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‘Bukola Thief, Saraki Thief’ — Oshiomhole Leads Anti-Saraki Song At APC Rally

17 January 2019 - 12:27am

Adams Oshiomhole, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), on Wednesday led a song filled with chants of ‘thief’ against Senate President Bukola Saraki, who was a member of his party until July 2018 when he defected to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

During his speech at the APC presidential rally in Lokoja, capital of Kogi State, Oshiomhole appeared to be set on a lengthy dig at Atiku, only for him to switch to Saraki in a flash. 

“I challenge Atiku Abubakar, the candidate of PDP. We will publish the record. In his election in 2011, Atiku lost in Adamawa; he lost all the three senatorial seats,” he began, before going on to explain how three senators lost an election in 2015 only for Atiku to insist otherwise.

“President Obasanjo called me; I was in Labour; I was the real opposition. And he said, ‘listen, now listen, o ti to (it is enough)… ole, ole (theft, theft) will kill you. My own comrade, I need you to say… because when they talk of rigging and manipulation, they are the sustenance of rigging. 

“One of the losers wrote a congratulatory letter to the man who won, but because Atiku felt, how can he be Vice-President and he lost his own state, he paid N100 million each to those who won for them to accept defeat. That is how those who lost, they smuggled them into victory; those who won, they paid them to accept defeat.

“Is that a man who will speak of honesty? Is that a man who can speak to integrity? Is that a man who can speak to character?

“Atiku wants to become Chairman of INEC, his Vice President wants to become Inspector General of Police. Their campaign Director-General is the man who presided over the liquidation of Societe Generale Bank after they had collected the deposits of very poor people. Bukola Saraki.”

At this point the crowd chanted ole (thief).

Oshiomhole joined in, saying: “Bukola Saraki, ole (thief)."

Oshiomhole then broke into a song during which he chants “Bukola Saraki” and the crowd respond with "ole" (thief).

At some point, he mixed it with “PDP”, to which the crowd also responded with “ole” (thief).

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Osinbajo Asks: Who Can Point To One Single Beneficiary Of Jonathan's SURE-P Scheme?

16 January 2019 - 3:10pm

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has questioned the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme (SURE-P) programme of the Goodluck Jonathan regime, asking: "Who can point to one single beneficiary of the SURE-P scheme?”

Osinbajo said this on Wednesday during a town-hall meeting tagged 'The Candidates'.

'The Candidates' is a presidential town hall co-production between Daria Media and the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), supported by the MacArthur Foundation.

The event was broadcast live on NTA.

He also said the Nigerian Government had spent N20billion on the Trader Moni no-interest loan. 

Asked what the government was doing to boost the economy, the Vice President said: “We started the largest investment programme for social investment in the history of this country. 

“That’s why we have the conditional cash transfers; we are giving the poorest people in our country today N5,000; we are hoping we are able to [help] about one million people.

“We are doing our school feeding, feeding 9.2 million children every single day in public schools. 

“Aside of that, the Trader Moni and the Market Moni that we are doing; these are loans to the poorest. Let me give an example: With the trader moni, we are giving two million of the market women loans starting with N10,000... some of them their inventories are not up to N2,000; we give them N10,000. When they pay back, they get N15,000 ... and it goes all the way up to N100,000. For the two million people, all of that is N20billion.”

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BREAKING: Buhari Expresses Doubts About Ganduje 'Bribery' Videos

16 January 2019 - 2:55pm

President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed doubts about the videos portraying Abdullahi Ganduje, Governor of Kano State, as receiving what appeared to be kickbacks from a contractor.

He stated this while responding to a question on the subject at a town hall event organised, tagged 'The Candidates'.

The event held at the Sheraton Hotel, Abuja on Wednesday night.

'The Candidates' is a presidential town hall co-production between Daria Media and the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA), supported by the MacArthur Foundation.

While answering a question on why he seemed not to mind the corruption allegation against Ganduje, Buhari said: "Can Ganduje fail to trust somebody to give the money to him?

"That clip, somebody brought it to me of how the Kano Governor was receiving dollars and smiling and putting it in his pocket. I don’t know the extent of technology used and I can’t answer now because the state assembly has gone to court I decided not to talk about it, and the state assembly constitutionally could have dealt with that but then I heard the matter was taken to court," Buhari said.

The moderator asked if the President believes the video is fake or real but Vice President Osinbajo tried to intervene. At this point, the moderator cuts him short, saying: "he can talk for himself."

Buhari's reply was: "As I told you, I’ve seen the clip; I don’t know how much technology was used but can Ganduje fail to get somebody to get the money to him [and] he has to take it directly himself, smiling?

"I honestly am completely overwhelmed and the system has given me some relief; it’s in the court, it is in the state assembly so let them as much as possible deal with it. This thing has received a lot of publicity and I hope by the time I go on my campaign for re-election there will be some answers from the court and the state assembly in Kano state about the…”

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LIVE: Q&A With Buhari, Osinbajo At Town Hall Meeting In Abuja

16 January 2019 - 12:10pm

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To Forfeit To EFCC? Patience Jonathan To Know Fate Of Her $4.8m, N7.4bn On Feb. 11

16 January 2019 - 11:52am

Justice Mojisola Olatoregun of the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Wednesday fixed February 11, 2019 to deliver a judgment in an application seeking final forfeiture of $4.8million and N7.4billion allegedly linked to Patience Jonathan, the immediate past First Lady.

EFCC filed the application against the former First Lady and six others.

The others are Globus Integrated Services Ltd., Finchley Top Homes Ltd., Am-Pm Global Network Ltd., Pagmat Oil and Gas Ltd. Magel Resort Ltd., and Esther Oba, as the second to the seventh respondents, respectively.

On April 20, 2018, the anti-graft commission, via an ex-parte application, obtained an order for interim forfeiture of the money.

On October 29, 2018, Rotimi Oyedepo, counsel to EFCC, filed an application for final forfeiture of the sums.

At the resumed hearing on Wednesday, Oyedepo told the court that the EFCC had filed and served a further affidavit to the respondents’ application to show cause.

Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), counsel to the respondents, however, opposed paragraphs 8 to 12 of the affidavit, and prayed the court to expunge them. He said the prosecution raised new issues in an attempt to discredit a video exhibit on the case, instead of responding to existing issues.

However, Olatoregun held that there was no need to expunge the paragraphs, noting that no new issues were raised.

In his submission for final forfeiture, Oyedepo told the court that Jonathan fraudulently diverted funds from the Women for Change Initiative, a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO) linked to her.

According to him, most of the funds were fraudulently diverted from the NGO to other accounts of the second to sixth respondents — companies said to be owned by the former first lady.

“Women for Change Initiative is not joined in this suit. We are not asking for forfeiture of its money; the funds have been converted and that is an unlawful act," Oyedepo said.

He further told the court that Jonathan signed some of the fund transfer instructions personally, and also signed using other people’s names and passport photographs. Oyedepo also said that as regards the $8.4million, the first respondent (Jonathan) had not been able to disclose to the court the identities of those who made the donations. He said the EFCC attached exhibits to show that the former first lady was the sole signatory to the companies’ accounts.

“The funds we are seeking to forfeit from the second to sixth respondents are not funds from their legitimate businesses, but those traced from the NGO,” Oyedepo said.

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Based On Executive Order 6, Nigerian Govt Asks NFIU To Freeze Onnoghen’s Accounts

16 January 2019 - 11:34am

The Nigerian government has asked the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) to freeze five bank accounts belonging to Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN).

Onnoghen is standing trial for fraudulent declaration of assets. He was scheduled for his first hearing before the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) on Monday but did not appear. After deliberations, the hearing on jurisdiction was postponed till January 22, 2019.

Acting on the Presidential Executive Order No. 6 which was enacted on July 5, 2018, according to a letter by the Office of the Attorney-General of the Federation, the restriction would take effect till the case against the CJN is determined.

The letter read: “I am directed by Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN, the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice to request that you, pursuant to the Presidential Executive Order No. 6 of 2018, forthwith restrict normal banking operations on certain accounts belonging to Hon. Justice Walter Onnoghen pending final determination of the case against him at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT/ABJ/1/19,” read the letter signed by Abiodun Aikomo on behalf of Abubakar Malami, the attorney-general of the federation.

“These accounts are as follows: a. Account No. 5001062686 (Euro) Standard Chartered Bank (SCB); b. Account No 5001062679 (Pound Sterling) SCB; c. Account No 0001062650 (Dollar) SCB; d. Account No 0001062667 (Naira) SCB, and e. Account No 5000162693 (Naira).

“Please accept the assurances of the esteem of the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice.”

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Buhari’s Refusal To Sign Electoral Bill Makes 2019 Elections Manipulation-Prone, Says Ubani

16 January 2019 - 11:07am

Monday Ubani, former Chairman of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), has stated that President Muhammadu Buhari’s refusal to sign the electoral bill will make the 2019 elections prone to manipulation.

He stated this at the 15th edition of the Chief Gani Fawehinmi Annual Lecture/Symposium organised by the Nigerian Bar Association (Ikeja branch) on Tuesday at the Macke Hall, Airport Hotel, Ikeja in Lagos State.

“I would have expected the President of the country to have signed that electoral bill; it would have made some high level of improvement in our electoral process. But the man said he was not going to sign it, asserting that election is so near. So, we are going back again to 2010 when we were being manipulated in electoral process," he said.

Ubani also maintained that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) lacks the parameters of independence.

“INEC is not independent. Ordinarily, if INEC was independent, prior to the election or four years before election, INEC should have the money with which it would conduct the election. It doesn’t have to be handicapped for funds. Few weeks before the elections and INEC does not have the funds it needs, simply indicates that INEC is not independent," he said.

He noted that the lack of funds will make the commission resort to seeking funds through other means, thereby making it subjective to the source.

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Falana Warns Senior Lawyers: Politicians Must Not Pay You From The Treasury

16 January 2019 - 10:08am

Femi Falana, human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), has called on lawyers to be "very careful" when receiving payment from politicians for services offered.

He stated this at the 15th edition of the Chief Gani Fawehinmi Annual Lecture/Symposium organised by the Nigerian Bar Association (Ikeja branch) on Tuesday at the Macke Hall, Airport Hotel, Ikeja in Lagos State.

According to Falana, politicians must pay lawyers handling their cases from their pockets and not from the public treasury.

He stated that the lawyers might "run into trouble" with security agencies, if they are not careful.

“I am warning senior lawyers to be very careful with respect to charges. You must ensure that the litigant is paying you from his or pocket. The moment you allow a Governor or President of the country or anybody for that matter to dip his or her hand to public treasury, you might run into trouble because security agencies have the power to investigate the sources of your income," he said.

Also commenting on the case of Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Falana advised the government to withdraw the charges against him because there is a judgment from the Court of Appeal that before you can arraign a judicial officer in Nigeria, he must have been investigated by the National Judicial Council.

The theme of the event was 'Securing the Independence of INEC — A Panacea for a Free, Fair and Credible Elections in Nigeria'. It was attended by Professor Akin Oyebode, former Vice Chancellor of University of Ado-Ekiti, who was the guest speaker; Mike Iginni, the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (Akwa Ibom); Austin Alegeh (SAN), former NBA President; Uwemedimo Nwoko, Attorney General/Commissioner for Justice (Akwa Ibom); Oba Semiu Orimadegun Kasali, the Adeboruwa of Igbogbo, among others.

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Why APGA As A Political Party Must Not Die (III) By Law Mefor

16 January 2019 - 8:02am

There is an important Igbo adage, which, translated, goes thus: who does not know where the rain started beating him will not know where he took shelter. The historical tour de force taken in these foursome treatises is to connect our past with the predictable future. Like Socrates said, an unexamined life is not worth living. Men of the future must not only understand their past but also the forces that forge the present.

Socrates' claim that the unexamined life is not worth living makes a satisfying climax for the deeply principled arguments that Socrates presents on behalf of the philosophical life. The claim is that only in striving to come to know ourselves and to understand ourselves do our lives have any meaning or value. Ndigbo, going by early census projections should number 30m and 50m globally. This population is more than the population of so many big countries like Argentina and Australia, to mention a few. We are therefore not talking of just an ethnic group but a whole race that is so poorly organized politically and fragmented.

The resourcefulness of Ndigbo to survive and grow everywhere they find themselves has always attracted mixed expressions. They are described as ‘innovative’ and ‘entrepreneurial’ and at other times they are seen as ‘over-ambitious’ and ‘domineering’, especially by the other ethnic nationalities who tend to fear the fast pace of progress and success of Ndigbo living in their local communities.

Such oddities have made Ndigbo in Nigeria to be endangered species, more or less, grossly misunderstood and even sometimes dreaded by their neighbours. This is not wolf crying but a stark reality. Professor Chinua Achebe summarized it thus: “The one thing all Nigerians are united about is their hatred for the Igbo”. Even if Chinua Achebe was being a bit extreme, his remark is not far-fetched.

Many Igbos have tried to rationalize their existential threats away. Yet, these threats are mutative and clear and present dangers, and keep repeating themselves in many forms with their dangerousness remaining strikingly the same.  

The most recent should be the Quit Notice given to Ndigbo living in the North by northern youths under the watch of their elders. Where the said Quit Notice was given was in an official facility and till date, there is no official disclaimer of the quit notice from the northern elders. Rather than call their wards to order, they gave tacit approval by acquiescing to the rascally call in both body language and not so muted declarations. It is their inordinate reaction to the unarmed struggle of Nnamdi Kanu and IPOB.

After Nigeria’s independence, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe celebrating, said: my stiffest earthly assignment is ended and my major life's work is done. My country is now free. On AIT, daily, Zik is featured still saying: "It does not matter to me who becomes Nigeria’s first prime minister… so long Nigeria is free, I am satisfied.” Soon after Zik made that historic declaration and the nation gained independence, he had cause to later lament against replacing British colonialism with indigenous colonialism championed by the Hausa-Fulani. Zik’s fear, which has been fully fulfilled, made nonsense of all his sacrifices to liberate and keep Nigeria one.

For me and to most Igbos, Zik and Ojukwu were possibly the greatest Igbo men that ever lived. Zik of Africa represents the ultimate urbane, cosmopolitan Igbo possibility, Emeka Ojukwu representing the zenith of Igboness and its can-do spirit. The inimitable Emeka Ojukwu, barely 33 then, particularly led Ndigbo and the old Southeast to resist extermination already being delivered to them in installments in pogroms repeatedly visited on them before the genocidal Nigeria-Biafra Civil War that claimed millions.

Frantz Fanon unforgettably said, each generation must, out of relative obscurity, discover its mission, fulfill it, or betray it. George Orwell of the famous Animal Farm also said: “The further a society drifts from the truth, the more it will hate those who speak it”. But the truth, if carefully and objectively canvassed, can sometimes engage even a base mind. For truth to set Ndigbo free, they need to know which falsehoods have been holding them down. It is better canvassed even where its unpleasantness is the obvious result.  

Of verity, only the truth shall set Ndigbo free; free from internal colonialism(as Zik feared) and free from economic dependence outside Alaigbo and from want and insecurity. Only the truth can bind their wounds and ensure an enduring, equitable and progressive polity, where the best can strive to become better and weak made strong and offered bragging rights of belonging to one of the greatest and biggest of the Black Race. The Nigeria project is still worth it and for Ndigbo to really have a usable stake in it; they have to be fully politically organized. APGA is that natural political platform.

The Igbo Presidency Project is also a political possibility, desired by so many but canvassed by so few, which is also possible only if Ndigbo are better politically organized. The perception held by Nigerians, especially those who fought in the Nigeria-Biafra war, is that the Republic of Biafra, as conceived and propagated by General Emeka Ojukwu was ingenious.  

To some, it was also disingenuous and was nothing but a fiasco and a disaster, especially when factors like international alliances and big oil politics are considered. But fact is: it was a war for survival more than it was a war for territorial integrity. That is why Biafra is not dead at least as an idea; Biafra can never die. All Igbos are Biafrans regardless of what they individually antithetically profess for fear or for their private economy and security!

Gowon’s bland declaration of No Victor No Vanquished and the ambiguous and amorphous 3 Rs - Reconciliation, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction - proved to be mere lip service. The praying general even left out the most important R, namely: Reintegration. Ndigbo indeed need a political platform (APGA) to call their own if they will negotiate from a position of strength how best to weave and mesh again into Nigeria.
Instructively, on December 01, 2015, Vanguard newspaper reported the wartime Nigerian military head of state, General Yakubu Gowon, as saying: “A Nigerian President of Igbo extraction is desirable in 2019, after President Muhammadu Buhari. An Igbo presidency will boost the unity of Nigeria”.  

Another military President of Nigeria, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida had equally said in an interview about the same time that he would back an Igbo for the presidential seat if he finds a credible personality. The sincerity of these two eminent Nigerian leaders may be yet unascertainable but the issue they canvassed cannot be diminished or wished away. It is the main object of this treatise to point that APGA can serve as the bargaining chip in giving Nigeria a President of Igbo extraction.

Ostensibly, the Nigerian-Biafra Civil War, 6 July 1967 – 15 January 1970, was a war fought to counter the secession of Biafra from Nigeria. Within a year, the Federal Military Government surrounded Biafra, capturing coastal oil facilities and the city of Port Harcourt. The economic blockade imposed during the ensuing stalemate led to severe famine - accomplished deliberately as a war strategy as enunciated and promoted by Chief Obafemi Awolowo. To Awo, the resultant deaths of about 2 million Biafrans, mostly women and children who were never involved in combat, were justified. After all, according to him, in war, all is fair, even dying more from imposed starvation and diseases than from bullets and bombs!

Emeka Ojukwu became the embodiment of Igbo struggle for emancipation and thus became deified in the minds of his people. After the war, their survival spirit resurrected in Enugu Rangers Intl Football Club of Enugu. Rangers was more than a football team to Ndigbo and till today, that feeling lingers in the older generations. It was a rallying point for the defeated Biafrans and where they continued the war in other forms.  

For good measure, just reminisce on the rapturous roars whenever Rangers entered the stadium in single file led by captain Christian Chukwu those days, those spotless all-white outfits giving a god-like aura. Such Rangers regulars like Ezeani, Damian Odoh, alias Araby Cho-cho, a hard-tackling defensive midfielder, Nwosu at left-centreback, Ihechukwu Ezidinmma, Mecha at left back, Ufele (RB) and Chukwu (RCB), the legendary Emmanuel Okalla was in goal to inspire confidence in Ndigbo of immediate postwar.  

In midfield, the defensive anchorman was the powerfully built Nwabueze “Bulldozer” Nwankwo; the playmaker was Kendo Illodigwe; on right wing, Emeka Onyedika(built like a tank and mercurial at full darting touchline runs), on the left wing, Ogidi Ibeabuchi; Matt Obianika and Chimezie Ngadi were forwards. These men were more than footballers to Ndigbo those days and they left a legacy that helped Rangers to remain the only Nigerian team yet to go on relegation.

The only thing reminiscent of Rangers after the war was the coming of APGA. Somehow, because the PDP moored in the Southeast before it, the zone serving it as real anchorage has not fully materialized.
You can see that Emeka Ojukwu easily emerging and sustaining as the face and soul of APGA is rooted in its origin and essence and none other could have done it in his place even though he was not a founding member.  

The clarion refrain, 'APGA bu nke anyi' simply means that APGA is the political party Ndigbo can truly call their own. It does not however make APGA an Igbo party per se. It is just a party where Ndigbo cannot be shunted out as they did to Dr. Alex Ekwueme and more recently, to Sen. Ike Ekweremadu, in the PDP.

The concluding Part Four is on the task before the Dr. Victor Oye APGA leadership, going forward. The wars of attrition and all the intraparty feuds have to stop to pave way for the urgent task of rebuilding the Party.

• Dr. Law Mefor, is a concerned APGA member; Tel.: +234-803-787-2893; email:

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Police Name Frank Mba As New PRO

16 January 2019 - 7:59am

Less than 24 hours after the appointment of Mohammed Abubakar Adamu as new Inspector General of Police, the new IGP has named Frank Mba as new Force Public Relations Officer (PRO).

Mba will take over from ACP Jimoh Moshood.

Mba hails from Enugu, and is a graduate of Law from the University of Lagos. He graduated from the Police Academy, Kano as the best graduating cadet inspector in 1993.

He became Assistant Superintendent of Police in 1999, was promoted to Deputy Superintendent of Police in 2003, Superintendent of Police in 2006 and Chief Superintendent of Police in 2012.

Mba, who is an Assistant Commissioner of Police, had previously served as the a PRO under the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar from 2012 to 2014.

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BREAKING: I Came Into Office On 19th Of May 2015, Says Buhari

16 January 2019 - 7:51am

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that he came into office on the "19th of May 2015".

The President said this on Wednesday at the presidential campaign rally of the All Progressives Congress (APC) held in Lokoja, capital of Kogi State, while thanking the crowd for turning up at short notice.

"I'm very impressed at this very short notice [sic], you turned out for so many hours standing in the sun to see us and to listen to us," he said.

"I assure you that I am very aware of your appreciation of the efforts for what we were able to deliver since came in 19th of May, 2015. All we are trying to do is to remind you to think, 'where were we in 2015 when we came in, where are we now?' What have we been able to achieve with the resources available to us?"

Buhari became President on May 29, 2015, after contesting the presidential election three times — in 2003, 2007 and 2011 — eventually defeating incumbent Goodluck Jonathan of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the March 28, 2015 presidential election.

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BREAKING: Obasanjo Is Truly Wicked, Says Oshiomhole

16 January 2019 - 7:29am

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo is a "truly wicked man", Adams Oshiomhole, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has said.

Oshiomhole said this on Wednesday while speaking at the APC presidential campaign rally currently going on in Lokoja, capital of Kogi State.

Oshiomhole made the utterance after castigating Atiku Abubkar, presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), as a corrupt former Vice President.

"The two of the [Obasanjo and Atiku] were fighting... Obasanjo said Atiku was a thief. Atiku said 'If I'm a thief, you were the one who taught me'. Do you remember?" Oshiomhole asked the crowd.

"What did Obasanjo say? Obasanjo said, however wicked people think he is — and he is truly wicked, because I was President of NLC and I know what he tried to put to Labour..."

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Buhari To Join Presidential Candidates Of 'Select Parties' To Answer Questions From The Public

16 January 2019 - 6:33am

President Muhammadu Buhari and his vice, Yemi Osinbajo, the presidential and vice-presidential candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the forthcoming general election, will feaure on a live presidential town hall programme.

The programme will be televised live and will take place on Wednesday at 8pm at the Ladi Kwali Conference Centre, Sheraton Hotel, Abuja.

Festus Keyamo, Director of Strategic Communications of the APC Presidential Campaign Council, made this known via a press statement issued on Tuesday.

The statement read: "The presidential series, which is titled 'The Candidates', is designed by the organisers to have both the presidential and their vice-presidential candidates of selected political parties on stage at the same time and at different dates to take questions from the moderator, Kadaria Ahmed, and from the general public through various platforms.

“The programme would be broadcast live on NTA, which shall in turn provide the live feeds to other partner stations like TVC, Wazobia TV, Oak TV and on all Radio Nigeria stations. It will also be streamed online at to enable Nigerians in the Diaspora participate. Nigerians are encouraged to kindly tune in to participate."

Attendance is strictly by invitation.

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Buhari Wasn't Aware Of Onnoghen's CCT Arraignment Until Saturday, Says Osinbajo

16 January 2019 - 5:18am

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has absolved his principal, President Muhammadu Buhari, of knowledge of the trial of Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), at the Code of Conduct tribunal (CCT).

Onnoghen is standing trial before the CCT over allegations of fraudulent declaration of assets.

Speaking on Wednesday at the Annual New Media Conference of Online Publishers Association of Nigeria in Abuja with the theme: 'Free Press and Objective Reporting in the 2019 Election Year', Osinbajo explained that Buhari didn't know of any matter regarding financial misdemeanour involving the CJN until Saturday evening.

"It is highly regrettable that the CJN has to go through this process but Buhari had issued specific instructions that anti-graft institutions be allowed to do their job without any interference. He did not even know that there was going to be any kind of trial until Saturday evening," Osinbajo said.

"He has said categorically that there shouldn't be interference with whatever the institutions are doing. Sometimes, it has consequences such as we have today, such that people say how can such an important person be subjected to trial without the Federal Government, but I can tell you without any equivocation that he was not aware.

"I must tell you in clear terms that for President Muhammadu Buhari, his whole approach is that institutions should just do their work. I can tell you for a fact that he did not even know about this until Saturday evening."

He charged online publishers to endeavour to crosscheck facts and resist attempts at making their platforms purveyors of fake news. He also spoke on the need to actively support local and international framework for preventing misuse of social media.

He, therefore, called for self-regulation to avoid opening the system to charlatans, adding that it is also important to be conscious of over-regulation or infraction of freedom of the press.

"It is important that self-regulation is robust enough to prevent a situation where government or formal establishment passes laws and actually think that there is need to regulate. I think once self-regulation is robust enough, it easier to make a case that we should not have government regulation."

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EXCLUSIVE: Osinbajo On Collision Course With Amaechi Over Onnoghen

16 January 2019 - 4:54am

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo is unrelenting in his opposition to the arraignment of Walter Onnoghen, the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), before the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) for alleged fraudulent asset declaration, SaharaReporters has been told.

The Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) had filed a six-count charge bordering on fraudulent declaration of assets against the CJN at the CCT, after receiving a petition from Dennis Aghanya, Executive Secretary of the Anti-corruption Research Data-Based Initiative (ARDBI).

But SaharaReporters subsequently unveiled Aghanya as a staunch fan of President Muhammadu Buhari and his allies See Also Corruption FLASHBACK: Five Times Onnoghen’s Accuser Proved Himself Buhari’s Main Man 0 Comments 1 Week Ago , after which it later emerged that Rotimi Amaechi, Minister of Transport, is the ringleader of the President’s allies pulling the strings of Onnoghen’s arraignment from the background. 

SaharaReporters understands that while Amaechi and his allies — including Okoi Obono-Obla, Chairman of the Special Presidential Investigation Panel for the Recovery Public Property (SPIP) — remain bent on removing Onnoghen from office by any possible means, Osinbajo has continued to maintain that the CCT option is not in line with due legal process.

According to a highly placed source in the All Progressives Congress (APC) who is very familiar with the matter, Osinbajo is insisting that while the CJN may have questions to answer, due process must be clearly and transparently followed.

“There are strong claims implicating the CJN on several fronts, including breach of extant laws bordering on corruption and conspiracies. This was the basis of the need to prosecute the CJN,” said the source.

“But the VP denounced the plan to arraign the CJN before the tribunal immediately he got wind of it, insisting that due process had to be followed strictly, especially in dealing with such an important personality in the judiciary.  

“The VP specifically warned against the arraignment at the CCT and the current manner in which the case is being pursued. While he acknowledged the strong case against the CJN, the VP firmly noted that there should be a diligent approach that is in line with due process.”

The source added that Osinbajo seemed to have had his way initially, however Amaechi went behind to draft a few security officials into the plot to arraign the CJN at the tribunal. See Also Breaking News BREAKING: CCT Adjourns Onnoghen’s Trial Till January 22 0 Comments 1 Week Ago

“Even the Attorney General of the Federation Abubakar Malami was kept in the dark until very late in the day regarding the arraignment at the tribunal,” he said. 

Onnoghen was absent as his arraignment before Honourable Danladi Umar of the CCT kicked off on Monday as Amaechi wanted. However, it was adjourned to Tuesday January 22 after Onnoghen — represented by Wole Olanipekun (SAN), plus 41 other SANS and more than 40 other lawyers — successfully argued that he was not properly served. See Also Breaking News BREAKING: Court Stops CCT From Trying Onnoghen 0 Comments 1 Week Ago

A Federal High Court in Abuja subsequently halted the arraignment and trial of the CJN), Justice N. E. Maha ordering the parties to maintain status quo until January 17, and that the defendants should be served with all the papers filed and they should appear in court at the next hearing.

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Rihanna Sues Dad For Using Their Last Name For Business

16 January 2019 - 3:10am

Rihanna Fenty, an American singer popularly known as Rihanna, has sued her father, Ronald Fenty, for using their last name for business.

Rihanna had already trademarked the 'Fenty' name for some business ventures, but the singer is claiming in the suit that her father is using the reputation she has created with the name for profit.

According to a court document obtained by American magazine, TMZ on Tuesday, allegedly filed at a California federal court, the singer claimed that her father and his business partner, Moses Joktan Poerkins “have egregiously and fraudulently misrepresented to third parties and the public that their company, Fenty Entertainment, LLC, is affiliated with Rihanna, and has the authority to act on her behalf".

The singer further claimed that in a desperate bid to profit off the name, her father made attempts to trademark the name 'Fenty'.

The court document further read that Mr. Fenty "used these lies in a fraudulent effort to solicit millions of dollars from unsuspecting third parties in exchange for the false promise that they were authorized to act on Rihanna’s behalf, and/or that Rihanna would perform at various locations throughout the world".

Mr. Fenty and his business partner was also accused of collecting deals for Rihanna to perform at 15 shows in Latin America for $15million. 

Rihanna is seeking a court injunction to be placed on her father from using the name 'Fenty' and for damages. She said she has tried severally to call her father to order with cease-and-desist letters but her efforts have not yielded fruit.

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Stop Calling My Number, MC Oluomo Is Alive, Taye Currency Tells Fans

16 January 2019 - 2:47am

Taye Currency (right) with Musiliu Akinsanya, a.k.a. MC Oluomo

Taye Currency (right) with Musiliu Akinsanya, a.k.a. MC Oluomo

Popular Nigerian musician, Taye Currency, has told his fans to stop bothering his phone line with questions on the rumoured death of Musiliu Akinsanya, popularly known as MC Oluomo.

Oluomo, a strong member of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), was one of those who sustained injuries duing the Lagos governorship rally of the All Progressives Congress (APC) held on January 8, 2018.

Also injured in the fracas were three journalists — the group political editor of The Nation Newspaper, Emmanuel Oladesu, a New Telegraph correspondent, Temitope Ogunbanke and Ibile Television cameraman, Abiodun Yusuf.

There had been claims that Akinsanya had passed on. However, contrary to speculations about his demise, Fuji musician, Taye Currency, paid MC Oluomo a visit and shared a video showing the latter alive and well.

"Stop calling my number, Oluomo is still alive,” he said, while Akinsanya sat beside him with a smile.

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Onaiyekan Warns Against Misuse Of Armed Forces

16 January 2019 - 1:08am

Cardinal John Onaiyekan

John Cardinal Onaiyekan, Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, has warned against the misuse of security forces in the country.

He also admonished the Nigerian Army to embrace justice and good governance as it strives to maintain internal peace in the country.  

Onaiyekan states this in his address in commemoration of Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebration on Tuesday.

The archbishop encouraged the Nigerian government to fight corruption within the confines of the rule of law, noting that the search for peace and overall stability of the country would be futile in the absence of justice and good governance.

“We cannot successfully prosecute a war against indiscipline by locking up innocent people for months in dungeons without legal recourse. For the same reason, we cannot hope to win the war against corruption by ignoring or by-passing basic human rights regarding the rule of law," he said.

Onayeikan said leaders must learn from January 15, 1966, the historic event which marked the beginning of military rule in the country.

“We hope we have by now learnt our lesson and that we will no longer allow such misuse of our armed forces and our military resources. I do not know why January 15 has been chosen as the Armed Forces Remembrance Day, but to many people like me, it brings strong memories of that critical day, January 15, 1966,” he added.

Adding that one of the lessons to hold dear is that “we should not misuse our armed forces and our military resources".

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EFCC Threatens To Sue Fani-Kayode, Odumakin For Libel​

16 January 2019 - 1:08am

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has threatened to file a libel suit against the duo of Yinka Odumakin and Femi Fani-Kayode, a former minister of aviation, over alleged propagation of fake news

This was contained in a statement released by the commission on Tuesday.

EFCC claimed that the duo have made allegations which are not correct against it.

It particularly made reference to the posts from the two personalities which accused the EFCC of surrounding the house of Walter Onnoghen, Chief Justice of Nigeria, with the primary aim of arresting him.

The statement read: “The attention of EFCC has been drawn to the falsehood which has been spreading on the social media that the EFCC has arrested the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen. This is not only a figment of the imagination of the purveyor of the fake news, but an evil machination by the creator and carriers of the news aimed at creating anarchy in the country.

“For the record, the EFCC never went to the house of the CJN for arrest, neither was invitation extended to him.

“Several calls and short messages received all point to the fact that the brains behind the fake news had one thing in mind: to act as agent of destabilization. We would not give in to their plots.

“One of the architects of the fake news, Femi Fani-Kayode, was quoted as saying 'Why have the EFCC surrounded the home of CJN Onnoghen and why are they seeking to arrest him? These people want Nigeria to burn! Buhari call off your dogs before it is too late! This is a democracy and not a gestapo state! In the name of God let this madness stop'. 

“Another arrowhead of the fake news, Yinka Odumakin, shared a non-existent video which has gone viral.
We want to assure Nigerians that while we would fight corruption in line with the mandate setting up the Commission, agents of darkness, in the likes of Femi Fani-Kayode, Yinka Odumakin and his cohorts, would never be able to manipulate the people against the Commission.

"We also want to assure Fani-Kayode, Yinka Odumakin and other purveyors of the evil news to be ready to defend their actions in the court of law as the EFCC will file libel suit against them without further delay.”

Onnoghen has denied the claims that his home was raided by the EFCC.

Awassam Bassey, the Senior Special Adviser to the CJN on media said: “I really don’t know where they got the information from. So many media men were here earlier with cameras over the same report. But what I can tell you for now is that there was no such thing. It is false news".

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West African Countries Depend On Nigeria For Food Sufficiency, Says Agric Minister

16 January 2019 - 1:01am

Heineken Lokpobiri, Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, has said the survival of most West African countries depends on the contribution of Nigeria in the area of food sufficiency. 

Lokpobiri said this when Lisandro Martins, the Regional Director of  International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), visited the minister in Abuja. 

This was contained in a statement by the minister’s Director of Media, George Oji, on Tuesday.

The statement read: “Whatever we do here essentially feeds the whole of West Africa. The seeds we produce here essentially services the whole of West Africa, the grains we produce here services the whole of West Africa. 

“Whatever happens here affects the whole of West Africa. So, whatever support you are giving to Nigeria is essentially the support given to the whole of West Africa.

“As a government, we will give priority to our partnership, whatever is needed to be done on the part of the government, we will endeavour to do."

The regional director of  IFAD promised that the  agency would deploy more staff to Nigeria to assist the nation in food sufficiency.

“We are working with our team to bring additional staff to Nigeria because this is clearly a country that is almost like a continent, where we realise the capacity we have at the moment is not sufficient,” Martins said.

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