Fintiri Promises To Make Adamawa Great Again

A file photo of Adamawa State Governor, Ahmadu-Fintiri.

 

 

Adamawa State Governor, Umaru Fintiri, has assured residents that the state would witness a better turn around during his administration.

He said despite the lean resources, the government would make sure that every nook and cranny of the state was provided with the needed development to uplift the standard of living of the people.

The governor made the remarks while flagging off the construction of township roads in Yola, the Adamawa State capital over N5 billion.

He described the flag off as historic and significant, considering the pathetic conditions and neglect which most communities across the state have suffered because of bad roads.

Governor Fintiri also promised to remain committed to actualising his vision and mission of making Adamawa great again.

The people of Bachure, a community within the state capital, have suffered over the years as a result of the bad road leading into the community.

Some of the residents narrated their experience and the difficulty they faced, a situation which informed the choice of the flag-off of 18.1-kilometre of roads in the metropolis.

In his welcome address earlier, the Commissioner for Works in Adamawa, Adamu Atiku, who accompanied the governor along with some members of the State Executive Council gave a breakdown of the project.

Only recently, the state government commenced the construction of 281 kilometres of rural roads in about 15 communities across the state.

The development, according to the government, will open up Adamawa as well as boost agricultural and expose the economic potentials of the state.

Appeal Court Affirms Fintiri’s Election As Adamawa Governor

A file photo of Adamawa State Governor, Ahmadu-Fintiri.

 

The Appeal Court sitting in Yola, the Adamawa State capital has affirmed the decision of the lower court over the election of Umaru Fintiri as Governor of the state.

Delivering the judgment, Justice Ali Gumel ruled that the main appeal on six issues were distilled from 19 grounds.

The first being whether or not the tribunal was right to have held that the non-joinder of former Governor Mohammed Jibrilla in the petition was fatal and incompetent.

The Appeal Panel set aside the ruling of the lower tribunal and allowed issue one to succeed.

Issues 2,3,4,5 and 6 were, however, dismissed entirely.

Consequently, the appeal in itself failed and was dismissed.

Reacting to the judgement, the governor said he was elated by the ruling and called on the opposition party and others to join hands with him to move the state forward.

Governor Fintiri Proposes N183.3bn 2020 Budget

A file photo of Adamawa State Governor, Umaru Fintiri.

 

 

Adamawa State Governor, Umaru Fintiri, has presented a budget proposal of N183.3 billion for the 2020 fiscal year tagged ‘Budget of Rebirth’.

The governor presented the proposal to members of the State House of Assembly on Wednesday at the legislative chamber of the House in Yola, the state capital.

He was accompanied by the newly sworn-in members of the State Executive Council and other top government officials.

In his presentation, Governor Fintiri explained that education, health, human capital, agriculture, water supply, rural infrastructure, and community development would be given top priority.

He informed the lawmakers that N85.935 billion representing 47 per cent of the total budget was earmarked for recurrent expenditure while the balance of N97.424 billion representing 53 per cent was for capital development programmes.

The governor promised to complete all abandoned projects and initiative new ones with a view to impacting on the socio-economic life of the citizens and foster economic development.

He also gave assurance that his administration would achieve 90 per cent performance at the end of the 2020 fiscal year.

Fintiri Visits Buhari, Asks President To Upgrade Federal Medical Centre

 

Governor Umaru Fintiri of Adamawa State on Thursday visited President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

The governor who was the leader of a delegation known as Leaders of Thoughts visited the President on issues affecting the state.

Part of the requests presented before the President was to convert the Modibbo Adama University of Technology in Yola to a conventional university.

READ ALSO: Taraba Killing: Police Pay Tribute To Slain Officers, Reveal Identities

Similarly, the Adamawa State government wanted the Federal Government upgrade of the Federal Medical Centre to a teaching Hospital.

Reacting, the President requested that a formal request be submitted to his office, promising to review the request and act accordingly.

Court Dismisses Suit Seeking To Reinstate Nyako

NyakoA Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has struck out a suit filed by a lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, seeking the reinstatement of the impeached governor of Adamawa State, Murtala Nyako.

Presiding Justice, Okon Abang, in a ruling, struck out the suit on the ground that the applicant (Ogungbeje) lacked the locus standi to institute the action.

The judge, who described the applicant as a meddlesome interloper in ‘affairs that does not concern him’, said that the rights to challenge the impeachment of July 15 resides solely in Nyako, who was impeached and not the applicant. The judge noted that the applicant should have allowed Nyako to carry his own cross, and not cry more than the bereaved.

“It is Nyako that will benefit from any favourable judgment, and not the public, and so this matter does not rank among public interest litigation, the court held.

“The applicant cannot cry more than the bereaved and he has no justifiable reason to file this suit because as at the time he filed it, it was not established before this court that Nyako was in detention or incapacitated.

“The applicant can also not depose to an affidavit in support of this application on behalf of Nyako who is alive. The facts deposed to by the applicant amounts to documentary hearsay,” Justice Abang ruled.

Justice Abang further held that the suit ought to have been filed in Yola where Nyako was impeached, and not in Lagos.

The court also set aside service of the processes in the matter on the defendants, on the ground that there was no proper service in law.

Besides, Justice Abang held that the applicant served the respondents through the Adamawa State Government liaison office in Lagos on August 15, 2014, while the order for substituted service was actually made on August 26, 2014.

“In other words, the applicant served the respondents before an order of this court was made, apart from the fact that the identity of the person served is unknown.”

The judge further held that the applicant had no cause of action against the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the Inspector-General of Police – joined as fifth and sixth respondents respectively.

In the final analysis, Justice Abang held that the suit was incompetent and lacked merit. The court awarded N70, 000 costs in favour of the respondents against the applicant.

In the suit, Ogungbeje had argued that Nyako’s impeachment was a clear derogation from the due process of law and prayed the court for an order reinstating him as a governor.

The Respondents in the suit were former acting governor of Adamawa State, Umaru Fintiri, Adamawa State House of Assembly and the Acting Chief Judge of the State, Justice Ambrose Mammadi. Others were Justice Buba Kajama, Chairman of the seven-member panel that investigated allegations of gross misconduct against Nyako, INEC and the Inspector-General of Police.

Specifically, Ogungbeje had argued that Nyako’s impeachment was a clear departure from the due process of law.

He argued that the failure of the respondents to serve the impeachment notice personally on Nyako was a breach of the impeached governor’s right to fair hearing and fair trial.

Ogungbeje sought a declaration that the inauguration of the seven-member panel by the state Chief Judge after an order stopping the Adamawa State House of Assembly from constituting the panel was biased.

The lawyer had urged the court to declare that the constitution and inauguration of the panel against a subsisting order of court was contemptuous and a flagrant violation of the constitution. He had also urged the court to nullify Nyako’s impeachment of July 15.

Nyako was impeached on July 15, 2014 by the Adamawa State House of Assembly after a panel set up by the Chief Judge of the state indicted him of gross misconduct.

Nyako’s deputy, James Bala Ngilari, who was said to have purportedly resigned moments before the impeachment of his boss, was however subsequently sworn-in as the substantive governor of the state following a judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja to that effect.

Bala Ngilari Sacks All Political Appointees

Bala NgilariThe new Governor of Adamawa State, Bala Ngilari has hit the ground running by carrying out his first assignment since becoming governor barely 24 hours after being sworn-in.

Governor Ngilari on Thursday dissolved the State Executive Council and also sacked all other political appointees in the state.

The decision which according to him takes immediate effect also advises all those involved to hand over government property in their possession to permanent secretaries who have been mandated to take charge.

Governor Ngilari was sworn-in on Wednesday after a Federal High Court in Abuja sacked the Acting Governor, Ahmadu Fintiri and ordered him to take over.

The court, in its ruling, said that the Adamawa State Deputy Governor, Mr Bala Ngilari, did not resign his position before the former governor Murtala Nyako was impeached.

The court has also declared that the swearing in of former Acting Governor, Umaru Fintiri, was illegal and unconstitutional and ordered the immediate vacation of the Government House by the Acting Governor

The court also ruled that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should not conduct the by-election slated for October 11.

Mr Fintiri was sworn-in as the Acting Governor after the House impeached the state governor, Murtala Nyako, on allegations of financial impropriety against him and his deputy, Bala Ngilari.

Umaru Fintiri To Appeal Court Ruling Ordering His Removal As Acting Governor

High_courtThe former acting Governor of Adamawa State, Mr Umaru Fintiri, has said he will appeal the ruling of a Federal High Court In Abuja that ordered his removal and the immediate swearing-in of the former deputy governor, Mr Bala Ngilari, as the governor of the state.

A lawyer to Mr Fintiri, Mr Bayo Ojo, said in a statement on Wednesday that he had been instructed to file an appeal.

Mr Ojo also said that in addition to the appeal he had also filed a motion for stay of the orders of the court until the hearing of the appeal.

The implication of the papers filed by his client, according to Mr Ojo, is that the orders of the court cannot be complied with until the appeal process is disposed of.

“This is the position of the law as the law allows anyone who is challenging an order of a court not to obey such order until his constitutional right of appeal is exhausted,” the statement read.

According to Mr Ojo, the motion for stay of the orders will help forestall a situation where the court’s ruling will be impose on the appeal court.

He said that even though he disagreed with the reasoning of the learned judge, he would not, out of respect for the court, comment on the merits of the case.

“The whole world knows that the former deputy governor did actually resigned through his two letters of resignation to the speaker and the former governor separately,” he said.

Bala Ngilari Sworn-in As Adamawa State Governor

Ngilari NewMr Bala Ngilari has been sworn-in as the Governor of Adamawa State in line with a court ruling that his resignation process did not follow laid down procedure in the Nigerian constitution.

While taking his oath of office on Wednesday, Mr Ngilari pledged to preserve, protect and defend  the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

After the swearing-in ceremony, Governor Ngilari expressed optimism that he would be able to carry along all indigenes of the state, irrespective of their political affiliations.

He also pledged his loyalty to the President, Dr Goodluck Jonathan.

“I pledge to run an open government, transparent and an all-inclusive one that will give hope to our women, the aged and guaranty the future of our youth.

“In this regard, I invite other arms of government, in particular, the legislature and the judiciary, not forgetting the civil service, to join hands with me to achieve this notable and noble course,” he said in his acceptance speech.

A Federal High Court in Abuja had ruled on Wednesday morning that Mr Umaru Fintiri, the Acting Governor, was occupying the position illegally and ordered his immediate vacation of the Government House.

The court ordered the Chief Judge of Adamawa State to immediately swear-in Mr Bala Ngilari as the Governor of the State.

In its ruling, the court said Mr Ngilari, did not resign his position before the former governor Murtala Nyako was impeached.

The court also ruled that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should not conduct the by-election slated for October 11.

Also, the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of Nigeria, Mr Mohammed Adoke, on Wednesday called on the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission(INEC) to obey the judgement of the court by suspending all the arrangements made for the conduct of a by-election scheduled to take place in Adamawa State on Saturday October 11.

Adamawa Governorship: Ribadu, Seven Others Step Down To Contest In 2015

RibaduEight of the fourteen aspirants jostling for the Adamawa State Governorship election under the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) have stepped down from the race in the early hours of Friday.

Following the impeachment of the former Governor, Murtala Nyako, October 11, 2014 has been fixed for election to get a substantive governor for the state.

The PDP primary election billed for Saturday in the state was heading for crisis until the intervention of the Senate President, Senator David Mark, and the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party in Abuja.

After about four hours meeting with the aspirants, starting by 9.06P.M on Thursday and ending around 1.00A.M on Friday at the Banquet Hall of the State House, Mark along with other officials of the party were able to reach a compromise with the aspirants and pruned down the number of those contesting to six.

The six aspirants still in the race for the party’s ticket on Saturday are Ahmed Gulak, Buba Marwa, Ahmed Modibbo, Dr. Umar Ardo, Acting Governor Umaru Fintiri, and Jerry Kumdisi.

Those who have withdrawn from Saturday’s primary election include Nuhu Ribadu, Auwal Tukur, Aliyu Idi Hong, Andrawus Sawa, James Barka, Gen. Aliyu Kama, Markus Gundiri and Abubakar Girei.

It was agreed at the closed-door meeting that the six aspirants contesting for the party’s ticket on Saturday would not contest for the position in 2015.

The meeting also agreed that only those stepping down now can contest for the party’s governorship election ticket in 2015, with more consideration in 2015 for Adamawa Central that has never produced a governor.

Any aspirant who fails to win the party’s ticket in Saturday’s primary election, the meeting also agreed, must support the party’s flag bearer towards the October 11 election.

Speaking with State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, Chairman of the Adamawa State chapter of the party, Joel Madaki, said: “Fourteen aspirants contesting for the position earlier has now reduced to six aspirants due to this meeting. It is a very welcome idea. Nobody was forced to step them. Those who stepped down did so voluntarily in order to wait to contest for the position in 2015.

“The six aspirants contesting this election are Ahmed Gulak, Buba Marwa, Ahmed Modibbo, Dr. Umar Ardo, Acting Governor Umaru Fintiri, and Jerry Kumdisi,” he added.

Also, the former Special Adviser to the President on Political Affairs, Ahmed Gulak, who is contesting for the ticket on Saturday, said: “The outcome of the meeting was fantastic. We met as family members of PDP, even before coming here all the aspirants in Adamawa have unanimously resolved that after the primaries, in a free, fair primaries, anybody that emerges will get our support.

“Today, in this meeting, the number of the aspirants have been drastically reduced to six, which is manageable. I am contesting, Gen. Marwa is contesting, Ahmed Modibbo is contesting, Dr. Umar Ardo is contesting, Hon. Jerry Kumdisi is contesting, and Acting Governor Fintiri is contesting.

“And we have resolved to go into the primaries without rancour, without acrimony and to come out of it as peaceful co-existing members.

“And at the end of it all, anybody that emerges, we will all queue behind him. And if I emerge as the candidate, they will all queue behind me. It is going to be a family affair and there will be no losers.”

On his chances of getting the ticket as Ribadu and others are now out of the race, he said, “Nuhu Ribadu or not, you know I prepared for this election. Even, if 14 of us are going into this election, I am confident of my ability, of my capability, of my mobilization, of my sensitization that the delegates will select me.”

Aliyu Idi Hong, who is among those who withdrew from the race, said, “Peace-building, negotiation, give-and-take, everything went well. We have been given a caveat and one thing we have succeeded in extracting from this meeting is that the meeting started with a preamble that whoever is going to contest and if he happens to win as a governor, he will not have the right to contest the 2015 election.”

“Some of us think that our aspirations, our ambition, our vision for Adamawa is a long term and more articulate vision.”

INEC Sets October 11 For Adamawa Governorship Election

INEC_Nigeria_adamawaThe  Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has announced October 11, 2014, as the date for the governorship election in Adamawa State, this was contained in statement issued by the state’s Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Kasim Gaidam.

The former governor, Murtala Nyako, was impeached by the State House of Assembly after he was found guilty of all 16 charges levelled against him by the lawmakers.

The ex-Deputy Governor, Bala Ngilari had resigned moments before the impeachment, paving the way for the speaker of the state assembly, Umaru Fintiri, to take over as acting governor.

Nat’l Conference: Derivation Has Been Settled 12 Years Ago – Clarke

Robert Clarke-SunriseA Legal Practitioner, Robert Clarke, is not surprised that his earlier statement that the National Conference was not going to have a successful end because there was no legal basis upon which to put their recommendations into constitutional effect has not been proven wrong.

He, however, expressed shock that despite President Jonathan making it clear that “the only no-go area was that Nigeria should not be divided” and the expectations were that Nigeria had been given the opportunity to have a new system of governance, the delegates failed to work towards a new constitution, which was the most important need for the country to move forward.

Speaking on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, he aligned with the view that all that the National Conference had done for its four months of deliberations was to amend the already existing 1999 Constitution, an act already being performed by the National Assembly.

He stated that they have bordered on the issue of derivation, which should have been the least problem because of their different approach, as he revealed that “the question of derivation has been settled well over 12 years ago by the Supreme Court judgment” adding that “the present Chairman of the Conference was one of the judges who wrote one of the leading judgements.”

Explaining the factors that determine the ownership of resources, based on the International Conference on International Law that was held in the 1970s and which created “a new maritime economic zone”, he revealed that “from 1991 Nigeria started looking for petroleum products from the deep sea and today 55% of the oil Nigeria owns comes from the deep sea.”

He submitted that the judgement in the 2002 court case between the Attorney-General of the Federation and the 36 states of the federation on their joint ownership of the resources is what answers the question of derivation.

“Any state that has resources within its geographical borders should be entitled to it. All states that have boundaries and are producing oil within Nigeria should be allowed to take everything that comes out of it but they should pay royalty and pay tax to the Federal Government.

“If that is done there would be no problem of 13% or 15%”, he said.

Citing the American state of California, which has been adjudged to be the 5th largest economy in the world, he noted that this was possible because the state was allowed to develop its own resources despite being within another sovereign state.

He also noted that the restructuring involved letting the average Niger-Delta people know that all the oil in the country does not belong to them. There was need, according to him, for Nigerians to be aware that only 40% comes from the south-south, the rest comes from the deep sea, which they all have rights to.

The veteran lawyer went down memory lane to explain how the deregulation of the oil and gas sector would make Nigeria’s economy better. He cited the revolutions initiated by former Head of State, Ibrahim Babangida, in the media, telecom and other sectors as those that should be replicated in the oil and gas sector.

He expressed the view that President Jonathan must have had good intentions for convening the National Conference and his declaration that Nigeria’s unity was non-negotiable was an opportunity to rebuild the country but there seemed to be sabotage.

Clarke maintained that he knew from the beginning that nothing was going to come out of the National Conference as the signs were obvious from the representation of some geopolitical zones.

Adamawa Illegality

The Senior Advocate of Nigeria expressed more regrets on the National Conference’s alleged failure to give Nigeria a brand new constitution but ended up offering an amendment of the same constitution which he said was Nigeria’s main problem.

He referred to the crisis that led to the impeachment of Adamawa State’s Governor Nyako and the activities of the Acting Governor since assuming office as evidences of how faulty the Nigerian Constitution was.

He alleged that the former House of Assembly Speaker, Umaru Fintiri, within one week of becoming the Acting Governor, paid out a sum of 120million Naira to each of the 24 lawmakers in the State House of Assembly and in addition all Local Government Chairmen in the state decamped back to the PDP.

He stated that this should not have been so if the constitution did not allow such financial and political liberty, maintaining that the Nigerian Constitution has given too much power to state governors and the President.

Speaking further on the Adamawa impeachment, Mr Clarke provided legal explanations to prove the illegality of the Speaker’s assumption of office and the circumstances surrounding the resignation of the Deputy Governor, whom he said should have become the Governor.

 

New Adamawa Leadership Sacks Political Appointees

Umaru Fintiri
Umaru Fintiri promised to resolve issues of outstanding salaries during his first speech as the Acting Governor

All political appointees in Adamawa State including commissioners, special adviser, principal special assistants and special assistants have been relieved of their appointments. 

This is coming a day after the State House of Assembly impeached the governor, Admiral Murtala Nyako on allegations of financial impropriety against him and his deputy.

A statement signed by the newly appointed Secretary to the State Government, Proffesor Abdullahi Liman Tukur, said that all the appointees were directed to hand over all government properties in their custody to the various permanent secretaries.

The statement further directed all permanent secretaries to take full charge of all government assets in their respective ministries.

After the impeachment of the governor, the speaker of the House of Assembly, Umaru Fintiri, was sworn-in as the Acting Governor while the deputy speaker took over as the Speaker of the Assembly.

In a speech after his swearing in, the acting governor promised to pay civil servants their outstanding two months salaries.

One of Fintiri’s first task will be to sustain the peaceful atmosphere presently witnessed in the state after series of attacks by members of the Boko Haram sect terrorising states in the north east.

He urged the state’s indigenes to refrain from acts that could disrupt the peaceful atmosphere prevailing in the state.

Adamawa, Borno and Yobe states are under an emergency rule that has lasted for over one year due to the insurgency in the region which the Nigerian Armed Forces are tackling at the moment.