Thursday, September 28, 2006

Windows Vista for download

Although I am generally against malware and spyware, one of my lecturers told us about this a few minutes ago. So some of you might want to try it.

Juve watch.

This one isn't about Juve perse, it is about those guys that have failed to win a title in God-knows-how-many years...

I've not seen my people at Juventuz so happy ever since il calciopoli. Inter 0-2 Bayern!

FORZA INTER! Hehehe...

Edit:

Today's headlines in Italy are priceless:

Thursday 28 September
Gazzetta dello Sport
Inter, are you crazy? – They lose at San Siro, are left with nine men and may now be eliminated
Milan: Gattuso and Ambrosini with Ancelotti against Kaka
Borrelli stays – in fact he doubles

Corriere dello Sport
Inter disaster – Ibra and Grosso sent off, Bayern win, champions now in peril
Roma fight, but suffer a knockout at Valencia
Juve double party with Alex and the youngsters

Tuttosport
Inter Euro disaster – Bayern win at San Siro, the Nerazzurri end the match with nine men
Juve were also spied – Telecom’s eye on the footballing world, the scandal spreads
Baby Inter hammered by Juve youngsters Incase y'all didn't know, our primavera team hammered Inter's primavera by some 5-1. . . Grin

If you want Inter Milan to be stripped of the Serie A shield which they undeservedly wear please click on this link.

Corruption in high places

Now, I know that I promised to talk about my new life in my next post, but the news coming from the motherland is too juicy to ignore. Yesterday, Mallam Nuhu Ribadu the chairman of the EFCC sat before the Senate to present a long awaited report on the activities of the governors of our states. And the report was hot. Below is a summary of who has been indicted, who is still under investigation, and the one man who has been given a clean bill of health.

INDICTED

1) Orji Uzor Kalu (Abia)
2) Boni Haruna (Adamawa)
3) Ayo Fayose (Ekiti)
4) Chimaroke Nnamani (Enugu)
5) Saminu Turaki(Jigawa)
6) Adamu Abdullahi (Nassarawa)
7) Joshua Dariye (Plateau)
8) Jolly Nyame (Taraba)
9) Sani Ahmed (Zamfara)

UNDER INVESTIGATION

1) Adamu Mu’azu (Bauchi)
2) James Ibori (Delta)
3) Lucky Igbinedion (Edo)
4) Ahmed Markafi (Kaduna)
5) Bola Tinubu (Lagos)
6) Gbenga Daniel (Ogun)
7) Peter Odili (Rivers)
8) Attahiru Bafarawa (Sokoto)

Clean bill of health
1) Donald Duke (Cross Rivers)

Some may say otherwise, and though I disagree with numbers 2, 3 and 7 of the investigations list (I believe that they should be indicted), while number 5 on the indicted list casts some doubts for me, it is generally a good thing. Forget the fact that Obasanjo is not there (well, he isn't a governor), his time will come.

Meanwhile, may I be permitted to recommend a punishment for item 9 on the indicted list? Amputation?

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

New classmates

Before I start boring y'all again, I'd like to sound my appreciation to the following people who have helped me settle in: Ubaka Uraih (and family), Chiedu Uraih, Uzo Nwanze and Violet Okosun. Things would have been a lot rougher for me if not for you guys. I can't thank y'all enough...

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Well, as things stand I am no longer the only black face in my class. Three more have joined (or do I say three of us joined), as the actual first black member of the class, a Nigerian like me was no where to be found during the first set of lectures. He made a fleeting appearance today (during which we were acquainted) and then vanished again. The other two, one is Ghanaian one is Kenyan. The Kenyan is a nice enough fellow, but the Ghana boy talks too much! Have you ever heard of motorola mouth? That is him. Jesus!

My next post (whenever that would be) is going to be about my observations here in the UK. Sneak preview: as a 'settler', the place is vastly different from what you get as a holiday maker. Back then this place used to be all glitter and fun. Now... And this damned cold is creeping in!

My reply to Fred.

Some two weeks ago, I wrote this article in which the main thrust was about Obj's and Atiku's rather interesting fight. However, another blogger Fred decided to see only the smaller segment of the article which concerned the World Bank's statement on Nigeria's 'fragility'. His reply was:

You are incredibly naive to think China is "anti-US", for starters. These two countries are hopelessly intertwined with each other in trade and other areas.To attempt a connection between being "friends with China" (whatever the hell that means) and being on the brink of economic collapse is a fallacy. Those two things are completely unrelated.Nigeria and Angola are indeed on the brink of collapse, but not because they're friends or enemies with anyone.Since you know better than the economists who work for the World Bank, why don't you enlighten us to why Nigeria and Angola are not on the brink? Because people can still buy bread on the streets of Lagos? Go on, let's hear it.

Well, I will try not to get personal as he did when he decided to call me names. But I'd like to draw his attention to this statement by the same World Bank about the same Nigeria just a few days later. I don't have the time to begin to even show him reports that clearly show that the US is less than comfortable with the emergence of China, I don't think he is worth that portion of my (not unconsiderable) brain power, so let him read the second World Bank story, and contemplate this: the World Bank report which you are taking as gospel maintains that Ethiopia, Niger, Chad, Nepal, Pakistan, Lebanon, Sierra Leone and IRAQ! are more stable than Naija. How in the name of all that is sensible can you take that report serious?

Finally Fred, one bit of advice. Try to seperate personalities from issues. This post doesn't exactly present you in the best light...

Juve watch.

Neddy believes that we are not the only ones that would eventually pay for il calciopoli. The fact remains though that what the FIGC did to us is grossly unfair and unreasonable. Having said that, it is great to see that we have gotten momentum going. Watch out Italy, la vecchia signora is on a roll...

Friday, September 22, 2006

Chxta goes to school


I think that this is significant coming almost 3 years to the day (25 September 2003) that I swore to some of my friends (Andrew, Henry and Peter) that I would never again see the inside of a classroom. Obviously events have rendered that oath null, void and leave me sounding stupid and childish. Here I am typing this from class. I haven't had much time for the net nowadays, and when the next lecturer walks in in another 5 minutes, God only knows when next y'all will hear rubbish from me. My online presence has taken a severe battering, I haven't been on either Juventuz or Nairaland since Sunday (which may be a good thing though...)

My class is an interesting group. I am the only Nigerian (sorry, nigger) in the class, there are two whites (so far), four Chinese, and the rst are Indians. Those guys are really taking over the global IT sector aren't they? So far so good, the facilities are as expected, and the school guide kept crowing about the library being one of the best in Britain. During our induction, they kept talking about the evils of plagiarism. Looks like after murder it is the biggest crime around these parts. Chxta be warned...

Juve watch


Camoranesi has decided to stay. Same as Trez. Gigi says we won't take the playoff route, that we'll be back in A in one go. Management decides to renovate the Delle Alpi. DD says Boumsong's confidence is returning. Chxta has no time to get all the links. Lecturer just walked in. Vayan con Dios.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

...and they said Juve is bad for football.

I've not been online much in the last few days, and I'm set to be online even less as I begin my new life as a student. But I just logged on briefly to point out this article. For those who didn't watch the programme, you can catch it here while it is still hot. I wonder whom the unnamed managers are...

Juve watch.

We deyed Cretone 0-3 yesterday. If we had started fairly like all others on zero points, we'd have been topping the table by now. God dey sha.

Until I find time to go online again, FORZA JUVE.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Congratulations

Can I be the first to say congratulations to the Arsenal fans out there? Chuma, Odinma, Oria, Seun and Akeem Lawal, Igboanugo, Dre901, Julum, Nutter, Kayode Soile, Kayode Olanipekun, Suleiman and Ababoy?

I eat my words.

Who is this Allah?

As a rule, I tend to avoid making comments on religious issues since by my very nature I tend to inspire provocative debate which as some of you who have met me (online or in real life) would have known by now. You see, religious issues much more than sports, ethnic or national issues tend to inspire some of the most irrational and passionate reactions from people, and I'd rather avoid those since I was involved in a particularly violent fight with a Jehovah's witness (would you believe that?) some 14 years ago. I think it is reasonable to fight over Milan-Juve, or over Nigeria-Cameroon, or over Igbo-Yoruba, such fights no matter how violent they become cannot match up to what people are capable of doing in God's name.

This would be my first post about a religious issue, and hopefully my last. This post was provoked by this thread on Nairaland, which I believe came about as a result of the recent comments made by the Pope. On that issue, I think it is ignorance that is causing the over-reaction of not a few Muslims, and I would leave this one to be handled by other writers. I will try my possible best to ignore whatever outburst what I am about to say will provoke.

The subject under discussion is whether Yahweh or Jehovah is the same as Allah. My answer to that is yes. You see, this is a matter of lingua, not a matter of religion (which is why I am posting in the first place). I once read a cute little book titled Who is This Allah written by some fellow who had converted to Christianity from Islam. His prognosis prompted me to do some research into the matter, and what I came up with closely matched what you are about to see:

The word Allah is derived from a contraction of the Arabic words al- (the) and ilah (deity, masculine form) — al-ilah meaning "the god". Cognates of the name "Allah" exist in other Semitic languages, including Hebrew and Aramaic.

Both Muslim and non-Muslim scholars often translate "Allah" directly into English as "God"; and Arabic-speaking Jews and Christians refer to Allah as God. However, some Muslim scholars feel that "Allah" should not be translated, because they perceive the Arabic word to express the uniqueness of "Allah" more accurately than the word "god", which can take a plural "gods", whereas the word "Allah" has no plural form. This is a significant issue in translation of the Qur'an.

Centuries before the time of Muhammad, the word "Allah" was used by Jews (they also used the cognant Eloah) and pagan tribes in the Arabian peninsula to signify the chief deity. Much in the same way as Chukwu was used in Igbo to signify the chief deity (I wonder why then Chukwu and Allah are so different since they both transmutated from chief deity to only deity?)

The Hebrew word for deity, El or Eloah, was used as an Old Testament synonym for Yahweh, which is the proper name for God according to the Tanakh. The Aramaic word for God is Elaha and Alaha (Syriac), which comes from the same Proto-Semitic word (*Ź¾ilah-) as the Arabic and Hebrew terms; Jesus is described in Mark 15:34 as having used the word on the cross, with the ending meaning "my", when saying, "My God (Eli), my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?"

What I am trying to point out here is this: Hebrew and Arabic belong to the same class of languages (Semitic languages), so they would always have similarities in almost all apects (Read: Mein haus ist braun in German and My house is brown in English which are both Teutonic languages).

Juve watch.

I believed I laughed at Inter in my last post, so I'll spare them now. Arsenal just missed a penalty, just as well, I am supporting ManU in this one (I can't believe that!) because those twats Liverpool lost!

Trezeguet's mum was in yesterday's match and sang the Juve anthem with the fans when her son scored. Trez also kissed the badge when he scored. He might just stay...

Write-ups on the Pope's comments that might be of interest:

The Pope's speech in full
Chippla's take
Jeremy's take
Martin Amis
Pankaj Mishra

Obj's blind fury

I placing this article uneditted so you can make your own judgements. I'd have said something, but time is not my friend at the moment, so I'll not. Meantime, someone called me naive over a part of the last write up. I'll respond to him when I find the time.

Juve watch.

We beat Vicenzia yesterday, Trez and Alex with the goals. Boumsong needs confidence. Hope he can return to his Auxerre days.

Making fun of Inter...
http://www.channel4.com/sport/football_italia/sep17f.html

Other than a good cross along the mouth of the goal, Zlatan was in classic "wide left, wide right" form. As often happened on Juve, Zlatan got the ball moving around a lot but was plagued by a lack of final finishing. Some things never change.

And Vieira's goal disallowed for rightfully being offsides? Classic.

Man, that was fun to watch. Even if it was an own-goal that gave Inter a point out of this match. Cordoba was an idiot, as he often is, but rightfully got caught this time for the Flacchi PK. That second half was Inter just pouring it on and Samp just defending everything.

Inter can't win a Scudetto on the pitch

The article on Obj is below:

I DID not know the full implications of Blind Fury until a bungling phenomenon called OBJ came along the other day. I had thought that blind fury only comes about when the matador shows the red handkerchief to the bull who gets real blind fury and lays itself easily for the matador’s deft sword. And I warned in many articles back that we were being prepared for a political drama that was about to open. And we would not have to buy tickets even for the ring side.

Obasanjo was the bull in the ring and Abubakar Atiku was the deft matador. What would have been responsible for Obasanjo losing his composure so badly as to trip so typically? The difference was so clear between an administrator and a man who has been nothing more than a soldier.

When Obasanjo thought he had dropped the bomb on Abubakar like the H-Bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, these are the thoughts that came to my mind: (a) Shigidi nr’oko ete bo (The voodoo clay figurine is trying to disgrace itself). (b) Bi shigidi ba maa te aa ni ki won gbe on s’ojo (when the clay voodoo figurine wants disgrace, it requests to be put in the rain). (c) shago nb’ugo (the kettle is calling the pot black). (d) ibinu ko me pe oluwa on ko lese nle
And to sum up my expectation of justice in the matter: Bika ba r’ojo, ika ko lo ma da (if the malevolent presents this evil evidence, he would not deliver the judgement). Two episodes in my own life immediately came to mind: Adebayo Bankole is my first cousin. A normally reticent boy at the time. He was younger and I took advantage of anytime he committed a little offence. I whacked him, he would whine, retreat from my walloping and cried. I got used to it that I made it a regular attitude. Then on a day I did not expect, he faced me and fought back and nearly floored me. Then I knew I had overstepped my bounds; I had stretched my luck too far. From then on, I stopped hitting him. Of course, he still respected me but I knew how far I could go.

Salisu Yakubu, General Gowon would remember him, was my counsellor at the Embassy in Stockholm. He was from Zaria, married to Sikira from Ibadan. There was this my colleague, a career diplomat, who thought I was too full of myself and did everything to cut me to size. I tried to avoid confrontation with him, but the more I avoided him, the more relentlessly he pursued me. I related my dilemma to Alhaji Yakubu. He told me the solution was not to avoid confronting an adversary, the thing to do was take him head-on. He told me the adversary would think twice. And the man did! That was what Obasanjo asked for and would get. Perhaps, one is jumping to conclusions. What are the facts?

First obvious facts: Atiku Abubakar was on the same ticket with Obasanjo - first and second terms. Atiku on Obasanjo’s ticket boosted his chance, this well-oiled PDM machine substantially powered the electoral victory. Obasanjo’s reluctance to name Atiku as running mate nearly cost him the second term. Obasanjo’s fortune turned when he acknowledged the grandmaster.

Atiku’s ambition to come into Obasanjo’s shoes at the expiration of his term polarised the union. Third term opposed by Atiku finished off the relationship. Since then, the centre ceased to hold. Atiku has an immunity which he waived to show he is bona fide. The administrative inquiry set up to look into allegations by the President comprised nominees and yesmen of the President: Attorney-General; EFCC chairman, Nuhu Ribadu, Nasir El-Rufai, Oby Ezekwesili.etc etc.

Just as the FEC comprises men and women who the President hired and can fire. Because jobs are hard to find, most would rather keep what they have. We are saying the inevitability of bias has been established ab initio. Even then, it is a simple and clear-cut case: The insinuation or allegation that Atiku abused his office by taking bribe from an American congressman, Jefferson The misuse or abuse of PTDF fund and, which I can here call sundries. My layman’s understanding of court trials has been that no judge would give ruling or judgement on what is not pleaded. That was not the case with the so-called Administrative Inquiry. It went beyond its brief (Jefferson) and pronounced on the lodgement of PTDF Fund.

Atiku was generous with his refutations. The alleged so-called bribe money $100,000, was not found with Atiku but in the home of the man who allegedly gave the bribe to influence the vice-president. As for the PTDF fund, the vice-president indicated the advantage of placing the funds with the banks after due advice from the accountant-general. Not only that, it was with the approval of the president! The man they did not want to see with Atiku - Mike Adenuga - has himself corroborated what the vice-president said: that Mike had paid for his acquisition of telecoms licence months before money was lodged in his (Mike’s) ETB Bank.

Under sundries came the allegation of misapplication of PDP campaign funds. The V-P was unequivocal. The account, he said, was jointly run by him and Obasanjo which makes both of them culpable in the case of fraudulent manipulation which is what the president seems to be alleging. Otherwise called The Marine Floating Account, both ran it through Johnson Fashawe, a mutual friend of the president and the VP. He directed our attention to the fact that Chief Emeka Ofor and the late Waziri K. Mohammed ran two similar accounts. In fact, there is rumour the accounts ran into billions.

Of course, that posed a moral question for both men - president and VP. And one now understands the vehemence of the persecution of hitherto unknown so-called businessman, Fashawe, by the government (otherwise the president). Long time and far away, one had wondered what status of Johnson, entitled him to unhindered access to both men.

Now, with the mutual recriminations between the President and the VP, we know. The EFCC mentioned a house in ABTI; the VP spoke of one donated to Africa Leadership Forum, an NGO owned by Obasanjo. It has also been alleged that: Adenuga was building a N1 billion or so library at Bells. It simply means our leaders are trading with us.

For the Senate of the Republic, its role is clear ease these bulls out of the nation’s china shop or declare a no contest. It has shown its power before in the matter of the third term; it can acquit itself this time also. Of course, swinging Zwingina spoke of the options in the matter. It is my hope that he will not swing this one as he tried to do the last time around. I do not trust him as I used to do before June 12. Page 17 cartoon of The Nation of September 11, sums up our expectation of the National Assembly on the matter. In a beer parlour discussion between two patrons, one client shows a banner headline: "EFCC Report: Obasanjo Orders Atiku impeached. Second litmus test for the honourables."
Segun Obasanjo is bent on running our country as his personal estate. We must not allow him that pleasure. He should go.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Obj and Atiku: Final round?

As far as I can tell from this distance, the relationship between Obj and Atiku is damaged beyond repair. This dance will not end up with a victor or vanquished, no, there will be many losers, and the Nigerian people may well be the ultimate losers. You see, when two elephants fight...

It has been a fight with many episodes which has become Naija number one. But for now, let me explain my own understanding of what is happening.

You see, it is very easy to draw parallels with the Tony Blair vs Gordon Brown fisticuffs (which by the way has reached a rather uneasy ceasefire), but I won't join in that bandwagon, and for good reason. See, Blair vs Brown is all about leadership of the party, and the ability to ensure that their party remains in power. There is nothing really personal in that fight unlike the Obj-Atiku row which is both personal and business. Personal in the sense that Obasanjo feels that Atiku needs to be taught a lesson for fucking up in 2003. Atiku on the other hand feels that Obasanjo wants to finish him both economically and politically (true anyways), so he has decided to behave like a goat pushed to a wall. He is fighting a no holds barred battle. This fight which started nicely(?) as a battle against seeming corruption in the corridors of power has become one of the dirtiest exposes we have seen in our history thus far. The rhythm is going higher, and sooner or later, someone's voice will crack.

We have to remember that it was a fight like this between Awolowo and Akintola that led to the demise of the First Republic, and ultimately to the Civil War. It was also a personality clash (Shagari versus Awo(again?)) that led to the demise of the Second Republic. The Third Republic never quite took off because Babangida and Abiola had differences. This means that our rulers have failed to learn from history. You see, history has a way of repeating itself, and as things are now, I won't be surprised if some young guns in the barracks are cleaning their guns. God forbid sha, but these guys in Aso Rock should behave.

The fight has been just below the surface, but methinks that this current wave burst to the surface when Atiku's wife was indicted in an American contracts scandal. The same day (7 September), Obasanjo sent a report to the Senate accusing Atiku of corruption. This was seen as an open attempt to get Atiku impeached. By 9 September, Atiku's camp had fired back. They pointed out that Atiku was being witch-hunted because of the 2003 thingy. Personally while I think that to be true, I support the retort from Obasanjo's camp which challenged Atiku to respond to the charges of abuse of public funds and stop being personal. At this point I'll insert my own complaint about people in Nigeria taking things too personally. That is what has led to this do or die culture that we seem to have nowadays.

In my opinion, Obasanjo's people have succeeded in damaging Atiku. The man seems too daft to realize that Obasanjo's plans to stop Atiku from succeeding him, an open secret by the way had been achieved. A lot of observers, notably Gani Fawehinmi, in a public statement declared Atiku guilty as charged; in addition, a candidate for impeachment and prosecution upon the expiration of his immunity, and a defeated Presidential aspirant. The only winner from this is IBB because when PDP demands money back from you, it can only mean that there is no way they'd select you to be their flag bearer. People with some political sense based on lessons that they learnt in 2003 are quietly joining (is aligning a better word?) themselves with the IBB camp. Wow!

What Atiku has failed to realize is that Obasanjo is a good strategist. Garba Shehu, the Vice President's Media Consultant has been defending his boss well. This would have been a time when Obasanjo would have missed Fani-Kayode who would have matched Garba Shehu, expletive for expletive. But guess what? They have re-deployed Akin Osuntokun, a veteran of press wars, as Special Adviser on Political Affairs. Uba Sani has also been appointed Special Assistant, Public Affairs. The timing of both appointments is instructive. Both men would give Shehu a great fight.

My views on the IBB sideshow were confirmed talking with my friend Uche (an ex-soldier) this morning. He had this to say: obj is a smoke screen...imagine wit this "fight" atiku is so strong. imagine if there was no fight...ibb will not stand a chance. And I asked him, “so you mean Obasanjo prefers IBB to Atiku?” To which he replied: they are soldiers...ibb et obj...they need someone that will maintain their legacy...not a politician that will compromise wit the likes of ENAHORO and soyinka...atiku is a listening man...they dont want that.

Truth is this: politically, Atiku is finished. Is there anything to add?

World Bank

The World Bank has listed Naija and Angola as being among 26 countries on the brink of imminent collapse. Idiots. Have you noticed that it is countries that are friendly with 'anti-US' countries such as China that are always on the brink? I saw a report that said Red China wouldn't survive the cultural revolution. This was back in 1967, and where are they now? These same 'westerners' said that Saddam has WMDs. Where are they now?


Crazy people!

A Brazilian referee faced suspension on Tuesday after she awarded a goal that television pictures showed was scored by a ball boy. You can watch the video here.


Juve watch

The Italian Olympic Committee has agreed to hear our case with a view to reinstating the stolen 17 points. Thieving bastards. They did it only after the season started so we don't go back to Serie A. Animals. Crooks. I could say a lot more...


Monday, September 11, 2006

The Premiership Resumes

My main concern at the moment when it comes to Premiership issues is that Che£$ky don't establish a hegemony over the rest of the division. It is quite sad that we have a case of they get what they want simply because they have Rom$ky's billions. That's terrible, and can only be bad for football.

Talking of ManYoo, I was disappointed by the game on Saturday. Carrick did not play as well the £18 million he commanded (see what I always say about English players being overrates?), O’Sh** was nowhere to be found, Saha was shite and Kieran *****ardson showed why he is not United quality. There was the odd flash of brilliance from Ronaldo but in the end United were really poor.
They got lucky for the goal and Tottenham deserved more from the game. But in the end, it’s another three points in the bag and they go four games unbeaten. Of the 'big' teams they look the most likely to challenge Che£$ky, so I will throw my lot in with them...

My beef with Che£$ky has even gotten worse with the Mascherano and Tevez issue. No disrespect to West Ham fans, but for those who do not know the dynamics of the international transfer market, let me explain. The two biggest South American talents still plying their in the blessed continent just went to some small club in London. They did not go to ManYoo or Arse-nal or Che£$ky. They did not go to Real Madrid or Barcelona, they went to WEST HAM!!!!!!!!!!
You see, these players’ contracts are owned by some conglomerate called Media Sports Investment (MSI). This group is headed by a shady fellow called Kia Joorabchian.
Mr. Joorabchian is understood to have close ties with that equally shady Rom$ky. Last year Kia Joorabchian and his MSI consortium made an unsuccessful bid to buy West Ham and reports say he has been in ”exploratory discussions”.

Jose Moanin-ho was spotted in Brazil earlier this year watching these two players and it seems these players might well have been on their way to Che£$ky. The length of the of the contracts and the cost of the transfers have been undisclosed and this adds fuel to my claims that they are headed for Che£$ky. I think these players are sent to West Ham to acclimatise to the English game before being shipped over to Stamford Bridge and I don’t this is the last time such a strange transfer will take place. West ham will thus become a breeding ground for Che£$ky’s future “Galacticos”. The suspicion is that MSI is being used as a front to buy players in order to keep them out of the hands of the big-money rivals. This also enables them to farm players out to the likes of West Ham, where the London club can monitor their progress, safe in the knowledge that they have first shout on their futures if and when they see fit to take them to Stamford Bridge. In doing so, Che£$ky are taking the concept of feeder clubs to a whole new level. I also think this is some form of money laundering in form of football clubs. And they said Juventus was bad for the game…

I'm out for now.

Advert for Naija

"One friend says you can leave your house naked in the morning and arrive at work washed, shaved, dressed, and smelling of aftershave, just by buying things from the vendors amid the Lagos traffic."

This guy left me in stitches. Read the rest of it here...

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Reality check!

Reality check, we just 'lost' to Rimini. 1-1.

Indeed, hopefully this will be a wake-up call. Serie B is a dogfight, it will be very tough. We didn't turn up properly today, rushed in attack, unorganized and sloppy in defence. We were very nervous. Taking Giannichedda out might've been a a mistake also, he goes unnoticed on the pitch but he does provide protection to our (weak) defence.

Anyway, most important thing is that we learn not to underestimate all the next opponents and really fight for the results.

Ratings:

Buffon 6.5 - Some good saves.
Birindelli 6 - Balanced play.
Kovac 5.5 - Did well at times, but didn't look 100%
Boumsong 4 - Goal was mainly his mistake.
Chiellini 5 - Very very nervous
Marchionni 5.5 - Good first half, dissapeared in the second
Paro 7 - Our best player, got the goal
Giannichedda 6- Did his work
Nedved 5.5 - Rusty
Del Piero 5.5 - Rusty
Zalayeta 5 - Bad Movement

FORZA JUVE!!!

What happened to the Gulf War money?

Former Military President, Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, frittered away $12bn of the country’s revenue through special accounts, which he ran as the sole approving authority.

This was contained in the report of the Panel on the Reorganisation and Reforms of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

The panel headed by the late renowned economist, Dr. Pius Okigbo, painted in graphic details how Babangida operated “a second but undisclosed budget” with the then CBN governor, the late Alhaji Abdulkadir Ahmed.

The report, which was submitted to the administration of the late Gen. Sani Abacha on August 29, 1994, had been a subject of interest to Nigerians, who have been itching for the detailed report of the government’s White Paper on it.

Today, the Babangida camp has come out to challenge the veracity of that report. According to Kasim Afegbua, IBB's media assistant, the amount the country made during the 3 month Gulf War period was not $12 billion, but $2 billion. He gave figures on how the said amount was generated for the national coffers, and actually had the guts to call the furor being generated by the controversy 'cheap blackmail'.

According to Afegbua, “the Gulf War was just fought for three months and per barrel of oil sold for $24. And if you look at the production capacity of NNPC at that period, (60% production capacity), you couldn’t have got $12. 4 billion by supplying oil outside the country for three months; with $24 per barrel, it was not possible.So what came into government coffers as income from the Gulf oil sales was just $2.6 billion. Somebody just added one figure just to blackmail IBB. It is cheap blackmail, it is unproductive, it smacks of lazy scholarship.”

No problem Mr. Afegbua, every human has a right to believe what he wants to, especially where it concerns where you toil for your daily bread. I don't have figures to exactly challenge yours but I have a question for you:

How can you claim that: "don’t forget, this period was the period that this Abuja actually took off. The Abuja you are enjoying today, all the facilities, good roads, water supply, beautiful barracks, federal secretariat, NICON Hilton, all the nice things about this Abuja took off in 1990." Have you forgotten that Abuja started being built in 1976? Before IBB came in Mohammed, Obasanjo and Shagari had all plunged a lot of resources into the Federal Capital? The only leader before IBB who really didn't show as much interest in Abuja was Buhari, so it is grossly unfair to claim that Abuja was built with the Gulf War funds.

As citizens we demand to know (and it is our right) what really happened to the money. We need a detailed balance sheet, not assumptions. Thank you for your anticipated cooperation.

Juve watch

Today is the day. History is about to be made. As I'm typing this, the teams are in the dressing rooms preparing to come out, while I am tuning in to British EuroSport to watch. Forza Juve!

Friday, September 08, 2006

Will Play For Food!

Chxta's take on today's Fiver...I'm not an advocate of using technology to help avoid duplicity in the modern game. But maybe it would help. After all, if players giving press conferences were hooked up to lie detectors, they might feel under some obligation to tell the truth for fear of being embarrassed by the flashing lights and shrill bleeping that would otherwise greet their every utterance. But with such electronic innovations remaining a pipe-dream, Cashley Cole was able to cite Ch€£$k¥'s success, ambition and collection of English players as the motivation behind his move from Arsenal with an admirably straight face today.

What's more, he put paid to speculation that the extra £20,000 per week he's being paid had anything whatsoever to do with his move by addressing the issue head-on. "I know full well that I'm not a greedy person. I've not come here for money," he deadpanned, as flames licked around the ankles of his trousers. "I've come here because I want to win things and I have a good chance of winning things at Ch€£$k¥," he continued, glad to have emerged from a losing streak at Arsenal that yielded a mere two Premiership winners' medals and two FA Cup winners' medals, not to mention one Champion's League final appearance more than Ch€£$k¥ has ever notched up.

And with his ever-lengthening nose threatening to spear several journalists through the heart like a ... [No stingray jokes. It's too soon - Chxta's lawyer] ... like a white-hot lance through one of my Weird Uncle's piles, Cashley spoke of his debt to the club he's been desperately trying to leave for the past two years. "I owe Arsenal for giving me the chance to make it," he confessed. "But hopefully the fans and the manager and everybody will agree I've repaid them a bit. Maybe it's not enough but there's nothing I can do now. I've moved on and Arsenal is in my past." For the time being, maybe. At least until all those unflattering mentions appear in not-at-all-greedy Cashley's autobiography - available soon in all good bookshops for what is bound to be a very hefty sum.

Personally, Chxta has one thing to say to Cashley: So you didn’t move for money huh? That means that Osama Bin Laden loves Americans and Phil Collins is a truly talented and gifted performer. It’ll be nice to see young Theo skin him to set up the winner at Stamford Bridge. I am no Arsenal fan, but I hate mercenaries.

African football watch

Why are the bloody Afrikaaners denying Enyimba visas? Classic case of Naija's lot in African football. We are so nice to the rest of the bleeding continent, but when it is time for them to reciprocate we get a lot of rubbish.
Like this case of awarding Angola the Nations Cup in 2010. First thing s first, I think it is demeaning that we bid for everything that comes along. Having said that, we were the best prepared country to host the damned thing, and CAF (fucking Issa Hayatou) gave it to Angola who have just one stadium! Then to add insult to injury, placed us on standby should Angola fail to be ready. I want to state here that I will personally be responsible for murder should we accept to host when Angola fail to meet their obligation as they surely will. Time to give the idiots a dose of their own medicine!

Rooney versus Gray

Until this week, Blackburn Rovers full-back Michael Gray was famous for two things. The first was the season-destroying penalty he missed in the play-off final for Sunderland against Charlton in 1998, later confirmed by kinetic scientists as the most pathetic spot-kick ever "struck" by a professional footballer. Then, on the day Mick McCarthy asked the Sunderland players to show a bit of sensitivity after about 30 members of the club's staff were laid off - a direct result of the players' own on-field incompetence - Gray turned up to work in ... a spanking new Ferrari. But, as the that American polygamist said before he was locked up for life in a Utah hellhole, things happen in threes. So it was clearly just a matter of time before Gray approached a fellow footballer in a posh restaurant and casually asked him and his dining companion for a threesome.

Now anyone who knows owt about owt will also know that young Wayne Rooney has previous when it comes to sboudoir antics you wouldn't necessarily want to tell your mother about. They - and Ricardo Carvalho's crown jewels - might also recall that he is no stranger to random acts of belligerence. So when a worse-for-wear Gray decided to try his luck at the Panacea eaterie in Manchester, he presumably concluded that the prospect of hanky-panky with Wayne and Coleen outweighed his fear of copping a haymaker. Moments later, he was laid out on the floor, with the awestruck Sun reporting that Rooney's punch was thrown "WITHOUT getting out of his seat".

A spokesman for the pug-nosed pacifist explained: "Wayne and Coleen were enjoying a night out with three other couples and were having a quiet dinner when Michael came up to their table uninvited. Michael then began making a number of remarks which were offensive to Coleen and Wayne's other female guests. Several times, Wayne asked Michael to leave. It was a brief incident and as far as Wayne is concerned, he bears no ill-feeling towards Michael." No, no ill-feeling whatsoever. Mickey, however, now bears the sort of shiner that will heap further glory on Blackburn's reputation as a haven of commonsense, fair play and all-round decency.

Juve watch.

British Eurosport 2 just announced that they'd be showing Juve matches this season. Ye! I get to watch la vecchia signora. Correct men. Meanwhile some idiot journalist was insinuating that DD wasn't happy to be coaching a Serie B team (the pressman must be on some cheap drugs) and DD has responded: "No regrets!"

Thursday, September 07, 2006

INEC, Oby, Abu and everything in between...

EFCC seized the assets of some dead INEC guy. Wow!! Assets worth over N 7 billion and the guy was a pastor! Fiery indictment on the level of decadence in Naija society when a pastor steals even more than Lucky Igbinedion (in comparative terms, you see, Lucky has access to more).

Like I said some months back, it is nice to see Oby and Abu fighting. The racks has once again burst to the surface with Oby requesting for Abu's impeachment. I always find it funny when people complain that Oby is using Uncle Nuhu to witch hunt his opponents. True yes, but you see, Oby will be gone from power by this time next year and trust me, the way things are in Naija, he would likely be on the receiving end of Uncle Nuhu or another. These things take time, but since Nigerians are an impatient lot, we aren't looking at that. IMHO, it is just a matter of time before someone starts doing things the right way, provided we are prepared to stay the course.

Interesting things are happening in Naija. Meantime it is funny to note the coincidence with our colonial masters. While on the one hand Oby and Abu are racking, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown are having it out too. Brown's people want Blair out so that Brown can lead the Labour Party to 'victory' in the next elections. Difficult to see how that would happen when you listen to what a lot of people say in the news. But then what do I care? I'm Nigerian, not Brit. The only thing that interests me in this waka is the number of daggers Tony Blair seems to have left in Gordon Brown's back. But one difference between them and us remains that I am yet to see Blair (or Brown) bringing up personal issues (I think only the Americans are as uncouth as my people). Political maturity? That is a topic for another day...

My school life

I went there yesterday. Registration is meant to start on the 21st, so I have a bit of time on my hands. Interesting how people trek a lot around here. When I was going I had to trek almost 2 kilometres from the train stop (would have been a busstop back in Naija, and I'd have seen an okada). Also God hates these people. What kind of cold is this?


Juve watch

We will play our first ever Serie B home game at Turin’s Olympic Stadium after their three-match ban was suspended.

The decision was taken after the Bianconeri’s official CONI arbitration appeal was lodged as we continue the fight to see our 17-point penalty reduced or completely cancelled.

Chairman Luigi Ronzani examined the acts and ordered the “immediate suspension of the secondary penalty represented by the home match ban until the ruling is announced”.

This decision mirrors the one taken for the other clubs involved in the Calciopoli scandal who will go to arbitration - namely Milan, Fiorentina and Lazio.

However, Ronzani confirmed that the 120,000 Euros fine that was also handed out to Juventus in July still stands.

Is El-Rufai gay?

http://www.saharareporter.com/dn001.php?dnid=121

Judge for yourself...

Blair to confirm resignation

PM to confirm he'll resign in August '07 but won't name precise date today. Were it in Naija, all of us would have begun to queue up to make insinuations that he wants to loot the treasury. . .

Someone just sent an email to the BBC saying: "As soon as Blair sets a date, he'll be a dead man walking."

The sit tight mentality is human, not African.

Interesting thing happened yesterday as I was coming out of the underground at Tottenham Court Road. This white girl looking at my Nigeria badge suddenly gave me an invitation to a rally at Brixton on the 12th. The invitation reads: Don't attack Iran, bring our boys back from Iraq. We are not America's 51st state. Come to the rally at the Brixton Hill, 12 September 06...

The whole Iraq adventure remains a mistake...

Juve watch

The season starts on Saturday. We are still on the appeal for a reduction of the points dock.

FORZA JUVE.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Lagos Journal

The following was written by Ade Adene:

How many States are there in Nigeria ? 36? Wrong answer. A recent UNDP study has found that Nigeria actually has 35 States. Lagos that used to be regarded as the 36th State has been found by the said study to lack every one of the 54 socio-economic indicators that confer the status of statehood and will therefore lose the status in the upcoming UNDP assessment on progress towards achieving the MDGs in developing countries.

O.K. I was fibbing. There is no such report, and the Federal Republic still has 36 States.Nevertheless,the point I was trying to make is that Lagos has problems (or issues like my shrink would say-and yes I am seeing a shrink!) Where does one begin to begin?
Its hard to imagine that the jungle we live in today is the same picturesque setting of epics such Chinua Achebes No longer at ease and Sefi Attas Everything good will come. That this same haven of madness was once home to water fountains at roundabouts, lush green gardens, city squares, parks and serene watersides is almost inconceivable-but in a time not so far away, it actually was.
So where did it go wrong?

Well, Ive been giving it some thought lately and all the evidence points towards one main culprit-the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. I know its fair game around these parts to blame government for everything from bad roads to burnt dodo! Nevertheless, I do think that the F.G. is truly culpable on this occasion.
Why?

Well, Lagos was for over 30 years the nations capital city. Federal presence meant that this was the place to be if you wanted any of the national cake. Therefore people came from far and wide to sink their teeth in-or at worst, make do with crumbs. Lagos therefore became a Big Apple or El Dorado of sorts. If you had any dreams or aspirations in life, Lagos was the place for fulfilling them; and if you didnt, come allthesame because great big Santa-Daddy Lagos would sort you out.
And the people came and came and kept on coming..and kept coming. (I guess youve gotten my point by now!)
Unfortunately, not all the prospectors struck gold. The unlucky horde became leeches draining essence out of the system-nevertheless, the people came.
Lagos was straining at the seams, implosion loomed large.. but the people still came.

The already precarious situation was exacerbated by the F.G.s revocation of the citys capital status and the subsequent relocation of the seat of government to Abuja . The raison detre that decision and its merits or demerits are debatable, but what remains beyond argument is that the Federal Government appears not to have had a recovery plan for the city. Lagos was bound to suffer from the abrupt cessation of the music. The soup kitchen had relocated, but the hungry horde remained at the dining table waiting for dinner.
Federal Civil servants suddenly had to relocate to Abuja , their dependants, hangers-on and all others whose daily bread depended on federal presence in Lagos had to either adjust to the new reality or maintain the status quo in the hope of the common mans eternal refrain e go better.


Lagos loss of Federal Capital status is by no means the sole contributory factor to the mess the State is largely in today. Like any other mega city has her fair share of mega city problems-environmental pollution/degradation, high incidence of unemployment and violent crime, transportation hiccups.;nevertheless, there is no gainsaying the fact that the genesis and compounding of todays realities are intricately linked to the enthronement and subsequent disrobing of the city.

The horde that populates this city today could very easily have been in any other city in the country had that city been designated federal capital instead of Lagos . A lot of the influx of humans was predicated on the equation of federal presence with brighter prospects and better living conditions. When government was in Lagos , Lagos problem was government problem and therefore got-more often than not, government attention. However when government found a new bride in Abuja , you knew the old wife was bound to suffer some measure of indignity-and suffer she has!

No doubt the level of trade and commerce in Lagos should ordinarily suffice for her upkeep. However, since the initial influx and the current population are largely attributable to the status quo ante the relocation to Abuja , I think it makes sense for the federal government to pay the State some special attention.

Lagos should not be left to the AD,PDP,NYSC or any other clowns happen to find themselves in Alausa.Lagos should enjoy a considerable level of pampering and special treatment from the Federal Government. This is why I think that the recent announcement of the agreement entered into by the F.G with foreign partners to aid the State government by way grants/loans to facilitate development of the State is a step in the right direction.

Lagos is not an oil-producing state, and the Free Trade Zone planned for the State has some ways to go before it begins to yield fruit. She therefore can do with some subvention and other forms of financial aid from the government at the centre instead of the power struggle which has attended the relationship between Alausa and Aso Rock in the last four years.