Saturday, June 28, 2008

EFCC Partners Musicians..."It is a Good Thing" - 9ice

UNAAC Teaser Poster

Mr. Gbenga Aroyehun with Denrele Edun

L-R: Deinde, Soulsnatcha, Sokleva, Anita Oden, a friend, Mr. Gbenga Aroyehun, Jah Bless and 9ice
Faze is not alone this time: with Cobhams Asuquo

As part of its effort to mainstream the anti-graft crusade into popular culture, a delegation of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) led by Mr. Gbenga Aroyehun had a meeting with some popular Nigerian musical artistes on Saturday 21st June 2008, at the Blue Ribbon Hotel, Ikeja, Lagos.

Speaking on behalf of the convener - the EFCC, Mr. Gbenga Aroyehun spoke passionately about the social cost of corruption, noting that corruption affects two people - the beneficiary and the victim. “It affects us all and its social cost could be seen everywhere in Nigeria – bad roads, maternal mortality, etc. So aside from arresting and jailing culprits, the EFCC thinks that engaging all sectors of the Nigerian society through preventative means is one other concrete way through which corruption can be reduced, and a critical sector of the society which is highly appreciated by Nigerians including the Commission, and which the Commission can indeed use to strengthen this fight, is the artistes”, he said. Thus, the Commission intends to work with the selected musicians on a proposed platform - United Artistes against Corruption (UNAAC).

He highlighted the intended areas of work on this platform which he said include:

1. Coming together of the artistes to produce an all-time anti-corruption song or album.

2. EFCC taking the artistes around six (6) campuses in the six (6) geo-political zones of the federation. This is because since Nigerian youths identify greatly with the artistes and imitate their lifestyle, it will be easier to convey the message of anti-corruption to youths through their songs and performances.

In a goodwill message, multi-talented award winning Cobhams Asuquo, arguably Nigeria’s most sought after music producer today, said that he is privileged to be associated with the EFCC as he is someone who has often asked himself what Nigeria will feel like if we had everything in place. He noted that having everything in place will require putting off that one thing that affects Nigeria in every sector and has eaten so deep into the Nigerian society such that it is now a norm - corruption.

Abolore '9ice' Akande who became renowned with his chartbusting Gongo Aso commended the idea of involving artistes in the fight against corruption. ‘It is a good thing’ he remarked and also assured that all Nigerian artistes are ready to go with the idea. On his part, Soulsnatcha of Rooftop MCs agreed that it is a clever idea. Asserting Mr. Cobhams' opinion, he quoted Hitler saying, “Give me the music of the nation’s youth and I will take the nation.” He said people may listen to the rhythm of the music for the fun of it but at some point, they stop to look at the lyrics.

Messrs Ejeh Odeh and Kes Ewere of Tuface Idibia’s Hypertek Entertainment represented the multiple award winning superstar who was unavoidably absent. They equally expressed the willingness of Tuface to collaborate with the Commission’s efforts to fight corruption. Other appearances at the meeting include, Soundcity whizzkid Denrele Edun, Ayeni the Great and popular Showbiz journalist Azuh Amatus of The Sun newspapers.

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Ten (10) Values of a True Nigerian

Behold the ten (10) values deliberated upon and then endorsed by young Nigerians at the GOTNI Leadership Summit in Abuja. History was made...just as in 1776, young Americans including the likes of George Washington and Thomas Jefferson sat down to create the American Dream!

Friday, June 6, 2008

XENOpho WHAT??? UBELIEVABLE! The Human Carnage in South Africa

A jubilant Xenophobe: How would Thomas Hobbes describe this?

It is an unfortunate incident that South Africans are repaying the world for keeping faith and assisting them against the apartheid regimes until the latter crumbled.

The pictures here are horrifying! These demented folks should realise that life is sacred and should never again do these against fellow human or animal beings.

I honestly think that the South African government should do something about unemployment rate which is put at 40%. History teaches us that when things are hard for nationals they look for scapegoats. The holocaust is a reference. In Ghana, in the 70s, Nigerians were thrown out and in the 80s, Nigeria retaliated but thank God they did not go the extreme way like the one under discussion.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Nigeria: Fight for EFCC's Soul

ONCE Mallam Nuhu Ribadu left the headship of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, for studies at the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPPSS), Kuru, Jos, there was no doubt that the controversy that trailed the man's tenure would be at the centre of whatever action anyone carried out on the institution.

Things are working out in frenzy. Lawyers of various esteems are claiming and counter claiming about the powers of the President to hire and fire the EFCC chairman at his pleasure. In this quest, the generous provisions of Section 2 (3) the EFCC Act which are clear that the President does not need any reason to fire the Chairman does not seem to matter.

It is rather worrying that these are preludes to appointing a new leadership for the EFCC, the main government agency charged with fighting corruption.

Although Ribadu got more than 100 convictions in court of law against corrupt persons and those who soiled Nigeria's name through Advance Fee Fraud popularly called 419, in addition to getting Nigeria's name struck of FATF notorious list, he sometimes got overzealous.

While it was desirable to have someone like him to give the EFCC bite at the beginning, his egregiousness lent some tainted bent to the fight against corruption.

What is going on at the EFCC may, at the end be some kind of reform. It is also a judgment on the past administration. But in correcting some excesses of the EFCC, care must be taken to ensure that the intention remains revving the fight against corruption.

As the Senate goes through the screening of Mrs. Farida Waziri, the new nominee for the position, it should also be asking itself whether the EFCC Act should not be amended to create more independence for the agency. The EFCC almost marred last year's elections by taking over screening of candidates, without any constitutional backing. This happened because the Executive wanted it.

The recent efforts at localising the importance of the EFCC chairman exhibits the extent of the desperation to whittle the powers of the agency. The Senate should screen the nominee factually, fairly, but firmly

Positions that diminish the importance of the post and the great job that is expected of the Senate in screening the candidate for the job should be disregarded.

The fight for the soul of the EFCC has resumed. The main casualty at the end of the day could be the EFCC which will never be the same again either because those who created it abused it thoroughly and robbed it of credibility or those who are taking over could wreck it because of known prejudices and self interest।

Culled from: The Vanguard newspapers