Tuesday, 30 June 2015


Fuel scarcity may have resumed in Lagos, Ogun states and their environs as motorists began panic buying, on Monday, resulting in long queues at filling stations.
Speaking with the Tribune Online on possible causes of the scarcity, an industry source who preferred anonymity stated that the situation is expected "since only the NNPC imports refined petroleum products. Marketers are yet to resume importation because of non-payment of subsidy claims/debt owed by the Federal Government."
He said until President Muhammadu Buhari settles down properly and inform Nigerians about his economic policy, "especially as it relates to downstream operations, product scarcity will be a perennial problem."
The Chief Executive Officer of Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc, Mr. Austin Avuru, had, on Friday, warned that Nigeria will probably be hit by fuel shortages in three weeks due to lack of fund to pay subsidy claims.
Nigeria was almost grounded to a halt last month during the country’s worst fuel shortage in a decade due to a dispute between oil-product marketers and the former President Goodluck Jonathan's administration.
Efforts to speak with spokesman of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Mr. Ohi Alegbe, proved abortive as his number could not be reached as of press time.


The Asiwaju Grassroots Foundation says those plotting against the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, will fail.
The group, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Adeboye Adebayo, on Monday, said this while reacting to the crisis rocking the National Assembly over the election of its principal officers.
It said that even though the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, emerged contrary to the wish of the APC, Tinubu would continue to wield great influence in the nation.
The group said, “Tinubu patriotically contributed immensely to the change we are all enjoying now. He made a lot of sacrifices and never allowed personal ambition to jeopardise national interest as he negotiated for change in the interest of the nation.
“Such a person needs to be appreciated and not to be fought but those plotting against him will lose and fail.
“Tinubu has always been on the side of the masses ever since the party was registered because the party has always been on the side of the masses.”
The group condemned Saraki and Dogara for going against the party’s directive.

Last Minute Rush: Nigerians Besiege Banks in Lagos for Banks Verification Number

Monday, 29 June 2015


Governor Nasir El-Rufa of Kaduna State has appointed Hadiza Bala Usman of the BringBackOurGirls as Chief of Staff.
The newly appointed Chief of Staff, Ms. Usman, also served the APC in a number of committees and capacities as the Administrative Secretary of the Buhari Presidential Campaign Organization, Member APC Strategy Committee and Member Secretary APC Elections Planning Committee, among others.
Similarly, during the gubernatorial campaign of El-Rufai, she was Director of Finance in the Campaign Organization, and later the Kaduna State APC Campaign Council.
It would be recalled that Ms. Hadiza Usman started the strongest campaign for the rescue of the kidnappedChibok Girls with the hashtag ‪#‎BringBackOurGirls‬ which went viral all around the world.
Other appointments include Special Assistant on New Media, Bashir Dabo and Personal Secretary to the governor, Saude Amina Mohammed.

Legendary Filmmaker, Francis Oladele to be buried July1 *To be buried in Oyo town, Oyo State. * To be celebrated July 3 by iREP Film Forum in Lagos.

Pioneer Nigerian filmmaker,Francis Adetunji Oladele, who passed on in the early hours of June 22, 2015 at an Ibadan hospital, after a brave battle with prostate cancer, will be buried on Wednesday, July 1, 2015 at his residence – Lapiti Estate, ‘The Forest’ (Opposite First Baptist Church), OkeIsokun, IseyinByepass, Oyo Township, Oyo State.
He would have been 83 on August 30.
Born to Oyo parentage, on August 30, 1932, the rather adventurous youngster first worked in Nigeria as a photo-journalist with Daily Times of Nigeria where he introduced the then very popular column, Social Diary. He traveled to the United States of America in 1955 at the young age of 22 to study photography at the popular New York Institute of Photography. He later worked at the Technicolor, USA, where he was recruited by the then Premier of Western Region, Chief ObafemiAwolowo to return home as the pioneer AfricanHead of the Film Unit of the defunct Western Nigeria Television (WNTV), Ibadan.
At the then WNTV, Francis Oladele was perceived asa non-conformist, as he never failed to express his dissatisfaction with apparent stranglehold of government officialdom on creativity and productivity. His determination to express his innate artistic talent, by all means necessary, left him with no other option than to resign his appointment from WNTV.

On September 21, 1965, he established Calpenny-Nigeria Films Limited – the first private film production company in Nigeria -- with an intent to provide a platform for artistic expression in a more profound way and in the process, opening up the Nigerian arts for international scrutiny and acceptability.

He complimented this efforts with the establishment of KongiClub atAdamasingba in Ibadan, which became the rallying point for artistes, like Wole Soyinka, DapoAdelugba,  John Pepper Clark, as well as TunjiOyelana, who actually honed his artistic stage performances as the Resident Artiste.
Unknown to many, what could have become the very first indigenous feature film from the production stable of Oladele, was Trials of Brother Jero, the popular satiric comedy by Wole Soyinka. That was way back in 1966. However, the success recorded by Kongi’s Harvest (also by Soyinka)both at Ibadan as well as during the Dakar Festival around 1965, coupled with its thematic relevance, especially in respect to African despots at the time, made that work the preferred project ahead of Trials of Brother Jero
Apart from being the pioneer in the Nigerian feature film industry, Francis Oladele achieved another first for Nigeria by deciding to make films based on the work of successful and internationally acclaimed Nigerian writers. By indicating a creative preference for historical epics, he also established for the Nigerian film industry the vital link between great literary works and film. This adaptation of novels into film not only assures future feature film-makers in Nigeria of a storehouse of material as manifested by the prolific output at Nigerian writers, but also serves as an inspiration for future writers who can now write with the wider and more immediate cinema audiences in mind. After the initial efforts, both established and bourgeoning Nigerian storytellers have had their works adapted for the screen.
Therefore, armed with its Pioneer Certificate, Francis Oladele’sCalpenny Nigeria Films Limited, produced Kongi’s Harvest (1970), based on Wole Soyinka’s dramatic epic of the same title. Shot on location in Nigeria, with a Nigerian cast and a mixed technical crew of foreigners and Nigerians, it was directed by the popular Afro-American actor/director, Ossie Davis. 
Oladele followed this trend up with the production of Things Fall Apart (1971), also based on an amalgam of Chinua Achebe’s novels;Things Fall Apart and No Longer at Ease, shot under the title “Bulfrog in the Sun”, due to the civil war at the time.“Bulfrog in the Sun” was indeed adopted as the title at the instance of the reigning military junta at the time, who insisted that ‘nothing was falling apart in Nigeria’; this coming at a time the dust of the Nigerian Civil War was just beginning to settle.

A notable filmmaker with Pan-African vision, Oladele introduced several innovations into African film industry, by bringing in notable film practitioners of African descent into his crew, in addition to picking the actors and actresses from outside Nigeria. For the lead roles, he chose John Seka of Sierra Leone and: Princess Elizabeth Toro of Uganda. Both Kongi’s Harvest and Things Fall Apart enjoyed good box-office responses in Nigeria and Things Fall Apart was well received particularly in Atlanta, Georgia in the USA, especially in view o its rich cultural motifs and also being an excellent piece of story woven together by the world renowned master-story-teller, Chinua Achebe.
He equally produced rare documentaries for the United Nations, notable among which was the story woven around the War in Congo, featuring the Late General Murtala Ramat Mohammed. These are apart from several other documentary efforts, like Ballard Dubar andMeet Olu. He also did a major documentary on the late Head of State, General Murtala Mohammed, sponsored by the United Nations.
His last feature film effort was the production of Eye of Life (1988), a multi-million naira film project, which, however, could not be released due to the sudden devaluation of the Naira by the then Babangida administration in 1988.
As a prolific writer, he authored and delivered several papers at conferences across the globe, while his works have continued to attract scholarly attention by students and researchers in the area of film production, both at home and abroad.Francis Oladele was in the process of assembling materials for his autobiography, when he bowed to death.
Francis Adetunji Oladele shall forever be remembered for his efforts in the film industry for his mentoring efforts, as well as his long-drawn battle with the Lebanese, who with their Nigerian collaborators at the time, held the Nigerian film industry by the jugular. He criticized successive Nigerian government on their neglects of the Nigerian film industry, which he saw as a veritable cultural and educational advocacy tool. Such a confrontational stance probably robbed him of a well-deserved national honors.
In 2012, Francis Oladelewas conferred with the iREP Documentary Film Forum’s Lifetime Achievement award, which earns him a place in the prestigiousiREPInternational Fim Festival’s Hall of Fame.

NB: Two days after his internment, iREP Documentary Film Forum in conjunction with his associates and friends, will celebrate his life and times on July 3 at the Freedom Park in Lagos.

For the family