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Venezuela In Crisis

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The crisis in Venezuela seems to be getting worse week by week following the disputed presidential elections held in May 2018 in which President Nicholas Maduro was re-elected.
Following the hues and cries, the national assembly become factionalised with the opposition controlled majority on the 10th of January 2019 recognising the parliamentary leader, Juan Guaido as the acting president of the country who eventually on the 23rd of January declared himself as the president of the country, a direct challenge to the incumbent president.
Why did this crisis start in the first place? According to political analysts, two major factors created this high level of political metability in venezuela a once prosperous and peaceful country. The first was the economic meltdown which began in 2010 under the presidency of the Late Hugo Chavez, and the non-compromising nature of the incumbent president Nicholas Maduro who the opposition claimed rigged the elections of 2014 and that of 2018. In addition to that, there are the allegations that apart from the rigging of the 2018 presidential elections, major opposition candidates were Prevented from running for offices.
As the political situation continues to deteriorate, the US, Bazil, Canada with some Latin American countries and some European Union countries have recognized Juan Guaido as President of venezuala while Russia,China, Cuba, Iran and their alised still recognise Nicholas Maduro as the legitimate president of the country.
As the tension continues to mount, some leading opposition figures have fled, some detained and attempts to factionalise the armed forces and the judiciary have so far failed and despite the sanctions imposed by the United States of America on venezuala, Maduro is still hanging on accusing the opposition for colluding with the American government for trying to overthrow his administration.
However, the opposition is not relenting in its effort to get rid of Maduro from office as the daily protest to oust him continues.
But what is quite worrisome is the unforeseen consequences of the action of the opposition. What if the protests turn violent and result in a civil war like that of Syria, which resulted in the destruction of over 40 per cent of the country’s infrastructure and displacement of millions of people. For now the scenario is relatively calm and hopefully the people of venezuela are more mature in their political outlook, that is both the opposition and members of the ruling party.
If Maduro were to be generally unpopular like Omar Al-Bashir of Sudan or Abdelaziz Bouteflika of Algeria he would have been removed from office long ago. In any case, every country is unique and what may work in country A, may not work out in Country B.
As the politicians lock horns for supremacy, one thing that they have tried to avoid with saner minds cautioning them is never to allow the country plunge into a civil war as dialogue and negotiations are always the best option in resolving issues. Otherwise, deadly armed merchants are waiting on the wings cash in whenever there is instability and the possibility of a civil war in any country.
The examples are many, that’s why even the United States of America is cautious in its approach to the crisis in Venezuela.
For a country to scide into such political crisis, several factors come into play such as personal ambition, the greed for power and foreign interest groups who might not like the politics of the incumbent in power or the possibility of creating chaos so that an individual or a politician who they believe will protect their interest will propped up to take over the reigns of government. So they are ever ready to use every means available to instigate crisis or cash on the existing crisis to achieve their aims by supporting a faction either through diplomatic support or financial inducement to bring about their desired change.
If people say that nobody benefits form chaos in the political life of any country, then we are still living in a fantasy world. Definitely, in every civil war, manufacturers of arms and ammunitions and providers of the necessary logistics and other accessories will hope to make sales and profit.
The economices of these countries will make improvements with job creation based on the increasing demands for their products and services. So one thing that should be paramount to the people of Veneuzuela is never to allow their country to become the next playground or battle field for any proxy war for merchants of death. They should learn from Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.
They should also ask themselves why the western countries resolve their own political crisis without all these drama, bloodshed and the appeal for foreign support, whereas the reverse is the case for developing countries. It is only when we play into the hands of opportunists next target. Countries in Latin America have passed through violent revolutions after their independence from Spain and Portugal. They have also experienced brutal military dictatorships especially in the 20th century, and now that all of them are under democratic rule, there is no need or any of therebe it Venezuela to go book to the old path of bloodshed and war of attrition.
For any civil war to occur, it venezuala is only the people of venuzuela that will suffer the consequences and all what the United Nations will do is just to pass resolutions upon resolutions to end the conflict. Yemen is in a mess likewise Syria.
The future can still be better only if there is dialogue and trust.

 

Tonye Ikiroma-Owiye

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PDP Women Protest, Demand Justice For Slain Party Leader

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Women stakeholders in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), on Wednesday, protested to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Abuja, demanding justice for Mrs Salome Abuh who was killed in Kogi State.
Mrs Abuh, the PDP Women Leader of Ochadamu Ward in Ofu Local Government Area of Kogi State, was murdered in her house on November 18 in a post-election violence.
The women led by PDP National Women Leader, Hajiya Mariya Waziri, told newsmen that they would not rest or relent until justice was secured for the deceased.
“Today, Nigerian women have gathered to continue our mourning and agitation over the death of an innocent woman, our sister, friend and mother, Mrs Abuh who was killed in cold blood in Kogi for participation in politics.
“We are here today to find answers to these nagging questions: Why are the murderers of our sister Mrs Abuh who are well known in their community still walking free?
“How long will justice continue to be delayed and denied for Mrs Abuh?
Who killed Salome Abuh? Who killed Abuh, this innocent mother?” she asked.
Waziri said that no mother deserved to be killed in cold blood, not even after enduring the pains and strife of motherhood.
The national woman leader described the killing as the ‘height of humiliation’, suppression of women in Nigeria, and a huge setback for women participation in politics.
Waziri called on President Muhammadu Buhari to take major action that would bring the perpetrators to justice, while also calling on Nigerians to raise their voices in solidarity for justice for Abuh.
Executive Secretary of NHRC, Mr Tony Ojukwu, receiving the protesting women, said that the Commission commiserated with them in their moment of grief.
Ojukwu said while it was expected that Nigeria’s elections should be improving, unfortunately the improvement in the electoral system in the past seemed to have been rolled back during the Kogi and Bayelsa governorship elections.
“Everybody has attested to this. It behoves on all of us to make sure that we take steps to deepen our democracy in making sure that things like this did not go unchecked.”
Ojukwu said that was why Justice Uwaise electoral reform committee advocated that an Electoral Offences Commission be established to ensure that electoral offenders were tried and prosecuted for justice to prevail.

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Abia IPAC To Formulate Dev Plan For Good Governance

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The Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) in Abia State says it would develop a 25-year development plan that could facilitate good governance and overall transformation of the state.
The Chairman of the council, Mr Ceekay Igara, said this last Wednesday, when he unveiled the newly elected officials of the council to newsmen in Umuahia.
Igara said that as the name implied, IPAC should advice the ruling Peoples Democratic Party on the best ways to administer the state.
“We want to join hands with the ruling party to develop the major cities of Umuahia, Aba and Ohafia with the development plan we shall produce.
“We cannot continue to do one thing the same way and expect a different result.
“IPAC is not supposed to play the role of opposition. Our role is advisory and we shall be advising rather than fighting the government.
“If we fight the government, then the citizenry will suffer because fighting will stall development, “ Igara said.
He said that his leadership was determined to do things differently from what obtained in the past, using different strategies to achieve result.
He said that as a major stakeholder in the affairs of the state, IPAC would evolve a robust plan to guide the government to ensure that it delivered the dividend of democracy to the people.
He said that the new leadership would devise new techniques of getting its advice across and acceptable to the government.
Igara said that IPAC under his watch would educate and reorientate the chairmen of all the political parties on ways to meet the people’s expectations.
He said that the council would establish effective communication with traditional institutions and religious organisations to sensitise and mobilise the citizenry for their active participation in the electoral process.
He wondered why less than half-a-million of the two million registered voters in the state voted in the 2019 polls and blamed the development on people’s apathy and lack of confidence in the ability of the Independent National Electoral Commission to discharge its duties creditably.

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Public Hearing: Atiku Decries Congestion In Higher Education Sector

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Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, has said that Nigeria’s higher education sector is overburdened by population growth.
He suggested the establishment of more tertiary institutions across the country to cope with the country’s growing population.
He stated this at a public hearing on a bill to establish Modibbo Adama University Yola, held at the National Assembly Complex, Abuja yesterday.
The bill which passed second reading in the Senate on November 13 seeks to convert the Modibbo Adama University of Technology (MAUTech) Yola, a mono-disciplinary institute to a multi-disciplinary and engaging institution of higher learning.
Abubakar said that the higher education sector was also overburdened by a significant youth bulge.
“More than 60 per cent of the country’s population is under the age of 24 years; almost one in four Sub-Saharan people reside in Nigeria, making it Africa’s most populous country.
“From an estimated 42.5 million people at the time of independence in 1960, Nigeria’s population has more than quadrupled to 186,988 million people in 2016 (UN projection).
“The United Nations anticipates that Nigeria will become the third largest country in the world by 2050 with 399 million people,’’ Atiku said.
The former vice-president said that with such projections, Nigeria’s exponential population growth was exerting immense pressure on the country’s resources and overstretching public services and infrastructure.
Abubakar further explained that record from Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) indicated a wide disparity between the number of applications and the actual number of successful admission in the nation’s tertiary institutions.
He said that converting MAUTech Yola to a conventional university would expand the chance of qualified candidates to get placement beyond the limited confines of engineering and sciences.
“The conversion of the university to a conventional university which in addition to courses in science and technology will have the mandate to run courses in medicine, pharmacy, law, the arts and social and management sciences, among others.
“This indeed is the surest way to accelerate access, quality, relevance and equity for our people in Adamawa.
“I formally join fellow compatriots in the advocacy for the conversion of the university from a specialised entity to a conventional one,” Abubakar said.
He, however, appealed to members of the National Assembly to review the law on compulsory basic free education, alleging that the funds given to states to develop education were being diverted.
Sponsor of the bill Sen. Aishatu Dahiru (APC-Adamawa Central) said that the world was moving from mono-disciplinary institutions to multi-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary institutions of learning.
“In keeping with this, it will also have well-grounded students of technology with knowledge of the social sciences and humanities and not just technology robots,’’ she said.
In his remark, Chairman, Senate Committee on Tertiary Institutions and TetFund Sen. Ahmad Kaita, said that the institution would provide the much needed technical knowhow that would aid the country’s technological advancement.
President of the Senate Ahmad Lawan while declaring the public hearing open said that the institutions were central to the growth and development of the much needed workforce in the country.
Lawan who was represented by the Deputy Senate President Ovie Omo-Agege said that the institution would be useful to the proposed catchment areas of Adamawa.

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