According to the PDP national chairman, it is the first time that a democratically elected government is holding political prisoners and refusing to release them.
He described the situation as unfortunate, stressing that it could disrupt the peace of the country.
Secondus added, “What we are seeing today is as if we are in a military era.
“He (Buhari) should quickly and urgently release all political prisoners and allow a democratic atmosphere to thrive in a country where everybody is guaranteed the freedom of speech.”
Sowore, the publisher of online news platform Sahara Reporters, was picked up by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) on Saturday in Lagos.
The arrest is reported to be in connection with the “RevolutionNow” protest march scheduled to hold on Monday across the country.
While the action of the security outfit sparked outcry in the country, the Presidency said that it was in the right direction, adding that millions of Nigerians voted for the government of their choice in the February 23 presidential election.
Ahead of the protest, the police warned organisers and members to shelve their plans and vowed to resist any attempt to forcefully take over government.
Although the march failed to go as scheduled in some states, protesters who defiled police warning were arrested at the Surulere area of Lagos.
The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Prince Uche Secondus has said that the fear of insecurity and intimidation of Judges as allegedly raised by the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), vindicates the opposition PDP’s position that the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, is obstructing justice from coming out from the nation’s courts.
Secondus said that the umbrella body of lawyers in the country through their President Paul Usoro SAN in a speech on Thursday and which was unanimously adopted by the National Executive Committee of the Association alerted the nation that ” the level of insecurity in the country and the attack on the independence of the Judiciary and the legal profession constituted a threat to the rule of law and by extension the country’s democracy”
According to the PDP Chairman, the NBA boss said that the climate of fear instilled by the Federal Government undermined the independence of the judiciary and the ability of Judges to act confidently without fear or favour in dispensing justice as they are threatened, intimidated and blackmailed by mostly the executive arm of government and their agencies at federal and state levels.
Prince Secondus in a statement from his media office said that the NBA alarm merely confirms the position of PDP that APC administration is “shrinking the doctrine of separation of power to enable a full blown dictatorship to blossom”.
The PDP National Chairman noted that Judges and Justices by their calling cannot speak out publicly even if they are under pains except through the bar as has been eloquently and timely done by the bar association and said that all democratic watchers should note this concerns.
He said that the PDP has continuously raised alarm at the gradual erosion of the doctrines of Separation of power by the APC administration as the nation watch helplessly as the executive continues to muzzle the other arms of government including even the press.
Prince Secondus said that the opposition has remained resolute in crying out loud against harassment of those with opposing views because it clearly envisages the danger of concentration of power in one hand especially with a leader who has no history of appreciating and respecting democratic tenets and principles.
The National Chairman however expressed the hope that even in the face of harassment and intimidation, the Nigeria judiciary knowing their critical position in the sustenance of democracy in the land and being citizens who are resident in the country, knows that Judiciary is the last hope of the ordinary people and that no nation grows on injustice.
Meanwhile, Prince Secondus has condoled with the people of Kom Kom in Oyigbo local Government Area of Rivers state who lost their lives at the gas pipeline explosion that killed dozens of citizens when Shell Petroleum Development Company, SPDC were carrying out routine maintenance of the facility in the area.
“Our hearts are with you at this trying times” Prince Secondus said while lamenting the incessant hazard of the people of the Niger Delta due to the neglect and insensitivity of the federal Government to listen to the cries of the people.
He also commiserated with victims of the senseless killings in Zamfara and other states in North West and the North East zones.
He then charged the relevant authorities including the oil and gas companies to show some sensitivities on the plight of the people of Niger Delta on the health hazards they are exposed to as a result of exploration of their God given natural resources.
The national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus has said that the present regime has destroyed all the electoral processes introduced by past PDP-led administrations.
Secondus made this claim while addressing party faithfuls at the 86th National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the opposition party.
The PDP chairman said, “All the gains of the deep rooted electoral process introduced by the PDP administration that elevated the status of this country internationally have been destroyed by a regime that has no respect for the rule of law and other tenets of democracy. Rather what you get is a democratic government that is threatening her voters, tagging them evil for not voting for them”.
He reeled out some anomalies within the current dispensation and urged all members to give their all in a bid to remedy the situation in the country and get back what he termed the PDP’s “Stolen Mandate”.
Below is the full text of the PDP Chairman’s speech at the NEC meeting.
“ADDRESS BY THE NATIONAL CHAIRMAN OF THE PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC PARTY, PDP, PRINCE UCHE SECONDUS ON THE OCCASION OF THE 86TH NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE (NEC) MEETING OF THE PARTY AT PDP NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS, WADATA PLAZA, ABUJA,20 JUNE, 2019
NIGERIA IN DISTRESS
It is with great pleasure and thanksgiving to God that I welcome you leaders of our great party to this very important 86th National Executive Committee, NEC meeting. I wish to also on behalf of the members of the National Working Committee ( NWC), sincerely congratulate all of you in the executive and Legislative arms for the successful swearing in and inauguration that took place on May 29, 2019 and June 11, 2019 respectively.
I need to happily report to you that our party performance at the gubernatorial level remains outstanding despite the immoral roles of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, to ensure that the will of Nigeria people are not adequately reflected.
I need to also inform you that our flag bearers and their lawyers are currently in the various election tribunals across the country trying to recover their stolen mandates. We are hopeful that by the grace of God and with God fearing judges and Justices, the will of the people will eventually prevail.
Our party also put up some showing during the inauguration of the National Assembly but the ruling APC came up with their ‘green card’ ‘vote and snap’ fraud that introduced an unprecedented dimension to the growing corruption index of this administration. My worry is the consequences this brazen corruption would have in the legislative activities of the 9th Assembly.
Meanwhile on your behalf the party congratulated the leadership of the 8th Assembly in particular the Senate President Bukola Saraki and Hon. Yakubu Dogara for the wonderful job they did especially in resisting the executive, maintaining the independence of the legislature and sustaining the doctrine of separation of power.
While the executive is having their wish in the 9th Assembly, PDP as the main opposition party is very uncomfortable that the level of corruption that preceded the emergence of the leadership is capable of undermining the desired robust legislative activities.
Having ‘purchased’ the leadership of the parliament, we expect the cabals to now fully take over and dictate the show at the legislature. We have even seen the first sign of what is to come when the APC group in the Senate killed a motion to debate the June 12 speech of the imperial President.
Only a conquered parliament with credibility challenge can shy away from discussing a major address of a President just sworn into office, but that is a sign of what is to come when choosing legislative leadership is heavily monetized by a regime that claims to be fighting corruption. The bazar that took place during the election of National Assembly leaders clearly gives a picture of the anti-corruption status and how the APC has become home for looters. Just last week Nigerians witnessed how some corruption charges involving APC chieftains were withdrawn from the EFCC and handed over to the Attorney General for final dropping .
Permit me at this juncture dear leaders to express the disappointment of our party on the embarrassing roles of some of our party members at the National Assembly during the election of their leaders. Party loyalty demands that you stick to your party at any given situation. When personal interest clash with party interest, personal should drown into that of the party, that’s what real democrats are expected to do.
In the area of security, as you all are very much aware, the threatening security situation in the country is not abating, rather it’s getting worse by the day. Infact the hopelessness in the security situation is underlined in the recent statement of the military hierarchy early this week trying to blame the soldiers for the continued Boko haram incursions. This is after they had severally declared the Boko haram sect to be technically defeated.
The killing of soldiers and civilians by Boko Haram terrorists in the North East and the bandits in the North West has continued unabated. Few weeks ago angry youths in Katsina, the home state of the President had to dump the bodies of 18 persons killed by the bandits in government house for the government to bury and taste the pain of burying. How else can a people whose government cannot provide basic things like security demonstrate their anger and frustrations.
The truth remains that under the watch of President Buhari and APC, Nigeria and her citizens have been degraded and people are no longer proud of their country. Also from the South-South region the health hazards arising from pollutions, black soot in Niger Delta area has continued to wreak havoc killing the people with no clear response from the government notwithstanding that this is region that produces the wealth of the country.
For instance, the people of Polobubo Community in Warri North local Government of Delta state after endless wait for Nigeria government have taken their pathetic case internationally to the World Health Organization WHO, for attention.
PRESIDENT’S JUNE 12 SPEECH
The President’s June 12 speech failed woefully to advance any pragmatic solutions to the myriads of problems facing the country a lot of which came as a result of poor governance and insensitivity from the government.
Making a bogus promise of raising 100million people out of poverty is yet many of the wishful thinking anchored on the propaganda agenda of the administration. Nigerians cannot be excited at a speech whose content by experience would never be implemented. Why should any Nigerian be thrilled at a speech of an imperial President who has established history of impunity violation of human rights and rule of law.
When this government came in 2015 with all the goodwill of Nigerians, it was unable to keep any of its words more so now when he is clutching a stolen mandate gotten through a militarized electoral process of harassment and cowing of the electorates.
Rather than taking full responsibility for the lapses the Commander in Chief and the APC instead have been indulging in blame game, the latest being the President’s fingering of faceless political and religious leaders as being behind the insecurity in the country without pinpointing anyone.
Nigerians have watched in the feeling of sadness, how this government is only effective in baseless propaganda and in questionable anti-democratic strategies aimed at muzzling up dissecting views for a full blown dictatorship to emerge. Recent closure of the African Independent Television, AIT, and the enormous corruption that preceded the election of leaders of the National Assembly clearly opened a new page in the corruption rating of this administration. Nigerians have also watched in utter disgust how the nation’s heroes who made enormous sacrifice for the unity of this country like former President Olusegun Obasanjo and Gen. T. Y. Danjuma among others are being maligned and insulted by this administration.
In the area of national cohesion, since the 30 months civil war the nation’s unity has never been so tested and stretched the way it has been in the last four years in the country. This government through their parochial approach to governance has divided rather than unite the country. This unfortunate development is a consequence of the narrow and nepotic approach of the President to governance which has done grave damage to the harmonious living of Nigerians.
All the gains of the deep rooted electoral process introduced by the PDP administration that elevated the status of this country internationally have been destroyed by a regime that has no respect for the rule of law and other tenets of democracy. Rather what you get is a democratic government that is threatening her voters, tagging them evil for not voting for them.
Beloved party leaders, I cannot finish this address without drawing your attention to the report just released last week by some international bodies that observed our last general elections. In particular, the European Union election observation group, the American based National Democratic Institute, NDI, and International Republican Institute, IRI. The reports of the three highly respected international bodies merely confirmed the feeling of Nigerians that the election that produced President Muhammadu Buhari was marred by rampant irregularities and therefore fell below credibility standard. The report also lampooned the roles of security agencies during the election and noted that the performance of security operatives during the election fell far below the acceptable international best practice.
From these reports therefore it’s now obvious even globally that the will of Nigerian voters freely expressed on 23 February 2019 when they came out in their numbers and voted for our candidate Atiku Abubakar was massively rigged and thwarted. This clearly is the verdict of the World who are also watching us as we proceed at the election tribunal.
In conclusion dear leaders of our great party, the fact of all the points I have just enumerated above which is not hidden to all eyes who have been resident in Nigeria since 2015, this government in all sincerity cannot take this country to their so called next level? Maybe as witnessed in the last four years, they will take us to the next level of insecurity, hunger and hopelessness.
The situation is precarious and it entails that all hands must be on deck to retrieve our stolen mandate and save this country. To do that, we must return to God to ask that the will of Nigerian people freely expressed on February 23, 2019 prevails.
The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to work with the state governors and relevant stakeholders in strategies aimed at tackling the security situation in the country.
Secondus who was in Port Harcourt with some members of the National Working Committee (NWC), gave the advice at a thanksgiving service by Governor Nyesom Wike on Saturday.
According to a statement by his Special Adviser on Media Ike Abonyi, Secondus said that the security problems are overwhelming and the government ought not to isolate itself from the people.
“You cannot isolate the people you govern and expect to get the necessary cooperation and support needed to tackle issues like security.
“That’s why they must try to carry the state governors along if they hope to decisively tackle the security challenges.”
The National Chairman praised the people of Rivers state for standing up in Defence of democracy pointing out that the supreme sacrifice of deaths and other stress they were subjected to during the election cannot be in vain.
Former chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Mallam Nuhu Ribadu and the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus, have attended the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal in Abuja.
National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus has lamented the level of insecurity in the country, insisting that the criminalities witnessed has led to people living in great fear for their lives.
He stated at a press conference in Abuja on Friday, that more needs to be done in addressing the security situation in the country.
“There is no evidence of the presence of government in this country as crimes of all kinds are committed all over the country and Nigerians have never lived in such a great fear and trembling for their lives.
“From Kaduna to Zamfara, Benue to Taraba, Plateau, Lagos to Enugu etc., bloodletting is continuing unabated, even the President’s home state of Katsina has lost about eight local government areas to bandits, not to talk of the North East.”
The PDP chairman also spoke about the killing of a British aid worker and a Nigerian in Kajuru, Kaduna state a week ago.
“Just last week a female foreign humanitarian worker, Faye Mooney, a Briton was brutally shot dead in Kajuru, Kaduna state. The situation has deteriorated to the extent that this country can no longer protect the lives of international aid workers who are here to help us clear our mess.”
Mr Secondus urged Nigerian leaders to address the security situation and not wait until the challenges become uncontrollable.
Read the tweet by Secondus below:
Brief remarks on some vital issues relating to the state of our nation. Gentlemen of the Press.
The security situation has been such that prominent Nigerian clerics have been raising serious concern on the issue of leadership, even questioning whether we really have a Commander-in-Chief in this country.
The security situation has been such that prominent Nigerian clerics have been raising serious concern on the issue of leadership, even questioning whether we really have a Commander-in-Chief in this country.
Things got even worse as the remaining goodwill of the people on this government vanished after it arm-twisted the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, into tampering with the will of the people in the February 23 Presidential and National Assembly Elections.
There is no evidence of the presence of government in this country as crimes of all kinds are committed all over the country and Nigerians have never lived in such great fear and trembling for their lives.
From Kaduna to Zamfara, Benue to Taraba, Plateau, Lagos to Enugu etc., bloodletting is continuing unabated, even the President’s home state of Katsina has lost about eight local government areas to bandits, not to talk of the North East.
Rather than give teeth to governance and address biting national issues of concern like the insecurity, this government exerts all its energies and resources planning nefariously how to undermine democratic institutions.
The executive backed humiliation of the head of the Judiciary, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen is a well-designed strategy by the APC administration to intimidate and coerce judicial officers particularly the Judges and…
My advice for members of the Judiciary particularly those handling election matters and who are all Nigerians and who are also leaving in Nigeria is that the country and rule of law should guide all their actions.
They should know that providence has placed in their laps the opportunity to make positive history and enshrine justice and fair play in our society knowing as a fact that no nation grows on injustice and injustice breed crisis.
I also while appreciating the good work of the media as the 4th estate of realm urges them to do more in condemning the deliberate bastardization of critical institutions of democracy and clear destruction of separation of power among the three arms of government.
The APC spokesman added, “It would have been unnecessary for any response at all to come from us as the ruling party but I suspect that the national chairman of the PDP may have stumbled on one of the statements they wrote pre-election.
“Because it sounded more like some of those campaign materials that were not used or that have been used repeatedly; for which the voters passed a verdict in the last election.”
Earlier, Mr Secondus addressed a press conference in Abuja where he condemned the killing of a Nigerian and a British national by gunmen in Kaduna State.
The PDP national chairman had also decried the rate of insecurity in the land, saying Nigerians had never lived in such great fear and trembling for their lives.
But Issa-Onilu insisted that the ruling party would not join issues with the opposition, noting that there was nothing relevant to argue about.
According to him, Nigerians are aware of who caused the problems and who is trying to find a solution to them.
The APC spokesman added that rather than engaging in such an argument, the ruling party was busy with how to ensure that the safety of lives and properties of the people was guaranteed.
He said, “At this stage, what we are focused on is how to ensure that all these problems that were created for over 16 years of PDP maladministration; that they no longer exist and we have made tremendous progress.”
“In this country, we all know what this country was before the APC came; we all know the tremendous steps we have taken and the progress we have made so far.
“We are focused on that and we are focused on governance; we are focused on policy and implementation of our policies,” Issa-Onilu stated.
On his part, an aide to the PDP presidential candidate and former vice president, Atiku Abubakar, disagreed with the claims that his party was desperate to be relevant.
Mr Phrank Shuaib who was also on Politics Today wondered how anyone with a conscience would align with the position of the APC spokesman.
He alleged that the number of deaths recorded under the present administration was much and all the Federal Government has done was to keep making promises.
“It is ludicrous to listen to this kind of vituperation coming from a ruling party because the lives of our people are very important to us,” Shuaib said.
He added, “It is unfortunate that this government is playing politics with the lives of our people. Security has been a challenge in this country under this present administration.”
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Monday, held its 84th National Executive Council (NEC) meeting in Abuja.
In attendance were the Presidential Candidate of the party, Atiku Abubakar, National Chairman Uche Secondus, Senate President Bukola Saraki, his deputy as well as the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara.
Other party Chieftains were also present along with some state governors.
The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus, has accused the President of giving marching orders to the Nigerian military and Police to brutalise voters during the forthcoming general elections.
Mr Secondus who was responding to President Muhammadu Buhari’s order to security agencies to be ruthless against anyone found snatching ballot boxes during the polls, said, “the President’s remarks amount to a declaration of war on Nigerian voters and a direct incitement against voters”.
President Buhari had during a caucus meeting of his All Progressives Congress (APC) on Monday said that he had given orders to the military and police not to spare any thugs who attempt to disrupt the electoral process.
In the words of the President, “Anybody who decides to snatch ballot boxes or lead thugs to disturb it, maybe this is the last unlawful action you will take. I really gave the military and the police (order) to be ruthless. We are not going to be blamed that we want to rig election. I want Nigerians to be respected. Let them vote whoever they want across the parties.”
But in a statement from his media office, the PDP chairman said the directive by the President was a licence to top APC leaders to move freely with the military at their constituencies to harass and intimidate INEC staff and the opposition agents during the elections.
He added, “The President’s confirmation that he has directed the service chiefs to kill Nigerians is nothing but a pre-determined script hatched by the ruling party to create voter apathy and implement their result replacement plans using thugs protected by the military.”
While noting that elections are a civil matter handled by the police, Mr Secondus wondered “whether the military belongs to Nigeria or Buhari and APC even as he advised the operatives to maintain professionalism in all their operations because history is recording.”
The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus has encouraged the Acting Inspector General of Police, Adamu Mohammed to work for and serve the Nigerian people.
Speaking at a presidential campaign rally in Osogbo, Osun state, the national chairman also encouraged the people to protect their votes in the coming elections.
Secondus urged the acting IG to toe the path of justice in his new role by “clearing the mess heaped on the force by his predecessor, Ibrahim Idris”.
The national chairman further warned the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and security agencies never to be steadfast and ensure that every attempt at rigging the coming polls is thwarted.
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) again says it is on a mission to rescue Nigerians from the All Progressives Congress (APC) led government come 2019.
This is according to the PDP National Chairman, Mr Uche Secondus, and former President Goodluck Jonathan who spoke on Monday at the flag off of the party’s presidential campaign in Sokoto State.
“It is important as we are here to let you know that the PDP is on a rescue mission,” Secondus told a large crowd of party supporters at the rally.
“We are on a rescue mission with the best candidate in the next election. We present to you by the grace of God, the man that will come and wipe your tears; the man that will provide food for all of you, the man that will provide security in our nation.”
The PDP chairman alleged that the Muhammadu Buhari administration has failed the people, stressing that their presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, was a better alternative for the people.
In his address, former President Jonathan believes the PDP is the only party that can eliminate hunger and ensure that Nigerians have food to eat.
He described the party’s candidate as the “most eligible” among all of those contesting the presidential election.
Jonathan said, “The north-west is the most populous part of Nigeria. From 1999 till today, we have seen four presidents from (Olusegun) Obasanjo to our late brother, (Umar) Yar’adua, to myself and the current President.
“You have seen how the various presidents and the various parties have worked and one thing that is very clear is that PDP is still the number one party.”
“There is something that all of us feel as human beings. Every day, everybody must eat and if you cannot eat well, then you won’t be happy. PDP is the only party that can make sure that all of us eat very well in the morning, afternoon and evening,” he added.
The former president thereafter called on Nigerians to be wise when they go to poll in 2019, saying the coming generations would not forgive them if they vote wrongly.
“Let us not make any mistake. Those of us who are adults old enough to vote; if we vote wrongly, our children and grandchildren will not forgive us,” he said.
“Atiku is experienced enough. He has demonstrated clearly from his personal life and his business life that he has that capacity to bring this country to one and make sure that our economy grows so that all of us will have food to eat”.