Wednesday, January 27, 2010

January 27, 2002 - Commemorating the victims

It was a beautiful Sunday in January 2002.  We just returned from Church. I had bearing entered my room when there was a sudden vibration. I rushed out and I saw hubby standing in the sitting room with shock all over his face! "What was that?" I asked. He replied, "I don't know." Some minutes later, another I felt another vibration and this time I asked hubby "Is this an earthquake? Abeg o!"

These vibrations were so serious that louvres were rattling and other items in the house were moving! That was why I thought it was an earthquake. There were also thunderous sounds following the vibrations. Somewhere in between all these, I saw the breaking news on television that the explosions and vibrations were as a result of bomb exploding in the armoury in Ikeja Military Cantonment! What!!!!

I did not know the extent of the damage and havoc until I went to work the next day. My office was somewhere on the Island. The whole office was scattered as if it was burgled. Files were all over the floor; tables upturned...

Most of that day was spent talking about the incident...

The news had it that somany lives were lost as a result of stampeding. Some people were looking for their loved ones. It was such a dark period in the city of Lagos.

I stopped by at my Mum's place in Isolo on my way home after work. There were large cracks on the walls and most of her dishes were broken. I got more tales about the whole incident. I was informed that people ran out of the houses out of fear and panic. Not knowing what was happenning. She said, thankfully, she waited, tried to understand before taking any action. She added that a friend of hers who lives in Ajao Estate jumped from a balcony and broke her leg in the process. My Mum was still in shock. I encouraged her to calm down and rest. My brother's gist was different. He said he was outside with some friends when the whole thing started. He saw people running down the street in panic and like a typical Lagosian, he was about to run as well. Fortunately, a neighbour called him back and told him to stay within the compound. He said the neighbour told him not to panic.

The most shocking news was that as a result of the panic and stampede, several people, including children, women and men were drowned in the Oke-Afa Canal! Some bodies have been claimed but some were not claimed. The unclaimed bodies were buried in a mass grave by the canal. A cenotaph was later erected at the mass grave for the unclaimed bodies. Year after year, the Lagos State Government set out some few hours to lay wreaths at the cenotaph in Oke-Afa.

It is exactly 8 years after that black Sunday in Lagos. The activities around that site for the past one week has got me thinking. The roads were patched and padded. The cenotaph now wears a new look. Enough beautification has taken place there. I even hear the Governor of  Lagos State, Babatunde Fashola will be on ground to give a befitting commemoration for the people buried at there.
Let us say prayers for the families that lost their loved ones on that ill fated day - Sunday 27, January 2002.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Scammers, Haiti + Crisis in Jos

In line with the plea for donations to help the Haitians after the devastating earthquake that rocked Haiti on, many Nations (including Nigeria) and Individuals all over the world have been sending monetary donations and relief items such as food, water, clothes, medications and other medical equipments to recognised Charities such as the Red Cross.

It is rather very unfortunate that while good hearted people are trying to give life, hope and love to the survivors in Haiti, some bad and evil minded people are using this as an opportunity to defraud the people with good intentions, who are genuinely sending aid and relief materials to Haiti. These scammers are capitalizing on the relief efforts to help rebuild Haiti. How can people be so wicked as to enrich themselves this way!I feel that such an act is heinous!

Please before making any donation towards rebuilding Haiti, take the extra precautionary step to ensure that the Charity is a genuine and recognised one. Please find below some tips on how to avoid such scams as posted on
Rely on expert opinion when it comes to evaluating a charity.
Donors are advised to consult experts when deciding which charity to donate to. Charity Navigator compiled a list of organizations operating to help the Haiti earthquake, among them are CARE, Doctors Without Borders, World Vision, American Red Cross.

Be wary of claims that 100 percent of donations will assist relief victims.
While administration cost may be minimized, processing fee is almost inevitable. For example, donations from credit card will incur service charges.

Find out if the charity has an on-the-ground presence in the impacted areas.
It will be difficult for charities to help the affected areas if they don't already have staff on the ground.

Find out if the charity is providing direct aid or raising money for other groups.
If the charity does not directly helping the Haiti earthquake, donors can consider skipping the "middleman" to reduce the processing cost when money is passed along to other relief organizations.

Gifts of clothing, food or other in-kind donations.
It is best to give direct monetary support instead of food or clothing because it is much more difficult to distribute such donation. It requires organizations to have the staff and infrastructure to handle donations of good properly. Be ware of inexperienced organizations asking for goods donations.
May the Almighty God, Jehovah Jireh continue to provide for all who have (and are still) sent some form of donations towards rebuilding Haiti. For those who can not send physical items, please continue to pray for the survivors of the earthquake.

While the international community are discussing on ways to help rebuild Haiti, people in Jos, Plateau State in Nigeria are also counting their loses as the recent crisis has left several dead and several others homeless. I pray for my people in Jos. I call them my people because I feel I am part of them. During my stay in Jos, in the 80s, I experienced the hospitality nature of the people of Jos. I have been asking myself  "where did all these hatred come from?" Anyway, my prayer is that God Almighty will heal the broken hearts and fill them with LOVE!  Amen!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Help Save Haiti!

The recent massive earthquake that rocked Haiti, has left over thousands of people dead and several others homeless. Somany children have become orphans as a result of this unfortunate incidence. I watched CNN news and I saw Dr. Sanjay, a CNN medical correspondent giving medical treatment to a baby whose mother died in the quake! This baby is only 15 DAYS old! My sympathy goes to the people of Haiti right now.

International Organisations such as the UN and Red Cross have formulated ways to send relief to Haiti. Donations can also be sent by text, that is for people living in America and Canada. However, for other Countries, donations can be sent online.

Please visit these sites and do something positive for Haiti:

Do a google search to find out how you can be of help.

In addition to monetary donations, the survivors and indeed the entire Haiti Nation need prayers from people all over the world. Let us join hands and reach out to the Haitians!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Much Ado About Yar'Adua!

Citizen A: Did you hear that Yar'Adua spoke to a foreign media yesterday?

Dee: Yes. I listened to the conversation as played on BBC yesterday morning. His voice was dull and shaky.

Citizen A: How are you sure that call was made by Yar'Adua himself? You know say these oyinbo people can do and undo!

Dee: Hmmm!

Citizen A: Yes O! Remember that there was news that said Yar'Adua is brain damaged!

Dee: Yes. I guess he chose to prove them wrong! Someone with a damaged brain can not talk. Or can they talk?

Citizen A: I no know o! But sha, I am not happy that he chose to talk to a foreign media house. Haba! Why did he not talk to NTA, VON or even Channels? It shows that he (Yar'Adua) has no regard for us. He does not believe in us.

Dee: Why are you talking as if you are not a Nigerian. No media house in Nigeria was granted audience in the first place! Even if they were granted audience, they will tread with "extra" caution so as to avoid been sealed!

Citizen A: The whole thin tire me jo!

Dee: Me too I tire! But wait o. Should we be bothered on his choice of media house? I do not care how he breaks the silence, the only thing I care about is for Peace to reign in Nigeria. You know his absence has generated a lot of concerns. It is not news that the guy has serious health challenges. You know what? As an individual, I pity him. Infact I feel sorry for his wife right now. She must stay strong.

Citizen A: I hear that your colleagues have sued him.

Dee: Wrong! My "colleagues" instituted an action in Court to compel the President to do the needful. The Lawyers are seeking an injunction to compel the President to hand over to Jonathan. As it is now, Jonathan CAN NOT ACT!

Citizen A: Okay! So that is it. So what next?

Now let me do a proper post on this issue.

For the past 50 days plus, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has been AWOL. Yes. AWOL because due process was not followed before the President left the Country for "medical treatment".

For the first FORTY days while the President was away, the main question the average Nigerian asked was where is Yar'Adua? Some politicians were clamouring for the "ailing" President to resign. Others said the Vice President can not act in his place because there was no such instruction for the VP to act upon. True.

There were SEVERAL rumours surrounding the disapperance or should I say AWOLness of the President. Some quarters said he was on a life support machine. Others said he was brain damaged. Yet some others said he was dead! Infact the American Chronicle posted on the web that Yar'Adua died as far back as the 10th of December 2009! Infact, the rumour that he was dead generated a lot of "side" talks. Thankfully, the former Governor of Abia State, Oji Uzor Kalu told the Guardian newspaper that he spoke with the President on the 31st of December 2009. Meaning, he could not have been dead!

The suspense continued and then, bam! The long silence was finally "broken" by the BBC who reported that the President spoke with a BBC reporter (I guess to prove that his brain was still intact). After the telephone conversation, the song took a new turn! Why did he choose to talk to a foreign media? Why not the Nigerian Television Authority or any other local media group?

1. Whether it was right (constitutionally or morally) for the President to leave the Country for such a long period without following due process?

2. Whether it ws right (constitutionally or morally) for the President to talk to BBC and not the Nigerian media?

As a citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the most paramount thing on my mind is the peace and stability of the Nation. At least, we now know he is ALIVE! Whether or not he is on life support! I suggest we deal with him when he returns. He will face the music then.

As a Legal Practitioner, I have a very different opinion on this matter. The RULE OF LAW MUST PREVAIL! Let us follow the provisions of the Constitution as spelt out in Sections 144 and 145.

Long live Nigeria!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Umar Musa Yar'Adua is Alive!

Yes! At least that is the conclusion from the telephone interview President MusaYar'Adua had with a BBC correspondent. He is not "dead".

I heard his voice (though shaky) on the BBC news some hours ago. The President actually spoke with a BBC correspondent. Amongst other things, he thanked Nigerians for their prayers and assured Nigerians that he will be back as soon as his doctors discharge him.

Read more here.

Long live Nigeria!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Still on Yar'Adua's Health

Source BBC.CO.UK

I just read here that Yar'adua has some problem with his brain! I just hope it is not true.

Below is an excerpt from the publication on

“President Umaru Yar'Adua is seriously brain damaged, is not able to recognise anyone, including his wife Turai, and can no longer perform the functions of the office of the president, according to multiple sources who have spoken to NEXT on Sunday.

But this fact, which has left a nation of 150 million people rudderless and its government in disarray, is being concealed from the public through an elaborate scam orchestrated directly and energetically by the First Lady.

Turai Yar'Adua has barred all but two security and one civilian aide, and a legislator from having access to the president in a two-tier power loop of which she is the organising principal. The inner core consists of the president's chief security officer, Mohammed Tilde, and his military ADC, Mustapha Onoedieva; an infantry colonel from Edo State. Through Mrs. Yar'Adua, this small knot works with Shehu Inuwa Imam, a member of the House of Representatives from Katsina State who is the president's childhood friend; Tanimu Yakubu, the president's chief economic adviser; and Sayyadi Abba Ruma, the agriculture minister. She is also aided by Inuwa Baba, the senior private adviser to the president on protocol matters.

Mr. Baba is an old Yar'Adua family friend, so loyal that he once got into prison uniform to stay behind bars with Shehu Musa Yar'Adua, the elder brother of the current president. who died in Abacha's gulag in 1999.

The group has blocked all direct access to the rapidly ailing president, said sources in Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, the Gulf region and in Europe and the US.

Despite several trips to Saudi Arabia, no other Nigerian government official, including the president's principal private secretary, ministers, and governors, has succeeded in seeing the president, who vanished from our country 50 days ago and has not been heard from since.

Grand deception

The people working frantically to keep up this ruse, including Mr. Yakubu, have also gone to great lengths to deceive the public, by claiming they have spoken to a president who is unable to speak and has lost all powers of cognition.

In fact, we can confirm that senior government officials lied when they claimed that Vice President Goodluck Jonathan, who is next in line to succeed Mr. Yar'Adua, has spoken directly to the president.

Although Mr. Jonathan subsequently went along with the charade, he has confided in several people in recent days that he did not speak to the president at all, according to informed sources. "He is trying not to create any friction because he knows he is about to become the next president," one source told our reporters.”

Please click here to read more.


I believe in prayers . . . I believe Nigerians are praying for the good health of President Yar'Adua . . .

God help us!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Yar'adua's Health

Well, it is a known fact that the Nigerian President was flown out of the Country on the 23rd day of November 2009 for medical treatment. His location was not disclosed. The ailment was also not known to the general public as at then. A few days after, his spokesman released a press statement that the President was in Saudi Arabia receiving treatment for a heart condition. According to the BBC report, Mr. President has acute pericarditis, otherwise known as inflammation of the lining around the heart.

I am not a medical practitioner, but when I googled for more information and I found that Pericarditis, is inflammation of the pericardium. The pericardium is the sac which surrounds and protects the heart. The heart, as we all know is a vital organ in the human body which pumps blood to other parts of the body.

I read here that complications arising from pericarditis can be life threatening and require immediate treatment.

The vacum created by the absence of the President has been generating a lot of criticism and concern. Right now there are three law suits in Court on this vacum created by the prolonged absence of the President. Read more here.

The news now is that the President is responding well to treatment. That is good considering the various crisis on ground. The Nigerian President needs prayers. At least for the peace and stability of the Nation. Let us all pray for the President to recover and resume is duties.

Long Live Nigeria!

Friday, January 1, 2010



May the blessings of the Almighty God, the Creator of the Universe and ALL that is in it, continually abide with you all! AMEN.
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