Buhari Should Have The Decency To Resign – Adetokunbo Pearse

A Public Affairs Analyst, Mr Adetokunbo Pearse, has asked Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, to have the decency to resign, as he believes that the issue of his health, is worse than what the general public has been made to believe.

He said this on Channels Television’s breakfast show, Sunrise Daily, while addressing the issue of the President’s health which has been sparking up various reactions among citizens.

Mr Pearse also expressed concern about the President not being able to attend meetings, among his other constitutional duties, adding he is not competent enough because according to him, even when Mr Buhari was fit, the economy was still failing.

“In the first place, when he was well, he failed his nation – the economy collapsed under him, there is insecurity everywhere. Nothing is working, all the indices of poverty is gone up, unemployment is gone up, the direct foreign investment is gone down, the stock market is in disarray, nothing was working in the country when he was well – now he is not well, things are only bound to get worse”.

Furthermore, he expressed dissatisfaction over the fact that Mr Lai Mohammed had addressed Nigerians on behalf of the President, stressing that it isn’t part of his responsibilities to do so.

Read Also: Buhari Has Been Transparent About His Health – Lai Mohammed

“Right from the beginning of this administration, we know, I know and the public knows that Lai Mohammed does not speak for the Presidency.

“He has no access, the President has his own spoke’s person. It is only when that Spoke’s Person is frustrated and doesn’t know what to say that they push Lai Mohammed ahead to go and talk to the people and mis-inform the people.”

The Public Affairs analyst, therefore, recommended that the President steps down, adding that if he had provided his doctors report when was asked earlier, the situation may not have gotten so serious.

“We never saw any medical report and when Yar’ Adua was ill, this same President kept saying “show us your medical report” – We are asking the same questions now and I am not saying the President won’t get better but when you have been off the job for so long, you have undermined the process of this country.”

Trump Spoke To The Heart of America – Adetokunbo Pearse

Donald Trump Spoke To The Heart of America - Adetokunbo PearseA former United States Democratic Party aspirant in New York congressional district, Mr Adetokunbo Pearse, believes Mr Donald Trump won the US presidential election because he focused on what Americans hold as priority – their economy.

He was on our breaksfast programme, Sunrise Daily, on Thursday, analyzing the factors that led to the success of the businessman and rookie politician in the election.

He insisted that Clinton supporters globally should have been cautious in their optimism leading to the election as it was obvious from a long time that either candidates could have won.

In his view, Americans may have wanted more employment opportunities, and forging stronger relations with major power blocks.

“Donald Trump was speaking to the heart of America. The bitter truth is that when he said that he was going to deal with illegal immigrants, (he did) not (say) all immigrants.

“Therefore, what you saw coming out at the election was legal immigrants who themselves don’t want illegal immigrants from their countries voted for him. Its incredible,” he said.

Bernie Sanders Factor

Mr Pearse also agreed with the view that the long-drawn battle for the Democratic ticket between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders which exposed the weakness of the party also contributed to their loss.

He noted that Bernie Sanders was a preferred choice among many Americans because, like Trump, he also addressed issues of economy, education and the youth.

“He was an outsider, not the typical politician who would just go according to what is already established in the country like Mrs Clinton.

“People believe that Bernie Sanders was actually rigged out of the primaries. So I do agree that that has something to do with the problems that Mrs Clinton had  after the primaries.

“She was helped by the Democratic Convention,” he claimed, and that is why “the supporters of Bernie Sanders never came through for Mrs Clinton”.

As far as Mr Pearse is concerned, these issues were only “compounded by the email leaks to show that Mrs Clinton cannot be trusted, and she is a system’s person who knows how to manipulate the system in her favour just to win elections”.

He explained further that the recently held US election was against ‘the system’.

“Don’t forget that Donald Trump is not a member of the Republican formal system. He is an outsider in the Republican Party.”

Anti-Trump Protests

There were protests in cities across the United States on Wednesday against Republican Donald Trump’s surprise presidential election win.

Hilary Clinton may have won the popular votes but that was not enough to take her to the White House, as Mr Donald Trump garnered the required Electoral College votes.

Calm has returned to Washington DC, but the same cannot be said for Los Angeles, Oakland, California, New York, and over 10 other cities where there have been anti-Trump protests.

Mr Pearse, however, believes that this is nothing more than citizens expressing their emotions.

“Trump himself said he would not accept the election result unless he felt that it was fair. So, these people feel that it must not have been fair.

“That is the beauty of democracy, freedom of expression in America. People will protest (on) both sides; this is just normal,” he said.

He further added that the element of surprise in Trump’s victory at the polls is what has led to the protests across the country.

Nigeria Should Invent Structures To Fight Corruption – PDP Member

CorruptionA member of the the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Adetokunbo Pearse, has recommended that Nigeria should invent structures that will fight corruption proficiently rather than going after individuals.

While assessing the corruption fight on Sunrise Daily on Thursday, the senior lecturer in the Department of English, University of Lagos, said that ”Nigeria needs structures that are deterrent.

“What we need to do is to restructure, find structures that can actually fight corruption, not go after individuals. For instance, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) is a structure in place, there are others that are fighting corruption.

“What we need now, we know that EFCC can do its job and is having problems (everybody is saying this is abusing people’s civil rights) because of the way they are going about it,” he said.

Adopt Better Ways

The PDP member condemned the alleged arms fund diversion but maintained that the Federal Government could have adopted better techniques to achieve its aim.

“Any fair minded Nigerian would applaud the effort to curb corruption and secondly, when you hear that money that should have been spent on the military is being used to fund elections is very disturbing. The way the President is going about it, I think, is very faulty and we need to comment on that so that maybe we can adopt better ways and achieve much more.

“The President seems obsessed with this fight of corruption to the detriment of development in other areas. Bad as what Colonel Sambo Dasuki has done and much as this money ($2.1 billion) appears, it will not cripple the Nigerian economy of six trillion Naira. Let us put that in perspective so that we do not spend so much time talking about one thing as if that is going to solve all our problems,” he said.

Change The Laws And Abide By The Law

Mr Pearse was also of the opinion that the war against corruption cannot be won without legislation, adding that the laws should be changed to prevent looting of the nation’s resources.

“When the Director of IMF came, one of the suggestions she made is what I have always advocated and that is that we cannot fight corruption or do anything without legislation. Without proper structures, it is a waste of time because I tell you, after Dasuki, there will be more and more.

“We need to change the laws and abide by the law. I am talking about before people get to the position where they can begin to loot, there must be ways to screen them out,” he said.

The academic maintained that Nigeria should concentrate on developing systems to fight corruption and let the systems work themselves, stressing that some other political office holders ought not to be in such positions.

“There are a lot of people in the National Assembly, there are a lot of people who are governors and there are people who have even become presidents as well who have no right to be in public services because they have a criminal background. They have a shady background and yet we are not addressing these issues, we are talking about fighting one person or two.

He also said Nigeria should be focused on developing systems that will work instead of headlining Dasuki everyday in the media.

National Conference Gives Nigerians In Diaspora Right To Vote

National Conference 422x280Delegates at the National Conference have endorsed diaspora voting in future elections in the country.

A recommendation which sought to deny this group of Nigerians this right was rejected by delegates as they supported the idea in a clear voice vote.

The endorsement, which was one of the key recommendations of the report of the Committee on Foreign Policy and Diaspora comes as good news for Nigerians living abroad.

The conference had started the day’s proceedings with discussions on the explosion that rocked a public health college in Kano State on Monday, but the motion to condole with the families and people of Kano State came with another concern as the delegate representing the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Sani Zoro, complained that there had been no message of sympathy from the Office of the President to the victims of the Kano attack.

The Deputy Chairman of the National Conference, Professor Bolaji Akinyemi, called for caution regarding the allegation, especially as Mr Zoro had alleged that there had been a deliberate lack of concern for victims in states ruled by the opposition  party. After this, did the conference observe a moment of silence in honour of the victims.

The conference then went on to consider the report of the Committee on Foreign Policy and Diaspora. After the Committee Chairman gave a summary and delegates had discussed the report, several amendments were considered, one of which was that which allows Nigerians in diaspora to vote in future elections.

The next amendment sought to have the excesses of first ladies and politicians in using diplomats for unofficial purposes curtailed. Although, the amendment brought the Deputy Chairman to a stop for a while, the conference went ahead to unanimously approve the amendment.

The conference, having approved most of the recommendations put forward by the committee and adopted the report, moves next  to the report of the Committee on National Security.

National Conference Okays Removal Of Governors, Lawmakers’ Pension

National-Conference-delegatesIf the report of the national conference committee on public service is accepted by government, governors, deputy governors and legislators won’t be entitled to pension, life insurance and severance pay.

The removal of the entitlements was a key part of the report that was considered and adopted by delegates at Wednesday’s plenary.

The delegates also adopted the recommendation to have federal and state legislators function on a part-time basis.

At the plenary that began on a calm note, delegates considered a change to the procedure of debating committee reports to make its adoption faster, in order to meet up with the left time.

However, delegates were divided over the issue and the chairman was forced to take a decision, after which the conference commenced consideration of the report of the Committee on Public Service.

The recommendation that retirement age for civil servants, be reviewed upward to 65 years age limit or 40 years of active service was rejected by the conference.

Most of the recommendations adopted during the consideration of the Public Service report can help reform the public service but that depends on their full implementation.

Meanwhile, the next report to be considered is that of the committee on science, technology and development.

At Tuesday’s plenary, delegates approved the removal of subsidy on petroleum products but with a clause that the government must build new refineries and repair existing ones.

The position followed amendments on the recommendations proposed by the Committee on Public Finance. Debate on the subsidy removal started on Monday with over 50 delegates speaking on the issue.

Delegates said that only when these and other conditions were met should the government be free to remove subsidy on petroleum products.

Debate On Grazing Ground For Herdsmen Divides National Conference  

National-Conference-delegatesA proposal to amend laws guiding the funding and maintenance of grazing ground for herdsmen resulted in debate that left delegates at the National conference divided on Wednesday.

The proposed amendment, if accepted, will place the responsibility of funding grazing ground on the government of the state where the grazing ground is located.

The proposal led to confrontation with loud disagreements between delegates, just as the conference began consideration of the report of the Committee on Citizenship, Immigration and Related Matters.

In the bid to ensure the issue did not lead to further rowdiness, the leadership of the conference put-off voting on the issue and hurriedly adjourned for the day.

The disagreement is coming after a one-day-break given to enable delegates study reports of some of the committees that are to be considered.

Work on the reports began on Wednesday with the consideration of the report of the Committee on Citizenship, Immigration and Related Matters.

The morning session went without any hitch as delegates had indicated interest in contributing to the report.

After debates on some issues, delegates adjourned for a break.

When the deliberations resumed, the chairman, Justice Idris Kutigi, started by stressing that “the conference has nothing to do with reports of tenure elongation”.

After his comments, the delegates continued deliberations on the report of the Citizenship, Immigration and Related Matters, considering the different amendments proposed.

But the proposal to amend the law guiding the funding of grazing ground turned the mood in the house around.

Several delegates were not comfortable with the proposal while some insisted that “the state where the grazing ground is located should fund the project”.

The conference room became tensed, as delegates continued to argue over the right decision.

In a bid to control the situation, Justice Kutigi quickly adjourned for the day.

It is not clear what effect this confrontation will have in the days ahead as the delegates consider more contentious issues.

National Conference Resumes With Call For Chibok Girls’ Rescue

National-conferenceDelegates at the national conference have again urged security agencies in Nigeria to do more to check the level of insecurity and also rescue the missing Chibok girls.

After four weeks of committee work, the issue of insecurity was the first that the delegates discussed and reached a resolution on at Monday’s plenary.

The conference also received reports from over 12 committees and is to commence consideration on Wednesday.

Twenty different committees had had four weeks of intense work, deliberating on different issues of interest with the sole aim of creating a better Nigeria.

The plenary started with the delegates correcting their votes and proceeding of their last day in plenary.

One major issue, that had to do with their commendation of the security agencies, caught their attention.

More than 20 days after their commendation, the girls abducted on April 14 are still missing and a delegate, Professor Eddy Erhagbe stressed that the security agencies needed to do more in effort to rescue the girls abducted by members of a terrorist group, Boko Haram.

The issue started off a discussion as delegates proposed amendments and other motions, leading to disorder and the chairman had to bring it to an end.

After the issue was resolved, the secretary of the conference asked the chairmen of the committees to lay their reports.

The reports were then distributed to delegates after a debate on the manner the committee reports would be considered caused further uproar.

Having received reports from some committees, the Chairman adjourned plenary till Wednesday. The delegates are expected to commence the consideration of the reports of the committees on religion, environment, land tenure and immigration.

Plenaries that would be held within the next few weeks as seen as the very crucial part of the conference, as recommendations would be based on the decision that the delegates would reach after deliberation on the issues.

The conference that began in March is expected to end in June with recommendations aimed at creating a better future for Nigerians.

Political Analyst Supports Jonathan’s Meeting With PDP Governors

political analyst

A Political Analyst, Adetokunbo Pearse has said nothing is wrong if President Goodluck Jonathan meets with all the governors of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) before involving other parties. 

He criticized the media for over publicising the meeting that was held between President Goodluck Jonathan, PDP governors and some governors of other parties, excluding the All Progressives Congress (APC) governors.

On Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Pearse explained that the meeting that was held on Thursday night by the governors and President Jonathan was a planning meeting, which he said was normally held and would later be extended to other parties that were absent, insisting, therefore, that the meeting was not a “PDP meeting”.

He urged Nigerians not to focus on the negative but rather on what President said concerning a larger meeting that will hold on April 23.

He emphasised that the APC governors did not shun the meeting with the president, as earlier publicised by the media but said the APC governors were not invited.

The Political Analyst commended President Jonathan for the efforts he and his administration had put in, in making the nation strong and called on those, criticising the government to ‘come and try’.

In terms of security, Mr Pearse said  the government had not put in so much effort in security in some parts of the country and further advised the media to talk to some people in government to get reliable information about issues.

 

National Conference Discussing Irrelevant Issues – Sagay

Itse-SagayA Nigerian Lawyer, Professor Itse Sagay, says the National Conference is discussing a number of issues that it should not concern itself with.

Professor Sagay beliefs that the conference should focus on issues of how Nigerians can associate and live peacefully together.

He stressed that about 75 per cent of the 492 delegates at the conference do not know what they were there for.

“The younger ones and some of the old ones do not know what they are there for,” he said.

The lawyer outlined some items he said were irrelevant and contained in the recommendations submitted to President Goodluck Jonathan by the Presidential Advisory committee on National Conference.

“You will hear things like; good governance, corruption, cost of governance, deepening democracy, democratisation, political parties, education; about 20 of the items in the list are totally irrelevant.

He insisted that issues that could be discussed outside the conference were not relevant in the conference.

“We can always discuss education, we can meet to trash out corruption, discuss cost of governance,” he said, listing some of the relevant issues that should be discussed to include things that would determine the mode of association between communities in future and how different communities and people should use resources.

The conference, which began in March will  dwell on these issues for three months.

National Conference Delegates Call For United Nigeria

National-conferenceThe need for a new mind set and approach to ensure that the task of creating a new Nigeria is accomplished has been emphasised by delegates at the ongoing National Conference in Nigeria.

Continuing discussions on Wednesday on the inauguration speech of President Goodluck Jonathan, delegates stressed the need to set aside ethnicity and personal interest in line with the demand of the president in the  speech. 

Even though the discussion may take a few days, the delegates say it is a key part of the conference.

Channels Television’s correspondent, Lanre Lasisi reports that the day’s plenary session had just one item on the order paper, the continuation of the debate on the president’s inauguration speech.

“The delegates were given three minutes to speak on the speech in alphabetical order and they focused on different aspects of the speech,” Lasisi said. 

The discussion went smoothly with just a slight incidence and delegates, which were once divided over the rule that would guide decision making, expressed satisfaction with the progress made.

They also said that the discussion on the speech of the president, which would continue on Wednesday, was vital.

It is not clear when this debate will be completed as a lot of delegates are yet to speak.

But having started from the first delegate, they must hear from the very last delegate.

IPAC Faults Composition Of Delegates At National Conference

National-conferenceThe Inter-Party Advisory Council of Nigeria (IPAC) has expressed its disappointment with the composition of the ongoing National Conference taking place in Abuja.

At a meeting in Abuja on Friday, the council said the situation where only five political parties were at the conference out of the 25 registered parties in the country ‘turned main actors to mere spectators’.

The chairman of IPAC, Yunusa Tanko, also told reporters that the inclusion of men and women above 70 years to be part of the conference may make the conference end up not achieving the purpose it was set up for.

“The inclusion of men and women above 70 years, with analogue qualification, can never succeed in mapping out the future of Nigeria and Nigerians. That is why the National Conference has become a ‘National Sleeping Conference’ as we can see.

“It is another waste of public funds by recycling the same people that have kept us where we are at the moment.

“These are very trying times and the conference will be meaningful when youthful representation, people within the age bracket that can represent the interest of the future of the country and the political parties which are the key drivers of this particular process are well represented. Twenty out of the 25 parties are being alienated from the conference.

“What will happen when a party not include in the conference wins an election, it can push the decision of the conference aside because it was not a party to it when it was reached,” he said

The modalities of the conference specified that only political parties with representation at the National Assembly would be allowed to send delegates to the National Conference.

Prior to the death of a delegate to the conference, Mr Mohammed Misau, 492 persons were meant to be in attendance, representing different regions, professional groups, ethnic groups, youth and religious groups amongst others.

They have been asked to put ethnicity aside and fashion out ways of moving the country forward.

IPAC’s statement is the latest that has kicked against the age range of delegates at the conference, which have low youth representation.

National Conference: Rules Guiding Proceedings Divide Delegates

National-Conference-delegatesA rule in the draft book of the National Conference holding in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, on how a decision will be taken on any issue divided delegates on Monday.

In the first major debate on ‘order 6 rule 4’ which proposes a three-quarter majority -75 per cent – for a decision to be taken, the delegates failed to reach a consensus after some delegates said the number was too high.

The division came when the chairman of the conference, Justice Idris Kutigi tried to overrule a suggestion of a delegate, Mike Ozekomhe, for the amendment of the rule to make a two-third majority vote sufficient for any decision to be arrived at, saying it is the same position with the Nigerian constitution and global best practices.

Ozekomhe had argued that it was against natural justice and the interest of the Nigeria for decisions to be made by only a few persons at the conference, insisting that two-third majority is more realistic than 75 per cent.

“Under the provision for 75 per cent for any dissenting voice to get anything done here, it would be very difficult for anything to be achieved. We should therefore go back to the normal practice of two third majority when it comes to voting on any matter.

“What this means is that for any decision to be taken no fewer than 369 of the 492 delegates must concur before such can be done. This is behemoth and extremely difficult given our situation in this country,” Mr Ozekomhe, who is also a lawyer, stressed.

Justice Kutigi pointed out that the consensus of 75 per cent voting had already been decided by the Presidency and that the matter had been closed.

“We cannot change the rule of voting which had already been decided by the President, who set the tone for this conference; the issue has been closed,” the chairman stated, countering the suggestion.

Some of the delegates disagreed with Justice Kutigi, insisting that the rule should be reconsidered and amended to comply with the Nigerian Constitution.

A former Nigeria’s Ambassador to the United States, Hassam Adamu and a former Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Gambo Jimeta, both from Adamawa State, supported the stipulations by the presidency, saying that the 75 per cent voting majority was a right decision.

Despite the attempt by Kutigi to rule that the matter had been closed, more delegates kicked against it, forcing the the chairman to defer discussion on the issue.

Another rule which proposes that the chairman of the conference will appoint chairmen and deputy chairman of committees that will be set up, was also strongly contested by some delegates.

After some minutes debate on the issue, it was eventually amended to reflect that committee members will pick their chairmen.

Delegates had earlier complained about the tedious process to get into the venue of the conference, leading to a short adjournment.

The conference’s plenary adjourned to Tuesday at 10:00am with delegates expected to conclude consideration of the draft rules and begin work in earnest.