Saturday, January 31, 2009

Foreign Secretary Statement on the Conflict in Sri Lanka


David Miliband

31 Jan 2009 11:36 Africa/Lagos


Foreign Secretary Statement on the Conflict in Sri Lanka

London, 31/01//GNN/ --

FOREIGN AND COMMONWEALTH OFFICE News Release issued by COI News Distribution
Service. 31 January 2009

Commenting on the Sri Lankan government's recent announcement the Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, said:

"The announcement that the Sri Lankan government will allow safe passage
for civilians in northern Sri Lanka is very welcome. The LTTE now need to
ensure that civilians wishing to leave the conflict area are able to do so.

"I repeated my call for a humanitarian ceasefire when I spoke to President
Rajapakse
yesterday. Our conversation covered the military situation,
humanitarian needs, the responsibilities of both government and LTTE, the
role of the international community, and the vital requirement of a serious
political process. I made clear the British Government's deep concern over
the humanitarian situation. Too many innocent lives have already been
lost. Many more are still at risk.

"Douglas Alexander has announced an additional £2.5m in UK emergency
humanitarian aid to civilians caught up in the conflict. But this aid must
reach those who need it most. It is essential that the UN, ICRC and other
agencies are able to carry out their crucial work without fear or threat
to their security. Both sides need to abide by their obligations under
international humanitarian law.

"The Government of Sri Lanka has a responsibility to ensure that the legitimate
concerns of all communities in Sri Lanka are addressed. There is a necessity
for a new drive for political engagement of all Sri Lanka's communities if
peace is to be established on a sustainable basis."


FCO Press Office: 020 7008 3100

Website: www.fco.gov.uk/news

Press Office, Downing Street (West), London SW1A 2AL
Telephone: 020 7008 3100
Fax: 020 7008 3734

Source: Foreign and Commonwealth Office


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Mercuria Energy Opens Nigerian Office

30 Jan 2009 09:00 Africa/Lagos


Mercuria Energy Opens Nigerian Office

LONDON, January 30/PRNewswire/ -- Mercuria Energy Group, one of the world's five largest private oil and petroleum products traders, is opening an office in Abuja, Nigeria on February 5th, 2009 a company spokesman has announced.


Mercuria Energy, which has its main trading floor in Geneva, Switzerland has been building both its sales of petroleum products in Nigeria, and purchases of crude oil there, for several years now. "The company wants a presence in the community, so that we can be closer to both our customers and our suppliers" said the spokesman.


The office is expected to play a role in optimizing the logistics of shipping imports and exports along the West African coast. The company also has plans to invest in Nigeria, both in upstream and downstream activities.


Mercuria Energy Group Ltd is an international group of companies active over a wide spectrum of global energy markets, including crude oil and refined products, petrochemical products, natural gas, power, vegetable oils, and carbon emissions. Global turnover in 2008 was $45 billion.


Source: Mercuria Energy Group Ltd

Media: For More Information, contact: David Ensor, +44-207-529-4403, dbensor@mercuria.com .



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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Addax Petroleum Announces Significant New Discovery in Nigeria

28 Jan 2009 15:02 Africa/Lagos

Addax Petroleum Announces Significant New Discovery in Nigeria

CALGARY, Canada, January 28/PRNewswire-FirstCall/ --


- Exploration Success With Njaba Discovery in Onshore OML124 License Area


Addax Petroleum Corporation ("Addax Petroleum" or the "Corporation") (TSX:AXC and LSE:AXC) today announces a significant onshore oil discovery from the Njaba 2 well (formally Okaka) currently drilling in the eastern part of the OML124 license area in Nigeria. Addax Petroleum has a 100 per cent working interest under a Production Sharing Contract covering the OML124 license area, whereby the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation is the concessionaire. Addax Petroleum currently produces approximately six thousand barrels per day from the Ossu and Izombe fields in OML124, which is located within the stable and peaceful Imo State.


Commenting, Jean Claude Gandur, President and Chief Executive Officer of Addax Petroleum said: "I am extremely proud to report an excellent start to 2009 with this successful exploration result in Nigeria as it is a leading discovery that has the potential to be one of our largest fields in Nigeria. The Njaba discovery is the first exploration well to be drilled in OML124 since the mid-80's and these results will increase the production potential of the license area considerably, as well as significantly upgrade the remaining undrilled prospects. This onshore discovery is a further example of Addax Petroleum's commitment to development in Nigeria. In addition, this recent success represents yet another highlight for our highly prolific Nigerian operations as it will strengthen our record of growth in Nigeria and it underpins our robust and consistent operational performance."


The Njaba discovery was consistent with pre-drill estimates having encountered four oil bearing reservoirs totaling 289 feet of gross oil column, including the two main individual gross columns of 149 feet and 115 feet of between 20 degrees and 28 degrees API at depths from 990 to 1,050 metres. Production from the Njaba discovery can be readily tied in as the Corporation has existing production facilities and infrastructure in the OML124 license area. Addax Petroleum continues to drill into secondary, lower sections relative to the newly discovered oil bearing intervals and plans to carry out a test of the main reservoirs. The Corporation also plans to drill an additional appraisal well down-dip of the discovery which may further enhance the recoverable reserves from Njaba.


About Addax Petroleum


Addax Petroleum is an international oil and gas exploration and production company with a strategic focus on Africa and the Middle East. Addax Petroleum is one of the largest independent oil producers in West Africa and has increased its crude oil production from an average of 8,800 bbl/d for 1998 to an average of approximately 134,000 bbl/d for the first nine months of 2008. Further information about Addax Petroleum is available at http://www.sedar.com, http://www.londonstockexchange.com or the Corporation's website, http://www.addaxpetroleum.com.


Legal Notice - Forward-Looking Statements


Certain statements in this news release constitute forward-looking statements under applicable securities legislation. Such statements are generally identifiable by the terminology used, such as "anticipate", "believe", "intend", "expect", "plan", "estimate", "budget", "outlook", "may", "will", "should", "could", "would" or other similar wording. Forward- looking information in this news release includes, but is not limited to, drilling plans, including testing of previously drilled wells, results of exploration activities and dates by which certain areas may be developed or may come on-stream. By its very nature, such forward-looking information requires Addax Petroleum to make assumptions that may not materialize or that may not be accurate. Forward-looking information is subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties and other factors, which may cause actual results, levels of activity and achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such information. Such factors and assumptions include, but are not limited to: the results of exploration and development drilling and related activities; imprecision of reserves and resources estimates, ultimate recovery of reserves, prices of oil and natural gas; general economic, market and business conditions; industry capacity; competitive action by other companies; fluctuations in oil prices ; refining and marketing margins; the ability to produce and transport crude oil and natural gas to markets; the effects of weather and climate conditions; fluctuation in interest rates and foreign currency exchange rates; the ability of suppliers to meet commitments; actions by governmental authorities, including increases in taxes; decisions or approvals of administrative tribunals; changes in environmental and other regulations; risks attendant with oil and gas operations, both domestic and international; international political events; expected rates of return; and other factors, many of which are beyond the control of Addax Petroleum. More specifically, production may be affected by such factors as exploration success, start-up timing and success, facility reliability, reservoir performance and natural decline rates, water handling, and drilling progress. Capital expenditures may be affected by cost pressures associated with new capital projects, including labour and material supply, project management, drilling rig rates and availability, and seismic costs. These factors are discussed in greater detail in filings made by Addax Petroleum with the Canadian provincial securities commissions.


Readers are cautioned that the foregoing list of important factors affecting forward-looking information is not exhaustive. Furthermore, the forward-looking information contained in this press release is made as of the date of this press release and, except as required by applicable law, Addax Petroleum does not undertake any obligation to update publicly or to revise any of the included forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. The forward-looking information contained in this press release is expressly qualified by this cautionary statement.


For further information: Mr. Craig Kelly, Investor Relations, Tel.: +41-(0)-22-702-95-68, craig.kelly@addaxpetroleum.com; Mr. Chad O'Hare, Investor Relations, Tel.: +41-(0)22-702-94-10, chad.o'hare@addaxpetroleum.com; Ms. Marie-Gabrielle Cajoly, Press Relations , Tel.: +41-(0)22-702-94-44, marie-gabrielle.cajoly@addaxpetroleum.com; Mr. Nick Cowling, Press Relations, Tel.: +1-(416)-934-80 11, nick.cowling@cossette.com; Mr. James Henderson, Press Relations, Tel.: +44-(0)20-7743-6673, james.henderson@pelhampr.com; Mr. Mark Antelme, Press Relations, Tel.: +44-(0)20-3178-6242, mark.antelme@pelhampr.com/


Source: Addax Petroleum Corporation

For further information: Mr. Craig Kelly, Investor Relations, Tel.: +41-(0)-22-702-95-68, craig.kelly@addaxpetroleum.com; Mr. Chad O'Hare, Investor Relations, Tel.: +41-(0)22-702-94-10, chad.o'hare@addaxpetroleum.com; Ms. Marie-Gabrielle Cajoly, Press Relations, Tel.: +41-(0)22-702-94-44, marie-gabrielle.cajoly@addaxpetroleum.com; Mr. Nick Cowling, Press Relations, Tel.: +1-(416)-934-80 11, nick.cowling@cossette.com; Mr. James Henderson, Press Relations, Tel.: +44-(0)20-7743-6673, james.henderson@pelhampr.com; Mr. Mark Antelme, Press Relations, Tel.: +44-(0)20-3178-6242, mark.antelme@pelhampr.com/



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The Sound That Changed America: Motown Celebrates Its 50th Anniversary


The Supremes

THE SOUND THAT CHANGED AMERICA: MOTOWN CELEBRATES ITS 50TH ANNIVERSARY



SANTA MONICA, CA January 28, 2009 /PRNewswire/ — As an irresistible force of social and cultural change, Berry Gordy's legendary Motown Records made its mark not just on the music industry, but society at large, with a sound that that has become one of the most significant musical accomplishments and stunning success stories of the 20th century. Diana Ross & The Supremes, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles, Stevie Wonder, The Temptations,, the The Four Tops, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson & The Jackson 5, Lionel Richie & The Commodores,, The Contours, and Martha and the Vandellas., Gladys Knight & the Pips, their music communicated and brought together a racially divided country and segregated society, around the world, touching all people of all ages and race. No other record company in history has exerted such an enormous influence on both the style and substance of popular music and culture. With more than 180 No. 1 hit songs worldwide and counting, that influence is still being felt today, from pop to hip-hop, Motown celebrates the 50th anniversary of the company's founding.



Motown, of course, stands for more than just the historic music. The label and its remarkable legacy is a reflection of the hard work of dedicated individuals overcoming incredible obstacles to achieve great success. Nearly a half-century ago, on January 12, 1959, to be exact, a young African-American songwriter named Berry Gordy founded Tamla Records with a loan of $800 from his family, marking the birth of the "Motown Records Corporation." A man of vision, drive, talent and determination, Berry Gordy was also a producer, innovative entrepreneur, and teacher. The phenomenal success of Motown Records is a tribute to all that he embodies and all the talent that he brought out in others. Under his leadership, and through determination and support of the Motown family of artists, Gordy forged new grounds for minorities and made the "Motown Sound" a worldwide phenomenon beloved by millions.

Berry Gordy always learned from all his experiences and applied them to his business. He put the tedious time he spent working on the assembly line at Detroit's Lincoln-Mercury automobile plant to good use: "Every day I watched how a bare metal frame, rolling down the line would come off the other end, a spanking brand new car. What a great idea! Maybe, I could do the same thing with my music. Create a place where a kid off the street could walk in one door, an unknown, go through a process, and come out another door, a star." That little thought that came to him while running up and down that assembly line became a reality we now know as "Motown."
When Motown was housed in its famed "Hitsville U.S.A." offices at 2648 West Grand Boulevard in Detroit, it was not just a location; history would be made there. In fact, Berry Gordy created a twenty-four hour hit-making and artist development factory, nurturing the artistic talent of the singers, writers, producers, as well as, corporate executives. Today, Motown is not only the greatest pop music hit factory ever heard, but an institution, a state of mind, a way of life, a style, the "Sound of Young America." The distinctive, upbeat and uplifting music brought together pop and soul, white and black, old and young, like never before and continues to this day. Regardless of race or social background, teenage girls admired Diana Ross and teenage boys pretended to be Smokey Robinson. Motown became the heartbeat of American pop music. With multi-platinum artists ranging from the Miracles, Temptations, Four Tops and Supremes to Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, and Jackson 5, the House That Gordy Built had and has no rival. Motown defined the term "crossover" not only on record and stage, but also behind the scenes. After breaking down barriers and having pop radio embrace Motown artists, Berry Gordy set his sights on television. He booked his artists on popular shows such as American Bandstand and the Ed Sullivan Show, making history as the first African-American artists on these shows. After captivating national audiences with repeat performances on The Ed Sullivan Show, The Supremes were the first R&B act to play the country's most prestigious night club, New York's Copacabana, which paved the way for other R&B acts into the top cabaret circuits around the world.
Motown was the first African-American-owned record label to reach widespread national acclaim, Motown broke down racial prejudice by becoming the most successful independent record company in history and the most successful African-American owned business in America.

After Gordy purchased that first Detroit property, he converted the garage into a small recording studio and the kitchen into the control room. The company's first signing was the Miracles, led by Smokey Robinson, and its first release was Marv Johnson's "Come to Me," January 21, 1959. But its first major hit was Barrett Strong's "Money (That's What I Want)," a song co-written by Gordy himself, which reached #2 on Billboard's R&B chart in 1960. A year later, the Miracles would score the company's first million seller with "Shop Around." That same year, teen girl group the Marvelettes landed the company's first pop No. 1, "Please Mr. Postman," while the label signed two young groups, the Supremes and the Temptations. Within three years, those two groups would lead Motown into the mainstream, when the Supremes launched an unprecedented string of five consecutive No. 1 hits, starting with "Where Did Our Love Go," while the Temptations released the eternal Motown classic, "My Girl." In 1968 the company had five records out of the Top 10 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart and accomplished another unprecedented feat by seizing the top three spots for a full month.

Upon his induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988, Motown's founder was given the following tribute: "Gordy endeavored to reach across the racial divide with music that could touch all people, regardless of the color of their skin. Under his tutelage, Motown became a model of black capitalism, pride and self-expression and a repository for some of the greatest talent ever assembled at one company… Motown's stable of singers, songwriters, producers and musicians took the concept of simple, catchy pop songs to a whole new level of sophistication and, thanks to the music's roots in gospel and blues, visceral intensity… After Motown, black popular music would never again be dismissed as a minority taste… Aesthetically no less than commercially, Motown's achievements will likely remain unrivaled and untoppable."
Today, the label is part of the Universal Music Group, with its classic recorded music catalog managed by Universal Music Enterprises (UMe). The timeless songs from Motown between 1959 and 1985 are represented by EMI Music Publishing.
From late 2008 to the end of 2009, Universal Music Group and EMI Music Publishing will mark the historic Detroit label's musical achievements with a series of initiatives. Notably, Universal Music Enterprises will issue monthly music releases in both physical and digital formats, with bonus tracks enhancing these packages. Details will be announced as each new package approaches.

Also upcoming throughout the celebration are releases of classic Motown Television specials in a series of DVD collections and INSIDE MOTOWN, a multi-part documentary on how the company was built.

Press Contacts:
Sujata Murthy
UMe
sujata.murthy@umusic.com
310-865-7812
Jonathan Wolfson
Wolfson PR
wolfsonpr@hotmail.com
818-615-0499


Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Ajayi Crowther Bicentennial Celebrations



Samuel Ajayi Crowther (c. 1809 - 31 December 1891}, the first Black Anglican bishop, was a Yoruba, one of the oldest and most advanced tribes in the region that comprises today's Nigeria. As a teenager, Ajayi, or Adjai, became something of an entrepreneur, raising poultry and produce. His fledgling enterprise was cut short when, in 1822, he - along with other members of his family - were abducted by Muslims, taken to the coast, sold to Portuguese slave traders, and put aboard the misnamed Esperanza Feliz, bound for America. The third day out, a British ship captured the Esperanza and freed its human cargo. Ajayi was then taken to Freetown, Sierra Leone and placed in a missionary school. As he later wrote, "about the third year of my liberation from the slavery of man, I was convinced of another worse slavery, that of sin and Satan. It pleased the Lord to open my heart." Baptized in Africa on December 11, 1825, he was given the name of an English clergyman, Samuel Crowther, one of the first members of the Church Missionary Society,.

It then pleased the Lord to send Crowther to England, specifically to Islington, where he studied at St Mary's Parochial School, then located on Liverpool Road. Returning to Sierra Leone in 1827, he enrolled as the first student at the newly established Fourah Bay College. So rapid was his progress that he soon became an assistant teacher, then a schoolmaster. In Church Missionary Society reports of the time, he was frequently described as a faithful and efficient promoter of missionary efforts. Crowther was particularly concerned about the effect of trafficking in whiskey and the slave trade, which - though formerly abolished in 1838 - continued in the interior of the continent. He returned to Islington in 1842, where he trained at the Church Missionary Society's college (see illustration #50). The next year, he was ordained at St Mary's, then returned to Africa.

In 1851, Crowther returned to England for a meeting with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert to discuss the slave situation. His eloquence resulted in a British expedition to the Niger, which Crowther joined, and which helped mark the end of the African slave trade. Among other accomplishments, Crowther was proficient in languages, which aided him immensely in his Evangelical work. He was the chief translator of the Bible into the Yoruba language, and composed both a Yoruba grammar and dictionary.

In 1864, he was called once again to England, this time for a singular honor - to be ordained a bishop of the Anglican Church. His promoters, anxious that he obtain a university degree before being consecrated, cited his several publications as proof of his knowledge. With almost universal consent, he received his degree. Then, on June 29, 1864, in Canterbury Cathedral, he was consecrated Bishop of the Niger. Among those in attendance was the former captain of the British ship that had rescued him from bondage forty-two years earlier.

Upon his return to Nigeria, Crowther continued his work with humility and devotion. Old ways still remained, however, and his work - as had been the case with Philip Quaque before him - was often met with frustration and defeat. Still, he carried on, until his death at Lagos on January 9, 1892. He had fought the good fight for some sixty years. Among all men associated with St Mary's, Samuel Ajayi Crowther deserves to be remembered.

See the "Ajayi Crowther Bicentennial Celebrations"


Monday, January 26, 2009

NEWSWEEK Cover: I Got It Bad


In the February 2 issue of Newsweek (on newsstands January 26), "I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)," Newsweek's Fareed Zakaria writes about the challenges President Obama will face in order to fix the economy and restore America's credibility. Plus: Daniel Gross on our "Yes, We Can" president in a "No, We Can't" economy; Somali-Americans recruited for jihad; what makes some people survive; what Obama's presidency means for racial equality; and Newsweek's Oscar Roundtable with six Hollywood stars.(PRNewsFoto/NEWSWEEK) NEW YORK, NY UNITED STATES 01/25/2009

25 Jan 2009 17:04 Africa/Lagos

NEWSWEEK Cover: I Got It Bad

President Obama Needs To Act Quickly and on a Massive Scale To Fix the Economy

"We Have Not Turned the Corner. In Fact, We Can't Even See the Corner Right Now."

NEW YORK, Jan. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- In an essay opening the February 2 Newsweek cover package, "I Got It Bad (And That Ain't Good)" (on newsstands Monday, January 26), Newsweek International Editor Fareed Zakaria writes that President Barack Obama will have to quickly start planning for a set of more extraordinary measures to pull the United States out of its current, unsustainable economic condition. "The American financial system is effectively broken. Major banks are moving toward insolvency, and credit activity remains extremely weak. As long as the financial sector remains moribund, American consumers and companies -- who collectively make up 80 percent of GDP -- will not have access to credit, and economic activity cannot really resume on any significant scale. We have not turned the corner. In fact, we can't even see the corner right now," he writes.


(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090125/NYSU001 )


"President Obama faces a terrible dilemma. He needs to act quickly and on a massive scale," Zakaria writes. Without large scale action, the financial system will keep bleeding, but the American public believes that we have already spent far too much on bailing out the banks. Zakaria argues that the economic fact is that we have not spent enough. Even worse, "this current crisis has resulted in a deep erosion of American power that we have not fully understood. Even in the depths of the Iraq War, when much of the globe was enraged by George W. Bush's unilateralism, people everywhere believed that the United States had the world's most advanced economy and that its capital markets in particular were the most sophisticated and developed." That system is now seen across the world as a sham, and the attitudes of officials and businessmen range from shock to rage at what they see in the United States.


"When he began his run for the White House, Barack Obama thought he could restore American power and leadership by righting our foreign policy, winding down the Iraq War, closing Guantanamo, ending torture. These are all important policies, and I am glad that he is pursuing them. But right now, the most important way for him to restore America's credibility and influence in the world is to rescue the American model," Zakaria writes.


Also in the cover package, Senior Editor Daniel Gross writes how more and more companies and firms are deciding to forgo the work of restructuring their finances, and instead selling off their inventory and closing. "Rather than soldier on, many operators have opted to simply fold, returning money to investors. Companies, homeowners and money managers willing to quit rather than fight is both a symptom of the nation's deep economic woes and emblematic of the challenge the Obama administration faces," Gross writes. "Our 'Yes, We Can' president is going to have to fix a 'No, We Can't' economy."


(Read cover package at www.Newsweek.com)

Cover: http://www.newsweek.com/id/181407

The Quitter Economy: http://www.newsweek.com/id/181264


Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090125/NYSU001
AP Archive: http://photoarchive.ap.org/
AP PhotoExpress Network: PRN1
PRN Photo Desk, photodesk@prnewswire.com
Source: Newsweek

CONTACT: Katherine Barna, +1-212-445-4859, of Newsweek


Web site: http://www.newsweek.msnbc.com/

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Saturday, January 24, 2009

Hope is Not a Strategy: A Letter to President Obama


By Benjamin Ola. Akande, dean, School of Business and Technology, Webster University, St. Louis, Mo.

22 Jan 2009 22:16 Africa/Lagos


Hope is Not a Strategy: A Letter to President Obama

ST. LOUIS, Jan. 22 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a letter by Dr. Benjamin Ola. Akande, dean of the School of Business and Technology at Webster University in St. Louis, Mo.:


(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090122/DC61721)

Dear President Obama,


During the campaign, you offered America hope, and promised to restore a civility and practicality to the nation's highest office so that, together, we could rise to the challenges and opportunities that lay at our doorstep. Now it's time to make some wise choices.


In your acceptance speech on the evening of Nov. 4, 2008, you were pointed in your statement that, "while we breathe, we hope." As President, your greatest challenge will be effectively leading a cabinet of highly qualified and highly opinionated individuals who will undoubtedly have differing ideas on how best to resolve the major issues that we face. Your leadership will be tested early and often and while you have assured Americans that there will be setbacks and false starts, your willingness to make tough choices early on will set the tone for a revival of a shell-shocked economy and a battle-fatigued nation. Yet, the fact remains that hope will not reduce housing foreclosures. Hope does not stop a recession. Hope cannot create jobs. Hope will not prevent catastrophic failures of banks. Hope is not a strategy.


President Obama, I would like to offer you 10 priorities to consider:

1. The Deficit. Don't be concerned about increasing the deficit in the
short term. There is an urgent need to stimulate the economy now--not
at any price, but almost. Your recovery plan must combine tax cuts
and structured spending in areas that foster long-term economic growth,
specifically, energy, healthcare and education. This is one time when
we need to act for today to ensure that tomorrow will be much better.
2. The Auto Industry. I want to urge you to reject the possibility of
extending additional bailout monies to the Big Three. Chapter 11
bankruptcy is the best thing that can happen to these automakers. They
need help quickly, but not in the form of government largesse. This is
a time for displaying "tough love" and not enabling poor performance,
corporate arrogance and unwise decisions. They will thank you in the
long run.
3. The New New Deal. There is urgency to rebuild America's roads and
bridges, but the real opportunity is to anchor your recovery plan on a
renewed energy policy that is timely and targeted. The imperative
should entail a: 1) green bailout for U.S. automakers; 2) green
infrastructure; 3) tax credit for companies to produce alternative
energy; 4) construction program for a new smart electric grid; and 5)
increased investment in mass transit using green technology. The
projects must be shovel-ready to get people back to work immediately.
4. 2009 Homeowner Protection Act. President Obama, now is the opportunity
to change the bankruptcy laws to protect homeowners from the vagaries
of the marketplace. We have expedited Chapter 11 bankruptcy for
businesses to keep them from going under when they run into financial
turbulence, and we should do no less for homeowners. It does no one any
good to force poor and middle-income Americans out of their homes, and
we know that vacant houses destroy even the best neighborhoods. An
expedited homeowner protection plan would allow for the restructuring
of the mortgages of millions of Americans who are under water. Stemming
the flood of foreclosures will reinvigorate the confidence of banks and
provide a shot in the arm for the credit market, putting the economy
back on the right foot.
5. Strengthening Middle Class America. Your administration should push to
expand the earned income tax credit as a relief measure for the middle
class and give Americans making less than $150,000 a $500 tax credit
per person on the first $8,100 in income. This will increase the rate
of spending and the rate of savings by the middle class, which will be
a source of new capital to spur growth.
6. A Health Plan for All. The greatest fear among most Americans is the
possibility of losing their jobs and with the loss of jobs comes the
real possibility of loss of health insurance. President Obama, we need
to have a comprehensive program that provides health insurance to the
unemployed and to the uninsured and it must happen post-haste. For a
nation of our comparative wealth to have any of our citizens go without
heath care is nothing short of criminal.
7. Rewrite Financial Service Laws. One of the key reasons for the current
financial crisis has been weak regulation of the financial services
industry. There needs to be a comprehensive overhaul of enforcement
policies of the Securities Exchange Commission. Require disclosure and
stipulate new accounting requirements.
8. Restructure Bailout. The first $350 billion of the financial market
bailout has done very little to jump-start the economy. The next $350
installment must be directed at assisting homeowners and expanding
consumer credit.
9. Foster a Bipartisan Approach. Divisive politics got us into this mess.
Unifying politics can help get us out of it. The country can no longer
afford to see things in terms of red and blue or black and white. The
enduring solutions will emerge from the gray.
10. Caution to Consumers. President Obama, I urge you to use your
presidential pulpit to speak to Americans, to encourage them to be
cautious and prudent in their spending. While consumer spending is a
key to the economic revival, at times it may be wise to counsel
consumers to--in the words of former St. Louis Fed President Bill
Poole--"Put their foot on the brake way before they get to the stop
sign."


What America needs, more than ever, is your ability to give hope to America through your leadership. May you have the inner strength to move this nation from uncertainty to certainty. I wish you well.


My Best,

Benjamin Ola Akande
Dean, School of Business and Technology
Webster University
St. Louis, MO

Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20090122/DC61721
http://photoarchive.ap.org/
PRN Photo Desk, photodesk@prnewswire.com
Source: Webster University -- Saint Louis Campus

CONTACT: Susan Kerth of Webster University, Office: +1-314-246-8232,
Cell: +1-314-220-9130, susankerth14@webster.edu


Web Site: http://www.webster.edu/


23 Jan 2009
18:36
Obama Administration Quick to Exploit Women in Developing Nations Says Americans United for Life Action
18:30
Economic Stimulus Bill Mandates Electronic Health Records for Every Citizen without Opt-out or Patient Consent Provisions
18:29
IRS Holds Hearing on Bush-Exit Proposal That Would Limit Transparency on Projects Receiving Tax-Free Financing
16:15
Change for the Country = Change for the Bidens
16:00
U.S. bailout package will spark inflation and shift the burden to foreign investors: CIBC World Markets
14:00
The Obama Cancer Plan Should Prioritize Prevention, Says Cancer Prevention Coalition
03:11
Continental Airlines Applauds Confirmation of Ray LaHood as Secretary of Transportation
01:31
More Than 100 Leaders of Business & Technology Companies Say Investment in America's I.T. Infrastructure Will Create Nearly 1 Million Jobs
00:20
President Obama Gives the Unborn at Least a 24 Hour Reprieve, Postpones $441 Million Bailout of International Abortions, Says Family Research Council
00:17
Nations Attending Upcoming Food Security Summit
22 Jan 2009

22:12
Closing Guantanamo and Keeping America Safe: New Policy Brief From The Century Foundation Urges New Administration to Return to Pre-9/11 Laws to Deal With Detentions, Trials, and the 'Global War'
21:35
The New Accountability in Governance
20:30
No Policies From Obama to Stop Diversion of Federal Small Business Contracts to Fortune 500 Firms
22:32
Pelosi Statement on Obama Executive Orders on Closing Guantanamo and Revising Interrogation Policies
18:38
Amnesty International Commends President Obama's Executive Orders to Close Guantanamo and End Torture
18:10
Obama Pajama Party, Sleeper Hit at Inauguration
17:41
Live Unseen Footage of Obama's Inauguration 'Purple Ticket' Tunnel Disaster
15:28
Retired Military Leaders to Brief Media on Obama Meeting, Torture Ban, Guantanamo Closure
14:00
AJWS to Obama: Sudan's President May Target Darfuri Civilians if Issued Arrest Warrant
14:00
77% of African Americans Attend Inauguration for First Time; 63% Say Obama Presidency Signals Improvement in Race Relations, New TV One/National Association of Black Journalists Inaugural Poll Reveals
14:00
New Generation Biofuels' CEO Emphasizes Second Generation Feedstocks in Interview with theStreet.com
01:45
Five Former USAID Officials Ask Obama for Leadership on Family Planning
00:33
Barack Obama Wears J.Crew to Inaugural Ball
21 Jan 2009
22:09
Remarks of Gov. Tim Kaine as Prepared for Delivery
21:50
President Obama Brings Hope to Home Foreclosure Market
21:00
Eisner LLP Analyzes President Obama's Stimulus Package: What Does It Mean for You, Your Family and Your Business?
20:50
A Clarion Call for Simplicity by Alan Siegel, Chairman and CEO of Siegel+Gale
20:45
The Making of a First Lady
19:02
Gray Graphics Corporation Prints Official Joint Congressional Committee Invitation Package for the Fifty-Sixth Presidential Inauguration Ceremonies
18:44
Amnesty International Calls Obama Administration's Suspension of Military Commissions a 'Positive Sign'
18:13
Rep. Fattah One of First House Members to Support Obama Stimulus Legislation
18:12
Timothy Geithner's Claims Contradicted by the Facts; Obama Must End 'Distraction' of Nomination as Banking Crisis Deepens
17:32
Students Across New Jersey 'Speak Out for Peace' in Honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and President Barack Obama
17:30
Actuaries Laud New President's Medicare and Social Security Message, Call for Bipartisan Solution
15:49
Cabrera Construction Honors Obama Administration Green Building Initiatives at Thursday Night Gala
15:39
Obama's 'Newer Deal' Likely to Raise Deficit


Friday, January 23, 2009

President Barack Obama Visits White House Press

It was another busy day for the new president. Barack Obama reversed some of his predecessor's anti-terror policies, delivered a pep talk at the State Department, and dropped by the White House briefing room to chat with reporters. (Jan. 22)




Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Dreams Do Come True

17 Jan 2009 00:10 Africa/Lagos

Dreams Do Come True

ST. LOUIS, Jan. 16 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a statement by Benjamin Ola. Akande, Dean of Webster University School of Business & Technology:


As a child growing up in Nigeria, I was a dreamer. My parents never dismissed my dreams. They were always encouraging. No matter how outright unbelievable my dreams were, they would assure me that dreams do come true. Dreams provide a glimpse of what the future will look like. I wish I could have recorded all those dreams.


Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream was recorded. It was a dream that was played out in front of thousands of people and like most dreams, no one really knew how it would play out. As the dream was recalled over the years, it became clear that this was a significant and compelling vision of the future. Martin's dream was in the form of a remarkable prose on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. Most of us can hear him recite this dream in our subconscious. "I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made straight and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together." It is a dream that visualizes a future where all those things that seemed impossible and improbable will happen despite overwhelming obstacles.


Barack Obama

The election of Barack Obama was a manifestation of Martin's dream. I would like to believe that Martin Luther King's dream highlighted how difficult it is to make change happen. Martin spoke about how mountains and hills (obstacles) shall be made lower and rough places (institutional changes) will be made straight. The recognition was that monumental changes of this magnitude take considerable time. Indeed, it takes the force of nature to break through the harsh reality of status quo and history.


Dreaming enables us to transcend the present and position us on the balcony for a better view of the future. And, because dreaming offers no restrictions, the greatest dreamers are often characterized as crazy and out of touch with reality. What history has shown us is that you may vilify them, you can criticize them, and you may even assassinate them. But, you can't kill a dreamer's dream. MLK's dream took a long time to come to fruition, with small significant steps and some big setbacks along the way. But on Nov. 4, 2008, the full realization of the great civil rights leader's dream came to pass with the election of a junior senator from Illinois as the first African American President of The United States of America..


Martin Luther King taught us that adversity is a lot easier to overcome than success. And that is the power of dreams. He knew it would happen. He even foresaw that his own demise may keep him from seeing his dream come true. "I've seen the promised land," he said. "I may not get there with you, but I want you to know tonight that we as a people will get to the Promised Land." Forty-five years later, his vision is still unfolding. But one thing is crystal clear. Dreams do come true.


Source: Webster University School of Business and Technology

CONTACT: Susan Kerth of Webster University, +1-314-246-8232


Web Site: http://www.webster.edu/


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Barack Obama Becomes the 44th President of the United States of America!


Barack Obama Becomes the 44th President of the United States of America!

He is the first African American to be elected as the President of America following his election to the presidency in the 56th consecutive quadrennial United States presidential election on Tuesday, November 4, 2008.

Text of President Barack Obama's inaugural address on Tuesday, as prepared for delivery and released by the Presidential Inaugural Committee.

OBAMA: My fellow citizens:

I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because we the people have remained faithful to the ideals of our forebears, and true to our founding documents.
So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.
These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land — a nagging fear that America's decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.

Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America — they will be met.
On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.
In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of shortcuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted — for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.

For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.
For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do.

Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions — who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short. For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.
What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them — that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. Those of us who manage the public's dollars will be held to account — to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day — because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control — and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our gross domestic product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on our ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our founding fathers ... our found fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake. And so to all the other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy. Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort — even greater cooperation and understanding between nations. We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan. With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet. We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.
To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to the suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world's resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages. We honor them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment — a moment that will define a generation — it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends — hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.
This is the source of our confidence — the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed — why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent Mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.
So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:
"Let it be told to the future world ... that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive...that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet (it)."

America, in the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Thank you.
God bless you. And God bless the United States of America
.



For a comprehensive report on the historic election of Barack Obama, read the new book Barack Obama and the American Dream by Orikinla Osinachi to be released soon in America.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Growing Optimism That Obama Will Improve US Relations: Global Poll


Barack Obama

20 Jan 2009 01:01 Africa/Lagos

Growing Optimism That Obama Will Improve US Relations: Global Poll

COLLEGE PARK, Md., Jan. 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As President-elect Barack Obama prepares for the Inauguration to be sworn in as the 44th president of the United States, a new 17-nation poll conducted for the BBC World Service finds widespread and growing optimism that his presidency will lead to improved relations between the United States and the rest of the world.


The poll also shows people around the world are looking to President Obama to put highest priority on dealing with the current global financial crisis.


In 15 of the 17 countries polled, majorities think that the election of Barack Obama will lead to improved relations with the rest of the world. On average 67 percent express this upbeat view, while 19 percent think relations will stay the same and just 5 percent that relations will worsen. This is up sharply - by 21 points among tracking countries - from polling done for the BBC World Service six months ago, before Obama was elected


Asked to rate six possible priorities for the Obama Administration, the top priority in all 17 countries polled was the global financial crisis. On average 72 percent said that it should be a top priority.


This was followed by withdrawing US troops from Iraq - with 50 percent saying this should be a top priority - then addressing climate change (46%), improving America's relationship with the respondent's country (46%), brokering peace between Israel and the Palestinians (43%), and supporting the government of Afghanistan against the Taliban (29%).


The results are drawn from a survey of 17,356 adult citizens across 17 countries conducted for the BBC World Service by the international polling firm GlobeScan together with the Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA) at the University of Maryland. GlobeScan coordinated fieldwork between November 24, 2008 and January 5, 2009.


"Familiarity with Obama seems to be breeding hope," commented Steven Kull, director of the Program on International Policy Attitudes. "But then again," he added, "he is starting from a low baseline, following eight years of an unpopular US president. Maintaining this enthusiasm will be a challenge given the complexities he now faces."


For more information, visit www.WorldPublicOpinion.org.


Source: Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA) at the University of Maryland

CONTACT: Steven Kull of the Program on International Policy Attitudes at
the University of Maryland, +1-301-254-7500


Web Site: http://www.worldpublicopinion.org/


20 Jan 2009
11:00
President Obama to Press Reset Button
03:09
Jamie Fox, Nas, Kerry Washington, Akon, T.I., Young Jeezy, Tatyana Ali and Jurnee Smollett Have Been Added to the Talent Line Up for Yes We Will! BET's Inauguration Celebration Premiering Tuesday, January 20 at 8:00 PM*
02:00
New Poll: Reagan, FDR Lead Presidential Role Models
01:01
Growing Optimism That Obama Will Improve US Relations: Global Poll
00:51
MLB.com to Stream Presidential Inauguration Live


Thousands Attend Pre-Inauguration Concert at the Lincoln Memorial

Thousands attend pre-Inauguration concert
January 19, 2009



President-elect Barack addressed an audience of tens of thousands at a star-studded concert at the Lincoln Memorial. He says the task confronting the nation is enormous but he's confident the country will endure hard times and prevail. (Jan. 18)


Sunday, January 18, 2009

An Important Letter from President-Elect Barack Obama


Michael Chima --

I have some exciting news to share about the future of this grassroots movement.

I recorded a personal message for you. Please take a minute to watch the video:
The Future


What you built can't stop now. Together with our partners at the Democratic National Committee and its new chairman, Governor Tim Kaine, this movement will continue organizing and bringing new people into the political process.

The challenges facing our country are too great, and our journey to change America is just beginning.

I look forward to working side-by-side with you in the months and years ahead.

Thanks,

Barack



Thursday, January 15, 2009

Guerilla Attack from Lebanese Soil Into Israel

Guerilla attack from Lebanese soil into Israel

January 14, 2009




Lebanese troops found and dismantled several rockets positioned to hit Israel after militants fired three earlier Wednesday. It may be a sign that Lebanon's government is determined to avoid being drawn into war with the Israelis. (Jan. 14)


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Nigeria: Mystical White Priestess of Black Goddess Buried in Sacred Shrine in Nigeria


Suzanne Wenger

Suzanne Wenger, 94, the legendary Austrian artist popularly known as "Adunni Olorisa", the White Priestess of the Ọsùn deity in the Osogbo, south-western Nigeria has been buried in her sacred shrine in Ọsùn Sacred Grove. She passed away at about 2.00 p.m. on Monday, January 12, 2009.

Ms. Wenger spent over half a century of her life to preserve the cultural heritage of the Yoruba goddess Ọsùn of the sacred Ọsùn river in Ọsùn state. She and her ex-husband Uli Bier inspired the Osogbo Art School, famous for the discovery of such successful artists as Twins SEVEN-SEVEN, Jimoh BURAIMOH, Nike OLANIYI DAVIES and other in the late 1950s. She would be remembered for making Ọsùn Sacred Grove Unesco World Heritage Centre.


A part of the Ọsùn Sacred Grove

She has been immortalized in many writings such as the poem Who Will Dare To Love A Witch published in Scarlet Tears of London and in the short story Boy Adam Floats Headless in The Thames and other publications.

Here is an extract from one of the publications with references on the legendary White Priestess of Osun Oshobgo in Nigeria.

Baba Orogbo was waiting for her as she descended from the wings of Agbe.
Susan Wenger was sitting in her lotus pose before the kérégbe calabash bowl of salt water. Baba Orogbo gazed at the white witch as she sat with her eyes closed. But he knew she was seeing everything before her.
“Kabo Òmó mi, my enchanted child,” Susan Wenger said as the toes of Òmó Iya Osùn touched the earth.
Òmó Iya Osùn bowed to salute her mother.
“Kabo, Òmó Iya Osùn Òrìsà.,” Baba Orogbo welcomed her.
“Baba mi, peace be with you my father,” Òmó Iya Osùn said.
“Gba, here is your èko tutu,”Iya Osùn said, giving her a calabash of cooked pap.
Then Baba Orogbo brought out some Ibùje leaves , ìjòkùn leaves, èlú leaves and osùn- cam wood. “Òmó dúdú, Òmó Iya Osùn, Aláse igbá kejì òrìsà, listen. I have a message for you,” Baba Orogbo said as he put the different leaves and camwood before the feet of Òmó Iya Osùn. Then he started chanting.

Eni sojú se mú
òrìsà ni máa sìn
Adá ni bó ti rí
Òrìsà ni maa sin”
Ó-s-enìkan-soso digba ènìyàn
So mí di rún
So mí digba
So mí di òtà-lé-légbèje ènìyàn
Òrìsà ni maa sin”
Olójú kára bíi ajere
Òrìsà ni maa sin”

Òjó kúrè, Alágada ogun
Òjó ò sí nílé, omo adìe dàgbà
Òjó wà nílé omo adìe kò kù kan
Òjó ún wè lódò
Gbogbo omoge yo wóse


Baba Orogbo swallowed two lumps of saliva and continued.

Ó mú’lé t’ará ojà
Ó so àgàn di alábiyamo,
àgàn tí ò rí’bí, ti ró sòó leyìn olúwa wà



Nigeria: Nigerian Banks in Trouble!


Can Nigerians trust Nigerian Banks when most of the banks belong to those who have links to money laundering schemes and corrupt practices?

The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation(NDIC)should investigate the activities and accounts of the following Nigerian banks:

1. Bank PHB Plc
2. Zenith Bank Plc
3. Spring Bank Plc and
4. Skye Bank Plc.

Bank PHB Plc is about to acquire the majority shareholdings in Spring Bank Plc, but there is large scale sharp practices reported at the popular Bank PHB and the financial interests of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Alhaji Umaru Yar'Adua in this bank should be open to the public. The NDIC should investigate the bank for large scale fraud. The source of income of every member of the Board of Directors of Bank PHB should be queried.

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) may have dropped the charges against Mr. Jim Ovia, the MD of Zenith Bank Plc, but there are still many unresolved issues that the NDIC must address if Mr. Ovia deserves the 'administrative bail,' while his managers are still being held over the N3.2 billion deposits by the Rivers State Government.

The NDIC should also investigate Skye Bank Plc and Spring Bank Plc, because they are not healthy.


RECOMMENDED READING:
REQUEST: PROPOSAL FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF A BUSINESS CONTINUITY MANAGEMENT STRATEGY.