Police Restrict Vehicular Movement In States Holding Elections

Solomon Arase Police acting IG on restriction on elections dayPolice have announced restriction of vehicular movements in Local Government Areas of Abia, Delta, Imo, Kogi and Taraba States where rerun of the ongoing general elections are scheduled to take place on Saturday.

The Acting Inspector-General of Police, Mr Solomon Arase, issued the restriction, which will hold between 8:00am and 5:00pm, on Friday, as part of efforts to ensure adequate security in the April 25 elections.

“This restriction of vehicular movements order affects movements in and out of the areas where the rerun elections are to take place, except for Ambulances, Fire Service Trucks and others on essential duties.

“Consequently, travellers and citizens who intend to ply roads within those hours are advised to plan alternative routes,” a statement by the spokesman for the Police, Emmanuel Ojukwu, read.

The IGP also warned government officials and political office holders not to go to polling Units with uniformed orderlies or aides, while persons who have no business with voting must not be found within 300 metres of a polling unit.

The Police High Command further put adequate security measures in place by the deployments of additional senior officers to supervise security of elections in the states.

One Deputy Inspector-General of Police, one Assistant Inspector-General of Police and two Commissioners of Police were deployed to Abia.

In Imo State, one Assistant Inspector-General of Police and three Commissioners of Police would be in charge of security activities.

To Taraba State, two Assistant Inspectors-General of Police and two Deputy Commissioners of Police were deployed.

The police further urged citizens to remain vigilant and report all suspicious movements or dealings to appropriate Police Authority.

APGA Ready For Rerun Governorship Election In Abia

APGA-2The All Progressive Grand Alliance, APGA, in Abia State said it is prepared for the rerun governorship election to be conducted in 9 local government areas on Saturday.

Though it is still contesting the reversed decision of the state’s returning officer on the cancellation of results in three local government areas, the party is optimistic of winning in the supplementary poll.

The APGA says the enormous support it has enjoyed from the electorate in the April 11 governorship election, is indicative of the change that is much desired, despite the irregularities witnessed.

While the people get prepared, some residents in the affected areas are allegedly being intimidated and threatened not to participate in the rerun elections.

The party says that going by the alleged intimidation on its supporters, the irregularities witnessed in the April 11 election may be repeated. It therefore, demanded a level-playing ground from electoral officials and security agencies.

Over 173,000 registered voters are expected to vote in 299 polling units, to determine the winner in a poll that has so far been keenly contested between the APGA and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

April 11 Polls: EU Observers, Civil Groups Recommend Probe In Violent States

April 11The European Union observation mission and some civil society groups have called for a probe of severe cases of violence and attempted manipulation in Saturday’s elections in some states.

The EU Chief Observer, Mr Santiago Fisas, said that despite lack of evidence of centralised systematic fraud at the polls, some attempts at manipulations were observed which necessitate further investigations by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

For the Coordinator of Nigeria Civil Society Situation Room, Mr Clement Nwankwo, multiple cases of electoral misconducts in Abia, violence in Rivers State and partisan interference in Akwa-ibom call for scrutiny of final collated results from the three states.

 

INEC Releases More Election Results

Election ResultsThe Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Nigeria has released more results of the presidential election held in Nigeria at the weekend.

This is in continuation of the collation and announcement which started at the collation centre in Abuja the nation’s capital on Monday.

The Commission had taken a break on Monday afternoon after releasing the result for eight states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The Returning Officers of the commission read out the results from the states they covered.

The second phase of the announcement was slated for 8:00pm but started around 8:45PM local time.

The first set of  results released are those of Jigawa, Kano, Anambra, Abia, Katsina, Kaduna and Kwara states, after which the Chairman called for a recess which lasted about one hour.

The exercise resumed with the announcement of results from Plateau, Akwa Ibom and Imo states.

Earlier in the day, the results for Ekiti, Ogun, Enugu, Kogi, Osun, Nasarawa, Ondo and Oyo State were announced, making a total of 18 states announced on Monday. The election results from the FCT were also announced.

The INEC Chairman brought the collation and announcement of results for Monday to a close. He announced that the exercise would resume at 10AM local time on Tuesday.

Click HERE for live updates as the results are released. You can also watch Channels Television’s live broadcast of the announcement HERE.

 

OPC Calls For Jega’s Sack

OPCThe Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) on Monday stormed the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, demanding the sack of the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Attahiru Jega, before the general elections.

Guns, cutlasses, pocket knifes, among other weapons, were seen on the OPC members who also destroyed some campaign posters of the All Progressives Congress candidates.

The protesters blocked the major highways causing a heavy traffic snarl while harassing pedestrians and motorists.

The protesters took time to distribute leaflets containing seven reasons why the INEC boss should be sacked.

The Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra had also on Friday protested in Abia and some other south-eastern states calling for the immediate removal of Professor Jega.

Politicians In Abia State Sign Peace Accord

peace accordPolitical Parties in abia State have signed a peace accord, promising to abide by the rule of the game and avoid any act that can truncate the democratic process.

It is seen as an effort to ensure a peaceful society in the state before, during and after the 2015 elections.

The event which was put together by the Police Command headquarters, Zone 9, Umuahia, took place at the Police Officers Mess, in the presence of other security operatives and tailored towards eliminating rancor, fighting, violence and reducing tension and overheating of the political terrain during the 2015 democratic election.

Six political parties (PDP,APC,ACPC, APGA, PPA, ACPN) made up of their chairmen, and their candidates for the 2015 election, security operatives and representative of the Independent National Electoral Commission were at the venue where the peace accord was signed. It is aimed at achieving a credible playing ground for the conduct of free and fair election.

The Police AIG Zone 9, Gwary Usman, called on the political parties to conduct their affairs in accordance with the provision of the rule of law, reminding them of the need to allow peace to reign. He assured them that the Police would do their part in securing the area during elections.

One after the other, the candidates of different political parties present at the event signed the peace accord and gave their word to abide by the rule.

This Peace Accord is symbolic because, it is a reminder that political parties should behave themselves well to put National interest above personal and party interest .

Abia Govt Cautions Political Parties Against Unruly Conduct

abia govtThe Abia State Government has called on all the political parties and their aspirants to adhere to the rules of the game and shun any act culpable of undermining the peace in the state.

According to the state government, the caution was in line with its desire to have peaceful and violent free elections in the state.

The Commissioner for Information, Mr Anthony Agbazuere, gave the caution while addressing a press conference in Umuahia on Tuesday.

He hinted that the information and complaints by law abiding citizens of Abia State had indicated that some political parties had sewn military uniforms and procured arms to equip hoodlums to appear as military personnel to facilitate their plans to rig the forthcoming election.

He therefore, called on the Chief of Army Staff to intervene urgently and on the Independent National Electoral Commission to take notice of the violation of the Electoral Act.

NLC Shuts Flour Mill Industry In Aba

nlcThe Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) has shut down a Flour Mill Industry located at Osisioma LGA, in Aba metropolis, over illegal dismissal of their staff and replacing them with casual workers.

The action was carried out by union members led by the Abia State NLC Chairman, Slyvanus Eyeh, who said that the company would be locked until they adhere to the demands of Labour as it concerns the welfare of their employers.

According to the Labour Chairman in the state, the company had failed to implement the minimum wage package to their staff and on top of that, has sent some of their employers away without reason and went ahead to recruit casual workers to replace them.

The dismissed workers were seen protesting with placards, supporting the action by the Labour Union.

The union members insisted that the company would be closed until it meets their demand.

CBN To Commence Nation-Wide Cashless Policy On July 1

cashless_cbnThe Central Bank of Nigeria has put in place modalities to introduce the cashless policy 30 states of the federation having completed phases 1 and 2 of the policy in six pilot states- Abia, Anambra, Lagos, Ogun, Kano, Rivers- and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The CBN, in a notice by its Corporate Affairs Department to all stakeholders and the general public, said Phase 3 of the policy’s implementation would commence in the remaining 30 States of the Federation on July 1 as scheduled.

The apex bank also said it has mapped out modalities to ensure the cashless policy succeeds in other parts of the state as it did in the pilot states.

The Head, Shared Services at the Central Bank, Mr Chidi Umeano, who was a guest on Channels Television’s daily business programme, Business Morning, said  the apex bank is doing all it can to deploy the needed infrastructure to support the policy.

According to him, the one year waiver of charges on withdrawals is one measure to give time for the infrastructure to be put in place.

He says the Central Bank has carried its sensitisation campaign to the rural communities and is still doing more to sensitise Nigerians.

The CEO, Cowry Assets Management Ltd, Mr Johnson Chukwu, who was also a contributor on the programme, said the cashless policy has benefited the economy in so many ways but urged the Central Bank to do more towards putting all that is needed in place to ensure its efficiency and success.

Jigawa Group Petitions NHRC Over 486 Detained Suspects In Abia

NHRCThe National Human Rights Commission said on Thursday, June 26 that it had received a petition from the members of the Jigawa Forum over the arrest and detention of 486 persons suspected to be Boko Haram members in Abia State.

In a statement by the commission’s Chief Press Officer, Fatimah Mohammed, the group, led by one Alhaji Ahmed Wanga, demanded an immediate release or prosecution of the detainees as they observed that the suspects had been detained for 10 days running.

The Executive Secretary of the commission, Prof. Bem Angwe, received the petition from the group on behalf of the NHRC.

The statement quoted Angwe as urging Nigerians to support the security agencies in their bid to combat insurgency, but also advised the security operatives “not to hide under the cover of security to infringe on the rights of the citizens.”

He also urged the security agencies to ensure that arrested persons were subjected to a screening process to separate those who for justifiable reasons were suspects, from those going about their normal businesses.

Prof. Angwe commended the group for not taking the laws into their hands but rather approached the commission which would ensure that the rights of the detained persons are enforced in line with the mandate.

The helmsman of NHRC also used the opportunity to reiterate that every Nigerian is entitled to his fundamental rights to freedom of movement and that “any attempt to breach this constitutional provision constitutes a setback to democracy” and therefore urged the relevant authorities to ensure that no citizen is detained unduly.

The Chief Executive Officer of NHRC described the current insecurity in the country as unfortunate and disturbing.

Kaduna APC Rejects State Congress Result

APC logoMembers of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kaduna State on Tuesday rejected the result of last Saturday’s state congress which produced a two time member of the House of Representatives, Mr Bala Bantex as the state party chairman, describing the entire exercise as a charade.   

Addressing journalists at the party secretariat on behalf of other chairmanship aspirants, Mr Joshua Ephraim, one of the aspirants,  explained that the results of the congress that were announced by the state congress committee did not in any way reflect the wishes of the delegates who voted during the exercise.

He however insisted that the election should be cancelled by the party’s national leadership to give room for a fresh congress where delegates will freely elect party officials of their choice.

But the newly elected chairman of the party, Mr Bala Bantex described the election that brought him and other officials into office as keenly contested and free and fair.

He urged the other aspirants to bury their grievances and join hands with him in order to move the party forward, adding that his emergence as chairman will propel APC to victory in 2015 elections.

And with barely two days to the party’s national convention, observers say unresolved issues emanating from state chapters of the party will determine the success or failure of the convention.

The Interim National Chairman of the party, Chief Bisi Akande, had last week said the party will hold a rancour-free National Convention.

The party, he said, would examine the complaints and protests over the congresses in some states.

Akande said state chairmen who emerged outside the party’s guidelines would be thrown out.

He was speaking in Abuja during the inauguration of the newly-elected 35 of the 37 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) chairmen.

The APC interim chairman also said issues about the just-concluded state congresses would not be swept under the carpet.

He was reacting to the protests at the ceremony on the outcome of the congresses in Abia and Ebonyi states.

INEC Extends Voter Registration In 10 States By Two Days

inec_ogutaThe Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Nigeria has extended the Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) taking place in 10 states by two days.

In a statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to INEC Chairman,  Kayode Robert Idowu, the commission said the extension was in view of the huge turnout of prospective registrants, and it is intended to give a fair chance to all eligible persons.

The exercise, which was originally scheduled to end on Sunday, June 1, will now run till June 3 in Taraba, Gombe, Zamfara, Kebbi, Benue, Kogi, Abia, Enugu, Akwa-Ibom and Bayelsa.

INEC called on eligible persons in the states that were yet to register as voters to use the opportunity of the extension to do so.

The Commission reiterated, however, that the CVR was for only persons who turned 18 years after the last registration, persons who were 18 years at the time but did not present themselves for registration and persons whose data were not adequately captured previously and for whom PVCs were not produced in the last distribution exercise.

It further clarified that the exercise was not for everyone, including people wishing to transfer their registration data from where they previously registered.

The commission warned that it would amount to double or multiple registration, which is an offence punishable under Nigerian law, for anyone who was duly registered previously to present himself/herself for registration during the CVR.