Connect with us

Columns

Middle East: A Crossroads of Conflict and Peace, Israeli-Hama’s War in Gaza

Published

on

Middle East: A Crossroads of Conflict and Peace, Israeli-Hama’s War in Gaza

By:Balami Lazarus

Peace in the Middle East has been the playground of diplomats, prime ministers, and presidents for more than seven decades. Truly, the historical Middle East has been a bowl of conflict, wars, and peace negotiations that have always been a failure over the years. Why ?

This article is not about that, but about Hama, who are in the Gaza Strip as part of the state of Israel. Gaze Strip, as it is known and called. Is a very small portion of land, one of the occupied territories by the state of Israel as a nation, that came into being in 1948 and was governed by the Jewish people. While the occupied territories are where you find a larger and greater number of Palestinians living as their homes in Gaza, while some of the occupied territories put together are run by Palestinian (PA) authority but not as a sovereign nation, Israel and her neighbors, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Egypt, who have been living cat and dog with Israel for ages, are the only recognized independent nations in the Middle East.

Therefore, the Israeli-Hamas war has brought to my attention that little is known by many out there about Palestine and Palestinians as people. My knowledge of the Palestinian struggle is reasonable enough, and I stand to say this: as a young man, I was a diehard supporter of the defunct Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), founded in 1964 under the leadership of engineer (Dr.) Yasser Arafat, who died in a plane crash in 2004. But today, the Palastaian struggle is more incendiary than any Read Side Improvise Explosive Device (IED), saturated with mutation—grafting of the struggle by rival groups, human rights organizations, public commentators, and analysts, including the third realm of the estate (the media).

Let me take you back a bit. Some 37 years ago, in 1986, a secret historical meeting took place in Hebrom, south of Bethlehem, where seven men came up with the idea of an organization. These men were: Sheikh Ahamed Yassin; Mohammad Jamal al-Natsheh from Hebron; Jamal Mansur from Nablus; Sheik Hassan Yassef from the West Bank; Mahmad Muslin from Ramallah; Jamil Hamani from Jerusalem; and Ayama Abu Thaha from Gaza. Hamas was born with the main objective of fighting for the liberation, rights, and independence of Gaza as the armed wing of the Palestinian people. How do I know this? One may be tempted to ask. I was privy to what happened in the PLO; today, the PLO is no longer in the picture of happenings in Palastiane.

Hamas, as a radical or armed organization, started an intifada (civil disturbance) in the occupied territories in 1987. Hamas has no leadership hierarchy, is not organized, and lacks fundamental objectives that will attract world attention for peace talks in the Middle East. “Hamas was largely driven by the ideology of Islamic jihad to awaken, unify, and mobilize the Palestinian people under the banner of Allah and Islam”.

***Balami is a publisher and columnist.

Middle East: A Crossroads of Conflict and Peace, Israeli-Hama’s War in Gaza

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Columns

Army University Biu: There is certain interest, but certainly not from Borno.

Published

on

Army University Biu: There is certain interest, but certainly not from Borno.

By: Dr. James BWALA

The Steve Oronsaye report, which failed in its implementation during the Jonathan and Buhari administration, has fallen into the loudest criticisms by Nigerians, especially the people of Borno State, owing to its seemingly reversed posture on the education of thousands who needed to add knowledge through the university system, particularly children of Borno State who are battling with the issues of Boko Haram, to the effect that it almost crippled west education in the state.

Schools are not enough in place in Borno State to cater to the needs on the ground in the fight to dismantle the minds of hundreds of thousands that have been indoctrinated against western education. According to many citizens, the order for the implementation of the Steve Oronsaye report, which named the Army University in Biu town in southern Borno, has a number of political interests, to the effect that some people have been pointing fingers at some politicians in the state for smuggling the de-Army University Biu in the reports.

I have spoken to many people on the earliest day of the report, trying to discredit their minds on certain individuals they are raising their doubts about for possibly working against the progress of the people by probably supporting the government’s idea of merging the Army University Biu with the Nigerian Defence Academy, which, in my opinion, is wrong to have begun to look at the situation from that angle. I have talked with a number of lecturers at both the University of Maiduguri and the Army University Biu to feel their pulse on certain name-callings.

Someone did send a message to me that read, “Mallam: Why should the Nigerian Army University be included in the ongoing implementation of the Steve Oronsaye Report? The report was dated in 2012, while the Army University was established in 2018. So the university couldn’t have been featured in the report. I smell a rat.”

Well, I already heard some names, which I tried to defend fairly in the face of confrontations. Sometimes I feel people who see themselves on the disadvantage side owing to what they heard other people say about them are often eager to move to anger over issues they may not be clear with, especially the Steve Oronsaye report and the involvement of the Nigerian Army University Biu.

I was particularly happy when I saw the Borno state governor, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum, pleading with the federal government over the calculation to merge the Army University with the NDA. He went point blank to state the importance of the Army University to Borno State, to the extent that he pleaded for the federal ministry of education to take over the university as one of the federal government universities if it most affected the Steve Oronsaye report.

The Borno state governor, as I often described him, would not mince words to state the facts. If there are undertones, as some people have already misinterpreted through the gates of misinformation as they have gathered in their underneath assumptions, the professor as I know him over the years would not have been on the pages of newspapers and on radio and TV standing with the people to give reasons for the federal government to rethink its position on the Army University Biu.

Those who are thinking that the rest of the Borno state may not be standing with the southern Borno in the mere allegations should know that the members of the representatives in both the green and red chambers at the National Assembly have come together under one umbrella to speak with one voice over the intentions of the federal government on the Army University Biu as intended, pinning to the Steve Oronsaye report.

I believe that they have gone a long way to advise the government on the needs that must be met to allow the Army University Biu to stand on its own. The Army University Biu must be allowed to function, not as a department or otherwise, and way apart from the regimented NDA. It is to benefit the civilians, who are also tax payers, that makes the country thicker in blending civility and regimented lives. 

The Borno state governor’s voice, added to the many voices, has rekindled hope in this renewed hope mantra of the Tinubu Administration, and I hope that we can give space to understand certain situations before we speak of them, and not to add negative thoughts to innocent claims. Borno is home to us, and we must stand with our leaders. The Army University Biu never wanted to be sited in Biu in the first place, and these forces are not from Borno State.

James BWALA, PhD, writes from Abuja. 

Army University Biu: There is certain interest, but certainly not from Borno.

Continue Reading

Columns

Qatar-based businessman in NDLEA Custody Over Drug Trafficking

Published

on

Qatar-based businessman in NDLEA Custody Over Drug Trafficking

By: Michael Mike

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have intercepted at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, a Qatar-based businessman, Agu Amobi, and one other, Uchegbu Obi with consignments of psychoactive substances.

A statement on Sunday by the spokesman of the anti-narcotics agency, Femi Babafemi said while Amobi was arrested last Saturday at the departure point of Terminal 2 of the MMIA on his way to Doha, Qatar on a Qatar Airways flight, Obi was taken into custody same day following the seizure of a consignment of 72,000 pills of tramadol 225mg, which he attempted shipping to Kano on a local flight.

According to Babafemi, Amobi who claimed he has been living and working in Doha, Qatar for over 10 years was caught with 1.3 kilogrammes cannabis sativa concealed in a bag of foodstuff. He claimed he bought the substance in Enugu to deliver in Doha to enable him raise enough funds to pay his rents in Doha and Nigeria and school fees of his three children.

In the same vein, NDLEA operatives at the domestic wing of the airport intercepted
a carton containing a total of 72,000 pills of tramadol 250mg with a gross weight of 38.5 kilogrammes. This was closely followed with the arrest of Uchegbu Obi who brought the consignment to the airport for shipment to Kano.

On Christmas day 25th December in Yobe state, NDLEA officers on patrol along Nguru-Gashua road intercepted the trio of Musa Sani, Mohammed Ibrahim and Adamu Usman in a truck conveying 39 blocks of cannabis sativa weighing 15.7 kilogrammes and 128,500 pills of opioids.

According to Babafemi, follow up operations the following day 26th December led to the arrest of the actual owner of the cannabis consignment, Ali Ibrahim (a.k.a Ramos) in Geidam where additional 208 blocks of the same substance were recovered from his house, bringing the total to 247 blocks weighing 94.74 kilogrammes, while the owner of the seized opioids, Mustapha Goni (a.k.a Lolo) was equally arrested.

In Imo state, NDLEA operatives on Christmas eve, while on patrol along Owerri – Onitsha expressway intercepted a commercial bus driven by Peter Orji, 42, with 400 bottles of codeine syrup; 7,590 pills of opioids including tramadol 225mg heading to Port-Harcourt, Rivers State.
While David Michael, 52, was arrested at Unguwa Ukku area of Kano on Sunday 24th December with 49 blocks of cannabis weighing 42.6 kilogrammes, Umar Abdullahi, 27, was nabbed with 27,350 pills of opioids at Gadar Tamburawa area of the city same day.

A 45-year-old Yusuf Yahaya was arrested same Christmas eve along Lagos-Ilorin expressway with 31 kilogrammes of compressed cannabis in a commercial bus coming from Ibadan, Oyo state to Kebbi State. Preliminary investigation revealed that he supplies illicit drugs to bandits in Kebbi and Zamfara axis.

Babafemi said the NDLEA Commands across the country balanced their drug supply reduction operations with War Against Drug Abuse (WADA) advocacy campaigns to schools, markets, worship centres and communities.

Meanwhile, the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (Retd) has tasked officers and men of the agency nationwide not to rest on the achievements of 2023 but continue to raise the bar in their offensive action against drug barons and cartels with an equal intensive WADA advocacy campaigns in the new year.

He took the occasion to wish all officers and men as well as their families, stakeholders and the general public a rewarding and fulfilling new year.

Qatar-based businessman in NDLEA Custody Over Drug Trafficking

Continue Reading

Columns

Between Next-of-Kin, Letter of Administration, and Will

Published

on

Between Next-of-Kin, Letter of Administration, and Will

By: Balami Lazarus

I write this piece not as a lawyer but as a supposedly layman, as this so-called legal professional called some of us. Family inheritance cases are among the most annoying litigations as far as I am concerned, where brothers flesh and blood engage each other on the estate left behind by their father with shame and consideration, and in some cases they go diabolical in order to claim and have possession of the estate of the deceased. I have seen and witnessed such on many occasions. Inheritance matters, land, and money have always been the motives behind family disagreements, feuds, and legal battles. Like money, which constitutes a major motive for crime among men, so does inheritance. Therefore, my self-development in law has given me some reasonable insight into what this caption is all about.

Next-of-Kin put on any document by parents or guardians, the bearer is not and shall not expressly be the heir-at – Law except and until proven that he is the only biological and legitimate child of whoever is the deceased. But to most people, in their ignorant thoughts, the bearer mentioned as next-of – kin will automatically inherit the estate of the deceased. It is legally wrong. Are you aware that one of the busiest areas of human traffic on the high court premises is the Probate Office? The traffic there is a crossroads for the applications seeking and requesting a Letter of Administration, which is only granted by the laws of the Federation of Nigeria through the office of the Probate Judge. To obtain such a sensitive legal document is tedious because it involves physical input and paper work by those in need of such a document—a letter of administration.

To nib these issues or matters of next-of-kin, a letter of administration is needed in order to claim the estate and have ownership of the properties left behind by the deceased. The only legal way out of this tough and thorny situation is to have a will written and signed by the testator, including his witnesses. And that such document is legally binding and can be executed by the person mentioned as the administrator of the testator’s will. Therefore, a will as a legal document is seen in the eye of the law not only as a written legal document but as the testator speaking in the presence of his family members and the law. Thus, there is no denying the fact that Will is over and above, far beyond Next-of – Kin and Letter of Administration, despite the fact that it can be challenged in a court of competent jurisdiction.

However, such cases are very rare. In Nigeria, most of her citizens are not aware of the importance and legal weight of will, for it is expressed expressly in an itemized manner, which spelled out willingly how the deceased wanted his estate to be managed and executed. I hereby advise men and women to begin to think of writing their wills because a will is a divider or sorter of matters arising from such a case as it may be.

Balami, a Publisher/Columnist: 08036779290

Between Next-of-Kin, Letter of Administration, and Will

Continue Reading

Trending