Sunday, November 27, 2011

KNOWING WHAT TO DO!!!!

There is no point cutting a large chunk of meat into little pieces with a blunt knife, when by sharpening the knife, your work is faster and you save energy…..but wait, what if you did not know that the knife could be sharpened? You just keep struggling with the task, when it is as easy as sharpening the knife. That is how lack of not knowing what to do can be for us. Your life becomes complicated, you become confused and you may be running around in circles because you do not know the right thing to do. Knowing what to do is wisdom and not knowing is why you are running around in circles.
Ecclesiastes 10:15
The labour of the foolish wearieth every one of them because he knoweth not how to go to the city.
Proverbs 4:7
Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding.
I read this verse some days back and then two words came to my mind; Rat race and Wisdom. Then I started wondering how these can be related even though wisdom is the major thought of this whole write up.
Rat race can be like running around in cycles, you just get exhausted and you have achieved nothing you just run around in cycles without leaving the same position. It can be likened to activity without progress or struggling without results or proofs.
What about wisdom? Wisdom the Bible says is the principal thing. It is the right application of knowledge in moral and spiritual matters. This goes to say that if a man doesn’t k now what to do, it would be a case of lacking wisdom. Wisdom is getting the right info, breaking the knowledge down and understanding then right application. Simply put, Wisdom is the right application of what you understand from what you know.

The link between wisdom and rat race is getting clearer now. Not knowing what to do at a particular point in time can result in someone running around in circles.   There has to be first, a hunger for the right information. When you have the right information, it is what we call knowledge.  For information to be right, it must be correct, progressive because knowledge is progressive. It has to be in accordance with what is good, proper. It must be solution-oriented and appropriate. It has to be something that meets your needs, a way to help you out of your predicament, challenge or what ever.
 When you now have the right information, you must not be in a hurry to begin doing it or rush through pages, you must understand it well. Break it down correctly into small bits. This is what UNDERSTANDING means. Until you understand, it cannot translate to right application. Until it is the applied rightly there is no wisdom, just as it is not enough to have the right information….the crux of the whole grammar is in doing. It is in right application you get a solution. Success is in problem – solving.
THE PRINCIPAL THING
That is why the Bible says that wisdom is the principal thing and with all your getting, whatever you are getting in this life, you must get understanding. There will not be meaning to anyone’s life if we run around not knowing the right thing to do. It is not just doing anything but the right thing. The race of this world is for those who can finish, you have a race to run and you need wisdom to run your race to the finish line. You need wisdom, knowing what to do at a particular point in time, so that you are not running in another man’s lane or running the opposite direction, the truth is, you must run your race and you must be determined to win the race. The Bible tells us in I Corinthians 9: 24 to run that we may obtain because obtaining for winners.  Wisdom is the only way out of the trial and error life. As human beings, trying and trying is easier said than done, it takes wisdom for you to pick important lessons from mistake because if you do the same thing over and over again, in the same way you did it, you will be getting the same result and you have not learnt anything from your previous failures. Besides, you do not have forever to live a trial and error life.

Wisdom is the principal thing and it better than money. When people operate in wisdom, they have speed and it is almost like they are some super humans, like their lives are so easy. They have a solution-oriented approach to problems. People who operate in wisdom are leaders. For you to operate in wisdom, the life of knowing what to do, when to do it, you must have hunger for knowledge. The hunger to know and you match it up with action. 
ANOITING
If you are a Christian and you went to church, you were anointed, it is not for you to run away from problems live a life of confusion but the anointing helps you to walk in wisdom.  There are challenges in your personal life that you are facing but because you don’t know what to do, you just sit there confused operating in the trial and error life believing one way, things will definitely work out. How long can you can you wait? Anoiting is for problem-solving.
 A lot of us are eager for solutions ready-made ones, the reason why you are confused. You are so dependent on fast-solutions, the experts, you never take the time to know and understand, and you want things solved so easily. The truth is when you know and understand your challenges; you are in a better place to proffer solutions. When you know how to get a challenge solved, you are a better person because you would have learnt something. Next time, you response will be better. Wisdom is very important and everyday; we must continually seek it from God because it is the principal thing in life. When you know the right thing to do and you apply it, you’ll experience speed and grace. The spirit of toiling and strife has over taken many in the world. The feeling that you have to suffer for everything, which the world is all about suffering and the type that wears you out. Nothing good comes easy but wisdom does more for you because God did not create you to suffer. Believe it and resist the temptation to think so. Your life is made to be progressive, not to run around in circles, to suffer all the days of your life.
 A man of wisdom is a man of understanding. When you understand issues thoroughly, you can solve and move on to something else. This is the time for you to rise again and stop managing your mediocre, self-pity, angry life. It is not about anger, envy or self-pity; it is all about knowing what to do. The right thing to do and when you should be doing it. Be tired of running around in circles, desire progress and stop making excuses for your average life. If you do not like where you are now, it is time to look inside, ask yourself what next. Do not just sit there feeling so confused,getting lost in the crowd for every problem, no matter how complicated, there is a solution and wisdom helps you figure that out.

HOW?

To get wisdom, ask God…..be hungry. Let God see your heart and your hunger… He never fails. He is the author of wisdom. You can also learn from other people from books and other valuable resources. Do not be a one-man army, be eager to learn.

THE DEATH OF ORIGINALITY: Speaking your own language

I like J’odie, Omawumi because they are original. So is my love for Asa and Dagrin. I love Classic FM 97.3 Lagos because there is nothing like it. You will hear songs you will not hear anywhere else in Nigeria, I can bet on that.
Many presenters in the media houses around here are so taken by their supposed “American” and “British” accents. Many musicians are so dying to get the Beyonce factor, the Rihanna sexy behaviour, sing like Mariah Carey, rap like Lil’ Wayne, Jay Z and everybody says they have got some swagger….and am wondering who are these people? Since they are trying hard to be like someone?  I thought we are supposed to learn from them, get inspired but never loose our sense of individuality? I won’t be surprised if someone starts dressing up like Lady Gaga walking down my streets. Every other lady rocks lace wig and Brazilian, they all have BBs, so it is understandable what trends mean. Little wonder, I see a lot of BEZs on my street and at auditions, all the young guys sagging their jeans because it seems like a huge trend…just wondering what happened to being original?

Many people are for the successful ventures, nobody wants to test the new grounds, once someone invents something and it works, you can be sure that the rest of Lagos will be unto it. You watch music videos and movies; it is like the same thing. Similar lyrics, beat, dress code, dance style……it is all so common. The radio stations are playing the same thing, it is so boring. Don’t you just like it when you hear JayZ, you just know it has to be JayZ and if it is not him, we just say, oh! This guy raps like JayZ; all because JayZ has defined his own style and it has stuck right inside our heads. When you hear Tu-Face, you know who it is. That is what originality is all about, It is why many people love Beyonce, Madonna, Lil’Wayne, Akon and all those who stand for originality. The world is in need of originality. If God wanted us to be copy-cats he would not have given us different finger prints.
Originality rocks and keeps you ahead of the pack.

-         Instead of spending time and resources duplicating Christian Audigier Ed Hardy T-shirts, take a cue and make yours.
-         We all cannot be so into that Brazilian hair and BB fever…. If you must have them, make sure it is not a bandwagon effect.
-         Short dresses or hugging clothes are not for you because it does not work for all figures.
-         Don’t catch the pencil heels fever, it is not for everyone.
-         Your lyrics must not be about girls especially naked ones and your beats must not follow the band wagon.
-         Stop sagging your jeans; it gives you no sense of style.
-         Stop forcing the American or British Accent, it makes you so fake and listening to you or watching you is so boring.
-         Don’t jump at that business because it looks lucrative
The earlier you know it the better for you…..the news is, you can only copy, you cannot be them, so take your cue and build your own brand. We already have them and we are so into them already…..we want something new and we want your brand. You can copy all you like; it will never get you anywhere. Whatever the success, it will be short lived…you will always be like them…oh she sings like Madonna.

A close friend told me how he lost a race in his secondary school days because he wanted to run a particular style copying someone. The funny thing about it was that he was ahead of the rest half way into the race but because he decided to copy, swing his arms like the other guy who was then the fastest guy, he lost the race and finished last. If he had ran at his own pace, his own style, he would have won first prize for his house and ended up as the new fast guy in school but he gave that away all in a bid to copy someone because he thought it would make him run faster. What he did not know them was that, it was a natural thing for the other guy and he never even took notice that he ran that way. So it is with all these original stars. They are doing what they love in their own original style and that is why they are stars. You have to believe in what you can do and do it well, that makes you original. Why it takes you so much time and effort to copy someone, it comes naturally to them and it is effortless.
Even when we hear everyday that originality is important and it gives you an edge, people still prefer to copy. That is why we have a lot of counterfeit products in the market. People just enjoy copying, everybody is conforming, and those who the society labels as rebel go on to become stars. The uncommon road is not an easy route but if you believe in something, then you should go for it. You must not dress like everyone dress, buy what they buy, sing like them to believe you are somebody. Right where you are, just as you are…..all you need to do is groom yourself better, brand yourself, with patience, persistence….you too can be a star.
It is better people hate for being original than them praising you for acting Lady Gaga so well. You will continually be in their shadow. It is why they encourage winners of talent hunt to write their own songs and do their own style. This is life, you must run your own race and you must finish it. You can be slow as a snail, if that is your style but the important thing is that you finish. You may not be able to run as fast as Usian Bolt or swag like Rihanna, the point is in you finishing as you. Never loose your individuality. There are so many people in the world and God created us uniquely, run with who you are…..be yourself…nothing more, nothing less. Be original, speak your own language.

Friday, November 18, 2011

CONGRATS TO THE NEWLY CROWNED MISS NIGERIA

Congrats to the new Miss Nigeria, Miss Feyijimi Sodipo.

This time they are more natural and thier dress sense works for me. Make up was really moderate and the girls are far intelligent. Miss Ogun nailed that Global warming answer and that was the part that made all the diffrence. Miss Edo was 2nd runner up and Miss Benue 1st runnner up. The Ankara and the styles was amazing...

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

SOLUTIONS....PLEASE! part 2

People go abroad and when they come back, they go back to littering the streets, while it is not done over there, once they come back, they become like most people. Yet they complain of how dirty the streets are. You are well travelled but some things, you cannot change, when it is vacation, you pack your family and off you go, then you come back and say how bad Nigeria is. People like you are part of the problem, major source!!!!  People make little money, instead of investing it; they quickly buy a liability….no thinking of posterity, long-term rewards. A lot of us prefer to buy a car twice as expensive, wear all the best clothes instead of doing something to change someone’s life with part of the money. We are so material driven that all we see is what people have….it becomes our aspiration. Don’t be the type of Nigerian or African with all the resources and all you do is consuming, you are not contributing anything, just occupying space and complaining. Some of us have no value for human lives, trampling others under our feet for some little power…... Collecting ‘change’ as a PHCN officer to connect light; what is supposed to be your job, what they are paying you for. Promising young girls a better life abroad and eventually sending them into a life of prostitution. You take another man’s child into your house and maltreat the poor child over little things, something you will never do to your child. Over working and continually criticizing your subordinates, with no regard for their private life and family, you treat them with no regard and if many of them had their way, they will not even be working under you. It is always about you, you must be the first to benefit, nothing from you at the top ever trickles down. You are a lecturer and all you do is intimidate your students, why they must buy your handout even with your obsolete teaching methods. People jumping corners to get things done, eye-service even in the tiniest form. If you do these things and more, you are part of the problem.
 Be the solution….Make it a choice to pursue excellence, never compromising. We have enough problems already. If we do not play our part, the way Nigeria is headed, God help us. Those in power are practically clueless and the ruling class are not allowing those below to climb up. If you want to rise above the rat race, be that star, then start thinking solution. In anyway, you can impact people’s lives positively, begin to now. It is not always about having money; even how you treat others, how you spend your money, what you say and do…change your thinking!!!!
  For those seeking relevance, wanting to be superstars…..remember that; when you solve problems, people will come to you regardless of your location, language, colour or whatever prejudice. We are tired of complainers, it is major tabloid headlines, it sells but we cannot continue like this. Be the change you seek, part of the solution, don’t add to our problems!

SOLUTIONS….PLEASE! part 1

Everyday, people complain and complain. I sometimes do but I try to resist it because most times we complain to people who cannot solve the problem, that is what I like to call lamentation or when you voice out to people who are supposed to be hearing, it is almost like they never heard you. As I have I figured, complaining does not solve anything, it only makes it worse. The best way is to put your self in the place of solution. Find some problem to solve, stop being part of the problem. In this part of the world (Africa), our greatest battle has been leadership. We lack it and for the most part, we barely can figure out how to lead.  The world needs solutions, plenty of it, that is what the developed world thrives on and it is the way to lead. Leading in that your small corner, doing those simple things extra-ordinarily well and being the change you seek. The system around here erodes human values and makes a lot of things difficult, our culture is change-resistant and we like complexity, too many processesses; it is understandable the challenges of pursuing excellence but the good thing is that it is possible. There are norms, Traditions and mechanisms that drive our system, even when they do not help. Certain practices that give no room for keeping your vision alive, baseless procedures but you must strive to keep your vision alive. Fight for what you believe in and let it begin where you are.
Complaining about it further complicates everything. Until recently, I just did not see how providing solutions could be linked to leadership, now I know (Thanks to my experience at Excellence in Leadership Conference (2011), Daystar Christian Centre, Lagos). To lead is to be different, to solve problems. When you are part of the solution, you are a true leader. Leadership is reserved for problem solvers. It is not about occupying positions. It is based on wisdom. We are plagued with a leadership that is experiencing HIV (Having Insufficient Vision) in the words of Sam Adeyemi. I resolved not to be part of the problem anymore but consider ways I can improve the things around me. Waiting on those leaders will not get us anywhere. They have enough on their hands already.
When you look at Young American Millionaires, they are entrepreneurs providing solutions to problems.
 Mark Zuckerberg, Dustin Moskovitz, Eduardo Saverin and Sean Parker are all linked with Facebook and the success of a platform for social networking has changed the way we communicate.

Segrey Brin and Larry Page have Google.

Let us ask ourselves, what problems are we solving now? Is there really nothing we can do? Are we part of the dependency population, the consumers? The point is, if you belong to this class, you are likely to fall into the class of people who always complain…waiting on someone else to fix the problem, you are not willing to use your initiative even in the smallest way. In Nigeria, we see that those who provide goods and services are mostly the CEOs, the dictate the tune when it comes to employment and they are the ones making all the cash. They are always ahead of the pack and take all the risks. They are always looking for solutions and by providing it, they become huge in many ways. It does not matter how much money you have or what your talent is, you must begin to start thinking solution, improvement and innovation…..you must not let the challenges of your environment limit you.
In the Bible, we see that people like David, Joseph, Daniel and Jesus Christ himself were all at the top because they provided solution.
-         David was a musician who played for King Saul when he needed a musician and was recommended; He also killed Goliath, a major problem for the Israelites.
-         Joseph interpreted Pharaoh’s dream. If there was no dream to be interpreted, Joseph will not be called to be palace and will not even be remembered.
-         Daniel Excelled because of his spirit of wisdom, being a captive; he also interpreted dreams and counselled the king.
-         Jesus Christ went about doing good, God anointed him and he went about solving problems, helping people live better lives.
The list goes on and you will see that many inventors and legends today solved problems, they rose above the crowd of complainers and by deciding to be different, and they have changed our lives. Mary Slessor, Florence Nightingale, Martin Luther King, Pastor Sam (Leadership) and  Nike Adeyemi (Orphans and Single mothers), Pastor Bimbo Odukoya (late), Bishop David Oyedepo, Lexy Mojo-Eyes, Mary Kay, Sean Diddy Combs, Fela and Tara Durotoye, Mike Adenuga, Cobhams Asuquo, Raymond Dokpesi, Betty Irabor etc. You MUST find a way to be a solution, stop complaining. Your own should not be pure consuming and finding faults in what others do. How about you? Which problem have you solved?
You must not allow the ineptitude of your leaders sabotage your dreams. You must survive and as Nigerians, we know exactly how to do it legitimately, if we truly want to. You can sit all day read the papers and the magazines admiring all those beautiful people, that is how far, you can go. Let their achievement inspire you to act, let it drive you to achieve and solve a problem, no matter how little it is. Be the candle light in the darkness. We cannot continue to wallow in backwardness, entitlement mentality, Get-rich-quick schemes, Poor value systems, Sentiments, Religion, Nepotism, No regard for the law (breaking the law, when you are supposed to be upholding the law) Selfishness, Bureaucracy, Tribalism, Insubordination, Mediocrity….refusing to be the change.

to be continued....

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

MADE IN NIGERIA; LYRICS

With the lines of music I hear these days on radio stations and watch on my TV screens, I am of the opinion there is a wanting for something more deep and meaningful. The lines are similar and the beat is just as the same. Only few Nigerian artistes understand what music is and believe in being an individual in a crowd. When you watch our American and other counterparts (though not all of them make sense) you know we are still far behind. Many musicians lack style, lyrics content and originality.
 Very true, we are better but we can do more. People like Tu Face are huge stars. We like to deceive ourselves that many of our stars are making music. There are so many musicians with beats that we can barely hear what they are saying. I have always thought that music should carry a positive message but since I am not hearing anything, I cannot say there is a message. It is always about a girl or a guy in love, with girls have naked shaking their buttocks….i am tempted to think; do they really think, they are sexy or what? Since we have no message, we are using sex and vulgar lyrical content to sell. It is majorly noise and when you try to say otherwise, they say you are beefing them or you are jealous.
The kind of music young people dance to, even some of the older generation leaves you wondering where we are headed. That further goes to say that we need to transform our thinking. We have to do better. When I hear musician in Nigeria talk of mentoring people, I am wondering what they are mentoring, when they are teaching nothing already with their lyrics….people make a couple of bucks and they start saying they are made, how BABA GOD has blessed them and no enemy can run them down. All manner of supposed ghetto and gangster rap...a lot of people think they understand hip-hop, forming fake American accent, plenty wannabes, lack of originality and poor lyrical content.
THE TYPE OF MUSIC WE LISTEN TO AS YOUNG PEOPLE HAS
A WAY
OF SHAPING US. When all you hear is sex, sex, getting rich quick, no room for delayed gratification, naked girls, money, flashy cars and the likes, it is likely to becloud your thinking and values…
We really have to improve and media houses should stop playing and showing all manner of sorts…what exactly is the point if the song does not pass a message? It rarely entertains and it is usually unnecessarily loud. We are driven by making all the money that we forget quality. How can we go far? When you look at our musical talent hunt shows, the winner goes into oblivion after a single hit or album, after that, they can barely put music together. A good musician, should know the professional ethics, be able to make music with anything, not just one type of music.
A good musician is well grounded and very versatile. When you watch the talent hunts, they are usually looking for the same type of people, particular audition songs….do we all have to sing like Beyonce, Mariah Carey, Rhihanna or Whitney Houston? Do we all have to do Usher or become like Justin Bieber? What then is the point in originality? Excellence thrives with originality and it is why most winners of these talent shows do not go far….when you are trying so hard to be another Jay Z, another Mariah Carey instead of learning from them to build your own brand, you become overwhelmed and your talent suffers. You tune multiple station and you are hearing the same songs, songs that are meaningless. We even dance to them without giving second thoughts to what the lyrical contents are saying. I have stopped a lot of that, I am getting more interested in what musicians say…. It tells the type of people we are. Even though I find myself singing along sometimes unconsciously, I am gradually coming out of that. That is because it is everywhere, you hear it continuously.
They type of people we celebrate in music sometimes leaves you wondering. When we have the likes of Onyeka Onwenu with major classics, songs you can hear every word and sing it, people like Panam Percy Paul, Asa, Dare Art Alade, Lagbaja, Fela, Femi, Nneka, Ayo ,9ice etc. People like Omawumi, Timi and J’odie are doing well on originality. We can improve if we will just understand the basics of music. Creativity and originality is the word. We cannot continue to be making noise and believing we are stars. We will remain local champions. The potentials are there, it is just the basics.
I am all for the oldies and few of the new school because the oldies is music to my ears and they will remain classics for a long time.

REUBEN ABATI: The Metamorphosis



In recent times, Reuben Abati has come under serious criticisms and it is understandable why people should feel they way they do. Reuben Abati was the outsider, the type of writer the common Nigerian could relate with because we believed he spoke our minds and he criticism of the ruling class was on point.  When he was chosen by Goodluck Jonathan to join his cabinet, we were hoping that being an outsider, he would be speaking for the common man….. Whatever happened to the Reuben Abati we used to know on the pages of Guardian Newspaper or did we really know him?  It is being human. We get carried away sometimes, thinking we know people but the truth is humans are very unpredictable especially with money and power.
The whole metamorphosis began when it was rumoured that he lobbied intensely for the position being that he wrote a ten-part article on Goodluck Jonathan’s presidency.
In case, you do not know who Reuben Abati is, He used to be the Boss at The Guardian Newspaper (one of Nigeria’s Top Daily Newspaper), he usually wrote a column and we loved it because of how much he expressed topical issues without mincing words. Perhaps, that was the man of yesterday…. People do change; it is not new around here. If you asked the man himself, I bet he would say he is still the same person but am not sure many Nigerians would agree with that.  A lot of people are not so keen on rubbishing him but it is a case of what he said then and what he is saying now. How could he fit in with PDP and what of his famous column which described Nigeria as a failed State?
Power corrupts……true fact! Looking back at what he said in the past and what he is saying now, you will agree that our dear Reuben has metamorphosed into a politician. He went from criticizing the Government to now defending that same Government. He has truly moved from being a critic to being an apologist. This goes to show that criticizing is easy but when it is your turn in power what guarantee is there that you will be different? Now that he is within the corridors of power, his tune is different. It explains why a lot of supposed “good people” get a chance to experience the corridors of power and they soon forget where they are coming from, they are and they totally compromise. Only God knows what happens in the Nigerian Corridors of power.
In 2009, He recommended that it will soon be time to start stoning the Economists in the corridors of power in Abuja…..Now that he is there; it all comes back to him. He was a strong critic of PDP, now he is part of them. What does that tell you?
In His own words;
        PDP: “...a most irresponsible political party, its continuing success in Nigerian politics, a great oxymoron, but a veritable indication of the putative nature of Nigerian politics marked as it is by insincerity, inequities and injustice....the PDP has done great damage to Nigeria and its people. Consistent with the mood of the times in 1998, the founding fathers of the PDP promised Nigerians...”litical party that will uphold the sanctity of the rule of law, human rights, strong political culture, equitable wealth distribution, minority rights, infrastructural development and high standard of living. They have failed Nigerians on each and every one of these issues” It is a divided political party, a party where the end justifies all the means and the meanness, and where the party register is full of obituaries. Across the country, there is so much strife in PDP constituencies, In terms of values, the PDP has gone down the scale in the last ten years, and the direction is clearly, permanently Southern. But while the party leaders pretended to be on good terms, they forgot to spare a moment or even a thought for all the victims of PDP's power politics, the men and women whose lives have been sacrificed by ambitious and greedy party members... Dr Reuben Abati in 2009
         “This is perhaps why most Nigerians are indifferent about the National Honours system. It does not change anyone’s opinion about the character of the title-holder. It does not attract a salary or a lifetime pension. It probably allows access to the VIP lounge at the country’s airports. But anyone with a couple of thousand Nairas can also use the VIP lounge…….”ho rather than pay a token sum for an hour of comfort, waiting to catch a flight, would insist on waving a medal? Still, we should not make light of it. The concept of honour is at the heart of society. Men from time immemorial have craved it. They would kill for it, if possible, go to war, and risk all. Honour is an intangible asset; it is about prestige and self-worth. But that prestige must be seen to have been earned, to have been worked for, such that it inspires the admiration of the community. Like Akintola Williams, CBE; I.K. Dairo, MBE. A review of the National Honours Act and system is overdue. Nigeria must be probably the only country where people are given national honours for work not done, or in anticipation of what they would achieve. National honours should be reserved for those who through hardwork and extraordinary achievement have helped to raise the Nigerian profile and its place in the world. If this be the case, the highest honours in the land should be reserved for the Wole Soyinkas, the Kayode Esos, the Chinua Achebes, the Chukwudifu Oputas, the Dick Tigers, the Fela Kutis, the Margaret Ekpos, inventors, entrepreneurs, great promoters of the Nigerian dream, including the honest average Nigerian, but not politicians and their sponsors, not every civil servant who manages to get to a certain position, not coup plotters, not traditional rulers, not government contractors and certainly not similar rent collectors.-Dr Reuben Abati, 11th June 2010

          Portrait of a country as a failed state By Reuben Abati
WHY is there such a scarcity of good news in
Nigeria? Bad leadership. Poverty. Ignorance. Impatience. Apathy. Alienation. Frustration. Wickedness. Hypocrisy, and more. Many years ago, the buzz phrase in the original argument for a new world information order was that the reporting of Africa should focus more on the positive attributes and achievements of the people rather than the predictable stereotype of Africa as the world's worst basket case. We blamed the Western media for its racist mindset. We lamented the meanness of parachute journalists who jet into Africa for a few days, report all the dirty gutters, the bare-chested women, the fratricide and the poverty and present that to the rest of the world as the true face of Africa. Two or more trips later, and well-funded travels across African countries, some of those journalists ended up with tomes on Africa and became experts on African affairs!

Less indignant commentators asked for the development of local structures to deepen the capacity of local African media systems to compete in a world where information is all. I don't get to hear all of this now being trumpeted from the rooftops with the same ardour of old. At least in Nigeria, we may gradually be settling down to the cold fact that bad news may be all there is to tell in our public sphere. Yes, in the private sphere, people still organise weddings, loud funeral parties (after which the living tends to be worse off than the dead due to the weight of debts), house-warming parties (well, Nigerians like to warm/wash everything including the purchase of a used SUV four-wheel drive which Americans are shipping off due to high energy cost- we go wash am o), dedication of babies, birthdays, send forth parties: good news is made of such stuff in the privacy of individual lives.

Looked at closely, such good stories, so described, invariably point to one form of sadness or the other in private lives, and indeed the event may be a way of covering up other deficiencies, psychological and social. Never judge the goodness of the lives of Nigerians by the number of people who congregate at pepper soup joints every Friday evening (proclaiming Thank God, it is Friday) or the gaily dressed aso ebi crowd at weekend parties particularly in the South West whose Yoruba population has been described in one recent dictionary as "the fun-loving people of South-West Nigeria." They even hold wedding parties nowadays on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Lift the veil and look at the public sphere:badnews.

Democracy has not changed the tone of news in the public sphere. It is the same drone of dreariness and jeremiad, failures and aborted hopes. There is no point blaming the outsiders anymore. Foreign media channels have become favourite sources of expert commentary on the African, nay Nigerian condition. We quote Western journalists with such great concurrence. A negative comment on
Nigeria on BBC or in the Economist, the Financial Times of London is immediately reproduced in the local media as gospel truth. Nobody is complaining about negative image and if there are some people still doing so, they are few indeed. Deep in their hearts, they know the truth that "this house has fallen," that the Nigerian state is in retreat, that all is not well here. In the age of the internet, and instant news, the apotheosis of the global village theory, Nigerians do not even have to worry so much about imbalance in the world information order, they are all over the internet and the blogosphere, lamenting the frustration in their lives. Nigerians curse, rave, rant, they abuse each other, they hold every other man responsible for their own woes. So much bile.

Reading the newspapers, sitting down at editorial discussions, engaging fellow compatriots in debate, you wonder how so difficult it is to be a Nigerian, how so low life and living in
Nigeria can be. It is a great wonder we are not all in psychiatric homes yet. It is three or four months to the end of the year, it is in vain that anyone can point to good news. Is it the endless strikes in the hospitals (which have resulted in needless deaths), or the strike by school teachers at all levels (which continue to disrupt the school calendar and the lives of students)? How about the lack of regular electricity and the high cost of diesel which has driven companies across the border or forced them to shut down, like the textile factories, resulting in job losses and greater social hardship? No end in sight to the Niger Delta crisis, with governments only managing to dance round the issues. Across the country, armed robbers, kidnappers, rapists and ritualists are on the prowl. Ten years ago we wrote on the bad state of Nigerian roads. The FRSC used to complain about the urgent need to revamp the roads in order to reduce carnage; last week, the FRSC said precisely the same thing, and yet in ten years, close to a trillion Naira has been spent on road audit, construction and maintenance. The roads are still bad. We are confronted with corporeal changelessness and worsening uncertainty.

Surprise: every Nigerian knows what is wrong. We don't need to wait for media headlines. We climb over each other to articulate the best solutions. A thinks he is wiser than B. C suspects D because he or she is of a different ethnic extraction or religious persuasion. The land has been overtaken by assassins at all levels; some carry daggers and guns, they complain about election results or religion and then kill others, the so-called educated ones engage in such bitter fights that make them no better than the Boko Haram zealots. The people blame their leaders. The leaders blame their followers. Even public officials go on television to complain that they are overwhelmed.

Every year, we say the same things: leadership is the problem, civil society should wake up, the Constitution must be reviewed,
Nigeria is a failed state, it needs a revolution (yeah!), institutions need to be re-built, economic reform must focus on drivers of growth, proper federalism must be adopted, the Niger Delta question must be addressed. Let's line up all our leaders and give them the Rawlings treatment (yeah, yeah!). We look at the achievements of other countries and we draw parallels wondering why Nigeria is behaving like an slowpoke. We ask the media to do better. We ask that the development process must be pro-poor,  we shout, we scream, And we put it all down to the lack of political will to do anything. Find that will, and all else will improve. We insist further that those who have looted the treasury should be guillotined. We say it. We scream it,  In due course an important foreigner visits the country and comments on our failings and we all talk about how profound that is.

Of course there is the praying and fasting crowd. They fast during Lent. They fast during Ramadan. They can quote the Holy Quran or the Bible with the facility of a parrot. They claim to know God. They go to umrah, hajj or they visit the
Vatican and take photographs with the Pope! Many unemployed graduates have learnt to short-circuit the system: either set up a private business, or engage in internet scam (the most amusing being the case of one fellow who says he makes the fantasies of lonely old white women come true through phone and internet messages, and he soon fleeces them), or become an armed robber, or better still, a spiritualist (claim you have been called by God: Nothing impresses Nigerians more than claims of ability to see into the future and identify the enemies debarring your progress- every Nigerian is waging a war against enemies- real and imagined). Even the ones abroad occasionally flee from the enemies in the Western world: credit crunch, hunger, unemployment, terrible bills, humiliation, hopelessness, they return home only to be confronted by bigger enemies. Some of them stay back and join the struggle with enemies, but many return abroad, drifting from one uncertainty to the other, hoping that some day, Nigeria will become a country where they and their children and their own children can have a true sense of home.

And then in the midst of it all, one Nigerian suddenly wins an international award, and while some people applaud, others would sneer, and the event leads inexorably to the evil of comparison: he couldn't have excelled if he was still in
Nigeria, and so the good news is pushed offshore. Football used to make us happy too, but now we can't even put a team together and we are not sure of anything with our over-aged players and unhappy coaches.

The months come and go, the year ends. Yar'adua asks the MDAs to return their unspent budgets. We all go to the church, the mosque, and we wish each other a happy new year. The New Year is a copy of the old. And we start all over. We search afresh for the missing political will, for the magic wand that will make our society efficient in the age of efficiency , there are no life-threatening monsoons, typhoons, earthquakes, tsunami, or wild fires stopping us, only madmen and specialists,  We argue, we scream -all over again, we rationalise. And life continues.

He has countless articles to his credit…..what do you know? He is a changed man judging from his words and I try not be surprised because who knows who will be the next to get corrupted?
Nigerians are already tired of this administration and the cycle still continues. For those who voted PDP, some are already regretting why they did. It is a waste of time, next election, doesn’t let religion and tribalism even your emotions cloud your reasoning. Point is…..you just never know! Everyone has a price; make up your mind never to be bought or sold.

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Steve Jobs...did we truely know him?

I recently read about Steve Jobs and his comments on Bill Gates, philanthropy and other emerging facts....i am wondering if majority of us actually knew him or they are just words to tarnish his memory? Steve Jobs is a genius, no doubt....we cannot forget that but reading this article about this man just leaves me with one question...did we actually know Steve Jobs? or maybe perhaps we are so used marrying him with Apple....the place we know him most and the genius we relate with. Was he really that bitter?  Bill Gates and Jobs were said to be good friends and Gates has continually said good things about Jobs. In private, Jobs felt little but contempt for Bill.
The 630 page book by Walter Isaacson gives a different view to the man we call a genius...an inventor. Isaacson is said to have interviewed Jobs 40 times....so why did Steve Jobs say of Bill Gates :
"Bill is basically unimaginative and has never invented anything, which is why i think he is more comfortable now in philanthropy than technology".

What do know?  if the author enjoyed unpreceedented access to the Late Apple creator, it will be hard to doubt his credibility....it seems when people die, a whole new chapter of secret opens. It is obviouslya two-sided view of the Arab-American.....the part we know and the side most of us don't; the petty tyrant who sacked people for crossing his path when he was in a bad mood. A man who dimisses those given to philanthropy or those who give away thier fortune as seeking "false respectability".

It is very revealing and i am tempted to think that other things will come up later. Steve Jobs is a dead man now and it is easy for things to come out now.
Isaacson is a former Managing Editor of the world famous TIME magazine and Steve Jobs chose him to write his biography. That alone gives the information credibility.
Besides, the writer cannot been seen in a bad light, he is obviously giving us facts, figures and his experience with Steve Jobs. His an acclaimed autobiographer.....
The dead man tell no tales and Right now....it is clear that this is life and when you die, it ends there. The rest of us in the world can make whatever we like from it..but that is it. Whatever the controversy, the dead man will not wake up. Whether they did not allow each other's products in thier household....that does not matter now. Life is more than that.
Bill Gates has remained honourable and it is best he stays cool. I respect the man and he has made a mark in history and continues to.
Steve jobs is a genius and whatever this is all about .Like other man,he has his ideologies and judging it is no longer important....he made history regardless of his shortcomings!

THE BLACKMAN FACTOR; Nigerian Factor! part 2

 
We are no longer slaves and even though there are cases of human trafficking, things are different now. A lot of things are just own doing, our thinking. Rise above suffering and smiling….
 We continually conform to what the others say we are. We submit to their conditions, their stereotyping and truly, the slave-driving methods is what many of us still answer to. They still use fear, distrust and envy to control the Blackman. Even in the modelling industry, sports and entertainment, these things are evident. In fact, a lot of black CEOs use it to drive their subordinates to get results, they make it and jump in the band wagon of the white man….but the point is, they can never be white. To look down on your fellow African, no matter their colour, to put a fellow black man down will not make you any better. You are a black man and that you will always be…..it does not matter what phonetics you speak, where you live or how educated you are. Chances of a black man selling another black man short are higher than another race will. It is the reason when some white man wants to penetrate the black community he looks for a loophole…he looks for someone greedy and uses money to buy him over. While the black man buy liabilities in a bid to get the status quo that he thinks will give him power and respect, the white man takes over. There is no point getting bitter about a white man, they are working with common sense. It only should open our eyes to the reality and make us better. The white man is not our problem especially now.

You have to be proud of your heritage, love who you are and celebrate it. Value who you are. If you value yourself, you will not sell yourself short and because you will not do that, it is easy to respect others. We must understand what is important in this life and rise above the slave mentality. Get over the being black factor and stop thinking it is always about your race. Never use racism for your weakness, your shortcomings or as an excuse to stay at the bottom. While certain things are hard to deal with and can really hurt, we can still rise above it and be it. Don’t be in a hurry to give in because of something so small, something with no value to your life. There are still issue of white supremacy still lingering all over the world; it does not mean we cannot become somebody.  
Do not let yourself be used by other people to bring others down. Check your belief systems and the traditions that hold you down and rise above it. Know that envy, jealousy does not do any good.  You have the responsibility to rise above it. You do not have to talk like them, behave like them to be civilized. If you are good at what you do, you can rise above prejudice, racism and all manner of things that hover around being black.
Understanding your values and who you are in God is critical. Some white people may still have that ideology that blacks are corrupt especially Africans but you do not let that limit you. It is a tall order to beat some things off but it is possible. When God created man he blessed them all and to God, race does not count. The blessings of God are without repentance. We are the ones sabotaging our efforts, we double cross each others and at the end of the day, we still suffer of. Don’t be in a hurry to sit up there, all made and all righteous, boasting of international connections while your next door neighbour needs your help.

The blame game is easy but it will not take us anywhere. You must understand the basics of humans success, of what leadership is….the issue of eating alone; me, my family, my friend and relatives is only counter productive. You must be willing to groom people, not use them and dump them….let your principles drive others to greatness. There is nothing wrong with being a black man and whatever your limitations your can rise above it. In the words of Pastor Sam Adeyemi “success is who you are”.
I am black and proud….proudly Nigerian!

THE BLACKMAN FACTOR; Nigerian Factor! part 1


Do you ever wonder why you should be black or just ask why we just never seem to have it right for the most part? It is annoying but true. You can resist it; talk yourself out of it but the truth so remains. You may have asked what is wrong with the black man, where exactly did we miss it that we all seem to be experiencing similar backdrop the world over. The truth remains that there is nothing wrong being a black man; you just have to know who you are, where you are coming from and how to rise above every limitation. Understanding it has changed a lot of things for me and believe me, it works. I am no longer angry being black, I most love it because I know my roots, who I am and how to be different. I write with reference to Nigeria.
The issue of race is very serious even though we have our drops of prejudice, every man, black or white, mulatto or where ever you are from. The only difference is in knowing when not to submit to that prejudice. The challenges of the Blackman all over the world are peculiar and the feeling comes with the questions that we ourselves alone can answer. The secret of rising above the stereotype is in knowing where you come from, your roots and being honest with the shortcomings of your colour. You must not be given to excuses, you must stop finding every reason to blame the white man, no matter what he has done or is still doing….it is your life; you must be determined to make it work.

It breaks my heart that even the educated “elites” as they call them, have yet to rise above nepotism, tribalism, traditions that holds us back, self-limiting believes, superstitions, corruption and defeat. For the most part mediocrity is still very much, a part of our system. While those in the western world have experienced some light, those of us in Africa still deal with issues, a lot of it. Our problems do not just end in physical dilapidation; it goes far into our mentality. Our way of thinking, relating with others and how we do our things….our system. The system must be progressive and productive for it to work.

The feeling that if it is imported, then it is the best. We so much believe in the superiority of the white man (thanks to the black slave-brain washing, which has been passed down generations and still going) that we have lost self-believe, it is one  reason why china made products are taking over the Nigerian market. It is easy for us to import rice or any food stuff than to make it happen here. We want to speak like them; they are the standards for what we do here, even in recruitment, auditions, fashion shows, relationships, television etcetera. There are policies that perpetuates red-tapeism, unproductive bureaucracy that frustrates many who want to make things happen here and even those in the Diaspora wanting to come home. From registering a company, to starting a university or a school, opening a business, building a house or owning a house etc. Methods that does not add value to life of the common man. You waste time, resources to achieve and you find these procedures that are unnecessary, practically frustrating. We are played by our leaders and plagued by indecisions of our leaders. As I have discovered, they really cannot lead when they do not understand what it entails. It is easier for a sate Governor to get a private jet than repair roads, renovate school or provide drinking water. Leadership is not part of our school curriculum…..you really should not blame them.

The things we worry about and the things that drive us for the most part are things that are for the now.  We want to get the best grades to get the best jobs so that we can live the luxurious lifestyles. Delayed gratification makes zero sense and excellence is rarely celebrated. We rarely implement originality; we prefer to copy and make the fake version. Even when it comes to using our talents, it is hugely for personal gains, there is little space for how we can touch lives. Impacting someone goes beyond giving them money. We often deceive ourselves with huge supposed “philanthropists” on the page of newspapers and on our TV screens. It is not about what you have and that is the part we miss it. We enjoy being at the top and the rest staying down below. Even those who claim to help the under privileged, at the back of their minds there is something to gain. For us, everything must have personal gain. Whenever there is a promo, it has to do with you buying first, to get the chance to win. It is okay to be profit driven but you must be careful who you step on and how you use people to get it. Many of us are complaining about our leaders but deep down, it is because we are not experiencing part of the national cake, when we do, a lot of us are prone to compromise even the human rights activist, we have seen them and it happens. In Nigeria, we know everyman, no matter his profession, religion, has a price tag. No matter the plan, the strategy, someone is likely to compromise. Chances are that when if someone becomes a millionaire from the slums, he is more eager to set myself up and be the star, than help someone up to be better than him or her, there is fear of succession. They often want to be like the master enjoying the homage and respect people pay them for what they have….not so much for who they are because when those things vanish, it is back to square one. When you see the kind of Freebies Corporation gives people around here, you will understand the type of people we have become. Getting a salary raise or a Blackberry® or something with no effectual value is likely to happen than getting a day off or getting vacation for your family. Just as long as they have control over you. We are so material driven that we see others in the light of what they have at the moment. For the small beginners, you are on your own. Things like this, is the reason why entrepreneurship never thrives here. It is easier for the Government, CEOs to employ your than teach you how to be an employer. We are taken over by the consumer mentality, we have little preference for seed sowing, we believe in the harvest. That is where you see us, which is where we are.
The lifestyles on TV and soft sell magazines even newspapers promote vain human pursuits. We prefer to rollover the same people, the supposed elites than take the story of a nobody and write about their success. Why? It will not sell. We rarely celebrate values and when young people grow up with all those stuffs, the get rich schemes thrives on that…it grows into networks.

Photos: Google Images
 To be continued...

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

TERRY G...tweets on M.I (JUDE ABAGA)

Have you heard or read this? Gabriel Amanyi (TERRY G) has described M.I as AFRICAN DANGBGA NUMBER 1 and SHORT DWARF on twitter. Would that be a compliment or what exactly is he saying? it is so funny.


I am waiting for songs to that effect, it comes easy in lyrics.... They are neighbours..Jude Abaga is originally from Takum, in Taraba State but grew up in Jos(the same place with the famous TY Danjuma) and Terry G is an Idomo Guy from Benue State....am wondering what dis is all about..or let's say Terry G did not do that!

CONRAD MURRAY......GUILTY OR A VICTIM?

I have to sincerely say that i feel for Dr Conrad Murray.....is the man really guilty of negligence that led to involuntary Manslaughter or guilty of being too concerned (in the words of Hix on Piers Morgan)? It is all too complicated...way too complicated.
Maybe....some of us are yet to accept that Micheal Jackson is dead. Dead in every meaning of it. A path of life. we have mourned him and we have to accept it and move on. We miss him and i am tempted to believe that if he was here, he would have said something different about the doctor. ....Maybe, we want to blame someone and we don't believe he could just die like that. The thing with death of a loved one....it is painful!

How could Dr Murray put his career in so much a mess? How could he have administered that drug and left his side? A guest on Piers Morgan described it as leaving your child on the kitchen sink....i feel for the Doctor and i really wonder what is going through his mind right now. Everything he worked for, his reputation...goes down the drain!
Justice being served will not bring the King of Pop backand whatever we feel about this, let us not forget that dying is part of life.  we may think it will make us feel better but we'll discover later that it cahnges nothing. Your loved one dying means dead...and really dead.Let us ask if this is what MJ would have wanted happening to his Doctor.  Our MJ should be resting in peace....that is the best we can do for him, not dragging his names on headlines. He deserves that respect.The man treated him well according to reports and never meant any harm....i guess that is waht the involuntary manslaughter means.
Doctors will learn from this......it could be a saving grace for someone another time and someone could be left to suffer.....it tells us that drug abuse is dangerous. Wether you are a celebrity or not, you are responsible for yourself and you MUST take care of yourself.

RIP in THE LEGENDARY KING OF POP!

MAGIC JOHNSON..... 20 years beating HIV and counting!

It is amazing that Earvin "Magic" Johnson has been living with HIV......for the last 20 years and it is still counting.Perhaps,if he knew he'll be winning this battle he wouldn't have retired from the Los Angeles Lakers, Nov 7, 1991, He would have played Longer.

 
 He has proved the impossible possible and behind it all is human will.....Thank God, he has the money to take care of himself and he made up his mind to stay alive. It is an inspiration to achieving the impossible in our individual lives.

SMOKING JOE GOES HOME...RIP

Rest in Peace.... Joe 'Smoking' Frazier (1944 - 2011).


                                                     
42 Victories
1 Draw
4 Defeats......
The famous boxer goes home. He was Muhammad Ali greatest opponent. He fought he battle with Liver cancer nad this time, he lost it...but he'll always be here in boxing history.

Monday, November 7, 2011

MISS WORLD:THE FORMER NUN & ORPHAN WHO NOW RUNS THE WORLD!

I find it interresting and heart warming that a former nun and an orphan is now the newest Miss World.:  Meet Miss Venezula, Ivian Lunasol Sarcos Colmenares. She has taken the coveted crown and i have to say, she is so deserving of it.
 
 She was orphaned at a young age. She was quoted as saying "winning means everything to me and i hope to take advantage of being a winner in a productive manner. I'm unbeliveably happy to have won and there are some incredible girls. I first and foremost want to help people in need. I would like to help people like me. I am an orphan. I would also like help the elderly and troubled teenagers. As many people as i can.
"Unfortunately i lost both parents at a very young age which led me to study for five years in a nunnery. I spent five years in there and my dream was to become a nun"....... 
I am happy for her and i am hoping that Nigeria will do better next year. We have to work on it and send a better representative. I just knew that since Miss NIgeria, Sylvia Nduka did not make it to the top 20, during the pre-contest, i figured we've lost it.
I have to admit that the make up regime was wrong....the famous red lipstick and that human hair was not working for her but i guess she was wrongly advised. She is better with nude make up and her hair up. i am suer she has taken a few lessons from there. We can do better and our peagantry godfathers have to work that out.
  The other results are:

Miss Philippines, Gwendolyn Ruais, was first runner-up while Miss Puerto Rico, Amanda Vilanova, was third.
Miss World 2011 Final Results:



2nd place; Phillipines


Congrats.....everyone who made it to the finals.


3rd place; Puerto Rico



Miss World 2011 – Venezuela
 


MISS WORLD 2011 TOP 7
Miss Korea
Miss Venezuela
Miss England
Miss Philippines
Miss Puerto Rico
Miss South Africa
Miss Scotland
 
Miss World 2011 Top 20 Semi-finalists:
Miss England


Miss Scotland
  • Miss South Africa
  • Miss Spain
Miss Puerto Rico

  • Miss US Virgin Islands
  • Miss Philippines
  • Miss Ukraine
  • Miss Venezuela
  • Miss Kazakhstan
  • Miss Sweden
  • Miss Zimbabwe
  • Miss Italy
  • Miss Korea
  • Miss Indonesia
Fast Track competition winners:
  • Miss Dominican Republic has won Miss World Sports competition.
Miss England Wins Miss World Beach Beauty Fast Track competition.
  • Miss Kazakhstan wins Miss World Top Model 2011 competition.
  • Miss Chile wins Miss World Talent competition
  • Miss Ghana & Miss Indonesia win Miss Beauty With a Purpose 2011