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The Only South-easterner In Aso Villa Is A Photographer – Sen Abaribe



The Only South-easterner In Aso Villa Is A Photographer - Sen Abaribe
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Senate Minority leader, Enyinnaya Araribe intensified his call for more recognition to be given to those from the South East at the federal level, saying that the only person from that region in the Aso Villa is a photographer.

Abaribe said this on Friday as a guest on Channels Television’s programme Sunrise Daily in reaction to Governor David Umahi’s defection from Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to the All Progressives Congress, APC.

Abaribe who had earlier in the week said the party was unfazed by Umahi’ defection also believes the governor’s movement will be gauged properly when it’s time for the 2023 elections.

His words: “Let us assume Governor Umahi is bringing the South East, as he says, into the mainstream because that was what I heard yesterday. What is the mainstream? Is it the Aso Villa that belongs to all of us that you cannot find a single person from the South East, except a photographer?

“Before every part of this country was represented in the Aso Villa, so when you want to do government business because sometimes government business is done from back channels, so if you have a problem or they want to do some consultations, you make a call into the Villa, you call to your countryman and say please can you tell oga this or that so that we can have this talk, there is none today inside the villa. There’s one guy, his name is Sunny, I think he’s a photographer.

“So Umahi is going to talk to who? Ok, because he is governor he can talk to Chief of Staff, he can go to see the president but what about others?”

When confronted with names of those who are from the South East and aides to the president, Araribe responded by asking, ‘where are they? Can you call them and ask them to tell the President A, B, or C? Everybody knows that we do not have someone you can call a proper person within that whole enclave you call the Villa. We had access, we do not have that anymore. Of course, you can have low-level people being appointed, but what do they do that you can say these people make a difference in our lives in the South East?

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Umahi’s defection to APC has not brought anyone out of poverty — Obi



Umahi’s defection to APC has not brought anyone out of poverty — Obi
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…Says, Umahi’s defection to APC is valueless

…2023 elections should not be the discussion now

…My life under threat —Anyim

Sequel to the defection of the governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi, to the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, reactions and counter-reactions have continued to trail the governor’s move.

The Vice Presidential Candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, in 2019 elections, Mr. Peter Obi, yesterday, also reacted to the defection, saying such political dramas should not form the focus of Nigerians when the country is facing severe economic recession.

This is coming days after Umahi had claimed that the plan was for the former Secretary to the Federal Government, Anyim Pius Anyim and National Assembly members to join him in APC after two weeks. Umahi had alleged that Anyim and others stabbed him in the back by staying put in PDP.

But countering Umahi’s position, Anyim had cried out over alleged threat to his life , describing Umahi as pitiably delusional. Anyim dismissed Umahi as a prisoner of his greed and inordinate ambition and a drowning man looking for who to drag down with him.

However, Peter Obi, who was responding to a question during his appearance on Arise Television, said he had, for a long time, refrained from commenting on Umahi’s defection because the country had more pressing economic issues to solve. He said it would be unfair to Nigerians if their political leaders focused on such trivial issues as defection when a greater percentage of the population were increasingly finding it difficult to put food on their tables.

“As at today, Nigeria is the poverty capital of the world. We have the highest number of out-of-school children. Our unemployment rate is skyrocketing every day, food stuffs prices are soaring higher and people are dying of hunger. Would it be fair for us to turn blind eyes to all these challenges facing our people and occupy ourselves with who leaves a particular political party or who does not?” Obi asked.

He advised every well meaning Nigerian and every leader who has the interest of the people at heart, to leave irrelevant political games and join forces to save Nigeria’s economy from collapsing completely. He insisted that 2023 elections should not be the discussion now, especially with the depressing economic situation prevalent in the country.

“How many people have been pulled out of poverty by Umahi’s defection? Will Nigeria exit recession because Umahi left PDP? What economic value does Umahi’s defection to APC have on the average Nigerian on the street who is struggling to put food on their table? We must not be distracted by political movements at this time. Anyone is free to belong to any political party. Our common focus should be saving our economy and making our governance fruitful and productive”, Obi said.

My life under threat —Anyim

Recall that on Monday night, former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim had alerted that Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State was after his life for refusing to join him him to the All Progressives Congress, APC.

In an open letter copied to President Muhammadu Buhari and all the heads of security agencies in Nigeria, Anyim had alleged that people had died mysteriously in Umahi’s administration and asked the federal government to protect him.

According to Anyim, he would not have bothered to respond to Umahi’s gibberishness because he was a sinking man with sinister plan.

Anyim said: “Governor Umahi is pitiably delusional. He is a prisoner of his greed and inordinate ambition. Here is a drowning man looking for who to drag down with him. Governor Umahi has made his worst mistake after his latest misadventure by taking on me and other noble and respectable sons of Ebonyi State who have served and continued to serve our dear state with resolute commitment, dedication and integrity.

“The discerning public knows that he has been on the plan for a long time and when he decided to consummate it, he suddenly concocted an accusation against PDP, that PDP was not willing to zone Presidency to the South East.

“People who know Gov. Umahi know that he normally starts this way whenever he is hatching a sinister plan. He raises dusts, makes wild allegations and accusations against people just to divert the attention of the public before he strikes. It is public knowledge that Gov. Umahi had been planning his defection to the All Progressive Congress, APC for a long time.

“Unable to contain and manage the unsavory reactions from the public, he ran to my home in the company of some high-profile people on the 20th of November2020 and pleaded with me to defect to APC, saying that if I do, others will follow suit. I pointed out to him that his approach has made it almost impossible for anybody to defect.

“He pleaded with me that if I cannot defect now, I should not attend any PDP meetings and I said no, I must attend PDP meetings as long as I am in PDP. He realized that he could not persuade anybody when he saw the crème of Ebonyi Elders and citizens that gathered for the inauguration of PDP Caretaker Committee. He could no longer sleep and declared war on every one who has refused to defect with him.”

“How can a man in his 6th year as Governor of a State suddenly realise that a former President of the Senate, a former Governor of the State and two-time serving Senator Dr. Sam Egwu, Senator Obinna Ogba, two time serving Senator, are now cultists and IPOB members. Something is wrong somewhere. It is obvious that either something is pursuing Governor Umahi or that he is pursuing something.

“The purpose of this response is to alert the public and the security agencies in particular on the schemes of Gov. David Umahi so that they will read him upfront and be wary of him and his allegations.

“The only offence we committed is that we refused to follow Gov. Umahi in his political adventure. We do not know when belonging to parties of one’s choice has become an offence against a Governor or means fighting a Governor.

“Security agencies, the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Judges should note that Gov. Umahi had boasted that one of the gains of his defection is that he has been promised absolute use of the security agencies for all that he desires to do.

“That the Hon. Attorney General of the Federation is his friend and will soon visit Abakaliki the second time and that he will use him to deal with those opposed to him using the EFCC.

“That he will extensively use the courts to not only make it impossible for PDP to function in the state but also to frustrate those opposed to him including sending them to prison.

“I fully understand that what Umahi meant by ‘this will be the last fight I will fight’, is that he will kill me so that I will not live to fight again.

“While I invite the security agencies to note this plan, I want to assure Gov. Umahi that my blood is not available for him in pursuit of his ambition.”

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Ohanaeze, Afenifere, NCF Ask Buhari To Honour Reps’ Summons



Ohanaeze, Afenifere, NCF Ask Buhari To Honour Reps’ Summons
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Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the apex Igbo so­cio-cultural organisation; Pan-Yoru­ba socio-political organi­sation, Afenifere; National Consultative Front (NCF), and Prince Tony Momoh, chief­tain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), have thrown their weight behind the House of Representatives, asking President Muhammadu Bu­hari to honour the House invi­tation following the killing of farmers in Borno on Saturday by Boko Haram Insurgents.

The House of Represen­tatives on Tuesday resolved to invite President Buhari to appear before it to explain cir­cumstances surrounding the current state of insecurity in the North-East and other plac­es in the country.

The members of the House of Representatives are representing their various constituents and they have right to invite the president to appear before them over se­curity situation. So, President Buhari must honour the invi­tation if he is representing the people of Nigeria.

This is a good develop­ment. Why won’t President Buhari appear before them? Is he President of Daura or President of Nigeria? In as much as he is still President of Nigeria, he must appear before the House because the President has failed the peo­ple by refusing to refurbish the security architecture of the country.

“Nigeria needs security forces that are proactive and intelligent gathering and not one sided security forces.

“It’s unfortunate that se­curity operatives in Nigeria are one sided so the president needs to bring in experts ir­respective of state or region they come from.

“President Buhari was elected to find solution to Ni­geria’s problems especially the insecurity but unfortu­nately he has failed the people by refusing to find solution to the country’s problems,” Ibeg­bu said.

Afenifere also on Tues­day said it is mandatory for Buhari to brief the House of Representatives on the true state of the security situation in the country.

Speaking with Daily Inde­pendent, Yinka Odumakin, National Publicity Secretary of Afenifere, said the pres­ident should appear before the lawmakers in order to give Nigerians the true picture of things and steps being taken to stop mindless killings in the country.

“Definitely, he should ap­pear before the lawmakers. Except he is not the president of the country, that is why he should not honour the invita­tion. But if he is the President of Nigeria, he should honour it. The killings in the country is too much.

How can 110 people be killed in a day? And yet the spokesman of the president will be making useless state­ments, blaming the farmers for not obtaining military clearance before entering their farms. What respect do these people have for human blood? They don’t have respect for human lives anymore.

“If the president has scant regards for the lives of Nige­rians, he must honour the invitation and explain to the lawmakers what is going on. He is our commander-in-chief not our lamenter-in-chief.

“After the killings, he will be saying ‘I am shocked’, ‘I condemn it’. No, we don’t need to condemn killings. What are you doing to prevent further killings? He needs to go and tell the lawmakers”.

Also speaking, Tanko Yunusa, a former presidential candidate and National Con­sultative Front’s (NCF) Head of Public Affairs Bureau, said the president must hon­our the invitation and speak to the lawmakers who are the representatives of the people.

Definitely, he should ap­pear before the lawmakers. He needs to come and talk to Nigerians through their elected representatives on the steps he is taking to keep Nigeria secure. He should go and explain what is happen­ing as Nigerians have a right to know. Nigerians are not happy”, he said.

On his part, Prince Tony Momoh, one of the national leaders of APC, said while the lawmakers have a right to invite the president, it may be difficult for him to divulge important security informa­tion in public.

“They can invite anybody to explain but I don’t know how the president can come to them and start to explain se­curity issues to them in front of the camera. As the pres­ident, he gets briefing from service chiefs on the security situation. Will he now be re­vealing this in public glare?”

Also speaking, Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa (SAN), who is a human rights lawyer, said the president must honour the invitation of the lawmakers to explain what he was doing about the security situation in the country which, according to him, had collapsed.

“The president should honour the invitation of the House of Representatives in order to explain to the nation what he is doing about the collapsed security of Nigeria.

“The situation has gotten out of hand such that we can no longer leave the matter with the president again.

“Security is everybody’s business, so we must all get involved through our elected representatives.

“It will be unconstitution­al for the president to ignore the invitation of the House as that will send a wrong signal of lack of empathy for the kill­ings going on across the land,” he said.

On his part, Chief Sunny Onuesoke, a former governor­ship aspirant and chieftain of the PDP, also threw his weight behind the call of the lawmak­ers, asking the president to honour the summons.

“Absolutely. It’s impera­tive. The president should, as a matter of urgency, in view of the sad security situation in the country appear physi­cally to address the House on the correct situation of things in the country.

“If the president can ad­dress and present his budget annually physically before both chambers of the Nation­al Assembly, what stops him from not appearing before them when summoned?

“Besides, it is constitution­al for him to do so and explain to the House, as they represent the entire country, on what he is doing on the safety of lives and property of Nigerians.”

Following the current state of insecurity in the North-East and other places in the country, the House of Representatives on Tuesday resolved to invite President Muhammadu Buhari.

This was as the House found itself in a rowdy ses­sion following attempts by the leadership to block a prayer in a motion which called for the invitation of the president.

The House Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, had earlier disallowed debates on the mo­tion moved by Hon. Ahmed Satomi calling attention to the wanton destruction of lives in the North Eastern state of Borno, which forced members to only suggest amendments to the prayers.

Satomi’s motion, moved on behalf of 10 others, was on the ‘Urgent Need to Condemn and Investigate the Insane Killing of Unarmed Farmers in Jere Local Government Area of Borno State’.

While calling on the House to condemn the dastardly act, the lawmaker, however, sub­stituted the original prayer to invite the president for ex­planations with “urging the president to declare a state of emergency on insecurity in the North-East and Nigeria”, whilst calling for a thorough investigation into the Satur­day massacre of over 43 farm­ers on rice field.

First to move for amend­ment was the Deputy Minori­ty Leader, Tobi Okechukwu, who called for an investiga­tion into the activities of the Defence Industrial Corpora­tion of Nigeria (DICON).

Okechukwu wanted the House to “mandate the Com­mittee on Defence to investi­gate DICON on its prepared­ness to manufacture weapons in the face of alleged interna­tional gang up against Nige­ria’s effort to tackle the Boko Haram insurgency”.

However, Hon. Ahmed Us­man Jaha, who said he was elected to the House from an IDP camp in Borno, moved a point of order on matters of privilege, saying that the mo­tion jointly moved by all Bor­no lawmakers in the House had been watered down as the prayer to invite the president for explanations on the state of security in Nigeria was no longer there.

He said: “Mr. Speaker, I rise to move on Order 6 Rule 1, Matter of Privilege, that I’m one of the core sponsors of this motion, as well as other members from Borno.

“And we all agreed that the prayers of this motion should remain. But when the member (Hon. Ahmed Satomi) read out the motion, I realised he left out one of the key prayers.

“There is a particular prayer where we said the president and heads of secu­rity agencies should come and explain to us why our people are still being killed despite trillions of budgetary alloca­tions and legislative support we have given.”

At this point, the speaker intervened, urging Jaha to allow the prayer for the presi­dent to declare a state of emer­gency on insecurity to stand instead of inviting him.

“This is an appeal from the chair that in a motion of this nature, it’s not all the time we allow ourselves to go all out and say we should invite the head of the executive to tell us what the security situation is.

“I very much understand the pain and the emotion and I share in it, but the prayer to declare state of emergency on insecurity, for me, has far more reaching implications and significance.

“That will go a long way to address the root cause of the matter, and I think we should explore that avenue instead,” Gbajabiamila pleaded.

But Hon. Jaha stood his ground, saying that “the prayer is not mine as an indi­vidual”.

He added: “My colleagues from Borno are seated here; let them say that I’m lying, that we did not agree to leave the prayer as part of the res­olutions.

“I don’t want my people who elected me from an IDP camp to think that we are here bench-warming.

“Let me say it for the world to hear that we want the pres­ident to come and explain to this House why his security chiefs are not doing their jobs, because each time issues are raised, they said they lack ad­equate funds and equipment, but the president said he has given them all necessary sup­port to enable them carry out their duties, so we need expla­nations.

“I’ve said it, let the world know that it is the House that is rejecting the prayer.

“But my motion is that Mr. President should be invited to come and explain the security situation in the country, espe­cially in the North-East.”

The point of order degen­erated into a rowdy session, forcing the speaker to dissolve the House into an executive session.

However, before then, the speaker expressed disappoint­ment at the attitude of mem­bers who were interrupting the House Leader, Alhassan Ado Doguwa, and Hon. Idris Koko, who all aligned with the motion as moved by Hon. Satomi.

“This must be said and I’m going to say it here on the floor. I’m a little bit disappointed to see that a lot of us are saying no, no, when some members were given the floor and were talking over a matter that bor­ders on national security.

“This House, from the be­ginning, has never been divid­ed and I’m not going to allow that now.

“So, I move that we dissolve into an executive session right now to resolve this issue,” Gbajabiamila ruled.

After about an hour, the House reverted to plenary where Hon. Jaha was asked to formally move an amend­ment to the motion inviting the president to appear be­fore the House to brief it on the state of security in the country.

Similarly, the upper cham­ber of the National Assembly on Tuesday slammed Presi­dent Muhammadu Buhari’s government over the killing of farmers in Borno State and other parts of the country.

Lamenting the high rate of killings in the country by Boko Haram, the lawmakers said that any government which failed to protect the lives of the people had lost its legitimacy and breach Sec­tion 14 (1) of the constitution.

The Senate also said that it would assess the performance of the military and probe its budget to know if the funds allocated to it to fight insecu­rity was judiciously utilised.

Lamenting the failure of government to guarantee safety of lives and the inabil­ity of the authorities to end the state of insecurity in the country, the lawmakers took turn to condemn the activi­ties of criminals who unleash mayhem on defenceless citi­zens across the country, espe­cially in the North-East.

The lawmakers, who ex­pressed their minds while contributing to a motion sponsored by Senator Kashim Shettima (APC, Borno Cen­tral), added that if President Buhari insisted on retaining the service chiefs, the logical conclusion would be that Mr. President had failed in his assignment of securing the nation.

In their resolutions, the lawmakers urged President Buhari to immediately initi­ate a transitional process of phasing out the current over-stayed security chiefs and re­placing them with new ones with new ideas and solutions.

The Senate urged the pres­ident to take immediate steps to restructure, remode, and revamp the country’s entire security architecture and pro­vide enough state-of-the-art weapons and equipment to effectively combat the bellig­erent power of the insurgents.

The upper chamber also urged the president to im­mediately initiate a probe into widespread allegations of corruption and leakages within the security structure and put mechanisms in place to foster transparency and en­sure all resources meant and deployed for security were actually spent on the needs on the ground.

They further impressed on the Federal Government the need to aggressively explore multilateral and bilateral options of partnership with the neighbouring nations of Chad, Niger, and Camer­oons towards reviving and strengthening the Multina­tional Joint Task Force and finding a lasting solution to the scourge of insurgency in the Lake Chad region.

The Senate asked the Fed­eral Government to, as a mat­ter of urgency, recruit at least 10,000 Civilian JTF, versatile with the local terrain in Bor­no, as agro-rangers under the aegis of the NCDSC to com­plement the efforts of the Nigerian Armed Forces and, coming under order 42 and 45 of the Senate rules, Shettima lamented that 2,801 attacks had been carried out between January and November this year in the state.

In his motion titled, ‘Be­heading of 67 Farmers in Borno by Boko Haram Insur­gents: Need for Urgent Deci­sive Action’, the lawmaker disclosed that about 40,000 people, mostly unarmed ci­vilians, had been brutally murdered.

He said 2.5 million people had been displaced from their homes and farms, property worth trillions of naira wan­tonly destroyed, and over 7 million people – mostly wom­en and children – plunged into dire humanitarian needs.

He said: “Over the week­end, Boko Haram insurgent members beheaded 67 farm­ers who had gone to a rice plantation at Kwashabe vil­lage in Zabarmari District of Jere Local Government Area, 20 kilometres north of Maidu­guri, the Borno State capital, to harvest ripe farm produce and destroyed the farm.

“This attack is one of the major attacks perpetrated by this devilish group in addi­tion to the February attack in Auno that killed 40 people, the assault in Foduma Koloram village of Gubio that killed almost 100 civilians in last June, while another attack in Usman Lawanti left another 40 dead.

“Last month, Boko Haram fighters killed 22 farmers working on irrigation fields near Maiduguri in two sepa­rate incidents.

“More than 67 citizens were beheaded while they were working in their farm­land without any form of re­sistance or challenge from the security agencies stationed a few kilometres away.

“The Nigerian military, in conjunction with other se­curity agencies, up till today have not been able to quell the insurgency affecting the region despite the slogan by government officials that the insurgents had been technical­ly defeated.”

He said that whatever it was that the present security chiefs were doing was not working or at least not enough.

He added: “If the presi­dent insists that the security chiefs are doing their work well, then the logical impli­cation of such assumption is that the president himself, as the constitutional command­er-in-chief of the country, has failed in his most rudimenta­ry assignment of securing the nation. I hope the latter is not the case.”

In his contribution, Senator Ahmed Baba Keita lamented that the killing was one too many, adding that the time for truth had come.

“The situation in the North-East can’t be allowed to continue,” he said, describing the statement from President Buhari’s spokesman, Garba Shehu, as irresponsible and insensitive.

Taking on the activities of the military in the fight against Boko Haram, the lawmaker said: “We have to sit down and reassess their (military) performance in the North-East. If we allow this to go, let us be ready for more mourning.

“Buhari is doing his best but his best is not enough. It is no longer about money because the money we have pumped in is enough for re­sults to be seen.

“We should investigate the funding for the military and we should no more give them money until we are sure that they spent what we had given them.”

Senator Ali Ndume, on his part, also lamented that reports of insecurity had not been implemented, insisting that the Senate needed to move further to save the na­tion.

He further lamented that soldiers at the war front shared ammunition, noting that the soldiers were not well-kitted and without new weapons.

Ndume insisted that if the government was serious in the fight against insurgency, in six months or less, Boko Haram would be defeated.

He disclosed how about 1000 Chadian soldiers wanted to assist the Nigerian govern­ment in the fight against Boko Haram, but decided to leave because the government was not serious about the collabo­ration.

He quoted Section 14 (1a and b) of the constitution to explain the role government ought to play in the lives of the citizens.

In his remarks, the Pres­ident of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, who presided over the plenary, said: “This is sup­posed to be a turning point for insecurity in Nigeria.

“Enough of excuses. Peo­ple who have nothing to offer should be shown the way out. Security should take centre stage.

“The Senate will do ev­erything to ensure that these resolutions are respected and implemented.”

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Insecurity: It’s Unconstitutional For PMB To Ignore Reps Summon – Adegboruwa



Insecurity: It's Unconstitutional For PMB To Ignore Reps Summon - Adegboruwa
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Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa (SAN), Lagos-based human rights lawyer has said President Muhammadu Buhari must honour the invitation of the House of Representatives to explain what he is doing about the security situation in the country, saying it will be unconstitutional for him to ignore it.

He said Nigerians can no longer leave the issue of insecurity which has collapsed in the hands of the President alone.

Angered by the worsening insecurity in the country, the House of Representatives on Tuedsay summoned the President over the cold-blooded murder of about 43 persons by suspected Boko Haram Islamists insurgency group in Zabarmari village, Jere council of Borno State.

Adopting a motion under urgent matters of national importance sponsored by Satomi Ahmed at the plenary presided by Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, the lawmakers insist that President Buhari be made to brief them on the true state of the security of the Nation.

According to Adegboruwa, it is time for Nigerians to get involved in the issue of security in the country through elected representatives.

“The President should Honour the invitation of the House of Representatives in order to explain to the nation what he is doing about the collapsed security of Nigeria.The situation has gotten out of hand such that we can no longer leave the matter with the President again”.

“Security is everybody’s business so we must all get involved through our elected representatives.

It will be unconstitutional for the President to ignore the invitation of the House as that will send a wrong signal of lack of empathy for the killings going on across the land”.

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