Boko Haram Is Defeated But Winning The Peace Is Critical- APC

The All Progressives Congress (APC) has fired back at the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for accusing it of attempting to “fritter away our national savings” through the $1 billion approved for the Boko Haram war.

Meanwhile state governors had last week agreed to take out the sum from the excess crude account for the fight against insurgency. Subsequently, the PDP had criticised the move and accused the APC of misleading Nigerians that Boko Haram was defeated.

Reacting in a statement on Monday, Bolaji Abdullahi, the national publicity secretary of the APC, said the PDP’s allegation that the $1bn was meant for the 2019 election is baseless.

“We can understand why it is easy for the PDP to arrive at its ludicrous allegation. A similar approval in excess of $2bn was granted to the PDP government when they were in power,” he said.

“They knew what they did with the money. It is a classic case of a serial killer who sees even a table knife as a murder weapon.

“The PDP presided over a government that made it possible for money meant for weapons to be diverted into paying marabouts and all manner of political jobbers ahead of the 2015 elections.

“Therefore, the PDP thinks the same thing is about to happen. They have not realised that it is a new day and President Muhammadu Buhari will not play politics with money meant to protect the lives of innocent Nigerians or allow anyone to engage in such brigandage that Nigerians suffered under the PDP.”

The APC said although Boko Haram is technically defeated, “more weapons and training” are required for the military to win the peace.

“Winning the peace remains a critical phase of warfare. The PDP does not understand that winning the peace is as important as winning the war,” Abdullahi said.

“There is therefore no contradiction in saying that Boko Haram is technically defeated and saying that more weapons and training are needed for our military and the military of neighbouring countries whose cooperation is necessary to finally rid our countries of the menace of Boko Haram.”

 

PDP’s Opposition To $1bn Boko Haram Fund Baseless, Ridiculous – APC

The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has tagged the opposition of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the $1 billion approved for the Federal Government from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) for the prosecution of war against terror as baseless and ridiculous.

“We also note the preposterous allegation by the PDP that the real purpose of the said $1 billion was to fund our Party’s presidential activities, ahead of 2019. We find this allegation baseless and ridiculous to say the least,”

APC said this in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi on Monday.

According to the statement, “The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) that granted the approval has eleven (11) PDP Governors as its members. This means that more than one-third of NGF is made up of members of other Parties other than the APC. We wonder how the Governors who are not members of our Party would support the decision to approve funds that was ostensibly meant to fund another Party. In essence, the PDP is by this allegation accusing their Governors of disloyalty or suggesting that they were bewitched into supporting the decision. It is that ridiculous!

“However, we can understand why it is easy for PDP to arrive at its ludicrous allegation. A similar approval in excess of $2 Billion was granted to the PDP government when they were in power. They knew what they did with the money.

“It is a classic case of a serial killer who sees even a table knife as a murder weapon. The PDP presided over a government that made it possible for money meant for weapons to be diverted into paying marabouts and all manner of political jobbers ahead of the 2015 election.

“Therefore, the PDP thinks the same thing is about to happen. They have not realised that it is a new day and President Muhammadu Buhari will not play politics with money meant to protect the lives of innocent Nigerians or allow anyone to engage in such brigandage that Nigerians suffered under the PDP.

“Another reason that PDP has given for opposing the approval was that the Federal Government has claimed that Boko Haram has been technically defeated. The military authorities have done enough to explain the need for the money, we therefore find no need to repeat the arguments. It appears however that the PDP does not understand that winning the peace is as important as winning the war.

“There is therefore no contradiction in saying that Boko Haram is technically defeated and saying that more weapons and trainings are needed for our military and the military of neighbouring countries whose co-operation is necessary to finally rid our countries of the menace of Boko Haram.

“We conclude by saying that we understand the pressure that the PDP is facing to justify its role as an opposition party, but they need to be reminded that opposition is not the same as opposing everything, including those things that are critical to national interest.

“We welcome PDP to play its part in ensuring that the money or any public money at all is used for the purpose for which it is intended. In this case, they can simply ensure that their eleven governors demand accountability for the money that they have joined in approving.

“The twin principle of accountability and probity are fundamental to APC. If the PDP in their latest reincarnation now consider these principles important, we are happy for them and we welcome them. It appears however that PDP’s interpretation of its role is to oppose everything even before they had the opportunity to understand it.

“They have remained embittered over what they thought APC did to them as an opposition party and are therefore seized by an obsession to revenge. In essence, they are primarily driven by vendetta rather than considered national interest.”

2019: Crisis Looms In PDP Over Vice Presidential Ticket And Other Newspaper Headlines Today

According to Independent, interest groups within the People’s Democratic Party(PDP) are set to engage each other in an open war for the control of the party as the race for 2019 presidential election get underway. A competent source within the party told INDEPENDENT at the weekend that some power brokers within the party who seemed united towards the convention held last weekend have since commenced underground moves to outwit one another in battle for the control of the party.

Meanwhile the The Nation reports that Nigeria plans to lend its neighbours a hand in the anti-Boko Haram war, with its headline reading; $1b Anti-Boko Haramm Battle Plan Sparks Row. The Federal Government requested for $1billion from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to bolster the military’s capacity to assist neighbouring countries, Defence Minister Gen. Mansur Dan-Ali said.

The Punch moves to the oil sector to report that Fuel Queues Reappear In Lagos, Persist In Abuja, Others. The lingering petrol scarcity in many parts of the country grew worse on Sunday in Lagos, Abuja, Nasarawa, Kaduna and Niger states as many filing stations were shut. The closure of the filling stations followed threats by members of the Petrolum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria to embark on a nationwide strike from today (Monday).

Presidency, Nass May Clash Over $1bn ECA Approval tops the stories for Nigerian Tribune. According to their reports, a fresh crisis is now looming between the executive and the legislature over the planned $1 billion withdrawal from the Excess Crude Account (ECA) to fight the Boko Haram war as both chambers of the National Assembly resumes plenary today. It was gathered on Sunday that plan had been concluded for a showdown in the House of Representatives with the Presidency over the deduction from the ECA which they claimed was illegal and unconstitutional.

The Vanguard newspaper has also revealed that UK Court Orders Return Of $85m Malabu Oil Loot. After many years of legal fireworks, the United Kingdom has given the final clearance for Nigeria to draw down a whopping $85 million seized from entities embroiled in the controversial Malabu Oil Scam. This was confirmed by the Attorney General of The Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, saying the money was not yet in the coffers of Nigeria but would soon be repatriated.

Daily Sun draws the curtain today on headlines, giving an exclusive interview as Governors, Others Felicitate With President at 75.

 

 

 

Osun 2018: ‘It Will Be Impossible For PDP To Return’

By Kehinde Ayantunji

The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has said that with the noticeable all round development in the state, it would be highly impossible for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to come back to power in Osun.

The Governor while flagging off the distribution of over 15,000 health incentives to pregnant women in Osun held that Osun citizens having compared the wasteful reign of the PDP and the progressives’ developmental stride, will not make the mistake of voting the PDP in the coming election.

Aregbesola also commended traditional rulers in the state for their supports to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state of the virtuous.

He said, over 15,000 health incentives will be given to pregnant women in a programme tagged “Saving One Million Lives Programme For Results (SOML PforR), Maternal Newborn and Child Health Week (MNCHW) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Mama Kits Distribution” a federal government and World Bank assisted project.

Aregbesola who promised that the present administration would continue to pursue its health policy with all doggedness and commitment, reminded the audience that his major campaign promise was the restoration of healthy living among the people.

He added that since inception, his administration has embarked on the renovation, rehabilitation and upgrading of the nine state hospitals to ensure public accessibility to qualitative healthcare services in all parts of the state.

The Governor also recalled the Public Private Partnership (PPP) which entails the outsourcing of the pharmacy units of all State Hospitals in order to have regular availability of effective and safe drugs.

He then commended the management of the Osun Ambulance scheme for saving thousands of lives since the programme kick-started in 2013.

Aregbesola said, “With all we have done to develop the state, it is highly impossible for the PDP to ever have a say in the governance of this state. With their wasteful seven and half years, the people of the state have totally rejected them.

“Also, we have been providing and will continue to provide essential drugs and medical consumables in all our hospitals.

“O’Ambulance is another success story. The scheme was introduced in 2013 when 50 state-of-the-art ambulance vehicles were put on the road for medical emergencies, a scheme which has been used to save a lot of lives in situations of emergency in the state.

“In 2016 alone, O’Ambulance saved 1774 lives. Between January and March this year, it has also saved 630 lives”, Aregbesola stated.

Federal Lawmaker Blasts PDP Over Court Order On Osun LGs’ Fund

By Ismaeel Uthman

A member of the Federal House of Representatives, Hon Ajibola Famurewa has described as inhuman, the move by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to ground local government administration through the instituted ex-parte motion at a Federal High Court in Abuja.

Ajibola who is representing Ilesa-East, Ilesa-West, Atakumosa-East and Atakumosa-West in the State of Osun said it is an act of wickedness and brutality against the masses for the PDP chieftains to aim at shutting down governance at local government levels.

The lawmaker in an interview with newsmen on Monday said: “All over the world, local government is the closest to the down trodden and the rural dwellers.

“That is why the dynamic style of governance of Ogbeni Aregbesola has taken giant strides to affect local government positively in the last seven years. But it is very unfortunate that the opposition party, PDP, in her usual retrogressive approach is designing famine, scarcity and artificial recession in the face of dwindling economic challenges.

“The PDP has never meant well for the people; they are jealous of Aregebsola’s numerous achievements. All their antics are to impoverish the people and turn them into beggars and this will not stand.”

Famurewa added: “Local governments in the State of Osun have kept pace with developmental policies in delivering the dividends of democracy, but have continued to struggle to make ends meet financially, as they cannot survive outside the FAAC disbursement as the case is in Lagos.

Jonathan, Do Yourself A Favour: Keep Quiet!

By Akin Fadeyi

Each time we mouth the cliche “our heroes past”, I wonder if we dig enough into the enormity of sacrifices made and how some of those heroes moved against established norms of debauchery for which they paid dearly – the supreme price.

Each time I introspect on the events of the 1970s, I shudder at the brutal murder of General Murtala Ramat Mohammed.

Dr. Yusuf Bala Usman, a historian of repute, in his seminal 1979 book For The Liberation of Nigeria had this to say: “Muritala was casual about his security”. “He distanced himself from imperial grandeur and did not move into the official residence of the Head of State in Dodan Barracks”.

But the one that piqued me most is premised on my discovery that Murtala “came to understand the essential features of Nigerian society especially the public institutions, and acted on this understanding to change them and make them serve the common people”.

Muritala thus constructed a model of contemporary Nigeria and mustered the courage to attempt to change it. General Mohammed established a link between the accumulation of wealth and public service. He was murdered while attempting to break that linkage, having realised that “abuse of public office was central to the chaos, indiscipline, confusion and whole underdevelopment of Nigeria”.

Simply put, AN ATTEMPT TO FIGHT CORRUPTION KILLED MURTALA MOHAMMED.

Muritala wasn’t perfect. He had his issues, ranging from hot temper to risk taking in a bizarrely daring manner. He was tough and described as erratic. But seriously, it is only a positively crazy man that can rule Nigeria. For this I’m at home with these weaknesses, and they cannot blight my admiration of him as a genuine Hero.

Fast forward to our era. I can’t help being bemused each time I hear Goodluck Jonathan say no Nigerian president can match his achievements. Then I’ll check what time of the day it is and wonder if it’s a weed smoking time. What achievements? Achievement of soiled hands? Achievement of looking the other way while the treasury was being looted? Achievement of alleged exploitation of Nigeria’s dire security situation to “clean out” the arms deal budget? There’s no other definition for blood money!

Jonathan is one peculiarly fortunate individual who sprang from obscurity and poverty and leapt into the rare ascendancy of a most coveted office. Despite being a minority, he beat the odds and became president. (Whatever “minority” means in a supposed state with equality).

One would therefore have expected him to practically “kill” himself in pursuit of a well-designed ambitious growth agenda, raise the quality of life of the people, confront corruption, and etch his name in gold. I dare say, he would have won his reelection without rigour. Instead, today, he has not just been sent out office, he’s struggling in defence of a very dark impression that he allegedly helped himself to some of Nigeria’s cookie jars.

Worse still, it’s obvious he fell for the sidekick tricks of his “domestic appendage”, a civil servant who today is shamefully laying claim to multi million dollars without answering the germane question of what manner of business brought such “blessings”.

So why is this man always throwing himself into space to defend such an administration full of heaving and sighing?

If you’re good, you’re good and your work will speak for you. The only thing speaking for the past administration are eye popping tales of unprecedented sleaze. Changing this narrative is a tall order.

Because of the circumstances surrounding our ethnic sensibilities, GEJ is already “granted immunity”. He therefore ought to maintain a stoic silence to earn some respect, not throwing himself in the ring every time to advertise a continuum of sheer chicanery.

GEJ put Nigeria in a quandary. And when the various chapters of the story of “our heroes past” are being written, to deserve a place at all, he will require unheard-of historical benevolence.

Akin Fadeyi is the Convener of the Corruption Not In My Country Project.

PDP’s Money-For-Votes Convention Questions Plan To Reclaim Power In 2019

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP national convention on Saturday has been described as height of corruption that can happen in any party politics, the All Progressives Congress has said in a statement.

 

The APC likened the opposition party to the leopard, which, it says, cannot change its spots, saying it would be counterproductive to have PDP back in power while the party failed to conduct an ordinary convention.

 

APC’s National Publicity Secretary, Bolaji Abdullahi said: “With rrevelations of how money-for-votes and systematic rigging was brazenly perpetuated during the National Convention of the Peoples Democratic Party, the All Progressives Congress is mindful of the popular axiom, ‘A leopard cannot change its spot.’”

 

The APC said the “abnormalities” that trailed the PDP National Convention have further exposed the PDP as “a party that is not ready or willing to change.”

 

“Indeed, the PDP has, once again, displayed itself to the generality of Nigerians that it is a party with corruption deeply rooted in its DNA.

 

“Again, it is tragic that the PDP which used to pride itself as the biggest political party in Africa has now been reduced to a regional party.

 

“By frustrating (its) South West chairmanship candidates, it is unfortunate that the PDP has decided to punish the South West for not voting for the party in 2015.

 

“We urge members of the PDP that can pass the integrity test to join the APC so that we can, together, bring about the much-needed change the country deserves”. (NAN)

PDP Can’t Continue With ‘Imposition Of Candidates’ — David Mark

A former Senate President, David Mark, has called for a peaceful national convention on Saturday of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.

Mr. Mark urged the delegates to right the wrongs of the party’s past by allowing the will of the people to prevail at the elective gathering.

In a message to the delegates, the senator admonished “true faithful of the PDP to try and restore the dignity of the party, urging them to shun ills such as imposition of candidates and impunity he said ruined the chances of the party in the previous elections.

“We have seen what the imposition of candidates caused us in the past. We cannot travel the same route anymore.

“I am sure we have learnt some useful lessons from our electoral misfortune in 2015. We now have the opportunity to right the wrongs of the past by allowing the will of the people to prevail at the convention,” he said.

While expressing confidence in the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa-led National Convention Committee to do a good job and return the PDP to the people, Mr. Mark enjoined party faithful to adhere to the rules of the game in order to guarantee a smooth convention “because only the rule of law and adherence to the principle of Democracy endures.”

Advising contestants for the various party offices to accept the outcome of the elections in the interest of all, he said: “Win or lose, we are still one family. All we need to do is put our house in order in the interest of the party and its members because I can see a bright future.”

Mr. Mark also welcomed former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and others back to the party and urged all those who defected to return home because “PDP is still the only national party and a home for all.”

The PDP National Convention on Saturday will witness the emergence of a new chairman, deputy chairman among other party officers.

Gunmen Abduct Plateau PDP Chairman

As pressure mounts towards the National Convention of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), gunmen Wednesday evening abducted the Plateau State Chairman of the party, Chief Damishi Sango, along the Kafanchan-Abuja highway.

The former minister was said to have left Jos around 2pm for Abuja for the party’s National Convention when the abductors took him on the way.

It was gathered that the gunmen forced Sango’s car to stop and immediately whisked him away with his driver, abandoning the car on the road.

Since then, neither him nor his driver has been seen.

The state police command is yet to make any public statement on the abduction, but the state Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Mr. John Akans, confirmed the incident Thursday morning.

PDP Is Ready for Pro-People Governance -Olawale Rasheed

A governorship aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party in Osun state, Mallam Olawale Rasheed has affirmed that the party is ready for a pro-people government with a validated governance agenda.

In a statement issued on Tuesday and signed by the Chairman, Policy Committee of his Campaign Organization, Dr Arowolo Olusegun, the aspirant posited that the current leadership tussle within the party is “a temporary hiccup which in no way affects the policy and governance preparedness of the party once it secures the peoples’ mandate by September next year.

” We make bold to declare that the PDP is not only ready for governance but for pro-people leadership and programmes that will attend to the wishes and aspirations of our people. Our agenda is not just good governance but people-centered policies designed to restore the well being of the state.

“We are convinced that the goal of any responsive government is the welfare of the citizens. Our policies are thus tailored towards placing human development as major preoccupation especially as the current administration has relegated same to the backwater of governance.PDP governance mantra is power and greatest good to the public.

“We have sustainable alternative programmes and policies in education,health,youth development,infrastructure ,the real sector as well an action plan to rid the state of huge debt within a two term tenure. Our policy focus is about community and societal prosperity through pro-people programmes”,the statement noted.

The governorship aspirant posited further that the party’s policy plan will address issues such as accessibility and affordability of higher education,youth employment and employability crisis,sustainable workers’ welfare and diaspora support and integration,adding that “a validated local content plan on infrastructure development is already concluded.

“Most importantly ,we will embark on large scale open government initiatives.We will in practical terms embrace open budget,access to information,open procurement and strict transparency and accountability in government finance. In short,a PDP government will return governance to the people”,the statement concluded.

PDP Governors Will Not Impose National Chair – Okowa

The Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP ) National Elective Convention Committee, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, on Tuesday dismissed reports that governors of the PDP have attempted to impose a national chairman on the party.

The Delta State governor said delegates for the convention from most states are known, stressing the party will ensure it gives a level playing field to all aspirants and ensure a hitch-free convention

He also expressed optimism that the party would be more united, following its upcoming convention on December 9 and emerge a much stronger force for the 2019 presidential election.

Governor Okowa stated these on Channels Television’s programme “Politics Today.”

He said: “I believe that the National caretaker committee of the party is doing a lot to ensure that things are put in place, as for the national planning committee that I lead, we were inaugurated this afternoon and we have held our inaugural meeting. We do know that in any elective convention, all kinds of views do come into play but ours as a planning committee is to ensure that we deliver a convention that is credible and in which all the processes are such that will be blameless. We will deliver a free, fair and transparent primary; that is our aim.

“For the reconciliatory process, we’ll be looking up to the party leadership to deal with that. But the major task is for us to deliver a convention that is truly credible and all can attest to. That will enable us to heal faster, and unify faster after the convention.”

Reacting to reports that the chairman of the electoral panel, who is also the former governor of Benue State, had declared support for a candidate, he said: “I’m not aware that he has declared support for any particular candidate but even if he has any sentiments for anyone, he will not be in a position at all, on the convention day to do anything that is unjust. We are going to adopt the open secret ballot system of voting.

“We have also put in place a credible team to ensure reconciliation of party members who may feel aggrieved going forward after the convention,” he added.

On the defection of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Governor Okowa said there is strength in numbers and that the party would always welcome as many persons as possible.

“We believe that as many persons that come into the PDP is good for us because it would help to strengthen the party because politics is one that is inclusive – the more persons you get into the party, the greater the strength of the party. So we will welcome him into the party just as we will look forward to many more persons who will want to come over to join us as a family. It will be a welcome idea because it will help to strengthen us going into `2019,” he concluded.