Lion Share And Baboon Share

On Sunday 1st October, 2017, two things of great interest happened in two different continents as Nigerians were celebrating the 57th independence anniversary here. In Spain, on the European continent, authorities were busy that day trying to prevent the people of Catalonia from voting in a referendum which they organised to express their willingness to separate from Spain and for their country, Catalonia. The country’s Constitutional Court declared the vote illegal. Police prevented people from voting, seized ballot papers and boxes at polling stations. In the end, 90 percent of the over 2 million people who were able to vote opted for separation. In neighbouring Cameroon on the same day, soldiers shot dead at least eight people and wounded several others during protests in that country’s English speaking regions by activists calling for its independence from the Francophone majority. Due to perceive marginalization, the protests, which began last year, against...

Professor Nye On Secession

The new in-thing all over the world is secession. Even European countries that were thought to be sacrosanct as far as boundary adjustments are concerned are now having separatist tendencies. Harvard University Professor Joseph S. Nye Jnr. is an authority on this issue. He recently wrote a very nice piece titled: The Who, Where and When of Secession, which I want to share with you my dear readers today. After all, no one is afraid of the issue of separation or secession any more. It is hereby reproduced verbatim in the following paragraphs. Happy reading: This week, Kurds in northern Iraq voted overwhelmingly in favour of independence for the country’s Kurdistan Region. With some 30 million Kurds divided among four states (Iraq, Turkey, Syria, Iran), nationalists argue that they deserve the world’s recognition. In Spain, some 7.5 million Catalans have raised the same question. Does it matter that polls show Catalans,...

Apc And Internal Democracy

By Abba Mahmood Democracy is a process at the heart of which is the political party which is the platform and vehicle for any politician aspiring to come to power through electoral means. There are provisions for independent candidates in some countries but an independent candidate even in advanced democracies like the US can only win at most legislative elections. No presidential candidate has ever won any election anywhere without the support and structure of a political party. This is the reason why a stable, cohesive and healthy party is necessary for the formation of a stable government, and vice versa. Relative to the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) is new. One of the main reasons for the decline and defeat of the PDP in the 2015 general elections was its lack of internal democracy. Candidates were imposed and the space was restricted for...

Remembering The Abacha Regime

BY Abba Mahmood Tomorrow, 17th November, will be exactly twenty four years since General Sani Abacha took over power from Chief Ernest Shonekan, the Head of the Interim National Government set up after the annulment of the June 12, 1993 presidential election. The Abacha administration has been variously described as a child of necessity and indeed it was. A High Court in Lagos had declared the Shonekan regime illegal and Nigeria was heading towards a national crisis. Many prominent citizens, including Professor Bolaji Ahinyemi, a former foreign minister and even the presumed winner of the June 12 presidential election, Chief MKO Abiola, openly called on Abacha to take over to save Nigeria from imminent collapse. A veteran of military coups, General Abacha answered the call and effortlessly took over in one of the most peaceful, bloodless military coup d’état in Africa’s history. If there was any legitimate coup, the Abacha coup was...

Assessing The Brain Drain

Abba Mahmood One of my favourite columnists is Mr. Eugene Enahoro. I personally enjoy reading him always as his articles are always very incisive, analytical and patriotic too. Recently, he wrote on the migration of Africans, particularly Nigerians, in search of greener pasture elsewhere. The article was titled: The Grass Isn’t Green on The Other Side. I hereby reproduced it below for you my dear readers. Happy reading: Every year thousands of Nigerians abandon the country legally or otherwise, and there appears to be no end in sight. The largest overseas Nigerian communities are in the UK and USA, while significant numbers also live in South Africa, Canada, Ireland and Portugal.This exodus has been enormously costly to the nation as some of the best, brightest and most able citizens have left in a “brain drain”. For example, in the USA, Nigerians have the highest percentage of Bachelor Degree holders amongst African...

The World In Turmoil

Just take a look at any news out let today you may think that only where you are sitting is peaceful. There is total chaos, disorder and turmoil everywhere, as clearly a new global architecture is about emerging from all these crises. For Africa there are three different opinions on what its future is supposed to be according to the current world powers. There are those who are of the belief that Africa should be nuclear free, not industrialized and backward. There are those who belief that Africa should be helped to develop as the other continents of the world. The third opinion is that Africa should be a buffet where every emerging and established power can come and grab whatever they want from it. Regardless of how anyone can look at it, these three views on Africa was expressed by a highly regarded policy maker at an international conference...