Kogi Rejects Two COVID-19 Cases Announced By NCDC

 

The Kogi state government has rejected the two COVID-19 positive cases announced by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

In its daily report of new cases on Wednesday, the NCDC said Kogi had recorded its first two cases.

Kogi State and Cross River were previously the only states not to have recorded any case of the virus.

However, during his appearance on Politics Today on Thursday, Kogi state’s Commissioner for Information, Kingsley Fanwo, described the NCDC reporting process as fraudulent.

“We are completely rejecting such declarations because they do not even conform to the protocols set by the NCDC itself.

“When you look at the history of the cases they declared, the patient was admitted at the Federal Medical Centre in Lokoja for symptoms that were far from COVID-19 symptoms. But they were not attended to there and the next thing was to bring them to the National Hospital in Abuja. And within a few hours, they were tested, and under 24 hours, the man was declared COVID-19 positive.

“It is fraudulent as far we are concerned and we are rejecting them in its entirety.”

Meanwhile, the NCDC had earlier maintained that due process was followed in recording the Kogi cases.

At the briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja on Thursday, the Director-General of the NCDC, Chikwe Ihekweazu, said the Kogi index case was a referral from the Federal Medical Centre in Lokoja.

“There is actually no dilemma in the two cases,” he said. “They followed absolutely normal practice.

“A patient that was referred from the Federal Medical Centre to the National Hospital. This is a normal referral pathway when you have a case.

“The physicians in the National Hospital, I don’t have any influence over the work that they do. They suspected COVID-19 based on the clinical symptoms of the patient, asked for a test, and the test came out positive.

“The individual lives in Kogi state. And public health response is based on where you live because that’s where your contacts are.

“So this is not controversial in any way. Standard practice was followed. Once the results came out, the state’s Epidemiologist was informed that he has to do contact-tracing around this patient. It is the state’s responsibility to do that contact-tracing. So we hope they do it. There is nothing actually controversial in any way about this.”

On whether the NCDC was willing to subject its test for validation, Ihekweazu said, “we are a public health organisation, everything we do is open to the Nigerian people.”

Kogi Joins List As COVID-19 Spreads To 35 States In Nigeria

A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.

Kogi State on Wednesday joined the list of states with confirmed COVID-19 infectious, as two fresh cases were recorded in the state.

COVID-19 has therefore spread to 35 states in Nigeria, including the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

This was revealed in the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) daily statistics released on Wednesday night.

The two cases in Kogi were part of the 389 new cases of coronavirus recorded in the country.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Reports 389 New COVID-19 Cases, Total Infections Hit 8,733

According to the NCDC, the total number of confirmed infections in the country now stands at 8,733 with 254 deaths recorded.

“On the 27th of May 2020, 389 new confirmed cases and five deaths were recorded in Nigeria.

“One new state (Kogi) has reported a case in the last 24 hours.

“Till date, 8733 cases have been confirmed, 2501 cases have been discharged and 254 deaths have been recorded in 35 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

“The 389 new cases are reported from 22 states- Lagos (256), Katsina (23), Edo (22), Rivers (14), Kano(13), Adamawa (11), Akwa Ibom (11), Kaduna(7), Kwara (6), Nasarawa (6), Gombe (2), Plateau (2), Abia (2), Delta (2), Benue (2), Niger (2), Kogi (2), Oyo (2), Imo (1), Borno (1), Ogun (1), Anambra (1),” NCDC revealed on its official website.

Find below, the table showing the breakdown of confirmed cases of COVID-19 by state:

Kogi Govt Purchases 5,000 Testing Kits To Maintain Zero Cases Of COVID-19

Gunmen Attack Kogi Communities, Kill Policeman And Three Others

 

The Kogi State Government has acquired over 5,000 testing kits to ensure the state maintains its zero cases in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The State Commissioner for Information and Communication Kingsley Fanwo who represented governor Yahaya Bello at Iyara in Ijumu Local Government Area of the state during the second phase of the distribution of 1000 bags of rice and beans as palliatives sponsored by the Senator representing Kogi West Senatorial District at the National Assembly.

The governor noted that his administration has procured materials for the protection of the front-line health workers against coronavirus in the state, adding that the hazard allowance of the medical officers has been increased.

He urged the people of the state to always take all the necessary precaution against the dreaded disease appealed to the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to commend Kogi State for not having any case of COVID-19 since its outbreak in Nigeria.

Addressing the beneficiaries of the palliatives, Senator Smart Adeyemi called on Nigerians to invest in agriculture to avert impending hunger that will soon surface as a result of sharp falls in the price of crude oil.

 

Tribunal Victory, An Act Of God – Yahaya Bello

A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.

 

 

The Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has commended the judgement of the State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal which upheld his re-election.

He described his victory at the Tribunal as an act of God and a testament to the popular votes cast in his favour by the people of the state.

Governor Bello stated this on Sunday shortly after he observed the Eid prayer at the Lokoja Township Stadium to mark the Eid-El-Fitr in Lokoja, the state capital.

According to him, the electorate re-elected him during the November 2019 governorship election to enable him to consolidate on the achievement recorded in his first tenure.

The governor insisted that his victory which was affirmed on Saturday by the judges of the Tribunal did not come to him as a surprise, as the electorate came out in large numbers to vote for him and the All Progressives Congress (APC).

READ ALSO: Nigeria Marks Eid-El-Fitr Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

He stated that the victory has posed a challenge to him and assured the people that he would continue to do his best to ensure that they get good governance in the state.

Governor Bello made the remarks a day after the Kogi Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja dismissed the petition filed by the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the election, Mr Musa Wada, and his party.

In a judgment of two to one, the Chairman of the Tribunal, Justice Kashim Kaigama, held that the petitioners failed to prove the allegations of over-voting, massive thumbprinting, and voter intimidation, among other electoral malpractices against the governor.

He also awarded a cost of N1 million to be paid by the petitioners to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Governor Bello, and the APC who were the respondents.

Governor Bello’s re-election was, however, nullified by Justice Ohimai Ovbiagele who gave a dissenting judgment.

Justice Ovbiagele, therefore, ordered INEC to conduct fresh elections in seven local government areas where the petitioners proved their allegations of over-voting, thuggery, voter intimidation, massive thumb printing, and other electoral malpractices.

Tribunal Affirms Election Of Yahaya Bello As Kogi Governor

A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.
A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.

 

The Kogi Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja has affirmed the election of incumbent Governor, Yahaya Bello.

The petition had been filed by Mr Musa Wada, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2019 election.

In a judgment of two to one, delivered by the Chairman of the Tribunal, Justice Kashim Kaigama, on Saturday, the tribunal held that the petitioner failed to prove the allegations of over-voting, massive thumb printing, voter intimidation, and other electoral malpractices.

The tribunal also awarded a cost of one million naira to be paid by the petitioners, PDP and Musa Wada to INEC, Yahaya Bello and APC who are the respondents.

In a dissenting judgment, Justice Ohimai Ovbiagele nullified the election of Governor Yahaya Bello and ordered INEC to conduct fresh elections in seven local government areas where the petitioners proved their allegations of over-voting, thuggery, voter intimidation, massive thumb printing, and other electoral malpractices.

 

Kogi Election Tribunal Dismisses Akpoti’s Suit Against Bello

A file photo of the SDP governorship candidate in Kogi State, Natasha Akpoti.

 

 

The Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja has dismissed the petition filed by Natasha Akpoti, the candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and her party against Governor Yahaya Bello.

A three-man panel of judges led by Justice Kashim Kaigama dismissed the suit in a unanimous judgment on Monday.

The petitioners had filed the suit to challenge the victory of Governor Yahaya Bello of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the November 16, 2019 governorship election in Kogi.

Delivering the lead judgement, Justice Kaigama held that the petition failed woefully as the testimonies given by the petitioners’ witnesses amounted to hearsay, doubtful, illogical, and of no probative value.

A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.

 

The Tribunal, however, awarded a cost of N600,000 to be paid by the petitioners to the three respondents.

They include the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the APC, and Governor Bello.

Gambari’s Appointment, A Round Peg In A Round Hole – Bello

New Chief of Staff to President Muhammdu Buhari, Professor Ibrahim Gambari.

 

 

Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, believes the appointment of Professor Ibrahim Gambari as the new Chief of Staff to the President is the right step in the right direction.

In a statement on Wednesday by his Chief Press Secretary, Onogwu Muhammed, the governor described Professor Gambari as a man of many parts whose vast wealth of knowledge and experience remain unrivalled in Africa.

He noted that as a thoroughbred scholar and seasoned career diplomat who served in various national and international capacities, Gambari’s appointment was “no doubt a round peg in a round hole”.

READ ALSO: Recovered COVID-19 Patients In Nigeria Surpass 1,000

According to Governor Bello, the new Chief of Staff to the President will bring his wealth of knowledge to bear in the discharge of his new responsibility.

“Just as the Late Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari played a prominent role in the success of the Buhari’s administration, your coming in to fill the vacuum will further add more colour to the administration’s achievements,” he was quoted as saying in the statement.

The governor added, “Congratulations once again and I pray that the Almighty Allah will give you the needed energy and wisdom to take on this new responsibility”.

COVID-19: Kogi Governor Orders Isolation Of NCDC Officials

A file photo of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State.

 

 

Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has ordered a delegation of officials of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to be quarantined at the state Isolation centre for 14 days.

The health worker, who are members of the NCDC Rapid Response Team, were deployed in Kogi to ascertain the true status of the state as a COVID-19-free state.

Governor Bellow, however, directed that they should be isolated before they can take the sample of any resident of the state.

He gave the directive on Thursday when the health officials visited the Government House in Lokoja, the state capital.

The governor explained that the decision was strictly in line with the laid down procedures of the NCDC and the World Health Organisation (WHO) to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

The delegation led by Dr Noah Andrew had arrived at the Government House in Lokoja to present a letter, entitled ‘Deployment Of Rapid Response Squad To Help In Fighting COVID-19 In Kogi State’ to the governor.

READ ALSO: Supreme Court Nullifies Orji Uzor Kalu’s Conviction

Dr Andrew said the mission of the centre was to provide logistics to all states of the Federation, including Kogi State.

He added that two members of the team would be left behind to assist the state and support its effort in preventing the disease.

The NCDC official urged the residents to observe social distancing and use face masks at all times, as part of the measures to fight the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the NCDC officials have reportedly fled out of the state for fear of being detained in the isolation centre.

Court Nullifies PDP Governorship Primary In Kogi

'Dont Drag Us Into Your Crisis', PDP Asks APC To Seek Restitution
File photo.

 

 

A State High Court in Lokoja has nullified the governorship primary conducted by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kogi State.

Wada who came second in the November 16, 2019 election, is challenging the re-election of Governor Yahaya Bello at the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal.

In a similar development, a PDP member Abubakar Idris, filed a suit to challenge the emergence of Wada as the PDP flag bearer in the poll.

Delivering judgement on the pre-election matter, Justice John Olorunfemi held that the PDP never had a candidate in the governorship election.

He pointed out that the claimant who averred that he would have won the primary conducted by the first defendant if the missing votes which belonged to him were added to his votes, could not convince the court to deliver judgement in his favour.

Justice Olorunfemi also held that the second defendant could not convince the court that he actually won the party primary, which was marred with rancour arising from pandemonium, due to sporadic gunshots that forced the participants to scamper for safety.

He averred that neither the claimant nor the second defendant could lay claim to the process that was never envisaged by electoral guidelines.

The judge held that the two contestants have not shown any credible evidence to prove that they won an election that was not only inconclusive but lacked credibility.

According to the presiding judge, the security breach arising from the primary conducted by the first defendant resulted into fear and anger, which subsequently led to the relocation of the venue of the process from the Confluence Stadium to somewhere else.

He added that the process which was hasty and acrimonious lacked democratic ethos and must not be encouraged, stressing that the claimant could not be entitled to the relief being sought, as no one could lay claim to victory.

Justice Olorunfemi subsequently held that nobody won the primary, insisting that “there is no Abubakar Ibrahim Idris, no Musa Wada and no victor, no vanquished.”

He, however, stressed the need for political parties to always allow democratic ethos to guide them in their activities.

EFCC Arrests Ex-Governor’s Son, Audu Over Alleged Fraud

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested Mr Muhammed Audu for his alleged involvement in a fraud.

Muhammed is the son of the late Abubakar Audu, a former governor of Kogi State.

EFCC’s Acting Head of Media and publicity, Mr Tony Orilade, confirmed the arrest of the former governor’s son in a statement on Thursday.

According to him, the suspect was arrested on February 18 for allegedly diverting funds to the tune of several millions of dollars and billions of naira.

The EFCC alleged that Muhammed diverted the funds which were donated to the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to his personal use.

Investigations, according to the statement, revealed that the suspect allegedly used two of his companies, Mediterranean Hotels Limited and Mediterranean Sports, to divert the monies which he could not account for.

It added that Muhammed would be charged to court as soon the investigations were concluded.

Perpetrators Of Plateau, Kogi Killings Will Be Prosecuted, Says Dingyadi

 

The Minister of Police Affairs, Muhammad Dingyadi, has assured the people of Kogi and Plateau states that the perpetrators of the recent attacks which claimed over 30 lives will be made to face the full wrath of the law.

The attacks by gunmen happened within a week on Tawari community in Kogi Local Government Area of Kogi and on Kunben village in Kombun District of Mangu Local Government Area (LGA) of Plateau State.

READ ALSO: Gunmen Kidnap Four Catholic Seminarians In Kaduna

While commiserating with the government and people of the two states, the Minister affirmed that the Police and other security agencies are investigating the attacks with the view to unravelling its root cause and apprehend those responsible accordingly.

The minister in a statement signed by his Press Secretary, Osaigbovo Ehisienmen, assured that the Ministry is committed to working assiduously with relevant stakeholders to retool policing architecture in Nigeria which will culminate in more Police visibilities, Police community partnership and deepening the intelligence and technological base of Nigeria Police Force to enable it to realize its full potentials.

He also stated that the Nigeria Police Trust Fund Bill which will take effect in the year 2020 will in no small measure assist in bridging infrastructural gaps for a more proactive Policing in Nigeria.

‘No Excuse Or Justification,’ Buhari Condemns Killings In Kogi

A car touched by gunmen during an early morning attack on Tawari community in Kogi State on January 3, 2020.

 

The President has condemned the murder of 19 people by gunmen in Tawari community of Kogi Local Government Area in Kogi State.

President Muhammadu Buhari frowned on the incident in a statement on Friday by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, hours after the incident.

He said, “There is no excuse or justification for killing innocent people by anybody or group, and for whatever motive.

“The killings and revenge killings will only aggravate the cycle of violence, creating neither safety nor security for any side.”

READ ALSO: At Least 19 People Feared Killed In Kogi Community Attack

 

The gunmen were said to have invaded Tawari at about 1am and opened fire on residents before setting houses, churches, and many properties ablaze.

Among those killed were the Chief Imam of the village, Zakari Salihu, and Tawari Ward Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ibrahim Simbabi.

Also touched were the oldest clinic established by the missionaries in the colonial era, and the official vehicle of the traditional ruler of the area – Aguma of Tawari, Idris Tawari – among others.

In his reaction, President Buhari warned Nigerians against resorting to violence in a bid to resolve disputes but to do so in accordance with the laws of the land.

“People should avoid taking the law into their own hands because doing so could make a bad situation worse and undermine the government’s efforts to tackle security challenges,” he cautioned.

The President added, “I am gravely worried about frequency and temptation of using violence to settle disputes instead of following lawful and amicable means to avoid needless destruction of lives and property.”

 

A car touched by gunmen during an early morning attack on Tawari community in Kogi State on January 3, 2020.