Nigerians have been called upon to use the opportunity of this year’s Eid-el-Fitri celebration to reflect on how to contribute more to the development of the nation and live peacefully as brothers and sisters.
Speaking to Eminent Leaders magazine at his residence in Abuja, Abdulfatah Agunleti, a PDP stalwart, social commentator and public analyst shared optimism of a better Nigeria and declares that the second term ambition of President Jonathan is more of divine and already a done deal, as he chides opposition to desist from denigrating the office of the President through chicanery and name calling.
Agunleti said “My appeal goes to all Muslim faithful to use the opportunity of this Ramadan to reflect on how to coexist peacefully as brothers and sisters, not minding our religious background. I appeal also to politicians not to sacrifice our togetherness on the platter of ambition. Only God crowns a leader and not by anybody’s individual strength.”
Commenting on the state of the nation and next year’s Presidential election, he said “Sincerely speaking, the only way the opposition can get to power right now in Nigeria is through the backdoor and not through the ballot. To me the so called oppositions are not prepared for the task to move us forward.”
“I am really not comfortable with the utterances and actions of most of our politicians especially when it comes to criticism of President Jonathan. Yes criticism is good and opposition is very relevant in democracy but when the Office of the President is been ridiculed by even those aspiring to occupy same office, then there is need to exercise restraint, as that office is a symbol of our nationhood. It is an institution that is even greater than the occupant and should be accorded due respect.”
“When it comes to criticism, the moment I opened my mouth and criticize, it means I have and know of a better workable options than what you have done. Criticism that emanates through bitterness can only be destructive and can never be helpful to the system especially when it comes to politics and governance.”
Speaking further, “APC has always been quick to put the blame of the country on the doorsteps of PDP having presenting Presidents since the inception of this democratic dispensation. If that is right, then what is the rationale behind the move by APC to coopt all the founding fathers of PDP in their move to salvage Nigeria? Why is it that the only people they look up to for direction in their “Roadmap to Power” are those of PDP extraction? They went, in the full glare of the whole world, begging Obasanjo and Amaechi to show them the way. Have they forgotten so soon that Obasanjo and Amaechi were founding members of PDP and both like many others cannot be exonerated from any ills that might have befallen the country if PDP is the problem?”
“Looking at the opposition critically, what exactly have they offered in the various states where they administered so far? The so called achievements of the defunct ACN is quickly been eroded in Lagos State because they have lost focus. BRT is fast becoming a thing of the past. In Ekiti State, APC recorded grave loss at the polls in a Tsunamic manner. They lost 16-0. The pressure is on them in Osun where the only thing their candidate can lure the masses with is a “Free Train Ride” from Osogbo to Lagos in order to get votes, yet that train was one of Jonathan’s revolutions. I’ll leave the achievements of Jonathan for another discourse.”
“Right now there is nothing the opposition can point to as their own achievements in the states that can really serve as a hallmark of good governance or leadership. The only tool available to them now is lies upon lies in the media.”
“I stand to be corrected, Jonathan as President or not will never tell a widow being victimized by agents of government to ‘go and die’ only an APC governor is capable of that. It is only the APC and its leaders that will be going into an election threatening fire and brimstone, blood for blood, as if they are going to war, for Jonathan, no single blood of any Nigerian is worth being shed for anybody’s ambition.”
“PDP lost in Ondo, we took it with good faith, same in Anambra just because a President who do not believe in “do or die” election administers, but I put it to other opposition parties to tell the world how many of all the local government elections conducted in their state has another opposition won?”
“Any opposition built on hypocrisy and falsehood cannot stand the test of time and that is why the opposition has found it too enormous a task to destroy the one they termed clueless.”
“So far, they have nothing to parade that will show their capability to take us to our Eldorado. Nothing have they done and nothing they are capable of but mere blackmail, name calling and propaganda.”
“A virile opposition could have used the states they administer to prove a point that they have something in stock giving the opportunity of a whole geopolitical zone to demonstrate that but they falter.”
“To me the crop of opposition available in our political settings right now is just a handful of power mongers that have failed to impact positively on just six states yet vigorously pursuing, their dream of cornering the wealth of the nation the more, to administer the whole 36 states of the federation. Should that dream be actualized, the task of nation building will definitely be too overwhelming for them and in the end disastrous.”
“Nigeria will be great, even greater than any of us could fathom and to get there can only be a concerted effort where better options are put on the table for all to see. Give or take, Jonathan and PDP is still the best available and I don’t see that changing before the next election. The opposition have gifted him the 2nd term and they should blame themselves for not doing their homework very well.”
Pastor Adeboye Leads Protest to End Killings in Nigeria
Pastor Enoch Adeboye, General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, discarded his hitherto conservative and conciliatory disposition and took to the streets to lead thousands of his members in a protest march against insecurity and killings of Christians across the nation, especially in northern states.
The action is sequel to an earlier directive by the leader of one of the most influential Pentecostal churches in Nigeria that its members should conduct the protest nationwide, with him starting his own action at exactly 11am at the RCCG National Headquarters in Ebute Metta, Lagos.
The Assistant General Overseer (Admin and Personnel) of the church, Pastor J.F Odesola, in a circular dated January 29, 2020, addressed to all regions and provinces of the RCCG, parishes of the church were asked to end their service not later than 11am on Sunday to enable members “march round their immediate environment, praying for God’s intervention in the ongoing situation in Nigeria.”
The protests are at the instance of the RCCG General Overseer, Pastor Adejare Adeboye.
The circular, read: “The Christian Association of Nigeria, the umbrella body for all Christians and Christian organisations in Nigeria, has made a clarion call for prayers and advocacy to all Christians in Nigeria in response to the inhumane acts against Christians in the country.”
Profile of Chuka Umunna,his career and work.
Chuka Umunna was born 17th of October, 1978 to a Nigerian Father and English-Irish Mother, he was educated at Hitherfield Primary School in Streatham, south London, at the voluntary aided Christ Church C of E Primary School (Cotherstone Road) in the Brixton Hill area of Streatham,and at the independent secondary school St. Dunstan’s College in Catford in south-east London. He obtained a 2:1 degree in English and French Law from the University of Manchester and then studied at the University of Burgundy in Dijon in France, and Nottingham Law School in Nottingham.
Education, equality, and community and youth engagement.
He trained at Herbert Smith the large “Magic Circle” City law firm: about his decision to join the firm he said “I wanted to join Herbert Smith because they were a big international firm, very much at the heart of the City, business and finance. Having entered thinking I wanted to be a hotshot corporate lawyer, I ended up wanting to become an employment lawyer because employment relates to people and their relationships. In 2006, he moved to the central London law firm, Rochman Landau, where he mainly acted for individuals and small and medium sized companies. As an employment lawyer, Umunna often spoke in the media on employment issues.
He is “Labour through and through” and says the Tories aren’t serious about equality, “despite what Cameron tries to say with his spin and presentation” and says the BSS is a very positive development, long overdue. But he warns that although Labour has traditionally represented Blacks: “We are in danger of falling behind on that if we don’t increase representation in the future. It’s not just about representation, it’s also about increasing out communities’ general participation in the political process. That’s something we must work on.”
Influence and motivation
At 27 Chuka Umunna has been in main street politics, Influenced by his father who is a died when he was 13. Chuka recalls moment with his father saying “It had a huge influence on my life. I had to grow up very, very quickly.” He added: “Politically my father had a big influence on me. He spoke out against the corruption in Nigeria, for better governance and got involved in politics in Anambra state. He narrowly missed out on winning the governorship of that state shortly before he died in a car crash. He lost because he refused to bribe anyone and was standing on an anti-corruption ticket.
Also motivating were his experiences while growing – In my youth I also often visited my father’s native Nigeria and came face to face with the extreme poverty one sees in Africa in the heart wrenching appeal videos produced by the likes of Oxfam and Comic Relief every year. I simply could not understand why some had so much, whilst others had so little. From there sprung a desire to do something about it and the other challenges we face.
he is presently a School Governor of Sunnyhill Primary School and sits on the Board of Sunnyhill Children’s Centre, both in Streatham Wells. He lives on Streatham High Road.
In addition, he sits on the Board of Generation Next, a not for profit social enterprise which provides activities for young people in London, and has been involved charitable youth work in Lambeth too.
He is a patron of Latimer Creative Media, a social enterprise which trains young people in digital media and a supporter of Cassandra Learning Centre, a charity raising awareness and working to stop domestic violence.
Prior to becoming Labour’s parliamentary candidate in Streatham, Chuka was Vice Chair of Streatham Labour Party from 2004 to 2008 and had held a variety of positions throughout the local party.
In the May 2010 general election, Chuka was elected to represent Streatham having received 20,037 votes, with the number of votes received by Labour rising from 18,950 in the previous general election in 2005. Turnout in Streatham increased by 11.5 percentage points at 62.8% compared with 51.3% in 2005.
He is a member of the GMB and Unite trade unions and sits on the Management Committee of progressive pressure group, Compass.
Since becoming an MP, he has been elected on to the Treasury select committee and become Ed Miliband’s parliamentary private secretary.
In October 2011, Chuka was appointed to the Shadow Cabinet as Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, replacing the Rt Hon John Denham MP who announced his resignation from Shadow Cabinet.
In this role, Mr Umunna leads the Opposition Shadow Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) team, leading for the opposition on a wide range of issues including business, enterprise, science and universities.
3a Mount Ephraim Road, Streatham, London, SW16 1NQ
Tel: 020 8769 5063
Spotlight on Gbenga Elegbeleye’s contribution
“Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye was recently appointed as a Member of the CAF Disciplinary Board. He is a member of IBB Golf Club and a recipient of several awards”
Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye motivated by the desire to serve his people in higher capacity, resigned his appointment as Chairman Ondo Waste Management Board in 2006, to contest elections into the Federal House of Representatives.
- Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Sports
- Member House Committee on Defence
- Member House Committee on Appropriation
- Member House Committee on Works
- Member House Committee on Environment
- Member House Committee on Rural Development
- Member House Committee on Inter-parliamentary Affairs
- Member House Committee on Solid Minerals
As a member of the House of Representatives, he attracted several projects to his Federal Constituency. These include:
- Neighbourhood Sports Centre Iye road, Arigidi
- Sports Stadium at Oyinmo St, Ikare
- National Library Ikare
- Extension of electrification poles to Ojeka camp road; Odo Irun electrification, Oyimo, Ogunsusi road, Ilepa Ikare
- Erosion control and school furniture in Ogbagi
- Block of classrooms in the following schools, St George’s Pry School, Okeagbe, Salem School, Ekan Ikare, AUD School V Ishakunmi, Ikare, AUD School 2, Iku, Ikare, Local Govt Pry School Ajowa, Ebenezer Pry School Okorun, Ikare
- Several boreholes in most towns and villages, among many others
After serving as Director General, National Sports Commission, Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye was recently appointed as a Member of the CAF Disciplinary Board. He is a member of IBB Golf Club and a recipient of several awards and honours. These includes, Fellow of the Nigeria Institute of Local Govt and Public Administration; Fellow, Chattered Institute of Public Administration; Fellow African Business School; Fellow, Certified Institute of Sales Management; Patron, SWAN, FCT; Patron SWAN, Ondo State; Patron NUJ, Ondo State; Gold Personality Award by Skye Sports; African Film Academy Award for Sports Development; National Youth Council Award for National Development; City People Award for Excellence in Politics; African Leadership Award for Sports Development among several others.
Hon Gbenga Elegbeleye is happily married to Solape, they are blessed with four children
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