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Archive for February, 2012|Monthly archive page

Deadly bird flu studies to stay secret for now: WHO

In ESSAY on February 22, 2012 at 9:18 am

Two studies showing how scientists mutated the H5N1 bird flu virus into a form that could cause a deadly human pandemic will be published only after experts fully assess the risks, the World Health Organization (WHO) said.

Speaking after a high-level meeting of flu experts and U.S. security officials in Geneva, a WHO spokesman said an agreement had been reached in principle to keep details of the controversial work secret until deeper risk analyses have been carried out.

The WHO called the meeting to break a deadlock between scientists who have studied the mutations needed to make H5N1 bird flu transmit between mammals, and the U.S. National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB), which wanted the work censored before it was published in scientific journals.

Biosecurity experts fear mutated forms of the virus that research teams in The Netherlands and the United States independently created could escape or fall into the wrong hands and be used to spark a pandemic worse than the 1918-19 outbreak of Spanish flu that killed up to 40 million people.

“There must be a much fuller discussion of risk and benefits of research in this area and risks of virus itself,” the WHO’s Gregory Hartl told reporters.

HIGH FATALITY RATE

The H5N1 virus, first detected in Hong Kong in 1997, is entrenched among poultry in many countries, mainly in Asia, but so far remains in a form that is hard for humans to catch.

It is known to have infected nearly 700 people worldwide since 2003, killing half of them, a far higher death rate than the H1N1 swine flu which caused a flu pandemic in 2009/2010.

Last year two teams of scientists – one led by Ron Fouchier at Erasmus Medical Center and another led by Yoshihiro Kawaoka at the University of Wisconsin – said they had found that just a handful of mutations would allow H5N1 to spread like ordinary flu between mammals, and remain as deadly as it is now.

In December, the NSABB asked two leading scientific journals, Nature and Science, to withhold details of the research for fear it could be used by bioterrorists.

They said a potentially deadlier form of bird flu poses one of the gravest known threats to humans and justified the unprecedented call to censor the research.

The WHO voiced concern, and flu researchers from around the world declared a 60-day moratorium on January 20 on “any research involving highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 viruses” that produce easily contagious forms.

Fouchier, who took part in the two-day meeting at the WHO which ended on Friday, said the consensus of experts and officials there was “that in the interest of public health, the full paper should be published” at some future date.

“This was based on the high public health impact of this work and the need to share the details of the studies with a very big community in the interest of science, surveillance and public health on the whole,” he told reporters.

In its current form, people can contract H5N1 only through close contact with ducks, chickens, or other birds that carry it, and not from infected individuals.

But when H5N1 acquires mutations that allow it to live in the upper respiratory tract rather than the lower, the Dutch and U.S. researchers found a way to make it can travel via airborne droplets between infected ferrets, which are considered good models of how flu viruses behave in people.

Asked about the potential bioterrorism risks of his and the U.S. team’s work, Fouchier said “it was the view of the entire group” at the meeting that the risks that this particular virus or flu viruses in general could be used as bioterrorism agents “would be very, very slim.”

“The risks are not nil, but they are very, very small,” he said.

(Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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A Golden Goodbye

In Uncategorized on February 21, 2012 at 9:18 am

Reporter: I’ve transcribed the interview

Editor: Oh thank you. I think you should go pick your son in school now

Reporter: I’ve been meaning to discuss a few things with you sir…

Editor: Really? Then, spit it out.

Reporter: I understand how nice a person you are. In fact, you’re more tolerant and empathetic than every other senior colleague here.

Editor: Oh! oh! Ah! ah! That’s just me.

Reporter:…but Sir, I notice you just sit around in the news room, and doing nothing; except calling some girls on the phone to meet you at some tryst.

Editor: You’re fired!

Reporter: I already resigned yesterday Sir. Just felt I should tell you “goodbye!”

TO MY FACEBOOK LOVER…

In Uncategorized on February 21, 2012 at 8:42 am
MY FACEBOOK LOVER – by Bayo Akinloye

each ticking moment
i am looking up the firmament
each additional workload
i am thinking of retirement
each urgent appointment
i am asking why this torment

knowing you’ll be here
eternally waiting
with heat of expectation
i perspire in the air-conditioned office
that is my dungeon

i know you’ll be waiting patiently
for within i feel your impatient poke
on the keyboard…

Living An Unsubsidised Life In Nigeria Today

In Uncategorized on February 21, 2012 at 8:38 am
SEASONS JUST PASS – by Bayo Akinloye

seasons just pass
without reasons
like a babe i still muse
over treason
defying prisons

momma was pledged
better life for rural women
she was ruled out
even without reason
wasn’t that treason?

poppa promised
poverty eradication program
but was programmed
yes for retrenchment
wasn’t that poverty commencement program
that doesn’t make life easy?

seasons just pass
without reason
better life turns bend-down life
poverty eradication program
now penury elongation pogrom

starting a new season
everyone’s shivering
cost of living increasing
many still craving
thieves thieving
labourers laboriously labouring
terrorists terrorizing
traders tremulously trading

seasons just pass
without reasons
nothing good seems pleasing.

NIGERIA TODAY: The Brown-Envelope Dialogue

In ANYTHING on February 21, 2012 at 8:32 am
Foreign Reporter: Reports reaching us indicate that journalism has been held hostage in Nigeria since 1999.

Nigerian Journalist: That’s stupid! Journalism is OK. It’s journalist who are held hostage.

Foreign Reporter (continues): Having drifted away from past excellence and dynamism, Nigerian journalism is now called “cash-n-carry” journalism.
******************************************************
With us here is Mr. Methuselah Brown-Envelope…Welcome.

Brown-Envelope: Thank you very much. You’ve only started the obvious. How do I survive on a take-home pay that doesn’t take me beyond the beer parlour?

Foreign Reporter: You mean Nigerian journalists are poorly remunerated?

Brown-Envelope: Are you asking me? Not only are they poorly paid, they’re hardly paid. Besides, they don’t get further training to enhance their work.

Foreign Reporter: How do they survive?

Brown-Envelope: Lemme assure you that they don’t steal, kidnap, bunker oil nor throw bomb. They’re too intellectual for that. All we do is some little blackmailing: “Ah, we won’t use your story unless you give some money oh!”; “Mr. MD I have information that are damaging to your company, what do you want us to do?” “Senator So-and-So, there are some undesirable elements in your constituency who are championing your downfall, they’ve paid us to do a critical story on you. But we won’t. Please settle your boys!”

Foreign Reporter: Oh really?

Brown-Envelope: Oh yeah!

JOB VACANCY TODAY IN NAIJA: CAREER IN JOURNALISM

In LATEST JOBS IN NIGERIA TODAY/ CAREER OPPORTUNITIES & DEVELOPMENTS on February 21, 2012 at 8:29 am
Financial Reporter- Lagos, Nigeria

Mergermarket – Nigeria
Job Description

Mergermarket, the world’s leading M&A news service, is looking to appoint an experienced and hardworking freelance reporter based in Lagos, Nigeria. The post involves writing exclusive news stories on mergers and acquisitions across all sectors, interviewing senior executives and attending conferences and meetings in the country.

The ideal candidate should have experience in financial/business reporting and have excellent spoken and written English skills. Candidates must have previous work experience in financial journalism in order to apply. Candidates should be willing to travel within the country at times and must comply with mergermarket’s strict ethical guidelines.

The post will suit reporters who are able to regularly deliver quality copy while working independently and with reporters and editors abroad. Part-time freelancers will be accepted as long as there is no conflict of interest between their other jobs and our product.

Please contact our senior reporter in West and Central Africa, Kimberly Johnson, kimberly.johnson@mergermarket.com if you are interested, or can recommend someone who is. A professional CV and at least three copies of published articles should be submitted with a proper cover letter to be considered for this position.

Desired Skills & Experience

Print reporting and writing skills

Business and economics journalism skills

VACANCY: FINANCIAL REPORTER – LAGOS

In LATEST JOBS IN NIGERIA TODAY/ CAREER OPPORTUNITIES & DEVELOPMENTS on February 17, 2012 at 11:22 am

Financial Reporter- Lagos, Nigeria

Mergermarket – Nigeria

Job Description

Mergermarket, the world’s leading M&A news service, is looking to appoint an experienced and hardworking freelance reporter based in Lagos, Nigeria. The post involves writing exclusive news stories on mergers and acquisitions across all sectors, interviewing senior executives and attending conferences and meetings in the country.

The ideal candidate should have experience in financial/business reporting and have excellent spoken and written English skills. Candidates must have previous work experience in financial journalism in order to apply. Candidates should be willing to travel within the country at times and must comply with mergermarket’s strict ethical guidelines.

The post will suit reporters who are able to regularly deliver quality copy while working independently and with reporters and editors abroad. Part-time freelancers will be accepted as long as there is no conflict of interest between their other jobs and our product.

 

Please contact our senior reporter in West and Central Africa, Kimberly Johnson, kimberly.johnson@mergermarket.com if you are interested, or can recommend someone who is. A professional CV and at least three copies of published articles should be submitted with a proper cover letter to be considered for this position.

Desired Skills & Experience

Print reporting and writing skills

Business and economics journalism skills

THE TOP 100 AFRICAN UNIVERSITIES: NIGERIA’S RANKING

In ESSAY on February 16, 2012 at 12:19 pm

The latest ranking of world universities has been released with South African universities dominating the African regional ranking. Egypt, Algeria and Morocco are other countries with strong ranking.

The best ranked West African university is Ghana’s Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology at number 18 while Nigeria’s University of Ilorin occupies the 20th position.  Egypt leads North Africa at number 11 with Algeria at number 19.

Below is a summary of the ranking of the top 100 universities in the African region.

Rank University Country
1 University of Cape Town South Africa
2 University of Pretoria South Africa
3 Stellenbosch University South Africa
4 University of the Witwatersrand South Africa
5 Rhodes University South Africa
6 University of Kwazulu Natal South Africa
7 University of the Western Cape South Africa
8 University of South Africa South Africa
9 University of Johannesburg South Africa
10 Makerere University Uganda
11 Cairo University Egypt
12 American University in Cairo Egypt
13 Ain Shams University Egypt
14 Mansoura University Egypt
15 University of the Free State South Africa
16 North West University South Africa
17 Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University South Africa
18 Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology Ghana
19 Université Mentouri de Constantine Algeria
20 University of Ilorin Nigeria
21 Al Akhawayn University Ifrane Morocco
22 Polytechnic of Namibia Namibia
23 Durban University of Technology South Africa
24 University of Khartoum Sudan
25 Cape Peninsula University of Technology South Africa
26 University of Botswana Botswana
27 University of Nairobi Kenya
28 Assiut University Egypt
29 Faculté des Sciences Rabat Morocco
30 Université Cheikh Anta Diop de Dakar Senegal
31 University of Zimbabwe Zimbabwe
32 Tshwane University of Technology South Africa
33 Université Abou Bekr Belkaid Tlemcen Algeria
34 University of Dar Es Salaam Tanzania
35 University of Mauritius Mauritius
36 Sudan University of Science & Technology Sudan
37 University of Namibia Namibia
38 Strathmore University Nairobi Kenya
39 Université Cadi Ayyad Morocco
40 University of Zululand South Africa
41 German University in Cairo Egypt
42 University of Jos Nigeria
43 Helwan University Egypt
44 National University of Rwanda Rwanda
45 Université des Sciences et de la Technologie Houari Boumediene Algeria
46 Zagazig University Egypt
47 École Mohammadia d’Ingénieurs Morocco
48 Addis Ababa University Ethiopia
49 University of Ghana Ghana
50 University of Garyounis Libya
51 Kenyatta University Kenya
52 British University in Egypt Egypt
53 Université Mohammed Premier Oujda Morocco
54 University of Nigeria Nsukka Nigeria
55 Université de Batna Algeria
56 Université Virtuelle de Tunis Tunisia
57 Universidade Eduardo Mondlane Mozambique
58 University of Lagos Nigeria
59 College of Medicine University of Malawi Malawi
60 South Valley University Egypt
61 Université Abdelmalek Essaadi Morocco
62 Fayoum University Egypt
63 Obafemi Awolowo University Nigeria
64 Université de Ouagadougou Burkina Faso
65 Université d’Alger Algeria
66 Vaal University of Technology South Africa
67 Université M’Hamed Bougara de Boumerdes Algeria
68 University of Tanta Egypt
69 Ahmadu Bello University Nigeria
70 University of Zambia Zambia
71 Arab Academy for Science & Technology and Maritime Transport Egypt
72 Université Ferhat Abbas Setif Algeria
73 Université Djillali Liabes Algeria
74 Pharos University in Alexandria Egypt
75 Université Ibn Tofail Kenitra Morocco
76 École Supérieure des Communications de Tunis Tunisia
77 Université Mohammed V Souissi Morocco
78 United States International University Morocco
79 Alexandria University Egypt
80 Universidade Jean Piaget de Cabo Verde Cape Verde
81 Université Mohammed V Agdal Morocco
82 Université Saad Dahlab Blida Algeria
83 University of Fort Hare South Africa
84 Université d’Antananarivo Madagascar
85 Université Hassan II Faculté des Sciences Ain Chock Casablanca Morocco
86 National Open University of Nigeria Nigeria
87 Mauritius Institute of Education Mauritius
88 University of Technology Mauritius Mauritius
89 Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology Kenya
90 Moi University Kenya
91 Mekelle University Ethiopia
92 Université Hassiba Ben Bouali Algeria
93 Jimma University Ethiopia
94 Université des Sciences et de la Technologie d’Oran Mohamed Boudiaf Algeria
95 University of Agriculture Abeokuta Nigeria
96 Minia University Egypt
97 Université Abdelhamid Ibn Badis Mostaganem Algeria
98 Central University of Technology South Africa
99 École National Supérieure de l’Informatique (ex-INI) Algeria
100 University of Malawi Malawi

Courtesy: Webometric Ranking of World Universities 2011.

ARSENAL’S ROBIN VAN PERSIE FIRST TO REACH 20 GOALS

In ESSAY on February 10, 2012 at 8:41 am

Van Persie first to reach 20 goals

Arsenal striker set to finish season as Barclays Premier League top scorer

Arsenal's Robin van Persie

Arsenal striker Robin van Persie has enjoyed a remarkably prolific 2011-12 season

Arsenal striker Robin van Persie has become the first Barclays Premier League player to reach 20 goals for this season.

The prolific Dutchman, who leads the League’s scoring charts, reached the milestone during the Gunners’ 7-1 thrashing of Blackburn Rovers at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.

Van Persie went on to score twice more, meaning the 28-year-old has now scored 22 goals in only 24 Barclays Premier League fixtures this campaign.

The Arsenal striker was also the first man to reach 10 goals and he did that while scoring a hat-trick too, in the 5-3 win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in October.

Van Persie’s 22 goals put him six ahead of Newcastle United’s Demba Ba (16), and seven away from Manchester City’s Sergio Aguero and Manchester United’s Wayne Rooney (both 15).

None of those four have ever won the Barclays Golden Boot award for the top scorer in a season, with Man Utd‘s Dimitar Berbatov winning it with 20 last term and Man City‘s Carlos Tevez with 20 the year before.

The last man to score 30 goals in a Barclays Premier League season was former Man Utd forward Cristiano Ronaldo, who struck 31 in only 34 matches in the 2007-08 campaign.

GSM ROGUES: MTN, GLO, AIRTEL AND ETISALAT

In ESSAY on February 8, 2012 at 3:51 pm

THE GREAT GAMBLERS

How telecom operators swindle unwary Nigerians of several billions of Naira via promo sham.

Bayo Akinloye

The incessant short messages (sms) sent to subscribers’ phones are too promising to ignore. The game-show prize-money is so stupendous to jettison. Thus, ubiquitous media glitz spun by various telecoms firms through wild sales promos, tempting game (gambling) shows, and misleading sms solicitations has continued to catch in its webs unwary and greedy subscribers.

As early as 4:00am almost every weekend, Saturday or Sunday, scores of youths and a mix of adults troop to Murhi International Plaza, in Ikeja, Lagos, to put down their names in a register, as audience-participants in a game-show. At about 7:30am, the about hundred early birds are given a tag each, by personnel Ultima Ventures – producers of the show -, as pass to enter the game auditorium. With keen eyes and palpitating hearts each one in the audience sits, hopeful of sitting on the ‘hot seat’. Welcome to the most popular TV quiz-show in Nigeria: MTN’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. To participate in the studio-play, a subscriber sends an SMS with his name and phone number to 132 and a question is sent to him. Then, the subscriber sends back an answer through SMS. SMS charges are: N 200. If the subscriber is successful he will be notified through a confirmatory message inviting him to participate in the studio programme. Usually, 120 subscribers are invited to the studio from which eight will be short-listed for the ‘hot seat’. The remaining 112 people will form the in-studio audience. The eight short-listed subscribers take turns on the hot seat. Questions are asked and as the participant gets the right answer to each question, he wins prize money. The biggest prize is N10million. The remaining 112 people invited to the studio are left to contest for the twenty N20, 000 slots.

The audience participation part of the show, called fastest fingers, illustrates this. The winner of this segment gets N20, 000. Well, almost. To get the N20, 000, however, National Standard investigations revealed that the winner must present an MTN SIM certificate (to prove he is a genuine subscriber), a photocopy of his identity card, passport photograph and his birth certificate. The winner is also required to buy recharge card up to the value of N1, 000. Two weeks after the show has been aired, and then the winner will be contacted on further steps to collect his cash prize. This magazine also found out that rather than MTN Nigeria, the bank form issued to its game-show beneficiaries has Ultima Ventures, producers of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, as account holder.

Little wonder it was a shocking and disappointing experience for 21-year-old Sola Emmanuel, a student, and one of the fastest fingers winners, when he went to the bank to withdraw his N20, 000 cash prize. “When I got to the bank to get my cash reward I was surprised when told that 5% withholding tax, 5% Lagos state gambling tax and other bank charges would be deducted from my N20, 000. This is baffling. If it is a game show or promo why would they be deducting 5% gambling tax? I felt cheated and used as a puppet in a gambling show,” Sola narrated. At the end of the day, Emmanuel left the bank with the sum of N17, 895 instead of the N20, 000 he won. But there is more to the show than meets the eye.

Each week, MTN Nigeria rakes in N1.665 billion, N6.660 billion each month and N79.920 billion each year. This is based on the conservative estimate that at least a quarter (8,325,000) of MTN’s 33.3 million subscribers send an sms each (costing N200) to participate in the TV game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. With the home-play version, using the same estimate, the firm makes N39.960 billion each year. With the combined figures (excluding proceeds from other promos), MTN Nigeria grosses at least N119, 880, 000, 000 in a year. That is just the tip of the iceberg.

Adegoke, an elderly man, had a nasty experience with Globacom Bid2Win promo. Lured by lucre and the unrelenting text messages that bombarded his cell phone, he expended N420, 000 in the hopeless bid to become a millionaire. “I got frequent sms from GLO, encouraging me to continue playing. They said I was near to winning N1 million. So I continued playing till it dawned on me that it was all trick. I had already spent over N420, 000,” Adegoke said. As proof of his extensive elusive investment in Globacom Bid2Win, he made a public display of the many GLO recharge cards he had purchased to participate in the GSM company gambling game referred to as a promo. Zain and Etisalat are also involved in what has become sleazy, corporate gambling.

Then enters GLO. With a subscriber base hitting more 25 million as at June last year, Wale Adenuga’s telecom giant is also eating deep into the insufferable skin of its customers. Take for instance its text-to-win promo. In that promo alone, Globacom grosses N30, 000, 000, 000 on the approximation that only a quarter of its more than 25 million subscribers play in the gamble a la promo. Thus, every month, GLO pockets at least N2.5 billion. That is discounting the fact that the GSM firm has other gambling gimmicks from which more money are effortlessly raked in. Not to be over-looked also are one-off subscribers – who get on the network just to participate in any of the promos. If all these are factored in what will be revealed would be a staggering sum.

But, there is no letting up in the telecoms industry as all the firms hold sway in a field that appears devoid of a regulator. New-comer Etisalat, Nigeria’s fifth GSM operator is feeding on the promo fever too. Since its arrival, Etisalat has stormed the industry with mouth-watering offers such as, Exactly June 17 last year, the GSM firm claimed to have hit a subscriber base of 1 million. To qualify for the express ticket to the grand finale in the critically acclaimed 9jillions one million dollar game show, customers who had spent up to a thousand naira within the month just needed to text the state they live and their full name to the short code 5123. Multiple entries are allowed. With an estimated figure of 250, 000 subscribers participating each month, with at least double entries for six months, Etisalat would have netted N1.5 billion. You can go on and on multiplying that amount by number of greedy fingers the Nigerian population can proudly produce.

“Confidential information!” the text message from Zain Nigeria said. “Text WIN to 222 now and you fit win N2 million cash from Zain. Costs N100/sms,” the text pitched. Another came in a hurried, secretive fashion, begging: “Abeg, your name don come out to win N2 million. Make you no tell anybody. Just text WIN to 222.” Welcome to Zain Nigeria – the most erratic, in terms of management, GSM operator in the country. As many times it had changed name, it had also changed management. But, that is a story for another day. That is Zain’s Wake up To Be a Millionaire.  The above-quoted text messages are apparent testimony of the mad dash by Zain to defraud Nigerians of their hard-earned money, by hook or by crook. Not satisfied with its six-week Zain Naira Rain promo, Zain in its current text-to-win N2 million is mind-boggling. Zain Nigeria executives will be smiling and patting their rotund bellies as at least N500 million naira is realised in a week based on the rough estimate that 5 million of its over 20 million subscribers forfeit N100 weekly.

Typically, though there has been talk of sanctions, there is no regulatory agency wielding the big stick on the telecoms companies defrauding their subscribers in the name of promos and game shows. But the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, was quick to absolve itself of any complicity in the defrauding promotions being done by the GSM firms. “Our business at NCC is to regulate service provision and not sales promotions but the NCC, CPC, Lottery Commission, will meet to look into who regulates what. Operators should have a code that can allow a consumer not to receive unsolicited SMS,” said Ernest Ndukwe, erstwhile executive secretary of NCC.

Unlike the lukewarm response of NCC to the raging issue of wanton gambling by the GSM operators, the National Lottery Regulatory Commission, NLRC, expressed certain degree of concern at the 55th edition of Telecom Consumer Parliament, where subscribers have opportunity to air their complaints. “Our concern is that you do not tell customers that you are rewarding them when you are ripping them off by engaging them in a game of chance. You do not expect customers to load their phones to reward them. Operators should not tell customers they are rewarding them when they are doing sales. You do not have to tell a consumer to load certain amount of money with certain code to qualify for a particular scheme. What many service providers are doing is a game of chance. They lure customers through unsolicited text messages to enter into sales promotion. If any operator engages in lottery in the name of sales promotions, the National Lottery Regulatory Commission will get interested. We are more concerned when a reward scheme becomes lottery in the name of promo,” said Barrister Osa Uwadiae, the Assistant Director, Enforcement & Compliance of National Lottery Regulatory Commission. Great sound bite that was.

Section 7(c) of the National Lottery Act says, “[the commission shall] promote transparency, propriety and integrity in the operation of national lottery;” and (d) maintains that the commission shall “ensure the protection of interests of players, stakeholders and the public in the national lottery.” And section 17 adds, “…the operation of the business of a national lottery or any lottery, by whatever name called, shall be subject to a license granted by the president upon recommendation by the commission and compliance with the provisions of this Act or any regulations made pursuant thereto.” The questions are: did the presidency grant these GSM operators the licence to engage in lottery in the guise of promos? Is the National Lottery Regulatory Commission ensuring the protection of interests of subscribers? Is the commission promoting transparency, propriety and integrity by feigning ignorance of the ‘gambling in disguise promos’?

While it is instructive to note that the National Lottery Regulatory Commission, NLRC, by its enabling Act (2005) is empowered to authorize and supervise promos, many subscribers have found it perplexing that it has not come to their aid. According to the telecoms industry observers, the National Lottery Regulatory Commission cannot feign ignorance that the ripping off of GSM subscribers has been going on for a long time before now. In 2009, the Consumer Advocacy Forum of Nigeria CAFON and the National Telecom Subscribers of Nigeria (NATCOMS) raised an alarm over frauds called promotions by Nigeria’s GSM firms. According to CAFON, “what many companies do is lottery not promo as they rip off Nigerians because they know that many Nigerians do not know their rights”. The Forum accused regulatory bodies of ‘having been bought over by the companies as they look the other way when subscribers complain’.

This is no doubt a matter of urgent public concern, as it is worrying that GSM companies, employing deceits and sometimes outright lies, are fast becoming gambling institutions treating their customers with impunity. Even more disquieting is the fact that the concerned authority has yet to call for refund to all swindled subscribers. Maybe, as always, the GSM consumers are being taken for a ride and the hand of the law is too short to protect and make restitutions for them.

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