Sunday, October 16, 2016

Oh! Woman know thy place-Nigeria as case study:

In traditional native African culture, before the advancement of both the Christian and Islamic religions, women had played very vital roles in the family and the society at large. As a woman, before the introduction and adoption of Western and Arabic civilization in the Sub-Saharan Africa, there were but only three major duties that were exclusive to the woman and they includes; getting married, making babies/raising them and domestic work in the family. There are other roles that may not fall under the afore mentioned categories but these are the main duties of the African woman though it may differ depending on the cultural backgrounds.
Where is the place of women in the modern day Nigeria where both Christianity and Islam has made, or if not equal but a good share of influence on the lives and cultures of the people who embraced them wholeheartedly? Nigeria's Northern region has a largely Muslim population with some of the states operating Sharia law which guides their socio-religious interactions.
The likes of Ã'isha, the wife of Prophet Muhammad, Queen Amina of Zaria and Miriam (Mary) the Mother of Prophet Ísà (Jesus) has from history been a model and source of inspiration/encouragement to Muslim women.

But where is the place of the women under Islam? The Holy Qur'an has no doubt provided for, and protected the rights of women in a dedicated verses of its  chapter 4; Sura 4 with 176 verses named "An-Nisa (Women).
Gender roles in Islam are simultaneously coloured or covered by two Qur'anic precepts:
(1) Spiritual equality between men and women in Sūrat al Ahzãb and,
(2) the idea that women are meant to exemplify feminity and men masculinity (Wikipedia).
Let me not bore you with Islamic teaching for it is the exclusive reserve of Islamic scholars.

The statement attributed to President Muhammadu Buhari as a response to the interview granted by his wife to BBC once again calls our attention to the place of the Nigerian Women in the 21st century -not the place of Muslim women but that of Nigerian women. It was reported that President Muhammadu said "I don't know which party my wife belongs to but she belongs to my kitchen, my living room and other room".
From the above extract, it could be adduced as I pointed out ab-nitio that the three most important duties of women in the traditional native African society vis-à-vis the modern day Nigerian women is still irrelevant and somewhat not valued.
President Muhammadu unlike Prophet Muhammad (SAW)  has once shown that the roles of women is no more than that of "house wives" confined only within the four corners of the house.
My problem is with the shrewd mentality of our President concerning the Nigerian woman in the modern world.

If the Holy Qur'an guaranteed the equality of men and women and their complementry functions (Sūrat al Dhãriyãt, 51;49), why then has Mr President reduced the place of women to the home only and not also the wider society?
I am not a feminist but I fault Mr President's shrewd comment on women.
Yes, our women should not forget their primary role in the home but can't they even be allowed to face and mingle in the society? From the President's remarks, I was battling with the following thoughts:
1) Women's place in the kitchen and in the Living room as a domestic servant- the emphasis which Islam places on the man/woman polarity is quite logically in a separation of social function in general, a woman's sphere of operation is the home in which she is the dominant figure.  While the man's corresponding sphere is the outside world, this separation is not in practice as rigid as it appears because in the early history of Islam and in contemporary world of Islam, Muslim women had played prominent roles in the public life. These women among others are Sultanas, Queens, elected heads of states etc. The case of Queen Amina of Zaria, and a religious and symbolic figure like Ã'isha the wife of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and Miriam (Mary) the mother of Prophet Isã (Jesus) contradicts and proves Mr President wrong because women have a very important and significant role to play in the society as opposed to being confined in the "little nuns room" ie. The home.
2) Women's place in the "other room"- I don't want to judge or condemn the words "other room" because it is an open ended assertion - the "other room" in a house could mean  the storeroom, the bathroom or even the bedroom, but whence the "other room" is meant to be the bedroom as widely stipulated by people in the social media, it only entails then that the President places women in a two way situations or roles of a baby making machine or,  places the women in a position of a sex machine. Each of the two situations or roles fits in.

There are three things that a couple could do in the "other room" (bedroom) -to sleep together on the same bed resting, to make love which leads to the third one, to make babies.
Both the Qur'an and the spoken examples of Prophet Muhammad (Sunnah) advocated the equal rights of men and women to seek knowledge and this again has shown the contrast between Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and President Muhammadu Buhari. This also showed the similarities between the outspoken Ã'isha Buhari and Ã'isha, wife of Prophet Muhammad who taught men and women are equally in Islamic principles.

Lastly, I am not judging President Muhammadu Buhari but I wish to condemn in strong terms the rather insignificant place the President has given to women in the modern day Nigeria. President Muhammadu Buhari should look very well and study the lives of Miriam, Ã'isha, Queen Amina, Ã'isha Buhari, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Prof. Dora Akunyili, Kudirat Abiola, Princess Oguso of Eri and Bini kingdoms, and Nne Òka of Awka dynasty and have a rethink that women do not only have a place in the kitchen or in the rooms but also a very significant place in the wider and larger society.
Mr.President is also reminded that in Politics, one should try as much as possible to choose his words because your defensive words today maybe your offensive words tomorrow - words are just a two edged sword.
Thank you!
Akpanevbuak Jp Nduba.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Nigeria @ 56: Nigerian Youths Sleeping in Beauty.

Written by Akpanevbuak Chukwujekwu Johnpaul Nduba Jp - Awka
Chukwujekwu Johnpaul Nduba

Why has the Nigerian youths decided to accept the status quo in the way and manner the government is run?

Why has the youths chosen to be stagnated and made domicile in the belief that "we are the leaders of tomorrow"? - unending tomorrow.
Why has the youths chosen to sleep in beauty?
Where has the willpower which motivated our heroes past and nationalists into the struggle for and subsequent attainment of our "Independence" gone to after a "mere" 56 years of age?
Will the Nigerian youths continue to allow themselves to be a "toy remote" in the hands of the politicians?

Why should the youths allow themselves to be mobilized "only" during electioneering campaigns?
Why has the Nigerian youth continue to sell their rights for a mere "pot of porridge"?
These and many other questions lingers and must be answered by the Nigerian youths if they wish to be freed from the "Political conscience prison" which they have been condemned to in more than four decades. The challenges facing the Nigerian youth is not just unemployment but a more "complex" one which must be tackled with all sense of patriotism and urgency.
The Nigerian youth must realize that there's no "Prince" or "Messiah" that will give the "love kiss" in order to resuscitate them from their "sleeping in beauty" other than themselves. The Nigerian youth needs to let itself out of the fear of being intimidated into jail sentence. We cannot continue to let those whose Lives are gradually Fading away to decide and form our future - a future only the youth will wallow and toil in when they are gone.

We are in a kind of Psychological spell which has made it look as though we are held hostage and our destinies hijacked and defined by those who will not be alive to participate in it.
But, for us to rise up against these challenges, we must do away with the fear which has caged us over the years, love and Lust for money and mere political appointment which only terminates when the politician has dully served his tenure.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Drones: The Good and The Bad


  • The Good and The Bad
  • US drones to bomb northern Nigeria


Drones: The Good and The Bad 
Written by Nduba Jekwu, Umubele Awka

Image result for drones in nigeria"Drones" otherwise known as the UAV (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) are  flying robots. It may be remotely controlled or can fly autonomously through software-controlled flight plans in their embedded systems working in conjunction with GPS.  UAVs have most often been associated with the military but they are also used for search and rescue, surveillance, traffic monitoring, weather monitoring and firefighting, among other things.

1. A Life-saver:
As pointed out ab-nitio,  they could be used in monitoring conditions of weather,  traffic etc, drones may also be used to deliver medical recommendations to save a life in emergency situations, it could also be used to monitor the amount of damage or extent of a natural disaster where it is impossible for man to navigate in person,  maybe tsunami, earthquake, landslide, erosion, fire disaster etc. All these and many more are some of the benefits of drones in the society which cannot be over emphasized.

2. Drones: A Potential Threat and call for vigilance.
Image result for drones in nigeriaThe benefits of UAV cannot be over emphasized,  however we have to be cautious.
The proliferation  of small UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) has moved from an “emerging threat,” to an established one. There have been hundreds of close encounters between airplanes and drones at airports and some areas, (data unknown).
In some areas it has crashed into buildings and causing confusion as to where it came from?  What mission has it been sent to thereby raising the feelings of insecurity.
It has been reported elsewhere that UAVs has been used by terrorists to deliver IEDs to their victims.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Educational: WAEC show of shame


  • WAEC show of shame
  • Towards reviving Unity Schools
  • Why teachers need professional development


WAEC show of shame
~The SUN Nigeria. Sunday, September 25, 2016.

On its website the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) boldly advertises its vision and mission including the core values that drive its operations. WAEC is the over 60-year-old examination body for English-speaking West African nations. It is the bridge a student must cross to transit from secondary school to tertiary institution. In Nigeria, it was a monstrous monopoly until the emergence of the National Examination Council (NECO).

I recall those days preceding the emergence of NECO. Officials of WAEC, directly and by proxy, mounted a vehement campaign to discredit NECO. They had argued that the need for uniformity of standard in examination should not be compromised; that there was no need for another body administering similar examination. I stood on the side of WAEC on this matter that Nigeria does not need a duplicity of examination bodies for the same candidates.

But those who mooted the idea of NECO also mounted a strong argument. They argued that WAEC has lapsed into some sort of monopolistic arrogance; they canvassed the necessity and desirability of an alternative body to put WAEC in check. Obviously, at that time, a significant quantum of inefficiency has crept into the operations of WAEC in Nigeria. Examination papers were leaked (Expo) by officials of the organisation, marks were awarded for cash, results were altered right inside WAEC offices by officials of its IT department and many more rackets.

The examination body which started out as a model for high, unimpeachable standard thus became a trading post for fraudsters and fixers of results: the more money you pay, the higher your grades. Yes, WAEC sunk to such low depth at a time

Yet, its vision "is to be a world-class examining body, adding value to the educational goals of its stakeholders", while its mission "is to remain Africa's foremost examining body, providing qualitative and reliable educational assessment, encouraging academic and moral excellence and promoting sustainable human resource development and international cooperation".

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