October 1: President Buhari To Address Nation On Saturday

In this file picture, President Muhammadu Buhari is seen addressing some APC senators during a meeting held at the Council Chamber of the Presidential Villa in Abuja on June 28, 2022.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari will address the nation in a telecast on Saturday, the presidency said Friday.

Saturday is October 1, Nigeria’s 62nd Independence Anniversary.

“As part of activities commemorating the 62nd Independence Anniversary of the country, President Muhammadu Buhari will address the nation on Saturday, October 1, 2022 at 7 am,” a statement signed by presidential spokesperson Femi Adesina said.

“Television, radio stations and other electronic media outlets are enjoined to hook up to the network services of the Nigerian Television Authority and Radio Nigeria for the broadcast.”

 

Channels Television will stream the President’s speech live. Watch on DSTV:420 | Sky UK: 518 | Live Stream: www.channelstv.com/live

Peace Accord With Jonathan Contributed To Peaceful Election In 2015 – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari met with members of the National Peace Committee in Abuja on September 29, 2022.
President Muhammadu Buhari met with members of the National Peace Committee in Abuja on September 29, 2022.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday said the signing of the Peace Accord with former President Goodluck Jonathan and other presidential candidates in the build up to the 2015 elections contributed largely to the peaceful outcome of the polls.

He made the comment while receiving the National Peace Committee (NPC), led by former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, on Thursday at State House, the President.

President Buhari urged all the signatories to the 2023 election Peace Accord, and their supporters, to abide by its content and spirit.

The President noted that the signing of the First National Peace Accord by presidential candidates in the 2023 election, earlier at a separate event on Thursday, was aimed at committing political parties, aspirants and their supporters to conduct their campaigns in a peaceful manner, devoid of ethnic, religious and hate speeches that could mar the upcoming elections.

“The timing of the First National Peace Accord is significant considering political party campaigns have already commenced in the country.

“The initiatives undertaken by the NPC are commendable as these efforts would ensure issue-based campaigns.

“I look forward to the second phase of the signing of the National Peace Accord coming up in January 2023.

“You may recall that President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan and I signed the first National Peace Accord before the 2015 elections.

“It is my conviction that it contributed significantly to the peaceful outcome of the 2015 election.

“It is my hope that the National Peace Committee continues this important work post 2023,” the President said.

President Buhari reiterated that credible, free and fair elections can only be achieved in a peaceful environment, adding that the signing of the Electoral Act 2021 as amended with landmark provisions underline his resolve for transparent and all-inclusive Electoral Process.

He, therefore, urged all stakeholders to conduct themselves in a manner that would ensure the successful conduct of the General Elections in 2023 as well as smooth transition from one democratically elected Government to another.

Gen. Abubakar, who briefed the President on the activities of the Committee in the build-up to the next year’s election, said they have met with various stakeholders, including the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Heads of security agencies, who reassured of their preparedness to conduct the polls creditably.

The former Head of State told the President that the membership of the Committee has been expanded to bring in some ‘‘young minds’’, expressing confidence that the Committee would do its utmost to ensure that all political actors live up to expectations.

The NPC Chairman also lauded President Buhari for repeatedly reaffirming his commitment to fairness in the 2023 elections, particularly at international outings.

He noted with delight that the off-season elections in Anambra, Ekiti and Osun States have confirmed President Buhari’s irreversible commitment to credible and violence-free polls in the country.

The members of the National Peace Committee are: Gen. Abubakar, Chairman; Alhaji Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, the Sultan of Sokoto; John Cardinal Onaiyekan; Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Prof. Ameze Guobadia; Prince Sam Amuka; Justice Roseline Ukeje (rtd); Prof. Ibrahim Gambari; Bishop Mathew Hasan Kukah; Lt. Gen. Mathew Luther Agwai; Mr. Femi Otedola; Alhaji Ahmed Yayale; Ms Idayat Hassan, John Momoh; Sani Suleiman Atsu and Fr. Attah Barkindo, Head of NPC Secretariat.

Buhari Departs New York After Attending UN General Assembly

A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has departed the United States after participating in the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

He left for Abuja on Sunday evening via the JFK International Airport in New York, days after he delivered the national statement to the world body.

The President, who is expected to arrive that the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja on Monday, left for New York on Sunday last week.

 

While in the United States, the President participated in the 77th session of the UNGA tagged “A Watershed Moment: Transformative Solutions to Interlocking Challenges.”

Just like other heads of government, he took his turn to deliver the national statement on the second day of the general debates on Wednesday last week.

Aside from this, President Buhari also participated in high-level meetings and side events, including the Nigeria International Economic Partnership Forum (NIEPF) convened by Nigeria in partnership with the Business Council for International Understanding (BCIU).

He held strategic bilateral meetings with some participating world leaders, renowned investors, and heads of multinational organisations while in New York.

On the entourage of the President were the First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari, some governors, ministers, and top government officials.

Buhari Challenges African Presidents To Rid Continent Of Corruption

 

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has challenged his African counterparts to rid their countries of corruption so the continent can rise to its full potential.

Buhari spoke at a High-Level side event on ”Food Security Response: Combating Illicit Financial Flows and Securing Asset Returns for Sustainable Development’‘, on the margins of the 77th Session of the UN General Assembly. He expressed regrets that the continent has remained at the far end of the global development index because of the menace.

According to him, national resources around the African continent must not find safe havens around the world hence, making the fight a necessity and not a choice, to give citizens a better life through economic prosperity, social peace, and security.

The President urged his colleagues to recall the United Nations General Assembly Special Session Against Corruption political declaration of June 2021 and ensure its effective implementation toward global food security and sustainable infrastructural development in the continent.

On food security in Nigeria, the President disclosed that the Nigerian government has financed 2.5 million smallholder farmers to cultivate about 3.2 million hectares of farmland across the country, creating 10 million direct and indirect jobs.

Buhari, who has served as AU Champion on anti-corruption since 2018, frowned at the recent data released by the UN which estimated that nearly a billion people went hungry in 2021. He said the data is a collective shame on the world’s conscience, which has been further exacerbated by increased illicit financial flows.

Buhari Writes Senate, Seeks Consideration Of 2023-2025 MTEF/FSP

President Buhari Signs NCDC Bill Into Law
A file photo of President Muhammadu Buhari.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has written to the Senate on the submission of the 2023-2025 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper (MTEF/FSP) for consideration.

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, read President Buhari’s letter during Tuesday’s plenary at the National Assembly in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

After weeks of vacation, the lawmakers resumed plenary at a makeshift chamber as the main Senate chamber is undergoing renovations.

The letter from the President also contained four other requests, including approval for the establishment of a promissory note programme in the sum of N375 billion.

According to President Buhari, this is to settle outstanding claims to various exporters from 2007 to 2020 in respect of the export expansion ground scheme.

He also requested the lawmakers to confirm the appointment of Mr Mohammad Sabo as the Executive Commissioner (Finance and Account) for the Board of Petroleum Upstream.

READ ALSO: [2023] We Must Have Nigeria Before A President, Says Jonathan

Similarly, the President sought approval for the issuance of a promissory note of N6.2 billion for Kebbi and Taraba states, for the construction and rehabilitation of federal roads.

He asked the Senate to approve the issuance of another promissory note of N18.6 billion to Yobe State for the construction of federal roads.

After the Senate President was done reading the letter, the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, submitted a petition on behalf of one Augustine Ogedengbe, over the non-payment of presidential amnesty programme allowances and the removal of slots allocated to his constituent’s camp way back in 2010.

The petition was laid and referred to the Senate Committee on Ethics, Privileges, and Public Petition, to report back within four weeks.

Senator Ayo Akinyelure also submitted four petitions from the Office of the President of the Senate, including that of Dr Emmanuel Attah and four others on behalf of the Federal Commissioners of the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) against the CCB Chairman, Mohammed Isa, over alleged ”mal-administration, non-functionality, corruption, and collapse of law and order” in the bureau.

Another petition was from a lawyer, Chukwuemeka Onwuemmene, on behalf of one Lieutenant Michael Umakor against the Chief of Naval Staff, requesting the release of Umakor who was said to have been in detention since July 31, 2021, after serving a jail term.

The third petition was from a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Yunus Usman, on behalf of one Commodore Uche also against the naval chief, seeking the “reconstruction of erroneous retirement from service and decoration of his new rank of rear admiral”.

The last petition by Senator Akinyelure was from another lawyer, K. Peter on behalf of Omire and Associates against Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), demanding redress of “the gross injustice meted on our client and service company [Omire and Associate] in respect of contracts REF: NGO1001316(A28) and NGO1003128(A28)”.

The petitions were also laid and referred to the Committee on Ethics, Privileges, and Public Petitions to report back within four weeks.

Buhari Condemns Attack On Ubah, Prays For Peace In Anambra, Other Areas

 

A file photo of Senator Ifeanyi Ubah.

 

 

The attack on the convoy of the Senator representing Anambra South District in the National Assembly, Ifeanyi Ubah, is “barbaric and condemnable”, President Muhammadu Buhari has said.

“We are deeply concerned about the activities of armed groups in the region and in other parts of the country. We are closely monitoring the situation and waiting for further details on the response to the worrisome situation by the police, the military and other security agencies,” the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said in a statement on Wednesday.

Ubah’s convoy was attacked on Sunday at Enugwukwu in the Njikoka Local Government Area of Anambra State. The gunmen killed some security officers and other aides during the attack.

“The nation has lost four brave policemen and other aides of the Senator.

“On behalf of the government and the people, I pay homage to these security men and the aides who were brutally murdered. Our thoughts and prayers are with their families at this difficult time,” Shehu said.

“The President prayed for the quick recovery of the Senator and all those that were injured. He equally prayed for the early return of peace and security in Anambra State and all other areas,” he added.

READ ALSO: Bandits Would Have Overrun Imo But For Buhari’s Intervention – Uzodimma

Anambra, like the other four states in the South-East geopolitical zone, has witnessed heavy attacks by daring gunmen of late.

In May 2021, gunmen assassinated Ahmed Gulak, a former aide to former President Goodluck Jonathan. Also, in September 2021, gunmen murdered Chike Akinyuli, the widower of the the late Director-General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, Dora Akunyili.

My Administration Has Done Extremely Well – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday said his administration has done “extremely well” but those who are supposed to commend his government for his achievements have failed to do so.

“In terms of time and resources, this administration has done extremely well. I have to say it because those who are supposed to say are not saying it. I don’t know why,” the President said in Owerri, the Imo State capital when he was hosted by Governor Hope Uzodimma after he commissioned some projects by the latter’s government.

The President once again blamed previous administrations, and the elite, for the state of the country.

“To be frank with you, I blame the Nigerian elite for not thinking hard about our country,” the President said.

“Between 1999 and 2015 when we came in, I will like people to check the Central Bank and the NNPC, the average production was 2.1 million barrels per day.”

He said the country was earning way more at the time but that did not reflect in terms of development.

“Look at the state of infrastructure, look at the road…look at the railway, it was virtually killed. (In terms of) Power, we are still struggling,” he added.

“But when we came in, unfortunately, the militants were unleashed, production went down to half a million bpd.”

The President also defended his handling of the Boko Haram insurgency, saying that before he came into office in May 2015, Boko Haram terrorists controlled local governments in Borno State but that has become a thing of the past.

FG Directs Flags To Fly At Half-Mast For Queen Elizabeth II

Two guards are seen hoisting the British national flag at the High Commission in Abuja on September 9, 2022. Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

The Federal Government of Nigeria has directed that all flags both in the country and at its missions abroad fly at half-mast on Sunday and Monday in honour of the Queen Elizabeth II.

Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, in a statement on Friday commiserated with the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth.

He said, “In honour of Queen Elizabeth II, The Sovereign of the United Kingdom, Chairman of the Commonwealth and an eminent global personality, whose passage was announced, the Ministry of Interior of the Federal Government of Nigeria declares that all flags in Nigeria and our missions abroad be flown at half mast on Sunday, September 11th, 2022 and Monday, September 12th, 2022.

“We commiserate with the government and people of the United Kingdom and all the affected people of the Commonwealth and the world.
“The Queen is dead. Long live the King.”

Queen Elizabeth II died on Thursday at the age of 96, making her the longest royal to live in the British history. She was immediately succeeded by her 73-year-old eldest son, King Charles III.

(FILE) Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s longest-serving monarch, died on September 8, 2022. She was 96.

Nigeria, one of the commonwealth nations, gained her independence from Britain in 1960 during the reign of Queen Elizabeth II.

President Muhammadu Buhari described the tenure of the late monarch as a “unique and wonderful 70-year reign,” adding that “she was the only British Sovereign known to 90 percent of our population.

“The story of modern Nigeria will never be complete without a chapter on Queen Elizabeth ll, a towering global personality and an outstanding leader. She dedicated her life to making her nation, the Commonwealth and the entire world a better place.

“I welcome the ascension of His Majesty King Charles III to the throne, in line with tradition, and pray that his reign will witness continuing robust relations between our two nations,” he said.

ASUU Strike Portends Grave Danger To Nigeria, University Alumni Calls For Speedy Resolution

A photo combination of ASUU President, Emmanuel Osodeke, President Muhammadu Buhari and Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu.
A photo combination of ASUU President, Emmanuel Osodeke, President Muhammadu Buhari and Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu.

 

A group of Alumni Associations of Nigerian Universities have warned that the lingering strike of the Academic Staff Union of Universities could lead to disastrous consequences for the nation.

In a letter on Monday, the group urged the Federal Government and ASUU to come together and resolve the impasse.

ASUU has been on strike for more than six months.

The academics are seeking improved welfare, revitalisation of public universities and academic autonomy among other demands.

One bone of contention for the academics is the non-payment of university revitalisation funds, which amounts to about N1.1 trillion.

But the Federal Government has said it doesn’t have the money to pay such an amount, citing low oil prices during the Muhammadu Buhari administration.

 

Read the group’s full statement below:

PRESS STATEMENT BY CONCERNED ALUMNI OF NIGERIAN UNIVERSITIES ON THE LINGERING ASUU STRIKE

The under-listed Alumni Associations of Nigerian Universities have expressed concern over the unabated crises between the Academic Staff Union of Universities and the Federal Government and the continued closure of universities in Nigeria.

In a letter signed by the Presidents of the University Alumni Associations, the concerned associations stated that no nation wanting to get to the Promised Land, and indeed aspiring to be a member of the comity of enlightened
nations would toy with education. They stated that globally, education is government-driven followed by other linked chains like lecturers, parents, students and other stakeholders. In this connection, the associations called on the Federal Government to urgently put in place a mechanism to holistically address the concerns and demands of the striking lecturers and other University staff.

The associations drew the attention of government to the recurrent crises in the country, especially the spate of terrorism, banditry, kidnappings, money rituals, prostitution, and other social vices, and noted that these are some
of the consequences of youths not being critically engaged.

A situation where millions of students are locked out of campuses portends a grave danger for the county, the associations lamented. They disclosed that the all-time honoured aphorism that an idle brain is the devil’s workshop
was instructive, and government should ensure that the crises in the county are not further exacerbated by allowing these youths to be willing tools for social vices.

The Association called on the Presidency to wade into the matter as a matter of utmost concern so that all contending issues are speedily and expeditiously resolved.

On the other hand, the Association is pleading with the leadership of ASUU to sheath its sword and recall its members back to the universities as they have made their point.

The opinion of the members of the public generally is in favour of resumption of academic activities in the universities that have been closed for over six (6) months now.

Signed
NAME AND DESIGNATION SIGNATURE
1. Dr. John Momoh, OON, NPOM
President (Worldwide), University of Lagos
Alumni Association
2. Prof. Ahmed Tijani Mora
National Chairman, Conference of Alumni
Associations of Nigerian Universities
(CAANU) for ABU Alumni Association
3. Prof. Elsie Adewoye
President, University of Ibadan Alumni
4. Prof. Yakubu Aboki Ochefu
President University of Calabar Alumni
5. Pst. Nuhu Sani
President, University of Jos Alumni
6. Pst. Ule Williams Glad
President, University of Port Harcourt
Alumni

What FG Must Do To End Strike – ASUU

 

The Academic Staff Union of Universities has outlined steps the government must take to end its six-month-long academic strike.

Speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, ASUU President, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, said the government must exhibit transparency.

“Government should tell us and Nigerians – the money that has been alleged to have been approved for revitalisation – how much is it and where is it lodged? When will it be released?” Prof Osodeke said.

The university don added that the government must clearly state its position on the University Transparency and Accountability Solution (UTAS), a payroll system which ASUU wants as a replacement for the Integrated Payroll and Personnel information system (IPPIS).

“Three, have they accepted the agreement we reached with their panel? They should come and tell us this, and not go to the press,” Prof. Osodeke said.

The ASUU President accused the Federal Government of appealing to sensibilities rather than solving the issues raised by the union.

“Strike is a symptom of a problem,” Prof Osodeke said. “Any day you sort out that problem, you will not have strike.”

ASUU has been on strike since February 14.

On Monday, the union declared a “total and indefinite” extension of its industrial action, noting that the government has failed to satisfactorily meets its demands.

The academics are seeking improved welfare, revitalisation of public universities and academic autonomy among other demands.

One bone of contention for the academics is the non-payment of university revitalisation funds, which amounts to about N1.1 trillion.

But the Federal Government has said it doesn’t have the money to pay such an amount, citing low oil prices during the Muhammadu Buhari administration.

2023 Elections Will be Free Of Intimidation – Buhari

File photo of Buhari speaking at an event.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday promised not to allow intimidations of any sort, whether materially, morally or physically during the 2023 elections.

He said the kind of leadership that thrives on intimidation will not benefit the nation.

The President was speaking when he received some Governors of the All Progressives Congress, led by Kebbi State Governor Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, at the State House, a statement signed by presidential spokesperson Femi Adesina said.

President Buhari stated that under his leadership he will continue to respect Nigerians by ensuring that their votes count and the people’s voice matter in choosing political leaders at different levels.

He further assured Nigerians that the APC will continue to bequeath strong political institutions that reflect their choices, through non-interference in elections, citing outcome of polls in Ekiti, Anambra and Osun States as cogent indicators.

‘An Attempt To Capture INEC’: Itodo Asks Senate To Reject Buhari’s Nominees

 

Executive Director of YIAGA Africa, Samson Itodo, on Monday faulted President Muhammadu Buhari’s nominations for Residential Electoral Commissioners.

Speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today, Itodo said the nominations were an attempt to capture the Independent National Electoral Commission for political gain ahead of the 2023 general elections.

“Nigerians need to know that there is an attempt to capture INEC,” he said. “And this is not the first time. It started with an attempt to appoint Lauretta Onochie.”

In July, Buhari had asked the senate to confirm 19 nominees as INEC RECs.

According to Itodo, some of those nominated by President Buhari have partisan leanings.

 

“We are 179 days to the elections; RECs have not been confirmed. And you’ve now appointed people who have partisan leanings,” he added.

“The Senate needs to rise the occasion by rejecting these nominees and ask the President to re-nominate. It (the nominations) is an aberration of the constitution.”

He said the nominees would undermine INEC’s capacity to resist those who intend to circumvent the electoral process in 2023.

A photo combination of President Muhammadu Buhari, Senate President Ahmad Lawan and YIAGA Executive Director, Samson Itodo.
A photo combination of President Muhammadu Buhari, Senate President Ahmad Lawan and YIAGA Executive Director, Samson Itodo.

 

Earlier a coalition of CSOs, including Itodo’s YIAGA Africa, had formally rejected the nominees.

“Some of the nominees of the President fail the constitutional test of non-partisanship and unquestionable integrity,” the CSOs said in a statement.

“Evidence abounds that some of the nominees are either partisan, politically aligned, or previously indicted for corruption.

“To mention a few, Prof. Muhammad Lawal Bashir from Sokoto was a Governorship aspirant under the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the 2015 elections cycle.

“Mrs. Sylvia Uchenna Agu, the nominee for Enugu state, is believed to be the younger sister of the APC Deputy National Chairman, Southeast,” the statement reads.

“The nominee for Imo State, Mrs. Pauline Onyeka Ugochi, a former Head of ICT at INEC in Imo state, gained notoriety for alleged corruption and connivance with politicians to undermine elections.

“Mrs. Queen Elizabeth Agwu, a former Accountant-General of the Ebonyi, was suspended allegedly on the grounds of incompetence and corruption in 2016.

“We contend that the appointment of these individuals as RECs will significantly undermine the neutrality and impartiality of the Independent National Electoral Commission, and it will increase mistrust in INEC and Nigeria’s electoral process.

“By the combined effect of Section 156 (1)(a) and Third Schedule, Part 1, Item F, paragraph 14 (1), these individuals are constitutionally prohibited from any appointment as members of INEC.”