PDP Disassociates Itself From Fayose’s Controversial Newspaper Publication

 Femi-Fani-Kayode-on_Fayose_PublicationThe Goodluck-Sambo 2015 Campaign Organisation has distanced itself from a controversial newspaper publication campaigning against the candidacy of the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress, General Muhammadu Buhari, which was sponsored by Governor Ayo Fayose of Ekiti State.

The Director of Media for the campaign office, Femi Fani-Kayode told reporters in Abuja on Tuesday that “the Peoples Democratic Party believes in the sanctity of life and does not wish the retired general any ill will.

He also said Governor Fayose of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was a respected member of the party and the advert was his opinion.

The publication on the frontpage of a popular Nigerian newspaper had been criticised by Nigerians on social media, with much of it focusing on the sponsor.

“What I can tell you is that this has not represented the opinion of the Presidential Campaign Organisation or the President.

The frontpage publication that has drawn much criticism from the public sponsored by Governor Ayo Fayose of Ekiti State.

“He is a leading member of our party. I have spoken with him, but for anybody to suggest that this is the position of the Presidential Campaign Organisation or President Goodluck Jonathan, that would be most unfair.

If we wanted to say something like that we will say it without any kind of apology.

“We would never say this,” Mr Fani-Kayode said.

He emphasised that the PDP believed in the sanctity of life and recognised the fact that age was not an indication of how long someone would live.

“We believe strongly that we must continue to show immense respect to the person of General Buhari in terms of his person and his health.

“Though we believe it is important for us to raise questions about facts and you know what those questions are and we will continue to raise those questions. We do not wish him dead. We wish him long life and we believe strongly that such sentiments can be aired by individuals but certainly not in our names,” the campaign organisation’s spokesman said.

He further said that the publication never contained any information that linked it to the President, stressing that the publication was Governor Fayose’s opinion.

The PDP has requested that General Buhari should present his primary school leaving certificate to the electoral body as stipulated in the Nigerian Constitution.




Bayelsa Is One Of Most Secure Places To Do Business – Seriake Dickson

Seriake DicksonThe Governor of Bayelsa State, Seriake Dickson has urged both local and foreign investors to pitch their tents in the oil-producing State, noting that it is one of the most secure places to do business in Nigeria.

Dickson, who made the call at the on-going maiden edition of the Bayelsa Investment and Economic Forum, in Yenagoa, commended security agencies for doing a good job of keeping the peace in the State, thereby making it a choice destination for investors.

Investors and Government officials from both Federal and State levels, who had gathered for the ceremony, included the Vice President, Nnamadi Sambo, who represented President Goodluck Jonathan, Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison Madueke, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga.

While delivering his speech, Governor Dickson made a strong case for his state, urging investors to do business in the land as his administration had made plans to position Bayelsa as a major vibrant economy.

Dickson, who described Bayelsa as Nigeria’s best kept economic and leisure secret, noted that his administration was “working hard to lay the foundation for a vibrant economy,” he said, noting that the government had embarked on several projects in some sectors, including education, power, agriculture, fashion, tourism e.t.c.

“In the past 2 years, we have built schools and schools and schools,” he emphasized, noting that over 600 primary schools had been built, including teachers’ quarters.

He disclosed plans to have a school in every state House Constituency of the House of Assembly.

He further highlighted that education is free in the State and that the government also paid for external examinations, maintaining that “our goal is education for the economy”.

According to him, human capacity development is the nation’s greatest challenge, hence different schools for music, agriculture, language studies, driving, fashion, photography are being set up to develop the youths.

He also called on investors in the fashion and tourism sector to pitch their tents in the State as the government was already making preparations to train youths.

The governor also spoke about power generation, maintaining that “we are aspiring to be the number one in power generation” and since the State produced about 40% of the nation’s crude oil and mineral resources, “we are aspiring to be the nation’s power hub”.

He stressed that the government was also interested in palm oil production, as well as aqua-culture. He disclosed that the State was targeting production of 3000 tonnes of fish for local consumption and export.

Also, the governor stated that about 6000 hectares of land set aside for cassava planting as the largest cassava processing company was stationed in the State.

Governor Dickson also addressed people of the State to reduce their dependency on the government. “We have got to move away from over-dependence on government and into production,” he stressed.

“You the people of Bayelsa must also do your part… don’t live a life of dependence. Take responsibility for your livelihood,” he said.

Niger Delta Security Is My Priority – Jonathan

President Goodluck Jonathan has said that the current security situation in the Niger Delta region is a top priority of his administration as they are working to deepen the foundations of durable and mutually beneficial peace.

President Jonathan who was represented by Vice President Namadi Sambo made this known at the Inauguration of the National Council on Niger Delta, held at Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State Capital.

The Vice President was present at the Stakeholders’ first National Council on Niger Delta which was organised by the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs.

Pertinent issues bothering on the security and development challenges facing the Niger Delta were discussed at the event which was attended by experts, technocrats, traditional rulers, the Civil Society.

Governors Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo state and his Delta state counterpart, Emmanuel Uduaghan as well as the Secretary to the Cross River State government, Mike Aniah were present at the ceremony.

Top on the deliberations was the consideration of implementation of the Niger Delta Action Plan, by the administration of President Jonathan, to compliment the specific commitments contained in the Amnesty Programme.

The president said he believes that the action plan will be of great relevance and will serve as a coherent programme for investments in the social and infrastructure sectors of the various communities of the region, thereby encouraging participation.

He went on to call for active support and collaboration of major stakeholders in the oil and gas industry, development partners, states, communities and specialized interest groups partner the region for a new reinforced phase of effective development in the Niger Delta.

Speaking at the event, Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Godswill Akpabio disclosed that, the people of the Niger Delta region have in the past being relegated to the background in terms of development in the midst of abundant human and natural resources.

He advocated for the non-inclusion of the Niger Delta Development Commission as a parastatal under the Ministry, noting that the region deserves an agency solely headed by its people.

Akpabio Emerges Chairman Of PDP’s Governors Forum

Godswill Akpabio

The People’s Democratic Party on Sunday formed its own Governors forum in Abuja with Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom state emerging as chairman.

His selection is following a meeting held with President Goodluck Jonathan, Vice President Namadi Sambo, some PDP governors as well as top functionaries of the PDP in the presidential villa.

The meeting which commenced at about eight o’clock in the evening lasted till about midnight.

Speaking on his emergence as the chairman of the new forum, Godswill Akpabio said that his selection is to help the PDP iron out issues that concern the party.

According to him only the interest of the PDP governors will be protected in the new governors forum which he said was not in competition with the Nigerian Governors Forum led by Chief Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers state.

Akpabio said that the PDP is making concerted effort to reunify the party beginning with the governors and denied reports, that there were efforts to remove Rotimi Amaechi as the governor of the Nigerian Governors Forum.

He insisted that there was need to galvanize the PDP governors the same way other parties have in response to the issues of the day.

FG summons Saudi envoy over arrested Nigerian female pilgrims

The Saudi Arabian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Khaled Abdrabuh is optimistic that the detention of female Nigerian pilgrims will be resolved sooner rather than later.

The speaker of the House of Representatives, Honourable Aminu Tambuwal, who is the head of federal government delegation to Saudi Arabia to resolve the impasse, met with the Saudi Arabia envoy behind closed doors.

Hounourable Tambuwal also added that the Nigerian mission in Riyadh is meeting with Saudi authorities to resolve the situation.

However, the chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Representative Nnenna Elendu-Ukeje added that Nigeria will not hesitate to bring back her people if the issue is not resolved today.

According to the National Hajj Commission, 908 female Nigerian pilgrims were refused entry into Saudi Arabia breaching the escort rules for female pilgrims under Saudi Law.

The female pilgrims need to be accompanied by a male who should either be her husband, brother or father.

African Heads of State pay last respects to late Ghanaian president

The funeral of Ghanaian president John Atta Mills, who died suddenly in July, is being held in the capital, Accra.

The coffin of late President John Atta-Mills is carried to the parliament in Accra.

President Goodluck Jonathan arrived Accra yesterday (Thursday) and paid a visit to President John Mahama in Osu Castle, Ghana’s seat of power to pay condolence to the Ghanaian people ahead of Friday’s burial.

Vice President Namadi Sambo had earlier visited to convey Nigeria’s best wishes to the government and people of Ghana shortly after President Mahama took over the reins of power.

Heads of State expected to attend the burial are Alassane Quattara, president of Cote d’Ivoire and chairman of ECOWAS, Faure Gnassingbe of Togo, Theodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo of Equatoiral Guinea, Blaise Campaore of Burkina Faso.

Others are President Hifikepunye Pohamba of Namibia; Jakaya kikwete of Tanzania; Ellen Sirleaf Johnson of Liberia; Mahamadou Issoufou of NIger. The rest are Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe of South Africa; Yahya J. Jameh of the Gambia and Macky Sall of Senegal.

Thousands of Ghanaians are attending. Mr. Mills, who had long suffered from throat cancer, died only five months before he was set to seek re-election.

Mills is to be buried in a Bird Sanctuary next to the seat of government, the 17th-century Fort Christiansborg, also known as Osu Castle, which overlooks the Atlantic Ocean.

Thousands of Ghanaians have been streaming into Accra in the past two days to pay their last respects to Mills as he lay in state.

Some mourners queued for hours, many of them wailing with grief, in lines up to 10km long outside the State House in Accra.

Also to attend is Hillary Clinton, the United States Secretary of State who will be ending a tour of Africa she began last week with her participation at the funeral.

To watch the live broadcast of the burial click here.



VP Sambo in Closed Door Meeting With North-Western Governors

VP Sambo

Vice President Nnamadi Sambo today, Sunday March 11, 2012, held a closed door meeting with governors of the North Western region of the country at the vice presidential wing of the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

It was however gathered that the issue of the elective position in the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) dominated the discussion.

The meeting according to the source was to come up with consensus candidates especially the positions zoned to the North-West.

Only three governors had arrived at the time reporters were excused out of the venue of the meeting. The governors were Sule Lamido, Jigawa, Ibrahim Shema, Katsina and Patric Yakowa of Kaduna State.
The PDP national convention is billed for March 24, 2012.

The positions available to the zone are the National Organising Secretary, the National Treasurer and the National Vice Chairman, North West.

The meeting, it was also gathered looked into the spate of insecurity in some parts of the North and also looked at the persistent attacks being carried out by the Islamic sect, Boko Haram.

It was learnt that the meeting resolved that the governors should be up and doing in complementing Federal Government’s efforts aimed at ending the trend. The recent agitation by the

North for a review of the nation’s revenue sharing formula was also looked.

It will be recalled that Sambo had on January 26, 2012 met with allthe 19 Northern governors in his official residence.