Microsoft’s new Windows Product Activation presents support techs with all sorts of new challenges,including the need to have a valid product key toinstall, or reinstall, Windows XP on workstations. Butwhat do you do if you can’t find the CD with theoriginal key that matches the machine you’re workingon? You can discover the key using ViewKeyXP.Why you need to know your product keyFor years, Microsoft has (quite legitimately) beenconcerned about piracy issues surrounding itsproducts. In an effort to combat this, it came up withthe concept of Windows Product Activation. When youinstall Windows XP on a workstation, you must enter a25-digit code from the original Windows XP CD duringSetup. Setup takes this information, mixes it withinformation it derives from the hardware configurationof the workstation, and creates a code that it sendsto Microsoft to validate the installation.This can cause problems for support techs, becauseeach product key can be used only one time. After thekey has been activated, it can’t be used on anotherworkstation unless you’re using a Volume-Licensedversion of Windows XP. That means each Windows XPworkstation in your organization has a differentproduct key.If you try to reinstall Windows XP and don’t have youroriginal product key or CD, you can’t simply borrowone from another workstation. Normally, you’d have toobtain a new product key, meaning a new purchase ofWindows XP. Naturally, you don’t want to do thatbecause you already have a copy of XP—you’re justmissing the valid key that goes with your workstation.That’s where ViewKeyXP comes in handy.When bad software goes goodIn reality, ViewKeyXP is a hacker tool used to revealWindows XP product keys. But just because it can beused maliciously doesn’t mean that you can’t use itfor good.ViewKeyXP performs a reverse hash on the Product IDthat you find in the Registered To box when youright-click My Computer and select Properties. Takingthis number, ViewKeyXP deciphers and displays youroriginal product key. You can then write this numberdown and reinstall Windows XP. When prompted, all youhave to do is reenter this number and you’re ready togo.Other Windows software uses product keys, butViewKeyXP won’t help you find those keys. It worksonly with Windows XP. However, it will reveal theproduct key no matter what version of Windows XPyou’re running: Home, Professional, or the CorporateEdition.Obtaining and using ViewKeyXPYou can find ViewKeyXP on the Internet by doing asimple Google Search. Be very careful when youdownload it. Because it is a hacker tool and notsupported by any legitimate organization, don’t besurprised if the version you’ve download has a virusembedded in it. If you choose to download the file,make sure you scan it with an updated virus-scanningprogram before using it.In today’s world of setup wizards and multi-megabytedownloads, ViewKeyXP is amazingly simple. The fileitself, Viewkeyxp.exe, is small—only 32 KB. There isno installation program. Just run the program, eitherfrom the command line or by double-clicking it fromthe folder you downloaded it to. When you do, yourproduct key will appear as shown in Figure A. (Ichanged my product key in this image for securityreasons.)Figure AViewKeyXP makes it easy to find your original XPProduct Key.It doesn’t get much easierThat’s all there is to it. Write down the number andthen you can reinstall Windows XP, or place the key ina database where you won’t lose it. ViewKeyXP is ahandy hacker tool to keep in your software utility toolbox.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
A computer with a BIOS that allows for booting from aUSB port.I used a Dell Optiplex GX260 that has a Phoenix ROMBIOS Plus version 1.10 revision A05. A Bootable floppy disk or CD.I used a Windows 98 bootable CD. For those who haveDell systems, you can also use the bootable DellOptiplex Resource CD that is used to reinstall yoursystem with Windows 98. Utilities with the ability to create a master bootrecord, create partitions, set active partitions, andformat and transfer boot files to the active partitionI used the DOS FDISK and FORMAT that are on theWindows 98 CD. Of course, the USB drive that you want to makebootableI used a 256MB SanDisk Cruzer Mini USB Flash Drive. DirectionsMake the USB drive the first in the drive sequence. Why?? fdisk does not allow for a partition to be setas ACTIVE (bootable) unless it is the first drive. Itis most likely that your hard drive(s) is set as thefirst drive. This needs to be changed.How?? Setting your USB drive to be the first in thedrive sequence can be done by following ONE of themethods below. No matter which method you follow, thecomputer MUST be booted with the USB drive plugged ininto the computer. Take a note of how the options thatyou are about to change were set before, as they willneed to be changed back later. Method # 1. BIOS drive sequence option.Depending on your BIOS, there may be an option tochange the drive sequence. On mine, there was anoption labeled "Hard-Disk Drive Sequence". If yourBIOS has this or a similar option, make sure youchange the sequence so that the USB Drive is listedfirst.Method # 2. Disabling other hard drives.Again, this is done from the BIOS. Different BIOS'smay have different options to disable the hard drive.On mine, the system had just one hard drive. I changedthe option labeled "Primary Drive 0" to "OFF". Method # 3. Unplugging the hard drives.If your BIOS doesn't have an option to change thedrive sequence or to turn off the hard drive, you canturn off your computer and unplug your hard drive(s).Make sure you know what you are doing here. Openingyour computer case may result in voiding your computerwarranty if you have one. Boot the computer from the boot floppy/CD into thecommand prompt with the USB Drive plugged in.Run fdiskUse fdisk's "Set Active Partition" (option 2) to setthe primary partition on the USB Drive to ACTIVE. This step assumes that a primary partition alreadyexists on the USB Drive. If this is not the case, usefdisk to create one. As noted in step # 1, fdisk willnot allow for setting the the partition to ACTIVEunless the drive the partition is on is the FIRST inthe drive sequence. Exit fdisk.Reboot the computer from boot floppy/CD into thecommand prompt with the USB Drive plugged in.At the command prompt enter the following command: dirc:This step is just to verify that the C: drive isactually the primary partition on the USB Drive.Regardless of the result that the command generateswhether it be a listing of files or an error message,what is important here is to make sure that the sizeof the primary partition on the USB Drive is roughlyequal to the sum of the empty space and the usedspace. Format and copy the boot files to the primarypartition. At the command prompt, from the directory whereFORMAT.COM is located, enter:format /s c: Run fdisk /mbr"fdisk /mbr" writes the master boot record, in thiscase to the USB drive, without altering the partitiontable information. Restart the computer and choose booting from the USBDrive. If all goes well, you should see a C:> commandprompt.Change the computer settings back to what they werebefore step # 1.I had a few people e-mail me with an error message "Nofixed disks present..." which they encountered whenthey ran fdisk.. Personally, I did not run into thisissue or know what is causing it on other people'smachines. A simple Google search and this link canprovide more information..
Posted by Abayomi at 4:15 AM
A MICROSOFT Technology Learning Centre wasb commissioned at the Federal Polytechnic, Nekede,Owerri recently.The Technology Learning Centre, which was established at the institution by Microsoft Nigeria in conjunctionwith the Federal Government, is designed to foster computer literacy and increase information technology skill and competency within the South Eastern zone.In his welcome address, the Rector of the institution,Dr. Onyekwere I. Nwankwo, disclosed that thepolytechnic now has two major digital centresestablished through a build, operate and transfer(BOT) model, adding that the institution now has over700 PCs in various centres on campus. The rectore mphasised that ICT is the institution' s main stay,adding that it has established ICT centres in variousschools. In achieving this, he said the polytechnicworked in partnership with the American Embassy, Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) and the Digital Bridge Institute (DBI), Abuja.While commending Microsoft Nigeria for choosing theinstitution as a centre for Microsoft Certification,Training and Examination, Nwankwo also explained thatMicrosoft Certificate, Microsoft Certificate is not only a stamp of authority but also a veritable passport to high brow employment in the competitive national and international markets. "We hope to realise our dream, which is to transformthis institution into a real centre of excellence,which will produce relevant manpower that cansuccessfully face the challenges of increasingi ntellectualism in this era of globalisation, " therector said.Speaking also, the General Manager, Microsoft WestAfrica, Mr. Chinenye Mba-Uzukwu, said that,"information technology is the bedrock for national survival and development in a rapidly changing global environment. " He also reminded government that, "wecannot be where we ought to be if we do not improve onour educational facilities, as well as our teaching and learning environment. " He opined that, "the rector has worked with Microsoftand other organisations to lift this institution to greater heights and all it remains is for the staffand students to maximally exploit the opportunity. "In a message delivered on behalf of Imo StateGovernor, Chief Ikedi Ohakim, by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mrs. Clothy C.Obinna, the governor explained that government will"invest enormously in capacity building in order toposition the human capital to brace up for the demands of modern development trends." He observed that, "Microsoft and the Federal Government have, with the establishment of this Digital Village, pointed the torch to a pathway thatwould lead to the entrenchment of enduring platforms and structures for the realisation of the goals ofraising computer literacy and Information Technology(IT) appreciation in Imo State."Ohakim said that in line with the imperatives of theNew face of Imo Vision, the state under his administration would create the environment that wouldbe very friendly to the growth and development ofinformation and communication technology.In a goodwill message at the occasion, a former Minister of Education, Mrs. Chinwe Nora Obaji,recalled that as a Minister of Education, she had the singular honour of commissioning the same day seven housing projects at the Federal Polytechnic, Nekede,adding that one of those seven projects is the Engineering Complex housing this Microsoft Community Learning Centre.In a speech at the occasion, an Executive Director atthe National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), Mr.L. U. Opara, who represented the Executive Secretary,Dr. Nuru Yakubu, described the Federal Polytechnic,Nekede as the Silicon Valley of Nigeria. (Silicon Valley is the Centre of Technology in the United States of American). He enjoined the students to aspire towards excellence.
Posted by Abayomi at 3:52 AM
Uwadia is new Computer Society president AT the 21st National Conference of the Nigerian Computer Society (NCS), Prof. Charles Onuwa Uwadia,the director of the Centre for Information Technology and System (CITS) of the University of Lagos waselected as the 10th president of the Society. He tookover from Dr. Chris Nwannenna after the later completed two consecutive terms.Born on June 7, 1956 at Ibadan in Oyo State, and an ative of Ukala-Okpunor in Oshimili Local Government Area of Delta State, Uwadia holds a BSc. Degreehonours in Computer Science from the University ofIbadan in 1979. He served at the Polytechnic Ibadanfor his NYSC programme. He had his MSc. in 1983 andPhD in 1990 both at the University of Lagos.Uwadia joined the services of the University of Lagos as an assistant lecturer in 1983 and rose steadily to the post of a full professor in the year 2004. Hismajor area of specialisation is Software Engineering with emphasis on Compiling Techniques and SystemsSoftware.He is an active member of Nigerian Computer Society(NCS), and the Computer Professionals Registration Council of Nigeria. He is also a fellow of NCS. He hads erved NCS in various capacities including: ChairmanEducation Committee (1997-1999), chairman Conference Committee (1999-20003) ; chairman Publications Committee (2003-2007).Besides his enviable service in Nigeria, Uwadia hasbeen a visiting fellow to Universities andInstitutions in the United States of America, United Kingdom, Italy and Australia.Uwadia is a detribalised Nigerian and holds liberal views about life. He is happily marred with three children. His other areas of interest include International Relations and Sports. Uwadia feels highly honoured at being elected thepresident of NCS to steer the affairs of theassociation for the next two years, adding that it wassomething, he looked forward to. Speaking on his priorities for the Society as head ofthe body's National Executive Council, Uwadia saidthat he would work towards getting improved visibilityfor NCS. "We will work towards establishing aharmonious relationship with other agencies, bothpublic and private to uplift Information Technology inNigeria, he commented.He added that he will work towards having some reformswhile, "working towards having a strengthened NCS."According to him, "once we have a unified house, wewill be in a position to influence government policiesas well as foster the development of Information Technology," he affirmed. I'd like to see an NCS thatis very strong in advocacy, engaging the Nigeriangovernment at various levels as well as the larger society," he added.Uwadia also stressed that one special focal point ofhis administration would be to engage the youths and reposition the National Association of Computer Science Students (NACOSS); the student body arm of theNCS. The don said that it was important to engage theyouths in order to groom them for challenges ahead in and emerging competitive world.He recently delved into the networking, congestion control and management aspects of Information Technology. With over 40 publications in both local and international journals, he has three books to his name.
Posted by Abayomi at 3:47 AM
Friday, August 24, 2007
Have you spoken with a high-tech recruiter or
professor of computer science lately? According to
observers across the country, the technology skills
shortage that pundits were talking about a year ago is
"Everything I see in Silicon Valley is completely
contrary to the assumption that programmers are a
dying breed and being offshored," says Kevin Scott,
senior engineering manager at Google and a founding
member of the professions and education boards at the
Association for Computing Machinery. "From big
companies to start-ups, companies are hiring as
aggressively as possible."
Many recruiters say there are more open positions than
they can fill, and according to Kate Kaiser, associate
professor of IT at Marquette University in Milwaukee,
students are getting snapped up before they graduate.
In January, Kaiser asked the 34 students in the
systems analysis and design class she was teaching how
many had already accepted offers to begin work after
graduating in May. Twenty-four students raised their
hands. "I feel sure the other 10 who didn't have
offers at that time have all been given an offer by
now," she says.
Suffice it to say, the market for IT talent is hot,
but only if you have the right skills. If you want to
be part of the wave, take a look at what eight experts
-- including recruiters, curriculum developers,
computer science professors and other industry
observers -- say are the hottest skills of the near
1) Machine learning
As companies work to build software such as
collaborative filtering, spam filtering and
fraud-detection applications that seek patterns in
jumbo-size data sets, some observers are seeing a
rapid increase in the need for people with
machine-learning knowledge, or the ability to design
and develop algorithms and techniques to improve
computers' performance, Scott says.
"It's not just the case for Google," he says. "There
are lots of applications that have big, big, big data
sizes, which creates a fundamental problem of how you
organize the data and present it to users."
Demand for these applications is expanding the need
for data mining, statistical modeling and data
structure skills, among others, Scott says. "You can't
just wave your hand at some of these problems -- there
are subtle differences in how the data structures or
algorithms you choose impacts whether you get a
reasonable solution or not," he explains.
You can acquire machine-learning knowledge either
through job experience or advanced undergraduate or
graduate coursework, Scott says. But no matter how you
do it, "companies are snapping up these skills as fast
as they can grab them," he says.
2) Mobilizing applications
The race to deliver content over mobile devices is
akin to the wild days of the Internet during the '90s,
says Sean Ebner, vice president of professional
services at Spherion Pacific Enterprises, a recruiter
in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. And with devices like
BlackBerries and Treos becoming more important as
business tools, he says, companies will need people
who are adept at extending applications such as ERP,
procurement and expense approval to these devices.
"They need people who can push applications onto
mobile devices," he says.
With the proliferation of de facto wireless standards
such as Wi-Fi, WiMax and Bluetooth, securing wireless
transmissions is top-of-mind for employers seeking
technology talent, says Neill Hopkins, vice president
of skills development for the Computing Technology
Industry Association (CompTIA). "There's lots of
wireless technologies taking hold, and companies are
concerned about how do these all fit together, and
what are the security risks, which are much bigger
than on wired networks," he says.
"If I were to hire a wireless specialist, I'd also
want them to understand the security implications of
that and build in controls from the front end," agrees
Howard Schmidt, president of the Information Systems
Security Association and former chief information
security officer and chief security strategist at eBay
But don't venture into the marketplace with only a
wireless certification, Hopkins warns. "No one gets
hired as a wireless technician -- you have to be a
network administrator with a specialization in
wireless so you know how wireless plays with the
network," he says.
4) Human-computer interface
Another area that will see growing demand is
human-computer interaction or user interface design,
Scott says, which is the design of user interfaces for
the Web or desktop applications. "There's been more
recognition over time that it's not OK for an engineer
to throw together a crappy interface," he says. Thanks
to companies like Apple Inc., he continues, "consumers
are increasingly seeing well-designed products, so why
shouldn't they demand that in every piece of software
5) Project management
Project managers have always been in high demand, but
with growing intolerance for over-budget or failed
projects, the ones who can prove that they know what
they're doing are very much in demand, says Grant
Gordon, managing director at Kansas City-based
staffing firm Intronic Solutions Group. "Job reqs are
coming in for 'true project managers,' not just people
who have that denotation on their title," Gordon says.
"Employers want people who can ride herd, make sense
of the project life cycle and truly project-manage. "
That's a big change from a year ago, he says, when it
was easy to fill project management slots. But now,
with employers demanding in-the-trenches experience,
"the interview process has become much tougher,"
Gordon says. "The right candidates are fewer and
farther between, and those that are there can be more
picky on salaries and perks."
The way Gordon screens candidates is by having
on-staff subject-matter experts conduct interviews
that glean how the candidate has handled various
situations in the past, such as conflicting team
responsibilities or problem resolution. "It's easy to
regurgitate what you heard from PMBOK [the Project
Management Institute's Project Management Body of
Knowledge], but when it comes to things like conflict
management, you start seeing whether they know what
Page 3 of 4
In one case, Gordon asked a candidate to describe how
he'd go about designing a golf ball that goes farther
by changing the dimples on the ball. "No one has the
answer to questions like that, but it shows how they
think on their feet and how they can break down a
problem that's pretty ambiguous into smaller
segments," he says.
6) General networking skills
No matter where you work in IT, you can no longer
escape the network, and that has made it crucial for
non-networking professionals, such as software
engineers, to have some basic understanding of
networking concepts, Scott says. At the very least,
they should brush up on networking basics, such as
TCP/IP, Ethernet and fiber optics, he says, and have a
working knowledge of distributed and networked
"There's an acute need for people writing applications
deployed in data centers to be aware of how their
applications are using the network," Scott says. "They
need to understand how to take advantage of the
network in their application design." For instance, to
split three-tier applications among multiple machines,
developers need to know how to build and coordinate
that network. "People who understand basic distributed
systems principles are very valuable," Scott says.
7) Network convergence technicians
With more companies implementing voice over IP,
there's a growing demand for network administrators
who understand all sorts of networks -- LANs, WANs,
voice, the Internet -- and how they all converge
together, according to Hopkins.
"When something needs to be fixed, companies don't
want the network administrator to say, 'Oh, that's a
phone problem,' and the phone guy to say, 'Call the
networking guy,' " Hopkins says. "Our research has
validated that there's a huge demand for people who've
been in the phone world and understand what the IT
network is, or someone managing the IT network who
understands the voice network and how it converges."
8) Open-source programming
There's been an uptick in employers interested in
hiring open- source talent, Ebner says. "Some people
thought the sun was setting on open source, but it's
coming back in a big way, both at the operating system
level and in application development, " he says. People
with experience in Linux, Apache, MySQL and PHP,
collectively referred to as LAMP, will find themselves
in high demand, he says.
Scott Saunders, dean of career services at DeVry
University in Southern California, is seeing the same
trend. "Customer dissatisfaction and security concerns
are driving this phenomenon, especially in the
operating system and database markets," he says.
9) Business intelligence systems
Momentum is also building around business
intelligence, Ebner says, creating demand for people
who are skilled in BI technologies such as Cognos,
Business Objects and Hyperion, and who can apply those
to the business.
"Clients are making significant investments in
business intelligence, " Ebner says. "But they don't
need pure technicians creating scripts and queries. To
be a skilled data miner, you need hard-core functional
knowledge of the business you're trying to dissect."
People who can do both "are some of the hottest talent
in the country right now," he says.
10) Embedded security
Security professionals have been in high demand in
recent years, but today, according to Schmidt, there's
a surge in employers looking for security skills and
certifications in all their job applicants, not just
the ones for security positions.
"In virtually every job description I've seen in the
last six months, there's been some use of the word
security in there," he says. "Employers are asking for
the ability to create a secure environment, whether
the person is running the e-mail server or doing
software development. It's becoming part of the job
This, Schmidt says, mirrors the trend toward
integrating security into companies' day-to-day
operations rather than considering it an add-on role
performed by a specialist. Companies will still need
security specialists and subject-matter experts,
Schmidt says, but more and more, every IT person a
company hires will have to have an understanding of
the security ramifications of his area.
Hopkins echoes that sentiment. "Every single
certification we do now has an element of security
built in," he says. "We keep getting feedback from the
market researchers that security touches everything
and everyone. Even an entry-level technician better
Saunders says DeVry University has responded to this
demand by adding a security curriculum to some of its
campuses throughout the U.S. "Companies are
increasingly interested in protecting their assets
against cyberterrorism and internal threats," he says.
11) Digital home technology integration
Homes are increasingly becoming high-tech havens, and
there has been enormous growth in the home video and
audio markets, and in home security and automated
lighting systems. But who installs these systems, and
who fixes them when something goes wrong?
To answer that question, CompTIA developed a
certification in cooperation with the Consumer
Electronics Association, called Digital Home
Technology Integrator. "It's the hottest and most
vibrant market we've seen in a long time," Hopkins
12) .Net, C #, C ++, Java -- with an edge
Recruiters and curriculum developers are seeing job
orders come in for a range of application frameworks
and languages, including ASP.Net, VB.net, XML, PHP,
Java, C#, and C++, but according to Gordon, employers
want more than just a coder. "Rarely do they want
people buried behind the computer who aren't part of a
team," he says. "They want someone with Java who can
also be a team lead or a project coordinator. "
Posted by Abayomi at 6:30 AM
Lessons on Life
There was a man who had four sons. He wanted his sons to learn not to judge
things too quickly. So he sent them each on a quest, in turn, to go and look
at a pear tree that was a great distance away.
The first son went in the winter, the second in the spring, the third in
summer, and the youngest son in the fall.
When they had all gone and come back, he called them together to describe
what they had seen.
The first son said that the tree was ugly, bent, and twisted.
The second son said no it was covered with green buds and full of promise.
The third son disagreed; he said it was laden with blossoms that smelled so
sweet and looked so beautiful, it was the most graceful thing he had ever seen.
The last son disagreed with all of them; he said it was ripe and drooping
with fruit, full of life and fulfillment.
The man then explained to his sons that they were all right, because they
had each seen but only one season in the tree's life.
He told them that you cannot judge a tree, or a person, by only one season,
and that the essence of who they are and the pleasure, joy, and love that come
from that life can only be measured at the end, when all the seasons are up.
If you give up when it's winter, you will miss the promise of your spring,
the beauty of your summer, fulfillment of your fall.
Don't let the pain of one season destroy the joy of all the rest.
Don't judge life by one difficult season.
Persevere through the difficult patches and better times are sure to come some time later.
Make it a grateful day!
Posted by Abayomi at 6:26 AM
I KNOW WHO I AM
I am God's child (John 1:12)
I am Christ's friend (John 15:15)
I am united with the Lord(1 Cor. 6:17)
I am bought with a price(1 Cor. 6:19-20)
I am a saint (set apart for God). (Eph. 1:1)
I am a personal witness of Christ (Acts 1:8)
I am the salt & light of the earth (Matt.5:13-14)
I am a member of the body of Christ(1 Cor 12:27)
I am free forever from condemnation (Rom. 8: 1-2)
I am a citizen of Heaven. I am significant (Phil.3:20)
I am free from any charge against me (Rom. 8:31-34)
I am a minister of reconciliation for God(2 Cor.5:17-21)
I have access to God through the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:18)
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realms (Eph. 2:6)
I cannot be separated from the love of God(Rom.8:35-39)
I am established, anointed, sealed by God (2 Cor.1:21-22)
I am assured all things work together for good (Rom. 8: 28)
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit (John 15:16)
I may approach God with freedom and confidence (Eph. 3: 12)
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Phil. 4:13)
I am the branch of the true vine, a channel of His life (John 15: 1-5)
I am God's temple (1 Cor. 3: 16). I am complete in Christ (Col. 2: 10)
I am hidden with Christ in God (Col. 3:3). I have been justified (Romans 5:1)
I am God's co-worker (1 Cor. 3:9; 2 Cor 6:1). I am God's workmanship(Eph. 2:10)
I am confident that the good works God has begun in me will be perfected (Phil. 1: 5)
I have been redeemed and forgiven (Col. 1:14). I have been adopted as God's child(Eph 1:5)
I belong to God
Do you know
who you are!?
(Keep this bell ringing...pass it on)
"The LORD bless you and keep you;
the LORD make His face shine upon you
and be gracious to you;
the LORD turn His face toward you
and give you peace."
Posted by Abayomi at 6:24 AM
36 CHRISTIAN WAYS TO REDUCE STRESS
An Angel says, "Never borrow from the future. If you worry about what may happen tomorrow and it doesn't happen, you have worried in vain. Even if it does happen, you have to worry twice."
2. Go to bed on time.
3. Get up on time so you can start the day unrushed.
4. Say No to projects that won't fit into your time schedule, or that will compromise your mental health.
5. Delegate tasks to capable others.
6. Simplify and unclutter your life.
7. Less is more. (Although one is often not enough, two are often too many.)
8. Allow extra time to do things and to get to places.
9. Pace yourself. Spread out big changes and difficultprojects over time; don't lump the hard things all together.
10. Take one day at a time.
11. Separate worries fromconcerns. If a situation is a concern, findout what God would have you do and let go of the anxiety. If you can't do anything about a situation, forget it.
12. Live within your budget; don't use credit cards for ordinary purchases.
13. Have backups; an extra car key in your wallet, an extra house key buried in the garden, extra stamps, etc.
14. K.M.S. (Keep Mouth Shut). This single piece of advice can prevent an enormous amount of trouble.
15. Do something for the Kid in You everyday.
16. Carry a Bible with you to read while waiting in line.
17. Get enough rest.
18. Eat right.
19. Get organized so everything has its place.
20. Listen to a tape while driving that can help improve your quality of life.
21. Write down thoughts and inspirations.
22. Every day, find time to be alone.
23. Having problems? Talk to God on the spot. Try to nip small problems in the bud. Don't wait until it's time to go to bed to try and pray.
24. Make friends with Godly people.
25. Keep a folder of favorite scriptures on hand.
26. Remember that the shortest bridge between
despair and hope is often a good
"Thank you Jesus."
28. Laugh some more!
29. Take your work seriously, but not yourself at all.
30. Develop a forgiving attitude (most people are doing the best they can).
31. Be kind to unkind people (they probably need it the most).
32. Sit on your ego.
33. Talk less; listen more.
34. Slow down.
35. Remind yourself that you are not the general manager of the universe
36. Every night before bed, think of one thing you're grateful for that you've never been grateful for before. GOD HAS A WAY OF TURNING THINGS AROUND FOR YOU. "If God is for us, who can be against us?" (Romans 8:31)
My request is to send this to four people that I wanted God to bless and I picked you. I decided to send it to more than four. SEND IT FORWARD PLEASE, not backward!
Jesus had no servants, yet they called Him Master.
He had no degree, yet they called Him Teacher.
He had no medicines, yet they called Him Healer.
He had no army, yet kings feared Him.
He won no military battles, yet He conquered the world.
He committed no crime, yet they crucified Him.
He was buried in a tomb, yet He lives today.
I feel honored to serve such a Leader who loves us!
If you believe in God and in Jesus Christ His Son ... Send this to all on your buddy list .. if not just ignore it. If you ignore it, just remember that Jesus said .... "If you deny me before man, I will deny you before my Father in
Posted by Abayomi at 6:23 AM
Hi Bro, oh I meant to say Sis. Wait, what am I saying, he or she? I beg, choose the category that you belong to.
Now, let me ask you a question, do you have a friend? You have! Glory be to God. Oh, you don't have, there is no cause for alarm. Eh, you don't even know, that sounds interesting then. Okay, let me put it this way, are you a friend? Ah ah, you can't really say or probably you can't really say what a friend is. Okay, let's consider it briefly.
What is a friend?
I will tell you
It is a person you dear to be yourself
Your soul can be naked with him. He seems to ask you to put on nothing, only to be what you are.
He may not want you to be better but of course, he does not want you to be worse. When you are with him, you feel as a prisoner feels who has been declared innocent
You don't have to be on your guard, you can say what you think, so long as it is genuinely you
He understands those contradictions in your nature that lead others to misjudge you. With him, you breathe freely
You can abhor your little vanities and envies and hates and vicious sparks, your meanesses and absurdities; and in opening them up to him, they are lost, dissolved in the white ocean of his loyalty
He is like fire that purges to the bone. He understands. He understands
You can weep with him, sing with him, laugh with him, play with him
He understands. You do not have to be careful. You can abuse him, neglect him, tolerate him
Through it all and underneath, he understands, he sees, he knows, he loves you
Best of all, you can keep still with him
It does not matter, he likes you
A friend! What is a friend? Just one, I repeat, with whom you dare to be yourself
Hello mine, looking at this, it seems you don't have a friend right? There is no cause for alarm. Only one thing is needed. You try and become one! And then, we see what follows.........
Posted by Abayomi at 6:19 AM
Chief David Ajibosho in his heyday was a well-to-do socialite, a member of some of the elite clubs in Lagos. His lifestyle was funded by a booming transport business and a printing press. He had three wives, a fleet of cars and a large house in a low density area in Surulere, Lagos. He was a virtual showstopper at the parties he attended religiously every week, resplendent in all white flowing robes.
But just as he turned 56, the music stopped. Despite, his seemingly solid financial standing, all it took to bring him to the ground was one “hit” by scammers and he lost everything. He had taken the wrong bet and by the time the banks closed in, he suffered a stroke and died, penniless, a few days after.
The gossip columns of celebrity magazines here and abroad are full of similar stories; of yesterday’s men who had made it big time or at least lived comfortably but still ended dead broke.
The list includes company owners, top politicians, civil servants, failed contractors, military officers, musicians, journalists and lately executives and directors of failed banks who have been stripped of their assets by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
Most are mired in debt, lured into investing into business they know nothing about, or were victims of 419ers. But the most common scenario is that they were victims of themselves. Extravagant lifestyles, poor financial planning or none at all; greed, lack of depth or just plain bad luck is sometimes to blame.
And the consequences can be dire as those who have treaded this feared path will tell. A sudden loss of self respect, loss of prestige among peers and family members, health issues, homelessness etc readily come to mind.
It baffles less privileged mortals that those higher up could crash easily. “It cannot happen to me” is a usual refrain when such issues come up for discussion. Boxer, Mike Tyson, reputed to have earned over $400m in his short-lived career as world champion recently filed for bankruptcy due to his inability to repay almost $30m in debts. United States rapper- turned preacher- Hammer, went into bankruptcy several years ago; his fortunes having been eroded by his decision to live a life of opulence and support a 200-man entourage consisting of friends and family.
Many lottery jackpot winners have ended up broke just a few years after multi-million wins: They could not just handle their good fortune.
Here at home, once high rollers such as Chief Femi Adekanye and Mr. Ralph Osayeme, former chairman and managing director of defunct Commerce Bank respectively, are on the run, their fortunes gone after the bank went bust on a failed sugar importation deal, and expensive legal fees spent to defend charges before the Failed Banks Tribunal.
Why does this happen? And why do people fail to learn lessons from the fate of others.
Head, Asset Management at IBTC Chartered Bank, Mr. Akeem Oyewale, says that windfalls or wealth built over time through savings needs to be managed knowledgably.
“The key issue is not to be greedy and to be knowledgeable about how to make money work for itself”
He points out that many people make the mistake of quitting work after they hit a wind fall not realising that expenses of every day living, school fees, hospital bills, rent, handouts and other forms of recurrent expenditure can make a significant dent on any cash stack.
Oyewale points out that the key to wealth protection is defining your objective and finding the right type of investment or investment mix commensurate to one’s risk appetite.
The questions to be answered, he says, include: whether the client wants more money or just wants to live off the accretion on current holdings. But he cautions that people should not expect N1m to turn to N2m overnight, pointing out that this is one of the reasons people fall for schemes offering 100 per cent to 200 per cent returns per month and end up losing money.
According to him, three classes of investments – money market, capital market and real estate – which all require specialised knowledge are available for the picking, to cater for varying tastes.
The capital market, which is his company’s specialty, offers a good hedge against inflation over the long term as the market usually outpace, inflation. But it carries some risk too. “You can make 20 per cent return in a week if you make a good decision, but if the market is bearish (share prices are falling), you could also lose even part of you principal.
Real estate could be the best bet, he points out, as land appreciates all over the world but it is less liquid and could prove problematic to convert to cash quickly. Money market instruments such as treasury bills or bankers acceptances, he notes, have fixed guaranteed returns, but this is usually low and if lower than inflation rate, returns could be in the negative.
However, if one is considering investing in a line of business, he says it is important to acquire some knowledge in that field and people should avoid joining the bandwagon or else one could find himself on a slaughter slab.
Experts elsewhere attribute financial failures to overconfidence and refusal to acknowledge signs of looming disaster. They find that it is difficult for those accustomed to betting and winning, making decisions that unlock wealth, to accept that they could be wrong.
Many of the owners of the banks that failed last year did see the ominous signs. But greed and dishonesty in some cases egged them on to sink deeper into the murk of borrowing to pay for previous borrowings until the bubble burst.
It was a matter of huge egos and keeping up appearances, usually testosterone induced, as studies have shown that men are more prone to risk taking.
The financier and speculator, George Soros, known as the “Man who broke the Bank of England” earned a whopping $1.1bn return in a single day by gambling his entire $10bn fortune in a spectacular attack on the British pound in 1992.
According to a recent article in the International Herald Tribune, business professors at the University of California at Berkeley, Brad Barber and Terrance Odean, in an analysis in 2001 of stock trading, titled: “Boys Will Be Boys,” pointed out that psychological studies demonstrated that men tended to be more overconfident than women.
Psycologist and Chief Executve, Simple Solubles, Mr. Folusho Ayodeji, points out that those that make their money through easy or fraudulent means are more likely to lose it.
“If a man works hard for his money, the tendency for him is to protect it. But if you inherit money, or win a lottery or you get lucky and someone gives you a contract and you make a lot of money from it, you are more likely to be careless, on the assumption that it can be replaced. But as we know, an opportunity once lost can hardly be regained, so we usually advice that people slow down and reflect and do some planning for the future.”
Posted by Abayomi at 6:17 AM
(Marriage Software Division):
Dear Systems Analyst,
I am desperate for some help! I recently upgraded my program from Girlfriend
7.0 to Wife 1.0 and found that the new program began unexpected Child Processing and also took up a lot of space and valuable resources.
This wasn't mentioned in the product brochure. In addition Wife 1.0 installs itself into all other programs and launches during systems initialization and then it monitors all other system activities.
Applications such as 'Boys' Night out 2.5' and 'Golf 5.3' no longer run, and crashes the system whenever selected. Attempting to operate selected 'Saturday Rugby 6.3' always fails and 'Saturday Shopping 7.1' runs instead.
I cannot seem to keep Wife 1.0 in the background whilst attempting to run any of my favorite applications. Be it online or offline.
I am thinking of going back to 'Girlfriend 7.0', but uninstall doesn't work on this program. Can you please help?
... AND THIS IS WHAT OUR ANALYST SAID:
This is a very common problem resulting from a basic misunderstanding of the functions of the Wife 1.0 program. Many customers upgrade from Girlfriend 7.0 to Wife 1.0 thinking that Wife 1.0 is merely a UTILITY AND ENTERTAINMENT
PROGRAM. Actually, Wife 1.0 is an OPERATING SYSTEM designed by its Creator to run everything on your current platform.
You are unlikely to be able to purge Wife 1.0 and still convert back to Girlfriend 7.0, as Wife 1.0 was not designed to do this and it is impossible to uninstall, delete or purge the program files from the System once it is
Some people have tried to install Girlfriend 8.0 or Wife 2.0 but have ended up with even more problems. (See manual under Alimony/Child Support and Solicitors' Fees).
Having Wife 1.0 installed, I recommend you keep it Installed and deal with the difficulties as best as you can. When any faults or problems occur, whatever you think has caused them, you must run the.........
C:\ APOLOGIZE\ FORGIVE ME.EXE Program and avoid attempting to use the *Esc-Key for it will freeze the entire system.
It may be necessary to run C:\ APOLOGIZE\ FORGIVE ME.EXE a number of times, and eventually hope that the operating system will return to normal.
Wife 1.0, although a very high maintenance programme, can be very rewarding.
To get the most out of it, consider buying additional Software such as 'Flowers 2.0' and 'Chocolates 5.0' or 'HUGS\ KISSES 600.0' or 'TENDERNESS\
UNDERSTANDING 1000.0' or even Eating Out Without the Kids 7.2.1' (if Child processing has already started).
DO NOT under any circumstances install 'Secretary 2.1' (Short Skirt Version)
or 'One Nightstand 3.2' (Any Mood Version), as this is not a supported Application for Wife 1.0 and the system will almost certainly CRASH.
Posted by Abayomi at 6:15 AM
A well-worn Five Hundred Naira note and a similarly
distressed Five Naira
note arrived at the Central Bank to be retired. As
they moved along the
conveyor belt to be burnt, they struck up a
The Five Hundred Naira reminisced about its travels
all over the country.
"I've had a pretty good life," the Five Hundred Naira
proclaimed. "Why I've
been to Lagos, Ibadan, Benin, Kano and Abuja, the
finest restaurants in
Victoria Island, Kaduna, Abuja and Port Harcout ,
performances at Muson
Centre and Glover Hall, hottest nite clubs all over
the country and even a
cruise on the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans."
"Wow!" said the Five Naira. "You've really had an
exciting life!" "So tell
me," says the Five Hundred, "where have you been
throughout your lifetime?"
The Five Naira replies, "Oh, I've been to the
Apostolic & Methodist Church,
the Redeemed Christian Church, Catholic Church, the
Deeper Life Bible
Church, Baptist Church, the Anglican Church ,CCC, the
The Five Hundred Naira note interrupts, "What's a
Please help the N500 notes go to church.
Posted by Abayomi at 5:15 AM
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
BUT THIS IS A GOOD 1...
When next you want to lie think twice ‘cos there is special robot in town.
One day Jonny's dad bought a robot.The robot was special in that it could detect a lie and would slap theperson who lied on the face.Jonny returned late from school that day and his dad asked him, " Son whyare you late from school?".Jonny answered, "Dad we had extra classes today".Much to his astonishment the Robot jumped up and slapped Jonny on his face.His dad told him son, This robot is special in that he can detect a lie andwill then slap the person who lied now come on tell me the truth, " Why areyou late?""Dad I went for a movie", " Which movie?" "The Ten Commandments" , SplattJonny got a tight slap on the face from the robot." No dad honest I went for the movie Sex Queen." Shame on you son when I wasyour age I never used to do such shameful things."Splatt, the dad gets a tight slap on the face from the robot.Hearing all this, Jonny's mother comes walking out of the kitchen saying, "After all he is your son, he will be like you ",to which the robot steps up and gives a resounding slap on Jonny's mother's face .
Posted by Abayomi at 3:59 AM
Microsoft vs. GM
For all of us who feel only the deepest love and affection forthe way computers have enhanced our lives, read on.At a recent computer expo (COMDEX), Bill Gates reportedlycompared the computer industry with the auto industry andstated, "If GM had kept up with technology like the computerindustry has, we would all be driving $25 cars that got 1,000miles to the gallon."In response to Bill's comments, General Motors issued a pressrelease stating: If GM had developed technology like Microsoft,we would all be driving cars with the following characteristics:
1. For no reason whatsoever, your car would crash twice a day.
2. Every time they repainted the lines in the road, you wouldhave to buy a new car.
3. Occasionally, your car would die on the freeway for noreason. You would have to pull over to the side of the road,close all of the windows, shut off the car, restart it, andreopen the windows before you could continue.For some reason you would simply accept this.
4. Occasionally, executing a maneuver such as a left turn wouldcause your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which caseyou would have to reinstall the engine.
5. Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, wasreliable, five times as fast and twice as easy to drive - butwould run on only five percent of the roads.
6. The oil, water temperature, and alternator warning lightswould all be replaced by a single "This Car Has Performed AnIllegal Operation" warning light.
7. The airbag system would ask, "Are you sure?" before deploying.
8. Occasionally, for no reason whatsoever, your car would lockyou out and refuse to let you in until you simultaneously liftedthe door handle, turned the key and grabbed hold of the radioantenna.
9. Every time a new car was introduced, car buyers would have tolearn how to drive all over again because none of the controlswould operate in the same manner as the old car.
10. You'd have to press the "Start" button to turn the engine off.
Posted by Abayomi at 3:56 AM
A young man, a student in one of our universities, was one day taking a walk with a professor, who was commonly called the students' friend, from his kindness to those who waited on his instructions.As they went along, they saw lying in the path a pair of old shoes, which they supposed to belong to a poor man who was employed in a field close by, and who had nearly finished his day's work.The student turned to the professor, saying: "Let us play the man a trick: we will hide his shoes, and conceal ourselves behind those bushes, and wait to see his perplexity when he cannot find them.""My young friend," answered the professor, "we should never amuse ourselves at the expense of the poor. But you are rich, and may give yourself a much greater pleasure by means of the poor man. Put a coin into each shoe, and then we will hide ourselves and watch how the discovery affects him."The student did so, and they both placed themselves behind the bushes close by.The poor man soon finished his work, and came across the field to the path where he had left his coat and shoes. While putting on his coat he slipped his foot into one of his shoes; but feeling something hard, he stooped down to feel what it was, and found the coin.Astonishment and wonder were seen upon his countenance. He gazed upon the coin, turned it round, and looked at it again and again. He then looked around him on all sides, but no person was to be seen. He now put the money into his pocket, and proceeded to put on the other shoe; but his surprise was doubled on finding the other coin.His feelings overcame him; he fell upon his knees, looked up to heaven and uttered aloud a fervent thanksgiving, in which he spoke of his wife, sick and helpless, and his children without bread, whom the timely bounty, from some unknown hand, would save from perishing.The student stood there deeply affected, and his eyes filled with tears. "Now," said the professor, "are you not much better pleased than if you had played your intended trick?"The youth replied, "You have taught me a lesson which I will never forget. I feel now the truth of those words, which I never understood before: 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"
Posted by Abayomi at 3:51 AM
Waiting upon the Lord is expecting His promised strength to help us rise above life's challenges.
Waiting on God
“But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” – Isaiah 40:31
About the time when most people in their mid-fifties were thinking ahead to retirement, my parents adopted two teenage boys from Vietnam. Scarred by the events in their early lives, my brothers came to us with many emotional wounds, and life around home was not always smooth as they tried to adjust to a completely new way of life. A conservative Christian home seemed confining, and at times they rebelled. While some parents would have become discouraged and perhaps wondered why they had ever taken such a drastic step at their age, Mom and Dad never wavered in their assurance that they were following God's leading.
In this situation, and in many others where problems were unresolved and prayers seemingly were unanswered, Dad's comment often was, “The last chapter isn't written yet.” Sometimes his words were tied to the verse in Isaiah 40:31, “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.” Dad had faith that God was still at work.
A study of the word wait reveals that it has a connotation of patience, rather than just marking time. And I believe the strength that is promised goes beyond physical endurance, but includes emotional and spiritual help as well.
Notice that the admonition is to wait “upon the Lord.” I believe that means we are to patiently await the fulfillment of His promises. Waiting upon the Lord is expecting His promised strength to help us rise above life's challenges, and keeping our eyes of faith fixed upon Him rather than circumstances.
Today, as a parent and grandparent, I find myself quoting Dad's statement quite often. There is an undercurrent of faith and hope woven through those simple words. God isn't done. He does hear my prayers. He is still working, though perhaps behind the scenes. The picture could be entirely different around the next bend.
May God help us all to wait upon Him, for as we do, the answer we need is sure to come.
Posted by Abayomi at 3:49 AM
A lot of people don't associate sex with God - they associate it with Satan and darkness, as if sex weren't holy. The bible is explicit when it comes to sex. Sex is holy within marriage, and there is no prescribed style. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that the missionary position is the only sexual style. Not discussing sex in a relationship leads to divorce!!!!!.Pastor Khathide has counselled women who've complained: my husbandtreats me as if I were his brother. There was one who told him: I am tired of getting sex fortnightly, like a salary. Khathide told her she was luckyto be getting sex fortnightly, since some wives only get it on big days,like elections. Many husbands leave their wives to seek sexual pleasures in Hillbrow. Have you ever asked yourself what those wives have that you don't. Wives have become very frigid and even sleep with their panties. If you're a married woman, you should sleep naked and let your bum touch your husband.Today you find men going out of their way to get a glimpse of a vagina.They page through magazines and even go to lingerie departments in stores hoping to see what's hidden under panties, because their wives hide it from them. Marriage is about being free with your body in front of your partner. A woman should parade naked and do some modeling to tempt her husband.There are many married women who don't know what their husbands' penises look like. They only feel it when he entersher. They've never switches off the lights before undressing. A penis is a wife's toy - she is supposed to play with it. He blames couples for not making time for sex and complaining about being tired after a day's work. You find many couples who've been sexually starved for years. God created sex for procreation and also for pleasure.You can't marry and not have a good time in bed. WHO SAID YOU CAN ONLY HAVE SEX AT NIGHT? Why can't you drive home during lunch and have a quickie with your wife? We're all equal in sex - it's not just about a woman satisfying a man.You have to satisfy each other. Have you ever seen a woman who hasbeen satisfied? Have u noticed how she glows and becomes energetic?May the Lord Bless you. This is the "Whole Truth, Nothing But The Truth"So God Help Us From The Beginning.Once you read this letter you have to keep it going. This game has been played since 1996. You must send this letter to 7 people.On the 5th day someone will ask you out or say "I love you." This is not a joke. It has worked for many years. If you break the chain, you will have bad luck with guys/girls forever. This is just for future readers. This began in 1996,not much of a past, but it works. So here are the rules:If you read this on a Sunday,wish for a good weekIf you read this on a Monday, wish for moneyIf you read this on a Tuesday, wish for loveIf you read this on a Wednesday, wish for successIf you read this on a Thursday, wish for anythingyou want If you read this on a Friday, wish for a really hot dateIf you read this on a Saturday, wish for an important phone call
Posted by Abayomi at 3:25 AM
HUSBANDS ON SALE!!!
A Store that sells husbands has just opened in F.C.T where awoman may go to choose a husband.Among the instructions at the entrance is a description of how thestore operates:"You may ONLY visit the store ONCE!"There are 6 floors in the building and the attributes of the men ondisplay increase as the shopper ascends the flights.There is, however, a catch . . . You may choose any man from aparticular floor, or you may choose to go up the next floor, but you cannot changeyour mind and go back the lower floor to select except to exit thebuilding!So, a woman goes to the Husband Store to find a husband. The sign onthe door of the first floor reads:Floor 1 - These men have jobs and love the Lord.The second floor sign reads:Floor 2 - These men have jobs, love the Lord, and love kids.The third floor sign reads:Floor 3 - These men have jobs, love the Lord, love kids, and areextremely good looking."Wow," she thinks, but feels compelled to keep going.She goes to the fourth floor and sign reads:Floor 4 - These men have jobs, love the Lord, love kids, are drop-deadgood-looking and help with house works."Oh, mercy me!" she exclaims, "I can hardly stand it" Still, she goesto the fifth floor and the sign reads:Floor 5 - These men have jobs, love the Lord, love kids, are drop-deadgorgeous, help with house works, and have a strong romantic streak.She is so tempted to stay, but she goes to the sixth floor and the signreads:Floor 6 - You are visitor 4,363,222 (four million, three hundred andsixty-three thousand, two hundred and twenty-two) to this floor. Thereare no men on this floor. This floor exists solely as proof that WOMEN areIMPOSSIBLE to please.Thank you for shopping at the Husband Store. Watch your step as youexit the building, and have a nice day!
Please send this to all men for a good laugh and to all the women who
Posted by Abayomi at 3:16 AM
It is my pleasure to welcome everyone to this important briefing on the ‘Strategic Agenda for the Naira’. As you may recall, it is about three years since we launched (in this very Auditorium on July 6, 2004) the 13-point reform agenda designed to restructure, refocus and strengthen the Nigerian banking and financial system. At that meeting, I observed that the agenda constituted ‘Phase One’ of the reforms. We have since introduced other complementary reforms designed to stabilize the exchange rate, reduce inflation, reform microfinance, restructure the lower denominations of our currency and re-introduce coins, as well as promote the efficiency of the payments system. We have also launched the design of a comprehensive long-term reform agenda for the financial system (the Financial System Strategy 2020 ---FSS2020).All these reforms are driven by our medium and long-term objectives to ensure economic prosperity of Nigeria, and for Nigeria to become the Africa’s financial hub by the year 2020. Only a sustained stable macroeconomic environment and a sound and vibrant financial system can propel the economy to achieve our national desire to become one of the 20 largest economies in the world by the year 2020.The Strategic Agenda for the Naira is therefore being launched today as ‘Phase Two’ of our reform agenda, and as a necessary complement to the 13-point agenda of Phase One and other reforms. Phase Two of the reforms has become all the more imperative given the progress so far on Phase One, as well as the emphasis of the new Central Bank of Nigeria Act on ensuring monetary and price stability. According to the “Central Bank of Nigeria Act, 2007”, (Section 2) the key objects of the Central Bank shall be to: (a) ensure monetary and price stability; (b) issue legal tender currency in Nigeria; (c) maintain external reserves to safeguard the international value of the legal tender currency; (d) promote a sound financial system in Nigeria; and (e) act as banker and provide economic and financial advice to the Federal Government. The Phase Two, by focusing on the Naira, means that the Central Bank intends to give greater emphasis to the most important function of central banks everywhere in the world namely, to issue legal tender currency and to defend its value (domestically by ensuring low inflation and externally by ensuring appropriate and stable exchange rate regime). Our specific objective in Phase Two of the reforms is to make the Naira the currency of reference in Africa, and thus a strategic catalyst for achieving the goal of an international financial centre as well as promoting Nigeria’s rapid economic development. We also need the Phase Two to ensure that the results being achieved under Phase One are deepened and sustained.
II: Overview of the Reforms since 2004 and OutcomesBefore we outline the elements of the Strategic Agenda, it is germane to briefly review our progress so far. As you are aware, most of our reforms have focused on structural and institutional reforms, and have included the following:• Strengthened the institutional framework for the conduct of monetary policy• Bank recapitalization/ consolidation • Programme to possibly eliminate or reduce government ownership of any bank (to no more than 10 percent)• Improved transparency and corporate governance • Zero tolerance to misreporting and data rendition, and strict adherence to the Anti-money laundering regulations• Implementation of Basel II Principles and Risk-based supervision• Payments system reforms for efficiency-- -- especially the e-payment• Reforming the Exchange rate management system--- adoption of the Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS) and increased liberalization of the forex market (which since 2006 led to the convergence of the parallel and official exchange rates for the first time in 20 years).• Restructuring the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting, Plc;• Addressing issues of technology and skills in the banking industry especially in risk management and ICT.• Launching of a new Micro finance policy and regulatory framework to serve the un-served 65 percent of the bankable public• Ongoing Pension, Consumer credit, and Mortgage system reforms• Forging strategic alliances and partnerships between Nigerian banks and foreign financial institutions especially in the area of reserve/asset management• Establishment of Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), as first private-sector led African Investment Bank• Encouragement of Nigerian banks to go global, leading to more than doubling of branch network in West Africa since 2004; setting up of subsidiaries in London as well as Nigerian banks successfully issuing Eurobonds and getting listed on the London Stock Exchange.Our grand objective in the banking sector reforms was to re-engineer and fast-track a system that will engender confidence and power a new economy. So far, the grand objectives of that policy are being achieved, and our consolidation programme has been adjudged about the most successful and at least cost to the tax payers in the world. The total deposits trapped in the failed banks as percentage of GDP is about 0.7% (the lowest in the world), and no private sector depositor would lose a kobo of his/her deposit. The banking system is the safest and soundest it has ever been in history. Deposits and credits have more than doubled, and non-performing loans as percentage of total loans have gone down from about 23% before consolidation to about 7% currently. Individual banks now finance big projects valued at hundreds of millions of dollars and also operate in the oil and gas sector --- a feat they never could do before now. Interest rates are gradually coming down (with average lending rate at about 16.9%, down from 25%). Currently, commercial bank branches have gone up from about 3,200 before reforms to over 4,100, and total employment in the sector has gone up from about 55,000 before reforms to over 61,000 currently. The world is celebrating Nigeria’s success, and over $1.5 billion of foreign investment has gone into the sector since 2005. By end 2007, there will be about 7 or more banks with shareholders fund in excess of $1 billion and over 10 banks with market capitalization of over $2 billion each (there was none in 2004). In 2004, there was no Nigerian bank in the top 1000 banks in the world. As at the end of 2006, there were 12 banks in the top 1000, with one ranked 355th (top 500 in the world). Our banking system is powering the Nigerian Stock Exchange. Today, Nigeria has the fastest growing banking system in Africa, and one of the fastest in the world. As seasoned commentators have observed, it has taken Nigeria less than three years to achieve what it took South Africa 20 years to achieve in the area of banking. To put it succinctly, a new banking system has emerged, and will only get stronger for the benefit of the Nigerian economy. We firmly believe that with the sustenance of the reforms as the CBN is determined to do, the best is yet to come.On the macroeconomic front, double-digit and volatile inflation rate (which used to be the norm) have been subdued as inflation rate has remained at single-digit since last year. However, inflation risks remain high. The Naira/US dollar exchange rate has remained stable (with steady appreciation of Naira against the dollar) since 2004, and the GDP has maintained a robust growth rate of over 6% per annum since 2003.
III: Matters Arising and Challenges AheadDespite progress on a number of fronts, there are still enormous challenges and unfinished business. At the economy-wide level, there are still chronic challenges of insecurity of lives and property, infrastructure deficiency (especially power and transportation) , education crisis, among others. At the level of the financial system, we have the huge task of effectively implementing the FSS 2020. There is still the risk of fiscal dominance and volatility in the fiscal operations of government. Evolving Fiscal Responsibility arrangements and framework for managing highly volatile oil revenues will be critical. Other unfinished business in the reforms includes:• Risk-based, consolidated and strengthened banking supervision• Mortgage, SME, and consumer credit reforms• Adherence of States and LGs to the requirement under the Micro Finance policy to devote at least 1 percent of their annual budget to micro credit• Continued reform of the payments system, especially the e-payments system and enforcement of the Dud cheque offences Act.Efforts will continue to be made to address these unfinished issues.
IV: The Strategic Agenda
The thrust of the agenda focuses on the Naira as our national currency---- to realign its denominations, ensure its stability and global integration. These will help to deepen the reforms of the financial system and national economy, and make the Naira the currency of reference in Africa thereby facilitating our quest for international financial status.The new focus is an extension of our previous currency redesign and re-issuance of the lower denominations and attempt to re-introduce coins. Our goals were to redesign the currencies after 23 years (contrary to the international norm of currency redesign after 6- 8 years), drive down the cost of currency printing and experiment with the polymer substrate. Our objectives are largely achieved and we have learnt a lot from the exercise. However, in the light of the new mandate by the CBN Act (2007) to ‘ensure monetary and price stability’, as well as the vision articulated under the FSS 2020, it has become imperative for us to evolve a more comprehensive strategy for the Naira as a reference currency.Currency redenomination and liberalization are not without risks especially for small open economies such as Nigeria. However, we believe that the time is auspicious for such reforms especially in the light of the following enabling conditions:• Overall commitment of the Federal Government under Alhaji Umaru Musa Yar’Adua (GCFR) to sustaining macroeconomic and other structural reforms• a robust external reserves to meet almost 20 months of foreign exchange disbursements and 25 months of imports• Stronger banking system powering a new economy and capital market• Inflation down to single digit, and robust GDP growth of about 6% and above• Exchange rate stability and elimination of multiple currency practices that had been prevalent before now• Strong capital inflows (with Central Bank as increasingly marginal player in the forex market)• Debt relief: Nigeria without a debt burden• Non-oil exports growing strongly (24% in 2006)• Nigeria de-listed from the FATF listNew CBN Act not permitting CBN to grant ways and means advances to Government exceeding 5% of previous year’s revenue provided such financing is retired before end of the financial year. Indeed, CBN is not positively disposed to granting any ways and means advances.It is in the view of the foregoing enabling conditions, and our vision for a Naira that is the currency of reference in Africa that the Board of Directors of the Central Bank of Nigeria has approved the following agenda for the Naira:
A: Currency Re-DenominationHere, we intend to restructure the entire currency by dropping two zeroes or moving two decimal points to the left from the currency, and issuing more coin denominations. This would entail a total currency exchange and phasing-out of all the existing denominations from August 1, 2008. Effectively, at the current exchange rate, this policy would mean that the Naira/US dollar exchange rate would be around N1.25 to US$1 then. All Naira assets, prices and contracts will be re-denominated by dropping two zeroes or two decimal points to the left with effect from this date.The proposed currency structure is as follows:COINS: 1 kobo, 2 kobo, 5 kobo, 10 kobo, 20 koboNOTES:50 kobo, 1 Naira, 5 Naira, 10 Naira, 20 Naira Effectively, our plan will restore the value of the Naira (in the short-term) close to what it was in 1985 before the commencement of the Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) in 1986.Re-denomination and re-introduction of totally new currency structure (notes and coins) following the progress so far with other reforms and the enabling conditions in the economy today are designed to better anchor inflationary expectations, strengthen public confidence in the Naira, make for easier conversion to other currencies, reverse tendency for currency substitution, eliminate higher denomination notes with lower value, reduce the cost of production, distribution and processing of currency, promote the usage of coins and thus a more efficient pricing and payments system, and lay the foundation for the convertibility of the Naira as well as make it the ‘Reference currency’ in Africa. The African Union has granted Nigeria the right to host the Headquarters of the African Central Bank when the common currency in Africa materializes. We must therefore lead the way in terms of properly aligned currency structure and sound monetary policy framework.Several countries in the world have undertaken currency re-denomination at various times and for different reasons, including: Afghanistan (2002); Germany (1923, 1948); Argentina (1970; 1983; 1985; 1992); Bolivia (1963, 1987); Brazil (1967, 1970, 1986, 1989, 1990, 1993, 1994); China (1955); South Korea (1962); Mexico (1993, 1996); Ghana (2007); Israel (1948, 1960, 1980, 1985); Turkey (2005); Angola (1995, 1999); and others. Evidently, many countries have had to undertake the re-denomination more than once. In the case of Brazil, it had to do it many times before it got it right. The major challenge is to undertake other complementary reforms, particularly macroeconomic reforms that will underpin price stability and continuing confidence in the economy. This is where we believe Nigeria’s experience is likely to be different from others, having learnt from the experiences of other countries.Consequently, as necessary complements to the currency re-denomination, we intend to introduce three additional measures:• Adoption of Inflation-Targeting Framework for the conduct of monetary policy;• Sharing Part of the Federation Account in US Dollars to deepen the Forex Market and for Liquidity Management• Current Account Liberalization/ Co-nvertibility and Accession to Article VIII of the IMF.
B: Adoption of Inflation-Targeting Framework for the Conduct of Monetary Policy: to commence from January 1, 2009.
In the light of the new mandate as contained in the new CBN Act (2007) urging the CBN to “ensure monetary and price stability” as well as the need to provide a transparent, credible framework to lock-in inflationary expectations, the CBN will adopt inflation target as the nominal anchor for monetary policy with effect from January 1, 2009. Low and stable inflation will be our monetary policy’s primary long-term goal. Focusing on inflation targeting does not mean that the CBN will not be interested in other broader objectives of macroeconomic policy--- output growth, employment, exchange rate, and balance of payments. Rather, an inflation-targeting framework will enable CBN to pursue these objectives in a more disciplined and consistent manner rather than the ad-hoc processes of the past. Locking-in inflationary expectations is one effective way of ensuring that the currency re-denomination will be sustainable. The outcome of this new framework will greatly improve the credibility of the CBN as the Monetary Authority, as well as deepen the financial markets and promote rapid development of a private sector-led economy.We will use the next 16 months to fully prepare for the introduction of this framework especially in the light of the deep technical issues involved. The CBN would collaborate with the National Bureau of Statistics in significantly improving the availability of high frequency and reliable data especially those of the GDP and more robust measures of the price indices.
C: Sharing Part of the Federation Account Allocation in US Dollars to Deepen the Forex Market and for Liquidity Management: to commence from September 2007.
Given the structure and development of the financial system, the underdeveloped nature of the Forex markets, as well as the restrictions on foreign exchange transactions, the CBN has traditionally fully monetized the foreign currency receipts in the Federation Accounts, to be shared by the three tiers of government. Initially, the CBN also maintained the accounts for all the tiers of government-- - as part of the liquidity management framework. Subsequently, as the banking system developed, the CBN allowed the share of the states and LGs to be deposited with the commercial banks.Recently, following the reforms in the banking sector and the further liberalization of the Forex market, both the financial system and the forex market have deepened and become increasingly sophisticated. Since 2006, the CBN adopted the Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS) in the forex market and significantly liberalized the forex market. Furthermore, Nigeria has exited the debt trap, built up significant external reserves, and the autonomous inflows into the Forex market are such that the CBN has become a marginal player in the forex market. The forex market has become so efficient that Nigeria no longer has multiple currency practices (as defined by the IMF). In the last two years also, the CBN has consistently intervened in the forex market through the increased sale of foreign exchange as an instrument of liquidity management (the so-called special auctions). In December 2006, the CBN introduced the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) with the corridor, and this has eliminated the high volatility in the money market interest rates. The money market is deepening, and the bond market is also evolving.The above conditions indicate that the private financial markets are getting deeper and sophisticated enough to warrant further steps on the part of the Central Bank to gradually withdraw as a dominant player in the forex market. The inter-bank forex market is now the dominant segment of the market, and needs to be deepened. Consequently, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the CBN has approved the sharing of part of the Federation Account allocation to the Federal Government and the State Governments in US dollars. The Local Governments are excluded in this phase. For the Central Bank, this could also provide an additional instrument for effective liquidity management as we migrate to inflation-targeting framework.The proportion of the Federation Account to be distributed in dollars will be determined from time to time, but largely dependent on the assessment of the forex market as well as the liquidity management requirements of the CBN. Both the States and Federal Government will be required to open ‘Special Domiciliary Accounts’ with commercial banks of their choice. The special account can only be accessed by monetizing the balances into Naira. In other words, the Governments cannot withdraw dollar cash but may also utilize part of their domiciliary accounts for settlement of external obligations (e.g. opening of letters of credit). From September 2007, the exchange rate that will be applied in the monetization of Federation Account as well as the ‘Special Domiciliary Accounts’ will be the inter-bank rate on that day.As the market deepens, the CBN will gradually withdraw from the WDAS, and only intervene in the market (buy or sell forex) as may be required to achieve defined policy objectives. This new policy thrust is expected to deepen the forex market, promote financial market development, and improve the degree of integration among the domestic markets and with international markets. This policy will complement the ongoing programme of allowing Nigerian banks to manage part of our external reserves in collaboration with foreign asset managers. The net effect of these will be to create and deepen capacity within our banks. All these will also provide important building blocks for the external current account convertibility and attainment of the IMF Article VIII status. The challenge here is that both the CBN and the commercial banks would have to manage the risks inherent in foreign exchange trading and deploy a sound system of monitoring foreign asset-liability matching. The CBN in particular, would need to sharpen its skills to monitor and regulate the use of domiciliary accounts in accordance with the international best practices as well as the rules and guidelines governing the anti-money laundering laws and regulations. The Governments too would need to be on top of the risk management techniques for optimal management of their portfolios.The CBN is conscious of the risks of dollarization of the economy and will take steps to avoid such. Also, we are conscious of the dangers of the Dutch Disease and hence the need to avoid the repeat of history in terms of high overvaluation of the Naira in real effective terms as happened during the 1970s until early 1980s. Non-oil exports have begun to recover and grew by 24% in 2006. Also, capital inflows have been growing rapidly and highly overvalued exchange rate would hurt these trends. More fundamentally, without a currency re-denomination/ realignment, a significant appreciation of the Naira/dollar exchange rate would lead to fiscal crisis given that much of the revenue is dollar denominated, and such appreciation would also significantly deplete our external reserves. Thus, while we deepen the forex market and effectively manage our liquidity, we would not lose focus on ensuring appropriate exchange rate regime for macroeconomic balance.
D: Current Account Liberalization/ Convertibility and Accession to Article VIII of the IMF: to commence January 1, 2009As a necessary complement to the foregoing policy initiatives, and to further deepen the integration of our financial system and economy into the global economy, we intend to embark upon full current account liberalization/ convertibility by January 1, 2009. This would entail that Nigeria eliminates all restrictions on current account transactions, and accession to Article VIII of the IMF means that the policy is not easily reversible. Out of the 185 member countries of the IMF, 167 have acceded to the Article VIII on current account convertibility. It is our belief that the conditions are right for Nigeria to now join the world league. The timing is proposed to coincide with the commencement of the inflation-targeting framework.
V: ConclusionThese measures constitute a key component of the FSS 2020 agenda: our quest to become an international financial centre and Africa’s financial hub. They will complement and deepen the ongoing financial system reforms. The conditions are now right, and despite the challenges, we are determined to ensure effective design and implementation.Furthermore, we are working towards greater transparency in the formulation and implementation of our monetary policy. A new Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) will soon be reconstituted in accordance with the new CBN Act, and Minutes of the MPC shall be made public. We also intend to undertake greater public education about what we do and why we do them the way we do.Are these policies consistent with the drive towards a single currency in West Africa? Yes: Nigeria remains committed towards the ECOWAS goal. Currently, the Nigerian economy constitutes about 70 percent of the entire ECOWAS economy and accounts for about 80 percent of the total external reserves. It therefore goes without saying that if the Naira is properly aligned and can become the ‘Reference Currency’, the goal of a monetary union becomes all the more credible and sustainable. Nigeria has met all the primary convergence criteria and hopes that the other countries will do same on a sustained basis. In the meantime, Nigeria must continue to make progress.
Posted by Abayomi at 3:00 AM
How The ‘Big Bang’ Will Affect YouFrom Paul Ibe in Abuja, 08.15.2007
How will the new monetary regime rolled out by the CBN yesterday affect Nigerians is the million Naira question resonating in the minds of its citizens and foreigners alike. Although the new monetary regime will be effective August 1, 2008, the days and months ahead will be crucial. A picture of how this new regime will impact on the lives of Nigerians, and how individuals, organisations and the system will respond to the challenges of this revolutionary policy will soon begin to crystallise.However, one thing is certain: the Naira will shrink, but the value will go up one thousand per cent. On August 1, 2008 all currencies and coins will change with the highest denomination of currency being N20. All prices for goods and services including those for labour and food will move two decimal points to the left. What this means is that on that date, if you go to the bank to change N50,000, you will get N500. If you earn N200,000, your salary will translate to N2,000 while your house rent of N419,000 will now be N4,190. Your plate of meal at a restaurant, which used to be N2,000 will now be priced at N20 while the N130 price tag for your favourite loaf of bread will now sell at N1.30k.A consequence of this is that the nation’s billionaires may be downgraded to millionaires, its millionaires will now occupy the ‘thounsandnaire’ spot, while the latter will now become ‘hundrednaires.’ Effectively, Nigerians will be spared the ordeal of bulky sums, which before the advent of bigger denominations have been transported via all manner of means including cartons. The new CBN policy will usher in a new regime of pricing of goods and services. By ensuring that the Naira becomes a currency of value and a currency to hold, the likely scenario is that people will stop pricing goods and services in US Dollars. Those goods and services that will be affected may include hotel room rates, house rents, airline tickets and a number of others things. An immediate impact on the forex market is a run on US Dollars, as most people in the hope of getting more value for their money will begin to trade in their US Dollars. So, in the days ahead, the Naira may begin to firm up against the US Dollars. In the new order, if you store value in US Dollars, you will certainly lose value. In the same vein people who price goods and services in US Dollars will continue to get lower quantities of Naira. But may be we should have read CBN Governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo’s lips last year when he said that Naira is the currency to hold. He had made the prophetic(?) saying against the backdrop of the convergence of the parallel and the official markets.This will no doubt spell the final death knell to parallel market operators otherwise known as black market. It will no longer be profitable for them to trade in forex as the margin will not guarantee any meaningful gains. With time, CBN will gradually withdraw from its interventions in inter-bank market and proper trading in forex will evolve between banks and dealers. Because the new currency regime will be simple to exchange, simple to denominate, simple to store and above all have value, it will become a reference currency to which other currencies can be benchmarked in the African region. To this end, the dream of making the Naira the currency of the West African sub-region may yet be realised.There is no doubt that the Naira has for several years been insulated and shielded from all of these things that would have ushered a new dawn. But the realignment of the value of the Naira, the deliberate attempt to ensure its stability and convertibility would in great measure facilitate global integration.On the take off date of the new policy, the Naira will nearly be at par with the US Dollars. N1.25k will exchange for US$1. This was what the exchange rate was before the advent of the Structural Adjustment Programme. It means that in nominal terms, nothing will change, but with inflationary targeting, the Naira will gain value.But there may yet be a downside to this new monetary regime, as it concerns budgets for all tiers of government. Assuming the Naira appreciates so much against the US Dollars. The price of the nation’s crude oil, which is still a major component of its earnings, will become expensive. If the product is too expensive, buyers may be forced to source for it elsewhere. Consequently, there will be less income and less money for the Federal Government, the states and local governments to share. This situation will certainly make nonsense of their budgets. So what is the way out of this scenario: recourse to internally generated revenue (IGR) and taxation. These two elements will not be subject to the volatility of the forex market and the demand and supply of crude oil. Experience has shown that in the new world order, taxation and improved fiscal regime and not recourse to export proceeds is the way forward.The consequence of this new monetary regime on investments is that it will further attract foreign direct investments (FDI), as Nigeria will become a preferred investment destination following improved value on the Naira.
Posted by Abayomi at 2:53 AM