Pini Jason: My brother, my mentor

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065, [email protected], Twitter@ikechukwuamach My first reaction was shock. Then disbelief! Pini Jason dead? No, that is impossible. It simply cannot be true. I had just received a text massage from Ikeddy Isiguzo, chairman, editorial board of the Vanguard Newspaper. That was on Saturday at precisely 3: 24 p.m. “Greetings my brother,” Ikeddy wrote.  “Our brother, friend […]

For Amaechi, the knives are, indeed, out

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected], Twitter@ikechukwuamach The biggest paradox of the Nigerian State is the fact that the more things seem to change, the more they remain the same or even  worse. Differently put, the more our leaders promise us change, the higher the likelihood that their actions and inactions will achieve only one goal – orchestration of the […]

Give me a Hugo Chavez, any time, any day

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065,[email protected] A friend of mine, as a New Year gift, thoughtfully gave me a book, “No Higher Honour,” Condoleezza Rice’s memoir of her years in Washington as National Security Adviser (NSA) and Secretary of State in the eight years George W. Bush held sway as U.S. President. Recalling an encounter with the late Venezuelan […]

As the ‘Ishiagu man’ turns 52

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected] In Igbo language, “Ishi Agu” means the head of a lion. It is a big deal. At 52, Anyim Pius Anyim, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and former President of the Senate, the country’s third most powerful position, has seen it all. Or almost! And that is no easy achievement […]

The Pakistanisation of Northern Nigeria

IkechukwuAmaechi,08055069065,[email protected] Time was when one could confidently say that certain things were impossible in the country. Not anymore! In today’s Nigeria, nothing is weird. In fact, the weirder the events, they more seemly and fitting they look in our unbecoming circumstance. Or how else can one explain the gruesome murder of nine polio vaccinators (all […]

As Obasanjo worships, eats with Jonathan

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected], Twitter@ikechukwuamach After reading excerpt from former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nasir el-Rufai’s memoirs, The Accidental Public Servant, I couldn’t help but remember the encounter I had with him in his Abuja home sometime in 2007. I had told that story in this column before; how el-Rufai pulled out a voluminous report from […]

Orubebe’s red herring politics

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected] Niger Delta Affairs Minister, Godsday Orubebe, is an interesting character. An “Elder” in the church, who, I was told, loves the pulpit, the minister also loves throwing tantrums. He is combative and seems to relish dogfights. Ordinarily, he should be the busiest minister because even only a fraction of his job ought to […]

NNPC’s scandalous $1.5b loan

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065,  [email protected] Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), the behemoth national oil company, is prone to scandals. And that is understandable. Oil is Nigeria’s biggest business. It accounts for over 80 percent of the country’s earnings. Above all, it is the major source of the slush funds which politicians use in their nefarious projects. It […]

Will Nigerians be better off in 2013?

Ikechukwu Amaechi , 08055069065, [email protected] The question that has concentrated my mind since the New Year is whether Year 2013 will be better than the preceding one for Nigerians. Put differently, will Nigerians be better off in 2013 than they were in 2012? The question does not lend itself to easy answer. President Goodluck Jonathan and most […]

Good governance as panacea for peace and security

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065, [email protected] It was indeed two days of intellectual harvest. Again, the 2012 Achebe Colloquium  on Africa lived up to its billing as, perhaps, the single most important effort to address the numerous socio-economic and political challenges bedeviling the African continent in the last 50 years since most of the countries gained independence. It was […]

The “class” that governs Nigeria

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected] Penultimate weekend, I was in Enugu to attend the fourth edition of the alumni reunion of the class that governs Nigeria. And what an event it was! I am using the phrase, the class that governs Nigeria, here to refer to a group of Nigerian students who were admitted into the Nigerian […]

Ribadu’s drama, Jonathan’s dilemma

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected] President Goodluck Jonathan is embattled. No doubt! He is a man at the crossroads of perception. And that is a dangerous place to be. He wants to be seen as the President who successfully put the rampaging dragon of corruption on a leash. At least, if he cannot be perceived as the man […]

Ribadu and dirty deals in the oil industry

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected] When President Goodluck Jonathan made the patently false claim that the global corruption watchdog, Transparency International (TI) ranked Nigeria second only to the U.S. in the fight against corruption in his October 1, 2012 speech to mark Nigeria’s 52nd Independence anniversary, Nigerians were nonplussed. Many asked if the President’s claim was true. Of […]

Reflection on the Ondo Governorship poll

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065, [email protected] The question that concentrated my mind after monitoring Edo governorship election was whether Nigeria’s democracy was on track 13 years after the military were forced to quit the political centre stage. Despite the fact that Governor Adams Oshiomhole, candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), secured a deserved victory, I was still […]

There was, indeed, a country

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065, [email protected] “Anger,” wrote Samuel Langhorne Clemens, the American author and humourist, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, “Is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.” I agree. The Yoruba intelligentsia are angry and up in arms […]

The essence of the National Honours Award

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected] Yesterday, President Goodluck Jonathan decorated 155 Nigerians with various National Honours. As usual, it was a grand occasion at the International Conference Centre, Abuja. The recipients will continue to wear their awards as badges of honour, which they are. That was the second time Jonathan would be conferring these honours in his capacity […]

2015: If Jonathan must be President again

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065, [email protected] President Goodluck Jonathan flagged off, literally speaking, his second term campaign penultimate week in Onitsha, Anambra State. The President went to Anambra to commission some projects executed by players in the private sector who are desirous of making the state Nigeria’s industrial hub. The Onitsha Inland Port, Orange Drug Industry, SABMiller Industry and […]

Olympics: The bad luck runs through! (2)

Ikechukwu Amaechi,08055069065, [email protected] Why is it difficult for us to get anything right in this country even when we claim to be the giant of Africa? How can our athletes excel in international competitions when we lack up-to-date facilities for training. How can they excel when all that matters to the officials is the estacode? Above […]

Olympics: The bad luck runs through! (1)

Ikechukwu Amaechi, 08055069065, [email protected] The 2012 Olympic Games held in London came to a glorious end Sunday night. It was a spectacular event,  almost flawless. Many countries are beside themselves with joy. Their young sportsmen and women came and conquered the world, literally. Every medal won by an athlete is celebrated back home. Victory is always a […]