ANTP Crisis: Baba Wande Sues For Peace Among Stakeholders


Veteran Yoruba movie actor, Mr Kareem Adepoju, has called for peace among members of the Association of Nigeria Theatre Arts Practitioners (ANTP), after a court judgement on the crisis rocking the national body of the association.

Adepoju, who is popularly known as Baba Wande, said the judgement of the High Court sitting in Ejigbo, Osun State on March 28, 2017 that Mr Victor Asaolu should remain in office as the President of ANTP till February 2018, was not a solution to the crisis bedevilling the association.

He called on all stakeholders including the governors and royal fathers in Nigeria’s South-West region to intervene in the matter and save the ANTP, lauding the efforts of the Olowu of Owu kingdom, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, in resolving the crisis.

Speaking during an interview with Channels Television at his residence in Osogbo, Baba Wande appealed to all Yoruba film actors and actresses to come together and speak in one voice to develop the industry.

“Some of us feel that the tenure of the President of ANTP, Mr Victor Ashaolu has expired, but the man insisted that he has not finished his tenure and he took the matter to court instead of leaving the office.

“The man has been in the office as the ANTP President since 2010, whereas he was supposed to spend four years. The matter was brought to a court in Osun here and after several years of litigation, the court eventually ruled that Ashaolu’s tenure will end in February next year.

“As law abiding citizens of this country, we must respect the court and obey the judgement, unless anyone is interested in appealing the judgement in the higher court and that cannot be a solution to the problem we are battling with.

“I want to appeal to all Yoruba film-makers, actors and actresses to unite and speak in one voice in the best interest of all of us. This current crisis in the ANTP will not benefit anyone of us and the society.

“I also want to call on all stakeholders, especially the Governors of Osun, Mr Rauf Aregbesola; Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun; Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi; Lagos State, Mr Akinwumi Ambode; Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose and Ondo State, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu to intervene in the ANTP leadership crisis.

“I’m also appealing to our traditional rulers in Yoruba land, especially the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi; the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, and the Awujale of Ijebu Land, Oba Sikiru Adetona, to wade in and help us settle the dispute so that we can be together.

“We are grateful to the Olowu of Owu kingdom, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, who has been making frantic efforts to resolve the crisis. We appreciate his efforts so far and we also want him to intensify efforts so that the crisis would be resolved while we unite to make our association great again,” the Yoruba actor said.

Recalled that leading members of the ANTP pulled out from the association and form a parallel association christened Theatre Arts and Movie Practitioners Association of Nigeria (TAMPAN).

Mr Adebayo Salami, also known as ‘Oga Bello’, Prince Jide Kosoko and Mr Dele Odule, who had a running battle with Mr Ashaolu over the leadership tussle in ANTP, formed TAMPAN in Lagos State.

Oyo Govt. Sets Up Agency For Planning, Development Control

oyo-stateThe Oyo State Government, has set up a Bureau of Planning and Development Control, to fast track the ongoing infrastructural development and urbanisation of the state, as an integral part of the modernization efforts by the state governor.

The bureau would also be tasked with eliminating indiscriminate and illegal physical development across the state.

This was disclosed on Monday at a press briefing by the state Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr. Toye Arulogun, at the end of the State Executive Council meeting held at the Governor’s Office Exco Chambers, Ibadan, the state capital.

Mr. Arulogun explained that the Bureau was established to step up the modernization of the physical landscape of the state, noting that the Bureau would operate as an enforcement agent for the controlled physical development of Oyo State.

He said that the government had to cut out bureaucratic bottlenecks in order to achieve more physical development projects, adding that the bureau was set up to create a more efficient process of turning around the physical landscape in the State.

“At the end of today’s State executive council meeting, the council decided after deliberations to create the ‘Bureau of Planning and Development Control’ with a view to embark on more physical developmental and control projects which would add more aesthetic value to the environment in the state.

“There is the urgent need to create an agency that will be reporting directly to the Governor. The agency will perform its roles and functions outside any ministry. The government is desirous of a department that will be more efficient in guiding development in the state.

“There is the need to conclude all projects that will change the face of the state for both the internal and external public. This is in line with Gov Ajimobi’s restoration, transformation and repositioning agenda of the administration.

The commissioner noted that the government will soon have its master plan, saying “the state government is collaborating with the World bank to have a master plan for the state. The government is also embarking on the Geographical Information System (GIS) project to have a proper geographical mapping for the state.”

He also hinted that the agency, which will be headed by a Director General, would also work towards improving the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) in the State from the physical planning sector, stating that the Ministry of Justice had been mandated to give the agency the needed legal backing.

“The major reason for creating the agency, was to give more bite to the efforts of the administration in effecting a turnaround, in our physical development. We want it to be more efficient.”

The Commissioner said there would be no need for recruitment or procurement of building and furniture for the agency that would become additional costs for the government, adding that the staffers under the concerned ministries and their offices would be used by the bureau.

Oyo State Receives 7.2b Naira Paris Club Deduction Funds

Abiola Ajimobi, Oyo State, Paris Club The Oyo State Government has confirmed the receipt of 7.2 billion naira as its share of the Paris Club over-deduction funds.

The government said the feat was achieved after spirited efforts by the State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi.

The government said that 60% of the funds collected has been added to the Federal Allocation to the state to pay salaries of workers for the months of August and September 2016.

The state’s Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Toye Arulogun, made the disclosure on Wednesday during a media briefing.

Mr Arulogun explained that the funds did not come out fortuitously, but came out due to the doggedness, determination and tenacity of Governor Ajimobi in spite of the initial exclusion of Oyo State on the list of the beneficiaries.

He noted that the state government had announced in December 2016 and reiterated in early January 2017 that the state was excluded from the initial beneficiary states of Paris Club Over Deduction Funds.

The Commissioner added that the Governor had reassured the people of the state at different fora that he would work round the clock to ensure the state gets its share.

“The efforts of Governor Abiola Ajimobi have yielded fruitful results. We will all remember that Oyo State was initially excluded from the states that benefitted from the Paris Club over-deduction funds.

“The Federal Government claimed that the previous administration had already collected the state’s share.

“However, Governor Ajimobi was not at peace with the development and swung into action to ensure that the state was included on the list.

“The Governor therefore mandated the Ministry of Finance to reconcile accounts with the Federal Ministry of Finance, Abuja.

“The results of the reconciliation and the Governor’s spirited efforts led to the payment of 7.2 billion naira to Oyo State.

“We have used 60% of the funds received to pay salaries as promised by the Governor during the interfaith service of the Oyo State Government held on January 3, 2017.

“Oyo State appreciates the cooperation of the Minister and Federal Ministry of Finance officials who facilitated the payment that has brought some degree of succour to workers in the state and will enable government deliver some more projects as dividends of democracy,” Arulogun said.

Olaniwun’s Death Decimates True Yoruba Leadership Hierarchy – Ajimobi

Olaniyun, true yoruba leadership, ajimobiGovernor of Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, has described the death of the foremost leader of the pan-Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, Sir Ajayi Olaniwun, as a huge blow that has decimated the hierarchy of true Yoruba leadership.

A statement by the Special Adviser on Communication and Strategy to the Governor, Mr Yomi Layinka, said that Afenifere, the entire Yoruba and the country at large have lost a rare, committed and disciplined leader of repute.

Although the late Isara Remo-born Yoruba leader passed on at a ripe age of 91, the governor lamented that he died when the country was in dire need of sages, required to proffer solutions to the myriads of its socio-economic challenges.

Eulogizing Olaniwun as urbane and affectionate, the governor said that his modest lifestyle was a lesson in humility, despite his accomplishments as a distinguished writer, great Yoruba leader and philosopher.

The governor recalled that the late leader proved to be a dependable rallying point when patriots were in the trenches to wrest power from the military, which made him one of the very few heroes and heroines of the democracy the country now enjoys.

Olaniyun, true yoruba leadership, ajimobi
Afenifere, Sir Ajayi Olaniwun

Ajimobi said, “I visited you at Isara Remo in February to tap from your rich repertoire of knowledge and to drink from your fountain of wisdom. But, little did I know that your warm welcome, as you ushered me into the inner recess of your modest home, was a way to bid me farewell.

“You were bubbly, energetic and full of life, with a strength that belies your nonagenarian status.

This, definitely, is an attestation to your disciplined and Spartan lifestyle.

“How I wish the young ones of today can emulate your way of life, which was a lesson in path to gerontology, piety, discipline, hard work, modesty, love for humanity, dedication to the course of Yoruba and fear of God. I have no doubt that you fought a good fight and you finished your course.

“Your death has created a huge vacuum in the hierarchy of true Yoruba leadership. You left us when your wisdom and experience was badly needed to pilot our dear country into safety, from this turbulent socio-economic weather.

“You will be sorely missed,” Ajimobi stated.

The governor condoled with the family, friends and associates of the legendary Olaniwun and prayed for the repose of his gentle soul as they plan on giving him a befitting burial.

Curbing Malaria: Oyo State To Establish Health Insurance Scheme

Oyo State GoveMalaria, oyo state, health, insurance schemernor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, has said that the bill for the establishment of the state Health Insurance Scheme passed earlier in the week by the state House Of Assembly, will soon be passed into law.

The Governor disclosed this while kick-starting the distribution of long lasting insecticidal nets across the state at the Government House arcade, Agodi, Ibadan.

He said that the bill would serve as a veritable tool for universal health coverage for residents of the state, especially to cater for the rural populace.

“The government has conducted the re-alignment of the health care service delivery in the state.

“Earlier this week, the state House of Assembly passed the bill for the establishment of the state Health Insurance Scheme.

“This is a tool the Government will utilize to ensure universal health coverage for residents of the Oyo state.

“Equally, the state Primary Health Care Law will soon be promulgated for further coverage of the grassroots in healthcare delivery.”

The Governor commended the United State Agency For International Development (USAID), Federal Ministry Of Health and other partners for their intervention and supportive roles, which according to him had enhanced the wellness of the people of the state.

He said that their noteworthy support over the years had assisted in minimizing the scourge of malaria, as underscored by the reduction in the incidence of the menace by 45% when compared with the 2012 figures.

Governor Ajimobi believes that the state is winning the battle as the incidence of malaria has now reduced by 45% when compared with the incidence of year 2012.

According to him, the regular mass distribution of insecticidal nets, which is currently ongoing in all 33 local government areas of Oyo state, has aided in the fight.

Ajimobi further assured all developing partners that the government would intensify its multi-prong approach aimed at curbing the malaria scourge in the state.

At the event, the representative of USAID, Dr Bolatito Aiyenigba, said that 8,500 health workers had been trained on malaria prevention, diagnosis and treatment, adding that mosquito nets, diagnostic tests and antimalarial drugs had been supplied to various centers in the state.

Aiyenigba said that no effort should be spared in the fight against malaria in Africa, stressing that the continent alone bears 80% of the global burden of the disease.

Of this percentage, she said it was regrettable that Nigeria alone accounts for one-third of the burden.

The USAID representative, however, commended the state government for spearheading the fight against malaria in all parts of the state through many safety nets.

Highlighting other key disadvantages, she said “malaria is responsible for one in every ten deaths of mothers due to complications in pregnancy.

“Therefore, no effort should be spared to tackle the scourge at the local, state, national and global levels.

“Your excellency, there is indeed great evidence that shows your commitment and good work to ensure that your people live in good health and in a sound environment.

“Please continue to give the health sector the required priority in your government,” she urged.

Oyo Governor Assents Death Penalty For Kidnapping

Oyo-Kidnapping-Abiola AjimobiThe Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, has signed the new Kidnapping (Prohibition) Bill 2016 into law.

Validating the bill at the Executive Council Chamber of the Governor’s Office, Senator Ajimobi commended the lawmakers for the accelerated passage, saying that it would help in curbing crime and criminal activities in the state.

He vowed to enforce the law to the latter, warning kidnappers to steer clear of Oyo State in their own interest.

A former Attorney General of the State, Barrister Adebayo Ojo, expressed satisfaction with the law, saying it was a welcome development.

On his part also, the Oyo State Commissioner of Police, Adeleye Oyebade, promised that the new law would be implemented to the letter.

The bill had earlier been passed into law by the Oyo State House of Assembly, following the submission of report by the Chairman, House Committee on Judiciary and Justice, Honourable Olukayode Akande.

The Speaker of the House, Honourable Michael Adeyemo, and the Permanent Secretary/Clerk of the House, Mr Paul Bankole, had earlier signed the bill before the governor’s assent.

Content Of The Law

As contained in the law, a convicted offender would be liable to life imprisonment if the victim is released or rescued unhurt upon the payment of a ransom while the kidnapper would be compelled to pay back the ransom.kidnapped clergies

Similar punishment awaits any person who procures, engages or gives information culminating in the kidnapping of a victim, as the law considered the offence to carry the same weight of kidnapping.

The law also stipulates imprisonment for any person who kidnaps or threatens to kill, maim or cause bodily harm in order to compel another person, corporate body or organisation to do or abstain from doing any act as a condition for the release of the victim.

Twenty years imprisonment awaits anyone who makes an attempt to kidnap while anybody who aids or abets kidnapping is liable to imprisonment for 15 years upon conviction.

Besides, the law also stipulates 15 years imprisonment or any non-custodian punishment that might be determined by the court for any person who puts himself forward to be kidnapped for the purpose of extorting ransom from his employer or any person.

According to the law, any property owner, who knowingly or willingly surrenders his building over which he has control, to be used for the purpose of keeping, is liable to 15 years imprisonment while such property would be forfeited to the government.

Any person who willingly allows his or her electronics, equipment, instrument, mechanical or movable item to be used for the purpose of kidnapping, aiding kidnapping has also committed an offence and would be committed to prison for 10 years if convicted.

Similarly, any property, monies and other valuables owned or realised by anybody convicted of the offence of kidnapping shall be forfeited to the government for public use.

According to the law, any person who kidnaps another person by any other means of instilling fear or tricks, with intent to demand ransom or compel another to do anything against his will has committed an office.

It also declared as an offence, kidnapping in such manner as to prevent the victim from disclosing to any other person, the place where he is being kept or prevent anybody from having access to him with or without payment of a ransom for his release.

Oyo Declares Public Holiday For Olubadan’s Coronation

OlubadanThe Oyo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi, has declared Friday, March 4, as public holiday throughout the state to commemorate the coronation of the 41st Olubadan of Ibadan land.

The new Oba Saliu Olasupo Adetunji will be installed at the historic Mapo Hall in the heart of Ibadan on Friday.

The Special Adviser to the Governor on Communication and Strategy, Mr Yomi Layinka, in an interview with Channels Television, said that preparations were in top gear for a successful coronation.

Dignitaries are expected from all walks of life both within the country and from the diplomatic community.

Mr Layinka added that all arrangements have been concluded with security agents to ensure that no breach in security is recorded during and after the historic event.

He, however, warned all corporate organisations not to litter the state with any illegal branding of any sort for the event as the entire programme is sponsored by the Oyo State Government.

He added that market places and business premises are expected to be closed for business while the event lasts to honour the new king.

The last coronation of this nature was done for the late Olubadan, Oba Samuel Odulana Odugade, in 2007.

Buhari, Ajimobi Others Pay Last Respect To Olubadan

OlubadanPresident Muhammadu Buhari has called on Nigerians to emulate the exemplary lifestyle of the late Olubadan of Ibadan land as an epitome of honesty, courage and dignity.

Represented by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the President made the call on Wednesday at the funeral service of the departed monarch held at the St. Peters’ Cathedral, Aremo in Ibadan, Oyo State capital.

He said that Oba Samuel Odulana, Odugade I, exhibited the fear of God throughout his lifetime and this informed the progress made in Oyo State.

The President stressed the need for Nigerians to work towards being celebrated while alive as well as to leave a good legacy after death.

He said that the whole of Nigeria was proud to have the like of the late Oba Odulana because of his life of honesty and forthrightness.

In his remarks, the chief mourner and host Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, paid a glowing tribute to the late traditional ruler whom he said had exemplary attributes.

Governor Ajimobi said that the late Olubadan left an indelible mark in the sands of time in the areas of politics, civil service, military and other leadership positions he was privileged to occupy before his ascension to the throne.

In his sermon, Most Reverend Olusegun Okubadejo said that the myriad of orations and tributes from different categories of people were testimonies to the fact that the revered monarch had secured heaven.

Dignitaries from all walks of life on Wednesday paid their last respect to the departed Olubadan of Ibadan land as his remains was committed to mother earth.

Among them were the Governors of Osun and Lagos States, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, and Mr Akinwumi Ambode and the Minister of Communications, Mr Adebayo Shittu.

Aregbesola Hopes For Victory In August 9 Poll

Gov aregbesola campaignOsun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola and his Oyo State Counterpart, Senator Abiola Ajimobi have expressed confidence that their political party, the All Progressives Congress (APC),  will win the governorship election, as the party has delivered on its promises to the people.

Addressing the crowd at the Rally ground in Ejigbo Federal Constituency in Ejigbo, Osun State, the Governor said  the visit to Ejigbo was the ninth in the series of the Mega Rally of the party, as it prepares for the August 9, Gubernatorial Polls.

The streets of Ejigbo town  became very busy as the crowd trooped out to welcome the campaign train of the All Progressives Congress to the town.

The campaign rally attracted all categories of people as Motorcycle riders Men and Women ,Old and  young ,even school  children were not left out as they chanted welcome songs to the convoy of Governor Rauf Aregbesola as it passed through  the town.

Governor Aregbesola arrived the Unity School, venue of the campaign rally in company of his Oyo State Counterpart, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, standing on the motorcade, dancing and waving the Party’s Symbol, the broom, to the enthusiastic crowd.

Both Governors gave their message to the people in the native tongue and said the Party has worked so hard to ensure that the dividend of  democracy is enjoyed by all just as they urged the people to let the flow of the APC be given a second chance.

While Speaking further, both the Governors said with the level of acceptance of the people, winning the election for the APC in Osun State  was a done deal.

The campaign team also visited the Ogiyan of Ejigbo, Oba Omowonuola Oyeyode-Oyesosin in his palace for royal blessings.

Education: S.West Governors Consider Yoruba As Language Of Instruction

Primary schools in the south-west geopolitical zone in the country may soon switch to the use of Yoruba language, their mother tongue, as the language of instruction.

The decision to consider the use of the language was part of the outcome of a meeting on Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) held by South-West Governors in Ibadan, Oyo State capital on Thursday night.

Speaking on behalf of the Governors, Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi said a region-wide education summit would soon be hosted by Osun state, to look at a mechanism that would allow the region come up with a common curriculum for basic education.

The curriculum according to Fayemi would place emphasis on the use of Yoruba as a language of instruction in basic schools across the region.

It could be recalled that the National Policy on Education (1976) had recommended that the mother tongue of pupils should be the language of instruction at the elementary education level.

Fayemi had at a forum in Akure a few weeks ago held that researches have also proven that pupils can learn faster when taught in their first language.

Speaking further on the outcome of the meeting, the Governor said the region was planning an alternative economic framework that will make the knowledge economy which the region is known for, serve as bulwark against the emerging reduction in the resource-based economy that the country currently has.

“What happens to us? We are being futuristic here. What happens to us as western Nigeria and we are concerned about Nigeria as a country? What happens to us when oil no longer flows or when oil sells for one dollar? Where would the resources come from? How do we harness the energy of our people, their creativity and innovation as scholars?”, he said.

Other issues raised at the meeting are the exploration of sports as a unifying vehicle for development in the region and homeland security framework to forestall any security challenges.