PDP Condemns Attack On Widows In Imo

Lagos PDPThe People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Nigeria has called on the Inspector General of Police to investigate the alleged attacks and brutalisation of widows in Imo State, by officials of the Imo State Government.

The Director of Media and Publicity of the People’s Democratic Party Presidential Campaign Organisation, Mr Femi Fani-Kayode criticised the alleged attack while addressing a news conference in Abuja.

Femi noted that the women were on a peaceful protest to pray for the womenfolk in the state against sudden widowhood.

He, therefore, called on the Inspector General of Police, to arrest and prosecute all persons involved in the attacks and brutalisation of the widows.

The PDP request is coming after a clash between some purported members of the PDP and All Progressives Congress, when some widows were on a protest to the Imo State Government House, to condemn the alleged and unwarranted media attacks by the State government on the person of their matron, Professor Viola Onwuliri, the Minister of State for Education.

Eyewitness said that the clash occurred early in the morning, when some aggrieved widows, all dressed in black attires from different Local Government Areas of the state, alleged to be supporters of PDP stalwart and the Minister of State for Education, Professor Viola Onwuliri, marched towards the government house with coffin.

Meanwhile, the Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha while calling for peace, condemned the act by Professor Onwuliri, for instigating such action against the State Government.

He called on President Goodluck Jonathan to call his ministers and PDP leaders in the state to order, so as to prevent any further chaos and political violence in the state.

However, Mr Fani-Kayode has called on the Imo State Government to apologise to the women, stressing that the Peoples Democratic Party would resist anti-women sentiments and all forms of brutality against women.

University Of Jos Resumes Academic Activities

University of Jos School Gate

The University of Jos, Plateau State, North-central region of Nigeria, has resumed its academic activities with the commencement of the second semester examinations.

Academic activities were disrupted by students’ demonstration late in 2014 and this resulted in the closure of the institution.

They had protested over increment in developmental charges. The protests became violent leading to destruction of lecture halls, administrative offices as well as hostel facilities.

The Students’ Union Government was also suspended.

Respite, however, came for the University of Jos students after two months of staying at home.

According to the resumption guidelines released by the School Registrar, Jili Dandam, all returning students must pay the sum of 6,000 naira each, as surcharges to cover cost of damages.

The students would as well sign an undertaking under oath, to be of good behaviour during their remaining period in the school.

The intervention of the leadership of the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS) and other concerned citizens resulted in the re-opening of the school as well as lifting of the suspension on the Students’ Union Government.

Imo Politics: Prof. Onwuliri Denies Sponsoring Widows’ Protest

Prof. Viola Onwuliri
Prof. Viola Onwuliri

The Minister of State for Education, Prof. Viola Onwuliri has debunked allegations by the Imo State government that she sponsored and mobilised widows from within and outside state to protest at the government house against Governor Rochas Okorocha.

Prof. Onwuliri on arrival from Abuja, said in an interview at the Sam Mbakwe airport in Owerri, the Imo State capital, that the widows were only on a peaceful protest to exercise their rights and air their grievances as citizens who do not like the manner in which the government handles issues affecting them.

She said the action by the State government was totally unacceptable, describing it as an attempt to intimidate poor widows who were neither members of PDP or APC, adding that the State government should desist from peddling unfounded rumours and stop pointing accusing fingers.

It could be recalled that last week, the state was thrown into pandemonium following a clash between some purported members of the PDP and APC when some widows were on a protest to the Imo State government house, to condemn the alleged and unwarranted media attacks by the State government on the person of their matron, Prof. Viola Onwuliri, the Minister of State for Education.

Eyewitness said that the clash occurred early in the morning, when some aggrieved widows, all dressed in black attires from different Local Government Areas of the state, alleged to be supporters of PDP stalwart and the Minister of State for Education, Professor Viola Onwuliri, marched towards the government house with coffin.

However supporters of Governor Rochas Okorocha, who were not pleased with the whole scenario attempted to prevent the widows’ entrance into the government house, which eventually led into a free for all.

However, while speaking to Channels Television, the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of operations in Imo State, Mohammad Kura, expressed disappointment over the incident which he said is capable of destabilizing the existing peace in the state.

He said hence, any protest or rally by any political party or group should get the permission of the police. he warned all politicians to play by the rules in this delicate period.

President Jonathan To Attend 22nd AU Summit In Addis Ababa

President Goodluck Jonathan will leave Abuja on Wednesday to attend the 22nd Summit of African Union Heads of State and Government, which begins in Addis Ababa on Thursday.

The African Union has declared 2014 as ‘The Year of Agriculture and Food Security in Africa’ and the 22nd summit of African Union Heads of State and Government will have “Transforming Africa’s Agriculture: Harnessing Opportunities for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Developmentas its theme.

According to a statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media & Publicity, Reuben Abati, President Jonathan and other participating Heads of State and Government will formally launch the ‘Year of Agriculture and Food Security in Africa’ which coincides with the 10th anniversary of the adoption of the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Programme.

They will also consider and adopt the reports of high-level committees on the Assessment of the African Standby Force and the Operationalization of the African Capacity for Immediate response to Crises, as well as the reports of other high-level committees on United Nations Reforms, the post-2015 Development Agenda, African Trade and Climate Change.

President Jonathan will be accompanied to the summit by Senator Emmanuel Bwacha, the Supervising Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Viola Onwuliri, the Minister of Justice, Mr. Mohammed Adoke, the Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, the Minister of Water Resources, Mrs. Sarah Ochekpe, the Minister of Health, Dr. Onyebuchi Chukwu and the Supervising Minister of Environment, Mr. Darius Ishaku.

He will return to Abuja at the conclusion of the summit on Friday.

Jonathan, World Leaders To Attend Mandela’s Burial

The Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan, will leave Abuja on Monday evening to join 59 other world leaders in South Africa at events leading up to the burial of former President Nelson Mandela.

A statement by the government’s spokesman, Reuben Abati, says the President Jonathan who will be accompanied by the Supervising Minister of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Viola Onwuliri.

“The president and the minister will attend the Memorial Service for Dr. Mandela on Tuesday at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg,” the statement read.

The President will, in the company of other Heads of State and Government, also pay his last respects to Dr. Mandela at the anti-apartheid hero’s lying-in-state on Wednesday at the Union Building in Pretoria where he served as South Africa’s first democratically-elected President.

At the conclusion of the event in Pretoria on Wednesday, President Jonathan will leave for Nairobi to honour a long-standing invitation to be a guest of honour at Kenya’s 50th Independence Anniversary celebrations.

He will return to Abuja on Thursday, December 12, 2013.

Nigeria’s President To Meet With Investors In London

President Goodluck Jonathan will be visiting the United Kingdom on Wednesday for a three-day meeting with foreign investors.

The meeting is aimed at attracting more investments to Nigeria.

Issues that would be discussed at the meeting of Nigeria’s Honourary International Investors’ Council include generating long-term affordable finance for Nigeria’s real sector, developing Nigeria’s private equity and venture capital sectors to attract more foreign investments and Nigeria’s information and communications technology master-plan.

The government’s spokesman, Ruben Abati, said that the council’s meeting, coordinated by Baroness Lynda Chalker, would also feature a review of Nigeria’s existing investment policies by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Paris-based international organization dedicated to the promotion of policies that would improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world.

“President Jonathan will be accompanied by Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan of Delta State, Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State, Senator Emmanuel Paulker, Senator Nenadi Usman, Hon. Sylvester Ogbaga, Hon. Isiaka Bawa, the Coordinating Minister of the Economy and Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investments, Dr. Olusegun Aganga and the Governor of the Central Bank, Mr. Lamido Sanusi.

Others on the President’s entourage include the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Allison-Madueke, the Minister of Communications Technology, Mrs. Omobola Johnson, the Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, the Minister of Special Duties, Mr. Kabiru Turaki, the Minister of State (Foreign Affairs), Prof. Viola Onwuliri and heads of relevant government agencies”, Abati said in a statement on Tuesday.

The accompanying Ministers and heads of agencies will brief the gathering on developments in their areas of responsibility, and also lead discussions on proposals for overcoming identified challenges.

Some members of the council are the CEO of the Investment Corporation of Dubai, Mr. Mohammed al Shaibani, a former South African Minister of Public Enterprises, Mr. Alec Erwin and the Vice President of Hewlett-Packard’s Enterprise Group in Europe and Middle-East and Africa, Mr. Olivier Suinat.

The President is expected back in Nigeria at the weekend.

Jonathan Meets With Shimon Peres

President Goodluck Jonathan says his administration will continue to actively combat the menace of terrorism in partnership with all peace-loving countries of the world.

Speaking at a meeting with President Shimon Peres of Israel, President Jonathan said Nigeria will welcome enhanced cooperation and assistance from Israel for its on-going efforts to end terrorist attacks and incursions in parts of the country.

President Jonathan also called for greater collaboration between them in other sectors, saying his administration will also welcome the deployment of Israel’s renowned expertise in furtherance of Nigeria’s agenda for national transformation in areas such as healthcare, agriculture, electric power supply and the management of water resources.

He assured President Peres that his administration will continue to encourage the expansion of trade, economic and cultural relations between Nigeria and Israel, adding that the signing of a Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) between them will undoubtedly boost such relations.

In his remarks at the meeting, President Peres said he was delighted and privileged to have had the opportunity of hosting “the first Nigerian president to visit the state of Israel”.

The BASA was later signed on Nigeria’s behalf by the Minister of State (foreign affairs), Prof. Viola Onwuliri.

Jonathan Sends Delegation To Boost Super Eagles’ Morale

President Goodluck Jonathan has sent a delegate to boost the morale and spirit of the Super Eagles ahead of the AFCON 2013 finals.

The delegation led by the Senate President David Mark is to represent him and the Federal Government at the match slated to hold on Sunday in Johannesburg, South-Africa.

President Jonathan who, because of urgent official commitments in London and Paris, cannot be physically present in Johannesburg to lead the cheering for the Super Eagles as he would have wished, has charged the delegation to ensure that members of the team are properly motivated and in the best possible spirits to win a resounding victory for the nation on Sunday.

President Jonathan asked the delegation which also includes Governor Peter Obi of Anambra State, Governor Isa Yuguda of Bauchi State, the Minister of State (Foreign Affairs) Prof. Viola Onwuliri, the Minister of Police Affairs, Navy Capt. Caleb Olubolade and the Minister of State (Works), Ambassador Bashir Yuguda to reassure the team of his full support and best wishes for victory.

They are also to inform the team that President Jonathan will host a dinner reception for them at the State House Banquet Hall at 7pm on Tuesday, February 12, 2013 to personally thank and honour them for their performance in South Africa which has undoubtedly re-established Nigeria as a major power in international soccer.

Jonathan has charged the team to go out against Burkina Faso on Sunday with the greatest determination to win a final victory that will bring immense joy and happiness to millions of Nigerians at home and abroad, who have had their pride restored by the triumphs against Ethiopia, Cote D’Ivoire and Mali.

He added that Nigerians are praying for ultimate success at South Africa’s National Stadium.