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Showing posts with label Politics. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Politics. Show all posts

Friday, July 16, 2021

July 16, 2021

Senator Odey, 51 Others Votes Against Electronic Transfer Of Result, Gershom Bassey, Sandy Onor Absent At Plenary

Cross River Senators


The senator representing Cross River North in the National Assembly, Senator Stephen Odey was the only Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) senator that voted against the electronic transmission of results by Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).


Senators Sandy Onor (Cross River Central) and Gershom Bassey were conspicuously missing at plenary on Friday when the matter came up for voting.


The Senate however ruled out the possibility of having results transmitted electronically when it voted that the Nigerian Communications Commission, with National Assembly approval, would determine whether the Independent National Electoral Commission could transmit results electronically or not.


A report by the Punch said those who voted against electronic transfer of results hinged their decision on the fact that the NCC had said only 43 per cent of Nigeria had internet network.


The Senate, however, on Thursday, finally passed the long-awaited Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill, 2021 after division among its members on electronic transmission of results.


The approval came following an amendment to Clause 52(3) by Senator Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi (APC, Niger North) during consideration of a report by the Committee on Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).


The amendment was seconded by Senator Ali Ndume (APC, Borno South).


The Committee in its recommendation initially prescribed that, “The Commission (INEC) may transmit results of elections by electronic means where and when practicable.”


This, however, was amended by the Deputy Whip, Senator Sabi Abdullahi to read, “The Commission may consider electronic transmission of results, provided the national coverage is adjudged to be adequate and secure by the National Communications Commission (NCC) and approved by the National Assembly.”



At the end of the physical voting, which lasted for about 40 minutes, a total of 80 Senators voted, out of which 52 voted for the amendment made by Abdullahi and 28 voted for original provision of the clause.


As announced by the Clerk, 28 Senators were absent during the division and voting session.


While all the 52 Senators who voted for the amendment belonged to the APC, 26 out of the 28 Senators who voted against the amendment belonged to the PDP, indicating party lines of voting.


Ironically , the Chairman of Senate Committee on INEC , Senator Kabiru Gaya who presented the report with original provision of clause 52(3), voted against it by saying no to Senator Albert Bassey’s call for its retention.


Those who voted against recommendation

At plenary, two Lagos Senators – Oluremi Tinubu and Solomon Adeola, – voted against the original recommendation of the committee, which called for adoption of electronic transfer of results. Senator Tokunbo Abiru was however absent.


Other APC Southern senators who voted against it included Senators Orji Uzor Kalu (Abia North); Ovie Omo-Agege (Delta Central), Peter Nwaoboshi (Delta North), Francis Alimikhena (Edo North) and Opeyemi Bamidele (Ekiti Central); Degi Eremienyo (Bayelsa East); Robert Boroffice (Ondo North), Basiru Ajibola (Osun Central), Frank Ibezim (Imo North), and Adelere Oriolowo (Osun West).


Others APC senators are Adamu Abdullahi (Nasarawa West), Tanko Al-Makura (Nasarawa North), Akwashiki Godiya (Nasarawa South), Mohammed Sani (Niger East), Abdullahi Aliyu Sabi (Niger North), Bima Enagi ( Niger South); Dimka Ayuba (Plateau Central), Ibrahim Gobir (Sokoto East) Yusuf Yusuf (Taraba Central), Isa Shuaibu Lau (Taraba North) Bomai Ibrahim Mohammed (Yobe South), Sahabi Ya’u (Zamfara North) and Lawali Hassan Anka (Zamfara West).



Ishaku Elisha (Adamawa North), Dahiru Aishatu Binani (Adamawa Central), Jika Daudu Haliru (Bauchi Central), Bukachuwa Adamu Muhammad (Bauchi North), Abubakar Kyari (Borno North), Shettima Kashim (Borno Central), Ali Ndume (Borno South) also voted against the recommendation of the committee.


Also in the above category are Danjuma Goje (Gombe Central), Amos Bulus (Gombe South), Alkali Saidu (Gombe North), Hadeija Hassan Ibrahim (Jigawa North East), Abdul-Kwari Suleiman (Kaduna North), Uba Sani (Kaduna Central), Kabiru Gaya (Kano South), Ahmad Babba Kaita (Katsina North), Mundiya Bello (Katsina South), Abdullahi Barkiya (Katsina Central); Yahaya Abdullahi (Kebbi North), Abdullahi Adamu Aliero (Kebbi Central), Oseni Yakubu (Kogi Central), Smart Adeyemi (Kogi West), Isah Jibrin (Kogi East), Lola Ashiru (Kwara South) and Yahaya Oloriegbe (Kwara Central).


Those who voted for electronic transfer of results were mostly PDP members. They are Adenugba Fadahunsi(Sun East), Clifford Ordia (Edo South) Matthew Urhoghide (Edo Central), Kola Balogun (Oyo South), Gyang Istifanus (Plateau North), George Sekibo (Rivers), Biodun Olujimi (Ekiti) South, Mpigi Barinada, Betty Apiafi, (Rivers) Abdullahi Danbaba (Sokoto) and Philip Aduda (FCT).


Others are Chukwuka Utazi (Enugu) Abdullahi Ibrahim Danbaba, Francis Onyewuchi , Danjuma La’ah (Kaduna South) Patrick Akinyelure (Ondo Central) and Enyinnaya Abaribe


All the three Senators from Anambra and Ogun states , were absent from the start of the physical voting. Also, two out of the three senators from Oyo State were not in the chamber before the commencement of voting.



Tuesday, July 13, 2021

July 13, 2021

BREAKING: Senate Rejects Buhari's Aide, Lauretta Onochie As INEC Commissioner

Lauretta Onochie

By Henry Umoru

THE Senate on Tuesday bowed to pressure from Civil Society Organisations, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and other Nigerians and refused to confirm the Special Assistant on new media to President Muhammadu Buhari, Lauretta Onochie from Delta as a Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.

The refusal was based on Federal Character Principle and to adhere strictly to the Act, just as the Senate said that she is from Delta and the state has May Agbamuche who is the Chairman, Legal Services, INEC.

The resolution of the Senate was sequel to the consideration of the Senator Kabiru Gaya, APC, Kano South led Senate Committee on the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.




Thursday, June 24, 2021

June 24, 2021

Anambra: INEC Insist APGA Will Not Take Part In Guber Election


 



For violating the Electoral Act 2010 as amended, the rulling All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) has been ruled out of the November 6, 2021 governorship poll in Anambra State.



According to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which dropped the hint, yesterday, in Abuja, APGA’s disqualification followed the party’s failure to comply with Section 85 of the Electoral Act.

The commission disclosed that APGA did not notify it when it purportedly held its ad hoc congress to elect delegates for the party’s governorship primary.

INEC’s National Commissioner in charge of Publicity and Voter Education, Mr. Festus Okoye, in a statement, insisted that parties must act within the confines of the law in the conduct of their congresses and primaries if they are to avoid issues and challenges that may complicate the conduct of elections.



INEC’s clarification came on the heels of the declaration of former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, as the winner of the factional primary organised by the Chief Victor Oye-led faction of the party.

As of the time of filing the report, exit polls indicated the former CBN governor and frontline aspirant was cruising home to victory, even as reports indicated that a rival faction of the party announced the suspension of the economist-turned politician.

The Chief Jude Okeke-led National Working Committee (NWC) of the party said Soludo was suspended from APGA for anti-party activities, saying that the NWC arrived at the decision after its meeting on Tuesday, June 22, 2021.



The acting National Publicity Secretary of the faction, Ikechukwu Chukwunyere, who disclosed this to journalists in Abuja, said the party leadership applauded the peaceful and successful “Special Delegate Ward Congresses, where three-member Ward Delegates were elected for the July 1, governorship primaries of the party.”

Journalists were barred at the venue of the accreditation and voting. The state secretary of the party, Tony Ifeanya, however denied knowledge of any order by the leadership of the party to bar reporters from witnessing the event, which was beamed live by dedicated television stations and the SoludoTV Facebook app

Ifeanya said journalists in the state were not accredited because they did not apply to the party for permission to cover the primary election.

“Maybe you people can wait around. When the process is over, the leadership of the party would speak to you about the outcome of the exercise,” he said.







Thursday, April 15, 2021

April 15, 2021

18 LG Chairmen In C'River Threatens To Leave PDP With Ayade, Demands Fresh PDP Congress, Submits Petition To NWC

18 LG Chairmen from CRS during a visit to PDP's NWC

 


Local government chairmen and councillors in Cross River have threatened to defect to the All Progressives Congress (APC) alongside Governor Ben Ayade if the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) fails to do the needful.


This threat was handed to the PDP on Tuesday when the Chairmen met with the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP in Abuja, GRASSROOT REPORTERS has learnt.



The leader of the delegation and Chairman of Akpabuyo Local Government Area, Hon. Emmanuel Bassey who handed over the petition to the party’s Deputy National Secretary, Dr. Emmanuel Agbo, called for immediate conduct of transparent congresses at all levels in the state.


Speaking shortly after the meeting, the Chairman of Calabar Municipal Council, Hon. Effiong Nta Eke demanded a fresh state congress to guarantee the return of party structures to the governor.



Hon. Eke said: “The governor is the leader of the party in the state. He should be given control of the party structures and this can only be done with a fresh congress.


“We are demanding a fresh congress. If not, where the Governor, Prof. Ben Ayade, goes, we will go with him. He is the leader of the party in the state.”


Commenting also, the leader of the delegation, Hon. Emmanuel Bassey said: “We are chairmen of the 18 local government councils in Cross River State. We came to meet the national chairman and we have met him, and he was ably represented by the Deputy National Secretary in the person of Dr. Emmanuel Agbo.



“We came for the purpose of our state; the state of affair of the party in our state; we met him and we presented to him what we came with and he has honourably taken care of it and has assured us that he is going to make sure that what we presented to the party and what we came with, will be given immediate and urgent attention.”


When he was asked to reveal the content of the petition presented, he said: “You guys must have known that the state congress has not been held, and we did ask that it be done urgently. And he has assured us that that will be considered urgently.



“For God’s sake, Prof. Ben Ayade is the party leader in Cross River State; he is the one that leads, just like every other governor in any PDP state. So, let us give him his due respect. Let it be given to him.


"Whatever equation he must have taken, I think is to a great extent it is for the goodness and betterment of the party.


“Let me state here categorically that we are the pillars of the party in Cross River State and these pillars were erected by Prof. Ben Ayade; so, if he goes, we go with him.”


The governor had lost the party's structure to the National Assembly Members from the state. 






Saturday, April 10, 2021

April 10, 2021

Governor Ayade's Absence At PDP Meeting Fuels Defection Plan


 

By Obio Monday


Barring any last minute change, the Cross River State Governor, Sen. Prof. Ben Ayade appears set to dump the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the All Progressives Congress (APC).


GRASSROOT REPORTERS gathered that efforts to reconcile the governor and some National Assembly members from the state and the Rivers State Governor, Ezenwo Nyesom Wike has hit a brickwall, as all warring parties has refused to shift ground.


Multiple sources told GRASSROOT REPORTERS that the rally organized on Thursday for the governor by the 18 local government chairmen and their councillors as well as all the governor's appointees was to assure the governor that they were ready to defect with him should he decide to jump ship, and to send a message to the PDP that the governor is in control in the 18 LGAs.


The governor had lost control of the party structure to the National Assembly members. This did not go down well with the governor and his loyalists. The governor's camp had inaugurated a parallel Ward and Chapter executive, which the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP immediately discredited, recognizing the National Assembly members backed Exco.


While receiving the Governor of Bauchi State, Sen. Bala Mohammed in Government House, Calabar, last month, Governor Ayade threatened to leave the PDP if the injustice meted to him is not corrected. 


He said:

“I cannot blind myself to the challenges of PDP and decide not to know what to do at the right time for the Cross River people sake.



“I know you (Bala) are somebody that doesn’t take injustice. One single injustice they will see a new Cross River state.”


The governor threatened that one single injustice against him and his followers, he'll take a big decision “... and I say it as a warning because it does appears that your party seems to celebrate people who threaten and stress them.”


“All councillors in the state are PDP, council chairmen are PDP, all House of Assembly members are PDP, all commissioners are PDP, and all the National Assembly members except one are PDP: all of them are under my leadership”.


“So today I am seated and dancing on the fence. Indeed that’s true.


“And so I speak with righteous anger for the continuous annoyance and nuisance orchestrated on our innocent by external factors. But I just hope this ends today


“While I believe in ecclesiastics of peace, I believe in the catechism of good faith but I also believe in respect for the supremacy of an office.


“So if you take a catalytic combination of all I have said, it tells you that there is the need for a guided caution and at some persons going forward as a people, as a party.


“I think the time has come when all of us will gather and say enough is enough.”



Ayade, Deputy Absent At PDP Governors' Meeting


The governor's absence yesterday at the meeting of the PDP governors in Makurdi, Benue State, has further fuelled his defection moves.


The PDP governors rose from the meeting to demand the devolution of power and restructuring of the country.



The meeting had in attendance, the PDP Governors of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia), Udom Emmanuel (Akwa Ibom), Douye Diri (Bayelsa), Samuel Ortom (Benue), Ifeanyi Okowa (Delta), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Darius Ishaku (Taraba), Umaru Fintiri (Adamawa), Godwin Obaseki (Edo) and Bello Mattawalle (Zamfara).


Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State was represented by his deputy, Baba Tela.


The Cross River State governor was the only PDP governor missing at the meeting. He was neither represented by his deputy, Prof. Ivara Esu.



When GRASSROOT REPORTERS contacted the Senior Special Adviser on Media and Publicity to the governor, Mr. Christian Ita for comment, he said:

"Was he the only governor that was absent? Go and ask Wike (Rivers State governor) why he was absent. It is only when it is Ayade that you put a spin to it. I asked a simple question, was he the only governor that was absent? No!


"So what's the big deal about it. The one they did the last time, didn't he attend in Abuja? He did. So if exigencies of office did not allow him to attend this time around, I don't think we should give any spin to it".


On moves by the governor to defect to the APC, Mr. Ita said:

" Are you hearing about that one today? They've been saying he'll defect since 2015, has he defected? We've responded to this overtime and we are tired of responding".





Saturday, April 3, 2021

April 03, 2021

Zamfara Governor Set To Dump PDP


 



Barring last minute change, the governor of Zamfara State, Bello Matawalle, has concluded arrangements to defect from the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC.

According to DAILY NIGERIAN, arrangements have been concluded for the formal defection of the governor, who will be introduced to President Muhammadu Buhari by the chairman of the ruling party’s convention committee, Mai Mala Buni.

The deal, according to sources, may be sealed on Tuesday when the federal government delegation visits Zamfara to sympathize with the governor over the recent market fire incident in the state.

Sources said the governor has been in talks with at least two governors of the APC for several months.

Aside from the serving governors, a former governor of Zamfara State, Ahmed Sani Yerima, is among the top politicians courting Mr Matawalle into APC in order to whittle down the influence of former Governor Abdulaziz Yari in the party.

Mr Yari, a former political godson of Mr Yarima, has taken over the control of the party in the state, deciding who gets what in the APC political equation.

In a February interview, Mr Yarima first broke the news of Mr Matawalle’s planned defection, saying “I think we have gone very far” in the arrangements.

But sources told said that Mr Yari had vowed not to remain in the APC as soon as the party transfers control of the structure to the governor. “Abdulaziz Yari vowed to leave the APC the day Matawalle defects to the party,” said a source.

The reasons for Mr Matawalle’s defection are not far-fetched as the governor himself once lamented that the PDP did not show solidarity to its governors.

In November last year, the governor lamented about the manner with which the PDP governors showed lack of solidarity for him when he needed them most.

“I am having a very bad experience of recent from some of my PDP Governor colleagues which I still find very puzzling. For instance, the South-South Governors accusing me in the media are PDP Governors and they are the same people who brewed controversy over the so-called Zamfara Gold, premised on deliberate misinformation and outright lies.

“Surprisingly, it is the APC Federal Government which has all the correct records on the gold mining issue that came out to defend me in this saga. As PDP colleagues, I expected the Governors to contact me first and find out my own side of the story before unleashing their venom in the media.

“As the brouhaha lasted, I commend the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency Muhammadu Buhari for being supportive of our efforts to organize the economic sector in the state to avoid using the mineral deposits to promote insecurity in our dear state,” the governor said.

Inside sources told DAILY NIGERIAN that the governor’s defection was not for personal interest but the general interest of the people of Zamfara State.

“Matawalle is a person who can sacrifice his life to get peace in Zamfara. So if he can sacrifice his life to this cause, then he can sacrifice his political interest for people to live in peace.

“Zamfara State will have a good synergy with federal government and get more support towards fight against banditry if the governor is in APC. Although President Muhammadu Buhari respects and gives Governor Matawalle audience anytime he requested, a lot can be easily achieved, just as support and cooperation of the Presidency can be easily secured through the Progressive Governors’ Forum.

“Let me give you another example, Governor Matawalle last year ordered security vehicles to donate to security forces fighting insurgency in Zamfara State, but the Customs rejected to give duty waivers to Zamfara State. But at almost the same time, Lagos being an APC state, gets waiver for the importation of commercial vehicles.

“Look at the recent fire incident in Zamfara market. None of the PDP governors came to sympathize with us, but APC ministers have come. The federal government delegation is also on its way next week,” said a source close to the governor.

With Mr Matawalle’s imminent defection, Zamfara APC crisis may yet be over as other political actors like Senator Kabiru Marafa, Dauda Lawan, among others may remain in the party to fight for supremacy.

Saturday, March 27, 2021

March 27, 2021

Prof. Ogban Rigged The Election For PDP, Not Me - Akpabio Reacts To Judgement

From L-R: Prof. Peter Ogban, Senator Godswill Akpabio

 


By Obio Monday


Minster of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio, has denied claims that the jailed University of Calabar lecturer, Professor Peter Ogban, rigged the 2019 Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial election in his favour.


The former Senator said, rather, the elections was manipulated in favour of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).


Recall that a High Court in Ikot Ekpene, Akwa Ibom State, on Thursday, sentenced Prof. Ogban to three years imprisonment for altering and announcing false election results in favour of Akpabio and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2019.


Prof. Ogban, a professor of soil science, who was the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Returning Officer for the election, was found guilty on Thursday by the trial court. He however vowed to appeal the judgment.


In a statement signed by his media aide, Aniete Ekong, the former governor of Akwa Ibom State maintained that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, twisted the judgment by claiming that Ogban rigged the poll in his favour.


“In their desperation in a continuing campaign of calumny against Senator Akpabio, the INEC in Akwa Ibom State twisted the context of the judgment and maliciously claimed that the election was rigged in favour of Senator Akpabio.


“Nothing could be further from the truth. The facts of the case put a lie to this assertion.



“Contrarily, Senator Akpabio was a victim of the fraudulent manipulation of the election of Akwa Ibom North-West Senatorial District held on February 23 2019.


“Professor Ogban was the Returning Officer who in a bizarre twist to manipulate the election and rig Senator Akpabio out, hijacked the electoral results of Akwa Ibom North-West Senatorial District from Ikot Ekpene, the Senatorial District headquarters to Uyo where it was announced after cancellations of lawfully collated votes and against the dictates of the Electoral Act.


“The question is: who was the beneficiary of the electoral fraud and manipulation in Akwa Ibom North-West Senatorial District?



“Certainly, not Senator Akpabio, which was why he challenged the outcome of the election up to the Court of Appeal which upheld his appeal and ordered a rerun election with very strong condemnation of the activities of the Returning Officer and INEC. How then could the same man whose actions Senator Akpabio was dissatisfied with and challenged in Court be said to have rigged the election for Senator Akpabio?


He added that:

“For the avoidance of doubt Prof Ogban never announced Senator Akpabio as the winner of any election.”


The Minister stressed that Ogban “cancelled lawful votes” and announced his opponent as the “winner of the manipulated election.”