 naira from the Community) in some cases he might not offer any other help but will keep enjoying his registration Bonuses every Month. Note that when you are taking out money from the Community without contributing anymore from your end, you are making the community to shake because you are getting peoples donation without giving any donation (It starts becoming a One Sided platform and as many others follow that Part, The Platform Stands Still with no one to pay those who offered Help).
Another way some communities like this close or stop functioning is when some Rich Dude Throws in Huge Millions like 300million into the system and then cashes 390million and he never participates anymore, all who donated will be left with no one to pay them. These things happen because there are no Rules. In some platforms they have what they call guiders who do little or nothing but keep cashing huge cash every 30 days. A Guider can give help of 100,000 naira and in 30days cash or 4million, the same Guider will offer another help of 100,000 or 10,000 knowing fully well that he will still get another 3 to 4million in 30 days this makes the system unbalanced because all that cash can be donated to someone who needs help. Gaining too much and giving too little knowing fully well that this is neither an Investment of any sort nor a Business. This is meant to be a Platform for people to help one another for goodness sake.
Get Help Worldwide will last forever for the following reasons;
1. NO Guiders: No unnecessary Huge cash is cashed out by participants in the name of Guider. They believe that anyone who invited you to the community guides you through till you can navigate through the website all by yourself. This saves good cash for the participants in the community.
2. Re-Commitment: All Modern Mutual Aid Platforms have adopted this Re-commitment Pattern, this makes it Last forever. This is a Community of active people, any account with no active Pledge / Request to Provide Help is blocked on the 3rd day of being idle. Communities like this last for ever as long as everyone keeps participating. If you are no longer participating, your account will be blockedon the 3rd day of being idle. This is to stop people from being idle and busy cashing out their referrals bonuses. They believe its better you leave the community and loose uncashed referral bonuses than to remain idle in the community and busy cashing out money when you are not participating anymore.
All users have Profile Pictures so you will see picture of who you are donating to, this creates a pure social atmosphere and gives you rest of mind that you are actually helping a fellow Human being.
3. Credibility Score: All accounts has an Activity Check which starts at 100% and grows or reduces depending on your activity on the platform. Anytime the Credibility Score Drops to 0% your account will be blocked. When you are paired to pay someone, if you plead for the other party to extend time for you when you are not able to meet up with making payment within the 48hrs given, Once the other Participant Extends your time by 48hrs, you will loose 25% of your Credibility Score. If you place and offer to give 10,000 or any amount for instance and decide to cancel it to change the figure by placing another amount, you will loose 5% of your Credibility Score immediately you cancel an already placed offer.
4. No Cheating/Trying to be smart: There is no Room for anyone to throw in Huge cash, the Maximum Help to give is 2million naira. I was amazed when I saw this feature because everyone is supposed to participate with spare money Huge Millions are not Spare money, some cheats tend to throw in huge cash in Hundreds of millions at once and when they cash out they don’t participate anymore not knowing they have destabilized the Community(They See it as a Business Opportunity to make millions in 30days). Get Help Worldwide Blocked that by setting a limit for amount of help to provide. A lot of Mutual Aid platforms closed as a result of this but it has been controlled on Get Help Worldwide by setting the Provide Help limit to 2million for local currency. Think for few seconds what will happen in MMM Nigeria when someone gives help of 200,000,000 million and in 30days when he requests for Help, almost the whole community donates to him to make up the 260,000,000 million he requested and the man refuses to participate anymore, at this point people who need help will be more than those providing help and the community stands STILL, this is how MMM in most Countries stopped functioning. Allow that to sink in a bit, Have you seen why a Provide Help limit has been set to 2million by Get Help Worldwide? Have you seen what Get Help Worldwide mean when they say they are programmed to last forever?.
5. Community Growth: They believe that when everyone is growing, it should keep growing with no one trying to be smart or taking the community backwards so they implemented Minimum Offer Balance. Here is how it works, If you offer to Provide Help of 10,000 and on the 30thday you receive 13,000 which is your money + 30%, when you want to make your next offer you will not be able to place any offer less than 10,000 you will either repeat same amount as your last offer or increase it if you want. Let’s say you increased it to 1,000,000 and on the 30th day, you received 1,300,000 you have earned 300,000 from the Community which means you are growing as well. Your next Provide Help Offer will not allow you Provide anything less than your last offer which is 1million. So your last offers automatically becomes your Minimum Offer Balance. This solves the Problem of one who like 1million and gets 1.3million and then resorts to giving help of 10,000 because he knows he has a lot of referral Bonuses.
You might not understand why all these laws are placed till I show you some facts. For Example; If you have an empty space with no rules guiding it, one day you will visit the space and notice that some have turned the space into a urinary or some might even bring their mattress, stove and all sorts to mess up the place. Reason being because there are no strict laws in the Space. This is exactly what has happened to MMM in many Countries; MMM is a wonderful platform, It was created with Good Intentions but people go in there and mess it all up.
6. Security: The Website is SSL Protected (https), it is also hacker proof. Once your Bank Account Details/ Bitcoin details are entered once, they stay there permanently cannot be changed by anyone including you. To change you need to contact support. So if anyone stills your password to wait in the maturity of your money he will grow old waiting because he cannot change the receiving account.
Dame Patience Jonathan, the wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan, may forfeit to the Federal Government, a N10bn hotel allegedly belonging to her if she fails to explain how she came about some funds allegedly traced to her accounts.
“This is one of the questions she may have to answer as the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission continues investigation into the $20m found in five accounts she has laid claim to,” a source told our correspondent on Monday.
The hotel, which is known as Aridolf Resort Wellness and Spa, Yenagoa, was inaugurated by Patience in April 2015, barely a month before the end of her husband’s tenure.
According to a UK business newspaper, The Financial Times, the hotel, which has imported state-of-the-art furniture, can compete with other luxury hotels in developed countries.
The report dated April 21, 2015, states in part, “The Aridolf Hotel in Yenagoa is an unlikely monument to kitsch on a reclaimed swamp in Nigeria’s oil-producing Niger Delta. In the lobby, Louis XIV furniture is accompanied by bowls of plastic fruit, faux Dutch landscapes and a grotesquely gaudy chandelier. The hotel is redolent of the riches on display in a region that for half a century has generated the bulk of Nigeria’s wealth.
“The Aridolf, which is owned by Patience Jonathan, wife of the former President, is symptomatic of how superficial progress has been in addressing the festering sense of marginalisation in the region, which remains desperately impoverished despite benefiting from a tide of petrodollars in recent years.”
The Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Prof. Itse Sagay, told our correspondent that the EFCC had the right to investigate anybody who was living above his or her means.
He said anybody, who failed to do so, could risk forfeiture of properties believed to have been obtained through stolen funds or could lose funds traced to him or her.
Sagay, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, wondered how Patience, who was a civil servant and never held any government position, could have billions in her bank accounts.
He said, “The EFCC and ICPC Acts have provisions under which they can ask the court to freeze the account of a person if a person’s capacity to earn is below the amount of money that the person appears to have.
“If you are living a lavish lifestyle and it appears you don’t have the means to have acquired the property and the wealth you have, the EFCC is free to probe you.”
Patience recently sued Skye Bank and the EFCC for freezing four company accounts which have a balance of $15m.
The former first lady also has another account with the title, ‘Patience Ibifaka Jonathan’ which has a balance of $5m. The account is, however, still active.
The PUNCH had reported that four of the accounts belonged to Pluto Property and Investment Company Limited, Seagate Property Development and Investment Company Limited, Trans Ocean Property and Investment Company Limited and Globus Integrated Service Limited.
The anti-graft commission believed that a former Special Adviser to the President on Domestic Affairs, Waripamowei Dudafa, forged the identities of his domestic servants to open the four accounts while the fifth account was opened in the name of Patience.
The domestic servants were, however, denied access to the accounts while a platinum card was issued to Patience.
The EFCC froze the accounts of the four companies which were initially believed to be owned by Dudafa until Patience stated last week that the four accounts belonged to her.
The EFCC is set to arraign Dudafa and some bank officials for alleged fraud.
However, Mr. Joseph Okobieme, the lawyer to Demola Bolodeoku, one of the bank officials, said his client did not take part in forging the signatures of the domestic servants/directors.
He said, “I don’t know why he was included in the charge. He has no business in this transaction. He was merely doing his job as a banker. The allegation they levelled against him was not that he benefitted from the proceeds of the alleged transaction.
“There is a mere allegation of forgery of certain documents which are not within his power to have forged because he is not a director of the company.
“These four companies were duly registered by the CAC (Corporate Affairs Commission) with the names and the directors on record. So, if they say the names of these directors were forged, it is not possible for my client to have forged them. Clearly, he was not the author of the documents.”
He believed that the four domestic servants should be charged by the EFCC as well.
Gov. Fayose supervises and records on paper the distribution of Sallah rams
NIGERIA - Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose on Sunday supervised the distribution of Sallah rams to some Muslim leaders in Ekiti State.
Speaking on the motive behind sharing Sallah rams, Fayose said: “I do this because it’s part of the Cardinals of the Islamic religion and as a leader, the little I am able to do, I should be seen to be doing so.
“I might not be able to buy ram for everybody, I can’t give ram to everyone but my people must still see the love in me trying my best to at least identify with everybody”. Photos after the cut;
SCRIPTURE: And Elijah the Tishbite, who was of the inhabitants of Gilead, said unto Ahab, As the LORD God of Israel liveth, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, but according to my word. – 1 Kings 17:1
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Prayerlessness increases the distance between God and man.
The lack of the consciousness of God is the surest way of losing out in life. Many people live daily without any thought of God. This is why many are far from God (James 4:8).
One of the ways of being conscious of Divine Presence around your life is engaging in persistent prayers.
Prayerfulness impacts the consciousness of Divinity. In 1 Kings 17:1, Elijah said, ‘…before God whom I stand, there shall be no rain or dew….’ He was a man of prayer, so he had a stand with God. Prayerfulness makes a person to live in the consciousness of the nearness of God. When you are conscious that God is near, it impacts caution to the way you live your life.
On the other hand, prayerlessness makes a man to be far from God. Prayerlessness is a confirmation of breakdown in communication. When the consciousness of God is lacking, there is recklessness in operation.
To maintain a consciousness of God through prayer, one needs to maintain a clear conscience that is devoid of offence before God and man (James 5:16).
Beloved, determine to stay away from every form of impurity so as to attract God to yourself.
Remember this: Prayerlessness increases the distance between God and man.
1. Make prayer a lifestyle.
2. Do everything you can to avoid sin.
FOR FURTHER UNDERSTANDING GET THIS MESSAGE: THE NECESSITY OF PRAYER - PT 1
PRAYER: O LORD, I ask for the grace to live right. Draw me to Your Presence, LORD, in Jesus’ Name.
QUOTE: When prayer becomes an attitude instead of an incidence, His presence becomes your atmosphere. Culled from 365 WISDOM CAPSULES by Dr Paul Enenche.
AMAZING FACT: A human body has 500,000 touch detectors.
TODAY IN HISTORY – 12/09/1788: The Constitutional Convention decided that the first federal election was to be held on Wednesday the following February. On that day, George Washington was elected as the first president of the United States. In addition, New York City was named the temporary national capital.
DAILY READING: Isaiah 12:1 to 14: 32, 2 Corinthians 13:1 to 13, Psalms 57:1 to 11, Proverbs 23:9 to 11.
Key Verse: "But he said, Then bring meal. And he cast it into the pot; and he said, Pour out for the people, that they may eat. And there was no harm in the pot" (2 Kings 4:41).
If you are facing an impossible situation without any means of escape, you need absolute trust in God for a way out. He can do exceeding abundantly above all that you ask or think of Him. In our text, when Elisha returned to Gilgal, there was a serious famine in the land. A group of the sons of prophets visited him and he had to entertain them, so he asked his servant to prepare a meal for them.
However, as ingredients were gathered in the field for the dish, a poisonous wild plant was mistakenly picked and used to prepare the dish. As the men began to eat, the food tasted awful and harmful. They cried out and Elisha rescued the situation by adding flour into the dish and it neutralized the poison.
Although the sons of the prophets may have feared dead and all hope seemed lost, God worked miracle through Elisha with something minute as a flour. He can do all things, with anything, in any situation only if we have faith in Him. Shortly after the incident, a man from Baalshalisha brought his first fruits, 20 loaves of bread made from barley, to Elisha. When his servant told him the loaves of bread would not be sufficient for the one hundred men with him, Elisha ordered him to serve them the bread in faith that it would remain. True to his word, the men ate and some portion remained. Do you doubt God? Do you despise His promises? The miracles in today's text clearly shows what God can do.
He can create something out of nothing, raise children from stones, make grace to abound, deliver from oppression, give strength to rise above trials and keep one from error. Simply put your confidence in Him and He will never fail you.
Thought for the day: There is no impossibility with God.
Key Verse: And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor. - Isaiah 59:16
When someone hurts us, our natural human reaction is to strike back...to ask God to clobber them. But that’s not God’s way.
I realized that one time when some relatives of mine got robbed. I was praying about the situation and puzzling over it. “Lord,” I began to ask, “why did You let that happen? Why didn’t You just knock that thief over the head when he tried to do that?”
Suddenly, God enabled me to back up from that situation and look at it with spiritual, instead of just purely natural, eyes.
When I did that, I knew the answer to my question almost as quickly as I had asked it. It was because of His mercy. God has great, great mercy. Not just for me and my family but for others too.
Think about that next time someone does you wrong. Instead of asking God to knock that person in the head, like I did, consider the fact that—as ornery as he may be—he may well have a grandmother somewhere who’s praying for him to be saved. Stop and remember that God loved him enough to die for him, that He’s longing to pardon—not punish him.
Then you can begin to pray for him instead of against him, uniting yourself with his grandmother (or anyone else who happens to be praying for him). You can go to the Lord for mercy for him and you can go up against the devil on his behalf. That’s real intercession and it throws the forces of darkness into total confusion. They have absolutely no defense against it.
The Lord is looking for people who are bold enough, committed enough to do that. Dare to be one of them. When you’re tempted to clobber someone, dare to change his life instead.
Bible Text: Everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus . . . –Philippians 3:8 (TLB)
“Where is Jesus Christ?” Innumerable students are studying Him and deciding whether or not Christ and the Gospel really matter-whether He is relevant in this modern age. C.S. Lewis, a professor of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Oxford and later at Cambridge, had to do the same thing. He spent his life exploring the great literature of centuries. In his remarkable autobiography, Surprised by Joy, he tells of his pilgrimage from atheism to Christianity. His turning point came with the realization that the writing with the deepest meaning and greatest content was based on a deep, personal faith in God, by men like Augustine, Blaise Pascal, George Macdonald.
Prayer for the day: There is nothing more I desire, Lord Jesus, than to walk closely with You—my Savior and Lord.
Memorise: But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: – John 1:12
Read: 1 John 3:1-3 (KJV)
1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.
Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 41-43, Psalms 57
The reference to Christians as children of God by the New Testament describes their status and privileges as the adopted children of God. By this, believers are no longer slaves but children of God by grace. In this respect, Galatians 4:7 says:
“Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.”
And Romans 8:15 says:
“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.”
These Bible passages confirm that Christians are children of God by grace and not by merit. I pray that the grace of Abba Father will always be available to work in your favour in Jesus’ name.
Ephesians 2:8-9 says our salvation is entirely by grace, not works. This is why God chooses the most unlikely people for Heavenly assignments, Just like He chose a persecutor like Saul as a divine vessel (Acts 9:10-18). If it wasn’t for grace, many of us would never have been called to salvation, much more become servants of the Most-High God. In Jeremiah 1:4-5, God told this great prophet that he was chosen even before he developed as a foetus in his mother’s womb. Before His birth, he had been ordained. God has blessed many with beautiful talents and abilities, and when they engage such talents, you would be amazed at the results they will birth. As the Potter, He is free to do what He likes with His clay (Romans 9:20-21). He may decide to give someone a beautiful voice, while He gives hands that can play the guitar or piano to somebody else. What is most important is yielding totally to the Lord and allowing Him to have His way in your life. Has the Lord endowed you with some talents or unique abilities? Are you effectively and effectually employing them in serving Him? Always remember that you were chosen not because you are special, but by grace. You are a product of divine choice, so learn to glorify God in everything you do. 1 John 3:1-2 says:
“1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. 2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.”
Being called children of God is a privilege that changed our status from darkness to light; we are now led by the Spirit of God to do His will. We have also become heirs of God (Romans 8:17). We are fellow citizens with the saints and household of God.
Prayer Point: Father, please let me enjoy the grace of sonship forever in Jesus’ name.