Tag Archives: Governor

Kogi governor, Bello Inaugurate Naval based in the state for security.

Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi on Friday inaugurated the Nigeria Navy Ship Lugard and Navy Barracks in Banda.

The base was established to ensure adequate security of the waterways in the Confluence state and its neighbours.

Bello inaugurated the newly constructed brick model 96 Housing Units, 1.83km road and other facilities in the new Naval base.

The governor pledged more support for the security agencies to ensure the safety of lives and property of the residents of the state.

He said the Naval base was key to his administration’s commitment to security and safety of Kogi people.

He thanked the Navy for their doggedness and synergy with other security agencies which he noted had improved security in the state.

Bello congratulated the Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Ibok-Ete Ibas and other senior officers of the Navy for bringing the project to reality.

“We look forward to other developments like primary and secondary schools, hospitals, ultra-modern markets that would take place in the nearest future,” he said.

While pledging his continued support to the Navy and other security agencies, Bello enjoined them to double their efforts in combating crimes and criminality in the state.

Earlier, Ibas said the event was significant to the Navy in adequately discharging its roles at the base, adding that it would assist in deploying its resources and manpower.

He stressed that the Navy Barracks in Banda would house both operational and administrative activities including barracks, schools, hospitals, residence for Naval staffs and civilians.

He commended the governor for his continued support for the Navy and his commitment in ensuring the security and safety of lives and property in the State.

The Naval boss said that the dredging on rivers Niger and Benue prompted the establishment of the Naval base to ensure adequate security of the waterways.

Other dignitaries at the occasion were representatives from Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Ministry of Defence, Senate Committee Chairman on Navy, top Naval officers, among others.

#Newsworthy..

My Ex Class Mate, Your Daughter Should Have Contested Against Me And Not You – Lalong Mocks Useni.

Governor Simon Lalong has taken a swipe at the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Governorship candidate, Lt. General Jeremiah Useni who lost out at the tribunal and the appeal court after challenging his victory at the 2019 Governorship election in Plateau state.

Lalong who recalled praying for his victory at the poll which according to him was the wish of the people of the state, stated the 76-year-old PDP Governorship candidate should have allowed his daughter who was his classmate contest against him.

He also averred that the validation of his reelection by the appellate court on Friday November 29, is “very sweet”.

“As far as I am concerned, the main election was more important for me. I did the election, I did a run off, we went to the tribunal the first time, we went again for the second time. Well I don’t know whether he is going for the third time,” he said.

“One thing I am very sure and with the confidence I have in Plateau people I know that this victory they are very happy about it. They have prayed about it and the victory is very sweet.

“I will say it again here, his (Useni) daughter was my classmate, I have told him several times, his first daughter was my classmate. So at this stage I would have been expecting his daughter to contest for governor and not him.

“His daughter was my classmate, we went to school together and so why should we be fighting? Fighting him is like fighting a father, it’s unfortunate but for me, I say my focus is Plateau state. We have done that in the first election, he was defeated, he said no, they will go back for a re-run, I said let’s go back for rerun.

“We went back for rerun I defeated him, he said no he was going for the tribunal. We went to the first tribunal, he said he is a general he doesn’t fight and retire, he will go to the Supreme Court. That I think is to make me lose focus but I have not lost any focus in Plateau State. As he is moving, I am becoming more determined because just before the judgment I think he will say go to Plateau state.”

Retired General Jeremiah Timbut Useni was responsible for the administration of Federal Capital Territory Abuja under the military junta of Sani Abacha. He was also the military governor of the old Bendel State from 1984 to 1985 and has also been a minister of transport.

#Newsworthy…

Just in – Ogun state government cancels monthly environmental sanitation and restrictions of movement.

The Ogun State Government has canceled the monthly environmental sanitation exercise in the state and also lifted the restriction of movement order.

This, the State Government said would enable secondary school students across the state to take part in the on-going National Examination Council (NECO) examinations. This was contained in a statement on Friday by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Dapo Abiodun, Kunle Somorin.

Abiodun, while giving the approval, said the decision was arrived at after reviewing the challenges that the restriction of movement order would have on the Mathematics paper in the NECO exams schedule for Saturday and which coincides with the timing of the monthly sanitation exercise.

“It has become expedient that the interest of the students be considered. Mathematics is a general subject and we need to facilitate hitch-free preparation and movement of students, teachers and NECO officials and examiners to various centres where the exams would hold within and outside the state,” the statement said.

Governor Abiodun, however, implored all citizens to ensure that the cleaning exercise is observed at their various houses, irrespective of the non-restriction of movement during the period of the exercise.

He further noted that it was imperative that all drainage channels be kept free of silts and refuse to avoid flooding of homes that could lead to the destruction of lives and properties.

“Cleaning should not be one-month affair. We need to take care of our personal hygiene and clean our environment regularly and on a daily basis to avoid outbreak of cholera and other preventable and communicable diseases that could lead to epidemics,” the statement further said.

The Governor mentioned that the Ministry of Environment and the Ogun State Environmental Protection Agency (OGEPA) have been mandated to go round and collect refuse generated during period of the exercise, while Environmental Health Officers have also been directed to ensure compliance with Public health regulations and bring offenders to book.

#Newsworthy…

There is no court that will shield you from EFCC investigation – Court tells El Rufai.

The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Friday said Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna Stare cannot stop the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) from investigating him.

Justice Binta Nyako said this while delivering judgment, in a suit no: FHC/ABJ/CS/60/09 filed by El-Rufai.

The governor was seeking the court’s determination whether as the then minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), he had complied with the guidelines approved by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for the sale of Federal Government houses between May 2005 and May 2007.

While El-Rufai was the applicant, the defendants from 1st to 13th include: EFCC, FCT minister, FCDA, AGF, CBN, Oceanic Bank, Access Bank, Intercontinental Bank, Aso Savings and Loans Ltd, Union Homes, Akintola Williams Deloite and Aminu Ibrahim & Co.

In the originating summon brought pursuant to Section 302 of 1999 Constitution and Section 3 and 18 of the FCT Act 1990, El-Rufai also sought court’s determination: “whether the proceeds of the sale of Federal Government houses in the FCT between May 2005 – May 2007 were properly accounted for or not in accordance with the FEC mandate and guidelines to the Federal Capital Territory Authority (FCTA).

“Whether the sum of N32 billion (or any sum whatsoever) is missing from the proceeds of the sale of Federal Government Houses in the FCT between May 2005 and May 2007.”

The Kaduna State governor also sought the court’s relief on “a declaration that the sale of Federal Government houses in the FCT was conducted in accordance with the Federal Executive Council mandate to the FCTA through the Ad hoc Committee for the sale of non essential houses in Abuja.

“A declaration that the proceeds of the sale of the said Federal Government houses conducted by the Ad hoc Committee on SOGH in Abuja between 2005 and 2007 were properly accounted for in accordance with the mandate and guidelines approved by the FEC.

“A declaration that the Audit Report prepared by the 12th and 13th respondents on the sale of Federal Government Houses in the FCT confirm that the Sale of Federal Government houses in FCT compiled with the approved guidelines for the sale of Federal Government properties in FCT and the proceeds were properly accounted for.

“A declaration that the proceeds of sale of Federal Government Houses in FCT between May 2005 and May 2007 were properly apportioned and accounted for in accordance with the approved guidelines as confirmed by the Audit Report of the 12th and 13th respondents, dated July 20, 2007.

“A declaration that the sum of N32 billion (or any sum whatsoever) from the proceeds of the sale of Federal Government of Nigeria Houses in FCT between May 2005 and 2007 is not missing.

“An order directing the 2nd respondent to disclose the exact amount remitted to the 5th respondent as the proceeds of the sale of Federal Government houses in the FCT between May 2005 and May 2007.

“An order directing the 5th respondent to disclose the exact amount received from the 2nd respondent as the proceeds of the sale of Federal Government houses in the FCT between May 2005 and May 2007.”

Justice Nyako had earlier, in her judgment, granted El-Rufai’s prayers.

Media reports that in the Friday judgment, the judge noted that the EFCC had called the court’s attention to its counter-affidavit in objection to the prayers.

The anti-graft agency, in its counter-affidavit, had submitted that the motive of the applicant was to stop the commission from investigating him in order to cover up the alleged fraud perpetrated when he was FCT minister.

Justice Nyako, who held that the earlier judgment delivered still stands, however, declared that no court would stop the EFCC from investigating anyone in line with its constitutional mandate.

“No court, including this one, will allow itself to be used to shield anybody from being investigated by the 1st respondent,” the judge held.

#Newsworthy…

Women of the PDP demands Justice for the assassination of the late women leader, Salome Abuh.

Women groups have re-stated their call for justice for the death of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Woman Leader, Mrs Salome Abuh, who was burnt to death in her house during the Nov. 16, Kogi governorship election.

National President, Women in Politics Forum (WIPF), Ebere Ifendu, made the demand while briefing newsmen at the end of a panel session on women in politics during the national women’s dialogue titled “Womanifesto”.

NobleReporters culled that various groups of women, NGOs, female religious groups and others embarked on a match from the National Centre for Women Development to the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs after a three-day conference in Abuja on Friday.

Ifendu at the briefing decried the poor participation of women in politics, which she attributed to violence and intimidation.

She said the situation would discourage more women from participating in politics, thereby stalling their contribution to national development.

“There must be justice for Salome because this is a huge crime against women; we are still struggling to find our feet with all the challenges women face and now this.

“We are afraid and going down on a daily basis but there must be justice to give us reasons to continue.

“We hold Inspector-General of Police accountable, we will follow the prosecution because somebody must pay for that gruesome murder.

“If we fail Salome we fail ourselves, but if there is justice we know that she didn’t die in vain.

“Women should not run away from politics because of this because if we do we are helping them to achieve their aim,” she added.

Ifendu, therefore, stressed the need for a violence-free society which would herald a bright future for women in politics and all sectors.

She also called for an amended Electoral Act adding that political parties should also ensure internal party democracy where people have equal fields to contest for any position.

“In fact what women are demanding now is twinning. That is a situation whereby when we have male president a woman should be vice president and so at all levels of governance,” she said.

Also, the National Coordinator, 100 Women Lobby Group, Mrs Felicia Onibon, blamed the challenges women faced on patriarchy, urging women and all stakeholders to hold the ace and unbundle it so that women could move forward.

A female politician from Cross River state, Ms Eucharia Bisong, expressed sadness over the death of Salome Abuh and other persons during electioneering processes and encouraged women not to give up their struggle.

#Newsworthy…

Plateau: Lalong dares Useni, Says ‘Shoulf he decide to head for the supreme court’ he will win.

Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State has boasted that he will defeat the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), and its governorship candidate in the March 9 2019 elections, General Jeremiah Useni, should he decide to head for the Supreme Court.

Remember, NobleReporters reported the postponed verdict of the Appeal court yesterday, following that is what Lalong told useni below.

Lalong was reacting to the Appeal Court’s judgement on the election which favoured him, urging Useni to leave political scene in the state for the younger generation.

Fielding questions from State House Correspondents Friday, Lalong recalled that he and Useni’s daughter were classmates in school and that he considers the retired General as a father, saying that it was unfortunate that he had to fight a political battle with such a person.

He described the litigations by the PDP candidate as distraction meant to make him lose focus.

Asked his message to Useni after Appeal Court’s decision, Lalong said, “I will say it again here, his daughter was my classmate, I have told him several times, his first daughter was my classmate. So at this stage I would have been expecting his daughter to contest for governor and not him.

“His daughter was my classmate, we went to school together and so why should we be fighting? Fighting him is like fighting a father, it’s unfortunate but for me, I say my focus is Plateau State.

“We have done that in the first election, he was defeated, he said no, they will go back for a re-run, I said let’s go back for rerun. We went back for rerun I defeated him, he said no he was going for the tribunal. We went to the first tribunal, he said he is a General he doesn’t fight and retire, he will go to the Supreme Court.

“That I think is to make me lose focus but I have not lost any focus in Plateau State. As he is moving, I am becoming more determined. The governor of Edo was telling me today (Friday) that he left Plateau last year but when he went to Plateau a week ago, it was a different Plateau and I told him after Christmas if you come, you will see a different Plateau.”

Speaking on the judgment, the governor said, “As far as I am concern, the main election was more important for me. I did the election, I did a run off, we went to the tribunal the first time, we went again for the second time.

“Well, I don’t know whether he is going for the third time. One thing I am very sure and with the confidence I have in Plateau people I know that this victory they are very happy about it. They have prayed about it and the victory is very sweet.

“You know when you get things this way and people are very happy. I am serving people and each time I look at them, I pity them if there is any change in Plateau State with what have done so far, restoring peace in Plateau State, bringing development to the people of Plateau state and overnight, to say that something can change it, it will be very very unfortunate. But I thank God for the judgment and also the confidence we have in the judiciary.”

#Newsworthy…

Gov. Ayade, Calabar becomes the first state to test-run MTN’s 5G Technology.

The Governor of Cross River State, Prof Ben Ayade, has lauded MTN Group, Africa’s leading cellular telecommunications company in Nigeria, for its choice of Calabar as one of the pilot cities to test-run its latest technological innovation – the 5G technology.

The Governor, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information and Orientation, Dr. Aye Henshaw, made gave the commendation during the Company’s 5G technology trial, held on 28 November 2019, at MTN Office, Etta Agbor Road, Calabar.

Prof Ayade said with Cross River, being a technically-savvy State, MTN’s latest 5G technology, when it becomes fully operational, will further energise the state’s aspiration of becoming the first smart city in Nigeria.

“The arrival of 5G technology in Calabar is not a coincidence. We are pretty gratified that MTN chose Calabar as one of the pilot cities for this project,” he stated.

“I know that we have a history of partnership with MTN. When we started to build the Optic Fibre Network, it was in partnership with MTN. Going forward, the current administration has invested a lot of funds in equipment that will lead to the realization of that project. And very soon, we will call MTN again on issues of connectivity, because the Ayade-led administration, as a test-run, wants to get the entire Carnival Calabar route to be smart,” Governor Ayade added.

The Governor, who described the 5G innovation as a welcomed development, commended the company for displaying the abundance of benefits the 5G technology brings.

The Governor promised to key in and build on the existing partnership, while wishing MTN a faster rollout that would lead to the adoption and approval of the technology for the consumption of Cross Riverians and other residents of the State.

In his remarks, the Chief Technical Officer, MTN Nigeria, Mr. Mohammed Rufai, after conducting the Governor and other dignitaries round the 5G Demonstration Booths, said the exercise was just a demonstration of the technology which is subject to the ratification, adoption and approval of the National Communications Commission (NCC).

Also speaking, the Chief Sales and Distribution Officer, Mr. Adekunle Adebiyi, added that the 5G innovation will bring a whole new change to digital service delivery, while advising all to begin to tune towards adaptation to the modern-day phenomenon.

He said:”How we go about our investments, doing things and coming first with a lot of innovations is a further demonstration that MTN has come to stay”.

5G is the fifth generation of cellular network technology. The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) has defined three main uses for 5G. They are Enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB), Ultra Reliable Low Latency Communications (URLLC), and Massive Machine Type Communications (mMTC)

#Newsworthy…

Bauchi – Court of Appeals confirm Senator Bala Mohammed as the Governor.

The Appeal Court sitting in Jos on Friday upheld the election and return of Senator Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir as the duly elected Governor of Bauchi State as declared by the Inependent National Election Commission, INEC in the last general election.
While delivering its judgement on Friday, the five-man panel dismissed all the four grounds of appeal filed by the All Progressives Congress, APC and its defeated gubernatorial candidate in the election, Mohammed Abdullahi Abubakar
Reading the judgement, Justice O. A Otisi held that all the grounds of appeal filed before the court by the appellants lacked merit and thereby dismissed them.
Counsel to the Bauchi state Governor, Chris Uche hailed the judgement describing it as a victory for democracy calling on the people of Bauchi State to continue to support the administration.
Immediately after the judgement, there was wild jubilation by supporters of the governor and the Poeple’s Democratic Party, PDP blocking the main Yakubu Gowon highway slowing down traffic along the road in Jos
They were beating drums and other musical instruments praising Bala Mohammed Abdulkadir just as they held placards and posters of the Governor.

More Details later…

#Newsworthy…

Governor of sokoto grants 8000 ghost workers amnesty, Dansuki says…

The Sokoto state government has granted amnesty to about 8,000 suspected ghost workers and those collecting abnormal salaries under its payroll.

Alhaji Abdussamad Dasuki, the Finance Commissioner and Acting Chairman, Sokoto state Steering Committee on Integrated Payroll and Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), disclosed this during a news conference, on Thursday, November 28th in Sokoto.

Dasuki said the initiative was to enable civil servants collecting salaries they don’t earn and those engaged in improper practices against regulations to come forward and open up under confidentiality and guaranteed state pardon. He said that the period of the amnesty began from Nov. 27, to end on Dec. 9, 2019, by midnight.

“Government is, therefore, calling on those concerned to avail themselves of this initiative. At the end of this period-appropriate sanctions will be meted out to those found wanting following Civil Service Rules and relevant laws,” he said.

The commissioner added that in the course of the committee’s activities, a lot of wrongdoings were discovered.

“These include suspected ghost workers, wrong computation of salaries, and inappropriate and inflated implementation of salary scales of certain cadres of civil servants. Similarly, civil servants or members of the public with relevant information that can assist in the discovery and/or resolution of problems in the payroll system are invited to approach the committee.

“However, this is with the assurance of confidentiality and reward where appropriate. Those willing to cooperate can contact the committee directly or reach out through the following phone numbers: 08105475900, 08144885521 08106010490,” he said.

According to Dasuki, they can also reach the committee through any of its members, members of the State Executive Council, Special Advisers, Permanent Secretaries or Directors-General, with an equal guarantee of secrecy and appreciation.

#Newsworthy…

Just in – Governors in the south team up for community policing..

The six governors of the South South geo-political zone have declared support for community policing as panacea for security challenges in the country as proposed by the Nigeria Police Force (NPF).

This was contained in a communiqué issued at the end of a one-day security summit for the South South region by the force, and hosted in Asaba, Delta State.

The summit, which drew participants from the six states, including Edo, Delta, Bayelsa, Rivers, Cross and Akwa Ibom has as its theme: “Strategic Partnership for Effective Community Policing in the South South Zone.”

The communiqué, which was read by the host governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, explained that the motive of community policing which hinged on integrating the grassroots into security management across the country was commendable.

It said the summit represented a significant redefining policing and security arrangements across the country, adding that current challenges were and should be the concern of not just government, but every citizen.

Also in the communiqué signed by the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, and representatives of the governments of the six states, the participants urged the IGP to design training pattern for vigilantes and neighbourhood watchers to bridge the personnel gap in the Police Force.

According to them, the ad-hoc security operatives should be suitably equipped and funded and their operations should be subject to direct supervision and control by the police.

“Moreover, the IGP should take further proactive steps to facilitate an appropriate legal framework to enhance the operations of the vigilance groups and similar bodies,” the communiqué added.

The participants expressed concern over declining family values, saying many crimes were traceable to negative peer group influence, substance abuse and the absence of moral discipline, all of which could be mitigated by good parenting and effective teaching and learning in schools.

They, therefore, charged stakeholders to undertake strong advocacy for the sustenance of family values and functional education capable of promoting self-employment for youths.

They also urged state governments in the zone to “pursue job and wealth creation as a priority as unemployment among youths is one of the disposing factors to criminality.”

#Newsworthy…

Edo state governor, Obaseki, others to be honored in Ghana..

A Group, Leadtimes Regional Summit on Good Governance, is set to honour some Nigerian and Ghanaian business men.

Also to be honoured are the wives of Edo, Enugu and Ondo State Governors, namely, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki, Mrs. Monica Ugwuanyi and Mrs.Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu.

Others are Executive Director of Cometstar Manufacturing Company Limited, Mr. Nwamaka Uduji, Chief Executive of Four Gate, Prince Omolayo Oladugbagbe, for good governance and administration in public and private sectors.

A statement by the Group, signed by Advisory Board Chairman, Leadtimes Africa, Professor Buba. S.Mshelia, and Director of Institute of Art Management and Professional Studies, Professor Prince Eze Nwauba, said the theme of the conference is “Promoting Business, Investments and Security in Africa through Good Governance -A Case Study of Ghana.

The statement, which was made available to The Nation, said the conference would be used as platform to honour Africans across Ghana and Nigeria who have excelled in their professional career and business across the regional borders.

It will also honour those who promote good governance in Africa. “Leadership would be recognized with honours at the occasion,” the duo stated.

The summit, which will attract participants from all walks of life including captains of industry, technocrats, security agencies, business men and women, religious leaders and all stakeholders in leadership cycle, is expected to last for a day.

#Newsworthy…

N208.8 Billion: Governor Seyi Makinde Of Oyo Presents Budget To The Assembly..

Nigeria

Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State on Wednesday presented a N208.8 billion Appropriation Bill for the 2020 fiscal year to the State House of Assembly.

Media reports that the budget presented by Makinde was N77 billion lower than the N285.2 billion 2019 budget presented in 2018 by his predecessor, Abiola Ajimobi.

The N208,802,972,878 billion total budget proposal has N100,142,690,046 earmarked for capital expenditure and representing 47.9 per cent of the total budget estimate.

This was an increase of 20 per cent when compared to the 2019 budget.

Also, the total recurrent expenditure for 2020 financial year stood at N108,660,282,832, representing 52.1 per cent of the budget proposal.

Makinde said: “You will also note that our capital expenditure increased by about 20 per cent, compared to the 2019 budget.

“The importance of this increase should not be lost on us. Increased allocation to capital projects directly contributes to a more buoyant economy and sustainable development.

“We will not only be starting new projects but also completing all ongoing projects from the previous administration.”

N.Rs reports that works had the highest sectoral allocation in the 2020 fiscal year’s budget at 23.93 per cent while education came a close second with a total allocation of 22.37 per cent of the budget.

Makinde said that other sectors prioritised in the 2020 budget included healthcare which received 5.18 per cent of the total budget proposal.

He said: “4.43 per cent of the budget was allocated to the agricultural sector. We remain determined to utilise agriculture to drive our economy.

“We are implementing policies that will transform farming activities, increase production and improve the quality of food crops, livestock exports and industrial crops through application of modern technology.

“We are presently working at upgrading two of the nine farm settlements in Oyo State at Eruwa and Akufo into Farm Estates.

“These estates will also serve as crop processing zones with the required technology and mechanisation practices.”

The governor further announced the relocation of the headquarters of the Oyo State Agricultural Development Programme (OYSADEP) back to Saki in Oyo North Senatorial District while also promising a restructuring of the programme.

He said that the programme would be fully strengthened in order to ensure efficient and effective performance.

Makinde assured the lawmakers that the budgeted funds would be accounted for, stressing that every single expenditure was geared toward facilitating the accelerated development of the state.

He urged the Speaker, Debo Ogundoyin, and other lawmakers to give the proposal due consideration in a timely manner “so that implementation may commence and Oyo State will indeed get on the path to accelerated development.”

Ogundoyin, in his remarks, assured the governor that the House would give the proposal prompt attention to ensure the overall development of the state.

#Newsworthy…

The minority leaders should come up with a law to tackle electoral violence – Sen. Yahaya

Nigeria

The Leader of the Senate, Yahaya Abdullahi, has hinted that the upper chamber of the National Assembly might come up with a bill that will prescribe punishments for perpetrators of violence during elections.

Abdullahi stated this on Tuesday while contributing to a motion moved by Senator George Sekibo, on the violence that rocked the governorship elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states on November 16.

He warned that any politician, irrespective of his or her political parties, could be a victim of violence during elections.

The Senate majority leader said this as the United Nations condemned the killings during the governorship election in Kogi State.

Also on Tuesday, the House of Representatives said it would investigate the violence during the governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa states.

No fewer than six people were killed during the governorship election in Kogi State. On November 18, a Peoples Democratic Party women leader, Salome Abuha, was burnt to death when thugs set her home at Ochadamu in the Ofu Local Area of the state on fire.

At the Senate plenary on Tuesday, Abdullahi said there was the need for the two main political parties in the Senate to work together and save the nation’s electoral process.

He said, “It is important if the Minority Leader and I can come up with a by-partisan bill to look at the punishments for electoral violence.

“Let us see how we can raise a law to effectively tackle electoral violence because electoral violence knows no partisanship. All politicians on all sides are guilty.

“Electoral violence started from the beginning of our democratic journey in 1999, but it’s getting worse by the day. There were pockets of violence in other republics, but they were not as terrible as what we have today. If we don’t curb this phenomenon, it’s going to be dangerous for our country,” he added.

He admitted that the issue of electoral violence had been happening since the beginning of the present republic in 1999.

We can become victims of electoral violence, Senator warns colleagues

He said, “The spectre of violence and its attendant consequences are some of the unhealthiest events in the country. I believe that all politicians, irrespective of the various parties we belong to, have a responsibility to address and to curb violence, otherwise we will all become victims.

“So, there is the need for us to urge the security agencies to really do their jobs. They should arrest and bring to book the perpetrators of the dastardly act, who are known.”

The Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, lamented that the security agencies had not successfully prosecuted the perpetrators of electoral violence.

He said, “People have been known and seen to perpetuate violence and nothing has been done to them. Once nothing is done to somebody, once nobody pays the price for criminality of this nature, it only creates further violence.

“The law enforcement agencies must be up to task. The husband of the woman that was killed in Kogi State has identified those who killed his wife but till today, nothing has been done to them.

“We have heard all manner of excuses and there is now a pattern. If you don’t curb it through the use of enforcement, you will only see that pattern continue to grow.”

The senate consequently, condemned the spate of election-related violence in the country.

Senate observes a minute silence for victims

It observed a minute silence for all those who lost their lives in the violence during the governorship polls in Bayelsa and Kogi states.

The upper chamber also urged the National Orientation Agency and the Independent National Electoral Commission, to carry out a detailed campaign against electoral violence in subsequent elections.

The Senate also urged the security agencies to expeditiously apprehend perpetrators of electoral violence in all the areas where they occurred and bring them to book.

The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, stressed the need for the immediate arrest of the perpetrators of electoral violence in Bayelsa and Kogi states.

He said, “No party is free from this blame, and it is for us as politicians to continue to enlighten our people to face politics as a game of ideas. I believe that those who perpetrated violence, especially in the last elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states, should be apprehended and prosecuted. I believe that this is the way to go; people should pay the price of their actions.”

Sekibo had in his lead debate, noted that armed thuggery has increased more in 2019 compared to previous elections.

He said privileged politicians used either armed thugs or security agents to disrupt smooth electioneering.

Sekibo noted that the effect of mayhem would reduce the credibility of electoral process and deepen hatred as well as widen the gap of our unity, if not checked.

He said, “The country’s electoral management body is not strong enough to withstand the pressure exerted by the political system. The electoral misconduct that accompanies it continue to threaten the deepening of democratization process.

“This negative effect of electoral violence in the country would continue to reduce the citizens’ confidence in the democratic process as well as heighten the fears of possible democratic collapse,” he added.

Reps probe Bayelsa, Kogi polls

On its part, the House of Representatives began an investigation into the violence recorded in the elections.

The Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, however, stated that the report by the panel that would conduct the probe would not be considered if it blamed any political party.

The Deputy Minority Leader, Toby Okechukwu, and a member, Solomon Bob, had at the plenary on Tuesday moved a motion titled “Need to Investigate the Security Breaches and Violence at the November 16, 2019, Elections in Kogi and Bayelsa States.” The motion was unanimously adopted.

Moving the motion, Okechukwu stated that the polls witnessed widespread violence.

He said, “The House is aware of the reports released by civil society organisations that security officials were complicit in the violence and disruption that characterised the Kogi and Bayelsa elections. The House is also aware that Governor Seriake Dickson reported that soldiers were deployed in the Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.”

The lawmaker also made reference to the Youth Initiative for Advocacy, Growth and Advancement, and the Situation Room which called for cancellation of the elections following the role of security agents.

Okechukwu further said, “The House is disturbed that in spite of such massive deployment of security personnel coupled with the intelligence reports, the elections witnessed such a degree of violence resulting in the death of one Mrs Salome Abuh. The House is concerned that the Police Service Commission also blamed insufficient manpower as reason for the widespread chaos during the elections. The House is mindful of the constitutional mandate of parliament and the need to forestall a recurrence.”

The lawmakers, therefore, prayed the House to “constitute a joint committee on Police Affairs, Army, Justice, Electoral Matters and Human Rights to investigate the pre and post-election security breaches in Kogi and Bayelsa.”

However, Gbajabiamila, before the motion was unanimously adopted through a voice vote, said he would amend the motion before it was passed. He warned the joint committee against naming or blaming any political party in its report.

UN condemns Kogi killings, commends investigation

The United Nations condemned the killings during the Kogi State governorship election. It also said it supported measures taken by the government to check hate speech, but not the death penalty.

The UN’s Deputy Secretary-General, Ms Amina Mohammed, told State House correspondents in Abuja that the global body commended President Muhmmadu Buhari for condemning the loss of lives in Kogi State.

She also stated that the President took the appropriate step by calling for an investigation into the killings that took place in Kogi State.

Mohammed stated, “ (On) The recent loss of lives in politics of Kogi State, we commended Mr President for condemning the killings and asking for investigation.”

She said hate speech had become a major issue, which countries could introduce measures to check.

Mohammed, who was reacting to a question on the bill before the Nigerian Senate, which proposed death penalty for hate speech, noted that the UN would not subscribe to killing offenders as punishment.

She said it was a good development that the sponsor of the bill, later deleted the death penalty from the bill.

Mohammed said, “Measures and checks taken that will reduce hate speech are supported. However, we are not in support of the death penalty, and we are happy that the sponsor of the bill has taken that provision out of it”, Mohammed stated.

Mohammed said she visited Nigeria to express the appreciation of the Secretary-General, Mr António Guterres, to the Nigerian President.

It’s irresponsible to say FG blackmailed Jonathan – Presidency

Meanwhile, the Presidency said on Tuesday that it was “false and irresponsible’’ for anyone to give the impression that former President Goodluck Jonathan fell to blackmail by supporting the All Progressives Congress in the just-concluded governorship poll in Bayelsa State.

It noted that before the poll, the former President and the Governor of Bayelsa State, Mr Seriake Dickson, already had a sour relationship. It added that this was enough a reason to make Jonathan support another party other than the PDP.

“It just doesn’t make any sense”, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Mr Garba Shehu, stated in an interview in Abuja.

Garba added, “Our media really must learn to verify whatever they publish. And people who make wild allegations during interviews should be made to produce the facts backing their claims by editors.

“A newspaper can be sued for granting space to people who belch false allegations against individuals with no proof.’’

He recalled that for five years, Jonathan had been out of power, adding that there was no time there was an allegation that he was blackmailed by the APC government to take any decisions.

“Anyone who has been following the politics of Bayelsa State should be aware of the sour relationship between Dr Jonathan and the incumbent governor, Seriake Dickson.

“That is more than enough reason for the former President to decide to work against his party, if indeed he did.

“We really must stop this habit of blaming President Buhari for everything, including issues that are not his business”, a statement by the Deputy Director, information, Mr Abiodun Oladunjoye, quoted Shehu as saying.

A former governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Sule Lamido, had in an interview (not in The PUNCH), said Jonathan traded off the PDP for the APC during the governorship poll in Bayelsa because of his alleged link with $1.6bn Malabu scandal, an allegation that the ex-President had denied.

#Newsworthy…

Muslim man slams Deputy Governor Hadiza Sabuwa for not covering her chest enough.. (See what he said..)

Dr. Hadiza Sabuwa Balarabe, the Deputy Governor of Kaduna State, attended an event fully covered in native attire and a veil across her chest. But a Muslim man felt her chest was not well covered and he criticized her for it.

She shared photos from the event and wrote: “This evening, I received renowned Islamic Scholar, @muftimenk. Mufti Ismail Menk inspires millions of people across the globe with his wisdom, balanced approach and great sense of humour.”

As Twitter users congratulated her, a certain Nigerian man with the Twitter handle @MusaYUbandoma wrote: “And what does it signifies when you’re not a good practicing Muslim wife/mother, even in the midst of people that are not your Muharram you don’t cover your chest.

“Just reminding you not to be among the “kathiatin ariyatin,mumilatu” May Allah SWT forgive our short comings.”

Twitter users called out the Nigerian man for his tweet and told him he’s the one who deserves God’s forgiveness for looking at her chest.

#Newsworthy…

PDP Governors Arrives Abuja For Summit On IGR, Diversification..

State governors elected on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP Governors Forum) are set to host the 2019 edition of its annual Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) summit in Abuja. Glimpses into the event show that an array of tested IGR experts are billed to make strategic presentations, aimed at boosting revenue generation initiatives in the PDP-governed States.

Earl Osaro Onaiwu, the Director-General of the Forum said the event will hold at the BON Hotel Stratton Asokoro, Abuja, on November 27-28, 2019.

Themed: “The Imperatives of Developing Internally-Generated Revenue Options for State Governments in a Recessed Economy”, Onaiwu said the summit l, which is hosted by the PDP Governors Forum and managed by Messrs Red Sapphire Nigeria Limited, in conjunction with the Producers of “Money Line on AIT”, will parade the Finance expert, Nancy Iloh as the summit anchor.

The expected participants are – State Commissioners of Finance, Trade/Investments, Budget/Economic Planning, Tourism and Local Governments/Chieftaincy Affairs; National/State Assembly Committee Chairmen on Local Governments whose input will generally provide statutory and parliamentary backing for the major determinants and considerations on IGR Resources; SSAs on Trade/Investments, Economy, Finance and Revenue Generation; LGA Chairmen/ Secretaries, as well as Heads of State Boards of Internally-Generated Revenue and Senior Executives engaged in the Development and Management of Rural Economy amongst others.

“The high-profile summit will feature the Governor of Bayelsa State and Chairman of PDP Governors Forum, Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson as the Chief Host of the summit, and the National Chairman of the PDP, Prince Uche Secondus as the Special Guest of Honour.

“The ultimate intention of the Forum in hosting the strategic event is aimed at increasing the economic well-being of the citizenry, and more access to dividends of democracy, a cardinal objective of the PDP.

“The summit is expected to parade finance and IGR experts like Dr. Peter Obi, former Governor of Anambra State and Vice Presidential Candidate of the PDP, Dr. Obadiah Mailafia, a former CBN Deputy Governor, Mr. Akinyele Oladeji, an IGR Expert and Managing Consultant/Country Representative of Canadian Software Development Corporation (CSDC Consulting Nigeria) and a coterie of frontline speakers, session chairmen, faculty members amongst other drawn from allied and related sectors”, Onaiwu added.

#Newsworthy…

Capture those behind the violence in Kogi and Bayelsa elections – Senate…

The Senate on Tuesday asked security agencies to apprehend those behind the violence that marred the elections in Kogi and Bayelsa States.

This was one of the resolutions arrived at by the red chamber after the matter of the election was raised during plenary.

As shared via the verified Twitter handle of the Senate, Senator George Sekibo citing Orders 42 & 52 moved a motion on public electoral violence.

Reacting to the motion, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe said, “We join them to condemn this electoral violence. People have been known to create violence and nothing has been done. What we should add is that law enforcement agencies must be up to the task.

“The husband of the woman that was killed in Kogi has identified those that committed the crime and they should be arrested. We will urge all legal instruments that can be used to be deployed to curb electoral violence.

Senator Abdullahi Yahaya (Kebbi) also condemned the electoral violence. He said, “Irrespective of the party we belong to, our responsibility is to prevent and curb electoral violence. The security agencies should put good measures and punish the perpetrators of electoral violence.”

Thereafter, the Senate resolved to “condemn the spate of killings in the country; observe a minute silence in honour of those that lost their lives in the just concluded elections in Bayelsa and Kogi States.

“Urge the NOA and INEC to carry out electoral violence advocacy campaigns in subsequent elections and urge security agencies to apprehend perpetrators of this violence.”

Commenting on the motion, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan said, “This is a very important motion, no party is absolved from this and we should continue to enlighten our followers to see politics as a game of ideas, people should pay price for their actions.”

#Newsworthy…

Zamfara Assembly welcomes Yari, Repeals the law binding the payment of pension of former governors…

Zamfara House of Assembly has repealed the law mandating the state government to pay pension and other entitlements of former governors and deputies, as well as those of Speakers and their deputies.

Presenting the bill before the House on Tuesday, House leader Hon Faruk Musa Dosara, urged his colleagues to, as a matter of urgency, consider the repeal of the law which provided jumbo pay for former political leaders in the state to the detriment of retired civil servants who have not been paid their entitlements over the years.

Dosara said the category of past leaders were collecting over N700,000m annually, which, he said, the present state economy could not accommodate for now.

Seconding the motion at the chamber, Hon Tukur Jekada Birnin Tudu from Bakura local government, said the abolition of the law was necessary, arguing that “it is detrimental to the socio-economic wellbeing of our people.”

After serious deliberations and contributions by House members, the Speaker, Hon Nasiru Mu’azu Magarya, ordered the clerk of the House to give the bill first and second reading.

The House then went for a committee of whole meeting, after which the bill went for a third reading.

The House resolved that the bill has now been passed into law and would be sent to the governor for assent.

With this development, all past political leaders in the state will no longer enjoy any entitlements unless those prescribed by the National Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission.

#Newsworthy…

Gov. Sanwo olu promise new NYSC camp in Lagos …

Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu has said his administration had started taking steps towards building a new orientation camp for the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Lagos State to accommodate the large number of corps members sent to the state.

Speaking at the closing of the Batch C Stream 1 Orientation programme Monday, Sanwo-Olu, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Relations, said:

“I wish to put on record that this administration is very conscious of the increasing number of corps members deployed to Lagos State, hence we are putting in place all measures towards the construction of a befitting permanent orientation camp that can accommodate the large number of corps members deployed to the centre of excellence.”

Sanwo-Olu also urged organisations where the 2,540 corps members would be posted to accept them and take care of their welfare while the service year lasts.

Reacting to the Governor’s speech, the Lagos State NYSC Coordinator, Mr Sunday Aroni, said in an interview that he was glad of the reference to the new camp – evidence that something is in the works.

In his speech, Aroni counseled the corps members to be of good behaviour throughout their service year.

“It is important to warn you to desist from acts that are capable of denting the image of the scheme and by extension, your families. I encourage you to be agents of change and be good ambassadors in your places of primary assignment. Lead by example and always let ‘Service and Humility’ be your watch word,” he said.

#Newsworthy…

Gov. Okowa raises alarm on how the rich evade tax..

Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State on Monday in Asaba lamented the evasion of tax payment by majority of those in affluence in the state.

The governor said such apathy towards tax obligation was exacerbating the already dwindling revenue from the federation accounts.

Okowa who made the observation while inaugurating the state board of internal revenue, charged the board to step up efforts to increase internally generated revenue so as to bridge the funding gap in the state economy.

He however, urged the board which has Mr. Monday Onyeme as chairman not to burden the poor nor over charge the rich who were already keyed into the tax net but seek ways to engage new taxpayers.

According to him, “the state needs additional funds to finance its technical education, health, infrastructure (roads) among others.”

He further tasked the board to increase its relationship with all relevant government agencies for effective synergy to increase internal revenue.

Other members of the inaugurated board were Mr. Mike Edegware (secretary), Mr. Kelly Edegwhenerue and Mr. Godday Daniel. The fifth member, Austin Igbini, according the governor, would be inaugurated next month.

Responding on behalf of other members, Onyeme, thanked the governor for finding them worthy to be re-appointed for a second term and pledged their commitment to deliver on the mandate.

He appealed to the governor and the state House of Assembly to fast track the process of the giving full autonomy to the board.

According to him, the autonomy will enable the board act faster, effectively and become more proactive in tackling tax matters and increase the revenue base.

#Newsworthy…

Yari writes letter to Gov. Matawalle to seek N10 Million Pension Per Month…

Former governor of Zamfara state, Abdulaziz Yari has demanded that Govenor Bello Matawalle, pay his outstanding allowance and pension.

In a letter dated October 17 addressed to the governor, Yari said he is entitled to N10 million monthly as upkeep allowance, but that he has only been paid twice since he left office. He said the law which was passed on March 23, 2019 by the State House of Assembly, provides for the entitlement of former governors, deputies, speakers and deputy speakers was amended in March and that it should not be truncated.

“I wish to humbly draw your attention to the provision of the law on the above subject matter which was amended and assented to on the 23rd of March 2019. The law provides, among other entitlements of the Former Governor, a monthly upkeep allowance of Ten Million Naira (N10,000,000) only and a pension equivalent to the salary he was receiving while in office.

“Accordingly, you may wish to be informed that since the expiration of my tenure on the 29th of May, 2019. I was only paid the upkeep allowance twice , that is, for the month of June and July while my pension for the month of June has not been paid.

“As the law provides, the pension and upkeep allowance are not in the category of privileges that can be truncated without any justifiable reason, hence, the need to request you to kindly direct the settlement of the total backlog of the pension and upkeep as provided by the law. While thanking you most sincerely for the anticipated positive action, please accept my high regards and esteem,” he said.

#Newsworthy…

Oshiomhole Plead APC Goveenors says, “Implement N30,000 Naira Minimum Wage”.

The National Chairman, All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, has pleaded with all APC governors to implement the N30,000 minimum wage and the consequential adjustments.

Oshiomhole made the plea on Monday in Jos at the Federal Government-Progressives Governors Forum parley in Jos.

“As progressives, let us be the first to pay the new national minimum wage and not just the wage but also the consequential adjustments arising from it.

“Already, there are some proactive progressive governors that have taken steps to address this.

“I plead that you give this a priority because when other governors are fighting whether or not to pay, you will say that progressive governors have paid.

“Where there is will, there will certainly be a way,” he said.

The APC national chairman also called on the APC governors to support border closure by the Federal Government.

He said that the nation’s borders should remain closed until neighbouring countries follow the protocols of fair trade.

Oshiomole in an interview with journalists also lent his support to financial autonomy for Local Government Areas in the country.

He said that LG autonomy was not negotiable.

According to him, just as the Federal Government does not determine how state governors manage their money, so should the state governors allow the local governments to enjoy the same freedom.

He said, “Local governments should be autonomous, but autonomy doesn’t mean there should not be an oversight.

“The same way the Federal Government goes after a state governor that breaks the financial rule, the same way state governor should go after local government that mismanages revenue that accrues to it,” he said.

#Newsworthy…

Channel resources and initiatives to what will benefit Nigerian citizens – Buhari..

President Muhammadu Buhari says that he will not accept underperformance from any All Progressives Congress (APC) Governor, following the overwhelming victory of the party at the 2019 General Elections.

He urged the Governors to channel resources and initiatives to what will benefit Nigerian citizens.

Buhari made the remarks in Jos on Monday while declaring open the third Federal Government/Progressives Governors Forum’s parley on “Strenthening Public Service Delivery” hosted by Plateau State Governor Simon Lalong.

“Early in 2019, Nigeria overwhelmingly re-elected me as President. That election was a referendum on not just my leadership but also on our party. Some State Governors were re-elected while new ones also came on board,” Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF) Boss Mustapha stated, delivering the President’s message.

“To whom much is given, much more is expected. It is therefore incumbent on this to meet the expectations of our teeming population. There should be no room for excuses and that is where the outcome of this parley becomes very critical.”

The President mentioned that insecurity has remained a major obstacle of his administration but expressed strong determination to overcome the challenge and secure the country.

He reiterated the protection of lives and property as the primary resposibility of government and called on citizens to be active participants in security matters.

Buhari said the APC government will do everything to sustain the country’s economic recovery efforts and reinforce the microeconomic policies to achieve sustainable economic stability in the country.

Plateau State Governor and Chairman of the Northern Governor’s Forum Simon Lalong said despite the challenges facing the country, the APC has recorded tremendous progress in reshaping the economy, rebuilding infrastructure, creating jobs and improving security of of lives and prosperity.

“We must admit that there is still more work to be done considering the level of decay we inherited in our various states. That is why we have commended Mr President for leading the way in the determination to deliver change and take Nigeria to the next level,” Lalong stated.

Chairman of the Progressives Governors and Governor of Kebbi State Abubakar Atiku Bagudu appreciated those who led the campaign that culminated to the re-election of Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State and the victory of David Lyon of Bayelsa State as Governor-elect, victories which brought the number of the APC Governors to 20.

He said that the Federal Government under President Muhammadu Buhari has brought crucial intervention to the states which has enabled them pay salaries and pensions, and has expended N23 billion to states ravaged by floods.

Bagudu expressed pleasure over the Buhari administration’s zero-oil policy, a policy which he said has compelled most state Governors to look inward for domestic revenue sources in order to become economically sustainable.

Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Adams Oshomhole, on his part, said Nigerians must support the Federal Government’s policy on the closure of Nigeria’s land borders, a move which according to him has curtailed the infiltration of fake products into the country.

He urged the APC Governors to partner with the party leadership to make the party a strong and a formidable institution in the country.

The panel of discussants at the event included Governor Kayode Fayemi, Ekiti; Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, Kebbi; Godwin Obasake, Edo; Alh. Abdullahi Sani Bello, Nasarawa; Nasiru El-Rufai, Kaduna, Mohammed Badaru, Jigawa while Kogi and Gombe State Governors were represented by their deputies.

#Newsworthy…

(CFN) Kwara state ready for Abdulrazak’s cycling..

The Cycling Federation of Nigeria (CFN) has concluded arrangements to hold the inaugural edition of the Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazak National Cycling Championship and Commissaries Course in Ilorin, the state capital.

Technical Director of the CFN, Bashir Mohammed, who disclosed that the state government has declared its readiness to start receiving the delegates from over 20 states and the Federal Capital Territory who have declared interest to participate in both the cycling championship and 3-day Commissaries Course.

Meanwhile Secretary General of the CFN, Dayo Abulude said that six cyclists, three male and female as well as one participant for the commissaries course are expected from each of the states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.

“So far over 20 states have registered for the championship and course including Edo, Delta, Rivers, Plateau, Kaduna, the FCT and host, Kwara,” he said.

“The first to fourth place finishers in the male category will earn N200,000, N150,000, N100,000 and N70,000 respectively while their female counterparts who will ride a shorter distance will take home N150,000, N100,000, N50,000 and N30,000 respectively.”

Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazak is expected to declare both the championship and commissaries course open and he will be supported by the deputy governor, Mr Kayode Alabi, the CFN scribe disclosed.

#Newsworthy…