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Catholic Medics say technology without adequate safety is immoral

ITRealms :  The Association of Catholic Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (ACMPN) has declared that the application of any technology w...

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Monday, July 24, 2017

Catholic Medics say technology without adequate safety is immoral

The Association of Catholic Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (ACMPN) has declared that the application of any technology without adequate assurance of safety is immoral, reports ITRealms.

Rising from its 12th scientific conference and annual general meeting with the theme Genetically-Modified Organisms: How Harmful, Harmless or Beneficial? which took place at the Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA), Port Harcourt from 6th to 8th July, 2017, the group noted that food and adequate nutrition are among the basic needs of people; and so the case for improved methods of food production and distribution is legitimate and noble.

ACMPN in a communique made available to ITRealms at the weekend and endorsed by the National President, Dr. Emmanuel Okechukwu and Secretary, Local Organising Committee (LOC), Dr. Nera Kadiri-Eneh, pointed out that strict control is necessary in the introduction and deployment of new technologies in such area as the manipulation of genetic materials across species, the effects of which we may not predict or mitigate.

“We commend the efforts by the government in establishing the GMO regulatory and development agencies. However, it would appear that both funding and technical capacity render them ill-equipped to effectively and efficiently carry out their essentially patriotic roles. In the current scenario, the processes of regulating GMOs are skewed in favour of the international promoters and merchants of GMOs who wield strong financial influences. 

"Thus, without substantially exploiting the existing safe and natural technologies neither of agricultural advancements nor of our vast land and water resources (including the new pro-biotic microbial technology), dabbling into the controversial GMO technology is overtly precarious,” the group said.

They stressed their endorsement of the position of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria expressed at the sensitization workshop on faith-based perspectives on GMOs which was co-hosted by the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria on February 7, 2017 in Abuja, to the effect that in order to protect the health of Nigerians and the integrity of our agricultural landscape as well as national food security, the Precautionary Principle should be applied.

In addition, ACMPN said they aligned with the position of eminent Nigerian Christian and Muslim scholars convoked by the Nigerian Inter-Religious Committee (NIREC) which in 2016 evaluated some 250 documented evidences and interacted with the Nigerian GMO regulatory and development agencies on the issues of GMO safety.

Further, the committee concluded that there are illegal GMOs already circulating in the country as foods, which are unknown to, and unregulated by the designated agencies. Also, other illegal and unverified GMO crops are in dissemination within the country’s agricultural map. This situation is highly deplored as it portends grave dangers to family health and national food security.

A total of 77 participants from 16 states and the Federal Capital Territory as well as 14 dioceses attended the events.

Uboshe Uboshe/GEE

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Pix: Onu Ogbonnia, Minister Science & Technology
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Mohammed mourns Adebayo Faleti, says a colossus is gone



The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has described the death of renowned author, poet, broadcaster and actor, Pa Adebayo Faleti at the age of 86, as a huge loss to the country's Creative Sector in particular and to the entire nation in general, reports ITRealms.

In a statement issued in Abuja on Monday, the Minister said Pa Faleti was a trailblazer and a colossus across many genres, who left an indelible footprint in the Nigerian landscape.

He said generations of authors, poets, broadcasters and actors owe Pa Faleti a debt of gratitude for his dedication, hard work and love of country.

Alhaji Mohammed commiserated with the family and friends of the departed, as well as all practitioners in the sector, and prayed that God will comfort them and grant repose to the soul of the departed.


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Packaging technology for showcase in West Africa

The producers of process and packaging technologies are for showcase at the forthcoming West Africa Agrofood 2017 slated for Accra, Ghana, reports ITRealms.

The German trade fair specialists, FairTrade confirmed to ITRealms that the 4th edition of Agrofood & Plastprintpack West Africa slated for 05-07 December 2017 at the Accra International Conference Centre in Accra, Ghana.

ITRealms gathered that producers of process and packaging technology obviously see great chances for business in Ghana and the surrounding West African countries, hence they are participating in this event.

Official national pavilions, ITRealms gathered, have been confirmed by Algeria, Belarus, France and the Netherlands, in addition to leading exhibitors from 10 countries.

According to VDMA German Food Processing and Packaging Association, Ghanaian imports of process and packaging technology increased by 10 per cent in 2016 to 77 million euro whereas West African imports of the same also went up by 10 per cent to 557 million euro.

Also, the association said, Ghanaian imports in the plastics, printing and packaging sector rose sharply last year, as Plastics technology up 4 per cent to 23.4 million euro; Printing and paper technology up 32 per cent to 22.4 million euro; and Packaging technology up 2 per cent to 30.1 million euro.


FairTrade told ITRealms they were not surprised that producers of process and packaging technology saw the opportunity in Ghana and its surrounding West African countries.

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Sunday, July 23, 2017

Genetically-Modified Organisms: How Harmful, Harmless or Beneficial?

Communique@ITRealms: 

PREAMBLE
The Association of Catholic Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (ACMPN) held its 12th scientific conference and annual general meeting with the theme Genetically-Modified Organisms: How Harmful, Harmless or Beneficial? It took place at the Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA), Port Harcourt from 6th to 8th July, 2017A total of 77 participants from 16 states and the Federal Capital Territory as well as 14 dioceses attended the events.

The pre-conference retreat and daily Holy Masses were celebrated by the national chaplain of the Association (Rev. Fr. Dr. Emmanuel Anagor). We received a goodwill message from Dr. John Lee - president of the International Federation of Catholic Medical Associations (FIAMC), headquartered at the Vatican.

The conference addressed thissues of genetically-modified organisms (foods) and their introduction in Nigeria from various perspectives. The keynote address (Let Us Exercise Caution in Trying to be Masters of the Earth) was presented by the Bishop of the Catholic diocese of Port Harcourt, His Lordship, Most Rev. Dr. Camillus Etokudoh, represented by Very Rev. Monsignor Dr. Pius Kii.

Other dignitaries that addressed our conference were:
· Dr. Rose Gidado (Nigeria chapter coordinator of Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology) – Family and national food security ramifications of GMOs;
· Dr. Bassey Nnimmo - GMOs and biosafety;
· Dr. Rufus Ebegba (Director-General, National Biotechnology Development Agency) (represented) – Biosafety and the regulation of GMOs in developing countries;
· Prof. Best Ordinioha – The medical and health implications of GMOs;
· Prof. Victor Wakwe - Ethical perspectives on the introduction of GMOs in developing countries;
· Dr Kinsley Douglas – Retooling the community-based strategies to improve family health in Nigeria;
· Dr. A. Fajola – How best to involve medical doctors in health insurance to achieve universal health coverage; and
· Dr. Emmanuel Okechuwu – Bioethical approach to infertility management and introduction to NaProTechnology (Natural Procreative Technology).

A society is measured by how well it cares for its vulnerable members particularly women, children, disabled and the aged. The deaths and destructions currently being endured by Nigerians in different parts of the country are unacceptable, and we urged the government to step up efforts in order to reassure citizens of its capacity to protect lives and properties. Because when a farmer is killed or people are kidnapped or murdered or maimed, or school children are molested, families and the nation suffer irreparably. 

Observations
The following salient points featured in the various presentations, discussions and interventions.
1. Food and adequate nutrition are among the basic needs of people; and so the case for improved methods of food production and distribution is legitimate and noble. However, the application of a technology without adequate assurance of safety is immoral.

2. Specifically, strict control is necessary in the introduction and deployment of new technologies in such area as the manipulation of genetic materials across species, the effects of which we may not predict or mitigate. For example, it took the global community about two centuries to recognize the grave harm which the on-going industrial/technological developments have brought to the environment and human health (depletion of ozone layer, global warming, flooding, skin cancers, etc.).

3. We commended the efforts by the government in establishing the GMO regulatory and development agencies. However, it would appear that both funding and technical capacity render them ill-equipped to effectively and efficiently carry out their essentially patriotic roles. In the current scenario, the processes of regulating GMOs are skewed in favour of the international promoters and merchants of GMOs who wield strong financial influences. Thus, without substantially exploiting the existing safe and natural technologies neither of agricultural advancements nor of our vast land and water resources (including the new pro-biotic microbial technology), dabbling into the controversial GMO technology is overtly precarious.

4. We endorsed the position of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Nigeria expressed at the sensitization workshop on faith-based perspectives on GMOs which was co-hosted by the Catholic Secretariat of Nigeria on February 7, 2017 in Abuja, to the effect that in order to protect the health of Nigerians and the integrity of our agricultural landscape as well as national food security, the Precautionary Principle should be applied; and

5. Further, we aligned with the position of eminent Nigerian Christian and Muslim scholars convoked by the Nigerian Inter-Religious Committee (NIREC) which in 2016 evaluated some 250 documented evidences and interacted with the Nigerian GMO regulatory and development agencies on the issues of GMO safety. The committee concluded that there are illegal GMOs already circulating in the country as foods, which are unknown to, and unregulated by the designated agencies. Also, other illegal and unverified GMO crops are in dissemination within the country’s agricultural map. This situation is highly deplored as it portends grave dangers to family health and national food security.

Recommendations 3:

1. The conference called on the government to re-commit to working for all Nigerians; and to truly develop a national consciousness on shared values. To lead Nigerians to possess, take ownership and protect this nation morally, socially, politically, and economically in a truly independent and progressive manner. The protection of lives of everyone, including the unborn Nigerians is a sacred duty for all, especially those in authority.

2. The government to adequately train the personnel, equip and fund the national agencies mandated to protect the health and lives of citizens, the environment and our natural resources. In this way, these agencies will not become mere facilitators and local proxy organizations for global businesses and so-called development partners whose underlying targets may be inimical to the strategic interests of Nigeria and her peoples.

3. We advocated for government to legislate and strictly regulate and monitor the introduction of GMOs in the country including express labelling of the products.

4. There should be adequate funding for research and development by the GMO regulatory agencies so that Nigeria can derive any benefits from the GMO technology. But more importantly, to protect our people and environment from the many possible dangers thereto: decreasing food productivity, food gene extermination, corruption of soil ecology, food insecurity and biological imperialism as well as various health hazards on human beings, the environment, animals and plants.

5. The conference called on Catholic doctors to engage in health insurance and especially community-based health insurance to help citizens access health care, and for Nigeria to achieve universal health coverage and, so improve its currently unacceptably low indices. It also called on all doctors of goodwill to adopt healthier, ethically and culturally adequate approaches in their maternal, child and family health care, rather than the values of the “culture of death”.

6. The Association of Catholic Medical Practitioners of Nigeria re-committed itself to promote the sanctity of human life, marriage between a man and a woman, natural family planning and NaProTechnology in pursuit of family health and national development.

Conclusion
We thanked God for a successful scientific conference and annual general meeting.

Signed:
Dr. Emmanuel Okechukwu and Dr. Margaret Mezie-Okoye President Chairman, LOC for the Association of Catholic Medical Practitioners of Nigeria (ACMPN).


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Operation Araba in history: How Murtala murdered Ironsi, Fajuyi

The ancient city of Ibadan comes alive on Friday July 29, 2017 as dignitaries from all walks of life converge to remember that gallant, brave and outstanding soldier, Col Adekunle Fajuyi, who was murdered 50 years ago by Northern military officers who massed on the capital of the Western Region to take out then Head of State, Major General Johnson Aguiyi- Ironsi.

The International Conference at the University of Ibadan is the place to be as prolific writer and teacher, Prof Niyi Osundare, speaks on “Fajuyi and the Politics of Remembrance”. Fiery preacher, Pastor Tunde Bakare and Prof Wale Adebanwi will spice his thoughts. I spoke with a 27-year-old a few weeks back and I was shocked he had no idea who Fajuyi was. And it quickly dawned on me that those who stopped the teaching of History in our schools have succeeded in wiping off the   memory   card of our pertinent stories .They want us to be blank but we must keep telling our stories.

Adekunle Fajuyi did not commit any crime than the fact that he was playing host to Ironsi on July 29,1966 when Northern officers who staged a revenge coup following the Kaduna Nzeogwu-led coup of January 15,1966 struck.

Disgruntled Northern officers led by Murtala Mohammed, TY Danjuma, Martin Adamu and others spearheaded a rebellion within the army after the event of January. On one occasion, Murtala called Ironsi a “fool” in the presence of other officers and threatened to avenge the death of his Northern officer colleagues. His position as the Inspector of Signals became quite veritable for the planning of the revenge coup nicknamed “Operation Araba”(Araba is Hausa word for let’s divide it).

Murtala and his Northern colleagues had totally lost confidence in the Nigerian federation and their plan was to break Northern region from Nigeria. Their politicians had earlier pulled out of the Federal Parliament in 1953 after the crisis that followed their rejection of Enahoro’s motion that Nigeria should become independent in 1956.They produced an eight-point demand which effectively wanted a confederal Nigeria as a precondition to return. As their coup began on July 29, 1966, it was Murtala who coordinated the take-over of the International Airport in Lagos,an edifice to be named after him 10 years later.

When he and his troops arrived the airport, they hijacked planes to ferry their families back to the North as a prelude to the exit of the region from Nigeria. An Igbo officer (Captain Okoye) was captured by them and tied to an iron cross and beaten to death. In Military units across Lagos, Kaduna and Ibadan, Northern troops went gaga and murdered their Igbo colleagues in gruesome manner, eliminating hundreds of them.

The arrowhead of the whole operation was Murtala who had close links with NPC as his Uncle Inuwa Wada was the Defence Minister. When Danjuma and co arrived Ibadan they made for the Government House where there was a detachment of 106 Artillery commanded by William Walbe from Plateau State on guard.It later came   to light that Walbe was part of the conspiracy. He later became ADC to Gowon. By some act of naivety Fajuyi’s ADC was one Lt Adamu, while Ironsi had Lt Sani Bello.

In an interview granted to an Hausa paper, Rariya in 2013, Jeremiah Useni who was a Lieutenant at the time of the coup said the following : “But while that was going on, words started going round about what the Igbo officers were saying: That they had killed the snake, but had failed to cut off the head. Which meant those of us left might make them suffer later, that there was therefore the need to finish us off. Instead of them to show remorse and apologise, they were planning another sinister attack.

We were together with Col. Remawa at the time, he was serving in Abeokuta, and we heard of a grand plot to kill our emirs. A meeting of all emirs was called in Ibadan, all our emirs gathered in Ibadan, that the head of state, Ironsi, would address them. So we said, are we going to let him come, address them and leave? Or should we just kill him or what?   Our fear was that he was in the company of our emirs, and you know bullets do not select whom to hit. What do we do? We don’t want even a single emir to die.

“We also considered arresting him at his lodge before he goes to meet with them. Col. Adekunle Fajuyi was the governor of South West at the time, and the head of state, Ironsi, was staying in his house in Ibadan. So we don’t want a situation where they would say he conspired with us. So we decided the best thing to do was to open fire there even if Governor Fajuyi was also caught, so that they would just be buried together, and that was what happened.” When the soldiers seized Ironsi, Fajuyi insisted on going with him as he considered it a betrayal of valour to abandon his guest at the most decisive hour.

They pushed them into a Land Rover and drove them to Lalupon on Iwo Road where the duo were shot dead. When the killings were done with, senior Northern officers converged at the Ikeja Cantonment in Lagos. Brigadier Ogundipe who was the most senior surviving officer could not face them given their mood and had to send Chief of Staff (Army) Lt-Col Yakubu Gowon to mediate. It was 28-year-old Murtala who was most recalcitrant as he insisted that Northern troops should destroy Lagos, pull out to the North and secede.

When the Military Governor of the East, Lt-Colonel Ojukwu managed to reach Ogundipe, the latter told him that Northern troops had stated their conditions for a “ceasefire”: (1) the repatriation of Northerners and Southerners to their respective regions (2) the secession of Northern Region from Nigeria.

Ojukwu’s   response was “let them go if that is what they want”. He later urged Ogundipe to take charge since Ironsi’s whereabouts was unknown and promised to make a broadcast 30 minutes after Ogundipe in his support. But Northern officers were no longer in the mood for a Southern rule. Ogundipe got it in clear terms when a Northern Sergeant told him: “I do not take orders from you until my (Northern) captain comes”.

A Northern Private equally refused to obey orders from the Military Governor of Lagos State, Major Mobolaji Johnson. When Gowon gauged the mood of his northern colleagues, he called the head of the Police Special Branch, Alhaji MD Yusuf and informed him that the Northern soldiers had drafted a speech declaring the secession of the Northern region from Nigeria.

He asked for a lawyer to look at the speech which   was influenced by Murtala and Major Martin Adamu.A Northern judge,Mr Justice Bello who was in Lagos at the time told the soldiers that all the nation’s money was locked in the Central Bank of Nigeria in Lagos and asked them how they would pay their soldiers after secession without   access to the CBN.Some of the soldiers quickly went to throw cordon around the CBN.

The Northern officers were joined by the British and American ambassadors, Sir Francis Cumming-Bruce and Elbert Matthews, respectively. Among other civilians with them were two Northern judges,head of Northern region’s civil service, Ahajji Ali Akilu,Muktar Tahir, Chief Justice Adetokunbo Ademola,Mr Justice Bello,the chairman of the Public Service Commission, Alhaji Sule Katagum. There were also permanent secretaries such as Alhaji Musa Daggash, Abdul Aziz Attah, Yusuf Gobir, Allison Ayida, Ibrahim Damcida, etc.

Police representatives included the Inspector -General of police, Alhaji Kam Salem and the head of the Special Branch,MD Yussuf From three days they argued ferociously over the soul of Nigeria with the civilians trying hard to convince the soldiers that the North had everything to lose if it should secede as it would be landlocked between the South and the sea.It was a cul-de-sac as the coup was not planned with any objective for Nigeria as a whole but a mere revenge against the Igbo and to move the North out of Nigeria. After they failed to convince the meeting on secession and with the country without a government for three days, the Northern officers agreed to drop their plan to secede but only on the condition that the most senior officer among them Lt-Col Gowon be appointed the Head of State.

This was done for the 32-year-old in spite of the presence of more senior officers in the chain of command (all Southerners) like Brigadier Ogundipe,Commodore Wey, Col Robert Adebayo, Lt -Cols Nwaw, Imo Kurubo, Effiong,Njoku and several other Lt-Cols who were commissioned before Gowon. Adekunle Fajuyi The initial coup speech given by Gowon was poorly edited that it still dripped with the poisonous mindset of Murtala and his “Araba” colleagues.

Hear him: “I  have now come to the most difficult part, or the most important part, of this statement. I am doing it, conscious of the great disappointment and heartbreak it will cause all true and sincere lovers of Nigeria and of Nigerian unity both at home and abroad, especially our brothers in the Commonwealth.

 “As a result of the recent events and the other previous similar ones, I have come to strongly believe that we cannot honestly and sincerely continue in this wise, as the basis of trust and confidence in our unitary system of government has not been able to stand the test of time. I have already remarked on the issues in question. Suffice to say that, putting all considerations to test-political, economic, as well as social-the base for unity is not there or is so badly rocked, not only once but several times.

I therefore feel that we should review the issue of our national standing and see if we can help stop the country from drifting away into utter destruction” (Yakubu Gowon, August1, 1966). The “difficult part” that was to cause “heartbreak” had been deleted from the speech of course and it was time to Go-On-With- One-Nigeria on their own terms. When the same folks today tell us that the “unity of Nigeria is not negotiable”, they are definitely not talking  about the unity they once questioned as narrated above. I think what they are saying is that “our conquest of Nigeria is not negotiable"



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Saturday, July 22, 2017

Fefegha commends Dickson over UNIAFRICA VC

The Education Commissioner in Bayelsa State, Elder Markson Fefegha has commended Governor Henry Seriake Dickson over the appointment of Prof. Christian Daniel Jacobs as Vice Chancellor of University of Africa, Toru-Orua, reports ITRealms.

He also gave kudos to Dickson for his choice of Dr. Ghalib Fahad as Dean, School of Foundation Studies of the University.

According to him, choice of the Vice-Chancellor and Dean has further reinforced the governor’s commitment to establishing world class institutions to expand the frontiers of knowledge as well as appointing versatile and renowned intellectuals, with a penchant for quality service delivery and international best practice to facilitate development in the Niger-Delta region.

He said with the appointment of the duo, the University of Africa is set to take off as planned this September and advised intending students, who are seeking quality education to take advantage of the window of opportunity open to them. 

Elder Fefegha pointed out that, the university is not only ready and dedicated to changing the erstwhile narrative of the region by offering qualitative education, but also distinct in its vision of inculcating in our youths, the ability to transfer their knowledge to capacity for sustainable development.

Dr. Ghalib Fahad (PhD) is an experienced academic who has spent over thirty years in the United Kingdom educational sector, Director of various Undergraduate and Post graduate programmes in Middlesex University Business School, London, for over two decades. 

He has a range of administrative and external university experience and leadership. Supervised several Doctorate Degrees and countless Master’s Degree Programmes. 

Prof. Christian Daniel Jacobs (D. Ed, PhD) is a renowned international academic and researcher. He has more than forty years’ experience in the tertiary domain at the University of Pretoria and the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa. He is the previous Vice-Chancellor of the University of Chrisland, Abeokuta, Ogun State. He is an author of numerous textbooks with contributions in Educational Psychology, Entrepreneurship, Quality Assurance and E-Learning. He was the study leader and promoter of forty eight Masters’ Degree students and twenty three Doctoral students.

The education commissioner also used the opportunity to commend Dickson for the appointment of Prof. Timothy Epidi, as the new Provost of the Isaac Jasper Boro College of Education, Sagbama. 

Further, he expressed appreciation to the pioneer provost, Prof. Saviour Agoro, for his selfless service and sacrifice in instilling moral and academic discipline in the institution during his tenure and wished him well in his future endeavors, while also urging the new provost to consolidate on the pioneering efforts of academic excellence the outgoing provost has set.


Uj. N. Dominic/GEE
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Mushin apprehension worries TMG

The Transition Monitoring Group (TMG) has expressed concern over the tension building around the elections for the Local governments and the Local Council Development Authorities (LCDAs) in Lagos State, this Saturday, reports ITRealms.

The TMG, through its Chairperson, TMG – Abuja, AbiolaAkiyode – Afolabi  and South West Coordinator, TMG, Lagos, SulaimonArigbagbu, told ITRealms they were particularly worried about the incessant violence in some areas of Lagos, especially in Mushin due to issues surrounding the nomination of candidates and the tension building up in some quarters due to undemocratic activities of some of the major political parties in the run up to the election and the impact of such tension for the coming elections. 

“We are also concerned about the speed with which the Lagos State House of Assembly passed an amendment to the Lagos Electoral Law regulating the conduct of election to allow for the substitution of a party candidate before the elections,” TMG lamented.

The new bill, they noted, allows a political party to withdraw and substitute candidate not later than three (3) days to LASIEC verification. Just as it also statesd that any candidate could withdraw from contesting not later than three (3) days to the election by personally taking a letter of withdrawal to the State Secretary of the party involved who must also personally take same to LASIEC not later than 12noon, three (3) days to the election.

TMG is worried about the implications and dangers such amendment portends on the credibility of the Saturday, 22nd Lagos State Local Government Area (LGA) Council elections as scheduled by LAISEC. Conduct of credible, free, fair and legitimate elections cannot be achieved in this kind of arrangement with an amendment taken place just three days to election. 

Furthermore, we are also apprehensive of the implications of the multiplicity of court cases relating to party candidatures giving the fact that the election is just three days away. Such conflicting decisions could cast aspersion on the credibility and legitimacy of the elections.

“We also express displeasure over the latest pronouncement by the authorities of the Lagos State Independent Electoral Commission (LAISEC) regarding its planned accreditation plan and observer's deployment for the Saturday Local Government Election in Lagos State,” TMG said.

Our concern is further heightened by the refusal by LASIEC to deploy Card Reader for the conduct of this coming elections. This is an anti-climax to the widely acknowledged improvement to our Electoral System during the 2015 General Elections.

 As a flagship organization on election and governance monitoring in Nigeria, TMG is seriously concerned about plethora of allegations trailing the preparations for the election and the lopsided observer’s deployment plan adopted by LAISEC. TMG urges the commission to reconsider its decision on these issues. 

TMG further called on LASIEC to ensure highest standard in the conduct and administration of the coming Lagos LG/LCDAs elections, by carrying out their responsibilities in accordance with law, and without fear or favour.

“We hope that LASIEC is committed to an open, genuine, free and appropriate process that is devoid of any suspicion misgiving in the process leading to the election,” they urged.


Ayo Midele/GEE 
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Friday, July 21, 2017

9mobile, a reflection of Nigerianness

The emergence of 9mobile into the Nigerian telecommunications depicts a true product of what Nigerians can offer this industry, says its chief executive officer, Mr. Boye Olusanya, reports ITRealms.

Speaking at the official launch of 9mobile in Lagos, Olusanya told ITRealms that the new name and brand is a deliberate representation and confirmation of its Nigerian heritage, 9ja-centricity, and another phase of its evolution after 9 years of operations in Nigeria.

Olusanya who was accompanied by management team of mobile network operator including the Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, Mrs. Funke Igbodaro, the Chief Financial Officer, Adebisi Idowu and Ken Ogunjiofor, said the change is a positive one especially as the brand is known for innovation data and vibrant brand.

“Those who made this brand what it is in the last nine years are here to make it better,” Olusanya stressed.


He also noted that although Etisalat Nigeria name and brand have changed, but assured customers that the values on which it operates remain the same and intact.

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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Become media entrepreneurs, alumni tell MAPOLY students

The 1992 set of the Association of Mass Communication Students of the Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta, Ogun State have told the Mass Communication students of the institution to explore how to become media entrepreneurs instead of looking for white-collar jobs.

Officials and members of the set, known as AMACOS ’92, said this on Tuesday when they came to their alma mater, which was known as Ogun State Polytechnic during their time in the school, for a mentoring programme in the department.

The association, during the programme, taught the students practical aspects of public relations, advertising, print journalism, broadcast journalism and blogging to mark their 25 years post-graduation anniversary from the institution.

The programme, which had as theme: “Classroom Experience and Post-Classroom Reality,” was held at the auditorium of the Mass Communication Department.

It had in attendance the Rector, MAPOLY, Prof. Oludele Itiola; the Director, School of Communications and Information Technology, Dr. Goke Raufu; the Head of Department, Kolawole Amos; and the Sub-Dean, Lekan Oketokun.

An alumnus and Founder, Rave FM 93.7, Osogbo, Osun State, Femi Adefila, who spoke on: “How to become a successful media entrepreneur,” told the students that the days of white-collar jobs were gone, advising them to develop the mentality of job creators.

Adefila urged them to have the “can-do spirit” because, according to him, nothing is impossible.

"You must be pregnant with ideas and deliver it. You should dream big and always think out of the box. At times, there may not even be any box,” he stated.

Another alumnus and Editor, Nigerian Tribune, Debo Abdulai, who spoke on: “How a journalist can remain relevant in today's newspaper world,” noted that for a journalist to stand out, he or she must be creative and constantly seek knowledge by reading wide.

Abdulai also listed adaptability, carving a niche for oneself, taking initiatives, integrity and nurturing relationship as some of the ingredients that would make the students relevant in the media practice after leaving school.

He noted that the media industry, especially print journalism, in the country was striking, as circulation had dropped, identifying online media as the biggest threat.

“Your success as a journalist isn't just dependent on the right skills and experience, it is dependent on you showing initiative. How you show initiative plays an active role in your career and it determines how far you will go in your career,” he said.

The Publisher, The Eagle Online, Dotun Oladipo, who spoke on online publishing, allayed the fears that online journalism might kill newspapers, arguing that newspapers would continue to survive despite the penetration of online media.

Oladipo challenge the students to start making money from their smart phones even while in school. 

The Vice-Chairman of AMACOS ’92, Adekunle Adeshina, speaking on public relations, urged the students to dare to be different in whatever they were involved in.
“Walk with confidence and engage in self improvement,” Adeshina said.

The “hairman of the set, Adekunle Adams, said the association in the past had donated equipment worth over N2 million to the department.

The ex-students equally donated a giant generator to the department on Tuesday.
Adams expressed the support of the set for the transformation of MAPOLY to a university of technology.

Appreciating the former students, the Rector, who was represented by Raufu, said the Department of Mass Communication was the flagship of the institution.



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Communications Minister applauds NBA for embracing ICT

The Communications Minister, Barrister Abdur-Raheem Adebayo Shittu has applauded the leadership of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for the giant feat of striving to reform the practice of the legal profession leveraging on Information Communication Technology (ICT), reports ITRealms.

Welcoming NBA President, A.B.Mahmoud and his team in his office, the minister expressed delight over the resolve of the Association to engage ICT in refining legal practice, saying advocacy and capacity building are veritable means to make Nigerian lawyers more effective and efficient.

Shittu also pledged to support the forthcoming 2017 NBA National Conference, saying that he will use his good offices to actualize the objective of the conference by encouraging agencies under the supervision of his ministry such as the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) to give logistics support to NBA for the conference.

The minister who promised to attend the conference billed for Lagos between August 18 and 24, 2017, alongside lawyers in the ministry and agencies under him, said he is proud to be one of the 11 versatile lawyers that are current members of the 37 members Federal Executive Council.

The NBA President said the visit was an advocacy one and also to seek support and cooperation for the conference of the minster and agencies under the ministry, stressing that NBA is out to gather necessary support for the success of the conference having contacted the Law Societies of England and South Africa.

This year’s conference, he said focuses on development of institutions of government, considering the various challenges the nation is facing.

Other members in his entourage were; Prof Shehu Musa, Ibrahim Abdullahi, Dafe Akpedeye SAN, Dr. Garba Tetengi SAN and Fatima Batulu Mohammed.


Uboshe Uboshe/GEE
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Msgr Patrick Somide: Lagos archdiocese unveils funeral rites

The Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, has unveiled the programme for home coming of Very Rev. Monsignor Patrick Somide, who passed on at about on Thursday July 13, 2017, after a brief illness, reports ITRealms.

Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, His Grace, Dr. Alfred Adewale Martins made this known to ITRealms in a press statement Thursday in Lagos, saying that late Monsignor Somide died at about 11:15pm penultimate Thursday, at the age of 97 years.

Bishop Martins recalled that Monsignor Somide was ordained a priest during the Marian Congress in 1954.

“It has pleased the Lord to call him back home during the 2017 Marian Year in Nigeria. He has served God and His people in the Archdiocese of Lagos for 63years in different areas of life of the Archdiocese,” he said.

As said by Bishop Martins, until his death, Monsignor Somide was the oldest priest in the Archdiocese and certainly one of the oldest if not the oldest in Nigeria.

Also, until his death he was in residence at the Catholic Church of the Resurrection Magodo, Lagos.

The funeral arrangements, he said would commence on Tuesday, August 1, 2017 with at 9am when his remains would leave the mortuary for the Catholic Church of the Resurrection, for lying-in-state.

By 12 noon of same day, Bishop Martins said, Holy Mass would be celebrated at 2 pm before his remains would depart Magodo for St. Agnes Magodo for St Agnes Catholic Church, Maryland, for lying-in-state

This, the Bishop said would be followed by an all-night vigil of Masses to be led by Chief Celebrant himself, His Grace, Most Rev. Alfred Adewale Martins, while the homilist would be the Very Rev Msgr. Philip Hoteyin.

By 9 pm, ITRealms gathered, there would be a Holy Mass to be celebrated by Very Rev. Msgr. Bernard Okodua, with Very Rev. Fr. Felix Onemeghie, OP as homilist.

On Wednesday, August 2, this year, ITRealms reports that a 12midnight mass would be celebrated by Rev. Fr. Gabriel Adeleke and supported with a homily by: Rev. Fr. Paul Adekoya, to be followed three hours later with yet another mass and homily by Rev. Fr. Anthony Orioha, the Chaplain, St. Rita Society.

At 6:30am the late Monsignor Somide would be treated to another Holy Mass and homily by Rev. Fr. Anthony Fadairo, who is the dean, Maryland Deanery. This, ITRealms reports would be followed immediately after with the remains departing for Holy Cross Cathedral, Lagos, where His Grace, Most Rev. Alfred Adewale Martins would celebrate another holy mass with homily by Very Rev Msgr. John Aniagwu.

The final commendation, ITRealms gathered would be performed by His Eminence, Anthony Cardinal Okogie, whereas the interment follows immediately at Ikoyi Cemetery.


Remmy Nweke/ED, Ops
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9mobile debuts with new brand identity

Acclaimed Nigeria’s most innovative telecommunications company, and formerly known as Etisalat Nigeria, has unveiled its new brand identity as 9mobile, the new name and logo, reports ITRealms.

The Chief Executive Officer, 9mobile, Mr. Boye Olusanya, told ITRealms in Lagos during the unveiling on Wednesday, that the new brand identity reflects the bold and creative attributes which the organisation shares with its valued subscribers.

“The vivacity of the brand will enable the company connect more with its subscribers especially the youth,” he asserted.

Olusanya said that with the migration to a new name and brand, 9mobile promises to sustain and continuously provide innovative and value-adding propositions which it has delivered since inception 9 years ago.

“In our 9 years of operations, we have remained at the forefront of innovation and take pride in consistently delivering superior experiences to our subscribers. We continue to establish meaningful partnerships with our customers and partners by providing platforms that support their goals and aspirations,” he said.

In addition, he said, the new name and brand is a deliberate representation and confirmation of its Nigerian heritage, 9ja-centricity, and another phase of its evolution over 9 years of operations in Nigeria. Although its name and brand changes, it assured its customers that the values on which it operates remain the same.

According to Olusanya, the new logo represents resilience and continuity, and also expresses the brand’s thoughts about the future, particularly of digital technology and its continued impact on communication and human interactions. Being a number-themed logo, it reflects the network’s futuristic slant. The colour green, both its light and dark variants, reflects vibrancy, dynamism, life, and youth as well as the brand’s ‘Nigerianness’.
The CEO explained further, “With the launch of our new brand, our commitment to providing our subscribers with best-in-class telecommunications services continues. We live in a digitalized world and 9mobile is positioned to deliver more platforms, products and services using the power of technology. The vivacity of our new brand is an affirmation of our creativity and the recent launch of a volley of value adding services, such as our BlazeOn and Kwikcash service, is testament to this”.

Over the years, the telco has built a strong network which better positions 9mobile to continue delivering innovative solutions which support businesses and people. The values of innovation, customer-centricity and Quality of Service remain its guiding principles even as the new management focuses on driving efficiency and steering growth.

Corroborating the CEO’s position, the Chief Finance Officer, 9mobile, Mrs. Funke Ighodaro, told ITRealms that “the immediate focus of the business is to drive value for the benefit of its customers. The approach and timing of the rebranding is evidence of the agility and responsiveness of the business.”

She said, rebranding has commenced at all of the company’s offices, Experience Centres, online and physical touch points, to facilitate seamless integration, as 9mobile guards its position as the most customer-centric and leading innovative telecoms company in Nigeria.


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