A jealous housewife, Oluwakemi Etu, who hacked her husband, Kehinde Etu, to a coma on Saturday has told the police that she bought a new machete two weeks before the act for the purpose of punishing Kehinde.

The acting Police Public Relations Officer for the Ogun State Police Command, Abimbola Oyeyemi, who stated this on Monday, also told our correspondent that Oluwakemi explained further that after purchasing the machete, she hid it in her apartment in the Erinlu area of Ijebu Ode, so as not to arouse suspicion.

“She said her waiting paid off last Saturday as she succeeded in luring her husband to her apartment,” the PPRO added.

Our correspondent gathered that she had invited the husband over to her residence to spend the weekend with her, which the man honoured without suspecting any foul play.

It was learnt that while he was there, she treated him warmly, but later attacked him with machete, inflicting several deep cuts on his chest and other parts of the body while he was asleep.

Oluwakemi was arrested by men of the Obalende Police Division, while the husband was rushed to the General Hospital in Ijebu Ode, where he is receiving medical attention.

The state acting spokesperson said the machete Oluwakemi used to inflict wounds on her husband had been recovered.

He said, “The woman has told the police that she bought the cutlass she used in inflicting cuts on her husband two weeks before she attacked him.

“She claimed that she attacked her hubby because he wanted to marry a second wife.”

Oyeyemi, an Assistant Superintendent of Police, said the suspect would soon be charged to court with either “wounding or attempted murder.”

Meanwhile, a source at the state General Hospital, Ijebu Ode, said Kehinde was responding to treatment.

Copyright PUNCH.   




Can The Igbo People Play Opposition Politics in Nigeria for 10 Years? By Joe Igbokwe

I want the Igbo nation, where I come from, to play opposition politics in Nigeria at least for the next ten years so that the world will take them serious once again in matters of Nigerian politics. In the first Republic, the Igbo-dominated NCNC formed an alliance with the northern-based NPC to form a government in the center. In the Second Republic the Igbo-dominated NPP again teamed up with the NPN to form the national government in the center. In the third Republic during the NRC-SDP era, MKO Abiola won the election fair and square on the platform of the SDP but the majority of the Igbo, led by the late Odumegwu Ojukwu, (Ikemba Nnewi) the late Evans Enwerem, and Okwesilieze Nwodo, teamed up with prominent Igbo and even some prominent Yoruba leaders to support IBB, Shonekan, and Abacha to sustain the annulment of that election. Again, for 16 years the PDP was in power in Nigeria, and the Igbo was with the PDP.

Now the outcome of the 2015 elections has forced the Igbo to be in the opposition. But will the Igbo play opposition politics in Nigeria and hold on to it at least in the next 10 years just to surprise people like us who think it is not possible? Can Igbo shame critics and tell them that the spoils of office and love for money will not allow them to play opposition politics? Can the Igbo make history by choosing to suffer a little in other to be relevant again in Nigerian politics? Can the Igbo show other Nigerians for once that they too can withstand the pressure of being in the opposition for a while?

Can the Igbo demonstrate capacity and capability now by working with South-South, the North, and other Nigerians to rebuild the PDP, even if it takes 20 years? Will the Igbo jettison the love to support any government in power to redeem its battered image of playing Ugba and Okpoloko politics? Can the Igbo do this for me and other Igbo like me who feel ashamed that we must support any government in power in order to survive? When did the Igbo cease to be a proud people? Did we not fight a civil war for three years with empty stomachs? Did we not prove to the world that we are strong men and women in those three long years?

The Yoruba nation I know has been in the opposition even since the inception of Nigeria and yet they are not the worst in Nigeria. After the annulment of the June 12, 1993, presidential elections won by Moshood Abiola, the powers that be tried to console the Yoruba by appointing Ernest Shonekan the head of the interim government. Did Yoruba accept Shonekan? No, they did not. They did not come out on the streets with Gbedu Drums to celebrate Yoruba and Chief Shonekan. Yoruba proudly told the powers that be that you can only be the Head of State in Nigeria through two methods: either through an election or through a successful coup d’état. In the case of Shonekan, he did not ascend to power through either of the above processes. He was therefore rejected by the Yoruba. Now, if it were the Igbo, would they have reasoned this way? I doubt it. In the struggle for June 12, Abiola was put in detention, and his wife killed. Several Yoruba people were in detention and some hounded abroad. Abiola was eventually killed. But did the Yoruba go to war or resort to self-determination? No, they did not. They fought back using common sense and the power of ideas.

In 1998 when the presidency was zoned to the South-West because the late MKO Abiola has paid the supreme price, the Yoruba preferred Olu Falae but the powers that be forced Obasanjo on Nigeria. Now did the Yoruba accept Obasanjo because he is a Yoruba man? They did not. This unique race rejected Obasanjo for the eight years he was in office, from 1999 to 2007. To date the Yoruba still believe that Obasanjo wasted their eight years. OBJ was rejected even in his own ward, in his local government, and in the whole of the Western Region. That is the Yoruba nation for you. Can the Igbo do this? I doubt it. After the 2003 elections, the PDP stole all the states in the South-West, leaving only Lagos because they were afraid of the trouble Lagosians will give them. The former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, fought back like a wounded lion with his committed associates to reclaim almost all the States in the South-West. He did not stop there; he spread his intimidating political tentacles across Nigeria, forming alliances across building networks and bridges, and the result is what we saw on Saturday, March 28, and April 11, 2015. Now, can any leader in the South-East achieve this feat? Where is the character? Where is the courage? Where is the wisdom and understanding? Where is the common sense? Where is the discipline? Where is the capacity and capability?

After the 2015 elections, where the Igbo lost their deposit by putting all their eggs in one basket, many Igbo leaders claimed that the Igbo made the right political choices given the circumstances on the ground then. Dr. Ebigwe, Senator Ekweremadu, Ken Nnamani, Professor Anya O. Anya, Dr. Alex Ekwueme, Peter Obi, Ohaneze, Aka Ikenga, Ndigbo Lagos, MASSOB, and even the Igbo in diaspora spoke with one voice in saying the Igbo voted well by pitching their tent with Jonathan. Yes, the Igbo have said they voted right, but in actions and in deeds, they have been busy looking for ways to sneak into the APC.

After President Buhari trounced Jonathan on March 28th, 2015, panic gripped Igbo politicians, businessmen and women and the traders. They have been running helter-skelter, looking for where to seek refuge. I remember a night in the house of a very successful Igbo trader in Ikoyi shortly after the presidential election, when it became obvious that PMB had carried the day. They gathered to contribute money to support to the APC. Even those who traveled home for the Easter holiday donated money from the East just to belong. I felt ashamed that my people couldn’t defend their honor and integrity even in times of trouble.

On Saturday, July 25th, 2015, a group who worked against APC in Lagos called Igbo United Political Forum organized a reception to honor Governor Rochas Okorocha. Behind the smokescreen was an attempt to sneak through the back door to the APC, having missed the front door on March 28th and April 11th, 2015. The organizers reaped what they sowed, as all the APC leaders they invited stayed away. They licked their wounds and went home to cry. Time and space will not permit me to recall various moves our people have made to find their way to the APC. Those who are still very angry about the colossal loss have pitched their tent with the Biafra mantra. When we lose out in national politics as a result of myopic and timid political thinking and calculations, the next move is to resort to ethnic politics. Nobody is deceived.

My humble submission is that the Igbo should learn how to play opposition politics, and the time to do so is now. The Igbo will not die if they are not in the APC or part of the government in power. After all, the Yoruba have been in opposition for a long time—since the 60s, and still they have not perished. Let the Igbo work with other PDP leaders across Nigeria to start strategizing to reposition, rebrand, and rebuild the PDP. This is the way to political rebirth and redemption. If you have many bushes to clear, you have to sharpen your knife very well.

Joe Igbokwe, Lagos


Re: Nigeria’s killer containers


I am writing a rejoinder to Lekan Sote’s article, “Nigeria’s killer containers” published in The PUNCH, Wednesday, July 15, 2015. The author failed to hold the Federal Road Safety Corps responsible for the lax enforcement of traffic laws concerning unlatched containers on trucks found on Nigerian roads. Also, the article glossed over the many fundamental issues why unsecured containers are ubiquitous on Nigerian roads. For instance, the author merely referenced government agencies’ (the Nigerian Ports Authority, Nigeria Police Force, Nigeria Customs Service, Vehicle Inspection Office, Lagos State Ministry of Transportation) official positions on and their reaction to the problem of unlatched containers in the country. The agencies in the safety chain provided standard responses with little insight into the crux of the problem and how to resolve it. It is obvious there was no claim of responsibility as they merely passed the buck among themselves. Therefore, accountability by a particular agency becomes elusive.

Which government agency is responsible for the safety of containers on trucks plying Nigerian roads? If someone observes unlatched containers on trucks on the roads, to which government agency is the report made? Over the years, I have observed many trucks with unsecured containers go thru the FRSC checkpoints without being stopped. The million naira question is, why in the world is this blatant failure of the FRSC to enforce the traffic regulations of the country?

A few months ago, on the Owo-Ikare Road in Owo Town, a freaky accident occurred involving a truck with two unlatched containers. The containers on the truck fell on a small car parked on the roadside. The car was compressed like a “sardine.”There was no death reported due to the accident. But it was observed that the FRSC officers were busy on the scene controlling and managing the flow of traffic around the accident site.

The recent horrible accident on the Sagamu Interchange-Benin Expressway, which took the lives of 11 students and a driver from the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye is the latest in the series of unlatched containers accidents on our roads. It also underscored the poor state of enforcement of traffic regulations in the country. How can you imagine a truck driver driving into the wrong lane facing the oncoming traffic? This is part of the impunity syndrome that Nigerians have had to live with daily. According to Sote’s article, the FRSC is unable to trace the driver and the owner of the vehicle. The truck is supposedly licensed by the agency. So, what happened to the vehicle’s information? This raises many issues among which is the FRSC’s bureaucracy and record keeping capacity in terms of its ability to provide vehicle information in the country in the case of an accident.

But, there is a silver lining in the Sagamu-Benin Expressway accident in terms of pushing the problem of unlatched containers to the public domain for discussion and it provides the opportunity for changes in public policy.

This author has not lived in a country where containers are loaded on trucks at the seaport without properly secured. The Nigerian experience where unlatched containers are loaded on trucks, and allowed to ply the highways, is contrary to the international norm. How can the governments in Nigeria be an exemption to the international standard and practices? Consider a truck carrying a load of unlatched containers from the Lagos seaport to Abuja. the nation’s capital. The truck may have passed through a chain of law enforcement checkpoints (FRSC, VIO, NCS, NDLEA) without being stopped. It is the responsibility of the government at all levels (federal, state and local) to make the highways safe for the commuters. It appears the current FRSC is weak as a public institution, which lacks the capacity in terms of trained manpower to effectively safeguard our roads. Corruption is part of daily life in the Nigerian society, the operations of the FRSC as a public institution have not escaped this tendency. According to the article, motorists obtain the MOT certificate without bringing their vehicles to any of the testing grounds. This may help to explain why there are so many junk vehicles on Nigerian roads. At night, it is a common occurrence to find vehicles without number plates, head and brake lights and other violations. In fact, there are many old, unfit vehicles on Nigerian roads that belong to the grave yard – vehicles’ junk yard.

The Federal Government needs to reform its motor vehicle policy concerning the operation of trucks on the country’s roads, particularly relating to unlatched containers. As part of this reform, the state governments must require regular inspection of vehicles to ensure road worthiness. The government should formulate a national policy and create a national data bank for all commercial trucks plying Nigerian roads. This bank will contain all pertinent information concerning the vehicle, owner, state of residency, insurance, etc. As asserted in the article, the FRSC accuses truck drivers of excessive speeding, drunk driving, drudgery and sleepiness from long distance drives, poor attitude to vehicle maintenance and ignorance of the highway codes. These allegations levelled against the drivers reflect the frustration being experienced by the FRSC officers. What are the corrective measures or programmes being implemented by the agency to mitigate against these issues?

What is the way forward in reducing the truck accidents on the roads? It is imperative that the Federal Government provides leadership and employs a comprehensive and integrative (vertical and horizontal) approach to a national policy to manage the commercial trucks plying the roads. It is obvious that the FRSC cannot do it alone. This requires all government law enforcement agencies (FRSC, NPA, NCS, NPF, etc.) to cooperate and work together through a multi-agencies organisation. This is part of the strategy to providing a better management structure to improve the performance of the FRSC. It is okay to solicit for the cooperation and voluntary compliance to traffic regulations from stakeholders (National Road Transport Owners, Licensed Custom Agents and Freight Forwarders). But, the effective implementation of the vehicle regulations remains paramount and more potent instrument in reducing truck accidents. As part of the reforms, all commercial trucks in the country must be officially registered with the Federal Government in each state capital and the FCT. Thus, each truck will carry a registered number boldly written on it for an identification purpose.

Copyright PUNCH.