Presidential election tribunal: 7 key rulings delivered so far

Presidential election tribunal: 7 key rulings delivered so far
The Presidential Election Petition Tribunal is currently giving its verdict on the petition filed by Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Atiku Abubakar challenging...

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Women’s’ diseases men suffer Women’s’ diseases men suffer

By Sola OgundipeMen are generally less likely than women to look after their health and four times less likely to have visited their doctor in the past year.Women visit the doctor more often mainly for gynecological and other reproductive health checks. But almost 40 percent of men are more likely to have skipped recommended health screenings.Men are also one and a half times more likely to die from heart disease, cancer, and respiratory diseases, and die an average of five years earlier than women.September is prostate cancer awareness month. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men in Nigeria and Africa generally, but it is preventable and treatable if diagnosed early. The chances of developing the disease dramatically from the age of 55 and above.Many men wonder if they should get screened for prostate cancer. Each man must decide for himself how important such screening is, so it’s important for all men to talk about screening with their doctor.There are some genes that cause prostate cancer that also cause other types of cancers. However, there are also some other diseases typically recognised as“women’s diseases” that can also strike men. Every man that experiences the symptoms of these diseases should not let his gender stop him from getting treatment.OsteoporosisOsteoporosis reduces the density of bone, making it more vulnerable to fractures. One in three women are at risk, but so are one in five men. Women experience rapid bone loss following menopause, but by 65 to 70 years old, men lose bone mass at about the same rate.Kidney and thyroid problems, vitamin D deficiency, and prolonged exposure to steroids, cancer therapies, and anti-convulsants put you more at risk. You may not have symptoms, so it’s a good idea to go for a bone density test.Breast cancerThis may sound surprising, but men do have breasts too, only that their breast tissues are much smaller than women’s. Women develop breast cancer, so do men, but women get breast cancer more often than men because they have more breast tissue.Although only about one percent of all breast cancers affect men, research shows that incidence is on the rise. Men rarely heed the warning signs, so the cancer is allowed to develop. Therefore, men typically don’t survive as long as women once a diagnosis is finally made.Men aged above 50, and obese, are more at risk. Watch for any unusual lumps or skin abnormalities in the chest.Nipple discharge doesn’t happen very often in men. When it does, see your doctor because it may be a sign that you have breast cancer.Thyroid problemsThe thyroid is a small gland that rests in the middle of the lower neck, where it produces hormones to control metabolism. If it produces too much, hyperthyroidism results. Symptoms include fatigue, weight loss, memory loss,dry, coarse skin and hair.If the thyroid doesn’t produce enough hormones, hypothyroidism results. Symptoms include weight gain, irritability, muscle weakness, and sleep disturbances.Women are five to eight times more likely to have some form of thyroid disease than men, but men can still be affected.Eating disordersAs more men feel the pressure to be thin and look good, more are falling victim to eating disorders. Only 10 to 15 percent of people with anorexia or bulimia are male, but the effects can be equally devastating. Men also are less likely to seek treatment, leaving them more at risk for complications such as heart problems, bone loss, organ failure and death.Athletes, obese boys, homosexual and transgender men, and those who are anxious or have perfectionist personalities are more at risk.Bladder infectionsBladder infections are much more common in women, but men can get them, too — particularly men with an enlarged prostate, kidney stones, or an abnormal narrowing of the urethra. Treatment involves antibiotics and is typically very effective, but men need to be aware of the symptoms.They include frequent urination, cloudy urine or bloody urine, a strong urge to urinate, a burning or tingling sensation during urination and low-grade fever.DepressionWomen are twice more likely than men to be diagnosed with depression, but that may be because their symptoms are different. Women may feel sad and cry more often, whereas men are more likely to show anger, irritation, frustration, and discouragement.Men may turn to drugs or alcohol, or engage in risky behavior. They are also more likely to complete suicide if they try it. Because of these differences, many men go undiagnosed. Without treatment, depression is likely to worsen.LupusAbout 90 percent of those diagnosed with lupus, an autoimmune disorder are women, but the disorder can also strike men. Symptoms include joint swelling and pain, muscle weakness, extreme fatigue, unexplained fever, hair loss, leg swelling, eye puffiness, swollen glands, etc.Lupus is treated similarly in both genders. Your doctor may overlook it because it is rare in men. If you have symptoms, ask for testing.FibromyalgiaFibromyalgia is a disease characterised by imbalance of chemicals in the brain. It is unknown what causes fibromyalgia and why so few men suffer from it. Chronic pain is the chief symptom, but other complaints often come along with it, such as chronic fatigue, insomnia, headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, and restless legs syndrome. Men’s symptoms tend to be milder, but cases in men are more likely to go undiagnosed or even be denied by medical professionals, which can mean greater suffering mentally and socially.When to see the doctorA fever is one way your body naturally fights infection. However, if you have a high fever or a fever that lasts more than three days, you should go to the hospital because a more serious infection could be at play.It’s not always easy to know when to go to the doctor for a cold; if yours doesn’t pass or even worsens, seek professional help.A severe cough that lingers more than two weeks may indicate whooping cough, while sustained congestion can lead to a sinus infection if left untreated.If you have a fever, muscle aches or other flu-like symptoms, see the doctor. Extremely difficult swallowing, chest pain and shortness of breath are not normal cold symptoms and may indicate a more serious condition.An unexplained drop in weight could indicate overactive thyroid, diabetes, depression or liver disease, among other things.As a general rule of thumb, if you’ve lost more than 10 percent of your body weight in the last six months (and you’re not obese), make an appointment with your doctor.High altitude, strenuous exercise, obesity and extreme temperature are all normal causes of shortness of breath. If none of these are causing your breathlessness, you could have asthma or bronchitis especially if symptoms come on suddenly and strongly.If you experience abnormal, intense and sustained pain in the chest, abdomen or pelvis, it can be a heart attack – when the pain is in the chest; gallstones – when pain is in the abdomen (accompanied by nausea and vomiting); and appendicitis or kidney infection – when the pain in the pelvis.If your bowel movement or urination changes suddenly, something’s definitely wrong. Things like bloody or black stools, diarrhea or constipation, or excessive urination are red flags. When these crop up, it’s a good idea to consult with your doctor.If you suffer from migraines, you may sometimes experience bright flashes or spots in your vision. Outside of these cases, sudden bright flashes might be a sign of a retinal detachment, a serious condition that requires immediate medical attention to prevent permanent vision loss.Changes in mood and sudden confusion can occur with mental health issues as well as physical conditions, such as an infection or drug interaction. Watch out for trouble thinking or focusing, irregular sleeping patterns, and feelings of anxiety or depression.If you’ve fallen on your head or suffered a blow to the head, monitor for the symptoms of concussion. These can include difficulty concentrating, headache, irritability and change in sleep pattern; if any of these develop, see your doctor.

Lewandowski strikes again as Bayern see off Red Star

Munich - Robert Lewandowski scored as Bayern Munich eased to a 3-0 win over Red Star Belgrade in their opening Champions League group-stage match at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday.After Kingsley Coman gave Bayern a first-half lead, Lewandowski poked home ten minutes from time for his ninth goal in six matches before Thomas Mueller added a stunning late third.Bayern visit last season's runners-up Tottenham, who blew a two-goal lead on Wednesday in a 2-2 draw at Olympiakos, in their second Group B game in two weeks' time.The hosts were stuttering to a slender win before Lewandowski capitalised on two mistakes in the Red Star defence for a classic poacher's goal."We had the whole game under control, we just scored too few goals," Lewandowski told Sky."I'm very happy that I scored and that we played well as a team."The margin of victory pleased Bayern head coach Niko Kovac after his side peppered the Serbian team's defence and enjoyed a huge share of possession."I believe we can be very satisfied, the team concentrated very hard on the job at hand," said Kovac."We scored three goals, that's standard for us."However, Red Star came within a whisker of equalising just before Lewandowski struck when their captain Marko Marin fired narrowly wide with Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer beaten.The German champions are not having things their own way so far in the Bundesliga and Saturday's 1-1 draw at early leaders RB Leipzig left Bayern fourth in the table, two points adrift.However, they remain a force to be reckoned with and last lost a Champions League group game at home in December 2013.It took just over half an hour for them to take the lead, capitalising on 70 percent possession.With the away defence hanging back, understandably worrying about Lewandowski, Coman slipped his marker and headed home from fellow winger Ivan Perisic's pin-point cross from the left flank on 34 minutes.It could have been 2-0 going into the break as Philippe Coutinho, on loan from Barcelona, audaciously flicked the ball into the net with his heel, but was narrowly offside.Lewandowski squandered an open goal, firing over with an extravagant volley rather than a simple tap-in, with an hour gone just after Perisic had hit the crossbar.Marin caused nervous looks in the Bayern defence when he fired wide of the diving Neuer, and the post, before Lewandowski struck.Substitute Mueller showed his class, having replaced Coutinho, when he fired home a floated Thiago Alcantara free-kick for the best goal of the night in injury-time.

Guardiola: I have to buy players like Eto’o

Guardiola: I have to buy players like Eto'o Premier League Cursed his defensive injury crisisManchester City coach Pep Guardiola faces a challenge in the Premier League as Liverpool top the Premier League early on in the campaign, but he knows that his legacy will last for some time as Samuel Eto'o proves.The former Barcelona forward recently said that he wanted to become the first African coach to win the Champions League by playing how Guardiola has his teams play."I need to sign players like Eto'o so that they can do what Pep does," the coach joked in his pre-match press conference.Less of a laughing matter is his team's injury crisis with Aymeric Laporte and now John Stones both having been ruled out."We have many options, with young players who we trust a lot," he explained."We won't take it as a problem, rather a challenge, if it doesn't work then we'll try something else."Guardiola played Fernandinho in a central defensive role against Shakhtar Donetsk in midweek and could repeat that, or field Spaniard Eric Garcia.After defeat to Norwich City, Guardiola will be out for all three points against Watford this weekend.

Jurgen Klopp unfazed by Liverpool’s defensive lapses

Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool have not changed their defensive approach despite their record of only one clean sheet in their eight games so far this season.The European champions are five points clear at the top of the Premier League after five straight wins but the backline has been breached in four of those matches.And two late goals conceded in Naples in midweek meant their Champions League campaign started in disappointing fashion.Klopp’s men started last season’s league campaign with three clean sheets and conceded just 22 Premier League goals all season, missing out on their first top-flight title since 1990 by a single point.But Klopp said at his pre-Chelsea press conference on Friday that the change was down to circumstances rather than system.“No, there is no difference,” he said at Liverpool’s training ground. “We didn’t focus more on offensive things and forget the defensive things.“The goals happened completely strangely. There would have been a second clean sheet against Southampton if we don’t concede that goal, there could have been different clean sheets in other games.“Of course it’s not exactly what we wanted but we don’t collect clean sheets. We want to win football games and we are still early in the season.”Klopp, whose side travel to Frank Lampard’s Chelsea on Sunday, was asked about the importance of Virgil van Dijk and whether he had concerns about any potential injuries ruling the Dutchman out for a period of time.“That’s the reason why we have four centre-halves,” he said.“It’s not easy for the ‘in the moment number four’, not playing and sometimes not involved in the squad, but in the moment if something happens, like it was last year, not only one thing happens, a couple of things happen and then you end up with one centre-half and a defensive midfielder, which we did against Bayern.”“We all need luck to be really successful, injury-wise first and foremost,” he added.“I can imagine something like that is not easy but the other guys, I have said it a lot of times, from my point of view we have four world-class centre-halves. They can play together in each partnership and hopefully that will be enough for a season, to be honest.”VANGUARD

Buckingham Palace “emphatically” denies “false” allegations levelled at Prince Andrew

Buckingham Palace has emphasised that allegations levelled against the Duke of York are “false” after his accuser gave an interview to US television.Virginia Giuffre told NBC News in America that she was ‘trafficked’ by Prince Andrew, who she described as an ‘abuser’.Buckingham Palace has issued numerous statements over the years, strongly denying any wrongdoing on the part of the Prince.On Friday, the Palace said: “It is emphatically denied that the Duke of York had any form of sexual contact or relationship with Virginia Roberts. Any claim to the contrary is false and without foundation.”In the statement last month, Prince Andrew apologised for his former friendship Jeffrey Epstein, who he continued to see even after the disgraced financier was released from prison for prostituting minors over a decade ago.The Duke said: “At no stage during the limited time I spent with him [Epstein] did I see, witness or suspect any behaviour of the sort that subsequently led to his arrest and conviction.”Prince Andrew continued: “I have said previously that it was a mistake and an error to see him after his release in 2010 and I can only reiterate my regret that I was mistaken to think that what I thought I knew of him was evidently not the real person, given what we now know. I have tremendous sympathy for all those affected by his actions and behaviour.“His suicide has left many unanswered questions and I acknowledge and sympathise with everyone who has been affected and wants some form of closure.“This is a difficult time for everyone involved and I am at a loss to be able to understand or explain Mr Epstein’s lifestyle. I deplore the exploitation of any human being and would not condone, participate in, or encourage any such behaviour.”In 2011 the Duke apologised for continuing his friendship with Epstein who was jailed for 18 months in 2008.Epstein was facing federal sex trafficking charges in New York, however, news emerged of his death last month.The disgraced financier killed himself in his Manhattan cell just a few hours after the new court documents were opened.

Cardi B Responds to Tekashi 6ix9ine’s Testimony About the Bloods

Tekashi 6ix9ine was generous with names while testifying as a prosecution witness against member of his former gang, the Nine Trey Gangster Bloods. During his cross examination, one of the names he confirmed as a fellow Blood was Cardi B, reports NBC News.This was momentarily expected to be a scandal, but the "Bodak Yellow" star has already been extraordinarily open about her past, from sharing tales of robbing clients while she was a stripper on Insta Live, to chatting about her past gang affiliation in interviews.Related | Watch Cardi B Take Bernie Sanders To a Nail SalonQuickly, everyone realized that they already knew Cardi had former ties to the gang, not least because she talked about it at length in a 2018 GQ profile. Here's the passage:"When I was 16 years old, I used to hang out with a lot of"—agonizing, cliff-diver pause—"Bloods. I used to pop off with my homies. And they'd say, 'Yo, you really get it poppin'. You should come home. You should turn Blood.' And I did. Yes, I did. And something that—it's not like, oh, you leave. You don't leave. Stripping," which Cardi began at 19, "changed my life. When I was a stripper, I didn't give a fuck about gangs, because I was so focused on making money."She continued:"When I was younger, I used to go very hard. As I got older…you can do your own thing, but you always got to check in with your set. You don't leave your people behind. They will understand I don't be doing it because I'm an adult now. After you're in your 20s, why would you join a gang? That's something that you do when you're young. I don't even got to keep up communications. I keep communication because I'm used to it. There was a point when I was like 20, 21, 22…I was repping it, but I know that things change, Big Homies change, and I knew I had to check in again. It's like almost like renewing your license. I kept repping something, [but] people was like, 'Okay, but you're not under the right person.' So it's like, 'Okay, I gotta do it real right.' You gotta get in the loop. If somebody was to tell me right now, 'I want to join a gang,' I would tell them that it's a waste of your money, it's a waste of your time. And then you can never leave it. Sometimes these people are gonna expect you to be at meetings when you have a job. You gotta be at work till 9:30 p.m., and you cannot go to a powwow because you at work. How you tell that to people? One of the laws in my set is that you always gotta have a job, you always gotta do something to contribute, to be right in the community. They want everybody to be successful. Nobody want to be in a group full of bums. Nobody want a group full of bums."It's a little hard to parse to what extent today she considers herself a Blood today, but certainly Tekashi 6ix9ine didn't tell us anything new.Despite this, Cardi B was expected to respond. A rep from her label Atlantic Records refuted Cardi's past statements, telling Billboard: "This is not true."However, Cardi took her publicity into her own hands, per usual, with a neatly timed, captionless Instagram post.Cardi, who posted the video just a few hours after the news broke that Tekashi 6ix9ine had named her, appears to be passing along her Hustlers co-star Keke Palmer's now iconic message to the rapper: "I hate to say it, I hope I don't sound ridiculous, I don't know who this man is. I mean, he could be walking down the street, I wouldn't know a thing. Sorry to this man."Palmer's clip — which was her response to being shown a photo of Dick Cheney during a "lie detector test" with Vanity Fair — has blossomed into the meme of the moment. The actress has already released a line of "Sorry to this man" t-shirts.Who knows what the joke's internet half-life will be, but this week it was perfect for meme queen Cardi's message: whether or not it's true she's a Blood, she does not know who this man is or why he's talking about her. He could be walking down the street, and she wouldn't know a thing.

Defection: Bayelsa PDP disowns Sen. Amange

The Bayelsa chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has disowned the former senator representing Bayelsa East Senatorial District, Sen. Nimi Amange, following his recent defection to the All Progressives Congress (APC).Amange was a PDP senator from 2007 to 2011 and represented former President Goodluck Jonathan’s constituency.But reacting to Amange’s defection in a statement issued in Yenagoa, the state Chairman of PDP, Mr Moses Cleopas, stated that the former lawmaker did not defect directly from PDP.Cleopas said that Amange ceased to be a member of PDP before the February National Assembly (NASS) elections when he defected from PDP to African Democratic Congress (ADC).Amange had on Thursday claimed that he left PDP because of Gov. Seriake Dickson’s “unilateral style of leadership,” which he likened to an emperor.However, Cleopas, while defending Dickson, described Amange’s stance as “unfortunate and mischievous attempt to create a false impression of an implosion within a party that is stable.”According to Cleopas, the PDP family in Bayelsa does not see Amange as a member of the party after he defected to ADC early this year.“There is a misleading report that Amange has defected from PDP to APC.“The fact is that Amange is not a member of our party. He defected from PDP to ADC to contest against us in the February NASS election and lost.“Sen. Amange is not a PDP leader and the public should discountenance this misleading claim. “This unfortunate claim is part of a calculated attempt to create an erroneous impression of an implosion in a party that is stable.“PDP in the state knows those who are genuine members. Amange is not one of us and he should desist from misinforming the public with the intent to cause mischief,” the statement further read.Also read:Amange had in a letter to the APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, made available to newsmen, stated that he had resigned the membership of his former party to join APC, ahead of the Nov. 16 governorship poll in Bayelsa.He also predicted bright chances for APC in the Nov. 16 governorship poll in the state.He said: “APC governorship candidate, David Lyon, hails from Southern Ijaw Local Government Area (LGA), with the highest voting strength.“I come from Nembe LGA and by my joining APC, Nembe has fallen into the hands of APC.“Brass LGA is Chief Timipre Sylva’s area and therefore an APC stronghold.“So, those three LGs are gone and we can give Kolokuma/Opokuma, the smallest LGA, to PDP because their candidate is from there.“Then Sagbama LGA, where the governor comes from, will be donated to him because PDP’s running mate is from Sagbama.“The question is, what will other LGAs do? So, we are taking three, they are taking two. The remaining three LGAs is 50/50,” Amange said.Vanguard

Why Middle-belt is opting out of Northern arrangement— Pogu Bitrus

By Chioma Gabriel, Editor Special FeaturesNational President of the Middle-Belt Forum, Dr Pogu Bitrus, in this encounter answers questions on why Middle-Belt is opting out of the Monolithic North arrangement and working with the south. He said the core north, since the British arrangement, has been using the Middle Belt to make up the number so as to continue dominating leadership, adding that his people have had enough of that. He also warned southerners to beware of RUGA, Cattle-Colony as Fulanisation agenda is real, saying Fulani from the whole West Africa could come and settle in Nigeria under the guise of RUGA. He also spoke on other pressing issues. Excerpts:Nigerians in South Africa were sent packing recently. Many years ago, Nigeria sent Ghanaians back to Ghana. Would you say what South Africa did to Nigeria was nemesis?It’s nothing like nemesis really. We sent Ghanaians away because our economy was buoyant and Ghanaian economy was down and we felt, they were taking opportunities that belonged to Nigerians because they were occupying all the handiwork: masonry, carpentry and other crafts and we felt they were taking our jobs. Now, South Africans are seeing us the way we saw Ghanaians and naturally, they responded in the like manner. In Nigeria today, our economy has gone down since 2015 due to recession. Jobs are not there and so, what happened when we sent Ghanaians away is what is happening now in South Africa and South Africans are feeling short-changed, thinking Nigerians are living luxurious lives while they are suffering. So, this animosity just developed. It’s unfortunate but nobody thinks about history. They forgot Nigeria assisted them a lot during the apartheid regime. But it’s a lesson as we have to now sit-up and build our economy so that our people will no longer go to South Africa in search of greener pasture.With the current state of our economy, what hope is there for these Nigerians returning home?Yes, our economy is not doing well and unfortunately, many of those coming back don’t have standard businesses. My fear is that some of those returning home are involved in drug-trafficking but not all, because, some of the professors in universities in South Africa are Nigerians and that category of Nigerians I believe is not affected by this repatriation. If somebody hasn’t saved enough money to start a business at home, there will be a problem but those who have saved money can easily fit in. Those who are entrepreneurial in nature can fit in if the money is there. Unfortunately, if the money is not there, there is no job for people around. The country has no jobs.Many Nigerians are against the proposed increase in VAT from 5% — 7.5%. What’s your take on this?In an economy that is not yet buoyant, increasing VAT adds hardship to the people because it is the ordinary man that is at the receiving end. You increase VAT and producers will increase the prices of goods and services and then, the consumer bears the brunt because he is at the receiving end. So, it is not good for the ordinary man. But the government has been pretending. They told us they have introduced this single treasury account, TSA, and said they have mopped up millions, yet, they are borrowing money. So, the economic indices are not what we are being told. The truth is that the money is not there. So, government needs money and in that respect, yes. But is it VAT that will give government the required money? They cannot increase fuel again after taking it from N87.00 to N145. They can’t get more money from fuel and so, they think VAT is the way out but let them tell us what they are doing with all these monies they have been borrowing because, we have borrowed so much and when you look back to where Obasanjo re-negotiated our debt and got Nigeria out of foreign debts and now, we are so indebted again, it is not good for us. This government has been borrowing money and is still borrowing money. So, what have they been doing with this money because we have not seen anything on ground?And what about the stolen money recovered by the EFCC? They are not telling us everything.Buhari’s second term in office is now over 100 days. Do you see any difference in his way of doing things?I cannot say anything because I have not seen anything. He only appointed his ministers earlier than the first term but the accusations which we made in the past have not changed. There is nothing significant he is doing. We were accusing him of nepotism and that has not changed.We accused him of being one-sided over religion and that has not changed. So, Nigerians have come to accept that this is the man and the man has not changed.So, whether it is 100 days or one year does not make any difference. What we want to see is a significant departure from how government is run. When you look at security, our soldiers are being run down by Boko Haram more than ever before. Many soldiers are being killed. Key areas are being taken over. So, things are worsening at the security front. In that case, what can we say he has achieved in 100 days? Some people have said he has signed the West Africa Free Trade agreement but anybody can sign anything. You cannot say anybody has achieved anything by being advised to sign anything. It’s the same old game but Nigerians want true change in behaviour, in the way of governance, in the way insecurity is being addressed, so that we can have a secured Nigeria. We don’t want a Nigeria where governors will come and negotiate with bandits. That’s my point. The 100 days does not say anything. For me, it’s the same old game.Many think that banditry, killings and general insecurity are the off-shoot of unemployment which has affected the youths more than ever.Unemployment has been on the increase. This is not rocket science. The condition is deplorable. Some government agencies are advertising here and there but there are few opportunities. The economy should be buoyant for the private sector to provide employment so that if industries come up and try, things will be okay. It’s not really for government to provide employment but employment should be facilitated by government. So, the system has to provide an enabling environment that would be good for entrepreneurial employment of our youths. The education system should also be more tailored towards private employment. Individuals should be trained in such a way that when people leave school, they will not go looking for jobs but would generate jobs for themselves and for others.Concerning insecurity, do we need to change the security chiefs to achieve the security we need as some are clamouring?Service chiefs have overstayed their usefulness. Apart from the deplorable condition of security apparatus, there is this issue of people who ought to have retired still being kept on the job and it is not helping issues. For example, the Chief of Army Staff ought to have retired. But he is still there. If they were performing and things are going well, you’d say, keep them. But they are not performing. Everyday, our military is being run down by insurgents, everyday, we hear stories of places being recaptured by the insurgents, everyday military equipment bought with tax payers money are being carted away. In fact, the main supplier of arms and ammunition to the bandits is the military because they over-run the military and take away the arms. We don’t need such people.In more developed countries, they would have resigned on their own. I’m surprised the commander-in-chief has done nothing when this kind of monumental failure is being witnessed frequently. So, the better thing to do is to remove these people and get people who are better qualified and who will approach insurgency and banditry in a better way to do the job. That way, we can address our insecurity problems in this country. We don’t have to continue the way we are and think we have a country because going by security indices; we can say Nigeria is a failed state. It’s so unfortunate when governors will negotiate with bandits and the bandits will even come to the negotiating table with arms in their hands. It is a disaster. It is shameful for insurgents to stop a security vehicle carrying arms and ammunition and money meant for the military and cart away everything.The operational headquarters of Boko Haram is not far from Buratai’s village. It is in Sambisa Forest but the part is in Danboa. Villages in that area have been evacuated, like Sabon Gari and the rest. And then they are telling us they are carrying money and escorted by less than a platoon through the road. Who knows if they didn’t make arrangement to take the money? It’s all deceit. You see in this country, things have to change. If such a thing happens, the commanding officer has to be queried to explain why they should carry that kind of money on a road that is close to Boko Haram operational headquarters. They are deceiving Nigerians. They have to stop. The truth has to be told. We cannot continue to accept this kind of nonsense in this country and then, we just wave it off as if nothing has happened. Serious questions have to be asked and we need answers. Don’t we have helicopters? Didn’t they know where they were going and what they were carrying and that the road was not safe? They just pretended they didn’t know and are telling us stories afterwards.Many Nigerians believe that with restructuring and state police, things will be well again.We believe things will improve and not that every problem will be solved. I’m about 65 years and I grew up knowing two types of police: the local police and the Nigerian Police. The Nigerian Police force was only operating in urban areas but the other was operating in the grass roots. They were the police who identified with the people and they knew the people. They knew the villages and the bad people. All we are saying is, let the state have their police, let the local government have their police since we are copying the American system where it operates. Your native police will not see where your people are being killed by bandits and keep quiet and not defend them. And let’s see if the government is an accomplice in this criminality. Why should we be keeping a system that is not working? These bandits may even be operating two or three kilometres to a police or military check-point and when you tell them, they will say they have not been given instruction to go to the scene or to get involved and now, when the people organise to fight back, the police or the military will come in to stop them. That means there is collusion.So, as far as we are concerned, one of the ways to tackle these issues is to have a police that operates in the grass roots who can identify the people and check crime. These police will interact with traditional rulers at local government and ward levels and will find the forests where the bandits are hiding. Everybody in the area would have known that yes, in this forest we have these people and they are of this nature. Local police will be able to handle that.When you look at the security situation, you would see that many of the things which the police are supposed to be doing are being done by the military. Many of these things, like internal security, is supposed to be done by the police. The military is supposed to concern itself with the territorial integrity of this country. We have involved the military in policing jobs and everything has become a mess. Some of us have looked at ways of addressing these issues by creating more states. We are not saying that all states have to be equal. Even in US, which system we are copying, all states are not equal. California is richer than so many countries in this world as a state and yet, there are poor states in the United States being supported by federal might. If we want true federalism, such things must operate. But let us not keep pretending. Unless these changes come, Nigeria will continue to face problems and we will not make progress.For sometime, there is this kind of cooperation between the Middle Belt and Southern Nigeria and many northerners think the south is trying to break what used to be known as the monolithic north. Is it true?I disagree totally. For one, before independence, there was the Williams Commission that was created by the colonial masters to look at the problem of the nationalities in the north other than the big Hausa/Fulani group who they saw with an organised system when they came in. The Williams Commission went round and interviewed locals from different parts in Yola and current day Taraba, Jalingo, etc. They interviewed locals from the minority areas and they prepared a report and because the core north then who were partnering with the British realised that if the Middle Belt was carved out from the north, they would be insignificant in terms of population. So, they resisted and ensured that never happened.However, in the South, Mid-West was carved out for the nationalities in the South but in the north, the Middle Belt was never carved out. This relationship has continued and the core north has continued to use Middle Beltans to lord it over Nigeria, boosting their population.After all, after the military created states, they still continued to ensure that the north remains as north so that they could lord it over others. But what is happening in the Middle Belt today? They are manipulating the Middle-Belt, using religion and other factors so that this relationship will continue but we are saying no. We want progress, we want to move forward and will partner with people who want Nigeria to progress; people who want every Nigerian to be able to aspire to be whatever he wants to be; not through a gang-up of 19 northern states and then, you gang up because of colonial arrangement which the British left with us. We are saying no. We have seen that what the south is crying about what will bring progress to Nigeria, not what monolithic north will bring and we see that Nigeria has to move forward and we are for development, not for retrogression. We are not for stagnation and for that reason, we opted this time to work together with brothers from the south so that Nigeria can move forward, not what we are maintaining and retaining, which is taking Nigeria backwards, instead of moving us forward.Does that mean you support the agitation for regionalism as being agitated for by some people?We are talking about restructuring now and people have different approaches to it. The South West thinks the way forward is regionalism, some think its parliamentary system of government. Some think, we should operate with the six geo-political zones which is not a constitutional arrangement but a political arrangement. But we can sit down and talk about these structures. We already have states and to jettison these states for regions might be a problem. We can restructure the geo-political zones to serve some of these agitations but we need to sit down and discuss it. And that is why we are saying, why don’t we revisit the 2014 conference report because in that report, many of these issues have been addressed and if we can be able to implement it, Nigeria will be better for it and we can move forward. That report tried to accommodate many of these things. The nationalities in the north can be factored in two additional geo-political zones. That will allow for some equity and allow people to have some sense or feeling of belonging. We can debate this and come to some agreement and not to say yes, it must be this way as if we are in military regime. No, that we don’t agree. We have to be talking, we have to be engaging each other so that Nigeria can have a system that is workable for Nigerians because we don’t just go and take somebody’s model and say it will work for Nigeria. No. It does not work like that. We have to come to terms with a Nigerian specific solution to Nigeria’s problems. So, this is what I’m saying.With banditry and insurgency in the north, it seems northern minorities are feeling it more than the other northerners. Is that what informed your agitations for more geo-political zones in the north?It is a contributory factor but not the sole reason. You see, when people want development, they consider so many things. Insurgency contributed because we’ve had attacks where these people come from unknown locations and attack and kill people. After attacking and killing people, some group will come out and say, we are responsible and nobody will be arrested even when they claim responsibility for the killings. That is a contributor. If such a thing is happening, why shouldn’t we look for a solution? And we had a situation where electoral bill was sent to the president and he refused to sign. Today, we have a problem of whether there was INEC server or not. Such problems would have been addressed if he had signed the electoral bill but maybe he deliberately refused to sign so they could favour them.So, if we want development, we can’t continue doing the same thing if it didn’t work and we are having problems. Why can’t we do something that will work or try something else? So, what we are saying is yes, banditry, terrorism contributed to the agitation. However, we have also looked at other issues that we need to have in place so this country can develop better and that resulted in us saying, let’s partner with people who want development, who want a departure from the current situation we are in. So, that is our take.Do you think the alleged Islamisation and Fulanisation are true?With regards to religion, that’s a different thing. Fulanisation came from the fact that the land which are being taken is given to the Fulani. They came with Cattle Colony, it didn’t work; they came with RUGA and now, National Livestock Transformation Plan. It’s all the same thing. It’s all about Fulani and they are generally nomads and it’s them that brought the Jihad to Nigeria. Naturally, the people will not embrace what comes from them. This allegation first came from former President Olusegun Obasanjo. Somebody of his stature and his standing cannot just come out and say something from the blues without some evidence. He will not make a sectional statement like someone who represents the interest of a people.Somebody like Obasanjo has gone beyond that life and for him to say such, he must have some evidence. But Fulanisation, I agree with him 100 per cent because we have nomads in Borno, we have the Shua Arabs and herdsmen who have settled in towns. They rear their cattle, they grow crops; they save grass for their cattle in dry season. We have the Kanuri cattle rearers who also farm and provide for their animals. They are in Borno; some of them are found in Yobe but they don’t leave those places. Are they saying Sokoto is drier than Borno and Zamfara is drier than Borno, Katsina is drier than Borno; Kano and Jigawa are drier than Borno?So, it is something else. They want to take lands which belong to communities and give to Fulani and then all the Fulani around West Africa will just come in and occupy our land and settle in Nigeria. You can see what happened last week; the umbrella body of Fulani said they are the largest ethnic group in Nigeria. That is even confirming this issue. There is a sinister motive behind RUGA and cattle-colony. The constitution does not allow anybody to take land belonging to a community and give it to another person. You are taking the land from another community and giving it to another community which is the Fulani. They should stay where they are and let the government have a policy that will accommodate Fulani in their own place. The non-Nigerian Fulani should be made to go back to their country and let their countries provide for them the way the Nigerian government is providing for the local Fulani, not to bring in all Fulani in West Africa and accommodate them in our land. That is not acceptable. So, whether it is cattle-colony which we refused, RUGA which we refused and National Livestock Transformation Plan to favour the Fulani, not considering people who have been displaced by the same Fulani, we do not want. The people whose lands were taken and given to Fulani, nobody cares about them or resettling them. We don’t accept that one.So, how do we rebuild Nigeria?For now, we should go and dust the 2014 national conference report which addressed issues of diverse importance, including economy in the way and manner that will move Nigeria forward. When that is implemented and we see that we are still far from getting there, then, we can sit down and discuss the way forward, not these draconian military kind of thing as if saying yes, we don’t want it because it was done during Jonathan’s regime. What is good is good. I was praising the current Borno governor. What he did within 100 days in office surpassed what his predecessors did. What is good is good. If Buhari does something good, I will shout it at the roof tops. The current Borno governor has started on a good footing. He doesn’t care about PDP or APC. Buhari should do same and pick the 2014 confab report and use it to move Nigeria forward.

Critics may attack Greta Thunberg, but the data and science on climate change speak...

It is unprecedented. One 16-year-old Swedish girl with a vision for a viable planet has inspired a global movement for change. The millions of people, predominantly young, all around the world who made a powerful but peaceful protest about the transcendent issue facing the world – the future of the life on Earth itself – constitute by far the most hopeful development since we first became aware of the damage human activity is inflicting on Gaia. For these are the very people who, perhaps before it really is too late, will be voting, agitating, arguing and delivering the changes to lifestyles so desperately needed.We owe an enormous debt to Greta Thunberg. Reviled though she may be in some quarters, her message carries an extraordinary power and resonance, much of it down to its sheer earnestness. As she told the United States congress this week – and there are few other groups on the planet who need to hear the voice of the global young more urgently – dealing with the climate emergency is not a matter of choice, of options to be weighed and assessed, of considering matters or planning ameliorative palliative measures.“This is above all an emergency, and not just any emergency,” she said. “This is the biggest crisis humanity has ever faced. And we need to treat it accordingly so that people can understand and grasp the urgency. Because you cannot solve a crisis without treating it as one. Stop telling people that everything will be fine when in fact, as it looks now, it won’t be very fine.”We’ll tell you what’s true. You can form your own view. From 15p €0.18 $0.18 USD 0.27 a day, more exclusives, analysis and extras.It is this blunt speaking, and the bold statement of the truth, that has led some, consciously or not, to belittle her and her motivations. It is foolish to do so, and pointless, because, while the critics can attack Greta all they like, the data and the science speak almost for themselves. They have, though, benefited from the amplification supplied by this remarkable young woman.She states the position admirably precisely: there is a 66 per cent chance of averting some of the worst aspects of climate change if action is taken on a 10-year timespan. Some countries, regions and cities are making impressive progress, pulling their targets for carbon neutrality and eliminating the internal combustion engine ever closer to today. Theresa May, in her last act as prime minister, pledged to make the UK carbon neutral by 2050. This is progress, but not enough. The remaining signatories to the Paris climate change accords at least acknowledge the reality of the threat, its immediacy and the scientific evidence.Yet the world knows there are others resistant to reason and the cause of self-preservation. Despite frequent and freakish weather that is already costing lives and damaging their economies, the American and Australian governments, with their large natural resources sectors, could go so much further than they have. It is also distressing to witness the wilful destruction of the rain forests of Brazil and central Africa, sometimes encouraged by figures such as President Bolsonaro. China has invested much in its electric vehicle industry, but is still building power stations fed by fossil fuels at an alarming rate. There, and in too many other countries, the authorities simply do not permit the kind of strike actions and protests that have promoted renewed global debate.Above all, this is the perfect reminder to all those attending the UN Climate Action Summit in New York about what is at stake. The issue could hardly be bigger. As the placards say, There is No Planet B, and, as the young are saying to the generation of today’s leaders that holds the very existence of future generations of humanity in its hands, you may die of old age, but your children and grandchildren will die of climate change. We have been warned.

Dispute Between Inter Duo Brozovic & Lukaku Took Place At Half Time Not Full...

Contrary to other reports doing the rounds in the media, Sport Mediaset report that the dispute between Marcelo Brozovic and Romelu Lukaku took place at half time and not at full time of Tuesday night’s match against Slavia Prague in the Champions League.At the half time interval, with the game at 0-0, Lukaku addressed the team and called for them to show some more courage when attacking. Brozovic is understood to have taken offence to this and things reportedly got heated between the two of them.The report from the broadcaster goes on to detail that Inter manager Antonio Conte then told the players that he welcomed the fact they were having discussion but so long as it was orientated toward winning the match.Inter would find themselves behind just over 15 minutes after the restart but substitute Nicolo Barella spared the team from defeat with a volley in injury time and secure the Nerazzurri a 1-1 draw.