Tag Archives: election

EdoDecide’20: INEC affirm Ize-iyamu, Obaseki alongside 12 others

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The stage appears to be set for the forthcoming governorship election in Edo State following the release of the final list of candidates in the poll.

With just two months to the poll, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has announced that 14 candidates will contest in the election.

INEC’s National Commissioner and Chairman of Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, made the announcement in a statement on Saturday.

A file photo of Edo State Governor and PDP candidate, Godwin Obaseki.

He revealed that the electoral umpire has displayed the final list of candidates at its offices in Benin City, the state capital, and the 18 Local Government Areas of the state.

Okoye added that the list has also been uploaded on the Commission’s website.

A file photo of APC Edo State governorship candidate, Osagie Ize-Iyamu, at the launch of his campaign manifesto in Benin City on July 14, 2020.

He explained that the action of INEC was in compliance with its Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the election and in accordance with Section 34 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).

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“By Section 35 of the Electoral Act and the Timetable and Schedule of Activities of the Commission, the withdrawal and substitution of candidates for the Edo Governorship election ended on 13th July 2020,” the INEC national commissioner stated.

He added, “With the publication of the final list of candidates, no political party can withdraw or substitute any of the nominated candidates or tamper with the list and particulars of the candidates in a manner inconsistent with the intendment of the Constitution and the Electoral Act.”

According to the list released by INEC, 12 of the candidates are male and the remaining two are female.

Okoye urged the participating political parties to pay close attention to the timelines stipulated in the Timetable and Schedule of Activities of the commission, as well as the provisions of the Constitution and the Electoral Act.


#Newsworthy…

OndoDecide’20: APC meet aspirants – seek reconciliation

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The Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Reconciliation Committee, Gov. Abubakar Bello of Niger, on Friday met with the party’s governorship aspirants with a view to reconciling their differences ahead of July 20 primary election.

Speaking with newsmen shortly after the meeting, Bello said the main objective of the committee in the state was to reconcile party members and all APC faithful.

According to him, the reason we are here is for the reconciliation in Ondo State.

“We have met with the aspirants.

“Our paramount objective is to ensure victory in the forthcoming election.

” We have met with the stakeholders on what we should do to have peace in the party.

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” We members of the committee would do everything we can to reconcile all members of the party to resolve any crisis.

“Success of the APC is what we must seek. We should not take action that will make us lose the election,” the committee chairman said.

Speaking on agitation for direct primary, Bello explained that ‘the committee would recommend whatever the members wanted

“If direct primary is what the stakeholders want, we will recommend to the national headquarters,” he said.

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The only six aspirants that attended the meeting were: Gov. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, Mr Ifeoluwa Oyedele, Mr Bukola Adetula, Ambassador Sola Iji, Mrs Jumoke Anifowose and Mr Jimi Odimayo.

Noble Reporters Media learnt that Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi, who is the Chairman of Election Committee for Ondo State, had on Friday in Abuja said that the Monday primary would be conducted through indirect mode.

However, one of the governorship aspirants, Chief Olusola Oke, who came late said that he managed to come and see the chairman because he did not get the notice on time.

Oke, therefore, frowned at the adoption of indirect mode of primary and the committee’s visit, saying that he might likely challenge the decision if the committee stuck to its gun

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He described the committee’s visit as a wasted effort because there was nothing new the meeting could bring.

He promised that he would not boycott the primary election on Monday, so that he could have locus standi to challenge it.

“I don’t boycott any election. It is not in my character and is not advisable.

“Under the electoral law if you boycott or you don’t participate, you cannot challenge,” he said.


#Newsworthy…

Election’20: Kanye West qualifies amid Presidential interest

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Kanye West has qualified to appear on Oklahoma’s presidential ballot, the first state where he met the requirements before the filing deadline. But confusion remains over whether he’s actually running.

A representative for West filed the necessary paperwork and paid the $35,000 filing Wednesday afternoon, which was the deadline for a spot on the state’s Nov. 3 presidential ballot, said Oklahoma Board of Elections spokeswoman Misha Mohr.

He was one of three independent presidential candidates to pay the filing fee prior to the deadline, she added. The others were concert pianist Jade Simmons and cryptocurrency entrepreneur Brock Pierce.

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The filing came a day after Media (known to Noble Reporters Media) quoted West adviser Steve Kramer saying “he’s out” and noting that the staff he had hired were disappointed.

However, NRM later learnt that the West campaign had filed a “Statement of Organization” Wednesday with the Federal Election Commission, stating that a Kanye 2020 committee would serve as principal campaign committee for a West candidacy.

West has already missed the deadline to qualify for the ballot in several states, and it’s unclear if he is willing or able to collect enough signatures required to qualify in others.

Kanye West attends the 2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Feb 9, 2020 in Beverly Hills, California. Taylor Hill—FilmMagic/Getty Images

West, who is married to reality television star Kim Kardashian West, initially announced his candidacy on July 4.


#Newsworthy…

Bayelsa’20: Court disengage Alaibe’s appeal over Duoye’s candidacy

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The Supreme Court has dismissed an appeal filed by a former aspirant of the Bayelsa governorship election under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Timi Alaibe, challenging the candidacy of Duoye Diri in the November 2019 election.

Alaibe who had earlier lost a similar suit at the Federal High Court and the Court of Appeal is claiming that he is the authentic candidate of the PDP.

But the court dismissed the case on Tuesday, on the ground that it was a pre-election matter.

Governor Duoye Diri was sworn in on February 14, a day after the Supreme Court sacked the former governor-elect of Bayelsa State, David Lyon, and his Deputy, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremieoyo.

Lyon’s election was nullified for submitting forged certificates to INEC.

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A five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili, thereafter, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to withdraw the Certificate of Return that had been issued to the candidate of the All Progressives Congress as the winner of the November 16, 2019 governorship election.

The court then ordered INEC to issue a fresh Certificate-of-Return to the candidate of the party with the next highest votes and with the required constitutional spread of votes in the results of the election, which was the PDP.

Diri was then sworn-in along with his Deputy, Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo.


#Newsworthy…

Election’20: Trump react to Kanye West’s US Presidential ambition

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President Donald Trump has reacted to the 2020 US presidential ambition declaration by music and fashion mogul, Kanye West.

Kanye West made the declaration last week in a tweet urging Americans to unify the country’s vision and build the future.

The rapper wrote: “We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States! #2020VISION.”

Reacting to the rapper’s move, Trump who is friends with Kanye said that “If he did it, he would have to view this as a trial run for what’s going to happen in four years”.

Kanye West has since received support from his wife Kim Kardashian and Tesla billionaire CEO Elon Musk.


#Newsworthy…

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EDO/Ondo Elections: INEC set to accredit media online, observers

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Yakubu said the party had learned from previous election conducted and the humongous number of litigations that followed election conduct.


The Independent National Electoral Commission has said it would be carrying out the accreditation of electoral observers and media through an online platform.

Chairman of the commission, Mahmood Yakubu, revealed this on Tuesday during a town hall meeting on ‘Fixing Nigerian elections’ which was organised by YIAGA.

Yakubu said the party had learned from previous election conducted and the humongous number of litigations that followed election conduct.

He said, “We have been deepening the usage of technology not only in management of electoral processes but processes that lead to elections.

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“We also introduced the accreditation of observers online. The media will be accredited online and we said that parties must also submit their nominations online.

“Recall that before the Kogi and Bayelsa governorship election, we had so many litigations simply because the process of submission was manual.

“We learnt from the experience of what happened and insisted that all political parties must file their nominations online. We created a dedicated portal online. All the political parties have filed their nominations.”

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The INEC Chairman aligned with the need for electoral reforms in the country as he urged political parties to do what is right according to the laid down laws and guidelines.

“I hope that as part of the reform we need to introduce in this country, attention will focus on the conduct of the bye-election.

“While we appreciate the lawmakers and all those responsible that we reform our electoral process, from our experience as a commission, we realised that we need electoral reforms and legal reforms but so much actually depends on what the commission makes of its own independence rather than them drawing from statutorily provision.

“We will continue to ensure we do what we have to do courageously to ensure that we achieve the free, fair and credible election that we require,” Yakubu added.


#Newsworthy…

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Election’20: Trump vows to protect American ‘way of life’

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On a day meant for unity and celebration, President Donald Trump vowed to “safeguard our values” from enemies within — leftists, looters, agitators, he said — in a Fourth of July speech packed with all the grievances and combativeness of his political rallies.

Trump watched paratroopers float to the ground in a tribute to America, greeted his audience of front-line medical workers and others central in responding to the coronavirus pandemic, and opened up on those who “slander” him and disrespect the country’s past.

“We are now in the process of defeating the radical left, the anarchists, the agitators, the looters, and the people who, in many instances, have absolutely no clue what they are doing,” he said. “We will never allow an angry mob to tear down our statues, erase our history, indoctrinate our children.

“And we will defend, protect and preserve (the) American way of life, which began in 1492 when Columbus discovered America.”

He did not mention the dead from the pandemic. Nearly 130,000 are known to have died from COVID-19 in the U.S.

Even as officials across the country pleaded with Americans to curb their enthusiasm for large Fourth of July crowds, Trump enticed the masses with a “special evening” of tribute and fireworks staged with new U.S. coronavirus infections on the rise.

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But the crowds wandering the National Mall for the night’s air show and fireworks were strikingly thinner than the gathering for last year’s jammed celebration on the Mall.

Many who showed up wore masks, unlike those seated close together for Trump’s South Lawn event, and distancing was easy to do for those scattered across the sprawling space.

Trump did not hesitate to use the country’s birthday as an occasion to assail segments of the country that do not support him.

Carrying on a theme he pounded on a day earlier against the backdrop of the Mount Rushmore monuments, he went after those who have torn down statues or think some of them, particularly those of Confederate figures, should be removed. Support has been growing among Republicans to remove Confederate memorials.

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“Our past is not a burden to be cast away,” Trump said.

Outside the event but as close to it as they could get, Pat Lee of Upper Dublin, Pennsylvania, gathered with two friends, one of them a nurse from Fredericksburg, Virginia, and none in a mask.

“POTUS said it would go away,” Lee said of the pandemic, using an acronym for president of the United States. “Masks, I think, are like a hoax.” But she said she wore one inside the Trump International Hotel, where she stayed.

By the World War II Memorial, the National Park Service handed out packets of five white cloth masks to all who wanted them. People were not required to wear them.

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Another nurse, Zippy Watt from Riverside, California, came to see the air show and fireworks with her husband and their two daughters, one of whom lives in Washington. They wore matching American flag face masks even when seated together on a park bench.

“We chose to wear a mask to protect ourselves and others,” Watt said. She said her family was divided on Trump but she is “more of a Trump supporter. Being from southern California I see socialist tendencies. I’m tired of paying taxes so others can stay home.”

Pat Lee made the trip from north of Philadelphia after seeing last year’s Mall celebration on TV.

She said the protests over racial injustice that unfolded near her were so threatening that people in her suburban neighborhood took turns staying up all night and those who didn’t own guns stationed bats and shovels in their garages. Her friend from Pennsylvania, who didn’t want to be identified, said she spent more than three hours in line to buy a gun.

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“I want people to stop calling us racists,” Lee said. “We’re not racists. Just because you love your country, love the people in your country, doesn’t make you a racist.”

Trump’s guests on the South Lawn were doctors, nurses, law enforcement officers and military members as well as officials from the administration, said Judd Deere, deputy White House press secretary. He said the event was a tribute to the “tremendous courage and spirit” of front-line workers and the public in the pandemic.

President of United States of America, Donald Trump

In many parts of the country, authorities discouraged mass gatherings for the holiday after days that have seen COVID-19 cases grow at a rate not experienced even during the deadliest phase of the pandemic in the spring.

In New York, once the epicenter, people were urged to avoid crowds and Nathan’s Famous July Fourth hot dog eating contest happened at an undisclosed location without spectators on hand, in advance of the evening’s televised fireworks spectacular over the Empire State Building.

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In Philadelphia, mask- and glove-wearing descendants of the signers of the Declaration of Independence participated in a virtual tapping of the famed Liberty Bell on Independence Mall and people were asked to join from afar by clinking glasses, tapping pots or ringing bells.

Yet Trump continued to crave big crowds when it came to his events.

He opened the holiday weekend by traveling to Mount Rushmore in South Dakota for a fireworks display Friday night near the mountain carvings of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt. In stark words, he accused protesters who have pushed for racial justice of engaging in a “merciless campaign to wipe out our history.”

Even as he pushed ahead with celebrations, the shadow of the coronavirus loomed closer to him. Kimberly Guilfoyle, a top fundraiser for the president and girlfriend of his eldest child, Donald Trump Jr., tested positive for the virus, Trump’s campaign said late Friday. Guilfoyle tweeted Saturday that she was looking forward to “a speedy recovery.”

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In a presidential message Saturday morning on the 244th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, Trump acknowledged that “over the past months, the American spirit has undoubtedly been tested by many challenges.”

His Democratic rival, Joe Biden, said in a statement that the U.S. “never lived up” to its founding principle that “all men are created equal,” but today “we have a chance to rip the roots of systemic racism out of this country.”

Trump’s endorsement of big gatherings at the National Mall and at Mount Rushmore came as many communities decided to scrap fireworks, parades and other holiday traditions in hopes of avoiding yet more surges in infection.

Confirmed cases were climbing in 40 states, and the U.S. set another record Friday with 52,300 newly reported infections, according to the tally kept by Johns Hopkins University.

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Trump did not dwell on the pandemic in his remarks Saturday evening. Instead, he declared that “our country is in great shape.”

Trump has been aching to see the nation return to normalcy, and has been willing to push the envelope farther than many states and big city mayors are willing to go.

For Trump and the country, it was yet another holiday clouded by a pandemic that the U.S. has failed to bring under control.

In late March, a little more than a week after he bowed to the need to shut down much of the country, Trump spoke of reopening with “packed” churches by Easter Sunday. He relented on that push as his medical advisers warned that it was far too ambitious. Then he spent chunks of his Memorial Day weekend fuming about critics who he said were ignoring falling cases and deaths at the time.


#Newsworthy…

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Bello, APC cannot run from Supreme Court – PDP

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The Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP), has said that Governor Yahaya Bello and the All Progressives Congress can run, but cannot outrun the Supreme Court over alleged fraud perpetuated during the November 2019 governorship election in Kogi.

Kogi State Publicity Secretary of the party, Bode Ogunmola, stated this in a statement on Saturday while reacting to an Appeal Court judgement on the Kogi governorship election delivered on Saturday.

Ogunmola described the judgement as a travesty of justice and vowed to head for the Supreme Court.

“Gov. Yahaya Bello and the APC can run, but it cannot hide from the Supreme Court, where the blood of the innocent people killed in the Kogi election and the irregularities that characterized the election would be pointed out.”

Yahaya Bello; Kogi State Governor
Ogunmola urged PDP supporters to remain calm and be hopeful.

The PDP said the party would never give up until justice was delivered and Engr Musa Wada becomes the Governor of Kogi State, particularly that he was overwhelmingly voted for in the November governorship election.


#Newsworthy…

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Election’20: Kanye West shows interest in U.S presidential.

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Rapper Kanye West has announced his plans to run for president in the 2020 US presidential election slated for November.

Kanye West made his intention known via a tweet shared hours ago.

He said, “We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future.

“I am running for president of the United States”.

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Kanye West has shown interest in politics over the past few years especially with his relationship with President Donald Trump.

Kanye West Shows Interest in United States 2020 Presidential election

He’s a successful music mogul and fashion entrepreneur who is married to reality TV star Kim Kardashian.

It is not yet clear whether he will be running as an independent candidate or on the Republican or Democrat platform


#Newsworthy…

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OndoDecide’20: Akeredolu distance himself from ‘Aketi Whiskey’

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The Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, on Saturday dismissed reports linking him with branded bottles of whiskey seen on social media platforms.

The bottle of whiskey allegedly carrying the Ondo State logo and labelled “Aketi Whiskey” has been touted as part of Akeredolu’s second term campaign strategy.

However, in a statement issued by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Ojo Oyewamide and titled: “Plan To Blackmail Akeredolu With Customized Whisky Uncovered,” the governor said he knew nothing about the whiskey bottle and described the claim as a plot by his political detractors to blackmail him.

He urged members of the public to disregard the report.

Akeredolu added that the plot by those behind the production of the whiskey would not be successful.

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The statement read: “For the avoidance of doubt, Mr. Governor does not require to produce customized drinks of that nature for his re-election. Neither has he commissioned any associate, friend, or even aides to embark on such a wasteful venture.

“This is more so, that Governor Akeredolu’s modest and non-ostentatious lifestyle has never been in doubt.

“It appears inconceivable to pre-empt the outcome of any investigation in respect of this distasteful act. All the same, it is pertinent to let the general public know that those behind this grand plot are desperate power-mongers who will stop at nothing to create despicable and imaginary scenarios to play their game.”


#Newsworthy…

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Court uphold Bello’s election as Kogi governor

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The Court of Appeal, Abuja Division on Saturday affirmed the election of Yahaya Bello as the duly elected governor of Kogi State.

The appellate court, in separate unanimous judgements by a five-member panel of justices of the court, led by Justice Adamu Jauro, dismissed four appeals challenging the victory of Governor Bello in the November 16, 2019 governorship election held in Kogi State.

The appellate court held that the appeals, which sought to upturn the earlier judgements of Kogi State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal that affirmed Bello of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner of the governorship contest, lacked merit.

The court said it found no reason to dislodge the judgment of the tribunal as the petitioners failed to prove their case to warrant the nullification of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)’s declaration that Governor Bello garnered the highest number of valid votes cast at the election.

Yahaya Bello

The panel of justices that sat on the matter agreed with the respondents that the petitioners failed o substantiate their allegations of electoral malpractice before the tribunal.

The Appeal Court consequently dismissed the four appeals that were filed against INEC, Governor Bello and APC, by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Actions People’s Party (APP), the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and the Democratic People’s Party (DPP), along with their governorship candidates in the election.


#Newsworthy…

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EdoDecide’20: Obaseki gets new NYSC certificate

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The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) has issued a new certificate to Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State following an official request by him.

The governor partook in the scheme in 1980 but it turned out there was an error on the certificate issued to him with an alphabet missing in his surname which read Obasek instead of Obaseki.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) panel which screened aspirants for the Edo 2020 primary had cited this error as one of the reasons for disqualifying the governor from the race – a decision which made him defect to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) where he contested and won the primary.

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The coast had earlier been cleared for governor Obaseki’s win after other aspirants running against him stepped down.

File Photo of Governor Godwin Obaseki

One of those who stepped aside for the governor was Kenneth Imasuagbon, who said he was inspired by Obaseki’s performance as the leader of Edo State.

According to him, he has been a “victim of godfatherism” and will help the Edo leader fight anyone who wants to “enslave” the people of the state.

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Meanwhile, the National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has appointed the Governor of Rivers State, H. E. Nyesom Wike, as the Chairman for Obaseki’s election campaign council.

The party disclosed this in a statement on Friday.

It also noted that the Adamawa State Governor, Rt. Hon. Ahmadu Fintiri, has been appointed as Deputy Chairman of the council.

The election is expected to hold on September 19


#Newsworthy…

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EdoDecide’20: Wike lead Obaseki’s re-election campaign

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The National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has appointed the Governor of Rivers State, H. E. Nyesom Wike, as the Chairman of the Edo State Governorship Election National Campaign Council.

The party disclosed this in a statement on Friday.

It also noted that the Adamawa State Governor, Rt. Hon. Ahmadu Fintiri, has been appointed as Deputy Chairman of the council.

This comes days after Obaseki emerged as the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s flag bearer for the Edo State governorship election taking place on September 19, 2020.

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Mr Obaseki was announced as winner after the delegates cast their votes at the party’s primary held at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City, the state capital.

The coast had earlier been cleared for governor Obaseki’s win after other aspirants running against him stepped down.

A file photo of Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike.

One of those who stepped aside for the governor was Kenneth Imasuagbon, who said he was inspired by Obaseki’s performance as the leader of Edo State.

According to him, he has been a “victim of godfatherism” and will help the Edo leader fight anyone who wants to “enslave” the people of the state.


#Newsworthy…

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Nasarawa speaker laud peaceful NUJ election

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The Speaker, Nasarawa State House of Assembly, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdullahi, has commended journalists in the state for exhibiting and adhering to the high level of democratic norms and values in their just concluded elections.

The polls saw Mr Salihu Alkali as the new Chairman of the state council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).

Also, NUJ Nasarawa council gets new leadeship.

This is contained in a statement issued by his Press Secretary, Mr Jibrin Gwamna, a copy of which was made available to the News Agency of Nigeria in Keffi on Friday.

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Abdullahi congratulated Alkali and his new executive members for their victories and wished them a united, peaceful and successful tenure.

The statement quoted the speaker as saying that he is highly impressed with the peaceful and transparent nature of the just concluded elections.

The speaker expressed hoped that it would enhance developmental journalism in the state and beyond.

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He called for more unity and understanding among members of the NUJ and the government for peace and progress of the state.

Abdullahi, who observed that elections are over, hence the need for all the parties involved to come together as one body for the progress of the union and the state at large

He reaffirmed the state assembly’s commitment in partnering with the union for the overall development of the state.

NAN recalls that on July 2, members of thd pen profession in the state elected their new officials with Alkali of the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria as Chairman and Mr Sunday John of NAN as Secretary, among others.


#Newsworthy…

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OndoDecide’20: Dogara head PDP screening committee

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has appointed the immediate past Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr Yakubu Dogara, as the chairman of its screening committee, for the Ondo State governorship primaries.

The appointment is contained in a statement issued by its National Organising Secretary, Col. Austin Akobundu (rtd) in Abuja on Wednesday.

Akobundu said that the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) approved the nomination of Dogara and four others to serve on the screening gubernatorial committee.

Other members of the committee, according to Akobundu, include Sen. Zainab Kure, Fred Agbedi and Ndubuisi Agwuama while Rev. Bunmi Jenyo will serve as Secretary.

The committee is mandated to screen all aspirants for the upcoming 2020 governorship election in Ondo state.

“The exercise is scheduled for Thursday at the NWC hall, Wadata Plaza at 10.00 a.m.,’’ Akobundu stated.


#Newsworthy…

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Anambra’21: Zoning for Governor over! – Youths flare

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A youth organisation called Anambra Ekunie has flayed what it termed imposition of governors in the state over the years and said the era was over as the state prepares for the 2021 governorship election.

The group also warned politicians using a purported zoning gimmicks to fan the embers of disunity in the state to desist henceforth.

President of the organisation, Dr. Ifeanyi Achusi made the disclosures in a statement on Wednesday in Enugu.

Achusi said that the popular position among the various sections of the state was that zoning of the governorship seat ended with the emergence of Gov. Willie Obiano.

He said that the insistence that the successor of the incumbent governor must come from a particular zone was against democratic tenets and hence unacceptable.

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Achusi said that the group after its recent meeting in Enugu resolved to encourage qualified candidates to vie for the governorship position in 2021 irrespective of the zone they come from.

He noted that the governorship position had successfully rotated among the three zones of the state since 1999, adding that it was morally wrong for a particular zone to appropriate the 2021 contest to itself.

“Anambra Ekunie is insisting that it is now the turn of Anambra people to elect their governor. We are done with the imposition of a governor on us.

“Our people must now rise to demand that their votes count and it must count for the most credible and most competent,” he said.

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According to Achusi, Anambra remains one and cannot be balkanised by political merchants who see zoning as an avenue to impose a governor who will be subservient to them.

“We are disturbed by the outcome of a recent meeting of political and traditional rulers from Anambra South Zone wherein they insisted that their zone must produce the next governor in 2021.

“Anambra belongs to all of us and the governorship of the state is open to every Anambra son and daughter who wants to contest.

“Therefore, let all who are interested, male and female, young and old from all the zones enter the ring and let the people make their choice. That is our stand,” he said.

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Achusi said that politicians from Anambra South Zone had in every election year contested for the position of governor alongside others.

“There is no doubt that Anambra rotates the governorship among the three senatorial zones but as it is now, all the zones have taken their turns.

“So, the logical thing to do is to begin the rotation afresh from the zone that wins the 2021 governorship election and not to ask others to stay away for you alone to present candidates.

“That has never been done in Anambra and will not begin now,” he said.


#Newsworthy…

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Edo-Ondo Election: APC appoint Keyamo, Fashola, Musa, Shina Peller. | See Full Lists

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The Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee (CEONCPC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has made new appointments.

Former Senate President, Ken Nnamani and Niger Governor, Sani Bello, will chair the APC Reconciliation Committees for Edo and Ondo States, respectively.

Yekini Nabena, Deputy National Publicity Secretary, announced this in a statement on Tuesday.

He said the development was in line with the process of reconciliation among leaders and members at all levels, announced by the National Caretaker Chairman and Yobe Governor, Mala Buni.

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The full list below:

Edo State Reconciliation Committee

Sen. Ken Nnamani – Chairman
Babatunde Fashola, SAN
Fetus Keyamo, SAN
Prof. Tahir Mamman
Mrs. Margaret Okadigbo
Barr. Sanusi Musa
Hon. Kawu Sumaila – Secretary

Ondo State Reconciliation Committee
Governor Sani Bello – Chairman
Sen. Adamu Aliero
Sen. Bamidele Opeyemi
Gambon Magaji
Jasper Azuwatalum
Hajiya Binta Muazu
Hon. Iquo Inyang
Shina Pellar – Secretary

The governorship elections in Edo and Ondo had been slated for September 19 and October 10, 2020.


#Newsworthy…

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Storyline: How Akeredolu’s COVID-19 infection could hinder his re-election

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For the next 14 day at least, Ondo Gov. Rotimi Akerdolu will lie low, nursing his health to beat the covid-19 virus that invaded his system.

In times like this when every second counts, the Ondo No.1 citizen’s latest health status has a lot of political implications

  1. His primary election campaign team will first experience shock, as all of them we have to go in for tests and isolate themselves for 14 days too.
  2. The psychological impact of this will tamp down the excitement and optimism of his team
  3. His arch enemies, within and outside the APC, will take advantage of that. More importantly, his estranged Dep. Gov. Agboola Ajayi who just defected to the PDP to battle in the coming guber election will get in the saddle. How will Akeredolu hand over to him?
  4. His APC challenger for the party ticket, Kayode Oke, will also take advantage of the disarray in Akeredolu camp to gain some more ground.
  5. If there are no underlining health condition may come back a changed man—very careful in his re-lection drive. After all, thunder must not strike same place twice.

#Newsworthy…

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Diezani’s crime: Ex Kebbi Gov, Dakingari’s trial stalled

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The trial of former governor of Kebbi State, Usman Saidu Dakingari was on Monday stalled due to the absence of his counsel, A.A. Awomolo (SAN) and the counsel to the second defendant, O.A. Dada.

Prosecution witness, Olabode Omolola was also absent in court due to the subsisting lockdown.

At the last adjourned date, the matter was stalled due to the absence of the second defendant and it was subsequently adjourned to Monday, June 29, 2020 for continuation of trial.

However, at the resumed hearing on Monday, prosecution counsel informed the court that at the last hearing of the matter, PW 4 testified and concluded evidence in chief but did not conclude his cross examination.

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Prosecution counsel, Mohammed Gambo, informed the court that his witness, PW4 could not appear in court on Monday because of the lockdown as he is currently in Ibadan.

Counsel representing the third defendant A.A. Fingilla, who also represents the first and second defendants, informed the court that the counsels for the second and third defendants were also affected by the lockdown as they both reside in Abuja and Lagos respectively.

Dakingari is standing trial alongside two others, Sunday Dogonyaro and Garba Rabiu Kamba for allegedly receiving the sum of N450 million from the former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Allison Madueke for the purpose of influencing the 2015 general election.

Justice S.B. Onu adjourned the matter to October 8, 2020 for continuation of trial.


#Newsworthy…

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Election: INEC, Police releases code of conduct

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Ahead of the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo States, the National Security Adviser (NSA), Major-General Babagana Munguno; the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, and the Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, have released a comprehensive code of conduct for all security personnel to be engaged in election duties.

The document, signed by the trio, listed procedures for arrests to be made during elections as well as the cautions to be observed.

According to them, the Code of Conduct is to guide all members of the Inter-agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) and their personnel while on electoral duties, is spelt out in this document.

The code of conduct states that all security personnel on election duty shall account for personnel and equipment, such as weapons and other related equipment issued to them, adding that duty parade must not disrupt or delay the smooth conduct of elections and other electoral activities.

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The code of conduct stated that, “Except for personnel deployed on covert operations, all personnel on electoral assignment will ensure a neat turnout in their prescribed uniform and name tags, which must be identifiable to the public, stating that ICCES may from time to time approve a common means of identification for all security agencies on election duty.

“Personnel on covert operations will ensure they turn out in clean outfits, having strict regard for the authorised identification card. Officers engaged in traffic control will ensure that white gloves and armbands are worn.

“No unauthorised item of accoutrement/kits like cudgel, horsewhip, etc. shall be carried by any personnel on election duty. At no time will personnel deployed to Polling Units be allowed to carry firearms.

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“Prescribed and appropriate weapons and riot equipment are to be issued to personnel, who are entitled to bear them. Clearly marked vehicles are to be used for every election exercise and/or operation. The use of personal vehicles to convey personnel for duty is highly discouraged.

“Pocket notebooks shall be carried, where important incidents encountered during tours of duty can be noted, in view of the fact that all security personnel can be personally summoned to account for their actions/inactions while on election duty,” the document stated.

Also, the code of conduct stipulates that, “At venues of all electoral activities, designated officers will identify areas to be classified inner and outer rings respectively to serve as a guide in deployment.

“On no account should personnel deployed to the inner ring of the venue of political events or voting centres/polling units be assigned any lethal weapon except baton. Involvement of the officers at political gatherings shall be limited to the maintenance of peace and order and enforcement of extant laws.

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“Officers shall at all times exercise maximum restraint while covering political gatherings or deployed at voting/collation centres. Officers shall not at any time turn themselves into spectators but shall at all times be conscious of happenings around them, observe precautionary measures and personal safety while on duty.

“Security personnel shall use tact and persuasion to resolve issues, when dealing with or confronted by agitated persons in the crowd. Refer cases to senior officers or supervising officers to avoid escalation where there is tension.”

On venues of political gatherings, voting, collation centres and other electoral activities, the document urged personnel to as much as possible survey and sweep the venues for Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) by the Police Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) personnel ahead of the event.

In the case of an unexpected incident of explosion, “Police EOD Section shall be informed promptly, if not present at the venue, and an evacuation process shall be initiated immediately, while the area is sealed to prevent obstruction during rescue operation and loss of evidential materials.”


#Newsworthy…

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Election’20: Buhari congratulate Chakwera on Malawi victory

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President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated Malawi opposition alliance leader, Lazarus Chakwera, the winner of the country’s presidential election re-run.

A statement issued by Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President (Media &Publicity) in Abuja Sunday noted that the alliance won the re-run five months after the first vote with 58.57 percent of the total votes as declared by the country’s electoral commission.

“Greetings from the government and people of Nigeria. I congratulate you and the alliance on your impressive victory in the elections. I look forward to working with you for the advancement of peace, security and development of the entire continent,” President Buhari said.


#Newsworthy…

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How ‘Black Lives Matter’ Protest could affect 2020 Elections

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As protesters marched through Brooklyn past curfew one night in early June, the young man holding the bullhorn at the front of the crowd kept repeating one date: June 23.

It wasn’t the date of George Floyd’s death. It was the date of the New York Democratic primary. “Nothing is going to change if we just protest,” explains Yahshiyah Vines, 19, who was leading the crowd. “All these people out here: use your emotions in the polls, use your emotions in the voting booth.”

The last few weeks have illustrated the power of the rising racial-justice movement in the wake of Floyd’s death. In less than a month, the protests have shifted public opinion on systemic racism, toppled high-profile executives and gathered momentum in their quest to defund police departments. The next few weeks and months will test whether the movement can translate its social and cultural might into political power.

The first test comes on June 23, when several young Black candidates who have aligned themselves with the Black Lives Matter movement are running in competitive Democratic primaries. Those races could in some ways be a preview of the presidential election in November, when presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden hopes to ride strong turnout among African Americans to victory. The protests could be a political bonanza for Democrats, political strategists say, galvanizing its most reliable voting bloc and boosting voter registration. But it’s not yet clear whether the party is poised to take advantage, especially at the national level.

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Already, the movement has fired up some voters. The progressive non-profit Rock The Vote registered 150,000 new voters in the first two weeks of June, the highest tally of any two-week period in the 2020 election cycle. And despite significant obstacles at the polls, Democrats in Georgia cast more than 1 million ballots in the state’s June 9 primary, breaking the record set in the 2008 contest between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. “People were in line for hours,” says Nse Ufot, executive director of the New Georgia Project, which registered hundreds of voters at Black Lives Matter protests ahead of the primary. “Can you imagine the strength, the resolve, the steely-eyed determination that folks are going to have when they go to the polls in November?”

The New Georgia Project is among a handful of organizations actively registering voters in person at protests around the country. But so far the effort to convert the energy of the movement into votes is spontaneous, localized and disjointed, much like the protests themselves. The most expansive national efforts are digital: The Collective PAC, aimed at building Black political power, has launched a new effort to collect cell phone data from protesters in order to serve them ads about registering to vote. Michael Bloomberg has given $2 million to the Collective PAC’s efforts to register 250,000 Black voters in key battleground states.

“It makes more sense to do it digitally, from a safety perspective,” says Quentin James, co-founder of Collective PAC. “We know who the unregistered African Americans are, we have their names, we have their address, we know the Black people who are purged, and we are targeting them specifically.” James says that in six days, more than 1,000 people have clicked on the ads the group has run through the geo-targeting effort.

National Democratic organizations, meanwhile, have been slow to capitalize on the movement’s energy. The DCCC and DSCC are not coordinating national efforts to register voters at protests, and the Biden campaign has not been actively registering demonstrators, according to spokespeople. Such an effort would be logistically difficult: many actions planned by local organizers are spontaneous and vaporous, operating outside the party structure, which makes it difficult to coordinate voter-registration efforts.

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Above all, the protests are both a gift and a challenge for Biden, who has supported the movement’s goals without embracing activists’ more controversial demands. “This movement has politicized young Black voters in particular,” says LaTosha Brown, co-founder of Black Voters Matter, which aims to register Black voters in overlooked areas. “They’re taking a much harder look at his record. And that doesn’t necessarily work in his favor.”

The former vice president, whose support among Black voters rescued his sinking campaign with a critical victory in South Carolina, has knelt with demonstrators, given a well-received speech about America’s long struggle against racial injustice and spoken at Floyd’s funeral. He has also touted his criminal justice reform plans, which include a $20 billion grant program to encourage states to move towards violence-prevention rather than incarceration, decriminalizing marijuana, ending cash bail, and using the power of the Justice Department to crack down on systemic misconduct in police departments. Since the protests, he has called for a ban on chokeholds and an end to qualified immunity as well as stopping the transfer of “weapons of war” to police departments. Yet he has rejected activists’ demands to “defund the police,” doubling down instead on his police reform plan that provides $300 million for community policing.

So far, the balancing act seems to be working: Trump’s attempts to paint him as a radical don’t appear to have stuck, while new polling has emerged suggesting that 58% of Americans oppose the call to “defund the police.” And Biden has maintained his solid lead in key battleground states. “What we say to young people is that we hear your concerns, we share your pain, we share your enthusiasm,” says Biden senior advisor Symone Sanders. “We have similar goals, we want change, we want police reform in this country, and I think we all agree that this moment has given us an opportunity to do just that.”

The next test of the Black Lives Matter movement’s political power comes June 23, when several states hold primaries featuring young black candidates. In New York’s 16th congressional district, which stretches from the Bronx up into lower Westchester, middle-school principal Jamaal Bowman is running to unseat 16-term Democratic incumbent Eliot Engel. In New York’s 17th district, Mondaire Jones is attempting to become the first openly gay Black member of Congress, competing in a crowded primary to replace a retiring Democrat. And in Kentucky, state Rep. Charles Booker is running against a well-funded opponent, Amy McGrath, for the Democratic nomination to take on Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.

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All three candidates have explicitly aligned themselves with the movement. “We’ve centered racial and economic injustice from the very beginning of our campaign,” Bowman says of his bid to unseat Engel. “In terms of volunteers signing up to phone bank, people making contributions to the campaign, all that stuff has increased exponentially over the last several weeks.” It didn’t help that Engel, the chair of the House Foreign Affairs committee, has been a scarce presence in his district and recently was caught on a hot mic at a protest, saying that “if I didn’t have a primary, I wouldn’t care.”

In May, Bowman was getting roughly 30 to 40 volunteer signups a day, according to data provided by the campaign. Floyd died on May 25. By June 4, the number of volunteers had doubled; by June 10, it had tripled. Bowman raised nearly $265,000 in three days in early June—almost a third what he’d raised in the entire previous year. After endorsements from Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, even more money flowed into his campaign. A week into June, he’d surpassed a million dollars.

Jones, an attorney who worked in the Obama Administration, says he’s also seen a significant increase in donations from the wealthier, whiter parts of his Westchester district. “I think what people have to come to grips with is that if they want to see racial justice, then they have to support progressive candidates like myself,” he says.

As for Booker, his family knew Breonna Taylor, the Black woman who was shot and killed in March by cops executing a no-knock warrant. He’s become a fixture at the Kentucky marches demanding justice for her death. “Standing in the streets crying with people who are facing trauma, the same trauma I carry from cousins who have been murdered over the last four years, the Commonwealth has really taken note,” Booker says. “It has amounted to a big boost in fundraising, a big boost in support.”

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Before the protests began, Booker was raising roughly $100,000 a month. He’s raised roughly $2 million in the month of June, according to his campaign, enough to fund an ad accusing McGrath of skipping the protests. He says he’s working to mobilize historically disenfranchised black voters in Kentucky with a volunteer network of hundreds of people across the state who hadn’t been involved in politics before. Before Memorial Day, his campaign averaged about 300 phone bank shifts a week, his campaign says; now they have more than 100 a day. “We get ignored, we get taken for granted, and the only time people talk to us is when they want us to vote for them and then they disappear on us,” he says. “We’re helping redefine what it means to be involved in politics.”

Polling remains scarce in Democratic congressional and Senate primaries, so it’s hard to tell which of these candidates is likely to prevail on the 23rd. According to one Data for Progress poll, Bowman now leads Engel by 10 points, including a 46-point lead with Black voters (the poll had a margin of error of roughly 5 points). A Public Policy Polling survey has Jones leading by more than 10 points in a crowded primary. The Booker campaign points to internal polling that shows him catching up to McGrath. But the true electoral impact of the movement won’t become clear until the votes are counted.

As younger Black men, candidates like Booker, Bowman and Jones can speak personally about the scourge of systemic racism and police brutality. Biden is a different matter. While he has a strong connection with many Black voters, some Democrats worry his unwillingness to meet the movements’ demands could cost him enthusiasm and votes. A coalition of more than 50 progressive groups recently wrote Biden a letter urging him to adjust his positions on policing, demanding he revise his platform to “ensure that the federal government permanently ends and ceases any further appropriation of funding to local law enforcement in any form.”

“You cannot win the election without the enthusiastic support of Black voters, and how you act in this moment of crisis will play a big role in determining how Black voters—and all voters concerned with racial justice—respond to your candidacy,” the groups wrote. “A ‘return to normalcy’ will not suffice.”

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Veteran organizers say that while older Black voters are loyal Democrats who delivered Biden the nomination, the young activists flooding the streets are demanding more. “If Biden does not come correct, he’s going to take a hit,” says Brown of Black Voters Matter. “He needs Black folks and young folks. He cannot win without either.”

As Republican strategist Stuart Stevens points out, President Trump’s chances of winning spike if Democratic voters of color stay home. Stevens, who advised GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney in 2012, notes that Ronald Reagan got 55% of the white vote in 1980 and won, while John McCain got 55% of the white vote in 2008 and lost, largely because nonwhite voters turned up for Obama. In 2016, Hillary Clinton lost partly because of depressed Black turnout in big cities in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania.

“If Biden can get nonwhite turnout up to what it was in ‘12, ‘08, or ‘04, he wins if everything else stays the same,” Stevens says. “He doesn’t need to win one more white voter.”

Ultimately, many activists say they plan to vote for Biden even if he doesn’t meet all of their demands. “A lot of people might feel disenchanted, but I also think it will make a lot of people go out and vote, because what else is there to do?” says Dara Hyacinthe, a 25-year old freelancer in Brooklyn. “It’s a two-pronged attack, really: you protest, and then you vote.”


#Newsworthy…

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EdoDecide’20: Atiku provides 150 support groups for Obaseki

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Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has donated his 150 support groups to Gov. Godwin Obaseki’s governorship campaign organisation in Edo ahead of the Sept. 19 governorship poll.

Atiku announced this in a statement made available on Saturday in Benin.

The statement was signed by Mr Oladimeji Fabiyi, Deputy Director of the defunct Atiku Support Group/Mobilization Presidential Campaign Organisation.

It quoted Abubakar as directing that the 150 independent support groups in Edo be immediately activated in support of Obaseki who is the PDP’s flag bearer in the election.

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“The former Vice President, as a major stakeholder of the PDP, considers it expedient to put in place winning structures and machineries that will guarantee total victory for the party in Edo.

“We need to complete the circle in the south-south region that naturally and originally belonged to the PDP.

“Having received the directive with joy and enthusiasm, I have no doubt that all our support groups in Edo will be very glad to receive this news and run with the directive of Atiku Abubakar for the benefit of Obaseki and the PDP”, the statement said.

Atiku was the presidential candidate of the PDP in the 2019 general elections.


#Newsworthy…

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