Bread Tax Is Evil, We Are Investigating Those Behind It – Yahaya Bello

Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has vowed to investigate and punish those behind the imposition of bread tax in the northcentral state, describing the development as evil. 

“The particular incident of bread tax is being looked into as I speak, we are investigating those that are behind this,” the governor, 45, said while briefing the press after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Abuja on Tuesday.

“It is evil and it is unaccepted, to say the least. I have ordered the Head of Service to issue queries to those that are responsible and they will face the law accordingly.”

Governor Bello while explaining that he held the meeting with the Nigerian leader to inform him about the challenges the state is facing, and the developments recorded so far, noted that security agencies are working with local vigilante groups to curb crime.

“The law enforcement agencies, to say the little, they are doing their best. From the Police to the Army, to the Civil Defence to the DSS, they are collaborating with the local vigilantes and the local hunters to ensure that our ways, our highways, our bushes and forests, our communities are safe,” he explained.

He also credited his grassroots leadership style for restricting lootings in the Confluence State in the aftermath of the #EndSARS protests.

“So, whenever there is any uprising or any threats whatsoever, they raise an alarm,” governor Bello added. “The locals exactly know who they are, they know the criminals among them. They know the strangers and intruders among them and they immediately swing into action by ensuring law enforcement agencies swing into action and the issues were contained amicably.”

Kogi Govt Queries Permanent Secretary Over Bread Levy

A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.

 

The Kogi State Government queried the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Usman Ibrahim for official misconduct over bread levy.

This was disclosed in a statement issued by the Head of Service, Deborah Ogunmola, who described as embarrassing the recent widely spread report of bread levy allegedly introduced by the state government.

Ogunmola said the Perm Sec had on November 9 written a letter to the bakers in the state “introducing an identified consulting company and levies on bread to all bakers and caterers doing business In and across the state.”

She explained that “investigation revealed that the official acted without obtaining the approval of the Honourable Commissioner of the ministry and could not provide any file documenting the approval for the dissemination of such information.”

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KGSG QUERIES PERM. SEC RESPONSIBLE FOR BREAD LEVY EMBARRASSMENT FOR OFFICIAL MISCONDUCT

The Kogi State Government has served an official query to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Usman A. Ibrahim for official misconduct over the recent widely spread report of bread levy allegedly introduced by the state government.

In a letter signed by the Head of Service, Kogi State Government, Mrs. Deborah Ogunmola, the affected official was directed to respond within 24 hours to exculpate himself on why disciplinary action should not be taken for gross misconduct.

The HOS stated that the concerned official on the 9th of November, 2020 signed a letter addressed to the Chairman, Association of Master Bakers and Caterers of Nigeria (AMBCN) Kogi state branch on the subject of introducing an identified consulting company and levies on bread to all bakers and caterers doing business In and across the state.

Mrs. Ogunmola added that investigation revealed that the official acted without obtaining the approval of the Honourable Commissioner of the ministry and could not provide any file documenting the approval for the dissemination of such information.

The HOS stipulated that despite the official’s denial, his actions contravened the provisions of Public Service Rules, Section 4 – 030402 (1), (N) and (o) which might lead to his dismissal from the service.

‘We Must End Rampant Carnage On Our Roads’: Lawan Mourns Kogi Explosion Victims

A file photo of the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan

 

The Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has sent his condolences to the families of the tanker explosion victims calling for an end to rampant carnage on the roads.

Lawan in a statement by his Special Adviser, Ola Awoniyi expressed grief over the gruesome accident in which more than a score of people, including school children, were reported to have lost their lives or property.

“It is sad and totally unacceptable that such tragedy keeps recurring on our roads despite ample road safety regulations and enforcement personnel.

“While we mourn those who have so unfortunately lost their lives and pray for the speedy recovery of those who are injured, the incident underscores the need for constant review of our road safety strategy and mechanism with a view to making them more effective in preventing carnage on our roads.

“Significantly improving road safety in Nigeria is an urgent challenge for the relevant authorities and other stakeholders in our transport sector. We have to bring an end to the rampant carnage on our roads,” Lawan said.

The Senate President also extended his condolences to the government and people of Kogi State over the tragic incident.

Kogi Governor Reacts To Tanker Explosion, Sympathises With Victims

A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.

 

The Governor of Kogi State, His Excellency Yahaya Bello has expressed shock over the unfortunate fatal tanker explosion which took place in the early hours of Wednesday, around the Felele area of the Lokoja metropolis.

Governor Bello in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Onogwu Muhammed expressed sadness over the tragic loss of lives, many vehicles, properties, and other valuables in the petrol tanker fire.

The governor condoled with the family of those affected by the ugly incident.

READ ALSO: At Least 23 Killed In Lokoja Tanker Explosion

While describing it as an unfortunate development, the governor said “this is sadly the greatest tragedy the state has witnessed in recent times”.

The Governor also urged the students of Kogi State Polytechnic to remain calm and peaceful, stating that he equally shared in their grieving moment over the death of some of their colleagues in the disaster.

Despite COVID-19, Kogi Still Pays Salaries, Repays Loans – Governor Bello

Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, speaks after the Supreme Court affirmed his election as governor of the state.

 

Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State says despite the dwindling resources occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic in the country, the state still pays workers’ salaries while gradually offsetting its debts.

The governor disclosed this on Monday during an appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today.

According to Governor Bello, his administration has been prudent with the management of the state resources to the benefit of the people.

He explained that critics of the state government should commend efforts made in addressing the numerous challenges facing the state.

READ ALSO: Bitter, Unnecessary Disputes Costing APC Seats In Elections, Buhari Decries

“In this COVID-19 regime, we are paying salaries, projects are ongoing, all our obligations and the indebtedness that we inherited, we are paying steadily.

“We are not going to take more than N1billion per month. That is financial prudence that in this era that resources are dwindling, Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) has nosedived, inflows from the federation account has really nosedived.

“We are paying back our loans; we are paying all other loans. Yet we are meeting up with all our obligations and projects are ongoing,” he said.

 

When asked why some Kogi workers still receive part payment of their salaries, the governor neither confirmed nor denied it.

He simply replied: “I am not aware of anybody that is being paid percentage of their salaries. The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and other organised labours are there.

“On a monthly basis, we are meeting up with our financials, our salary obligations and other contractual agreements are being met on a monthly basis.”

His remarks followed the Supreme Court verdict which upheld his electoral victory in November 2019.

Speaking further, Governor Bello asked his opponent to join hands in building a better state.

No Victor, No Vanquished, Says Gov Bello After Supreme Court Victory

Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State speaks to journalists after the Supreme Court upheld his victory in the November 16, 2019 Governorship election on Monday.

 

Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has said that there is no victor and no vanquished in the Supreme Court judgement which pronounced him the winner in the November 16, 2019 Governorship election.

Reacting shortly after the apex court upheld his election as the Governor of Kogi State, Mr Bello who said the victory means a lot to him, thanked God and the people of the State for giving him a mandate for another four years.

“I thank the people of Kogi State who turned out en masse and trusted me and gave us their mandate for another four years. I appreciate Mr President, Muhammadu Buhari, and all the party leaders of the All Progressives Congress at all levels.

“This wonderful resounding statement from God almighty through the justices of the Supreme Court means a lot to me and the people of Kogi State.

“By the special grace of God, we will continue to do more for our people in the area of security, infrastructure, fighting corruption, and to ensure that we lead with the fear of God,” he promised.

READ ALSO: Supreme Court Upholds Election Of Yahaya Bello As Kogi Governor

The Governor stressed that his administration will need the support of everyone as he seeks to push a united State, which he said, has not been united over the years.

“I will continue to do my best to ensure that across the party line, we continue to unite Kogi State and the people will continue to benefit and feel the dividends of democracy irrespective of your religion or the senatorial district you come from.

“In this particular pronouncement of the Supreme Court, I state that there is no victor and there is no vanquished, we only tested what the law and fact is before the court; they have spoken and I know you will join me in making sure that we unite the state.

“I call on my brothers and sisters, those who contested with me, the victory is all ours because we are citizens of Kogi State. We all have the interest of the state at heart, but today, the people spoke; God almighty has really affirmed this assertion by the people.”

The apex court, in its judgement led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, dismissed the appeals filed by the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Kogi Governorship Election, Musa Wada.

The panel also dismissed the seven grounds of appeal filed by the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and its candidate, Natasha Akpoti, which includes an allegation of age falsification against the Kogi State Deputy Governor.

Supreme Court Set To Deliver Judgement In Kogi Governorship Appeal

A file photo of a courtroom at the Supreme Court complex in Abuja. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

The Supreme Court will on Monday, deliver judgement in the appeal filed by the Peoples Democratic Party, and its candidate in the Kogi Governorship Election, Musa Wada, challenging the election and victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Yahaya Bello as the Governor of Kogi State.

Last week, A seven-man panel of the Supreme Court presided by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Mohammed heard the appeal filed by Mr Wada and fixed August 31 to deliver judgement.

Mr Wada who lost his appeal at the Election Petition Tribunal claimed that the Kogi election held on November 16, 2019, was riddled with serious electoral infractions, when he approached the Supreme Court after his petition was dismissed by the Court of Appeal on July 4th, 2020 with a split decision of two to one.

A five-man panel of justices of the appeal court upheld Governor Bello’s election and ordered Mr Wada to pay a sum of N100,000 each to Governor Bello, the All Progressives Congress (APC), and INEC, who were listed as respondents in the appeal.

READ ALSO: Leadership Absent In Nigeria, Govt Is Crippled – Pat Utomi

The apex court will also give a verdict in the appeal filed by the Social Democratic Party and its candidate, Natasha Akpoti.

Lawyer to Governor Bello, Joseph Daudu, and that of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Dr Alex Izinyon, urged the court to dismiss the appeal filed by Mr Wada through his lawyer, Jibrin Okutepa, for lacking in merit.

Mr Daudu asked the apex Court to toe the line of the Court of Appeal and the election petition tribunal which gave concurrent decisions by dismissing Mr Wada’s petition.

Meanwhile, the second appeal filed by the SDP and its candidate asked the apex Court to set aside the findings of the Court of Appeal and the Tribunal and allow their appeal to succeed.

The Appeal Court had held that Akpoti could not prove the allegations of corruption and voter intimidation against Governor Bello.

On November 18, 2019, INEC returned Bello as the duly elected governor having scored the highest number of votes in the keenly contested poll.

He polled a total of 406,222 votes to beat his closest rival, Wada who scored 189,704 votes and Akpoti who garnered a total of 9,482 votes.

Gunmen Kill 13 Family Members, One Other In Kogi

 

Gunmen on Wednesday invaded Agbudu community in Koton-Karfe Local Government Area of Kogi State, killing 14 persons with six others injured.

The Commissioner of Police in the state, Ede Ayuba, confirmed the attack to journalists in Lokoja, the state capital.

According to him, the dead victims include 13 members of the same family and one other person.

“Fourteen people were killed and six people were fatally injured. The sad thing is that out of these 14 dead bodies that were brought out, 13 are from one family,” the police commissioner said.

Kogi State Commissioner of Police, Ede Ayuba, reacts to the killing of 14 people by gunmen on July 29, 2020.

 

He added, “But in the interim, I want to give you that assurance that we are not going to relent in our efforts.

“We will make sure that we get to the root of anything that is behind the killings around that zone.”

The scene of the attack in Kogi State on July 29, 2020.

 

Ayuba said as soon as he got wind of the situation, he quickly dispatched a team of police operatives, including the Divisional Police Officer in the area to the community.

He, however, explained that the gunmen fled the area before the arrival of security personnel.

Residents of Agbudu community in Koton-Karfe Local Government Area of Kogi State, have been thrown into mourning following the killing of 14 persons on July 29, 2020.

 

Ayuba pledged that the State Police Command would not relent in its efforts to tracking the perpetrators of the crime.

The commissioner said that the police had carried out some preliminary investigations and discovered that there had been long-standing communal feud in the community.

He noted that the police authorities are investigating the attack, adding that the paramount ruler adding that the real cause of the violence will be revealed soon.

DPR Seals 20 Illegal Filling Stations In Kogi

 

 

The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has clamped down on 20 illegal gas stations in Lokoja, the Kogi State capital.

The Operational Controller of DPR in the state, Idris Zangi who led the surveillance told newsmen at the end of the operation, said the agency can no longer fold its arms and watch peoples’ lives being endangered by those who want to make money at the detriment of other peoples lives.

He said that the illegal outlets sealed were to avoid fire outbreak within residential and business areas where the illegal business are operated.

Zangi, however, appealed to the state government to assist in relocating the sales of cooking gas to a safer and suitable environment in the interest of the safety of citizens.

According to him, those in the act of the illegal business have been asked to seek counsel from the agency on how best they can operate.

Kogi Inaugurates New Chief Judge

Justice Henry Olusuyi takes his Oath of Office as the Chief Judge of Kogi State in Lokoja on July 8, 2020.

 

The Kogi State Government has inaugurated Justice Henry Olusuyi as the Chief Judge of the state.

The swearing-in ceremony was held on Wednesday in Lokoja, the state capital.

Justice Oluseyi was sworn in at 10:35 am after taking his Oath of Office.

In attendance are Governor Yahaya Bello, the state Deputy Governor, Edward Onaja; Speaker of the House of Assembly, Matthew Kolawole and other top government functionaries.

READ ALSO: Chief Judge Of Kogi State, Justice Ajanah Dies

This comes five days after Governor Bello approved Olasuyi’s appointment in an acting capacity.

The position became vacant following the death of Justice Nasir Ajanah on June 29.

Similarly, the President of the state’s Customary Court of Appeal, Bayo Olowosegun, was also sworn in today.

His swearing-in comes few days after Governor Bello approved his appointment, following the demise of the former occupant of the office, Shaibu Atadoga, who died on June 22.

COVID-19: Politicians Playing Games With Kogi People, Says Bello

Kogi Governor, Yahaya Bello speaks on COVID-19 at the Government House in Lokoja on July 5, 2020.

 

Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello has accused some politicians of playing games with the people of the state amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The governor stated this on Sunday when receiving the Board of Trustees of Sir Ahmadu Bello Memorial Foundation at the Government House in Lokoja, the state capital.

He insisted that the pandemic is a scam orchestrated by some individuals to generate profits to the detriment of the poor masses.

“Coronavirus is not new, it was not in 2019 that coronavirus was detected. Coronavirus has been in existence for ages,” the governor said, insisting that his position on COVID-19 in Kogi has not changed.

READ ALSO: Air Force Kills ‘Several’ Boko Haram Terrorists In Borno

Speaking further, he stated: “I don’t want to believe the language of mutation, coronavirus behaving like a chameleon by changing to white today and black tomorrow.

“Today, what is killing Nigerians is the fear and panic of coronavirus. Very, unfortunately, some leaders and the press are helping to propagate this against our people. This is a crime against humanity.”

Reacting to the death of the state Chief Judge, Justice Nasiru Ajanah, Governor Bello explained that the state government has been working with the late jurist on his health even before the advent of COVID-19 pandemic.

According to him, the global impact of the virus made it impossible for Justice Ajanah to have access to his regular medical checks.

The governor regretted that the ex-Chief Judge was so isolated before his death, lamenting the media reports on him.

Governor Bello’s claim comes a week after Justice Ajanah passed away in Abuja which some sources blamed on the complications of COVID-19.

However, the Kogi State Government has been at loggerheads with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), insisting that there is no COVID-19 case in the north-central state.

Appeal Court Affirms Yahaya Bello’s Election As Kogi Governor

lokoja, supreme court judgement, bello,
A file photo of Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello.

 

 

The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has affirmed the election of Mr Yahaya Bello as the governor of Kogi State.

A five-man panel of justices of the court upheld Governor Bello’s election in a judgement delivered on Saturday in the nation’s capital.

The court had dismissed the appeals filed by four political parties challenging the governor’s re-election in the November 2019 governorship poll.

Those who filed the appeals were the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Social Democratic Party (SDP), the Action Peoples Party (APP), and the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP).

On the APP’s appeal, Justice Mohammed Shuaibu dismissed the appeal filed by the party in a unanimous judgment.

He also affirmed the decision of the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal which dismissed the petition filed by the APP and awarded a cost of N100,000 against the party.

In its appeal, APP had claimed that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) unlawfully excluded it from the governorship election in Kogi State.

READ ALSO: PDP Seeks Prayers Of Recovery For Umahi, Ortom’s Wife

Similarly, the appellate court dismissed the appeal filed by the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP) against Governor Bello’s victory in the November 2019 governorship election.

DPP’s appeal was also dismissed in a unanimous decision while the SDP candidate, Natasha Akpoti, lost her bid to unseat Governor Bello.

In its judgement, the court held that Akpoti could not prove the allegations of corruption and voter intimidation against the governor.

On his part, Mr Musa Wada of the PDP got his appeal dismissed by the court, but not without a penalty.

Wada was ordered to pay a sum of N100,000 each to Governor Bello, the All Progressives Congress (APC), and INEC, who were listed as respondents in the appeal.

The court dismissed the appeals filed by the political parties and their candidates after they lost at the Tribunal.

On November 18, 2019, INEC returned Bello as the duly elected governor having scored the highest number of votes in the keenly contested poll.

He polled a total of 406,222 votes to beat his closest rival, Wada who scored 189,704 votes and Akpoti who garnered a total of 9,482 votes.