Category Archives: World News

Isoko flood

Where is Isoko Nation in Okowa’s Government?

Isoko flood

Isoko flood

With the present political leadership in Delta State, Isoko nation is far behind in terms of political appointments and others. Even in the Delta State House of Assembly, Isoko leadership is not well represented. In the last political dispensation, Isoko nation had 40 percent leadership in the state. It is sad that on the recent appointment given to one of the Isoko highly placed politicians was mere adviser to the governor. As a former Delta State PDP chairman could be given just adviser and nothing more. Isoko nation must grow beyond appointments and contest for positions that would bring developments to Isoko nation.

Again, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa should know that his political victory across the 25 local governments did not come from Delta North only but also Isoko nation added values to his political emergence as the governor of Delta State. Okowa‘s selection of appointments must be cautioned not to turn the state into war. With the high debt profile left by his predecessor indicated that Delta State needs technocrats to move the state forward which cuts across all the ethnic groups in the state.

Isoko Development Union that ought to be the mouth-piece of Isoko nation is keeping mute waiting for mere appointments than drawing the attention of Dr Okowa to the region. If Isoko nation must move forward, our elected representatives either by providence or not must wake up from oblivion and agitate for change in Isoko.The narrow escape of victory by the PDP in Isoko over APC must teach our politicians lessons that, it is not as business as usual. Isoko nation cannot be relegated to the background like that than seeing our so-called representatives representing us well. The national IDU leadership is a disgrace to our region where the likes of Paul Omu and Felix Ogbaudu cannot perform their executive functions to see Isoko nation as one united front.

However, Dr.Ifeanyi Okowa must know that 75 percent of Isoko youths are competent to handle his government than given appointments to retire Isoko politicians with no political benefits to the region. Despite Barr Kingsley Utuaro, the deputy governor of Delta State is partly from Isoko but not fully representing the interest of the region. Isoko nation must not be left behind in the sense that, last political dispensation, Isoko people were given portfolios to some large extent. Even as the governor is yet to appoint commissioners, with the situation on ground reads that Isoko nation would be treated as second fiddle citizens if not cautioned now. We can any longer mortgage our future for mere political appointments that has no basis in Delta State leadership. Politics of disunity must be jettisoned in the region. Now that Lagos IDU branch has elected new vibrant leaders to move Isoko forward, leadership marginalization would be a thing of the past .Senator Okowa never rode to power without some Isoko hands that supported his victory. If Isoko nation must be recognised, all Isoko youths must checkmate the excesses of our representatives starting from the House of Representatives to State House Assembly. Constituency funds met for Isoko nation must be accountable to the people.

If infrastructural development must come to the region, then all our representatives must show concern and not to be used as scapegoats in Delta politics. It is time for President Mohammadu Buhari to identify with Isoko nation that has over 10 oil wells generating revenue into the federation account. Our muteness should not be taken for granted by the present government than establishing a political relationship in the region. With 19 clans and Isoko is the third ethnic group in Delta State, leadership priority must be respected if peace must reign. It is unfortunate that Isoko Advancement Network (IAN) that was founded by the immediate past Secretary to the Delta State, Comrade Macaulay Ovuozourie could not see the light of day of projecting Isoko interest.

Lastly, Isoko nation is due for sitting up a refinery that would create employment opportunities for our youths through the federal government. We cannot take back seat in leadership of Nigeria again. Senator Okowa‘s government can only succeed if Isoko nation share equal political positions with other ethnic groups in the state.

Godday Odidi
Social Media Analyst
08058124798
Lagos

The people of Osun celeberate Aregbesola's victory

Thank God! Osun Commences Salary Payment, Cuts Pay for Political Appointees by Half

The people of Osun celeberate Aregbesola's victory

The people of Osun celeberate Aregbesola’s victory

The Government of the State of Osun has announced the commencement of the process of paying the salaries of civil servants in the state.

In a statement issued by the Governor’s Office, the government said it is paying the balance of November and and full December salary arrears owed.

We must assure our people that serious efforts are on to ensure the remaining months are also cleared.

Also, the government has announced a 50% cut in salaries and allowances of all political office holders in the state.

The statement further read that the government, while saddened and troubled by the turn of events in the financial status of the state and the country at large, is taking responsibility for the unfortunate problem and is prepared to meet the challenge head-on.

“Since the inception of this government, we have treated the resources under our control with the utmost respect and disbursed them diligently for the greater benefits of our people. Our mandate had always been to use our God-given wealth to bridge the gap between the downtrodden and the government.

“It is very unfortunate that we find ourselves unable to pay our workers their due wages for several months when, in the past, we stood for paying on or before the 25th of each month. We thank the ever gracious and understanding workers of our state for their patience as we go through this most trying time.

“However, we are glad to announce that we have commenced the process of paying for the balance of November and full December salary arrears for all our workers across the state and the process should be concluded by Friday, July 3rd, 2015. We are able to do this because our partners and creditors have faith in us and we have proven to be responsible and trustworthy.
“We must emphasize at this point: We are not out of the woods yet! Our finances took a dive because we were hit by the shock of the sudden and massive drop in global oil prices while Nigeria also had a Federal Government that failed in its primary responsibility to secure our people and our commonwealth. Thanks to the Nigerian people, that evil leadership has been removed and replaced with a progressive one. That does not translate to instant cure for our near-empty pockets. We must take drastic steps to correct many of our past errors and embrace the true realities of today.

“Therefore, we hereby announce a 50 per cent cut to the salaries and allowances of all political office holders and appointees. This is one of the many steps we are taking to ensure the sustenance of our collective. We are also calling on our people to join us and do their part in carrying the weight of change.

“Austerity stares us right in the face. We must embrace it. We are going to intensify our efforts at prudence and frugality. We will practice self-denial in every way possible.

“As we proceed on this journey of self-discovery, we hope to put more and more of our people to work by attracting productive investments to our state. The better part of our resources will go to funding capital projects that will create employment and unlock wealth. The State of Osun will rise from this situation and prosper like never before.”

Signed:
SemiuOkanlawon
Director, Bureau of Communication and Strategy,
Office of the Governor.
Tuesday June 30, 2015

CBN and NNPC

PREMIUM TIMES EXCLUSIVE: How NNPC “Pocketed” Half of Income Generated in 3 Years!

CBN and NNPC

CBN and NNPC

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, generated about N8.1trillion between 2012 and May 2015, but paid only N4.3trillion to the federation account, Edo State governor, Adams Oshiomhole, said Monday, citing new details from the federal economic council meeting.

The balance of the oil money — about N3.8trillion — was withheld and spent by the NNPC unilaterally without approval or National Assembly appropriation, the governor told journalists.

Also, the governor confirmed at the meeting that from November 2014, about $2.1billion was withdrawn from the excess crude account without the approval of the National Economic Council, NEC.

Mr. Oshiomhole, who, alongside the governors of Kaduna state governor, Nasir El-Rufai, and Zamfara governor, Abdulazeez Yari, briefed journalists, said following the discovery, the NEC has set up a four-member committee to comb the books of the NNPC to confirm its remittances and how the excess crude account was utilised.

President Muhammadu Buhari dissolved the board of the NNPC on Friday, to pave way for full investigation of the corporation.

Mr. Oshiomhole said Monday’s meeting was the first time the NNPC and the office of the Accountant General of the Federation, briefed the National Economic Council, as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The governor said Mr. Buhari “compelled” the NNPC to provide information in “black and white” on issues relating to the total sales of Nigeria’s crude oil from 2012 to May 2015.

“This has never happened before and for us this is profound. We are talking about transparency, we are talking about change. And what we saw from those numbers I believe that Nigerians are entitled to know, is that whereas the NNPC claimed to have earned N8.1 trillion, what NNPC paid into the federation account from 2012 to May 2015 was N4.3trillion.

“What it means is that NNPC withheld and spent N3.8 trillion.

“The major revelation here is that for the entire federation — that is the federal government, the states and all the 774 local governments — the amount the NNPC paid into the federation account for distribution to this three tiers of government came to N4.3 trillion and NNPC alone took and spent N3.8 trillion. Which means the cost of running NNPC is much more than the cost of running the Federal Government. That tells you how much is missing, what is mismanaged, what is stolen, they are huge figures.”

He said it had become clear that the NNPC had not respected the Constitution on how government money should be spent.

“If NNPC needs to spend money, it is obliged to prepare its budget like every other business
enterprise. That budget will be scrutinized by the executive and forwarded to the National Assembly and the National Assembly will accordingly appropriate it.

“If the federal government cannot spend without appropriation, why should any agency spend without appropriation?”
Mr. Oshiomhole said President Buhari promised that henceforth, all monies must go to the federation account.

“What you need you budget for, Nigeria cannot continue with you earn the money and spend it. Where is transparency? Where is the role of the National Assembly? So if you were doing that you won’t have a situation where the NNPC alone will spend N3.8 trillion and remit to the federal, states and local governments N4.3 trillion which means NNPC is taking about 47 per cent and that explains all the leakages you are talking about.”

He said parastatals must return to spending on a budget.

“We are not reinventing the wheel, that is the way it used to be and that is the way the constitution says it should”

EXCESS CRUDE ACCOUNT

The Edo governor also disclosed $2.1 billion was withdrawn from $4.1 billion reported to be in the excess crude account as at November 2014 without the approval of the National Economic Council (NEC). The account now has $2.0bilion.

“We looked at the numbers for the Excess crude account, the last time the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of the Economy reported to the Council and it is in the minute, she reported by November 2014, that we had $4.1 billion.

“But today the Accountant General Office reported we have $2.0 billion. Which means the Honourable Minister spent $2.1billion without authority of the NEC. And that money was not distributed to states, it was not paid to the three tiers of government. This is why the NEC has set up a panel to look at what accrued, what it was spent for, when and by whom. So that Nigerians will have the full picture of all the transactions as regards the much talked about Excess crude,” Mr. Oshiomhole said.

The four-member committee, which consists of the governors of Edo, Gombe, Kaduna and Akwa Ibom states.
Explaining further, Kaduna State Governor, Mr. El-Rufai, noted that the Federal Government had in the last year been unilaterally withdrawing from the excess crude account without consulting the other owners.

According to him “The Excess Crude account was started by President Olusegun Obasanjo around
2004-2005.

“It was an administrative arrangement to save for a rainy day. And it was meant to have very clear accountability such that every state and local government, in a particular state knows their balance in the Excess Crude Account, though you can’t spend it but you know how much of it is yours.

“That was the arrangement. And in those days, before we spend any money from the Excess Crude Account, the federal and states governments will meet and agree. That is how we agreed to build the seven power stations which is NIPP today, it was from Excess Crude Account. And we also met and agreed to build the Lagos – Kano Standard Gauge Rail Line from the Excess Crude Account.

“But what we have seen, in the last few months or years is that the Excess Crude Account was operated unilaterally by the federal government, drawings were made unilaterally without consulting those that actually own the money because the Excess Crude Account is 52 percent owned by the federal government and 48 by the states and LGA.

“So the decision of the NEC is to set up this committee of four to look at the operations of the Excess Crude Account and make recommendations to council on its future.

“The other thing the committee will do is to look at the operations of the federation accounts particularly the shortfall and again come back to council with very clear recommendations as to what to do.

“We have not been given a time frame but as you can imagine states government are under pressure, many of our state governments are unable to pay salaries on time without recourse to borrowing, so this is very important to us. This is an all governors committee, we wear the shoes we know where it pinches. So we are going to do this as quickly as possible,” he said.

The Council’s next meeting of the council is on July 23rd, and Mr. El- Rufai said he hopes the committee will complete its work and be in position to report to council on that day.
Zamfara governor, Abdulazeez Yari, said the council also agreed that the Federal Government in conjunction with the Central Bank, will see how to support financially ailing states.

SOURCE: REVEALED: “In three years, NNPC generated N8.1 trn, gave Nigeria N4.3 trn, pocketed the balance” – PREMIUM TIMES

saraki

Saraki Denies: “Fuel Subsidy Barons Did Not Sponsor Me Against Buhari”

SARAKI

In what seems like a season of denials, the Senate President, Bukola Saraki has refuted in a press statement the popular insinuations that his controversial election in the red chamber was bankrolled by fuel subsidy barons who plan to checkmate President Buhari from probing them.

His reaction, was circulated to the media by his spokesman, Bankole Omishore, Saraki said his battle against subsidy barons exposed the rot and fraud in the oil industry, please read on:

“Again, the attention of the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki has been drawn to a malicious, false and totally reprehensible news report, wherein it insinuated that the election of Dr. Bukola Saraki as the Senate President of the 8th Senate was facilitated by Nigerians associated with dubious claims in the infamous oil subsidy.

Read Also: PDP Chieftain tears Saraki apart! Says, they’re masters of “Legislative Looting”

“The news report went further to give a negative and dirty impression that the emergence of the President of the 8th Senate is aimed to sabotage the anti-corruption posture of President Muhammadu Buhari led Federal Government as well as sabotage the ‘Change agenda’ of the All Progressive Congress (APC),” the statement read.

“One of such desperate attempts to justify this blackmail and others was the story published in newspapers of Monday June 29 2015 as contained in a statement issued by the former Interim National Chairman of APC, Chief Bisi Akande.

“We dare say that the entire story was the figment of the imagination of the author.

“We make bold to state that in the 7th Assembly, Senator Bukola Saraki was Chairman of the Senate Adhoc Committee which exposed the fraud and mismanagement in the oil sector.

“Until Saraki’s motion on the floor of the senate, no one was in the picture of the rot in the sector or took any action. Therefore, surely, Senator Saraki will be the last person the oil baron will want to see as Senate President.”

“No doubt, we make bold to state that Saraki is the last person to be so sponsored by the oil barons or cabals.

“In that position, Saraki did not only lead his colleagues in exposing the rot in the scheme but made very strong recommendations on how the system could be reformed and made corrupt- free.

“It is on records that through his motion on the floor of the Senate, the House of Representatives followed in what is to be known as Oil subsidy probe and to which Ministers of Finance and Petroleum summoned and at last over, N500 billion was saved. Certainly, Senator Saraki is the last person to be so sponsored by the oil barons or cabals,” the statement added.

“…during the Senate hearing on the missing $20 Billion, for those who attended the public hearing, Senator Saraki led the onslaught of difficult questions to both the Minister of Finance, Minister of Petroleum and other federal agencies despite being in the ruling party then. To this effect, Senator Saraki refused to sign the final copy of the committee’s report but rather put forward a minority report with a press statement that follow suit.

“Saraki went further to oppose the inclusion of kerosene subsidy in the 2015 budget as well as his opposition to Petroleum Swop deal by NNPC. Let it be known therefore that the Senate Presidency of Dr. Bukola Saraki would not in any way be a stumbling block against President Buhari’s posture against anti-corruption.”

He pledged that the 8th Senate under him as the President would give all necessary legislative support to the administration to fight and reduce corruption “as his previous actions and bold step taken against the so called oil barons indicates that Saraki is committed to anti-corruption.”

“For avoidance of doubt, we want to make it abundantly clear that it is totally false, untrue and calculated mischief to suggest that Senator Saraki’s emergence as Senate President was facilitated by oil barons. This is a case of calling the dog a bad name so as to hang it. Another blatant lies that cannot fly. In any case, Senator Saraki was elected unopposed as the Senate President, therefore the lies that he was sponsored by the oil barons cannot hold.

“Senator Bukola Saraki is determined and focused to achieve the Senate targeted legislative agenda and he is committed to support President Buhari to deliver on his promises to the people of Nigeria.”

DELPHI DECLARATION

THE DELPHI DECLARATION – By Gbenga Komolafe

DELPHI DECLARATION

DELPHI DECLARATION

In the late ’80s and early ’90s, the western neo-liberal institutions imposed series of killer economic programs on most African countries, as well as South America and a large swathe of Asia that came to be known as Structural Adjustment Programs (SAPs). The late Prof. Bade Onimode, a foremost political economist called the SAPs ‘a declaration of war’ while late Prof. Aluko called it the ‘kiss of death’. Well, the same medicine is now being applied to the ailing economies of Southern Europe, with the most devastating outcome in Greece. But progressive Europe is fighting back:

THE DELPHI DECLARATION

On Greece and Europe

European governments, European institutions and the IMF, acting in close alliance with, if not under direct control of, big international banks and other financial institutions, are now exercising a maximum of pressure, including open threats, blackmailing and a slander and terror communication campaign against the recently elected Greek government and against the Greek people.

They are asking the elected government of Greece to continue the “bail-out” program and the supposed “reforms” imposed on this country in May 2010, in theory to “help” and “save” it.

As a result of this program, Greece has experienced by far the biggest economic, social and political catastrophe in the history of Western Europe since 1945. It has lost 27% of its GDP, more than the material losses of France or Germany during the First World War. The living standards have fallen sharply. The social welfare system is all but destroyed. Greeks have seen social rights won during one century of struggles taken back. Whole social strata are completely destroyed, more and more Greeks are falling from their balconies to end a life of misery and desperation, every talented person who can leaves from the country. Democracy, under the rule of a “Troika” acting as collective economic assassin, a kind of Kafka’s “Court”, has been transformed into a sheer formality in the very country where it was born! Greeks are experiencing now the same feeling of insecurity about all basic conditions of life, that the French experienced in 1940, Germans in 1945, Soviets in 1991. At the same time, the two problems which this program was supposed to address, Greek sovereign debt and the competitiveness of the Greek economy have sharply deteriorated.

Now, European institutions and governments are refusing even the most reasonable, elementary, minor concession to the Athens government, they refuse even the slightest face-saving formula there might be. They want a total surrender of SYRIZA, they want its humiliation, its destruction. By denying to the Greek people any peaceful and democratic way out of its social and national tragedy, they are pushing Greece into chaos, if not civil war. Indeed, even now, an undeclared social civil war of “low intensity” is being waged inside this country, especially against the unprotected, the ill, the young and the very old, the weaker and the unlucky. Is this the Europe we want our children to live in?

We want to express our total, unconditional solidarity with the struggle of the Greek people for their dignity, their national and social salvation, for their liberation from the unacceptable neocolonial rule the “Troika” is trying to impose on this European country. We denounce the illegal and unacceptable agreements successive Greek governments have been obliged, under threat and blackmail, to sign, in violation of all European treaties, of the Charter of UN and of the Greek constitution. We call on European governments and institutions to stop their irresponsible and/or criminal policy towards Greece immediately and adopt a generous emergency program of support to redress the Greek economic situation and face the humanitarian disaster already unfolding in this country.

We also appeal to all European peoples to realize that what is at stake in Greece it is not only Greek salaries and pensions, Greek schools and hospitals or even the fate even of this historic nation where the very notion of “Europe” was born. What is at stake in Greece are also Spanish, Italian, even the German salaries, pensions, welfare, the very fate of the European welfare state, of European democracy, of Europe as such. Stop believing your media, who tell you the facts, only to distort their meaning, check independently what your politicians and your media are saying. They try to create, and they have created an illusion of stability. You may live in Lisbon or in Paris, in Frankfurt or in Stockholm, you may think that you are living in relative security. Do not keep such illusions. You should look to Greece, to see there the future your elites are preparing for you, for all of us and for our children. It is much easier and intelligent to stop them now, than it will be later. Not only Greeks, but all of us and our children will pay an enormous price, if we permit to our governments to complete the social slaughter of a whole European nation.

We appeal in particular to the German people. We do not belong to those who are always reminding the Germans of the past in order to keep them in an “inferior”, second-class position, or in order to use the “guilt factor” for their dubious ends. We appreciate the organizational and technological skills of the German people, their proven democratic and especially ecological and peace sensitivities. We want and we need the German people to be the main champions in the building of another Europe, of a prosperous, independent, democratic Europe, of a multipolar world.

Germans know better than anybody else in Europe, where blind obedience to irresponsible leaders can lead and has indeed led in the past. It is not up to us to teach them any such lesson. They know better than anybody else how easy is to begin a campaign with triumphalist rhetoric, only to end up with ruins everywhere around you. We do not invite them to follow our opinion. We demand simply from them to think thoroughly the opinion of such distinguished leaders of them like Helmut Schmitt for instance, we demand them to hear the voice of the greatest among modern German poet, of Günter Grass, the terrible prophecy he has emitted about Greece and Europe some years before his death.

We call upon you, the German people, to stop such a Faustian alliance between German political elites and international finance. We call upon the German people not to permit to their government to continue doing to the Greeks exactly what the Allies did to Germans after their victory in the First World War. Do not let your elites and leaders to transform the entire continent, ultimately including Germany, into a dominion of Finance.

More than ever we are in urgent need of a radical restructuring of European debt, of serious measures to control the activities of the financial sector, of a “Marshal Plan” for the European periphery, of a courageous rethinking and re-launching of a European project which, in its present form, has proven unsustainable. We need to find now the courage to do this, if we want to leave a better Europe to our children, not a Europe in ruins, in continuous financial and even open military conflicts among its nations.

Delphi, 21 June 2015

The above declaration was adopted by nearly all participants in the Delphi conference on the crisis, on alternatives to euroliberalism and EU/Russia relations, held at Delphi, Greece on 20-21st of June. It is also supported by some people who were not able to be present. The list of people who signed it follows. In it there are not only citizens of EU countries, but also of Switzerland, USA, Russia and India. Many distinguished American scholars seem to be more sensitive as regard the European crisis, than the … political leaders of EU themselves! As for Russians, it is only normal and natural to bear a great interest for what is going on in EU, as EU citizens bear also an interest for what is going on in Russia. All participants in the Delphi conference share the strong conviction that Russia is an integral part of Europe, that there is a strong interconnection between what happens in EU and in Russia. They are categorically opposed to anti-Russia hysteria, which in fact is nothing less than the preparation of a new, even more dangerous cold, if not hot war.

Altvater Elmar, Germany

Member of scientific community of AΤTAC. Retired Professor of Political Science, Free University of Berlin.

Amin Samir, Egypt/France

Economist, President of the Forum Mondial des Alternatives

Ayala Iván H., Spain

Researcher, Instituto Complutense de Estudios Internacionales

Arsenis Gerasimos, Greece

Εconomist, ex-minister of Economy, of Finance, of National Defense and of Education, ex-UN official and ex-director of UNCTAD

Artini Massimo, Italy

Member of Parliament

Bellantis Dimitris, Greece

Lawyer, PHD in Constitutional Law, Member of the Central Committee of SYRIZA

Black William, USA

Professor of Economics, University of Missouri (Kansas City)

Cassen Bernard, France

Professor Emeritus, Université Paris 8, secretary general of “Mémoire des luttes”

Chiesa, Giulietto, Italy

Politician, journalist and author, ex MEP, president of the “Alternativa” association

Freeman, Alan, Canada/UK

Geopolitical Economy Research Group, Business School, Director

Gabriel, Leo, Austria

Director of the Institute for Intercultural Research and Cooperation (IIIC), Vienna, Member of the International Council of the World Social Forum, Coordinator of the NGO Committee for Sustainable Development of the United Nations

George, Suzan, France

Political and social scientist, writer, President of the Transnational Institute

Georgopoulos, Dimosthenis, Greece

Economist, sociologist, political scientist, Secretariat on Industrial Policy, SYRIZA

German, Lindsey, UK

Convenor, Stop the War Coalition

Graeber, David, UΚ

Professor of Anthropology, London School of Economics. Author of “Debt: The First 5,000 Years”

Hudson, Michael, USA

Professor of economics, University of Missouri (Kansas City), UMKC. President, Institute for the Study of Long-term Economic Trends (ISLET)

Irazabalbeitia, Inaki, Spain

Former MEP / responsible for International Relationships for the party ARALAR, Basque Country

Jennar, Raoul Marc, France

Dr. in political sciences, specialist on European law and on WTO regulations, writer of twenty books, among them “Europe, la trahison des élites”

Kagarlitsky, Boris, Russia

Director of the Institute for globalization studies and social movements (IGSO)

Kalloniatis, Costas, Greece

Phd on macroeconomics, adviser to the Ministry of Labour, researcher in the Labor Institute of the General Confederation of Workers of Greece

Kasimatis, Giorgos, Greece

Prof. Emeritus of Constitutional Law, University of Athens. Founder and Honorary President of the International Association of Constitutional Law, ex-advisor to PM Andreas Papandreou.

Koenig, Peter, Switzerland

Εconomist / geopolitical analyst

Koltashov, Vasiliy, Russia

Head of the economic research unit of the Institute for Globalisation and Social Movements

Konstantakopoulos, Dimitris, Greece

Journalist, Writer, Coordinator of the Delphi Initiative

Koutsou, Nikos, Cyprus

Member of Parliament from Famagusta

Kreisel, Wilfried, Germany

Former Executive Director, World Health Organization

Mavros, Giannis, Greece

Member of the National Council for the Claiming of Germany’s Debts to Greece

Mityaev, Dmitry A. , Russia

Deputy Chairman of the Council for Study of Productive Forces of the Ministry of Economic Development and the Russian Academy of Sciences on Development Issues

Ochkina, Anna, Russia

Head of Department of social theory at Penza State University

Pantelides, Panagiotis, Greece

Economist, senior researcher, European Institute of Cyprus

Petras, James, USA

Bartle Professor Emeritus , Binghamton University

Ex-Director of the Center for Mediterranean Studies (Athens), ex-adviser to the Landless Rural Workers Movement of Brasil and the Unemployed Workers Movement in Argentina

Pinasco, Luca, Italy

National coordinator of Proudhon Circles-Editor for foreign policy of the journal “L’intellettuale dissidente”.

Radika, Desai, USA

Professor, Director of the Geopolitical Economy Research Group, University of Manitoba

Rees, John, UK

Co-founder, Stop the War Coalition

Roberts, Paul Craig, USA

Former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury for Economic Policy, Associate Editor, Wall Street Journal, Senior Research Fellow, Stanford University, William E. Simon Chair in Political Economy, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

Sideratos, Aggelos, Greece

Publisher

Sommers, Jeffrey, USA

Senior Fellow, Institute of World Affairs, Professor, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

St Clair, Jeffrey, USA

Editor, CounterPunch, author, Born Under a Bad Sky

Stierle, Steffen, Germany

Εconomist, ATTAC Germany

Syomin, Konstantin, Russia

Author, TV host at All-Russia State Television (VGTRK.com)

Tombazos, Stavros, Greece

Professor of Political Economy, University of Cyprus, member of the international “Committee of Truth on Greek Sovereign Debt” (debt auditing committee) created by the Greek parliament

Vanaik, Achin, India

Retired Professor of International Relations and Global Politics, University of Delhi

Xydakis, Nikos, Greece

Minister of Culture

Zachariev, Zachari, Bulgaria

President of the Slaviani Foundation

Zdanoka, Tatjana, Latvia

Member of European Parliament

Contact email: the.delphi.initiative@gmail.com

Cocoa-farmers in osun

GOOD NEWS! Cocoa product industry will be alive in 6months in Osun, China investors assure

Cocoa-farmers in osun

Cocoa-farmers in osun

The moribund Cocoa Processing Company in Ede, Osun state has on Thursday received a lifeline with the intervention of two Chinese firms who have promised to resuscitate the comatose Cocoa industry.

This disclosure was made when the Chinese firms paid a courtesy call on the governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola at the government house in Osogbo.

The companies resuscitation of the Cocoa products company promises creation of many jobs in the state.

‎The two China-based companies -Skyron Corporation and Golden Monkey Group of Company promised that production will commence in the next 6 months.

Mr. David Shi who led the Skyron group stressed that ‎the company has been in the business of Cocoa processing in the last 10 years and that their firm is similar to that of Ede.

He held that the company is sure of turning around the moribund Cocoa processing company in no distant time.

According to him, “Cocoa processing industry is not a new terrain to Skyron having been engaging in similar sector and company in the last ten years.

“Skyron group has a turn over of 6.4billion Dollars in the year 2014 with visible investment in Agriculture and construction sector established across the world including Lagos and other states in Nigeria”.

Also the head of delegation of Golden Monkey Corporation of China, Mr. Liu Jin Hiu assured that aside resuscitation of Cocoa industry, confectionery company will also be established.

Mr. Liu also added that the group is ready to embark on massive production of cassava as raw materials for the confectionery.

He said, “Golden monkey corporation remains the number one producer of candies and chocolate in China, reviving the cocoa processing company in Ede will not be a problem.

“The partnership with the government of Osun in reviving the cocoa project will end up being a win-win partnership project. We have several investment companies in West Africa, especially Cote D’voire with 55 additional branches throughout the world.”

In his remarks, Governor Aregbesola disclosed that the State of Osun is ready to provide an enabling environment for the investors, urging them to consult him whenever they have challenges in pushing ahead the investment.

The governor who also spoke on cassava production and processing held that the state is the largest producer of cassava in the country.

He assured that land and personnel already committed to cassava cultivation and investment are guaranteed, saying government will look forward to a speedy revival of the cocoa processing company in Osun.

Aregbesola also advised the foreign investors to be ‎up to date in the use of technology and equipment by replacing the obsolete machinery in the moribund company.

In his words, “We hope that with result-oriented activities and hard work, your company should hit the ground running as we are committed to ensuring that your investment will yield profit as operation commences.

“We desire for others what we desire for ourselves. We therefore challenge you to allow activities to start at the Cocoa processing company in Ede latest November this year”. The governor emphasised.

SARAKI

Your Antics Are No Longer Funny! Open letter to Senate President by Sola Salako

Bukola Saraki

Bukola Saraki

Dear Dr Bukola Saraki,

I have restrained myself from commenting on the confusion that the NASS has suddenly become under your watch for many reasons, top of which was because I felt some conflict was normal in a political party that was a marriage of necessity amongst warlords with differing political orientation and philosophy. I however assumed that since we fought so hard together to effect Change for the sake of country, you all will be guided by the patriotic zeal to put Nigeria first…I assumed WRONG!

Frankly, I had no angst that you emerged Senate President because, as the Senate Rule says, it is an election of one by his peers. You actually had a right to aspire and most Nigerians were willing to cut you some slack on the issue…however, you were too impatient and hasty by the ambush strategy you employed…tantamount to a hostile takeover of the Upper Chambers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria!

If you had been less arrogant and desperate, you could have still won that election with all the APC Senators in the Chambers…but you needed to prove a point ( one wonders to whom) and in that power drunk stupor, you mortgaged the Change millions of Nigerians labored for; some lost lives and limbs for what you treated with disdain by ceding your Deputy position to the PDP in exchange for their support! That was the height of insensitivity sir!

As if that was not enough disrespect of our collective mandate, today,you openly defied your party again by disregarding the party’s choice of principal officers in spite of a formal letter to that effect! In other words, Senator Saraki, you became a law unto yourself and a sole political platform which incidentally is not known or recognized in our constitution.

In view of these your recent actions, one cannot but ask “who exactly do you think you are sir?” Are you greater than the collective will of a people? Why must you throw the nation into turmoil simply because you want your way? Did Nigerians vote for you to dominate the political space or dictate our priorities for us? Was your name on ANY ballot paper in the last elections? Save for your senatorial constituency, did you traverse the 36 states and Abuja canvassing for our votes?

Just in case you have conveniently forgotten, Nigerians voted in their majority for the APC, a political party that sold its CHANGE vision to us. We rejected the PDP with its TRANSFORMATION agenda that was leading us nowhere fast. For you to reintegrate the PDP into our CHANGE government just because of your singular ambition is to exalt yourself above and beyond all of our collective wills…that is unacceptable sir!

It has been rumored that all this disrespect is about posturing for 2019. I sure hope not! How do you expect us to entrust our collective destinies to a man who cannot be accountable to Authourity? If you are too haughty to submit to your party, the platform upon which you were elected into the Senate, who will you be accountable to if you ever become President? The adage says “morning shows the day”.

Mr Senate President (by hostile takeover) it is no longer amusing neither is it entertaining anymore. It is now getting really annoying and downright irritating. All the carrying ons need to stop forthwith as you are fast losing the goodwill bump you had when Nigerians thought you were a victim of an imposition cabal. It is now clear to all that you are most probably the aggressor and not the victim. Sole dictatorship is no longer in vogue as a political ideology. Even the bible says “two heads are better than one”. No matter how erroneous your party position might appear to you, as commonly said in boarding schools back in the 1980s, you “Obey first, and then complain!”

Please sir, as much as I really don’t want to burst your bubble, this is really NOT about you! It is about millions whose daily livelihood is threatened by an economy on the brink of collapse; It’s about millions of children whose education is inadequate and irregular; it’s about millions of unemployed youths whose future is bleak unless the change that they braved intimidation and oppression for starts to happen fast! Those are the headlines we want to wake up to; those issues are what we expected to dominate our airwaves not your personal tussle for power in your own self delusory “Game of Thrones” soap opera.

Enough already please! We have a nation to run!

This is definitely NOT the CHANGE we voted for!

Vice President-elect, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo

Osinbajo Did Not Lock Down Calabar – Laolu Akande

VP Osinbajo In His Aso Rock Office1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was in Calabar and Lagos on Thursday June 25 to pay tribute to two eminent Nigerians whose lives reflect the very virtues of integrity, trustworthiness and social justice, which can lift our dear nation. The one is Late Justice P.O.E Bassey and Dr. Christopher Kolade.

He arrived Calabar at about 10:30am attending the Justice P.O.E Bassey Memorial Lecture, at the University of Calabar, and left the town about 3:30pm, heading for Lagos where he spoke at the Convention for Integrity 3rd Annual Lecture.

 

Prof Osinbajo was well received in Calabar witnessed by the warmth shown him and his delegation by the people and government of Cross River State.

Claims that the town was in a lock down because of his visit is just another mischievous and baseless report from some of the same social media quarters that misled the nation in the past about his purported exclusion from security meetings. The Vice President did not even spend ten hours in Calabar and could not have locked down the town, as his convoy moved freely among the people in regular traffic as he normally does.

I personally observed several people go about their normal activities and businesses without any hinderance.

He has since returned to Abuja after his trip to both cities.

Signed

Laolu Akande

 

Asiwaju Bola Tinubu - the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Leader

Never Compare! Tinubu Towers Above Saraki – PDP Chieftain Hon Adekoya Dare Alaba

Ambode ,Tinubu and Fashola

Ambode ,Tinubu and Fashola

Lately it is common news in columns and pages of social media to read venoms,vituperations and verbal attacks on the person of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and these barbaric acts started immediately after his Party APC won the elections and became a ruling party the attacks to me
are irrational, inhuman, baseless and unreasonable.

But before I’m tagged a Tinubu apologist let me quickly state here, and it is a fact in public fora that l defected officially, openly, and publicly from APC to PDP on January ff21st and till now l have got no reason to regret that action nor do l have plans of returning to APC either now or in the nearest future or am l writing this to curry the favour of Tinubu? the answers to the above questions is NO, but I’m writing this on good conviction with open and objective mind maybe because l cut my teeth as politician with the progressives from the SDP days to AD to ACD to AC to ACN to APC.

To worsen matter is the latest comparison of Saraki with Tinubu this is disgusting and nauseating, apart from the fact that Tinubu first became a Senator 23 years ago, long even before Saraki thought of coming into politics, Tinubu would have even been a Senate President at his first attempt if not for his respect for his party, and even in 2015. Using an clean and acceptable channel, his loyalist still became the country number two man.

In my entire lifetime l have met Tinubu closely just on three occasions and those were in my days as member of ACN Ogun State Working Committee and none of the meetings went beyond handshakes but on those times l have seen in Tinubu the great leadership traits that reside in the best of men, Firm, Focus, Kind, Charismatic and decisive, hence even in my wildest dream l never believe that vilification and persecution can come as result of being an arrowhead to a
successful outing hence the campaign of calumny and the pull him down project which is coming at quite alarming rate against Tinubu beat my imaginations.

The criticism against Tinubu can be classified into three groups, namely:

(1) Those who feel he is too greedy and corrupt and that he want to have his hands and eyes in everything

(2) Those who feel it is his family that is getting everything, they will tell you Tinubu was a Senator/Governor, his wife is a Senator, his daughter is an lyaloja and his in-law was a House
of Rep member.

(3) They are those who feel he is overbearing, overambitious and a region leader.

Before l tackle these groups appropriately and one by one, my personal investigation showed that these smear campaign to crucify Asiwaju at all cost are been sponsored,masterminded and spread by his hitherto beneficiaries people he installed as governors deputy governors and cabinet
members but who envy his new status as the kingmaker with APC victory they became his overnight
traducers, detractors, albatross and nemesis and they are actively collaborating with outside enemies in harbouring bitterness against their erstwhile benefactor and in the process they are involving in backbiting, subversion, treachery, undermining, lies, deception, greed, avarice,
covetousness,morbid and inordinate ambition all in attempt to be relevant in Buhari government.

According to Harold Lasswell: Politics is who get what, When and How? but do we call this Pull-Him-Down Project too politics? What is the basis of this forceful hand twisting power struggle and involuntary retirement push? though there is nowhere where power is giving out and up a la carte but there is suppose to be some decorum in this elite game but how successful
they will be in this their pursuit remain to be seen in unfolding scenario, because Tinubu l know is a planner, a deft fighter, a consummate strategist, and a political warrior with lots
of experiences at his arsenal.

Or how can people who few years back are known as celebrated sycophants, military apologists and bootlickers will have their memories and eyes shut down by inordinate ambition to compete with
Tinubu politically or have they forgotten Tinubu antecedent, struggle and efforts to bring in this CHANGE in government. l remember Tinubu in those military days when he put his life on line with others to fight the military juntas just to achieve the democracy we are presently enjoying, what of his days in exile,shuttling and roaming many countries capitals using his money to sponsor NADECO and Radio Kudirat or should we talk of when he returned to Nigeria with just $2,000, 5 shirts, 3 jackets and 3 trousers while all his properties were already confiscated by military government?

Or should we talk about his days in SDP in 1992 then he could have become the Senate President if not for his party and Abiola interest in the Presidency which led to Iyorchia Ayu becoming the
Senate President Or is it in 2003 when PDP swept the whole South West but for his political sagacity he remained the last man standing, He was the Governor who was picking his Commissioners and Special Advisers from other Southwestern States so that he can use them to plant his party again in the States and like mustard seed planted in the midst of thorn struggling to survive, from Alliance for Democracy he moved and formed Action Congress and
merged with ACD and from there to ACN and from the only surviving state which was Lagos ACN got five other States making six, most of the people Tinubu started AD with had fallen by roadside.

In ACN he used all his energy, honour and charisma and merged with other like-mind progressives and formed APC and for the first time in the history of Nigeria he brought the dream and aspirations of the late sage Chief Awolowo to manifestation with opposition becoming the ruling party in the country.

Who can count the number of people Tinubu has made Governors, Deputy Governors, Commissioners, Special Advisers, Chairmen and Board members, Party Leaders and Excos,Contractors? or many he had given appointments in LGAs and LCDAs and lately he just made another of his loyal follower a Vice President of this great country, and most of these people are people he never knew from
Adams but through recommendations or do people expect him to give appointments to unloyal members? but is it wrong to give to your households the largesse you give to outsiders if they are qualified?

In Yorubaland it is even sacrilegious to send other people’s children an errand you can’t send your own children, what is wrong in Tinubu wife being a Senator or his in-law being in the House are they not Nigerians? Dont they pay taxes? Are they not qualified?

Even Jesus said “Food that is made for children should not be given to dogs” ln 1963 ln Action Group days Chief Awolowo was the Party Leader and was the Party gladiator, ln 1979 same Chief Awolowo was his Party Leader and Party Presidential candidate while his son Oluwole also contested and won a seat in the House of Assembly in Lagos did the world come to an end?

In 2003 in Kwara State, Chief Olusola Saraki made his son Bukonla Saraki the current Senate President the Governor, he made his daughter Gbemisola Saraki the Senator, His son Laolu Saraki the Presidential Adviser to Shehu Musa Yaradua and his son Ope Saraki a Special Adviser to the Governor on Students Affairs, and the earth remains, in U.S the names like Bush, Kennedy, and Clinton continue to dominate national politics, in India, politics is incomplete without
mentioning Gandhi, so what of the Ribadus, Yar’Aduas, Obasanjos in Nigeria? so why will Tinubu case be an exception?

Though naturally human being love men who are like candles who give light others to others while its bottom is in darkness, or like sewing machine who sew clothes for others while it is naked, To the second Group l want them to know that Politics is the biggest investment in the world and
it is highly expensive and capitally intensive and on its own politics is a big industry, and to be a successful player and politician you must be a professional, a bourgeoisie or a capitalist.

I’m always surprised when people talk of Tinubu’s wealth and investments, for one, most of his businesses are here in Nigeria giving employments and creating wealth and saving our country a lots of capital flight,can same be said of other politicians? What about his giving culture, no
journalist or pro democracy activist during Abacha junta won’t attest to his generosity infact if it were possible for humanity to return excesses like we have in budgetary situation Tinubu would have too much kindness return back to him.

Lately too I’m surprised at the many overnights disciples of Buhari,where were all these people during the APC Primary and campaigns? if not for Tinubu, Buhari could not have been the President today or was is not the same Buhari who had contested three times previously but then
nobody seems to remember all these his publicise integrity and anti corruption stance until APC repackaged and gave him publicity hype, It was the same Tinubu that used his overwhelming influence to move the National Convention from Abuja to Lagos.

I was an APC National delegate in the December 10th convention and l also doubled as State
Coordinator for Atiku Abubakar for the convention. I must confess that if not for Tinubu there was no way Buhari would have won the Primary election because most of the delegates from the Northern States were there for Atiku and Kwankwaso and we in Atiku Camp were already smiling in
anticipation for victory,lt was the same Tinubu that use his overwhelming influence (which is now called overbearing) to twist and wipe the delegates from the entire South zone in line for
Buhari it was a day l learnt a New Political trick, Hon Abike Dabiri (another Tinubu loyalist) who was the compere, set the tune for Buhari’s victory that night when she introduced Buhari and eulogised him by calling him “an Anti corruption Czar” thereby indicating where Tinubu interest
was, then Tinubu was not overbearing.

Also during the Presidential campaign and tour of States all the VIP we were seeing with Buhari are Tinubu, Fashola, Fayemi, Bamidele, Mamora, Oyegun, Osibajo and other Southerns,we are all these overnight power blocs and Fulanis blocs, so truly success has many relatives.

To worsen matter is the latest comparison of Saraki with Tinubu this is disgusting and nauseating, apart from the fact that Tinubu first became a Senator 23 years ago, long even
before Saraki thought of coming into politics, Tinubu would have even been a Senate President at his first attempt if not for his respect for his party, and even in 2015. Using an clean and
acceptable channel, his loyalist still became the country number two man.

Let me conclude this write up by quoting from MKO Abiola’s autobiography: “To Make Whole
Again” He said when he bought his first helicopter in 1976 and used it to carry his father from Lagos to Abeokuta he said his father asked him “How many people in this country has private helicopter? and he said he replied his father that presently it was only him,he said his father then told him “This is a novel idea you will need to exercise a lots of patience because people
will always hurl stones and pebbles at tree that has fruits”.

So to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu You are a big tree with lots of fruits so you need to exercise lots of patience as stones and pebbles will be thrown at you because opposition ruling in this country is a novel idea,so you are a pacesetter, My personal advise is for you Asiwaju to critical study this “is Southwest real cut for the the government at the centre (Federal) ? because being in the mainstream has never paid us,won’t it be better if the country is restructured and each zone is allowed to develop at its own pace? Think of this, and to all Tinubu critics and detractors the indisputable fact remains that “Tinubu did not come into politics as a poor man” and you must start to learn how to believe in Luck or what will you call the success of those you don’t like, though to me, Tinubu may not be a saint but he is a
GREAT Man, Time and posterity will vindicate you Asiwaju.

– By Hon. Adekoya Dare Alaba

Bukola Saraki

NASS: This Is Why The House Adjourned Its Sitting – Saraki Explains

Senate President, Bukola Saraki

Senate President, Bukola Saraki

 

 

 

 

 

 

As the struggle for power in the Nigerian upper chambers ensues, it will amaze you that the House of Representatives also had their own share of the fresh brawl happening in the house, as lawmakers threw caution to the twist and bartered clenched fist for leadership positions.

The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, subsequent to the resettlement of the house postponed plenary till July 21.

Saraki in a statement released on Friday announced that the two committees were given one week to present their reports assuring that the senate will reconvene at any time before the postponed date to reflect on any matter of urgent national importance or to attend to any national assignment requiring its attention.

It would be recalled that the National Assembly (NASS) had slashed its 2015 budget to N120billion from N150billion as a result of deteriorating federal government revenue, which the president of the senate explained was part of the National Assembly’s belt-tightening measures in analysis of the recent economic veracity in the country.