Can you tell if your worship leaders are spiritually bankrupt?

In the past several years there has been no shortage of prominent contemporary Christian leaders denouncing Christ either with their words or their actions. One time I ministered to a young man involved in the gospel music scene, and he confided in me that he almost lost his faith because of what he experienced when he went on tour with a band. (He said other gospel music performers regularly propositioned him!) That being said, as a pastor and trans-local minister, I have come to the conclusion that many involved in Christian worship seem to have a very superficial relationship with the Lord and His Church. (I thank God we have had a strong process for ministry involvement in our local congregation. Hence, we usually have worship leaders with a solid walk with the Lord.)

Also, I write this in the context as one who was a professional musician who served on
the worship team of our local church.

The following are some of the reasons I believe why many worship performers are spiritually bankrupt:
(Based on my personal observation, not based
on hard data)

1. Many are hirelings and not committed members to one church.
I have been shocked and dismayed to see how many large churches just hire out their worship team members, even if they are not committed Christians or committed to their
local church. Consequently, when a gifted singer or musician first comes to Christ, they are sucked into a culture of play for pay and
go where the dollars are rather than where the Lord is truly leading them.

2. Pastors do not enforce the same standards upon talented singers and musicians.
Many pastors turn the other way when it comes to the immoral or unethical behavior of their most talented musicians and singers.
The reason for this is obvious :These performers help draw crowds into their congregation.

3. Often talented people get ahead without being deeply rooted in Christ.
Many people in this field find they get promoted, idolized and celebrated in their church merely because of their talent.Consequently, they have a superficial lifestyle and rarely see the need to die to self, seek God and allow God to penetrate their soul.

4. Gifted Christian performers are idolized in the church.
We, evangelicals, have created a culture of entertainment that empowers and promotes the most gifted among us. These very gifted singers and performers are admired and celebrated for their abilities in a way that is not different from “The Voice” or “American Idol.” With all this adulation in the environment, it is no surprise that many Christian bands and performers are lifted up with pride and never mature in their faith.

5. The focus of worship is more about them than about Jesus.
The church usually puts talented singers and performers front and center during Sunday services. Hence, a service is largely judged by how good the band performed. This is the kind of setting that
engenders man worship instead of Jesus worship. Worship leaders and performers often have big egos to match their talent and many subconsciously (and erroneously) think that the service is all about them.

6. They often don’t sit under the Word after they perform.
I am amazed with how often I see many worship team members leave the service after they perform. I guess they think that the highlight of the service was their performance and everything else that ensues, including preaching, is a letdown.

7. They perform but do not worship from the heart.
When the pastor and congregation only care about the talent and effect of the worship experience, they perpetuate a culture of performance more than a culture of worship. Consequently, band members and singers will then focus more on performance than on worship. This result is band members programmed to equate worship more with performance than with drawing close to God.

8. They are overly sensitive and do not easily receive correction.
In my opinion, many in the music world are overly sensitive, ego-driven megalomaniacs. (I know, because as a professional music analyst for many years, I was or am guilty of this!) Folks like this are very competitive and have a hard time admitting they are wrong. This does not make it easy for a pastor to bring correction to them since their identity is rooted more in their ability than in their God.
9. They do not study the Word but rely upon performance sessions in church for their walk.
Many years ago I was shocked to realize that many of the worship leaders I got to know had no prayer life and rarely cracked open the Bible for personal study! Often they depended upon worship practice or the Sunday services to try to connect with God. It alarmed me that many worship leaders were not themselves worshippers!

10. They do not have a spiritually mature worship person leading the team.
All of the previous points mentioned could be dealt with if the worship leader held them accountable. Of course, this will only happen if the worship leader is not a diva but a real disciple of Christ. Leaders set the culture of a team, and if he or she is a spiritually immature “performer,” then most likely the whole team will be more about performance than worship.

In conclusion, I pray pastors and leaders will have the courage to sit down talented but prideful, worldly worship team members, so that Jesus will once again be the center of our worship.

Part 1 By Os Hillman

In 1975, Bill Bright, founder of Campus Crusade, and Loren Cunningham, founder of Youth With a Mission, had lunch together in Colorado. God simultaneously gave each of them a message to
give to the other. About a month later the Lord showed Francis Schaeffer the same thing.

In November of 2007 I had the privilege of interviewing Loren Cunningham, founder of Youth With and Mission. Following is an excerpt of that interview as he describes the meeting with Bill Bright that day.
“As we came in and greeted each other, {we were friends for quite a while}, and I was reaching for my yellow paper that I had written
on the day before. And he said, ‘Loren, I want to show you what God has shown me!’ And it was
virtually the same list that God had given me the day before.

Three weeks later, my wife Darlene had seen Dr. Francis Schaeffer on TV and he had
the same list, so I realized that this was for the body of Christ.
I gave it for the first time in Hamburg,Germany at the big cathedral there to a group of
hundreds of young people that had gathered at that time. And I said, “These are the areas that you can go into as missionaries Here they are: First, it’s the institution set up by God first,
the family. After the family was church, or the people of God. The third was the area of school,
or education. The fourth was media, public communication, in all forms, printed and electronic The fifth was what I call celebration, the arts entertainment, and sports, where you celebrate within a culture.The sixth would be the whole area of the economy, which starts with innovations in science and technology, productivity, sales, and service. The whole area
we often call it business but we leave out sometimes the scientific part, which actually raises the wealth of the world Anything new, like making sand into chips for a microchip, that increases wealth in the world. And then of course prediction sales and service helps to spread the wealth. And so the last was the area of government. Now government, the Bible shows in Isaiah 33 verse 22 that there are three branches of government, so it’s all of the three branches judicial, legislative, and executive And then there are subgroups under all of those seven groups. And there are literally thousands upon thousands of sub-groups But those seven can be considered like Caleb:’Give me this mountain,’ and they can be a ‘mountain’ to achieve for God. Or they can be a classroom that
you’re going to disciple a nation in, Because Jesus said, ‘Go and disciple all nations.’ And it also can affect us because in those areas we can be changed, transformed by the Holy Spirit to be effective missionaries into the area that God has called us into, and we will see it as not just a job to get money to stay alive, but ‘as the Father sent Me, so send I you,’ Jesus said. Therefore, we can be missionaries, where the word ‘missionary’ means ‘one sent’, and one sent of Jesus, if you’re a lawyer in a legal office, you are sent of God.You’re sent to be his missionary, or if you’re in Hollywood, or you’re working as a dentist, or you’re working as a doctor, everything you can do for the glory of God. You may be in the area of foodservices. The
Bible says in Zach 14:20 that even the cooking pot will be called ‘holy’ to the Lord. That’s foodservices. Or transportation Everything from a bus driver to an airplane pilot or to a car dealer or whatever it is, it says even the veils of horses will be called holy to the Lord.

So we make whatever we do, if we do it as unto the Lord, a sanctified, or a holy work, it is Holy unto the Lord.It’s not just the pulpit on Sunday, that’s one of the spheres. It’s also all the other spheres together, and that’s how we achieve advancing the kingdom of God.”

Loren proceeded to explain how they began to equip young people with these 7 spheres in mind through their schools they established all over the world.

What Happened?
As I listened to his story I could not help but ask myself, “Well, if that began more than thirty years ago, why are we in the condition we are in today? We are not winning the culture; we are losing it.” Loren Cunningham and Bill Bright have done a wonderful work for the Kingdom. Who could question how God had worked in and through their ministries. Yet, I had to ponder whether the strategy that was used to respond to this message was the best strategy.

You see, one of the mountains of culture is Religion. This is also known as the Church Mountain. The door that was used to reach the culture by Loren and Bill was the Religious Mountain. They trained young people in the Church Mountain and sent them out as missionaries.
These young people were being trained to win the world through evangelism. Once they won one person to the Lord, they moved to the next person. They appealed to the young people to be missionaries to win the lost. This appeal was seen as a higher calling. They often had to raise
support and live on only what they needed to exist. This also contributed to a poverty spirit
mindset and a dualism that said, “This is a higher call than working in a secular job.” This sacred-secular divide became rampant among evangelical Christians and can be traced back to the Catholic era of 300 A.D. in which paid clergy were elevated to a higher “spiritual” position than common working people.

Consequently, over the centuries this has affected men and women to believe there is actually a higher call in vocational ministry. Decades passed and these
young people were a byproduct of a cultural mindset that did not see secular education as a means of impacting culture, but saw it as a cop out and even a lesser call, or in some cases, evidence of backsliding and selling out to mammon and an ungodly society.
I wonder what would have happened if we had trained them biblically and then encouraged
them to go to Columbia University or Harvard or Yale and prepared them for a career in business, government, media, or entertainment to reach the culture through the these mountains. This is where real societal change is going to take place because this is where the authority lies to make societal change.

Gospel of Salvation vs Gospel of the Kingdom
Landa Cope, author of The Old Testament Template, tells how several years ago a British journalist did a documentary on the most Christianized city in America. She wanted to know the impact that a city which was the most Christianized had on the culture of that city. Christianized meant the city had the largest concentration of church attendance The city that met that criteria was Dallas, Texas. Her research compared statistics on:

•Health care
•Hospitals
•Emergency care
•Contagious diseases
•Infant mortality rate
•Job availability

They compared general economics such as:
• How easy is it to get a job?
• How easy is it to get housing?
• The relationship between potential income and potential housing.
• Homelessness
• Racism
• The existence of abuse
• Crime rates
• Economic discrepancies

The results of her findings were that the city was one of the lowest ranking cities in the nation providing core services and the city was having little positive impact on the condition of the city. No one would want to live in a city in that condition. This should be very disturbing to every follower of Christ in that city.

When the journalist asked a group of Dallas pastors their response to their findings many made this statement: “Those things do not
concern us. We are spiritual leaders”.

I was reminded of a statement Martin Luther said many years earlier: “A gospel that does not deal with the issues of the day is not the gospel at all.”

This case study is another evidence of the preaching of the Gospel of Salvation versus the Gospel of the Kingdom. Jesus preached the Gospel of Salvation but focused on the Gospel of the Kingdom more. This was because He wanted to bring the Gospel into every aspect of a person’s life-including their work life. The early church gospel changed the culture and everything in it. Today, we often stop at salvation, which is a bit like sitting down after crossing the Jordan River. We have only fulfilled a small portion of the mission. This has led to a more liberalized society. We have become a society more concerned with the rapture than
thinking about ways the Gospel could penetrate every sphere of life.

God’s First Instruction to Man
In order to understand God’s original intent for mankind we must go back to the first book of the Bible. In Genesis we find these words: “God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground” (Gen 1:28).
God wanted man to rule the earth in cooperation with Him. We were to be stewards of the earth.

The Bible tells us that God created everything and rules over everything. “All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence (Col 1:16-18).
God’s original intent was that individuals and nation’s were to obey God and if they did so
they would:
• Prosper in every way
• Fulfill their unique purpose
• Fulfill God’s overall plan
• Receive their God-ordained inheritance individually and as a nation In essence, all creation would reflect His glory as a result of their obedience to Him. This would allow them to have dominion over all the earth and fulfill what He spoke to the Israelites in Deuteronomy 28:1-2:
“If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations on earth.”

We have an obedience problem
So what happened to this wonderful plan? Adam and Eve changed this when they decided to sin by eating from the tree of good and evil. God had set up boundaries that they had to live
within, but they chose to go outside those boundaries.

What was lost in the garden? Several things were lost as a result of man’s sin in the
Garden of Eden:
• We lost our intimate relationship with God.
• We lost our ability to work unhindered. Work went from joy and worship to sweat and toil because the ground had been cursed, making it more difficult to earn a living from the soil.
•Women would have pain in childbirth
• There would be strife between people
• Evil entered the world and resulted in murder, shame, guilt and various sorts of evils that became byproducts of this fallen state. Dominion was lost in the Garden. However, when Jesus Christ returned to earth He did so for one purpose: to reclaim that which had been lost inthe Garden. Jesus came to reclaim what Satan
took in the garden.
•”For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10).
•”For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself allthings, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross” (Colossians 1:19-20).
“There is one body and one Spirit-just as you were called to one hope when you were called-
one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all” (Eph 4:4-6). Jesus returned to reclaim His Lordship over all
domains of influence: (not just Lord over salvation)

He re-established His position as:
•King of Kings – the Lord of Justice
•Jehovah Jireh – Lord of Economics
•Father, Lord of the family
•Creator God, Lord of science & technology
•Living Word, Lord of communication
•Potter, Lord of the arts & beauty
•Great Teacher, Lord of education
After Jesus returned it was up to followers of Christ to appropriate what He did on the cross be reclaiming all that had been lost. We are His representatives on earth to finish the reclamation mission. Many of us have not done this because we believe the earth is not God’s and is now in control of Satan and so we have
given over society to him. This is not biblical theology.
God wanted to establish this relationship through Moses
God desired to make Israel a new nation that would model what He had set up in the Garden of
Eden. He did not want to establish a religion but a nation of people who would love, serve, and
honor God. “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special
people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9-10). In the New Testament Jesus told His disciples what their assignment was to take every nation and make it His.
“And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the
Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.'” Amen (Matt 28:18-20). God knows that man will be fulfilled the most when people lead them who lead by the godly
principles He established from the beginning. He tells us in Proverbs, “When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; But when a wicked man rules, the people groan” (Prov 29:2). Each of us needs to ask some important questions as to where we are individually and in our community as it relates to God’s original intent. Would the community notice if our local church shut its doors tomorrow? Would our workplace notice if we were no longer there? Is our industry different because of me? What would my nation look like if we modeled Deuteronomy 28 and became the head as a result of modeling Christ-like leadership and servant hood?

We are each called to impact the sphere of influence God has called us to influence. As each of us does this, we reclaim the culture one person at a time, one industry at a time, one mountain at a time.

Troop halts Attack on Gombe

Posted: February 15, 2015 in Uncategorized

A combination of air and ground operation, yesterday, repelled Boko Haram fighters who
invaded Gombe even as it merged that the fighters wanted to divert the military’s attention due to sustained bombardments of
their camps.

A tweet from Defence Headquarters handle confirmed the attack and the military overcoming it. “The terrorists attack on Gombe has been repelled. Troops are in pursuit”, the brief tweet stated.

Security sources told Sunday Vanguard that the fighters were desperately seeking other places
to set up camps as they were being pursued from their camps in Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states.

In the last few weeks, Boko Haram camps in the states, close to the borders with neighbouring countries, have been under intense pressures from Nigerian troops in cooperation with their
counterparts, from the Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF).

Some of the camps have been destroyed. And as they could no longer enter Cameroon and Niger
so easily, they are moving southwards, the sources confirmed.

Eye witnesses said the militants attacked soldiers at the security checkpoints at the edge of the town and forced their way into the quarter guard of the 301 Artillery Regiment. The quarter guard was burned but they could not proceed into the main barracks which is a little
far off.

image

Prof. Attahiru Jega (INEC Chairman)

The February 14 Presidential elections have been postponed to March 28, 2015.

This information was made public by the Chairman of the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) at the
Commission’s headquarters in Abuja.
The Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Attahiru Jega, says that the election was postponed because all the security agencies in the country have expressed to him, in writing, that they cannot be available to support the elections if it holds on February 14. This decision was made after several hours of meetings chaired by Jega on charting a way forward as regards organising a free, fair,and
violence free elections.

Jega gave reasons for the postponement saying:
“There are several things needed to conduct a credible election. Some are within the control of
the elections but others are not. One of the things not in our control is security.”

He continued saying, “It has become pertinent to consider the security situation in the country.
INEC is a election organising commission, not a security organisation”
“We have done wide-ranging consultations before taking our decision. The presidential elections will now hold on March 28, while the state elections will hold on April 11, 2015.”
He appealed for peace and assured that the decision was “taken in good faith and best
interest of deepening democracy.”
A leading African election expert and senior fellow at the Centre for Democracy and Development, CDD, in Abuja, Jibrin Ibrahim, who
was at the meeting, disclosed that Jega, during the meeting stated that security operatives from all the nation’s agencies informed the commission that they were commencing a six weeks special operations against Boko Haram insurgents in the north eastern corridors of the country and an election would only be a distraction.

We shall bring you more details as soon as we get them.

CANDID ADVICE: FIGHTING SEXUAL URGES

In this generation where there are so many triggers to indulge in sexually inclined activities, it is most appropriate to fight back, but the big issue is that fighting back seems to be a larger tasks than conquering the Electricity challenges in Nigeria.
Here are some few tips to winning the war.

#1. ACCEPT THAT IT IS PRETTY NORMAL TO HAVE SEXUAL URGES
To control your sexual urges, you must first accept that there is nothing wrong in wanting sex or thinking about it. It is a pretty normal phase everyone goes through, but there is an appropriate time for it. Unlike what we have been made to believe by some societal factors like religion that sex is evil and having sexual urges is a complete taboo, on the contrary, God invited sex for a purpose and he gave certain prerequisites before engaging in it. When these criteria (most popular of which is Marriage) are met, then Sex is a goldmine. In fighting the urges (most especially when you are yet to be qualified), you have to know and accept that your sexual desires are just one of those basic physical needs that seeks to be fulfilled one way or the other but not obliged. Once you have accepted this fact and you strongly wish to put it in check, you can control it.

#2. KNOW WHAT TRIGGERS THOSE FEELINGS
In order to control your sexual desires, you must know what it is that actually sets it off. For someone who is sexually starved, it is easier to be drawn by sexual innuendoes and signs, making it tough to control your urges but once you have identified those things that triggers these feelings, you mind will be alert enough to steer clear of them. Avoid reading books with x-rated contents or watch pornographic movies or any form of object that can stimulate your sexual urges.

#3. TRANSLATE YOUR SEXUAL URGES INTO CREATIVE OUTPUTS
To curb your sexual desires, you have to do more to think less. Channel all those feelings into something that will keep your mind off sex and then, get busy. You can read books, go out with friends, watch movies (but be sure of the content before you find yourself using Petrol to quench fire), learn new things etc. Transfer your urges into something you have always wanted to do. At the end of the day, you would have successfully managed not to think about sex and you will also be satisfied at the things you did. If one of those hobbies trigger a sexual response in you and you are feeling aroused, do not masturbate. Think of non-sexual images or take a long walk.

#4. TRANSFER YOUR ENERGY INTO EXERCISE
Engage your body in exercise that will keep you busy and keep you from feeling frustrated from not having sex. You can jog in the morning, swim or hit the gym. You
can also try yoga and other exercise that will help stimulate both mind and body.

#5. STAY AWAY FROM DRUGS AND ALCOHOL
Only few can drink heavily or do drugs without losing control of themselves. Stay away from alcohol and drugs, they will cause you to do something you will regret when you are sober. If you must drink, drink water or juice or soda or some non-alcoholic drink and with friends you can trust and you know will watch over you.

#6. PURSUE NON-SEXUAL RELATIONSHIPS
In order to control your sexual urge, you should enter into a relationship with no sex. If you wonder what you both will do without the sex, there are countless things couples can do to bond like going on a field trip together, taking up a joint hobby, learning new things together. Far from what most people think, you can have a very satisfying relationship without sex.

#7. TALK TO SOMEONE
If you feel like you can’t control it all by yourself, you can talk to your doctor, pastor, parents, close relative or friends. Sometimes, having someone to talk to about how you feel helps better than trying to curb it all by yourself. Who knows, the person you want to meet may have had difficulty curbing his own desires too. What then is better than learning from someone’s experience. Don’t be shy or scared of being judged.

#8. GET SPIRITUAL HELP
In getting spiritual help, it’s important to note that if you are being taught that sex is
bad and it wrong, you won’t have much comfort there and it will only push you deeper into your urges. Get spiritual help that engages your mind in spiritual activities that are far from sex. Being around people pursuing the same goal as you, especially in chastity can also be a strong supportive measure. That way you have someone holding your hands all the way.

As you would handle the viruses on your system, so should you handle the thoughts of sex, especially when you are trying so hard to be chaste. Tackle your thoughts before it
translates into an action you may regret later.
Thanks

Have you ever wondered if it is possible to remain in tune with the Spirit of God every moment of your life? I did wonder on that possibility until I was exposed to these 18 steps by a friend. Since then I have transformed from a normal man to a Spirit sensitive being. It has helped me a lot in keeping the flame on my altar at an inferno state at all times.

Let me share them with you.

1. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal any unconfessed sin in your life.

2. Seek forgiveness from all whom you have offended, and forgive all who have hurt you.

3. Make restitution where God leads.

Examine your motives in every word and deed.

4. Ask the Lord to search and cleanse your heart daily.

5. Ask the Holy Spirit to guard your walk against complacency and mediocrity.

6. Praise and give thanks to God continually in all ways on all days, regardless of your circumstances.

7. Refuse to obey your carnal (worldy) nature (Galatians 5:16,17).

8. Surrender your life to Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord.

9. Develop utter dependence on Him with total submission and humility.
Study the attributes of God.

10. Hunger and thirst after righteousness (Matthew 5:6).

11. Love God with all of your heart, soul, and mind (Matthew 22:37).

12. Appropriate the continual fullness and control of the Holy Spirit by faith on the basis of God’s command (Ephesians 5:18) and promise (1 John 5:14,15).

13. Read, study, meditate on, and memorize God’s holy, inspired, inerrant Word daily (Colossians 3:16).

14. Pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17).

15. Fast and pray one 24-hour period each week.

16. Seek to share Christ daily as a way of life.

17. Determine to live a holy, godly life of obedience and faith.

18. Start or join a home or church Bible study group that emphasizes revival and a holy life.

Be sure to obey this steps and hour river can never run dry.

Since the apparently invincible Boko Haram insurgency pounced on Nigeria virtually four years ago, every act of the Nigerian military in its effort to combat and, possibly, subdue it has never failed to dishearten Nigerians in the most bizarre and epochal forms.

Let no one talk about the possibility of the appalling failures of the military to subdue the insurgency as a problem caused by something unfathomable in the realm of secret global military, political or intricate diplomatic intelligence, about which Nigeria must tread with utmost caution in its choice between ‘the devil and the deep blue sea,’ which may have, therefore, compelled the military to compromise some measures of its constitutional responsibility of maintaining security and protecting the territorial integrity of the country.
We are talking of Nigeria – the most reputable black nation in global affairs, a nation that proudly flutters the banner of the most revered military in peacekeeping missions, a nation that brandishes the military prowess of defending other African nations against any crisis akin to the one terrorising it now.

Members of the Nigerian military should know that their prime responsibility is to ensure the internal and external security of Nigeria and Nigerians in situations of the inability of the police and other relevant agencies to do so to ward off any uncontainable threat to the existence the country.

They should know that there has to be a secured Nigeria for them to answer the name of the members of the Nigerian military, let us assume they have not begun to feel ashamed of answering the name.
Why are Nigerians so bizarrely disheartened with the conceited failure of their erstwhile proudly laurel-decorated military to even face the insurgents in a prolonged fierce combat, let alone subdue and banish them from the Nigerian territory?

Aside the unfathomable invincibility of the insurgents, which the depressing string of promises of the military authorities, such as ‘we are on top of the situation’ or “we will soon re-capture Boko Haram’s Caliphate,” the Nigerian military has all along slapped Nigerians with an endless series of disrespectful lies about strategically combating the crisis, in the face of sharply contrasting deterioration of the security situation.

No Nigerian now needs to be convinced that the top echelon of the military has perfected strategies, not of decisively battling insurgency towards quelling it, but of conning President Goodluck Jonathan into disbursing trillions of Naira to finance what it proposes to him as victorious war against terror, to which the president succumbs with a promptness emanating from his Commander-In-Chief and guardian position for Nigeria and Nigerians.

Although some inconsolably cynical Nigerians would always argue that President Jonathan readily makes such disbursements in a trick to mesmerise the soldiers against going anywhere close to the vicinity of a coup de tat, I do not subscribe to that. So far, the president has demonstrated considerable commitment to putting an end to the dastardly insurgency that has, so far, resulted in the mass murder of innocent souls and wanton destruction of places of worship and many properties.

It has since ceased to be any secret among Nigerians that the top echelons of the military have ascended to the class of the richest group of Nigerians, leaving the pitiably frustrated rank-and-file consoling and pleasing themselves with transferring their frustration and anger on the ever-worsening vehicular gridlock at military checkpoints on most of the Nigerian highways and metropolitan centres, especially in the northern states, on the pretext of looking out for and arresting insurgents.

Very ridiculously, Nigerians have never heard of any insurgent arrested at the checkpoints. A mass of hundreds, at some locations, several thousands, of vehicles is usually built up, with the jam-packed vehicles spilling beyond the shoulders of the roads to create several lanes more than the number the roads have been built to contain. These huge mass of vehicles snail-paces to the point where a couple of frustrated and angry-looking soldiers merely wave at them to pass, most times without checking anything.

Conventionally, criminals find it easy and safe to operate at night. In contrast, however, vehicles pass through these military checkpoints freely in a smooth vehicular traffic flow at night with no logjams because the soldiers keeping sentry there would be relaxing, either near the checkpoints or elsewhere nearby, drinking and gallivanting. It would have been very easy for as many insurgents or other criminals as possible to ease their way through the checkpoints in the night hours when no soldier would be around to detect them to any planned location to perpetrate crime.

These military checkpoints have proved to be practically useless, oftentimes, counterproductive, causing economic activities slowdowns in most metropolitan centres with large populations of commuters comprising traders, businessmen and women and workers stranded there for hours. Honestly, these checkpoints have failed to serve their purpose. How would they? Do the soldiers have the facilities to effectively be in charge of the checkpoints? What modern gadgets do they have to detect even knockouts?

Yours sincerely is also worried about the way soldiers are being used in stop-and-search operations in the city, which ordinarily should be handled by the police or para-military personnel. More worrisome is the fact that a reasonable number of the soldiers have been deployed to personal residences of some retired permanent secretaries, retired directors, retired this and that as guards. Why should Nigeria train soldiers only to be used as guards in private houses and companies? For me, unnecessary presence of soldiers and avoidable interactions with civilians diminish their prestige in the eyes of the public, if the Hausa adage, ido wa ka raina, wanda na saba gani (which simple means familiarity, breeds contempt) is anything to go by.

Now, it has since ceased to be any secret that military troops are deployed to the epicentres of the insurgency, ill-prepared with ‘makeshift’ weapons compared to the highly superior weaponry brandished by the Boko Haram militants. No wonder, most times when both combatants come face-to-face, the Nigerian military men flee for their dear lives as would, a herd of gazelles fleeing from an attacking lion in the wilderness.

Face-to-face with the stark reality of the superior weaponry of the insurgents, detachments of the Nigerian soldiers have severally mutinied against being deployed to confront the superior-armed insurgents.

Why are poorly-armed Nigerian soldiers continuously deployed to face the seemingly indomitably Boko Haram militants who delightfully crush them? Most Nigerians now believe this is due to the rather psychopathic tendencies of their military generals who evidently take pleasure in sacrificing them as part of the dual strategy of creating more urgent excuse to attract more funds for terror war.

This situation, most recently, caused a detachment of Nigerian troops to flee from the more powerful insurgents to the neighbouring Cameroon, to which the Nigerian military authorities respond, albeit with the usual bare-face lies, that the soldiers only retreated in a tactical manoeuvre. What an explanation!

The persistent ill-preparedness of the Nigerian military for the terror war has confirmed the observation of Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State, some months ago, that the Boko Haram insurgents have more sophisticated weapons, which is why the Nigerian military cannot subdue them, an impeccable observation the military authorities vehemently denied.

Huge population of Nigerians in the Northeast are exterminated, evidently by Boko Haram militants and seemingly complicity of the Nigerian military in the insurgency crisis, perhaps powered by some unfathomable formidable force masterminding the insurgency.
There is absolutely no time for lamentations. If the Nigerian military authorities are sincere on fighting and quelling the insurgency, they should rebuild their confidence and commitment accordingly, hone their tools morally and spiritually, utilise the billion-naira funds for the terror war in equipping the rank-and-file with the state-of-art weapons that could, at least, match the ones brandished by the insurgents. That is THE HARD WAY, THE ONLY WAY they can effectively deal with the crisis we have at hand.
By
ABDULLAHI GULLOMA

The Defence Headquarters, DHQ, on Friday said it had commenced inquiry into the shooting incident that occurred in Zaria between soldiers and members of the
Shiite Islamic sect.

This is contained in a statement in Abuja by Chris Olukolade, the DHQ’s Director of Defence Information.
Mr. Olukolade said the inquiry became necessary to calm the situation in Zaria after the recent encounter between soldiers who were on routine patrol and members of the sect.
It stated that while not downplaying the significance of such incident, it was also necessary to ensure that sufficient information was obtained beginning from the unit level and other reliable sources at the location.

He said that a preliminary investigation had been conducted to unravel the circumstances surrounding the unfortunate incident.
“An inquiry is subsequently ongoing at the Divisional level”.
“Although, the report of the preliminary investigation at the unit level has vehemently contradicted some of the issues raised by the leader of the group.
“In his statement, especially on the
allegation of extra judicial killings, the higher headquarters is conducting additional investigation on the incident to ascertain the claims in the preliminary reports from the unit level”.
“In spite of the preliminary findings, the importance placed on the respect for human rights in all military operations, activities and interactions, has prompted the additional steps presently being taken to ascertain the true situation.”
He said the higher level of military inquiry is with a view to unmasking the remote and immediate causes of the incident and to identify anyone found culpable.

Mr. Olukolade said that those apprehended during the incident are being interrogated.
“The DHQ deeply commiserates with the families of those that lost their lives in that unfortunate incident, especially the leader of the group who was reported to have lost
his sons.
“Indeed, his present disposition is
understandable as it is pathetic. I assure that no effort will be spared to ensure necessary justice on this matter.”

The sect was on a procession to mark the annual Quds day in Zaria when soldiers reportedly shot at them, killing over 30 of them, including three sons of the leader of
the group, Ibraheem El-Zakzaky.
(NAN)

What’s Ebola?

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It’s Bloody:
Ebola is what scientists call a haemorraghic fever – it operates by making its victims bleed from almost anywhere on their body.
Usually, victims bleed to death from Ebola.

It’s Contagious:
Ebola is highly contagious; being transmitted via contact with body fluids such as blood, saliva, semen or body discharges.
Ebola is NOT AIRBORNE!

Really Deadly:
About 90% of people that catch Ebola will die from it.
It’s one of the deadliest diseases in the world, killing in a few weeks.

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Untreatable:
This is the sad part – Ebola has no known treatment or cure. Victims are usually treated for symptoms with the faint hope that they recover.

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How Do I Know Someone has Ebola?:
The follow signs and symptoms will be visible in a sufferer

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Fever
Headache
Diarrhoea
Vomiting
Weakness
Joint & Muscle Ache
Stomach Pain
Lack of Appetite

Protect Yourself:
Wash Your Hands with Soap.
Do this a lot. You can also use a good hand sanitizer. Avoid unnecessary contacts!

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No Bush Meat and Suya.
Bush meat may be carrying the virus. Also avoid suya.
Its better to restrict yourself to food you prepared yourself.
Disinfect Your Surroundings. The virus cannot survive disinfectants,heat, direct sunlight,detergents and soaps.

Clean up!:
Fumigate If you have Pests. Rodents can be carriers of Ebola.
Fumigate your environment and dispose off the carcasses properly!
Don’t Touch Carcasses. Dead bodies can still transmit Ebola. Don’t touch them without protective gear or avoid them altogether.

Protect Yourself:
Use protective gear if you must care or go near someone you suspect has Ebola.

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Report:
Report any suspicious symptoms in yourself or anyone else IMMEDIATELY you notice them.

Don’t delay!!

Educate Everyone:
Tell your neighbours, colleagues and domestic staff. You’re safer when everyone is educated about Ebola.
#Ebola_is_Real

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As reported on today

.ng

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The Fallen Hero

A symbolic but tragic reminder of the enormous sacrifices the Nigerian military has been making in defence of the nation in the ongoing war against terror was brought to the fore yesterday by the painful news of the death of a  Lieutenant who was killed in the line of duty barely a month to his wedding.

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His wedding invitation card

Lt. Kyom Leo, who had planned to wed his fiancee, Miss Angela Gaiya, on August 30, in Kaduna was killed in an ambush while on a mission to search for the Chibok schoolgirls. With his death, he joined the long list of fallen heroes as the military intensifies the counter insurgency campaign against the Boko Haram sect.

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The late Lt. Kyom as a 3rd year cadet in NDA

The sad news was announced yesterday by the Defence Headquarters (DHQ) through their twitter account @DefenceInfoNG and later on their website http://www.defenceinfo.mil.ng.

The message which was confirmed by the Director of Defence Information (DDI), Maj-Gen. Chris Olukolade, stated:  “This is his WEDDING IV but killed by #BokoHaram in an attempt to #BringBackOurGirls. A #HERO is gone”#RIP Lt. Leo”

The statement reads: “2nd Lieutenant Leo of the Nigerian Army was one of the three gallant soldiers killed in operation as insurgents ambushed our troops during a patrol to dislodge insurgents around Delwa, Borno State.
“His emotional story told on various social media channels, continues to draw myriads of sympathies, tributes and encomiums from friends and family and other well-meaning people all over the country.

“One Miss Nkechi Afamu, a friend to the late soldier wrote ‘RIP LEO, my childhood friend. We all parted ways after Kaduna crisis in 2000. I can’t believe you are gone, what happens to Tida and Wyari your lovely sisters. I can’t question God but it’s hard to say goodbye. Rest On KY. We will all miss you’.”

The statement added that Leo was a deeply religious and courageous soldier whose steadfast belief in the country for which he paid the ultimate price would “continue to inspire the Nigerian Military to protect our territorial integrity and rid Nigeria of all forms of insurgency and aggression.