Seas aren’t just rising, scientists say — it’s worse than that. They’re speeding up.

On a warming Earth, seas inevitably rise, as ice on land melts and makes its way to the ocean. And not only that — the ocean itself swells, because warm water expands. We already know this is happening — according to NASA, seas are currently rising at a rate of 3.5 millimeters per year, which converts to about 1.4 inches per decade.

However, scientists have long expected that the story should be even worse than this. Predictions suggest that seas should not only rise, but that the rise should accelerate, meaning that the annual rate of rise should itself increase over time. That’s because the great ice sheets, Greenland and Antarctica, should lose more and more mass, and the heat in the ocean should also increase.

The problem, or even mystery, is that scientists haven’t seen an unambiguous acceleration of sea level rise in a data record that’s considered the best for observing the problem — the one produced by the TOPEX/Poseidon satellite, which launched in late 1992 and carries an instrument, called a radar altimeter, that gives a very precise measurement of sea level around the globe.

This record actually shows a decrease in the rate of sea level rise from the first decade measured by the satellite (1993 to 2002) to the second one (2003 to 2012). “We’ve been looking at the altimeter records and scratching our heads, and saying, ‘why aren’t we seeing an acceleration in the satellite record?’ We should be,” said John Fasullo, a climate scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado.

In a new study in the open-access journal Scientific Reports, however, Fasullo and two colleagues say they have now resolved this problem. It turns out, they say, that sea level rise was artificially masked in the satellite record by the fact that one year before the satellite launched, the Earth experienced a major cooling pulse.

The cause? The 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines, which filled the planet’s stratosphere with aerosols that reflected sunlight away from the Earth and actually led to a slight sea level fall in ensuing years as the ocean temporarily cooled.

“What we’ve shown is that sea level acceleration is real, and it continues to be going on, it’s ongoing, and we understand why you don’t see it in the short satellite record,” said Fasullo, who conducted the research along with scientists from the University of Colorado in Bolder and Old Dominion University.

The study was performed using a suite of 40 climate change models to determine how the Pinatubo eruption affected seas and the global distribution of water. The scientists estimate as a result that sea level not only fell between 5 and 7 millimeters due to a major ocean cooling event in the eruption’s wake, but then experienced a rebound, or bounce back, of the same magnitude once the influence of the eruption had passed.

This had a major effect on what the satellite record of sea level looks like, because the bounce-back occurred earlier in the record and made the sea level rise then appear extra fast. So the researchers conclude that while no official acceleration trend can be seen in the satellite record now, that’s an artificial consequence of Pinatubo and should be gone over time — barring another Pinatubo-like event.

“Our initial impression of sea level rise was not only influenced by climate change and the rate of change, but the response and the recovery from the eruption itself,” says Fasullo. “Those effects largely have ebbed by now, and once we get a few more years into the altimeter record, we should see a clear acceleration. That’s really the punchline of the article.”

In fact, the researchers also removed the sea level effect of Pinatubo, and found that when they did so they could see sea level rise acceleration happening already.

Another study last year, using a different record of sea level rise — global tide gauges — in addition to satellite data, also found that sea level rise has accelerated in the last 15 years.


If carbon emissions continue unabated, expanding oceans and massive ice melt would threaten global coastal communities, according to new projections. (Daron Taylor/The Washington Post)

One sea level rise expert who was not involved in the new study, Robert Kopp of Rutgers University, praised the work in response to a query from the Post.

The study, Kopp explained by email, found that the Pinatubo eruption would have caused seas to fall “just before the start of the altimetry record, the recovery from which was spread out of the remainder of the 1990s and therefore masked some of the acceleration that would otherwise have been seen in the tide-gauge record between the 1990s and the 2000s. This makes strong physical sense.”

It also aligns better with actual observations from Greenland and Antarctica. Scientists have shown that both of the Earth’s major ice sheets have seen an accelerating rate of ice loss in recent years, which ought to help drive an accelerating rate of sea level as well.

The key question then becomes just how fast the annual rate of sea level rise can actually increase. In one thought experiment recently, former NASA climate scientist James Hansen calculated the consequences if the “doubling time” for ice loss is as fast as 10 years — finding dramatic sea level increases as a result.

“Doubling times of 10, 20 or 40 years yield sea level rise of several meters in 50, 100 or 200 years,” Hansen’s study concluded. However, it is far from clear at this point that ice loss is actually increasing this rapidly.

So far, the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change officially estimates that the high-end sea-level rise projection for 2100 is lower than some of these scenarios, closer to about 1 meter (3.3 feet) by that year. But that has recently been challenged by new work estimating that Antarctica alone could add this much to global sea levels by 2100 if high levels of human greenhouse gas emissions continue.

Fasullo says that debate — over precisely how fast acceleration happens, or where that leaves us in 2100 — remains unresolved. For now, he says, at least it’s pretty clear that the acceleration is actually happening as expected.

“Accelerated sea level rise is real, and it’s ongoing, and it’s not something we should doubt based on the altimeter record,” said Fasullo.

 

Credits: Washington Post

FLAT-FOOTED BUHARI, START ROLLING YOUR FEET ON COKE BOTTLES.

Jimmy Carter the 39th President of the United States is best known for his longevity and his nobel peace prize due to the hard work of his humanitarian NGO “The Carter Center”.
But few know he was the American President with flat feet. One is not trying to be figurative, he did have flat feet hence was ineligible to join the US Military because of his flat feet.
As World War 2 beckoned the US to enter the fray , Jimmy Carter became perplexed for he knew that he will be denied the opportunity to serve his country hence he decided to do something about his flat feet.
And thus he drew up a plan. He began to roll his feet on Cocoa-Cola Bottles for 30 minutes a day. Apart from jogging and other physical exercise President Jimmy Carter remained faithful to his daily routine of rolling his feet on Coke bottles.
And in 1943 he passed his Miltary service physical exam having overcome by sheer determination his malay, the anatomical anomaly called flat feet. He rose to serve the US Navy for 10 years earning various service medals showing that through grit one can overcome any adversity.
President Muhammadu Buhari is in a similar delimma as he appears flat-footed in the task of steading a drifting Nigerian ship.
Two incidents in question raises eyebrows and makes one wonder if at all he is aware of how his leadership is currently faltering.
The first is the crisis of leadership in Bauchi and Imo States. On the 20th of August 2016 high ranking APC stalwarts held a world press conference chaired by the Honourable Speaker of the House of Representatives Yakubu Dogora to tell the world that the current Governor of Bauchi State, Mohammed Abubakar is a thief.
Indeed this is the implication of their accusation based on the fact that N8.6 Billion of the Federal Government bail out fund dished out to Bauchi State to pay its workers owed salaries and emoluments had suddenly vanished under mysterious circumstances into personal accounts of the Governor and his stooges who they likened to Adolf Hitler and the Gestapo.
Indeed these are hefty allegations delivered by those in the top echeleons of the ruling APC leadership. One would have thought Magu, the EFCC Czar and his ace detectives would have been despatched with extreme prejudice to determine the veracity of this claim and make some arrests targeted at the scheming civil servants who remain the willing tool in the hands of theiving politicians that enjoy a superfluous immunity from prosecution and arrest.
But alas over a week has passed and the Presidency remains silent and aloof. Or has the anti-corruption war come to an end? Or has it become excessively selective with its big stick reserved for errant opposition states?
Likewise Imo State workers remain in a similar quagmire as their salaries remain unpaid despite rumours of the mental stability of the returning Governor Rochas Okorocha from the USA where he says he went to see his grandchildren against the claims by the grapevine that he had a psychotic break with reality.
Indeed when our leaders travel abroad and see the sanity and order in other climes aren’t they piqued into replicating same in their homeland?
While the children of his workers are threatened with expulsion from school his grandchild enjoys the best of care in the United States of America. Such is the irony of life and the misgivings of good fortune or otherwise that blesses one to be born with a silver spoon and another with a wooden spoon.
Like Bauchi State, Imo State has also caressed the bail out fund to pay workers salaries with the money walking away like a daddy long-legs. Indeed this act of paying lipservice to the war against corruption with selective harassment will not win President Buhari acolades when the annals of history compile the dossier of his Second Coming.
The second matter is the faltering economy. As the naira trades at over N400 to the Dollar one wonders how one could deconstruct an economy so rapidly without any plan to reverse the downward spiral. As the Government continues to run away from addressing the issue of remittances one can only watch in horror as the Nigeria economy goes down the drain.
Over 100,000 jobs have disappeared as the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria decry the harsh economic climate. Staples like Garri, beans and rice are slowly being priced out of the reach of the common man. Indeed the President has neither been proactive or reactive as the downward spiral continues unchecked. He appears flat-footed as the nation’s economy drifts like a pilotless drone without extracorporeal control.
Nigerians were told that things will improve once the budget is passed however this is not so as the seemingly heavy rains of gloom has worsen the sorrow of Nigeria.
The jobs promised in the teaching sector has failed to come to fruition as the only flicker of life is the glare from its recruitment website. The school children feeding programme is still all but a pilot dream. Even the N5000 promised the most poor and downtrodden in society is all but a monument to failed electoral promises.
Indeed President Buhari appears flat-footed as the problems in the nation seems to overwhelm him. He should realise that the honeymoon period is over and the same stick that was used to cane his predecessor out of office is poised to flay his backside if he fails to roll his flat feet on Coke bottles.
Flat footed people are commonly labelled as lazy and incapable of great physical achievements. However Jimmy Carter through determination overcame his limitations.
President Buhari has more than enough time to right the wrongs of the nation within his current term thus the excuse to curry a second term to turn Nigeria into an El Dorado is currently not tenable. But his flat footed approach to Governance epitomised by wasting 6 months to appoint Ministers to his cabinet then leaving Kogi State without its statutory Minister for almost 5 months since Ocholi the Minister of State for Labour, died in a car accident does not inspire confidence. Slow and steady does not win the race in Nation building. Only speed, precision, intelligence and honesty can build a nation. Indeed Buhari is well endowed with the last attribute but the others are yet to bear on this his reincarnation as a civilian President.

 

Credits: Attah Essien

THE RETURN OF THE DALEKS

THE RETURN OF THE DALEKS
Few in Nigeria know who are the Daleks. But those who read and watch science fiction especially the British inspired Doctor Who, who is in his 6th Incarnation since his creation in 1963, will know who or what are the Daleks.
Created by a fictional Davros, the Daleks were a race of nomads whose goal in the universe was to invade distant habitable worlds in a bid to rob others of their natural resources.
“Exterminate, exterminate” was the common catch phrase of the Daleks as all before them were brutally killed in such barbaric ways that one wondered if such beings could truly exist. Despite battling the Daleks time and time again, Dr Who over the half-century of tv series and novels never truly subdued the Daleks. They remain the most dogged science fiction villians of all time only rivaled by the Sith Lords in Star Wars.
Nigeria seems to be locked in a similar struggle against armed Fulani marauders called Fulani Herdsmen by most mainstream media. These herdsmen can be likened to the Daleks who successive regimes have had to live through their perpetually menace yet noone seems capable of containing these rampaging marauders.
Recently the Fulani Daleks returned to Enugu state to wreck havoc. As the truth behind this dastardly attack by these herdsmen is only being known, one shudders at the horror of hearing scores of people being eviserated, pregnant women being laid open by these Daleks and their fetuses prematurely delivered to ensure future generations shall cease to exist from their infancy, these tales are only reminiscent of the rampaging Daleks screaming “Exterminate” at the top of their voice.
Indeed Dr Who’s antagonistic Daleks were half human and half machines integrated to form the ultimate killing machine that is without remorse or mercy.
Likewise these Fulani Herdsmen, who slaughter without mercy or remorse, one is left wondering if they are human beings or monsters like the Daleks, whose originators modelled their merciless murderous ways after the German Nazi Stormtroopers of the 2nd World War.
And just like the Daleks who sought to destroy the Religious beings called the Time Lords that held the fabric of the Doctor Who Universe together, these herdsmen deliberatly target Priests and traditional leaders for their most brutal slayings as shown by the invasion of Enugu and Benue States where a Seminarian and Traditional leader were beheaded respectively.
And just like in previous regimes the Fulani Daleks have returned with even greater ferocity.
But why does one revisit this issue that has seemed to be overflogged?
Indeed the recent comments and actions of President Buhari gives one cause for concern.
In one breath while being interviewed by the foreign press in faraway Kenya while attending the Japan-Africa Economic Summit, the President promised to return security to Nigeria by dealing with Niger Delta Militants with similar ferocity as he dealt with the Boko Haram Menace.
Indeed this is seen by all as Operation Crocodile Smile has commenced phase 2 in the swamps of the Delta after one of the most impressive military builds up in recent times. In less than 48hrs since phase 2 commenced, Notorious kidnappers and militants have been killed and their bodies laid on display for the public to snap pictures and upload to social media to continue the pretext that all is well.
Alas in all this discourse no mention was made of how the President and his armed forces intend to deal with the menace of the Fulani Herdsmen?
Is the President in denial that his kinsmen have become the number 1 quintessential threat to the corporate existence of Nigeria?
After Operation Crocodile Smile is there going to be an Operation Desert Shield to protect Nigerians South of the Sahel Savannah from these merciless exterminators of mankind who value grazing lands for their cows over human life?
For how long will the tales of rape and pillage go on as these Herdsmen continue to lay waste to communities so as to gain access to ancestral land that doesn’t belong to them that their cows may feed fat on the toil of others?
The President and his handlers should be told that these Fulani Herdsmen should feature as number one on his to do list or Risk Assessment Dossier as the Intelligence officers tend to call it, for the potential this crisis has to thrust Nigeria into another civil war is as real as can be. Even at the height of Boko Haram these criminals kept their activities restricted to the North and never attacked locations South of the Sahel Savanna hence avoiding a full blown ethnoreligious conflict
However these Fulani Herdsmen are not that restricted as their reach is wide and ubiquitious popping up in various States across the country to kill, maim and destroy. Nothing more fuels regional anger more that the inability of the Government to contain these marauders. Hence if nothing is done communities shall begin to arm themselves with a policy to shoot any Fulani Man with a cow first thenask questions later. Why allow a nation to descend into such a cycle of violence when there is still time to nip this in the bud before such escalation murders peace totally?
If special forces can be deployed to protect cows from rustlers in the North and Operation Crocodile Smile to deal with Militants blowing up oil installations one must ask what plans are on ground to deal with these Marauders?
Or is it because the people killed have no voice to speak on their behalf hence their deaths can be swept under the carpet?
Indeed that is the biggest folly to ignore this problem for the tension and anger in various communities is reaching boiling point.
Fulani Herdsmen have remained a recurring decibel in Nigerian history. If the President continues to treat this issue with kids glooves then one does’t need to be a clairvoyant to see an end not dissimilar to the Thals, the fictional race who failed to contain the Daleks while Davros their creator was still tinkering with his rudimentary killing machines.
The Thals lived to rue their costly mistake as their rule and dominance was
 
eventually utterly destroyed by the Daleks as their nation lay divided and in ruins.
The President of Nigeria has a task fufill “End the reign of the Rampaging Fulani Herdsmen or risk Nigeria imploding into a deadly new civil war.”
 
 
Credits: Attah Essien

Meet the man siphoning money from Donald Trump

At a glance, the two websites look virtually indistinguishable. Both feature a photo of Donald Trump, in a suit and red tie, in front of a giant American flag. Both seemingly offer a chance for two to win dinner with Donald Trump.

One is at donaldjtrump.com; the other is at dinnerwithtrump.org.

The first belongs to Trump’s campaign. The second is a scheme run by Ian Hawes, a 25-year-old Maryland man who has no affiliation with Trump or his campaign and who has preyed on more than 20,000 unsuspecting donors, collecting more than $1 million in the process.

In just its first three weeks of operation, Hawes’ PAC spent more than $108,000 on Facebook ads, offering an opportunity to win “Dinner with Donald Trump” — and netted itself nearly $350,000 in donations, according to federal records.

The biggest chunk of the money raised — $133,000 — went to a company that Hawes founded and owns, CartSoft LLC. The purpose of the payments is described on federal records as “media” and “media purchasing,” though CartSoft’s website describes itself as an online payment-processing platform.

Since then, PAC has collected more than $1 million, Hawes told POLITICO. It has spent $0 on behalf of Trump.

I feel ripped off and taken advantage of. This is horrible. That was not my intent,” said Mary Pat Kulina, who owns a paper-shredding company in Maryland and gave $265 to Hawes’s group. Kulina thought she had given to Trump’s campaign until told otherwise by POLITICO. “This is robbery,” she said. “I want my money back and I want them to add up what they stole from people and give it to Donald Trump.”

Of the 156 donors who gave more than $200 to Hawes’s group in June — the threshold for names to be included in federal filings — POLITICO contacted dozens and spoke with 11. Everyone interviewed said they believed they had given to Trump’s campaign, not an unconnected PAC.

“I would say, unfortunately, that’s simply a matter of pure chance,” Hawes said in an interview defending his group and denying it is a scam.

But the dinner scheme is just the beginning. By late July, Hawes – who calls himself a “registered genius, board certified hacker, and grape soda connoisseur” in his Twitter bio – had launched another website, crookedhillary2016.org, according to Internet domain registration records, and began promoting a contest to revoke her security clearance. The group’s Facebook page copies the “Cooked Hillary” logo that is used on Trump’s official LyingCrookedHillary.com site.

“We’re raising $1 million dollars from small donors to fight Crooked Hillary’s campaign of lies,” reads Hawes’ site. Hawes also registered imwithtrump.org in late June, records show, though that site remains dormant.

As of Sunday, Hawes’ group had raised $1.1 million from 21,253 donors, he said. More than 410,000 people had signed up for the dinner contest — giving him a massive email list he can leverage for more money for years to come.

Internet-based scam PACs are hardly new to 2016. In the past, some have made look-alike campaign sites and bought Google ads to lure unsuspecting donors. Facebook, with its vast audience and ability to target users by political ideology has proved an alluring tool this cycle and Trump, with legions of passionate fans, has become an appealing target. Facebook declined to comment for this story.

Because Hawes’ PAC has zero ties to Trump’s campaign, the dinner they are dangling won’t be very intimate. The fine print — in gray, size 8.5-font on a black background at the bottom of the website — discloses that this “dinner” actually amounts to the PAC buying two tickets “at a Sponsor-selected fundraising evening event held with Donald Trump and other attendees.”

David Easlick, a lawyer in Virginia, gave more than $1,000 to the American Horizons PAC. “I assumed it was coming from Trump and we donated a $1,000 because you might have a better chance than if you’d given $100,” Easlick said.

He asked with more than a hint of resignation, “Is it a fraud or something?”

Hawes’ site doesn’t initially ask for money. First, one can enter the dinner contest simply by providing an email. But it quickly offers a chance to “double your chances” by donating, even though the fine print states, “Contributing will not improve chances of winning.”

One person, Jared Peavler of Indiana, posted screenshots of his correspondence with Hawes’ group on Facebook after he complained it was a scam. “I’d like to point out that it clearly states that contributing does NOT increase chances of winning both in the rules within the link and at the bottom of the email,” Peavler wrote, adding in all-caps, “EAT SHIT!”

An email signed by Hawes replied. “Monetary contributions don’t increase your chance of winning, but we do multiply your entries. We’re also a political action committee, so it’s our job to collect contributions. So you can eat your own shit.”

Peavler told POLITICO: “That was when I knew it was fake. Professionals don’t allow themselves to be drawn into an unprofessional conversation like that.” (Hawes said he did not recall writing such an email and that his records did not show any such correspondence. “That’s not something we would say,” he said. “Pissing people off is not something that we’re trying to do.”)

Another donor, Jeanie Boro, an insurance broker in California, gave $1,015 to the group before she saw the fine-print that it wasn’t actually affiliated with Trump. “I thought it was very deceiving. I was very upset,” Boro said. She demanded and received a refund.

If people complain, Hawes said, “We’ll be happy to return your donations right away.” They had processed 110 refunds to date, he said. (Those who want their money back can email help@americanhorizons.org.)

The American Horizons PAC, which Hawes registered with the Federal Election Commission on June 10, is actually the second incarnation of a “Dinner with Donald Trump” scheme — though both have ties to Hawes.

An earlier group called the Recover America PAC was created in late November last year and registered by Michael Williams, a friend of Hawes’s, who listed the same website — dinnerwithtrump.org — as the current dinner-promoting PAC is using. The contact number provided to the FEC on that filing was affiliated online with a company called Glexia, where both Williams (CEO and president) and Hawes (executive vice president) are listed as employees. That first effort, however, never reported any further activity, despite three subsequent letters from FEC attorneys demanding additional paperwork.

Then, in June, Hawes revived the idea. The new PAC immediately began buying Facebook ads, starting with $750 per day on June 10 and building up to more than $15,000 on June 29. In three weeks, the group had raised $349,958.

Hawes took advantage of a vacuum left by a skeletal Trump operation that had failed to activate supporters online and protect its digital turf; Hawes noted he bought Facebook ads and solicited money via email before Trump ever did, and created the dinner contest first.

He noted Trump’s campaign has never contacted them to request they stop using his name, even though the campaign did so to the FEC last fall about some other groups. The Trump campaign did not respond to requests for comment for this story.

“I applaud anyone that wants to dig into our financials but they’re looking at the wrong political organization,” Hawes said.

So far, his group’s biggest expenditure was to his company CartSoft. The next report is due in mid-October. Hawes declined to say what his personal cut has been.

“I don’t want to say the number is zero because that’s not true,” he said, calling any CartSoft profits “a standard mark-up.”

FEC commissioner Ann Ravel declined to discuss any specific potential cases but said in general the FEC was too powerless when it comes to combating fraud.

“That’s the frustration I have, that there’s very little recourse,” she said. “People give money thinking it’s going to go to a particular person or a particular cause and it’s a consumer protection issues as far as I’m concerned.”

John McQueen, a funeral home owner in Florida, remembered seeing the ad in his Facebook feed. “I had planned to give a thousand bucks to his campaign and when my wife saw it also on her Facebook feed she said, ‘Why not do this?’” he recalled.

He gave $1,015 in late June.

“Who really reads the fine print?” he lamented. “If he wants to refund me my thousand bucks, I’m happy to turn around and give it to Mr. Trump.”

Hawes’ PAC ended June with $88,197 cash-on-hand. It is not clear what activities he has planned on Trump’s behalf this fall. “We use the money that we collect in a way that we feel best creates value for the people who have donated to us,” he said.

Hawes’s most recent activity online was posting publicly on his personal Facebook page that he got engaged in mid-August “on the bow of the yacht overlooking Miami.”

“Couldn’t be more perfect!” he wrote, as he posted pictures sipping champagne with his fiancé and of her glittering oval engagement ring.

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2016/08/donald-trump-fundraiser-hawes-227486#ixzz4IiPJcnit

 

 

 

Credits : Naijarchives

Kenya’s seaside looks peaceful, but a murderous war is being waged

Tourists may be returning to the Kenyan coast, but the hinterland is being ravaged by Islamic militants, their defectors and armed police
Tourists have returned to Kenya’s beaches but are unaware of the death toll in the battle for locals’ hearts and minds
Tourists have returned to Kenya’s beaches but are unaware of the death toll in the battle for locals’ hearts and minds Photograph: Alamy Stock Photo

A football field and a grove of mango trees lie between Bongwe and its neighbouring village. On one side live the family of 33-year-old Subira Mwangole, shot dead by gunmen while watching television with friends one evening in May. On the other live his alleged murderers.

The two villages, 30km south of the port city of Mombasa on Kenya’s coast, are almost identical: three-room houses with rusting tin or thatch roofs, a ramshackle primary school, a government office, a small mosque with white walls stained by rain, a crossroads where two tracks meet, a well, small plots of tall corn plants.

Yet, despite their placid appearances, the villages lie on the invisible frontline of a brutal, low-level, three-way war pitting security agencies against the Islamic extremist network al-Shabaab, and the militants against the local community. It is a war carried out by small groups of armed men who shoot first and ask few questions.

“We are very anxious, frightened. He knew he could die at any moment. We all know we could be next,” said Ibrahim, a former al-Shabaab fighter and a close relative of Mwangole.

There is a steady beat of violence. The extremists murder those they see as a threat. Local human rights groups say the police do the same thing. Both sets of killers know that the fear they provoke brings impunity.

Mwangole was particularly hated by al-Shabaab for his role in convincing veterans of the movement to take advantage of an amnesty offered by the Kenyan ministry of the interior last year. The shopkeeper and father of two was himself a defector from the group, which has waged an insurgency in Somalia since 2006 and has expanded across the porous border into Kenya.

Mwangole was shot in the head by a group of men dressed as policemen but identified by family members as local members of al-Shabaab. His death was swiftly followed by the murder, in similar circumstances, of three community leaders in Bongwe. All were involved in government “anti-radicalisation” schemes.

Hundreds have died at the hands of Islamic militants in Kenya in recent decades. A first wave of violence between 1998 and 2002 was directed by al-Qaida against foreign targets, including US embassies and Israeli tourists. It had ebbed by the middle of the last decade.

But radicalism was growing among Kenya’s Muslim minority, fuelled by a sense of marginalisation, extremist clerics, the impact of the US-led “war on terror” and a shift away from traditional moderate Islamic practices to more rigorous versions of the faith influenced by countries in the Gulf.

In 2013 gunmen from al-Shabaab stormed a shopping mall in Nairobi, Kenya’s capital, killing 67 people. Last year 148 people were shot dead at a university in Kenya’s north-east. Both attacks were launched from Somalia, where Kenyan troops are fighting the extremists as part of an African Union force, but focused attention on support networks within Kenya itself.

Investigators found that young men from villages such as Bongwe in Kwale county had been travelling to Somalia to fight with al-Shabaab for over a decade. Authorities launched a major crackdown and, officials say, a comprehensive “anti-radicalisation” strategy. One element was the amnesty announced last year. By this spring, 70 al-Shabaab veterans – or returnees – had made a clean breast of their militant past to authorities, receiving an assurance that they would not be prosecuted in return.

According to local journalists and former al-Shabaab fighter Sami, who worked closely with Mwangole and was a friend, two amnestied returnees have since been killed, as have six other al-Shabaab veterans.

“We trusted the government. We thought we could live a better life, in peace, and put our past behind us,” Sami said.

Many amnestied veterans receive constant threats from militants, while also facing harassment from police. “The government issued an amnesty that was not anchored in law,” said Hussein Khaled, of Haki-Africa, a human rights monitoring group in Mombasa.

The identity of the alleged killers of Mwangole and the three community leaders reveals how, despite the extremist rhetoric of “global jihad”, the conflict being fought out in Kwale is very intimate.

In interviews with the Observer, Mwangole’s relatives and friends blamed a band of a dozen young men from the neighbouring village for the murders in Bongwe. Most are in their 20s and only recently recruited to al-Shabaab. They include several relatives of the victims. Well before the four murders in May, the group had already made a series of threats to amnestied veterans, accusing them of treachery and spying for the government.

Sami, who returned from a stint in Somalia with al-Shabaab six years ago, said: “We went to the police. We identified those threatening us, but they did nothing. Sometimes I think they wanted Mwangole to be killed – that’s why they gave him no protection.”

In June, police detained 10 men for the killings, including three of those named by Mwangole’s relatives. They say they are confident they have now broken up the network. This has inspired little confidence in Bongwe, however, where the authorities are as feared as al-Shabaab. Campaigners claim systematic human rights abuses by the police, including 70 extrajudicial “executions” or disappearances in the past year alone in and around Mombasa.

Many such killings and disappearances involve former members of al-Shabaab, or individuals alleged to be extremists. At least three alleged members of al-Shabaab in Kwale have been shot dead by police in recent months.

One, named as Omar Hesbon Matheka, died on 4 June when he was “running while shooting at the police”, according to officials, who claimed a grenade had been found among the dead man’s possessions. Witnesses said Matheka was killed by officers while sitting in a rickshaw. His mother told local newspapers that the 24-year-old was looking for work.

“Terrorism is the worst form of human rights violation. We want to eradicate terrorism … [but] it seems that the [government] strategy is simply using firepower. There is nothing about community resilience, addressing underlying problems or rule of law,” said human rights activist Khaled.

Maalim Mohammed, the police commissioner of Mombasa, denied any human rights abuses by Kenyan security agencies. “These allegations are baseless, malicious and unfair,” he said. “Our constitution and laws are very clear and we always respect the process. You cannot use coercive means to win against terrorism. You need to win hearts and minds. We get a lot of information from the community.”

The police crackdown has had a significant impact – at least in the short term. Analysts say the al-Shabaab support network on the coast and elsewhere is much weaker than it was, and has been eradicated in Mombasa.

The British and US governments recently lifted travel warnings applied two years ago to almost all of Kenya’s Indian Ocean coastline, giving the crucial tourist industry a much-needed boost. “We can assure all visitors that they will be entirely safe here on the coast of Kenya,” Mohammed said.

But there are still frequent cross-border incidents. Five policemen were recently killed by suspected al-Shabaab fighters near the border with Somalia. There is also continuing recruitment, according to villagers. Several Kwale county residents, who did not want to be named, added that some women are also attracted by the extremist ideology, and marry al-Shabaab veterans in the area.

Last weekend Bongwe and its neighbouring village were calm. Both were full of women wearing flowing robes. Young children, cows and chickens wandered between the trees. A dozen youths wearing old T-shirts played on the football pitch.

“I left one war behind me in Somalia when I returned,” said Ibrahim. “But now I am in the middle of another one.”

 

 

Credits: Guardian.com

26 Rules for Preventing Your Housemaid From Snatching Your Husband

26 Rules for Preventing Your Housemaid From Snatching Your Husband
by Bisi Adewale

In this modern day, housemaids have become part of many family life and a whole lots of women are making serious mistakes the way they handle them. Some are losing their marriages because of this little mistakes. Remember the mistake of Sarah in the Bible.

You need to get divine wisdom to handle them. This is what I have put together as rules for handling housemaids:

RULE 1: NO MEAT FOR THE HUNTER
Never employ an house maid if you cannot really trust your husband with opposite sex or if he has history of sexual infidelity. An adult house keeper will be better who will come to your house in the morning and go in the night. Please don’t employ your ‘Hagar’, dear sister Sarah.

RULE 2: BEAUTY CONTEST
Never employ a housemaid that is more beautiful than you. She may turn out to be your nemesis and take your husband from you. Don’t employ somebody that will engage you in a beauty contest.

RULE 3: BE IN CHARGE
Never employ house maid you cannot control. Two drivers should not be in the same car.

RULE 4: NO NEED, NO MAID
Please my sister, don’t go for a housemaid if you don’t really need one. Buckle up and do your work. The problem of maids at times is bigger than the support they give at home. Won’t it be better to take your baby to crèche than leave him or her with a maid that will man-handle the baby and even snatch your husband? Hello men, please help your wife at home to raise your children. If you do it together, there may not be the need for a maid. Sir, supporting your wife at home will not remove “MR” from your name, it only makes you a real man.

RULE 5: TIME TO FIRE
If your housemaid suddenly becomes uncontrollable, stubborn and disobedient to you, while your husband sees nothing wrong in it, fighting or even beating you because of the girl.

Be very observant. There is something fishy under your roof. If you lose control of your maid she must gooooo!

RULE 6: COVER-UP
Don’t ever allow your house maid to wear see-through and s*xy dresses in your house. Somebody else (your husband) may begin to see through her in your absence.

RULE 7: FULLY KITTED
Don’t ever permit your maid to be tying towel around the house for hours just because she wants to go and take her bath. It is tempting. Help your husband. Don’t ever allow this. In fact, your blood sister must not even be permitted to do so. Any lady in your house must always be well dressed if they are not in their room. No spaghetti, tying of wrapper without blouse. Some girls are so careless that they wear pants and bras around the house. Hey! Sister, the house is yours not theirs. Don’t permit them to destroy it. Every lady around you must be fully dressed in your house. If they must wear night dresses it must be in their rooms. Protect the territorial integrity of your home. Failure to do this is one major mistake most wives do make at home. Don’t lose your husband to strange women that are close to you.

RULE 8: AVOID MATURE TROUBLE
Don’t employ a fully grown up, developed, breasted housemaid. She may become a fully grown up and developed trouble. DON’T permit it.

RULE 9: NO ROOM, NO MAID
Never employ a maid if you don’t have a separate room where you are going to put her. Making your maid to sleep in the sitting room can bring doom into that home, as she sleeps carelessly, enticing your husband who may accidentally see her as she sleeps and begins to pursue her.

RULE 10: NO BOY, IF GIRLS
Don’t ever employ a houseboy if you have only girls as children. Experience has shown that a whole lot of little girls are being deflowered by their mother’s house help. Get female a house help, if you have only girls.

RULE 11: NO GIRL, IF BOYS
Likewise, if all your kids are male, don’t employ a female house maid. There are lots of cases where house maids s*xually molest the boys of their madams. Rather, get a houseboy.

RULE 12: NO YOU IN HER
Don’t give your old dresses that your husband likes on you to your maid, lest your husband begins to see you in her. Those clothes that look beautiful and maybe sexy on you that made your husband to fall for you several times SHOULD NEVER be given to your maid. Don’t make your husband feel that there is no difference between the two of you and get carried away as he sees you in her.

RULE 13: NO HARSH TREATMENT
A young housemaid seduced her madam’s husband to bed and nearly took over the house. When she was interrogated; she said, that is her own way of dealing with her madam who had been so cruel to her.

Another maid ran into the house of one of their neighbours just to escape the man of the house who insisted on sleeping with her. She told the neighbour what happened and that she will never do that kind of thing with “Oga” because madam has been so good to her. She later left that house voluntarily losing her job. She said, “I will never hurt that good woman.”

What is the difference between the two stories? One woman was cruel and lost her husband and another one was good and saved her marriage.

Wives are fond of being so cruel and harsh to their maids. Most of the time they do treat them with disdain, shouting on them, punishing them, beating them and treating them without honour.

If you must get a maid, learn to treat her with honour. A maid you treat badly has many ways of fighting back. One of them is punishing your children or molesting them sexually behind you. The maid you maltreated can also decide to seduce your husband to bed. In extreme cases, maids are known to have poisoned the family of their employers.

By all means, try to be good to your maid. You may be doing yourself a great favour. Always remember that you are only privileged to be the wife in that house.

RULE 14: TRAVEL LESS
Avoid constant travelling, leaving your husband and children at the mercy of your maid. You may not meet your home the way you left it.

Must you attend all the parties? Must you be on the road every weekend? Must you move from London to Dubai on your way to Madrid in the name of business meeting? I think you should choose between becoming a successful family woman and the most popular, famous, known face in town and the richest.

If you travel constantly, I can assure you that you can become a victim of house maid wickedness.

RULE 15: TREAT HER WELL
Treat your maid always the same way you treat your children. Remember, maids have parents too. They are only unfortunate, and your children could have been in her shoe if not for the mercy of God.

Let her eat the same food with your children, and eat on the same table. When you buy clothes for your children, buy for your maids too. It will be totally wrong for your maid to be wearing rags when your children dress like princes and princesses. By all means treat her well. See it as a privilege to sow seeds into the lives of others. Start from your maid.

RULE 16: CHILDREN RESPECT
Never allow your children to disrespect her. Let them respect her. She is older than them. Don’t tell them she is just an house girl. Let them see her as their sister and respect her like that.

RULE 17: KITCHEN OWNER
Don’t surrender your kitchen to your maid. She should never be the one cooking your husband’s food or serving him. Men always fall in love with the hands that cook and serve their food. If she can successfully replace you in the kitchen, your husband may not see the reason why she cannot replace you in the bedroom.

RULE 18: BE UNPREDICTABLE
Get home at times when your maid least expects you. Cut short your journey at times to arrive a day earlier than planned. Just be unpredictable. Don’t allow your maid to be able to predict you accurately. Your discovery may shock you.

RULE 19: WATCH OUT FOR CLUES
Occasionally, check the bags and the room of your maid. This may give you room to know what is going on in her life. You will be able to detect if she is stealing your money, food, properties etc. You may even see male or female condom or contraceptive in her bag. That will give you a signal to question the use and know who uses it with her. “Who is that person?” You should probe further to unveil the whole truth.

RULE 20: ASK QUESTIONS
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Probe your maid about her background, parents, experiences, plans, fears etc. If you make her comfortable with you, she will open up and you will be able to know who you are dealing with.

Most of the times our maids know everything about us but we know nothing about them. At times we don’t even know their real name. What a mistake!

Moreover, ask questions from your children because they spend more time with the maid. They may have many things to tell you if you are humble enough to ask questions.

RULE 21: NO IDLE TIME
Find a way of keeping your maid busy when you are not at home. Remember that idle hands are the workshops of the devil. Send her to a local school around you or make her to learn a vocation within the period you and the children will not be at home. If you leave her at home alone doing nothing, boys around can come and have their share of her in your house and she will be using your food to feed them. Some of them can even come as armed robbers at night. Some husbands are even known to sneak back home to go and meet the “small madam” who is idle and available at home and may also be willing.

RULE 22: DO BACKGROUND CHECKS
Check the state of health of your maid. Please let her go for HIV test. I know you must have heard the story of a maid who infected the little children of her madam by sleeping with the innocent children. Don’t overlook this. You may also need to check if there is any disease in her body that can infect your family.

RULE 23: GIVE YOUR CHILDREN SOUND S*X EDUCATION
Tell your children not to allow anybody to touch their PRIVATE PARTS. Please list the private parts for them to include: their male or female genitals, buttocks and anus. Let them touch the place as they mention them by names. Tell them also never to touch anybody’s private parts or put it in their mouth. They should all be well tutored to know that if anybody touches their private parts or if anybody asks them to touch somebody’s private parts or put it in their mouth, they should tell mummy or daddy immediately.

This is the basic principle of sex education. Please don’t fail to teach your children lest you regret you did not do it.

RULE 24: BE VIGILANT
Don’t sleep with both eyes closed. Most wives never discovered that their husbands were sleeping with their maid until the maid became pregnant. In a particular case, the woman of the house did not even know until the pregnancy was three months old. It was her neighbour that later called her attention to it. She said she never knew they were sleeping together, despite the fact that they have been sleeping together for about two years and the man even aborted a pregnancy for her before the present one. Maybe they would have aborted this, if not for the fact that the man travelled abroad.

Be vigilant. Open your eyes when you are bathing your children. Check them very well. Ask questions.

If you notice any strange behaviour in your children, maid, or your husband, if there is any strange hatred, affinity, or hostility between your maid and your children or husband, try to know the reason. The word is, be vigilant.

RULE 25: KNOW THE TIME TO FIRE
Most women do know the time to hire housemaids but ignorant of time to fire. No matter how useful a maid is to you, let her go if:

– She becomes uncontrollable to you.
– Becomes too close to your husband.
– Begins to disrespect your husband. There may be secrets that she and your husband cannot reveal to you.
– She is very lazy. If she cannot do what you employ her for, why keep her?
– You caught her in fornication or other s*xual immorality. Let her go before she infects your children and husband.
– She is fetish and demonic.
– You caught her in a compromising situation with your husband.
– You feel she is trying to seduce your husband.
– Your husband suddenly says you should send her packing without you seeing a reason for that. You better obey. He may have reasons he should never tell you, but that decision will be the best for you on the long run. If you insist, you may regret it later.
– She has grown to become a very beautiful lady. She was very young when she got to you but now she is a grown up girl, with fully developed pointed breast and tantalizing back side. She may be very good, but let her go at this stage lest you regret it. Give her, “her retirement benefits”, as she may grow up to be more beautiful than you are now and make your husband to go with her.

RULE 26: HAVE A GREEN BED
Build a green bed in your marriage. Don’t build a yellow or red bed. Yellow bed means struggle in your bedroom where your husband has to beg you for sex or even bribe you for it.
Red bed is when there is no sex in the marriage. Both yellow and red beds can give room for the housemaid who is more available than you to take over from you.

Please, build a green bed

Jean-Baptiste Belley

Image may contain: 2 people

Jean-Baptiste Belley ca. 1740-1805
Jean-Baptiste Belley, also known as Mars, was a former slave from Saint-Domingue who became one of the first Black men to hold elective office in France. Born in the West African island of Goreé, part of present-day Senegal, Belley was sold into slavery as a toddler, eventually arriving in the French colony of Saint-Domingue (present-day Haiti) on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. Along the way, he became educated and was able to purchase his freedom as an adult. In 1793, following the French Revolution, he was elected as the only Black member of a three person coalition sent to France to represent the colony of Saint-Domingue in the National Convention, where he spoke in defense of the Abolition of slavery on February 1794. Slavery was briefly abolished in the French colonies that same year, only to be reinstated after Napoleon’s rise to power five years later. Belley stayed as a member of the Convention, and later the Council of the Five Hundred, until losing his seat in 1797. He then obtained a position in the gendarmerie nationale and returned to Saint-Domingue on official missions. While in France, his portrait (shown above) was painted by Anne-Louis Girodet de Roussy-Trioson, a pupil of Jacques-Louis David. Belley returned to Saint-Domingue with Charles LeClerc in 1802, the year slavery was reinstated in the French colonies, and was arrested on orders of Napoleon Bonaparte. He travelled again to France, this time as a prisoner, where he died in 1805.
The portrait is currently at the Musée national du Château de Versailles.

 

 

 

Credits : The Caribbean Archive

COMMENCEMENT OF DISCLOSURE OF THE CONTROVERSIAL ALLOWANCE OF MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

In line with my resolve to continue to expose individual&systemic corruption in House, I will today commence the disclosure of what many Nigerians believe is almost impossible to reveal or are not even aware of – the allowances of Members of the House.

My resolve to open up the controversial allowances should be instructive to those who think I am only out to get Dogara out of his seat If that is my mission, I will definitely not go into the issue of allowances, which is the only aspect that unites the entire House. But if members&Nigerians feel at home with Dogara, a corrupt no4 citizen, despite overwhelming allegations against him&his gang,so be it!

If my colleagues chose to support the Speaker, I wish them safe journey. But on this struggle, I shall continue even if Iam alone! I will continue this crusade to wipe out corruption in the House&trigger internal reforms so that Nigns can have the ideal representative.The imperative of having a corrupt-free House of Representatives cannot be over-emphasized.

It is only when the House comes with purity that effective oversight can be done&investigative hearing to expose fraud can be undertaken. When the House is corrupt, it affects the whole country because the House of Representativesis the largest representation of Nigerians.

This must be the focus of the fight against corruption. The root of our economic,political&social problems as a country lies in the House. No amount of economic strategy will succeed in this country if we do not put hands together&decisively deal with corruption in the House.

Now we come to the crux of the matter. It should be noted, however, that money is voted as “running cost” to members apart from salaries. You don’t need a professor or a committee of technocrats to tell you what is reasonable as running cost for member of the House of Reps. and also how the money should be administered and who should be the recipient of the money.

The way the allowances of members is currently structured can not pass the integrity test of any of the aforesaid. The allowances is systemic corruption that should be dealt with in phases since you can not afford the systemic shock of a oneoff attack

Today, I will start with the 10 Principal Officers of the House. If just these 10 are named and shamed it will force reform in the House. I will therefore provide what each one of them had collected as “office running cost” in their entire stay in the House. If any one of them disputes my figure,they should not make drama out of it,just simply tell the country how much he or she has collected.

Running cost is a money collected by many members (with a few exception) and used as personal funds. No more, no less – case closed!
Most of these members use it to acquire properties, cars and live a life of luxury they never had before coming to the House.

Though there exist systems for retirement but a simple investigation by a primary school pupil will reveal the massive fraud therein.

From computation of various sub heads of allowances of the House, the 10 Principal Officers received various amounts as follows

1. Speaker Yakubu Dogara has been in the House from 2007 to date. He has received about 1.5billion naira

2. Deputy Speaker Yusuf Lasun has been in the house from 2011 to date. He has received about 800million naira

3. House Leader Femi Gbajabiamila has been in the House from 2003 to date. He has received about 1.2billion naira

4. Deputy House Leader Buba has been in the House from 2007 to date. He received about 1.2billion naira.

5. Whip Alhassan Doguwa has been in the House from 2003 to date. He has received about 1.2 billion naira

6. Deputy Whip Pally Iriase has been in the house from 2011 to date. He has received 700 million naira.

7. Minority Leader Leo Ogor has been in the House from 2007 to date. He has received 1.2 billion naira

8. Deputy Minority Leader Barde has been in the House from 2011 to date. He has received 700 million naira

9. Minority Whip Chuma has been in the House from 2007 to date. He had received 800 million naira

10. And finally, Deputy Minority Whip Binta has been in the House from 2011 to date. She has received 700 million naira.

So in between these 10 Principal Officers, the country has pumped about 10 billion naira – and still counting! As I have mentioned earlier, in most cases with few exceptions, these funds are diverted for personal use. –

I will provide break down of these figures&names of more members with worst cases of diversion of such funds in due course to shame them. As we continue this struggle to wipe out corruption and restore sanity in the House of Representatives. I urge Nigerians to remain vigilant as these corrupt elements can go to any length to change the narrative and evade justice. God bless.

Hon. Abdulmumin Jibril

Emir of Kano- Sanusi’s warning to Buhari

“I’m a friend of this administration but if they decide to run Nigeria aground, I will become the opposition.
You are not good friends if you sit down with Government officials and don’t tell them the truth.
“The current Buhari-led administration may end like the Jonathan administration if it fails to retrace its footsteps.”

“There is nothing we are facing today that we did not know would happen.

“We made mistakes, many of them deliberate. We ignored every single warning.

“We should not continue to blame the previous administration, as we have also made some mistakes in the current administration.

“We must retrace our steps; otherwise we may fall into the same trap we fell the last time when the government was always right.

“The bottom line is that if your policy is wrong, it is you that must change.”

I will continue to say the truth.”

~ Emir Sanusi today in Kano at the ongoing 15th Joint Planning Board/National Council on Development Planning Meeting.

“PEOPLE ARE NOW MAKING BILLIONS IN FOREIGN EXCHANGE DEALS” – EMIR SANUSI .. ” “We created billionaires from Oil subsidies
in the past. We are making the same
mistake with Forex Subsidies. As an Emir, I
can sit in my garden and make phone calls
to access $10M at N197 per $ then sell it
off at nothing less than N300. With just a
phone call, I’m making a profit of over a
billion Naira. That is what people are doing
now. Any system that allows you sit in
your garden and make a billion Naira
without investing a Kobo is a wrong
system.”
– Emir of Kano Muhammad Sanusi II”

Here’s the fuller-text of HRH Emir Sanusi’s statement in Kaduna today:

I’m a friend of this administration but if they decide to run Nigeria aground, I will become the opposition. You are not good friends if you sit down with Government officials and don’t tell them the truth. I will continue to say the truth.

“Nigeria must drop the habit of borrowing to pay salaries and service recurrent expenditures.

“There is nothing happening today that we didn’t forecast years ago because all actions have consequences.

“Industrialisation potentials of Northern Nig was documented by Ahmadu Bello in 1962, 54 years after, there’s nothing to show.

“We created billionaires from Oil subsidies in the past. We are making the same mistake with Forex Subsidies.

“As an Emir, I can seat in my garden and make phone calls to access $10M @ N197 per $ then sell it off at nothing less than N300. With just a phone call, I’m making a profit of over a billion naira. That is what people are doing now.

“Any system that allows you sit in your garden & make a billion naira without investing a Kobo is a wrong system.

“We created the recession we are in now and I hope the President won’t make the mistakes Jonathan made.

“We are not being sincere when we say we are in a recession because of the fall in oil prices. What happened to other sectors?

“I understand it’s painful when we pay for expensive fuel but we must understand no system is perfect.

“Petroleum subsidy empowers a small group of criminals rather than the poor masses it was meant for.

“If you must subsidise anything, please it should be for production rather than consumption.

“In 2011, we earned $16B from Oil revenues.
$8b was spent for LCs while the remaining $8b was spent on subsidising fuel. We spent a whooping $8billion on subsidising fuel. Not a dime was spent on infrastructure, education or schools.

“To get out of this recession;
FG must set the FX rate to incentivise capital inflows, catalyse FDI & FDI funding.
FG must set interest rates at levels that deter capital flight dollarization.
FG must eliminate wasteful and abuse prone subsidies.
FG must address failure in the power sector value chain starting with the DISCOS.
FG must digitise state land registries and streamline relevant legislations.
FG must re-priotize public spending towards investment in human capital.
Lastly, the FG must protect infant industries specifically labour intensive manufacturing.”

Source: Kaduna Ministry of Budget

OSITA OSADEBE, The Story of Nigeria’s King of Highlife Music

I love music. And I appreciate it even more in its diversity (don’t ask me about dance…lol!). For Africa, I enjoy various nations. From Mali (Oumou Sangare, Fatoumata Diawara, Amadou et Mariam (a married couple, both blind), Ali Farka Toure, don’t blame me, blame my Dad for that…lol!), Senegal (Vivian Ndour, the mbalax legend), Cote d’Ivoire (Alpha Blondy), Tanzania (Bi Kikude of Zanzibar, the queen of taarab and the oldest performing musician on earth before her death in April 2013), Eritrea (Yohannes Tihabo, love Selamawit Gebru die! LOL), Algeria (any rai artiste will do but Cheb Khaled tops the chart for me) to Egypt (oh, the sonorous Umm Kulthum!), I am into various forms and genre of music, as in, musik.

Although some of my friends say it to my face that my taste of music is simply crazy (especially when I sing the lyrics which obviously make no sense to them), I cannot think of a more ecletic selection of tracks (some shake their heads pitifully when I cool off with a Kenyan song or nice Namibian jamz but do I send them ni? Variety na the thyme of life na! LOL!). Not that I am not into Naija songs too o, just finished Kcee’s Limpopo…lol! So it was, I was ‘innocently’ enjoying nice selections on Gidilounge’s gPlayer (went straight to Essential Highlife) and then after a few tracks, the next thing I was nodding my head to was Chief Osita Osadebe’s Nwanem EbezinaI knew it was time for me to write on this star in the firmament of African entertainment. Hubert Ogunde will have to wait till another day…lol!

Dear Esteemed Reader, I present to you, Nigeria’s king of highlife music, CHIEF ‘Nnanyi Ukwu’ STEPHEN PATRICK OSITADIMA ‘OSILI’ OSADEBE, Nigeria’s king of highlife music.

OSITA OSADEBE, Nigeria's Master of Highlife Music1

BIRTH AND EARLY DAYS

Born on the 17th of March 1936, the late Chief Osita Osadebe hailed from the Umukeke Quarters of Ogbaru Local Government (Ogbahu or Ogbesi) in Atani, an agricultural and fishing city on the eastern bank of the River Niger, near Onitsha in Anambra State, southeastern Nigeria. His father was Chief Dennis Obi Osadebe while his mother was Iyom Nwanjiego Uzoka-Osadebe. Like many others, his family was one long lineage of dancers, singers and other entertainers. He attended the St. John Catholic School and Our Lady’s High School, both in Onitsha, Anambra State. However, it was not until he was in secondary school that his interest in music really surfaced. As a boy, he was a chorister in the church and also played in the school band.

After completing his secondary school education, he worked briefly with SCOA as a clerk and was into music full-time in 1958, two years before Nigeria became an independent nation.

MUSIC CAREER

OSITA OSADEBE, Nigeria's Master of Highlife Music2

After a while, he moved to Lagos State, the nation’s commercial center where he would perform at disco clubs, dance halls and parties, starting small and climbing the ladder steadily under the tutelage of Zeal Onyia, an expert with the trumpet, said to be the best trumpeter in West Africa in his time (Osadebe was a genius with the guitar). At first, he was with the Empire Rhythm Skies led by Stephen Amaechi where he was a vocalist and maracas player. Then later, he joined groups formed by EC Arinze, Eric Onugha, Agu Norris, Eddy Okonta, Chuks Nwamama and Charles Iwugbue. He started out in Lagos at the now-defunct Empire Hotel (later turned to Kalakuta Nite Club by Fela Anikulapo-Kuti), Idioro, Ojuelegba, a club owned by Chief Kanu who said of him:

Two personalities were greatly respected and sought after during those highlife days -the vocalist and the guitar player. The guitarist provided palm wine chords which held the orchestra together and also indulged in interminably long guitar solos that kept dancers on the floor for long periods of time. The vocalist projected the entire band and remained the main focus. Osadebe was one of the leading singers on the scene, along with Joe Mensah, Tunde Osofisan, Godwin Omabuwa. But the edge Osadebe had over all of them was that he was a prolific composer; and for this reason, he was in great demand.

  From Empire Hotel, Osadebe would later shift to Central Hotel, Yaba, Lagos.

Osadebe’s musical career is one of the longest in Nigeria as it spanned a period of more than 40 years. Starting before independence in 1958 in his early 20s when he released his first album, the late Igbo high chief would sing until his last year on earth. His first album had only two songs, and one of the two, was called Adamma, which he sang as a tribute to a pretty lady. His energy was impressive and his vibrant nature on stage endeared him to many who would do anything to attend his live performances. Apart from being an exponent of highlife music itself, the late Osadebe was also a songwriter and record producer. He worked under the Polygram Records Nigeria Label. Here, I need to make some clarifications. Some narrations have it that his first recording was actually not Adamma but Lagos Na So So Enjoyment , a single, which was a collaboration with the late Onyia. There is also another account that in 1958 he worked first with Stephen Ameche and had his first recording with Zeal Onyia in 1959.

But in 1960, he took everyone by surprise when he left music and became a student. In the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), he studied Trade Union and finished in 1962 as one of the National Trade Union. When he came back after bagging his diploma, he delved into music once again, forming the Stephen Osadebe and His Nigerian Sound Makers.

In 1984, he hit gold when he released Osondi Owendi (meaning ‘one man’s meat is another man’s poison’), selling over 750,000 copies. In no time, it became the most popular record ever in the history of Nigeria. Even six years after his death and 29 years after he released it, Osondi Owendi is still wildly popular in Nigeria. The modern artiste, now deceased, MC Loph (Nwaozo Obiajulu) featuring Flavour N’abania (Chinedu Okoli) made a remix of Osondi Owendi, as a tribute to Chief Osadebe, giving it a refreshing urban flavour. Watch that one here, even if you have done so before:

Osadebe was a very prolific singer and as a songwriter, he wrote a very impressive total of more than 500 songs, and about 250 of these went into commercial production. At first, he was with The Empire Rhythm Orchestra headed by EC Arinze, from whom he learnt a lot. As he progressed, his songs also reflected the events in the society and the nation at large, throwing subtle jabs at and uppercuts against the government. His songs were steady in rhythm and were thoroughly danceable. Slowly, rhythmic swaying of the body is my own formula…lol!

The outbreak of the Nigerian Civil War in 1970 meant that Osadebe, like many other Igbos had to flee for the southeast, and that meant an end to his successful career in Lagos. However, he was not a man to surrender easily to the travails of life. Even while the war was on, and subsequently, he still managed to have some performances and it was in the 70s that he reached the apex of his performance. Osadebe ’75 was particularly successful. In the year 1986, he clocked 50 and decided to pay more attention to his family life. Osadebe also had interest in classical music.

LOVE, MARRIAGE AND FAMILY

OSITA OSADEBE, Nigeria's Master of Highlife Music4

He was married and is warmly remembered as a loving father to his son, Obiora and other children he sired with his wives. He reduced his tours and performances so as to dedicate more time to his kids and family. One of his children, Obiajulu Osadebe was also into music. His first son, Obiajulu was a student at the Christ the King College in Onitsha while his first child and daughter, Uju, studied Mass Communication in New York. Some of his other children are Patrick Okwy Osadebe, Stephen Osita Osadebe, Jr., Virginia Uju Okakpu, Gloria Nwando Robbins and Lisa Oge Osadebe.

OSADEBE’S WORKS

For a man who penned over 500 songs, and more than half circulated worldwide, you know that he is rich when it comes to the stuff. His music had its roots from highlife in its basic form, drawing influences from rumba, waltz, bolero, samba and calypso (he had over 30 albums to his credit). With time, he became more vocal against government policies but not to a radical extent like the late Fela Anikulapo Kuti. His words were measured and had the desired effect. One other thing with his songs is that atimes, they were clearly targeted at his personal enemies, whom he gave a megadose of his melodious (or sharp?) tongue. Some of his fans felt this personal vendetta was not really necessary but that was just an aspect.

Another very interesting feature of his performances was that his songs were relatively long and for those on the dance floor, it gave them enough time to dance and enjoy his tunes as he dished them out. Over time, and even as he aged, his voice remained delightfully consistent, with no loss in vigour and clarity. And yes, like many of the other musicians all over Nigerians, he also praised the rich and influential and in one of the interviews conducted with him, he explained why he was also a praise singer. Because of the calming effect of his songs, some of his fans referred to him as the ‘Doctor of Hypertension’.

In 1995, at the age of almost 60, he toured the United States of America with his band twice. His experience would later lead to one of the hottest albums of his, titled Kedu America (which means ‘How are you, America’) which was recorded in Seattle, Washington State and released in 1996In June 1990, he was in the United States with his 12-piece band to the Music Machine, that was his first tour of the US.

-Apart from Osondi Owendi, some of Osadebe’s other works include Aye Mama, ‘One Pound, No Balance’Nye m Obi GiMerenge SposaOnuigboKanyi JikotaAgbalu Akala Azo AniOgbaru SpecialGwam OkwuMakojo and many others.

INTERESTING THINGS ABOUT OSITA OSADEBE

-In Egwu Ogolo, one of his songs, he makes allusion to the fact that his musical talents and skills came from the assistance of a spirit dwelling in water. His hometown of Atani, is in the southern riverine part of Anambra State, where worship of natural features was once heavily practiced until the advent of Christianity. However, some pockets of African traditional worship remain in the area.

-A lover of football and tennis, Chief Osadebe was also into business, and he had a prosperous hotel business. He faced his hotel business when not occupied with music.

-Osadebe also sang in English, Pidgin (‘Broken’ English) and his native Igbo. His contemporaries include Bobby Benson, Godwin Omabuwa, ‘Cardinal’ Jim Rex Lawson, Victor Olaiya, IK Dairo, Celestine Ukwu, ‘Emperor’ Erasmus Jenewari and ET Mensah.

HONOURS, AWARDS AND LEGACIES

OSITA OSADEBE, Nigeria's Master of Highlife Music3

-A doyen of Igbo culture and rich repertoire of some of Africa’s most unique traditions, Chief Osita Osadebey proudly sang in his native Igbo and showcased some of the most colourful aspects of the culture of his people (you cannot but be mesmerized by the enchanting dance steps and the revolving hinges of the swaying hips…lol! The day I witnessed Igbo dancers from Nekede live and at close range, I knew there was no comparison, the performance was electrifying! Only if we can understand ourselves better and maximize the opportunities tourism will bring Nigeria from our diverse cultural assets). He was honoured by the Federal Government of Nigeria with the national honour of Officer of the Order of the Niger (OON).

-His songs are full of wise sayings and anecdotes about life. His music is a fine fusion of culture, traditional values, philosophy and entertainment, not to mention the soothing and calming effect of his songs (he called it onyilima). In Osondi Owendihe muses: He that is faster than his God always ends before his time. What you like, others may not like. But the title of our music says: what pleases some people, others may not like it. Because as some people are happy over things of this world, likewise some people are not happy also. Some people are happy, while some are unhappy… In another song, he says: No matter how bad we must live. No matter how much it rains, it must someday stop raining.’

-Today, his songs are enjoyed not only in Nigeria but all across the globe. Just check out one of those meetings or celebrations of Nigerians in diaspora and you get what I’m saying 🙂 As a skinny lad under Arinze, Osadebe learnt all that was there to learn and when his time came to shine, the heavens glowed.

-He has left a lot behind for the new-generation musicians. For example, the ‘call-and-response’ technique now in use by many highlife musicians was perfected by Osadebe.

-His people also honoured him with a chieftaincy title: the Ogbuefi Ezealulukwufe of Ataniland. He loved his people and the love they gave him in return was also massive. In 1987, he sang in honour of his people and his land in Ogbaru Akwulugo. In Igboland, his status as an icon of culture and tradition is recognized with his nickname of Osankwa. He was also the Omeokachi I of Ogbahu.

He was honoured by Polygram Records with a platinum album for his Osadebe ’75 which sold over 100,000 copies.

-He was the recipient of the Performing Musicians’ Association of Nigeria (PMAN)’s Best Highlife Artiste of the Year in 1988.

-In 1981, he received the Gold Disc for his Onu Kwulonjo.

HIS WORDS

‘A country without music is a dead nation. Nigerian musicians are great people, and musically Nigeria is great. The unfortunate thing is that we are not accorded the recognition due to us’.

‘My own belief is that if you cannot compose your own song, you are not worth being a musician.’

‘The man who mainly inspired me was the late Nat King Cole, an American. He sang in English, Spanish and other languages. I loved his music.’ 

WHAT OTHERS SAY ABOUT OSITA OSADEBE

‘In Nigeria, he is loved not only by one ethnic group but by all the ethnic groups. When you live in a country like Nigeria, people go through a lot to survive, and we look for avenues to soothe this daily pain that we go through. His music played a very important role.’ Nnamdi Moweta, his manager.

‘The poetry of his music and the philosophic way he speaks about life…really set him apart.’ Andrew Frankel, producer of three of his albums.

DEATH

In 2007, he flew to the United States for a medical checkup and he was later placed on admission for respiratory illness. Relatives would care for him for months. On the 11th of May, 2007, he breathed his last at the St. Mary’s Hospital, Waterbury, Connecticut. He was 71 and had suffered from severe respiratory problems (lung failure), leaving behind five wives (one of whom was Elizabeth-Edwin Osadebe) and several children, many of whom are based in the United States. On the 8th of February, 2008, a Friday, he was buried in a befitting ceremony organized by his people. That was after a funeral service for him on the 8th June, 2007 at BEECHER & BENNETT, Hamden, Connecticut, USA.

The legendary Atani man who gave Nigeria Osondi Owendi went to join his ancestors -where, he would hopefully, entertain and mesmerize them like he did for the inhabitants of the earth. The legend might be gone but his works remain – very much appreciated.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME.

 

 

Full Credits: Abiyamo.com