Politicians Have Brought Rot Into The Supreme Court – Clarke

Robert Clarke (SAN) has lamented over the rate of interference in Nigeria’s judiciary by politicians, thereby hindering the delivery of good governance.

The Senior Advocate who disclosed this in an interview on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics called for a reform of Nigeria’s judiciary and the constitution which he faulted for allowing “so much money to filter into the system of politics.”

“I stand by my words and I have no regret to have said that there is a rot in the Supreme Court. I did not say that the Supreme Court judges were rotten. I said politicians have brought rot into the Supreme Court.

“We are all Nigerians we have seen how this country has been managed in the past 20-30 years, it gives no hope to you and I.

“Since politics came in 20 years ago, the judiciary has not been the same, politics has not been the same. The politics of the first, second Republic are quite different from the politics (practiced) in these past 20 years.

“This is a rotten constitution that allows so much money to filter into the system of politics,” he lamented.

Clarke also gave his opinion on the Supreme Court verdict on the Osun State election

According to him, the Supreme court’s verdict is ‘deadly correct’ in the interest of fairness and justice.

“The judgement of the Supreme Court came as a surprise to some elements of the society in Osun State and also did not come as a surprise to many people who are learned in the law.

“The judgement was by a majority of five to two. The five judges giving judgement to the APC decided that due to the fact that the lead man who wrote the judgement in the tribunal never participated on the very valid day that certain decisions were taken and which he now read as judgement.

“The other two claimed that the malpractice surrounding the re-run itself was not necessary and that INEC was really wrong to have conducted that re-run.

“In the interest of justice and fair-haring, the Supreme Court was deadly correct.”

Clarke added that although Supreme court judges are very busy, cross-examination is vital and that the judge should not simply have written the judgement and in the interest of justice.

Muslim Leaders Challenge Buhari On Good Governance

President Muhammadu Buhari has on Friday, November 10, met with Muslim leaders across the nation at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

The Muslim leaders including Jama’atul Nasril Islam group during the meeting prayed for the good health of the president and also called him to maintain good governance and ensure just amongst all groups.

Muslim leaders at the meeting include Secretary General JNI, Dr Khalid Aliyu, National Chairman JIBWIS, Sheikh Bala Lauw, Ibrahim Bauchi, Sheikh Muhammad Jingir and Sheikh Qaribullah, among others.

President Buhari met with leaders at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Friday after an earlier meeting with Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN).

The Christian leaders during the meeting demanded Nigeria’s exit from all religious organisations.

CAN President, Reverend Ayokunle at the meeting also asked the Federal Government to tackle herdsmen attacks in the country.

UN Security Council Meets With Osinbajo

UN Security Council Meets With OsinbajoNigeria’s Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, has assured the visiting United Nations Security Council mission that steps are being taken to ensure that human rights culture is institutionalised in the Nigerian Military to avoid negative reports of human rights abuse.

Professor Osinbajo said this during a closed door meeting with the UN delegation at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

He, however, noted that it was time for the international community to take another look at the international legal instruments and conventions that govern warfare and conflicts in the light of the unconventional and brutal operations of terrorists and insurgents around the world.

“We must, on a global scale look again at how to deal with these new challenges.

“We need to look at the governing conventions, as well as what type of legal categories and recognition of law we should give them.

“We need to re-examine how to deal with these individuals according to law,” the Acting President said in a statement issued on Monday by his spokesman, Laolu Akande.

He also assured the UN team that the Federal Government would progressively review the Rules of Engagement by the military and across the nation’s security system while taking human rights issues into consideration.

Professor Osinbajo added that President Muhammadu Buhari’s Social Investment Programmes which include the Conditional Cash Transfer, the GEEP Micro Credit scheme and the N-Power job programme would cater to the developmental needs of the northeast.

He said “we are already disbursing the cash transfers in some Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) camps and host communities,” adding that the present administration was implementing a micro-credit scheme while using the Social Investment Programmes to resuscitate the local economies, including through the Anchor Borrowers’ plan for farmers.

The Acting President further urged the international community to support the Federal Government in the area of humanitarian response, describing the challenge as “massive”.

He hinted that the government was also in the process of passing a Northeast Development Commission bill that would deal with some of the long term developmental issues.

The Security Council members were led to the Presidential Villa by the UK Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Mathew Rycroft.

The team comprises of all the five permanent members and 10 non-permanent members of the Security Council.

Speaking earlier at the meeting, Ambassador Rycroft praised the Nigerian Government for its handling of the humanitarian challenge in the Northeast.

He called for a long term developmental outlook in the region to address the issues of good governance, human rights, women’s participation, economic revival, education and jobs.

The delegation is leaving Nigeria with a pledge that the United Nations Security Council would play its role well in assisting the Nigerian Government to tackle the challenges in the conflict zones.

Briefing State House correspondents after the meeting, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geofrey Onyeama, said the Federal Government is pleased with the tour of the northeast by the Council.

He assured the team that Nigeria would leverage on it to access all the funds needed for the rehabilitation of the IDPs in region.

The meeting was attended by some members of the Federal Executive Council and top government officials including the Minister of Defence, Major General Mansur Dan-Ali (rtd), and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama.

Others are the Minster of Budget and Planning, Udo Udoma; Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu; Minister of State for Environment, Ibrahim Jubrin; the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), and the Chief of Defence Staff, General Gabriel Olonisakin.

Good Governance Identified As Panacea To Poverty Reduction

Good Governance, Poverty ReductionA committed world of good governance at the federal, state and local government levels, have been identified as a panacea towards poverty reduction in Nigeria.

This is the submission of the Director- General, West African Institute of Financial and Economic Management, Professor Akpan Ekpo, at the distinguished annual lecture for participants at the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies, Kuru.

He noted that the absence of committed leadership in the country is a great concern, while political will is both a necessary and sufficient condition for institutional mechanisms for poverty reduction.

The renowned economist stated that, “a committed world of good governance can reduce global poverty to the barest minimum.

“The solution does not lie within the frameworks but within concrete action that portrays the exercise of good governance at the federal state and local government levels.

“In the absence of good governance, no nation can effectively design and implement sustainable poverty reduction programmes.”

He however suggested that the way forward is for government to formulate and implement an economic blue-print that stresses sustained growth and inclusive development with specific strategies and programmes targeted at the poor.

“This must be accompanied with a robust monitoring and evaluation framework,” he said.

Reflecting on the complexity of the issue of poverty and its alleviation, Professor Ekpo posited that all hands must be on deck with non-governmental organisations, complementing government efforts.

“Globalization of society is not helping matters in this regard. It is also necessary for civil society and the private business communities to join efforts with those of government, more than ever before, to contribute to poverty alleviation in ways that reflect their interests and capabilities because utilizing non-governmental channels would help broaden the scope of government contributions to poverty reduction.

“In this regard, the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) should focus not only on individual projects, but also engage in more general analysis and proposals to government for promoting workable approaches to poverty reduction,” Ekpo added.

Obiano, John Momoh, Dogara, Others Bag 2015 Zik Prize Award

obianoThe Governor of Anambra State, Willie Obiano; CEO of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh and others have bagged the 2015 Zik Prize award.

Governor Obiano bagged an award for Good Governance under the auspices of Public Policy Research and Analysis Center (PPRAC).

He said that the award would be an inspiration to him towards realizing the vision and mission of the state in being the first choice investment destination, and a hub for industrialization and commercial activities.

This, he said, would be achieved through the four pillars and 12 enablers of his administrative policy.

He gave the assurance that he would continue in the leadership ideals of Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, both in decision making and in implementation.

The Chairman/CEO of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh, picked up the award in the Professional Leadership Category.

John-Momoh-Channels-TV-Chairman
Chairman and CEO of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh

He was represented by the Assistant General Manager, International Operations and other members of staff of Channels Television.

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Honorable Yakubu Dogara, also got the Public Service Prize.

 

The Zik Leadership Award was set up in 1994 in honour of Nigeria’s first civilian president, Nnamdi Azikwe. It honours those in positions of authority who display exemplary leadership in Africa.

The 2015 edition honoured seven eminent personalities in different categories, including Public Service, Political Leadership, Good Governance, Professional and Business Leadership.

The Chairman of the occasion, Retired General Ike Nwachukwu drew the attention of all and sundry to the leadership ideals of the founding fathers of Nigeria.

The award ceremony took place at the Civic Center, Victoria Island Lagos.

The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, and several other dignitaries graced the occasion.

Nigeria’s Independence: Governor Ayade Promises Good Governance

Green Police-AyadeAs the countdown towards Nigeria’s Independence gets closer, the Cross River State Governor, Ben Ayade, has reiterated his commitment towards the delivery of good governance to the people of the state.

Ayade made the remark at an interdenominational service at the Saint Bernard’s Catholic Church in Calabar, the Cross River State capital, as part of the events to celebrate Nigeria’s 55th Independence Anniversary.

Speaking on the achievements of the state and country at large towards meaningful governance, Ayade sued for policies that would be more beneficiary to low income earners.

On the issues facing the nation 55 years after independence, the Governor called for a reversal of the privatization policy. According to him, “Nigeria’s present state of development does not support privatization.”

Speaking further, Governor Ayade urged the people of the state to remain focused on his signature projects, no matter how unrealistic it seems, as he remains focused on its deliveries within his first four years in office.

Governor Amosun Promises Better Days Ahead For Ogun Residents

amosunOgun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun, has assured residents of more capital projects to re-fertilize the socioeconomic development of the state, despite the harsh economic situation in the country, saying that proactive economic policies have been put in place to achieve this.

The Governor said this in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, during the yearly special Iftar prayer held at the arcade ground of the Governor’s office.

Addressing the gathering, the State Governor seized the occasion to thank residents for their cooperation and also asked for more cooperation and better understanding for government policies and programmes.

Quick to promise better days ahead in the face of dwindling finances, Governor Amosun promised not to betray the confidence reposed in him and his administration.

During a lecture at the event, the Chief Imam of the University of Abuja, Professor Taofeek Adesina, urged Muslims against all forms of violence. He also challenged the Federal Government to provide the much needed good governance, transparency and accountability for the overall development of the country.

Prayers were offered for continuous peace and harmony in the land.

The event was attended by religious leader, traditional rulers, members of the National and State Assemblies, the Secretary-General of the Council for Islamic Affairs, and the former International Criminal Court (ICC) Judge, Prince Bola Ajibola.

Muslim Forum Tasks Buhari On Good Governance

Muslim-Forum-AbujaA Muslim forum has urged the new administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure good governance that will give all Nigerians access to education and healthcare.

The forum held in Abuja on Saturday was attended by a former Minister of Sports, Mr Bolaji Abdullahi and other Muslim faithful.

The participants further asked President Buhari to also give priority to poverty alleviation in the interest of national development.

Lectures were held at the forum in the spirit of Ramadan to remind the Muslim faithful of how to contribute their quota to national development irrespective of their class in the society.

Men and women gathered to listen to what speakers at the event had to say.

In his message to the congregation, the former Minister of Sports admonished those in authority to provide good governance and basic amenities to their followers and also called on Muslims and non-Muslims to champion the course of development where ever they find themselves.

Speakers after speakers, also appealed for closer interaction between leaders and their followers, noting that everyone must give account of their actions or inaction someday.

Also at the event were representative of the wife of the President, Maryam Ibrahim and Dr Khalid Abubakar, who was the guest lecturer.

Prayers were also offered for the leaders at all levels.

Institute Says Low Turnover Of Legislators Poses Risk To Nigeria’s Democracy

dg od nils, ladi hamalaiThe National Institute for Legislative Studies (NILS) has described as dismal, the low turnover of legislators in Nigeria’s states and the National Assembly.

In a post election report, the Director General of the institute, Dr Ladi Hamalai, said the trend poses a serious risk to Nigeria’s democracy and good governance.

Dr. Hamalai said the re-election of legislators dropped from the average 30 per cent in previous years to 16 per cent, a situation which she said makes continuity in law making process difficult, contrary to what is obtainable in advanced countries with up to 80 per cent re-election rate.

She said lack of high level institutionalisation of the democratic process, transparency in governance and failure to ensure open and genuinely competitive election, were hindering the achievement of the the needed sustainability and continuity in the legislature.

According to Dr. Hamalai, the institute runs into a constant need for training and orientation for new lawmakers, most of which take close to two years before the lawmakers get accustomed to the plenary proceedings and oversight duties that make up legislative duties in Nigeria.

VP’s Wife Assures Women Of More Political Participation

vp's wifeThe Wife of the Vice President, Dr Aminat Sambo, has assured Nigerian women in the south-west that political positions for women will be increased from 35 per cent to 45 per cent, should President Goodluck ‎Jonathan be re-elected at the March 28 Presidential polls.

Dr Aminat Sambo gave the assurance in Osogbo, the Osun State capital while addressing the women at the Nelson Mandela freedom park, in continuation of the presidential campaign of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

She asked the women to see themselves as useful tools in the political terrain.

Dr Sambo stressed the need for persons that have not collected their Permanent Voter Cards to do so before the deadline of March 22.

The VP’s wife also urged the people of the state, especially the women, to vote massively for the PDP in all the elections, saying “the PDP is the only party that can deliver good governance”.

She assured the women that re-electing President Jonathan would result in more involvement of women in governance, emphasising that “women play key roles in ensuring good governance”.

 

APC To Hold “Extraordinary” National Convention, Adopt 2015 Manifesto

APCThe All Progressives Congress (APC) on Sunday disclosed plans to hold an “extraordinary national convention” on Wednesday, 29th Oct. 2014 in Abuja, where the Party will approve amendments to its constitution and also adopt its manifesto for the 2015 general elections.

In a statement issued by APC National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said the proposed amendments when approved at the national convention will align the party’s constitution better with the Electoral Act and also allow the APC to function more efficiently.

The Party noted that the convention would adopt the six-point manifesto that has been extracted from the one submitted to the electoral umpire, INEC earlier for the purpose of the 2015 general elections.

”The manifesto to be adopted at the extraordinary convention of our party is specifically for the 2015 general elections. Because of shifting priorities, we do not believe that a party manifesto should be one for all time but a document that will adjust to the changing needs of the people.

”In this regard, we have conducted a survey to find out what Nigerians urgently need at the moment to raise their standard of living and ensure their security and welfare, which is the raison d’etre of any government. Based on the outcome of the survey, we have come up with a six-point manifesto, which we extracted from the one we submitted to INEC earlier.

”The six broad priority areas for the APC ahead of the 2015 general elections are National Security, Good Governance, Human Capital Development, Economic Development, Land and Natural Resources as well as Foreign Policy. The issue of job creation, fight against corruption, infrastructural development, health, qualitative education, regular power supply, etc are subsumed under these broad priority areas,” APC said.

According to Mohammed, the adopted manifesto “will be made massively available to all Nigerians, complete with the full details, in many languages”.

Kogi Governor Commissions 12 Buses From SURE-P Fund

The Governor of Kogi State, Idris Wada, has commissioned 12 (32 seaters) Ashok Leyland buses at the cost of 110 million Naira from the Subsidy Reinvestment Program (SURE-P) fund.

While commissioning the buses at the Government House in Lokoja on Tuesday, the state capital, the Governor disclosed that the ‘Lokoja City Bus Service’ was a division of Kogi State Transport Company.

Top government officials, representative from state ministries, royal fathers, State House of Assembly members, political office holders and members of planet projects limited in attendance.

Governor wada  noted that it was established to facilitate the movement of people in a safe and orderly manner at an affordable ticket price .

Since the closure of Kogi State Transport Service, popularly called Kogi Travelers in 2010 , due to mismanagement of the company’s fund, people in the state have depended on taxi and  Commercial motorcycle (popularly known as okada)  as a means of transportation.

The new 12 buses will, however, run only within the Lokoja metropolis at the price of 50 Naira per drop irrespective of the distance.

In his opening address, the Commissioner for Transport, Mohammed Wuya, gave an insight on how it all started. He noted that the current administration had evolved policies to regulate the transport sector as well as intervention where necessary, to ease mobility in the society and reduce hardship .

Governor Wada while giving his address said the desire to restructure the company was as a result of government’s commitment to providing safe, comfortable and affordable means of transport for the entire citizenry.

He, however, urged the consultants to bring their wealth of experience to bear by ensuring proper and efficient management of the scheme so as to justify the huge investment of government in the scheme. He also directed the new ministry of transport, which is the supervising ministry, to ensure strict supervision and monitoring.

At the end of his speech, Governor Wada commissioned the 12 buses, and took a trip round town with some top government officials.