Governors Steal LG Funds, Says Buhari 

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday indicated that governors steal from local government council allocations.

The President, who spoke extempore after delivering his speech at the presidential parley for members of the Senior Executive Course 44 (2022) of the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) at the State House, underscored that personal integrity is fundamental in the operations of government.

FILE: Buhari at the third ministerial review in Abuja on Monday, October 17th, 2022. [email protected]

 

He recalled an instance of how a state governor would receive allocation on behalf of council areas in his state only to remit half of such allocation to the council chairmen.

“If the money from the Federal Government to the States is about N100 million, N50 million will be sent to the Chairman but he will sign that he received N100 million. The Governor will pocket the balance and share it with whoever he wants to share it with,” Buhari said.

“And then the Chairman of the local government must see how much he must pay in salaries and to hell with development. When he pays the salaries of the bigman, the balance he will put in his pocket.

“This is what’s happening. This is Nigeria. It’s a terrible thing; you cannot say the person who was doing this is not educated.”

READ ALSO: Some CBN, NPA Workers Earn More Than Buhari – RMAFC

These actions, he said, portrayed the sort of corrupt practices that is now symptomatic of Nigeria in dispensing resources meant for local council administrations, thereby undermining development.

Buhari, in his address, congratulated the members of the Senior Executive Course 44 on the successful completion of their course. He challenged them to revitalise and reinvigorate leadership at the various levels of establishments.

Court Nullifies Abia APGA Gov Primary, Orders Fresh Election

A file photo of the emblem of APGA.

 

Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court Abuja has nullified the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) Governorship Primary held on May 29, 2022 in Abia State.

The judge subsequently ordered that a fresh primary be conducted within 14 days.

Justice Nyako made the order in a judgement on a suit by Chikwe Udensi, challenging the outcome of the APGA governorship primary purportedly won by Greg Ibe.

READ ALSO: Court Affirms Adebutu As PDP Gov Candidate In Ogun

The judge observed that from the evidence and testimonies of witnesses, the May 29 APGA governorship primary in Abia was “flawed and marred by irregularities”.

Udensi lost to Ibe at the APGA primary but headed to court to challenge the outcome of the election. Specifically, Udensi had urged the court to declare him winner of the APGA governorship primary or in the alternative, order for conduct of a fresh election.

Adamu: NANS To Stage Nationwide Protest Against Aisha Buhari Monday

Aminu Adamu

 

The National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) has condemned the detention of Aminu Adamu over an alleged defamatory post made against the wife of the President, Mrs Aisha Buhari.

NANS President, Usman Barambu, in a statement on Thursday, demanded the unconditional release of the student of the Federal University Dutse.

He also announced a nationwide protest for Monday, December 5, 2022 to press home the demand of the students’ body.

“Sequel to the exhaustion of all options available to us before confrontation in seeking the freedom of one of us who was arrested in questionable manner, tortured, molested, harassed and detained by agents of government, you are hereby notified of the decision of the leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students to proceed on a nationwide protest,” the NANS president said in a memo to the organs of the association.

“We have consulted and consolidated and neither yielded desirable results in seeking the freedom of AMINU ADAMU MUHAMMED, student of the Federal University Dutse hence the protest shall commence as follows: Monday 5th December, 2022 Nationwide.

READ ALSO: ‘Patience Jonathan Didn’t Arrest Her Critics’: Monday Ubani Faults Aisha Buhari

Barambu specifically said the protest is against Mrs Buhari and the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Usman Baba, noting that the demonstration will continue until the student is released.

Adamu, a final year student in the Department of Environmental Management and Taxocology, at the Federal University Dutse, Jigawa, was alleged to have made the post criticising Mrs Buhari. He was arrested in November.

Justice Halilu Yusuf of the Federal Capital Territory High Court later remanded him at the Suleja Correctional Centre in Niger State for cyber stalking.

Meanwhile, the reported arrest of Adamu has caused a social media storm with thousands of users calling for his release. Also, global rights group, Amnesty International has demanded the student’s release.

Alleged Defamation: Court Remands Student For Tweet Against Aisha Buhari

L-R: A photo collage of Aminu Adamu and Aisha Buhari

 

Justice Halilu Yusuf of the Federal Capital Territory High Court  has remanded one Aminu Adamu, a student of the Federal University, Dutse Jigawa, at the Suleja Correctional Centre in Niger State after tweeting about the wife of the President, Mrs Aisha Buhari.

The student was arraigned for cyber stalking, where he was denied bail despite pleading not guilty to the charges filed against him.

Mohammed, a 500-level student who was allegedly arrested by security officials on the orders of Mrs Buhari a few days ago, had in June tweeted in Hausa that the President’s wife was feeding fat on poor people’s money.

Justice Halilu ordered the defendant to be remanded in Suleja Prison pending the hearing and determination of his bail application.

READ ALSO: ‘Patience Jonathan Didn’t Arrest Her Critics’: Monday Ubani Faults Aisha Buhari

The charges against the defendant partly read, “That you Aminu Adamu, male of Anguwar Sarakuna, Bauch, Bauchi state sometime between May – June 2022 within the jurisdiction of this Honorable court did intentionally open a Twitter Handle with the name @aminullahie and wrote on it in Hausa language ‘Su mama anchi kudi talakawa ankoshi’ roughly translated to the English language to mean ‘mama has embezzled monies meant for the poor to satisfaction’ and posted same on your above Twitter handle for the members of the public to read, knowing same to be false and capable of affecting her reputation. You thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 391 of the penal code.”

FG Accuses Marketers Of Hoarding, Says No Plan To Hike Petrol Price

In this file photo, vehicles queue for fuel in Abuja on March 1, 2021.

 

Amid the biting fuel scarcity experienced across the nation, the Federal Government has cautioned petrol marketers to stop hoarding Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) popularly known as petrol.

The government, in a statement through the Nigerian Midstream And Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), also said there is no plan to increase the price of the indispensable commodity.

“The Authority wishes to inform the public that the Federal Government has no intention of increasing the price of PMS during this period,” the statement read.

“The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd) has continued to import PMS with current stock levels sufficient for 34 days.

“Consequently, marketers are strongly advised to avoid hoarding of petroleum products, while the general public is advised to avoid panic buying. Marketers found hoarding petroleum products will be sanctioned appropriately.”

The authority assures the public that it would continue to monitor the supply and distribution of all petroleum products nationwide especially during the Yuletide season.

READ ALSO: Oshiomhole Blames Fuel Scarcity On PDP’s 16-Year Rule

For weeks, vehicle owners especially in Lagos and Abuja have had a tough time getting petrol from filling stations. Whilst many outlets are closed, the few ones that are open sell the indispensable commodity for as high as N250 per litre from the uniform price of N169/litre.

The shortage of supply has led to long, grueling snake-like queues at the few open filling stations as motorists and business owners jostle to buy fuel while others resort to black market. The situation has also worsen traffic on major roads as vehicle owners block at least one lane to join queues to filling stations.

Meanwhile, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) said its members get the essential product for as high as over N200 per litre from private depot owners.

APC Supporters Hold Rally For Tinubu In Lagos

APC supporters in Lagos on Thursday

 

The Bola Ahmed Tinubu Campaign Organisation (BATCO Mandate) on Thursday organised a solidarity walk for the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu in Lagos.

The group members in their signature white and orange branded cap and t-shirt gathered around the kick-off point in Bank Anthony Road, Ikeja Lagos as early as 8am on Thursday.

The group consisting of party supporters from all the local governments in the state, took off from Anthony, with the rally expected to terminate at Ojota.

READ ALSO: Court Affirms Adebutu As PDP Gov Candidate In Ogun

A heavy traffic gridlock has also built around the Ikeja axis even as traffic management officials are working to manage the situation.

Tinubu is in the race alongside top contenders like Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peter Obi of the Labour Party (LP).

Court Affirms Adebutu As PDP Gov Candidate In Ogun

Oladipupo Adebutu

 

Justice Inyang Ekwo of the Federal High Court in Abuja has affirmed Oladipupo Adebutu as the winner of the Ogun State Governorship Primary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) after dismissing a suit by Jimi Lawal for lacking reliable and credible evidence.

Lawal, who contested the May 25 governorship primary election of PDP, had challenged the emergence of Adebutu, alleging that an invalid delegates list was fraudulently used by the PDP to conduct the election.

Lawal had prayed that the purported primary be cancelled and another conducted with the authentic ad hoc delegates.

[READ ALSO]  Alleged Defamation: Court Remands Student For Tweet Against Aisha Buhari

Delivering Judgement, Justice Ekwo described Lawal as a “spoiler”, having joined the PDP in March from the All Progressives Congress (APC) and participated in governorship primary held in May.

The court also held that the delegates list which Lawal challenged, is the same list approved by the PDP and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) which was used during the primaries which Adebutu emerged as the candidate of the party.

‘Patience Jonathan Didn’t Arrest Her Critics’: Monday Ubani Faults Aisha Buhari

A photo collage of Monday Ubani, Patience Jonathan, Aminu Adamu and Aisha Buhari

 

Human rights lawyer, Monday Ubani has criticised the wife of the President, Mrs Aisha Buhari over the reported arrest of Aminu Adamu for an alleged derogatory post on social media.

According to him, many Nigerians flayed Mrs Patience Jonathan during her husband’s tenure as Nigeria’s President from 2010 to 2015 but she didn’t arrest any of her detractors.

Ubani, who is the Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association Section on Public Interest and Development Law (SPIDEL) spoke on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme on Thursday.

 

 

He urged public officeholders and their spouses to be tolerant because people will always criticise them and their actions.

“The former President’s wife, Mrs Jonathan goes viral every time, she was called names (but) we never heard a situation where she ordered security agencies to arrest any person.

“As a public officer, you have to be tolerant, if you don’t have tolerance, you will need to arrest everyone because immediately they criticise you, the next thing is that you order the police or the DSS (Department of State Services) to arrest them,” Ubani said.

Although the police have denied arresting Adamu, the Federal University Dutse in Jigawa State and his parents confirmed that the student was arrested for making an alleged derogatory post about Mrs Buhari on social media.

Ubani, who said his team is working on the case, said, “The arrest was at the instance of the President’s wife and that has not been denied. He (Adamu) was secretly arraigned yesterday (Wednesday) and is now in a correctional centre and that has not been denied.

“I think that what has been said that the President’s wife has added some flesh, if you look at the woman when she came, she was looking slimmer but today, she has added flesh and that is the truth.”

The lawyer said the President’s wife should have asked the police to invite and interrogate Adamu in a civilised manner if she felt offended. “We cannot use a sledgehammer to kill a fly,” he noted.

Ubani said he used to appreciate Mrs Buhari because she tried to “side the masses but this act of hers, I condemn it unequivocally”.

“It is absolutely wrong, she has to release that young man. That is the only way we can forgive Mrs Aisha Buhari,” he said.

He stressed that the student must be released before Monday to commence his final-year examination.

Adamu, a final year student in the Department of Environmental Management and Taxocology, at the Federal University Dutse, Jigawa, was alleged to have made the post criticising Mrs Buhari. He was reportedly arrested in November.

Neither the President’s wife nor the Presidency has commented on the matter as of press time.

Meanwhile, the reported arrest of Adamu has caused a social media storm with thousands of users calling for his release. Also, global rights group, Amnesty International has demanded the student’s release.

Some CBN, NPA Workers Earn More Than Buhari – RMAFC

A photo collage of RMAFC Chairman, Mohammed Shehu and President Muhammadu Buhari

 

The Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC) says some public servants earn salaries bigger than that of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“The salary of Mr President is not up to N1,300,000 a month…the allowances of the President are factored into that salary. In 2008, that was considered a big money but now, there are people in the private sector and public sector that earn twice, three times, four times,” RMAFC Chairman, Mohammed Shehu said on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily on Thursday.

Shehu precisely said some staff of government agencies like the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), amongst others, earn emoluments bigger than the President’s. The NPA is one of the agencies with high revenues. It generated over N172bn in the first half of 2022.

 

 

17 Different Salary Categories?

According to him, Nigeria has about 17 different salary categories across several agencies. He, therefore, proposed the regularisation of the salary schemes for the civil service, saying no public official should earn more than the President.

“What I was saying that time is that no public servant should earn salaries bigger than Mr President’s but we do have public servants that earn bigger than Mr President: NCC, NIMASA, NPA, Central Bank,” he said.

The RMAFC chair also said some government officials get as high as N500m as their severance package but the President gets N10m after his tenure.

READ ALSO: Buhari Approves Salary Increment For Judicial Officers

Furthermore, he noted that his commission will soon implement the upward review of the salaries of judicial officers and subsequently review salaries of public officers to reflect current socio-economic realities.

Asked whether the government can afford to increase salaries at the moment, he bemoaned a situation where some government agencies spend all the monies they generate, saying there are up to N7 trillion unremitted revenues in some agencies. He, therefore, tasked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to go after the culpable agencies.

Shehu also urged the Federal Government to speedily implement the Steve Oronsaye report submitted over a decade ago in order to merge government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) performing similar functions as a way to cut governance cost.

Court Orders Arrest Of COAS For Contempt

File Photo of the Chief of Army Staff, General Farouk Yahaya.

 

A High Court Sitting in Minna, the Niger State Capital, has issued a warrant of arrest on the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Faruk Yahaya for contempt.

Also to be arrested include Commandant Training and Doctrine Command, Minna, Major General Olugbenga Olabanji for a similar offense.

The presiding judge, Justice Halima Abdulmalik said the order followed upon hearing on motion on notice brought before the court in pursuant of order forty two rule ten of the Niger State High Court Civil procedure 2018.

Justice Abdulmalik ruled that the order is commuting Yahaya and Olabanji to be kept in Minna correctional custody for contentions of order of this court on 12 October, 2022.

According to her, the two suspects are to remain in custody until they purge themselves of the contempt.

Justice Abdulmalik then adjourned the case to December 8 for continuation.

READ ALSO: Controversy Surrounds ‘Arrest’ Of Jigawa Student For Criticising Aisha Buhari

In November, Justice Mobolaji Olajuwon of the Federal High Court, Abuja sentenced the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Usman Baba to three months in prison for disobeying a court order.

Delivering ruling, Justice Olajuwon issued the order following a suit filed by a former police officer, Patrick Okoli who claimed he was unlawfully and compulsorily retired from the Nigeria Police Force.

Also in November, Justice Chizoba Oji of a High Court Abuja convicted the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa for contempt and ordered that he should be committed to prison at Kuje Correctional Centre, Abuja.

The judge held that Bawa was in contempt of the order of the court made on November 21, 2018, directing the commission to return to an applicant, his Range Rover and the sum of N40 million.

However, Justice Oji in a subsequent ruling set aside the conviction of Bawa after hearing an application brought by the EFCC chairman.

Mexico Exit World Cup On Goal Difference Despite Beating Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s midfielder #23 Mohamed Kanno (C) fights for the ball with Mexico’s midfielder #24 Luis Chavez (R) during the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group C football match between Saudi Arabia and Mexico at the Lusail Stadium in Lusail, north of Doha on November 30, 2022. (Photo by Alfredo ESTRELLA / AFP)

 

Mexico suffered an agonising exit from the World Cup on goal difference on Wednesday despite beating Saudi Arabia 2-1 in a dramatic finale to Group C.

Second-half goals from Henry Martin and Luis Chavez secured victory for Mexico but they finished third behind Poland after Salem Al-Dawsari’s late strike.

Mexico desperately pushed for a third goal in an effort to improve their goal difference as they faced elimination on FIFA fair play rules.

Saudi Arabia’s win over Argentina in their opening match was one of the World Cup’s great upsets, but they crashed back down to earth with a 2-0 loss to Poland in their second game.

Coach Herve Renard urged his players to show that was no flash in the pan and write themselves into Saudi football history by reaching knockout rounds for the first time since 1994.

Having failed to win either of their first two group games for the first time in 44 years, Mexico knew victory was essential if they were to stand a chance of reaching the last 16 at an eighth successive World Cup.

Mexico boss Gerardo Martino ditched the back five he used in the 2-0 loss to Argentina and brought in Martin to lead the attack.

It almost reaped immediate rewards but Saudi goalkeeper Mohammed Al-Owais raced out to block Alexis Vega after he was slipped in behind the defence by Hirving Lozano.

Al-Owais, one of the heroes of the 2-1 win over Argentina, tentatively palmed away a bouncing cross ahead of a lunging Martin and held weak attempts by Chavez and Orbelin Pineda.

Mohamed Kanno whipped a free-kick just over for Saudi Arabia, who saw defender Ali Al-Bulayhi forced off with injury — adding to their mounting casualty list.

Mexico continued to attack without success and Ali Al-Hassan nearly sent the bulk of the largely Saudi crowd wild late in the first half with a diving header that flashed wide of the far post.

Chavez tested Al-Owais right after the interval and Martin soon broke the deadlock as he turned in from close range following Cesar Montes’ clever flick-on at a corner.

Mexico’s second goal arrived just five minutes later when Chavez sensationally curled a free-kick into the top corner from 30 metres.

Keeping an eye on the score between Argentina and Poland, Mexico pushed relentlessly for a third goal, with Lozano’s effort ruled out for a tight offside.

Martin blazed over when he had a glorious chance and Chavez had another free-kick turned away by Al-Owais, who also sprawled to his right to claw out a drive from Lozano.

Uriel Antuna then had another goal disallowed for offside before Al-Dawsari’s late strike put an end to the drama.

AFP

Messi Misses Penalty But Argentina Advance At World Cup

Argentina’s forward #10 Lionel Messi leads the ball past Poland’s players during the Qatar 2022 World Cup Group C football match between Poland and Argentina at Stadium 974 in Doha on November 30, 2022. (Photo by Glyn KIRK / AFP)

 

Lionel Messi had a penalty saved but Argentina still advanced to the last 16 of the World Cup as Group C winners after a 2-0 victory over Poland on Wednesday.

Poland also went through as runners-up although a 2-1 win for Mexico over Saudi Arabia in the group’s other game meant Czeslaw Michniewicz’s side advanced only on goal difference.

Alexis Mac Allister’s 46th-minute goal settled Argentina’s nerves after a tense first half, before Julian Alvarez doubled their lead just over 20 minutes later.

Argentina had been unable to find a way past Wojciech Szczesny in an opening 45 minutes in which the Poland goalkeeper saved his second penalty of the tournament.

Szczesny was adjudged to have fouled Messi while stretching to reach a cross, but he dived to his left to beat away the resulting spot-kick.

It was the 31st penalty Messi had failed to convert in his career.

Poland offered little attacking threat, with star striker Robert Lewandowski virtually anonymous throughout.

Instead it was left to Szczesny to take centre stage for the Poles, denying Messi with two crucial early stops.

First Messi wriggled clear of a pack of defenders before producing a shot that flew straight at the keeper.

Then he found space to charge into the Polish box down the left, forcing Szczesny to make a save at his near post.

Argentina continued to create the better chances in the first half and Marcos Acuna flashed a shot wide after Alvarez had also gone close to breaking the deadlock.

Szczesny had to scramble to stop Angel di Maria scoring direct from a corner, before the goalkeeper was again called into action to deny Alvarez.

– Penalty save –
Szczesny outdid himself when he dived to his left to stop Messi’s penalty in the 39th minute.

He still had more to do before the half-time whistle, punching away a shot from Alvarez before saving the follow-up from Rodrigo de Paul.

There was nothing he could do when Mac Allister broke the deadlock less than a minute after the interval.

Nahuel Molina charged down the right, then cut the ball back for Mac Allister to drill just beyond Szczesny’s reach.

The goal forced Poland to show some belated attacking ambition and Kamil Glik headed just wide from a free-kick almost immediately after the restart.

Argentina continued to go in search of more goals and Alvarez scored their second after combining well with Enzo Fernandez.

Fernandez, making his first start for Argentina, picked out his team-mate, who held off a defender before lashing the ball past Szczesny.

Poland were still walking a tightrope with yellow cards potentially crucial to their chances of reaching the last 16.

Grzegorz Krychowiak went into the book in the 83rd minute but a late goal for Saudi Arabia against Mexico saw the Poles safely through on goal difference.

AFP