Niger APC Sweeps Local Government Election

Niger electionThe All Progressives Congress (APC) has cleared all the positions in the 25 local government areas in an election held in Niger State.

Low turnout and late arrival of electoral materials characterised the local government elections, as electorates and party agents blamed neglect and ill-treatment on some alleged quarters on Saturday.

Although, the election was relatively peaceful in most of the centres visited by Channels Television’s correspondent, there was low turnout of voters as some of them were accredited and didn’t come out to vote.

“Very Unfortunate”

The two former Nigerian leaders in the State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar did not come out to vote, but investigation revealed that General Ibrahim Babangida was out of the country for medical checkup.

Investigation further revealed that the two leaders don’t come out to exercise their franchise in most of the local government elections conducted in the past.

The immediate past Governor, Muazu Aliyu, was also absent in his country home of Minna for the election.

The Niger East Senatorial District Senator, Mr David Umaru, also did not come out to vote.

The Niger State Deputy Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Tanko Beji, while leaving the office of the Niger State Independent Electoral Commission (NSIEC) described the local government election as “very unfortunate”.

Mr Beji, after hearing some results on Sunday, expressed displeasure in the results announced, adding that he would consult the party before would take a stand later on the matter.

The local governments results collected from the various council returning officers were: Agaie, Chanchaga, Bosso, Lavun, Mokwa, Edati, Magama, Munya, Pailkoro and Rafi.

Others were: Rijau, Shiroro, Tafa, Bida, Wushishi, Gbako, Mariga, Lapai, Gurara, Borgu, Agwara, and Katcha Local Government Areas.

The only local government result being awaited was Kontagora, the country home of the State Governor.

Meanwhile election could not hold in Suleja Local Government Area due to perceived crisis in the area. It was rescheduled to hold on Saturday, January 23.

Northern Governors Felicitate With Christians, Preach Peace, Unity

Northern GovernorsThe Northern States Governors Forum (NSGF) has called on Nigerians to remain dedicated to the peace, and unity of Nigeria.

While felicitating with Christians on the Yuletide, the Chairman of the forum and Niger State Governor, Muazu Aliyu, urged Nigerians to demonstrate genuine commitment toward achieving the nation’s collective developmental aspiration.

While expressing optimism that Nigeria would come out of its present social, political and economic challenges stronger and more united, Governor Aliyu said that Nigerians should analyse the origin of the present challenges facing the country and sincerely address them.

“I am optimistic that one day we will all sit together first as Nigerians regardless of ethnic or religious affiliation to deliberate without sentiments on how to move our dear country to its deserved social, political and economic height,” the leader of the northern governors said.

Governor Aliyu Drops Three Commissioners, Swears In Five

The Niger State Governor, Muazu Babangida Aliyu

The Governor of Niger state, Muazu Aliyu has dropped three commissioners in a minor cabinet re-shuffle.

Those dropped from the Executive Council of the state are Daniel Clifford Shashere, former Commissioner for Sports, Ibrahim Ahmed Matane , former Commissioner for Agriculture and the former Commissioner for Mining and Solid Minerals, Abubakar Baba Jibrin.

The Governor swore in five new commissioners which are  Danladi Ndayebo as Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Abubakar Tukur ,Commissioner for Finance and Abbas Munya as Commissioner for Mining and Solid Minerals Resources.

Others are Isa Kantigi, former Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs as well as  Abdullahi Maza Kuka who becomes the Commissioner for Water Resources.

Northern Governors Urge Christians To Pray For Nigeria


The Northern States Governors Forum (NSGF) has called on Christian faithful to use the opportunity of Easter celebrations to pray for the quick resolution of the security challenges confronting the nation.

In a statement, the chairman of the forum and Governor of Niger State, Muazu Aliyu,  called on Nigerians to be mindful of the need to continue to work for peace which underscores the essence of Christ’s Resurrection on Easter Sunday.

The forum also urged Christians to imbibe the ideals of perseverance, sacrifice and commitment to the will of God which characterised the Lenten season.

The forum then congratulated Christians and all Nigerians who are alive to witness 2014’s Easter, reminding the faithful that “we are alive today only by God’s grace and favor and not that; we are in any way special before the almighty.”

The statement reiterated the need for Nigerians to pray for and work towards peace, stability and progress of Nigeria. It also emphasised the need for Nigerians to support their leaders at all levels for the benefit of all.

He wished Nigerians a memorable Easter celebrations.

Northern Governors Condemn Abuja Explosion

Northern governors' forumThe Northern States Governors Forum (NSGF) has condemned the bomb blast that killed many people and injured several others at a bus station in Nyanya, Abuja on Monday.

They said that there was no basis for what the perpetrators did, adding that the loss of innocent lives due to the explosion was regrettable.

Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Niger State, Muazu Aliyu, in a statement, expressed the forum’s deepest condolences to the families of the victims, saying no grievance could justify such a dastardly act against defenceless citizens.

“The issue of security should not be left to Government alone. All hands must be on deck to stop the activities of terrorists which have left hundreds of innocent Nigerians either dead or wounded”, the statement read.

The statement urged security agencies not to be discouraged by the activities of terrorists, emphasizing that the nation would forever remain grateful to the military and other security agencies for the successes recorded so far in the war against terror.

The Governors also prayed God to grant the souls of the deceased eternal rest and members of their families the fortitude to bear the loss.

Northern Governors Seek Ways Of Solving Insurgency


The Niger State Governor, Muazu Babangida Aliyu
The Niger State Governor, Muazu Babangida Aliyu

Governors of Nigeria’s northern states have stressed the need for Nigerians to assist security agencies in identifying the culprits and sponsors of the Boko Haram insurgents.

Rising from a meeting on Tuesday centred on how peace will be restored in the north east region, the governors stated that proper information to security agencies would go a long way in ending the insurgency.

In a communique read at the end of the northern states governors emergency meeting held in Abuja, the chairman of the forum and governor of Niger State, Dr Muazu Aliyu, said that the recent trip to the United States of America by 12 governors from the north was aimed at providing a strong platform for enhanced co-operation that would address security, social, economic and governance issues peculiar to states in the north.

“The security situation, the crime rate and the general insecurity in the north are increasingly becoming daunting, ranging from mayhem being perpetrated by insurgents, characterised by sporadic killing and attacks on school and communities leading to several deaths and citizens being displaced,” he said, reading from the communique.

He further stated that the forum agreed that there was the need to identify the culprits and sponsors of Boko Haram insurgents.

All member states are to establish a security trust fund in the various states to ensure that the states will not run out of fund in fighting insurgency in the north.

The forum expressed optimism that the National Conference would provide a focused forum for the nation and its citizens to discuss security challenges, rule of law and corruption among others.

The Boko Haram insurgents have carried out several attacks on villages in the north east and have increased the spate of attacks some weeks ago, leading to a reinforcement of military offensives by the government.

The offensive is yielding results, as the military has discovered at least two Boko Haram armouries in the last two weeks.

Boko Haram: Nigeria Closes Border With Cameroon

The Federal Government of Nigeria has sealed its northern border with Cameroon in an effort to shut out terrorists using its neighbour as a launchpad for attacks.

The closure extends from Borno State, by Lake Chad, to the southern end of Adamawa State, around halfway along Nigeria’s 1,500-mile border with Cameroon.

A statement issued by the Commandant 23 Armoured Brigade, Brigadier-General Rogers Ibe Nicholas said that the closure is meant to effectively curtail the activities of the insurgents.

Borno and Adamawa states are covered by a State of Emergency that President Goodluck Jonathan declared last May as part of an offensive meant to crush the Boko Haram sect.

“To effectively curtail the activities of the insurgents, the Cameroon border in the northeast has been closed indefinitely,” Brigadier-General Rogers Ibe Nicholas said in a statement.

The Islamists, whose struggle for an Islamic state in northern Nigeria has killed thousands and made them the biggest threat to security in Africa’s top oil producer, are currently based in the hilly Gwoza area next to Cameroon.

Nigerian security officials say they often launch deadly attacks then flee over the border to avoid being pursued.

They killed more than 200 people in two attacks last week on villages, prompting renewed criticisms that military action has failed to neutralize them.

Boko Haram: Northern Govs Ask FG To Implement Forum’s Recommendation

The Northern State Governors’ Forum (NSGF)  has repeated the  call on the Federal Government  to deploy more security personnel with superior military equipment as well as adopt measures to boost their morale to enable them effectively fight the insurgents and other threats to security in the region.

Chairman of the forum and, governor of Niger state, Muazu  Aliyu, who was reacting to the killing on Saturday of 29 persons by unknown gunmen in Barkin Ladi Local Government Area of Plateau State, also urged the military to review its counter-insurgency strategy to protect innocent citizens who are being killed daily by members of the Boko Haram.

“While we (Northern Governors) agreed in our last meeting in Kaduna to deal decisively with the fast growing security challenges being posed by the activities of cattle rearers, we call on the Federal Government to consider a national policy to settle nomads and provide adequate grazing reserves and cattle routes,” Governor Aliyu said in a statement.

The forum also reiterated its appeal to the federal government to “provide adequate funds to Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states afflicted with the problem of insurgency in order to address attendant issues.”

It hailed the military for restricting trans-border movements between Nigeria and Cameroon, urging security agencies to do all within their powers to halt the killing of innocent lives in the region.

The state governors also agreed to vigorously pursue employment and youth empowerment programmes as a way of taking idle youths off the streets.

The governors prayed God to grant repose to the souls of those who lost their lives in the fresh attack in Plateau State and also grant members of their families the fortitude to bear the loss.

Gov Aliyu Distributes Vehicles To Unemployed Youths

The Governor of Niger State, Mu’azu Aliyu has re-affirmed his administration’s commitment to eradicate youth unemployment in the state.

The governor did this at the distribution of 100 vehicles to unemployed graduates in the community.

Speaking at the distribution ceremony, the governor said: “We are doing this to all communities, irrespective of political affiliations…that effective governance is not only in the efforts put into any venture but by the final results and the impact it has on the majority of the population.”

He pointed out that unemployment is one of the causes of youth restiveness, for which reason the State Government is determined to give priority to engaging them in gainful employment.

The governor also appealed to the beneficiaries to make good use of the cars which will be operated on a higher purchase basis.

The Chairman, SURE-P Niger State, Bawa Mu’azu, added that the vehicles are meant to serve a dual purpose of reducing unemployment and easing transportation challenges in the state.

PDP Court Ruling: Tukur PDP Labels Baraje Faction Imposters

In a move that clearly marks the end of reconciliation talks between the two disputing factions of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), the Bamanga Tukur leadership has termed members of the Baraje faction as imposters.

The National Publicity Secretary of the party, Olisa Metuh, said this while reacting to the Federal High Court ruling which dismissed the suit filed by the Kawu Baraje-led faction of the People’s Democratic Party and declared that there is only one recognised PDP led by Mr Bamanga Tukur as the National Chairman.

The National Publicity Secretary also warned that it will no longer tolerate meetings or utterances by unauthorized persons or groups.

It will be recalled that the creation of the Baraje faction of the PDP started when five of the governors – Abdufatah Ahmed of Kwara, Muazu Aliyu of Niger, Musa Kwankwaso of Kano, Sule Lamido of Jigawa and Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto States –walked out of the PDP special convention in Abuja, with a claim that a lot is not done right under the Tukur leadership.

I Am Happy The President Sacked The Minister– Aliyu

Governor Muazu Aliyu of Niger state has thrown his full weight behind the decision of President Goodluck Jonathan to sack the Minister of Youth Development Alhaji Abdulkhadir Turaki.

Governor Aliyu noted that the action of the President is what is expected of a national leader that does not want any of his officials to cause disharmony among the people.

Receiving the Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission, Mr Kennedy Okpara at the Government in Minna, Governor Aliyu declared, ‘I am happy that the President sacked the minister as this will serve as a lesson for others’.

Youth Idleness Must Be Blamed For Crisis In Northern Nigeria – Gov Aliyu

The governor of Niger state, Muazu Aliyu has identified youth idleness across the northern part of the country as the major cause of the recent security challenges in the region.

Governor Aliyu made this observation during the official flag off of the training of 300 youths in modern livestock and fish farming in Minna, Niger state.

He lamented the rising level of unemployment in the north which according to him has made youths in the region to be a ready tool for mischief makers.

This is coming at a time when fundamentalist insurgency is staged across cities in north by Islamist youths.

The youths from the 25 local government areas of Niger state converged on Minna to commence a two months training in livestock and fish farming production.

The Niger state Commissioner of Livestock and fisheries development, Mr Isah Vatsa noted that the training which is aimed at empowering youths across the state as part of the state government’s youth empowerment programme.

He appealed to the youths to make effective use of the opportunity of the training to empower themselves.

The Governor also expressed the hope that participants at the end of the training will join in the development of the agricultural sector of the country.

Some of the participants, who spoke to Channels TV, expressed their expectations at the end of the empowerment programme.