Ali Modu Sherif Group In Edo Dumps PDP or F

Edo PDP governorship candidate in the 2016 governorship elections, Matthew Iduoriyekenmwen, the member representing Ikpoba Okha/Egor in the House of Representatives, Johnson Agbonayinma, former member of the State House of Assembly, Blessing Agbebaku have led several others have defected to the APC, saying they left PDP for its impunity.

Iduoriyekenmwen who commended former governor Adams Oshiomole of the APC said “You all know that I resigned from the PDP since September 2017 and I decided to watch and see. I wanted to be governor of the state and if you have somebody that is doing what will do and even doing it better, you have to join him. We believe that our children must have education, government must make life meaningful for the people, I see sincerity in this government, I see sincerity in Governor Obaseki, I see that he doesn’t need distraction, we think that all we can do is to join him ion developing the state. Those of us that will have opposed him, we said we will join him to make the state better so whether you like it or not, Edo state is now a one party state, I want to thank Oshiomhole for providing the leadership”.

The serving Governor Godwin Obaseki welcomed them, “We don’t have new joiners; they are part of us; no difference no demarcation, new comer, everybody is the same.”

Why I Stand With Buhari By Femi Adesina

These are very difficult times in our country. Sad, mournful and dolorous times, as the New Year opened with killings in Rivers, Kaduna, Taraba, and Benue states, among others. Of course, there had been gruesome carnage on the Mambilla plateau mid last year, and bloodletting in Numan, Adamawa State, as well as in other places. Hell suddenly seemed to have enlarged itself against Nigeria. Sincere condolences to those who are grieving and mourning the loss of loved ones.

But instead of finding solutions, and joining to chart the way forward, some people are making political capital out of the killings. They are trying to use the orgy of bloodshed to advance their political interests, wanting to make it appear that it is a failure of the Muhammadu Buhari administration.

Faults are thick where love is thin. There is prejudice in Nigeria. Plenty. There is insularity, in prodigious quantity. There is animus, antipathy against anyone that is not of your ethnic or religious stock, or that belongs to a different political orientation or persuasion. If you meet him, kill him, if you can’t catch him, poison his footsteps, seems to be the singsong among some people. And as the build up to general elections next year gathers momentum, matters are made worse. Everything must be politicized, including wanton killings. There must be spurious handshakes across the Niger, and across the Benue, all for political gains.

But I stand with Buhari, and will always do. Why won’t you? Your snout is in the honeypot, licking the nectars of office, some cynics would say. Really? My bank balances do not indicate so. It is not just about money. It is about conviction. It is about believing in a man who can bring enduring change to our country, if we allow God to have His way through him.
Standing with Buhari through thick and thin is not about money, or the spoils of office, which are not even available in these lean times. In or out of my present position, I stand with Buhari. Sir Walter Scott wrote: “Other people’s resolutions may fluctuate on the wild and changeful billows of human opinion. Ours, now and forever, are anchored on the Rock of Ages.” In or out of government, I stand with Buhari. Why? You will get to know shortly.

There is strident attempt to defame, demean and de-market the Buhari government today. Who are those behind it? The crooks, thieves, freeloaders, who want business as usual. They hate probity. Their souls abhor accountability. They prefer the plunder of the past years, and can’t wait to see that epoch return. They engage in all sorts of misinformation and disinformation. Hate speeches. Fake news. Under us, you had leeks, onions and garlic to eat. You were fed manna till you wanted no more. When you were tired of the fluffy stuff, we gave you meat, you gorged yourself so much, till meat began to come out of your noses. They wouldn’t tell you about what William Shakespeare calls “the goodly apple, but rotten at the cheek.”

They won’t tell you about humongous amounts of money made from oil, which stood at over $100 dollars per barrel for about six years, and which they looted to the last cent. Foreign reserves; depleted. Excess Crude Account; looted. Federation Account; plundered. They turned the country to a wasteland, leaving an economy primed for recession. But deftly and sure-footed, the Buhari administration is building a new foundation for the economy, erecting an edifice that will stand the test of time, not a bubble that collapses with just a pinprick, not a will-o-the-wisp that vanishes in the midday sun.

That is why I stand with Buhari, and have stood with him since he was a military leader in the 1980s. I can trust this President. I can go to bed, knowing that my leader is not striking deals to fleece the country in the dead of night. I can trust that every money that comes into the coffers of Nigeria, will be used for the good of Nigerians. Am I saying it is a perfect administration? Such has not been forged from the smithy of the divine powers.

Every human enterprise will have its shortcomings, but on Buhari I still stand. I stand with him, and by him, any day.

Some people ask themselves: can we afford to be outside government for another four years from 2019? We would be dead! No access to the public treasury, which we know how well to abuse and plunder? To ravage and savage. They have spat into the sky, and collected the spittle with their faces. Rather than let Buhari be, we would employ all the tricks in the books. Defame, demean, de-market him. Is he not Fulani? He is supporting herdsmen causing murder and mayhem round the country. Trumpet it from the rooftops, even without a scintilla of evidence. He is sectional, and bent on Islamizing the country. He is fighting a one sided anti-corruption war. His war against insurgency is a fluke, not winnable.

They refuse to see massive investments in infrastructure, which would burst into full bloom in another year or two. Roads, rail, power. They refuse to see the rebounding economy, strides in agriculture and mining, all with good auguries for the future. They refuse to acknowledge the stock market, which recently recorded N15.78 trillion, the highest in the history of the country. What of N1.3 trillion spent on capital projects in 2016? And almost the same amount for 2017? No, they rather imagine how much of that amount they would have pocketed if they were in power, living in obscene luxury, while the rest of the country went to hell, if it wanted. They refuse to see the good things happening to the country. And none is as blind as those who deliberately refuse to see. All these and more are the reasons I stand with Buhari, and will always do. So that Nigeria can have a future and a hope. Our own Canaan, flowing with milk and honey.

After primitive fury was unleashed in Benue, and about 73 people were left dead, a sitting President eyeing reelection could also play politics with it, visiting and muttering the right words to impress the people. Nothing wrong. But for President Buhari, action speaks louder than words. Action stations, he told the security agencies. The Deputy Inspector General of Police in charge of Operations was first despatched, then the Minister of Interior, the Inspector General of Police himself, and then the Nigerian Army. Consultations were held with the governor of the state, with Benue elders, and now, a committee headed by the Vice President, made up of nine governors, has been set up to proffer solutions to farmers/herdsmen clashes. Action truly speaks louder than words.

President Buhari has not thrown his hat officially into the ring for a second term in office. But they are in mortal fear of him running. Therefore, they do all they can to dissuade him. Malign him, paint him black, devalue him before the electorate. But they don’t know that there are many devices in the hearts of men, but only the counsel of God shall stand. If God has ordained President Buhari to be in power beyond 2019, human effort to stop it can only end in futility.

I stand with Buhari, because it is solid ground for Nigeria. All other ground I see, at least for now, is sinking sand. For us, for our children, for generations yet unborn, Buhari is engendering a new country, whose builder and maker is God. Let the wailers wail; endlessly. Let the heathens rage; till they render themselves hoarse. Let them throw even the kitchen sink at him, they did worse in the build up to 2015. I stand with Buhari. I know his heart for Nigeria, and for Nigerians. Let people shed their prejudices. Let them eschew hate, and purge themselves of all malice. The future can only then be written in gold.

Adesina is Special Adviser to President Buhari on Media and Publicity

Truth Of The Matter With AYEKOOTO: Another Strong Voice For Parliamentary Democracy

 

When sometime last year, the Governor of the State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola took the bull by the horn and declared that the upcoming local government administration in the state will be Parliamentary system-based, not many understood the wisdom in the whole idea.

Just this week, while addressing the press on the occasion of his 79th birthday in his Ila-Orangun, State of Osun country home, the former Interim National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC),and a former governor of Osun, Chief Adebisi Akande was even more forthcoming on the dangers in the present arrangement.

According to him, the Nigerian nation is currently running a difficult government under an unworkable set up.

“President Buhari is my friend and I want him to succeed but he is running a difficult system of government.

“Nigeria’s democracy is a military democracy of sharing and if we continue like this, there is no how we can succeed.

“Up to this present age, evidence-based analyses have proven parliamentary democracy to be the most accountable transparent form of government in the whole world,’’ he said.

One cannot but agree with Baba Bisi Akande, if the present problems of insecurity, governance, corruption and fiscal responsibility which Nigeria has been facing since the return to democratic governance in 1979 up till present moment are considered.

Chief Akande further declared that parliamentary democracy had helped countries like the United Kingdom to become rich, stable and respectable globally and also made the very young Israel very strong economically and militarily.

“It is also transforming India from acute poverty and hunger into self- sufficiency and reliability virtually in all fields. Apart from being transparent and accountable, parliamentary democracy is absolutely inclusive. It appears to be the best form of governmental structure for Nigeria now,’’ he said.

One of the principal merits of the parliamentary government is that it provides for the maintenance of harmonious relationship between the legislative and the executive branch of government.

Ministers, Commissioners or equivalents in the local governments are heads of the executive departments and at the same time are members of the Legislature, constituting the majority party. The wishes of the majority are therefore, carried on with great zeal and strength. Deadlocks are also avoided as the legislature and the executive are constituted in the same body of persons.

It is the best specimen of representative democracy as it recognises the ultimate sovereignty of the people and ensures ministerial responsibility. The executive is continuously responsible to the legislative assembly and as such any serious misuse of executive power can be checked readily through the immediate removability of cabinet members.

A third merit of parliamentary government is its flexibility and elasticity. People can easily change the government. It is therefore, specially suitable to meet emergencies. In special circumstances, a smooth change of leadership is possible without bloody revolution.

Bagehot, an English political philosopher, highly praised parliamentary government, because people in this system can “choose a ruler for the occasion” who may be specially qualified to tackle the situation. At the time of the Second World war Chamberlain was replaced by Churchill without any political upheaval in England.

Another advantage of the parliamentary form of government is that it can claim high educative value. It cannot function without well organised political parties. Political parties formulate, organise and educate public opinion.

The primary objective of every political party is to win elections and capture the government. They place different manifestoes before the people.

All this makes the people politically conscious and vigilant. Parliamentary government is also a government by criticism. The opposition criticizes the government and brings the government on the proper track in cases if it is getting off the track.

Lastly, the merit of parliamentary government is its achievement of a close union between lawmaking and administration. Since ministers are members of the legislature as well as the political heads of administrative departments, administrative considerations are not likely to be overlooked in the enactment of laws.

At the same time, the top executives, in approaching the administrative problems of the governments, are mindful of the legislative point of view. On the other hand, formation in the possession of administrative agencies is always available to the legislative branch in the discharge of its policy determining functions.

A major criticism of Parliamentary system is on centralisation and lack of separation of powers. Some people, however, regard this as a strength, calling it ‘strong government’. Well, that’s easy enough as long as you agree with what the government is doing.

The parliamentary system was invented in the UK in the 1720s and 1730s, by a group of parliamentarians, centered around the world’s first Prime Minister, Robert Walpole, who wanted to get around the limitations of separation of powers, particularly on their own ability to enrich themselves. You can’t give a particular year because they did it by stealth and pretended nothing significant was changing.

Another major criticism is of the system is the complete lack of checks and balances, since the government is chosen because it has a majority in Parliament, and from that it follows that the government (in general) controls Parliament. The government is in control, and Parliament provides no effective check. But the judiciary, pressure groups and non-governmental organizations are there to check government’s excesses.

We congratulate the former Interim national chairman of APC, author of Moving Osun to Prosperity, the Oracle of Ila Orangun, former governor of the State of Osun, Baba Omo keekeeke, a happy celebration.

 

Osun Lawmaker Distributes Delivery Packs To Pregnant Women, Notebooks For Students

 

Over 250 pregnant women in Irewole/Isokan State Constituency of Osun state have been given delivery packs, with a charge on them to adhere strictly to medical advice during pregnancy and after delivery.

 

The women drawn from the 22 wards that make up the constituency received the packs during an empowerment programme held in Ikire.

 

The lawmaker representing Irewole/Isokan State Constituency, Mr. Olasunkanmi Adufe Akinola, while giving out the packs said the society must do more in taking care of women because of the critical position they occupy in the society.

 

Apart from the delivery packs, Akinola said the School for The Handicapped in Apomu would also receive food items and educational materials.

Akinola, who also gave out crash helmets for commercial motorcyclists and notebooks for over 5,000 public secondary schools students in his constituency, said more of such poverty alleviation programmes would be done.

 

The lawmaker then called for financial autonomy for state assemblies to enable members to effectively discharge their duties, adding that beside making laws, parliamentarians should also be allowed to cater for petty needs of their constituents.

In their goodwill messages, the chairman All Progressive Congress in Irewole local government, Alhaji Arimiyau Owoade and the West Senatorial Leader of the party, Alhaji Amobi Akintola, called on wealthy Nigerians to do more in assisting the less privileged in the society.

“Whatever we can do to protect and cater for the needs of the vulnerable and women in our society, we should all do it. Nigeria can only be more secured when the wealthy ones assist the less privileged”, Amobi concluded.

Akeredolu Welcomes Oke Back To APC

Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State has formally welcomed the candidate of the Alliance for Democracy in the last governorship election in the state Olusola Oke back to the Ruling APC.

At the event held in Akure, the state capital, Governor Akeredolu hailed the decision of Oke to return to the progressives party alongside other Governorship candidates.

He assured that the party’s door is always open to everyone willing to be part of a political party with the interest of the people at heart

Earlier, Olusola Oke had told Akeredolu of his readiness to be of support to his administration towards having a successful tenure and the development of the state.

He said the only thing he and other members defecting from the AD seek,is respect and will in return give their loyalty and unalloyed support.

The Acting Chairman of the APC in the state Ade Adetimehin advised all defectors to go to their various wards and obtain membership card so as to authenticate their membership.

PDP Shamed As Aregbesola Vindicated – APC

The All Progressives Congress (APC) has said that the more the People’s Democratic Party struggle to demonise, scandalise and repudiate the person, the policy and the government run by the APC leader in the state, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, the more acknowledgement, praise and recognition he gets from home and abroad.

This was contained through a statement by the party’s Director of Publicity, Research and Strategy, Barrister Kunle Oyatomi.

The party said the irony was that Aregbesola is being singled out for those things he has done which the PDP and other critics vehemently deny its existence.

It added that the constant and consistent refrain of the opposition elements in the state is, on the one hand, that Aregbesola has done nothing whatsoever to improve lives, and on the other hand, they shamelessly threaten to either stop, demolish or suspend every project which is supposedly too “sophisticated” for the people of Osun.

“In their hopelessly flawed judgement and pathetic ignorance, they claimed that the State of Osun has been in its “worst” form since the Aregbesola-led APC government came to power in the state seven years ago.

“However, only last Thursday, Yoruba professionals, home and abroad, declared that in their professional judgement, and with the facts on ground available to them for assessment, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola was the “best” performing governor (within the Yoruba area, presumably) for the year 2017.

“This should make the PDP bury its head in shame because the group of people, who are talking, are not simpletons like most of Aregbesola’s critics, but professionals with stable minds, depth of scholarship and a comprehensive understanding of what it takes to adjudge a governor the “best” amongst his colleagues”, the APC said.

The Party said it was not surprised that the PDP has been quiet since this Award was made public because it (PDP) knew what further damage their negative comment would do to their already rotten image as liars, falsifiers of data and people in denial of what stares at them glaringly in the face.

According to the Party, “those who so irrationally condemn Aregbesola may not simply be ignorant, they may actually be intellectually impaired; which is why their situation appears pathetic.

“Anybody who has not read the reasons the Yoruba Professionals gave for awarding the “Best Governor of Year 2017” to Aregbesola will do himself or herself a lot of good to do so and those who already have,  may take a second look at it.

“It was not a sentimental exercise” the APC claimed, arguing that, “the group had a goal in mind to award excellence to who its due, after vigorous assessment of the empirical evidence on ground. As professionals, they acted professionally.

“But critics and opponents of the Osun governor are mainly opposition politicians acting in a politically irresponsible way, without regards for facts and the demonstrable evidence on ground.

“Part of their profession is to deceive, falsify and condemn in order to gain political advantage. For the most part, they are not agents of truth,” the APC declared.

“It will be interesting to read or hear (or both) from the PDP what demonstrable evidence they will advance against the judgement of the Yoruba Professionals.”

“One thing is for sure though; the professionals’ judgement among others,  will certainly lead the debate in the run-up to the governorship election in September,” the APC concluded.

Osun LG Election: APC To Embark On 5-Day Campaign In Ile Ife

 

By Sodiq Lawal

The All Progressive Congress (APC) in Ife Central and Ife Central West  has disclosed that the party will embark on 5-day campaign for the upcoming local government elections in the State of Osun.

 

The Secretary of APC in  Ife Central Local Government, Hon Olufemi Francis who spoke to our correspondent on Thursday said the party in Ife Central and Ife Central West will jointly commence a 5-days rally for all candidates from the grassroots to the state level.

 

He added that the campaign will begin on Saturday and end on Wednesday.

 

The Secretary however urged party members and Ife sons and daughters to turn out in folds for the campaign.

LG Poll: Osun APC Aspirant Promises Adequate Representation, Developmental Programmes If Voted

By Nofisat Marindoti

An All Progressive Congress (APC) aspirant in the January 27 Local Government election in the State of Osun, Comrade Rasheed Raji-Ropo, has promised the people of his ward in Odo-Otin Local Council Development Area (LCDA) of proper and adequate representation if voted.

 

Ropo made the promise while addressing supporters at a rally in Oyan town on Thursday.

 

Vowing to supervise Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola’s integral action plans if given the chance to serve, The Oyan born politician said he would do everything within his capacity to complement the efforts of the Governor in his bid to move the state to a greater height.

 

Ropo also promised people oriented people programmes in line with the party’s manifesto.

 

He thereby urged the electorate in the LCDA to come out en-mass to vote for him, with a promise that he would serve diligently.

 

 

 

Saraki Swears-In Victor Umeh

The Senate President, Bukola Saraki, has sworn-in the winner of the Anambra Central Senatorial election and former National Chairman of the All Progressive Grand Alliance, (APGA), Victor Umeh, into the Senate.

The oath of office took place on Thursday at the chambers of the Senate.

Umeh on Wednesday received his Certificate of Return from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in Abuja, which was presented to him by National Commissioner in charge of South East, Prof. Ibeanu.

Umeh swept to victory in Saturday’s poll by a landslide, securing 64,879 votes. None of the 13 other contestants in the election got up to a thousand votes.

Consequently, INEC returned him as the winner of the rerun election on Sunday morning.

No Litigation Can Stop Osun LG Election – OSIEC

By Nofisat Marindoti

The Chairman of Osun Independent Electoral Commission, OSIEC, Otunba Segun Oladitan has affirmed the commission’s readiness to conduct the Local Government election come January 27 despite the litigations against it.

In a radio programme monitored by Osun Defender, Oladitan stated that the Commission has not been served legally, adding that the ruling of the High Court in Abuja on January 24 can neither disturb nor stop the conduct of the election.

The Chairman who stated that the commission is well prepared for the election, also assured that it would be free and fair.

Stating that the polling units would be tightly secured, Oladitan said there would be no movement from 7am and 2pm to avoid disruption and that the only pass across the units would be the PVC.

Asked when the result would be out, The OSIEC Chairman replied that it would be out almost immediately bearing on the geographical problems of some centres.

Oladitan also revealed that the main opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is not part of the 18 political parties that would be participating in the election.

Asked why the PDP would not be participating, Oladitan replied that it is not the duty of the commission to necessarily call the opposition to participate.

According to him, “18 political parties without PDP is participating, 36 parties showed interest but we discovered 8 were not registered with INEC. The nomination forms were given to the remaining ones but at the close of forms, only 18 responded and showed up interest to participate.

“It is not the responsibility of commission to call opposition to come and participate. Commission’s responsibility is to call people out to vote for councilors.” Oladitan explained.

Oladitan who also justified the parliamentary system of government to be used, explained that section 7 of the constitution says the mode of conduct has to be democratic but that the state has to make law according to its structure.

Why We Insisted On The Conduct Of LG Election – OSIEC

The Osun State Independent Electoral Commission (OSIEC) has reiterated its stance on the conduct of local government election earlier slated for January 27,2018, in the face of a pending litigation.

The OSIEC’ s Chairman, Mr Segun Oladitan asserted that the decision of the commission to go ahead with the exercise was hinged on the premise that the litigation does not in anyway affect the process of the contest.

It would be recalled that OSIEC, at a press conference late last year had announced its resolve and plan to conduct the councils’ poll on Saturday, January 27, 2018.

It was against the backdrop that a human right activist, Kanmi Ajibola and some members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) approached the court, to declare the action as unconstitutional and illegal, arguing that the propose parliamentary system at the local government level is in conflict with electoral law.

However,  at a stakeholders meeting organized by the commission in Osogbo, the state capital, the OSIEC Chairman further opined that  the court injunction, which supposedly sought to halt the process would not prevent  the commission from conducting the poll as earlier announced.

Olaitan who faulted the process through which the injunction was served said, January 27 was sacrosanct.

He said, “when the date for the conduct of local government election was announced, the opposition party approached the court, seeking the conciliation of the process but instead of serving  the commission the notice of injunction in Osogbo, they brought it to liaison office, Abuja, which according to him does not fall under the jurisdiction”.

According to him, ” the local governments election was last held in 2007 and the forthcoming  election would take place on Jan. 27 , despite the court injunction.

“The method at which the injunction was served was questionable and the commission position is simple.

” The injunction served at liaison office in abuja would not bind the commission. We have not submitted our self to the jurisdiction of the federal high court”, he resorted.

While giving the breakdown of the election, Olaitan enunciated that out 389 wards in the state,  only  125 wards have more than one person contesting, while 264 wards have only one candidate contesting without opponent.

He explained that 18 political parties out of the 28 that registered would be contesting  in the  3, 018 polling units in the state.

Oladitan sought for the cooperation of the commission , security agencies and political parties to make the contest a success.

Olaitan who called on members of political parties to conduct themselves in a lawful manner in order to ensure itch free polls announced that,  there would be no vehicular movement between 7:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.

Earlier, the Commissioner of Police (CP) in Osun, Mr Folahanmi Adeoye, enjoined all political parties not to take laws into their hands , adding that election is not a do or die affair.

Adeoye noted that  security agencies would not relent in their efforts to ensure hith-free exercise.

He called on relevant stakeholders to desist from any act capable of destabilizing the election.

Present at the stakeholders meeting are the security heads in the state, political parties, OSIEC staff , among others.