President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday declared that all necessary measures have been put in place to ensure that Saturday’s election in Ondo is peaceful, transparent and credible.
Mr Femi Adesina, the president’s spokesman, in a statement in Abuja, said the president gave the assurance in a video message to party supporters at the Grand Finale of the All Progressives Congress (APC) campaign in Akure.
The president, who assured the electorate in Ondo of the provision of adequate security to forestall any breach of the peace by unscrupulous elements, urged them to turn out en masse to vote on Saturday without fear of molestation.
He expressed confidence that the party supporters would vote in accordance with the laws guiding the electoral process.
While urging the electorate in Ondo to vote for continuity and progress, Buhari explained why Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, the APC candidate, deserved re-election.
”I have no doubt that our candidate is a good brand for the APC to market. I am particularly delighted by his ingenious approach to governance.
”His performance within the limits of available resources is endearing, just as he has taken the state to an enviable level and on the path of prosperity.
”Having had the privilege of commissioning some of his projects, which I consider enduring legacies, I join you here today to declare that Governor Akeredolu deserves to be re-elected to consolidate the good work he commenced in his first term.
”I am not just proud of his achievements; I am confident he will enjoy the mandate of the good people of Ondo State for the second term,” he said.
On the party’s campaign, the president said he was encouraged by the large turnout at the grand finale, noting that he had keenly followed events in the State as regards the governorship election.
”I have taken a special interest not necessarily because my party is involved but because my focus and attention have been to ensure that we maximize every given opportunity to raise the bar in our collective desire to deepen democracy,’’ he said.
Buhari also used the occasion to commend the party’s national and zonal leadership, and the APC family in Ondo State for upholding internal democracy and ensuring a hitch-free party primary.
According to him, internal democracy, which is regarded as a major ingredient in the electoral process, was not merely encouraged in Ondo State but zealously nurtured.
”I salute the courage and the demonstrated capacity of the National Caretaker and Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee under the leadership of His Excellency, Mai Mala Buni. I thank you for conducting a hitch-free party primary in Ondo State.
“I congratulate the APC family in Ondo State on this uncommon display of brotherliness, candour and doggedness.
”May I, therefore, salute all other governorship aspirants who accepted the outcome of the primary election and decided to work for the success of the candidate and incumbent, Gov. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu.
“Their patriotic and selfless conduct shall serve as an enduring reference point in party politics.
”I must not fail to equally acknowledge the efforts made by party leaders, especially from the South West, who spared time to manage the post-primary period ahead of today,” he said.
Destruction In Lagos Too Much For State To Bear – South-West Senators.
This picture taken on October 27, 2020, in Lagos shows the 15 members of the South-West caucus in the Senate, as well as the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, and his deputy, Dr Obafemi Hamzat.
Senators from the south-west zone have visited Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to commiserate with him on last week’s coordinated destruction of public and private properties in the state.
The delegation of the South-West caucus in the Senate led by Senator Ajayi Boroffice (Ondo North) visited the governor on Tuesday at the State House in Marina.
According to a statement by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Gboyega Akosile, the lawmakers sighed endlessly as they were shown pictures of the buildings destroyed in Lagos.
In his reaction, Senator Boroffice described the destruction as an “orchestrated tragedy” that must be thoroughly investigated.
He was worried that many youths working in the businesses that were destroyed would be rendered jobless, adding that it would take time for the owners of such businesses to recover, given the extent of the loss.
“Members of the South-West caucus in the Senate are here to console you over the demonic violence unleashed on Lagos. Government and private individuals suffered an incalculable loss in the unfortunate destruction that trailed the EndSARS protest,” he stated.
A police facility is vandalised during the violence in Lagos State.
The lawmaker added, “Adequate decision had been taken by the government to attend to the demands of the protesters. Of course, some of the demands require a constitutional amendment and cannot be done immediately.
“The Senate showed its readiness to look into the issues with the necessary amendments.”
He said the burden occasioned by the destruction could not be borne by Lagos State government alone, stressing that the senators would be meeting with the leadership of the National Assembly to prevail on the Federal Government in assisting the state to recover and rebuild.
Senator Boroffice stated that the caucus would move a motion that would enable the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to catalog the ugly images from the destruction and send them to Nigerian embassies overseas for those in the Diaspora to see the proportion of damage wreaked.
In his response, Governor Sanwo-Olu thanked the lawmakers for showing solidarity, saying that law-abiding residents had suffered from the violence and borne the brunt in harsh ways.
He was also concerned that some Lagos communities were vulnerable to crimes, following the arsonist attacks on police stations and facilities housing security operatives.
The governor condemned the shooting of protesters at the Lekki Toll Plaza by soldiers, insisting that until after a thorough investigation, no one would know how many lives were lost in the incident.
He stressed that the two bodies found on the roads on Admiralty Road and Victoria Island had no link with the Lekki shooting, adding that most of those who were injured in the incident had been treated and discharged.
Governor Sanwo-Olu reiterated his commitment to a thorough investigation into the violence and the shooting of protesters by soldiers.
He promised that the findings of the investigative panel would be forwarded to relevant authorities for actions.
Buhari Reappoints INEC Chair, Mahmood Yakubu For a Second Term In Office
President Muhammadu Buhari has reappointed chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, for a second term in office.
Presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina, who disclosed this in a statement, noted that Yakubu’s reappointment was contained in a letter to president of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan.
In the letter, President Buhari said the reappointment was in accordance with the provision of Section 154 (1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended).
“I am pleased to present for confirmation by the Senate, the nomination of Professor Mahmood Yakubu for appointment as Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for a second and final term,” Buhari stated.
Yakubu who was first appointed by President Buhari in October 2015 took over from Amina Bala-Zakari, then acting chairperson after the tenure of Prof Attahiru Jega who oversaw the 2011 and 2015 general elections.
Yakubu’s reappointment marks the first time in the history of the country that incumbent chairman of the electoral body will be reappointed.
Born in Bauchi State, Yakubu completed his basic and secondary school education at Kobi Primary School and Government Teachers College, Toro, respectively.
He proceeded to the University of Sokoto (now Usmanu Danfodiyo University), where he became the first and only Nigerian from the North to obtain a first class degree certificate in history.
He studied international relations at Wolfson College, Cambridge, at postgraduate level, graduating with a masters degree in 1987.
He later studied Nigerian history at the University of Oxford, graduating with a doctorate degree in 1991.
He conducted the 2019 general election, Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa elections. He also conducted the Edo and Ondo governorship elections which held amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The United States, a pro-democracy think-tank, the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD), Yiaga
Africa among other civil society organisations lauded INEC over the conduct of the Edo and Ondo governorship elections.
Meanwhile, the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) has congratulated Yakubu on his reappointment as INEC chairman.
In statement released on confirmation of the History Professors’ reappointment, the national chairman of the umbrella body of registered political parties in Nigeria, Dr Leonard Nzenwa, noted that Yakubu’s reappointment was a welcome development and a blessing to the polity.
Nzenwa restated that only few helmsmen at the commission had been able to achieve respectable results like the incumbent INEC chairman did during his first tenure.
The IPAC chairman praised the INEC chairman’s remarkable digitalisation programme which has transformed the way elections have been conducted in the country in the last four years.
He added that the success of the Edo and Ondo 2020 gubernatorial polls are clear examples of the positive technology and digitisation trajectory which Yakubu’s first tenure gave to Nigeria.
IPAC chairman further urged the INEC chair to continue with the strident effort to reform the electoral process, even as it requests the chairman to put his foot down to ensure that Nigerians’ votes counts in all elections in the country going forward.
Also, the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) said the reappointment of the INEC chairman gives him an opportunity to set the country’s electoral processes on the right path.
CUPP spokesman, Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere, stated this in a statement congratulating Yakubu on his reappointment.
The CUPP spokesman who described Yakubu’s reappointment as novelty in Nigeria’s political history, urged him to use this second term to cleanse the electoral process and consolidate on the gains of Edo and Ondo elections.
He said, “The shifted elections earlier scheduled for 31st October, 2020 would be the first test of what this second term would be for.
Nigerians will expect nothing less than a very credible, free and fair 2023 general election from him.
“The CUPP on this note calls on the Nigerian Senate and Opposition lawmakers join to confirm the appointment so as to allow him have the needed neutrality to oversee the upcoming bye elections and adequate time to start the cleansing process for our Nations electoral process”.
BY JONATHAN NDA- ISAIAH AND TUNDE OGUNTOLA,
Obasanjo Failed Nigerian Youths And Even Failed more by Not Giving Igbos Sense Of Belonging- Kalu
Obasanjo Failed Nigerian Youths And Even Failed more by Not Giving Igbos Sense Of Belonging, Ex-Abia Governor, Kalu, Says In Autobiography
In excerpts from his newly released autobiography ‘My Life,’ published by The cable, Kalu accused the former military general, who claimed glory for the surrender of Biafrans in 1970, of carrying on like the war was still on.
He said, “I am not in politics because I want to make money from it. If that was the case, I would have remained with President (Olusegun) Obasanjo throughout our time in office because he controlled all the money.
“But I needed honour for my people. He refused to honour and respect my people; he failed to give them a sense of belonging. He equally had opportunity to rescue the youth but failed. He carried on as if he was still at war with the Igbo nation, hence we disagreed.”
The senator, who narrowly escaped going to jail for depriving his state of N7bn during his time as governor, said Igbo last enjoyed progress in Nigeria a few years after independence.
He added, “In January 1914, Lord Fredrick Lugard completed the amalgamation of the northern and southern protectorates into Colonial Nigeria and became its first Governor-General.
“The Igbos did not have a say as to whether they desired to be a part of such a contraption or not. However, the clouds lifted so briefly and the Igbo enjoyed brief sunshine in Nigeria in the decade before and a few years after independence.
“Having embraced Christianity and western education with enthusiasm, they quickly rose to hold sway in the federal civil service, military, academia, commerce and industry.
“The ‘Jews’ of West Africa were on the march, toiling, sweating and swinging upwards, to the envy and hatred of their compatriots.”
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