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PROLOGUE: Nigeria @ 57: How to make it work again

Elder-statesman, Chief Richard Akinjide (SAN) was effusive after reading the 2016 Independence Day publication of Saturday Vanguard, “Your Saturday Vanguard made other newspapers look small, it made them look ordinary.” In that publication, the newspaper engaged some of the country’s leading personalities who traced the country’s progress and pitfalls since the Union Jack was lowered on October 1, 1960. Dr Ekwueme Among them was former Vice President Alex Ekwueme who hardly grants interviews but had to break his silence only to us. Mbazulike Amaechi, Edwin Clark, Tanko Yakassai, Paul Unongo and Akinjide were among the statesmen who laid bare their hearts to us. There were also interviews with Kalu Idika Kalu, Pat Utomi and a special story on the unending attempts to re...

Lalong’s Plateau breaks 45-yr curse

By Emeka Obasi Jubilations on the Plateau should be unlimited,greater things are on the way following what took 45 years to achieve: Winning the Premier League. And the people must give kudos to Governor Simon Lalong. There must be some luck about him. Jos teams had a curse hanging in their cleats. They were cursed by Enugu Rangers supporters and Fair Play because in 1972, Mighty Jets dubiously lifted the very first formally organised national league. Aided by  Commander Edwin Kentebbe and his Nigeria Football Association (NFA), Jets got what they did not merit. Gov. Lalong It is a long sad story, but I must tell it for everyone to hear. The CAF Champions League from inception over 50 years ago was meant for league winners from the various federations. Nigeria did not ...

Senator Abba Aji intervenes in release of protested Bama IDPs in prison custody

By Ndahi Marama, Maiduguri Former Minority Whip in the 5th Senate and a former Presidential Adviser on National Assembly Matters to late President Umaru Yar’adua, Senator Mohammed Abba Aji has assigned his lawyer, Barrister Abdullahi Usman of Beneshiekh Chambers to take up the matter concerning some Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) from Bama who peacefully protested their going back and vacated camps in Maiduguri due to poor feeding and health, but ended up arrested and remanded in Prison custody. *Senator Mohammed Abba Aji This is even as 500 IDPs from Abadam Local Government Area of Borno state taking refuge in Wanzam town of Diffa in Niger Republic who have spent over three years in asylum on Thursday also protested in Diffa province demanding from government and...

“De-P-Squared?” I hope not

By Francis Ewherido For some time now, P-Square (the twin brothers, Peter and Paul Okoye) have been in the news for the wrong reasons. They, along with their elder brother, Jude, have been churning out more of squabbling than great music that brought them to limelight. Initially, it was rumoured to be a publicity stunt, but I guess the handshake has gone beyond the elbow with some recent events, especially the video of their fight that went viral. P-Square What are they squabbling about? I do not really know, but I have read about issues related to Peter’s wife. However, I am not here to judge them, rather I want to concentrate on the lessons the rest of us can learn from their situation, while I pray they resolve their differences amicably. One, who anybody decides to...

ATIKU ABUBAKAR- an idea whose time has come ?

By Morenike Taire In the heady days   of the dawn of the 4th  republic when governor elect of Adamawa state, Atiku Abubakar, was forced to consign that office to the dustbin of strategy in order to take up the PDP’s vice presidential ticket that would catapult him to Aso Rock; things appeared to be rather straightforward. Musa Yaradua, great friend and ally of General Olusegun Obasanjo, was also the political godfather of Atiku. Political analysts had considered it only fair that Yaradua’s godson would govern in his stead, in the country for whom he died.  Atiku Abubakar Obasanjo’s clout was global and far reaching, and few men boasted the unique ability as he did at the time to stabilize a hurting nation, smarting still from the   wounds inflicted on it from the wrest...

Tracking early signs of dementia

When you lose your car keys and then go upstairs only to forget why, it’s easy to fear your memory is fading. But instead of being a cause for concern, it seems these ’senior moments’ should be welcomed. It is when you begin to stop noticing your memory lapses that you should actually start worrying, according to scientists. Love-gone-sour A study found people tend to become oblivious to memory problems two or three years before the onset of dementia. Researcher Robert Wilson, of Rush University Medical Centre in Chicago, said: ‘Our findings suggest unawareness of one’s memory problems is an inevitable feature of late-life dementia, driven by a build-up of dementia-related changes in the brain.’ The study tracked the mental sharpness of more than 2,000 adults for more ...

How do you cope when your spouse suffers from dementia?

By Bunmi Sofola “I began losing my husband nine years ago,” said 72-year-old Charlotte, a retired  industrial nurse. “We were both in our early 60s when he became strangely forgetful and disoriented. I can’t quite pinpoint when Idowu, my husband—that is to say the man I married—disappeared, but that man no longer exists. The diagnosis of Alzheimer’s didn’t happen until three years ago, but by then it didn’t really need a name. It was abundantly clear that something was seriously wrong. Lovers “His doctor’s abroad had told me what to expect but I never realised it was going to be this hard. Idowu forgot about the diagnosis as soon as they were made. I wasn’t surprised. Only what I didn’t appreciate back then was that I was experiencing bereavement. Life rolls on. You ma...

Senate will hasten the passage of Gender Bill, Saraki

…Pledges Support to ACP Countries on Cotonou Agreement By Henry Umoru, Abuja SENATE President Bukola Saraki yesterday assured the new Country Director of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to Nigeria, Samuel Bawlya that the Senate would hasten the passage of the gender bill presently before the National Assembly. Saraki who noted that much work has been done on the gender bill, said, “The Gender Bill as you mentioned is before the National Assembly and we have  made much progress on it. We should be able to come up with something tangible on it very soon.   “As I said,   I think the support that can be given at this point should be in terms of advocacy on the objective of the Bill so that it would make it more acceptable.” Saraki Senate President Saraki ha...

CBN sustains Forex supply

…Injects $308.5m By Emma Ujah, Abuja Bureau Chief The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has continued to sustain liquidity in the foreign exchange market, as it boosted the market yesterday with $308.5m. CBN Headquarters This move is expected to further ensure liquidity and stability in the FX market. The Bank opened the week with a boost of $195m ahead of MPC decisions on Tuesday A total sum of $195m was offered in three segments of the market. In the wholesale Secondary Market Intervention Sales (SMIS), of the inter-bank Foreign Exchange market, it auctioned $100m and also intervened in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and invisible segments, with the sum of $50 million and $45million respectively. This brings the total intervention for the week to a sum of $503.5...

NPDC Poised to Grow Equity Production to 500,000 bpd by 2020

…As Company Becomes 5th  Largest Oil Producer in Nigeria Nigerian Petroleum Development Company (NPDC), the flagship subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), is poised to grow its equity production from the current 180,000 barrels per day to 300,000 bpd by 2018 and by 2019 and 2020 its production is expected to hit 400,000 bpd and 500,000 bpd, respectively. NPDC Managing Director, Mr. Yusuf Matashi, who disclosed this in Benin, said the planned increase in the company’s equity production was due to the ongoing transformation in NNPC. NNPC Mr. Matashi said having attained the position as fifth largest Exploration and Production Oil Producer in the Nigeria, the NPDC was poised to efficiently manage its portfolios to achieve the new target. “The N...

Even Pope may not be able to pay salaries in Benue

…As Lawmaker appeals against looming strike By Peter Duru, Makurdi Following the plan by the organised labour to embark on an indefinite strike over backlog of unpaid salaries in Benue state, the Majority Leader of the State House of Assembly, Mr. Benjamin Adanyi has appealed to workers to jettison the action saying that “with the present economic realities even a Pope or Bishop may not be able to pay salaries in Benue.” Pope Francis salutes as he gives his traditional Christmas “Urbi et Orbi” blessing from the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica on December 25, 2014 at the Vatican. AFP PHOTO Adanyi who spoke yesterday in Makurdi was reacting to the failure of the aggrieved labour leaders to honour an invitation from the House, aimed at resolving the dispute, said the fail...

How Playboy don, Hugh Hefner suffered hearing loss

By Sola Ogundipe Up till about five years ago, Hugh Hefner, former editor of Playboy magazine, who passed away Thursday at the age of 91, was a playboy in his mid-eighties—thanks to Erectile Dysfunction drug Viagra. The Playboy mogul, believed to have bedded 2,000 women during his lifetime, took on several lovers after his marriage ended and famously had several live-in girlfriends. Late Playboy Hugh Hefner He once remarked: “Thank goodness for Viagra. But experience also helps. Woody Allen once said: ‘If you don’t think sex is dirty, you’re not doing it right’.” Hugh also told a newspaper that “Dealing with seven girlfriends was easier than dealing with one wife.” However, the performance enhancing drug caused the late Hefner to lose his hearing in one ear, according ...