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By Abimbola Adelakun

Words could barely describe how irritated I felt watching the has-been, Femi Fani-Kayode, berate a Daily Trust journalist, Charles Eyo, for asking him what seemed like a gotcha question. From the distance of my phone screen, I badly wanted to intervene to make him stop. What could have called for that “Fani-power” level of vituperation? Anyone who has seen self-important Nigerian “big (wo)men” address their social subordinates would not be surprised by how far Fani-Kayode went to diminish that man, or even the complacence of the others within the room who did not step in to stop him. At some point, I expected other journalists in that room to stand up for their colleague and their professional dignity, but they all seemed petrified at the sight of a faux big man in a fit of rage.

When he sat down in front of journalists for questioning, what did he think should happen? That what he deserved was to be mollycoddled with soft questions? For the record, I am no fan of what they call “gotcha journalism,” whereby a journalist asks a politician questions that will entrap them into making self-indicting statements. However, what happened in that viral video was nowhere near mischief by the journalist. I will concede that the journalist’s question was not elegantly worded. However, it was legitimate to ask Fani-Kayode what was at stake for him in the recent trips he made to politicians’ abodes. The journalist, Eyo, said he noted the trips Fani-Kayode has been making round some southern states in the past months and asked him who was “bankrolling” them. In a country where virtually all politics is cash and carry, if a journalist cannot ask a politician the motive behind his possessive investment in the politics of a particular region, what is the point of addressing a press conference?

The journalist’s observation was not only factual, Fani-Kayode has also been quite effusive in praising the politicians of the states he visits. In December, in Imo State, last year, he lavished quite some praise on then Governor Emeka Ihedioha whom he stated “understands the complexities of governance” and was a triumph over the “intellectual barbarian” he replaced. Those are quite strong words, and you do not go that overboard in praising one politician if you are not trying to get at another one. In March, Fani-Kayode also observed that, “The level of infrastructural development in Ebonyi state under Governor David Umahi is simply mind-boggling. How he does all this with limited resources, I don’t know! You need to go there and see for yourself. Kudos to him and blessings to the people of Ebonyi.”

On August 16, he was also in Anambra State where he praised the governor, Willie Obiano, at his lodge in Awka. According to Fani-Kayode, the Anambra airport project being undertaken is “mind-blowing” and spectacular because it dwarfs anything even the Federal Government has achieved so far. Just as he did in the previous instances, he praised the Anambra governor with extravagant adjectives. He stated that the governor did not borrow money for the airport project and that Obiano was a blessing to the Anambra people because he pays salaries on time. He then added, “I advise Governor Obiano to take a decisive stand on who will succeed him. He must be a person who must build on the legacies that he has established. Governor Obiano should ensure the right person succeeds him.” When he had that meltdown in the public glare, he was in Cross River State doing the same runs of meeting politicians.

Now, when a politician goes up and down the abodes of power, all the while deploying superlatives to shower encomium on sitting politicians, it is quite proper to ask what he has to gain. For a self-styled “voice of the voiceless” politician, we should question on whose behalf he uses his voice; and whether he is not in fact usurping the voice of the unheard. It should not be that hard for him to answer those questions. Also, why him? Why is it his business to proclaim the “good works” of governors in the South-East and the South-South to the public when he is not their chief publicity secretaries? What is in it for him? Fani-Kayode is someone who has an opinion on every subject ranging from history to even supernatural phenomena. Every time he needs to unload his thoughts on the public, he has always found media houses to indulge his whims by offering him a platform to ignite his mischief. For someone like that, facing a similar level of scrutiny from journalists should not have caused such a hormonal outburst.

The journalist was not wrong to ask him why he was that much invested in the politics of that region to the point he was endorsing their politicians. Fani-Kayode has come a long way from that time he drew massive opprobrium on himself by writing highly disparaging articles about the Igbo people. If he has now transformed into a friend of their politicians, it is within the purview of the journalist to smell filthy lucre. If he had nothing to hide, he could have truthfully stated that his wanderings were self-sponsored. He could have told the gathering why he cared so much about what the governors were doing that he developed a pet project that was taking him from state to state, adulating them. Mind you, his trips did not take him into the rural communities. He was frolicking with the powerful politicians in the capitals.

With his public meltdown, some have prompted him to apologise to the journalist for his tantrum. I am not sure he would ever do that. Look at the heroes he referenced when he tried to justify his treatment of Eyo — Donald Trump and Olusegun Obasanjo. Anyone that tells you his actions are inspired by a combination of Trump and Obasanjo likely suffers from the same narcissism complex and insecurity. Such a person must also be prone to power abuse and gratuitous wickedness. His humiliation of Eyo could only have come from a place of deep psychological complex that takes its self-assurance from denigrating others. If he did not have a compelling need to abuse someone for some psychological self-gratification, why go overboard? Why else would he charge, “Do you know who I am?” If he suffers from an identity crisis, he should be talking to a therapist, not a journalist. Meanwhile, he took umbrage that the journalist insinuated he was being sponsored, yet accused the journalist of collecting brown envelopes?

Finally, while I am happy that Daily Trust and the Nigerian Union of Journalists took a stand on behalf of Eyo, I also think they also owe it to journalists to train them better for occupational hazards that include possible encounters with psychopaths. Let me reiterate that Eyo’s question was provocative and could have been better framed, but I insist he did nothing wrong in raising that point. Eyo should have stood his ground. That is where media employers come in. They need to imbue their reporters with more confidence to stand their ground when dealing with witless politicians who start to throw toys out of the pram because they are questioned.

Once Fani-Kayode started throwing a tantrum over that question, Eyo should have realised that he had struck a nerve. Rather than back down, he should have rephrased his question and ask him again. His colleagues too should not have allowed themselves to be bullied into submission with all that grandiose show of anger. To be a bit fair to them, it could be intimidating challenging someone with political power and privilege. At the same time, when he resorted to shouting and throwing insults like a schoolyard bully, they should have realised that he was unravelling. Anyone who shouted like Fani-Kayode did in that video could not possibly do worse than that. Besides, such outburst is as good an answer as any. The journalist should have asked the question again. If necessary, rephrase it. The frowning face of a he-goat cannot prevent it from being priced in the market.

  • PunchNg

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Domestic violence is a violence or other abuse in a marriage.
Domestic violence could involve any body but I’m looking at it in a family setting between a man and his wife.

Domestic violence includes

  • Physical, verbal, emotional, economic, religion reproductive and sexual abuse.

Many people are going through a lot in marriages today, some Christan homes inclusive. This has caused a lot of harms in homes, churches and the society at large. So many women have lost their lives in the process,men inclusive but women are mostly at the receiving end. And they endure mostly even to the point of loosing their lives. This they do because of:

  1. The love they have for their spouse
  2. Because of their children
  3. What the society will say about them
  4. Because of their faith and religion.

Please when beating and sexual molestation becomes the case in your home, there’s need for separation.

Now in as much as the Bible frowns at divorce, I don’t think it’ll be reasonable for one to remain in an abusive marriage where his/her life is a stake. The same children you think about will still be maltreated, neglected and will be forced to face horrible situations the moment you are gone. The same society you are thinking of what they will say will still blame you for not speaking out on time. Your making heaven is even very slim because I don’t think your heart is clean in that condition. Your bad thoughts, unforgiveness and bitterness is enough to send you to hell. And instead of you to commit murder, I think you should separate if that’s the only option left.

Many women are going through alot. When a domestic violence involves life threatening abuses, there’s need for you to seek for help.

Many women have died in this process. Pls being born again doesn’t mean your brain should be suspended. Yes divorce is a sin but you shouldn’t die either because you are married. You are being asked to keep praying often times, yes but you could do that also while away. Many women are dying silently. Women please speak out in such conditions, don’t keep quiet. Make sure the problem is not from you. Make sure you are not the cause of it.

I have seen a woman beating blue black by her husband. Not once not twice. Infact the man always use cane,belt etc on her. And she’s asked to keep praying. What if she die one day? What if she couldn’t take it any longer and tries to defend herself and kill her partner in the process, what will be her lot?

Women should take the necessary steps the moment they see that things are getting out of hand.

Try to see how you could save the situation by involving your spiritual leaders, your both families,the people your partner respects so much and if there’s no changes please take a break while you pray and take the necessary steps to save your marriage.

Pls note that your being away is for the mean time. Even while away you are to remain and keep your body. It’s not a time to go about messing up. If you do that you are commenting sin. You are to maintain sexual purity. Even when your partner is doing otherwise. The only time remarriage is possible is when one partner is dead. See Romans 7:2,1cor.7:39.

Neighbors should as well look out for their fellow women/men. Please speak out for them. Some of them are in a tight corner and can’t help themselves.

Stay tuned for the next post on this same topic!

Say no to domestic violence.

What’s your take on this? Share your opinion.
Will you allow your daughter, sister, brother,son go through domestic violence?
What will you have them do;the abused?

By Chika Helen Nwabueze’

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By Oladimeji Ramon

A group, the Federal Social Democrats, says the credibility and integrity of the Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, have been diminished by the alleged shooting of #EndSARS protesters by soldiers at the Lekki tollgate on the night of October 20.

According to the group, the Lekki incident has eroded the admiration that Sanwo-Olu won with his handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The group, in statement on Sunday signed on its behalf by Olutola Mobolurin, also condemned the harassment of #EndSARS protest leaders through the freezing of their bank accounts and stopping them from travelling outside the country.

The FSD’s statement was titled, ‘Statement by the Federal Social Democrats On the #EndSARS Movement and Violence in the Wake of Lekki Shootings.’

The group said, “Governor Sanwo-Olu, who before now has been credited with responsible and energetic response to the COVID-19 pandemic, has by this one act lost his credibility and integrity for many. He has a big task in regaining the confidence of the public and youths; his credibility gap surrounding what happened at the Lekki Toll Plaza is not helped by the insensitive bluster of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu at the governor’s residence stating that those who were injured and presumably those who died had questions to answer.”

Though the group condemned the destruction of public assets and looting that trailed the shootings at the Lekki tollgate, it said the mayhem pointed to the alienation of a large number of youths from society by government.

It said, “The so-called hoodlums are the youths that have been denied any stake in society by the self-dealing and state capture that have characterised governance over the last 30 years. Millions of our youths have been uneducated, unemployable and with no meaningful social safety net. Even for the millions who are educated and skilled, long-term unemployment has been their experience in the Nigerian prebendal political economy that serves primarily the interests of public office holders and their cronies.

“Some of the ‘hoodlums’ responsible for the trashing of Lagos are the youths and ‘the toughies’ that many politicians have over the years employed to subvert the democratic process through intimidation of voters and perpetration of violence during elections.”

The group said the organisers of the #EndSARS protests deserved commendation for the resourcefulness, transparency and accountability which they demonstrated.

The group condemned “the growing reports of compilation of names of the assumed leaders and facilitators of the protests for government reprisals.”

It said, “Those that are being targeted are reportedly being prevented from travelling outside Nigeria while accounts of some have been frozen. This is hardly the hallmark of a democratic government that is interested in dialoguing with the youths or learning positive lessons from the #EndSARS protests. It is also a violation of the spirit of government’s acceptance of the 5 for 5 agenda. The President should stop all these acts of witch-hunt.”

The FSD solicited support for the Lagos State Government to rebuild and replace the vandalised public assets.

  • PunchNg

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• Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala had been expected to be confirmed as leader on Monday

By Richard Partington

The race to find a new leader of the World Trade Organization has been thrown into renewed uncertainty after the cancellation of a key appointment meeting following the US presidential election.

The Geneva-based WTO, which acts as an international arbiter for trading disputes, said it had put off a meeting scheduled for Monday that had been called to appoint Nigeria’s Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as its next director general.

Donald Trump’s administration opposed her selection in one of its final acts before the US election, despite the former Nigerian finance minister securing the overwhelming backing of the WTO’s 164 members.

The special meeting of the trade body’s general council had been convened to take a formal decision on the appointment. Officials had been set to put forward Dr Okonjo-Iweala as the candidate most likely to attract a majority, after most countries expressed a preference for her over South Korea’s Yoo Myung-hee.

Okonjo-Iweala had moved a step closer to becoming the first woman and the first African to be director of the global trade watchdog after securing backing from the EU, China, Japan and Australia. Liam Fox, the leading Brexiter and former international trade secretary, had run as the UK government’s preferred candidate but failed to win enough support from other countries to reach the last two in the process.

Trade experts said Joe Biden defeating Trump in last week’s election may have led to countries calling for a delay in the WTO leadership race, with the aim of securing the Biden White House’s backing for Okonjo-Iweala after he takes charge in January.

The delay in selecting a new WTO director general comes at a fragile moment for the world economy amid the second wave of Covid-19, and after years of criticism of the WTO and calls for reform from Trump.

The WTO said the meeting would be postponed until further notice, during which time the organisation would continue undertaking consultations with delegations from countries around the world to pick a new leader.

It said in a statement: “For reasons including the health situation and current events, delegations will not be in a position to take a formal decision on 9 November.”

  • TheGuardian

Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala

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