From the headlines and news of major local and international news sources, Breaking presents the Breaking Radio from Lagos; Nigeria’s mega city. I have got news from Thisday, Daily Post, Daily Independent, The Punch, Nigerian Guardian, Vanguard, Nigerian Pilot, Premium Times, Sun Newspaper, PM News, Leadership newspaper, The Herald, The Nation, Royal Times, Sahara Reporters, News Agency of Nigeria and more. You can head over to breaking.com.ng on your mobile phone for direct links to news on one page.
Here are the headlines
Kaduna murders: CAN says Buhari not doing enough
SERAP demands probe of Obasanjo’s $16b power spendings
Maiduguri: the bombings continue
Amnesty servers Nigerian Army another damaging human rights exposé
Nigerian Army killed 150 Igbos – Amnesty
Ride on MMM, we are still in – Nigerians sing praise of notorious scheme
Lagos dumps sanitation Saturday
Obasanjo delivers 9,959-word speech, jabs Buhari & co
Jegede is now PDP candidate, says INEC
… and there goes ‘candidate’ Jimoh Ibrahim’s dream
Premium Times: Authorise Probe of Obasanjo’s $16b Power Spending, SERAP Tells CJN
Transparency group, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, has sent a letter to the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Walter Onnoghen, requesting him to urgently “to appoint an independent counsel to investigate allegations of corruption in the spending of $16b on electricity by the government of former President Olusegun Obasanjo between 1999 and 2007.”
SERAP said the request was brought “pursuant to Section 52 of the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act 2000, and the letter and spirit of the Act, and the object and purpose of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).”
The letter dated November 24, and signed by SERAP senior staff counsel Timothy Adewale, says that, “a Parliamentary Hearing by the House of Representatives in Abuja over the spending of $16b between 1999 and 2007 on the power project revealed through testimonies of witnesses appearing before the Committee that the $16b budgeted for the power project may have been stolen by some state officials and others, and cannot be accounted for.”
And another power-related news
Buhari Approves Clearance of 218 Stranded Containers of Power Equipment
Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, yesterday said that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the disbursement of funds for the clearing of about 218 containers of power equipments stranded at various sea ports in Nigeria.
Fashola disclosed this during an official visit to Duncan Bonded Terminal in Lagos.
He said: “In Mr. President’s effort to give a stable power supply to every Nigerian, he has graciously approved the disbursement of funds for the clearing of stranded containers containing power equipment and materials at various terminals, so as to improve power delivery to every Nigerian.”
He also said that upon clearing these consignments, contractors will move to site immediately and complete on-going priority and other projects, some of which include: construction of new Abeokuta-Igboora double transmission line and 132 kilovolt (kv) double circuit Tee-off at Igboora-Igangan.
ThisDay: World Bank, Govt, Others Sign $40m Deal to Decongest Apapa Ports
The Executive Secretary of the Nigeria Shippers’ Council (NSC), Mr. Hassan Bello, wednesday said the federal government, through the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA), NSC and the International Consortium (IFC), the investment arm of the World Bank, has concluded a $40m deal to de-congest Apapa, Lagos, gridlock by building automated truck landing terminals across the country.
While disclosing this at an interactive session with Transport correspondents in Abuja, Bello said the deal would be delivered through the National Freight Information and Transportation Hub (NAFITH), a Jordanian Logistics Service Consultant to IFC, in collaboration from with Lagos State Government and other interested stakeholders.
The entire project which THISDAY learnt will take 18 months to complete has commenced at different parts of the country to create truck landing terminal that will be electronically driven.
The project, when completed, he said, would reduce the notorious traffic jam in Apapa, Lagos.
Vanguard: Nigeria: Kaduna Killings – You Are Not Doing Enough, CAN Tells Buhari
Following the Fulani herdsmen/farmers clash in the southern part of Kaduna State, the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, yesterday, called on the Federal Government to redouble its efforts towards stopping incessant attacks on farmers by Fulani herdsmen.
According to the Christian group, the government is not doing enough to stem the tide of herdsmen’s killings.
The President of CAN, Rev Samson Ayokunle, who stated this while receiving representatives of villages displaced by the current crisis rocking southern Kaduna, in Abuja, cried out that there was religious cleansing going on in Kaduna State.
Narrating their ordeal, the victims, who spoke through the Secretary of CAN, Godogodo Zone, Reverend Chawangon Nathan, said the problem, which started in May 26, 2016, had degenerated to uncontrollable crisis due to non-challant attitude of those in authority.
He noted that not less than 25 villages in southern Kaduna had been brought down by the Fulani herdsmen.
Nathan disclosed that “102 people had so far been killed while about 215 sustained various degree of injuries. 50,000 houses burnt in 25 villages, over 10,000 displaced and over 30,000 hectares of land destroyed deliberately by Fulani.
WashingtonPost: Suicide bomber kills 1 at northeast Nigerian bus station
A civilian self-defense commander says a suicide bomber has exploded outside a bus station in Nigeria’s northeastern city of Maiduguri, killing himself and one other person. It is the sixth attack in four weeks on the city that is the birthplace of the Boko Haram Islamic extremist group.
In another news,
Vanguard: Army, Amnesty International, Trade Words Over Alleged Killing of 150 Pro-Biafra Activists
Amnesty International, yesterday, came out with a report stating that the Nigerian security forces led by the military, embarked on a chilling campaign of extrajudicial executions and violence resulting in the deaths of at least 150 peaceful pro-Biafra protesters in the South Eastern part of the country.
Attributing their findings to an indepth investigation it carried out, the international body stated that analysis of 87 videos, 122 photographs and 146 eyewitness testimonies relating to demonstrations and other gatherings between August 2015 and August 2016, consistently showed that the military fired live ammunition with little or no warning to disperse crowds. It also finds evidence of mass extrajudicial executions by security forces, including at least 60 people shot dead in the space of two days in connection with events to mark Biafra Remembrance Day.
“This deadly repression of pro-Biafra activists is further stoking tensions in the South East of Nigeria. This reckless and trigger-happy approach to crowd control has caused at least 150 deaths and we fear the actual total might be far higher. The Nigerian government’s decision to send in the military to respond to pro-Biafra events seems to be in large part to blame for this excessive bloodshed. The authorities must immediately launch an impartial investigation and bring the perpetrators to book,” said Makmid Kamara, Interim Director of Amnesty International Nigeria.
Amnesty International further stated in their report that: “By far, the largest number of pro-Biafra activists were killed on Biafra Remembrance Day on 30 May 2016 when an estimated 1,000 IPOB members and supporters gathered for a rally in Onitsha, Anambra State. The night before the rally, the security forces raided homes and a church where IPOB members were sleeping. On Remembrance Day itself, the security forces shot people in several locations. Amnesty International has not been able to verify the exact number of extrajudicial executions, but estimates that at least 60 people were killed and 70 injured in these two days. The real number is likely to be higher.”
Stating that they have reviewed videos of a peaceful gathering of IPOB members and supporters at Aba National High School on 9 February 2016, the body also said that the Nigerian military surrounded the group and then fired live ammunition at them without any prior warning. Eyewitnesses and local human rights activists said that many of the protesters at Aba were rounded up and taken away by the military. On 13 February, 13 corpses, including those of men known to have been taken by the military were discovered in a pit near the Aba highway. It is chilling to see how these soldiers gunned down peaceful IPOB members. The video evidence shows that this was a military operation with intent to kill and injure,” Makmid Kamara alleged.
No action by authorities to ensure accountability
The organisation regretted that despite overwhelming evidence that the Nigerian security forces committed gross human rights violations including extrajudicial executions and torture, no investigations have been carried out by the authorities. “Amnesty International has repeatedly called on the government of Nigeria to initiate independent investigations into evidence of crimes under international law, and President Buhari has repeatedly promised that Amnesty International’s reports would be looked into. However, no concrete steps have been taken,” said Makmid Kamara.
Army debunks Amnesty Report
But the Nigerian Army yesterday debunked the allegation made by Amnesty International, describing the claims of mass killing of MASSOB/IPOB protesters by the military between August 2015 and August 2016 as unfounded.
A statement signed by Colonel Sani Kukasheka Usman, Acting Director, Army Public Relations, a copy of which was emailed to Vanguard said the insinuation that troops perpetrated the killing of defenceless agitators is untrue.
The statement read: “This is an outright attempt to tarnish the reputation of the security forces in general and the Nigerian Army in particular, for whatever inexplicable parochial reasons. For umpteenth times, the Nigerian Army has informed the public about the heinous intent of this Non-Governmental Organisation which is never relenting in dabbling into our national security in manners that obliterate objectivity, fairness and simple logic.
“The evidence of MASSOB/IPOB violent secessionist agitations is widely known across the national and international domains. Their modus operandi has continued to relish violence that threatens national security. Indeed, between August 2015 and August 2016, the groups’ violent protests have manifested unimaginable atrocities to unhinge the reign of peace, security and stability in several parts of the South East Nigeria.
“A number of persons from the settler communities that hailed from other parts of the country were selected for attack, killed and burnt. Such reign of hate, terror and ethno-religious controversies that portend grave consequences for national security have been averted severally through the responsiveness of the Nigerian Army and members of the security agencies.
“These security agencies are always targeted for attack by the MASSOB/IPOB instruments of barbarism and cruelty. For instance, in the protests of 30 – 31 May 2016, more than 5 personnel of the Nigeria Police were killed, while several soldiers were wounded, Nigeria Police vehicles were burnt down same as several others of the Nigerian Army that were vandalized.”
Niger-Bridge under threat
The release from the military also claimed the strategic Niger Bridge at Onitsha came under threat which led to disruption of socio-economic activities.
“In the aftermath of the encounter that ensued between security agencies and MASSOB/IPOB militants, many of our troops sustained varying degrees of injury. In addition, the MASSOB/IPOB recurrent use of firearms, crude weapons as well as other cocktails such as acid and dynamites to cause mayhem remain a huge security threat across the Region.
“In these circumstances, the Nigerian Army under its constitutional mandates for Military Aid to Civil Authority (MACA) and Military Aid to Civil Powers (MACP) has continued to act responsively in synergy with other security agencies to de-escalate the series of MASSOB/IPOB violent protests.
“Instructively, the military and other security agencies exercised maximum restraints despite the flurry of provocative and unjustifiable violence, which MASSOB/IPOB perpetrated. The adherence to Rules of Engagement by the military has been sacrosanct in all of these incidents.
“Therefore, it is rather unfortunate for the Amnesty International to allow itself to be lured into this cheap and unpopular venture that aims to discredit the undeniable professionalism as well as responsiveness of the Nigerian Army in the discharge of its constitutional roles.”
Away from security, Nigerians won’t be leaving MMM in a hurry.
Some Abuja residents on Thursday said that they have benefited immensely from the popular financial programme, MMM Nigeria Scheme, and have no intention of leaving the scheme anytime soon.
The Mavrodi Mondial Movement popularly known as MMM has gained popularity among Nigerians as the programme promises a monthly payment of 30 per cent interest on loans provided by participants.
This is against the backdrop of the House of Representatives order in November that operators of the scheme should be arrested to protect Nigerians from financial devastation.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that in spite of the order, MMM’s membership had continued to grow.
Some residents who spoke to NAN said that MMM was very beneficial to Nigerians.
Ebube osakwe, a civil servant told NAN that she doesn’t see the programme as a Ponzi scheme and believed it could help many Nigerians.
“When I heard about it, I was skeptical at first, but I decided to test the system by putting in 20,000 Naira to see if I would get the money they claimed.
“To my surprise, a month later, I got my 20,000 with my 30 per cent interest and an extra bonus.
“I was amazed by the success so I put more money into the system and have benefitted from it.
“This programme has helped many Nigerians deal with this recession so I don’t see the wrong in it.”
Godwin Dickson, a mechanic said that the scheme had helped him with his finances, adding that it had assisted him immensely in paying his debts.
“I don’t care what anyone has to say about MMM because as far as I am concerned, it has saved my life.
“I have paid off my debts and I have been able to generate extra change to take care of my household.
“I owed someone a large sum of money and someone introduced me to MMM and loaned me 500,000 Naira to put into the scheme.
“The money I got back was able to clear all my debts at once and I was able to finally breathe again.
“I am aware of the risks of this programme, but it is also a lifesaver and I will advise more Nigerians to get involved at least for now that it seems safe,” he said.
Joyce Okoh, an entrepreneur, said that she was certain the business would crash at a point, but she would take advantage of it while it lasts.
“I know that this programme has failed before in some countries and I admit it is a sort of Ponzi scheme but why should I complain when I am benefitting from it?
“MMM is bound to fail whether the government bans it or not, because the process is supported by new members funding the profits to be made by older members which will crash at some point.
“However, I have made a large sum of money from this programme and I am willing to continue reaping the benefits it is offering for now.
“I just have to ensure I don’t get greedy and invest my whole savings or sell my property like many people have done because when it crashes, people will become suicidal.
“I think the key thing here is to know your limit and know when to bow out of the programme,” she said.
Punch: Lagos stops monthly environmental sanitation
The Lagos State Government has stopped the monthly environmental sanitation exercise in the state.
The government said the exercise, which used to hold for three hours on the last Saturday of every month with restriction on movement, needed to go to pave the way for a much-needed reform.
The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde, in a statement on Wednesday, said the decision to cancel the monthly exercise followed a resolution adopted at the State Executive Council meeting.
He said the members of the executive agreed that it was no longer appropriate to restrict movement of people for three hours in a megacity like Lagos at a time they should be pursuing commercial activities.
He said, “Lagos has grown exponentially with the attendant environmental problems associated with managing 20 million people. The environmental laws and procedures being practised in the state have not been able to match the growth and the dream of a 24-hour economy.”
Ayorinde said the state government was also aware of a recent Court of Appeal judgment, which made restriction on movement during the monthly sanitation illegal.
He said, “After a careful consideration, the State Executive Council has therefore resolved that the present economic climate can no longer support the continued lock down of a megacity like Lagos, hence the need for the reform
“Furthermore, Government will also accelerate the introduction of fresh reforms through the passage of new harmonised environmental laws that will drive meaningful changes in areas of harmonised billing, waste management, modern landfill sites, noise pollution, introduction of an environmental trust fund and an environmental advisory council.”
Ayorinde said the government was committed to a clean and secure environment for the benefit of Lagos residents and would continue to provide the necessary leadership to meet the environmental challenges of the state.
“Lagosians and visitors alike are therefore urged to embrace these changes and imbibe a culture of voluntarily maintaining and preserving their environment to create a beautiful and healthy city that we all can be proud of,” Ayorinde added.
He said the government would thenceforth be tougher in ensuring enforcement against contraventions of its policies and regulations.
The commissioner urged the residents to voluntarily comply with the necessary laws and support government in its bid to have a clean and healthy environment.
Also in the news today,
Premium Times: Obasanjo strikes again, attacks Buhari, National Assembly, Military
The honeymoon between President Muhammadu Buhari and former President Olusegun Obasanjo seems to have ended.
For the one and a half year that Mr. Buhari has been in power, Mr. Obasanjo remained one of his staunchest backers, visiting him repeatedly and publicly defending most of his actions.
But speaking in Lagos Wednesday, Mr. Obasanjo served signal that the era of being soft on the administration Mr. Buhari leads is over.
Delivering the keynote at the First Akintola Williams Annual Lecture, Mr. Obasanjo lashed at the Buhari administration for repeatedly lumping the country’s three previous administrations (including the one he, Obasanjo, led) together and then accusing them of misgovernance.
He also advised Mr. Buhari to stop dwelling on the past, saying since he was elected to change the country, he should concentrate on clearing the mess he inherited.
“The blanket adverse comments or castigation of all democratic administrations from 1999 by the present administration is uncharitable, fussy and uninstructive. Politics apart, I strongly believe that there is a distinction between the three previous administrations that it would be unfair to lump them all together.
“I understand President Buhari’s frustration on the state of the economy inherited by him. It was the same reason and situation that brought about cry for change, otherwise there would be no need for change if it was all nice and rosy.
“Now that we have had change because the actors and the situation needed to be changed, let us move forward to have progress through a comprehensive economic policy and programme that is intellectually, strategically and philosophically based,” Mr. Obasanjo said.
“It is easier to win an election than to right the wrongs of a badly fouled situation. When you are outside, what you see and know are nothing compared with the reality.
“And yet once you are on seat, you have to clear the mess and put the nation on the path of rectitude, development and progress leaving no group or section out of your plan, programme and policy and efforts. The longer it takes, the more intractable the problem may become.”
The former president also criticised plans by Mr. Buhari to take about $30b loan.
“I am sure that such a comprehensive policy and programme (that will move Nigeria forward) will not support borrowing US$30b in less than three years. It will give us the short-, medium- and long-term picture.
“Adhocry is not the answer but cold, hard headed planning that evinces confidence and trust is the answer. Economy neither obeys orders nor does it work according to wishes. It must be worked upon with all factors considered and most stakeholders involved.
“The investors, domestic and foreign, are no fools and they know what is going on with the management of the economy including the foreign exchange and they are not amused. The Central Bank must be restored to its independence and integrity. We must be careful and watchful of the danger of shortermism.
“Short-term may be the enemy of medium- and long-term. We must also make allowance for the lessons that most of us in democratic dispensation have learned and which the present administration seems to be just learning.”
The former president did not spare the National Assembly which he says stinks to high heavens and the Nigerian military, which he said needed to be purged.
Now on politics. Jegede is now PDP candidate, says INEC
In a judgment lasting three tension-soaked hours, the Appeal Court, Abuja, resolved the controversy surrounding the governorship ticket of the Ondo Peoples Democratic Party in favour of Mr. Eyitayo Jegede, sending the PDP supporters in the 40-year-old state into wild jubilation.
The judgment delivered on Wednesday by the Justice Ibrahim Saulawa-led three-member panel lifted the pall of uncertainty hanging over the governorship ticket that had pitted business mogul, Jimoh Ibrahim, against a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Eyitayo Jegede.
In the landmark judgment, the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja set aside the judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja by which the Independent National Electoral Commission had declared Ibrahim the PDP’s governorship candidate for the November 26 election in Ondo State.
The three-man panel of the appeal court in a unanimous judgment, upheld the appeal by Jegede, who was earlier dropped by INEC and replaced with Ibrahim, as the governorship candidate of the party.
In a separate judgment delivered by the panel, the appeal court also upheld the appeal by a factional chairman of the party, Ahmed Makarfi, and the secretary of the faction, Ben Obi, against the judgment of the Federal High Court, recognising Biyi Poroye and eight others as state executive members of the party in their various states.
All the three Justices on the panel, Justice Saulawa, Justice George Mbaba and Ignatius Agube, agreed on the decisions reached on the two judgments.
Poroye and others who are backing Ibrahim as the governorship candidate of the party belong to the Ali Modu Sheriff faction of the PDP.
Justice Okon Abang of the Federal High Court, Abuja, had on June 29, 2016, delivered a judgment recognising Poroye and others as the authentic state executive members of the PDP in their various states.
Subsequently, the judge, in a post-judgment ruling delivered on October 14, 2016, ordered INEC to drop Jegede and substitute him with Ibrahim as the governorship candidate of the PDP in the election slated for Saturday.
Justice Saulawa, in setting aside the two decisions on Wednesday, described them as “highly misplaced and most fraudulent”.
He resolved all the seven issues formulated for determination in favour of Jegede, describing the failure of the judge to grant fair hearing to Jegede, who was not a party to the suit before the Federal High Court, as “violent attitudinal disposition to rule of law.”
He said the judge committed a “grave error by violating the principles of natural justice” which he said required all parties that could be affected by an order of court to be heard before judgment was delivered.
Another member of the panel, Justice George Mbaba, who read the lead judgment on Makarfi’s appeal, also described Justice Abang’s judgment, as a “charade and fraud”.
Justice Mbaba ruled, “The entire proceedings leading to the judgment delivered on June 29, 2016, were, in my view, a fraud and it was intended to defraud the appellants. It appeared to be arranged by the same people who paraded as the plaintiffs and the defendants.
“The first to ninth respondents (Poroye and others) did not have a proper course of action.”
He noted that Justice Abang was “a willing party to achieve an ignoble goal”.
The appeal court held that Justice Abang acted without jurisdiction when he made orders against those that were not parties before him.
The panel also faulted the order granted in favour of Ibrahim on the grounds that the governorship candidate of the Sheriff faction was never a party to the suit and the prayer asking that he be recognised as the governorship candidate was not sought by the plaintiffs.
Justice Saulawa held that Justice Abang contravened judicial principles by granting an order not sought by the party.
He said Justice Abang, having earlier in the main judgment delivered on June 29, ruled that the recognition he granted Poroye and others as state executive members of the party was with respect to the 2019 general election, the judge on his own, in his October 14, 2016 ruling, “targeted his orders at the November 26 governorship election”.
“The court mistook his robe for that of Father Christmas and was handing out orders like Christmas gifts,” Justice Saulawa ruled.
The appeal court also nullified the primary said to have been conducted by the Poroye-led state executive of the Sheriff faction of the party which produced Ibrahim as the governorship candidate of the party in the state.
The appeal court described the primary that produced Ibrahim as an “illegal contraption” with “no legal effect or equitable remedy”, adding that the only valid primary could be the one conducted by the National Working Committee of any political party.
The court also held that the provisions of section 287 on which the October 14 post-judgment ruling was based could not be applied for judgment enforcement as Justice Abang did, describing the proceedings as fraudulent.
The court also dismissed Exhibits B21, B23 and B24 relied on by Abang as inadmissible because they were not properly certified.
Justice Saulawa ruled, “Having come this far. Having resolved each and all the total number of seven issues in favour of the appellant, Mr. Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), what else should the court do?
“Against the background of the foregoing, there is no gainsaying the fact that the appeal is meritorious and it is hereby allowed.”
But the court said it could not make any “consequential order” because Jegede’s lawyer, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), only prayed the court to allow the appeal and set aside the order of Justice Abang of the Federal High Court and nothing more.
Justice Saulawa explained that a court was not allowed to make an order not sought by parties, adding that Jegede’s prayer in his notice of appeal “is incongruous” with the prayers his lawyers asked the court to grant during hearing.
Justice Saulawa ruled, “The reliefs are incongruous and rather mutually exclusive. It is the law that the court does not grant the prayers not sought by parties.”
The Supreme Court had on Tuesday given the Justice Ibrahim Saulawa panel of the Court of Appeal in Abuja, which was handling the various cases relating to the dispute over the PDP governorship ticket in the forthcoming election in Ondo State, the nod to continue with its proceedings.
In two separate rulings, the five-man panel of the apex court led by the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen, unanimously dismissed the motions asking for a stay of the appeal court’s proceedings and others seeking an order disbanding the Justice Saulawa panel.
The two categories of motions dismissed by the apex court on Tuesday were filed by nine applicants led by Poroye.
The apex court arrived at the decisions when 14 separate appeals relating to the dispute over the PDP’s governorship ticket for the forthcoming election in Ondo State came up for hearing on Tuesday.
Other members of the Supreme Court’s panel – Justices Tanko Muhammad, Kumai Akaahs, Kudirat Kekereekun and Ejembi Eko – all agreed with the lead rulings read by Justice Onnoghen.
I’ll get judgment at Supreme Court – Ibrahim
Jimoh Ibrahim has reacted to the judgment which ordered INEC to remove his name as the candidate of the PDP in Saturday’s governorship election in Ondo State.
Ibrahim said in a statement shortly after the judgment that he was sure of getting justice at the Supreme Court.
He said there was no way the incumbent Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, would succeed himself by planting Jegede as his successor.
His statement read in part, “I have read the decision of the Court of Appeal delivered today (Wednesday). We have nothing to lose as the Supreme Court sits on the same case tomorrow. We shall get justice at the Supreme Court and if the PDP wins Saturday election, we shall have our four-year mandate to rule Ondo State.
No sooner had the judgment been delivered than wild jubilation broke out among Jegede’s loyalists in Akure.
Hundreds of women stormed the INEC office at Alagbaka, in the state capital to jubilate the ruling.
From Oyemekun Road to NEPA, Arakale, Alagbaka, Isikan, Oluwatuyi, Ijapo, Stadium Road, Hospital Road, Owode, Araromi, and Ilesa Garage areas, hundreds of jubilant supporters of Jegede trooped out singing and dancing.
The supporters, who displayed posters and campaign banners of Jegede, sang and danced in front of the INEC office while the armed security operatives deployed there monitored them closely.
Ibrahim’s party secretariat deserted
The campaign secretariat of Ibrahim was deserted following the ruling by the appeal court.
Our correspondent, who visited the secretariat around 4pm observed that although few cars branded in the posters of Ibrahim were parked in the front of the campaign office, people inside the office were less than 20.
The secretariat of the Poroye-led executive of the PDP, which is some few metres away from Ibrahim’s campaign office, was also deserted.
Poroye, however, said he was confident that the Supreme Court would rule in favour of Ibrahim and the PDP would be the eventual winner of the poll.
Jegede is now PDP candidate – INEC
Meanwhile, INEC has declared Jegede as the candidate of the PDP for the election coming up on Saturday.
The commission said it took the decision following the judgment of the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, which ordered it to remove the name of Ibrahim as the PDP candidate.
The Secretary to the Commission, Mrs. Agusta Okagwu, made the position of the commission known in a statement issued in Abuja on Wednesday night.
She said, “In compliance with the judgment delivered today, Wednesday, November 23, 2016, by the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, the Independent National Electoral Commission hereby declares that Mr. Eyltatyo legede (SAN) is now the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party for the Ondo State governorship election scheduled for Saturday, November 26, 2016.
“lt will he recalled that in compliance with the order given by the Federal High Court, Abuja Division, on Friday, October 14, 2016 (re-affirmed on October 27, 2016), the commission named Mr. Jimoh lbrahim as the PDP candidate for the governorship election.
“However, with today‘s judgment by the Court of Appeal, the commission, hereby, recognises Mr. Jegede as the candidate of the PDP for the said election.’’
Demand for postponement
The Ondo State Commissioner for Information, Kayode Akinmade, has called on INEC to provide a level playing field to all the candidates participating in the governorship election.
According to him, this would give the PDP governorship candidate, Jegede, the opportunity to prepare the names of his agents in all the polling units ahead of the election.
Akinmade said the remaining two days were not enough for the governorship candidate to prepare for the election.
He said, “It is only fair that INEC shifts election by 14 days so that Jegede could have enough time to prepare his agents’ list. If the Edo State governorship election was postponed, I see no reason why the Ondo State election cannot be postponed so as to ensure fair play.”
The state women leader of the PDP, Mrs. Easter Ebiwonjumi, who spoke to our correspondent, stated that women in the state were happy about the court’s order in favour of Jegede, adding, however, that there was the need for INEC to postpone the election.
The Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, has described the emergence of Jegede as a victory over judicial rascality.
Mimiko, who arrived in Akure on Wednesday night from Abuja, said President Muhammadu Buhari had no hand in the intrigues that led to the substitution of Jegede’s name by INEC.
He, however, said he believed that certain elements in the Presidency were behind the plot. He called on INEC to postpone the poll in order to ensure fairness and justice for Jegede.
He said, “Initially, we thought INEC was under an undue influence from the top. With my interaction with the President, however, he (Buhari) has no hand in it. But certain elements in the Presidency are part of this conspiracy and complicity.”
Also, the candidate of the AD, Chief Olusola Oke, said that the victory of Jegede at the appeal court would benefit his party because it would curb massive rigging in the Saturday’s governorship election in the state.
He said, “We are set for the election and we are set to win. Jegede’s return to the race is to the AD’s advantage. Now, we will have state power checking the federal power because the fear of the people before now was that the federal might could be deployed to design victory for the All Progressives Congress candidate, Rotimi Akeredolu, without any check.
“Now it means that this will not be possible; it means that only genuine results will most likely come out of Ondo State and once that happens, we are confident of winning because we are accepted by the people of the state.”
The Daily Trust reports –
Ondo Poll:Security beefed up for hitch free election
Security has been beefed up in Ondo state ahead of the Nov. 26 governorship election.
A NAN correspondent who visited some areas in the state on Thursday reports that armed personnel from the Nigeria Police and the Nigerian Army were stationed at strategic places.
It could berecalled that no fewer than 26,000 police officers were deplored to the state by the Inspector General of Police, Mr Ibrahim Idris for the election.
DSP Oluwole Ojo, the Divisional Police Officer in Okitipupa, said that security agencies were fully prepared for the election.
He said that the presence of the security agencies was to protect lives and properties before, during and after the elections.
“We are fully prepared for the election, we want to guide against any break down of laws and order. There is no cause for alarm, we are poised to protect lives and properties during the election,’’ he said. (NAN)
from the Punch, but health-related
Hypertension affects one in every three adults’
A chief pharmacist in the Dilimi Pharmacy in Jos, Mrs. Rotkang Okunlola, on Thursday warned Nigerians against habits capable of resulting in High Blood Pressure which is a silent killer.
She said in Jos that HBP is a silent killer because it usually presented with no early symptoms, adding that it affects one in every three adults
Okunlola said that smoking, high alcohol intake, stress, anxiety, consumption of diet high in salt and fat, lack of or inadequate exercise and consumption of processed food increased the risk of hypertension.
She said, “Excessive alcohol intake can raise the blood pressure; smoking increases the chance of a heart attack or stroke.
“People should reduce their salt intake because salt makes the body to retain more fluid which makes the heart work harder.”
She said that hypertension had no cure, adding, however, that “it can be managed by the use of drugs to control the blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes’’.
The pharmacist advised people to check their blood pressure regularly to avoid strokes, heart attacks or even death.
She also encouraged people to eat healthy food and drink enough water daily.
She said, “People should eat more of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts, poultry and fish and less of processed and refined food.
“Alcohol should be taken in limited quantity and smoking should be avoided.”
Okunlola said that the ailment remained a major cause of death because most people did not know they were hypertensive.
She said, “It affects one in every three adults; the unfortunate thing about it is that if it is not detected early, or if left untreated, it can cause a heart attack, stroke or death.”
From Daily trust: Lalong blasts Tinubu, asks him to speak out over health claims
Barely a day after an associate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) national leader, Bola Tinubu, condemned Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State for interloping on the former, the governor waved off the statement as coming from a proxy.
The governor, through his media adviser, Daniel Manjang, told Daily Trust on phone on Wednesday that Tinubu himself has not come out to prove otherwise that he did not show up to boost the campaign of the Ondo state APC governorship candidate, in Akure because of ill-health.
Tinubu, an APC National Leader, was absent at the campaign rally attended by President Muhammadu Buhari, which critics said further widens the cracks in the party’s leadership over control. Three governors in South-West did not attend the rally too, Daily Trust learnt.
Lalong, during the Akure rally claimed Tinubu did not show up because he was ill, and travelled for medical check-up, a statement which the APC leader’s associate, Tokunbo Afikuyomi challenged as “incorrect.”
It would be recalled that Afikuyomi on Tuesday explained in a statement that Lalong’s statement embarrassed the APC leader’s associates who travelled with him to the US, and later to Europe as Tinubu was in good health.
But Manjang said Tinubu speaking through a proxy created a “web” too difficult to entangle because we expected him to speak himself, to deny that he did not attend the rally because he was ill.
He said the governor has some information that may not be privileged to Afikuyomi.
“The governor has information that may not be privileged to him (Afikuyomi),” Manjang said, adding that “A proxy cannot be speaking for him (Tinubu).”
He challenged Tinubu to speak out himself, to clear air on the matter.
These are just some of the news reports over the past 24 hours.
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