UK Parliament’s Suspension To Begin Today

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson gestures toward the opposition benches as he stands a the dispatch box and speaks in the House of Commons in London on September 3, 2019.
AFP / PRU

 

Britain’s parliament will be suspended for five weeks on Monday following another expected defeat by MPs for Prime Minister Boris Johnson as he battles to salvage his hardline Brexit strategy amid fierce opposition in Westminster.

The controversial suspension will begin shortly after MPs are set to vote again against Johnson’s bid to hold a snap election next month — two weeks before the country is due to leave the European Union.

“Parliament will be prorogued at close of business today,” Johnson’s spokesman said at a daily briefing, using the parliamentary term for the suspension.

He added it would happen regardless of the outcome of the vote on the October 15 poll.

Johnson held talks with his Irish counterpart Leo Varadkar in Dublin before returning to the parliamentary turmoil later Monday.

He ordered the shutdown in an apparent bid to stymie a cross-party block of MPs opposed to a possible no-deal Brexit.

The British leader has vowed to take Britain out of the EU by the latest October 31 deadline with or without a formal divorce deal — despite warnings that the latter scenario would entail economic chaos.

However, the planned suspension has provoked uproar from opposition MPs and Conservative critics, who have labelled the move a constitutional outrage.

It appeared to backfire by galvanising them into passing legislation last week — expected to receive royal assent on Monday — that forces Johnson to seek a Brexit delay if he fails to reach a deal at an October 17-18 EU summit.

Johnson responded to the proposed law by trying to force the early general election, but fell short in a vote last week of the necessary support of two-thirds of MPs.

He will try again later Monday in another vote widely expected to fail.

Opposition party leaders, who met Monday, have vowed to keep blocking the snap poll until Brexit has been extended beyond October 31.

“He has got to ask for an extension,” Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn told Sky News.

“We will do everything we can to prevent us crashing out on October 31 and will support an election when it is clear we will avoid that crashing out.”

 ‘Significant gaps remain’ 

Johnson met Varadkar on Monday hoping to lay the groundwork for new divorce terms as he finds himself increasingly cornered just six weeks after taking over from his predecessor Theresa May.

The British leader wants the bloc to scrap a special provision in the deal agreed by May to keep the Northern Irish border open in all circumstances after Brexit, arguing “alternative arrangements” exist.

But Brussels and Dublin have insisted the so-called backstop mechanism must remain in place to guarantee no return to a hard border between EU member Ireland and British-ruled Northern Ireland, which suffered decades of deadly sectarian violence.

They say Johnson is also yet to propose the details of any workable alternatives.

“While they agreed that the discussions are at an early stage, common ground was established in some areas although significant gaps remain,” the two leaders said in a joint statement following an hour of talks.

Johnson’s decision to prorogue parliament until October 14 and his promise to do Brexit come what may have rattled his ruling Conservative Party.

Twenty-one Conservative MPs including Winston Churchill’s grandson were sacked last week for voting in favour of the law aimed at blocking a no-deal Brexit.

The dismissals and the defection of one MP to the Liberal Democrats left him without a working majority.

Several members of his government have also quit, including his own brother.

 ‘We have a plan’ 

A government minister rejected speculation Sunday that Johnson had no real option but to resign.

But he could not say clearly how he intended to keep all his Brexit promises without somehow bending UK law.

“Of course he is not going to break the law,” Foreign Minister Dominic Raab told Sky News.

He added Johnson would “test to the limit” of the law in court.

Rebel Conservative MPs insist their strategy to stop Johnson will prevail, however.

“I remain very, very confident we can stop no-deal because in the end parliament is sovereign,” said Rory Stewart, a former Tory lawmaker now forced to sit as an independent after rebelling against the government last week.

AFP

NBC Withdraws Suspension Notice On DAAR Communications

 

The National Broadcasting Commission has withdrawn the suspension notice it issued to DAAR Communications on June 7, 2019.

The NBC had suspended the operating license of DAAR Communications PLC following allegations of its inability to pay the license renewal fees and hate speeches, among other things.

While the commission says it will continue to clamp down on licensees who choose to pay what they deem fit as their licensing fees, it says its decision is based on an agreement reached by both parties in court.

Part of the agreement is that DAAR Communications will take full responsibility of the use of content sourced from social media.

Another is that the broadcaster will submit a proposal for the payment of its outstanding fees.

Daar Communications Plc is the parent company of Africa Independent Television (AIT), and Ray Power 100.5 FM (in Abuja and Lagos)

Dublin Airport Flights Resume After Drone Sparks Suspension

Dublin Airport. Source: Getty Images

 

Dublin Airport on Thursday briefly suspended flights following the “confirmed sighting” of a drone at the airfield north of the Irish capital.

Aviation authorities apologised to passengers for the suspension of flights for around 15 minutes after the aerial device was spotted in the skies overhead.

“Flight operations have now resumed… following an earlier drone sighting,” the airport said on Twitter at around midday (1200 GMT).

Dublin Airport, which lies about six miles (10 kilometers) north of the city center, handled nearly 30 million passengers in 2017.

READ ALSO: Flights Suspended In Dublin Airport After Drone Sighting

Dozens of airlines operate from the Irish hub, flying to more than 180 destinations in 42 countries.

Thursday’s incident follows several drone sightings in neighbouring Britain in the run-up to Christmas and last month which caused travel misery for tens of thousands of people.

Gatwick Airport near London suspended all flights over three days in December after drones were repeatedly spotted in the air.

Meanwhile, Heathrow Airport, Europe’s busiest hub, suspended all departing flights for around an hour in January following a drone sighting.

This week, the British government said the no-fly zones for drones around airports would be extended to three miles from next month.

AFP

Onnoghen’s Suspension: Rule Of Law, Constitution Must Be Respected, CCJA Insists

 

The Conference of Constitutional Jurisdictions of Africa (CCJA) has reacted to the suspension of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, calling for strict adherence to the rule of law.

CCJA President and South Africa’s Chief Justice, Thomas Mogoeng, made this call during the 10th annual session of the Executive Bureau in Johannesburg, South Africa.

“We are concerned that there is apparent instability that affects the judiciary of Nigeria. We would always be concerned regardless of whether a jurisdiction is a member or not a member of the CCJA when developments unfold in a manner that seems to suggest that the measure of normalcy needs to be restored in order for the judiciary to be as effective as the original intent for its establishment,” he said

Although Justice Mogoeng said Nigeria is yet to be a registered member, the organisation is however worried by the development.

READ ALSO: Onnoghen’s Suspension: Senate Approaches Supreme Court, Cancels Tuesday’s Plenary

He, therefore, demanded that due process is followed as enshrined in the nation’s constitution be followed in dealing with the issue.

The CCJA brings together the African constitutional jurisdictions and aims to support and deepen democracy in the continent by upholding constitutionalism and the rule of law in member states.

Recall that Justice Walter Onnoghen was suspended by President Muhammadu Buhari on January 25 over an alleged false declaration of assets.

Following the suspension, Justice Ibrahim Tanko Mohammed was appointed as the acting CJN.

The President explained that the suspension was based on the request of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, pending the completion of Onnoghen’s trial.

Justice Tanko Mohammed who hails from Bauchi State is the most senior justice of the Supreme Court.

Okowa Faults Onnoghen’s Suspension, Says Due Process Was Not Followed

 

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State has faulted the suspension of the Chief Justice of the Federation, Justice Walter Onnoghen, by President Muhammadu Buhari.

In a recent interview on Roadmap 2019 which aired on Channels Television on Monday, the governor said due process was not followed.

“I am not a lawyer but I know that from recent judicial pronouncements, anything involved in officers of that caliber or officers within the judiciary is supposed to first be tried by the National Judicial Council (NJC) for processes, a further process for prosecution,” he said.

“This process was not followed through and there are court decisions on that. And that appears to be ignored. You will realise that for several years, no person from the South-South has got to that position of authority. It is important that we speak out for one of our own. We say follow the due process if the court pronouncement has said that this is the process that we ought to undertake.”

READ ALSO: President Buhari Suspends Onnoghen, Swears In Mohammed As Acting CJN

Okowa also revealed that himself and other governors were worried because the laid down processes were not adhered to.

President Buhari suspended Justice Onnoghen on Friday and appointment Justice Ibrahim Tanko Mohammed as the acting CJN.

According to the President, the development was based on the request of the Code of Conduct Tribunal, pending the completion of Onnoghen’s trial.

Justice Tanko Mohammed who hails from Bauchi State is the most senior justice of the Supreme Court.

Monaco Coach Thierry Henry Suspended Ahead Of Relegation Showdown

Champions League 'Dream' Awaits Monaco Coach Henry
Monaco’s French coach Thierry Henry/ AFP

 

Former Arsenal and France striker Thierry Henry has been suspended from his role as coach of Monaco with his team second bottom of Ligue 1, the Ligue 1 club announced on Thursday.

“Henry has been suspended until a definitive decision is made,” the club said in a statement, adding that assistant coach Franck Passi would oversee training on Friday ahead of the weekend’s clash with fellow strugglers Dijon.

 

Henry, 41, was suspended by Monaco, who are second-from-bottom in the French league with 15 points after the former Arsenal and France striker earned the Principality club just two wins since his arrival in October.

He took up the post with the 2017 French champions in October following the sacking of title-winner Leonardo Jardim but failed to improve on the poor start to the campaign by his predecessor.

Monaco are two points behind Dijon, who are 17th and a further point from safety, after collecting only three wins from 21 matches, and crashed out of Europe early after finishing bottom of Champions League Group A with just a single point.

Their miserable form under Henry culminated in a humiliating 3-1 French Cup defeat to second-tier Metz on Tuesday and a 5-1 home Ligue 1 hammering by Strasbourg last weekend, during which the tension surrounding Henry began to show.

Henry was forced to apologise after being caught calling Strasbourg defender Kenny Lala’s grandmother “a whore” after he delayed a throw-in with the score still 2-1.

Monaco have brought in players in the transfer window but Henry’s former Arsenal teammate Cesc Fabregas — who arrived from Chelsea — was at fault for Strasbourg’s third, while fellow new arrival Naldo left them with an uphill battle after being sent off in the seventh minute.

However, escape from the relegation zone is possible as the two sides immediately outside the bottom three — Caen and Amiens — face Champions League-chasing Montpellier and Lyon and can be caught should the pair lose to their high-flying opponents and Monaco beat Dijon.

AFP

France To Cut Public Spending Despite Fuel Tax Suspension

French Finance and Economy Minister Bruno Le Maire (C) gives a press conference following his meeting with employers and professional organizations at the Economy Ministry in Paris on December 3, 2018. ERIC PIERMONT / AFP

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire on Tuesday said France would stick to its EU commitments to slash public spending despite a decision to suspend a fuel tax to quell fierce protests.

“There is a course set by the French President Emmanuel Macron, which is to respect our European commitments, reduce spending, reduce debt and reduce taxes, and that course will be maintained,” Le Maire told journalists in Brussels.

AFP

FIFA Threatens To Suspend Nigeria, Ghana

FIFA Only Recognises Pinnick As NFF President – Infantino
FIFA president Gianni Infantino speaks during a press conference. Photo: Alexander NEMENOV / AFP

 

FIFA has threatened to suspend the Nigeria and Ghana football federations over government interference.

Nigeria will face the wrath of world football’s governing body unless “the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) offices are not handed back to the legitimate NFF executive committee under President Amaju Melvin Pinnick”, FIFA warned in a statement on Tuesday.

Nigeria put itself on a collision course with FIFA in July when the government’s sports ministry directed the NFF to comply with a court order to overturn Pinnick’s election and recognise Chris Giwa as its head.

The long-running dispute over who is in charge of the NFF dates back to 2014.

Giwa first claimed to have won election to the top job.

However, FIFA did not endorse the vote and threatened suspension unless it was re-run.

Pinnick won the re-run, although the vote was also deemed to have been flawed. Giwa then launched court action over the result.

FIFA said the ban would only be lifted once Pinnick has confirmed the NFF is back under his effective control.

Ghana’s problems stem from a corruption scandal engulfing suspended GFA federation boss Kwesi Nyantaki.

FIFA are on the warpath after the country’s Attorney General ordered the GFA to be dissolved.

“If the petition to start the liquidation process of the GFA is not withdrawn” by August 27 the association “will be suspended with immediate effect”, FIFA said.

FIFA statutes dictate that member states should “manage their affairs independently with no influence from third parties”.

AFP

APC NWC Lifts Senator Sani’s Suspension

I’m Yet To Leave APC – Shehu Sani
Senator Shehu Sani (file)

 

The National leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has lifted the suspension placed on the senator representing Kaduna Central senatorial district, Shehu Sani.

In a statement signed by its Acting National Publicity Secretary, Yekini Nabena, the APC said, “The National Secretariat has received the news of the suspension of Senator Shehu Sani by the Tudun Wada ward Chairman and wishes to clarify that the purported suspension of distinguished Senator Shehu Sani representing Kaduna Central Senatorial District is hereby lifted and he is confirmed as a bonafide member and leader of our party”.

The party, therefore, directed its chairman in Tudun Wada ward and others to implement the directive in order to restore peace in the party.

“The Chairman Kaduna State Chapter has been directed to inform the relevant Ward and Local Government chapters appropriately, and also put the necessary mechanism towards complementing the efforts of the National leadership towards ensuring lasting peace and unity in the party”.

Read Also: I Am Not Leaving APC For Now – Shehu Sani

The Chairman of the Tudun-Wada ward, Ibrahim Salisu Togo,  had announced senator Sani’s suspension in a statement dated July 31, 2018.

According to him, the decision to suspend him indefinitely was based on the constitution of the party.

“We make bold to say that our decision was based on the provisions of the constitution of our great party. Therefore, Senator Shehu Sani remains suspended.

“In all fairness to the party and Kaduna State voters, the only pre-condition for lining this suspension on Senator Shehu Sani is for the lawmaker to openly apologize to the leadership of our great party for his various acts of misconduct and disrespectful attitudes towards both his constituents, party leadership and his vicious media attacks against our amiable President, Muhammadu Buhari,” the statement read in part.

Kashamu Reacts To His Suspension, Claims NWC’s Decision Is ‘Lawless’

Extradition: Kashamu Challenges Appeal Court Decision, Approaches Supreme Court
Senator Buruji Kashamu

 

The Senator representing Ogun East Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Senator Buruji Kashamu, has faulted his suspension by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

In a statement he personally signed on Monday, the lawmaker described the decision of the party’s National Working Committee to suspend him as “lawless and undemocratic.”

“It is clear from the ill-advised decision that the Prince Uche Secondus-led National Working Committee is lawless and undemocratic,” he said.

Kashamu’s criticism comes seven months after the opposition party suspended the senator for one month for alleged anti-part activities.

In December 2017, PDP’s NWC also queried Senator Kashamu for his alleged involvement in some issues in the Ogun State chapter of the party.

The party had also referred Kashamu to its National Disciplinary Committee for further action.

But the senator criticised the PDP for not following due process as enshrined in its constitution.

“No due process was followed as enshrined in the constitution of the party. Since the initial 30-day suspension lapsed on the 9th of January, 2018, they do not have any right to take any disciplinary action against me,” he added.

To the lawmaker, his reported suspension goes contrary to Article 57 (6) of the PDP Constitution.

In addition to that, he said the matter was pending before a court of competent jurisdiction.

Senate, Reps Have No Power To Suspend Me – Omo-Agege

The Senator representing Delta Central Senatorial District, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege

 

The Senator representing Delta Central Senatorial District, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege, has said that his colleagues in the Senate and House of Representatives do not have the power to suspend him.

Omo-Agege stated this on Sunday to journalists at Osubi Airport in Warri, Delta State where members of his constituency were on hand to receive him.

“The House of Representatives or the Senate or indeed any legislative arm do not have the power to suspend any sitting senator or member of the House of Representatives,” he said.

The Senator also vowed to resist pressure by the National Assembly to stop him from sitting as doing that would mean denying the Urhobo people of representation.

“None of them can stop me because by stopping me, you are stopping the Urhobo nation. It will not happen under my watch.”

His remarks come five days after the Federal House of Representatives recommended his suspension for 180 legislative days and prosecution for an alleged culpability in the invasion of the Senate chamber.

This follows three months after unidentified persons believed to be thugs invaded the Senate Chambers and disrupted the ongoing proceedings, thereby snatching the mace.

But this did not go down well with the lawmaker who criticised NASS leadership for intimidating him for supporting President Muhammadu Buhari’s reelection bid.

Omo-Agege believes that his ordeal is as a result of corruption fighting back while dealing with its menace.

He added, “All of these is meant to intimidate me because of my support for Mr. President’s reelection. I believe that anytime you fight corruption, corruption will always fight back.

“And they want to use me as a scapegoat to fight, humiliate Mr. President but they chose the wrong target because if they know who I am, they will back off because I will fight them.”