Saturday, December 31, 2016

USA Africa Dialogue Series - 2017 Trend Analysis for Nigeria

2017 Trend Analysis and the Contours of Inertia

 

Jibrin Ibrahim, Daily Trust, 1st January 2017

 

Let me start with a health warning - I am a social scientist so I do not do predictions. That is the work of charlatans. I simply look at current trends and project them forward. The trends show that 2017 will be an important year in Nigeria's march towards democratic consolidation as the political class starts making concerted plans and engaging in actions towards the 2019 elections. It is also the year in which Nigerians will find out and respond to government's ability or inability to address the hardship generated by economic recession.

 

The key word for 2017 remains the same one that has determined political and economic dynamics since the inauguration of President Muhammadu Buhari – INERTIA. In 2016, the political movers and shakers within the ruling APC resisted the temptation to come out openly to confront the President over his refusal or inability to make political appointments, hoping that there would be changes. In 2017, they will be unable to restrain themselves; they will have to come out and do what politicians do, struggle for power. They will do so with gusto as they are still furious that they won power in 2015 and President Buhari would not allow them access to that power.

 

The story at the end of 2016 has been that for the umpteenth time, President Buhari would make major political changes and appointments in January 2017; he will do no such thing. Inertia will simply not allow him to make major changes. Essentially, President Buhari hates politics and distrusts politicians; he cannot change himself. The political class will come out and tell President Buhari that they forced him into politics and funded him for twelve years so after "success" at last, he cannot continue to treat them with disdain. In the first few months of 2017, the President will be under intense pressure to change one or two people close to him following allegations of corruption against them and the current investigation he has asked his Attorney General to carry out. He is likely to replace them with similar people who would also be unacceptable to the political class.

 

As inertia will not allow the President to act in his own interest, the real question is how would the political class act. The political class will also have great difficulties taking action. There are strong push factors that would push political agitation within the APC into the open. Nonetheless, there are no pull factors to bring the APC political barons together. Four of them at least - Bukola Saraki, Atiku Abubakar, Bola Tinubu and Rabiu Kwankwaso - would continue their individual quest for power, which means eliminating the others from the race to the summit. The year 2017 will witness an acceleration of the attempt to establish a new political platform with a capacity to win elections.

 

The continued crisis within the PDP will push some of its leaders to join the quest for a new platform this year. If, however, Ali Modu Sheriff fails in his attempt to demolish the PDP, then the former ruling party could attract some of those being pushed out of the APC. The key question for 2017 is whether the President will seek a second term. I believe it will soon become clear that he would indeed seek a second term, not by taking action to consolidate a political coalition that would support him, which is what he should do. Rather, his inertia is likely to push his inner core supporters to start his re-election campaign this year, simply because those mobilising against him would push the Buhari team to work towards maintaining their stay in power.

 

This will pose a challenge for the anti-corruption campaign of President Buhari. The Buhari team would have to answer the question about whether they should loot the treasury to campaign or allow their opponents who have already looted to succeed in taking over power. The refusal of the Senate to confirm Ibrahim Magu as the Chairman of the EFCC is actually an inner battle within the presidential team and within the APC about whether the country should shift gear from anti-corruption to a more laissez faire approach. We saw this previously, following the transition from Nuhu Ribadu to Farida Waziri under the Umaru Musa Yar'Adua Administration. Those around President Buhari are intelligent and know that they would need a huge financial war chest to keep the President in power.

 

The most important question for 2017 will be getting out of recession. Economists are agreed that the recession happened because of two factors. The first was the profligacy of the Jonathan Administration followed by the collapse of petroleum prices. The second was President Buhari's failure in getting a competent economic team to develop an effective and timely response to the crisis. By the end of 2016, the misery associated with the economic crisis has accelerated the social decomposition of society and anarchic responses as the youth engage in self help projects based on kidnapping, cattle rustling and rural banditry, Accompanied by the lingering Boko Haram crisis and the revival of militancy in the Nigeria Delta, this has created a massive security challenge that our military and police forces have been unable to address adequately. The most important threat for 2017 is whether the Islamic Movement in Nigeria, the Shiites, would be pushed into opening another security threat for Nigeria. This follows the triple provocation associated with the ban of the organisation by the Kaduna State Government, the actions of the security agencies in preventing their religious and political processions and the refusal of the Federal Government to release their leader, Sheikh Ibrahim El-Zakzaky despite court orders. Nigeria might well be sleepwalking into another security challenge that might be much bigger than the Boko Haram crisis.

 

All of these trends point to the necessity for the constitution of very strong political and economic teams to map out and pursue pathways towards solutions. The President however appears very happy with his current team and is unlikely to make significant changes so inertia will continue to be the operative key word. The crisis is, however, deepening and reaction will have to confront inertia in 2017. In most States of the country, Governors will continue to favour contracts over the payment of salaries. Although trade unions have been weakened, the failure to pay salaries would provoke revolt by workers in many States of the country, amplifying political tensions and social crisis.

 

The most frightening trend for 2017 is the return of hunger and malnutrition to Nigeria. In 2016, we observed the growth of starvation in the North East due to the Boko Haram insurgency. The dollar crisis has increased the annual trend of buying up food from farmers at harvest and exporting it to neighbouring countries. As inflation and unemployment bite harder, the spread of hunger and malnutrition would intensify.

 

Finally, 2017 is likely to be the record year for the Nigerian national sport – prayers and more prayers. As crisis deepens and inertia cripples our response capacities, Nigerians will increase the quantum of time devoted to prayers. Nigerians will also expand their generous donations to their religious leaders who will become richer as their congregations become poorer. The question that might arise is whether Nigerians would think more clearly and extend revolt to our revered religious leaders.

 

I close my 2017 trend analysis with another health warning. Nigeria's leaders at all levels should take trend analysis seriously in our collective interest. It is not about predictions of doom; it is not even about predictions. It's about assessing where we are, and where we are going, so as to ensure that we change course and head for better destinations. It's possible. One of the most enigmatic dictums in trend analysis or future studies is: "the future is no longer what it used to be." This refers to the paradox of our times when we appear determined to bequeath to our children a poorer world than the one we found at birth. We must return to a future that is better than what current trends are pointing to.

 

Professor Jibrin Ibrahim

Senior Fellow
Centre for Democracy and Development, Abuja
Follow me on twitter @jibrinibrahim17

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USA Africa Dialogue Series - And Prof. Emmanuel Ayodele Yoloye Lives On

Ayodele Yoloye and the Future of Education in Nigeria

Dr. Tunji Olaopa

Executive Vice-Chairman

Ibadan School of Government and Public Policy (ISGPP)

Email: tolaopa@isgpp.com.ng


Like literature, history, medicine and the arts, the field of education also has its unique icons—intellectuals, practitioners and theorists—who translated theories and practices into a passionate agitation for the transformation of education as a driver of change in Nigeria. Several names come straight to mind—Babatunde Fafunwa, Alvan Ikoku, Samuel Bajah, and of course Ayodele Yoloye. The recent demise of Emeritus Prof. Emmanuel Ayodele Yoloye is an occasion both for celebration and for reflection. It calls for celebration because we have an opportunity to reminisce on the life and time of a teacher of teachers, whose entire life, private and professional, tells a story of passion and commitment. His professorial status is really a trajectory of a lifelong dedication to a cause. Indeed, Professor Yoloye represents a trajectory of accomplishments that is worth celebrating.


Professor Emmanuel Ayodele Yoloye—father, husband, teacher, science educator, evaluator extraordinaire, educational psychologist, professor of professors and "the Bloom of Africa"—lived a very good life that is attested to by all. But that is not the reason I want to celebrate him. Rather, I find in Prof. Yoloye a solid template that combines theory and practice, and research and policy in a dynamic framework that enables education to speak directly to developmental issues in Nigeria. This is significant for me as a researcher, political scientist, policy worker, and public administration reformer who has been walking the tight rope between theory and practice for a long time. Bridging the gap between research and policy is a delicate endeavour. It requires a sensibility that is neither too academic nor too professional, yet a smooth blend of the two that makes one a genuine member of both worlds. That is one of the uniqueness of Prof. Yoloye's life. I enjoyed the privilege of inviting him as a significant member of the Technical Advisory Team, which supported an endeavour that I coordinated between 1999 and 2002; the Education Sector Analysis (ESA) project. The study backstopped education strategy development and policy work in the Federal Ministry of Education at the time. His wisdom, erudition, expertise and time were crucial items that I drew on in the landmark project which attempted to bridge the data gap in the education sector as well as create a baseline statistics upon which many policy designs affecting pre-primary, basic and upper secondary schools, vocational/technical, and higher education, cross-cutting reform issues, etc. were fashioned.


However, more than the celebration that attends Professor Yoloye's exit is the need to reflect on his legacy and what that translates to in terms of larger concerns surrounding Nigeria's development. As an educationist, Yoloye occupied a field, unlike literature and medicine, which speaks directly to the development of Nigeria, especially in terms of human capital development and learning achievement. Take a famous example. Prof. Babatunde Fafunwa is renowned today because of his bold attempt at relating education to national development through the mother tongue experiment. The critical issue he confronted was that of how to create a critical mass of human capital that would take on the burden of national development in all spheres of human endeavour, and the role of mother tongue in such a project. What role, in other words, does culture play in manufacturing a vibrant and knowledgeable workforce that could relate her peculiar cultural undercurrent intimately with Nigeria's development challenges? Prof. Yoloye is doubly relevant because he dedicated his professional academic life to another significant dimension of this project.


He is effectively a part of the long lineage of Nigerian educationists, including Prof. Chike Obi, who are convinced of the relevance of science education to a profound transformation of Nigeria's development profile in the twenty first century. Yoloye and others should be seen as the lone voices in the wilderness calling on the nation to engage its own reluctance and take the bull by the horn. They are right, and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education now makes the case that these foresighted precursors have been making for years. STEM signals the triumph of an educational and curriculum policy that attempts to generate competitiveness in school with regards to the study of science and technology and the implication of such a curriculum for national development. This makes it doubly tragic that a country like Nigeria that urgently need to upgrade its development profile has not deemed it fit to engage the policy end of the STEM challenge nor seek to unpack the relevance of Yoloye's science education research as basis for deep-seated reform. This research is all the more requisite because it advocates the teaching of science from the primary school level within the frame of integrated science, which was one of his inventions, and wherein the scientific spirit could first be firmly ingrained in the educational quest of the children.


His involvement in science education at the primary school level was indeed revolutionary since it led to the transformation of the lukewarm attitude to science education. Through the African Primary Science Programme (APSP) and then later, the Science Education Programme for Africa (SEPA), Prof. Yoloye and others breathed proactive life into curriculum, teaching methods, teacher trainings, enrichment of science education and the development of publishing initiatives for science education project. From a pan-African perspective, Yoloye's original research passion, intelligence testing, allows him to unravel the fallacy behind Eurocentric biases which undermines the African's capacity for abstract and scientific thinking. Science, indeed, is a universal endeavour and Nigerian children have a right to its promises as a prelude to Nigeria's human capital flowering.


Prof. Ayodele Yoloye has more in terms of educational legacy that speaks to Nigeria's human capital impasse. It is as if he has been telling us all along that if Nigeria is to transform her development fortunes and achieve the capacity to make her educational dynamics the hotbed of human capital development, the best place to commence is not only the active cultivation of science education but also the active measurement and evaluation of educational processes, institutions and programmes. Educational evaluation is a gatekeeping mechanism in education that allows for adequate quality control of educational programmes and the evaluation of student learning dynamics. If education must become a fulcrum for development advancement in Nigeria, then educational evaluation becomes a crucial ingredient in the reform of Nigeria's educational sector. Innovative progress in education requires a rigorous evaluation framework that balances new ideas with environmental imperatives. And Yoloye saw this necessity and dedicated his entire career to pushing the boundary of theories and practices in this regard.

It should be straightforward, for instance, to connect Yoloye's research outputs in educational evaluation, his promotion of science education and his advocacy of mastery learning into a firm and robust educational philosophy around which a STEM framework for curriculum transformation in Nigeria could be grounded. Mastery learning foregrounds a pedagogical strategy that inculcates a mental and practical reassessment of learning. At a primary school level, mastery learning provides sufficient motivation that allows young minds to achieve the mastery of scientific attitudes and challenges. If science itself is considered broadly as the mastery of the universe and its physical laws, then a pedagogy premised on mastery learning as the foundation of science education promises a lot for the reassessment of Nigeria's educational policies and philosophy.


Ayodele Yoloye had many policy initiatives, especially with regard to the evaluation of educational programmes and curriculum development. But the large and damning question is whether we have integrated his ideas on curriculum development, measurement and evaluation and science education while he was still alive to pragmatically refine, redefine and reassess them. Now, Professor Emmanuel Ayodele Yoloye is gone. And he left a body of insightful and revolutionary ideas and practices around which a solid educational practice in Nigeria could be built. Alongside other education icons in Nigeria, there really is no need to reinvent the wheel of educational advancement beyond the pragmatic frameworks which these patriotic educationists have provided. Yoloye does not stand alone; he is one great name in a firmament of other great names who have invested a lifetime in education reform in other to excavate a rich package of ideas and ideals around which Nigeria can overcome its development lethargy. If we must develop, we must rigorously guide the content of our educational programmes. This is one of the significant lessons Yoloye is asking us to learn as a nation. Emeritus Professor Emmanuel Ayodele Yoloye is truly gone, and we mourn and celebrate his passing; but it is not too late in time to put his legacies and ideas to good use to salvage our educational predicament. 

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USA Africa Dialogue Series - Cafeafricana REVAMPED for 2017!

Happy New Year to All! 

Prof. Falola, thank you very much!

Cheers. 

Oh, the new face of www.cafeafricana. com. Well, I'm still entering info to the website. Check it out!


Art

http://cafeafricana.com/wordpress/category/art/

Playlist: Miles Davis

http://cafeafricana.com/wordpress/playlist/

Image result for christa franke

Image by the late Ms. Christa Franke. Lots of love. 


Funmi Tofowomo Okelola


USA Africa Dialogue Series - Article: Leadership, Governance And The Quest For Revolutionary Transformation

Link:
http://chidioparareports.blogspot.com.ng/2016/12/article-leadership-governance-and-quest.html

From chidi opara reports


chidi opara reports is published as a social service by PublicInformationProjects

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USA Africa Dialogue Series - Happy New year


Dear colleagues, friends and brothers,

I would like to wish you and your loved ones a happy, healthy and productive year 2017.

I take this opportunity to thank prof. Toyin Falola for creating this wonderful plateform for discussing and sharing matters related to our continent and beyong. I am also grateful for the most active brothers and sisters on the forum for their inspiring contributions. I had the chance to thank some of these people personally in the course of the year.

Above all, I thank you all because this platform has become for me a sort of African university where we learn about our countries, cultures and people. 

May the Almighty protect all of us and our families in this new year.

Best greetings.

Patrick Effiboley

USA Africa Dialogue Series - Article: The Death Of Nigeria's Civil Society

Link: http://chidioparareports.blogspot.com.ng/2016/12/article-death-of-nigerias-civil-society.html
From chidi opara reports


chidi opara reports is published as a social service by PublicInformationProjects

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USA Africa Dialogue Series - Today's Quote

My New Year Prayer: God, continue to give me the patience to continue to use poetry as the weapon and not the gun.

CAO. 


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USA Africa Dialogue Series - The death of Nigeria's civil society by Godwin Onyeacholem

http://www.chidoonumah.com/the-death-of-nigerias-civil-society/

Time was when the Nigerian civil society flourished with inspiring agility and genuine enthusiasm for public good. That was the period the group seized the national turf with commanding decisiveness, and galvanized the Nigerian people towards seeing themselves as the ultimate sovereign who must take charge of their destiny by deciding the type of country they wanted. One recalls with nostalgia those memorable days that are now locked in the deep, dark recesses of the past.

Anyone who is conversant with the historic role of the country's pressure groups would very easily recall the vibrant activities of the civil society from the middle of the 1980s to the time the Fourth Republic was inaugurated in1999. That period would aptly pass for the golden era of Nigeria's civil society. But for the steely resilience and compelling combat posturing of that group in the heady days of military dictatorship, one scenario would have been the reality: either of two military dictators would have simply changed from military uniform into civilian attire and, with telling impudence, presented himself to the world as a product of democracy. But it never happened, thanks to that virile, vigilant and well-appreciated civil society of yore.

With a cadre boasting accomplished professionals from every known field of human endeavour, it was able to organize itself into a formidable pro-democracy group that mobilized Nigerians from all walks of life for the showdown that eventually forced the soldiers to succumb to the popular demand for a government freely chosen by the people.

Personalities who formed the vanguard of that epic struggle are too numerous to mention but one could readily recall front liners who pounded the streets, filled the highways and packed the halls, parks and squares with fiery speeches denouncing military dictatorship and calling for a democratically elected civil government. They include Wole Soyinka, Alao Aka-Bashorun, Gani Fawehinmi, Beko Ransome-Kuti, Olisa Agbakoba, Femi Falana, Baba Omojola, Comrade Ola Oni, Ayo Obe, Dr. Segun Osoba, Idowu Awopetu, Clement Nwankwo, Frank Kokori, Chidi Odinkalu, Abdul Oroh and Richard Akinnola to mention just a few. For emphasis, it must be stated that this list is by no means exhaustive as a handful of activist students also played crucial role in the struggle.

At regular intervals, members of this civil society underlined its resolve with robust confrontation with the military forces, the police and some of the conniving individuals and groups in the society. One witnessed and indeed covered one of such confrontations at the conference hall of the old secretariat of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Yaba, Lagos, in the early 90s. That sombre evening the pro-democracy group had converged for a sensitization meeting with the public and had lined up some of the persons mentioned above as speakers.

Then, just suddenly, MKO Abiola (God bless his soul), who had by then assumed notoriety as a long-standing cheerleader of the military usurpers, breezed into the hall to the consternation of the entire gathering. As expected when he got the microphone, Abiola wasted no time launching into a spirited apologia for a wayward military regime. But between him and Gani, the match-up was complete. The hall exploded with fireworks to the delight of the audience as the feisty legal colossus and the dogged business mogul went eyeball to eyeball in a tense standoff between autocracy and freedom. It was a terrific evening of mind-blowing encounter. Trust Gani to always prevail in such situations.        

Most remarkable in that civil society was the solid involvement of the Nigerian Bar Association, then led by the inimitable Aka-Bashorun, who has been described as the greatest and most effective president of NBA in living memory. Aka, as colleagues knew him, was elected to the presidency of the NBA at a time the ruling military junta led by General Ibrahim Babangida seemed to have neutralized all forms of opposition to its dictatorship. Aka's two year stint (1987-1989) at the helm of affairs rebuilt the foundation of that body and re-energized it as an active agent of public scrutiny to the applause of a vast majority of Nigerians.

He it was who evinced rare clairvoyance by deciphering at the very early stage of the junta's eight-year fruitless transition to democracy that Babangida was not interested in handing over to anybody but to himself. In that strangulating atmosphere of unrestrained repression and persecution of voices of dissent, Aka was the one who mustered the nerve to coin the term "hidden agenda" and slammed it on IBB with reference to his merry-go-round transition programme. For his audacity he was labeled a "radical" by the military, while his multitude of admirers hailed him as "The Lion of the Bar."

That era contrasts sharply with the state of today's civil society. The activism of the NBA that ought to be one of the arrowheads of this critical segment of the society has progressively declined since Aka's exit. Today the NBA tramples on the soul of the masses as it exists only as the legal department of the neo-colonial oppressors, romancing corruption by defending high-profile thieves and politically exposed politicians, and displaying horrific apathy as all kinds of impunities are visited on the land on a daily basis from all arms of government and beyond. An NBA that exists only for the rich. Surely by now, Aka and Gani must be turning in their graves.

Outside the NBA, it is no less disheartening and shameful. All shades of Non-Governmental Organizations parading under the rubric of civil society are set up to be hired by anyone who can pay the price. They will rent the crowd and kit them up with all kinds of paraphernalia to protest on your behalf. And only those who have looted this country blind have been able to continually engage their services.

Although there are genuine CSOs out there, one can hardly see the wood for the trees anymore. It is therefore not a surprise that Professor Itse Sagay, Chair of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), recently publicly lamented the death of civil society in Nigeria – a painful fact long acknowledged by honest observers of unfolding events in the country.     

Godwin Onyeacholem is a journalist. He can be reached on gonyeacholem@gmail.com; Follow him on Twitter @GOnyeacholem



Regards,
Chido Onumah

USA Africa Dialogue Series - Article:Ibori and a nation united by corruption

Link: http://chidioparareports.blogspot.com.ng/2016/12/articleibori-and-nation-united-by.html
From chidi opara reports


chidi opara reports is published as a social service by PublicInformationProjects

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Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fw: column

Gloria in excelsis deo !

Semper aliquid novi Africam adferre !

Ex Africa semper aliquid novi!

Gloria,

Africa- Hallelujah!

Many thanks for alerting us to another dimension of the prodigy Falola - the poetic dimension !

It's a priority : Falola and Bahl : Scoundrels of Deferral: Poems to Redeem Reflection . I'm sure that by the time I'm through with it, I will never be the same. I seldom am (the same) after reading a scintilla of poetry, be it divinely inspired or not. At the moment at least I am not as apprehensive as I would have been if what you tempt me with had been written by Falola and Baal although I surmise that even from an admixture of good and evil, the Catholics would at least earn the rewards of purgatory…

In secular Sweden, further studies in religion begin with Mircea Eliade , not with the devotional stuff.

Two things:

First of all let's be clear about the Bangura that you are referring to, if it's the same one. If we want to be rigorous about it, my Bangura is a believer – according to his own definition/s, and one who asserts a tautologous (circular), unverifiable truth claim of all time, that goes lā ʾilāha ʾillā-llāh, muḥammadur-rasūlu-llāh" which duly translates as "There is no god but God, Muhammad is the messenger of God."

You know the saying that "God moves in his mysterious ways his wonders to perform", of course.

The difference between the Prophet of Islam (s.a.w.) and Professor Falola is that whereas the former claims that his revelations were communicated to him by the angel Gabriel (usually the bringer of bad news to Israel, the archangel Michael usually the bringer of good news), Professor Falola has made no claim to prophethood, all he said on the 23rd of December 2016, was, "A harvest (of 12 published books in 2016, and numerous keynote addresses) is a testimony and this is mine. The glory is not mine; all that is mine is how God works in me"

Nor is it a matter of "Fool," said my muse to me. "Look in thy heart and write."

Chaos theory ? It should be interesting to see this applied to the whole of the Noble Quran. He who did so would arrive at instant fame like the masonic Rashad Khalifa...

Secondly, there is the fine line between religion and ideology (in al-islam they are intertwined) and not being a historian, I know so little of Falolaism but doubt that religious postulations or belief/s in the supernatural are its main engine. In our science-dominated culture, making some sensible distinctions between religion/religious doctrines and ideology, there's myths, parables, notions of sin, holiness, worship, rituals, virgins in paradise, heaven , hell, prayers, symbolic ways of speaking etc, which I presume are most probably less developed in Falolaism (whatever it is, may be or is meant to be ) even if it could have a close affinity to e.g. Marxism or Maoism which if we are to agree with Ninian Smart speaking in 1971, said should " be treated as a form of religion . It could well develop into a fully-fledged form , in my view. For this reason there is merit I think in extending the scope of the philosophy of religion, or, if you want it the other way round, the scope of the philosophy of ideology. The only thing is that nobody talks about the philosophy of ideology. There's been very little recognition that there are perhaps special considerations which concern ideologies and religions which could be treated , up to a point, together" ( That was good news for al-Islam)

A dire prediction ( not a prophecy)

Extreme pessimism : The Burning of the Midnight Lamp

Old school: Bili

I know that you like to provoke me.

Wishing you and yours more of the new school this coming year.

Today, I'm like the kohen ha gadol

Cornelius

We Sweden











On Saturday, 31 December 2016 08:45:30 UTC+1, Emeagwali, Gloria (History) wrote:

Cornelius,

                Leave Dr.  Bangura alone. He belongs to a religion that says that there is no God but God.



As for me, I would be happy to be a priestess-  a priestess of  the gym -   but  there is no Orisa with that function, as far as I know.


Too bad you haven't read  Falola and Bahl. 2006."Scoundrels of Deferral: Poems to Redeem Reflection." 



Gloria






From: usaafric...@googlegroups.com <usaafric...@googlegroups.com> on behalf of Cornelius Hamelberg <cornelius...@gmail.com>
Sent: Friday, December 30, 2016 9:23 AM
To: USA Africa Dialogue Series
Subject: Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fw: column
 

Gloria in excelsis deo !

Gloria Emegawali,

"Some songs were done by chosen men
Some from men, insane" ( Life is for learning )

Re- your earlier interpretations of Professor Toyin Falola's very modest, humble,

"The glory is not mine. All that is mine is how God works in me."

But in the end we agree that Professor Falola did not claim to be writing infallible scripture and we know that even the inspired scripture of the so called "New Testament" are subject to all kinds of criticism, historical , linguistic, factual, and so forth. Nor has he declared that he is the last prophet and is about to start a new religion to be known as Falolaism , with you as one of the priestesses and one Bangura as an Apostle, an exegetical theologian riding on Falola's glory, bearing the light ( Falola's effulgence) to the nations….

The Sufis say that the heart ( the temple where God dwells) is the seat of the intellect. (Personally I think that some poetry comes from there)

I don't know who was the man or woman of the year last year or the year before, but in my opinion based on the criteria presented by the also inimitable Professor Ayo Olukotun and concurred by all of us the praise singers, as far as I can remember, Professor Falola God bless him, deserves to be the man of many years, as a man of principle, a man for all seasons, without objection, an African Renaissance Man of the new century, although some of us must admit that to some extent Muhammadu Buhari should most probably have earned the title "Man of the Year" last year when he astounded Nigeria, Africa, the world by winning the Nigerian presidential elections. (Would he have voted for Resolution 2334, I wonder)

In the region of literary distinction we have been offered the autobiographical - a book of wisdom entitled "a mouth sweeter than salt" ( 2005) followed by "Counting the Tiger's Teeth" ( 2014) and for those interested in the Yoruba universe –Falola & Adesanya, Etches on Fresh Waters a work "Dedicated to the Yoruba God Sango, and Goddess Oya" a veritable goldmine of beauty, poetry, ethics, folklore , guidance. We may count our blessings...

There's a lot more that could be said. It's 2.32 pm in Stockholm…

A nasty piece of work here

Wishing everyone a restful weekend and a Happy New Year!

Cornelius

We Sweden



On Friday, 30 December 2016 06:45:29 UTC+1, Emeagwali, Gloria (History) wrote:

I agree with Prof. Babawale completely. Professor Falola is inspirational. Prof. Olukoton indeed fashioned the perfect letter.

That Falola is Man of the Year is indisputable. I must confess  though that initially, I got a bit nervous,  at  the  statement

that  the work was  the product of God, or something to that effect:


"The glory is not mine. All that is mine is how God works in me." 


I was worried for two reasons.


Firstly, if the work was the product of God and  perhaps, by implication, of divine inspiration, then how would anyone  dare to apply

historiographical analysis and  scholarly criticism  to  any of the  12  books. They would be, collectively,  beyond all  forms of evaluation

and assessment.  Only renegades  and fools would dare to do book reviews,  or write  critical assessments -  critical activities that

academics are prone to do for  new publications.


Secondly, claims about divine intervention or inspiration are often followed by the creation of a religion

of some sort -  with an "inspired"  religious leader at the helm. This is the stuff of which  saints and other divine

intermediaries are made.


But then I realized that my interpretation of the statement was too literal,  and even erroneous. The professor

simply meant that he was thanking God for giving him the strength  to produce the works in question.  It is a statement

that atheists and  even agnostics may challenge -  but  pretty much captures the overall  spirit of  gratitude that  Believers

share- no matter their  religion or faith. No problem with that. No cause  for alarm.


We look forward to the harvest of 2017. May 2017 be a wonderful year for us all.






Professor Gloria Emeagwali
Professor of History
History Department
Central Connecticut State University
1615 Stanley Street
 
New Britain. CT 06050
www.africahistory.net








From: 'Olatunde_Babawale' via USA Africa Dialogue Series <usaafric...@googlegroups.com>
Sent: Thursday, December 29, 2016 5:08 PM
To: ayo_olukotun via USA Africa Dialogue Series; USAAfricaDialogue
Cc: toyin...@austin.utexas.edu; adeb...@hotmail.com; adigun...@yahoo.com; amomo...@yahoo.com; aoluko...@yahoo.com; ayodu...@yahoo.com; babso...@gmail.com; ban...@unrisd.org; boye...@hotmail.com; chibuz...@yahoo.com; Ebunoluwa Oduwole; falan...@yahoo.com; faw...@yahoo.com; hafsat...@hotmail.com; jum...@yahoo.co.uk; laji...@yahoo.com; moju...@gmail.com; med...@yahoo.com; mvic...@mvickers.plus.com; oluk...@yahoo.com; osagha...@yahoo.co.uk; paddyk...@yahoo.com; profbayo...@yahoo.com; r-jo...@northwestern.edu; rot...@yahoo.com; salawu...@yahoo.com; to...@yahoo.com; walead...@yahoo.com
Subject: Re: USA Africa Dialogue Series - Fw: column
 
This piece by Prof Ayo Olukotun is a testimony to the reward of hard work which Prof Falola personifies.
‎Prof Falola's incomparable intellectual achievements remain a source of inspiration to us all.
He is a man in whom we are well pleased.
Thank you Prof Olukotun for the characteristically well-crafted piece.

Tunde Babawale
Department of Political Science
University of Lagos
Lagos
Nigeria
Sent from my BlackBerry 10 smartphone.

U

Sent from my BlackBerry 10 smartphone.
From: orogun olanike <dam...@yahoo.com>
Sent: Thursday, 29 December 2016 12:35
To: Ayo Olukotun
Subject: Fw: column




On Thu, Dec 29, 2016 at 1:21 PM, Ibini Olaide



On Thu, Dec 29, 2016 at 1:20 PM, Ibini Olaide



On Thu, Dec 29, 2016 at 1:17 PM, Ibini Olaide

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