ANTP Crisis: Baba Wande Sues For Peace Among Stakeholders


Veteran Yoruba movie actor, Mr Kareem Adepoju, has called for peace among members of the Association of Nigeria Theatre Arts Practitioners (ANTP), after a court judgement on the crisis rocking the national body of the association.

Adepoju, who is popularly known as Baba Wande, said the judgement of the High Court sitting in Ejigbo, Osun State on March 28, 2017 that Mr Victor Asaolu should remain in office as the President of ANTP till February 2018, was not a solution to the crisis bedevilling the association.

He called on all stakeholders including the governors and royal fathers in Nigeria’s South-West region to intervene in the matter and save the ANTP, lauding the efforts of the Olowu of Owu kingdom, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, in resolving the crisis.

Speaking during an interview with Channels Television at his residence in Osogbo, Baba Wande appealed to all Yoruba film actors and actresses to come together and speak in one voice to develop the industry.

“Some of us feel that the tenure of the President of ANTP, Mr Victor Ashaolu has expired, but the man insisted that he has not finished his tenure and he took the matter to court instead of leaving the office.

“The man has been in the office as the ANTP President since 2010, whereas he was supposed to spend four years. The matter was brought to a court in Osun here and after several years of litigation, the court eventually ruled that Ashaolu’s tenure will end in February next year.

“As law abiding citizens of this country, we must respect the court and obey the judgement, unless anyone is interested in appealing the judgement in the higher court and that cannot be a solution to the problem we are battling with.

“I want to appeal to all Yoruba film-makers, actors and actresses to unite and speak in one voice in the best interest of all of us. This current crisis in the ANTP will not benefit anyone of us and the society.

“I also want to call on all stakeholders, especially the Governors of Osun, Mr Rauf Aregbesola; Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun; Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi; Lagos State, Mr Akinwumi Ambode; Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose and Ondo State, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu to intervene in the ANTP leadership crisis.

“I’m also appealing to our traditional rulers in Yoruba land, especially the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi; the Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, and the Awujale of Ijebu Land, Oba Sikiru Adetona, to wade in and help us settle the dispute so that we can be together.

“We are grateful to the Olowu of Owu kingdom, Oba Adegboyega Dosunmu, who has been making frantic efforts to resolve the crisis. We appreciate his efforts so far and we also want him to intensify efforts so that the crisis would be resolved while we unite to make our association great again,” the Yoruba actor said.

Recalled that leading members of the ANTP pulled out from the association and form a parallel association christened Theatre Arts and Movie Practitioners Association of Nigeria (TAMPAN).

Mr Adebayo Salami, also known as ‘Oga Bello’, Prince Jide Kosoko and Mr Dele Odule, who had a running battle with Mr Ashaolu over the leadership tussle in ANTP, formed TAMPAN in Lagos State.

FG Denies Withholding Statutory Allocation To Ekiti State

FInance Ministry, Ekiti State, Statutory AllocationThe Ministry of Finance has refuted claims by the Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, that it is withholding statutory allocation to the state.

The ministry described the claims as incorrect while stating that it has not withheld any statutory allocation due to Ekiti State, or any other state in Nigeria.

A statement issued on Thursday by the spokesman for the ministry, Salisu Dambatta, said that the Ekiti State government failed to comply with the necessary requirements for participating in the Budget Support Facility (BSF).

Mr Dambatta explained that BSF was a conditional loan programme to state governments introduced with the view to enhancing fiscal prudence.

He added that the programme was also designed particularly to enhance transparency and efficiency in public expenditure and payment of salaries.

The statement read: “This is not the first time of non-compliance by the Ekiti State Government.

“His (Fayose’s) administration defaulted in meeting the conditions specified and agreed upon by the 35 State Governments that are participating in the programme, as contained in the Fiscal Sustainability Plan (FSP).

“The Ekiti State government was warned formally of its failure to comply with the full requirements via a letter on August 5, 2016, with reference number HMF/FMF/ASG/1/2016.

“The failure of Ekiti State Government to comply with the requirements and conditions for the Budget Support Facility (BSF) resulted in a letter sent to the Chief of Staff, to notify him of the suspension of BSF for Ekiti State and it was conveyed to Mr President before payment to the Ekiti State government was reinstated.

“The Ekiti State government and all the other participating states are aware of the consequence of failure to comply with the full conditions and it is not the first time that a state would be stopped from accessing the facility due to non-compliance.

“In the course of its normal duties, the Ministry of Finance has the right to query, suspend or withhold funds as part of the conditions of the Budget Support Facility.

“The process is for the Commissioner of Finance of any state or the governor having issues to contact the Federal Ministry of Finance and resolve the issues without resorting to the media, because such issues are of a financial nature and therefore, confidential; they are routinely resolved amicably by the parties involved.”

The Finance Ministry maintained that the Budget Support Facility is a conditional programme and that the Federal Government would not be intimidated in the discharge of its duties.

Rivers Re-run: Fayose Claims Plans Are On To Arrest Wike

Ayodele Fayose, Miyetti Allah, EkitiThe Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, on Tuesday raised an alarm over alleged plot to arrest his counterpart in Rivers State, Mr Nyesom Wike, before the Saturday’s rerun legislative election.

Mr  Fayose revealed that intelligence report from top security sources at his disposal, vividly confirmed that there was an alleged subterranean plan to place Governor Wike on House arrest commencing from Thursday, December 11, to give way for the rigging of the scheduled polls.

Fayose made the claim on Tuesday in Ado Ekiti after presenting 93.4 billion Naira appropriation before the House of Assembly for passage.

The governor said he had it on good authority that those plotting the nefarious act would not hesitate to kill the governor if he resists the plan.

“Democracy Is In Danger”

Governor Fayose further said that the alleged withdrawal of the Governor Wike’s Chief Security Officer on Monday was a prelude to the planned criminal intention of those he branded ‘as potential dangers to the country’s democracy’.

He said: “As governors, we have our own spectacular ways of gathering information and security information my disposal revealed clearly that there was alleged plot to put Governor Wike under house arrest on Thursday December 9over Saturday’s Rerun elections.

“And part of their evil plans was that, the plotters will not hesitate to deal with him (Governor Wike) if he resists the attempt. And let me say expressly that the FG [Federal Government] must be held responsible if anything happens to Governor Wike.

“Let me make it public now that the intention is to place him on house arrest commencing from Thursday to Friday and I can’t keep quiet over this serious issue.

“With this, it is evidently clear that democracy is in danger. We can all see that democracy is being muzzled. The Monday withdrawal of Governor Wike’s CSO, a man saddled with the responsibility of managing, protecting and keeping the governor goes to show that the governor’s life is under serious threat.

“As I speak to you now, anything can happen to Governor Wike before weekend and if anything happens to him based on this evil plan, Nigerians know who to hold responsible,” he said.

Ahead of the legislative re-run election in Rivers State, allegations and counter allegations have continued to emanate from the camps of the All Progressives  Congress and that of the Peoples Democratic Party and political analysts have said that both parties statement could heat up the polity.

Governor Wike had last week claimed that there was a plan to assassinate him, after he had alleged that he had a video of a plot to rig the election in favour of the All Progressives Congress.

He said that the police and the electoral body where in the video which he would make public at the appropriate time.



Ondo Election: AD, APC Wrap Up Campaign

Ondo Election: AD, APC Wrap Up Campaign The Alliance for Democracy (AD) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) have held their final rally ahead of the Ondo state governorship election holding on Saturday.

The Alliance for Democracy flagbearer, Mr Olusola Oke was in Ondo town where he expressed his gratitude to party members and supporters for their steadfastness throughout the campaign period.

It was a grand entry for the Mr Oke into Ile-Oluji and Oke-Igbo area of Ondo state and the residents rolled out the drums in solidarity with the AD candidate.

However, what started out as a peaceful campaign came under an attack which led to the destruction of a vehicle.

“This is just one of the series of attacks on our members across the state. Only yesterday we were told some of our members were maimed in Owo.

“Security forces must wake up to their responsibilities because all it takes for evil to triumph is for good people to keep quiet.

“I am appealing to my people to remain (peaceful) but there is a limit to which they can listen to me. Someone must be there to call them to order,” he said.

He also asked his supporters and other political parties to shun violence in the run-up to the poll.

For the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Rotimi Akeredolu, victory of his party at the poll come Saturday is assured.

He said this during the rally to wrap up his campaign at his home town in Owo Local Government Area of Ondo state.

The campaign train moved through several towns to get to Owo where thousands of supporters were on ground to receive their man.

The APC candidate, again, rolled out his plans for the people. He maintained that his policies would cater for not just the people of Owo but the entire Ondo state.

Other leaders of the party also expressed their confidence that Akeredolu would emerge victorious at the polls.

Ondo Election: PDP Governors Hail Appeal Court’s Ruling On Jegede Candidacy

Ondo Election: PDP governors heal appeal court judgment on Eyitayo Jegede
Mr Eyitayo Jegede

Series of commendations are coming from Governors of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Nigeria after the Appeal Court gave a ruling expected to change the course of things in the forthcoming Ondo governorship election.

There have been controversy over the right person that will represent the PDP in the election after two factions in the state produced two different candidates – Eyitayo Jegede (Senator Ahmed Makarfi faction) and Jimoh Ibrahim (Senator Ali Modu Sheriff faction).

After the two candidates emerged at different primaries, the judiciary was approached with suits to determine the right candidate that should be added to the electoral body’s list for the election that will hold in three days’ time, as scheduled by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

A court had earlier ruled that Mr Ibrahim was the right candidate that should represent the party in the election. The ruling made the INEC documented his name as the PDP candidate in the election.

On Wednesday, however, an Appeal Court upturned the earlier ruling, making Mr Jegede the right candidate. The ruling has changed the situation of things, political analysts say.

Triumph Of Good

Showing their solidarity with Mr Jegede, some governors of the party have welcomed the decision of the appellate court.

Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa hailed the ruling which declared Mr Jegede the authentic governorship candidate of the PDP for the November 26 governorship election in Ondo State.

Governor Okowa described the decision of the Court of Appeal panel led by Justice Ibrahim Salauwa, as a triumph of good over political bitterness aided by selfish interests.

Reacting to the unanimous judgment of the appellate court that Jegede was duly nominated as the authentic candidate of the party, Okowa
In a statement by his spokesman, Charles Aniagwu, Governor Okowa urged the Sheriff-led faction of the party and its candidate, Jimoh Ibrahim to stop distracting the party and support Jegede to deliver for the party in the Ondo election.

He said: “I commend the Court of Appeal in Abuja for their unanimous judgement which restored Eyitayo Jegede as the candidate of our party. This ruling is very significant because the will of the people, clearly expressed, cannot be thwarted by a clique being propelled by political bitterness and selfish interests they want to promote”.

Call For Postponement Of Election

On his part, the Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, commended the verdict, but pointed out that the time was against its party to be able to make a headway in the poll.

Fayose , who craved for the postponement of the poll, as done by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Edo State governorship election, alleged that the INEC in cahoots with the All Progressives Congress (APC) had succeeded in undermining the strength of the party through this unwarranted judicial impediment.

Governor Fayose said: “The judgement shouldn’t have been otherwise, because you can’t cover the truth. I have said it ab initio that charlatans in the PDP are colluding with INEC and APC to undermine our party.

“INEC has no reason in the first instance to change Jegede’s name. So, this mistake was caused by INEC. It was an INEC making and the best way to for it is for the election to be postponed. This is not the best of time for us in the PDP and the good people of Ondo State. This is not the best time this judgement should have come.

“But we are still looking for Nigeria of our own, I mean Nigeria where there will be fairness and equity. It is regrettable that some charlatans can be colluding with INEC and APC to destroy our party.

“This is very regrettable and unfortunate. But they will still be defeated.

“The commission has no reason not to postpone this election, because what the INEC did was a deliberate action to weaken our party.

“This judgement coming at this time is a major setback for our party, which I believe can only be cured if this election is postponed,” Fayose concluded.

Plane Aborts Landing After Cattle Runway Obstruction

Cattle rustlingA fully loaded Air Peace Plane, narrowly escaped tragedy on Thursday, after noticing the runway had been invaded by a bunch of cattle, just as it was about to land at the Sam Mbakwe Airport, Owerri.

A passenger aboard the flight, Mr Richard Akinnola, gave account of the incident, saying the pilot was forced to hover around the airport until the runway was cleared by the airport security.

The passengers, who initially thought the pilot deliberately aborted landing, applauded him after being told that a major disaster was averted.

The Port-Harcourt International Airport runway has once been invaded by cows while an approaching Air France plane was reported to have collided with some of the cows.

Anti-Grazing Bill

Herdmen have in recent times been warned to desist from public grazing of cattle, as it is observed to interfere with normal human activity.

The Ekiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, had in August signed an Anti- Grazing bill into law in a bid to curtail the alleged inordinate activities of herdsmen.

Fayose-Aluko-PDPThe Governor described as “shameful” the practice of herdsmen rearing cows in cities, including the nation’s capital, Abuja

Governor Fayose also threatened to charge any cattle rearer found in the state carrying arms while grazing, with terrorism.

According to him, the state government is already working with local
government officials for the allocation of portions of land for grazing to all
local government authorities in the state, an initiative the government hopes will curtail the illegal grazing of cattle.

The Anti-Grazing Law also provides that any herdsman caught with firearms or other weapons during grazing activities would be charged with terrorism and their cattle confiscated.

Cattle Breeders Seek FG’s Intervention In Ekiti Grazing Restrictions

Cattle rustling and Grazing RestrictionsThe Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders’ Association of Nigeria have appealed to the Federal Government and security agencies to wade into what it describes as an unprovoked aggression against its members in Ekiti State under the guise of enforcing restriction laws against cattle breeders.

In a statement by the National Secretary of the Association, Baba-Othman Ngelzarma, says members of the association were attacked by the Ekiti Grazing Enforcement Marshal by 2.30p.m. local time on Friday when the law allowed cattle breeders to move about with their cattle till 6:00p.m.

The association called on the Ekiti State government to compensate its members who list five cows to the activities of the Ekiti Grazing Enforcement Marshals, claiming that the officials operated outside the stipulated time recommended by the Ekiti Grazing Bill.

Anti-Grazing Bill

The Ekiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, had in August signed an Anti- Grazing bill into law in a bid to curtail the alleged inordinate activities of herdsmen.

The Governor described as ‘shameful’ the practice of herdsmen rearing cows in cities, including the nation’s capital, Abuja

Governor Fayose also threatened to charge any cattle rearer found in the state carrying arms while grazing with terrorism.

Herdsmen, Ayo Fayose, Hard copy, anti-grazing bill
Governor Ayodele Fayose says the entire Ekiti people are behind the bill

After the signing the bill into law, he told stakeholders and leaders of communities across the 16 local government areas of the state in Ado Ekiti, the State’s capital, that the recent killings and attack on the people of Oke Ako Community in Ikole Local Government Areas of the state by suspected herdsmen was unfortunate.

The Act was read to the Assembly of all traditional rulers, chiefs and legislators by the Speaker of the state House of Assembly, Kola Oluwawole. It prohibits the activities of herdsmen in the state.

According to him, the state government is already working with local
government officials for the allocation of portions of land for grazing to all
local government authorities in the state.

The Speaker also gave the highlights of the Anti-Grazing Law, revealing that “grazing activities must be from 7:00a.m. to 6:00p.m. local time daily.

In the new law, anyone caught grazing on portions of land or any farmland not allotted by government would be apprehended and made to face the full wrath of the law.

The Anti-Grazing Law also provides that any herdsman caught with firearms or other weapons during grazing activities would be charged with terrorism and their cattle confiscated.

It also says that farm produce destroyed by the activities of any caught herdsman would be estimated by agricultural officers and the expenses of the estimate shall be levied on the culprit.

Any herdsman who violates any of these rules shall face six months’ imprisonment without option of fine, the law also stipulates.

Governor Fayose while appending his signature on the Anti-Grazing bill said passing the bill into law was borne out of his desire to interface with the traditional chiefs on security issues bedevilling the state.

Ajayi Ayodele, who spoke for the community, commended the Governor for signing the bill into law.

Fayose Displeased With State Of Old Governor’s Office

FayoseEkiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, has expressed displeasure at the poor state of the old governor’s office in Ado Ekiti, the capital of the state.

After assessing the state of the building and other facilities within, the Governor promised to rehabilitate the structure.

The Governor made the promise on Tuesday when he paid an unscheduled
visit to the secretariat and held a closed-door meeting with all traditional rulers in the state.

Governor Fayose, who was accompanied on the inspection by key members of his administration, ordered the immediate demolition of some structures.

After he gave the order, the Commissioner for Works and Transport, Funmilayo Oguns, vowed to carry out the governor’s instruction.

The Governor also warned those who work at the old governor’s office to please keep the environment clean.

Fayose Reassures Communities Of Basic Amenities

Fayose's aide, EFCC, Abiodun AgbeleThe Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, has reassured the residents of the state of his administration’s commitment to providing basic socio-amenities to all communities in the state.

Mr Fayose gave the assurance in Igbaraodo-Ekiti Community when he paid a visit to the town to have a first-hand look at the resuscitation of pipe-borne water into the community, after several years.

The Governor told reporters that his administration would stop at nothing in making life more comfortable for its citizenry.

Water has been a major challenge faced by some communities in Ekiti State and Igbaraodo-Ekiti Community is one of these communities.

For several years the community have not had access to pipe-borne water and this had been giving the people of the town and their monarch a sleepless night, until Mr Fayose-led administration revived the water project.

On his way to Igbarado-Ekiti, the Governor stopped by at the palace of Arajaka of Igbraodo-Ekiti, Oba Edward Jaiyeola, to have a chit-chat with the people of the community.

At the palace, the Governor told the traditional leader that he was in the community to assess the infrastructural needs of the people.

After the meeting with Oba Jaiyeola, the Governor in company of Senator Iyiola Omisore and top members of his government visited some of the water points to assess the level of repairs or resuscitation needed.

The people of Igbaraodo, led by the monarch, thanked the Governor for putting an end to their sufferings.

With the resuscitation of pipe-borne water in Igbaraodo-Ekiti Community, the people of the town are hopeful that other basic amenities they asked for would be attended to as promised by the Governor.

Fayose Flags Off Planting of 250,000 Trees In Ekiti

Tree Planting, FayoseThe Ekiti State Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, has flagged off the planting of 250,000 trees.

According to Governor Fayose, the programme is to fortify the already depleted forests in the state.

The initiative is aimed at avoiding a forecast of running out of valuable tree species by 2018.

Ali Modu Sheriff Annuls Plateau State PDP Congress

Ali Modu Sheriff, PDP, PlateauThe former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, has nullified the party’s congress in Plateau State.

The embattled PDP Chairman made the annulment when aggrieved members of the party visited him to ask for a fresh congress to elect a chairman in Plateau State.

The delegation led by a former member of the House of Representatives from the state, Mr Bitrus Kaze, alleged that the congress which was conducted in April was not credible.

In his response, Senator Sheriff told the gathering that a new committee would be inaugurated to conduct a fresh congress that would elect principal officers for the PDP in Plateau State.

In a related development, he had on Thursday set up another committee to conduct primaries for three PDP governorship candidates in Edo State, who have bought forms from his faction.

He said the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had sent the party their guidelines for the primaries, expressing preparedness to meet up with all the requirements set by the INEC for the September election.

Cripple The PDP
In a swift reaction to this, the Senator Ahmed Makarfi-led Caretaker Committee condemned the move by Senator Sheriff, after Mr Osagie Ize-Iyamu had emerged winner of the party’s primaries held on Monday.

MakarfiThey accused him of working with the enemies of the PDP to completely cripple the party in the interest of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).

The committee insisted that the Edo primary election and all the processes leading to it thereof, were properly conducted, monitored and observed by the INEC.

The emergence of the two factions of the PDP is a fall out of the party’s Governors Forum meeting where some leaders of the party removed Senator Sheriff and set up a caretaker committee.

However, the embattled Chairman told reporters when he was refused entrance into the PDP National Secretariat that he remained the chairman of the party until 2018.