Saturday, 18 April 2015

Idiot prisoner tried to carve 'the sign of the beast' 666 into his forehead but....

Idiot prisoner tried to carve 'the sign of the beast' 666 into his forehead - but used a mirror so it came out backwards

  • Nikko Jenkins, 28, was trying to etch the Revelation sign of the beast
  • But he now has a series of upside-down 9s across his face
  • It is believed he may use the botched case as evidence he is mentally unstable and therefore ineligible to face the death penalty
  • Jenkins was convicted of shooting dead four people in 10 days after he was released from prison in Omaha, Nebraska, in 2013 
It was meant to be the ultimate symbol of menace: carving '666' into his forehead.
But in a phenomenal case of idiocy, convicted murderer Nikko Jenkins used a mirror - so the numbers came out backwards.
The symbol is described in the biblical book of Revelation as 'the sign of the beast', and has since been popularized by the horror movie The Omen.
However, with a series of upside-down 9s, Jenkins has fashioned himself an entirely unique - and irreversible - engraving.
Botched: Nikko Jenkins (pictured in 2014) recently tried to carve '666' into his forehead but did it backwards
Botched: Nikko Jenkins (pictured in 2014) recently tried to carve '666' into his forehead but did it backwards
According to Omaha.com, Jenkins told his attorney about the incident in a phone call from his cell in Omaha, Nebraska.
It comes amid the 28-year-old's ongoing appeal that he is mentally unstable and therefore ineligible to face the death penalty.

Jenkins was jailed exactly one year ago for shooting dead four people in 10 days after being released from prison.
During his murder trial in Douglas County, Jenkins was assessed by a doctor who concluded that he was 'a psychopath' and 'one of the most dangerous people' he had ever encountered.
'Psychopath': The 28-year-old, who a doctor described as 'one of the most dangerous people' he had ever encountered, may use the botched case of self-mutilation as evidence he is mentally unstable
'Psychopath': The 28-year-old, who a doctor described as 'one of the most dangerous people' he had ever encountered, may use the botched case of self-mutilation as evidence he is mentally unstable
Jenkins pleaded not guilty, then guilty, then ineligible for trial on the grounds of insanity. 
However, a judge dismissed the appeals and he was sentenced to life.
The decision of whether he would be sentenced to death was delayed after Jenkins revealed he had carved a swastika into his skin.
Following months of delays, he will face a panel in July to decide his fate. 
It is believed Jenkins may use his latest botched case of self-mutilation as further evidence that he is mentally unstable. 


Exclusive: Chopra says ECB's threats to Ireland were 'outrageous'

THE European Central Bank acted in an "outrageous" manner and went beyond its remit when it pressured Ireland to commit to years of austerity, according to Ajai Chopra.
The International Monetary Fund's former Ireland mission chief made the damning assessment during an address at Oxford University.
The IMF’s former Ireland mission chief Ajai ChopraOPEN GALLERY 2
The IMF’s former Ireland mission chief Ajai Chopra
A recording of his speech uncovered by the Irish Independent reveals Mr Chopra telling an audience that the so-called 'Trichet letters' were an "outrageous overreach" of the ECB's mandate.
In a stinging criticism of the bank, Mr Chopra says he isn't surprised people in Ireland were upset about the letters between the former ECB President Jean-Claude Trichet and the late Brian Lenihan in 2010 in which Mr Trichet threatened to cut off funds for the Irish banks if the Government did not apply for a bailout.
"The letters actually pressed Ireland to do fiscal consolidation, it pressed them to undertake vague structural reforms without specifying what these were, and that, in my view, is an outrageous overreach by a central bank," Mr Chopra said.
And he also claimed that the possible effects of burning the bondholders that were put forward by Europe were "exaggerated."
Former European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude TrichetOPEN GALLERY 2
Former European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude Trichet
He told the Irish Independent last night that he had nothing further to add beyond the comments in his address.
The blunt intervention by the man considered the public face of the Irish bailout will cause ructions in the ECB and will pile pressure on the Banking Inquiry here to get answers from the Frankfurt body on its controversial role in the bailout.
The ECB eventually released the letters last November, giving a fresh insight into the build-up to Ireland's entry into the IMF/EU programme in late 2010.
The letters urged the then-government to commit to structural reforms and restructuring of the financial sector.
"That is not their job," Mr Chopra said. "Their mandate is to meet inflation. And if you lecture the ECB as to how they might go about that, they talk about their independence.
"But when it comes to lecturing others about fiscal policy or structural policy, they're not at all hesitant. I'm not surprised that the people in Ireland were very upset about these letters from [Jean-Claude] Trichet."
Mr Trichet has refused to appear before the Banking Inquiry but he has said he is prepared to speak to Irish politicians at an event in Dublin at the end of the month.

There had been a long dispute between the Inquiry and the ECB over the attendance of Mr Trichet before the committee, which aims to establish the events leading up to the bailout.
Mr Chopra accepted that if you are the lender of last resort, such as the ECB was, it was reasonable for it to ask Ireland about the condition of its banks, and to say that if it isn't possible to have them recapitalised via the markets, an international rescue package should be sought.
"My reading of the letters is that, if you're the lender of last resort and you see this [a spike] happening with your liquidity support, I think it's perfectly reasonable for you to ask the borrower, 'what is the condition of your banks, are they solvent and do you have a plan to make these banks viable?'
"Every lender of last resort has to be asking these questions and also be saying, 'look if you can't recapitalise these banks by borrowing on the market, you'd better get an international rescue loan to recapitalise your banks'."
During Mr Chopra's address at the Political Economy of Financial Markets event at Oxford, the former IMF senior official, who is now a visiting fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington DC, also alluded to a number of disagreements between the IMF and Europe concerning Ireland. He said the two sides had "fairly good working relations" but that "it took a lot of effort".
"A lot of things had to be first negotiated with the Europeans before we could negotiate them with the Irish.
"And that took time. And also, to be honest, they didn't have the experience or the technology at the beginning of this process," he said.
Mr Chopra recalled being at a meeting with an Irish official during which one of the European negotiators said something that was "very stupid".
"At that time, the Irish went out and hired foreigners, including Brits, to help them with what they were doing. And this person just shot them down," Mr Chopra recalled.
"The person who made the stupid comment made the comment and ended it by saying, 'I'm not a bank supervisor or bank restructuring expert'. And the person from the Irish side, who happened to be British, said, 'It shows'."
Mr Chopra reiterated that it was unfair for Irish taxpayers to suffer the cost of bailing out the banks when senior bondholders got their money back.
"The IMF staff right from the beginning was very much in favour of imposing losses on senior bondholders. The EU partners were dead against it, especially the ECB," he said.
"The reason given by the Europeans was exaggerated. Yes, there would have been spill-overs. It would not have been so much of a disaster, but the Europeans were just terrified about the implications for bank funding markets."
Mr Chopra also accused the ECB of being "gung-ho" in terms of imposing lots of austerity early, and he said the Irish Government was also "quite aggressive" on the fiscal front.

Profiles: Ajai Chopra

He gained celebrity status among a downbeat populous who were attracted to his charisma but concerned at the policies he advocated.
Ajai Chopra was the public face of the austerity programme in Ireland, which was perceived as being imposed by unsympathetic foreigners more concerned with economic theory than the people whose lives were being ravaged by the recession.
The iconic photograph at the outset of the bailout negotiations captured a sharp-suited Chopra walking past the Shelbourne Hotel with his entourage, as a homeless man with a cup begged for change.
That image travelled around the world and became synonymous with the plight of this country during that fateful period.
Fast-forward three years and Chopra was portrayed in a very different image as he donned a vintage costume during a visit to Bunratty Castle, Co Clare.
It was that of a 19th century banker, and by all accounts, he graciously agreed to the request from the photographer to wear it, and could see the humour.
Chopra became a household name for that very reason. He didn't shy away from publicity - unlike other technocrats.

Jean-Claude Trichet

Jean-Claude Trichet's involvement with Ireland has long been controversial, for his alleged role in bumping the country into a bailout.
The Frenchman has held firm to his claim that Ireland's decision to ask for international funding was one solely taken by the Government, and he never accepted that pressure may have been brought to bear.
But it's not just in Ireland that he's stoked controversy.
The former European Central Bank chief headed up the Frankfurt-based body during the early years of the global financial meltdown and his management of that crisis has swung between praise and deep criticism.
He has been quick to point out that he saw the crisis coming before it struck, but claimed his warnings fell on deaf ears.
As far back as 2005, the Frenchman was warning of a looming financial disaster triggered by credit deals that few people understood.
And when the crisis did break out, he won praise for managing to avert a greater meltdown by issuing emergency loans to banks.
But that praise turned to impatience and head-scratching after he refused to follow the lead of other central bankers and cut interest rates.
That has been viewed as one of his biggest mistakes.

Man leaves hospital with Police escort after dated 17 girlfriends show up

When a man from China’s Hunan province got into a car accident last month, he never knew it would be the beginning of even bigger problems in his life. Hospital staff contacted his loved ones after he was rushed in and shockingly seventeen women turned up at the hospital, claiming to be his girlfriends. The man, whose last name is Yuan, had been seeing all of them secretly, swindling them of large sums in the process.
According to telegraph.co.uk, most of the women are from Hunan province and the oldest is 40 while the youngest, a student, is 19. Yuan was married to one of them but had a child with another. When they came to know the truth, all 17 of them were left in total shock.
“I was really worried when I heard that he was in the hospital,” said Xiao Li, Yuan’s girlfriend of 18 months. “But when I started seeing more and more beautiful girls show up, I couldn’t cry anymore.”
The women’s claims led to a full-fledged police investigation, open a can of worms on the deceptive life of Yuan. The man milked his wife of about $40,000 before divorcing her. He then proceeded to meeting several other women, fleecing them of thousands of yuan in the process. Apart from the 17 women he was seeing in real life, his WeChat account revealed that he had over 200 female targets online.
Once these incriminating details were out in the open, Yuan actually had to leave the hospital early with a police escort to protect him from his scorned girlfriends. With no job or relationship, the man has returned to his hometown to start a new life. He would soon be charged for criminal offence and fraud by the police in China.

Shed tears-Travails of 11-year-old left to die on street by father

Promise and his new surrogate mother, OgunlekeFor the last two years, 11-year-old Promise Christian has been living on the streets of Ipaja-Ayobo, Lagos. Roadsides, front of shops and street corners, all served as young Promise’s bed as he scrounged for survival, begged for food, living on the mercy and magnanimity of residents of the area.
When our correspondent and child rights activist, Mrs. Esther Ogwu, met with the boy and he narrated his story, it was one that would move any heart to tears.
Promise explained that his father, Emmanuel Christian, and mother were from Calabar, the Cross River State capital. He does not know his mother’s name and neither does he remember where the woman lives.
In 2013, Promise’s life, which at the time was already filled with pain and suffering, suddenly changed for the worse.
Aged nine, he found himself on the street, with no one in the world to take care of him.
“My daddy beat me all the time,” he said as he showed our correspondent two large scars on both hands which he said he got from being burnt with a hot iron by his father.
“But the night I saw him last, I did not do anything wrong,” he continued.
Intelligent and smart in English far beyond her peers in Basic One, which he said was the last class he attended, Promise explained how he found himself on the street.
“I woke up in the morning and my daddy had packed all his belongings. I was alone in the room. I did not know he was packing. I was afraid and I began to cry but I thought he would still come back. But he did not till today,” the boy said in halting sentences. He did not cry. But people who were around and listened as he narrated the story could not help but shed tears.
Promise left the empty room he once shared with his father at Ipaja Ayobo in search of food. He found none. Yet he stayed around the house with the hope that his father would show up the following day. He never did.
The hopelessness of his situation began to dawn on him gradually, when he realised a week later that his father had not shown up and nobody in the neighbourhood could give any information about the whereabouts of his father. Thus, Promise began his life as a homeless child on the streets of Ipaja Ayobo.
Residents of the area said the boy sleeps in the front of shops and almost lost his life once when vigilantes caught him sleeping in a small bush beside the road. “They thought he was a robber and wanted to shoot him. But he fled and they later caught him,” a resident said.
Narrating more terrible things he was exposed while sleeping on the streets, Promise said, “There was a time I slept in the front of a shop and I felt something on my body in the middle of the night. It was a snake. I screamed and ran away from the place. Some landlords on the street came out to see who was screaming but they did not allow me to stay in their houses.”
But more than the frightening things he saw, seeing other children living normal lives broke the little boy.
He said, “Anytime I see other children going to school. I always wish to be like them. I always close my eyes in the night and wish that my parents would just come one day and take me away.
“I used to be afraid sleeping in the night before but after many months, I was no longer afraid. I was hungry all the time, so instead of being afraid, I was thinking of my hunger.”
As months rolled by, Promise lost weight and became haggard as the only cloth on his back was given to him by a resident who took pity on him.
A resident informed Ogwu of his plight and the boy was handed over to a woman, Mrs. Taiwo Ogunleke, who had previously taken over the daily feeding and care of the boy.
Ogunleke, a widow, who had four children of her own, explained that there was a time some residents of Ipaja Ayobo wanted to drive the boy away from the area because they said he was constituting a nuisance.
“I first got to hear about him through my children. They said he was sleeping on the street.That was when I decided to give him money for feeding daily. I bought him a pair of shoes and the boy started to call me ‘my mummy’. I was shocked when he prayed for me one day and said he would grow up to reward me for all I was doing for him.
“I was so happy when I was told I could take him in. I was afraid to allow him to live with me fully because I was afraid of what people would say.
“Now, he is like my own child. How could I not take pity on him when I am also a mother? I decided to enrol him in school till the government decides on his matter.”
Ogunleke is a pepper seller at Ipaja-Ayobo.
Ogwu tracked down one of Promise’ uncles, who knew about the boy’s state but did nothing. The uncle later provided the phone number of the boy’s father.
When our correspondent contacted Christian on the phone, the man said his son was possessed.
Christian said, “When he was still living with me, Promise, would always leave home. No matter what I did, he would always run away from home to beg for food outside. That was when I realised that there was an evil spirit tormenting him.
“My job as a fish supplier does not allow me to stay at home most of the time. But anytime I come home, he was always away. I complained, I punished him, but he never stopped.”
Asked why he burnt the boy with hot iron, Christian explained that “it was a mistake.”
He said the day he packed out and abandoned Promise, the boy had left home as usual and he did everything he could to locate him but all his efforts were fruitless.
Asked if he knew the boy had been living and surviving on the streets since he left, Christian fell silent.
About Promise’s mother, Veronica, he said he only had a love affair with the mother and she became pregnant. “She was a cook in the canteen of the company I was working with in Apapa, Lagos at the time.
“I don’t even know her surname. I already had someone else I intended to marry at the time, the pregnancy was a mistake. But after she gave birth to Promise, she married someone else. When the man Veronica married started to complain, I decided to go and take the boy.
“I can no longer remember how I got to the street of the house where Veronica lives with her husband at Ikotun.”
However, Ogwu has reported the case at the Ayobo Police Division, Lagos where the Divisional Police Officer has promised to track down the father of the boy.
Ogwu said, “It is necessary for the Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation to take action on the boy’s case and we have written a letter informing them about the boy’s state. I am confident the government will take custody of the boy for now.
“At this point, our concern is the welfare of the boy. Obviously, the father no longer see his son as a human being he should take responsibility for. Abandoning one’s child for such a long time is criminal and we hope the police would handle the case as such.”

He drank poison over N1m loan – Accused widow of pharmacist

Busayo and PaulThere is nothing to describe what Busayo Olafare is going through at the moment as she languishes in the custody of the Department of Criminal Investigation of the Lagos State Police Command, one week after the suspected suicide of her pharmacist husband, Paul.
Paul was found dead in their Oworonsoki, Lagos home on Sunday, April 12, 2015. His death was initially suspected to have been suicide because a container of a popular rat poison, called ‘Sniper’ was found beside him.
However, his late husband’s relation told the police that his wife might have poisoned him and made it look like suicide.
In a statement made at the DCI by a relation of the deceased, Busayo was found packing her belongings out of their house shortly after her husband’s body was discovered, which was why they suspected that she might be attempting to run away.
But Busayo, in her statement to the police, explained that right from when she first met her husband, her family and that of Paul’s have not been in good terms.
“I was in the bathroom that evening when he drank the poison called Sniper. I came out of the bathroom and saw him holding the bottle and quickly snatched it away from him, but he said he had already drunk the poison,” she told the police. “I know my husband owes a lot of money. It is at least N1m.That is the only reason my husband can kill himself. He has been very depressed because of the money he owes.”
Busayo, who got married to Paul in 2011 and had a son with him, said she had cried and wailed as she assured her in-laws that she had no reason to kill her husband but they still did not believe her.
When our correspondent visited the DCI, some family members of Busayo, who were angry about the continued detention of the widow, said instead of allowing her to mourn, they have subjected her to more punishment.
A relation, Mr. Soyemi, who identified himself as uncle of the suspect, told our correspondent that he would be releasing a statement on their side of the story.
The investigators at the DCI said an autopsy would soon be carried out on the deceased’s body.
A source close to the investigation told our correspondent that at the moment, there was no reason to release Busayo and rule the deceased’s death as suicide.
“The wife is still the prime suspect for now,” the source said.
Paul graduated from University of Lagos in 2006 and was described by friends on his Facebook wall as a youth leader in a white garment church in Lagos.Busayo is also a graduate of UNILAG.
At the time of filing this report, the spokesperson for the Lagos State Police Command, Mr. Kenneth Nwosu, had not been reachable for comment as calls placed to him indicated his phone was switched off.

I’d have died with Clem Onyeka–Nzube Onyia, actress

Nzube Onyia
Actress, Nzube Onyia, is one hell of a lucky gal! She was riding with late actor, Clem Onyeka, that fateful day last year in Asaba, the Delta State capital, when she watched helplessly as bullets on which rode demons of death snuffed the life out of the thespian. In this chat with NKECHI CHIMA, the native of Nneato, Umunneochi, Abia State and star of Pretty Liars, relives those scary last moments with Onyeka.
Excerpts:
While growing up did you ever think of becoming an actress?
Yes! I had always wanted to become an actress. I got inspired from my secondary school days playing in my school’s Debating & Dramatic Club productions. But my parents, being disciplinarians and religious were not comfortable with my choice of career. However, I am delighted my parents eventually gave their consent after realising I had a very strong passion for acting.
Did your parents give you reasons why you shouldn’t become an actress initially?
They believed actresses are wayward and hardly stay married but I was able to prove to them that it is all about the individual and not the industry. It all depends on the way you live your life and I let them understand that there is no way the industry will influence me so much that I will forget my background and where I am coming from.
When exactly did you begin your career?
I have spent four years trying to find my foot in the movie industry. I started out officially in 2011, after graduating from Alvan Ikoku College of Education, where I studied Economics Education.
You have worked with so many stars in the industry, which among them has inspired you the most?
Chioma Chukwuka-Apotha is among the stars I have always loved and desired to work with. She is my role model and I will always respect her skills.
Could you recall the first movie you featured in?
It was an Igbo language movie entitled Ukwu Nwanyi Owerri. I played alongside Ameachi Munagor among many others.
Could you recall some of the movies you have acted in?
Honestly, I can’t remember all but I will mention a few like Nurse Elisa, Bloody War, Pretty Liars, University Mafia, My Prophecy, and Who Owns The Ghetto.
Which movie brought you to the limelight?
I have played so many remarkable roles but the character I played in Pretty Liars, produced by P Collins and directed by Tchidi Chikere gave me so much recognition. I played alongside Zubby Michael; I was his girlfriend.
Tell us a bit about yourself?
I was born into a family of nine and I am the first daughter. My family resides in Okigwe where I grew up. I attended Beatman Nursery School and St. Marie Primary School before proceeding to Marist Comprehensive Academy, Uturu, Abia State.
Are you a catholic?
Yes! I grew up in a Catholic home and hope to get married to a Catholic so that I can remain a practicing Catholic.
What if a non-Catholic proposes marriage?
It won’t hinder our marriage as long as I am in love with him, but I will beg him to wed me in the Catholic church.
Would you say you are looking for a Catholic husband?
No! But it is my desire to marry a Catholic and train my children the Catholic way. But if God says otherwise, who am I to question God’s plans for my life.
How is your boyfriend?
He is fine, thank you.
Will you be proud enough to tell us who has taken over your heart?
No, it is my private life and he wouldn’t be happy having me discuss our affair on the pages of newspapers. But I will definitely tell the world whenever God approves my marriage. And I pray for a man after my heart; I am talking about a mature, caring and good looking man with the fear of God engraved on the walls of his heart.
A while ago, you and late Clem Onyeka were caught up in a cross-fire between the police and armed robbers on your way to location in Asaba. Could you tell us about your close shave with death?
I have realised that whatever God has not approved will not be accomplished. And I give God all the glory for saving my life because I could have died like Clem. But God said it was not yet time for me to say farewell to the world. I was inside the car with him when they shot at his car. He was actually driving when they shot though, he wasn’t the target because it was a cross-fire between the police and armed robbers. When the bullet hit him, he lost control and the car which was in motion swerved, so I took control of the steering wheel trying to pack the car in order to save our lives but we crashed into a building and I ended up with a fracture and dislocation to my right arm and was admitted at the hospital immediately. I thank God I am living to tell the story.
What did you learn from the experience?
It has finally dawned on me that life is all vanity upon vanity and it is not worth it killing yourself for earthly desires and riches. We should be preoccupied with eternity.
How did your parents react to the news?
Honestly, my parents were grateful to God because it was a miracle. It could have been me because none of us was a target. We held a thanksgiving celebration to appreciate the gift of life.
What do you miss most about Clem?
He was a jolly good follow, everyone close to him in the industry would attest to his lifestyle; he was a friendly and jovial actor.

Be good losers, Ajimobi tells Folarin, others

The Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, has called on the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the state, Teslim Folarin, and other political parties that lost April 11 governorship election to be good losers and team up with him in his quest to take the state to higher height.
The governor spoke during the presentation of certificates of return to the winners of the March 28 National Assembly and April 11 governorship elections in Ibadan on Friday.
Also at the event, the National Commissioner in charge of Oyo, Ogun and Ekiti states, Prof. Lai Olurode, lamented the number of invalid votes during the elections, saying that the wasted votes could have made a difference between the losers and winners.
He blamed the waste on lack of voter education and revealed that Oyo State had the second highest percentage in the South-West.
The governor said, “This election is the most credible, freest and fairest in the history of Nigeria. We cannot complete this debt of gratitude without acknowledging our fellow contestants who ran the 2015 elections race with us. The contests were keen, the race was swift but no one’s head was bruised at the end of this brotherly struggle for power.
“No one is the loser at the end of the day. There was no victor, no vanquished at the end of it all. The people of Oyo State, indeed democracy, are the winners. Let us be robust sportsmen who receive victory with sober reflection and take losses without bitterness but with stoic surrender to the will of the people.
“I must advise that we should not be sore losers. We should purge ourselves of electoral illiteracy. Don’t let us resort to self help and acrimony. I extend a hand of fellowship to other candidates to join me in the quest to further develop the state. The combination of attributes possessed by each candidate will be useful for the development of the state.”
While looking back at the protest that greeted the posting of Resident Electoral Commissioner, Rufus Akeju, to the state, the INEC national commissioner, Olurode, said the protests were sponsored by politicians who did not want a free and fair election.
He said, “In Oyo State, the hue and cry that greeted the posting of Akeju as the REC must have come from politicians who abhor free and fair election. We cannot continue like this in this country by disrespecting institutions. Nobody in INEC is pregnant with elections. The INEC Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, is not pregnant with votes. We allow the people to speak with their votes and we respect their choices. They might in the process, unfortunately, make wrong choices, but that is their choice.”

I left PDP 48 hours to election to spite Mimiko–Olanusi, deputy governor

Ondo State Deputy Governor, Ali OlanusiOndo State Deputy Governor, Ali Olanusi, explains the issues he has with Governor Olusegun Mimiko and why he had to defect to APC few days before the last governorship election in this interview withOluwole Josiah
How have you fared so far in politics?
I never imagined I would be deputy governor. When I was the Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, I hated cheating. I believed then that (Olusegun) Agagu, who was the governor was mistreating Olusegun Mimiko. At that time, if he (Agagu) called me to say that I should do something to Mimiko, I would tell him no. Since he had joined PDP and Agagu had made him Secretary to the Government, I felt he should be allowed to perform. I did not know that Dr. Agagu knew him well. I never worked with Mimiko before then politically. When I was in the UPN, he was not ripe enough to play politics. I was the chairman of a constituency at that time and I had grown politically. I bought vehicles for UPN and for late Papa Awolowo’s campaigns in 1979. In the Social Democratic Party, we were both in the same party but we supported different people. He supported Evangelist Olumilua while I was working with Dr. Olajide. Olumilua became the governor and when he appointed the members of his cabinet, he left out all those who did not back him during primaries. Most of his appointees were from Ekiti, so our people in Akoko South were not happy. Olumilua also sponsored a man I sponsored to become the Chairman of the Local Government to contest for the House of Representatives in the SDP, one Funso Babadele from Oka. At that time, I was not interested. I had even gone back to my business.
So why did you come back?
My people in Akoko South persuaded me to run against him. I had hesitated initially, but I gave in after much pressure. I earlier had the opportunity to serve as a member of the Constituent Assembly. I contested and won election overwhelmingly to the House of Representatives. I was appointed the Chairman of a viable committee known then as the House Committee on Federal Commissions and Agencies, which is now about almost eight committees in the House of Reps. But Abuja again flushed us out in 1993 and I simply returned to my business as usual. I returned again to politics during the period of what the late Bola Ige called the “five leprous fingers,” during (Sani) Abacha’s era. Those were the five parties he created. It was during that time again that I associated with some people. Unfortunately, Abacha did not allow that to see the light of the day. But in 1999, I joined the Peoples Democratic Party.
You became the Chairman of the PDP in Ondo State shortly after that?
I became the Chairman of the PDP in 2001. Remember that Agagu contested against late Adebayo Adefarati in 1999 and lost. As a result of the woeful result or performance of the party in Ondo State then, they came around again as they did before, especially the young elements, to beg me. I can remember some names of those who came to me in Lagos, I remember Mike Adeyeye, late Adedipe, who later became high chief in Akure, and some other young men. They came to me in Lagos that I should come home and head the party. I said I could not leave my family and business to return to Akure to lead the party on a full time basis. But they prevailed and then I succumbed to their pressure. This was in 2001. I made it a full time job.
We learnt your salary was enormous…
I had no salary. My wife was supervising my business and was sending money to me from Lagos. It was about three years later that my wife joined me in Akure. After Agagu won election, I was appointed as the Chairman of the Nigerian Shippers Council.
If you claim you helped Agagu to win the election, why did you leave him and the party you also claim you helped to build?
After Agagu had spent about three and half years, things were not going on well. The way he was treating Mimiko and doing other things was not satisfactory to me. After correcting him and he refused, I had to go to former President Olusegun Obasanjo and I told him that the way things were going, the PDP might not be able to win election in Ondo State. He asked why, I told him that the first two years was used for road plan. There was too much grammar. I told him the Exco would commence around 9 or 10 am and end at 11am. I told him nothing was happening in the state. I remember I went to see Obasanjo with my secretary, Boluwaji Kunlere. The late Agagu was very close to Obasanjo and so I thought the former president would be able to prevail on him to use the remaining one and half years of his term to come up with solutions. But unfortunately, Agagu kept the malice.
We learnt the major issue you had with Agagu was because he did not support your senatorial ambition?
When I decided to go to the Senate, Agagu welcomed the idea and encouraged me, only to turn around to urge Bode Olajumoke to run for the Senate. This was surprising because Olajumoke was the first person I told about my ambition in my senatorial district to run for the Senate. I even went to his house with my wife to spend the first day of the New Year with his family in 2006. Olajumoke, who had earlier supported me, told Agagu that he was not prepared to run unless he would bankroll his primaries, which Agagu did and he emerged the candidate. Although I had resigned as Chairman of the Nigerian Shippers Council and that of the PDP in the state, I was asked to return as chairman of the party, I refused, more so that Agagu was not disposed to that.
But we learnt you left the party because of that…
I actually turned my sympathy to Olusegun Mimiko who is now harassing me because of what was going on in the PDP. He was lovely, lively and respectful. When I was Chairman of the PDP, in fairness to him, including Agagu, they respected me. I was a no-nonsense chairman and you can ask anybody in the party then. It was during that time that I and some principal officers of the party including my secretary suggested Mimiko should contest against the governor. But as the Chairman of the party, I knew that if Mimiko contested the primaries in the PDP, he would not win even though the people of Ondo State liked him and wanted him to contest. So we joined hands with my colleagues, at least, 11 members of the central working committee, joined me to form Labour Party. I resigned my appointment as the Chairman of the PDP.
Since you formed the party, why did you choose the position of just a deputy governor?
After forming Labour Party, Mimiko called me and asked me to recommend three persons from Akoko as his running mate. I recommended late Clement Adebambo from Ogbagi Akoko and Saka Lawal, from Afin Akoko. I said these two gentlemen could work with him. After about a week or two, he phoned me. I was at my office at the Nigerian Shippers Council at Apapa. He said he wanted to come to Apapa to meet me. He said he didn’t know how he would put it but he actually wanted me to be his running mate. I told him that I was too old for that position and that he should consider the people that I recommended to him. He went to persuade my wife in Akure and when I came home, my wife persuaded me to accept the offer.
But didn’t you think you were too old for the position of a deputy governor?
I insisted that I was too old for the position. But Mimiko promised (which he kept to some extent, before he showed his true colour) that I would not be put under immense pressure. But I told my wife that the humiliation and insults that came with that position was much. I told her she shouldn’t complain whenever such arose. And she agreed. That was why she had to bear all we went through and that was why we were able to tolerate him and his wife up till this time before we decided to leave them.
Would you mention some of the maltreatments you suffered, specifically as deputy governor?
Immediately we were sworn in, Mimiko had his own plan from day one which was unknown to me. This was why many members of the party left after forming the government. What he introduced was very alien to the practice we met in the Western Region and in Ondo State. He was not the first governor anyway. He took over everything. He single-handedly selected the 22 commissioners. When I saw this, I was annoyed. But he pleaded with me and promised he would create the Local Government and Chieftaincy Ministry. He decided to create it in conjunction with the former chairman of LP, Olaiya Oni. I pleaded to be excused. I said I wouldn’t want to leave office and be going to Abuja to be reporting in the office of EFCC and ICPC. Eighty per cent of the accusations levelled against the last administration were about the money diverted from the local governments. He promised that he would put me in charge of a very powerful agency where a lot of money would be spent on power generation and that was better than the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs. But I told him he should do what he wanted because I was not in the job for money. The prestige in that office was alright. I had a means of living. Within six months, all the responsibilities I had, as the chairman of State Tender’s Board and Joint Allocation Committee, where I presided over the monies coming from the federation account to the local governments, he went to the House of Assembly and got a bill to revoke the order where the deputy governor was chairman of JAC. I did not bother. He decided to select occasional members of the cabinet or chose any person he wanted to take over the job. There was no official pronouncement on that. This he did to render me completely non-functional. So, I came to the office, I read papers and so on.
Was that what led you to part ways with the governor?
Yes. After enduring the maltreatment, I had to leave. He had been unfair to me. I had endured hardship, but I did not count it as hardship. I am satisfied with my salary. It was clear that Mimiko did not value me. So for him to value me, I decided to leave 48 hours to the election. There were many things he did against me. It came to a point that even when I phoned him, he would not pick my call. When I complained, he said I should not call him directly, that I had to call his ADC, since he was permanently in Aso Rock Villa. It was only when he came back that he would be approving files. I actually asked him if he really said I should be calling his ADC when I needed his attention and he said yes. I just felt this was too much for me to bear.
We learnt you were also not happy with him because of the appointments he made…
Yes. I was not happy with the way he distributed his appointments. In my local government, he appointed just four commissioners in the last six years, whereas other local governments still have the ones he appointed in 2009. He has changed four commissioners, appointing them without my knowledge. He never consults me in any decision he makes. He said since they are going to be working with him directly, he has the right to pick them. What annoyed me was during this election, while we were preparing for it, he decided to pick the person who would represent my constituency. I considered that to be too much. If you say you can nominate candidates from other constituencies, it is wrong of him to go ahead to nominate a candidate in my own constituency; a candidate who has spent eight years in the House of Reps, to return for the third term to represent a constituency of four towns.
Since you said you started having issues with the governor right from the first day, why did it take you this long to defect and why did you even wait till the eve of the election to defect?
I am not in the office because of money. I am from a family background that respects constituted authority. My father was a traditional chief. With my age, I am not in a rush for money. With my age, I am contented with what I have. I have every cause to thank God. God gave me three children. They are doing fine. Even as deputy governor, my daughter still sends me money for cow and ram for Sallah. I told her not to bother, that I have enough, but she said she knew I was doing same for my father and that she would be doing it for me too. So I said alright. So, it is not money. I enjoy the love the Ondo State people have for me. I also respect eminent persons in the state.
But you haven’t told us why you chose to defect few hours to election day…
When Mimiko wanted to defect to PDP, I was here in Akure. He had been in Abuja for two weeks at the time. Early in the morning around 4am, the governor called me and asked where I was, I told him I was on my bed, he said alright and that he just wanted to hear from me. About three hours later, that should be around 7 or 8am, the Chief of Staff called me. I asked where he was calling from and he said he was in Lokoja. I asked what was happening, he said he thought the governor had sent for me, that he was on his way to Abuja to go and defect to PDP. Defect? That was what I wanted to do since last year. February last year, I wanted to return to the PDP, Mimiko pleaded with me that I should not. I stayed back. He went there, he defected with his commissioners. I only heard of it in the news. When he came back, I thought he would give reasons why he did not consult me but he did not say anything or mention it at all. I called him and complained to him. I told him what he did wasn’t right. I asked him why he would go to Abuja to defect to PDP without letting me know. One of the party officials even said I was not a member of PDP because when Mimiko defected with his commissioners, I was not there. It dawned on me that this action was not by mistake; it was deliberate. He said I was no more useful or relevant. I gave him 48 hours. After all the maltreatment he had given me, I said alright, I defected to APC since he did not even want me in PDP. He defected from LP to PDP while I defected to the APC. I don’t know why he is annoyed.
But we learnt you worked against PDP even when you were in the party…
How did I work against the PDP? Let people substantiate the allegation. After messing up the primaries, he asked me to head a reconciliation committee. He did not give me any role to play during the primaries. I went round the 18 local governments and I submitted my report that as a result of imposition of candidates, it did not allow democracy to work. I said that was what created the crisis in the party and that such things should not be allowed to happen again in the party. We recommended that all those who paid as much as N1m, N2m to obtain nomination forms should have their monies refunded to them as a way of pacifying them. But the governor refused. He said he would not give any money to anybody.
How would you describe the last election where APC emerged victorious in the presidential election and lost the House of Assembly election to PDP?
The only election we held peacefully here was the presidential election. The House of Assembly election saw the carting away of ballot boxes instigated by the governor. There is record that they carted away many ballot boxes during election. People were killed during the House of Assembly election in the governor’s town, Ondo East. So don’t regard that as an election. See the way they released the results. That result has nothing to do with the people of Ondo State.
Would you advise your party, APC, to go to court to challenge the results?
Even though we are a product of the judiciary, Mimiko does not respect the judiciary. The party can go to court to challenge it, but that is a decision it will have to take. The election was nothing to write home about. Ondo came second in the INEC’s rating of areas that witnessed violence. Why didn’t the governor use the style he adopted in the House of Assembly election for the presidential election? He was doling out dollars or naira to people who filed in the queue. Mimiko is self-centred. He said the House of Assembly election was his own election; he did not spend the money meant for the presidential election and now he was dolling it out to those who had been impoverished for the past six years. He was giving N1,000 to each of them. Is that election? Vote and show and collect N1,000, or N2,000, it depends on the degree of the people living in that area. In some areas, they were not given more than N1,000. There are some areas in Owo where they gave them N5,000.
We heard the House of Assembly wants to impeach you soon.
No one has told me that the House wants to impeach me.
What about the protest by students calling for your impeachment?
That was organised by Mimiko, the governor. Is that the way of doing things? Is it when Ondo State people go out to protest in Abuja that they don’t want somebody that they will take action? He has gone back to Abacha era, when people will say do this, or do that, in the pretense that people were mounting pressure before action will be taken. As the Chief Executive of the state, does he need to be told by students who have not tasted life? They are still in school, that they gave him seven days ultimatum to impeach me. Let him start his impeachment and let us see how it will sail through. I don’t have any function. If I have committed any offence, let them bring it out. I am not aware that the House of Assembly wants to impeach me. Maybe it is hearsay.
You still have up till 2017 to remain in office. How do you intend to manage your relationship with the governor through this period?
I will do it like other deputy governors who defected from their party to other parties. As they are managing their own, we will manage our own here. Go to Nasarawa, go to Niger, go to Ogun, they are many.

tosabod@gmail.com


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