Wednesday, March 23, 2022


 The renewed gold rush in the Ife-Ijesha axis of Osun state is fast transforming what had hitherto been an artisanal industry to a major one.  The current scale in all probability trumps the first rush which had occurred over five decades, in the early part of the last century - till crude oil gained prominence and shifted attention away from solid mineral. Now the miners are back with a vengeance!

Led by the ubiquitous Chinese and employing young labour-hands largely from the north, heavy duty machinery and equipment tear down the landscape day and night, unrelentingly. Farmlands, including cocoa plantations, are not spared. The rumour mill suggests that the “lease agreements” on the lands typically have a life-span of about 10 years, hence the desperate rush to make hay while the sun is up.

Now, it is freely suggested by all and sundry, that gold mining is at the root of the ongoing crisis rocking one of Nigeria’s foremost educational Institutions, the Obafemi Awolowo University, here at Ile-Ife.  The simple process of choosing a Vice Chancellor which initially appeared commendably transparent and rancour-free is now fast turning into a Nollywood horror movie.  The emerging stories have it that it is actually the mind-boggling vast land resource of the University that is more the subject of interest than the desire to be on the driving seat in steering the Citadel of learning to higher glory.

This is quite plausible, considering the severe passionate agitations that have attended the subject in recent years.  At the peak of the wrangling, some people actually went as far as deliberately poisoning the drinking water source of the University community to prove their point!  What’s new now is the suggestion that the interest in the land is neither for farming or real estate potentials, but for the gold mining prospects.  Again indicators are emerging to confirm this suggestion.

However, as important as these politics-laced socio-economics issues obviously are, they are not the main considerations here.  At the LivingScience Foundation, our primary interest is in the oft-neglected Environment-Health leg of the Economic – Socials – Environment/Health tripod on which “Sustainable Development” rests.

Sadly, it is all too evident that both the people and the leaders in the various communities under considerations do not appreciate the plain fact that factoring Environment-Health issues into their golden adventure is simply a matter of life-and-death.  It was Satan who pointed out to the almighty God (in the Bible, Job 2:4), “Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life.” 

To begin with, it should be self-evident that the countless hectares of land being excavated at a mind-boggling rate aren’t going to be available again for farming or real estate for a long time!  On the Jos plateau, it took a major intervention by the FG to restore portions of the landscape under the Mine land reclamation project.  What’s going on here might make the plateau experience a child play, especially considering the terrifying rate things are shaping up here – every week introducing fresh humongous devastation.  The DG of Amotekun in Osun State could hardly contain his emotions as he described the devastation he witnessed in the course of arresting some Chinese nationals involved in “illegal mining” in Osun State:

“It is too bad….The degradation we experienced in their various sites, God will never forgive them for that.  For any right-thinking Nigerian seeing what they have done to our land, it is unspeakable…”

It is ironic that while Nigerians in the Eastern region of the country grapple with erosion and gullies, begging for assistance from the ecological fund, our people here at the Ife/Ijesha are tearing down the landscape in exchange for pittances paid to private pockets by the ever-cunning Chinese.

Beyond this physical degradation (with its long-term economic and social implications for people) is the equally devastating impact on the ecosystem and the consequent disturbance of the subsisting delicate balance in nature.  By Law, such operations ought to have been preceded by detailed Environment Impact Assessments (EIA).  But where this is done at all, all the necessary components, including townhall consultation with the local stakeholders are hardly ever conducted.

As previously indicated, the ultimate considerations in these matters are the effects on human health.  Some twelve years ago, to the date, the gold mining industry in Zamfara State (and later on also in Niger) came into international attention as hundreds of children were noticed by MSF personnel to be dying of what was later shown to be lead toxicity.  Yes lead is a frequent travel-mate of gold, and as gold is extracted, some measure of lead is inexorably brought up together with it to the surface.  Whereas the lead level in many gold-rich deposits might be minor or marginal, a time eventually comes that deposits with dangerously high levels of galena and similar lead-rich gold ores are reached.  And there would be nothing to warn anyone of those levels except systematic routine testing of deposits before mining has been incorporated into the standard operating protocols.  At Zamfara, the communities at first refused to accept that the deaths of the children had anything to do with an industry that had been ongoing for 11 years without any major incidents!

Unfortunately the deleterious health effects of lead go beyond even the attention-grabbing horrific deaths of hundreds of children!  Literally, hundreds of thousands (if not millions) are today succumbing to well-known, but subtle chronic effects of lead poisoning.  These include negative reproductive outcomes (infertility, spontaneous abortion, malformation, etc),  and neurotoxic effects such as reduced IQ, autism, ADHD, violence and crime, and so on and so forth!

In the ongoing unregulated gold mining operations, apart from lead contaminating the water bodies where the ore is washed as well as the surrounding soil, there is also mercury contamination.  Should the miners engage in further beneficiation of the ore by onsite refining, release of mercury into the air is involved.  Such mercury is known to persist in the environment for decades!  Thus we have the double trouble of mercury synergistically interacting with lead leading to aggravated health scenerios!

All these problems have been shown to actually exist at Ife/Ijesha axis.  Primarily to test the capability of then newly acquired TXRF facility at the OAU, (unfortunately now out of action), LSF-affiliated scientists investigated the chemical impacts of the sparse artisanal gold mining then ongoing around Ile-Ife.  The results were amazing and deeply concerning. A few years later we further demonstrated increasing impacts as we compared environmental-health parameters from Zamfara, Iperindo, and Ile-Ife gold-mining operations.  The clear correlation of lead levels in blood and breast milk of lactating women demonstrated beyond doubts, the contribution of mining operations to this highly toxic situation.

However, the LivingScience Foundation (LSF) has always been careful in joining the bandwagon of those espousing blanket condemnation of environmental exploitation in the course of boosting the economic fortunes and social values of Society. Of course, the environment is provided for the good and benefit of Man!  Only that this must be done responsibly. Our emphasis has always been that sustainable development is possible if sound risk-assessment is practiced  and the two sectors of Socials and Economy are integrated with the Environment-health dimension via basic common-sense considerations. 

It should be understood that the problem discussed here in the context of gold mining at Ife/Ijesha region exists in other forms in other regions of Nigeria.  The take-home lesson is the dire need for local common-sense risk assessment and an  understanding that problems would not just disappear if we could somehow manage to ignore them.  Unlike the hyped COVID situation where society responded sheepishly to unfounded and indemonstrable dangers (which, sadly, is still ongoing as Nigerians are being coerced/mandated to receive a dubious experimental vaccine which other nations are now rejecting in droves); such environmental-health issues as these are the real places to “follow the science”.  Rather than an obsessive attention to vaccines (even real vaccines, not to talk of the gene-therapy contraption disingenuously labelled “mRNA vaccines”); or an interminable pursuit of expensive therapies, a sizable fraction of diseases plaguing society could be outright prevented by a little more attention and pro-activeness by society to Environment-Health issues. 

Unfortunately, governments (all over the world) now only respond to issues where Society has bothered to express concerns.  So at the end of the day, the ball is solidly in our courts, we the people.

Till next week, by God’s grace.


Joshua Ojo

Monday, March 14, 2022



“COVID-19 is not the enemy, ….. Our underdevelopment and backwardness rest on four pillars – they are the real enemies of our nation. They are…lack of patriotism, …self-interest … corruption, … and shamelessness ”



Nigeria’s Covid Czar, Prof Oyewale Tomori was right on target in his impassioned statement quoted above.  “Shamelessness” indeed is the major epidemic in Nigeria, not COVID.


Even while the whole world is tactically retreating from the COVID pandemic narrative, rather than shamefacedly tow the same path, the Shuaib Faisal crew providing technical guidance to the FG on COVID response continues to dig in, insisting that the pandemic is just beginning here and is set to do what it had been unable to do in more than two years - decimate all of us in Nigeria.  The one and only way out of the looming apocalypses, they insist, is that we all compulsorily take into our bodies the experimental vaccine being distributed under “Emergency Use Authorization”, and from which government and everyone involved have absolved themselves of all liabilities, come whatever may!


With straight bold face, one government official after another, ranging from State Governors to DGs of Parastatals, patronizingly insist that we must all receive “the vaccine” for our own good.  Failing which they would be forced to de-citizen us, rather than allow us jeopardize our personal health.  It has, of course, been long established that the “vaccine” prevents neither infection nor transmission of COVID.  So, the touted benefits are for individuals and not for the general public, but government officials would sanctimoniously feign ignorance of this basic fact.


Indeed shamelessness is the no 1 enemy in Nigeria!


All along, the principal alibi the FG had latched on in insisting we lock down society, be masked-up everywhere, and continue to “social distance” had always been: “the developed nations are doing it, so why not we?”  Even when the facts and figures clearly show that the presentation of the disease is starkly different here, the argument had been that whatever is good enough for the UK, Europe, and the US should be good also for Nigeria. 


So why is it then, that at the very time that these nations (including even the Biden administration in the US) are declaring the pandemic over, the NYSC here should be insisting that healthy and vibrant Nigerian youths would not be mobilized for youth service unless they take the experimental vaccine?


Or the JAMB suggesting that Nigeria’s teens will not be allowed into exam centres to write the matriculation exam needed to pursue higher education, except they have first received the COVID shot?


Unknown to many, the social distance rules are still being strictly enforced, to ridiculous extents, on several University campuses in this country. Supposed Citadels of learning, of all places!  Yes, students may gather in their thousands for social and religious activities, including those officially organized by the University, such as orientation or matriculation programmes for JAMBITES.  But lectures for large classes (invariably affecting those same fresh incoming undergraduates – JAMBITES) are not allowed to hold physically, all because of COVID-19 protocols on  “social distancing”!  Consequently, these greenhorns (who are still trying to grasp the fact that they are now undergrads), are required to download pre-recorded lectures and somehow digest them in the quiet of their rooms.  For the avoidance of doubts, the foundational courses we are talking about include chemistry, physics, and mathematics where in the pre-COVID years, regular students in live physical classes struggled to grasp new concepts critically needed later on at higher levels of their studies.  It is as clear as daylight that some interests are deliberately intent on destroying Nigeria’s education system big time. 


The University of Ibadan, in particular, has taken this shameless playing-to-the-gallery of foreign interests even a notch further by tying allocation of hostel space with presentation of COVID vaccine certificates!  Could it be that our officials don’t check happenings in the world from other media houses except CNN and BBC?


It is not only governments that are retreating from COVID and declaring the pandemic closed all over the developed nations.  The pharmaceutical companies are even in faster retreat!   Only last week, on Monday 7th March, Pfizer filed a request to the US Securities and Exchange commission to de-person itself.  The implication of such dissolution of legal personhood is that there would no longer be any criminal defendant available in the event that legal charges are raised with respect to people  being maimed or killed by the company’s COVID-19 vaccine!  This analysis is especially credible following the recent granting of several Freedom of Information requests by Courts, which now compel the pharmaceutical companies to release to the public, health data acquired by the companies during the clinical trials of their products.  The few data so far released are showing clearly that the companies knew that their experimental vaccines could be very highly toxic.  Yet they had withheld the information and continued with their mass experimentation on human beings!


In a similar vein, the stock of Moderna has maintained its sharp downward trajectory as top executives of the company are selling off their share!   Toward the end of January, the losses had surpassed $130 billion US dollars!  According to a report, Moderna’s stocks, one the top last year is currently the worst performer in the market having lost more than 60% of its value!


Shamefully, as far as the officials in charge of COVID response in Nigeria are concerned, none of these is happening! 


In the meantime, it has now been revealed that the US government heavily paid major media outlets ($1 billion outreach campaign) to promote the COVID vaccine and suppress unfavourable reports.  Likewise, it is coming out that government agencies in Uganda get commissions from the sales of COVID vaccine in that country.  The report is credible and consistent with the fact on ground that the country negotiated to procure her Astra Zeneca vaccines for 133% the price paid by South Africa and 324% that paid by European countries earlier on in the plandemic! All these then abundantly explain why government in that country could be touting the idea of imposing a fine of over $1,000 or 6-month jail terms on people who refuse to take the experimental vaccine!


With the Contract Agreement between the Nigerian government and the pharmaceutical companies remaining shrouded in utter secrecy, who knows exactly what the driving force is behind our government’s ostrich-like  belligerent posture on the COVID jab?


See you next week, by God’s grace.


Joshua Ojo

Wednesday, March 2, 2022



The COVID response from Nigerian politicians is now going far beyond the “ridiculous”.  One can only but wonder, what these fellas actually take their countrymen for!  At a time when most of the western world is either throwing out the COVID measures as proven failures, or at least keeping mum on them (apparently occupied with more pressing issue at Ukraine), politicians in Nigeria are insisting that enforcing these same COVID measures here, particularly the experimental vaccine aspect, is their way of showing their love and deep concern for the wellbeing of their compatriots. Do they actually expect anybody to still believe such humbug?



The politicians at the helms of affairs at the Lagos Island Local Government are the latest to announce mandatory vaccination for any member of staff who wishes to keep their job, or any citizen for that matter, who wishes to do ANY business with the government!  The measure announced on February 23 is to take effect within a week, from March 1.



So far, we have not heard of a single voice of dissent challenging this outrage.



We are in a land where diarrheal continues to decimate every year, 150,000 citizens, mostly children under the age of 5. Another 85,000 are mauled by malaria, and over 75,000 sent to early graves by sickle cell anaemia – round the clock.  Yet our politicians, masquerading as caring leaders, are allocating funds (which have to be financed by external borrowing), to procure an experimental vaccine proven to be not only ineffective but also very unsafe.  And worst of all, they now compel citizens to receive the products into their blood if they must keep their legal means of livelihood and productivity in society! 



All of these purportedly to fight (or more accurately, to reduce the severity of) a disease with documented fatality of less than 3,500 in over two years.  This official data include ALL deaths with clinical features that can somehow be conceivably deemed compatible with COVID-19 – whether actually diagnosed as such or not; and they occurred mostly at a period when the disease was a total novelty and people had no idea how to deal with it.



Initially, some people had naively reasoned that well, even if COVID is indeed extremely mild here, (by Divine intervention, contrary to the evil projections of so-called global “experts”), nevertheless Nigeria cannot be aloof to a global problem.  So the cut-and-paste response of government in aping the responses from the western world could be justified, or at least excused.  And so Nigerian authorities, as prompted by their masters abroad, dutifully announced without any credible statistics, the arrival and departure of successive “waves” of COVID pandemics - with associated social restrictions including lockdowns, mandatory masking, social distancing, and eventually the barely-hidden ultimate goal, mandatory vaccination.



We should reflect on the import and real implications of this incredible situation: even countries that have serious COVID problems, and with no such medical problems as we uniquely face, have PROVEN that most of the COVID measures are NOT EFFECTIVE.  And are therefore discarding them in droves (Iceland, Slovakia, and Poland being the latest in this regard).  Yet Nigerian politicians and their handlers in the bureaucracy, are insisting that those same measures must be embraced here in Nigeria at all costs!  And all these while neglecting the real issues here!  What a horrible shame!



What other evidence is needed to confirm that some evil hanky-panky is clearly at work?



Blood clotting and myocarditis are now established as top causes for the  24,402 documented deaths directly attributable to COVID vaccine in the United States, so far.  Similar data  routinely published in other countries corroborate this sobering fact.  However, Nigeria NOT only does not have such a transparent adverse-event tracking system that is openly accessible for public scrutiny and interrogation such as the US VAERS, week after week, Mr Shuaib Faisal of the NPHCDA comes out to assure Nigerians that there has been no single vaccine-related death in Nigeria so far!



What could not be reported in the adverse event records of the western world is the impact of this blood-clotting product on the blood of sickle cell anaemia (SCA) patients – who are known to be more vulnerable to having such clots.  While most western countries have literally zero of such patients, Nigeria remains the global capital for SCA.  Yet authorities here are irresponsibly compelling SCA patients to receive into their blood a product that is making even normal blood to clot!  These young subjects must receive the experimental vaccine if they intend to make progress academically by writing the JAMB exam, or proceeding to participate in the NYSC scheme after graduation.  And so far, we have not seen anybody challenging this great evil.  We are all seemingly fixated on 2023 politics or the new drama being created by the globalists in Ukraine.



The developed countries with serious Adverse Events monitoring and reporting systems could at least pretend to have their citizen’s welfare in mind  by offering some sort of advisory (e.g in Japan, placing warning label on all COVID vaccines and outright proscribing MODERNA in some demographics).  Here in Nigeria, every brand is welcome for everybody.  You simply take whatever you are offered, and take it you must!  Indeed, according to the new WHO-certified protocol called MIX and MATCH, you may even take the first dose from one brand, take the 2nd from another, and boosters from yet another!



All this is absolutely crazy, to say the least.  There has been absolutely no trial anywhere to even attempt to prove the safety, not to talk of the efficacy of such protocols.



It is instructive to note that the WHO had actually recommended that expired vaccines could still be used by indigent (African) countries.  Until the idea was sharply rebuffed by Malawian authorities.  That precedence compelled Nigeria to tow the same line, grudgingly, dumping over a million doses of Astra Zeneca vaccines last December.



It is bad enough putting on the market such a product as this, it is gross SIN against humanity COMPELLING VULNERABLE PEOPLE TO TAKE IT INTO THEIR BODY – ESPECIALLY WHEN SUCH IS AN IRREVERSIBLE ACT.  MORESO WHEN THE PRODUCT INVOLVED IS ONE THEY HAVE ABSOLUTELY NO NEED FOR IN THE FIRST INSTANCE.  All the players involved (either actively or abetting) are advised to look forward to answering for their actions, if not in the court of men here, then in the court of heaven hereafter, possibly sooner than later.



Till next week, God willing.