Nigeria’s Perennial Flood: Happening of Preventable Disaster II

Nigeria’s Perennial Flood: Happening of Preventable Disaster II By Prof MK Othman   This is a corollary to my two articles published in this column on 16th October 2020 and 23rd June 2021, which can be accessed via and it is the concluding part of last week's piece. As mentioned earlier, an Inter-ministerial Committee was set up for the Development of a National/Multi-Sectorial Flood Emergency Preparedness and Response Plan. Despite the committee’s effort to address the flood tragedy, the nation lost 70 people in the 2021 flooding with over 200,000 people displaced. This year, 2022, the flood incidences occurred with catastrophic severity. Already, over 600 people were reported killed by the flood with millions of people displaced in addition to losses of properties and farmland across the nation. Perhaps, this calamity gingered the Federal Government to speedily act on the committee’s assignment. Last month, the Permanent Secretary of the M

Nigeria’s Perennial Flood: Happening of Preventable Disaster

  Nigeria’s Perennial Flood: Happening of Preventable Disaster By Prof MK Othman In our lackadaisical manner as a developing nation, we ignore almost every imminent disaster until it happens, then our leaders begin to shed crocodile tears and before you pronounce “Jack”, an investigation panel would have been put in place, if the disaster is big enough. In most cases, the hidden aim of the panel is to avoid asking embarrassing questions about the preventable incidence. By the time, the panel report is submitted, if ever done, the euphoria of the incident would have gone, the victims of the disaster; the dead were buried, and the injured and properties losers would have accepted their fate as part of their destiny, and the nation will move on waiting for another circle of disaster to occur. These disasters range from plane crashes, road mishaps, and fire incidents to banditry activities. Sometimes, the bandits/insurgents are bold enough to announce their visit to communities, but little

EndASUUStrike: Victory of the Hawks, Nation Riding on a Back of Tiger

 #EndASUUStrike: Victory of the Hawks, Nation Riding on a Back of Tiger By Prof. MK Othman When I joined the academic turf over two decades ago, I was accosted by a hawk on a recruitment mission, a kind of membership drive. The first lesson of hawkish agenda in a game is “win by any means, hook or crook” as the end justifies the means. The game must be manipulated to bring out the desired result, which is more or less a selfish end before the game even commences. Hawks fight to always win and hardly believe in “gives and takes”. Peaceful or diplomatic ways of winning a game are alien to them. “Leave the ball and tackle the leg of your opponent to secure advantage.” Hawks are driven by selfishness, survival instinct, and egoism, which becloud their sense of reasoning and sometimes lead to their failure. The 18-day proportionate salary paid to ASUU members is a clear indication that the hawks are opposed to a peaceful resolution of the ASUU-FGN imbroglio. They have thrown a spanner in th

BPM Liz Truss Resignation: Epitome of People-Centered Politics

 BPM Liz Truss Resignation: Epitome of People-Centered Politics By Prof. MK Othman Confidently and majestically, she strolled to the podium with calmness and unperturbed, she made one minute and fifteen seconds speech, which contained a few key messages. These are the Economic downturn affecting thousands of households in Britain, her inability to achieve her campaign promises, "I recognize though I cannot deliver the mandate", due consultation, and then announcing her resignation as the British Prime Minister. Planning for the election of her successor. Hundred of millions of viewers watched the video clip with utter shock and disbelief. Few viewers watched her for the first time because she spent only 45 days in the holy office as Prime Minister. Truss is one of the shortest-serving premiers in British political history after just six weeks in office. She came in with rekindled hope and mammoth aspirations of the citizenry.  Truss, with her longtime political ally and bosom

Re: #EndASUUStrike: Gbajabiamila, Epitome of Exemplary Leadership and Matters Arising

 Re: #EndASUUStrike: Gbajabiamila, Epitome of Exemplary Leadership and Matters Arising By Prof. MK Othman The action of the distinguished Speaker, Honourable Femi Gbajabiamila in #EndASUUStrike was highly valuable beyond quantification. He saved the situation at a critical moment when the Court of Appeal had ordered ASUU to do what some legal luminaries termed “doctrine of impossibility”, and when all hopes were almost lost. As mentioned in my piece last week, when a snake is killed, do not celebrate until the head is severed from the body. Therefore, Gbajabiamila’s action is a solid foundation for ending the strike but the edifice has to be completed by putting in place a strategy to ensure fulfillment of the agreement as when due by the Federal Government.   Today, the universities are re-opened but the lecturers lack the motivation, the strength and even the passion to face their students and happily teach, no thanks to government posture as the absolute winner of the imbroglio. My

#EndASUUStrike: Gbajabiamila, Epitome of Exemplary Leadership and Matters Arising

#EndASUUStrike: Gbajabiamila, Epitome of Exemplary Leadership and Matters Arising By Prof. MK Othman My first and last encounter with the honorable speaker, Olufemi Hakeem Gbajabiamila was at the public hearing of an Agricultural Bill after the commencement of the 9th Assembly. He walked into the venue of the event quietly and seamlessly without the paraphrenia and dust-raising protocol, talked to the audience, prayed for fruitful deliberation, and then walked out. I was impressed by his business-like look, core humility, and simplicity, and hardly believed he was the speaker of the National Assembly. Over the years, the conducts or misconduct of the National Assembly members leave much to be desired. Their conduct from the padding of budget, to the so-called constituency projects and earning jumbo salaries and allowances (perhaps, the highest in the world monetarily) to themselves has made many Nigerians lose hope in finding a saint among them, it is like finding a virgin in the mater

ABU@60: Giant, Still Briskly Walking in the Right Direction

 ABU@60: Giant, Still Briskly Walking in the Right Direction By Prof. M. K. Othman On Tuesday, 4th October 2022, my Alma Matter, my means of livelihood, Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria was 60 years. As we fondly call it, the great ABU has transformed from a regional citadel of learning to the most cosmopolitan, diverse, nationalist breeding ground for the intelligentsia. Thanks to its founding fathers who had a clear vision of how knowledge could conquer the world without firing a shot.  Their vision made them realize achieving excellence in education requires merit, hard work, and dedication. There should be no room for nepotism, racism, tribalism, and religious inclination. This vision became the central pillar on which ABU was built. 60 years later, this academic octopus has lived up to its founding fathers’ vision and expectations. ABU is no doubt an icon of nation-building considering its giant contributions since its establishment. The University with two campuses, occupying