Edo Govt. Set To Regain Top Position In Sports

Governor Obaseki Flags Off NIPDS In Edo StateThe Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has reiterated his administration’s resolve to ensure the state regains its pride of place in terms of sports at the national level.

Governor Obaseki gave the assurance when he received a team from the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) Edo state chapter led by the Chairman, Ahmed Aigbona on a courtesy visit to the Government House in Benin City, the Edo state capital.

He maintained that sports had always been at the front burner throughout his campaign and was precise on his laid down procedures to lift sports in the state.

“We want to make sure we regain our pride of place and restore our legacy in sports, we are leaders in sports and we will do everything to ensure we retrace our step and recover our position and pride in sports.”

As parts of efforts to regain first position in sports, the state government organized sports workshop which was well attended by great sports men and women across the nation including sports writers to develop the necessary framework.

The Governor further said that his administration will refurbish part of Samuel Ogemudia Stadium and also revamp major sports like athletics and football which will be handled by professionals to produce the desired result, adding that the administration is also set to encourage school sports to catch them young.

Earlier, the Chairman of SWAN, applauded the present administration for the achievements recorded so far in areas of investments promotion.

He urged the State government to implement recommendations from the sports workshop.

“We commend you for your commitment to developing sports in Edo state and your assurance to faithfully implement the outcome of the sports workshop.”

Edo Set To Hold 5th Edition Of Okpekpe Road Race

All is now set for the 5th edition of the Okpekpe Road Race which is scheduled for May 13, 2017 in Okpekpe, Etsako East local government area of Edo state.

Addressing journalists at the Government House in Benin City, the Edo state capital, a team from the organising committee led by Mike Itemuagbor, disclosed that the event has seen some upgrades including a mobile app for access to competition details and the use of transponders and trackers to eliminate cheats.

He disclosed further that the 10km Okpekpe Road Race which is a bronze category event of the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF), will make Edo state a tourist attraction.

Itemuagbor added that athletes from 11 countries namely, Kenya, Uganda, Eritrea, Turkey, Germany, Bahrain, Morocco, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Burundi and Nigeria, are expected to participate in this year’s edition.

He assured participants of improvements in the competition particularly the VIP race.

“We want to do an effective VIP race, especially those that would run for a cause,” the committee leader stated.

On his part, the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, lauded the organisers for the innovations in the 2017 edition.

EFCC Seeks Synergy With Sister Agencies

EFCC Seeks Synergy With Sister AgenciesThe Acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ibrahim Magu, says all government agencies tasked to fight corruption must work in greater synergy for the benefit of all Nigerians.

The anti-corruption czar said this at a time when division among sister agencies has come into full public view.

This follows the rejection of his nomination as the substantive Chairman of the EFCC by the Nigerian Senate, on the basis of an indicting report from the Department of State Services.

Speaking at an anti-corruption summit hosted by Commission, Mr Magu tasked all stakeholders on collaboration.

On his part, the House Committee Chairman on Anti-corruption, Honourable Kayode Oladele, said political culture must be checked.

While a senior advocate, Mike Ozekhome, alleges official hypocrisy, former Edo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, says behaviour tolerated by Nigerians is behaviour approved by the citizens.

The summit, themed ‘Building an Anti-Corruption Consensus in an Inter-Agency Environment’, took place on Monday in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital.

Obaseki Wants National Monument Named After Late Ogbemudia

Obaseki Wants National Monument Named After Late OgbemudiaThe Edo State governor, Godwin Obaseki, has suggested the naming of a national monument after the late elder statesman, Dr. Samuel Ogbemudia, as a befitting farewell gift for the two time governor.

The Governor gave the opinion when he received a delegation from the late Ogbemudia family at the Government House in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

“A lot of things have been named after him, but I want one federal major asset named after him. At least, on the national basis he also gets his dues,” he said.

Governor Obaseki said the state burial for the former administrator was not enough appreciation for all he has done for the state.

“As for the state funeral, it was due. We could not have done anything less for him. This office we are operating today, he built it”, he added.

The leader of the delegation and the first son of the late administrator, Samuel Ogbemudia (Jnr), expressed the family’s appreciation to the Edo State Government for the befitting burial given to their father.

Elder Statesman, Samuel Ogbemudia Laid To Rest

ogbemudia3The remains of late elder statesman and two-time Governor of Mid-Western State and later Bendel State, Brigadier General Samuel Ogbemudia (rtd), has been laid to rest.

Dr. Ogbemudia was buried at his residence in Ihaya Street, Benin City, following an interdenominational service held at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in the Edo State capital.

A combined team of clergymen from the Christian Association of Nigeria, Edo and Delta chapters took charge of proceedings at the venue.

Family, friends, close associates, past and serving Governors of Edo and Delta states, as well as members of National Assembly and their state counterparts also witnessed the ceremony where they paid their last respects to the two-time Governor.

In a sermon titled “the man and his works”, Bishop Oyonude Kure said the late Ogbemudia by his laudable achievements as an administrator lived an exemplary life worthy of emulation.

Shortly after the sermon there were tributes from former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon (rtd), Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki and Deputy Governor of Delta State, Kingsley Otuaro among others.

ogbemudia2

Dr. Ogbemudia died on Thursday, March 9 at the age of 84 at a private hospital in Lagos.

While serving as Governor of the old Bendel State, Dr. Ogbemudia initiated improvements in the areas of sports, urban development, education, public transportation, housing, commerce and agriculture.

Obaseki Inaugurates New Board Of Internal Revenue Service

Edo Governorship Election Tribunal Adjourns Till December 12
Edo State Governor-elect, Godwin Obaseki

Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has charged a new board of Internal Revenue Service to meet up with the set revenue targets while ensuring compliance from tax payers without force.

Mr Obaseki stated this during an inauguration ceremony of the board at the exco chambers in the Government House in Benin City, the Edo state capital.

The governor urged the team to justify the confidence reposed in them.

“Each one of you that I have worked with over the years and had the privilege of associating with, I know that you have the grounding, the training and you have behind you, the accomplishments to enable you do this job that we have assigned to you.”

He also insisted on continuity with the recent tax reforms by the Edo state government.

“You have all the instruments to collect taxes and revenue for the state and i’m sure you will do it – but in conducting yourselves, ensure that you have the highest standards of ethics, of professionalism. You must be empathetic and humane to the people of Edo state.”

In his address, the Chairman of the Edo state Internal Revenue Service, Igbinidu Inneh, said the first task is to have a correct data base for all tax payers in the state.

“We have identified six critical success factors around which our strategies would be wrapped; legal and regulatory environment, availability of data, human capital capacity, technology selection, enlightenment and social inclusion and value for money.”

Edo PDP/APC Trade Words Over Obaseki’s 100 Days In Office

Godwin Obaseki, Judiciary, Executive, Edo StateThe achievements recorded by the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, in his first hundred days in office have continued to generate reactions from the ruling All Progressives Congress, (APC) and the opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP).

Addressing journalists at the PDPs secretariat in Benin City, the Edo state capital, the Chairman Of the Party, Dan Orbih, said that the muted celebrations by the APC depicts little accomplishments.

Reacting to the statement, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, John Mayaki, said the concept of a hundred days in office was originally a PDP creation.

Obaseki was sworn-in as the Edo state governor, on November 12, 2016, at the expiration of the term of office of Adams Oshiomhole.

Edo Governor Seeks Stronger Judiciary-Executive Synergy

Godwin Obaseki, Judiciary, Executive, Edo StateEdo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, has called for stronger cooperation and harmonious relationship between the Executive and the Judiciary arms of government.

The Governor made the appeal at the swearing-in ceremony of Justice Esohe Ikpomwen as the substantive Chief Judge of Edo State.

Mr Obaseki noted that the strengthened collaboration would enable his administration achieve its developmental goals for Edo State.

The newly inaugurated Chief Judge assured the Governor that the state would begin to experience speedy dispensation of justice.

The ceremony took place on Thursday at the banquet hall of the Government House in Benin City, the state’s capital in south-south Nigeria.

Justice Ikpomwen, being the most senior judge in the state, took over from Justice Cromwell Idahosa who retired at the age of 65.

LEDAP Condemns Killing Of Death Row Prisoners In Benin City

LEDAPThe Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP) has condemned the killing of three death row prisoners in Benin City Prison.

The group, in a statement on Wednesday by its national coordinator, Chino Obiagwu, noted that the death warrants of those executed were signed by the Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki.

The convicts: Ogbomoro Omoregie, Apostle Igene and Mark Omosowhota were executed on December 23 2016 in Edo State, south-south Nigeria.

They were all convicted and sentenced to death about 20 years ago by military tribunals under the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions) Decree as amended.

LEDAP noted that in an earlier petition it submitted to the Governor on behalf of the executed prisoners on December 21, 2016, protesting the plan for their execution, the prisoners had pleaded with the Governor to shelve the planned execution, saying there was a pending case at the Court of Appeal brought by all death row prisoners in Nigeria against their execution.

They pointed out that the appeal had not been decided and maintained that it was illegal to carry out the executions.

“LEDAP is appalled that the earliest social duty of Governor Obaseki upon assumption of office was execution of his citizen on death row. We reiterate that all prisoners, including those sentenced to death, retain all the fundamental rights endowed on all citizens by the 1999 Constitution. This was re-emphasised by the Court of Appeal in the case of Peter Nemi vs Attorney General of Lagos State in 1994. The Supreme Court of Nigeria also held in Nasir Bello vs Attorney-General of Oyo State that a prisoner cannot be legally executed while his case is pending in court.

Death Penalty Moratorium

“In so far as an appeal against the sentences of the death row prisoners in Nigeria are pending in court, to the knowledge of the prison authorities and the government who participated in the high court proceedings before the appeal, there is no legal justification for the Edo executions, more so when it was carried out cruelly on a day to the eve of Christmas.

“It is also appalling that Edo State government carried out the execution despite the declaration by Nigerian Government at its 2009 and 2014 Universal Periodic Reports (UPR) to the United Nations Human Rights Council that Nigeria has put in place a moratorium on the use of the death penalty.

“The December 23, 2016 execution of these three prisoners, as well as similar execution of four prisoners on June 21 2013 by the same Edo State government have undermined Nigeria’s declarations to the international community for death penalty moratorium,” the group said.

LEDAP has further called on the Federal Government to stop all death penalty executions forthwith.

“The National Assembly and State Houses of Assembly should amend the Criminal Code and Penal Code, as well as the Robbery and Firearms (Special Provisions) Act to remove death sentence as punishment for crimes and replace it with life imprisonment or term of years’ sentence,” the group proposed.

Governor Obaseki Seeks Assistance For Edo IDPs

Governor Obaseki Seeks Assistance For Edo IDPsEdo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has appealed for more support for the internally displaced persons across Nigeria and particularly to those at the Christian Home for the Needy at Uhogua in Edo State.

The Governor made the appeal at a Christmas party organised for the IDPs by the state government in which the children were treated to a fun time.

The centre was converted to an amusement park with bouncing castles, fun rides and seesaws while the children and parents had a lot to eat, taking the foods from no less a person than the wives of the Governor and the Deputy.

The First Lady of Edo State, Mrs Betsy Obaseki, shared what inspired her to organise the party.

“The least we can do is to give of our time and resources and the life that God has put in every one of us to share with other humans especially those who are in need of it.  So that is what inspired this,” she said.

Wife of the Deputy Governor, Maryam Shaibu said: “The idea of coming here is nothing short of being with the children instead of bringing them out of here you know, just be with them and enjoy the day with them.”

While their wives spent time with the children, Governor Obaseki and the Deputy Governor were disguised as Santa Claus and handed out gifts to those below five years old.

The Governor later stepped out of Santa’s tent to greet them in the Santa Claus costume before unveiling himself.

While addressing the children, both the Governor and his deputy assured them of the care of the government.

Governor Obaseki said: “I want assure all of you here that our government will continue to support you.”

His deputy, who spoke in Pidgin English, further assured them that the Governor’s promises of a new hostel and better facilities would be fulfilled.

The coordinator of the camp, Pastor Solomon Folorunsho, while briefing newsmen, could not withhold his excitement.

He said: “You can see the children are very happy, today they don’t remember their pain or whatever happened to them.  Some of them are telling me that even before Boko Haram they had never experienced this before.”

He, however, stated that they have a lot of needs and called for assistance: “We are really in need of so many things; food, health, education, books, text books more especially and accommodation”.

The Governor also added to his plea for assistance.

“Programmes like this cannot be fully sustained by government alone. So the purpose of me coming here is to draw attention to camps like this and to see how we can attract resources beyond us as government have and to support this camp.

“So I really will like to use this opportunity to say that while we are all spending this Christmas with our family and loved ones, know that there are people out here as internally displaced people in Nigeria who need your love who need your help, who need your support.”

NNPC Boss Seeks End To Pipeline Vandalism In Niger Delta

Military, Niger delta, pipelineThe Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Dr. Maikanti Baru, is appealing to pipeline vandals to desist from their actions.

He also asked the vandals to channel their grievances to the NNPC through established channels for them to addressed.

The NNPC Group Managing Director made the appeal on Wednesday while briefing reporters after a meeting with the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, and the Oba of Benin Oba Ewuare.

Dr. Baru assured vandals that if they heed the call and come forward they would not be arrested and that their complaints would be given utmost attention.

Militancy had resurged in the Niger Delta in 2015, with series of attacks on pipelines and oil installations, forcing some oil companies to declare force majeure.

A group that calls itself the Niger Delta Avengers has claimed responsibility for most of the attacks that have affected Nigeria’s oil output and power supply, which largely depends on gas from that region.

Governor Oshiomhole Condemns Postponement of Edo Election

Adams-Oshiomhole-on-Edo-electionEdo State Governor, Adams Oshiomhole, has expressed surprise at the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to postpone the state’s governorship election earlier slated for Saturday, September 10, 2016.

The agency on Thursday afternoon announced this decision after it had earlier said that it would go ahead with the polls.

Speaking on Channels TV’s Politics Today, Governor Oshiomhole described the decision as a setback for the state.

He frowned at the time it took the electoral body to make the decision, which he said had affected the parties’ programmes.

He said that if INEC had given the hint earlier that the election would be postponed, the All Progressives Congress (APC) would have also postponed its final rally to suit the new election date.

The Governor also reacted to allegations that his party was behind the postponement of the election by stating that none of the other parties was as ready as the APC for Saturday’s election.

He argued that the large turnout of supporters at the party’s final campaign rally on Tuesday was an indication that Edo State was indeed an APC state.

He maintained that the only issue that involved him as the Governor of the state was INEC’s decision to fix the election to coincide with the West African Examination Council (WAEC), GCE examination, which led to protests by students of the state.

“INEC ought to have known that the West African Examination calendar was out there. It is not something they fix two or three weeks to the time,” he said.