PDP Reform Group Decries Alleged Lack Of Internal Democracy

Niger State, PDP MembersAhead of the proposed National Convention of the Peoples Democratic Party, the PDP Reform Group has decried the alleged lack of internal democracy in Nigeria’s main opposition party.

The group said cases of such resonated during the state congresses held recently.

The group, which is a coalition of the party’s National Youth Wing, is also asking the leadership of the party to reconcile all aggrieved members before the National Convention, which is scheduled to hold in Port Harcourt this month.

The group is also demanding that no member of the former National Working Committee should be allowed to contest in the congress.

Abia Election: Appeal Court Declares Alex Otti Of APGA Winner

Alex OttiAn Appeal Court has declared the candidate of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Dr Alex Otti, as winner of the Abia State Governorship election.

The court, sitting in Owerri, the capital of Imo State, in its ruling on Thursday ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission to immediately return Dr Otti, as the rightful winner of the April election, having won majority of the votes cast during the polls.

In its unanimous ruling, the five-man panel of judges, presided over by Justice Oyebisi Omoleye, faulted the ruling of the Abia State Governorship Election Tribunal which upheld the election of the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Okezie Ikpeazu, as the winner of the April governorship election.

‘Landmark Judgment’

The panel said there were established proofs of over voting and substantial non-compliance to electoral laws during the election in Osisioma, Isialangwa North and Obingwa Local Government Areas of the state and as such, unlawful votes were allotted to Dr Okezie Ikpeazu.

According to the panel, after subtracting the votes from the Isi-Alangwa, Osisioma and Obingwa, the PDP candidate was left with a total vote of 114,444, while the APGA candidate had 164,332 votes and should be returned as the rightful winner of the election.

The Appeal Court was filled to capacity by members and lawyers of the APGA and that of the Peoples Democratic Party to witness the final ruling of the Appellate court.

Reacting to the judgement, counsels to Dr. Otti lauded the judgement which they described as a ‘landmark and thoroughly analysed judgement’ but to the PDP legal team, the legal fireworks is not over. They expressed readiness to approach the Supreme Court.

 

PDP Asks APC To “Stop Bandying Imaginary Figures”

Olisa-MetuhThe Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has descried as reckless, irresponsible and highly provocative, Sunday’s statement by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), with a controversial list of alleged looted funds.

In a statement by the opposition party’s spokesman, Mr Olisa Metuh, released in response to the APC claims, the PDP said that the party bandied imaginary figures against the previous administration to suit a heinous purpose.

The spokesman for the APC, Mr Lai Mohammed, said the party saw the necessity of “reminding Nigerians the kind of massive looting of the treasury that took place in the past few years, so they can better appreciate the seriousness of the issue at stake”.

But the PDP said that the APC had again exhibited its emptiness and disgusting desperation for public approval.

The statement by the PDP read: “In trying to escalate their stock-in-trade of lies, wild allegations and falsehood, the APC failed to understand that their baseless fabrications are capable of throwing an unsuspecting nation into chaos.

“The spate of fabrications by Lai Mohammed has become a sickening source of worry for well-meaning Nigerians including those in his party,” the PDP stated, urging President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC to “call their spokesman to order before he plunges the country into crisis with wild and unsubstantiated claims”.

The opposition party further stressed that instead of engaging in unnecessary playing to the gallery, the APC-led government should get serious with the fight against corruption by investigating and prosecuting corrupt persons.

It also urged the APC to move on with the demands of governance, especially in fulfilling their numerous campaign promises for which they were voted into office at the centre.

Mimiko Emerges Chairman of PDP Governors Forum

MimikoThe Peoples Democratic Party Governors Forum has elected Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State as its chairman.

This decision was announced by the Abia State Governor, Mr Okezie Ikpeazu, after a meeting of the governors in Abuja that lasted about four hours.

Governor Mimiko takes over the leadership of the forum from former Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr Godswill Akpabio who is now a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

As part of the resolutions reached at the meeting, the governors also condemned the relocation of the Electoral Tribunals of Rivers, Taraba and Akwa Ibom States to Abuja, Nigeria’s capital city.

The All Progressives Congress had requested that the Akwa Ibom State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal should be relocated to Abuja.

Their request was granted by the President of the Court of Appeal.

The party had rejected the result declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission, which proclaimed the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Udom Emmanuel, winner.

It alleged that the election was marred by widespread electoral malpractices, disenfranchisement of its supporters and a declaration of votes for the PDP in violation of the provisions of the Independent National Electoral Commission that required that all votes cast be duly accredited.

Bayelsa State Holds Thanksgiving Service For Jonathan

JonathanThe Bayelsa State Government has held a Special Thanksgiving Service for the immediate past President of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan.

The service was held on Saturday at the St. Peters Anglican Church, Yenagoa, the states’ capital.

In a speech at the thanksgiving service, the former President appealed to the people of Bayelsa and the Niger delta to continue praying for him and his family.

It was a gathering of elders from both Bayelsa and Rivers State, singing and dancing in appreciation to the almighty God for what most of the guests described as a safe return of the former President to his people after his tenure in office.

Dr. Jonathan read the first lesson of the service, from the book of Luke 17;11-19 while his wife, Mrs Patience Jonathan read the second lesson from the book of Psalm 121. After reading the bible chapter, Mr Jonathan broke into a song.

In his address of welcome, the Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, said the thanksgiving service was held to round off activities marking the “heroic homecoming of the hero of democracy”, Dr Jonathan.

The preacher at the service, quoting from the book of job, Reverend Uma Ukpai pointed out that any life without problem was useless.

“Problem is a pathway to promotion. Everyone must go through that other side of life. Sunlight becomes darkness, good health becomes sickness. Nobody remains on the sunny side of life. Every one of us will be tested. You can’t escape it. If you have not been tested, you can’t be a good soldier of the cross,” he said.

In a speech, Dr. Jonathan thanked members of his cabinet, who attended the service; the Bayelsa State Government and Ayo Oritsejafor, the President of the Christian Association of Nigeria for their support while he was in office.

He also thanked the newly sworn-in Governor of Rivers State, Governor Nyesom Wike, who led a delegation of state officials and members of the Peoples Democratic Party in his state to the service.

The former President expressed his gratitude to the former Governor of Bayelsa State, Mr Diepreye Alamieseigha, without whom, he said, he would not have become president.

Dr. Jonathan handed over to President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday in a swearing-in ceremony that was attended by over 50 world leaders.

Osinbajo Hopeful God Will Heal Nigeria

PortraitsThe Nigerian Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, says he is convinced that the election of Mohammadu Buhari after four attempts at the presidential elections was part of God’s plan towards the healing of the nation.

Professor Osinbajo made the statement at a Special Thanksgiving Service at the National Christian Center, Abuja, held to mark the successful swearing-in ceremony on Friday.

He identified 2015 as a significant milestone in the history of Nigeria for Mohamadu Buhari and himself.

At the service, there were prayers for the right choice of appointees to be made, as Nigerians look forward to seeing who will occupy what position in the ministerial lists.

The Vice President’s family, friends and well-wishers were at the service, thanking God for how far he had brought them in the service of their fatherland.

In his sermon, the preacher for the day said the combination of Osinbajo and Muhammadu Buhari, two thorough breeds, was not ordinary and urged them not to let Nigerians down.

Prayers and special anointing were offered for the upkeep of the Vice President’s family, friends and the nation by a representative of the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of Nigeria, Akinremi Bolaji.

Some of the special guests said the President and the Vice President had started on a sound footing, with the thanksgiving.

They are hopeful that their expectations that had been raised by the President, with his promises at the campaigns, would be met.

Some of the dignitaries at the service were; the governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola, a former Minister of Education, Oby Ezekwesili and Professor Chris Imafidon, who is a media consultant.

In the next few days the President is expected to forward the list of his Cabinet members to the National Assembly for approval. It is a document many political watchers are looking forward to seeing, as it will show what the nation would expect in the next four years.

The President had said that his Cabinet would be made up of committed technocrats.

Nyesom Wike Sworn In As Governor Of Rivers State

Nyesom-Wike-Rivers-GovernorMr Nyesom Wike has been sworn in as the Governor of Rivers State.

The swearing-in ceremony held on Friday was conducted by the Chief Judge of Bayelsa State, Justice Kate Abiri, at the Liberation Stadium in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.

Mr Wike and his Deputy, Ipalibo Banigo, were sworn in at about 10:47am, in a ceremony that seemed to have laid to rest the controversy that preceded the swearing.

The new Governor, who was a former Minister of State for Education, told thousands of people at the stadium that the days of maladministration were over.

He further said he would ensure security of lives and property in the state, which witnessed series of attacks at political gathering and the death of some persons in the build up to the governorship election.

Mr Wike won the Governorship election of April 11, defeating Mr Dakuku Peterside, with a total of 1,029,102 votes. Mr Peterside polled 124,896 votes.

After Mr Wike won the election, there were controversies over who would conduct the swearing-in ceremony.

To end the controversy, the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Mohammed Adoke, on May 19 directed the Chief Justice of Bayelsa State to swear-in Mr Wike on May 29.

The directive was as a result of the existing vacuum in the office of the Chief Judge of Rivers State and the President of the Customary Court of Appeal in Rivers State.

Imo Politics: New Lawmakers in Okigwe Promise Better Representation

maceNew lawmakers-elect of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from Okigwe on Monday promised the people of Okigwe Senatorial District a better representation.

The lawmakers, under the auspice of Okigwe Zone Lawmakers forum, said they would focus on legislation of laws that will be to the utmost benefits of people of the zone.

At a meeting with community leaders, APC ward leaders and chieftains of the APC in the area, the new lawmakers both at the state and federal level commended the people of the zone for their support and for coming out en masse to ensure the victory of APC in the zone.

While speaking to Channels Television on behalf of the group, the member-elect representing Okigwe South Federal Constituency, said all the lawmakers in the zone would do everything possible to bring development to their constituencies.

He said that the new lawmakers would also make laws that would positively affect the people which in turn will bring the much desired dividends of democracy.

EFCC Decries Politicians’ Use Of Anti-Graft Body For Election

EFCCThe Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has asked politicians to stop using the anti-graft body as a tool to achieve their political ambition, especially as some of them are still standing trial for alleged graft.

The Chairman of the Commission, Mr Ibrahim Lamorde told a news conference in Abuja, that the fact that the Commission has not been publicising its achievement does not mean it has been docile.

According to him, over 126 convictions have been recorded by the Commission in 2014, a figure that represents more than any anti-fraud agency in the world, has achieved, he added.

Ending corruption has been one of the campaign promises of most political parties in the country. While some of the parties have accused the EFCC of being docile in performing its statutory responsibilities.

However, the Commission has warned politicians to stop using the anti-graft for playing politics as EFCC remains apolitical .

Mr Ibrahim Lamorde attributed the inability of the Commission to completely prosecute some of its cases in court as a consequence of the accused persons and their lawyers exploiting loop holes in the laws and the courts.

The EFCC  Chairman however, said contrary to the allegation of performance below expectation, the Commission had continued to make progress by increasing the number of convictions of accused persons from 65 in 2009 to 126 in 2014.

Court Confirms Darius Ishaku As Taraba PDP Governorship Candidate

pdpA Federal High Court in Abuja has struck out a suit filed by Ambassador Musa Jen seeking to nullify Taraba People’s Democratic Party (PDP) governorship primaries which produced Mr Darius Ishaku as the party’s candidate.

Delivering a short ruling, Justice Ahmed Mohammed struck out the suit on the ground that the plaintiff had filed a notice of discontinuance of the suit.

Jen, a governorship aspirant had, through his counsel, Mr Emmanuel Toro (SAN), urged the court to nullify the election which produced Ishaku for been conducted in Abuja, instead of Taraba State, in breach of the provisions of the Electoral Act.

He also prayed the court to order Ishaku to stop parading himself as Taraba PDP governorship candidate for the rescheduled April 11thgeneral elections, pending the determination of the suit.

Jen also urged the court to restrain the PDP and its National Chairman from forwarding Ishaku’s name to INEC as governorship candidate of PDP in the April 11 general elections.

Court Rules Ugwuanyi Is PDP Governorship Candidate

Ifeanyi UgwanyiA Federal High Court in Abuja has dismissed a suit filed by Senator Anyogu Eze, challenging the nomination of Honourable Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, as the  governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Enugu State.

Senator Eze had asked the court to hold that a sister court presided over by Justice Adeniyi Ademola, endorsed the list used for a parallel governorship primaries of the party, which produced him as the authentic candidate of the party.

However, Justice Evoh Chukwu, in his judgement disagreed with the lawmaker, saying the primaries conducted with the harmonised list of the party in the state, which produced Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi as the party’s candidate subsists.

He ruled that the order of the sister court was merely declarative and not mandatory.

Justice Chukwu also stated that only one primary was held by the PDP national working committee in line with section 89[4] of the Electoral Act.

The Judge held that Ugwuanyi was declared the candidate of the party after voting by delegates in the party’s primaries held on April 11 last year.

Supporters of the Enugu State governorship candidate, Honourable Ugwuanyi, received the news that the court had struck out the suit challenging his candidacy in cheers, celebrating the end of a case that had been postponed on four different occasions.

Addressing reporters at the end of the ruling, Alex Akoja, the lawyer to Senator Eze, said he would consult with his client to decide on whether to appeal the judgement.

 

Group Calls On ICC To Prosecute Buhari For 2011 Violence

goran sluiterMr Goran Sluiter, a Dutch lawyer called the International Criminal Court to investigate Nigeria’s presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Gen. Muhamadu Buhari, over the 2011 post elections violence that claimed hundreds of lives.

The lawyer and a group known as Northern Coalition For Democracy, told a news conference in Abuja that there are evidence at their disposal that indicts Gen. Buhari over the violence.

The group hinged its action on the need to prevent violence similar to the 2015 general elections.