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BUHARI, ATIKU IN EPIC BATTLE

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BUHARI, ATIKU IN EPIC BATTLE

…19.8m Lagos, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Rivers votes crucial to candidates

 

  • What voters should do, by INEC

 

 

 

With 19.8 million votes at stake in five crucial states, out of the over 72 million votes to be garnered nationwide, the stage is now set for an epic battle between President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Over 19.8 million votes accruable from five states of Lagos, Kano, Kaduna, Katsina and Rivers, which make up what to be scrambled for among all the contestants in the presidential race.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had on Thursday released figures of the collection of Permanent Voters Card (PVC) according to states, listing the states as the dominant with highest number of PVC collections. More than 72 million Nigerians were cleared by INEC to vote in today’s presidential and National Assembly elections, representing 86.63 per cent of the 84 million registered voters. According to the figures released by the commission, Lagos is leading the pack with 5, 531, 389 votes, followed by Kano with 4, 696, 747 votes. Others are Kaduna with 3, 648, 831, Katsina with 3, 187, 988, and Rivers with 2, 833, 101. In the lower rung of the ladder are Ekiti and Bayelsa states, which recorded 666,591 votes and 769,509 votes respectively.

Going by the released figures from the commission, there are over 11 million uncollected PVCs with Lagos still leading the list with 1,038,902 votes, followed by Kano with 570,115. Going by that projection,the two major political parties had immediately gone into strategic meetings on how to make impact in the five states immediately the electoral umpire released the figures. According to a stalwart of the APC and a senatorial candidate in one of the South West states, both parties are now struggling to see what they can make from the five determinant states. Explaining that the major parties had been in the know before the figure was released to the public, the politician noted that all parties had their ways of making projections. “We have been monitoring the collections before they even announced their own figures and what we have is not too different from what they released to the public. “All parties had been monitoring the collections and we are no exception, we have the figures they released. It is now left for us to maintain our hold on all these states. We are in order.

“We have seen what the PDP is doing immediately. They called a meeting asking people to mop up votes in our stronghold but they are joking, there is no way they can defeat us in those states. “Look at the figures from the states INEC mentioned, the four major states are in our kitty, they are our strongholds and there is no way we are losing those states. Just look at Lagos and Kano, they are under our control. “And do you think the president will lose his home state, even if we are going to share Kano? That is not a possibility. Let me even give Rivers to them, with the figures we have, we are already ahead with over 10 million votes. However, a chieftain of the PDP didn’t see any logic in the submission of the APC candidate, arguing that the figures released by INEC has given the PDP an edge, going by the overall number of figures.

“You can’t judge by those states in the lead, there are many other states on the list. What makes you even think that those states are going for the APC? I can assure you that we are getting more votes in Lagos, Kano and Kaduna”, he said. Meanwhile, a public affairs analyst and former Vice Chancellor of University of Ado Ekiti (now Ekiti State University), Prof. Akin Oyebode, yesterday described President Muhammadu Buhari’s address as focused on Nigerians and befitting of his office as a sitting president.Oyebode, while reacting to the early morning address, the third in two weeks by Buhari, who is the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), as a guest on Channels TV, expressed the view that Buhari did much better in his latest address when compared to the one on February 15.

“For me, President Buhari did better in this particular broadcast unlike the one of last week when it appeared the president forgot some of the things he wanted to say and started campaigning instead. “The main thrust of his message this time is about encouraging Nigerians not to lose hope and to feel free to exercise their civic duties as opposed to last week’s address in which he made the controversial statement about ballot box snatchers,” the retired professor of International Law and Jurisprudence, said.Also speaking on the election set to kick-off today, the scholar added: “The stage is set and although politicians are known to always be ready to do anything to gain upper ground, we hope that whoever wins will be magnanimous in victory and the person who lost will be gallant in defeat and Nigeria can move on.

Elections are not supposed to be everything.” Officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) told voters what to do when they go to the polling units to cast their votes today in the Presidential and National Assembly elections. Also speaking on Channels, Director of Publicity and Voter Education, INEC, Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, said all the necessary details were already stored on the Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) to show authenticity and INEC officials were only to note this before allowing a prospective voter cast his or her vote.

“You can use any finger and voters must know that camera phones are not allowed anywhere close to the polling unit. You can choose to stay around after casting your vote so as to monitor the process or go but if you decide to stay, be sure you maintain reasonable distance so as not to clog the polling unit,” he said. Chidi Nwafor, Director of ICT at INEC, added that no person could have two PVCs. “You can’t have two PVCs even if you have had to initiate a transfer. Once a transfer is done, the previous PVC is no longer valid and should have been submitted. Therefore you cannot vote twice with them,” he submitted.

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    February 23, 2019 at 2:12 pm

    Like!! I blog quite often and I genuinely thank you for your information. The article has truly peaked my interest.

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Osinbajo: Why I missed Wole Soyinka Award ceremony

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Osinbajo: Why I missed Wole Soyinka Award ceremony

The Office of the Vice President has made public the letter which Vice President Yemi Osinbajo wrote to the organisers of Anti-corruption Defender Award of 2019.
The letter made available to newsmen on Monday in Abuja indicated that the vice president had given two reasons why he would not be able to attend the event held on Monday in Lagos.
Osinbajo said his first reason was that he would be in Abu Dhabi for an international meeting under the auspices of the government of the United Arab Emirates where he was the keynote speaker.
The vice president’s second reason was that he thought it insensitive to attend the ceremony in view of the recent developments on Friday in the Sowore case, reports the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).
“I am extremely grateful for the recognition and award of the ‘Integrity Specialty of the Wole Soyinka Centre for Investigative Journalism’s Anti-corruption Defender Award of 2019’ to me.
“The award, I note, is for our justice reform efforts in Lagos State. I had accepted the award with pride on behalf of the excellent Justice Sector team we had.
“However, two reasons explain my absence. First is that I am currently in Abu Dhabi for an international meeting under the auspices of the government of the UAE where I am the keynote speaker.
“Second, in view of the developments on Friday in the Sowore case, I think it would be insensitive and inappropriate to attend the ceremony.
“Please accept my heartfelt apologies and extend the same to the other members of the organising team. God bless you,” the letter reads in part.

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Soyinka, Jega task FG on anti-graft war

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Soyinka, Jega task FG on anti-graft war

Until the murders of a former Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, the late Chief Bola Ige, and other high-profile individuals were resolved, the fight against corruption in the country may remain a “futile” exercise.
This was the position of Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, at the United Nations Anti-corruption Day, which held Monday at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The late AGF was assassinated in his home in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, on December 23, 2001.
This was a former chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Attahiru Jega, tasked the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on the need to show that there were no sacred cows in the ongoing anti-graft war.
In his estimation, Ige and others were victims of “forces of corruption”.
“What has happened to the investigation of such high profile murders of Chief Bola Ige and others?
“If we do not resolve them, fighting corruption would be futile because they were murdered not because of political rivalry but by forces of corruption,” Soyinka said.
Speaking on the re-arrest of the Convener of #RevolutionNow Movement, Mr. Omoyele Sowore, the renowned playright underscored the sanctity of free speech, stressing that the “wark” against corruption, signify the “long walk to freedom”.
He said: “If I say revolution now, am I going to be thrown into prison because those in charge are afraid of the word revolution?
“Let the walk today between the citadel of anti-corruption and the seat of the executive arm of government be the long walk to freedom. What we are doing now is revolution somewhere or the other.”
Also speaking, Jega stressed the urgency in revvying-up the  fight against corruption by anti-graft agencies.

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Millions of Nigerians not bothered about Sowore’s rearrest —Presidency

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Millions of Nigerians not bothered about Sowore’s rearrest —Presidency

The Presidency has said that millions of Nigerians are not bothered about the rearrest of SaharaReporters Publisher, Omoyele Sowore, at the Federal High Court in Abuja last Friday.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, said this during Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme on Monday.
Adesina was asked to react to the outrage that greeted the violent rearrest of Sowore.
He said the Presidency stands by the claim of the Department of State Services (DSS) that the video circulating did not reflect what actually transpired in court.
The President’s spokesman added: “I don’t particularly agree with you when you say a lot of Nigerians (are not happy), you know that all this noise has been coming from less than 100,000 Nigerians. And the noise will be so loud that you think it is the whole country.
“It is a country of 198 million people. When just 100,000 are making noise in the social and traditional media, you would think the whole country is in an uproar. There are millions and millions of people who are not bothered.
“There are millions of people who know what the issues are. So, you cannot just seek the opinion of a local minority and then conclude that the country is in an uproar.”

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We can’t trust our security forces, if we allow corruption to ruin our institutions – ICPC

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We can’t trust our security forces, if we allow corruption to ruin our institutions – ICPC

The Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has stated that corruption is the fastest route to the destruction of the nation’s institutions.
Citing examples of the effects of corruption on institutions, the ICPC Chairman, Prof. Bolaji Owasanoye, in his message Monday at the 2019 United Nations International Anti-Corruption Day, noted that “when a country’s institutions are weakened by corruption for instance, its security forces would not be trusted, its borders would become porous, criminality will fester and its insecurity may be internationalized.”
He, however, warned that the days of impunity were over in Nigeria and that all corrupt persons must be ready to face the consequences of their actions.
His words: “As we explore the option of collaboration and cooperation in the fight against corruption, we shall intensify activities to detect and investigate acts of corruption, embezzlement of public funds and abuse of office. The days of impunity are over. The warning must be given, loud and clear, that the corrupt will be dealt with firmly, and with the degree of ruthlessness that the law permits.”

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Kwara: Ahmed’s administration left N100bn debt, says AbdulRazaq

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Kwara: Ahmed’s administration left N100bn debt, says AbdulRazaq

Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has disclosed that the immediate past administration incurred a debt of about N100 billion as against the N30 billion it handed over to his administration.
AbdulRazaq, who disclosed this on Monday in Ilorin, the state capital, during a rally commemorating the United Nation’s Anti Corruption Day,  commended the EFCC for preventing the removal of about N4 billion from the treasury of the state by the immediate past administration at its twilight.
The governor noted that corruption is a cankerworm that affects all and sundry and the fight against it should be embraced by every member of the society, if there would be meaningful progress and development in Kwara state and Nigeria as a whole.
He said: “The anti corruption laws should not be seen as punitive but an effort to guide the people to do the right thing.
“Corruption is a cankerworm that is detrimental and it drastically retards socioeconomic growth and development of the people, the state and the nation.”
He, however, promised that his administration would effectively collaborate with the anti graft agency so as to make the state better.

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Ganduje appoints Sanusi Chairman Kano Council of Emirs

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Ganduje appoints Sanusi Chairman Kano Council of Emirs

Kano Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has appointed the Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, Chairman of the state’s Emirate Council of Chiefs.

Ganduje said he did this going by the powers conferred on him in Sections 4 (2) (g) and Section 5((1) (2) of the Kano State Emirate Councils Law 2019.

Also Four First Class Emirs of Bichi, Rano, Karaye and Gaya, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero, Alhaji Dr Tafida Abubakar (Autan Bawo), Alhaji Dr Ibrahim Abubakar II and Alhaji Ibrahim Abdulkadir, are appointed as automatic members of the Council, as enshrined in the state’s Emirate Council Law.

According to a press release signed by Mr Abba Anwar, the Chief Press Secretary to the governor and made available to newsmen on Monday, the governor stated that Section 4(2) names other members as Secretary to the State Government, Commissioner for Local Governments, five Chairmen of local government councils one each from the local government council where the Emir’s palace is situated.

Section 5(1), (2) of the law provides that, the Chairmanship of the state Council of Chiefs shall be rotational among the five Emirs of the Emirates and the sequence of which is to be determined by the governor and the chairman shall serve for a period of two years only.

The appointment is with effect from Monday, December 9.

Governor Ganduje urged all the Council members to utilize the opportunity to serve the people in the state and to strengthen the Emirates and the traditional system of administration in the state in advising the state government, more particularly on security matters

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Sowore: Coalition threatens mass action after 14-day ultimatum

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Sowore: Coalition threatens mass action after 14-day ultimatum

Coalition of Civil Society Organisations has threatened to mobilise Nigerians for a mass action against the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government after the expiration of a14-day ultimatum it issued for the release of Omoyele Sowore and others illegally detained by the Department of State Services (DSS).

While the Coalition noted that last week’s invasion of the Federal High Court in Abuja by DSS operatives and re-arrest of Sowore was the highest level of abuse of executive powers, it also stated that the country would slide fully into anarchy if nothing was done to curb the excesses of the government.

Yemi Adamolerun of EiE Nigeria, in the address she read on behalf of the Coalition at a press conference in Abuja on Monday, said that the ultimatum was necessary to put an urgent check on the government before democracy in Nigeria would be completely truncated by power drunk politicians.

Details later…

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One killed, others missing in New Zealand volcano eruption

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One killed, others missing in New Zealand volcano eruption

One person was killed after a volcano erupted on White Island off the coast of New Zealand and an undetermined number of people were injured or missing, authorities said Monday.

John Tims, deputy commissioner of the national police, said at a news conference that there are “likely to be more” deaths. Search and rescue operations have been stalled because “at this stage, it is too dangerous for police and rescue services to go to the island.”

Boats, ships and emergency aircraft in the area had removed 23 people from the island, many of them with burn injuries, he said. About 50 people were believed to have been in the area at the time of the eruption, he said.

Jonathon Fishman, a spokesman for Royal Caribbean Cruises, told NBC News that multiple guests aboard the ship Ovation of the Seas were touring the island, which in quieter times is a tourist attraction popular with birdwatchers. He had no further immediate information, adding: “Please keep all those affected in your prayers.”

GeoNet, the government earthquake agency, said the country’s most active cone volcano, Whakaari White Island, in the Bay of Plenty about 30 miles off the northeast New Zealand coast, erupted at about 2:11 p.m. Monday.

“We are aware that people were on the island immediately before the eruption and we express our concern for their safety,” GeoNet said in a statement. It said that the eruption was a “short-lived” event generating an ash plume 12,000 feet into the sky but that ash fall appeared to be confined to the island.

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Finnish minister Sanna Marin, 34, to become world’s youngest PM

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Finnish minister Sanna Marin, 34, to become world’s youngest PM

Sanna Marin, aged 34, will become the world’s youngest prime minister as head of a women-led coalition government in Finland.

The transportation minister was picked by her Social Democratic party to take charge after PM Antti Rinne quit. She is expected to be sworn in this week.

She will lead a centre-left coalition of five parties all headed by women, reports the BBC.

Rinne stepped down after losing the confidence of a coalition member over his handling of a postal strike.

When she takes office, Ms Marin will be the world’s youngest sitting prime minister. New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern is 39, while Ukrainian premier Oleksiy Honcharuk is 35.

“We have a lot of work to do to rebuild trust,” Ms Marin, who won the vote by a narrow margin, told reporters.

She brushed away questions about her age, saying: “I have never thought about my age or gender, I think of the reasons I got into politics and those things for which we have won the trust of the electorate.”

Ms Marin will be the third-ever female prime minister in the Nordic country. The Social Democrats emerged as the largest party in elections held in April, and so can appoint the prime minister who leads the coalition government.

According to Finnish broadcaster YLE, Sanne Marin was raised by a single mother and was the first person in her family to go to university.

Finland currently holds the European Union’s rotating presidency.

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Buhari likens Sowore to Boko Haram terrorists

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Buhari likens Sowore to Boko Haram terrorists

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resident Muhammadu Buhari has likened the activities of the convener of #RevolutionNow protest, Omoyele Sowore, to Boko Haram terrorists operating in North-East part of the country.

 

The President stated this in reaction to criticisms that have trailed the re-arrest of the convener of Sowore and his co-defendant, Olawale Bakare, at the Federal High Court, Abuja by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS).

 

While the fighting between government forces and Boko Haram insurgents since 2009 in the North-East has led to death of several people and displacement of millions, Sowore recently called for a revolution against the government of President Buhari.

 

Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the President, Garba Shehu, in a statement yesterday, explained that the criticism which followed the re-arrest of Sowore and Bakare inside the court premises is unnecessary.

 

DSS operatives were reported to have chased away a presiding judge, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu and assaulted journalists in their bid to arrest the duo of Sowore and Bakare in Abuja on Friday.

 

 

Reacting to the condemnation of the Buhari government over the re-arrest which happened inside the court premises, Shehu said Sowore remains a person of interest to the DSS.

 

“Again, it is no surprise that he (Sowore) should be a person of interest to the DSS. Nigeria is already dealing with an insurgency that has left millions of people displaced and desperate in the North-Eastern region of our country.

 

 

“The Boko Haram militants, who are behind the violence, also fancy themselves to be fighting for some sort of revolution.

 

“Nigerians do not need another spate of lawlessness and loss of lives all in the name of ‘revolution’, especially not one that is orchestrated by a man who makes his home in faraway New York – and who can easily disappear and leave behind whatever instability he intends to cause, to wit, Nnamdi Kanu. This is a matter for the DSS, acting under its powers,” the presidential aide stressed.

 

The Presidential spokesman said no government around the world will allow anybody to openly call for destabilisation in the country and do nothing.

 

Shehu said: “No government will allow anybody to openly call for destabilization in the country and do nothing.

 

 

“Sowore called for a revolution to overthrow the democratically elected government of Nigeria.

 

“He did so on television, and from a privileged position as the owner of a widely read digital newspaper run from the United States of America.

 

“He founded an organisation, Revolution Now, to launch, in their own words, “Days of Rage”, with the publicised purpose of fomenting mass civil unrest and the elected administration’s overthrow.”

 

According to the presidential spokesman, the DSS does not necessarily need the permission of the Presidency in all cases to carry out its essential responsibilities that are laid down in the Nigerian Constitution.

 

The Presidency explained that: “The DSS does not necessarily need the permission of the Presidency in all cases to carry out its essential responsibilities that are laid down in the Nigerian Constitution – which was the foundation for the restoration of democracy in our country in 1999.

 

 

“Mr. Sowore is no ordinary citizen expressing his views freely on social media and the internet. He was a presidential candidate himself, who ran – and lost – as the flag bearer of the African Action Congress (AAC) in the February 23 presidential election.

 

 

“Nigeria’s democracy was a long time in the making, and was achieved after decades of often harsh, military-led overthrows of government: the kind of situation Sowore was advocating.

 

 

“To believe in and desire armed revolution is not normal amongst ‘human rights activists’, as Sowore has been incorrectly described.”

Meanwhile, the US Department of State has expressed concerns over the re-arrest of Sowore.

 

 

In a tweet on Saturday, the United States reminded the Nigerian Government that respect for rule of law, freedom and judicial independence are key elements of democracy.

 

 

“We are deeply concerned that Sowore has been re-detained in Nigeria, shortly after a court ordered he be released on bail. Respect for rule of law, judicial independence, political and media freedom, and due process are key tenets of democracy,” the US Department of State said.

 

 

 

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