Edo PDP Chairman Denies EFCC Arrest

Dan Orbih, Edo PDPThe Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Edo State Chapter, Dan Orbih has refuted stories of his arrest by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

There were reports that he received over 700 million Naira from the party headquarters in Abuja for 2015 general election.

Mr Orbih cleared the air on the allegations of fraud during a press briefing at the Edo PDP secretariat in Benin City, the state capital.

He insisted that the money used for the 2015 general election by his party was generated at a fundraising programme organised by former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Election Conduct Probe: Army Panel Recommends Sanctions For Officials

Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur BurataiA board of inquiry set up by the Nigerian Army to review allegations of unprofessional conducts by some officers and soldiers during the 2015 elections has recommended some sanctions for erring officials in its report submitted on Monday.

The Board set up by the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, after a thorough job submitted its report, which also looked at the army’s involvement in Ekiti and Osun States Gubernatorial elections last year, to the Chief of Army Staff at the Army Headquarters in Abuja, the oil-rich nation’s capital.

Far Reaching Recommendations

In its report, the board recommended the compulsory retirement of two officers from the Nigerian Army, while three other officers were recommended to lose their command and one was recommended for prosecution for collecting financial gratification.

Other recommendations include placing 15 officers on watch list while nine officers were to be further investigated by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission over allegations levelled against them.

The Board also recommended that six officers should face an audit committee and 62 officers, (mostly of the rank of Majors-below), are to be given letters of displeasure and to appear before their respective general officers commanding for counselling.

Submitting the report, the chairman of the board, Major General Adeniyi Oyebade, the General Officer Commanding 1 Division Nigerian Army, stated that the board, which placed advertorials requesting for memoranda from the public before they commenced sitting, had 23 officers and over 100 soldiers appeared before it as well as 62 civilians.

According to him, the Board had made far reaching recommendations that would assist the Nigerian Army and the nation in the future.

He thanked the Nigerian Army for the opportunity to serve and reiterated the Board’s members’ willingness to serve when called upon for any other such assignment. He also acknowledged the support and cooperation they received from the Nigerian Police and other security agencies, as well as the general public.

While receiving the report, Lieutenant General Buratai thanked the Board for a thorough and dispassionate job devoid of influence from any quarters.

He expressed delight that the Board, knowing the gravity and implication of their report on the careers of officers and impact on the Nigerian Army, discharged their assignment diligently and professionally.

He assured them that the report would be reviewed accordingly, in line with Nigerian Army’s legal and administrative procedures.

A statement by a spokesman for the Army, Colonel Sani Kukasheka Usman, said the Chief of Army Staff also enjoined members of the Board to share knowledge acquired in the course of their assignment with their colleagues for the benefit of the Nigerian Army and the nation.

Lieutenant General Buratai further reassured Nigerians that the Army would continue to remain professional and apolitical in the discharge of its responsibilities.

Kano Government To Embark On Aggressive Revenue Generation

KanoIn the face of Nigeria’s oil revenue crisis, Kano State Government is set to embark on an aggressive internally generated revenue programme backed by an anti corruption agency that will prosecute corrupt government officials.

Addressing journalists on his new master plan, Kano State Governor, Abdulkahi Umar Ganduje, said that his administration will be committed to serving the good people of Kano State.

Ganduje said that he would begin with a rigorous drive for internally generated revenue to be able to complete the ongoing projects and introduce new ones.

In addition, Ganduje will establish an anti corruption agency to fight anyone who may be involved with any form of corruption.

Although Mr. Ganduje would have to settle a debt liability of N379 billion naira incurred from the Government of Mr. Kwankwaso, he was optimistic about his master plan’s chances of success, insisting that the huge debt will not stop him from performing.

On the security situation, Ganduje said that he would soon set up a security trust fund as part of step to bring the security problems in the state to an end.

The trust fund will be charged with the responsibility of sourcing fund to assist various security agencies in the state.

North-east Seeks Leadership Of National Assembly

NASS-on-zoning principal officialCivil society organisations in Nigeria have joined the debate on the zoning arrangement of National Assembly principal officers, demanding that it should be zoned to the north-east.

At a news conference in Abuja, on Wednesday, the coordinator of the Justice and Development Consultative Forum, Mr Elisha Ishaku, said the north-east deserved the position of the Senate president, having delivered the second highest number of votes for the party.

Mr Elisha argued that the north-east had been marginalised in the political equation in the country since the inception of democracy.

At a separate news conference, the coalition of Buhari-Osinbajo campaign movement argued that the zone deserves the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

On Monday, the Deputy Senate President urged the incoming administration to learn from the mistakes of previous governments and avoid imposing principal officers on the National Assembly.

Senator Ike Ekweremadu gave the warning at the opening of an induction seminar for incoming legislators held in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

He urged the presidency to allow federal lawmakers choose their presiding officers.

Ondo State APC, PDP Disagree Over Olanusi’s Impeachment

ondo state-APC,PDP-on olanusi's impeachmentThe All Progressives Congress (APC) and the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State have disagreed on the recent impeachment and removal from office of the former Deputy Governor of the State, Mr Ali Olanusi.

Speaking to Channels Television on the issue in Akure, the State capital, a chieftain of APC in the State, Mr Kunle Adebayo, argued that the former Deputy Governor was not given fair hearing, as he was not duly served with the notice to appear before the panel of investigation.

He maintained that the decision of the State House of Assembly ‎to impeach Mr Olanusi was not acceptable.

But the Publicity Secretary of the PDP in the State, Mr Banji Okunomo, said that the former Deputy Governor was duly served with the notice to appear before the panel of investigation to defend himself on the allegations brought against him.

Mr Okunomo, however, argued that the decision of the House to impeach Mr Olanusi was the necessary procedure to be taken. He further called on aggrieved parties to approach the court of law to seek justice.

APC Reverses Decision To Ban AIT

APC-on-AIT-banThe All Progressives Congress (APC) has reversed the decision made by the media aide to General Muhammadu  Buhari to ban one of Nigeria’s private television stations, the AIT,  from covering the activities of the president-elect over what he referred to as issues relating to ethics and standards.

In a statement on Tuesday, the APC spokesperson, Mr Lai Mohammed, said all accredited media organisations in Nigeria, including the AIT, were free to cover the activities of the president-elect.

Mr Mohammed went further said that the incoming Buhari administration would not discriminate against any media organisation, irrespective of its role during the electioneering campaign before the elections of March 28 and April 11.

‘Out For Personal Vendetta’

He further advised that all media organisations should observe the highest level of professionalism in carrying out their duties.

Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has described Monday’s directive to bar the television house, from covering his activities as unacceptable.

The party further said that the suppression of the media, under any guise portends danger for the nation’s democracy.

The ruling party, however, warned that if the right of the president-elect was in anyway violated by the media organisation or any media house,  he is expected to act within the law and seek redress in court. The party further stated that if the decision was not reversed, it would have no option than to conclude that General Buahri was out for personal vendetta.

Kebbi House Of Assembly Impeaches Speaker, Appoints Jega

maceThe Kebbi State House of Assembly Speaker, Honourable Hassan Muhammad Shalla, has been impeached for alleged breach of trust and embezzlement of allowances of some members.

At the the Tuesday sitting, which held in the absence of the Speaker and his Deputy, a member of the House, representing Birnin Kebbi north constituency, Abubakar Sabo, stood as the Chair of the plenary.

Another member, representing Yauri State constituency, Hon Aminu Gumbi, moved the motion for the impeachment of the speaker and it was seconded by Hon Aliyu Mutubare from Kalgo constituency.

Shortly after the members impeached the former speaker, they elected Habib Musa Jega as the new Speaker via a motion moved by Bala Aanbaba Waje.

Honourable  Shalla was, however, impeached by 12 out of 24 members of the House of Assembly.

Mr Jega, a former speaker was also impeached by his colleagues in a controversial manner in December, 2014.

The impeached speaker has not been reached for his opinion on the action of the House of Assembly.

Court Fixes May 26 To Decide Tambuwal’s Candidacy Suit

tambuwal-on -electionA Federal High Court in Abuja has fixed May 26 to rule on whether there is still live issue in the suit challenging the emergence of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, as the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the just concluded governorship poll in Sokoto State.

The Speaker, through his counsel, Jibril Okutepa, asked the court to dismiss the suit filed by the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Judiciary and Human Rights, Senator Umaru Dahiru, challenging his candidacy as the APC governorship candidate in Sokoto.

Mr Okutepa stated that it had become an academic exercise, asking the the court to decline jurisdiction to hear and determine the suit.

He further stressed that the reliefs sought by Senator Dahiru which would have conferred utility value on the suit were no longer tenable, due to the occurrence of events.

Nevertheless, counsel to Senator Dahiru, Chief Awa Kalu, urged the court to hold the matter alive, insisting that there is a reasonable cause of action.

He said the plaintiffs were not indolent, just as he urged the court to invoke it’s powers to look into its records and exercise the power in order to determine whether or not, the plaintiffs were indolent as claimed by the defendants.

Senator Dahiru, however, asked the court to ascertain whether the procedure for the nomination and/or sponsorship of candidates for the elective offices recognised by the Electoral Acts 2010 was surly followed in the selection of the Mr Tambuwal.

Abia State Concludes Re-run Election Except In Umunneochi LGA

re-run election in abia stateVoting in several Local Government Areas in the governorship re-run election in Abia State has been concluded except in  Umunneochi Local Government Area.

Accreditation and voting did not take place at Umunneochi Local Government Area because the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) erroneously scheduled election there, which was not supposed to take place in the first instance because the Form, EC40G, was not filled which indicated that there was no problem in the area.

At some of the places visited, which include: Umuola at Aba, the commercial city, the turnout was massive and the voters expressed enthusiasm to cast their votes while the party agents commended the peaceful conduct of the election. In some areas, however, the turnout was low.

Channels Television correspondent in Abia State reports that the supplementary governorship election in Abia State took place under peaceful and calm atmosphere.

There was a huge presence of security officials to checkmate any lapses while vehicular movement were partially restricted at  places that  election was scheduled to take place.

At Ubakala, voting ended by 3:00pm. The electorates and party agents were hanging around for the votes to be counted while the unused ballots were cancelled by the INEC ad-hoc staff to avoid being tampered with.

Meanwhile,voters and residents also waited at the polling units to ensure that the votes are counted in their presence.

The electoral officials in the state are already sorting and counting votes cast in Ugwunagbo, Osisioma, Aba North and Aba South polling units.

Accreditation Of Voters Hold In Abia State

abia state-accreditationVoters in the areas of Abia State where the supplementary elections are holding came out for the accreditation exercise which started at about 1:21pm.

Channels Television visited some polling units in some of the affected Local Government Areas and the exercise has been going on smoothly.

“The process was peaceful at flash points like Ugwunagbo, Osisioma and Aba north Local Government Areas, despite the low turnout of voters,” a Channels Television’s correspondent monitoring elections in the state said.

Security personnel were strategically positioned to ensure peace and order in the State’s election.

Jonathan Tasks Nigerians On More Sacrifices For Nation’s Development

jonathanPresident Goodluck Jonathan has advised all Nigerians to  be ready to make sacrifices that will help in the development of Nigeria. 

He further stressed the need for Nigerians to continue to pray for the incoming administration, as they take over the onerous task of nation building.

The President spoke at an interdenominational breakfast meeting in the Presidential Villa on Saturday.

He expressed gratitude to God and Nigerians for all the privileges he enjoyed from his days in office, as a Deputy Governor in Bayelsa State to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

President Jonathan further stressed that he was now happy to join the likes of General Yakubu Gowon and Mr Ernest Shonekan as elder statesmen, saying he will be ready to make contributions anytime they are needed.

The President, however, urged leaders at all levels, including Local Government Chairmen and lawmakers, to be ready to make sacrifices that would help in the development of the nation. He stressed that the nation would get to the promise land only when the people are ready to make necessary sacrifices.

It was the fifth Christian faithful’s gathering in the Presidential Villa for the breakfast meeting, designed to thank God for his goodness since the inception of the administration.

The gathering was a unique one, coming at the last lap of the President Jonathan’s administration. It still drew much crowd who joined the President and his team in the worship session.

There were bible readings by the former head of state General Yakubu Gowon and prayers were also said for the nation and for President Jonathan, as he marks what many have described as the end of a meritorious service to his fatherland as president.

The message of the breakfast meeting centered on destiny and decision. In it, the preacher, Senior Pastor of Dunamis International, Dr Paul Enenche, made reference to Nigerian’s 2015 presidential elections and certain decisions that brought Nigerians the peace they are enjoying today.

Cross River Rescheduled Election: APC, LP Candidates Insist On Boycott

apc,lp candidates-on-cross river electionThe candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and  Labour Party (LP) have maintained their stands not to participate in the election process in Biase Local Government Area of Cross River State.

According to the participants who spoke in Calabar, the State’s capital, the candidates demanded for the conduct of the rescheduled bi-election to cover all polling units in the constituency and not just some wards.

They maintained that this was a consensus reached between the two parties following series of meetings and petitions forwarded to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

They further stressed that if INEC goes ahead to hold the elections in some wards on Saturday, April 25, the will of majority of the people to vote in leaders of their choice, would be denied in the state constituency.

Reacting on the issue, the State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Sylvester Ezeani, insisted that the re-run elections will hold in both Yakurr and Biase Local Government Areas as the commission is already set for the conduct of the re-election.

He maintained that he has no powers to cancel any elections and urged grieving parties to lay their complains before the law.