Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Kaura Local Government Chairman Allegedly Kidnapped, Motorcycle Rider Killed in Kaduna


Caretaker Chairman of Kaura Local Government Area of Kaduna State, Dr Humble Bege Katuka, has been allegedly kidnapped by armed bandits.
The motorcycle rider taking him to his farm on Monday morning when the incident happened was also allegedly killed by the hoodlums.
The farm is located in Juji Village under Chikun Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
It was learnt that the kidnappers opened fire on the motorcycle rider, killing him on the spot before whisking Katuka away.
No information had been received from his abductors at the time of filing this report.
Kaduna State Police Public Relation Officer, Muhammed Jalige, was unavailable for comments when our correspondent contacted him.
Chikun Local Government Area has become a hotspot for kidnapping and banditry in recent times as several persons have been attacked by hoodlums there.
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OPINION: Governor El-Rufai Is Killing The Hausa Shàgo Culture Of Northern Nigeria Starting From Kaduna State, By Saliu Momodu


Through out Kaduna State, Governor Ahmed Nasiru El-rufai through his iconic onslaught of mass demolitions, is killing the Hausa shàgo culture of Northern Nigeria.
The logic is for city beautification and perhaps most importantly, Internal Revenue Generation. So as you go around town, spaces where mini, small and even large privately owned and privately operated shops once sat are now opened up after what came mainly as an unceremonious deployment of bulldozers and catapillers.
These entraprenuers now stranded and aching from the predicament of their new realities are expected, if still interested in eking out a living, to go find and rent shops at exorbitant rates from plaza-like buildings and shopping centers. Buildings that appear to have been briskly erected by salient but shrewd bourgeois. Bourgeoises who hitherto have always cozied with the advantages and privileges of means and information on the impending draconian socio-economic policy of government.
It may be difficult to argue against a logic that seeks to harness sundry economic activities in a state for a boost in tax inflow, and as in this particular case through rents and royalties. But to ignore the overwhelming number of those shàgo owners and practitioners who must now return to unproductivenes, unemployment, despondency and moribundness is to be insensitive to the plight of a critically disadvantaged class of the society.
From where will these peasants start off if they are to ever continue fending for themselves and their families? How can they possibly source the capital required to rent out a shop from these ostensible shopping malls much less stock up on the wares to sell. Many of these people especially in this COVID dispensation have definitely been thrown under a racing bus if not literarily under a moving Catapiller. All these coming just when they thought they could still manage to clutch onto an age-long, yet enduring, practice of the shàgo as a lifeline to out-live this pelting economy.
People of Northern Nigeria, their young men from the bottom social strata especially, have over the decades been able to wrestle their share of livelihood and maintain some semblance of independence and responsibility through the practice of owning and running a small shop somewhere around in the neighborhood or right outside their various houses. These shops popularly called shàgo in the local Hausa dialect are the principal supply units for simple but critical consumer items. Big corporations like Dangote, Honeywell, Cadbury etc., have these shàgos to thank for being the last link in the downstream sector for the distribution of their products to the final retailer and consumer in the biggest cities and in the remotest extremities of the Nigerian landscape. Aside serving a life-dependent network of critical supply to those low income earners who only subsist on a hand-to-mouth basis due to the uncharitable economics unleashed upon them by government, these shàgos serve as the economic mitochondria upon which a poor society depends for an otherwise impossible redistribution and circulation of wealth among the poor and less privileged in our economy. On account of a neighborhood shàgo, those who legitimately earn or unabashedly fetch from our common patrimony could still handover some crumbs to the shàgo operator through the purchase of groceries, sanitaries, veggies, etc. By extension, those at the lower ebbs of an unforgiving socio-economic construct may earn just enough to go through another night-man, wife and children. But when even this oportunity is arrogantly taken away on the grounds of environmental beautification and tax scavenging, one can only wonder how those at the receiving end would fare in the immediate and medium term- not to mention anytime thereafter.
Now, talking about the aristo-centric economic gains that may possibly accrue from these developmental adventures. Who says this is the better way to go? By this approach, wealth will once again be made to perculate at the hands and corridors of those already rich and privilege ones. They will go on to own all the departmental stores and shopping centers while those that are purported to be running those shops and businesses will actually be slaving both for their principals through rents, and for the government through taxes. Mind you, there is a worse case scenario where large retail chain stores could simply snuff out the life from their smaller competitors through an unfair competition as already being staged by this demolition policy. And again, even if the present govenor may want to boast of his good intentions and judiciousness with the generated revenue, what are his guarantees for future administrations and for those men, women and their children whom he has violently taken out of circulation by severing their critical shàgo lifeline?
As a people, we have to be very weary of blanket imitation of Western liberal democracies just as we should be cautious in applying textbook examples of developmental models. One would have thought that government and her handsomely paid policy makers would be more charitable, pragmatic and sensitive in a Northern Nigeria that is this plagued with insurgency and widespread insecurity, drug addition, and out-of-school children. Yet we are greeted with a demolition orgy that luxurate in bringing down the lives and businesses of the poor only for a propping up of those already rich and privilege shopping plaza and retail corporation owners.
The way to go at this critical juncture of our national life isn't to place environmental beautification above human survival and sustainability. And regarding socio-economics, we got here in the first place owing to massive rural-urban drift as brought about by lack of armenities, infrastructure and social welfare in the hither lands. This migration still continues and there are little or no insensitives to stay back in those remote communities hence the bourgeoning population and accompanying petty economic activities as ever sprawling in the main cities of our country. It is therefore better to apply a voluntary pull strategy rather than a high-handed and unsustainable push approach as we see here. Through a pull strategy, people are nudged away from the urban centres for a return to the rural areas by making those far-flung townships and villages to be adequately viable living enclaves. People should again see reasons to pack up their belongings and head back to their local communities on humane terms and for real productive reasons rather than on account of the desperation brought about by hunger or the frustration and bitterness occasioned by government demolition campaigns.
An attempt not to yield to these candid, sincere, professional and humane options of going about an all-inclusive development would send many people into destructive alienation and many more away as recruites and foot soldiers for the very insurgency we purport to endlessly fight with the same hard-earned tax money we are gluttonously scavenging for. Let them hear, those that have ears.
God bless Kaduna State, and God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
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Your re-election is not only well deserved, but timely, Isa Ashiru tells Hassan Hyet led Executives


Honourable Isa Ashiru Kudan, a former gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has issued a congratulatory message to the Hassan Hyet led executives, on their re-election to lead Kaduna State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, in the next four years. 
Using his official Facebook page, he said; ''I wish to felicitate with the newly inaugurated Hassan Felix Hyet led Executives of our great Party, The PDP; whom have been given the mandate to lead our party in the next four years.
Without doubt, your re-election is not only well deserved but timely in order to enable your capable team to continue on the good work you’ve started. 
This victory is a clarion call to rebuild, re-strategize, build cohesion in the party, work assiduously for the PDP to take her rightful place at the helm of affairs state-wise and indeed nationally; to renew the trust the people have in our great party, the PDP. I believe that this team is capable of putting PDP in its traditional pedestal, which would culminate in seizing power come 2023, in sha Allah.
I hereby charge them to realize that their tenure would most certainly dovetail into the next general elections and while wishing them a successful tenure ahead, urge them to embrace the fact that the hard work of securing the PDP’s position as the number one political Party in the State and most preferred Party of choice for the good people of Kaduna begins immediately.
It is my prayer that Almighty God will give Hon. Felix Hyet alongside his Executives, the grace, Strenght and wisdom to direct  affairs of our great party in our State to a constant and Umblemished records of political victory. 
I want to also use this medium to appeal to all our party faithfuls to give all necessary support to the Exco to enable them have a good working environment to take our great party to the dreamland.
Once more, Congratulations to all members of our great Party." 
POWER TO THE PEOPLE!!!
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Monday, September 28, 2020

OPINION: NO Shaking must shake in 2023, Ekene is coming, By Daniel Katung


It is no longer News that the people of Chikun/Kajuru Constituency are sick and tired of Hon. Yakubu Umar Barde, popularly known as no shaking. It is also not news that he has been the House of Representatives member, representing Chikun/Kajuru federal Constituency for over a decade, with nothing tangible to show. 
Aside the incessant killings/kidnappings in Chikun/Kajuru Local Government, the roads are horrendously bad. Not for a day, have i heard nor seen a Constituency project, initiated or completed by the said honourable, aside his hotels.
To the people of Chikun/Kajuru Constituency, our mumu never do? For how long are we going to continue to allow such a failed representative to toy with us? I think it's time for us to begin to see beyond party line. Winning the ticket of our favourite Political party shouldn't guarantee the success of a candidate in an election, it's time we change that. Promoting someone who has failed his exams over and over again will only give the person the liverage to be lazy. It is time for No shaking to shake, cause Ekene is coming.
Though i am a die hard supporter of the Peoples Democratic Party, which hasn't changed, i don't see myself supporting the PDP in 2023 if they make honourable Yakubu Barde their candidate. We are sick and tired of him. And that's something the PDP should respect. Failure to do that, some of us would support Hon.  Ekene Adams, with the whole of our hearts. The man has done so much, and is still doing alot for the people of Chikun/Kajuru Constituency, and Kaduna State at Large. I don't know him in person, i've never met him, but his philanthropic works are evident. If everyone would campaign like Hon. Ekene Adams, then alot of persons would be alleviated out of poverty, instead of the usual vote buying during elections. He is a rare gem i must confess. A good option, incase PDP fails to do the right thing. So it's up to the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to do the needful, or we'll move!
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OPINION: El-Rufai is right; Nigerians do think all governors are thieves, By Joel Popoola


Governors are the most suspected elected officials. Everyone thinks governors are just thieves… wasting state resources (and) not doing anything – Nasir El-Rufai
The above is the sort of opinion you hear all the time inside a danfo – but not something you hear very often from governors themselves. But this week Kaduna chief Nasir El-Rufai publically addressed he and his colleagues’ “very negative image”.
He was right. Nigerians do think all governors are thieves. The statistics prove it.
Research shows 72% of us believe “most politicians are corrupt”.. 57% of Nigerians believe that nothing will ever change, no matter who wins an election.
And other countries agree – that’s why the international Corruption Perception Index ranks us amongst the most corrupt countries on Earth. And 80% of Nigerians think that placing is deserved!
Regardless of your politics, no governor has done more to tackle the systemic and structural shortcomings of our democracy than Mr El-Rufai himself.
It was El-Rufai who trialled electronic voting in Kaduna in 2018, deservedly winning praise for his efforts to promote transparency and increase electoral integrity. Voters even reported enjoying going to the polls – which will hopefully encourage them to do so again in the future.
Even more strikingly four Kaduna elections were won by the opposition rather than the incumbents – a statistical rare occurrence in Nigerian elections. People knew their vote would have an impact. So they voted.
After a recent governorship election in Edo where only one in four voters went to the polls it is clear our nation needs to incentivise and encourage voters to vote more than ever before.
Its measures like electronic voting – which make vote-rigging and ballot-stuffing significantly harder – which are so desperately needed across Nigeria if we are to fix our current democratic deficit.
A coalition of over 70 human rights organisations recently united to raise the alarm about increasing vote buying in Nigerian elections, with convener Clement Nwankwo quoted as saying:“Politicians are increasingly investing money to buy votes with voters appearing to be willing to sell their votes.
“In the Edo State election this practice was widespread with all of the major political parties engaging in this infringement.”
With only 25% of Edo voters going to the polls it feels like the only people voting are the people who are being paid to. This is a bleak assessment of Nigerian democracy.
These allegations follow an election which has thankfully been described as “relatively peaceful” and “relatively credible” by the Centre for Democracy and Development.
But we Nigerians should expect more than “relatively credible” and “relatively peaceful” elections. I ask you, would you buy a car which is “relatively safe”? Would you purchase a pet which is “relatively harmless”?
Our democracy faces significant challenges. The first step to tackling them is better communication between electors and elected.
Mr El-Rufai has described the role of a governor as “one of the most difficult jobs in the world”. As both a Nigerian tech entrepreneur and as a digital democracy campaigner, I have seen firsthand how true this is. Local politicians are, for the most part, motivated only by public service and a profound love of their communities. They step up to take the hardest decisions for us, even when they do not like those decisions any more than we do.
But they need to explain themselves better. That’s why the digital democracy campaign I lead created Rate Your Leader, a free app which puts local officials in direct person-to-person contact with the people they serve. It also allows voters to contact them, helping them gain better insight into the needs and wishes of the people who elect them.
If politicians using the app are responsive and authoritative, and explain the decisions they are taking clearly and satisfactorily, their voters can give them a positive rating. If people see that neighbours who have interacted with their local politicians have all rated them highly, that builds trust in our leaders. And that in turn builds trust in our system.
Communication between the authorities and the public has never been more critical. As more and more Nigerian parents see their children returning to school after the disruption of Covid-19 they need to be able to trust institutions as much as they need to be able trust leaders. They also need to be able to receive vital public health messages instantaneously.
But with more Nigerians owning a smartphone than voting, the answer is literally in their hands.
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My daughter's wedding was supposed to take place in Zamfara, but because of the security challenges, we decided to hold it in Kaduna - Senator Marafa


Kaduna was on Saturday agog, as supporters and followers of Senator Kabiru Marafa, stormed Kaduna in their thousands, as the Senator married out his daughter, Architect Aisha Kabiru Marafa alongside 13 orphans.
Senator Marafa who played a fatherly role also took full responsibility of 13 other female orphans whose parents were killed by bandits in Zamfara ‎and gave them out for marriage.
The wedding fatiha took place at the Almannar Juma’at Mosque in Kaduna, with Zamfara State Govornor Bello Matawalle, former Kano State Governor Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, former Zamfara Governor Alhaji Mahmuda Shinkafi, former Kaduna State Governor Senator Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi and many others dignitaries in attendance.
The marriage was conducted by the Chief Imam of the Mosque, Dr Tukur Adam Almannar who used the opportunity to call on other serving and former leaders to emulate Senator Marafa by also taking care of orphans in their localities.
“The Groom to the Senator’s daughter Al’amin ilyasu Abdullahi paid 100,000 naira as bride price for Architect Aisha Kabiru Marafa.
Dr Almannar said the Senator did all a father will do for his daughter as well as the 13 orphans which is commendable.
The 13 orphans were those whose parents were killed across Zamfara State due to bandits activities. We hope and pray to Almighty Allah to reward him for the gesture as we also urged other well to do to emulate him by assisting the orphans.
He also prays to God to bring an end to insurgency in states like Zamfara, Katsina, Sokoto and other parts of the country.
Meanwhile, Senator Marafa speaking to newsmen shortly after the wedding said, “My motivation to do this is the support I get from my people all the time. You can see the crowd that gathered here today, it is the demonstration of their genuine love for me, and I am not in office, I am not in control of resources. These are people who love me and believe in my struggle.
“So, I am humbled by this show of love because this wedding ceremony is supposed to take place in Zamfara, but because of the security challenges we decided to hold it here in Kaduna.
“We also decided to hold it in a low-key due to Covid-19, yet people came in large number because of their love for me”.
Talking about the security situation in Zamfara state, he appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to please in the name of Allah implement the resolution that was passed at the tail end of the 8th National Assembly, “where we called on the federal government to extend even if it is a small fraction of what has been done in North-East should be done in Zamfara, by constituting a President Initiative Committee on Zamfara state, give the Committee a seed money of N10bn and same amount to be given every year for 10 years to assist the situation on ground.
“The situation is that, between 2011 and 2019, conservatively, 10,000 able bodied men were killed in Zamfara State. If those 10,000 men had an average of two wives, that means, there are 20,000 widows in Zamfara, if you give them an average of four children per family, that means, there are 40,000 orphans in Zamfara.
“That is what informed my gesture to sponsor the wedding of orphans, because most of them are grown up, but their families cannot buy them even broom.
“So, I am calling on Mr President as the father of the Nation to look at that Senate resolution of 2019 and implement it because that is the only way we can curtail the spill over we are now seeing in Katsina, Sokoto and other places. Because, when people and hungry and some gives them a hundred thousand Naira and AK47, they will follow the person. But if these orphans are properly catered for and trusted persons are appointed to manage the resources, we can tame the monster called banditry to the bearest minimal,” he said.
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Sunday, September 27, 2020

Emir of Zazzau’s demise: Gov. El-Rufai showing how much he hates our people – Adara community


The Adara Development Association, ADA, has observed with dismay that Governor Nasir El-Rufai has used the demise of the Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Shehu Idris to publicly showcase the status differential between Northern and Southern Kaduna people in his administration.
The National President of Adara Development Association, ADA, Mr Awemi Dio Maisamari, in a statement issued on Saturday, he said, “As a mark of well-deserved honour to the late 1st Class Emir, who died naturally, three days mourning period and a public holiday were declared by the Governor. Also, in a matter of a few days, arrangements are in top gear to peacefully appoint a successor to the throne based on established Zazzau customs and traditions.
On the other hand, the 1st Class monarch of Adara Chiefdom was abducted like a commoner and eventually assassinated in very humiliating and suspicious circumstances. And yet the Governor did not consider his tragic demise deserving of any extraordinary action, special honour, press statements, tributes or even ceremonial calls for public mourning by the state government.
“This was again followed by the greatest mark of dishonour and treachery to our monarch and Adara people as a whole. Our people were shocked to learn that Adara Chiefdom and Adara Traditional Council had been secretly scrapped by the Governor five months earlier.
The statement added, “The unacceptable scrapping of Adara Chiefdom and the creation of Kajuru Emirate on Adara land were made known a few days after the murder of our Royal Father. Furthermore, even the investigation and prosecution of the masterminds and executors of the crime are not being given the publicity, importance and urgency they deserve.”
The Adara people said these are displays of sharply contrasting policies, actions, attitudes and body language by the Governor on the death of two 1st Class monarchs.
This shows his total and unapologetic disrespect and disdain for the traditional rulers and people of Southern Kaduna. Therefore, the Emir’s death has finally unmasked Governor E-Rufai’s apartheid and segregationist system in Kaduna State beyond any reasonable doubt,” the statement added.
The Adara people said Governor El-Rufai has balkanized the largest Christian majority of Adara Chiefdom whose size covers only two local governments, but has left Zazzau Emirate intact with ten local governments.
The statement explained that the governor sympathizes and apologizes for Fulani terrorist attacks in Northern Kaduna but blames Southern Kaduna communities for the endless atrocities on their people by his kinsmen, adding that he has ignored the humanitarian crisis affecting tens of thousands of Fulani terrorist attack victims and internally displaced persons in Southern Kaduna.
The Adara people appealed to the governor to rethink his principles and policies in the interest of sustainable social harmony, genuine peace and equitable development of the state.
This is necessary in the overall interest of our helpless Adara community, other Southern Kaduna victims and even his privileged and favoured people who are also agonizing from the insensitivity of his administration,” the statement explained.
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