IPAC Removes Secretary, Deputy, To Fill Vacant Positions Nov 19

IPACThe Inter-Party Advisory Council of Nigeria, IPAC has removed its Secretary, Mr Godson Okoye and Deputy Secretary, Mr Rasaq Eyiowuawi for violations of the Council’s Code of Conduct.

This was the outcome of the meeting of its General Assembly on November 11 and 12, 2015, according to a statement by IPAC Publicity Secretary, Ogbuehi Dike.

The meeting which had 21 political parties and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC in attendance, had received a report from a Committee set up earlier to determine cases of violations of Political Parties Code of Conduct 2013 brought by the Executive Committee against Mr Godson Okoye and Mr. Rasaq Eyiowuawi.

“A Committee set up by the General Assembly of IPAC and chaired by the National Chairman of Hope Democratic Party, Chief Ambrose Albert Owuru had, after investigating the charges of misconduct against Messrs Okoye and Eyiowuawi, presented a report to the Council’s General Assembly on 12th November 2015 on violations of Articles 5 and 10 of the Political Parties Code of Conduct against the two national officers and recommended their removal.

“The two officers were invited to defend themselves but they declined, without giving reasons for doing so. In his reply to the invitation by the Chairman of the investigation committee, the Deputy Secretary wrote, ‘Don’t ever in your life send me these messages again’,” the statement read.

The IPAC also listed the parties that voted for the removal of the two national officers. They include Accord, Action Alliance, Advance Congress of Democrats, African Democratic Congress, Alliance for Democracy, African Political Alliance, All Progressive Congress, Citizen Popular Party, Democratic Peoples Party and Fresh Democratic Party.

Others are Hope Democratic Party, Independent Democrats, KOWA Party, Mega Progressive Peoples Party, New Nigeria Peoples Party, Peoples Democratic Movement, Peoples Party of Nigeria, Social Democratic Party, Unity Party of Nigeria and United Peoples Party.

The Inter-Party Advisory Council, IPAC, has also set up an Election Committee to conduct a by-election into the vacant positions of Secretary and Deputy Secretary. The Election Committee, which has three members, is chaired by the National Chairman of United Peoples Party, Chekwas Okorie, with the National Chairman of DPP, Mr Benson Gashon, as Member and National Secretary of UPN, Abubakar Sokoto, as Secretary.

The IPAC Election Committee has requested political parties interested in contesting any of the two positions to send in their nomination on or before Wednesday, November 18, 2015. INEC is required to supervise elections into the IPAC Executive Committee.

IPAC had conducted an election into its Executive Committee on July 24, 2015 in which the National Chairman of Peoples Democratic Movement, Bashir Yusuf Ibrahim emerged as Chairman of the Council to defeat his opponent Mr Peter Ameh of Progressive Peoples Alliance.

Mr. Ameh had since approached the Abuja Federal High Court to challenge the election.

The Political Parties Code of Conduct 2013 was written and adopted by Nigeria’s registered political parties on July 16, 2013 to regulate their conduct. It also doubles as the governing regulation of the Inter-Party Advisory Council.

YDP Tasks INEC Over New Ballot Papers

ydpMembers of the Young Democratic Party (YDP) are insisting that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should re-print ballot papers that will include the party in the forthcoming elections or reschedule the date for the polls.

The YDP secured a court victory over INEC on Wednesday when a Federal High Court in Abuja ordered the inclusion of the party in the general elections.

YDP is a political party with young people forming the majority of its members.

The party was not listed among parties contesting in the 2015 general elections until the Federal High Court in Abuja ordered INEC to issue a certificate.

Following the judgement of the court, the leadership of the party is insisting that INEC must print new ballot papers, to include its name and candidacy or shift the election date further.

Meanwhile, the Democratic Peoples Party has also clarified allegations that it is among those calling for the sack of Prof. Attahiru Jega.

Members of the DPP have said that they have confidence in the electoral body and the introduction of the card readers during the polls.

The DPP has no presidential candidate in the forthcoming elections, rather it has adopted the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Absence Of Witness Stalls Subsidy Protest Murder Trial

A Lagos High Court has threatened to close the case of the prosecution over its failure to produce its witnesses in the murder trial which arose from the protests against fuel subsidy removal in January 2012.

A Divisional Police Officer with Pen Cinema Police Division, Lagos, Segun Fabunmi, who has now been dismissed from the Police, is standing trial before the court for allegedly shooting Adedamola Daramola to death at the Yaya-Abatan, Agege area during the protest.

Trial Judge, Justice Olabisi Akinlade frowned at the inability of the Director of Public Prosecution, DPP, to produce its witnesses in court on Monday, even though the defendant, who was on bail, was present in court with his lawyer, Mr. George Oguntade.

The DPP, Mrs. Olabisi Ogungbesan who appeared for the prosecution had told the court that the investigative police officer in the case, who was the witness, scheduled to testify today was appearing before a magistrate’s court in Ikeja.

She urged the court to stand down the matter till 12pm to enable the IPO to appear in court. This angered Justice Akinlade who described the request as an insult to the court.

After turning down the prosecution’s request to stand down the matter, the court threatened to close the prosecution’s case if it failed to produce more than one witness in court at the next hearing date.

Justice Akinlade has adjourned further proceedings till February 18.

APC Crisis: We Foresaw Our Problems – Mohammed

The Interim National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Lai Mohammed, has said that the party had foreseen that the coming together of different parties would cause the APC problems.

While speaking on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ , he said that the moment the defunct ACN, ANPP, CPC, section of DPP and APGA, came together they knew it would lead to differences at some point with everyone wanting to protect interests but that they were well prepared for it.

He noted that the defection of the five governors from the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, did not make things easier but the party had set up a Harmonization Committee to ensure a seamless blending.

The APC Chieftain refused to be compared to the ruling PDP in terms of party crisis. He argued that theirs was a different situation and indeed “unique in the history of Africa”, as what they achieved in merging such number of strong parties had never been achieved in the history of democracy in the continent.

He expressed optimism that the minor issues would soon be resolved with everyone coming back together. “What is important is that we will be stronger”. He stood by his past comments about the PDP not being able to handle its problems, insisting that the APC was different.

While referring to comments made by the PDP that the APC was made up of “strange bed fellows” with their make-up of different political parties, persons of different political backgrounds and lately the aggrieved PDP governors, Mr Mohammed said that the APC was simply playing by the rules of politics.

“You cannot effect a change from the outside, except u want to rig. In politics numbers are important.”

He dismissed the fear that the new members would pollute the values of the party, maintaining that the APC was a well structured party and the many people joining or defecting to the party would not pollute its values.

He enthused: “We have a manifesto, they can’t change it” but rather they would adjust from the ways of their former parties to do things in line with the APC’s ideology.

What exactly is the philosophy of APC?

As it has been a common criticism that Nigeria’s political parties lacked ideologies, since the defection of the five PDP governors to the APC, Mr Mohammed was asked to clarify the actual ideologies of the All Progressives Congress.

The APC Publicity Secretary said that the ideology of his party had never been hidden from the public as it had always been available on the party’s website for anyone who wished to know to read up.

He however went further to state that the All Progressives Congress was a “Left of the centre party”, a welfarist party that believed that the wellbeing of the people was the basic responsibility of any government.

The APC places the provision of amenities, security, and education as its priorities.

He said that the ideologies of the APC were obvious from the differences it had made in states where the PDP once ruled. Citing examples of the APC states of Osun, Oyo, and Ogun, he stressed that a proper comparison between the APC’s three years of governance to the eight years spent by the PDP governors would enable people understand the ideologies of the party better.

He also added that the APC was already rubbing off on the PDP defectors rather than the party losing its own values.

The Kano State Governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, who was among the five PDP governors that joined the APC, has already declared free education in Kano State, while the Kwara State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, has also set up a committee to develop a plan for the employment of over 5,000 youths in the state.

Candidacy Tussle

The APC leader also debunked rumours that the party was confused on who to present as its candidate at the 2015 General Election.

Laughing at what he termed “creative rumour mill that emanates from Nigeria”, he stated that the issue of who flies the party’s candidacy at any level has never risen as the party was busy building its structure.

With member registration slated for the end of January 2014, congress in February, to be followed by the National Convention in March, there was no way they could have had time to discuss candidacy.

He insisted that the Party’s constitution was clear on how candidates at different levels should emerge and there was no pressure on whom to put forward at the coming elections.

Ogun APC Crisis

Mr Lai Mohammed also tried to exonerate the national leadership of the APC on allegations that it caused the crisis rocking the Ogun State APC through its imposition of an executive on the members without following laid down rules.

He explained that part of the conditions for merger as required by the National Electoral Commission, INEC, was that names of interim national officers were expected to be provided, and the Interim National Committee set guidelines for selecting the persons who should be in the interim based on their political qualifications.

While providing details of the agreement with all merging parties, the set guidelines and the concessions given, he insisted that the party followed these rules as set during the merger agreements, adding that the people complaining about imposition of candidates in Ogun State APC did not know that agreements were made and rules had been set to ensure that old or new APC members were equally treated.

Over A Hundred Persons Move To PDP In Delta

The People’s Democratic Party has today embraced over a hundred persons who have decamped to the party from other parties in Isoko North Local government council.

Receiving the people and speaking on behalf of the state governor, the secretary to the state government, Comrade Ovuzuorie Macualay pointed out that this is a huge step ahead of the forth coming local government elections in the state.

At the event which had men, women and youths, the leader of the group, Chief Ateke stated why they left the parties in the first place  but that he is however back as he is one of the founding fathers of PDP in Delta state.

During an interview session, the Deputy majority leader, House of representatives, Honourable Leo Ogor, who is from Isoko North Constituency, expressed satisfaction at the decampees’ decision to come back to the party.

The decampees came from other parties like APC, DPP, ADC etc.

DPP Senatorial Candidate, Dafinone Heads To Election Tribunal

The last appears not to have been heard of the National Assembly poll in Delta Central as the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP) has vowed to contest the outcome of the poll at the Election Petition Tribunal.

The DPP senatorial candidate for Delta Central, Chief Ede Dafinone is contesting the victory of Mr. Emmanuel Aguariavwodo of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for Delta Central senatorial district.

In a statement issued on Thursday in Sapele, the DPP senatorial candidate described the April 12 bye- election as political denial perpetrated against Urhobo, the 5th largest ethnic group in Nigeria.

“There is little recognition of Urhobo at the federal and state levels in terms of appointments and positions. Similarly, the interference in the last election where the candidate foisted on the PDP in Delta State is again foisted and this time forcefully on the people of Delta Central”.

The DPP candidate who is not pleased with the result of the election where PDP was declared winner, flayed the exercise which he alleged was not free and fair and was enmeshed in violence and intimidation of voters.

He condemned the reckless desperation, the sheer treachery and lawlessness of leaders of the PDP in the state. He also accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of overturning the rule of fairness and allocating victory to the PDP.

“We reject this outright robbery of the people’s will. We condemn this grievous injustice, this unconscionable mockery of all that is decent, of all that is fair and just. The army and INEC, both Federal Government institutions worked with the PDP’s candidate to ensure his victory. The PDP used the army to unleash terror on the people of Delta Central. For hours, gun shots rent the air and the people were clobbered. Also, the announced result shows PDP in first place. As if that is not bad enough, the result shows All Progressives Congress (APC) in second place with DPP the Populist Party in the third place. All that combine to make the whole result laughable” the statement said.

The statement said the party’s legal team had been told to head to the poll tribunal.

“As law abiding citizens, we intend to explore all legal means to ensure this sham of an election is cancelled. We shall be proceeding to the election petition tribunal to present our case” the statement added.

Supreme Court Fines Ogboru For Suit Against Uduaghan’s Election

The Supreme Court has dismissed the appeal filed by the candidate of the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP) during Delta state governorship election in April 2011, Mr Great Ogboru, challenging the election of Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan as Governor of the state.

Delivering judgment on the suit, Justice Suleman Galadima who led a panel of four justices said the application by Mr Ogboru amounts to a gross abuse of court processes which is capable of setting a dangerous precedence for the legal profession.

The court therefore awarded a cost of N150,000 against Ogboru.

The DPP’s candidate had approached the court seeking for an order to set aside the March 21, 2012 judgment, which affirmed Emmanuel Uduaghan of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the election.

APC’s Number Swells As DPP Prepares To Join New Party

Another opposition political party, the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP), has signified its intention to join the newly formed opposition party coalition, All Progressives Congress (APC).
DPP’s entry has further swelled the number of the opposition parties involved in the merger to four, with the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and All Nigeria People’s Party (ANPP) already in the merger.

Addressing Journalists on Wednesday after the party’s National Executive Council (NEC) meeting, the DPP National Chairman, Major General Bashir S. Magashi (rtd) said the party having analysed the present political development in the country has resolved to close ranks with the other opposition parties to float a merger.

He said the party has decided to set up a merger committee to immediately enter into negotiations with other opposition parties and leaders of APC.

Cynthia’s murder: Pharmaceutical group petitions prosecutor over member’s trial

The Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, (PSN), has petitioned the Director of Public Prosecution, DPP, to properly review the murder case of Cynthia Osogoku to ensure that pharmacists were not persecuted wrongly.

The four suspects accused of killing Cynthia, who they met on Facebook

The national president of PSN, Mr. Azubike Okwor told journalists on Thursday that if the suspects were not found guilty of the crime of rape and armed robbery, they should be handed over to the Pharmacists’ Council of Nigeria, (PCN), for proper discipline for selling drugs without prescription.

Mr Okwor says that if the liability of the two pharmacists was limited to the sales or alleged sale of Rohypnol to clients they do not know and never collaborated in the condemnable crime.

He noted that it would be logical to believe there might have been breaches of professional ethics, adding  that the law provides that such matters to be dealt with by the Pharmacists’ Council of Nigeria.

Four suspects were on Monday arraigned before a Yaba Magistrate Court for killing 24-year old Cynthia Osokogu, who they met on social media platform.

The suspects, Okwumo Nwabufo,  Ezeike Olisaeloka, Orji Osita and the pharmacists that sold the drug, Rohypnol Flunitrapezam-Maduakor Chukwunonso,  are standing trial on an eight-count of felony, conspiracy, robbery and murder.