6 Basic Rules of Investing by Robert Kiyosaki

Understanding…and mastering the game of investing

When I was a young boy, my best friend Mike, the son of my rich dad, took up both the game of golf and investing. Both were games, in a sense, both were difficult to master, and both required understanding the rules of the game.

Fifteen years later, when we were both twenty-five years old, Mike was an expert at both golf and investing. I was just beginning to learn the rules.

I make this point because, regardless of how young or old you are, learning the basics of anything, is important. Most people take some kind of golf lessons to learn the basics before playing golf, but unfortunately, most people never learn the simple basics of investing before investing their hard-earned money.

The following are the 6 basics of investing taught to me by my rich dad:

Basic rule #1: Know what kind of income you’re working for

Most people think only of making money. They don’t realize that there are different kinds of money to work for. For years, rich dad drilled into Mike and me that there are three kinds of income:

  • Ordinary earned income: Generally earned from a job via a paycheck. It’s the highest-taxed income, and thus, the hardest to build wealth with.
  • Portfolio income: Generally derived from paper assets such as stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.
  • Passive income: Generally derived from real estate, royalties, and distributions. It is the lowest-taxed income, with many tax benefits, and is the easiest income to build wealth with.

Rich dad said, “If you want to be rich, work for passive income.”

Basic rule #2: Convert ordinary income into passive income

Most people start their life out by making ordinary earned income as an employee. The path to building wealth then starts with understanding that there are other types of income and then converting your earned income into the other types of income as efficiently as possible.

 

To illustrate this, rich dad drew a simple diagram:

“That, in a nutshell,” said rich dad, “is all an investor is supposed to do. It’s as basic as it can get.”

Basic rule #3: The investor is the asset or liability

As we’ve discussed recently, many people think investing is risky . The reality, however, is that it’s the investor who is risky. The investor is the asset or liability.

“I have seen investors lose money when everyone else is making it,” said rich dad. “In fact, a good investor loves to follow behind a risky investor because that is where the real investment bargains can be found!”

Basic rule #4: Be prepared

Most people try to predict what and when things will happen. But a true investor is prepared for anything to happen. “If you are not prepared with education, experience, or extra cash, a good opportunity will pass you by,” said rich dad.

Rich dad went on to say that it was most important not to predict what will happen but to instead focus on what you want, to keep your eyes open to what is happening, and to respond to opportunity. This is done through continual education and application.

Basic rule #5: Good deals attract money

One of my big concerns as a beginning investor was how I would raise money if I found a good deal. Rich dad reminded me that my job was to stay focused on the opportunities in front of me, to be prepared.

“If you are prepared, which means you have education and experience,” said rich dad, “and you find a good deal, the money will find you or you will find the money.”

Rich dad’s point was that getting the money was the easy part. The hard part was finding a great deal that attracted the money—which is why so many people are ready to give money to a good investor.

Basic rule #6: Learn to evaluate risk and reward

As you become a successful investor, you must learn to evaluate risk and reward. Rich dad used the example of a nephew building a burger stand.

“If you had a nephew with an idea for a burger stand, and he needed $25,000, would that be a good investment?”

“No,” I answered. “There is too much risk for too little reward.”

“Very good,” said rich dad, “but what if I told you that this nephew has been working for a major burger chain for the past 15 years, has been a vice-president of every important aspect in the business, and is ready to go out on his own and build a worldwide burger chain? And what if you could buy 5 percent of the company with a mere $25,000? Would that be of interest to you?”

“Yes,” I said. “Definitely because there is more reward for the same amount of risk.”

Learning and mastering the rules of investing takes a life-long investment in financial education. But these basics will get you started. Where you go from here is up to you.

Truly, there was a country by Femi Adesina

The first battle we lost was the one for nationhood.  Our National Anthem tells us we want “to build a nation where peace and justice shall reign.”  But we never even built a nation, not to talk of one where peace and justice are enduring values.

What is a nation?  “A sovereign state inhabited by a relatively homogenous group of people who share a feeling of common nationality.”  At a time the rest of the world is talking about nation-state:  “an independent state inhabited by all the people of one nation and one nation only,” Nigeria never attained anything near the status of a nation.  No, not at any time in our 100 years of chequered history as an amalgamated country.

Country?  Well, that is what we have been, but what a country!  We occupy a particular territory, so we qualify to be called a country.  But nation?  Never!  One, we are not homogenous, and never may be.  Two, we don’t share a feeling of common nationality, and we continue to gripe and bellyache about “the mistake of 1914.”  What an egregious error, a humongous blunder Lord Lugard committed when he forcefully cobbled the Northern and Southern Protectorates together in January 1914.  We are doomed to live in the light of that error, cursed to be a perpetual country, not a nation, and not ever a nation-state.  Thy glory oh Nigeria is slain upon the high places.

Somehow, we had managed to patch things up, with our country held together by gossamer-thin fabrics.  We live in hatred, malice, injustice, suspicion, ill will, in fact, all the fault lines you can find among a people are in Nigeria.  We fought a Civil War, we still came together again.  Many times we have been at the brink, the edge of the precipice, but fortuitously we pull back, and the country remains one.   Now, terror has come, and the auguries are not good.  The different groups that make up the country are saying:  “What portion have we in Nigeria.  We have no inheritance in the son of Lugard.  To your tents O Nigeria; and now Lugard, see to thine own house.”

But Lugard is long dead, and can no longer see to the house of commotion that he had built.  He cannot behold the tinderbox he set up.  He cannot see the cauldron, the waiting Armageddon that his socio-political tinkering has become.  Some men cause trouble, go away, and leave others to pack the mess. That is what Lugard did.  Nigeria is in a thorough, proper mess today.

See the past five weeks in the life of the country:  Nyanya 1.  Chibok abduction of schoolgirls.  Nyanya 2.  Kano. Jos bloodbath. And the carnage in Alagarno and Shawa villages in Borno!  Hundreds upon hundreds of people dead, and that in a country not officially at war.  But are we not at war?  We are!  Nigeria is at war with herself.  The country has waxed old, and is about to be folded up.  It is about to be consigned to the dunghill of history, and soon, people may point to this geographical territory, and declare: that was where Nigeria used to be.  A country that never fulfilled her potentials, which made a mess of eating an egg.  A country done in by poor leadership, corruption, insularity, suspicion, and finally, terrorism.

Nigeria is dying, and no mistake.  For many months, attention had shifted to the North-East, where the insurgency seemed to have circumscribed itself.  But this week, while men slept, adversaries crept in and sowed tares among the wheat.  Kano, which was fast returning to normalcy after the terror attacks of the past two years, got bombed again.  Also, Jos, which had haemorrhaged for decades from ethnic and religious conflicts, suffered multiple bombings.  Corpses littered the streets in their hundreds.  While the bodybags were still being moved to the overflowing mortuaries, 48 people were slaughtered in Alagarno and Shawa villages in Borno.  Please, let’s check the world map, is Nigeria still existing on it?  Or have we been swept off, gone extinct, without our knowing it?  Can one country be so beleaguered, so embattled, and still survive?  Will Nigeria survive, as Veno Marioghae confidently sang long ago?

If dem thief our oil o, Nigeria go survive

Even if dem burn the oil o, Nigeria go survive

Nigeria go survive, Africa go survive

My people go survive o, Nigeria go survive

Now, are we so very sure that Nigeria will survive?  We were surer in 1984 when Marioghae sang that song, but not anymore today.

Nobody can say with unshaken conviction that Nigeria will survive.  The contraption is rickety, the ship is adrift, leaking, and taking in water.  Fast.  Will the titanic sink or be rescued?

What happens ultimately depends on us.  If Boko Haram crept back into Abuja, Kano and Jos, they can creep into any part of the country.  Our security agencies are doing yeoman’s job, but terror wars are peculiar.  Do you say ‘I will kill you’ to a man already primed to die, with bombs strapped all over his body?

Nigerians will ultimately decide what happens to their country.  Boko Haram is not about religion, we now see and know.   Even the average Muslim will hate to live in a country headed by Boko Haram, and be subjected to what the Talibans did to Afghanistan.  Both the Muslim and Christians now know that Boko Haram is an enemy.  That was why Jos did not erupt in sectarian fury after the bombs went off on Tuesday.  Nigerians are getting wiser.

Will Nigeria die or survive?  Big question.  But no doubt, she’s in the throes of transition.  Whether she ‘kicks the bucket’ or survives depends on what we do with ourselves.  Chinua Achebe lamented in his last book that there was a country called Nigeria.  We are still lamenting today.  Will better days ever come, or this is the end of the end?  Cry the beloved country.

 

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS’ FREAKING FREETHINKING Vols 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36 (plus World Cup Special and June 12 poem)

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS’ FREAKING FREETHINKING. Vol 30

 

Don’t you think Benfica is jinxed?

 

Have u ever imagined why Benfica keeps losing d final of successive european cup finals? It even Lost Europa Losers’ League final ystrdy. Why? It’s jinxed. It’s under a curse.

 

After the 1962 European Cup Final, Guttmann (Benfica coach) approached the Benfica board of directors and asked for a pay rise. It was rumoured they had promised him a pay rise if he could achieve success with them. He’s earlier won d portugese league with Porto,overcoming Benfica’s 5 point lead. He later “ported” to Benfica. He won 2 Portugese league trophies and two European Champions trophies.

However despite the success he had brought the club,his request for a pay rise was turned down. On leaving Benfica, Guttman allegedly cursed the club, declaring “Not in a hundred years from now will Benfica ever be European champion”. Benfica have gone on to lose all eight of their subsequent European finals, including five European Cup finals (1963, 1965, 1968, 1988, and 1990), and three UEFA Cup/UEFA Europa League finals (1983, 2013 and 2014).

 

Before the 1990 final, which was played in Vienna, where Guttmann was buried, Eusébio even prayed at his grave and asked for the curse to be broken. Benfica still lost that match and subsequent finals after that.

 

Disregard d power of curses to ur peril !

Do u think curses don’t work in real life?

 

 

 

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS’S FREAKING FREETHINKING. Vol 31

 

The Chibok girls’s kidnap isn’t a phantom. It’s real !

 

It is a pity that despite the identification of some of the abducted girls by their parents in the recently released video,some people still doubt the abduction of the girls or accuse the Borno state governor,Shettima of “orchestrating” the abduction saga. It is difficult to convince the deaf and the dumb who have closed their minds to reasoning and empathy.

 

Parents have identified their Girls from the Video…what are you talking about Bro?

http://dailytrust.info/news/24018-chibok-girls-54-girls-identified-by-parents-in-boko-haram-video

 

I couldn’t believe it more when my pharmacology professor in school then,Prof Olorundare told us that there are 3 kinds of people on earth -Whites,Blacks, and Nigerians

School girls we’re abducted 4 weeks ago,some said it was a hoax even when the FG confirmed it,they then asked for their names and pictures to be published which was done save the pictures .Now that BH has released the videos of some of the girls,some still don’t believe it citing unreasonable and callous perceptions, some said they’re more mature than school girls,some said it’s not possible they could recite the 1st part of the Quran so well since most of them are Christians

It makes me wonder why we wouldn’t continue to have mediocres as leaders if a considerable size if the nation is thinking this way.

Some people are saying Boko Haram video may be fake because the girls recited the Quran well. I don’t agree with them. A lot of Christians who grew up far North could recite that, at least, especially the indigenous people. Some of my christian friends knew how to recite if from primary school and they still do. As for recitation who does not know if u attend public schools in the north u have to recite Quran? It does not follow religion, hundreds of my christian friends from Adamawa, Bauch, Gombe recites like muslims, The video cannot be fake because the faces of the girls were showing and most of them can be identified. Boko Haram aren’t that ‘ram’, they know a thing or two.

 

Let me add some folks said the place isn’t a forest. Have they ever travelled up north b4? Were they expecting Shambisa forest to be as thick as rain forest or mangrove swamp or even southern guinea savannah? Sambisa is in d Sahel Savannah. With much desert encroachment and dryin up of lake Chad, it can’t be more than we saw. Only uninformed folks will be expecting a thick forest in d fringes of d sahara. Apart from elementary geography which if u did will tell u Sambinsa will be mostly wood and shrubs because of location, its a known fact that there are villages inside that forest. Fulani heardsmen before boko haram lived in the forest for ages.

On accent, who doesnt have accent? The accent of a person from Kano must be diffrent from Borno, what is unaccented Hausa?

 

The JTF that the Principal of the Chibok schools made nonsense of their claim that the school girls were rescued should be the first to have told Nigerians and the rest of the world abduction never took place to have at least gotten back at the principal and all behind the cooked up event if truly it is but till today i haven’t read any denial. The presidency also changed their tactics to negotiating for the girls release but some or many Nigerians who have never been to Borno sit or stand comfortably in their houses, offices, cars, etc thinking, saying and typing on social media like Asari Dukobo that the abduction never took place. The SSS and the police also haven’t denied it. Despite all the evidence asked for and given and even by the foreign media going on ground to see first hand the school burnt, interviewed parents, the doubters for reasons none of them except Asari have told us that the people he sees as Gambari want to tarnish Gej’s already seriously over-tarnished image believes the girls were not abducted.

 

So many thousands of fellow humans and Nigerians have been killed by Boko Haram for the past few years these doubters never came up with this idea that the deaths were cooked up so how did the abduction which is not the first time but the highest in terms of numbers now turn to a cooked up event? ? How come these doubters never asked for pictures, parents, families etc of the people that have been killed? After all the pictures and information required of the 9/11 and the Uk terrorist act are available and even during their memorial some of their familes and loved ones still come up with pictures to show the world. Why? Why? ? ? i asked again did all these doubters refuse to ask for pictures, parents and families to protest with the pictures of their loved ones at all the many thousands that have been killed since boko haram started their evil. . . So many questions but here are just a few for the doubters. Since they’ve been picking holes to ask questions the president, JTF, SSS and police have refused to ask publicly rather they telling us the abduction took place, they also should not run away from simple questions like these!

 

One shouldn’t be like Apostle Thomas who refused to believe Jesus resurrection, despite all reports . He asked for undeniable proof. When he saw Jesus, he was so shocked he stopped doubting. Let’s not be doubting Thomases. Some ask for links from reputable media houses. I’m providing u at least 3 here.

 

http://www.punchng.com/news/abduction-army-ignored-advanced-warning-ai/

 

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-27344863

 

http://news.yahoo.com/nigeria-ignored-warning-boko-haram-kidnap-amnesty-143910613.html

 

Let it not be that when the american and israeli multinational forces rescue the girls that some will believe. Shame and even greater shame on those who’re yet to believe now,despite d undeniable evidences. More shame unto them when the girls are rescued.

Bring back our girls.

 

 

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS FREAKING FREETHINKING. Vol 32

Stop all these lies and campaign of lies

I don tire to see these annoyingly repetitive ads with glaringly false content on AIT. Martin Luther King, Obama, Nelson Mandela, Lee Kuan Yew won’t find them amusing either… How can u be be comparing a heartless incompetent liar with all these great men. The juxtaposition is too unequal.

There are so many creative ways the government can advertise its real and imagined achievements..but this Lee Kuan Yew, Mandela, Obama, Martin Luther comparison is just another LOW . Obama should sue them or just tell them to stop d misuse of his name. Likewise all d others too. I hope INEC too is watching. It should be a fair umpire. Official campaign hasn’t started. All these unofficial campaigns must stop. All these defenders of prosperity, Transformation initiatives , Promoters of Nigerian Prosperity,bla bla bla must stop d campaigns of falsehood. Where is d 24-hr electricity? With these clowns called DISCOs ? (Abi na skelewu or Azonto ni)

 

 

 

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS’ FREAKING FREETHINKING Vol 33
Don’t let us be carried away and forget

Now that d World Cup is starting,with all its excitement and month long fanfare and fun, I hope we haven’t forgotten about

1. Our missing $20bn CBN funds

2. ASUP strike is over 11mths. Our youths are wasting productive lives at home doing nothing

3. Our Chibok girls are missing. #bringBackOurGirls

4.Boko Haram is still on rampage

5. The Allison Madueke Probe

6. The so called Jonathan’s Conference is still ongoing (but like I’d said countlessly,it’s an exercise in futility)

7.The NGF Nigerian Govs Forum is still factionalised

8. The fate of defecting senators and house of rep members

9. Are more political parties gonna be deregistered or we’ll maintain status-quo

10. Where is d much publicised help of d american,french, british and israeli forces promised? When are they storming Shambisha forest to rescue and bring back our girls? I’m still awaiting watching another “Delta- Force- style, rescue operation on TV”

 

 

 

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS’ FREAKING FREE-THINKING vol 34

Who is greater ? An Emir or Mr. President ?

Many of my friends willingly or ignorantly got me wrong over the issue of Sanusi Lamido Sanusi,the new Emir of Kano. Never have I ever said that any traditional ruler be it Oba, Eze, Obi, Ataoja,Etsu, Sultan, Emir, Ooni, Alaafin or any other, is greater than the president or state governor, LG Chairman or any legislator or elected official. Never. They have constitutional roles and are all recognised by the constitution over any traditional ruler. However, by our own tradition and culture, it demands that anybody,no matter how big or small should respect and bow down &pay appropriate obseissance to any traditional ruler He CHOOSES to see. If he fails to do that, not only has he committed a sacriledge and desecrated traditions. That isn’t wise.
It’s a known fact that all former heads of states /presidents, governors, legislators, LG Chairmen,even Jonathan in the past all paid proper respects to traditional rulers, why must there be a change now? It goes beyond politics of APC and PDP.

The choice is GEJ’s. He can choose to ignore going to Kano. I don’t give a damn. I’m sure most people too don’t give a damn. But if he chooses to, he must go visit his enemy – SLS, d new emir of kano and pay proper obseissance to him. He must address SLS as his royal highness and bow down to SLS and say “ranka deede”. I’m waiting for that time too. This time,he mustnt go alone. He should carry my friend Collins Eze  to also go pay homage to the emir

 

 

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS’ FREAKING FREETHINKING Vol 35
BRAZIL 2014: Harvest of protests and aparty

By tomorrow, the 20th edition of the world cup will be kicking up amid protests. It is quite ironical that this is so given that the mundial is taking place in Brazil, the home of football.
Brazil’s image to the world is determined by her carnivals, the samba girls and most importantly her football. I remember when Brazil was handed the hosting right in 2007; it was greeted with fanfares and celebrations that finally football is returning to its spiritual home after 6 decades of waiting. One can only wonder how within 6 years these supports metamorphosed to anger and protests.

A major factor behind the outrage by Brazilians is the corruption that has marred the handling of the world cup preparation. There has been allegation of fraudulent billing by contractors most of whom are government political sponsors. How do one explain the tripling of the cost of Garrincha’s world cup stadium from just little above $300m to $900m!

Human right violation is another major reason for the violence. Locals have been forcefully evicted from their ancestral homes little financial compensation, sometimes without resettlement. This elitist drive has made over 200,000 Brazilians homeless. Thus they are asking “WORLD CUP FOR WHOM?”

There has also been allegation of overspending. Brazilians have asked rightly, why construct 12 stadia when 8 stadia can successfully host the world cup. This is more worrisome given that 4 of the stadia are located in areas where professional football is nonexistent. This world cup will be costing thrice the cost of Germany 2007 edition.

The love of Brazilians for football explains why they protested using a football tournament ‘Copa Popular’. They believe copa popular is for the people while the World cup is for the elites and tourists.
The only way to calm the nerves of Brazilian is for the Canarinho to fly all the way to the finals, anything short of that would flare up the already tensed situation

A friend was in Rio last year for the Confederation Cup and he was positively shocked to discover that the average Brazilian cares very little about football as the myth outside the country of a soccer crazed country. So many of them couldn’t fathom why anyone should come all the way from Africa just to come and watch football. It was most disheartening.He even tried very unsuccessfully in educating some of them on the possible benefits derivable from hosting the WC,

The issues fueling the riots (which started then) isn’t just about corruption only but also about the socio-economic disparities there. The gap between the wealthy and the poor is so frightenly wide. Much more than in Nigeria.
The slums are worse than any you can see in Naija in Ajegunle, Ijora – Badia, Makoko, PH shanties and the rich areas of Copacabana and Ipenama are as exotic as the finest European town.So beyond corruption, most of the citizenry cannot understand the need to spend so much on the World Cup.

Even more frightening is that the country is still spending heavily to host the Rio de Janerio 2016 summer olympics and are building yet another 4 new stadium to host the football events. Many citizens feel the money being wasted on hosting these two tournaments will have been better used to improve their lives. I quite agree with them even though the government has made many wastages and failed to improve the standard of the people, it should have struck a good balance. The people too should be ready to make small sacrifices but I put most of the blame on the government. I hope the protests won’t disrupt the World Cup.

 

 

FRIDAY FREE FOOD FOR FRIENDS’ FREAKING FREETHINKING Vol 36
REMEMBER JUNE 12 (Three Poems Written in 1994)

1.
…the tainted hue
of mid-noon sky
changing bright haze
to violet mood

-rumours-

…the chords of June
the strings of June
the rape of June
the Twelfth of June

…and the mandate
of a lost June
approaches a bloody anniversary
in the eternal rhapsodies
of an alternative joke

2.
…the mood of the day
the short tail of lizard
the agony of June Twelve
the approaches of war

-gambling men
gambling lives
gambling tide
gambling with history

….and we will remember
these wise men
if we live long enough
to see the conference

and the circumference
of a lost generation
in the wake
of an annulment

3.
… the fate of men
a man of faith
dribbles from a cold season
between the annulment
of history

…and three cats
fought three mice
and drew three lines
of three bloody paths

…and the third line
was cast in the sky
waiting for the season
to touch the unrighteous

…and on June 12
we will all stand
and be counted
in an empty marketplace

otherwise
stay at home!
it is a lousy country
especially for the poor

(From the Collection: Crosses on the Hilltop, Published in 2002)

The Chibok Girls Kidnap isnt Fanthom or Scam. It’s Real !

The Chibok girls’s kidnap isn’t a phantom. It’s real !

It is a pity that despite the identification of some of the abducted girls by their parents in the recently released video,some people still doubt the abduction of the girls or accuse the Borno state governor,Shettima of “orchestrating” the abduction saga. It is difficult to convince the deaf and the dumb who have closed their minds to reasoning and empathy.

Parents have identified their Girls from the Video…what are you talking about Bro?
http://dailytrust.info/news/24018-chibok-girls-54-girls-identified-by-parents-in-boko-haram-video

I couldn’t believe it more when my pharmacology professor in school then,Prof Olorundare told us that there are 3 kinds of people on earth -Whites,Blacks, and Nigerians
School girls we’re abducted 4 weeks ago,some said it was a hoax even when the FG confirmed it,they then asked for their names and pictures to be published which was done save the pictures .Now that BH has released the videos of some of the girls,some still don’t believe it citing unreasonable and callous perceptions, some said they’re more mature than school girls,some said it’s not possible they could recite the 1st part of the Quran so well since most of them are Christians
It makes me wonder why we wouldn’t continue to have mediocres as leaders if a considerable size if the nation is thinking this way.
Some people are saying Boko Haram video may be fake because the girls recited the Quran well. I don’t agree with them. A lot of Christians who grew up far North could recite that, at least, especially the indigenous people. Some of my christian friends knew how to recite if from primary school and they still do. As for recitation who does not know if u attend public schools in the north u have to recite Quran? It does not follow religion, hundreds of my christian friends from Adamawa, Bauch, Gombe recites like muslims, The video cannot be fake because the faces of the girls were showing and most of them can be identified. Boko Haram aren’t that ‘ram’, they know a thing or two.

Let me add some folks said the place isn’t a forest. Have they ever travelled up north b4? Were they expecting Shambisa forest to be as thick as rain forest or mangrove swamp or even southern guinea savannah? Sambisa is in d Sahel Savannah. With much desert encroachment and dryin up of lake Chad, it can’t be more than we saw. Only uninformed folks will be expecting a thick forest in d fringes of d sahara. Apart from elementary geography which if u did will tell u Sambinsa will be mostly wood and shrubs because of location, its a known fact that there are villages inside that forest. Fulani heardsmen before boko haram lived in the forest for ages.
On accent, who doesnt have accent? The accent of a person from Kano must be diffrent from Borno, what is unaccented Hausa?

The JTF that the Principal of the Chibok schools made nonsense of their claim that the school girls were rescued should be the first to have told Nigerians and the rest of the world abduction never took place to have at least gotten back at the principal and all behind the cooked up event if truly it is but till today i haven’t read any denial. The presidency also changed their tactics to negotiating for the girls release but some or many Nigerians who have never been to Borno sit or stand comfortably in their houses, offices, cars, etc thinking, saying and typing on social media like Asari Dukobo that the abduction never took place. The SSS and the police also haven’t denied it. Despite all the evidence asked for and given and even by the foreign media going on ground to see first hand the school burnt, interviewed parents, the doubters for reasons none of them except Asari have told us that the people he sees as Gambari want to tarnish Gej’s already seriously over-tarnished image believes the girls were not abducted.

So many thousands of fellow humans and Nigerians have been killed by Boko Haram for the past few years these doubters never came up with this idea that the deaths were cooked up so how did the abduction which is not the first time but the highest in terms of numbers now turn to a cooked up event? ? How come these doubters never asked for pictures, parents, families etc of the people that have been killed? After all the pictures and information required of the 9/11 and the Uk terrorist act are available and even during their memorial some of their familes and loved ones still come up with pictures to show the world. Why? Why? ? ? i asked again did all these doubters refuse to ask for pictures, parents and families to protest with the pictures of their loved ones at all the many thousands that have been killed since boko haram started their evil. . . So many questions but here are just a few for the doubters. Since they’ve been picking holes to ask questions the president, JTF, SSS and police have refused to ask publicly rather they telling us the abduction took place, they also should not run away from simple questions like these!

One shouldn’t be like Apostle Thomas who refused to believe Jesus resurrection, despite all reports . He asked for undeniable proof. When he saw Jesus, he was so shocked he stopped doubting. Let’s not be doubting Thomases. Some ask for links from reputable media houses. I’m providing u at least 3 here.

http://www.punchng.com/news/abduction-army-ignored-advanced-warning-ai/

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-27344863

http://news.yahoo.com/nigeria-ignored-warning-boko-haram-kidnap-amnesty-143910613.html

Let it not be that when the american and israeli multinational forces rescue the girls that some will believe. Shame and even greater shame on those who’re yet to believe now,despite d undeniable evidences. More shame unto them when the girls are rescued.
Bring back our girls.

Blame God, Nigeriana! By Leonard Karshima Shilgba

Our Nigerian way of life is the way of plenty of rituals of religion and very little of deeds to match our religious professions. It is public conduct and confessions that are divorced from personal responsibility and rather attached to “faith”. It does not matter what the outcome of our “faith” may be. Our most convenient escape route is to “pray” or to urge people to “pray harder”. As a pastor myself, I am concerned and have made efforts to put in clear relief before my congregation and others who care to listen to me what their personal responsibility as citizens should be.

 

A Nigerian gets into a conversation with you about their country:

 

Nigeriana One: The level of corruption in this country is really alarming. What can we do about it?

 

Nigeriana Two: I think we need to pray more for our country rather than complain. Complaining will solve no problem. The problem we have is that we are not praying enough.

 

Nigeriana One: We are not praying enough? How much of praying is enough?

 

Nigeriana Two: Our pastor told us that prayer changes things, and that if Nigeria has remained in this sad state for this long, it is because the church is not praying but playing.

 

Nigeriana One: Indeed, I love the catch phrase your pastor used; but, can you tell me how the church in Japan, China, Malaysia, UAE and in those countries that have registered great levels of development has been praying so that the Nigerian church can learn?

 

Nigeriana Two: I can sense mockery in your voice. I did not know you are an unbeliever. How can you underrate prayer?

 

Nigeriana One: I am sorry if you perceive it like that. I only asked to learn how I should pray because, to me, Nigerians seem to be praying a lot. We even have “Christian ministries” that are wholly devoted to praying; you can even see this in their names. And at every occasion Nigerian government officials call for prayer and some of them cannot make a speech before praying. And they call God or Allah or Jesus Christ many times in a single sentence.

 

Nigeriana Two: Let me educate you. Jesus Christ says that “Men ought always to pray and not to faint.” Are you fainting already?

 

Nigeriana One: If you talk of fainting, I must insist on getting the answer I asked for. How much praying without fainting have the Japanese, Chinese, Malaysians and the others been doing that they are much better off than Nigerians in all indices of human development?

 

Nigeriana Two: I cannot tell. But we must continue praying. Maybe the words we use in praying are not enough or appropriate.

 

Nigeriana One: My good friend, if you cannot tell me what I must do, how do you expect me to know when I have attained accomplishment? By the way, Jesus Christ says, “But when you pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking. Be not you therefore like them; for your Father knows what things you have need of before you ask him.”Do you still think the problems of Nigeria have refused to go away because Nigerians are not “praying enough”?

 

Nigeriana Two: Please, I need to leave now; I have a Church meeting in few minutes. But God will help us. God is in control.

I find it annoying when Nigerians expect God to do even laundry for them. I think the country has been sedated under the influence of unproductive religion and if Nigeria has under-performed, we must blame God! God has not yet responded appropriately, and so Nigerians must pray more, and maybe louder. My experience as a writer, public speaker, organizer, activist, pastor/preacher and teacher informs me that Nigerians are not yet prepared for the kind of change that some of us have written about. Recently, I wrote somewhere about the kind of expectations we the people should have of our elected leaders. Someone responded by asking me to be “morally flexible.” On many occasions the people you think you are talking for, writing for, and fighting for, would tell you that you should be “patient”. They see no reason why you are boiling over for them. They expect you to give them money. That is the language Nigerians understand; they don’t care from where you have got the money. They only want their share. This attitude threatens to weaken our hands. Other Nigerians would respond to us with a question such as, “Are you perfect yourself?”

 

I was invited to give a keynote speech at the coronation of our town chief last year. During my speech delivery I lectured them on the responsibility of our elected legislators, local government chairman, state governor, traditional rulers and the citizens. I did not spare religious leaders too. I guess the people were uneasy as the speech went on. Only few minutes into the speech I heard the compere shout, “Time!” I ignored him. Later, I heard a chorus from one section of the audience, “Time factor!” Well, I concluded my speech, gave the new king a copy of the Holy Bible, announced a scholarship offer for school children in my hometown and sat down. After the applause died down two gentlemen walked up to my seat and asked, “Do you have anything you want to offer?” Clearly, they did not think I had “offered” anything important yet! I told them as calmly as possible, “I have nothing more to offer.” Actually, I had some good sum of money with me that I had intended to give; but I decided to withhold. In fact, this is well known in my community. People that are averse to education and learning are without any hope of development. What our people worship is money. Our politicians know this so well; and that is why they have political longevity in spite of lack of character and what saner people would call “bad reputation”. The Nigerian people are not ready for a better life.

 

Few days ago, I stopped at a service station to buy petrol. There was a man on a motorbike who was lamenting the hardship that was being worsened by the sharp increase in petrol price. I responded in the Nigerian manner, “God will help us.” He brightened up and confessed that he was initially afraid of speaking his mind because he thought I was “one of them” (politicians) since I had emerged from a big jeep. He said he was afraid of being killed. So Nigerians who would do anything to get the politicians’ money have a petrifying fear of the same politicians? We have conveniently found a way of avoiding the wrath of our political leaders who do not brook criticisms or dissent—we blame God indirectly. We say that, “God dey.” We urge ourselves to “pray more”. Maybe our God is deaf or has taken a very long vacation from Nigeria to countries that hardly “pray” to him. One big overseer of one of the largest churches in Nigeria and Africa said in an interview last year that he refrained from publicly criticizing government policies because he did not “want to be misunderstood.” Jesus Christ did not care about being misunderstood. But I have a question for this overseer: When he preaches to little sinners in his church does he worry about being “misunderstood” by them? The same overseer jars our ears year-after-year that “it is well” with Nigeria.

 

Surely, it is not well with Nigeria. When blood-thirsty Boko Haram militants conduct hours of operation and slaughter our children in their sleep without the intervention of the Nigerian security personnel, how could it be well with Nigeria? When billions of dollars of public money get missing and government officials only meet to “reconcile accounts” and nothing more is done in the public interest, how can it be well with Nigeria? When services like telecommunications and electricity supply remain deplorable and yet citizens are being ripped off without stern reaction by the government on behalf of citizens, how can it be well with Nigeria? When since 1999, the “largest party in Africa” has formed central government in Nigeria and yet not a single kilometer of modern railway has been built, and rather all we hear is the boast about “refurbishing” colonial-era coaches in spite of the hundreds of billions of dollars Nigeria has earned in revenue during the period, how can it be well with Nigeria? When the same old gang that has presided over Nigeria’s decay since independence is charged with organizing a national conference to heal Nigeria, how can it be well with Nigeria?   On December 31, 2011, a famous prophet in Nigeria announced to the world that the problem of Boko Haram would be “a thing of the past” from 2012! Alas, Boko Haram is waxing stronger. But Nigerians love to be deceived by their prophets and overseers. We are made to hide under “prayers”, “faith”, and would not accept our individual responsibility.

 

It beats my imagination that these militants come in a convoy of expensive vehicles, conduct their operations at will and then disappear like ghosts into thin air while our soldiers rely on the prayers of Nigerians to keep safe. And when you announce that on the basis of empirical evidence, Boko Haram operatives are more motivated and better equipped than the Nigerian military, you are criticized by Nigerians and their government officials and apologists that you are weakening the Nigerian army. Alright, let me encourage them—“The Nigerian army is highly motivated and better equipped than Boko Haram. In fact, I decree that they will stop Boko Haram in one day! They are only being careful so as not to kill innocent Nigerians. Don’t ask me if the number of Nigerians being killed by Boko Haram is not too high already. The Nigerian army is very professional, and when we back them up with serious prayers, Boko Haram will become history.”

 

Seriously, is the problem of Nigeria lack of “serious prayers”? When the nation of Israel arrived in the Promised Land they set out conquering greater and bigger nations than them. Suddenly, they suffered a setback and were defeated by a much smaller group of people. Their leader, Joshua turned to the weapon of prayer. This is the account:

 

Joshua ripped his clothes and fell on his face to the ground before the Chest of God, he and the leaders throwing dirt on their heads, prostrate until evening.

Joshua said, “Oh, oh, oh . . . Master, God. Why did you insist on bringing this people across the Jordan? To make us victims of the Amorites? To wipe us out? Why didn’t we just settle down on the east side of the Jordan? Oh, Master, what can I say after this, after Israel has been run off by its enemies? When the Canaanites and all the others living here get wind of this, they’ll gang up on us and make short work of us—and then how will you keep up your reputation?”

 

Can you see how Joshua blamed God for the plight and reproach of his nation? He even tied God’s reputation to the well-being of his nation. I know some Nigerians say that God is a Nigerian. Some say that this is God’s country. We have got so used to being pulled off the edge of the cliff that we take our recurring deliverance for granted. But how did God respond to the leader of Israel? This is the account:

God said to Joshua, “Get up. Why are you groveling? Israel has sinned: They’ve broken the covenant I commanded them; they’ve taken forbidden plunder—stolen and then covered up the theft, squirreling it away with their own stuff. The People of Israel can no longer look their enemies in the eye—they themselves are plunder. I can’t continue with you if you don’t rid yourselves of the cursed things.

 

“So get started. Purify the people. Tell them: Get ready for tomorrow by purifying yourselves. For this is what God, the God of Israel, says: There are cursed things in the camp. You won’t be able to face your enemies until you have gotten rid of these cursed things.”

Nigerians, we have groveled to “God” enough. We must change our ways. The president cannot defend corruption, excuse corruption and encourage impunity and then think that visitations to churches can shield him from the consequences. I want to warn that a deadly consequence awaits mockers of God. But we cannot continue this way and pretend continually. The conspiracy of Nigerian religious leaders, business leaders, traditional leaders and political leaders to hold Nigerians down will not survive scrutiny forever. The Nigerian people can decide when they want the charade in government, religious circles, business sector and traditional institutions to end. We must not be cheerleaders of what is injurious to our commonwealth. We must get rid of the cursed things in the camp. This requires action and not prayer. God will not get rid of these things for us; we must. It is our responsibility. The problem of Nigeria is Nigerians. Our moral temperature is very low—we call wrong right and right wrong. Stop “praying” and start purifying yourselves, for that is the greatest PRAYER. For “if you do my (God’s) will, then you are my friends indeed, and whatever you ask it shall be done for you.” The great prayer warrior is the obedient person. In our obedience we have the power to punish all disobedience.

 

But what is God? God is truth, and so there is no God where there are falsehood and betrayals. God is life, and so there is no God where there is killing, including the killing of a nation by our collaboration and active engagement. God is not present where leaders and the people do not value human life, where our killers are hardly found and punished. God is not where the environment is not being protected, and environment-related diseases take away human life every so often and yet those charged with environmental issues of flood control, waste evacuation and management, tree planting and urban renewal, erosion control and water supply are never held to account. God is love, and so there is no God where we disregard the welfare of the people we are strategically placed and equipped to help. So, is there God in Nigeria? Is there God in your state? Is there God in your local government and county? Is there God in your local religious assembly? Is there God in your family? Is there God in your life? Let us know that we can never see God; rather he is noticed in truth, life, and love. These bring light within our society.

 

Let me conclude with this Gullah proverb:

If you want to solve a problem permanently, then you must deal with the cause for “You need to take care of the root in order to heal the tree.”

 

Leonard Karshima Shilgba is  a Sad Nationalist (SaN).

TEL: +234-8055024356; Email: shilgba@yahoo.com

Osaze, Agbim and their nine lives by Pius Anyior

Finally, the Super Eagles list for the 2014 FIFA World Cup holding in Brazil was made public on Tuesday. The release put to rest all the arguments, false lists and pressures tied around the list. And many of these were not really necessary as Nigeria’s list became something extraordinary compared to the other 31 countries billed for the 2014 World Cup.

Before Stephen Keshi and officials of the Nigeria Football Federation released the list, I had imagined that it was only the cat that had nine lives going by what humans have always said about the feline. But after going through the provisional squad for Brazil I have come to realise that some players can also boast of nine lives. Chigozie Agbim, Osaze Odemwingie and Joseph Yobo certainly have nine football lives but I don’t know how many one can count for Ikechukwu Uche.

These four players, I understand, were the major issue when Keshi presented the original provisional list to the NFF. The Technical Committee members were not too sure if Yobo was still needed but they were adamant that the coach could get another goalkeeper from the Nigerian league who could replace Agbim. The indices used were very clear. They spoke on the keeper’s performance in South Africa during CHAN earlier this year; they were also not comfortable that a number one goalkeeper of the home-based Eagles could not tie down the number one shirt in Rangers. The fear was that anything could happen in Brazil and suddenly the third choice goalkeeper could then become number one.

I share this fear with them. Agbim didn’t impress in South Africa but I must admit that I have not watched him in action in the local league or elsewhere since then. Some people have argued that he has overcome the stage fright and could do better with a fresh challenge. I wait to be convinced on that.

As for Yobo, I doubt if he can stand the heat of the World Cup even though this is just a provisional list. I wish he was used so long ago for the friendlies so that he could have cooled off his emotions completing the 100 caps race. A friend of mine has argued several times that the team needs the experience of the defender on the pitch from time to time. If that is what Keshi also thinks of him, then so be it. But if Yobo could miss so many games in the English Premier League due to fitness/injury challenge, then he needs to convince us that he still has a place even in a provisional list.

I had truly believed that Keshi would find a way of reabsorbing Ikechukwu Uche in spite of the case of ‘indiscipline’ against him. I never had a one-on-one contact with Uche but he had always impressed me as a player. Perhaps, in the times of Rashid Yekini and the rest of the ’94 Eagles, Uche may have just been another player. But with what is available to Nigeria going to Brazil, the Villareal striker is certainly needed. Keshi may have had all other names right but this particular player I say he got it wrong.

It is such a painful reality for Uche and his friends. His exclusion from the 2014 squad means the young man may never play in a World Cup despite his achievements with the Eagles. His missed South Africa 2010 on account of injury.

Brown Ideye lost my vote with his outing at the FIFA Confederations Cup. His performance in many other games was not exactly convincing. He just could not satisfy Nigerians playing the way we wanted him to play. I am sure Keshi bowed to pressure concerning him. Looking at the list once again I really feel sorry for him. He had tried hard to impress but he was not just hitting the mark. It is painful playing through the qualifiers only to miss out from the real deal.

But I ran into an interesting argument over Ideye and Nnamdi Oduamadi. The argument was on who should have been in or out. Those who rooted for Ideye ahead of Oduamadi won the argument widely.

Osaze really has more than nine lives with the Eagles. The ‘prodigal son’ eventually mellowed down after his original tweets. As I said on this page in the past, I was sitting fifty/fifty on his case. The team needs him but I could not back him to return. My stand was that he had to work his way back to the team himself and of course he got the clue and apologised himself.

The team could never have been complete without Ejike Uzoenyi and Kunle Odunlami. They established themselves with the 2014 CHAN and have thus clearly merited their places on the list. It wouldn’t be any surprise if they make the final team to Brazil.

What is clear with the list is that it was clearly Keshi’s. Ideally, that’s the way it should be as he is the coach. All the cries from the public were just to make the country present the best team possible. And that happens everywhere. And it is now over to Keshi to deliver at least to our expectations. Nobody is dreaming of the trophy but we know what we should be able to achieve with what we have.

Copyright PUNCH.

Top 10 stocks for 2014

Fellow Investor,

I’m not going to sugar coat this…a market pullback is imminent.

It’s only a matter of time.

Many investors will run for the hills. Others will be frozen in fear…waiting to see if and when interest rates climb…waiting to see if we fall back into recession. These same investors will miss out on some phenomenal gains over the next six months.

While I do NOT expect another recession, I think you’d be foolish not to take steps today to prepare the correction ahead.

So where should you invest your money? In this report, I’ll share the ten unstoppable stocks that are at the forefront of massive trends that will dominate the year ahead. These are the same type of innovative, explosive growth stocks that have delivered us some big double-digit winners in 2013:

  • 70.1% in Intercept Pharmaceuticals
  • 56.4% in Exact Target
  • 46.7% in Shutterfly
  • 42.2% in SHFL
  • 42.0% in eBay
  • 34.4% in Barrett Business
  • 30.8% in Illumina
  • 28.6% in PriceSmart
  • 26.6% in Evercore
  • 25.9% in MercadoLibre

That’s on top of 22 double-digit winners in the 18 months before that. We’ve been locking in steady double-digit gains month after month no matter whether the market has been going up, down or sideways! And I’m going to show you how to do the same.

But TIME IS RUNNING OUT to grab your share of the profits from the next big move up, so let’s get started with my top 10 stocks for 2014 — buy now, BEFORE the window of opportunity slams shut!

Stock Superstar #1:
The Sky’s the Limit

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Are You Pocketing
Profits Like This?

Despite the last 24 months being one of the most volatile periods on record, GameChangers subscribers have been racking up blockbuster returns regardless of the market going up, down or sideways.

Don’t just take my word for it—see for yourself some of the blockbuster gains we’ve locked in over the 24 months:

  1. Up 22% in Panera
  2. Up 52% in Gilead
  3. Up 48% in Solar Winds
  4. Up 85% in Ariad Pharmaceuticals
  5. Up 33% in Novo Nordisk
  6. Up 55% in Mako Surgical
  7. Up 56.7% in Parexel
  8. Up 29.1% in Cerner
  9. Up 19.7% in ICU Medical
  10. Up 36.3% in Jack Henry
  11. Up 28.3% in Regeneron
  12. Up 36.1% in Medidata Solutions
  13. Up 17.6% in Vascular Solutions
  14. Up 26.6% in Evercore
  15. Up 46.7% in Shutterfly
  16. Up 17.5% in Check Point Software
  17. Up 20.0% in Cantel Medical
  18. Up 42.0% in eBay
  19. Up 28.6% in PriceSmart
  20. Up 25.9% in MercadoLibre
  21. Up 21.7% in Splunk
  22. Up 18.4% in Halliburton
  23. Up 56.4% in Exact Target
  24. Up 30.8% in Illumina
  25. Up 23.0% in Casey’s General St.
  26. Up 42.2% in SHFL Entertainment
  27. Up 34.4% in Barrett Business Ser.
  28. Up 23.3% in TripAdvisor
  29. Up 70.1% in Intercept Pharma.
  30. 30. Up 22.6% in MAXIMUS
  31. Up 20.4% in Cognizant Tech.
  32. Up 47.2% in NIC. Inc.
  33. Up 24.2% in First Solar
  34. Up 37.5% in Faro Technologies
  35. Up 40.2% in Solera Holdings
  36. Up 19.4% in Intercept Pharma.

I spent my entire career on Wall Street where the only thing that matters is performance. Put up or shut up. I’m proud to say that our GameChangers results speak for themselves. Don’t miss out on our next 30 double-digit winners! Join us now.

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EMC Software (EMC) has long been the market leader in high-end data storage systems for enterprises. This company is growing its top line by grabbing big market share in this next frontier, and I highly recommend its stock today.

The key reason EMC is on my Buy List is its laser-focus on data science.

Thanks to a brilliant acquisition last year, EMC is well ahead of the pack in building a single platform to crunch data in unique and innovative ways.

In fact, EMC has poured almost $2 billion into R&D spending and an additional $2.1 billion into acquisitions during the past 3 years—which means it is light years ahead of competitors in this arena.

The company also dominates the flash storage market (a critical need as the amount of data continues to explode). It also announced a trailblazing initiative to merge their data storage and cloud-computing units…which makes them uniquely positioned to leverage the coming convergence of three massive trends: the cloud, mobility, and big data.

This is a triple profit play you don’t want to miss, but you must buy now before Wall Street catches on!

Stock Superstar #2:
Lighting Up Profits

Lighting is one of the renewable energy industries that are undergoing a real revolution right now across the globe, and a push toward more LED usage is a big part of that. I’m sure many of you are familiar with these lights, which will last 25 times longer than an incandescent light bulb and consume 84% less power.

I see an opportunity to light up some profits (sorry, couldn’t resist!) with LED specialist Cree (CREE). As one of the few pure-play, publicly-traded companies that makes and sells these bulbs, this stock is an attractive way to get in on a budding efficient lighting industry. The company pushed its way to the forefront of LED technology several years ago by creating multidirectional lighting that mimicked the “warm glow” of incandescent bulbs.

Cree currently gets 94% of its revenues from its LED segment. Of that, 58% is tied to LED components (lighting components, and specialized semiconductor materials) and the remainder, or 38%, comes from actual lighting fixtures and bulbs.

Pricing has traditionally kept LED lights out of many people’s homes, but Cree has a leg up here, too. The company is bringing LED lighting to the masses with a much easier to digest price tag. Its 40-watt LED bulb costs $9.97, and its 60-watt bulb is $12.97. Management believes these price points will attract residents to make a change, and claims that consumers can save $61 a year by replacing old bulbs with Cree’s LED lights in a home’s five most frequently used light fixtures. As LED lighting continues to grow in the global lighting market, Cree will continue to increase market share and make further retail inroads.

Stock Superstar #3:
How to Profit from Obamacare

Quality Systems (QSII) is a software-centric company in the medical information field that’s well positioned to ride a wave of healthcare IT spending. Its software is used to track patient health records to make sure that professionals — within and outside points of care — are able to collect, receive and use data in real time.

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“A One Woman Financial Investment Powerhouse”

—The Financial Times

Hilary KramerFor more than 25 years, Hilary Kramer has been the on the front lines of Wall Street working for some of the biggest Wall Street firms, and managing money for some of the world’s wealthiest families and institutions.

Hilary’s insight and prescient ability to identify GameChanging stocks ahead of the Wall Street herd made her a darling of the financial Media.

She appears regularly on Fox Business Channel, PBS’s Nightly Business Report, Bloomberg and Yahoo. She’s also a contributor to MarketWatch, AOL, Forbes.com and more.

Great GameChanging Calls:

First Solar’s technology is the clear winner,” Nightly Business Report, September 2007. 8 months later First Solar is up 216%!

Baidu stands to be the clear hands-down market leader.” Nightly Business Report, November 2006. One year later, Baidu is up 370%!

Teva will be a leader,” BusinessWeek, April 2002. Two years later Teva is up 140%.

RIMM is the clear leader with no close second,” Fox News, August 2003. 58 months later, RIMM is up 3,200%!

Dendreon has explosive potential here,” CNBC, April 5, 2010. 4 weeks later, Dendreon is up 45%.

And now Hilary Kramer wants to work for YOU, with her remarkable new GameChangers service. Put this proven winner to work for YOU! Click here to try learn how you can try Hilary’s new GameChangers risk free today.

This kind of documentation is critical because it also helps healthcare providers and the government that ponies up payments to eliminate bloated costs. According to QSII, health care industry statistics claim that 25%-30% of lost medical practice income comes from improper billing. That’s a significant number, and Quality Systems has created software to help solve the problem.

QSII’s software extends across four segments: NexGen (helps physicians manage all aspects of their business), Hospital Solutions, Revenue Cycle Management, and QSI Dental. About 75% of total revenues and 94% of its operating profits are derived from the proprietary software known as NexGen Ambulatory Services, so NexGen is a key segment for the company.

The opportunity to tap into growth is significant, as Quality Systems estimates that 35% of all physicians and hospitals still do not have electronic health record systems. QSII also believes that there is ample opportunity to grow into markets that have already adopted some form of healthcare IT. In its latest presentation to investors and analysts, the company estimated that only 50%-60% of ambulatory services (i.e. outpatient physician care) have adopted software programs. This is a sizeable $6 billion market, so that leaves plenty of untapped customers.

Driven by severe under penetration in its key markets, support from government initiatives, and its sizable market position/mindshare, QSII appears well positioned to ride the healthcare IT spending wave for both the near and long term. Add this to already healthy margins, a promising-looking turnaround and an undemanding valuation, as earnings and sales take off, so, too, should the stock.

Stock Superstar #4:
The Auto Industry’s Comeback Kid

Since the U.S. financial collapse of 2007-2008 took its toll on auto makers and auto retailers, the theme among investors, especially individual investors, has largely been to avoid car stocks at all costs. That’s not too surprising, since the auto industry moves with the economy. When times are bad, banks don’t issue as many loans, and people hold onto their old cars longer. When times are good, people take out loans and buy more cars more often.

And right now, there is a shift happening in the market making it a more favorable car-buying environment, and I’ve got my eye on one auto company that stands to benefit the most as we close out the year.

AutoNation (AN) is the largest U.S. retailer of new vehicles, with 315 dealerships across the country and 32 different manufacturer brands under its belt. AutoNation sells used cars, but it derives more than half of its revenue from the sale of new cars. And unlike industry competitors like General Motors (GM), AutoNation’s share price has steadily increased from its 2009 low of $4, to the $40 range where it trades today, climbing11% this year alone.

But it is AutoNation’s position in the market that has me watching this stock as it close out the year. The company reported second-quarter earnings that beat analysts’ expectations, and shares soared to their highest levels since September 2009. Sales were up 17%, to $3.9 billion, and profits from continuing operations beat 13 analysts’ expectations of $0.59, coming in at $0.66 per share. Quarterly profits also beat expectations, with net income rising to $78.6 million from $71.9 million from a year earlier. 

AutoNation also reported an increase in new vehicle sales of 19% in the first half of the year, beating the industry gain of 15%. And in the second quarter, the company upped its new vehicle supply to 49,200, a 26% increase from the prior year period.

I see strong growth ahead for AutoNation as housing and the economy pick up in the second half of the year—don’t miss the boat.

There couldn’t be a better time to jump into the gamechanging world of investing than the opportunity that I’m seeing right now.

I expect each one of my stock superstars to deliver 30%, 75% even 100% gains in the months ahead. The key is getting in before the next move higher.  Time is running out to get in on the ground floor—accept a risk-free trial to GameChangers and get started today.

Stock Superstar #5:
You Must Profit from this Cutting Edge Tech Stock

My next company I’m recommending to has created software that does the heavy lifting of sorting through data across a variety of media, from e-mails to phone calls, and across a slew of industries, from finance to retail to government agencies.

About 65% of this company’s revenue comes from technology that helps its customers maintain business-to-consumer relationships. These are software programs that do everything from manage call centers to run voice recognition — those sometimes helpful and sometimes annoying automated operators that let you “press or say” your answers in order to route that call to the right department — in order to enhance customer service.

That core part of the business is obviously important, but I view the remaining smaller businesses, which represent the other 35% of sales, as the real firepower going forward. These are the “financial crime” and “security operations” businesses. Demand for these services is growing alongside ever-increasing regulation, particularly among banks and government (public) works that are vulnerable to terrorist activity.

The company is well-positioned to rise over the next several quarters as revenues grow at a double-digit clip, yet the shares look undervalued next to these strong growth rates. Your profits from this gem alone could pay for your subscription 20 times over! Don’t miss out on this chance to snap it up at a great price. Full details here.

Stock Superstar #6:
Monster Profits Fueled by this Energy Breakthrough

Details HereThe alternative fuel field is a crowded place, with biodiesel just one of the many options available on the market. But since government standards have mandated increased purchases of biofuels through 2022, this has become an attractive area to find lower-priced companies with fantastic growth potential.

FutureFuel (FF) is one such opportunity that packs a one-two punch of income and growth. This undervalued dividend stock has a strong sales trend that is looking to expand further into the biofuel market.

FF manufactures and sells specialty chemicals and bio-based products primarily in the United States. The company’s biofuel segment consists mostly of biodiesel, an alternative fuel that emits fewer carbon emissions and is manufactured at its Arkansas plant. FF has a current production capacity of 59 million gallons of biodiesel, which is made from vegetable oil, fat or grease feedstocks, and is usually mixed with petro-diesel. The company caters to the same customers who purchase petro-diesel for on-road use.

Mirroring the company’s name, biofuel is FutureFuel’s future. The segment is certainly growing thanks to those government mandates, which helped revenues more than triple last year, and its potential is a major catalyst going forward. However, FF currently generates most of its operating income from a highly profitable specialty chemicals unit.

In 2011, FutureFuel derived more than 90% of its chemical revenues from custom manufacturing of specialty chemicals, generally under long-term contracts. The unit also produces a bleach activator for Procter & Gamble, which had sales of $70.8 million in 2012, and represented 23% of total sales and 54% of the unit’s sales last year.

In addition to specialty chemicals, FutureFuel makes a proprietary herbicide and intermediates for Arysta LifeScience. The herbicide’s sales of $38.93 million in 2011 made up 13% of FF’s total sales and 24% of segment sales.

The company continues to exceed expectations by maintaining profitability each year and realizing earnings of at least $0.58 a share since 2008. Furthermore, FF is in the biofuel segment that has more than tripled its revenue to $141.6 million from $40.9 million in 2011 on the government’s increased usage mandates that were developed in 2005.

The attraction of FutureFuel lies in its valuation, and its very liquid balance sheet is an important component of this. Don’t miss the boat on this one—accept your risk-free trial today, and get immediate access to my buy advice.

Stock Superstar #7:
A New Innovative IT Play

SolarWinds (which has nothing to do with solar power or alternative energy!) is an enterprise software company that sells its products to organizations of all shapes and sizes all over the world, including many Fortune 500 companies. Its main goal is to help other businesses cut costs and operate more efficiently. SWI does so through good products that cost less than many of its competitors, providing strong value that has resulted in a big and loyal customer base. 

The company has built its niche in providing software that helps IT professionals manage all aspects of their firms’ technology — from networks to servers — through its Orion Network Performance Monitor. The software can also monitor, troubleshoot and repair remotely.This is done through a process called virtualization, where data and network applications use the cloud to host data, applications and analytics. Clients can then access whatever they need from their individual machines. Most of us are familiar with pulling data off a network server or a cloud location such as Google docs, but virtualization allows the machines to function in different operating systems as well. The machines in essence become customizable so they can be used for a variety of different purposes. This is simpler and cheaper than every machine functioning on its one operating system and configured for specific purposes.

SWI is a real recession and post-recession success story. It continued to grow through the worst of times, increasing revenues from roughly $60 million before the Great Recession to a run rate of about $300 million today. The company has shown impressive growth through harsh conditions, and it is poised to continue this trend given its strong product pipeline and cross-selling abilities to a dedicated customer base. I recommended this stock in October 2011, and rode it to a solid 48% gain in only a little over three months. Don’t miss out on our next leg of profits! Full details here.

Stock Superstar #8:
A Real Financial Firepower

Fortegra Financial (FRF) has developed into a “revenue enhancer” for its corporate customers throughout the country with its credit insurance, service contracts and warranty products. The company also administers direct response marketing for insurance companies, and has a wholesale insurance brokerage unit. These three business segments are what make FRF tick now, but management has plans to keep expanding and move into new geographic markets in the United States.

The company has made several acquisitions over the years (spending $109 million from 2009 through the first nine months of 2012), and they will continue to be an avenue of growth into the future

Details HereOwing to the client relationships it has built in its 30-year history, much of Fortegra’s revenue base is recurring in nature. Furthermore, FRF’s valuation is very attractive, with the shares selling at less than 10X expected EPS of $0.90.

Management has reiterated its commitment to adding shareholder value, which points to even further gains in the stock price. Given FRF’s strong fundamentals and anticipated growth, this is a stock that you don’t want to miss out on in 2014.

Stock Superstar #9:
The Gift That Keeps on Giving

None of us carry around as much cash as we used to. Credit and debit cards have come a long way to making cash almost obsolete, and now our smartphones are starting to do the same thing to plastic.

Not to be overlooked in this move away from cash are gift cards. Gift cards and other pre-paid products are a large and quickly growing segment within the continuing shift toward electronic payments.

My next pick is a successful third party distributor of gift cards and other products in the United States and 18 other countries. They offer cards from over 500 retailers, including those from leading consumer brands such as Amazon.com, Applebee’s, iTunes, Lowe’s, Macy’s and Starbucks, and from payment networks such as American Express, MasterCard and Visa.

This company distributes its cards primarily through grocery stores, with over 100,000 active retail distribution networks worldwide. Nine of the top 10 grocers sell their cards, and they are also available in 90% of the top 50 grocery operators in the country. Specialty retailers and convenience stores stock their cards as well, and they can also be bought online at GiftCardMall.com.

You may be wondering why a company like this is even needed for something as relatively simple as distributing gift cards. Does it really do that much? The fact is—it does quite a lot!

It has invested over $100 million in its proprietary technology platform, which connects content providers, distribution partners and transaction processors, and allows consumers to load, reload, redeem and manage pre-paid cards. Through data gained from the marketing platform, the company can also provide its distribution partners with insights on what cards should sell best in each of its locations.

The company has many levers to continue to grow in the long term as it offers solid profitability, a strong market position and a consumer product that should see increased usage in the future. It also offers a valuation that will allow for long term gains. Get in now while this stock is attractively valued.

Stock Superstar #10:
A Niche Opportunity in Cyber Warfare

In this volatile trading and economic environment, I look for companies that have a strong presence in a growing market. My next pick clearly fits the bill. Fortinet (FTNT) is a $3.3 billion market cap company specializing in network security. It focuses specifically on unified threat management, which means the typical firewall has evolved into an all-in-one product that detects and prevents intrusions. The company offers a number of application control and firewall software offerings, but its flagship device is FortiGate, a network security platform that can work for anyone from small offices and retailers to large enterprises and data centers.

The niche opportunity for “cyberwar” stocks is a large one. The Department of Defense has estimated that hackers can wreak some truly staggering economic damage, stealing more than $250 billion a year in intellectual property. And tech research firm Gartner has estimated that businesses spent $60 billion on information security hardware and software in 2012, and that number could rise to nearly $90 billion by 2016.Your profits from this gem alone could pay for your subscription 20 times over! Don’t miss out on this chance to snap it up at a great price. Full details here.

My Promise to You: Double YOUR Money

I launched GameChangers because I love the thrill of the hunt—there is nothing (besides my kids) more exhilarating than watching your stock go up 22% in one day, 60% in one week, 200% in a year or 4,000% in a decade!

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I was a millionaire by the time I was 30. I “retired” at the age of 37 with enough money to last me more than a lifetime. Now I want to help as many investors as possible rack up big investing profits and enjoy the freedom that money can bring.

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    2. JOIN TODAY IT’S RISK FREE!Blockbuster Biotech Stock
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Hilary Kramer
Editor, GameChangers

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10 Reasons Why You Will Never Become Rich

There’s an interesting maxim about how long wealth actually stays with a person and their descendants. The saying is three generations, tops: one to make it, one to spend it, and the third to blow it. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule, but have you ever sat down and seriously thought about wealth and what it means to you? Or do you figure, “What the heck, I’ve always been broke, my forefathers were broke; it’s generational” – it’s just a rite of passage of sorts. If you feel that wealth is out of your reach, you aren’t alone. According to some experts, there are millions of ‘clueless potential millionaires’ who could be at the top of the wealth ladder if they only reined in a few bad habits. However, you may be a skeptic, and rightly so. Being wealthy means different things to different people. But according to the experts, there are financial mistakes many people make that keep them away from their possible wealth.

 

What is Wealth Anyway? 

 

Most people do not equate wealth with a mansion or a big yacht. In fact, a scanty 7% of people surveyed associate wealth with material possessions like cars, houses and boats. Rather, to many, being rich means having just enough to not worry about the next payday – that’s according to 33% of those questioned. An additional 26% define being wealthy, or rich, as having more than enough money to quit their jobs. Still, few people place an actual dollar amount on what it means to be wealthy. Only 17% felt that being rich means having at least $1 million or more, and 11% stated a six-figure yearly income would make them feel rich. Yet most people who are rich don’t even consider themselves rich. Maybe it’s because being ‘rich’ or ‘wealthy’ has very little to do with material possessions, and more to do with how people feel about themselves. Nonetheless, according to financial experts you will never be rich if you are bogged down by anything on the following list:

 

Ten Reasons Why Someone Will Never Be Rich

 

1. Overspending

 

If you have a ferocious appetite for spending beyond your means, you’re not alone. According to a survey, of the 52% of people who habitually overspend, many balance the shortfall by taking from their savings, and 22% rely on credit cards. Blowing all your money each month is not a realistic pathway to wealth. Start tracking where your money goes each month, check where you can cut back, and create a ‘realistic’ budget that allows you to pay your bills and invest in a retirement account or an emergency fund.

 

2. Not Saving Enough

 

Welcome to the club! The personal savings percentage in the US is a measly 4.9% of disposable income. Saving should become a priority if you want to accumulate wealth. Start with an emergency fund. Once your emergency fund is substantial, you can redirect small amounts toward other goals like purchasing a home or paying for college.

 

3. You Have Too Much Debt

 

Certain debts are a precursor to financial success, like purchasing real estate or starting a business; however, a high-interest credit card balance is not. Pay off credit cards with the highest rates first.

 

4. You Don’t Have a Plan

 

Without a definite, clearly defined plan, becoming rich will seem like an unbelievable dream. This alone will solidify your excuses for overspending and not saving. As the saying goes, “Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.” Putting together a financial plan may seem tedious, but it doesn’t have to be, and you can get used to it.

 

5. You Don’t Have an Emergency Fund

 

Experts say you need at least six months of income saved in case of an emergency. Life is tricky, and not having some type of safety net can turn a comfortable situation into a disaster.

 

6. You Started Late

 

Time is slipping by. Just like starting an exercise routine, the most difficult part about saving is getting started. Even if you have debt, a small income, or many expenses, you can save something, even if it’s only a small amount.

 

7. You Complain Rather Than Commit

 

“I don’t earn enough money”; “Life is too expensive”; “It’s hopeless, I’ll never get out of debt.” Have you uttered any of these statements before, or perhaps all of them? Old habits die hard; however, as long as you do nothing to change, nothing will change. Stop complaining and making excuses. Instead, take responsibility for your non-productive habits and concentrate on how to change them – and then do it!

 

8. You Live for Today, and Forget About Tomorrow

 

It’s no fun getting serious and thinking about retirement and all that stuff. Nonetheless, eventually it has to be done. The problem is that impulsive and unregulated spending leads to debt… period! Do yourself a big favor: Get rid of the ‘buy now, worry later’ attitude, and switch to a ‘save now, get rich later’ way of thinking

 

9. Putting All Your Eggs in One Basket

 

You might get lucky by wagering all your money on one type of investment. Just like you might get lucky winning the lottery. But that’s not a strategy to live by, or for getting rich. Putting all your money in one place is not advised because it puts you at too much risk. Your investment portfolio should include multiple investments with varied levels of risk and ROI potential and liquidity.

 

10. You Just Don’t Get It!

 

You may be one of those people who believe that somehow something will come along and save you, so why bother with saving or trying to get out of debt? Maybe you will get lucky and land a fantastic job, receive a big pay raise, inherit money, hit the lottery, or whatever! But ‘whatever’ won’t cut it if you really want to become rich. Yes, life is uncertain. No one knows what will, or will not, actually happen; therefore, why not focus on what you can control today? Get it together now and save yourself, in case someone or something else won’t.

 

One thing you can be sure of: You are already rich. Think about it. If someone came to you and offered you a million dollars for your arm, would you give it up? Why not, you have two; you can surely spare one of them! Of course the answer would be no! Being rich is more than physical ownership; it’s a state of happiness and well-being, while wishing the same for others. So while you are working on getting rich materially, remember to be happy along the way!

 

Orkar Coup 5 : April 22 coup: The trial, conviction of Orkar, co-plotters.

Major Gideon Gwaza Orkar was a military officer and revolutionary who staged a coup against Gen. Ibrahim Babangida on Sunday, April 22, 1990.

It was a day the fabled security network of the self-styled military president was demystified.

Orkar’s men seized the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) station in Ikoyi, the various military posts around Lagos and the Dodan Barracks, Lagos, the military headquarters and presidential residence. When the barracks were attacked, the rattled Babangida was obviously within the premises, but he managed to escape through the back route.

Apart from Orkar, the other prime movers of the coup were, Lt. Col. Tony Nyiam and Major. Saliba Mukoro.

In Orkar’s coup broadcast, the courageous soldier, amongst other things, called for the consideration of an excision of five northern states from the then 21 state structure of the country.

Hence, the coup’s broadcast was said to be emphatic in the sense that it was done on behalf of the people of Middle- Belt and Southern part of Nigeria.

Orkar gave three primary reasons why the group decided to oust the Babangida administration.

The reasons ‘’were to stop Babangida’s desire to firmly install himself as the country’s life President at all costs, the need to stop intrigues, domination and eternal colonisation of ‘’the Nigerian state by the chosen few’’ and the need to lay egalitarian foundation for thermal democratic take-off of the Nigerian State.”

Among Babangida’s sins, according to Orkar, were the president’s appointment of himself as Minister of Defence; putting under his direct control the State Security Service (SSS); and the deliberate manipulation of the Transition Programme.

The coupists said the administration had been the major clog in the wheel of progress of the country.

However, the coup was crushed by officers loyal to the Babangida regime. It was gathered that Orkar could easily have escaped, but he refused to attempt to do so.

Late Gen. Sani Abacha whose voice was one of the first set of officers to be heard in a nationwide broadcast after the plan was aborted said ‘’ all ’the disgruntled and ambitious military officers behind the plot who constituted themselves into National Ruling Nuisance have been arrested.’’

Indeed, quite a number of coupists were rounded up. According to the government accounts, over 700 people were arrested and interrogated while some were subsequently tried by the Special Military Tribunal.

Facts which later emerged from the tribunal proceedings showed that some middle-level officers and men of the armed forces stormed Dodan Barracks, Lagos, the then seat of government in the early hours of April 22, 1990 with heavy bombardment in an attempt to unset Babangida’s government.

Babangida managed to escape with his family, but not without losing his aidede- camp (ADC), Lt. Col. U.K Bello and several other soldiers on both sides.

Later, the AFRC inaugurated a military tribunal headed by Gen. Ike Nwachukwu to try them.

Besides, Nwachukwu, a former Provost Marshal of the Nigerian Army, other members of the tribunal were, Brig. Abdulsalami Abubakar, Col. Ekpo Archibong, Col. Linus Olorogun, Lt. Col. Aminu Abdulmumuni, Lt. Col. Bello Fadile as judge advocate, Major Isaac Osayande and Major. Umar Tundun Wada.

The trials were in batches. After the first batch was court-martialed by the Major Gen. Nwachukwu-led Tribunal, some officers and men were sentenced to death.

Some got jail terms while 31 others who were freed by the tribunal were ordered to be re-tried by another tribunal headed by Major. Gen. Y.Y Kure.

Thirteen serving and ex-servicemen and two civilians were freed, but dismissed.

The then Chief of General Staff, Admiral Augustus Aikhomu, in a subsequent broadcast on the outcome of the trial said the plan to overthrow the Babangida government was first uncovered in 1987. He claimed that three officers including, Orkar allegedly implicated at the time were arrested, cautioned and subsequently released.

The government said the men, however, regrouped and met in January 1990 to conclude the details of their plan.

Aikhomu also named a businessman, Great Ogboru as the financer of the attempted coup, saying that it was discovered during investigation that Ogboru had committed about N10m to finance the plan and execution of the coup plot.

Ogboru had, however, taken to his heels and fled the country.

Like any other military court, the coup suspects were taken to the tribunal in chains. They were charged and given copies of the charges preferred against them. They were also given defence lawyers in line with military tradition.

By the time the tribunal concluded its assignment, it was certain that those found guilty would be executed.

At the beginning of the investigations, about 863 military officers, soldiers and civilians were arrested in connection with the coup attempt. They were thoroughly investigated and subsequently tried by a military tribunal as provided by law.

751 persons comprising military officers, soldiers and civilians have been released to go back to their jobs, with a few being compulsorily retired from service

. The AFRC has met and thoroughly considered the findings of the military panel set up to investigate the abortive coup, the judgement of the SMT which tried the coup suspects and the recommendations of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the appeals lodged by the appellants.

After two days of deliberation, the AFRC discharged and acquitted about 764 and ordered the re-trial of 31 persons. Besides, the council convicted and sentenced nine persons to various jail terms while 42 persons were found guilty and sentenced to death by firing squad.

Notable among them were, Orkar, Capt. N.H Empere, Capt. P.A Dakolo, Lt. A.E Akogun, Lt. Nicholas Odey,, Lt. C.O Ozoalar, and 2nd Lt. .A.B Umokoro.

Orkar and others were later executed following the confirmation and approval of their sentences by the Armed Forces Ruling Council (AFRC).

Some coup suspects were also declared wanted for the part they played during the unfortunate incident. Among them were, Lt. Col. Nyiam, Great Ogboru, Major. Mukoro, Lt. Emmanuel Okekumatalo, Major. T,O. Edoja, Major. C.O. Obahor and Mr. Alex Aigbe, among others. They have since been granted pardon.

A major actor in the coup plot, Nyiam, in a media interview he granted and which was published later in the defunct African Concord Magazine edition of June 24, 1991 said ‘’He (Orkar ) was like Chukwuma Nzeogwu, interested in Nigeria’s salvation. He, like Nzeogwu, recognised the hegemonic tendencies of the clique that has its roots in Sokoto.”

Nyiam said if the coup had succeeded, the group had targeted some key Nigerians for appointment into an interim government which was to ensure a proper transition programme.

LEST WE FORGET

LEST WE FORGET

Events in recent times have alluded to the fact that Nigerians have very short memories. We tend to forget things (or at least pretend to, in deeds&actions&words) very easily. What could be d cause? Maybe we have amnesia problem? Is it genetic, educational, deliberate, socio-economic, ethnic, tribal, religious, retrogade, idiopathic, organic , (forgive my medical language), hypocritical, political, parochial, nutritional, defective, bigotted, jingoistic, selective, self-denial or multifactorial? I can’t answer for every one but my careful observation shows it bears a character of at least one of the above mentioned.

We do forget things easily. At least, most people, if not all will agree with me. As I go further, let me try to remind us of certain stuffs,lest we forget.

Have we forgotten about the over 200 secondary school girls kidnapped in Chibok?

Have we forgotten about the missing $20bn (or $10.8bn as d minister of finance put it) FG funds?

Have we forgotten about the comprehensive audit of NNPC promised by the minister of finance herself?

Have we forgotten GEJ promised to create wealth?

Have we forgotten the ever changing promises of stable power supply,even before CNN’s Christiana Amanpour?

Have we forgotten various probes by the senate& house of reps?

Have we forgotten the promise of very constant fuel supply when GEJ raised petrol prices from #65/L to #97/L?

Have we forgotten the promise of more local refineries GEJ promised us in 2011 while campaigning,also reiterated in 2012 after he increased fuel price?

Have we forgotten the FG Niger Delta amnesty programme is meant to last for less than one year ?

Have we forgotten the billion dollars contract given to ex-militants to protect our pipelines?

Have we forgotten the $3.5bn kerosene subsidy fiasco?

Have we forgotten the Centenary celebration occured just few days after over a hundred pupils were slaughtered in Bunu Yadi?

Have we forgotten the president’s jolly trip to Ibadan and Kano just 24 hours after over 100 people died in Nyanyan bombing ?

Have we forgotten a Federal Executive Council meeting was cancelled just because the Vice President’s brother died?

Have we forgotten Ribadu report on oil?

Have we forgotten the probe into the Immigration job fiasco?

Have we forgotten the reports on the Senate and Reps probe on Oil Subsidy?

And so on (add yours) ?

How many reports have we had? How many white papers? KPMG, NEITI, Ribadu Report, etc. What is the outcome?

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

Every onlooker is either a coward or a willing collaborator. Enough of seminars, workshops and conferences.

Don’t be deceived, we have to take back our stolen dreams.

Michael Adeyemi, a medical doctor, blogger, writer, author, political and social affairs analyst cum commentator, social activist, writes from Lagos, Nigeria