Sunday, February 17, 2019

Reuben Abati

    Let’s talk turkey about Turkey

Let’s talk turkey about Turkey

I was shocked by the trenchant reaction to my piece on the July 15 attempted coup in Turkey from at least two persons. The piece titled “Nigerians and the Failed Coup in Turkey” (The Guardian, Sunday, July 17) had fetched a mail and direct messages from a concerned Nigerian who objected to my description of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan [...]

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    The bleaching, chameleon crowd

The bleaching, chameleon crowd

I wrote a piece recently, a tribute to the late veteran actress Bukky Ajayi and the multi-instrumentalist OJB Jezreel, in which I raised a number of issues, including how in Nollywood today, there is an obsession with the whitening of skin, an anti-Negritude yellowing, what I referred to as “the bleaching, chameleon crowd of Nollywood beauties.” The various reactions to [...]

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    All protocol(s) observed

All protocol(s) observed

Nigerians love events and ceremonies.  The engine of governance in fact runs on this special fuel, which in many ways has become an occasional excuse for waste and idleness. I have in the course of work attended and compered many of such events; one thing that I find curious is the obsession with acknowledgements. If you are the compere at [...]

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    Nigerians and the failed coup in Turkey

Nigerians and the failed coup in Turkey

Turkey is about five hours away from Nigeria by air, about 2, 634 miles from here, but the night there was a coup attempt in Turkey, July 15, with soldiers shutting down parts of Ankara and Istanbul, you’d think Ankara is a city somewhere in Nigeria and Istanbul is an extension of our country. Commentaries kept flying up and down [...]

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    Theresa May, Melaye and the leader’s wife

Theresa May, Melaye and the leader’s wife

“Have you been to Bourdillon? Or rather I should ask when are you going to Bourdillon?”“What’s happening?”“I hear people are paying solidarity visits to the Tinubus to express their dismay over Senator Dino Melaye’s assault on Senator Remi Tinubu, wife of the APC National Leader.”“Assault?”“That is precisely what it is.  Assault. Sexual harassment. Abuse. Threat of rape. Definite expression of [...]

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    Two lives and other stories

Two lives and other stories

Two lives lost recently in the creative industry convey useful messages in terms of the import of their careers and the circumstances of their departure: the elderly actress, simply known as Bukky Ajayi, and the music entrepreneur, multi-talented artiste, producer and musician, Babatunde Okungbowa, popularly known as OJB Jezreel. Bukky Ajayi died aged 82, and she has been well mourned [...]

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    ‘Biafrexit’ is different from Brexit

‘Biafrexit’ is different from Brexit

What has the United Kingdom just done to itself, its people and the future of its youth? It is difficult to fully understand why a country in taking a decision about its future will decide on a false option that seems to negate long-term interests.  And this, just because a total of 17.4 million people out of over 61 million [...]

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    The game has changed

The game has changed

“My brother, I think all the people saying they have not seen any change should by now be convinced that truly, truly, the game has changed.”“Football? Euro 2016? Brexit?”“What is wrong with you?”“Or may be you are talking about the death of Stephen Keshi and Shuaibu Amodu and the fact that Nigeria’s House of Football needs to be re-organized.”“I really [...]

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    America and the man-no-be-wood Nigerian lawmakers

America and the man-no-be-wood Nigerian lawmakers

There has been no shortage of controversy and hair-raising incidents from the 8thNational Assembly of Nigeria, but nothing breaks the heart more than the name-them-shame-them letter that has been sent to the Speaker of the House of Representatives by the US Ambassador in which he accused three Nigerian lawmakers of sexual misconduct during an April 7-13, 2016 participation in the [...]

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    Dis Fela Sef!: He lives

Dis Fela Sef!: He lives

On the occasion of his 80th birthday, Benson Idonije, who is arguably Nigeria’s most informed analyst of jazz music and an enthusiastic promoter of popular culture and music has released for public review and consideration an absolutely well-informed biography of Fela, the Afro-beat music maestro. The book is a useful contribution in my opinion. But the first thing I noticed- signposted [...]

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    June 12 annulment: Babangida’s final error

June 12 annulment: Babangida’s final error

This day, June 12 will always be remembered by those who have defied the culture of silence and conspiracy against a significant moment in Nigerian history, to remind us of how today, 23 years ago, the battle against the exit of the military from power was fought at the ballot by a determined Nigerian people. It is indeed sad that [...]

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    The national brain in recession

The national brain in recession

“Have you eaten today? If not, let me show you this new restaurant. Good food, the service girls specially attractive, the Madam herself is quite friendly.”“What are you proposing: the food, the service girls or the Madam? Sorry to disappoint you, I am fasting.”“When did you become a Muslim?”“Is it only Muslims that fast? Fasting is good for everyone’s spirit [...]

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    Muhammad Ali, the Greatest (1942-2016)

Muhammad Ali, the Greatest (1942-2016)

Muhammad Ali, who died late Friday evening aged 74, was one of the greatest icons of the 20th century, one of the world’s greatest boxers of all time, and certainly in his time, and during the era that he dominated the ring, the greatest among his contemporaries, the inimitable master of his game. The polyvalent nature of his talent: athlete, [...]

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    Tomato scarcity as metaphor

Tomato scarcity as metaphor

One of the major news items in circulation has been the scarcity of tomato. Incidentally, Nigeria is (was) the 14th largest producer of tomato in the world and the second largest producer in Africa, after Egypt, but our country hardly produces enough to meet the local demand of about 2.3 million tonnes, and lacks the capacity to ensure an effective storage [...]

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    The Niger Delta Avengers  

The Niger Delta Avengers  

Niger Delta Avengers is the name of a new group of militants in the Niger Delta who claim to be different from the former agitators and militants who operated between 2006 and 2009, largely under the umbrella of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND). The title of this group may well serve as the thematic and [...]

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    Deregulation and the politics of public policy

Deregulation and the politics of public policy

This thing called democracy, particularly the Nigerian brand, never ceases to throw up new and intriguing lessons about the relationship between government and the people, and the larger, complex socio-political environment. I had gone to Lagos on an assignment in the last two days of the year 2011, when around midnight I received a phone call from someone close to [...]

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Exchange Rates

February 15, 2019USDGBPEUR
INTERBANK306397354
LAGOS362475413
KANO361474413
PH361475412
ABUJA362476413
NOTE: The black market rates represent the most prevalent. They could be slightly higher or lower among different sellers.
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