Friday, October 30, 2009

I posted this joke some years ago, and while looking over old posts, I stumbled upon it. As always, it made me chuckle. Not because I wish harm on anyone, but simply because the joke is very funny.
Enjoy the 'lighter' side of Nigerian politics....

A driver is stuck in a traffic jam on the motorway. Nothing is  moving.

Suddenly a man knocks on the window. The driver rolls down his window and asks,
"What's going on?"

The man responded, "Militants have kidnapped, OBJ, IBB, Atiku,Buhari, Tony Anenih,
Ahmadu Ali, Dariye, Nnamani, Odili, Ibrahim Mantu, Tinubu, Kalu, Maurice Iwu,
Adedibu, Ibori, Olubunmi  Etteh, and Igbinedion."

They're asking for a $500 million ransom. Otherwise they're going to douse them with
petrol and set them on fire. So, we're going from car to car, taking up a collection."

The driver asks, "How much is everyone contributing, on the average?"

The man  responded, "About a litre of  petrol and a stick of matches."

I wonder what names would be added to the list of 'kidnappees' now that this joke is a few years old.

UPDATE: In some unfortunate news,the father of the former chair of the Central Bank, Charles Soludo, was allegedly kidnapped. According to Nigerian Police, Soludo's family is yet to report the kidnapping. Whatever the case, I can only hope that the elder Soludo is well and that he be with his loved ones. 

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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Michael Peel's first book titled A Swamp Full of Dollars is a refreshingly balanced look at Nigeria through the prism of its most famous export - oil. Peel, who lived in Nigeria for some years as a reporter for the Financial Times, goes beyond the typical depictions and assertions made about Nigeria. He places modern day issues such as the Niger Delta militants, political corruption in a historical context, enlightening readers about the roots of many oil-related problems.

Even the most well-versed and passionate observers of Nigeria and its history would be interested to learn of the 1895 palm oil war between residents of the Niger Delta and British colonialists, given the parallels to present violence, corruption and subjugation in the same region more than a century later. Peel also focuses on the complicity of non-Nigerian actors/interests and their role in creating some of the issues Nigeria faces. Peel expressly illustrates how these foreign actors have exploited Nigerian oil and compounded problems, showing a weave of complexity that is fascinating.

A Swamp Full of Dollars is definitely a must read for all trying to understand not just Nigeria but how oil an the converging interests of of others can transform oil, a natural resource that should be a blessing, into a curse, of sorts. Peel has managed to write an engaging, yet informative book about Nigeria, its people, its past and possibly its future. It is a definite addition to any library, personal or otherwise.

To learn more about Michael Peel or the book, please visit his website or IB Tauris

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Monday, October 26, 2009

Nollywood is Nigeria's film industry and currently the third largest in the world after Hollywood (U.S.) and Bollywood (India). Movies are created with small budgets and in a short amount of time, and despite the quality issues of many of them, they have become a mainstay of the average Nigerian, and proven popular across the African continent and the Caribbean. Nollywood continues to gain recognition and one of its most well known stars Genevieve Nnaji, recently received mention on the Oprah Winfrey Show, a program watched my millions across the world. Good or bad, Nollywood has allowed ordinary Nigerians to influence lives beyond the shores of Nigeria.

Despite these attributes, TIME Magazine opted to create a questionable pictorial essay on Nollywood entitled, The Stars of Nigeria's Movie Biz. Shot by Pieter Hugo, the pictures were taken from the book Nollywood and the images are creating quite a stir.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Not too long ago, a Nigerian traveling to Europe documented a power outage at Murtala Mohamed International Airport in Lagos, Nigeria. The outage was in the terminal and based on the description given by the gentleman filming, individuals were boarding planes in darkness.

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Monday, October 19, 2009

Nigeria's mining industry is a sector on the verge of a boom. The current administration has been propositioned by various countries and mining companies seeking to take advantage of the nation's ample natural resources such as gold, precious and semi-precious gemstones, metals and ores. Like in many other African countries, China has made many inroads in Nigeria's mining industry.

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Friday, October 16, 2009

Chimamanda Adichie's talk at TED.

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Monday, October 12, 2009

It has become cliche to complain about Nigeria's power problems. The recent discussion on the potential government ban on imported generators, and the ire it created raises even more questions about power generation and the needs of businesses and individuals. It is definitely time to rethink Nigeria's approach to the creation and supply of electricity. Consequently, I now believe that Nigerians and its leadership should be discussing the possible benefits of a modern smart grid and not a power generation goal of 6000 or more megawatts.

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Friday, October 9, 2009

I heard this song sometime ago at one of my favorite haunts - Notjustok.com. The song, "Be Like Yours" is by Omolara Ayodele and has a neosoul, jazz vibe to it. She was born in Lagos State and received a degree in Philosophy from the University of Ibadan. Omolara has featured MI on another track "Tonight".


According to her Facebook Fan page, she mentions Lauryn Hill, Brandy, Sade and Mariah Carey as some of her influences, and that is evident from the moment she begins to sing. I particularly like the smooth harmony employed in the chorus section and am impressed by her clear vocals and lyrics. Her video is simple and highlights the quality of the song she sings.


From the Archives:
- Fame Enterprise and the Entertainment Industry
-Nigeria vs. The African Continent
-P-Square "Say your Love"
-Infinity's "Olori Oko"
-Ty Bello's "Greenland"
-Banky W.'s "Ebute Meta"
-Fishe's "Africa"
-Asa's "So Beautiful"
-Nayo's "1+1"
-Conscious Music
-Bope Boya
- Douye
- H-Man's Uwadiwe
- Asa's The Place To Be"

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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The publication, Business World recently reported that the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) plans to ban the importation of generators. Now, for anyone who knows Nigeria, lived in Nigeria or has been to Nigeria, generators are a way of life for those who can afford them. The sound of generators whirring at all hours to deliver electricity is likely more prevalent today than the sound emitted from the deadly anopheles mosquito which freely delivers malaria.

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AT 49....

Monday, October 5, 2009

Nigeria celebrated its 49th independence anniversary on October 1st. A former colony of Britain, Nigeria started out as an economic outpost, supplying the British crown with riches and influence that pays dividends even today, and it eventually became a formal and independent nation state in 1960. An independent nation that even many of its creators believed would have a hard time succeeding. Since then, the country and its people have experienced ups and downs like any other nation, but as each year passes, questions are raised as to which direction the nation is going.

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