Nigerian Leaders Optimistic About Greater 2017

Nigerian Leaders Optimistic About Greater 2017Nigeria’s former leaders and current Vice President, Yemi Osibajo, have collaborated to release a hymn in which they advocated a greater, united and more peaceful Nigeria in the year 2017.

Singing Isaac Watts’ hymn, “O God, Our Help in Ages Past,” were: the former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Former Chairman of Nigeria Interim Government, Ernest Shonekan, Former Vice President Alex Ekwueme and Former Chief of General Staff, Commodore Admiral, Ebitu Ukiwe.

The VIP choristers released a video recording of the rendition on Monday.

Thereafter, in a goodwill messages to Nigerians, Yakubu Gowown said: “We pray to God, to continue to grant us that peace and unity that this country dearly deserves”.

They believe that: “In spite of the mess we tried to make of the country, God manages to always rescue us when we get to the edge of the precipice and we thank him for that”.

Furthermore, they expressed gratitude to God for “accepting and accommodating us, despite the mess we’ve made of ourselves”.

Meanwhile, speaking on the state of the country, Obasanjo believes that “God created Nigeria as we are, and he doesn’t make a mistake. So, we should thank him for that”.

Mr Shonekan, also encouraged citizens to continue to work hard in order to achieve desired results.

The former leaders equally expressed appreciation to the President, Muhammadu Buhari, and Mr Osinbajo, for coming up with the idea of bringing them together to render the song.

Babangida Says His Oil And Gas Vision Will Continue To Flourish

Ibrahim-Babangida-Niger-Oil-and-GasThe former Head of State, General Ibrahim Babangida (Rtd), says that his vision in the oil and gas industry will continue to flourish.

General Babangida says this is because his administration considered petroleum very important during his tenure.

He made the statement on Tuesday when he received the Controller of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) in Niger State, Engineer Abdullahi Jankara, at his residence in Minna.

“I appreciate the evolution of history of petroleum in the country because I consider it very important during our tenure.

“We discussed a lot with my Minister of Petroleum, Professor Jibrin Aminu and our vision is still working and will continue to flourish,” he said.

The former military President appreciated the visit of the DPR boss and commended the efforts put in place in oil and gas sector.

He assured the DPR of maximum support and assistance from the people of Niger State who he said are known for peace and for Nigeria’s development.

The Babangida-led administration established the only petrochemical industry in Nigeria situated in Eleme, Port Harcourt which Nigeria relies on till date.

Mr Jankara, in his remarks, applauded the machinery put in place by the former military President’s administration.

He described the former Head of State as a visionary leader, adding that it was his vision for the establishment of the two deports in the state that led to the citing of DPR in Niger State.

The DPR official also visited the palace of the Emir of Minna, HRM Umar Faruk Bahago, to seek his royal blessings.

He said that those involved in the distribution of petroleum have begun to appreciate the work of DPR in the state unlike when they were unaware of the benefits of licensing their business.

HRH Bahago also appreciated the foresight of General Babangida and that of the present administration for their vision at every level to succeed. He assured the DPR of his support.

President Buhari Felicitates With Ajoke Mohammed On Her 75th Birthday

Muhammadu Buhari, Ajoke MohammedPresident Muhammadu Buhari warmly felicitates with former First Lady, Mrs Ajoke Mohammed, who clocked 75 years on Monday.

The President in a statement by his spokesman, Mr Garba Shehu, joined family members, friends and well-wishers in celebrating the worthy and exemplary life of Mrs Mohammed.

On the happy occasion of her 75th birthday, he said she has consistently shown that the entire society could be truly enriched through building strong and successful families.

President Buhari also applauded the remarkable contributions made by the wife of late General Murtala Mohammed to environmental preservation, as a renowned horticulturist and leading conservationist.

He prayed that Almighty God would grant the dear wife of late military Head of State many more years of good health and joyful living with her children, grandchildren, relatives, friends and associates across Nigeria.

Agric Minister Blames Nigeria’s Poor Economy On SAP

Audu-Ogbeh--Agric-Minister-economyThe Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Audu Ogbeh, has blamed the poor run of Nigeria’s economy on the Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) introduced by former Head of State, General Ibrahim Babangida.

Mr Ogbe disclosed this during an exclusive interview with Channels Television in Otukpo, Benue State, at the flag off of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Benue South Senatorial re-run election campaign for its candidate, Mr Daniel Onjeh.

The Agric and Rural Development Minister, who blamed Nigeria’s over-reliance on crude oil, claimed that the Structural Adjustment Programme pointed Nigerians in the wrong direction.

He advised Nigerian youths to take advantage of the oil crisis in other to diversify into Agriculture and non-oil sectors.

Ogbeh also expressed concern over the high rate of unemployment among Nigerian youths with the advice that they take up opportunities being created in the agric-sector, in other to earn themselves legitimate sources of livelihood.

Gowon Asks Amnesty International To Apologise To Nigerian Army

GowonFormer Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, has demanded an apology from Amnesty International to the Nigerian military over accusations of inhuman treatment in its fight against the Boko Haram sect.

The elder statesman admitted that there might exist instances where military operations have raised human right concerns but said that the military never engages in ‘slitting of throat’ of any person whether civilian or terrorist as peddled by the international human rights group.

General Gowon was speaking at the National Defence College Course 24 inauguration lecture.

On June 3, 2015, Amnesty International released shocking videos where they claimed that more than 7,000 suspects died in military detention from torture, starvation as well as evidence of the military slitting the throats of some of the men and boys.

That accusation did not go down well with General Yakubu Gowon (Rtd) as he described the accusation as unfair to the Nigerian Army.

“They are accusing the Nigerian armed forces of doing all sorts of atrocities like cutting the throat of the Boko Haram people whereas it is the Boko Haram people that were doing that exercise and I have seen many videos of what they were doing to poor innocent Nigerians in Gwoza area.

“For them (Amnesty International) to accuse Nigerian military of doing that, certainly is wrong because the Nigerian military were never trained to do that sort of exercise. It is absolutely false, wrong and they should not make such an accusation.

“They should apologise to the Nigerian military and to Nigeria,” he said.

The elder statesman also identified internal discord among security agencies, inadequate welfare and questions of indiscipline as some of the reasons why the armed forces have not completely overcome insurgency in the country.

The Federal Government, has however said that is now a forgotten issue. The Permanent Secretary at the Ministry Of Defence, Ismaila Aliu, in a chat with Channels Television, expressed confidence that the military could win the war on terror within three months as mandated by President Muhammadu Buhari.

“By all indices, we might even beat the deadline, but one thing is that information sharing is very important. Civilians need to give us information to address certain security challenges,” he said.

The Chief Of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai also shared the same optimism, describing the military’s progress within the first month as “fantastic” and an indication that the war can indeed be won in three months.

Nigerians Should Accept Democracy As A Lifestyle – Buhari

BuhariPresident Muhammadu Buhari has called on Nigerians to be patient and accept democracy not as a system of government but as a lifestyle in order to ensure development of the country.

The President said this when he paid homage to the Emir of Daura, Alhaji Umar Faruk Umar, after attending the Juma’at prayer at the Low Cost Housing Mosque in Daura, Katsina State.

The President, who delivered his speech in Hausa, urged those who were aggrieved after the 2015 elections to seek redress through democratic means and institutions, noting that Nigeria is adopting democracy from the western nations and learning fast by avoiding mistakes made when studying the weaknesses and strengths of those nations.

According to the President , if Nigerians decide to be hasty, some avoidable mistakes can be made, urging that elections at all levels must be conducted based on democratic principles.

President Buhari also urged those interested in elective positions to look for a political platform of their choice, declare their interests and the party would support them.

He said that in 2002 when he joined politics, many people did not give him a chance because they knew his antecedents as a military officer but added that the 2015 polls had clearly shown that it is God that chooses who becomes a leader.

President Buhari said that he decided to contest elections because of his commitment to serve the people and not to be served or to amass wealth.

He added that he had served the nation in different capacities in the past and had not had so much money in the banks either locally or abroad or anywhere in the world.

He said that all he had over time is “integrity and commitment to serve the people” adding that he would fulfil his promises to the people.

The Emir of Daura, Alhaji Umar Faruk Umar, had earlier said he had known Buhari for his consistency which had become the hallmark of his integrity.

Like Good Wine, Buhari Gets Better With Age – Adesina

buhari

The Presidency has reacted to statements credited to President Muhammadu Buhari, saying his age would limit his performance, stating that “Buhari is like an old wine that has got tastier”.

Buhari had told a gathering of Nigerians living in South Africa that ”I wish I became Head of State when I was a governor. Now at 72, there is a limit to what I can do.”

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adeshina, in a statement said ”though the President is 72, his persona has not changed”.

Read in full the statement below.

On Monday evening President Muhammadu Buhari spoke with the Nigerian community at the Nigerian Consulate in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Speaking extempore, because according to him, he wanted to “speak from the heart,” the President urged them to be good ambassadors of Nigeria, a country he went to the warfront to keep together.

”Still extolling the virtues of our country, Nigeria, the President, who had served as a military governor of the then North-Eastern State at 33 years old, declared:”I wish I became Head of State when I was a governor. Now at 72, there is a limit to what I can do.”

The above comments have been reported by some newspapers to mean that the President was saying he was too old to cope with the demands of his office. Far from it.

As the saying goes, ”old wines are tasty” and the President Buhari we have today is a man, like old wine, that has got tastier. At 72, yes, he can’t be called a youth, but he has in quantum the wisdom, the patience, temperance and forbearance that age brings. And all these virtues he has brought to the Presidency, to make a difference in our national life.

The President assured the Nigerian community in South Africa that his Administration will make  a positive impact on the country. And that he would do.

Insecurity as symbolized by insurgency will be brought to an end, corruption will be fought to a standstill, employment will be created for the teeming army of unemployed, the economy will be revived, and the quality of life of Nigerians will take an upward swing again. These will not come by a sudden flight, but they will happen in the life of this Administration.

At 72, the Buhari persona has not changed. He remains the simple, honest, incorruptible patriot he has always been. And because Nigerians earnestly desired change, that was why they voted for him overwhelmingly at the general elections in March, this year. All the virtues and values of the Buhari persona will be deployed into governance in the weeks and months ahead.

The Nigerian community in South Africa was enthralled as President Buhari spoke with them on Monday. In fact, leaving the venue was an effort, as they swarmed round the President, who shook hands with as many of them as he could.

They took his message well. That is the essence of good wine. It gets better with age. And it is a message for all Nigerians, both at home and in the Diaspora.

Buhari: It’s A New Dawn- Oshiomhole

BuhariThe Edo State Governor has congratulated the Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2015 general elections, General Muhammadu Buhari, on his victory and emergence as President-elect, saying the victory represents a new dawn in the nation’s polity.

Governor Adams Oshiomhole shared his thoughts in a statement titled ‘Buhari: It’s a new dawn’.

Full Text

Let me congratulate you Sir on your historic victory at the presidential election, through a process which has been adjudged as free, fair and credible by both local and international observers. Indeed, your victory, on the basis of ‘One Man, One Vote’, represents a new dawn in the democratic governance of our great country.

The spread of your victory across the length and breadth of the country shows your national acceptance as the man Nigeria needs at this critical stage to re-position her from the 16 years of misrule of the PDP.

Despite the smear campaigns against your person and candidature and the attempts to polarize the country along ethnic and religious lines, Nigerians made a bold statement by speaking through their ballots that you are, indeed, the President they want at this time of our national history.

I have implicit confidence that, with you as President, Nigeria will no doubt get a true and selfless leadership needed to drive the much-desired change at the centre, which will start the process of re-engineering the country and halt the drift which the country had been plunged in the past 16 years.

Your pedigree as a former Head of State and the indelible imprint you left at that time are still being felt across the country. Your doggedness and victory at the fourth attempt will serve as an inspiration to many, never to give up on a dream that is worth living.

We congratulate all Nigerians on this historic victory, because this victory belongs not to General Buhari or the APC alone, but to all Nigerians who desire change.

For us in Edo, the victory of General Buhari has effectively disconnected the oxygen which Abuja had provided for the godfathers in the past 16 years.

I give kudos to President Goodluck Jonathan for conceding defeat and congratulating the incoming President on his electoral victory.

However, just like Abraham Lincoln said: “Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision”, Nigerians have indeed spoken!

Sanusi Officially Crowned Emir Of Kano

Lamido-Sanusi2Kano residents, friends and relatives and traditional rulers across Nigeria and beyond converged on Kano Government House on Saturday for the official coronation of the Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II.

Emir Sanusi was selected the 14th Emir of Kano following the death of his predecessor Alhaji Ado Bayero in June 2014.

At the coronation ceremony, the Emir promised to serve the emirate with the fear of God and in accordance with Islamic Teachings.

The occasion was to officially turban Muhammadu Sanusi II and hand over a staff of office to him.

The Emir was sworn in by the Chief Imam of the Kano Central, Professor Sani Zaharadden, witnessed by the former Heads of State, General Yakubu Gowon and General Muhammadu Buhari, Governors of Niger, Zamfara, Yobe, among others.

The occasion was also attended by the Sultan of Sokoto, Oba of Lagos and the Emir of Damagaram in Niger Republic among other Traditional Rulers.

Receiving the staff of office from the governor, the Emir promised to rule in accordance with the tradition.

“I thank everyone for attending this occasion, especially the governor for selecting me. I assure you that i will lead you in accordance with Islamic teachings and with the fear of God irrespective of your tribe or religion.”

The Kano State Governor, Rabi’u Kwankwaso, who described the Emir as a man of humility and justice also says that his selection followed a series of consultation with kingmakers and other concerned authorities who authenticated that the Emir was a kind and generous man.

After the Emir was kitted, he was shown to the people of Kano Kingdom.

It is a major activity that follows the coronation and it gives the District Head and other Traditional Rulers the opportunity to pay homage to the Emir.

 


 

2015 Elections: Court Backs Prisoners’ Vote

prisonersA Federal High Court sitting in Benin, Edo State, has ruled that prisoners should be able to vote in all national and local elections in Nigeria.

The ruling by the Federal High Court comes barely two months to the general elections slated for February 2015.

The suit was instituted by Victor Emenuwe, Onome Inaye, Kabiru Abu, Osagie Iyekepolor, Modugu Odion (for and on behalf of inmates of Nigerian prisons), against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Comptroller-General of Nigeria Prisons Service.

The plaintiffs had asked the court to determine whether having regards to the provisions of section 25 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999, the plaintiffs are not entitled to be registered as voters by the 1st Defendants.

In his judgement, Justice Mohammed Lima said, “To deny inmates the right to vote is unconstitutional, illegal, irregular, unlawful, null and void and of no effect whatsoever.

“Being an inmate is not an offence that impedes their registration and voting right under section 24 of the Electoral Act,” he added.

The Judge ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to update its register of voters to take into account the prison population.

The court also directed the defendants to ensure that the applicants are not disenfranchised.

The February 14 presidential election would pitch incumbent President, Goodluck Jonathan, against his strongest challenger and former military Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari.

President Jonathan had recorded a victory over General Buhari in 2011, amid claims of rigging.

PDP Welcomes Buhari To 2015 Presidential Race

PDPThe Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has welcomed the emergence of former military Head of State, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (Rtd), as the presidential flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the 2015 general elections.

In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh, the PDP urged the APC candidate to conduct his campaign based on issues and not sentiments.

The party emphasized the fact that Buhari would be contesting in the presidential election for the fourth time and “on each occasion, his brand of politics was rejected across Nigeria.

“Apart from changing to a dinner suit, Buhari, has not changed the tired ideas and provocative utterances that Nigerians rejected in previous elections.

“We hope that this time around, Buhari will conduct a campaign that is issue-based and devoid of ethno-religious sentiments.”

The PDP also expressed confidence that it remained the only truly national political party in Nigeria.