Millions of Nigerians are daily lamenting their inability to obtain justice in the courts of law. They blame this ugly trend, majorly, on corruption and other self centered considerations such as status in society and influence.
Indeed, the Judiciary has, in most recent times, proved not to be the last resort for the common man, if recent events in Nigeria are anything to go by.
Confronted with the fact that Government at all levels disobey court orders, Nigerians are now helpless, disillusioned and distraught.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudfeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke says that as long as court judgments are based on nepotism and the highest bidder syndrome in law courts in Nigeria it would be difficult for ordinary Nigerians to obtain justice. Excerpts :
Nigerians are increasingly finding it difficult to get justice in the law courts in this dispensation, what do you think is wrong ?
Regarding the issue of justice, the law court is the last hope of the people. This is because their perception , the training and orientation of Judges emphasizes incorruptibility. In other words, objectivity must be their watchword, in dispensation and delivery of judgments.
No one must influence their actions with bribe or make moves to corrupt them and in the same vein the Judges must not demand for gratification or any form of inducement or favor.
The profession is such that they must shun all biases and they must remove elements of unnecessary passion, that may be based on interpersonal relationship, blood relationship and even the status of the people on trial. This is why in a democratic dispensation the structure of democracy is such that governance must be articulated through the factors of transparency, accountability, auditing and probity, as well as the essence of feedback mechanism, even in procurement, due process is expected to be employed.
Governance is embedded in the constitution of the nation which we expect the political active players to read, digest and comprehend for ease of application in the governance process.
It takes two to tango, the people who are been governed, who gave the mandate to those people who are governing them and the performance rating of those charged with the responsibility of governance.
Democracy, therefore stands on the two axis of justice and equity. In all these, the legislators are to formulate policies to regulate the environment for governance through feeling the pulse of the nation, while the executive are expected to harness and manage the resources-human and material.
The legislators are equally expected to perform oversight functions to ensure that the executive fulfill promises and do the needful without derailing from the laid down ethical principles. All these are based on the issue of social justice.
The policy formulators are so powerful by the rule of the law, to ensure that the electoral processes including campaigns equally follow due process. They further have the power to call to order, the Commissioners or Ministers on issues concerning project execution.
When all these things are done accordingly, the issue of justice and equity would have been addressed to the point of producing peace for the environment as well as sustainable development without rancor.
The level of constitutional compliance in going about the executive duties of managing approved budget by the National Assembly, as well as the welfare of the people become a matter of social interest, whereby the economic viability, environment feasibility and social justice based on the agitation level of the people, which must be critically controlled to avoid violence, insurgence and war, as indications of the collapse in the security system.
Based on the above analysis, the expected job of the Judiciary manifests clearly on the need to regulate and control the justice system emanating from the activities of government officials and the people generally. The question now is how far have we fared in the management of our justice system by the third realm of government, the Judiciary ?
Our situation in Nigeria is appalling, if we consider the relationship between the Judiciary, the security agencies and the Executive as having frictions, perhaps, because of the environment of partisan politics that polarizes issue and trivializes ethics.
This becomes a serious issue when one considers the following events of historical records : the killers of Dele Giwa are yet to be identified, fished out and brought to justice, the killers of a one time Attorney General of the Federation, the late Chief Bola Ige are yet to be identified, fished out and brought to justice.
The Nigeria state found it difficult to ensure the transparent trial of Chief James Ibori, despite all the evidences available, but Nigerians celebrated him on his return from an overseas jail after been convicted on the same matter.
Nobody pursued the extra judicial murder of Mohammed Yusuf in Police custody, but today the whole Nigeria is paying dearly for this, through the unabating vengeance of destruction by the Bok-Haram.
When is Nigeria to have universally acclaimed judgments on court litigation on various election results ?
What about the very many of such cases that have to do with the poor masses suffering in silence ?
Where lies the hope of the people and the nation generally when it comes to the issue of seeking redress ?
It was Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka who said in one of his books,’’ The man died in that person who keeps mute in the face of tyranny’’, but when one cry out and judgment goes to the highest bidder, how are we to be motivated to have our trust in the Judiciary ?
Employment in Nigeria is now about nepotism and judgement in the eyes of very many would only be received fairly by those who have right connections.
Our clamor for restructuring must therefore, extend to ensure sanctity of the Judiciary through the possible overhaul of the system to ensure corrupt elements are eased out for sanity to reign supreme.
Equally important, is the issue of freedom of the Judiciary. Generally, those who pay the piper dictate the tune. If the appointment of the leadership of the Judiciary remains with the political class, there is no way their operations would not be polarized through political interventions, interference and sentiments, thereby murdering merit to promote mediocrity in an environment of nepotism.
Another aspect is that of salary independence which is not expected to come from the political class, but be managed by government as rolled out by them with that favor of independence to manage the disbursement without going cap in hand to the political masters, whose activities the Judiciary is expected to scrutinize, regulate and control.
This working formula would afford them the opportunity to meet up with the challenge of incorruptibility for them to be objectively fair to all irrespective of status, poor or rich and religion, even when it is different from that of the Judge’s personal faith interest.
The independence of the Judiciary would give them the freedom to use SWOT analysis in maximally utilizing their areas of strength and opportunities to avoid the delay in judgment dispensation. They would equally be able to identify areas of weaknesses and threats in catering for the areas of inadequacies of courts and Judges as well as the capacity building needs for Judicial officials to be capable of practicing through ethics, their assigned national assignments, to promote peaceful co-existence, good governance, zero tolerance for corruption and institutional indiscipline, which are germane to building a virile and prosperous society for strong institutions, rather than strong individuals.
Victims of the recent fire disaster at Onitsha main market,in Anambra state have called on the state Government to deal directly with them rather than going through unions.
The victims made this call through their spokespersons of the victims, Mr. Anthony, Chinedu Okonkwo, and Chief Uchenna Udaegbe.
''We lost over N20 billion to the fire disaster and some people are trying to use it to enrich themselves by diverting the donation. Government should deal directly with the affected persons and not through any union,” the victims disclosed.
The Nigeria Labor Congress has been called upon to confirm the inclusion of the new national minimum wage in the 2020 national budget.
This call was made by the Chairman of the United Labor Congress(ULC) in Abia state, Comrade Christopher Uchenna Ezekiel.
“The NLC should concentrate more on knowing if the increased minimum wage was captured in the 2020 federal government budget or not, before taking the decision to embark on national strike and then declare the proposed strike in those States that are still owing their workers arrears of salaries rather than calling for blanket national strike action against the Federal government, Comrade Ezekiel state.
He lamented that a number of state governments were owing workers salary arrears under the present N18,000 minimum wage regime saying, ''if some of these Governors cannot pay the present N18, 000, is it now that we have an increase that they would pay ?''
Reports of these ugly trend are recorded on a daily basis, with the law enforcement agencies struggling to stem the tide.
Baby factories are on the increase while mothers, mostly the young ones, sell their new born babies to cushion the effects of the present economic realities.
Teenagers and adults are deceived into traveling abroad, but end up as prostitutes or slaves. This trend in not abating.
In this interview , the Founder, Spiritual Head and Gran Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that poor governance which has brought about poverty is the major cause of child and human trafficking
Child and Human trafficking is what a sizable number of Nigerians engage in these days. Why is this so ?
Nigeria was first a country where discipline, control the fabric of all social spiritual sub systems . It was characterized by very low import index and very high export index. Religious laws were in tandem with the societal norms to create a path of sanity for our interpersonal relationship and our general attitude towards values.
Unfortunately, the Nigerian youth in the mufti of the military killed the geese that laid the golden eggs. Since then, value erosion crept in to destroy all agents of socialization for the nation, to stand with very weak legs.
The civil war followed to put us into alien idiosyncrasies, whereby every moral value is replaced with overtures of waywardness and frivolities starting from the home front to push the society into a state of moral decadence.
The most pitiable aspect was the era of searching for greener pastures in the houses of spirituality whereby we replaced sacredness with profanity and we commercialized, against the tenets of the scripture on the word of God.
Sins committed by people became the software which now transformed into the hardware of criminality.
FESTAC ‘’77 promoted culture as if its is a twin brother of satanic practices. We gave voodooism priority to trivialize the essence of puritanism in religious worship, modesty was murdered to be replaced by shameless acts of fraudulent families while dignity of labor was placed into poor second for various malpractices by the youth to be aided by the elders.
The sociopolitical and economic life as well as our state of spirituality thereafter became badly affected.
All media is able to report, is a micro version of the real happenings in the land. The issue of child and human trafficking therefore, emanated in the land as a result of the dichotomy been introduced by the ruling class whereby the suffering masses continue to suffer from impoverishment, while the ruling elite turn democracy into a money makig opportunity through the concept of ego centrism to change democracy into kleptocracy as evident in the rising profile of poverty indices, 15 per cent in the 60s followed by a progressive arithmetic of 28.8 per cent in 1983 , 42 per cent, 54 per cent, 65 per cent under the subsequent military regimes while the National Bureau of Statistics presented the economic experts evaluation in 1999 as 70 per cent.
Since then, up to the 9th National Assembly regime, it is yet to be improved. For example, in 2007 to 2009 more than 849 companies relocated to other African nations because of our bad economic climate for investment.
The youth who were mostly affected became ordinary pawns in the hands of dubious elders who played the smart card.
Anti social menace arose, as a result of the emerging proffered alternative to survive in the race and crave for greener pastures. Armed robbery, arson and active participation of the youth in various insurgencies and militant activities were effective as a result of drug addiction with attendant abuses.
The con people hid under the bad economic situation to deceive the youth into the various illicit practices, ranging from visa scam and cases of forgery of documents, with sweet promises of jobs in abundance without consideration for certificate worth.
Many died in transit, most especially those who plied Libya en route the desert to the promised abode of succor. Some of them became victims along the journey, whereby they were always hammered into a corner and their kidneys forcibly removed, resulting in their deaths. This practice brought good money for the smart guys in the medical world of kidney transplantation.
The most popular but destructive form of trafficking , is deceit of the victims by promising them jobs abroad, which later turn out to be prostitution via several underworld conspiracy against legitimate governments.
The bottom line that is making this bad attitude to flourish is the issue of poverty and poor governance which needs to be squarely addressed through the following steps :
One, engaging the citizens through effective sensitization through the National Orientation Agency(NOA), and the mass media on the dangers of getting involved in the trafficking of persons.
Secondly, government must reform all institutions to be effective enough in promoting sanity.
The judiciary must be firm as partners in progress with quick interventions on emerging cases while the agencies which are directly concerned must be rightly strengthened to do their work without fear or favor and timely too.
Thirdly, we must revive, for the purpose of the restoration of core values, all agents of socialization such as the parents, schools, religious houses, voluntary organizations and a host of others.
Be responsive and responsible in the process and crusade of core value restoration.
Above all, let government officials be role models on the issue of decency, chastity, drug free life, with total pursuance of zero tolerance to corruption with no respect for institutional indiscipline.
The issue of role modelling of exemplary lifestyles by parents and the elite is equally sacrosanct to the promotion of the issue of integrity as a key factor to core value restoration.
When government pursues, realistically, the issue of vocation for the establishment of Small Scale Enterprises(SSE) and Small and Medium Scale Enterprises(SME), youth restiveness would be minimized because they would be meaningfully engaged with focus on job creation, self-employment and self discipline.
Let government use the SWOT analysis to re examine the situation to do the needful in order that we can walk the talk to correct all aberrations at 59.
Also read : Nigeria at 59-Only The Beneficiaries of the Lapses in Governance have a reason to Celebrate-Prof. Olagoke here-https://bit.ly/2nctwYX
The Association of Water Well Drilling Rig Owners and Practitioners(AWDROP) has warned that any attempt to increase the Value Added Tax(VAT) by 7.2 per cent will have adverse effect on millions of Nigerians.
AWDROP made this position known through its National Public Relations Officer, Mr. Richard Adeyinka
‘’All Nigerians know that the Federal Government needs money, but it must thread with caution, considering the state of the economy. Any increase in VAT will affect all aspects of life negatively, the masses will suffer for it. At the present 5 per cent VAT the masses know what they are going through, what happens if it is now increased by 7.2 per cent ?.’’
‘’Democracy means government of the people, for the people and by the people. Government cannot stand alone without the masses, who voted those in government into power. It is advisable for government to look elsewhere’’, Mr. Adeyinka stated.
Indeed, addiction and abuse are rampant among the youth, while trafficking has for long become a major source of livelihood for a number of Nigerians.
Of note, is that hard drug use and violent crimes are complimentary, although the Federal Government have, over the years, paid lip service to this fact.
A source of worry lies in the role of the political class, in the use of drugs by their foot-soldiers to gain political mileage.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Pro. Sabitu Olagoke opines that the interest of the Powers That Be makes it difficult for to curb hard drug menace.
Drug addiction, abuse and trafficking have to a great extent contributed to the worrisome state of insecurity in Nigeria. Are you comfortable with this fact ?
The history of the rise in criminality could be traced to the era of the military incursion in governance. If we are to connect it with the mysterious disappearance of Gloria Okon and the ultimate unrepentant investigative journalism that resulted in the demise of the late Dele Giwa, then it leaves much to be desired.
That was the period when we could actually conclude that the cookie crumbled and the secrecy of illicit affairs and undercover criminality were found to be glorifying the creme de la creme of the society, which the Late Fela Anikulapo Kuti, described as the expected Very Important Personalities(VIP) into the actual reality of government and the elite class been constituted by vagabonds in power. Things Fall Apart, according to the late Prof. Chinua Achebe, was why the Falcons could no longer hear the Falconers, while the center became elusive to hold.
Suffice it to now say that if the ‘’Powers that Be’’ are clearly uninterested in drug abuse or trafficking the criminals behind it wouldn’t have been so difficult to tame.
This is an era when sadism has replaced parental need in governance, for those in power to be daring in their involvement in the evils that they are supposed to control.
Let’s first use the exchange of prisoners for innocent citizens who were kidnapped by the government of a state to settle the bandits, what of the case of Wadume, who was released from captivity by some Soldiers ?
When criminals are been aided and abetted in a nation, justice is already murdered and the issue of security is at stake. Most often, like fables, tales from Arabian stories, innocent, but poor citizens are often exchanged for the real criminals, who have Barons as godfathers.
Unfortunately, Nigeria has lost all virtues revolving on the dignity of labor to core values of integrity, which has been replaced by the craze for material wealth and quick money making schemes.
Unfortunately, the ugly phenomena has crept into the houses of God,changing the divine code of sacredness into the satanic code of profanity.
We can easily infer that Nigerians are naked now, losing the glorious wares of spirituality to lack divine intervention in their political, social and economic affairs, while most of us are dehumanized, chasing the shadows of life in accumulating wealth illegally.
To exhibit our height of shame, Nigerians hero worship and even confer honors and chieftaincy titles on most of the people with questionable character.
Drug abuse cuts across all classes of Nigerians, with respect to age, position and other measures.
Children start with burnt cigarette remnants through their peer group and when they are in adolescence, they engage in the use of marijuana or cannabis, either for mere pleasure or to be active in fornication or at social gatherings.
The originality of developing potentials through technical trainings, is hereby absent in their bid to make an head way in life.
This extends to the deterioration in our reading culture, to the extent that they resort to the misuse of the social media, while Nigerian institutions end up turning out graduates, who are unable to express themselves.
This poor background, cuts across our social, environment and economic lives, which results in the production of quacks, while at the same time depending on artisans, in place of technical experts and skill based leaders.
In this kind of environment, it is therefore, normal to have drug addicts in government, who might not be able to fully control the activities of drug traffickers.
Nigeria has become a mere talk shop, where evil doers lead in the praise and worship of God.
Leaders who have corruptly enriched themselves, now lead in counseling prison inmates and also blaze the trail in the presentation of papers on ways of preventing crime.
Any lofty idea for development, is gloriously orchestrated to be abandoned at the implementation level.
Nigeria failed in Vision 2010, we somersaulted in Vision 20-20-20, which has made our becoming one of the 20 economically viable nations in the world a mirage.
What of how we insulted the United Nations, on its charges to all nations of the world, to fund education adequately and the health sector to a functional state. This is just as government has failed to utilize the benefits of various grants, including the Millennium Development goals(MDGs) and the ongoing Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs), instead, we excel in using tribal sentiments and nepotism to run each other down, while the country’s image abroad is always at stake.
For example, 77 out of 80 caught for cyber crime in the United States of America, happen to be Nigerians.
Nigeria is the major recipient of xenophobic attacks, while the kind of character Nigeria breeds, makes the whole world justify the country’s decapitation challenges in Saudi Arabia and China.
Nigerians top in the number of criminals in various jails across the world.
Apart from the international embarrassment, the home front is equally suffering from threats of insecurity, if the activities of a cult group who engaged in ritual killings in Ikorodu in Lagos some time ago and most recently in Oyo state, are anything to go by.
Only under the influence of drugs, can anybody carry out such dastardly acts.
What about the Boko-Haram onslaught in the North East of the country ? and the banditry in Zamfara state, don’t also forget the Fulani herdsmen activities, the South South militancy and the continued kidnappings across Nigeria, which began from the South East.
Nobody will carry out this onslaught of mass killings and property destruction without been under the influence of hard drugs.
Prosecution of court offenders which seems unclear, is a reflection of the lack of seriousness of government and the Judiciary because the impact has been so infinitesimal to bring about deterrence.
It is fundamental to note that drug abuse, drug trafficking are devilish as child trafficking for hard labor or ritual killings, human trafficking and the girl child ordeal in this modern day slavery, have always been influenced through drug abuse.
Prostitution and other crimes considered to be social problems, have their root in the effects of bad governance and the weakeness of the the apparatus of the system for effective control.
The hope of eradicating these evils, to have a sanitized society, is therefore in realizing that every Nigerian is a stakeholder, who has specific roles to play, starting from the agencies of government and the Ministries, Departments and Agencies, as well as the religious houses, through reviving into a functional state all agents of socialization to be coordinated through continuous sensitization programs by the National Orientation Agency through the media.
No single individual can do it and without government provision of basic amenities and functional infrastructure and employment as visible signs of good government insight. Let us all de emphasize quick money making syndrome, but uphold dignity of labor to prevent drug abuse and addiction, child trafficking, girl child abuse and women marginalization in the scheme of things.
With this on ground, the network of evil will easily be broken, for us to have a reliable and admirable nation expected of Africa and the rest of the world.
The Federal Government of Nigeria and the managements of universities have been called upon to render assistance to patent owners in the country’s higher institutions.
This call was made recently by Prof. V.O Adetimirin of the Department of Agronomy, University of Ibadan at a program organized by the College of Medicine of the University.
‘’We have peculiar challenges, I think we are not doing enough. Patent owners should be assisted in the process of commercialization. Once this is done people will start running after the university’’, Prof. Adetimirin asserted.
The university don lamented that it was very difficult to obtain funding, for the purpose of commercializing patents, form the university and the Tertiary Education Trust Fund(TETFund), just as he stated that this was discouraging and saddening.
Government at all levels and educational institutions have for so long shied away from investing in patents for inexplicable reasons, even though millions of Nigerians are of the views that government ought to encourage its manpower through funding of innovations and inventions.
Prof. Adetimirin is the inventor of the super sweet corn.
Rape, Defilement and Homosexuality : The Police and Judiciary must be disciplined to ensure Justice for Victims-Prof. Olagoke
Parents, guardians and serious minded Nigerians are helpless and worried, even as law enforcement agencies have adopted a non-nonchalant approach in enforcing the law.
Indeed, most of the reported cases involve those at the bottom of the ladder in the society, while high profile cases have for long been shielded from the public domain.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in Islam Wordlwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that the Police and the Judiciary must first imbibe the tenets of discipline before victims of sexual crimes can have hope of getting justice. Excerpts :
Sexual crimes, including defilement, rape and homosexuality among others are on the increase in Nigeria, law enforcement agencies have failed to do the needful, Nigerians are worried, what are your views ?
Nigeria’s transition from a state of discipline, up to the 70’s, to that of institutional indiscipline, impunity and corruption have created an unsafe environment for the weak in the nation.
The most vulnerable people to the let out of attack are the marginalized women and the girl child in particular.
Our pace, as Nigerians, has nose dived into that of prey and predators, or to be specific a beastly level of existence.
A nation that focuses on material wealth alone, without a commensurate provision for work will ever throw its people into all forms of misdemeanor just to be able to survive and live, most especially to the regime of affluence, is not only in a state of emergency, but highly unsafe for habitation and highly unsecured for investment that may attract foreign interest.
With this kind of gory picture of the state of affairs in Nigeria, the people believe in enthroning a government that would be constitutionally empowered to correct all aberrations in the land.
Unfortunately the elected representatives deviate from the course of Democracy that is based on justice and equity for real development and peace to elude us, hence the present state of insecurity at all strata of human endeavor in Nigeria.
For example, cases like rape, defilement and pedophilia are expected to attract not less 14 years of imprisonment, to the worst, based on the level of damage a life term jail.
However, since all cases are whistle blowing, and offenders identified, prosecution in this direction is yet to be published, perhaps, because there is none.
In a situation of no deterrence, perpetrators of evil will continue will to multiply.
The structure in Nigeria not only encourage corruption, but also encourage people to go into various criminal acts.
This is because since the aftermath of Nigeria's civil war in 1970, we’ve been experiencing deterioration in the core values, that used to hold us intact into a state of discipline.
This becomes cancerous into an endemic state, polarizing every segment of our agencies of socialization, breaking them down into a state of lawless and weak fabric of our human existence, destroy sacredness to promote profanity.
Let us look into the following arrays of our stakeholders known as agents of socialization for correct transformation of the animal called man and the upbringing of our children.
Parents, neighbors, government, schools, houses of God or system of religion, traditional institutions of the Obas, Emirs and the Obis, peer groups and voluntary organizations, what of the agencies for the regulation and control of the system for the overall security of the community and the nation ?
A critical analysis of the present roles of these stakeholders is in a sorry state of destruction rather than construction, to the extent that Nigeria cannot claim to have a bequeath able legacy for our youth !
Suffice it now to say that for our prison yards to transform into a corrective fluid, government must avoid the foot dragging in delivering judgments by the Judiciary, to effectively depopulate our havens of criminality by upholding the ethics of all professions, in this case, the Police and the Judges, on these matters relating to child abuse, pedophilia and cases of rape.
The above mentioned must be disciplined themselves before they can discipline people into rejecting criminal tendencies.
Parents on the other hand must be sensitive, responsive and responsible, in bringing up their children, within safe custody, monitoring and on the need for nature nurturing for the children not to allow anybody to abuse them or whistle blow the possible occurrence of abuse in any form and by anybody from outside.
Government on the other hand must never show favor to offenders, researchers must support the cause of investigation to be able to uproot, the possible cases of aiding and abetting, even when it involves an intention of ritual killing to get rich quickly by perpetrators.
The society must be sensitized on the evil of child abuse, drug abuse and out-of-school children syndrome which is now back to more than 13 million in Nigeria and more than 400,000 in Oyo state.
Rape and pedophilia is very bestial and must be discouraged by all to have a sane and civilized society.
The acts are sinful and could attract divine sanction and it is imaginatively affecting the safety and security of the society.
We are all stakeholders in saving the future of our children, who we all regard as our future leaders, presently Nigeria’s image has been battered, both locally and internationally.
If we fail to do the correct things today on this matters the embarrassment to the country occasioned by those involved in fraudulent activities in the United States of America and the issue of xenophobic attacks in South Africa shall be a child’s play for our children in future, if these issues are are not decisively addressed.
Nigeria must learn how to adopt and adapt the culture of discipline and civility to be good ambassadors in and around the globe or wherever we may find ourselves.
Stop the acts of pedophilia, rape, homosexuality and other acts of human dehumanization.
According to the National Coordinator of the AWC, Comrade Andrew Emelieze, ‘’ it is very embarrassing and ridiculous for labor leaders in Nigeria to beg Mr. President to intervene in the new minimum wage negotiation, President Muhammadu Buhari has severally made his stand known to Nigerian workers, that he is not ready to make workers happy, if not he ought to have influenced a reasonable new national minimum wage’’.
‘’ Labor leaders have exposed their weaknesses and stupidity by begging Mr. President, who from events is nonchalant to workers welfare. Painfully, Nigerian workers have lost out and the present crop of labor leaders are killing unionism in Nigeria, in their approach to the new national minimum wage by begging the question.’’
‘’Labor leaders have proven themselves to be a monumental disaster to the interest of Nigerian workers. And so, at the level of the AWC, we call on labor leaders to resign, if they cannot use legal industrial means to achieve the new national minimum wage’’, Comrade Emelieze stated.
This admonition was given by the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam f Shafaudeen-in-Islam Wrldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke in his sermon during prayers to commemorate this year's Ed el Kabir celebration at the Shafaudeen Mosque, Wakajaiye, Ibadan, Nigeria.
''Nigeria suffers from poverty and kleptocracy. We must not allow the environment to corrupt us. Those people in government should allow sanity to reign, they must role model good virtues. For Nigeria to have peace, justice and equity must prevail, while there must be transparency and accountability'', Prof. Olagoke asserted.
Prof. Olagoke also called on parents and guardians to place more emphasis on good parenting saying, ''good child rearing must be the preoccupation of Fathers and Mothers.''
Sadly, the contrary is the case in Ibadan, and other major cities in Nigeria, as the choice of words, mode of dressing and behavior of several youth leaves much to be desired.
Of worry, however, is the recent arrests effected by the Ibadan zone of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in the Elebu area of Ibadan, capital of Oyo state.
This suggest that the ancient city is now a fortress for the ''yahoo'' adherents while the Oyo state Government must take urgent steps to reverse this.
The AWC made this disclosure in a chat with People through its National Coordinator, Comrade Andrew Emelieze.
''The protest was meant to be an indefinite strike action and shut down of the Federal Secretariat Complex, Ibadan, which was successfully done on Monday, 29, July, 2019, at the end of the day the workers converged and it was unanimously agreed that having created the needed awareness there was the need for a review.''
'' Moreso, the protest was not meant to deny people of their rights, we therefore decided to observe reactions surrounding the protest and based on the reactions we received, we decided the next line of action. Most importantly, the message has been sent to the right quarters and workers have been freely able to express their displeasure, anger and unhappiness over the non-implementation of the new national minimum wage, the continued kidnappings, killings and other violent crimes of innocent Nigerians at home and abroad.
Tech and Vocational Education : I Believe Govt has Solved most of the Problems in Nigeria-National President IEIs
Dr. Jegede made this position known recently, at the sidelines of a National Advocacy forum for the popularization of IEIs in the South West Geo-Political zone.
‘’ I want to believe that the Federal Government has most of the problems confronting IEIs in the country. There are about 150 institutions presently in the next five years, they could be between 200 and 300'’, the National President stated.
Nigerians must be convinced that the hands of some Monarchs and Elite are clean before any dialogue-Prof. Olagoke
They are at a lose over the seemingly helplessness of the government to ensure the safety of lives and property of its citizens.
They readily make reference to several communities such as Molusi, Olorunsogo, Molete,Felele among others in Ibadan, Oyo state, where some community leaders and Landlords and Tenants Association aid and abet criminals with the backing of law enforcement agents, as good examples of how crime has taken a very dangerous dimension.
Indeed, a lot of Nigerians are of the opinion that dialogue is the way to go, while others believe that community leaders who sponsor criminals should be identified and brought to justice as a step towards addressing the country’s security challenges.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that Nigerians must first be convinced that some traditional rulers and elite are above board in the present situation before the issue of dialogue can be propagated. Excerpts :
A cross section of Nigerians are of the opinion that a national dialogue will address the county’s various problems. Do you agree ?
The issue of national dialogue is not supposed to be limited to the time when the elite are been affected by the hostilities of the times, which today has manifested in insecurity.
A profile of institutional indiscipline and corruption dates back to the 60s when Alhaji Tafawa Balewa observed that civil servants were no longer contented with what obtained then as natural life that was commensurate with the individual wages based on their cadre.
He observed that they preferred to forcibly have bicycles, which they would ride with pleasure to their different villages.
In the 70s, a foreign economic expert described the Nigerian system of government as that of kleptocracy.
Furthermore, Nigeria was observed to have governments that condoned evil and corruption based on the fact that those unfortunate elite caught in the game would never be brought to justice or convicted.
Many of those who talk today cannot absolve themselves from having contributed,at various degrees of impunity, to the present problems which urgently need a serious national conference; with a view to overhaul the provisions of the constitution, to a more holistic level of justice standard so that posterity would not continue to curse us.
There is the need to appreciate the former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo on his concern, though his antecedents would always portray him as not been sincere because while in government, he stated that that he might have advisers, but nothing would compel him to take to their advice.
However, we don’t need an angel to preach virtues, hence the advice of our great elder statesman must be heeded by President Muhammadu Buhari government.
There is also the need to appreciate the efforts of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitna Ogunwusi and the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi 111, whose concern have made them to speak out on behalf of the voiceless.
They don not want the Yoruba nation to be unnecessarily undermined and ravaged by the faceless non-indigenes, whose activities are yet to be effectively charged to the conviction level to serve as deterrent to others.
However, the traditional rulers seem to have gone the extra mile to warn those of Yoruba origin who own the herds of cattle and engaged the services of the Fulanis, for rearing and grazing, so that we do not fight an unjust cause.
What about the several Churches, Mosques, schools and institutions, companies and industries and even private homes that engage the services of the non-indigenes on matters of security.
Once we have put our house in order and ensured that some traditional rulers hands are clean, as well as that of the elite, the agitation by the Yoruba to have their way would be justified.
On the issue of national conference, we must avoid the jamboree sort of what happened during the administration of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan in 2014, many of the representative were never respected in their domains because they had never shown interest in the security and welfare of the people, who they claimed to represent.
There is the need to separate rhetoric or game of theories from the pragmatism and records of concerned activities for the people who we may claim to represent.
A choice based on mere political affiliation and diabolical service of Yes man platform for the strong individuals, will always mar the objectives of any conference.
Service to humanity has nothing to do with egomania, which always characterize the state of most of those who have been having opportunities to attend conferences on issues pertaining to Nigeria.
This must have been one of the hallmarks that weakened the strength of the 2014 conference because after it, most of the participants only enjoyed millions of Naira showered on them, without having anything to show on returning home.
National conference should start from the past Heads of state and former Presidents with their economic and political experts to identify our areas of weaknesses and threats and those factors that must have been responsible for our Democracy turning into kleptocracy.
The gross abuse of the immunity clause and the preferred alternative to ensure seriousness and discipline in governance.
Attendees must from their various domains create platforms of town hall meeting with those professionals and opinion moulders as well as former state Governors, traditional rulers and religious leaders of note and relevance to the people at the grassroots, within their areas of jurisdiction for brainstorming before going for the conference and for feedback.
If we are able to go by the national conference, accordingly, the intervention of God would eventually see us through to have a safe and secure nation again. God save Nigeria.
The Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olgoke has warned that unless the Nigerian Youth does what is right the coming generation will suffer.
Porf. Olagoke gave this warning on Wednesday, when the Southern Youth Forum(SYF) presented an award to him at the his office in Wakajaiye, Ibadan, Nigeria.
‘’If care is not taken, the coming generation will suffer. The youths have to take their destinies in their hands. In Nigeria, there is no sense of patriotism and nationhood. Government in Nigeria is just wasting money on trivialities and creating problems. The youths must take their destinies in their hands with sincerity. Anything given to anybody has been made for the person to cherish it. Unfortunately, Nigeria is surrounded with cottons of ignorance.’’
‘’The solution is for Nigerian youths to look inwards and make use of the opportunity of the little education they have to move forward. Politicians will continue to dictate to professionals, rather than allow professionals to come up. Inherent problems must be identified and expunged before one can say he wants to excel where others have failed’’, Prof. Olagoke noted.
Earlier the National Secretary of the SYF, Comrade Luke Ogemba who said he was representing the forum’s National President, Hon. Olarinde Thomas, stated that the forum decided to present an award to Prof, Olagoke because he was a source of inspiration to Nigerian youths, while stressing ‘’ we will like to tap from your wealth of experience.
Among those who accompanied Comrade Ogemba on the visit were, Comrade Tobiloba Amodu(Ondo state), Comrade Fynface Allo(Rivers state) and Comrade Stanley Omoregie(Edo state)
However, the unattractive annual budget allocation to the education sector has continually manifested in the troubled learning environment, shortage of qualified Teachers and teaching aids, poor salaries and absence of incentives for those who impart knowledge.
Nigerians insist that the public higher institutions of learning in the country are yet to meet the purposes for which the institutions were established, even as they argue that the private ones are exploitative and fall short of acceptable international standards.
Sadly several fraudsters have exploited the situation, in connivance with a sizable number of supposed qualified Teachers, to defraud Parents and Guardians of their hard earned money ? in the guise of overseas admissions.
In this interview with, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that Policy makers in government have to co-opt those with the technical know how to move the country forward. Excerpts :
What are your views on higher education in Nigeria, considering the falling standards ?
The Nigerian educational system started to have problems as a result of several retrogressive factors confronting its management, but with neglect and misplacement of priorities from all stakeholders, most especially on the side of government-which is supposed to set and enforce standards and quality in an environment of discipline. For example, federal character aims at ensuring uniformity of purpose and equity. But it has ended up in collapsing the ethics, as reflected in the admission standards, which have discriminatory minimum scores for admission across the six Geo-Political zones.
Unfortunately, this does not reflect in the quality of grades of those affected, but paradoxically in the quality of the products and their performance ratings.
This is the major concern of the South West that is struggling to go back to the virtuous era of discipline, quality, standards, graduate reliability and employ-ability that could be compared to the modern day acclaimed global competitiveness, through best practices.
Today, we are having 170 universities that are yet to make the first 200 best universities in the global rating.
This is purely due to under funding of education in Nigeria, most especially in the areas of Teachers’ standard upgrade, lecturers’ capacity building need and facility update challenge to meet up with the global trend of development in the world of Science and Technology, through the ever dynamic world of Information Technology(ICT).
Instead of government complying with the UNESCO’s benchmark of 26 per cent of the national budget allocation, Nigeria’s funding pattern of education is yet to attain 10 per cent.
Tertiary Education Trust Fund(TETFUND)has achieved in the areas of structure, but not totally in the area of facility.
The struggle to ensure that all tertiary institution Teachers have first, second and third degrees, is appreciable, but only fractional and unfortunately, the interest of having Doctor of Philosophy, is not for research and development purpose, but for accelerated career progression in the world of academics.
Worse still, our Professors in various fields of human endeavor are yet to be fully engaged in the scheme of aggressive nation building because of the murky waters of our partisanship driven political hostile environment, where expert views are supposed to be sought, but politicians use money to make a wrong choice. This has resulted in the re occurrence of problems in a more dangerous way.
Government’s inability to fund Polytechnic education, as appropriate, makes it a challenge.
Higher National Diploma (HND) programs are still limited by the National Diploma status of the institutions in question.
Today, most Polytechnics are mere surrogates of Universities.
Unfortunately, university education is more in favor of the cognitive domain that is more of research.
Polytechnic education, with adequate facilities, are expected to compete favorably with what obtains in the industries, which can transform, when harnessed, university theories into physical dynamic machinery of operation, that favors the Psycho-motor domain of education.
All institutions are supposed to work in tandem, with correlative synergy` to promote the country’s industrialization.
Nigeria’s costly neglect of the Technical Colleges, has made us to lose out in the areas of vocational and entrepreneurial evolution that would have formed the very practical bases for industrialization, but for the stigmatization effect.
Parents and children are running away from patronizing this aspect of Engineering appreciation, which the Canadian government has proved to the whole world that their products are crucial, with recruitment in mind, in the establishment of cottage industries for the Small and Medium scale Enterprises(SME).
90 to 98 per cent of this sector are responsible for the industrialization of China, Hong Kong, Russia and the United States of America.
The policy makers need to look inward, by contacting the relevant experts, both from the Polytechnic and University sectors to resolves this matter.
Unless the New Crop of Leaders are Ready to Fix Things Nigerians Should not expect Miracles-Prof. Olagoke
The performance of political appointees of the President and 36 State Governors, in the last four years, is already in the public domain and Nigerians are expressing divergent views on their performances.
Even though the elections that threw up these political office holders were flawed and trailed with a lot of irregularities, Nigerians are very unhappy with the yardstick used by the Powers that be to select the Ministers, Commissioners and Heads of Departments and Agencies in the last dispensation.
Sadly, political patronage, nepotism and other self centered considerations play great roles in these appointments, just as Nigerians express fears that the yardstick for political appointments shall remain the same in the new dispensation.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that the readiness of Nigeria’s new crop of leaders to fix the country should start from the downward review of their salaries and allowances. Excerpts :
Nigerians complain that the yardstick used in the appointment of Ministers, Commissioners and Heads of Departments and Agencies negatively affected governance in the last dispensation, what do you think should be the yardstick to do same in this dispensation ?
Nigeria’s situation is appalling because we have since reached a stage, where all theories always fail the test of time, even though they work elsewhere.
What is responsible for this ? It is all about the attitude of Nigerians generally, towards power and service responsibilities.
No economic theory can stand the structure and distribution pattern of our wealth to satisfy the democratic demand of equity and justice, where the new national minimum wage is controversially facing the challenges of implementation and the political class in power consume almost two thirds of the nation’s resources on their personal effects .
This is equally a nation where all professionals are dictated to and even neglected, when it comes to capital projects because of the greed of the people in power, who will benefit more from foreign partnership at the expense of the indigenous professionals, who they are supposed to motivate and encourage.
Equally, everything about Nigeria’s development is foreign as well as been fraught with fraud.
This is why little violence has been aggravated into high levels of insecurity because the hoodlums hide under the need to survive.
Instead of government at all levels coming out boldly to arrest and correct the situation, they have continued to fail in their responsibilities to protect lives and property.
With this climate of disillusion, Nigeria needs leaders who will be ready to sacrifice their lives to ensure a positive impact is made on the lives of the people.
In the light of the truth, Nigeria is yet to face the reality because majority of Nigerians are groping in the darkness of truth. For example, the Media only reports what government wants them to air, the religious community is now beclouded with blurred visions, while the political terrain is troubled by kleptomaniacs, who believe in self-enrichment through the spoils of office,rather than using the position of power to serve the nation.
Above all, Nigeria's case is shrouded in the cloud of falsehood, perhaps, one can conclude that nobody knows the truth, except the perpetrators of evil.
Normally, when you want to vote for people in positions of power, you are supposed to know each one of them, based on their antecedents of performances, but contrary is the case because we are only voting for posters and probably the sugar coated campaign promises,which would never come to fruition.
If those people in power are known to us only through their paper credentials, the implication is that the beautiful ones are not yet born.
For new newly elected power brokers, their second assignment is to choose Ministers and Commissioners as well as Heads of various service points, that is the Ministries, Departments and Agencies(MDAs).
One would therefore expect that the choice should be based on merit, rather than tribal sentiments, but this would not happen under the culture of federal character.
What we would consider as the worst in the South West, maybe fixed as a candidate from the North, and there is nothing anyone can do under the present arrangement.
The second consideration is skill, this involves the kind of relevant professional skills that would determine the kind of portfolio the holder shall assume.
But this may not necessarily come up again under the sentiment of party patronage consideration.
In the past ex-convicts would never hold any position of power, but now they are celebrities.
If the newly emerging crop of people in government are not ready to objectively fix things for us, then Nigerians must not expect miracles from them.
This is because our major problems are attitudinal, rather than material sufficiency.
If truly these people mean well to fix Nigeria, they must start with the downward review of the wages and allowances of the political class, while the stipends of civil and public servants as gratuities and pension arrears should be revisited for prompt payment, for the voters and the beneficiaries of the 2019 elections to rejoice on the same page
June 12 : GCFR without Payment of Reparation and Compensation to M.K.O Abiola’s Family is Meaningless-Prof. Olagoke
Even though it is post humous, Nigerians have continued to applaud President Muhammadu Buhari for deeming it fit, to confer the country’s highest honors of the Grand Commander of the Federal Republic(GCFR) on the acclaimed winner of the June 12, 1993 Presidential elections, late Bashorun Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola.
In addition, Nigerians believe that if the bank accounts of the Late Bashorun Abiola frozen by the late Military despot, Gen. Sanni Abacha, are unfrozen and reparations paid to his family, justice would have been seen to have been done.
Also, all those who one way or the other lost their lives during the period ought to receive compensation through the families they left behind.
However, the body language of President Buhari is not in tandem with the peoples’ belief, even as a cross section of Nigerians argue that declaring June 12 Democracy Day emanates from gaining political mileage, if consideration is given to the fact that the incumbent President was part and parcel of the late Gen. Abacha military regime.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that conferment of the highest honors in the land in not enough, but ought to also include paying reparation and compensation to Bashorun Abiola’s family, else Nigerians may think otherwise. Excerpts :
In commemoration of June 12, the day the freest and fairest general elections in Nigeria’s history was annulled, what do you think is the best compensation for the late Bashorun M.K.O Abiola’s family ?
The issue surrounding Bashorun M.K.O Abiola is a milestone of an historical record and antecedent in which Nigeria in particular, and the whole world in general, need to learn a lot from. He happened to be a victim of unholy friendship and treachery by his kinsman.
Besides this, his life depicted to the whole world, that even the pinnacle of affluence has a lot of limitations to the expected influences that may accompany it.
Despite God’s favor on him to win the Presidential elections, with outstanding performance over the National Republican Convention(NRC) candidate, Alhaji Bashir Tofa, based on what nature could give any man, in terms of what would have been the barriers-barriers of Muslim/Muslim ticket, Southern candidacy and the possible environment that is fraught with Ethnic, Tribal and Religious differences, the atmosphere was not only favorable, but the people put aside their differences to ensure that Bashorun Abiola emerged as the winner.
However, some household enemies and the hidden ones among his friends, became a deadly clog in the wheel of his destiny.
The funny aspect, is that of the failure of successive governments after, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, to revisit his case,and the eventual Democracy that ushered in a total departure from the erstwhile military rule.
His kinsman, the then President Olusegun Obasanjo and his successors, who happened to be the direct beneficiaries of Bashorun Abiola’s struggle for Democracy, equally failed to revisit his state incarceration and dehumanization.
Fortunately, an opposition political party, in the name of the All Progressives Congress(APC) and Gen. Muhammadu Buhari(rtd.)eventually revisited what the whole world helplessly claimed to be an act of injustice, hence the post-humous conferment of GCFR to the late Bashorun Abiola and by extension the largesse of the peak of recognition for his supposed deputy, in the name of Alhaji Babagana Kingibe, as well as the conferment of one of the highest honors in the land on the unforgettable activist, late Chief Gani Fawehinmi, who lived all his, life for the enthronement of Democracy and died without fulfillment of the struggle, to address the injustices meted out to Bashorun Abiola.
Mr. President deliberately refrained from giving his national address on May 29, during his inauguration, and I believe he must have reserved his speech for June 12, which he has been courageous enough to declare as Nigeria’s Democracy day, in fulfillment of the agitations of the progressives to recognize Bashorum Abiola as the symbol of Nigeria’s Democracy and the pathfinder of how the freest and fairest general elections ought to be conducted in Nigeria.
Most of Nigerians expect that the highest honor conferred on Bashorun Abiola as his right, shall be followed by his family having access to what Nigeria and our government owe the late business mogul, most especially in the aspect of unfreezing his numerous bank accounts, as the first step towards reviving his ‘’dead’’ chains of legacies. All these shall be to the benefit of the family he left behind and this shall serve to reunite them.
Recently, one of his oil companies of international repute was affected by the recent government policy through which some oil companies’ licenses were revoked.
Government owes Nigerians an explanation on why Bashorun Abiola’s business concern was affected and possibly work on how he would be exempted.
However, recognition through the conferment of the highest national honors in the land shall be meaningless, without supporting it with the attendant freedom for the family to have access to what he had spent all his life to acquire.
I have the belief that the Federal Government is waiting for June 12, for favorable declaration on this, otherwise, the stiff opposition against them may use any lapses on the side of the Federal Government to gain sympathy of the generality of Nigerians to turn the table against them as they did in many states lost by the APC to the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) in the people’s court and parliament during the recent general elections.
9th National Assembly : Nigerians Hope for a Legislature that Shall Not Massage the Executive’s Back-Prof. Olagoke
Both chambers of the 9th National Assembly shall be inaugurated next week and Nigerians are hopeful that the elected representatives of the people shall make laws that shall impact positively on impoverished Nigerians who have not seized to contend with insecurity.
Nigerians are also hopeful that the lawmakers shall not in any way or circumstance become rubber stamps for decisions from the Executive that are anti-people and dictatorial in content.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke says that the expectations of Nigerians revolve on a people driven Legislature that would not massage the back of the Executive, but enact enabling laws that will not only regulate and control the excesses of the Executive, but emancipate the masses from the vicious cycle of poverty and insecurity. Excerpts :
What do you think the lawmakers of the 9th National Assembly should embark upon, considering the performance of the lawmakers of the 8th National Assembly ?
The 8th National Assembly’s performance was hostile and antagonistic considering its relationship with the Executive, this later affected the people negatively and harshly.
When bills are passed into law, there must be corresponding enabling empowerment programmes and projects on it, for the law to have impact on the society.
To an average Nigerian, the last four years of the National Assembly, has been more of orchestrated ceremony of wealth, rather than that of enabling the people that gave them the mandate to serve.
It had been more of celebrating trivialities, that have ever failed to articulate development.
It is unfortunate that Nigeria is yet to address several issues. For example, we failed to learn from the experience of secession by placing emphasis on the problem of the fall in the international price of oil as it affected the budget, rather than looking inward on the country’s style of management and the structure of the payment of salaries and allowances which tilts favorably more to the side of the political class, while the civil and public servants continue to groan and grumble with the given token because of the corresponding low purchasing power of the Naira.
Despite the heavy weight of the salaries and allowances of the political class, corruption and institutional indiscipline continued unabated, rendering the efforts of the Federal Government in this direction ineffective, specifically for Nigerians to turn a new leaf.
The aspect of plea bargaining for the big wigs and no deterrence record for the offenders had made the exercise to become a laughing stock, to the favor of the opposition that eventually rose from their ‘’dead’’ state to compete and win in a number of states and to pose a major threat to the’ almighty’ Federal Government during elections.
If all these issues are not addressed, Nigerians would not yet be happy, in celebrating the inauguration of the 9th National Assembly.
Characteristically, on record of history there had always been downward profile of performances on goodness and rising profile of moral decadence from one session to the other as the players exchange batons from one dispensation to the other.
From the look of things, although the mistake of the past whereby the All Progressives Congress(APC) government was not cohesive enough for the leadership of the National Assembly, to favor the Executive is still lingering.
Now that they are struggling to have their way, the fear must be on the effectiveness in serving the people, rather than rubbing the back of the Executive.
The expectations of the people generally, at home and abroad is that objectivity should be the axis of operation, based on global best practices that is incorruptible Judiciary, people driven legislature on the issue of their welfare through enacting enabling laws that will not only regulate and control the excesses of the Executive, but directed purposely to emancipate the cause of the masses on the issues of their welfare and well being.
The Executive, on their harnessing power for resources, is expected to serve the people sincerely through transparency and accountability to promote inclusive governance through the principle of equity.
If the APC government is to be sincere then, no member is expected to run foul of these goals because change of government is expected to address areas of heresies, weaknesses and failures of the outgoing dispensation, which visibly was responsible for the failure to effectively and completely achieve anything reasonable on the subject matter of zero tolerance to corruption and institutional discipline.
Irrespective of still controlling power, the arms and tiers of government which the ruling members of the ruling party are the occupants, now need to unite to achieve these fundamental aspects of heresies which happen to be the bane of our democratic disposition for worthwhile development.
After Ramadan Fast Nigerians should not Return to What God has Rejected-Grand Imam Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide
As Muslims enter into the last days of the 30 day Ramadan fast period and prepare for the Ed L Fitri celebrations, the general belief is that the fast period has brought about a new direction for the faithful who must have cleansed themselves of impurities and all that is evil.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Gran Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke urges Nigerians not to go back to their sinful ways after the Ramadan fast. Excerpts :
What is your message to the Muslim Faithful as they are about to finish the 30 day fasting period ?
The first thing to do for every Muslim who happens to be alive at the end of the 30 day Ramadan fast, is to give thanks to the creator, almighty Allah, who has given us the wherewithal to go about the fast exercise successfully.
This thanksgiving need to reflect on the extent to which we have been able to learn about the culture of fear of God, in order that we may be able to live the expected exemplary lifestyles which society requires to keep the peace with accelerated development.
When one looks at the three major segments of the Ramadan period, as a school period to learn, one would appreciate God for giving and teaching us mercy in the first 10 days, forgiving us our sins, if we go about the exercise rightly with sincerity of purpose. The fast teaches us to forgive our perceived enemies and those who must have offended us.
The third segment is what we can regard as harvesting period, loaded with spiritual re-orientation in which we learn how to be very close to God, by taking to His will.
Besides this, it is a period when prayers are easily answered through sincere supplication to almighty Allah.
This translates to an all encompassing spiritual rejuvenation that transcends the usual mortal sourcing of power or miracles.
We must not lose sight of the fact that before or during the Ramadan fast, that some known colleagues must have passed on, leading us to the question of who is next after the Ramadan ?
However, with the promise of God the Koran 10 : 61–62, the almighty Allah calls us to the following order, that closeness to God is sacrosanct to having insurance against life’s hazards through the following three criteria :
- Keeping of good neighborliness to be accepted by the community and society.
- Translating the theoretical message to application point of living by the reformative messages of God from the Holy Koran.
- This bothers on legitimate earning to live, source and maintain power and influence.
The almighty Allah set this as conditions to be practically observed, in order that one would become a friend of his creator, who will be so much insured against any form of fear or grief.
Fortunately, this is the import of the message of Ramadan, which we are expected to live by.
After Ramadan therefore, the expectation of God and society from the Muslim graduates of the Ramadan school, ranges from as follows ;
- Just worship based on holiness for Allah and sincerity of purpose, without derailing from the righteous path in any aspect of life we may find ourselves.
- One must be a source of motivation, defense and protection for ourparents who we must ensure are close to God, as well as been clothed, well fed and protectively sheltered, without suffering from any hazards of life.
This is a recompense for the very care they gave us when we were babies or toddlers.
3. As parents , we must be responsive and responsible to the cause of the welfare of the children including their education and healthcare concerns as well as physiological needs.
4. We must preserve our bodies by avoiding sins and crime as well as ensuring that soul purification exercises are achieved.
This will make us rational and disciplined, which are embodiment of moral etiquette, that is not dangerous to the society, but beneficial.
We must refrain from cheating others, breaking of oaths and promises, and infidelity.
Lastly, we must never take laws into our hands and neither must we resort to extra judicial killings without following the due process of law
All these have been taught in the month of Ramadan, for us to be reformed as individuals, into instruments of light that will manifest in our care for others and sense of patriotism, most especially in the scheme of nation building.
Luckily for us in Nigeria, the governments at the Federal and state levels were sworn-in the the glorious month of Ramadan which came up almost after the Lenten season.
To be sincere to God, He has given us the opportunity to institute and establish a new government of Democratic dispensation with bedrock for functionality, dwelling on justice and equity for peace and development to reign supreme under the most perfect conditions of conducive atmosphere provided for us by God through Ramadan.
If we are to be sincerely grateful to God, the sovereignty of Nigeria is been given to the Christians and Muslims to manage as a trial that shall be assessed and evaluated through individual and collective performances.
What we need finally, is a perfect system of leadership and follower ship network, to be able to walk the talk because with education and religion as an advantage, counting the number of Churches and Mosques adherents now in power with additional advantage of been certificated through good education, there won’t be any excuse for anyone of us to fail Nigeria and the state.
However, it is expected that corruption and indiscipline shall be alien to the new political dispensation.
Let us all be gradates of Ramadan on quality and standards in tandem with global best practices.
After the Ramadan fast, Nigerians should not go back to what God has rejected, but allow the revamped core values nurture and nourish our attitude to be best players in running a well ordered society full of peace and development.
May 29 : Nigerians Expect their Elected Representatives to Correct the Defective Aspects of Governance-Prof. Olagoke
As elected representatives of the people prepare for another dispensation, beginning from May 29, 2019, Nigerians at home and abroad are hopeful that the new dispensation will bring in its stride , good governance and development.
However, presently, despondency, hopelessness and disillusion characterize the state of well being of most Nigerians.
In this interview, the Founder, Spiritual Head and Grand Imam of Shafaudeen-in-Islam Worldwide, Prof. Sabitu Olagoke opines that the unenviable past records of the country ought to inspire the elected representatives who will steer the ship of governance from May 29, to make up for the losses and ensure that the country celebrates its 60th independence anniversary. Excerpts :
A new dispensation shall commence on May 29, 2019, what is your message to Nigerians ?
Nigeria will witness a civilian to civilian transition, come ,May 291, 2019, that will move us into self-realization for the purpose of effective necessary changes for governance to have a positive impact, most especially in the areas of revisiting the welfare of the people.
However, we must be mindful of the fact that the elected representatives are still Nigerians, who are products of the bad past.
Worse still, the same hostile environment is still going to be confronted as barriers to development, unless they are very much determined.
Lee Kuan Yew’s experience in the history of Singapore’s development could be of help to our political office holders.
His travelling to many other nations including countries in Africa, to seek for the way out of his country’s economic challenges and the competency needs of the managers of the state, and the harnessing power of resources, coupled with the management classification of the people to work with, like the prime movers, the lackadaisical and the rebellious groups, who the leader needs to identify, to work on them, to enable acceptable values and positive mindset, to be able to move Singapore into the class of development.
On getting home, Yew reached an agreement with the lords of his political party and the people of his country, through a perfected agenda for development, with a good counsel on zero tolerance for corruption, indiscipline and impunity.
Having gained the confidence of his people, he became a role model on transparency and accountability, for others to make sacrifices.
Today in Nigeria, Political Parties are directed by their godfathers and the destiny of elected leaders are usually remote controlled, making many of them to deviate from the normal path of the promises made during their campaigns.
Worse still, appointment of people into sensitive positions of power usually lack merit, credibility, transparency and accountability, for the state Governors, the President and the people to assess their performances while in office. This gives them every opportunity to engage in corrupt practices, with all impunity, to the detriment of the peoples’ welfare, community and national development.
There is the need for the timely supervision of Commissioners and Minsters activities, to assess their performances.
Besides this, Nigerians generally, have no excuses not to perform well in office because the Swearing-in ceremony shall take place during the Ramadan fast period, which is expected to have provided and instilled the fear of God for due process in transactions, as an enabling environment to allow campaign promises tally with service delivery.
One would expect that Nigeria at 59 should look backwards and regret the failure in governance by the Military and their Civilian counterparts.
Most of our political office holders today, were either born during independence or after.
Unfortunately, these crop of people by omission, commission or inaction had in one way or the other soiled their hands in corruption, which were trailed with poor records of performances, most especially those who had always been in government or born before 1960, Nigeria’s independence day.
If only they can reflect back that till date, Nigeria’s development profile is neither bequeath able nor sustainable, their focus should therefore be on how to work assiduously to deliver, to make up for the losses so far and to meaningfully celebrate Nigeria at 60, when the time comes.
Using SWOT analysis, Nigeria still stands at the advantage of been potentially sound, in terms of the endowed natural resources.
Even when you consider the capacity building needs in terms of human resources, with globalization in mind, our high number of Universities, other components of tertiary institutions, give us the hope of having the ability to rise in terms of development, without necessarily relying on foreign experts.
The professionals in all fields of human endeavor are equally many, waiting for challenges of government patronage and societal acceptance.
Obviously, our areas of strength and opportunities are versed, while the challenges, weaknesses and threats must be faced squarely by the new government, to correct the lapses.
These are the expectation of all Nigerians, whose mandate, entrust power onto the elected and indirectly onto the appointed representatives.
Politicians must embrace the culture of internal party Democracy and the opposition must equally refrain from hate speech and personality attack, but dwell more on critiquing issue based values and desist from criticizing that which is more judgmental than proferring solutions.
The structure of Democracy is such that the Executive is always put in check, with respect to its excesses, by the Legislative arm, which is expected to regulate and midwife people oriented legislation.
The Judiciary must see Nigeria as a project that must be free of corruption.
The Ministries, Departments and Agencies must equally be alive to their responsibilities of providing a safe and secure environment for development through ethical practice that is based on global best practices.
The Houses of God through its population target theory and proliferation of sects must be checked and controlled by making them to be scripture compliant, in order that this sector would be able to produce reliable and dependable adherents, who will be raw materials for governance at all levels.
Management of the House of God must be based on piety for the religious sectors to provide good aura of divinity for necessary divine intervention in the affairs of Nigerians, most especially through their governments.
Nigerians must be made to uphold the culture of innovation, skill acquisition and productivity, we must equally see ourselves as stakeholders in ensuring that government performs its duty as expected, whistle blowing, impunity and corruption, while ensuring that errant violators are brought to book as deterrent to others, while preventing re-occurrence.
What should be of primary concern now, is that all hands must be on deck to see Nigeria as a project and to manage Nigeria in such a way as to achieve in the areas of bequeathable legacy, for our children to enjoy the dividends of sustainable development.