Thursday, March 26, 2020

Azu Ishiekwene

    COVID-19 and that flight from Abuja

COVID-19 and that flight from Abuja

The trip was not planned. As concerns over the spread of COVID-19 grew and the country inched more and more towards the abnormal, I figured travel might be restricted before the end of the week. A call that Tuesday morning confirmed that feeling: I decided to travel out of Abuja immediately. What I saw at the airport and on the flight [...]

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    Unusual story as tragedy writes book of humour

Unusual story as tragedy writes book of humour

In a world where laughter is already in short supply, the outbreak and rapid spread of Coronavirus has only left us all the more depleted. The world, as we know it, has been turned on its head. Yet, in this once-in-a-lifetime experience we have examples of fate using tragedy to write the book of humour. Who could have believed that Mexico [...]

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    Thirty-nine years after, Awujale moment for Sanusi

Thirty-nine years after, Awujale moment for Sanusi

“Politicians are often very intolerant of contrary views to theirs. If one differed from them on any issue one automatically became an enemy." - Oba Sikiru Adetona The day after Governor Abdullahi Ganduje dethroned Mohammad Sanusi II, Sarkin Kano and banished him, the question that kept coming back to me was: what is going on in Sanusi’s mind? Was he in [...]

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    Obasanjo: A belated love affair

Obasanjo: A belated love affair

If words could make the dead turn in their grave, the founder of the Oodua People’s Congress (OPC), Dr. Frederick Faseun, would have rolled over last week, caught between amusement and surprise at a remarkable statement during the first anniversary lecture of his passing. On that occasion, former President Olusegun Obasanjo warned that the country risked another civil war if President [...]

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    Beyond the Oba’s knockout punch

Beyond the Oba’s knockout punch

If there was dividend for controversy, the stock of the Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdul-Rasheed Akanbi, would be perhaps the most bullish among investors in royalty, coming next in demand to that of the Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi. The Oluwo of Iwo cannot help staying out of controversy, and he goes the extra mile to stir up even the [...]

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    What has the supreme court done?

What has the supreme court done?

Not a few politicians are beginning to have second thoughts about what may be the sure path to electoral success in future. The traditional model, which was godfather plus moneybags, and then crisscrossing the country squawking like fowls with broken beaks, appears to be old school and in rapid decline. After Hope Uzodinma’s unexpected installation as Imo State governor and Douye [...]

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    INEC’s bloody axe and the political remnants

INEC’s bloody axe and the political remnants

On a hot, dusty harmattan day last week, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) loaded its gun, and pulled the trigger, terminating 74 political parties. The grieving remnants were left to bury their dead in what seemed a most unkind Valentine gift. A number of the leaders of the affected parties have refused to be consoled. They have vigorously expressed their [...]

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    Marcus Brutus and his cousins

Marcus Brutus and his cousins

One week after the Supreme Court overturned the election of Emeka Ihedioha of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as governor of Imo State and installed Hope Uzodinma of the All Progressives Congress (APC), nine lawmakers in the state house of assembly abandoned their party and joined the “winning team”. Four of them were elected on the platform of the Action Alliance [...]

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    Was it all about Meghan, the witch of Windsor?

Was it all about Meghan, the witch of Windsor?

The boy whose mother was hounded to her death by the paparazzi has come of age. And he is reminding the British establishment of everything it has tried desperately to forget about that tragedy, and more. Harry, still addressed as His Royal Highness and Duke of Sussex at the time, was not supposed to remember. He was just 13, shy and [...]

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    What the Ostrich told Amotekun

What the Ostrich told Amotekun

There’s a reason why we’re the world’s largest ostrich farm. And that reason was given yet again in legalese in the response of the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, to Amotekun, the regional security network launched by the six South west states last week. In nice words that invite the governors to hell, while still making them look forward [...]

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    The oracle and Ihedioha’s fate

The oracle and Ihedioha’s fate

He brushed it aside, saying that he would not lose sleep over the prophesy. But you could tell, even by a casual look, that it was not the new year present he was expecting. Governor Emeka Ihedioha of Imo has been trying to be a man since Father Ejike Mbaka prophesied on New Year’s Eve that his days as governor are [...]

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    2020: APC’ll survive Oshiomhole-Obaseki war, but it’s beginning of the end

2020: APC’ll survive Oshiomhole-Obaseki war, but it’s beginning of the end

In an article entitled “2019: How Atiku will lose – and other matters,” published this time last year, I made six predictions: 1) Atiku will lose 2) despite Access Bank having Diamond Bank for supper, there won’t be a rat race for size among banks and liquidity will get tighter 3) Super Eagles will reach the semi-finals of the Nations [...]

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    Story of the vanishing loaf: How to kill a local company

Story of the vanishing loaf: How to kill a local company

I met him three or four years ago. We were introduced by a mutual friend sickened by the story. What struck me about this man who I was meeting for the first time was his calmness, in spite of the story of cheating and betrayals, which he would later share.     Alfred Irabor Okoigun, son of a farmer, was born with the [...]

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    God and the politics of succession in 2023

God and the politics of succession in 2023

Politicians are not leaving anything to chance. Even before the posters for the 2019 elections have been removed, the race for 2023 has started and it’s just as charged at the national level as it is in the states. One state that is offering a spectacularly different approach to the business of the next general election is Ebonyi. Governor David Umahi [...]

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    Buhari cannot look the other way

Buhari cannot look the other way

Since we have eyes but cannot see, the Department of State Security (DSS) invited us to look again at the viral video of the invasion of Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu’s courtroom on Friday. Laughable, if it wasn’t a travesty. The previous day, the judge had given the DSS 24 hours to release the Publisher of Sahara Reporters, Omoyele Sowore, who was arrested [...]

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    Literature? What literature?

Literature? What literature?

Literature, like other art forms, is a reflection of society. It is from the society that creative writers get their ideas. Society is the subject matter of literary expression. This is one of the reasons why literature is viewed in relation to the era or age it reflects. For instance, we have literature of the various centuries across the world. Here, [...]

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Exchange Rates

March 25, 2019USDGBPEUR
INTERBANK306397354
LAGOS380478402
KANO375477498
PH380478498
ABUJA375476400
NOTE: The black market rates represent the most prevalent. They could be slightly higher or lower among different sellers.
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