Thursday

CC™ Investigative: The Northern "usual suspects" behind Boko Haram as Nigerians search for answers to the violent insurgency

CC™ Investigative

When the late National Security Adviser, Rtd. General Andrew Owoye Azazi  blamed the rise of insurgence by the fundamentalist sect, Boko Haram in the country on the internal wranglings of the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and other political parties (see video below), he naturally made many in the corridors of power uncomfortable, at the time.

Not surprisingly and rather mysteriously, he was "killed" when his helicopter exploded over the skies of Bayelsa State after having been let-go by then President Goodluck Jonathan.



The late General Azazi was obviously privy to information regarding the real details behind Boko Haram. His position as the National Security Adviser at the time, put him at the head of that information. If anyone were to be in the know regarding the real truth behind the upsurge in the Islamic sect's violent insurgence, it had to be someone like Azazi as the nations top security head.

Former President Goodluck Jonathan had on several occasions admitted that they knew who was behind Boko Haram, and these were top level officials, mostly of Northern extraction.


Gen. Azazi explicitly declared to his audience, who was behind the unrest. He narrowed it down to the result of ‘unconstitutional’ PDP convention regulations, which determined who could run for President vs who could not run.


He went on further:

"The extent of violence did not increase in Nigeria until there was a declaration by the current president that he was going to contest. PDP got it wrong from the beginning, from the on-set by saying Mr A can rule, Mr A cannot rule, Mr B can rule, Mr B cannot rule, according to PDP’s convention, rules and regulation and not according to the constitution {applause} and that created the climate for what has manifest itself, this way. I believe that there is some element of politicization. is it possible that somebody was thinking that only Mr. A could win, and if he did not win, there will be problems in this society. Let’s examine all these issues to see whether the level of violence in the North East just escalated because Boko Haram suddenly became better trained, better equipped and better funded, and in any case how did they get it all done…{warning of Boko Haram becoming snipers – who could potentially target elite}
But, then I must also be quick to point out that today, even if all the leaders that we know in Boko Haram are arrested, I don’t think the problem would end, because there are tentacles. I don’t think that people would be satisfied, because the situations that created the problems are not just about the religion, poverty or the desire to rule Nigeria. I think it’s a combination of everything. Except you address all those things comprehensively, it would not work."
Intelligence sources have informed CC™ that although former President Jonathan knew (and still knows) exactly who the sponsors of Boko Haram are, he lacked the courage and political will to bring them to task as the "usual suspects" were actually aligned with Jonathan on ensuring that he got re-elected in the 2015 elections as long as he (Jonathan) "played ball".

One name did however stand out of the three "usual suspects" CC™ was able to gather credible information about. It was that of then Minister of Defense, Rtd. General Aliyu Mohammed Gusau. 


Gusau was always an ambitious man and those who know him very well not only say he is very "loyal", but they also pointed to a rather glaring trail in his professional dossier - he (Gusau) had always been in the "thick of the action" in just about every administration in Nigeria, from Babangida (a serial coup plotter himself) to Jonathan.


However, one thing always stood out, more-so in the administration of Nigerian Christian leaders from the South, namely Obasanjo and Jonathan; there was always insecurity of a religious nature that he (Gusau) although placed in charge of managing, had seemingly always found a way to allow spiral out of control. 


Gusau's history with Boko Haram is a rather interesting one. According to  TheNationOnline, 01/01/2012, "hardline allies of Jonathan’s went further, suggesting that northern rivals within the PDP – such as Generals Ibrahim Babangida and Aliyu Mohammed Gusau – have covert ties to Boko Haram." Ironically, Jonathan however continued to have the ear and vice-versa of Ibrahim Babangida and Aliyu Gusau.


Earlier as the NSA under former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Gusau had told Obasanjo that "there was no evidence of such a group as Boko Haram in 2006 although there had been evidence to the contrary as far back as 2005. 


Here is an excerpt:

PMNews, September 14, 2011: Sources, however, indicated that the Azazi’s predecessor as NSA cannot be absolved of blame. It was gathered that the the issue of al-Qaeda affiliated cells in the North-East part of the country was pointed out to former President Olusegun Obasanjo as far back as 2006. It was noted for instance that Boko Haram, termed the “Nigerian Taliban”, had been operating in the clear since 2005 when General Aliyu Gusau (rtd.) was NSA. The former president was said to have in turn asked Gusau to investigate the issue. But Gusau, according to reports, told Obasanjo that no such group existed in the country.It was gathered that the same issue of Taliban presence in Nigeria was raised with the late President Umaru Yar’Adua in July 2007. “Goodluck Jonathan became President of Nigeria upon the death of Umaru Yar’Adua in May 2010. Former NSA Aliyu Mohammed Gusau was once again made National Security Adviser. Gusau could not possibly have missed the threat of Boko Haram. If his security operatives failed to raise the matter in their reports then the public statements released by Boko Haram and printed verbatim in Nigeria’s national newspapers should have raised questions from the NSA, if not alarm,” said Steven Davis, a public commentator. “The handling of the Boko Haram matter while Gusau was NSA resulted in a dramatic escalation in the conflict to the stage that it threatened the nation’s security,” he added.
Many media articles accused Aliyu Mohammed Gusau et al of being the terror mastermind(s) behind Boko Haram. 

An arms cache at the time in Kano with Hezbollah agents was linked to him and according to sources, he was under investigation with the result once again swept under the rug. 


It was under Gusau as NSA that Boko Haram acquired all their weapons and reigned terror. Gusau did nothing to check these terrorists. He even, according to Steven Davis as reported in PM News on Sept. 14, 2011, protected Boko Haram by telling then President Obasanjo that the group did not exist. 


This, despite series of attacks by the group. Gusau did not make any security report on the group, then called “Nigerian Taliban,” the paper alleges and Gusau even ordered the release of captured terrorists on the request of some Northern leaders, namely the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammadu Sa'ad Abubakar III, a former security detail of former dictator, Rtd. General Ibrahim Babangida. 


This is not surprising as Sultan Abubakar is on record as having condemned the crackdown on Boko Haram.


In his capacity as NSA (three times to be precise) in Nigeria’s history, Gusau failed woefully and invariably assisted Boko Haram in becoming the menace they now are, with hundreds of thousands of deaths to their credit to date.
It remains puzzling that Jonathan appointed a man who actually retired as NSA to contest for the Nigerian Presidency against him (Jonathan), as Defense Minister when everything pointed to the fact that Gusau, in addition to being grossly inept (as his record had shown), had a history of being "soft" in his response to Islamic militant insurgencies in the past and was therefore not the logical answer to ensuring the outright defeat of Boko Haram.
Gusau and his Northern mischief makers, who are nothing short of avaricious predators, are now witnessing the proverbial chicken coming home to roost, with the recent trend of events.
The fact remains that Northern feudalism and its staunch protagonists remain the secret hands behind Boko Haram, the Fulani Herdsmen terrorists and all Islamic fundamentalist movements. President Buhari, the Sultan of Sokoto and Nasir El-Rufai, just to name a few, are the incumbent facilitators of these violent and murderous terrorists.
Asking the thief to watch the house is essentially what Nigerians are doing, by expecting this current administration to safeguard the lives and property of Nigerians.

Monday

3 Risk Management Functions for Secure Cloud Governance.....

CC™ Technocrat

The method of managing risks on cloud has witnessed a big shift as the pressure on governance model to track variants of risk has become high.

While risk formats have changed in the industry, business continuity is said to be affected with the ushering in of cloud model. The pressure on cloud service providers is increasing in terms of identifying and tracking new risks emerging out of this trend, which sometimes has an adverse impact on the business. 


Sethu Seetaraman, VP/Chief Risk Officer, Mphasis, says that risk management basics do not change with cloud. However, the way in which a control is implemented and monitored is what has changed. “As far as BCP/DR is concerned, the organisation owns BCP/DR in case of Infrastructure as a Service and Platform as a Service. Service providers will own BCP/DR in case of Software as a Service. 


You must build or take these services from the cloud service provider based on the availability risk,” avers Seetharaman. 


Why 3 functions of Risk Management are Key to Governance.....


Just as with IT governance, risk management in cloud governance must fulfill three functions argue most CISOs.

Atul Pandey, The ICT Rainmaker: GRC, GSD, PMO & BPM, mentions the three functions: a) Assessing risk b) mitigating risk, and c) measuring the success of that assessment and mitigation.

Pandey says that this is not a static scenario. Risk shifts continually, and the cloud governance model must be able to track these shifts.

Stating facts established by Thomas J. Betcher in his report on a clear analysis of risk and cloud in Cloud Computing: Key IT-Related Risks and Mitigation Strategies for Consideration by IT Security Practitioners,’ Pandey puts forth the type of risks to be managed under the cloud model. 

They include:
  • Policy and Organisational risks: Lock-in, loss of governance, compliance challenges, loss of business reputation, cloud service termination or failure.
  • Technical Risks: Availability of service, resource exhaustion, intercepting data in transit, data transfer bottlenecks, distributed denial of service.
  • Legal Risk: Subpoena and e-discovery, changes of jurisdiction, data privacy, licensing.

According to Pandey, one particularly important observation in the Betcher report relates to risk and frequency. Many traditional IT governance models are designed around IT life-cycles of around three years. 

Within these cycles, IT audit leaves a detailed trail of version and upgrade information.

With the cloud, this changes. Not only does the cycle shrink massively (change can now be measured in hours and weeks rather than in years), the actual versioning of the technology behind the service can remain completely hidden from the consumer. 

As a result, cloud governance models must be able to assess risk from this entirely new perspective.

How Continuity is affected.....

Pandey believes that continuity in itself is solicited as the USP of cloud, at least in comparison with traditional infra.

Business continuity management (BCM) is the result of critical functions and processes assuring that a system performs its mission without incidence, and that the entity responds to all acts or events in a planned, consistent manner. 

Business continuity planning is rehearsed through scenario analysis which:
  • Targets new, evolving or projected risks affecting business operations.
  • Simulates and evaluates the effect of disruptions in information systems support and response time delays.
  • Provides the ground for experimenting on effective solutions to every type of BCM disruption entering into the scenario.
“The analysis to which reference is made is instrumental in elaborating BCM clauses in service level agreements (SLAs) with cloud computing providers,” says Pandey and adds, “Sound governance assures that business continuity studies are part of the evaluation process preceding any top management decision in adopting cloud computing; it also constitutes a factor in choosing a cloud provider.”

Reprinted/Republished with permission from: www.csoforum.in

Sunday

A powerful message from the late venerable Archbishop Benson Idahosa

CC™ Sunday Revival

This was a powerful message from the late Bishop Benson Idahosa. Simply riveting and worth listening to as we wade through this dark world of uncertainty and spiritual paucity.

Wednesday

8:46: Dave Chappelle rips Candace Owens and Laura Ingraham in surprise Netflix special released on You Tube

CC™ Entertainment

In a Netflix comedy special released last year, Dave Chappelle delivered an incendiary, impassioned monologue on the brutal death of George Floyd at the hands of racist Minneapolis police officers.
The special, called "8:46," is a reference to the eight minutes and 46 seconds a police officer knelt on Floyd's neck during an arrest on May 25, 2020 killing him and sparking a wave of protests across the US.
Watch Chappelle's full special below:

Tuesday

The best West African destinations

CC™ Travel Scope 

1. Ghana

Hailed as West Africa’s golden child, Ghana is an ideal destination if you’re looking to relax, immerse in the authentic African culture and learn more about African history – no wonder it’s called ‘Africa for beginners. 

For a more exciting getaway, visit the country’s capital – Accra.  You’ll find beautiful beaches (like Labadie beach), luxury hotels and fascinating museums. Don’t forget to stop over at the marketplaces where you can shop African prints, jewellery and souvenirs.

Also read: Epic adventures in Ghana

Amaiashome Beach, Ghana

Image Source: @amaiashome on Instagram

2. Cape Verde

With an abundance of spectacular views and rich culture, Cape Verde is one of the most beautiful countries in West Africa. Located on the west coast of Africa, it’s an archipelago out in the north Atlantic, consisting of 10 islands and several islets. 

Be sure to visit the beaches, the restaurants for amazing seafood and the local market for some artefacts. A visit to the salt lake (Salinas de Pedra de Lume) is a must if you’d like to try a mud bath.

Also read: 12 Reasons to visit Cape Verde

Sal, Cape Verde

Image Source: @rivo_lution on Instagram

3. The Gambia

Despite being the smallest country in Africa, The Gambia is regarded as West Africa’s best-kept secret. Surrounded by golden beaches backed by swaying palms sprinkled with scenic lagoons, an abundance of wildlife, vibrant history and culture, it offers visitors an opportunity to get in touch with nature.

The Gambia has amazing reserves, such as Abuko National Reserve, Gambia National Park and Bijilo Forest Park, where you can see various animals and rare species of wildlife.

Gambia-Travelstart

Image Source: flikr

4. Ivory Coast

Ivory Coast is one of those undiscovered countries in West Africa – a hidden gem. It’s a country surrounded by picture-perfect palm-lined beaches, offering incredible attractions for visitors. The food in Ivory Coast is incredible. A bite of kedjenou and poulet braise will have you begging for more!

Explore the oldest park in Africa, the Comoë National Park, where you can see the lions, waterbucks, hippos and other animals frolicking in their natural habitat. It’s an ideal destination for a family vacation.

Also read: Six amazing things to do in Ivory Coast

kedjenou

Image Source: @cheffe_naomi_a on Instagram

5.  Nigeria

Dubbed as the “giant of Africa” Nigeria is one of the most beautiful countries in West Africa. Its subtropical climate, wide beaches, superb restaurants, excellent shopping malls, exciting craft markets and lively nightlife make Nigeria a year-round destination. 

Nigeria will captivate you with its rich and multicultural society. It boasts beautiful tourist spots such as Olumirin Waterfall in Erin-Ijesha, Ife Museum in Enuwa Square, the Olumo Rock, Agbokim Waterfall and plenty more. 

Also read: 10 Romantic honeymoon destinations in Nigeria

Civic Centre, Lagos

6. Senegal

Home to the Monument de la Renaissance Africaine, Senegal has come a long way in its fight for independence.The African Renaissance Monument, which was built in 2010, is a statue expressing a rebirth of Africa and commemorating Senegalese independence, so be sure to check it out. 

Like many countries in West Africa, Senegal is also famous for its food. The Senegalese glean their culinary inspiration from far and wide, combining French and North African influences with ancient local traditions. The staple dish for most families is thiéboudienne (fish and rice). You’ll find different variations around the country.

Senegalese food

Image source: 196flavours.com

7. Togo

Togo is part of the few countries in West Africa known for its white-sand beaches and perfect scenery. Its multistorey Grand Marché bazaar in Lomé (the capital) is also worth a visit, so be a tourist and do some sightseeing. Start with the Monument de l’Independance and learn about the end of the colonial rule in Togo. The national museum, the food market and the Lomé Cathedral are a must-see as well.

Lome beach

These are the best West African destinations you can visit for a nice holiday. Remember that any way you plan to spend your vacation, the most important thing is to enjoy yourself and stay safe. Don’t forget your camera at home because the memories should be documented in pictures.


travelstartblog

Monday

My comments on low vaccine efficacy 'misinterpreted" - Chinese official


CC™ Global News

China's top infectious disease control official said his comments on the effectiveness of his country's vaccines over the weekend were misinterpreted.

The director of the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, Gao Fu, said it was a "complete misunderstanding'' that he had said Chinese vaccines offer a low level of protection, in comments to state newspaper the Global Times on Monday.

He had been presenting a "scientific vision'' that adapting vaccine sequences or administering different jabs on after the other could also be options for increasing protection, he said.

"The protection rates of all vaccines in the world are sometimes high, and sometimes low. How to improve their efficacy is a question that needs to be considered by scientists around the world,'' Gao said.

Gao Fu was talking at a conference in Chengdu on Saturday on the topic of how to solve the insufficient protection of current vaccines, Chinese news outlet Pengpai Xinwen (The Paper) reported.

"It is also necessary to consider ways to address the low protection rate of existing vaccines,'' he was cited as saying.

His comments prompted a reaction because there is far less data available on Chinese vaccines than those being produced in many other countries.

Critics have complained of a lack of transparency when it comes to Chinese jabs, which have not been authorized in many European nations.

Data from the third phase of clinical studies was particularly sought after.

Because China has the Coronavirus pandemic largely under control and was reporting hardly any local infections, studies so far have only been published from other countries where vaccines were being used.


WORLD PRESS

Sunday

52 Nigerians hit with severe reactions after taking AstraZeneca vaccine

CC™ Medical News

The National Primary Health Care Development Agency, NPHCDA, on Friday disclosed that 52 Nigerians have experienced moderate to severe reactions after taking the AstraZeneca vaccine.

Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, NPHCDA, Dr. Faisal Shuaib disclosed this at a news conference in Abuja.

He also said 8,439 Nigerians experienced mild Adverse events following immunization (AEFI) after taking the vaccine.

Shuaib stated that the 52 Nigerians that experienced moderate to severe reactions to the vaccine were brought down with fever, vomiting, diarrhea headaches, dizziness and allergic reactions

“In Nigeria, since the vaccination program was officially rolled out on 15th of April 2021, a total of 8,439 mild Adverse events following immunization (AEFI) have been reported. These range from pain, swelling at the site of the inoculation, to body pains and nausea. 

“Similarly, 52 cases of moderate to severe incidents of AEFI have been reported. These presented as fever, vomiting, diarrhea headaches, dizziness and allergic reactions.

“Five states have the highest records of the AEFI namely: Kaduna (970) Cross River (859), Yobe (541), Kebbi (511), and Lagos (448),” he disclosed.

According to Shuaib, as of today, April 16th, 1,071,346, representing 53.2% of the eligible persons targeted with the AstraZeneca vaccine had been administered their first dose in this vaccination phase.

He said the data were based on reports received from states through the Electronic Management of Immunization Data (EMID) system only and did not take into account vaccinations that were not yet captured in the system.

“What this number means is that these are the people who have their information already uploaded on our data base, while others are awaiting upload, potentially due to network problems and the high traffic of those coming in to take their shots at the same time.

“While we continue to optimize our registration and immunization data system, we also encourage the state teams to deploy the most suitable internet service for their locations in order to speed up the data entry process, so that we can have the actual number of vaccinated people at any given time,” he said.

Shuaib added that in many states, the inoculation of frontline health workers had been completed and that they had begun offering vaccination to the elderly, particularly those that were 65 years and above.

“We are glad to be able to progress quickly offer immunization to more members of the community.

“Our rollout has been marked by safety, efficiency, best practice, and speed. The National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) and its development partners, have a platform of Senior Supervisors that engage in daily evening review meetings to determine the status of the COVID-19 vaccine implementation in all States & the FCT.”


AGENCY NEWS

Saturday

Ten things we've learnt about identity politics in the United States

CC™ Editor-in-Chief

a) Racism is an institution not an event, statement or action, as evident by the silence and acquiescence of the Republican members of Congress to the dangerous and highly-charged statements, and actions of former President Donald Trump for 4 years, that ultimately culminated in the violent insurrection by White Supremacist supporters of his, against the Congress of the United States on January 6th, 2021.

b) House Speaker Nancy Pelosi actually instigated the singling out (in 2019) of the women of color in the U.S. House by referring to them as "just four people with no following". That was all President Donald Trump needed to strike at the time, against those women. 

c) Donald Trump "is not a racist". The power structure that enabled him become the POTUS and continues to facilitate his trampling upon the Constitution with impunity is racist and was set up to be that way by the founding fathers, who enslaved the Africans that were brought to America and saw them as less than human.

d) President Barack Obama would not have been elected to office if he had bragged about sexually assaulting women, and he would definitely have been impeached if he had conducted himself in office as Trump did.

e) Imagine what would have happened if Barack Obama had asked those that criticized his administration to leave the country, if they did not like the way things were being done. Or worse still, if he (Obama) had threatened to unleash the U.S. military on American citizens, protesting in the streets. Lastly, I am confident Barack Obama would have been impeached and convicted within a week (at most) if he had instigated an insurrection against a co-equal branch of government.

f) Gratitude is not a requirement of citizenship. Furthermore, all U.S. citizens (naturalized or natural born) have equal rights or do they.......?

g) The old order of the Democratic party is completely out of touch and the treatment of the four women Representatives of color by Speaker Pelosi two years ago, serves to buttress that point.

h) The Republican party has always had a playbook steeped in identity politics. Anyone remember the Willie Horton ads? Trump is not doing anything new. He simply took it to another level.

i) The palpable silence of the so-called religious leaders (especially the white religious leaders) in the United States tells you all you need to know about them.

j) The silence of most top American CEOs and business leaders (until recently) also tells you all you need to know about them and their organizations. The ones that have 'spoken out' are not only late to the game (about four years late at least), but are speaking out merely to 'sanitize' their brand, as well as clear whatever is left of their conscience (assuming most of them actually have one).

#Racism #Willie Horton #Barack Obama #Donald Trump #Capitol Insurrection #White Supremacy #White Nationalists

Thursday

'The narrative is always white is better' - Ex-Chelsea director and former Nigeria international Emenalo on systemic racism in football

Ex-Chelsea and Monaco Sporting Director Mike Emenalo
CC™ Introspective 

Former Chelsea sporting director Michael Emenalo says “the narrative has to change” if black coaches are to be given the same opportunities as their white counterparts.

The issue of racism in society has been given greater prominence in recent months following the killing of American George Floyd by a white police officer in Minneapolis in May 2020, which sparked Black Lives Matter protests across the globe. 
Premier League players and staff have shown their solidarity against racism by taking a knee before kick-off at every game, while the players also have 'Black Lives Matter' printed on their shirt sleeves.
Emenalo, though, believes there needs to be a more fundamental shift in how black players and managers are perceived if there is to be true equality in football.
Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo is currently the only manager from a black, Asian and minority ethnic background in the Premier League. Emenalo meanwhile is one of only two BAME technical directors in Premier League history along with Les Ferdinand, whose QPR side were relegated three months after his appointment as director of football in February 2015.
“The narrative has to change. The narrative right now is always that white is better,” he told the Guardian.
“So it doesn’t matter what Chris Hughton produces as a manager. There’s always someone saying a white guy can do it better. People need to do the right thing. Like Martin Luther King said: ‘Judge me by my competence – not my skin colour.'
“When I sit behind the bench at a game, I want to be close to my work. But it’s also so that people of my colour could say: ‘I can do that.’ People in the parking lot would say: ‘Oh my God, you don’t know what you mean to us.’ Then I feel even worse because I want to say more.”
Emenalo joined Chelsea as chief scout in 2007 following a playing career that saw him play in five countries and feature for Nigeria at the 1994 World Cup. The 54-year-old was briefly promoted to assistant coach in 2010 before becoming technical director the following year.
He would go on to spend a decade at Stamford Bridge, overseeing a complete overhaul of the club’s academy structure and being credited with the scouting and signing of players such as Kevin De Bruyne, Mohamed Salah, N'Golo Kante and Eden Hazard.
Despite those achievements, Emenalo felt he constantly had to prove himself to the 10 permanent or caretaker managers Chelsea went through in that time.
“Everybody has a misconception of my knowledge, insight and experience. I did it 10 times with 10 managers,” he added.
“Each time I climbed the hill and convinced them of my worth. I have a university degree in international relations and diplomacy. I know how to deal with people and with situations. I had World Cup experience and been part of this industry on five continents.
"I said: ‘I’ll give them an opportunity to understand me.’ They all did but it’s not easy starting from ground zero every time.”
Stats Perform News

Wednesday

Racism: Why 'the children of a lesser God' must redefine the next human century and beyond.....

CC™ - Editor-in-Chief

I have always stated to many, including black intellectuals that racism is not an event, statement, person/personality or even an action. Racism, at its very core and foundation, is an institution and that is why I laugh consistently at the notion by white liberals and some blacks that racism must be defeated.

Defeated? Those who are actually 'in the know' understand the implication of that statement and as such they will NEVER allow that to happen; as it would mean the loss of their privilege and influence. I mean why would anyone in their 'right senses' want to give up the power and position they have benefited from for generations.

That opening flurry then brings us to the state of things not only in America, particularly under Donald Trump, the 45th POTUS, but also in the world as we, 'the children of a lesser God' seek to navigate our way through s system and indeed a world that continually views us as a threat. Yes, I said 'as a threat' as the founders of the racist establishment that currently runs the world understand very well how formidable and capable Africans (blacks) are.

Whether it is in the corporate world, national and international politics, sports and entertainment, the system engendered by racism has ensured that blacks in particular remain removed from positions of influence (where far-reaching decisions are made) that determine the ultimate outcome of events in the critical arenas of human life.

THE GLOBAL ECONOMIC SYSTEM

A closer look at the global economic system would serve to buttress my point regarding the institutional nature of racism. It defies logic that a continent (Africa) that produces majority of the worlds key natural resources remains the poorest and the most indebted. A situation where the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (all created to perpetuate neocolonialism and western imperialism) determine if, when and how the governments of African countries function basically ensures that the rusty shackles of slavery are replaced by new and shiny ones. It is not a coincidence that the fate of African countries in the hands of these Western institutions is similar to that of blacks in America, Europe or South America when dealing with financial institutions. Blacks generally, even when they have great credit on the average pay higher interest rates than whites and end up being buried (much like African governments) under the weight of indebtedness.

THE UNITED NATIONS

When one looks at the United Nations and most international non-governmental organizations, the tale is the same. There is an undue influence exerted by the United States and Europe (Western Europe to be exact) in the daily affairs of those organizations. Of the five permanent members of the United Stations Security Council (UNSC), only one (China) is non-European. The other four permanent members are Russia, United States of America, Great Britain and France. When you look at that list, three of those five permanent members, the United States, Great Britain and France were three of the key perpetrators of the worst carnage in human history, the Trans-Atlantic Slave trade that robbed a whole continent of its future and destroyed the promise, hope and aspiration of a whole race.

GLOBAL SPORTS AND ORGANIZATION - FIFA, NFL AND THE NBA

When you look at organizations such as the Federation of International Football Associations (FIFA), the National Football League (American Football) and the National Basketball Association (NBA), the mark that has been laid down by the institution of racism and white privilege can not be over-emphasized. FIFA for the longest time only allowed a whole continent (Africa) with over 50+ countries to produce just one representative to the global showpiece from its inception in 1930 until the 1982 edition (52 years later). At that 1982 edition, FIFA allotted just two slots to Africa in a field of 24 nations (Europe was allotted 14 spots out of the total 24).

The odds continue to be stacked against African reprsenetatives at the FIFA global showpiece with a view to ensuring that an African country never wins the most prestigious global event in the world. FIFA and the European Football Confederation (UEFA) want to ensure that there isn't a repeat of the 1996 Men's Olympic footbal tournament that saw Nigeria defeat global soccer giants (with star studded players) such as Brazil and Argentina on their way to winning the first Gold medal in soccer (football) ever by an African country or a country outside of Europe and South America. FIFA and the IOC went on to ensure the watering down of the Olympic Men's soccer tournament shortly after that Nigerian victory.

THE REALITY

The fact remains that the African (black) resurgence can't be stopped. That resurgence is not intended to ensure the destruction, eclipsing or eradication of anyone (unless they decide to get in the way of its actualization), but instead, the restoration of the basic construct of our humanity. The latter has been lost over the past generations, as avaricious greed, obtuse imorality, unbecoming debauchery and senseless over-indulgence have become the order of the day. What separates humanity from animals is basic and common-sense restraint, as necessitated by our core human make-up. There are consequences to our actions, both intended and unintended. Guns, climate change and politics are not the problem.

The problem lies with the human beings that pull the trigger, engage in actions that harm the environment or profess political views that seek to promote hate, division and a general sense of social anxiety. The first 'black" POTUS (Barack Obama) and the first African President of South Africa (Nelson Mandela) both brought a humanity to their respective positions during their tenures, that had been lacking from their predecessors. While both were invariably still bound by the ubiquitous realities of the positions they held, they nevertheless sought to bring a more humane reality to it and that was evident by the ressistance both had to face while in office.

In conclusion, while the future may seem bleak, one thing remains a constant; the potential and the opprotunity to rewrite the human destiny lies in the African resurgence. The West will not lead, as evidenced by European and American regression into the throes of bigotry and intolerance (with the ascent of the likes of Boris Johnson, Donald Trump and Italy's Matteo Salvini). Africa must and will lead as history has shown that continent and its people as the ever-enduring moral compass for the world.

© 2021 2CG MEDIA. Coker Confidential™

Tuesday

RACISM: An evil and methodical global system of oppression and consequent decimation.....

W.E.B DuBois
By Contributing Editor - Ayodeji Komolafe

"A system cannot fail those it was never meant to protect"..... W.E.B. DuBois

The afore-stated quote with the requisite attribution to the great W.E.B. DuBois essentially sums up the crux of the piece. Racism, as I have always stated is not a behavior, nor is it a word, action or an attitude. Racism at its very core is an institution with its attendant benefactors as well as victims.

There is nothing more disheartening than to hear people of an ethnic background in particular refer to an individual, an action or a statement as racist. The institution is what is racist. Yes, the institution that deemed the black man and woman as less than human and forced people of African descent in particular into an artificial class, then proceeded to accuse them (to this day regardless of geographical location) of all manner of sin with the sole intent of damning and systematically subjugating them.

Whether it is in South Africa (pre or post apartheid), Brazil and other parts of South America, the United States of America or countries in Europe like France and England, the system has always ensured that "people of color" (blacks in particular) remain at the bottom. Brazil for example, has the second largest concentration of people of African descent (blacks) after Nigeria. In Brazil, the poverty level among its black or "colored" population is terrifying with the unemployment rate among the latter in Brazil well over the 50% clip. The same scenario plays out in the United States with black unemployment rate nearing 10% (blacks make up only 13% of the US population) and 1.6 times the US national unemployment average. The same pattern of subjugation is also found in South Africa where the majority population of close to 90% is black (African) but the broad unemployment rate among South African blacks (who are the majority) stands at a staggering 45% and should be more if the unemployment among the "mixed-race blacks" (designated as coloreds by the former racist apartheid regime) is also taken into consideration.

The sole intent of racism (as an institution) as designed by White Anglo-Saxon Protestants (WASP) was to ensure the continued dominance of other ethnic (non-white) groups by minimizing the traditional ways, religion, ideals and institutions of non-white racial groups, while promoting those of the colonialists and western imperialists as superior to those of the former.

It is not surprising that countries like Japan, China and the Asian Tigers, who have maintained their core culture and traditions are the ones that have been able to compete and even out-duel the global WASP economic powers. The Chinese, Japanese and the Asian Tigers have kept their culture and institutions the way they have always been even in the face of some of the most debilitating wars and conflicts with the West, as they understand its existential importance to their survival.

African countries on the other hand continue to imbibe the alien cultures and values of the West with its attendant negative consequences. As a people, we (Africans) have essentially abandoned our traditional institutions including our language, thus embarking on a journey that may not augur well for the future survival of our people. The debilitating effect of colonialism and racism continue to take its toll on our people, our institutions and our way of life. In sports for example (soccer or football for one), we disregard our best local talent and seek even the most unqualified white expatriates to fill the same role while paying them exorbitant amounts of money, a fraction of which the local handlers would gladly take, and produce better results than the white mercenary.

Our women have been told that their natural beauty is not enough, and that they must purchase and wear human hair procured from dead women in India and other parts of Asia and Europe to be considered beautiful. The same racist institution also tells them they must bleach their skin so they can be light skinned like Beyoncé (the white held ideal of black beauty) and inculcates the black woman with anti-male propaganda that has inevitably seen the black man and the black woman increasingly at odds with one another.

The most obvious example of the effects of racism is the most recent US elections in 2016 that saw Donald J. Trump elected as the 45th POTUS. There is no question that Donald Trump's election was in response to the election of his predecessor, Barack H. Obama as the 44th POTUS. Obama (who is half white and half black/African) was elected in 2008, against all odds as the so-called first black POTUS. He (Obama) endured some of the most contentious times any POTUS has ever endured in the history of the United States and by the end of his tenure, the majority white population already had enough and any white person, no matter how unqualified, would do. The election of Donald Trump was essentially a white backlash to the election of the first black POTUS!

When you see all these scenarios, it is clear to see that racism is an institution, an evil and methodical system of continued oppression, marginalization and consequent decimation of a class of people by and with the apparatus of national and global economic, executive, judicial, legislative and military power.

Africa must realize that the second scramble for the continent is already in effect and those who forget history are condemned to repeat it.

#racism #imperialism #neo-colonialism #white supremacy

Monday

Editorial Flashback: It's an e-mail scam, not a "Nigerian scam"....

Editor-in-Chief

Imagine my surprise when I turned to the consumer page of the Attorney General of the State of Washington to find that a whole people, in this case citizens of Nigeria, had been painted with a wide brush (see former website content below in italics). Regarding the latter, I am talking about the much talked about e-mail scams or advance fee fraud, many believe originated from that West African nation.

"E-mail Scams - Advance fee and counterfeit check/Nigerian scams: If you suffered a financial loss you can file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov"
To better understand this issue, it will be prudent to give a brief overview of the most populous country on the African continent, a nation that has disbursed so much good to much of humanity, with some bad mixed in (show me a perfect country or people).
Nigeria gained its independence from Britain on October 1st, 1960. Since then, the country has experienced a civil war (that lasted for three years 1967-1970 and killed 1 million of its citizens) while also enjoying a long spell of economic prosperity and boom from the 70s to the late-80s (much from oil and other natural resources she has been blessed with).
Lately, beginning in the 1990s, the country's infrastructure, image and over-all national reputation has taking a beating, mainly as a result of defective leadership laced with unbecoming greed and avarice.
The general climate of corruption (not quite different from what you would find in most countries but quite overt in Nigeria) has led to an expected societal breakdown, where law, order and common decency became an exception and not the norm.
For all of its struggles with corruption and the systematic destruction of its storied institutions and culture, much of this by its own military, with the acquiescence of the West (the latter mostly concerned with taking its resources by any means), the country has re-set itself back on course, with democratic elections in 1999 and has never looked back since.
The descent into "white collar crime" with the e-mail scams and other forms of criminal activity (by a very marginal minority) does NOT define the nature and character of Nigerians (over 200 million people), with many Nigerians contributing as physicians, scientists, technology experts and business executives in much of the world, particularly Africa, Europe and the United States (with a well established immigrant population in the Puget Sound as well).
While the e-mail/advance fee scam has generally been portrayed as a "Nigerian Scam", recent investigations by the Nigerian State Security Service (SSS) (working in conjunction with the FBI and Interpol) have shown that most of these crimes (e-mail/advance fee scams) have actually been committed by citizens of other West African countries, namely Ghana, the Sierra Leone and Liberia (due to the wars and extreme poverty in the latter two).
The interesting spin to the preceding information is that America's next door neighbor, Canada, has become a notorious breeding ground as well for a large proportion of these e-mail and other transactional scams. Witness the Canadian "lottery winner" e-mails as well as the offer to send you a "cashiers check" when you try to sell your car on Craigslist.
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), a body recently set up by Nigeria's democratically elected government, has also been very aggressive in pursuing the perpetrators of ALL financial crimes, within the Nigerian state.
While it is true that the Nigerian government "needs to do more" to ensure that this menace is curtailed (at least within its borders), one can say that the US government also needs to do more, by advising its citizens not to reply to e-mail solicitations to receive money from "relatives", they never had in Nigeria or anywhere else in the first place.

The advance fee fraud and e-mail scam developed a life of its own by the default of enablement. The greed and avarice in the United States (particularly on Wall Street) is there for all to see, but I am yet to see any Attorney General websites or newspapers refer to those as "American scam" or even worse still, label the scam on Wall Street with an ethnic delineation.
I am grateful to the deputy Chief-of-Staff of the Washington AG at the time for heeding my call and that of other well-meaning and hardworking Nigerians to remove the "Nigerian" label on this disgraceful activity.

One would hope that the likes of Sean Robinson (Staff Writer at the Tacoma News Tribune) might also learn something and understand that much like the criminals on Wall Street and those on the corners of the worst neighborhoods of Tacoma and indeed America who murder (serial killers et al), rape, pillage, molest and commit countless heinous crimes, are not branded with an American or other ethnic-American brush, it would be fool-hardy to do the same to others.