Nigeria Opinion Politics



LAHA 2023 : Equity, justice, fairness imperative for Ikorodu’s unity — Bebenlo 

Prince Olamilekan Ojo Martins, a public affairs commentator and leadership advocate revisits the current succession controversy in Constituency 1 in Ikorodu Division ahead of 2023 and questions a clandestine arrangement by some unforeseen socio-political cabals that excludes the good people of Ikorodu West LCDA. 

I spoke on the roles that leaders must play to engender unity in my weekly Instagram-live entitled: “Nigeria, Some Defining Issues for the Future.’’. In my live broadcast I stated emphatically that equity, justice, and fairness for all segments of society are imperative in the pursuit of unity in Ikorodu Division of Lagos State.  

As a former LGA Youth Leader of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) I am of the conviction that any fear or allegation of marginalization or discrimination on account of tribe, residency, religion, ethnicity or political affiliations must not be overlooked by any community as its long term negative effects are better imagined. 

“Political and traditional leaders in Ikorodu Division must do the difficult work of educating their publics about the need to live together and ensure political positions and patronage are circled amongst the three entities that makes up Constituency 1 and 2, in this case for Constituency 1 are Ikorodu West, Ikorodu North and Ikorodu Central”. In constituency 2 brothers are pitching against one another, neighbors against neighbors …so the story goes. 

“It is the elites, leaders that will do the onerous job of ensuring unity in our communities.” 

In my previous writeup with the title, “The Propaganda Plights of LCDAs in Lagos State”, I tried to show how Greater Ikorodu West LCDA made up of Ipakodo, Owutu, Agric amongst others have been reduced to the political weeping child of Ikorodu Division. This is due to the worst form of political marginalization foisted on the people before, during and after the creation of LCDAs in Lagos State. 

Expectedly, the writeup attracted mixed reactions. In that writeup, many pertinent questions were raised challenging proponents of centralization in Ikorodu Central to provide evidence as to when and who sat together to draw the agreement on such arrangements (written or unwritten). 

While many hailed the logicality of the argument, some people with opposing views made feeble attempts to counter the argument even as they were lacking in facts and failed woefully to provide answers to the basic questions raised. Their best attempt was to say that both Ikorodu West and Ikorodu North were merely created from Ikorodu Central and they have to call the shorts and that it has come to stay! We shall return to that later. 

In this my second intervention, I basically want to present further historical evidence to buttress the point that, by reason of equity, justice and fairness, Ikorodu West LCDA, whether by “cultural zone” or old divisional structure (or even affirmation), should be supported to produce the next Lagos State House of Assembly Member for Ikorodu Constituency 1. Power can still shift to Ikorodu North LCDA afterwards. By so doing, equity is still serve.

Activities of the past years has only revealed how some stakeholders have been neglected in Ikorodu Constituency I. which is made up of Ikorodu Central, Ikorodu North and Ikorodu West)

House of Assembly Ikorodu Constituency I Short history 1999-Till Date

1999-2003.. Hon. Ola Animashaun (Ikorodu LG).

2003- 2007.. Hon. Sunmi Odesanya ( Ikorodu Central).

2007- 2011. Hon. SOB AGUNBIADE ( Ikorodu Central)

20011- 2015. Hon. SOB AGUNBIADE ( Ikorodu Central)

2015- 2019. Hon. SOB AGUNBIADE ( Ikorodu Central)

2019- 2023. Hon. SOB AGUNBIADE ( Ikorodu Central)

Ikorodu North and Ikorodu West we have waited enough…

We call on Our party Leaders and Traditional Leaders to speak out. If Ikorodu Constituency 2 can tinker with rotation , Ikorodu Constituency I should also lead by example.

It’s time for Rotation 🗣️🗣️🗣️🗣️……..

The unique and constitutional position of the trio is longed recognized by the laws of Lagos State as equal entities but the injustice vehemently experienced as shown in the case of the Lagos State House of Assemble leaves so much to be desired. We live in a complex web of multi-layered social, cultural, economic and political synergies playing out in Ikorodu and that is most unfortunate to the LCDAs. 

Despite the scale of the challenges facing us, unravelling this web of commonality as proposed by enthusiasts of disintegration and some greedy politicians is a cure that is worse than the disease. 

This is why we must understand that even though managing diversity can be politically and administratively onerous, diversity itself is an economic strength and harnessing it properly is hugely rewarding, if properly harnessed, our diversity could ensure lasting prosperity for all. 

The true wealth of nations in the 21st century is human capital, societies that set out to attract and retain the most diverse pool of skilled human resources are ordained to prevail in the race for prosperity. 

It is a matter of interest that the most prosperous economies in the world are typically diverse. With diversity comes a broad range of cultural, philosophical and intellectual approaches for solving problems; innovation can only flourish in this kind of setting. Ikorodu West indeed has qualified and experienced professionals who can occupy any post. 

This is why the apex leadership in Ikorodu Division must understand that even though managing diversity can be politically and administratively onerous, diversity itself is an economic strength and harnessing it properly is hugely rewarding. Let’s give Ikorodu West LCDA the opportunity to ensure a refreshing legislative agenda. 

Prince Olamilekan OJO MARTINS (Mnipr) wrote in from Texas, USA

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Nigeria Politics USA/Europe


PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : January 2nd, 2022

Prince Olalekan Ojo Martins, Convener, Nigerian Diaspora League (NDL)


The Nigerian Diaspora League on Friday in a new year message listed certain arrangements that must be in place before the National Assembly could come up with necessary legislation that would enable Nigerians who are resident abroad to participate in future general elections in the country.

The NDL also said the current situation in the country regarding power, ICT proficiency and poor telecommunications system was not conducive for the National Assembly to come up with a law that would legalize voting in the country.

The Convener, Nigerian Diaspora League, NDL, Prince Olalekan Ojo Martins in the State of Texas, USA, has said that Nigeria is not yet technically and financially ready to allow Nigerians in diaspora to vote in the 2023 and 2027 general elections.

The Ojo Martins during a meeting with NDL Executive Committee members said he was not against the right of Nigerians in Diaspora participating during elections by voting.

He noted that it was the National Assembly that should pass the relevant laws to give a legal backing to Diaspora voting.

The Chartered Public Relations Practitioner who disclosed this in an interview with Push News 24 International said that the call on National Assembly by Nigerians to fast track legislation that would allow Nigerians in diaspora to vote would not be possible following common home-grown irregularities that are still militating against the electoral process in the country.

To this end, the irregularities that mars the electoral system must be looked into before Nigerians in abroad could vote.
Irregularities, which include lack of an undated voter’s register, late arrival of voting materials among, adequate voters education, security amongst others, must be corrected before initiating diaspora voting.
“If a child is born, the child will learn how speak, crawl before beginning to run.
Voters in Nigeria do not have confidence in the electoral process in term of provision of voting materials. All these have not been corrected.
“There are a lot of names of voters not being appeared on voter’s register which militating against the electoral process to have free and fair elections in the country and this must be looked into
” Martins explained.

Martins said, “ There are so many things that are involved in Diaspora voting. It is not just enough to say that we are going to do diaspora voting.

it is not as if we are opposed to diaspora voting as stakeholders but there are so many challenges and issues that we have to be resolved first.

Prince Martins noted that the local elections in the country are usually confronted with numerous challenges especially when few numbers of votes are needed to determine the winner of an election, particularly at the state levels.

He said, “ For instance the Sokoto governorship election where the margin between the winner and the runner-up was very slim. Who will be the beneficiary of the votes from the Diaspora especially when the winner would be determined by the votes from the diaspora?

“We also have to determine who constitute the diaspora. Are they only Nigerians in Europe, America and Asia or are we also going to recognise Nigerians who are living in African countries?

There are speculations that the population of Nigerians in Sudan, Niger, and Chad alone are running into millions. We also have Nigerians residing in other African countries. So, will all those millions of Nigerians there be allowed to vote under the diaspora voting?

Another issue to determine is that, is it only those who genuinely emigrate and legitimately living in those country that would be regarded as diaspora? Are we talking about the documented and non documented Nigerians that are living abroad?

Now, because of the nature of our elections, in which of the elections would the Nigerians in Diaspora vote? For instance, we talk about the local government election. Will the Disporans vote in such elections? How are we going to determine the local government they are voting for?

“Will they also vote in the National and state assembly elections? How are we going to determine the constituency or the lawmakers they are voting for? Is there any machinery in place to determine that? The answer is No!

In the governorship election, are they going to vote according to their state of origin? The fact is that we don’t even have any arrangement or records in place to determine that, at least for now.

So, it is not just enough to say the National Assembly should legislate on Diaspora voting but we have to find a way to address the serious issues that could hinder the process before coming up with any legislation that would give it a legal backing.”

Prince Ojo Martins noted that Nigeria Diaspora League (NDL) will be willing to work with the National Assembly on Diaspora voting but that all the important issues must be critically looked into to avoid consequences that may jeopardize the bill.

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Nigeria Politics USA/Europe


PUSH NEWS 24 INTERNATIONAL : January 2nd, 2022

Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa, NIDCOM Boss

Former Lawmaker and Chairman of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa, has come to clear the air on diaspora voting as we count down to the 2023 general elections.

Abike Dabiri, who, without a shred of doubt had raised the bar during her hugely successful stint as a journalist, who has been the face and link between Nigerians living abroad and the Federal Government is also confident that diaspora voting is doable.

Push News 24 International confirms that the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission through Abike’s leadership has expressed its readiness to assist Nigerians abroad to ensure that the National Assembly passes a law that will allow them to vote during general elections.

It however agreed that the proposed diaspora voting can be limited to some countries for a start.

The NIDCOM Chairman, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, disclosed these in an interview with the media.

Dabiri-Erewa in the interview, said her commission would do everything possible to assist Nigerians in Diaspora to achieve their dream on diaspora voting.

The assistance, she explained, would include the drafting of a bill that would be sent to the National Assembly as well as the necessary lobbying needed to ensure that the proposed amendment to the nation’s electoral laws scale through at the parliament.

She further disclosed that a seminar, where the issue and others as well as the possible challenges and how to tackle them would be addressed, had been fixed for Monday.

She said, “We will do everything to push along with Nigerians in diaspora on this issue of diaspora voting.

A bill will be drafted and sent to the parliament to be included in the constitution amendment process because we will need the constitution to be amended to accommodate it.

For now, diaspora voting may not feature the whole world. We will draft the bill in a manner that will give INEC the discretion to decide which countries for now, whether UK, US or so.”

Dabiri-Erewa worked for the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) for fifteen years, anchoring the weekly NTA News line programme and taking a particular interest in poverty and social justice issues. She retired from her position at Nigerian Television Authority to stand for election in the House of Representatives, winning with a substantial majority.

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Finance/Industry Nigeria USA/Europe


PUSH NEWS INTERNATIONAL : November 10th, 2021

Prof Yemi OSINBAJO – Vice President, Federal Republic of Nigeria

My brothers and sisters,

The 4th edition of the Nigeria Diaspora Investment Summit (NDIS) summit coming up on the 16th-17th of November 2021 will be making a bold attempt to attract much-needed dollars from investors and immigrant entrepreneurs to Nigeria.
The theme of the summit is Partnership & Linkages For Post Covid Economic Growth. The Summit is aimed at establishing a platform where Nigerians and Nigerians in Diaspora investors can interact with potential sponsors, partners, collaborators and government officials.

They will have direct round table deals for mutual benefits and for those seeking investment opportunities in Nigeria. Growth prospects from a wide range of industries will be showcased.

The event will be hosted by me, the Chairman, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa while the Special Guest of Honour will be His Excellency, the Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.

The event is specially targeted at Diaspora investors and potential foreign investors with a favorable risk appetite, seeking opportunities for investment in Nigeria.

Also being reached are financial intermediaries and stakeholders with an interest in the resurgence of diversification efforts.

The sectors to be highlighted at the Summit include: Healthcare, education, agriculture telecommunications, manufacturing and real estate.

To read more:

Join us by pre-registering for the virtual summit below:

I hope to see you all soon.

Honorable Abike Dabiri-Erewa.
Chairman, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM)

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