Defence Team Kicks As Conduct Tribunal Orders Onnoghen To Open Defence Monday

Defence team kicks as conduct tribunal orders Onnoghen to open defence Monday

Proceedings ended abruptly and on a rowdy note yesterday at the resumed hearing in the trial of suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, before the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) as his lawyers protested what they viewed as the highhandedness of the tribunal Chairman, Danladi Umar.

Adegboyega Awomolo (SAN), who led the team of lawyers for Onnoghen, accused the CCT Chairman of oppressing the defendant and his lawyers when, shortly after delivering a ruling on the no-case submission made by the defendant, Umar insisted that the suspended CJN must open his defence on Monday (April 1, 2019).

Awomolo told Umar: “Stop oppressing us. This is not justice.” He repeated the statements about three times when the CCT Chairman refused to yield to his appeals that the defendant be afforded sufficient time to prepare for his defence and be allowed to return next week Friday.

While Awomolo was still on his feet, pleading with the tribunal Chairman to reconsider his position, Umar stood up, announced that the proceedings had been adjourned till Monday and walked away, leaving the two other members of the tribunal to scamper after him.

As Umar and the other members of the tribunal walked out of the tribunal’s sitting venue, many lawyers in the defence team shouted in protest, saying: “This is not how to do justice.”

A dejected Awomolo, who appeared to have been taken aback by Umar’s conduct, said: “If this is justice, then, God bless Nigeria,” a statement he repeated about four times.

Proceedings had commenced earlier in the day on a friendly note, with the tribunal Chairman exchanging pleasantries with lawyers to both the prosecution and defence when the case was called.

Shortly after, Awomolo argued the defendant’s no-case submission and urged the tribunal to discharge and acquit his client on the grounds that the prosecution was unable to establish a prima facie case against the defendant.
Read also: Protest as CCT orders Onnoghen to open defence on April 1

Awomolo faulted the entire evidence led by the prosecution and exhibits tendered and urged the tribunal to hold that it is not worth it calling on Onoghen to defend himself.

He said the entire proceedings had become a nullity because the process leading to the commencement of the trial did not comply with the procedure provided for in the CCB’s Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) 2017.

Awomolo made a lengthy submission, during which he cited many decided cases, including a 2013 ruling by the tribunal (a copy of which he later offered the tribunal), urged the tribunal to be guided by past decisions.

At the conclusion of his submission, the CCT Chairman commended Awomolo for his brilliant and “well-articulated” argument.

Prosecution lawyer, Aliyu Umar, offered a counter-argument and urged the tribunal to reject Onnoghen’s no-case-submission and order him to enter defence.

The prosecution lawyer said the prosecution’s case was simple and relates mainly to the defendant’s failure to declare his assets.

He said: “We are not accusing him of having $300m in his accounts. What we are saying is that he failed to declare his assets on his appointment as Justice of Supreme Court and that he operated domiciliary accounts since 2009 and 2010 without declaring them.”

After listening to the arguments by parties, the tribunal Chairman, to the dismay of most of those at the proceedings, announced that ruling would be delivered in two hours’ time.

When the tribunal resumed around 2pm, Umar read his ruling, in which he rejected the submission by Awomolo.

He rejected Awomolo’s argument that the process leading to the filing of the charge was not in accordance with the procedure provided in the CCB’s SOP.

Umar noted that the SOP, which was a creation of the former board of the CCB, led by Sam Saba, was no longer in use because it had been abused by that board.

CCT Chairman said the operations of the CCB was currently being guided by the Constitution since it has discarded the SOP, which he said the former board abused.

The CCT Chairman accused the defendants of deploying technicalities to prevent the hearing of the case despite the glaring evidence, suggesting that the defendant has a case to answer.

Umar said the tribunal was not bound by technicality, but was interested in always ensuring justice.

He refused the no-case submission and said the tribunal was convinced that the prosecution had established a prima facie case, warranting the defendant to enter his defence if he has any.

The tribunal Chairman added: “The defendant himself made a written admission, without duress, that he forgot to declare the domiciliary accounts maintained in Standard Chartered Bank. That is, the euro account, the dollar account, the pound sterling account and the two naira accounts.

“His confessional statement is more than enough to warrant the defendant to enter defence, if he has any.

“The tribunal shall never be swayed from exercising justice, no matter whosoever appeared before it, irrespective of his/her status in life. After all, all of us are from the same source – dust.”

Umar added that by the evidence led by the prosecution through its three witnesses, and the documents tendered, including the statement by the defendant, “where he confessed that he forgot the accounts and that he made mistakes in not declaring the accounts,” are sufficient to make the tribunal demand that the defendant defend himself against the charges.

He said the need for the defendant to defend himself was “to clear his name, because the name has been tainted so much.” He proceeded to reject the no-case submission and ordered the defendant to “enter a defence.”

At the conclusion of the ruling, Awomolo applied that a certified true copy (CTC) of the ruling be made available to the defendant to enable him prepare for his defence. Awomolo prayed the court to allow the defendant return next week Friday for his defence.

The tribunal Chairman assured Awomolo that the tribunal’s registry will make the ruling available to him before the close of work yesterday. He directed the defendant to return on Monday for his defence; a decision the defence lawyer pleaded with Umar to reconsider.

Awomolo pleaded with the tribunal Chairman to remember that the Constitution provides that a defendant was entitled to adequate time and materials to prepare for his defence.

While Awomolo was still on his feet, appealing to the tribunal Chairman to reconsider his position in relation to the next adjourned date, Umar, who appeared unmoved by all that the lead defence lawyer was saying, sprang up from his seat and said: “That is the decision of the tribunal. Come and open your defence next Monday. The case stands adjourned to Monday.”

At that point, Awomolo stopped begging the tribunal Chairman and told him to stop oppressing the defendant and his lawyers.

Umar did not respond to Awomolo. He simply turned away and walked straight out of the tribunal’s sitting venue, leaving everyone dazed.

As Umar walked away and other members of the tribunal in toe, a dejected Awomolo said: “If this is justice, I pray for Nigeria.”

He later had a little altercation with the lead prosecution lawyer, Aliyu Umar, who he accused of not intervening when the tribunal Chairman was imposing a date on the defendant. Umar shot back at Awomolo, saying he did nothing wrong.

The suspended CJN is being tried on a six-count charge of non-disclosure of assets. He has however appealed yesterday’s ruling of the tribunal rejecting his no-case submission.

In the notice of appeal filed at the registry of the CCT, shortly after the ruling, the defendant raised five grounds of appeal, in which he faulted the tribunal’s decision and urged the Court of Appeal to, among others, set aside the ruling.

Ten Reasons Governor Bindow Was Sacked By The Masses Of Adamawa State

TEN REASONS WHY GOVERNOR BINDOW WAS SACKED BY THE MASSES OF ADAMAWA STATE!

  1. SALARIES

There is no doubt, Adamawa is a civil servants state, a state where salaries play a vital role in every aspect of human endeavor in all the twenty one Local Governments the state has.
The welfare of the citizens solely depend on how punctual salaries are being paid. The delay in salary payment can one way or the other affect not only the civil servants but their dependents, businessmen, and the socio-economic development of Adamawa state.

In the four years of Bindow’s administration, workers in Adamawa experienced the worst moment of their lives. They sometimes get salaries after thirty-five, forty or forty-five days. This development turns the workers to borrowers. They spend seventy to eighty percentage with others hundred percent of their salaries paying back what they owe. To them “albashi” (salary) was “bashi” (debt) not wages.

  1. LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREAS

Bindow’s government was an anti local governments administration. The twenty one local governments in Adamawa state were denied their the rights and privileges. The funds of these local governments and the salaries of workers were diverted to road constructions in not more than five to seven local governments. Over 100 tractors were bought with the funds of local governments which are no where to be found as of now.
From 2015 to 2019, local governments’ workers salaries were not paid regularly except during Sallah festivals, Christmas and 2019 general elections. It could be recalled that the governor in 2018 opined that local governments’ workers must appreciate his kind gesture, stressing that their salaries were gifts because they haven’t laboured for it.

  1. THE MALTREATMENT OF THE WORKERS OF THE PRIMARY HEALTH CARE DEVELOPMENT AGENCY AND PRIMARY SCHOOL TEACHERS

The contributions of PHCDA doctors and primary teachers to the development of the people from the grassroots can not be over expressed, over emphasized and over stressed. Ninety percent of the people of the state benefited in one way or the other from these two sectors including Bindow himself. Building structures and equipment in these sectors were neglected. Salaries and other entitlements of PHCDA workers and primary school teachers were not paid regularly. To these workers, Bindow’s government was a disaster, many have died due to hunger, frustration and depression. The curses these people and their dependants showered on Bindow led government is equivalent or more than the curses showered on former president, Goodluck Jonathan by indigenes of Borno state.

  1. APC PRIMARY ELECTIONS

The magic and tricks used by the outgoing governor during APC primary elections in the state was the root cause of the party’s failure in the state. I am sorry to say but there was nothing like primary elections but primary selections by Bindow and the leaders of the APC in Adamawa. The APC candidates for Senatorship, House of Representatives, and State House of Assembly were given automatic tickets with others rigging the primary elections.

The governorship direct primary election which could not hold in many local governments was massively rigged. Many if not all members of the APC in the state were unhappy with the greediness and non-chalant attitude shown by His Excellency, Muhammad Umar Jibrillah Bindow. Adamawa citizens love APC as a party but the personalities in the party killed the party by betraying the masses. Most of them came to power via SAK in 2015 but failed to utilize the chance given to them by the APC. APC was killed in Adamawa by APC family not the masses.
This is what led us to Aisha Buhari and Mahmoud Halilu (Modi) Influence.

  1. THE NENNE-MODI INFLUENCE

Mahmoud Halilu popularly known as Modi, a brother to the wife of the president Aisha Muhammadu Buhari, was among the APC’s governorship aspirants in the state. Intelligence reports indicated that Modi Halilu and Aisha Buhari who were unhappy with the way APC governorship primary election was conducted, worked against the incumbent governor in 2019 elections. Both Modi and Nenne have not campaigned for Bindow and none of their supporters were in need of Bindow to return to power, considering how he denied them their franchise during primary elections.

  1. ADC – O JIPPA TAN

Bindow who was an ally to former governor, Murtala Nyako from 2010 before he become a senator to 2015, turned to be a rival after 2015 general elections. The former governor, Murtala Nyako, his son the ADC governorship candidate in just concluded general election, Abdul-Azeez Nyako and the ADC state chairman, Yahya Hamma-Julde fought gallantly for Bindow before, during and after 2015 elections. Few weeks after he was sworn in as governor, Bindow turned white to black, honey to lemon and water to wine. He showed no appreciation to the Nyako’s family and to add pepper to wound, he started fighting them. Forgetting the wise saying that says “Never bite the finger that fed you.

  1. FAKE PROMISES AND UNTRUE STATEMENT

Though he fulfilled some of the promises he made in 2015 but his failure to guard his tongue and vet his speeches, awarded him a nickname “DIGITAL”. Digital to those who came up with the name means someone who tells what is not true.
Thousands of Adamawa citizens where affected negatively whether directly or indirectly by the digitally of governor Bindow.
In short, Bindow was a kind of person who finds it simple to feed his followers with untrue statements and fake promises.

  1. YOUTHS EMPLOYMENT AND EMPOWERMENT

To youths like me in the state, Bindow administration was a pure disaster and a horrified calamity. Bindow runs a four years government without officially employing or empowering youths.
Under this outgoing administration, you must know the governor or someone who is close to the governor before you get employed. How can a villager who is from far Toungo or Madagali local government have an access to the governor?
The government has contributed to the insecurity within Jimeta and Yola metropolis (The ‘yan shila).

The more the unemployment rate, the more the number of youths who go into anti-human activities like drug abuse, stealing, kidnapping, armed robbery, banditry and many more. Thousands of unemployed youths were left unattended to for four years and you expect the community to live peacefully. Would that be possible? That’s capital NO.

  1. EMBEZZLEMENT AND CORRUPTION

Adamawa is among the states that received Bailout and Paris Refund from federal government of Nigeria to clear salariy arrears of both state and local governments’ workers. However, Adamawa citizens have been accusing the governor for diverting the funds and embezzlement as well. The way the governor organised some unwanted events with Kannywood actors such as Hadiza Gabon, Rarara, Ado Gwanja among others received lamentation from almost all the nooks and crannies of the state.
Such events and corruption submit in February, 2018 were seen as an embezzlement of state government’s funds.

  1. REDUNDANT ADVISERS

Advisers are those people who advise their boss on what is needed to be done for the betterment of the society. Advisers support, oppose and criticize ideas and issues tabled before them by their boss.

Unfortunately, the case is different under Bindow’s government. In the first instance, for you to become an adviser to Bindow, you must be either his supporter who used to praise him especially on traditional or modern media. Here, he will give you that appointment for you to continue praising him.

Secondly, you must be his opponent who criticizes and opposes his failures. Here, you will be employed as an adviser to stop going against his government and start praising him.
Lastly, you must be brought by someone who is close to him.
All the above mentioned are praise singers not advisers.
You have over hundred advisers, they are aware of all what is mentioned in this write-up and they kept mute. Are they really advisers? Are they not there just to earn money?
Now, that they have retired you from politics, what is next?
Well, on behalf of Adamawa citizens, we are wishing you a safe landing and success as you return to business.
At least, you have shown us your true colour.

PDP should learn from Bindow’s mistakes, four years is like four months.

Mysterious Tree Kills School Senior Prefect In Akure

Mysterious tree kills senior prefect at a school in Akure

The senior prefect of Ijo Mimo High School in Akure, Ondo State died mysteriously over the weekend after falling from a mango tree in the school premises.

A source at the school said this is the fourth time a student would be falling from the mango tree whenever they are sent by their teachers to pluck mango for them.

The late student identified as Temitayo Oluwole was said to have been sent by one of his teachers to pluck a mango after a weekend tutorial class for SS3 students.

An anonymous source at the school said “we all came for tutorial on Saturday, after the tutorial one of our teachers asked him to pluck mango, it was while he was on the tree trying to pluck the mango that he fell and died immediately.

“This is the fourth time a student has died after falling from that particular tree in this school, and our teachers don’t hesitate to send us to pluck mango for them, despite the danger and our cries that the tree is evil. But we can’t disobey them whenever they send us to climb the tree to pluck mango.”

A family source also said since the incident happened none of the teachers nor the principal could be reached as they have all gone into hiding, switching off their phones.

Party Will Be Upheld In The 9th NASS Leadership – Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Party discipline will be upheld in 9th NASS leadership, says Tinubu

Sen. Bola Tinubu, the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Leader, said that party discipline would be upheld in addressing the leadership tussle of the 9th National Assembly.

Tinubu said this while speaking with newsmen in Lagos on Friday after a Prayer Programme organised by Islamic and Christian clerics to mark his 67th birthday.

“Party discipline is key, we must be discipline in the party. We were a little careless in 2015. We created the opportunity for serpent to get into our party and that did not allow Nigeria to make the desired progress.

“You have seen the result of it and we are not going to allow that to happen again. We are going to respect our party and we are going to apply the whip.

“It is either you stay with us or you follow us or you leave. You have the freedom to choose but the freedom does not give you as a minority to go and collaborate and protrude our mandate given to you to another party who was our opposition and who is still our opposition.

“We would not take that this time, no matter who you think you are. That is how it is built. Why do you want to deviate from what has been structured?

“We look at our reward system equally, zone by zone,” he said.

Tinubu said that his life as a politician at 67 had been a fulfilling journey.

“When I joined politics, there were a lot of uncertainties because it was during the military regime. There were lots of struggles but my concern is about people and the future of my country.

“My mother stood by me when I told her then that I was joining politics. She told me to be ready to take all sorts of insults whenever they cross my way. May her soul rest in peace.

“The struggle was tough. It created a justice on June 12 election of MKO and some people deserted the camp, the struggle, the spirit.

“We have stayed with this struggle. We know democracy is not easy but it is the only system of government that we chose.

“Ever since, it has been a very fulfilling journey. There is always the twist and turns in politics.

“Today, we endure, we persevere, we think, adjust, collaborate, merged and became single party just like yesterday,” he said.

Tinubu said that the APC party was in government for the common man.

“You will think that APC had been on for twenty years but is not up to six years. We went through compromises because we know that if we form a good alliance of progressive thinkers and believers in the ideology of common man, we will be able to serve the people.

“It is not by criticism alone. You have to have the opportunity to even change the life of the people and quality of their standard of living.

“So, we stood by it, we persevered persistently, uttered our voice, offered our recommendations, and then we are here. And today I am extremely happy that we are in government for the common man.

“The only way to change Nigeria from penury is to fashion out our own organic economic strategy and plan that will continue to cater for all,” he said.

Appeal Court Has Not Voided My Election – Senator Omo-Agege

Appeal Court has not voided my election, says Omo-Agege

Senator representing Delta Central, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege has dismissed insinuations that the Court of Appeal has voided his election and that of all candidates of the All Progressives Congress in the just concluded general elections, saying the court was yet to determine the appeal against the judgement of the Federal High Court in Asaba.

In a statement by his Senior Special Assistant, Communication and Strategy, Godwin Anaughe, Omo-Agege said Friday’s ruling of the Appeal Court merely states that only the APC can appeal the judgement of the lower and not individual candidates.

The statement said Senator Omo-Agege had applied to the court to be joined in the appeal, a position which was rejected by the court in it’s ruling on Friday.

The statement reads: “Following the judgement delivered by Justice Toyin Adegoke of the Federal High Court, Asaba on the 18th of March, 2019 which was being misinterpreted in some quarters to have nullified the Delta State Executive Committee led by our able chairman, Prophet Jones Ode Erue and the candidacy of Chief Great Ovedje Ogboru, Distinguished Senator Ovie Omo-Agege and other candidates of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Delta State, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege and Rev. Francis Waive filed an application seeking the leave of Court to join as parties to the Appeal, on behalf of themselves and other candidates of the APC, against the judgement of the Federal High Court sitting in Asaba.

“It is instructive to note that the ruling delivered by the Court of Appeal today only struck out the application on the ground that Senator Omo-Agege and Rev. Waive cannot appeal the judgement as individuals since they are both members of APC who can appeal the judgement on their behalf. The APC has already filed an appeal against the said judgement.

“Furthermore, it is important to note that the ruling delivered by the Court of Appeal sitting in Benin has not and did not determine the appeal filed before it by the APC.

“We reiterate that the Consent Judgement delivered by Justice A.I. Chikere of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja is still valid and subsisting and all the recent happenings in court have neither invalidated nor set aside the Consent Judgement. Therefore, the Prophet Jones Ode Erue led Exco remains the authentic and legitimate APC Executive Committee of Delta State, so also are all the candidates of APC in the just concluded 2019 general elections.

“It is important to note further that the recent judgement delivered by Justice U. A. Ogakwu of the Court of Appeal sitting in Calabar made it succinctly clear in the case of Sir John Ochala & 5 ORS. VS. Hon. Godwin Etim John and 2 ORS that “ …. It is settled law that a court cannot make a finding that will prejudicial against a person that is neither before it nor a party to the case and cannot in the same vain grant a relief which will affect a person who is not a party in the suit: OKONKWO vs.
OKAGBUE (1994) 9 NWLR (PT 368) 301. The effect of Order(s) made against persons not joined as a party is that such order is a nullity and of no effect”.

“This remains the position of the law as affirmed by the Supreme Court in plethora of cases, including but not limited to the case of OKONTA VS PHILIP.

“It is therefore foolhardy for anyone to suggest that today’s ruling delivered by the Court of Appeal, Benin City upheld the earlier judgement delivered by the Federal High Court, Asaba and as such touches on the legal rights of the APC candidates in Delta State.

“In conclusion therefore, as previously posited, Distinguished Senator Ovie Omo-Agege and other candidates of the APC for 2019.general election are not bound by the said judgement delivered by Justice Toyin Adegoke of Federal High Court, Asaba.

The status of all the candidates of the APC in Delta State for the 2019 general election remain valid and legitimate.”

FGN Sends Delegation On A Condolence Visit To Sokoto

FGN DELEGATION CONDOLENCE VISIT TO SOKOTO

R-L; Minister of Interior Lt General Abdulrahman Dambazzau, APC Governorship Candidate, Alhaji Ahmad Aliyu, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami and others during FGN delegation Condolence visit to the Family home of the Senator Aliyu Wammako over the death of his younger brother, Alhaji Salihu Barade, the Baraden Wamakko in Sokoto State at the weekend. Saturday.

Ooni, Emir Sanusi, Clark Others Named In NANS Special Committee To End FG, ASUU Crisis

Ooni, Emir Sanusi, Clark, Others Named In NANS Special Committee To End FG, ASUU Crisis

The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has constituted a committee made up of elder statesmen in the country to help provide permanent resolutions to the Federal Government and Academic Staff Union’s crisis in Nigeria.

Danielson Bamidele Akpan, president of NANS, in a statement on Saturday said the committee’s resolution will bring about new dawn in the educational sector.

He said, “History has it that Nigeria education system was good such that other countries sent their nationals to acquire tertiary education in Nigeria. Until the inglorious days set in beginning in the year 1988 when the academic staff unions of universities started what is today known as the “ASUU Strike”.

“It is no longer news to Nigerians that not only has ASUU strike affected the standard of education in Nigeria, but that other academic staff unions have followed suit, e.g Academic Staff Union of Polytechnics (ASUP), Colleges of Education Academic Staff Union (COEASU).

“Consequently, we began consultations to seek the support of elder statesmen and eminent Nigerians to interface with ASUU, ASUP, COEASU, other unions, stakeholders and the federal government to bring a permanent solution to the incessant academic strike actions which has damaged our educational sector and made us a subject of ridicule in the comity of nations.”

Named in the committee are HRM. (Oba) Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi II, Ooni of Ife; HRM. Sanusi Lamido Sanusi II, Emir of Kano; HRM. Nnaemeka Alfred Achebe I, Obi of Onitsha; HRM. (Dr) Victor Folagbade Olateru – Olagbegi III, Olowo of Owo.

Others are Chief Edwin Clark, Alhaji Tanko Yakassai, Aare Afe Babalola, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, Mrs. Folorunso Alakija, Prof. Suleiman Bala Mohammed, Vice Chancellor, Nasarawa State University, Keffi; Prof. Rukayat Mohammed, a former minister of Education, Chief Femi Falana and Barr. Kayode Ajulo.

Bamidele said “the association is of the belief that the selected elder statesmen have all the requisite and will be patriotic enough in the discharging of this ‘life time task”.

Restructure Your Psychology Before You Leave – Late Prof Adesanmi Pius

Restructuring

By Pius Adesanmi

Nigerians are all talking about restructuring.

Now, that is funny.

There are two types of Nigerians: those in government and those awaiting their turn in government. Forget all the talk about the size and potential of Nigeria’s economy. Forget all the talk about business, entrepreneurship, innovation, and the rise of a vibrant new demographic of creators defying the odds to crystallize into a 21st-century transnational elite.

That is all puff and powder for there is really only one business in Nigeria and it is called government. Everybody is just really waiting for and on government.

Every other sector and sphere of Nigerian life and all the players in all those private spheres and sectors are merely waiting on and for their turn in government. In Nigerian life, there is no creativity, no aspiration, no vision, no mission, no genius, and no dream beyond “joining government”.

The sum total of national life is nothing but an endless footsy playing between those in government and those outside, hoping to cajole them to be let in or scheming to shove them out and take their place. Either by election or appointment, a Nigerian has no greater definition of success and life fulfilment than a political office, no matter how paltry and insignificant.

This atrocious national sociology of course has consequences. It is at the centre of the Nigerian tragedy. At the personal and national levels, it stifles growth, initiative, and development because the citizen and his nation are defined exclusively by prebend. The citizen destroys all regenerative and innovative possibilities because his creative energy has only one purpose: profit from government prebend (if he is already in government) or aspire to profit from government prebend (if he is awaiting his turn in government).

Nigeria is the only place where the path to building a global business brand, powered by genius, innovation, creativity, entrepreneurial spirit and drive can be abandoned midway to serve as a Special Assistant to a Special Adviser on Miscellaneous Matters in the Presidency. The owner of a flourishing innovation hub or a growing e-commerce outlet will drop all that creative energy and suddenly become a Special Assistant to a Governor or a Senator.

In Nigeria, do not be surprised to wake up to news that Dangote is abandoning the Dangote Group to run for even governor. Instead of joining Mark Zuckerberg and Jeff Bezos on a panel in Davos, do not be surprised to hear that the owner of Konga.com or Nairaland has accepted an appointment as a Special Assistant on New Media to a state governor.

In essence, any Nigerian great news on the innovation front is only great until government appointment happens to it because every other sphere of agency in Nigeria is tentative and aspirational in a move towards government and mediocrity and corruption.

Take a look at Rochas Okorocha. He has been busy ruining Imo state on the platform on APC and change. His destruction of Imo is a greater tragedy because it is collective and affects our fellow citizens.

However, there is also his self-destruction. He had a robust business brand that could have become an Africa brand on its way to the global level had he continued to devote his creative energies to it. The Nigerian thing happened to him and he decided to aim for the sun of Aso Rock Villa before ending up with the consolation moon of Government House in Owerri.

It is true that many of these people abandon potential global brands for life in government because of the belief that they will loot with impunity, and divert public funds and government patronage to their businesses.

They forget that all their stealing and looting has never taken any of their businesses to a truly global dimension because no truly global brand can be built on a foundation of such brazen rottenness. The money they steal and infuse into their businesses is only Pyrrhic victory.

Obasanjo Holdings is one of the greatest beneficiaries of loot, corruption, nepotism, and government patronage in Nigeria. Baba stole Nigeria black and blue and poured everything into his business. Obasanjo Holdings is not a recognizable African brand, let alone a global brand. It is a local champion in a local field where Baba is doing gragra and harassing people. When he gallivants the world stage, it is because he ruled the largest concentration of black people for 8 years and not on the basis of his entrepreneurial brand. In Davos, he will have to book an appointment with Zuckerberg and Bezos.

There is also of course the story of Orji Uzor Kalu’s Slok – another innovative business brand that government office happened to and destroyed. The business people are not the only class affected by this Nigerian disease. Generations of the country’s brightest minds go to government, when they leave government, they do not return to any worthwhile ventures and activities that could uplift the country because they understand that life in Nigeria is divided into two strict phases: life in government and life spent awaiting life in government.

I live in a part of the world where people have time for short spells in government appointments before returning to other spheres of nation building. Academia is a very popular destination for people after government office. They come and join us in training the next generation. Look at journalism and mass communication schools in the US and Canada. Very often, people quit influential government spokesperson positions to become Deans or Chairs of such schools or programs. They don’t have to be academics. Universities negotiate with them on the basis of their profile and experience.

You come to Nigeria and you get Reuben Abati – a brilliant first class mind that any school of journalism or mass communication in Nigeria should be privileged to engage as Dean or Chair. What is he doing? He is roaming social media to maintain relevance in preparation for any possibility of returning to government in 2019. One of Nigeria’s best minds now understands that there is only life in government and life spent awaiting a return to government.

The Right Reverend Wendel Simlin, also known as Reno Omokri, falls into this category. Before he discovered the tragic duality of Nigerian life, he was actually a bright mind on the rise in the United States. Now, he too is roaming social media, carefully curating his nuisance value to maintain visibility ahead of the possibility of a return to government in 2019, accompanied by fellow vermin, Femi Fani-Kayode.

Think of Abati as Head of Mass Communication in Unilag; think of Omokri in some innovative new program in any of our Universities. No matter what you think of them, they would serve Nigeria’s future excellently in such stations. Sadly, they are like fish out of water, unable to conceptualize agency and nation building outside of the sphere of government crumbs.

I have used Abati and Omokri to illustrate the crematorium of talent and innovation that is Nigeria. Once you leave government, you are pretty much useless to Nigeria because your brain is colonized by the singular desire to return to government. You cannot even sustain a business after life in government. Look at Senator Smart Adeyemi, thrashing around like somebody high on paraga because there is no life for him outside of government. He is desperate to return.

I have been preaching that the restructuring of the polity is not something that should be done outside of the restructuring of the psychology and the socializing narratives which frame the Nigerian mind. And we need to revamp civics to achieve this mental rewiring.

You may well get your Biafra Republic. You may well get your Oodua Republic. You may well get your Arewa Republic. However, I pity those three putative Republics for they are going to be peopled by psychologies and mentalities shaped and nurtured by Nigeria. If you must have your three separate Republics, that is fine.

I am a supporter of legitimate claims to self-determination and maybe I have read too many books to subscribe to the silly myth of the indissolubility or indivisibility of any nation-state that Professor Osinbajo and the Nigerian elite are peddling.

However, do not go to Biafra, Oodua, and Arewa and continue to believe that life outside of government is life not worth living.

Remember: that tragic sociology destroyed the Nigeria you are fleeing.

Restructure your psychology before you leave.

As for me and my house hold, we shall remain proud Nigerians.