Talking Drums

The West African News Magazine

People, Places and Events


Radio Ghana commentary on Nigerian coup

A Radio Ghana commentary on the coup in Nigeria has noted that even though the new military rulers have: "accused the Buhari team of corruption it is not clear whether they are referring to lingering cases of corruption in the society at large or they are accusing members of the regime itself of corrupt practices. If it is the former, it may be pointed out that no government can overnight cleanse the whole society of corruption and that time is needed for this.

"The most important thing is for the Government to be seen seriously to be tackling this social vice and this the Buhari Government seemed to be doing. As far as the charge of corruption within the Buhari Government goes, all that one can say is that there had not, previous to the coup, been any widespread reports of this practice. Indeed, that Government has been pursuing a war against indiscipline otherwise called simply WAI and it is doubtful how a regime that pursue such a policy could in the same breath engage secretly in corrupt practices."

The commentary, however, conceded that the charge that the Buhari team was too rigid and impervious to advice seems easier to explain for there were clearly many instances when the Government could have listened to public outcry against some of its measures, however well-intentioned. Some of these actions included Decree No 4 under which journalists were tried for saying things against members of the regime.

"Another example, and this is well known to Ghanaians, was the Nigerian Government's refusal to keep its land borders open just for a few more days after the 10th May this year, to enable hundreds of thousands of aliens which had defaulted to cross safely to their home countries.

"As it turned out, the Nigerian authorities decided to keep their border closed and not even the sufferings of women and children nor the pleas of friendly governments in the ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) region could make Nigeria change its mind. If any evidence of inflexibility is needed, this was it, and they crowned it all by shooting at the deportees, many of whom died and were buried in shallow unmarked graves."

In conclusion the commentary dwelt on the importance of stability in nation building and said that such frequent changes of government are not desirable, unless there is compelling reasons for it, such as to secure and protect democracy. On this point, it is significant that the new leader, General Babangida has accused the Buhari leadership of having closed the door to advice and of interpreting all discussion as insubordination. This is the most serious charge of all, and if it is true, it will make Buhari guilty of having turned his back on participatory democracy, thus creating a justification for the coup.

Referring to the public expressions of the intentions of the new rulers, the commentary observed that what they actually do in the next few days and months will signify their true intentions. These actions, such as its attitude on the detention of members of the Shagari regime and on the question of the IMF, will tell whether the coup was motivated by a desire to advance the interest of the majority of Nigerians or whether it an imperialist-inspired was attempt to turn the clock of progress backward as happened when Murtala Muhammad was overthrown 10 years ago.

Portraits of Flt-Lt. Rawlings

Chairman of the PNDC, Flt-Lt Jerry Rawlings, has ordered the removal of his official portraits from offices in government buildings. The media have reported the ruling by the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) that the portraits should be replaced with Ghana's coat of arms and flag and that only Ghanaian embassies abroad could display the portraits.

Four Ghanaians missing

There are reports from Abidjan, Ivory Coast that four Ghanaian women were missing after an angry crowd of Ivorians threw them into a lagoon and looted Ghanaian owned shops in the city.

The report quoted Ghana Embassy officials as attributing the cause of the riots to an incidence of violence at a football match in Accra between Ghana and Ivory Coast which ended in a goalless draw. The Ivorian players who were seeking to consolidate their 2-0 home victory in the first leg Africa Cup qualifying match were reported to have angered Ghanaian supporters with their rough play during the second leg.

In the ensuing disturbances a number of Ivorian supporters were injured and their arrival back home incensed their compatriots to retaliate against Ghanaians in that country. At least forty wounded Ghanaians had to flee to the Ghana Embassy premises. The four women, one of whom is pregnant were thrown into the water in the Abomo Doume neighbourhood of Abidjan.

In a similar incident in July the Ivorian soccer fans beat up the players and supporters of a Nigerian club, IICC, during a WAFU match in Abidjan forcing the Nigerians to surrender victory.

American journalists appeal

An organisation of American journalists has appealed to Flt-Lt. Rawlings to make public any charges against Mr Tommy Thompson, publisher of the Free Press and bring him promptly to trial. On the other hand, if no charges are forthcoming then he should be released to continue with his professional duties. In a letter to Flt-Lt. Rawlings signed by the Executive Director, Barbara Kelppel, the committee to Protect Journalists, a strictly non-partisan and non- political organization of American journalists working to protect the rights of journalists worldwide, expressed distress about the re-arrest, on Jun 12, of Thomas Quarshie Thompson, publisher of the weekly Free Press.

Noting that no official reason has been given for Mr Thompson's arrest, which comes barely one year after he was released from a previous detention, the American journalists were concerned about Mr Thompson because he suffered a stroke in April, 1984 while in jail and fear for his physical well-being. They therefore urged the PNDC chairman to take steps to resolve his situation as expeditiously as possible.

If there are charges against Mr Thompson, we would be grateful if these are made public and the publisher is promptly brought to trial. If no charges are forthcoming, we urge Mr Thompson's immediate release, so that he can continue with his professional duties, the American journalists concluded in their letter copies of which were released to the international media.

Sousoudis trial fixed for October 15

The trial of Michael Agbotui Sousoudis, cousin of the Ghanaian Head of State Flt- Lt. Jerry Rawlings, accused of espionage and other charges in the USA, has been fixed for October 15, 1985.

When he appeared in court on August 13 Mr Sousoudis pleaded not guilty to an eight count indictment on espionage and related charges.

The black American former clerk of the Central Intelligence Agency who is also accused of engaging in espionage, Miss Sharon M. Scranage, is also due for trial on October 7.

The CIA spy scandal in Ghana which broke with the arrest in Washington DC earlier in July of Scranage and Sousoudis, has led to widespread arrests in Ghana.

The two are being tried separately. When Miss Scranage appeared in court, she pleaded guilty to two counts of identifying a United States intelligence agent.

According to the New York Times, Miss Scranage who had been charged in an 18-count indictment, also pleaded not guilty to 16 counts of espionage, conspiracy, unauthorised disclosure of classified information and further charges of identifying covert agents.

The paper quotes Justice Department as saying that Miss Scranage's attorneys had tried to arrange a plea bargain that would have involved dropping the espionage charges, which carry potential life sentences, but that the offer was rejected.

Each count of identifying American intelligence agents carries sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine of a maximum $50,000.

Brian P. Gettings, the attorney for Miss Scranage, said in a telephone interview after the hearing: "We've essentially thrown ourselves to the mercy of the court. I've got to get across that this is overkill,"

He said the defence would question whether the actions Miss Scranage admitted to in interviews with Federal investigators constitute espionage or conspiracy as described in the relevant statutes. "She did what she said she did, but whether that adds up to espionage is an open question," said Mr Gettings.

In Federal District Court in Alexandria, Va., Justin W. Williams, an Assistant United States Attorney, read a statement of the case that the Government was prepared to make against Miss Scranage on the two counts to which she pleaded guilty.

Mr Williams said that Miss Scranage began dating a man in Ghana, Michael Agbotui Sousoudis, in May 1983. By the end of the month, he said, "they became lovers."

In December 1983, said Mr Williams, Miss Scranage disclosed to Mr Sousoudis the identity of a covert agent working for the CIA in Ghana. He was described in court papers only as "John Doe No 1".

Miss Scranage revealed his identity, according to Mr Williams, after she had a "confrontation and argument" with Mr Sousoudis at her home.

She told Mr Sousoudis of the agent's relatives and residence, Mr Williams said. He said she also told Mr Sousoudis that she had seen the CIA chief of station meet with the covert agent at her home. Within a month, he said, Miss Scranage revealed the identity of John Doe No 2, "providing a partial name and title".

Mr Williams said Mr Sousoudis assured her "there was no need for her to worry". Miss Scranage continued the affair "cladestinely" with Mr Sousoudis after her supervisor in the CIA had told her to stop seeing him, Mr Williams said.

In the indictment, the government charged Miss Scranage with revealing the names of several Ghanaians working covertly for the CIA.

An affidavit, filed by an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigations, said Miss Scranage admitted providing information about the CIA's radio communications and acknowledged passing on a classified intelligence report about military equipment that a Ghanaian group requested from Libya.

The affidavit said Miss Scranage was asked by a Ghanaian security official to provide the identities of three Ghanaians travelling abroad who had delivered information to the CIA.

Mr Williams said Miss Scranage arrived at the CIA station in Accra, the capital of Ghana, in May 1983. It was her first overseas assignment.

As operations support assistant, she had a security clearance of "top secret" and had access to the files in the station in which the CIA kept the identities of its operatives, Mr Williams said.

Her duties, he added, included typing intelligence reports and cables. Mr Williams said she was also involved in accounting and "logistics".


Atrocities by Rafindadi's men

Some of the atrocities perpetrated on innocent Nigerians by the discredited Nigerian Security Organisation (NSO), under deposed Major-General Buhari's administration have been unveiled.

Inmates at the Alagbon Close interrogation centre of the NSO narrated tales of woe to horrified journalists from Dodan Barracks.

The journalists had been invited by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Alhaji Muhammadu Gambo to see the inmates, including some foreigners, at the centre.

A report in Concord said most of the inmates had been at the centre for more than a year without even being interrogated.

Some of them said they did not know why they were being held since no charge had been brought against them.

Among the detainees were lawyers, civil servants and businessmen. They were all stripped to the waist with five or six of them sharing a poorly ventilated room. Looking very haggard, most of the journalists. inmates complained that they had not had a bath for one week and were fed once or twice daily.

Most revealing was the disclosure by some of the inmates that some NSO officials brandishing their identification cards, picked them up from their residences and locked them up at the centre without a word as to why they were being held.

There was also the disclosure by some of the inmates that their families and relatives did not know their whereabouts several months after they were picked up.

A Customs officer, Mr Joseph Otite was picked up from his base in Sapele, Bendel State, seven months ago and according to him, his parents would have considered him dead.

Two civil servants, Messers Chidi former minister of foreign affairs. Onyemaechi and Tom Akpan, who testified in a case of espionage brought against a Brazilian have been at the centre since January 21, this year. No charge has been brought against them.

Two young Ghanaians, Caroline Ennin and Vesta Osam also said they were picked up four months ago at the residence of Alhaji Dantata's son. They said the NSO interrogated them only twice since then.

A lawyer, Mr Tony George Ikoli of Benttley Edu and Company said he was. locked up since June 7, this year, for un- specified charges. Two Germans, Robert Fischer and Phillipe Devriel, said they were locked up two weeks ago for alleged unlawful entry into the country.

Also at the centre was an American, Pascal Imbit, the promoter of jailed musician, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, who said NSO officials locked him up after beating him and seizing some of Fela's records.

But what looked most pathetic was the condition of Miss Aisha S. Walkie of No. 15 Adeola Hopewell Street, Lagos, who looked so depressed that she could not remember when she was picked up. Clutching a copy of the Holy Quoran and crying throughout the visit, Miss Walkie said that she is a vegetarian and had been in immense anguish at the centre. "Please take me home. I am suffering here," she said in tears.

Miss Walkie who was picked up with her American friend, Miss Sinclair Jackson, said the room which she shared with four other inmates also served as their toilet.

Among those who heard the tales of horror was also the former Director-General of the NSO, Alhaji Mohammed Rafindadi, whose men perpetrated the atrocities, the magnitude of which have never been known in the history of the country.

Alhaji Muhammadu Gambo said Ambassador Rafindadi was specifically invited to see the "atrocities committed by him and his men."

Looking downcast, he told journalists that while he conceded that the actions of his men were inhuman, it would be unfair for him to accept full responsibility, he told

Release of detainees

Following the establishment by President Maj-Gen. Ibrahim Babangida of a committee to screen all detainees the following detainees have been released from detention. They include six former civilian Governors, Alhaji Lateef Jakande, Lagos State, Chief Adekunle Ajasin, Ondo State, Alhaji Balarabe Musa, Kaduna State, Alhaji Mohammed Goni, Borno State, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, Gongola State and Clement Isong, Cross River State.

Many others who were released after they had been held in prison for months without trial included ex-Senate Leader, Chief Olusola Saraki, Professor Ishaya Audu,

Others are Malam Haroun Adamu, Punch Newspapers Editorial Adviser; Mr Ebenezer Babatope, former director of organisation of the banned UPN; Mr Akin Omoboriowo, former deputy governor, Ondo State; Mr Ademola Thomas, Dr Ishmael Igbani, Dr Ibrahim Tahir, former chairman, NET, Alhaji Akanbi Oniyangi, Alhaj Ahmed Musa, Mr Y.E. Akanu, Chief Eteng Okoi-Obuli and Alhaj Musa Habib Jega, all former ministers.

Seven of those released were ordered to make monetary refunds to the coffers of the Federal Military Government. They are: Chief Olusegun Coker, ex-Lagos Commissioner - N78,820, Peter Akhere 5,000 pounds sterling; M.J.A. Ajana-N105,139; G.A.O. Agbabiaka- 2,000 pounds sterling; Alhaji Ippa, Lateef Jakande.

Ahmed N140,500; Constantain Sofronlou - N7 million and Alhaji A. Yaro N7,606,707.

Announcing their release to the Press, a spokesman for the Armed Forces Ruling Council, Lt. Colonel Anthony Ukpo said the immediate release of the 87 detainees was in consonance with the pledge of the present administration to uphold. fundamental human rights in the country. A list of the released is as follows:

1. Haroun Adamu. 2. Michael Ajasin. 3. Balarabe Musa. 4. Ebenezer Babatope. 5. Lateef Jakande. 6. Rufai Ibrahim. 7. Adeleke Salau. 8. Akin Omoboriowo. 9. Suleiman Takuma.. 10. Ishaku Rabiiu. 11. Dr Ibrahim Tahir. 12. Chief Olu Adebanjo. 13. Alhaji Ali Baber. 14. Alhaji Muhammed Goni. 15. Alhaji Bamanga Tukur. 16. Alhaji Dangoro. 17. Dr Olusegun Coker. 18. Dr Abubakar Olushola Saraki. 19. Dr Clement Isong. 20. Mr Ademola Thomas. 21. Dr Ishmael Igbani. 22. Alhaji Akanbi Oniyangi. 23. Professor Ishaya Audu. 24. Chief Eteng Okoi-Oboli. 25. Dr Sylvester Ugo. 26. Alhaji M.D. Galadima. 27. Dr Ray Ofoegbu. 28. Alhaji Asheik Jamar. 29. Usman Sanni. 30. Alhaji Ahmed Musa. 31. Alhaji Ibrahim Gusau. 32. Dr Yahaya Atanu. 33. Alhaji Musa Jega. 34. Mallam Garba Wushishi. 35. Alhaji Iro Dan Musa. 36. F.R. Fashoranti. 37. Ade Adefarasin. 38. Patrick Agbobu. 39. Alhaji Yahaya Dikko. 40. S.O. Kolawole. 41. Solomon Makimde. 42. Chief C.D. Orike. 43. Funmi West. 44. Alhaji Ali Mongumo. 45. A. Owoade. 46. Alhaji Haruna Damja. 47. Alhaji Bako Kotangora. 48. Alhaji Ahmed Mai-Deribe. 49. Tsoho Dan-Amale. 50. Godwin Okpe. 51. Chief W. Onyestaka. 52. Ibrahim Rijav. 53. Peter Akhere. 54. M.J.A. Ajanah. 55. Y.I. Abbas. 56. Fidus Ashiedu. 57. G.A.O. Agbabiaka. 58. Alhaji Bappa Ahmed. 59. Awotunde Rasak. 60. Oluremi Deke alias Zedetti. 61. Hamza Aminu. 62. Muhammed Dan- Lamid. 63. Haruna Magaji. 64. Idris Al- Hassan-Kpaki. 65. Muhammed Tanko Inga. 66. Shuaibu Magi Doko. 67. Aliyu Lemu. 68. Mustapha Tauhid Hara. 69. Dr Musa Abdullahi. 70. Abdul Lapai. 71.. Francis O. Aignfadewa. 72. Klaus Seemuth, 73. Constantine Sofronlou. 74. Rajoo Shyam. 75. R. Wagner. 76. Graham A. Covery Duch. 77. Bashir Muhammed. 78. Ibrahim Elzekzaku. 79. Gabriel ogiridho Oshase. 80. A.B. Ahmed. 81. Alhaji A. Shasanya. 82. Mr Mark Okoye. 83. Mrs Meme Achibong. 84. Kabir Ben Umaru. 85. Alhaji Garba A.D. 86. Alhaji A. Yaro. 87. Abdul Kadri Abdulkadri.

AFRC pledges open government

The Armed Forces Ruling Council which has been set up to replace General Buhari's Supreme Military Council as the country's highest ruling body, has pledged to run an open government where each member would be given an opportunity to participate.

Major-General Ibrahim Gbadamosi Babangida, President and Commander-in- Chief, gave the assurance shortly after swearing in members of the AFRC at State House, Dodan Barracks in Lagos.

He advised the members to run an open door policy which will enable their sub- ordinates and superiors alike to contribute their own ideas. He stressed the need for team work and unity of purpose in the joint resolve to find lasting solutions to the economic and socio-political problems facing the nation.

The structure of the new government as announced by Lt-Col. Anthony Ukpo, a member of the interim ruling council is that it is headed by the President and Commander-in-Chief, Major General Ibrahim Babangida who will be assisted by the Chief of General Staff (CGS). The functions of the CGS are restricted to the political administration of the nation which differs from the former concept of the chief of staff, Supreme Headquarters, who had responsibilities over the armed forces. Under the AFRC are the National Council of Ministers (NCM) and the National Council of State (NCS).

The Armed Forces Ruling Council is the highest ruling body and is responsible for the formulation of all national policies. Its composition has been significantly regime. increased as compared with the former Supreme Military Council and is made up of armed forces personnel and the police.

The National Council of Ministers and the National Council of State are essentially the same as in the previous organisations. In order reduce the work load of the office of the Secretary to the Federal Military Government, that office is now charged only with the responsibility of serving the Armed Forces Ruling Council but it shall still be headed by a Secretary to the Federal Military Government and Head of Service.

The National Council of Ministers and the National Council of State have a secretariat, each to be headed by a secretary or permanent secretary grade. The new arrangement is to make these bodies more responsive to the needs of their members. There shall also be a secretariat to service the National Defence Authority Council and this will be headed by a secretary or permanent secretary grade.

Members of the Armed Forces Ruling Council are: Maj-Gen. Ibrahim Babangida, President and Commander-in-Chief, Chair- man; Maj-Gen. Domkat Bali, Minister of Defence and Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, member; Maj-Gen. Sani Abacha, Chief of Army Staff; Maj-Gen. Nasko; Air Vice-Marshal Ibrahim Alfa, Chief of Air Staff; Rear Admiral Aikomu, Chief of Naval Staff; Maj-Gen. Mamman Vatsa; Air Vice-Marshal Mohammed Yahaya, Air Officer Commanding Training Command; Maj-Gen. Paul Omu, Commandant, Command and Staff College; Commodore Ebitu Ukiwe, Chief of General Staff.

Others are: Brig. Peter Ademokhai, General Officer Commanding First Mech- anised Division; Brig Yohana Kure, General Officer Commanding Second Mechanised Division. Brig. J.N. Dogon Yaro, General Officer Commanding Third Armoured Division; Brig. D.O. Diya, General Officer Commanding 82nd Division; Brig. A.B. Mamman, Commander, Nigerian Army Corps of Artillery and Brig. D.O. Ajayi.

The rest are: Air Commodore Bayolawal, Air Officer Commanding Tactical Air Command; Commodore Aloko, Flag Officer Commanding 15th Naval Command; Air Commodore Nura Imam, Air Officer Commanding Logistic Command; Commodore Nyako, Flag Officer Commanding Western Naval Command; Commodore Elegbede, Flag Officer Commanding Sea Training; Brig. Ola Oni; Air Commodore Koinyan; Lt-Col. J.A. Shagaya, Commander, Ninth Mech- anised Brigade; Lt-Col. H. Akilu, Director, Military Intelligence; Lt-Col. R. Rasaki, Commander, Army Headquarters Signals group; Lt-Col. Ayuba, Commander, Corps of Signals, and Mr Etim Inyang, Inspector General of Police.

New state governors

Four Military Governors under Buhari have retained their posts under the Babangida

They are Group Captain, Golahan Madashiru (Lagos), Lt-Col. David Mark (Niger), Police Commissioner Fidelis Oyakhilome (Rivers) and Colonel Dan Archibong (Cross Rivers State).

Two others, Navy Captain Allison Madueke and Lt-Col. Oladayo Popoola, were posted to Imo and Ogun States respectively. In the ousted administration, they were governors of Anambra and Oyo States respectively.

Briefing newsmen in Lagos, the spokes- man for the Armed Forces Ruling Council (AFRC), Lt-Col. Anthony Ukpo said that the appointments were purely military assignments.

He maintained that the former governors who were not retained would be re-assigned.

The new Governors and their postings are as follows:

Anambra State, Group Captain Emeka Bendel, Li-Col. John Iniger; Borno, Major Abdul Mumina Aminu; Cross River State, Colonel Dan Archibong; Benue, Group Capt. David Jang; Gongola, Lt-Col. Yahanna Madaki; Imo, Navy Capt. Alison Madueke; Kaduna, Major Abubakar Umar; Kano, Lt-Col. Ahmed Dako; Kwara, Wing Commander Mohammed N. Umaru; Lagos, Group Capt. Mudashiru; Niger, Lt-Col. David Mark; Ondo, Commodore Mike Akhigbe; Ogun, Lt-Col. Dayo Popoola; Oyo, Lt-Col. Junji Olurin; Plateau, Lt-Col. Muhammed Ali; Rivers, Police Comm. Oyakhilome; Sokoto, Colonel Garba Mohammed.

Idiagbon's advice to his son

Major-General Tunde Idiagbon is reported to have gone into hiding in Saudi Arabia while other members of the team that went for the Hajj have returned home. They include the Chief of Air Staff, Air Vice Marshall Ibrahim Alfa and Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Major General Mamman Vatsa who are now members of the ruling AFRC.

A News Agency of Nigeria correspondent in Saudi Arabia reported that on the day of the coup Maj-Gen. Idiagbon was attending a state buffet party hosted by King Abdul Aziz of Saudi Arabia.

His 14 year old son, Master Adekunle Idiagbon who arrived home on the presidential jet which had taken his daddy to Saudi Arabia, told reporters that he did not know the whereabouts of his father in Saudi Arabia. He, however, disclosed that his father had advised him to be calm and to take care of the family.

Reinstate Medical Association

The Nigerian Medical Students Association has made a passionate appeal for the reinstatement of the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) and the Nigerian Association of Resident Doctors (NARD). Also, the association has called for the reabsorption of the sacked doctors and the recall of the expelled students of the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.

The Vice-President of the Association, Mr Onoyona Alexander, who made the plea while expressing support for the new military administration said this was to pave way for the new administration's plan to redeem government's hospitals from its present state.

Besides, Mr Alexander said the full participation of doctors in both the formulation and execution of policy was very vital to the success of the policy.

…tion of alienating doctors in both the formulation and execution of health policy and the proscription of the NMA/NARD.

Solarin wants Shagari tried

Educationist and social critic, Dr Tai Solarin, has called for the immediate trial of former president, Alhaji Shehu Shagari.

"Shehu Shagari, like the captain of a boat that sank in mid-Atlantic, must be publicly tried," Dr Solarin said in his 39-page memoir released at his Ikenne home-town.

Dr Solarin pointed out that he did not want Alhaji Shehu Shagari shot adding, that "the greatness or ignobility of this regime lies solely on what it does with Shehu Shagari." He also wanted the government to look into the issue of "53 suit-cases". The renowned educationist wants the government to make education free and compulsory.

"A child refused education is like a child born with no hands and no feet," he said in the memoirs.

He also said if the government accepted the chance of making education free, universal and compulsory, the next civilian regime would have no option but to continue with it.

He said in the memoirs that he was ready to spend the last breath in him to oppose anyone who was against free, compulsory education.

Freed Briton arrives in London

Mr Graham Coveyduck, a British businessman who was held for nearly a year without trial in a Nigerian jail, has flown to Britain. He revealed that his arrest by theNigerian security police came the day after his arrival to carry out a fraud investigation for the security police.

He had lost six stones in weight and his wife, Jean, said that had made her unable to recognize him at first. Mr Coveyduck said at Gatwick airport that he had been detained in a cell measur- ing 10ft by 8ft with up to seven other prisoners and lived mostly on porridge, rice and fish. He was one of a number of detainees released after the coup.

He said the purpose of his visit to Nigeria had been to give a verbal report on the findings of his investigations.

"I think the security police expected different names to come out from those that did," he said. His arrest and detention under military decree had probably been to cover up any embarrassment.

Mr Coveyduck was arrested in September last year on charges of alleged extortion which were dropped in March.

After his arrest he was held under house arrest in a flat in a Lagos suburb, then moved to a medium security prison and later to the high security unit at the Kiri Kiri

Abacha is new Chief of Army Staff

Maj-Gen. Sani Abacha who announced the overthrow of President Shagari in 1983 and also announced the appointment of Maj-Gen. Babangida as the country's new President has been appointed the new Chief of Army Staff. Until the appointment, he was the General Officer Commanding, the Second Mechanised Division of the Nigerian Army. His appointment was made together with others including that of Maj- Gen. Domkat Bali, who retained the Defence portfolio in addition to a new position of Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff. Other service chiefs who were appointed are Rear Admiral Augustus Aikhomu, Chief of Naval Staff, Air Vice-Marshal Ibrahim Alfa, Chief of Air Staff, and Mr Etim Inyang, Inspector General of Police.


Famine relief concerts

African musicians, led by the Zairois pop star Franco Luambo Makiadi, has held two concerts in Abidjan in aid of famine relief.

The two-concert event, called Operation. Africa, the first of its kind "by Africans, for Africans" follows the Live Aid concerts. in London and Philadelphia which raised millions for relief.

One concert was held for Ivory Coast dignitaries in the concert hall of Abidjan's leading hotel, while a cheaper "popular" show in a football stadium attracted 4,000 people.

Musicians and dancers from 15 countries. took part in a colourful mixture of modern and traditional African music rhythm and blues and break dancing.

The musicians were due to record a song entitled "Africa" written by the Zairois musician Mori Maurice. Proceeds from the concerts and sales of the record will be donated to Medicine Sans Frontieres, a group of French, Belgian and Dutch doctors.

talking drums 1985-09-09 Rafindadi's N.S.O. Empire exposed