FG Accuses PDP Of Planning To Truncate Electoral Process

Why FG Made It ‘A Cardinal Principle’ To Tackle Insecurity – Lai Mohammed
Mr Lai Mohammed

 

The Federal Government has warned against plans by some in the opposition to cause a constitutional crisis by truncating the electoral process and making the February 23, 2019 elections inconclusive.

The warning is contained in a statement on Monday by the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, issued.

He accused the PDP of laying the groundwork for a constitutional crisis by unleashing what it described as the party’s “talking heads” on the public space to claim victory from Saturday’s election, even when INEC has yet to announce the result.

He said that by usurping the role of INEC through the announcement of result, the PDP has violated the Electoral Act and should face very serious consequences.

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”This confirms what we said in a series of pre-election press conferences, that the PDP – realizing it cannot win a free and fair election – will do everything possible to scuttle the polls, failing which it will proceed to the next stage, which is to discredit the entire electoral process, including the result, with the ultimate aim of precipitating a constitutional crisis and pushing for an interim government,” he said.

The minister wondered why those who parade themselves as Democrats would “show such disdain for the electoral process, which is a key ingredient of democracy.”

He called on the security agencies check the activities of the PDP in this regard by arresting and prosecuting anyone, who announces the result of last Saturday’s Presidential and National Assembly elections, other than INEC.

2019: British Govt Committed To Supporting Nigeria’s Electoral Process – Envoy

British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Arkwright

 

The British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Arkwright, has reiterated his government’s commitment to supporting Nigeria’s electoral system ahead of 2019 general elections.

Arkwright stated this on Wednesday in Abuja during his appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.

“The (electoral) process is very important and that is why the British government has been supporting the process all the way through and this is an important milestone on the road to 2019,” he said.

Arkwright’s comments come four days after the Ekiti State Governorship election that was keenly contested between the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Kayode Fayemi and that of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Professor Kolapo Olusola.

In Saturday’s election, Fayemi was declared the winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the keenly contested poll.

He polled 197,459 votes to beat his PDP rival Olusola who scored 178,121 votes, as well as the candidates of over 30 other political parties who took part in the governorship race.

Following the outcome of the announcement, the British envoy is satisfied with the conduct of the election considered to have reflected the mandate of the Ekiti electorates.

He, however, wants Nigerian politicians to avoid buying votes by allowing the people to exercise their free will in subsequent elections.

“It is important that conditions should be set for people to go out and vote in line with their opinions and conscience, vote freely as they wish to.”

Reacting to the deployment of 33,000 police personnel for the election, Arkwright commended the security operatives and INEC for providing an enabling environment for people to cast their votes.

Arkwright also believes that security is key to encouraging residents exercise their franchise during elections.

Jonathan Preaches Independence, Fairness In Electoral Processes

Nigeria’s forGoodluck Jonathan, Independence, Fairness, electoral process, electionmer President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan has urged electoral bodies to embrace independence and fairness during electoral processes.

This according to him, is in order to reflect the true will of the people as that is more essential than arguments concerning the length of a leader’s tenure.

Dr Jonathan made the comments while speaking at a symposium organised by the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa, taking place in Johannesburg, South Africa on Thursday.

Also in attendance are the former leader of Mauritius Cassam Uteem and the Former Prime Minister of Senegal, Aminata Toure who would also be part of a discussion panel later on.

The event which is themed: Current Democratic Realities in Africa, Where Are We Headed Beyond The Vote, was flagged off by South Africa’s Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa.

Mr Ramaphosa said although Africa has recorded progress in boosting democratic value, there is still a lot of work to be done.

Rumour To Disenfranchise Non-Indigenes Is Callous – Lagos INEC

political parties-LagosThe Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Lagos State, Nigeria’s commercial city, has debunked the rumour that the commission intends to delay Saturday’s Governorship and House of Assembly elections in the state.

In a statement issued yesterday and signed by the commission’s HOD Voter Education and Publicity in the state, Mrs Ijeoma Okey-Igbokwe, the commission noted that it has no plans to replace corps members with state school teachers to disenfranchise non-indigenes as alleged.

Describing the rumour as callous, the commission stated: “We want to state here clearly that the rumours are callous, unfounded and malicious.

“The commission in the state wants to assure Lagosians (Lagos residents) that everything is set for the smooth take off of the above mentioned elections tomorrow, Saturday, April 11, 2015 and that there is no intention by the Commission to delay the electoral process”.

It warned the peddlers of the rumours to desist from acts that are capable of disrupting the peace of the state, while urging the residents of Lagos State to come out in their numbers to elect leaders of their choice.

Fayemi Hails Osinbajo’s Choice As Buhari’s Running Mate

Kayode Fayemi 1Former Governor of Ekiti State and Chairman of the National Convention Committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Kayode Fayemi, has hailed the choice of legal luminary, Prof Yemi Osinbajo as the running mate to General Muhammadu Buhari, 2015 presidential election.

Fayemi, whose committee conducted the APC convention and presidential primary that produced General Buhari as the party’s presidential flag bearer, said in a statement in Lagos on Thursday that Prof Osinbajo’s choice has further reinforced the party’s determination to effect the change which Nigerians have for long clamored for.

Describing Osinbajo as a renowned teacher, legal expert, administrator and a reform-minded technocrat, who embodies the virtues of honesty, integrity, selflessness and dedication to the overall good of the society, Fayemi said the university Don remains a strategic partner to General Buhari in the onerous task of driving the change.

“Every time pundits come up with their doomsday predictions of APC’s imminent collapse, APC comes out stronger right from its founding. The choice of Osinbajo is also leaving us much stronger for the task ahead. I commend General Buhari and other party leaders for arriving at a choice that is bound to strengthen our ticket”, Fayemi said.

Fayemi added that regardless of what skeptics are saying the APC is set to run an issue-based campaign and carry along every segment of the society in the electoral process that would culminate in APC emerging victorious at the 2015 presidential election.

He added that the choice of Buhari as Presidential candidate and Osinbajo as running mate has re-defined the 2015 contest and become a concern to the ruling party.

Fayemi urged Nigerians to support the APC in bringing about the change which the country and its people so urgently need, by voting massively for the party at the coming polls.

Anambra Election: APGA Commends President Jonathan’s Distance From Polls

The leadership and members of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, have commended President Goodluck Jonathan for his neutral position in the just concluded Governorship election in Anambra state.

The National Chairman of APGA, Victor Umeh, in his submission said that though the party grappled with a lot of issues before and even after the election, the President in his firm belief in democracy never in any way intruded or meddled in the electoral process.

He said that despite the fact that his party was involved in the election too, President Jonathan insisted that the opinion of the people of Anambra State must count in the polls.

The APGA governorship candidate, Willie Obiano, however reminded the party members of the enormous tasks ahead, that requires concerted effort and support of all and sundry.

 

US Non-Immigrant Visa May Be Reviewed To 5 Years – Nigeria’s Ambassador

Nigeria’s Bi-national tie with the United States of America has come to the fore on the background of the recent labelling of insurgents Boko Haram as a terrorist organisation by the United States.

Although, the development was quickly embraced by the Nigerian Government, some Nigerians are said to believe that the US might be having a political game plan to cash in on Nigeria’s fragile political atmosphere, ahead of 2015.

In this video, Network Africa speaks with Nigeria’s Ambassador to Washington, Ambassador Adebowale Adefuye.

Dismissing the doubts, he assured that Nigeria is making the best of its ties with America, and there is need for Nigerians to be realistic because “no country can do it alone.”

He discussed areas in which the US is adding value to Nigeria, they include helping in its electoral process, national security, anti-corruption campaign and several others. He spoke on several other issues concerning Nigerians living in the US as well as those at home.

He also stated the efforts of his office to have the American Non-Immigrant Visa issued to Nigerians reviewed to have 5 year validity, a development he said has been agreed to in principle.

According to him, Nigeria is willing to reciprocate this gesture as reciprocity is “the name of the game in International Relations.”

Enjoy the interview.

Learn From Ghana’s Election, INEC Commissioner Tells Nigerians

The Cross River State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mike Igini on Tuesday said Ghana will remain the pride of Africa as it stands as a model in African democracy which Nigeria must emulate.

Mr Igini, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, said “the history of a people is a reflection of how they decide to conduct themselves.”

The INEC commissioner said Ghana has conducted six successful elections that has met both local and international standards and that the success is not far-fetched because the saying “Ghana First” applies that every Ghanaians should believe in the country.

He said Ghanaians are where they are today because they started a journey of change some years ago, remaining committed to the value of change and in making the country attain a higher level in Africa and West Africa Sub-region and that they also adopt new method which is the introduction of the biometric system in the election process.

“Some of the things I found in Ghana are quite interesting unlike in our own country; and of course we can see why we are where we are,” he said.

At 52 Nigeria is experiencing more motion than movement, says University don

A Professor of International law and former Vice Chancellor, University of Ado-Ekiti, Akin Oyebode, on Monday said little else apart from the replacement of the Union Jack with the Nigeria flag has changed since 1960.

Mr Oyebode, who was discussing the level of development in Nigeria since independence on Channels Television’s news at 10, said he thought that by now Nigeria should have experienced economic independence to ‘wrestle the firm hold imperialism’.

“But we’ve not succeeded in doing that. Nigeria has remained a neo-colonial economy. In fact, we’ve had more motion than movements in terms of progress in this country,” he said.

Watch the full interview with Mr Oyebode below as he proffers solutions to Nigeria’s leadership problems.

Nigeria has civilian not democratic government – Robert Clarke

A legal practitioner and a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Robert Clarke on Tuesday said though the country has experienced significant development since  it gained independence from colonial rule, there is still lack of local government presence in most areas.

The 74-year-old lawyer, who joined Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily via the telephone, said the absence of the local government presence is due to “complete corruption”.

“We need to strengthen every area of governance so that all necessary things can be done to ensure that it is not a civilian government we have but a democratic government,” he said.

“There is the general believe that the representatives we have in Abuja are not elected representatives of the people and that the forms of conducting elections still allows many, many people who should not be in Abuja to be in Abuja.

“And the representative finds out that he doesn’t owe allegiance to the people and the people do not trust him. The problem we have is to strengthen the electoral process so that the people would believe, not only believe, but that they know that they have an influence on their representatives,” Mr Clarke said.

Jonathan’s Independence Day speech is ‘Book of Lamentations’ – Melaye

Dino Melaye, a former member of the House of Representative and the Executive Secretary of Anti-corruption Network on Tuesday said that the Independence Day speech broadcasted on national television by President Goodluck Jonathan is far from impressive calling it the ‘book of lamentations’.

Mr Melaye, who was a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, said what he expected the president to have done with the speech was to give Nigerians hope not to reel out the woes facing the country.

“The speech of Mr President yesterday shouldn’t have been a recorded speech in the Villa, it should have been made before Nigerians,” he said.
The former lawmaker said he was surprised to hear President Jonathan saying that he cannot solve the problems of Nigerians alone.

“Leadership is a serious business. What I expected from my president is a statement of hope not a lamentation. No one would expect that the president alone would ameliorate our problems. What I am saying is that nobody selected the team of Mr President for Mr President. He appointed his Ministers, he appointed his presidential aides. If there is a failure, it is his responsibility,” Mr Melaye said.

Lawyer says Nigeria’s electoral system has improved

A legal practitioner and the pioneer Chairman, Business section of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), George Etomi on Tuesday said that there are several improvements to make Nigerians celebrate the 52 years Independence from colonial power.

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Etomi said the one significant area that has experienced improvement is the electoral process.

“The person at the helm of affairs matters a lot. If you have a president or a governor who decides that the electioneering system does not matter, then people would burn, loot, and generally cause mayhem. But if you have a president such as we have, who is not prepared to stick out his neck for anybody but ensures that the system works, then you will have results,” he said.

Watch the video below for the complete interview.