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NASS Leadership: Uncertainty as Lawan, Ndume, Gbajabiamila, Bago lock horns



NASS Leadership: Uncertainty as Lawan, Ndume, Gbajabiamila, Bago lock horns

As senators-elect intensify their last minute horse trading, consultations and negotiations over today’s election of presiding officers of the two chambers of the National Assembly, a cloud of uncertainty is hanging across the parliament as no one seems to be sure what might be the outcome of today’s polls. Although there have been publicly announced endorsements of Senator Ahmad Lawan (APC, Yobe North) by over 60 senatorselect on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and some others from the opposition parties, it is yet not clear the direction the elections will take. This is because the body language of the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) members-elect indicates a tendency that they might play a joker card today.

For instance, when the outgoing Deputy Senate Minority Leader and Senator- elect, Emmanuel Bwacha (PDP, Taraba South) was asked why his colleagues were maintaining a loud silence on the issue of Senate Presidency, he said that their silence was a sign of dignity, and that they were not noisy about the whole matter because they desire a rancour-free 9th Senate. He also said that the PDP senators-elect would act as a family during voting to elect presiding officers of the Senate today, noting that noise-making among politicians could be mischievous.

He said: “There is dignity in silence and there is mischief in noise-making. So, we maintain a dignified silence because we want a 9th Assembly that will be rancour-free. We speak as a family; that is our tradition. We speak as a family; we are not divided.” Also, Rep-elect, Fred Agbedi (PDP, Sagbama/ Ekeremor Federal Constituency, Bayelsa State), who spoke to journalists at the National Assembly yesterday, noted that the PDP had not decided on the direction its members would vote today, saying that when the decision was made, they would act accordingly as loyal party members. He said that only the secret voting system would be acceptable in the elections of presiding officers of the National Assembly, stressing that anything other than that would be undemocratic.

He said: “I can’t say where the pendulum will swing to in the elections. I’m of the minority party. The majority party says they have a decision; and that is the direction they want to go. As a minority party man, I will be around watching; if it becomes necessary for me to cast my vote, I cast.” While expressing his unflinching support for Ahmad Lawan, Senator Ibrahim Gobir (APC, Sokoto), however, noted that concerning the election of the Deputy President of the Senate, he would take a personal decision on who to vote for and not just cast his vote for any one parading as anointed candidate. He also expressed support for the use of secret ballot voting model during the election, noting that the 2015 Standing Rules of the Senate, which stipulate the use of secret balloting, would be the instrument to be used. Senator Gobir, however, interpreted the silence of PDP lawmakers on the jostle for the 9th Senate Presidency to mean acceptance of Lawan as the candidate of the APC. He said: “I am not worried about the election of today because what is right is right and what is wrong is wrong. What is right is that the person we are going to choose, we will choose him tomorrow (today). When we get to the bridge, we will cross it. Certainly, what the President wants is Lawan, and I am going for Lawan. “On the Deputy President of the Senate, that one is left to me.

I think am going to make my decision.” However, it appears that the APC would be going into today’s battle with a divided house as several of their members who are in the race for different positions have shunned all entreaties to step down for the anointed candidates of their party. Former Senate Leader and Senator representing Borno South, Mohammed Ndume, yesterday, shunned the meeting scheduled by the APC governors and the National Working Committee (NWC) members with the APC Senators-elect. Ndume, who is contesting for the Senate Presidency, insisted he was still in the race and not prepared to step down for Lawan, the choice candidate of the ruling party. The meeting was to formally ask all Senators and House of Representatives members aspiring for principal positions in the 9th Assembly to support the candidates of the party. The APC leadership had endorsed Lawan as Senate President and Senator Ovie Omo-Agege as Deputy Senate President. Also House Leader, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila has been endorsed as Speaker, House of Representatives and Hon. Ahmed Idris Wase as Deputy Speaker. However, those contesting for the positions the party has zoned to individuals did not attend the meeting. Among them are Ndume, who is contesting the Senate Presidency; former governor of Abia State and Senator-elect, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, who is contesting for the Deputy Senate President; Senator Kabir Gaya, who is also contesting for the Deputy Senate President and Hon. Umar Bago, who is contesting for Speaker, House of Representatives. Others who had indicated interest to contest one position or the other at the meeting stepped down for the preferred candidates of the party. Among them are Senator Ajayi Boroffice, who had indicated interest to contest for the Deputy Senate President and Hon. Nkiruka Onyejiocha, who had indicated interest to contest the Speaker, House of Representatives. Addressing the media after the meeting that had in attendance APC governors, members of the NWC and Members-elect and 60 Senators-elect, the APC National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, said the meeting was basically to firm up all the conversations and lobbies that have been going on and draw a specific conclusion. “We have all agreed as a caucus to endorse distinguished Senator Ahmed Lawan as the APC candidate for the presidency of the Senate and Senator Omo-Agege as the Deputy Senate President and Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila as the Speaker,” he said. PDP governors and leadership of the party met, yesterday, for a second time in four days on the elections of presiding officers of the 9th National Assembly. The governors with the leadership first met last Thursday, but failed to take a position on whom to support. PDP National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, as well as the outgoing President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki and Speaker of the 8th House of Representatives, Dogora Yakubu, were present at the meeting. A source said the meeting was to harmonise the party’s position before presenting it to PDP members in the National Assembly before the inauguration of the Assembly this morning. The meeting is under way as at the time of filing this report.

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Car dealers to sue NCS for sealing off business premises



Car dealers to sue NCS for sealing off business premises

…as LCCI berates Customs


group of car dealers in Lagos State have threatened to sue the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) for sealing off their business’ premises.

In a letter to Comptroller General of the Nigeria Customs Service, Col. Hameed Ali through the law firm of Ubani & Co, the group condemned the 30th September, 2019 raid and sealing off their business’ premises by customs officers, saying the action was a demonstration of gross irresponsibility, unprecedented impunity and abuse of power.

They maintained that the cars in their business’ premises were duly cleared and appropriate duties paid to the federal government.

The group consequently threatened to drag the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) to court if their business premises were not opened in the next two weeks with a compensation of N10 billion for their losses during the period of closure.

Copies of the letter were sent to the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila and the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN).

It reads: “We must state here with all sense of responsibility and patriotism that the action of Nigeria Custom officers in this regard is a demonstration of gross irresponsibility, unprecedented impunity and abuse of power.

“Though the Nigeria Customs & Excise Management Act gives you the power to examine, mark, seal and take account of any goods, in this case, you did not examine, mark, seal and take account of the particular vehicles identified as not being properly cleared, but rather sealed up the entire premises without any form of examination or inspection of papers.”

Meanwhile, the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has berated operatives of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) for the unconditional sealing off offices and showrooms of genuine automobile dealers in Abuja and Lagos over an alleged infraction in the audit of import duty payments by the firms without recourse to extant laws.

Director-General of the LCCI, Muda Yusuf explained in Lagos yesterday that there was nothing wrong with an audit exercise conducted by NCS to validate compliance with extant rules and policy of government but the ominous and intimidating manner the exercise was carried out. 

He said that the premises of the affected auto companies were sealed for about three weeks, paralyzing their entire operations despite the aforementioned audit exercise being carried out without the sealing up of their business premises.

Yusuf, however, alluded to the fact that there was currently a disproportionate focus by Customs on revenue generation, a disposition already hurting investors and the citizens in their activities.

Particularly, the drive to meet revenue targets was pushing up cost of intermediate products and other inputs imported by investors.

According to him, the NCS action had portrayed danger signal to the country’s business environment for sealing off the auto companies, adding that regulatory and the enforcement powers should be exercised with due propriety and courtesy.

Yusuf said: “Three weeks ago, offices and show rooms of leading automobile dealers in Lagos and Abuja were sealed up by operatives of the Nigerian customs service.

“Some of these dealers are leaders in the industry, representing reputable global brands in the country.

“They are members of the organized private sector representing a strong segment of the auto industry on account of their contribution to tax and customs revenue.

The main objective of the Nigeria Customs action was to undertake an investigative audit regarding import duty payments by these firms. Some of these outlets have been unsealed.

“The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry is a strong advocate of good corporate governance and compliance with statutory requirements by businesses.

“There is nothing wrong with an audit exercise to validate compliance with extant rules and policy of government.  What is not right is the ominous and intimidating manner the exercise was carried out. 

“The premises of the companies were sealed for about three weeks, paralyzing their entire operations. 

“We believe that the audit exercise could still be carried out without the sealing up of the business premises of the companies for that length of time.”

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Ex-Dep Gov: I was treated like a common criminal




mpeached Deputy Governor of Kogi State, Elder Simon Achuba, yesterday, said his political adversaries treated him like a common criminal in spite of his constitutional immunity.

Achuba, who was impeached on Friday by the state House of Assembly over alleged gross misconduct, said he was forcefully ejected out of his official residence.

He told reporters in Lokoja, the state capital, that he was placed under house arrest and electricity to his official residence disconnected.

Achuba was impeached few hours after the submission of the report of a Judicial Panel of Enquiry constituted by the state Chief Judge, Justice Nasir Ajana.



The panel, headed by a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. John Baiyesha, had reportedly cleared Achuba of all the allegations levelled against him.

Narrating his ordeal, Achuba told journalists at his private residence that a police patrol van, on Saturday morning, blocked the main entrance of his official residence at the GRA Lokoja, preventing anyone from going in or out.

His words: “I was in the house on that fateful Saturday, when a police Hilux van parked and blocked the main gate of my official residence. They refused anyone to come into the house and also stopped anyone from going out of the house. What it implied was that I was placed under house arrest.


“With the situation then, and since my security details were withdrawn and I didn’t know if the policemen at the gate were real or fake, I had to lock myself in the room. After a while, the electricity to the house was disconnected.


“I asked my private assistant to put on the generator, which he did. After some minutes, a technician led by armed policemen, went straight to the generator and put it off, removed the battery, so I was in a total darkness throughout the night.”



Achuba explained that he had earlier forwarded the soft copy of the Certified True Copy of the panel report to the state Police Commissioner, Director of Department of State Services (DSS) and Commandant, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).

He added: “But I was shocked when the state Police Commissioner told me on phone that I have to vacate my official residence. His actions also proved that he has long been bedding with my adversaries.

“As I speak to you now, I have no single car; some of my personal effects are still in the office and my official residence.”

Achuba, however, appealed to President Muhammad Buhari and leaders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to intervene and save the party from embarrassment, saying the illegality going on in the state was capable of costing the party fortunes.

He also urged well-meaning Nigerians to rise up as the sanctity of the nation’s Constitution was being trampled upon.


He insisted that swearing-in anyone else as deputy governor amounted to illegality and a breach of the constitution.

“My purported impeachment last Friday by the state House of Assembly was unconstitutional and an illegality that will not stand the test of judiciary,” he said.

But in a swift reaction, the Kogi State House of Assembly has said there is no going back on Achuba’s impeachment as deputy governor.


The House Leader, Hassan Bello, who spoke on behalf of the state legislators, asked the former deputy governor to approach the court if not satisfied with his impeachment.

Bello also accused members of the judicial panel of inquiry of allegedly compromising the assignment given to them.

He said: “Based on the Rule of Procedure given to members of the panel, their assignment was a fact-finding one, and were not required to give any resolution.

“The panel submitted report to us and based on their report, we gave our verdict. The rule of procedure says that the panel is a fact-finding panel; they are not to give judgement and it was in the rule of procedure which they accepted. They are not supposed to give any verdict in this circumstance.


“The decision of whether the deputy governor is guilty or not guilty is that of the House. If you look at Section 188(11), it says the House of Assembly is the only authority which determines what gross misconduct is. It is not for the panel to say, proved or not proved.”

On the panel’s report which has gone viral, Bello expressed concern that the panel chairman attempted to compromise the process.

The lawmaker said: “I don’t know where that is coming from, can you imagine the panel chairman who said while addressing pressmen at the Assembly complex shortly after he submitted the report to the Speaker that it is not constitutional for him to disclose what is in report since he has submitted to the appropriate channel?

“How come few minutes later the whole report was on social media even before the deliberation of the House on the same report? Again, just to let you know that even the report in the public domain is not signed, for us, we know that the panel has compromised in the process.


“In the rule of procedure, it was written boldly that the panel shall not give the report of their investigation to anybody, except to the House of Assembly.

“We question the rationale behind the statement credited to the Panel Chairman, Barrister John Baiyeshea on the issue and wonder; what is his interest?


“So, if the panel has gone ahead to release the report to anybody, that means they are compromised.

“It is a known fact that the impeached Deputy Governor was on some national television stations discussing issues that should be classified information about the state government, going against the oath of secrecy he swore to himself. Does that not amount to a gross misconduct?

“Even at the panel, Elder Simon Achuba confirmed that he did appear on those stations. Then, how come the Panel said it was not proved?



“Aside that, he also affirmed through an affidavit that he did commit the offence as alleged and beside the reports he submitted came in three parts – part 1, 2, 3. How come, the version on social media is only part 1 and 2?

“In a nutshell, his actions already negated the oath of secrecy; is that not gross misconduct? Achuba also lied that he was not paid his salary when the schedules of payment showed clearly that he was paid. These and many more show that he negated his function as a Deputy Governor.

“Basically, our action was based on the report of the Panel and there is no going back from what we have done. If he is not comfortable with our decision, he can go to court.”

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Osinbajo, Lagos harp on teachers’ development



Osinbajo, Lagos harp on teachers’ development


ice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, at the weekend said revitalising the education sector is central to the focus of the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, saying as a result, it has given rise to ministerial strategic plan of the Federal Ministry of Education, which aimed at revamping the sector.

This, according to him, the government was doing by addressing the out-of-school children crisis, strengthening basic and secondary education, training and retraining of teachers, adult literacy and special needs education, as well as education planning and data.

The vice-president spoke of during the fifth Maltina Teacher of the Year 2019 programme, organised yearly by Nigerian Breweries Plc in Lagos. The programme was under the auspices of the Nigerian Breweries-Felix Ohiwerei Education Trust Fund, instituted in 1994 with a seed capital of N100 million to promote sustainable quality of education through structured intervention in the sector.

Osinbajo, who was represented by the Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, however, added that other areas of the plan that would be impacted by the plan include curriculum and benchmark minimum academic standard, technical and vocational education and training (TVET), quality assurance and access to higher education, Information Communication Technology (ICT) and library service in education.

Meanwhile, Ezem Collin Chizuruoke of Royal Academy, Wuse, Abuja, emerged as the 2019 Maltina Teacher of the Year.

He received N1.5 million cash prize as the state champion and the overall winner, with N1 million each year for five years and overseas capacity development training, as well as block of classroom building for the school.

Meanwhile, Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who was also represented at the event by the Commissioner for Education, Mrs. Folashade Adefisayo, lauded Nigerian Breweries for celebrating teachers for their contribution to the education sector and national development.

He described the yearly award as a major event to reward excellence in the teaching profession, saying: “Indeed, no doubt, it has been a source of motivation for teachers to put in their best with the knowledge that their efforts will be recognised and rewarded.”

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Bandits’ attacks: PDP blames Niger gov’s truancy for unending insecurity



Bandits’ attacks: PDP blames Niger gov’s truancy for unending insecurity


he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday blamed Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello, for incessant insecurity in parts of the state, saying that the governor used an improper model of amnesty for the release of bandits.

In a statement signed by the PDP Secretary in the state, Suleiman M. Zhigun and made available to New Telegraph, PDP called on the governor “to cut his travels and cost, stay at home to hold regular security meetings and urgently provide relief to those affected by the menace.”


It will be recalled that despite the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) reached during a peace pact between the bandits and the state government, the bandits had reneged and had carried out several attacks and caused mayhem in many communities.

According to Zhigun; “The incessant insecurity in the state had led to wanton destruction of lives and property across Niger State, which had continued unabated.



“This is as a result of the truancy and ‘jump around style’ of Governor Abubakar Sani Bello, who since emerging as governor, has not found it deserving to give the security architecture a face lift, save for a few ‘Tokunbo’ unserviceable Hilux vehicles bought at cut throat prices.”

He noted that the security agencies in Niger State were still battling with the brand New Nissan pick-ups donated to them five years ago by the PDP led governor then, Babangida Aliyu, which expired since 2015.



While lamenting, Zhigun said: “The PDP finds it painful that after lives are lost, people displaced due solely to banditry and the governor’s refusal to stay in the state to tackle the issue, the governor comes with an ‘arrangee’ model of amnesty for bandits, when we are aware that the bandits have set up camps across the state.

“Till now, we know for sure that there are several internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Kagara, who were forced out of their villages in Allawa, Kukoki, Pandogari, Madaka and neighboring villages of Rafi Local Government Area, and similar situations are in Shiroro LGA.”

Furthermore, he said the capital city of Minna, killings of commercial motorcycle riders had become part of the city’s daily life. Accordingly, he said “a few days ago a man was caught with the body of a man he had removed his head and internal organs in the capital city, just this week another person was killed in Maitumbi area.”

He, however, advised the governor to take issues of security seriously by giving all the security agencies support with necessary logistics.

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Dangote pledges hostels for Ambrose Alli Varsity




resident of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote at the weekend pledged to build two functional hostels for students of Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, in Edo State.

Dangote aid corporate bodies should do more for the education sector in the country as a nation with highly educated youth would surely succeed and do well.

He said: “We have contributed so much to the education sector in Nigeria.

“We have built hostels and even business schools for some of our high institutions and we will continue to do more.

“I have assured the school management that we will build two new functional hostels for the school. “We want to ensure that the students live in a decent environment as that will help their educational pursuits.”

The Governing Council of Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State at the weekend honoured five distinguished personalities with honorary doctorate awards at the 22nd Convocation Ceremony of the University.

The awards was held at the Cordelia Agbebaku Auditorium of the institution, according to a special invite sent to the awardees by the Vice-Chancellor, Professor I.A. Onimawo, on behalf of Council, Senate, Staff and Students of the University.

The awardees were conferred with the Doctor of Public Administration (DPA) Honoris Causa.

They were President of the Republic of Gambia, Adama Barrow, and the ex-military Governor of Rivers State and former Minister of Information, Federal Republic of Nigeria, General Anthony Ukpo (rtd).

Also honoured was Mr. Emmanuel Ikazoboh, who bagged Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) Honoris Causa as well as Chiefs E.A. Ainabe, Ojomo of Ekpoma, Chairman of Zeek Group of Companies and Dorry Afe Okojie, CEO/MD of DAF Homes & Estate Ltd., Lagos.

Gambian President Barrow won the 2016 presidential election with 43.34 per cent of the vote, defeating long-time incumbent Yahya Jammeh.

The awardees conferment took place at the convocation ceremony for the installation of the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the Governing Council, Award of Diplomas/Degrees, Prizes, launching of Endowment Fund, and conferment of Higher Degrees as well as Honorary Degrees, during a week-long event which began on Monday, 14th October, 2019.

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Recruitment: Kaduna shortlists 5351 after CBT





s its recruitment process continued at the weekend, Kaduna State government has shortlisted 5,351 candidates for further screening.


This followed the conclusion of computer-based test (CBT) for 13,700 candidates who scaled through the first stage from the pool of 41,971 applicants.


A screening exercise for the shortlisted candidates would commence this week. Persons successfully screened would then be invited for interviews by the agencies in which they have indicated interest.

Of the 13,700 persons on the first-stage shortlist, 12,887 registered for the CBT, while 12,299 applicants sat for the test between October 7 and 13, 2019.



The second-stage shortlist of 5,351 included 2,604 at entry level, 2, 283 middle-level and 464 management level applicants. Among them were 443 candidates who earned perfect scores.

Applicants who sat for the CBT would receive email notifications regarding the status of their applications.

Screening of shortlisted candidates would commence in Kaduna this week. This woukd represent the first interaction between the applicants and Kaduna State government officials in a recruitment process that had so far been conducted exclusively online.

Candidates on the shortlist would also be advised by email on the date, time and venue for their screening.

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Airtel vs Globacom: 95m telecoms subscribers face service disruption



…as NCC grants disconnection approval to Airtel



bout 95.1 million telecommunications subscribers on Globacom and Airtel networks may experience service disruption in days to come except the former operator settles with the latter before October 28, 2019.

This followed Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC’s) approval to Airtel to partially disconnect Globacom over interconnect debt.


Primarily, the disconnection is to affect 47.2 million subscribers on Globacom’s network as they would not be able to make calls to any Airtel line, but would be able to receive from the network.

But technically, any subscriber on Airtel network, 47.9 million of them, who is also expecting calls from Globacom’s users, would also not be able to receive such calls.


Interconnection debt has been as major problem confronting the telecommunications sector as operators fail to pay the statutory fees for connecting calls to one another.


About two months ago, MTN had also threatened to disconnect Globacom over unpaid interconnect debt. This was, however, later settled by the operators.

In a notice, dated October 18, 2019 and signed by the Director, Public Affairs at NCC, Dr. Henry Nkemadu, NCC said: “The Nigerian Communications Commission hereby notifies the general public and subscribers of Glomobile Limited (Glomobile) that approval has been granted to the partial disconnection of Glomobile from Airtel Networks Limited (Airtel) as a result of non-settlement of interconnect charges.


“Glomobile was notified of the application and was given opportunity to comment and state its case. The commission, having examined the application and circumstances surrounding the indebtedness, determined that the affected operator does not have sufficient reason for non-payment of interconnect charges.”

The letter further stated: “All subscribers are, therefore, requested to take notice that the commission has approved the partial disconnection of Glomobile by Airtel in accordance with Section 100 of the Nigerian Communications Act 2003 and the Guidelines and Procedure for Granting Approval to disconnect Telecommunication Operators.

“At the expiration of 10 days from the date of this notice, subscribers on the network of Globacom will no longer be able to make calls to Airtel, but will be able to receive calls. The partial disconnection, however, will allow in-bound calls to the Glomobile network.”

NCC insisted that the disconnection will subsist until otherwise determined by the commission.

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Monarch: It’s a shame Okorocha didn’t pay Imo pensioners




hairman, Imo State Council of Traditional Rulers, Eze Samuel Agunwa Ohiri, at the weekend described as shameful and disappointing, the inability of former Governor Rochas Okorocha to pay pensioners their allowances during his tenure in spite of the huge resources at his disposal.



Speaking to newsmen at his palace in Owerri, Ohiri accused the former governor of not being sincere about payment of pensioners, saying that Okorocha merely played politics with the wellbeing of the pensioners throughout his administration.



He said his administration conducted ‘unending verification exercises’ that never yielded any result, stressing further that; “Perhaps his (Okorocha) government may have been using the unending verification exercises to undermine the payment of pensioners in the state.”

He said: “Before this present administration, there were series of unending verification exercises of pensioners in the state and for me I felt like the government was kind of playing games with our senior citizens and that wasn’t right.

“At every opportunity, I made it known to the governor and the government that they needed to take care of our senior citizens, but nothing came out of it.”



The Obi of Orodo in Mbaitoli Council Area of the state and South-East Coordinator, National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria, commended Governor Emeka Ihedioha for commencing the payment, which he said, eluded the pensioners in the state in years past.

He said: “I want to thank God Almighty that finally something is being done through Governor Emeka Ihedioha. I have to say that in honesty and sincerity, I am happy that at this point that our pensioners are beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel.



“I also commend the process, because it is not just paying them, it requires some planning. First of all, we need to understand and to know how many pensioners we have in the state and truly and accurately how much is due to each of them. And such planning and well thought out process was what I felt was lacking in the previous administration in the state.”



Eze Imo continued; “Also, before now, some of the problems that we had or some of the complaints I received as the chairman of council of traditional rulers from these pensioners include that every month the government can decide to pay them arbitrary figures.

“Somebody that was supposed to get N70, 000 or N60, 000 was paid N13, 000 or N15, 000. And nobody knew how government arrived at those figures. And they couldn’t go to anybody to get answers to those questions.



“But now I thank God that the government has begun payment to them 100 per cent. So, I want to say that I have good faith in the exercise that has just been concluded and I believe it was sincere, honest and reliable.”

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Kogi poll: APC drafts 7 govs, 6 ministers into Bello’s campaign




head of November 16 governorship election in Kogi State, not less than seven governors, one Senator, four House of Representatives’ members, six ministers and other leaders and chieftains of the party are billed to relocate to the state for the election.


This was announced at the inauguration of the National Campaign Council for Kogi and Bayelsa States governorship elections by the chairman of the Campaign Council for Kogi State and the governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai.


Other governors who are members of the Kogi State Campaign Council are: Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), Abdullahi Sule (Nasarawa), Abubakar Sani Bello (Niger), Abdullahi Abdulrazak (Kwara), Mai Mala Buni (Yobe) and Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe).

Also on the list are: Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Hon. Ahmed Wase; Senate Leader, Yahaya Abdullahi; Chief Whip, House of Representatives, Hon. Mohammed Monguno and Deputy Senate Whip, Abdullahi Sabi.

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) members expected to relocate to Kogi State are: George Akume, Babatunde Fashola, Rauf Aregbesola, Hajia Ramatu Tijjani, Mohammed Bello and Sharon Ikeazor.


Also included are former governors of Bauchi, Nasarawa and Borno states.

Party officials on the campaign council are: Acting National Secretary, Hon. Victor Gaidom; National Organizing Secretary, Emma Ibediro; National Publicity Secretary, Lanre Issa-Onilu; National Women Leader, Hajia Salamatu Baiwa; National Youth Leader, Abubakar Sadiq; National Disable Leader, Misbahu Lawal; Director General, Nigerian Waterways Authority, Chief George Moghalu and Senator Hope Uzodinma.


The Kaduna State governor, in his remarks, after the inauguration, said: “After the flag-off, I will like to ask most of the committee members to relocate to Lokoja and remain there in preparation for the final burial and nailing of the coffin of the PDP.”


El-Rufai also said that it was pertinent for the All Progressives Congress (APC) members to work for the victory of Kogi State governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, in the forthcoming election because he is ardent supporter and believer of President Muhammadu Buhari.


He said: “Looking at the 56 members of the campaign council, some of them are my elder brothers. I want to thank the National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole for having this dose of confidence on this campaign council. I promise on behalf of the Council that we will not let the party down


“Mr. Chairman, Kogi is different from Bayelsa in two respects. The first is that it is an APC-controlled state, which makes it easier, but re-election is far more difficult to prosecute than when you are running for the first time. In your second term, you must run on your record and you must have offended many people. So, you spent more time going round for reconciliation than if you are contesting for the first time without any record or any enemy.


“I am convinced that the good work done by His Excellency, Yahaya Bello in the last four years, the combined efforts of all of us focused and unity of purpose, we will deliver Kogi State with even a wider margin than in the past election.

“We will need money, but we will need brains to plan the victory. We will need humility to be able to get down and reconcile those that we need to reconcile with.


“I’m particularly pleased to lead this campaign because Yahaya Bello is not just a colleague, but he is a friend; a younger friend. He is someone who has served the party, has fought for the party and has stood by Mr. President through thick and thin.”

Meanwhile, the 56 member committee, on Saturday, met and came up with resolution to flag-off the Kogi State governorship campaign on Saturday.

According to a member of the committee who spoke on the condition of anonymity, the committee was divided into eight sub-committees.


The committee members said that sub-committees have been charged with responsibilities.

Asked what would be the budget line for the committee to prosecute the governorship election in Kogi State, the source said finance was not discussed as the sub-committee in charge of finance was expected to work out that.

The committee member could not also ascertain if the President or his vice would flag-off the campaign.

Speaking on the fears of APC in the election, the committee member said the only fear that the party has was that the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was not campaigning.

According to the member, no one can actually say what the opposition party was planning.

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Akeredolu is a performer, says Olugbo of Ugbo




he Olugbo of Ugbo, Oba Frederick Obateru Akinruntan, has described the Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, as a performer whose performances in the last two and half years have transformed the state positively.



Olugbo, who is the chairman of the state traditional rulers Council, said the Akeredolu administration has carefully, but deliberately pursued the economic growth of the state, which he said was now impacting positively on the progress of the state.



The traditional ruler spoke in Abuja on Saturday at the African Governor Award For Innovative Leadership (AGAFIL) and the official Investiture & Conferment of AGAF honour on Akeredolu.



He said the governor has shown his passion for the progress and development of the state with the way he is pursing the establishment of the deep sea port in the state, which according to him,  would give the sunshine state economic liberation.



The monarch also commended the construction of the Ore Flyover by the Akeredolu administration, describing the project as live-saving and impactful.



The Olugbo assured the people that with the massive achievements of the governor in less than 3 years, the people of the state should be rest assured of unprecedented turnaround of the state.

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