Sunday, September 30, 2007

Reuben puts his mouth where his money is...

Reuben Abati's force of perspective and clarity of thought are clearly what make him arguably Nigeria's most popular columnist. Last week, his piece on Big Brother Africa was spot on; and this week, his piece on the shape of banking and the plight of banking staff is truly FANTASTIC.

To take a quote:

"Banks must be told to stop soliciting for deposits like beggars on the streets. I once mistook a female banker for a corporate beggar, and I was going to give the poor girl N500 to get rid of her before I saw the T-shirt she was wearing.
The CBN should stop banks from sending their staff onto the streets to dance and entertain prospective shareholders. The banks must also be told to set realistic targets for their marketing staff (if they must set targets), design other
performance measurement benchmarks, and concentrate more on raising the quality of their service: the surest way to build customer confidence. The present methods dehumanise and endanger the lives of staff..."

YOu should read the entire piece. HERE

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Apologies ...

I apologise for not explaining my absence, at least for those who have asked. I must also apologise for not posting the comments - I kept postponing and postponing because my connection has been slow, and when I finally decided, I accidentally deleted the comments!

It's The Future.. Awards and Rubbing Minds sapping my energy - but what you don't see of me here, you will soon see, both here and on The Future's website.

If you can, please resend thh comments and I will post. And I will do my darndest to update, so don't leave o!!


Saturday, September 22, 2007


This weekend of our nation’s independence celebrations, young people in Nigeria will be kept very busy, if not directly, then by extension, as RedSTRAT presents two of its major events back to back in its relentless bid to inspire a generation of young Nigerians into taking charge of their destinies!

On Sunday, the 30th of September 2007, in conjunction with Channels Television, it will be hosting the initially postponed Rubbin’ Minds talk shop, which will be broadcast live at 3pm on the Channels TV Network.

The event – to be held at Planet One in Lagos – is for a select 200 young people between the ages of 16 and 30, who will gather to discuss ‘President Yara’adua’ and Co: First Impressions – an avenue to effectively inject a strong and genuine youth component into national discourse.

To attend that event, or to recommend someone to attend, send an email to

The very next day, 1st of October, as has become the tradition, RedSTRAT will be formally kicking off the 2008 edition of Nigeria’s biggest youth event. “The Future..” Awards, at an exclusive media and VIP event at rave venue, SixDegreesNorth in Ikoyi.

A cocktail event that sees a gathering of some of the brightest and best upwardly mobile young Nigerians it is an opportunity to bounce the plans for the next Awards directly off a cross-section of its target. At this pre-event cocktail, the promos and campaigns will be unveiled, alongside the new categories, revised criteria, sneak preview of the plans for the event and its build-up, media partners and sponsors, and the guests are free to ask questions, record observations and make suggestions.

About 25 seats are still available – if you think you or someone you know qualifies to fill in the slots, send an email to, with name, age, and details of occupation.

The organizer of these events, RedSTRAT, with its national spread and mainstream relevance, has quickly established itself as the first name on the lips when it comes to young people in Nigeria, relentless in its bid to act as principal change agent for its generation, presenting positive role model and creatively engaging the hearts and minds - and it is resolutely committed to this imperative. Further information on all the events can be gotten on

Sunday, September 16, 2007

It’s An Assembly of Heavyweights Judging The Future… Awards 2008!

In a matter of days, the three-month journey towards Nigeria’s biggest youth event “The Future…” Awards 2008 (holding on the 13th of January 2008), in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Education, will formally kick off - a journey that many across the nation and beyond are certainly looking forward to with excitement.

But before the formal launch at an exclusive media and vip event on the 1st of October, the organizers can reveal the names of the distinguished Nigerians who have made the list of the Independent Audit Committee, judging the awards.
As has become the tradition, TFA prides itself on having perhaps the most transparent and rigorous Nigerian awards process, where nominees go through four stages that span 12 weeks - and the Audit Committee is the most important arm in this process. Therefore, it is understandable that, each year, part of the excitement of the awards is to see who would make the committee.

Yet committed to making the process even more fool-proof, the committee has been enlarged to a membership of 30, drawn from across every sector of the Nigerian society, through an elaborate selection process by the Central Working Committee.

From the corporate environment, there is Dr. Yemi Osindero, COO of Virgin Nigeria, Mrs. Funmi Omogbenigun who heads corporate communications in MTN and Siene Alwell-Brown of the NLNG – who is engaging in her first public/media activity after a long hiatus from the public space.

From the media there is Mr. Seye Kehinde, publisher of City people, Mr. Simon Kolawole, editor of Thisday, Mrs. Eugenia Abu of the NTA, Tajudeen Adepetu, who runs Soundcity amongst others in his massive TV network and Dr. Reuben Abati who is also the Chairman of the Audit Committee and has so been for three years now.

Iconic entrepreneurs, Tosan Jemide of Cakes by Tosan, Mrs. Mo Abudu of Vic Lawrence & Associates and Bolanle Austen-Peters of Terra Kulture also make the list.

Advocacy sees Mrs. Hafsat Abiola-Costello, Dr. Judith Burdin Asuni, Ms. Nike Awoyinka of Common Ground Productions and Mrs. Ndidi Nwuneli of LEAP Africa, and from government there’s Hon. Abike Dabiri and Mr. Dapo Olorunyomi, Chief of Staff in the EFCC.

In fashion, there are two doyennes, Ms. Ruth Osime who sits atop Thisday Style and Mrs. Data Okorodudu, Creative Director of JD7; and from entertainment there’s the legendary Onyeka Onwenu (MON), ace comedian, Ali Baba, and AMAA Awards chief, Peace Fiberesima.

And to top off the list are Ms. Bennie Uche from the US Consulate, human resource guru Fela Durotoye, Mr. Tunde Soyinka, Creative Director of IMS, sports icon Chief Segun Odegbami (MON), Dr. Emman Shehu Usman, Farafina publisher Muhtar Bakare, and Mrs. Funke Aboyade who is managing partner with Babalakin and Associates.

The Board of Trustees also sees new heavyweight additions including Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili, Chief Rasheed Gbadamosi, and Chief Olusegun Osoba, who are joining the likes of Prof. Jadesola Akande, Prof. Pat Utomi, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, Dr. Reuben Abati, Mr. John Momoh and Hon. Nduka Irabor. Further information on the event can be gotten on

There’s no doubt about it, this 2008 edition, “The Future…” Awards is set to take the nation by storm!

The List

 Dr. Reuben Abati (Chairman, The Guardian Editorial Board)
 Dr. Yemi Osindero (COO, Virgin Nigeria)
 Mrs. Sienne Alwell-Brown (Head, Corporate Communications, NLNG)
 Mr. Dapo Olorunyomi (Chief of Staff, EFCC)
 Mr. Seye Kehinde (Publisher, City People)
 Ms. Onyeka Onwenu (MON)
 Mr. Tosan Jemide (CEO, Cakes by Tosan)
 Hon Abike Dabiri (Member, House of Representatives)
 Mrs. Mo Abudu – (CEO, Vic Lawrence & Associates/ Inspire Africa)
 Chief Segun Odegbami (MON)
 Dr. Judith Asuni (Executive Director, AAPW)
 Mr. Simon Kolawole (Editor, Thisday Newspapers)
 Mr. Fela Durotoye (CEO, VIP Consulting)
 Mr. Tajudeen Adepetu (CEO, Consolidated Media Associates)
 Mrs. Funmi Omogbenigun (Head, Corporate Communications, MTN)
 Ms. Ruth Osime (Editor, Thisday Style)
 Mrs. Hafsat Abiola-Costello (Executive Director, KIND)
 Mrs. Funke Aboyade (Managing Partner, Babalakin & Associates)
 Ms. Bennie Uche (Information Officer, US Consulate)
 Mrs. Eugenia Abu (Head of Presentation, NTA News)
 Ms Nike Awoyinka (Publicist, Common Ground Productions)
 Dr. Emman Usman Shehu (The Presidency)
 Mrs. Peace Fiberesima (CEO, AMAA Awards)
 Mrs. Data Okorodudu (Creative Director, JD7)
 Mr. Alleluya Atuyota Akporobomeriere (CEO, XQZMOI)
 Mrs. Ndidi Nwuneli (Executive Director, LEAP Africa)
 Mrs. Bolanle Austen-Peters (CEO, Terra Kulture)
 Mr. Muhtar Bakare (Publisher, Farafina)
 Mr. Tunde Soyinka (Creative Director, IMS)

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Rush Hour 3 v MY Rush Hour Week!

WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO (That's the sound that comes when you blow out air out of your mouth - it's actually the elder cousin of a sigh of relief).

I haven't slept at home for an entire week!!! Just got back a couple of hours ago - and I tell you: have I ever been so glad to see my room - and my bed!!!!

It's all been about the new Rubbing Minds we were working on - shuffling between our new office space, the Channels TV studios (you know you've almost become staff when the security just waves you in!) and Planet One - and I was even the one doing the least work! I felt so sorry especially for Adebola, our director of operations who is the one directly in charge of this project. But we managed to survive it - and then a couple of days ago it was cancelled, but for very good reason. Channels always wants stuff to be perfect, and that is always a positive thing; except that, as I joked, too much 'perfection', can be a bad thing!

You'll be the first to know of the new date (in September) etc etc. Myself and Adebola were actually on Sunrise (I've ALWAYS wanted to go on Sunrise!) yesterday to talk about the postponement.

In between all of that though, I was able to get - AT LAST! - internet on my computer (everyone's gotten it before me: my excuse of 'no time yet' was beginning to sound stupid even to me!), had lunch with fellow blogger, Linda, and then (the big one) was able to go see Rush Hour 3!!!

Now, my friends at rotten tomatoes I have always agreed with on each and every fantastic movie (Notes on a Scandal, for instance) and the truly horrendous (Are We Done Yet picks up that trophy for now), but on Rush HOur 3 which got all of 13percent there ARE wrong! Add that to the fact that I went into the movie armed with cynicism and all the righteous snobbery of a movie critic, and then to have laughed so hard and almost at every turn?! Yes, Jackie Chan's face might be looking like a ton of bricks right now, and his mate isnt looking as dandy, but they still know how to tickle - and that whole subtle but very telling sub-theme on how America is the country that 'kills for no reason'? Brett Ratner certainly did the right thing in squeezing the last juice from teh franchise. Brilliant Brilliant Brilliant. If you havent seen Rush Hour 3, it's still at the cinemas (at least, Silverbird) - HURRY!!!

Speaking out what ele's good; it's a shame that the series Commander-in-Chief, only did one series before it was pulled off. Emilia was raving about it, cos she bought the series after she saw Oprah raving about it, and I was hooked all night until I had seen ALL 18 episodes and it is splendid! President Allen Mackenzie is perhaps the most brilliant character ever created.. Only worry though, seeing as after one episode, the viewers interest shifted (people blame ABC for 'mismanaging' the series, whatever that means) would that be a metaphor for how America sees Hilary Clinton's candidacy? I most certainly hope not.

And once more I say: Rush Hour 3 was FANTASTIC!

My week in a nutshell! Yours?


Friday, September 7, 2007

Rubbing Minds: Update..

Channels Television sincerely apologises that the brand new version of Rubbing Minds in collaboration with RedSTRAT will have to be postponed.

This is both to align the event to the sponsorship it has attracted as well as to ensure the event meets the high standards the brand has set.

This is the first time RedSTRAT has ever postponed an event so we can assure everyone that by the time we unveil the new Rubbing Minds, it will be clear why this postponement is necessary.

We apologise most sincerely to everyone who has already made plans towards the day ... The new date in September will be communicated shortly.

For further information: and

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Rubbing Minds Gets Reloaded!

On the 9th of September 2007, Nigeria’s premier news TV Station, Channels Television and leading marketing communications firm for young people, RedSTRAT (organizers of “The Future…” Awards) will be presenting to the nation a brand new version of the quarterly event, Rubbing Minds.

In its second year now, Rubbing Minds prides itself as the only event of its kind in the country. Designed in the fine tradition of modern ‘town-hall’ meetings, it has quickly distinguished itself as the only avenue for young people from a vast cross-section to discuss issues around the social, economic and political, as well as to network and synergise.

Unlike other talk sessions that only manage to draw the attention of students or youths in advocacy, Rubbing Minds has achieved A-list status with its rare ability to pull a qualitative mix - from the corporate environment, business, fashion and style, music, comedy, the academia, the media, politics and advocacy. Rubbing Minds sees the elite of young people coming together to discuss of all subjects – Nigeria.

According to RedSTRAT’s Director of Operations, Adebola Williams, “the idea of Rubbing Minds is to make it cool and hip for young people to discuss the issues that ultimately define them, as young people, and as Nigerians. We took up this challenge because of our impatience with the way young people in their 20s and early 30s are being engaged. The fact is, the more you keep presenting those kinds of sessions in a boring, clichéd monotone, the more you alienate a generation of young people who have been exposed to the modern savvy of international debate and politics.”

The first edition of the new Rubbing Minds will seek to counter-balance the expected frenzy that will accompany the 100 Days in Office celebrations across the country. Themed ‘First Impressions’, it will reflect what young people from across Nigeria think about the new president, the governors, and the steps they have taken in the 100 days since May 29. Expected to be as intellectually charged as always, the organizers have promised that the event will maintain its easy ambience and the delicious mix of wit, candor and irreverence that have earned the event its credibility and acceptability.

The event is billed to hold at rave venue, Planet One, in Lagos, playing host to 250 selected young people, as well as three special guests to be revealed in a few days. Even better, this session will be broadcast live (4pm) on the Channels Television network – with a scheduled repeat broadcast. This is certainly unprecedented!

Explaining the new partnership with Channels Television, Williams reveals it was the CEO, Mr. John Momoh “in that unobtrusive way that is his trademark, who, having encountered Rubbing Minds, decided it was to time to put it on a bigger, more accessible platform, so that Nigerians can effectively move beyond empty clichés and begin to really integrate the voice of young people into national issues and the way our country is run. Indeed, people like Mr. Momoh, Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili, Prof. Wole Soyinka, Chief Rasheed Gbadamosi, Mr. Tayo Aderinokun and others who have encountered the work that RedSTRAT does for young people and have decided to give it their full support prove themselves as authentic inspiration for the new Nigeria we keep talking about.”

With the irresistible blend of Channels Television’s professionalism and unwavering commitment to detail, combined with RedSTRAT’s savvy and popularity amongst the youth population nationally, the excitement as we all count down to the reloaded version of Rubbing Minds on the 9th of September 2007 is almost breathless!

Enquiries about the event can be made to or, and details can be gotten on

P.S: 40 seats are left open: if you wanna attend, please send a mail to with your full name, age, and occupation.