of nominations and awards

Late yesterday Time magazine announced their Person of the Year 2015 and it turned out to be Angela Merkel, the Chancellor of Germany. With that she became the fourth woman to win that honour solo since Wallis Warfield Simpson (1936), Queen Elizabeth II (1952) and Corazon Aquino (1986). I will call this another victory for the feminists. Some reasons attributed for her getting this accolade include championing Europe’s policy towards refugee migrant crisis, the Greek debt crisis, her stance against Vladimir Putin’s creeping theft of Ukraine and for her moral leadership amongst others. Donald Trump, a finalist, had something to say about it via twitter

Donald J. Trump ‏@realDonaldTrump  18h18 hours ago

I told you @TIME Magazine would never pick me as person of the year despite being the big favorite They picked person who is ruining Germany

4,640 retweets7,866 likes

he definitely was not pleased about it and neither am I. Unlike Donald, my displeasure is not about who won but about who was not nominated.

First, I know the racism card would work here very well but I am not going to tow that path because I am a half-believer of racism. Time’s Person of the Year award 2015 pontificated about solvers of problems that have crystallized and not solvers of issues before they become problems. Before I reveal who was missing from Time’s nomination let us look at the other finalists. Continue reading “of nominations and awards”

GDP Rebase, The Optimism

So many events generate so many diverse reactions in Nigeria and when you think you are done with one another steaming event crops up and you are caught in the eye of the gossip storm. On Sunday, April 6, 2014, Nigeria rebased her GDP from the primordial date of 1990 and the ensuing reactions from Nigerians have been as predictive as usual; “whats in it for me?”

GDP or Gross Domestic Product is the total value of goods and services produced in a country within a specific period of time. GDP rebase, according to The United Nations, is the process of replacing present price structure (base year) to compile volume measures of GDP with a new or more recent base year. Countries rebase their GDP regularly to get a recent view of how their economy is faring. Nigeria lagged behind for 23 years. Continue reading “GDP Rebase, The Optimism”

Summary and quotes of Jean Jacques Rousseau’s The Social Contract

Rousseau's The Social Contract.
In summarising this political masterpiece, the four-part division is maintained and is referred to as Book I through to book IV. Book I seeks to make us understand how man graduated from being self-serving to being civil, why there was a need for the change and what political benefits necessitated it.
Book II tries to expose what kept sovereignty, its alienability, indivisibility and limits. The source of power of every sovereignty, which was in its laws as agreed upon by all was also examined and who the lawgiver was and how he came about with its different but important systems. Finally the people, their motivation and composition was glimpsed at.
Book III demystified government, its forms, institutions, preservation, classes and intersections. It also went further to show why different government are suitable for different countries and people.
Book IV explains the indestructibility of the general will and its motivations. It also ran an expose of the roman government, its build up, mainstay and peculiarities.

Jean Jacques Rousseau wrote the timeless piece “The Social Contract” in a bid to stoke the embers of self-rule and freedom in France and in the French Continue reading “Summary and quotes of Jean Jacques Rousseau’s The Social Contract”

John F. Kennedy’s “Ich bin ein berliner”

I am proud to come to this city as the guest of your distinguished Mayor, who has symbolized throughout the world the fighting spirit of West Berlin. And I am proud to visit the Federal Republic with your distinguished Chancellor who for so many years has committed Germany to democracy and freedom and progress, and to come here in the company of my fellow American, General Clay, who has been in this city during its great moments of crisis and will come again if ever needed.

Two thousand years ago the proudest boast was “civis Romanus sum.” Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is “Ich bin ein Berliner.”

I appreciate my interpreter translating my German!

There are many people in the world who really don’t understand, or say they don’t, what is the great issue between the free world and the Communist world. Let them come to Berlin. There are some who say that communism is the wave of the future. Let them come to Berlin. And there are some who say in Europe and elsewhere we can work with the Communists. Let them come to Berlin. And there are even a few who say that it is true that communism is an evil system, but it permits us to make economic progress. Lass’ sie nach Berlin kommen. Let them come to Berlin. Continue reading “John F. Kennedy’s “Ich bin ein berliner””

The Epetedo Declaration – Chief MKO Abiola

The Epetedo Declaration

People of Nigeria, exactly one year ago, you turned out in your millions to vote for me, Chief MKO Abiola, as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. But politicians in uniform, who call themselves soldiers but are more devious than any civilian would want to be, deprived you of your God-given right to be ruled by the president you had yourselves elected.
These soldiers introduced into our body politic, a concept hitherto unknown to our political lexicography, something strangely called the “annulment” of an election perceived by all to have been the fairest, cleanest and most peaceful ever held in our nation.
Since that abominable act of naked political armed robbery occurred, I have been constantly urged by people of goodwill both in Nigeria and abroad to put the matter back into the people’s hands and get them to actualize the mandate they gave me at the polls.
But mindful of the need to ensure that peace continues to reign in our fragile federation, I have continued to pursue sweet reason and negotiation. My hope has been to arouse whatever remnants of patriotism are left in the hearts of those thieves of your mandate, and to persuade them that they should not allow their personal desire to rule to usher our beloved country into an era of political instability and economic ruin. Continue reading “The Epetedo Declaration – Chief MKO Abiola”

Walter Rodney’s How Europe Underdeveloped Africa

There may be more questions raised than answers proffered in Walter Rodney’s classic but we seek to summarize the book whilst importing a critical look to complement the book.


Some Questions on Development

1.1 What is Development?

Development defined as a process of change is, according to Walter Rodney, many-sided involving individualism, social stratification/castes, and the society at large. This development is represented in the context of increased skill, greater freedom, creativity, self-discipline, responsibility and material well-being. However, during the course of this discourse Walter Rodney’s greater attention was directed at material well-being, freedom and skill.
Individual development, though sometimes moral, is tied to the overall development of the state. At the level of social groups, development implied an increasing capacity to regulate both internal and external relationships while for the society at large, development has exhibited strength to single-handedly improve their ability to live better lives through harnessing the earth’s resources available to them. Africa, construed to be the home of man, is not excluded in this regard.
The advent of tools greatly impacted economic development positively no matter how crude they were. However, human industry was beset by varying degrees of setback as they sought to achieve economic development. Using early China as an example, circumstances propelled their discovery of man-made fire and planting seeds. The resultant economic prosperity was evenly distributed equally amongst families. By the time of the T’ang dynasty of the 7th century AD, this quantitative growth progressed into qualitative changes that became evident in the structured political clime of the Chinese society and in specialization and division of labour which resulted in more production. Continue reading “Walter Rodney’s How Europe Underdeveloped Africa”