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BREAKING: Appeal Court Gives INEC Green Light To Accept APC Candidate In Rivers

4 February 2019 - 6:44am

The Court of Appeal sitting in Port Harcourt, capital of Rivers State, has granted stay of execution of the lower court's judgement nulifying all primaries of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in RIvers State and restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from fielding the party's candidates in the forthcoming general election.

In January, Justice Kolawole Omotosho of the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt had nullified both the direct and indirect primaries conducted by two factions of the party. He also restrained INEC from recognising any candidates of the APC for the 2019 general election in the state.

While a faction of the party loyal to former Governor Rotimi Ameachi had produced Tonye Cole as its candidate from its primary, the other loyal to Senator Magnus Abe produced him as its own candidate.

The national secretariat of the party recognised Cole as the authentic candidate of the party and forwarded his name to INEC.

Ruling on a suit filed by Abe, the court observed that both the direct and indirect primaries were held during the pendency of the suit at the Rivers State High Court. Omotosho held that the APC conducted the indirect primaries in gross disrespect of the pending suit before the court.

The court therefore held that the names sent by the Amaechi faction and the National Working Committee of the APC to INEC for the 2019 general elections were illegal and should be disregarded.

When IEC released its list of candidates for the general election last week, it omiited APC in Rivers, based on the ruling of the High Court. However, it said it would wait to see if the Appeal Court would give a different ruling on the controversy, which has now happened.

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Fake Naval Officer Nabbed In Cross River

4 February 2019 - 5:51am

James Solomon has been arrested for impersonating and defrauding unsuspecting members of the public in Calabar, the Cross River State capital.

He had been parading himself as a naval officer attached to the office of the Chief of Naval Staff, before he met his Waterloo.

Parading him before journalists on Monday, Rear Admiral Julius Nwagu, the Commander, Nigerian Navy Ship Victory, said the fake Identity card of the suspect was found his possession.

Nwagu said: “The 25-year-old imposter hails from Abi Local Government Area of the state, and has admitted to the crime and will soon be handed over to the Police for prosecution. Items recovered from him included the Nigerian Navy camouflage, which he was putting on at the time of arrest, a fake Nigerian Navy identity card, copies of recruitment forms and applicants credentials for the Navy, ATM cards, and a computer."

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WHD2019: Who Is Afraid Of The Hijab? By Abdullah Abdulganiy

4 February 2019 - 5:22am

To keen observers, one of the major sources of controversy in Nigeria has been the issue of the hijab. The hijab – a head gear donned by female Muslims – had generated a lot of hullabaloos in several quarters. From academia to the legal institution to the health institution to the media, and down to different work places, females putting on this head gear had been – and still are – made to face unspeakable persecutions and unwarranted stigmatizations. This had necessitated legal gymnastics in the country overtime.

It is clear a fact that Nigeria is a multi-religious society. In other words, it welcomes all shades of religions. It is even of particular note that the Nigerian constitution grants each individual the right to uphold and practise any religion of his wish without being persecuted or hounded. Islam is one of the popular religions in Nigeria and beyond. A sizeable amount of Muslims lives in Nigeria.

The hijab, just like the five-daily prayers, is a well pronounced aspect of Islam. Thus, repudiating those donning the hijab and calling for the ban of hijab is tantamount to banishing Islam which is in contrast to the dictate of the constitution. It is therefore an act of sheer intolerance and illegality to stand in the way of the hijab. This must be made clear in the first instance. To put it differently, those persecuting and maltreating the hijabites are not only violators of the constitution, but also enemies of humanity. 

Cases of how female Muslims adorning the hijab were terrorized, persecuted and discriminated against abound in the public space; though downplayed by the mainstream media. Even, young girls at tender age are not let out in this barbaric trip. They are mostly the victims of this endless animosity for the hijab. From Lagos to Ogun to Osun and other states in Nigeria, female secondary school students donning the hijab had been physically assaulted and psychologically traumatized by overzealous principals and teachers in flagrant disregard for the grundnorm of the land allowing them to do so.

The case of a nine-year-old girl who was molested by her principal in Ogun state for donning the hijab is of important note here. In what has become a routine activity, a principal in Lagos state also harassed five female Muslim students for the same offence. It should not be forgotten so soon that some female Muslim students of the University of Ibadan International School were also caged in the library, and subsequently sent out by their principal for the same offence. Amasa Firdausa was, in the same vein, boycotted from the call to bar ceremony for this same offence. An overzealous doctor also harassed some nurses in Osun state for donning the hijab. Of recent, a corper was also discriminated against for donning the hijab. The list is endless.

In most cases, what these fanatical and bigoted persons put up as defense for their ferocious act is that the hijab is not part of the uniform to be donned according to the extant law of schools, professions or organizations. Then I ask: is there any law superior to the constitution that had granted the freedom of religion to everyone? Are these overenthusiastic principals, teachers and professionals not lettered enough to understand the information contained in the first page of the Nigerian constitution? “That any law that is not consistent with the constitution shall be declared NULL AND VOID”. Needless to say that there is an injunction in an appellate court that ruled in favour of the hijab. If anything, it shows that these people either do not have access to the constitution or are not literate enough to understand the message in the first page of the constitution. But if they do not fall in these two categories, it speaks a lot to their unlimited hatred for the hijab.

Some would argue that hijab is a way of colonizing the females and denying them freedom to show what God has bestowed upon them; thereby making it difficult for them to get marital partners. I will also like to ask in this instance if freedom or civilization now mean walking half-clothed or naked all over the place. If anything, it is a descent into the period of pre-civilization of yesteryears where man is barely clothed. Moreover, no substantial literature or existing research had been able to establish significant relationship between the hijab and not getting marriage partners. The fact is that those who don the hijab enjoy lasting marriage than the half-clothed folks. 

In fact, this illogicality has graduated to the level of saying that hijab has relationship with the intelligence of its users. This is another lie from the pit of hell. Female Muslims adorning the hijab had done -- and continue to do – us proud in all walks of life. The youngest doctor in Nigeria adorns the hijab; the best graduating student of Uniosun in 2018 dons the hijab; we have hijabites as doctors, lawyers, teachers, journalists, engineers and whatnot. What else do naysayers want?

Some of them will steer off logic by asserting in blissful ignorance or astounding acrimony that the hijab is an attempt to Islamize Nigeria. This is the dullest of all arguments put forth by these bigots. People had been donning hijab since the pre-colonial Nigeria, why does Nigeria remains unislamised? Advanced worlds allow for the use of hijab in all sectors, why have they not been Islamized. Indeed, the hatred for hijab is the height of stupidity. Our females that had embraced this spiritual garment should not be cajoled!

Abdullah is of the better by far University of Ilorin. Reach him via 08090637356.

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Fire Consumes 'Everything' At Demonstration Studio Of Unizik's Mass Communication Department

4 February 2019 - 5:04am

Fire has destroyed the demonstration studio of the Mass Communication Department of Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State.

The cause of the fire, however, has not been disclosed by the university authorities.

The fire outbreak took place in the early hours of Sunday.

Benita Matthias, the staff adviser for the Faculty of Social Sciences, the faculty housing the studio, said the fire burnt everything in the studio. There are speculations that it was caused by power surge.

Stella Okunna, Dean of the faculty, noted that the Vice Chancellor visited the location of the incident and an investigation will be carried out to know the exact cause of the fire.

Francis Okeke, the officer in charge of Faculty of Social Sciences security unit, said the fire started at about 3:30am on Sunday, but he couldn't tell exactly what caused the fire.

However, he added that the Investigation Department of the security unit were on it and would send a report to the Vice Chancellor.

His words: "We cannot say exactly, because the place has not been in use for a long time. Uche Ebeze, Head of the Mass Communication Department, said there were many equipment in there but everything was consumed.”

He also stated that the unit would make recommendations to the Vice Chancellor to avert a recurrence, adding that a fire service department should be instituted to tackle such cases, regular servicing of fire extinguishers, as well as the use of iron instead of wood for roofs within the university.

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JUST IN: 'Kidnapper' Evans Loses N1bn Fundamental Rights Suit Against Police

4 February 2019 - 4:41am

Chukwudubem Onwuamadike

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Monday struck out a fundamental rights enforcement procedure suit filed by Chukwudumeme Onwamadike (a.k.a. Evans), an alleged kidnap kingpin, against the Police over seizure of his property.

Ruling on the case, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun held that the court lacked the jurisdiction to entertain the case, noting that the suit ought to have been filed before a Lagos State High Court, before which the applicant was facing charges of kidnapping.

According to NAN, Evans, through his counsel, Olukoya Ogungbeje, filed the suit in June 2018 and joined the Inspector-General of Police, the Nigeria Police and IGP’s Intelligence Response Team, as respondents.

In the suit, he prayed the court to declare that the alleged forceful seizure of his property by the respondents, without any court order, was illegal and unconstitutional. The properties listed included N500million, another N500million, two residential houses located at Magodo, Lagos State, a Brigade wristwatch worth $20,000, necklaces worth $25,000 and five pieces of diamond rings.

Also listed are one Lexus 470, a Grand Cherokee, a Toyota Highlander, 85 Samsung television sets, 45KVA generator, 22KVA generator, 20KVA inverter worth N10million and five sets of freezers.

Evans had sought a declaration releasing the property, just as he asked the court for an order compelling the respondents to unconditionally unseal and vacate without delay, the two residential houses located at Magodo.

The judge noted that the respondents did not file any defence, in spite of being served hearing notices, and held that when confronted with a claim under the fundamental rights enforcement procedure, it would be important for the court to critically look at the reliefs sought.

According to her, the main issue to be decided is whether the plaintiff’s claim constitutes a violation of his rights under the Fundamental Human Rights Procedure, adding that the right to own property cannot be denied except for the due process of the law.

She held that the applicant failed to show that, within the circumstances of his arrest, the properties were forcefully seized.

“The only conclusion I can draw is that the property were taken consequent upon his trial for kidnapping before the Lagos State High Court. This court must be careful not to interfere with due process of the ongoing trial of the applicant before the Lagos State High Court. This court lacks the jurisdiction to entertain this case; same is hereby struck out,"  the judge said.

Other prayers sought by Evans included an order compelling the respondents to apologise to him and pay him N1billion as damages for the alleged forceful seizure of his property.

He also sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the respondents from taking any action against him or any of his property in relation to this case.

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JUST IN: Onnoghen’s Counsel, CCT Chairman Exchange Heated Words At Tribunal

4 February 2019 - 4:16am

The court room of the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) sitting in Abuja on Monday was thrown into confusion as Danladi Umar, the CCT Chairman, and Adegboyega Awomolo, the Defence Counsel, exchanged words over the application for adjournment moved by the defence.

At the resumed hearing of allegations of fraudulent declaration of assets instituted against Onnoghen.

In his submission, Awomolo told the court that the petitioner had sent the same petition to the National Judicial Council (NJC), the body empowered to investigate and discipline any indicted sitting judicial officer.

He said the body had forwarded same petition to the defendant to respond to the issues raised. He, therefore, prayed that the tribunal should tarry a while and adjourn the matter to enable the NJC conclude their investigations and take a decision.

He also appealed to the court not to allow the defendant suffer double jeopardy, adding that the position is in the interest of justice and the integrity of the tribunal.

Trouble started when Umar interjected and insisted that the court would go ahead with the preliminary objection brought by the defence challenging the jurisdiction of the tribunal.

He said the approach of the defence counsel is tantamount to delay tactics in the hearing of the case, adding that with experience of Awomolo in the bar, he did expect him to come up with such approach. He, thus, faulted him for moving such motion.  

He maintained that the matter would not be adjourned since the tribunal has assumed jurisdiction to hear the case.

In a swift reaction, Awomolo stood up in anger to take exception to the remarks of the CCT Chairman. He said he had spent 25 years as Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and been in the bar for 45 years and could not stand before the junior lawyers to be ridiculed and embarrassed by Umar.

The altercation lasted for 10 minutes before the matter was stood down for a few minutes to allow both defence and prosecution reach an agreement on the adjournment.

On his part, the prosecution counsel, Aliu Umar, said he was not opposed to the application for adjournment, noting that he had agreed with the defence on the matter to be adjourned. He added that the defendant had been consistently absent in court, and warned that if the defendant failed to appear on the next adjournment date, he would be forced to apply for a bench warrant for his arrest.

When the court reconvened, the second member of the tribunal, William Atedze, apologised on behalf of the tribunal over what transpired in the court on the part of the Chairman. 

Awomolo also tendered his apology to the court.

The Chairman said on the instances of the position of both parties, the matter would be adjourned till February 13, 2019. He, therefore, directed the defendant to appear in court to take his plea before the hearing of any preliminary application.

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BREAKING: CCT Adjourns Onnoghen’s Trial

4 February 2019 - 3:43am

Sahara Reporters Media

The Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) has adjourned the trial of Walter Onnoghen, the suspended Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), till February 13, 2019.

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

He was suspended by President Muhammadu Buhari and replaced with Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad, although in acting capacity.

At the resumed hearing on Monday, Danladi Umar, the CCT Chairman, insisted on Onnoghen’s presence to take his plea during the trial.

The CCT, thereafter, adjourned the trial till February 13, 2019 for hearing of the application which insists that the suspended CJN must be present to take his before any issues on preliminary objections on competence or jurisdiction of the CCT to hear the trial can be raised.

Details later...

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Court Temporarily Stands Down Fayose's Trial

4 February 2019 - 3:38am

The trial of Ayodele Fayose, immediate past Governor of Ekiti State, was stood down for one hour at the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos on Monday.

Fayose is standing trial over allegations of benefitting from N6.9billion fraud.

Obanikoro had earlier testified that he gave Fayose the sum of $5million in cash from the National Security Adviser's imprest account, on the instruction of Sambo Dasuki, the then National Security Adviser during the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

Fayose applied for an adjournment through his lawyers, Kanu Agabi (SAN) and Olalekan Ojo (SAN), to enable them cross-examine Obanikoro. Consequently, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun had adjourned the case to February 4, 5 and 6, respectively for continuation of trial.

Musliu Obanikoro, a former Minister of State for Defence, was scheduled for cross-examination on Monday.

However, when the case was called for hearing on Monday, after the court sitting began, Justice Mojisola Olatoregun left to attend an official function.

The trial was, thereafter, stood down for one hour.

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Big Brother, Small Naija By ‘Fisayo Soyombo

4 February 2019 - 12:41am

Was anyone worried last week when reality television show Big Brother Naija kicked off the auditions for its 2019 edition? In each of the eight audition centres —Edo, Enugu, Lagos, Rivers, Oyo, Delta and Cross River states, plus the Federal Capital territory (FCT) — youth assembled in their tens of thousands to jostle for just 12 house spots (or maybe up to 20) available nationwide. They were so many that no single audition centre escaped crowd control issues. 

In Lagos alone, it has been claimed that over two days, the crowd was well over 10,000, which is plausible given that someone who arrived the centre at 5:35am on Friday was Number 679 in the queue; hundreds of them, it would later emerge, slept over at the venue on the eve of the audition kick-off. The broad-daylight latecomers were seen scaling or looking through the walls of the building to gain access to the venue. Abuja was so bad the Police fired teargas canisters to control the crowd. 

Since debuting in 2006, the BBN show has become notorious for its heavy dose of booze, sex and meaningless drama. This year, scandal-crazy Nigerians do not have to wait for the show to properly kick off. Game on, already! Among the numerous mouthwatering videos from the audition venues is one of some applicants answering the question: “Where is the smartest place to have sex in the Big Brother House”? The answers range from “under the duvet” to “by night when everyone is sleeping” to “behind the door — the bed behind the door”. At one location, an aspiring BBN housemate fainted and was stripped to his underpants as part of his resuscitation process. Elsewhere, one man got on his knees at the audition and popped the question to his woman. Mercy Okadi Enoh, a middle-aged woman and fish, poultry and livestock farmer, turned up at the Lagos centre claiming she wants to go to the house to “make a difference” by being the “mama” of the housemates. That’s someone’s mum. In Abuja, a bra was found on the floor as the audition wound down; it is unclear if that was down to some raunchy action or the pushing and shoving at the venue. 

For those who are too serious to know, Big Brother Naija (originally Big Brother Nigeria) is the most lucrative, most exciting and most debated (all in one) reality competition in this country. A minimum of 12 housemates kick off the show — though two are sometimes added midway into the contest as genuine or fake housemates — seeking to ingratiate themselves with the public who, one by one, will evict the housemates till the last one standing is declared the winner and proud recipient of a whopping $100,000. That’s N36.1million. There are unconfirmed reports this year’s prize could even be up to N45million.

To put this cash reward in context, there is no known Nigerian award for intellectual prowess in any discipline that offers more than $100,000. The only award that equals Big Brother Naija’s $100,000 is the Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) Limited-sponsored Nigeria Prize for Literature. The NLNG Prize is not only the biggest literary prize in Africa and one of the world’s biggest, it has been won by an array of extraordinarily talented writers, including Soji Cole, Ikeogu Oke, Abubakar Ibrahim, Tade Ipadeola, Chika Unigwe, Kaine Agary and Mabel Segun. Each of these greats — and some even won it when it was $30,000 or $50,000 — won with end products of years of rigorous creative writing. In contrast, winning BBN’s $100,000 is not that taxing: get a hot body, which can be a six-pack or the hourglass shape; have a lot of sex in the open glare of the world; drink a lot of wine; smoke without restraint; bathe naked and act all shades of crazy every day for roughly four months.

There really is no problem if a show rewards four months of pseudo-adult film plus idle chitchat with a prize money that demands years of brain work from others, but there’s a problem when an increasingly rising youth population considers it their surest way to fame and fortune. It is normal that intellectually-oriented affairs will always attract the least audience; the majority are always on the side of the empty. But the traffic-causing tumultuous crowd at the auditioning centres point to a deeper problem of declining values and the growing popularity of success through shortcuts.

The kind of crowd at the BBN audition centres is symptomatic of a country that is not working. It is what you expect of a country where tertiary institution students have been out of school for three months due to an industrial action by lecturers, yet there are no protests. Meanwhile, there have been a series of protests over the planned-now-aborted impeachment of the Lagos Governor and the controversial ‘removal’ of Walter Onnoghen as Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN). It is what you get in a country where unemployment stats are not only worrisome, but where the future offers little hope. Most importantly, this is what you get in a country where the depth of thinking and values is, on the average, small. Big Brother Naija remains a big show, but that is only because we’re largely a small country starved of the kind of thinking that turn nations around.


Soyombo, former Editor of the TheCable and the International Centre for Investigative Reporting (ICIR), tweets @fisayosoyombo

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12 Dead In Ogun Accident

4 February 2019 - 12:22am

Twelve people have been confirmed dead in a road accident involving a black Kia Cerato car and a grey Toyota Sports space bus in Ogun State.

The accident, which happened around Shiun area on Abeokuta/Sagamu Expressway on Sunday, was said to have been caused by overspeeding.

Clement Oladele, Sector Commander, Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) in Ogun, confirmed the accident, stating that the car was on high speed when the tyre burst.

“The bus with registration number LSR 334 FF was travelling from Abeokuta toward Sagamu. The unfortunate crash killed all the occupants of the two vehicles. The driver was suspected to have applied brake suddenly, which made him lose control. This led the speeding car to climb the road divider to the opposite direction, where it collided with the bus. Twelve persons who were involved in the crash —five male adults, six female adults and one child —  all died," he said.

Oladele said the corpses had been deposited at the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital (OOUTH) morgue.

He also cautioned drivers to avoid overspeeding and always ensure that they check their cars are always in good condition before entering the road.

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Nigeria To Begin Demolition Of Illegal Tertiary Institutions

4 February 2019 - 12:20am

Nigeria Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu

Nigeria Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu

The Nigerian Government has declared that it will begin to demolish illegal tertiary institutions across the country.

Adamu Adamu, the country's Minister of Education, said this at a press briefing in Abuja, stating the institutions constitute a threat to the education system of the country.

The government had earlier ordered the shutdown of 134 higher institutions said to be operating without proper accreditation.

“Nigerians should assist in exposing these higher institutions whenever they are found, with a view to dealing with the menace. Where necessary we shall demolish such institutions," he said.

Some of the institutions earlier listed are: University of Accountancy and Management Studies; University of Industry, Yaba, Lagos; Blacksmith University, Awka; Atlanta University, Anyigba; UNESCO University, Ndoni, River State.

Others are Columbus University, UK, London External Studies; Pebbies University, UK; Tiu International University, UK; Adonai Polytechnic, Benue; Al-Ameen College of Health Sciences and Technology, Kaduna State; Assam School of Basic Health Science and Technology, Kaduna; Bethel Polytechnic, Benue State and Grand Royal College of Health Technology, Ekiti State.

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NECA Pushes For Timeframe In Passage Of Budget

4 February 2019 - 12:20am

The Nigeria Employers’ Consultative Association (NECA) has called for the introduction of a time frame in the presentation and passage of the yearly budget.

NECA made the proposition in a statement signed by Timothy Olawale, its Director General of NECA.

According to Olawale, the unnecessary delay in the passage of the budget is costing the country a lot, from infrastructural development to foreign investment.

He said: “The continuous delay in budget passage year on year is worrisome and continues to be a major source of concern for the private sector. The importance of quick passage of the budget cannot be over-emphasised as it plays a very critical role in economic development.

“If we truly want to get the country on the track of economic prosperity as soon as possible, we need to accord extreme importance to the early passage of the budget. There has to be a defined time frame, which should be religiously followed as seen in other countries.

"We also urge our lawmakers to give the 2019 budget the utmost importance it requires as budget passage should not suffer at the expense of politics.”

Olawale made references to Ghana, Ethiopia and Egypt who passed their 2019 budgets in November, July and December 2018, respectively.

He argued that the stability and predictability of the budgetary process of these countries could be one of the reasons they are becoming the new desired destination for foreign investments.

He also likened the budget process in Nigeria to a case of "two elephants fighting", with Nigeria and Nigerians always being the victim.

“For some years now, the process leading to the approval and passing of budget in Nigeria has always been a victim of the proverbial fighting of two elephants. 

“A critical component of the budget such as the capital expenditure, which, to a large extent, plays a major role in economic development, suffers. Infrastructural reforms, which are meant to attract investments and improve the lives of the populace, are put on hold and business decisions, which could translate to expansion and employment generation, frustrated."

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Senator Waku Is Dead

4 February 2019 - 12:15am

Senator Joseph Waku is dead.

Joseph Waku, a former senator who represented Benue North West Constituency at the National Assembly, is dead. 

He died on Sunday after a brief illness.

Waku, aged 72, served at the National Assembly in 1999, under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He was appointed to committees on Senate Services, Works and Housing, Health, Establishment, Water Resources (Chairman) and Privatization.

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PDP Slams N100million Law Suit Against APC, Police

4 February 2019 - 12:10am

The Akwa Ibom chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has charged the Inspector General of Police and the All Progressives Congress (APC) to court over the indiscriminate arrest of its members.

Akwa Ibom PDP is demanding the sum of N100million as damages.

The PDP claimed that the Police, working in connivance with APC, is arresting its members and planned to keep them behind bars until after the election.

The party claimed that its members, especially in Essien Udim, are being picked and locked up without being charged to court.

PDP also accused the Police of plotting to frame its leaders in the state.

In the suit marked HU/FRU18/2019, PDP maintained that the actions of the Police contravened Section 40 of the 199 Constitution, as well as Articles 11 and 13, respectively, of the African Charter of Human Right and Peoples Rights.

The suit read: “We have received credible intelligence that during the build-up to the general election, buses branded as PDP, vehicles bearing the state government number plates, would be loaded with arms and occupied by some criminals, heading for the APC rally.

“On approaching, the bus and their occupants would be arrested and the contents of the buses displayed for all to see a major security breakthrough. Additionally, the criminals would mention some PDP topshots as their financiers, necessitating their arrest and subsequent prosecution under the Anti-terrorism Act.

“This plot which is hatched and sponsored by the opposition, APC, is aimed at arresting and incarcerating our key members and keeping them away from circulation throughout the elections.

“In the past few weeks, the leadership of the PDP has been inundaunted by calls from different parts of the state where its supporters have been wantonly arrested and incarcerated without any lawful justification.

“In Essien Udim, many of our members have been arrested and detained for over two weeks without being charged to court."

The applicants prayed the court to make an order for a perpetual injunction restraining the respondents, either acting alone or in concert with one another, from violating the enjoyment of their fundamental human rights in the manner so stated.

It also asked to be paid N100million as relief for infringement of rights of some of its members arrested.

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Osinbajo Gets New Chopper From Caverton Helicopters

4 February 2019 - 12:10am

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has received another aircraft from Caverton Helicopters.

This was revealed in a tweet by Caverton Group while restating its commitment to the safety of the Vice President.

The tweet read: “A true statement of our commitment to safety and professionalism. Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo continues his campaign flying with Caverton.”

A true statement of our commitment to safety and professionalism the Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo continues his campaign flying with Caverton. #safetyfirst #trueleader #proudlynigerian

— Caverton Group (@CavertonGroup) February 3, 2019

Osinbajo’s helicopter had crash-landed in Kabba, Kogi State, on his way to a campaign rally of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state on Saturday.

The helicopter skidded during landing but all 12 people aboard the chopper were safe.

Caverton had blamed unusual weather for the accident.

Also, the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has launched an investigation into the accident.

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INEC: 2019 Election Results To Be Collated Manually

4 February 2019 - 12:06am

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) says the result of the 2019 elections will be collated and transmitted manually.

This was revealed by Festus Okoye, National Commissioner and Chairman, Information and Voter Education, at a media briefing in Abuja.

Okoye noted that the law is yet to accept electronic transmission and the commission would have to rely on manual method to collate and transmit the results of the elections.

"We are ready for electronic transmission any day the law is amended. For now, we are collating and transmitting manually in accordance with the law," he said.

Okoye debunked the claim that the commission handed over PVCs to northern leaders to share to voters, and challenged anybody with evidence to back the claim to forward, as the commission “will not sweep such infraction under the carpet".

Okoye also warned INEC staff not to receive any gift or bribe from anyone, as it could land them in trouble.

He said the commission would not hesitate to prosecute any staff who receives bribe to tamper with the electoral process.

“The commission is prepared to deliver a free, fair and credible election and we will come hard on ad hoc staff who collect financial inducements from any source in order to compromise the election," he added.

He also noted that the commission would provide all the needs of its officers that will be partaking in the election to dissuade them from collecting bribes or any form of inducement.

Elections News AddThis :  Original Author :  SaharaReporters, New York Disable advertisements : 
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PVCs Burnt As Fire Razes Abia INEC Office

4 February 2019 - 12:06am

A part of the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Abia State, erupted in flames on Sunday.

The incident occurred in Umu-Ikaa in Isiala Ngwa South Local Government Area of Abia State.

The fire affected the office where some unclaimed Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) were kept, and is alleged to have been caused by hoodlums.

Confirming the incident, Geoffrey Ogbonna, Police Public Relations Officer in Abia State, alleged that suspected hoodlums poured fuel through the window and set the office ablaze.

He also noted that the fire did not consume the whole building, but added that some voter registers were burnt.

“Only the voter register and the PVCs were affected by the fire,” he said.

Ogbonna said the Police is investigating the incident, and will bring all involved into the book.

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Nnamdi Kanu Is Right; Atiku's Adamawa Was In Northern Cameroon By Fredrick Nwabufo

3 February 2019 - 1:34pm

Fredrick Nwabufo

Fredrick Nwabufo

Before I give a historical perspective on the veracity of Nnamdi Kanu’s claim that Atiku Abubakar is “originally from Cameroon”, I must say this about this disturbed personality.

Kanu is a disadvantaged character who does not take himself seriously, but who some lost Igbo sons and daughters, in terrible need of guidance, take seriously.

I do not think he regards much of the rottenness that proceeds from his vocal aperture. I believe he laughs at himself and takes a dip with the cacophony that his bizarre utterances and “commandments” effectuate.

Kanu is a “little scared figure” with the ego of a planet. He is what happens when elders fail, and the people yearn for guidance; a lodestar to show them the way. Whoever emerges to cater to their sentiments is king.

But I think Kanu knows he has thousands of young impressionable minds in his thrall; so he provides them fodder to feed their sentiments, curiosity, bias and confusion. This is how he keeps his business enterprise alive.

It is all about “influencing”. Kanu is not different from Speed Darlington, the Instagram clown, who markets products for clients by making wry comedy out of them.

The more controversial he gets, the more his influence and the more financial endorsements from “sponsors”.

When Kanu marketed the Buhari body-double conspiracy theory, he scored a big one. Many Nigerians, including professors swallowed the garbage. I read as some professors theorised about the possibility of his claim and shuddered at the “certificated ignorance”.

I was surprised that only a few people realised that Kanu was delivering a PR assignment – denuding Buhari. And he was successful at it. President Buhari had to succumb to pressure to confirm his own existence.

But now, he says Atiku is “originally from Cameroon”, and that the PDP presidential candidate became a Nigerian when his region through a referendum became part of Nigeria.  

Is he right? Is there a method to his madness? Yes. Kanu may not be entirely wrong.

On 11 February 1961, a plebiscite was held in British Cameroons to determine which parts of the territory will stay in Cameroon or align with Nigeria. While northern Cameroon favoured a union with Nigeria, southern Cameroon wanted an alignment with the mother country.  On 1 June, 1961, northern Cameroon became part of Nigeria, and on 1 October 1961, the southern territory dissolved into Cameroon.

And really, much of the present day Adamawa state in Nigeria is part of the old northern Cameroon. In fact, there is a region called “Adamawa” in Cameroon today. And even the kingdom of the Lamido of Adamawa stretches into Cameroon.

However, Kanu’s claim, though historically correct, is for exploitative propaganda purposes.

Kanu does not believe in Biafra, he only believes in the idea of making a living by selling an illusory kingdom.

Biafra is just merchandise for him.

Fredrick is media personality.

Facebook: Fredrick Nwabufo, Twitter: @FredrickNwabufo

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