September 2012


 “Most of the (private) jets are bought by top politicians, oil magnets, and other business moguls in Nigeria”. These are the epitome of Dr. George BN Ayittey’s “phalanx of bandits, gangsters, crooks, and scoundrels who use the machinery of the state to enrich themselves”.

 

In case there is a recent alien visiting from another planet who might wonder as to how these “vampire elites and government ministers” manage to acquire theimmense outlay of “$50m, as the average cost of each brand new private jet”, Dr. Ayittey has your answer in his book, Africa In Chaos. He writes, and I quote: “Dishonesty, thievery, peculation, and embezzlement pervade the public sector. Public servants embezzle state funds, and high-ranking ministers are on the take. Government then becomes irrelevant to the people. What then exists is a vampire state”, en quote.

 

It is unconscionable “that Nigeria currently rival(s) China as one of the two fastest growing private jet markets in the world” – where as a nation Nigeria is dithering on the brink of failed state status. Among so many ills, it is a country that manufactures nothing and exports nothing; it is a country where massive unemployment has rendered its youths as virtual aimless armies of street marauders with no future: giving rise to the hordes of kidnapers and armed robbers in the East, and Boko Haram that wreaks havoc in the North and the Centre.  No wonder “the need for privacy, (and the) fear of insecurity”!

 

The rapacious “luxury trend … among the rich” of Nigeria is mind-boggling in a country where three quarters of its population daily wallow in abject squalor, penury, and poverty; where the scant and long neglected infrastructures are dilapidated and laying in ruins. What a legacy by malfeasants in a country where there are no hospitals or schools worthy of such names; in a country rich in oil and gas, but cannot generate the electricity that could power a medium sized Canadian city!

 

Yet, the aberration that is the “private jet ownership in Nigeria has grown by 650 percent” between 2007 and 2012, placing “the monetary value of all private jets in the country at $7.5bn”. What a country!

 

Dr. Chukwuemeka Chukwuma-Eze Obiajunwa

 Nigerian Looters’ Paradise: Wealthy Nigerians Spend $6.5bn on 130 Pr

Sun Sep 16, 2012 8:53 pm (PDT) . Posted by:

“Kayode Adebayo” kayusee1

Source: Punch

Director-General, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, Dr. Segun Demuren and Minister of Aviation, Mrs. Stella Oduah
| credits:
The growing penchant for
private jets acquisition has cost wealthy Nigerians a sum of $6.5bn
(N1.02tn) in the last five years. Aviation sources reveal that the
luxury trend, which rose by 650 per cent between 2007 and 2012, is
encouraged among the rich by the need for privacy, fear of insecurity
and the urgency required by modern business, TUNJI ABIOYEreports
Private jet ownership in Nigeria has grown by 650 per cent, from 20 jets in 2007 to over 150 jets in 2012.
According to documents sighted in
aviation agencies, the development means that wealthy Nigerians
acquired, at least, 130 private jets with a sum of N1.02tn ($6.5bn)
within the last five years.
This put the private jets aviation
market in Nigeria (the monetary value of all private jets in the
country) at N1.18tn ($7.5bn), using $50m as the average cost of each
brand new private jet.
A private jet goes for between $40m and
$65m, according to the websites of major private jets manufacturers,
like Bombardier of Canada; GulfStream and Hawker Siddley of United
States; and Embraer of Brazil.
According to findings, the common brands of private jets in Nigeria are Gulfstream 450, 550 and 650; Bombardier
Challenger 604, 605; Global Express; Embraer Legacy and Falcons; and
Hawker Siddley 125-800 and 900XP.
Top aviation officials told our
correspondent on Friday that Nigeria currently rivalled China as one of
the two fastest growing private jet markets in the world.
An official with in-depth knowledge of
the situation, who spoke under condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to comment on the matter, said most of the jets were bought
by top politicians, oil magnates and other business moguls in Nigeria.
He explained that the economic downturn
in Europe and the United States had made Nigeria and China to become two of the fastest growing private jet markets in the world.
He said, “Two countries buying private
jets now are China and Nigeria. Europe and America are going through
turmoil; so, their people are no more buying. This accounts for the
trend that whenever some of the private jet manufacturers develop any
new jet, they take them to Nigeria and China.”
“The private jets in Nigeria are owned
by top politicians, oil magnates and business moguls. It is difficult to get the real identities of owners of some of the private jets in
Nigeria because they buy them through some foreign companies in North
America, especially the US. The foreign company then leases it to
another company in Nigeria.”
Investigation by our correspondent also
revealed that there were still several private jets on order by wealthy
Nigerians. Some of the jets, it was learnt, would be delivered this
year, while others would be delivered in 2013 and 2014.
A top official of the Nigerian Civil
Aviation Authority, who asked not to be named, said representatives of
the owners of the private jets on order had already notified the agency
about the order. This, he said, was necessary for the purpose of
registering the aircraft in Nigeria. According to him, some of the
private jets also come with foreign registration credentials.
The Managing Director of Aero Airlines,
Captain Akin George, had recently commented on the increasing number of
private jets being parked at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport,
Abuja.
He particularly lamented the fact that
most of the private jets carried foreign registration credentials. He
had subsequently called on the authorities concerned in the country to
make registration processes in Nigeria friendly and attractive.
During a recent visit to Abuja, our correspondent observed that over 40 private jets were parked at the terminal.
The CEO of another airline also said
that during political meetings or big functions in Abuja, over 50
private jets were usually seen parked at the Abuja airport.
These, he said, were different from the ones parked at the Lagos and other major airports across the country.
“If you go to the old local wing at the Abuja airport, there is virtually no place to park private jets again,” he said
Just on Thursday, a team of officials
from the headquarters of Bombardier in Canada arrived at the Executjets
Private Hangar at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, to showcase one
of their latest private jets, Global 6000.
The team was led by the Sales Director,
Africa, Bombardier Business Aircraft, Mr. Robert Habjanic, who said that the team was on a tour of 12 cities in Africa, including Lagos.
Habjanic, who spoke with a few aviation journalists, told our
correspondent that Nigeria was the company’s largest market in Africa,
with about 35 Bombardier-made business aircraft currently flying its
airspace.
He said the team had also showcased the relatively new business jet in other parts of the world.
He confirmed that “private business in Nigeria has been growing tremendously in the last five years.”
He attributed this to the fact that “Nigeria is an emerging market.”
The growth in the purchase of private
jets in Nigeria has also led to the development of multimillion dollars
private jets hangars, where repairs and maintenance could be done in the country. Some of these include Execujets Nigeria Hangar, Caverton
Hangar and EverGreen Hangar, all located at the Lagos airport.
Speaking on the development, industry
expert, Mr. Olumide Ohunayo, said, “The economy is expanding, with
increasing investments within the country and the region. This will
invariably necessitate instantaneous travel that scheduled airlines
cannot provide.
“Also the privacy needed in a country
filled with paparazzi can be an issue. Increasing political and
religious issues are contributory. By and large, it will continue to
increase if the economy continues with a lot of diversification inputs
that naturally spread wealth.”

Advertisements

Yes, I am surprised. Please enlighten me. I thought that articles of secondhand clothing were contraband in Nigeria – like stockfish, which used to be a staple-food to Easterners, and everything else that benefitted the common people are all banned in Nigeria.

Dr. Chukwuemeka Chukwuma-Eze Obiajunwa    

 

Secondhand Clothes from West flood Nigeria Markets

Wed Sep 19, 2012 11:27 am (PDT) . Posted by:

“Kayode Adebayo” kayusee1

Anyone surprised about this development? The so-called leaders and economic managers have abandoned their responsibilities to Nigerians. They kill-off local businesses with their high interest rates, lack of investment in infrastructure like electricity, finance foreign goods with our foreign reserves and confuse the youths with empty promises. The confused youths now promote foreign countries, traditions and cultures instead of their own. They love New York, instead of Lagos; they watch and support foreign soccer teams on TV, instead of local soccer teams. What a country – Kayode
 
Source: Associated Press – 3 hrs ago
 
 
* Associated Press/Sunday Alamba – In this photo taken Monday, June. 18, 2012. A woman alters secondhand clothes at Katangua market in Lagos, Nigeria. Shipping container after shipping container arrives to this …more market in Lagos, Nigeria’s largest city, filled to the brim with plastic-wrapped bales of secondhand clothes from the U.S. and elsewhere in the world. Traders scour, barter, hem and haw over T-shirts, bras, pants and shoes sent to help clothe a nation of more than 160 million people where the textile industry largely collapsed years ago. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)  LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — At Nigeria’s Katangua Market, that castaway from the West means big money.
Shipping container after shipping container arrive in the market in Lagos, filled to the brim with plastic-wrapped bales of secondhand clothes from the U.S. and elsewhere. Traders scour, barter, hem and haw over T-shirts, bras, pants and shoes sent to help clothe a nation of more than 160 million people where the textile industry largely collapsed years ago.
 
But while much comes in as Western donations, those on the receiving end sell them instead of giving them away, creating a massive industry that makes it even harder for Nigeria’s remaining clothing manufacturers to complete against a tidal wave of cotton and polyester.
“More often than not what people call donations actually ends up been hijacked by people … who profiteer from it,” said Diran Akinleye, an economics professor at the University of Lagos. “So even though it starts out in the U.S. or the (United Kingdom) as a donation, it ultimately becomes a business on this side.”
 
Katangua Market sits past the international airport, surrounded by suburbs of Nigeria’s largest city. Piles of clothes ranging from jeans to underwear lay on the ground as traders pick through them, selecting what they want to buy. Some sell the clothes direct to customers while other buyers will take the items to shops in and outside of the city.
 
Nearby, rows of tailors sit at foot-cranked sewing machines, repairing tears and resizing some large shirts. Piles of bras and panties litter the ground. T-shirts bear strange, cryptic slogans, like a cartoon character saying “No, no no!” A jersey with the No. 3 reads “Pittsburgh.” Other shirts are more recognizable, like an Obama 2008 campaign shirt or an “I Love NY” T-shirt on a woman sewing nearby.
 
“We need this clothing,” said clothing trader Sunny Nnjiofor. “Most of the factories that produce all this clothing materials have folded up.”
Some clothes sell here for three pieces to a $1, a bargain compared to locally made shirts. Traditional clothing still has its place, though increasingly poor women will wear a cloth wrapper around her waist while wearing a secondhand T-shirt from the U.S. Western-style button-up shirts and pants also are increasingly worn by men.
 
Nigeria once had a thriving textile industry, largely based in the northern city of Kano. But in recent decades, as Nigeria’s state-run electricity company fell into shambles, the mills slowed and finally stopped. Some companies, like Omas Nigeria Ltd., still produce clothes for government agencies and private businesses, but making a profit has grown increasingly difficult as they depend on diesel generators for electricity, said Margaret Orubu, Omas’ managing director.
 
“The cost of production is very high. Electricity, to water, the rent and (other charges are) very expensive compared to what people bring in from abroad,” Orubu said. “If you compare the price you’ll find out that after production, the cost of the ones we produce here are very, very expensive.”
 
While undercutting costs, the importation of donated clothing provides jobs in the country’s massive gray labor market. Tailors wander through streets here, snapping scissors to announce their presence. Salesmen drape the secondhand clothes over their arms, walking through neighborhoods to show off their wares.
 
Marketers decline to talk about how they source the clothes from abroad, but acknowledge much of it comes from donations. Some of it also is thought to be ferried over from neighboring Benin as contraband.

Mister, you can call “Dr. Goodluck Eberechukwu Azikiwe Jonathan … the weakest and most ineffective head of state Nigeria ever had”, because he does not perceive government as a vehicle to fleece the people, unlike his “functionally illiterate” predecessors – “a phalanx of bandits, gangsters, crooks, and scoundrels” who hijacked government and used “the machinery of the state to enrich themselves, their cronies, supporters, and members of their own ethnic” and “religious group” to the exclusion of the masses. (My reasoning in parenthesis taken from Dr. George BN Ayittey. Defeating Dictators: Fighting Tyranny in Africa and Around the World – New York: Palgrave MacMillan – P.23)

Goodluck Jonathan’s Nigeria and Barack Obama’s United States of America exist in a parallel universe. Think about that.

Some elements fought tooth and nail to deny Vice-President Jonathan his right of succession to the presidency after the demise of President Yara’Adua. For those powers-that-be it was anathema that anyone other than from the region “born to rule” should be elevated to the Presidency of Nigeria – despite the fact that the crude oil, the mainstay of the Nigerian economy, the proceeds from which are stolen, looted, and siphoned away in private foreign bank accounts, comes from Dr. Goodluck Jonathan’s own region of Nigeria. After he had prevailed, the same elements vowed to make his Nigeria “ungovernable”, hence the rise of the terrorist Islamist group called Boko Haram. Have they wreaked havoc in that moribund country?

In the United States of America, Barack Obama took the country by storm to the chagrin and discomfiture of the ultra-right-wingers, and ascended to the Presidency of the United States of America, the most powerful position in the world. What an audacity of a Blackman, albeit, a slave progeny, the son of a vagabond Kenyan man, they grumbled. It goes without saying that to the largest extent, the United States of America, the status of the world’s greatest power that it enjoys today, was built by the labour of black slaves; the White House itself which President Obama occupies today was built by slave hands. And they vowed to make him “a one term president”. To boot, the Tea Party, and the Birther movements were born.

Both men, smart, intelligent, and enlightened, but try as hard as they are imbued with the accoutrements to pull their countries from near collapse and doldrums they have received neither the accolades for their accomplishments, in spite of all the odds, nor the cooperation for their vision for a brighter and better tomorrow.                    

 Dr. Chukwuemeka Chukwuma-Eze Obiajunwa

Marketing Jonathan

His Excellency Dr Goodluck Ebelechukwu Azikiwe Jonathan, Nigeria ’s first PhD holder President must be worried stiff that his image as the weakest and most ineffective Head of State Nigeria ever had continues to go worse by the day. He must be worried that his self-proclaimed dream of becoming the father of modern Nigeria like his godfather once dreamt may actually make him also like his godfather THE FATHER OF MURDERED NIGERIA!

It was not surprising to hear him lament last week that he is the most criticised President in the world. Of course he is; simply because he is the most confused and least performing President there is in the world. He made his case the more pathetic when he tried lamely to argue that he did not create the problems Nigerians want him to fix. This pronouncement from a ‘leader’ shows the shallowness of a President’s understanding of his job.

Leaders are made leaders by their people so that such leaders could solve existing problems. People are elected into office to solve problems on ground. The core essence of leadership is the ability of a leader to solve the problems he did not create!

We did not have electricity because people hitherto entrusted with the task of providing power chose to put currency notes in their mouth. They simply ate the money meant to provide infrastructure.

Nigerians then allowed themselves to have a leader rigged into their sphere in the hope that whichever way such a leader emerged, he would solve their problems and end their nightmare. They reasoned that the new leader might perhaps not like the smell of currency notes and might therefore not be a gormandiser of money.

Now Dr Jonathan is in a dilemma. He is worried about his image. He tried the most expensive perfume made in France ; it did not seem to have worked. The more doses of Giorgio Armani from Italy , he splashed on his body, the worse the smell of his Resource Control Suit.

Our President’s handlers are now more worried and are having sleepless nights. They have a product on their laps. A very bad product. How does any one make orogbo sweet? What quantity of honey can an orogbo be laced with that will obliterate the bitter taste of orogbo or Kola nitida or kola accuninata?

We have reached a stage that even if the presidency gathers the combined strengths of Moses Ihonde, Prince Aleshinloye, Alex Nwokedi, Duro Onabule and Mrs Remi Oyo and link them up with the public relations wizardry of Alex Akinyele, the sum total will still be zero!

Every elementary student of Marketing knows that the first principle in marketing is the product. The product must be good, appealing and credible. And in Public Relations, the brand to be laundered must be properly packaged, appealing and trustworthy. If you have a product that is not credible or you have a brand that is not packageable, no amount of marketing or public relations gimmicks can make such a product or brand fly.

The problem with the image of our amiable President has nothing to do with his dress sense, or the use or misuse of language, or his occasional rushing to conclusions without proper evaluation of events, or his obvious reduction of the presidency to local government level, [by the way the whole of Bayelsa population is about the same as the population of Akinyele Local government in Oyo state], it is more with his style and the obvious lack of being in charge.

Mr President allows too many people to be posing as his face. The obvious result of that is that the real or true face of the president is no longer recognizable. As things stand today, Nigerians are not sure whether it is Okonjo Iweala [the World Bank/IMF representative] who is running this country, or it is Dezeani with her frightening lights behind her glasses, or the imperial Sanusi Lamido Sanusi [the hand of Esau] who sees the Central bank, nay the national treasury as an extension of the palace he is said to be eyeing. Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi behaves as if he is greater than the President of the Federal Republic . And nobody can blame him. If I happen to be working for a President that does not seem to understand my portfolio, I will assume his functions and make a dwarf of him. Or worse still,
if I work with a National Assembly that can be pocketed with tonnes of currency I will surely ride them roughshod.

It is very difficult to market President Jonathan. The reason as stated earlier is very simple. You simply don’t know what to market! Or put bluntly, you do not have something to market. No properly articulated policy. No properly executed project. No convincing performance. And the character of those who surround our President does not lend itself to any human relations.

We have a country where over 90 percent are groaning under the weight of crushing poverty, we have a country where most of the stories we read daily are of rape, kidnapping, murder, armed robbery and large scale looting of the treasury, and yet you see people who are supposed to be leaders swimming in odious opulence and lavish display of stolen wealth.

But the situation is not irredeemable. It is still possible for President Jonathan to recover some of his lost honeymoon with the Nigerian people. Dr Ebele Jonathan is a good person. He is humble. He is simple. He is a decent human being. There is also no denying the fact that the unprecedented billions of Naira lavished on propaganda and brain-wash did secure the admiration of certain segments of the Nigerian masses for likeable personality prior to the elections in 2011.

Then the mask fell off!

Performance, the lack of it, had taken propaganda to the court of public opinion and propaganda has been sent to life imprisonment.

What President Jonathan needs to get a good rating and improved reckoning is POLITICAL. There are deft political moves that he must immediately embark upon to restore confidence both in himself and in the polity.
Luckily, and this is not a joke, there are Nigerians imbued with political sagacity who can help if consulted.

I will, for example, suggest Prince Emeka Obasi, a socio-political tactician and strategist who never ceases to dazzle his listeners at public forum with his uncanny politico- economic analysis of the Nigerian situation. I know he is doing well as Publisher of Business Hallmark, so he is NOT looking for a job. I know as of a fact that if Emeka is listened to for just one hour, the fortune of Dr Jonathan will dramatically improve. Leaders all over the world invite bright minds for occasional chat.

For now, the President must present a product and a brand for his marketers and brand managers to market and promote