Police arrest amputee, three others for supposedly impersonating Tinubu, Saraki.

Detectives attached to the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Intelligence Response Team (IRT) have arrested four persons for allegedly impersonating the Chief of Staff to the President, Mallam Abba Kyari and the National Security Adviser (NSA), Gen. Ali Monguno.

The suspects, identified as High Chief Ovie Ogogo, 47; Abdulazeez Eragbe, 40; Babatunde Oshamoto 49; and Samuel Idah, on different occasions had also impersonated the Minister of Petroleum, Minister of Finance, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, as well as the Senate President, Bukola Saraki.

Force Police Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Chief Superintendent of Police (CSP) Moshood Jimoh, who confirmed the arrest, said the suspects are members of a notorious syndicate that specializes in impersonating prominent citizens.

He said their arrest is sequel to series of complaints, which the IGP Ibrahim Idris received from members of the public on the activities of the criminals. He said based on the strength of the complaints, the IGP directed Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Abba Kyari, to fish out members of the gang.

“After three days of unrelenting follow-up and intelligence, they were tracked down to a luxury hotel in Kaduna and arrested there. The suspects at different fora posed as Chief of Staff to President, NSA, Minister of Petroleum, Minister of Finance, Chief Bola Tinubu, and Senate president.”

The police spokesman said investigation revealed that Samuel Idah is the one who supplies the gang with SIM cards allegedly registered in the names of prominent Nigerians.
Fourteen different phones with SIM cards registered in the names of top government officials and a diary containing phone numbers of several top government officials and popular Nigerians were recovered from the suspects.

They further confessed to have made over N20 million from their criminal activities within the last six months, and mentioned one Prince Maurice based in United Kingdom as their gang leader.

“They admitted posing as the Secretary to the Federal Government, Mr. Babachir David to swindle one Nnamdi Udo of N4 million.” The Force PRO disclosed the said Nnamdi was allegedly looking for a federal appointment.

 

Source: The Guardian

I’ll not contest against Buhari in 2019 – Tinubu

Former Lagos governor, Ahmed Tinubu, has ruled out the possibility of contesting against President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019.

Mr. Buhari, who is on extended sick leave, has not said he will seek a second term.

But Mr. Tinubu, a senior leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress, and one of the party’s strongest backers, said he would never contest against the president, or support anyone who does, should he decide to seek re-election.

Mr. Tinubu was reacting to a ThisDay report suggesting he was preparing for a presidential run, and was set to dump a purported alliance with the main opposition, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

A statement signed by Tunde Rahman, for the Tinubu Media Office on Tuesday, said the report was a “fantasy” seeking to place Mr. Tinubu at odds with President Buhari.

“Writing such a baseless report is a very foul and wrong thing to do,” the statement said.

“As long as that patriotic and committed man named Muhammadu Buhari holds and seeks to hold the mantle as our president, then Asiwaju Tinubu stands behind him in unwavering support and confidence,” the statement said.

Read Mr. Tinubu’s full statement below:

The front page story of the February 28 THISDAY newspaper alleging that Bola Tinubu is actively planning a presidential run is an example of bad fiction masquerading as professional journalism. The story is a manufactured tale weaved by its authors to try to create division where there is none. Those who wrote this fantasy seek to place Mr. Tinubu at odds with President Buhari. Writing such a baseless report is a very foul and wrong thing to do.

The story carried the headline “Tinubu Prepares for Presidential Run, Dumps PDP, Mega Party Alliance”. The headline is remarkable in the fact that every bit of it is utterly wrong.

First, Asiwaju Tinubu is not gearing up for a presidential run. So there will not be any doubt about this core matter, we shall state Tinubu’s position clearly and unequivocally so that even THISDAY reporters cannot misinterpret his position. As long as that patriotic and committed man named Muhammadu Buhari holds and seeks to hold the mantle as our president, then Asiwaju Tinubu stands behind him in unwavering support and confidence. Asiwaju Tinubu remains faithful to the mission of progressive reform and change that President Buhari, he and the All Progressives Congress (APC) have started. Tinubu was instrumental in the formation and success of the APC. His toil and efforts helped establish this government. He is not one to tear down something he laboured so dutifully to build.

Instead of trying to convey the truth, the THISDAY report opted to gain false sensation by completely mocking the tenor of the brief banter Asiwaju Tinubu had with journalists at the inauguration of Ondo State Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu. When asked about future political office, Asiwaju said he could not discount that possibility if the nation called upon him for such service, provided, he emphasized, that all political conditions were appropriate; particularly the office in question would have to be vacant, even if it’s local government chairmanship. In our political lexicon, this means the office is not held by a member of the APC in good standing. We all know this.

Moreover, if you really listen to his words, Asiwaju did not mention any office or any time-frame. The conditions he mentioned may not become ripe for years to come and they might not pertain to the presidency. In effect, all Asiwaju said was the position that any political figure would hold.

As a politician, he cannot preclude the possibility of running for office in the future because no man knows what the future will hold. To translate this general statement of political reality into a tale that he is actively preparing for a 2019 presidential run is reckless in the extreme. For that newspaper reporters to have engaged in this great leap of counterfeit logic means they purposefully bowed to the pressure to create false headlines instead of following the ethics of their craft to follow the truth even if the truth is more pedestrian and less volatile than what the reporters would have liked to hear. They have turned themselves into newsmakers instead of remaining true to their calling of being neutral conveyors of events.

Asiwaju Tinubu has not held any planning meetings for any such presidential campaign and is not contemplating any such meetings. He has no present list of possible running mates because he has no present intention of running.

The headline also libels Asiwaju by asserting he was going to join the PDP. This is as shameless as a lie can be. Asiwaju is acknowledged to be the intellectual father and the driving force behind the APC. It makes no sense that he would abandon the party that he worked hard to build in order to enter the dilapidated building the PDP has become. Asiwaju worked for over 16 years to break the PDP yoke on the nation. After breaking that yoke, it is not in his nature to voluntarily place it back on our necks. Anyone who has followed his career, even his staunchest critics, knows Asiwaju for his partisan consistency. He is not a party hopper. He is loyal and sticks with the party to which he belongs. After fighting for so many years to elevate his party to the position of national leadership, he would not give that away in order to join with those who blame him for their currently bleak political circumstance.

We understand all too well the genesis of this false news report. For their own reasons, THISDAY has joined with those who seek to put Asiwaju Tinubu at odds with our President.

This scam will fail. Asiwaju supports and stands behind President Buhari. He wishes the president well and that he returns soon. Whether the president is here or away, he has the full loyalty of Asiwaju Tinubu. President Buhari can rest assured on this point: Asiwaju Tinubu will never contest against him nor will he support anyone who does.

 

Source: Premium Times

To say I didn’t visit Buhari is simply crazy – Tinubu

Bola Tinubu, national leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC), says it is crazy for anyone to insinuate that he did not visit President Muhammadu Buhari in London, United Kingdom.

The former Lagos state governor had last week visited the President in the company of Bisi Akande, chairman, APC board of trustees.

Reacting to reports that he didn’t travel to London, Tinubu said no one in their right senses would peddle such falseness when there were pictures to prove that he visited Buhari.

A statement was released to this effect by his media aide, Tunde Rahman.

Tinubu was quoted as saying that, “The report about the so-called denial of the visit is the handiwork of mischief- makers. I felt we should not dignify that with a response.

“That report beggars belief. Asiwaju Tinubu and Baba Akande were in London. The reason they travelled to the United Kingdom was to see President Buhari.

“And they visited him last Thursday and held discussions with him at the Abuja House in London. After the visit, the President, as a mark of respect, saw off his guests to the door.

“Pictures were taken during and after the visit and released to the media by the Presidency. These pictures were international headlines. How can anybody in his or her right senses be saying there was no such visit? It’s simply crazy! I can’t just get it.”

Source: pulse.ng

 

ONGOING: Tinubu, Akande, others in Ibadan as APC South West stakeholders meet

Stakeholders of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), in the South West geo-political zone are currently meeting in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital.

Among those who beat the time to arrive early at the meeting billed to take place at 1pm include former interim National Chairman of the party and former governor of Osun state, Chief Bisi Akande; Minister for Information and Culture Alhaji Lai Muhammed and his Finance counterpart, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun.

Others include the National Leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, former Governor of Ogun state Chief Olusegun Osoba, former Governor of Osun state, Chief Olagunsoye Oyinlola and Lagos State governor, Mr. Akinwumi Ambode who arrived about 12.50 pm.

Also attending the meeting include Senate Chief Whip, Senator Olusola Adeyeye; Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila.

The Minister of Communications, Barrister Adebayo Shittu. Governor Ibikunle Amosun, and Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun state have all arrived the venue of the meeting.

The purpose of the meeting is yet to be revealed.

Atiku Will Be Forced Out Of APC, Tinubu May Be Poisoned – Prophet

The head of the Divine Hand of God Prophetic Ministries International, Prophet Emmanuel Omale, has given series of revelations concerning the new year saying that God told him that former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, will “be forced out of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC)”, even as he added that the party’s National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, “may be poisoned.” even as he called for fervent prayers.

Reading out 2017 prophecies and vision God showed him in a statement on Sunday in Abuja, Prophet Omale, also said that if “President Muhammadu Buhari chooses the Mandela option, (that is, not to contest again in 2019), a very powerful man will be anointed by him from North West to rule after him.” 

He also revealed that if fervent prayers were not said, the Ekiti State governor Ayodele Fayose “may face impeachment.”

He said God told him that the proposed Mega Party will not come to reality in 2017 added that aside two People Democratic Party (PDP) governors “cross carpeting to APC,” another “South-South  strong man who rose out of the walls will join the ruling party.”

On corruption, Prophet Omale said 2017 will witness the anti-corruption hammer landing on three serving ministers in President Buhari’s cabinet.

On economy, the man of God said Dollar will move from last year prediction of $350 to $570, even predicted that “No oil in commercial quantity will be found in the North, NNPC should seek the Divine Hand of God to know where to find oil in the North.

“I see peace in Niger Delta, but federal government should make peace with former President Jonathan and his family to sustain that peace.”

While calling on the country to “pray against a plane crash in early 2017”, he also warned that prayer should be said “against Boko Haram efforts to create mayhem in Abuja: residents of Gwagwalada should be vigilant.

January 27th keep ringing bells  in my head, let us pray for ourselves, for our country, we deserve political stability to enable economic prosperity. Let us pray! There will be no shedding of blood.

“Let us pray for the health of a former President to avert  bereavement.

“I see fire outbreak in Lagos and Abuja markets.

“I see changes in INEC Leadership

“Taraba should pray to avert a very severe Ethno-religious crisis.

“A very important Emir should pray against bereavement.

“Nigeria should pray to avert deadly inter tribal clash in Lagos state.

“A former governor should pray against sudden death.

“I see massive oil spillage around Kogi that will lead to seven days fire.

“Three banks will collapse.

“A service chief of one of the armed forces  will be dropped.”

On international level, the prophet said he “foresee a massive typhoon in Thailand that may be worse than the last tsunami.

“The new Ghana President-elect should pray against liver and internal organ sickness after inauguration.

“Yahaya Jammeh will hand over to President-elect Barrow.

“Robert Mugabe may not survive 2017.

“Jacob Zuma may still be in trouble, adding that “big tragedy will happen in China.”

“The English Queen should pray against life threatening health challenges.

On sports, he said a “famous Nigerian Athlete should pray against injury that may end his career.”

The Prophet however admonished that some of these danger can be averted if serious prayers are done.

He also encouraged people to be fervent in prayers and to have strong faith in God saying “with God all things are possible.”

Buhari: Why Tinubu is better as an ally than opponent – Azuka Onwuka

There must be something Asiwaju Bola Tinubu knows or does that is beyond other politicians; for he is the only politician since 1999 that sponsors people into political offices and they remain faithful and loyal to him

In the three zones of the North as well as in the South-East and South-South, sometimes the relationship between a political godfather and a godson does not even last until the inauguration before turning sour. But in Tinubu’s case, no matter the attacks the public may heap on him about his political and financial stranglehold on his godsons’ tenures, they still remain loyal to him and maintain sealed lips. Whatever the reason for his ability to maintain a firm control over his protégés, Tinubu deserves commendation.

For long, there have been rumours over a frosty relationship between him and President Muhammadu Buhari. It is widely acknowledged that Buhari’s candidacy in the 2015 election got a big boost due to Tinubu’s support and media packaging. Buhari was effectively packaged as an angel with no blemish but with the Midas’ touch to cleanse Nigeria and catapult her into the First World in the twinkling of an eye.

The rumours about the rift between Buhari and Tinubu have refused to fizzle out despite all efforts made to deny them.

It was rumoured that Buhari made key political appointments, especially from the South-West, without any recourse to Tinubu, who is the godfather of the All Progressives Congress in the South-West as well as the National Leader of the APC. Then, when Prof John Paden presented Buhari-endorsed biography in October, a controversy arose from it. Rather than the public being concerned about the messages from the book, what occupied the attention of the public was the claim by the author that Vice President Yemi Osinbajo was not nominated as Buhari’s running mate by Tinubu, but was chosen by Buhari in spite of Tinubu’s opposition to it.

There was also the rumour and gloating about the demystification of Tinubu over the governorship election in Ondo State. It was alleged that Tinubu supported Mr Olusegun Abraham in the APC primary but Mr Rotimi Akeredolu, supported by Buhari and the National Chairman of the APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, won the primary and went ahead to win the election on November 26, 2016. The result of the APC primary in Ondo State led to an exchange of words between Tinubu and Odigie-Oyegun, which further confirmed the suspicion of a rift between the APC leadership and Tinubu. The eventual victory of Akeredolu in the election was seen as the defeat of Tinubu in the APC politics in the South-West, where it was believed hitherto that any candidate backed by Tinubu in any APC election would win.

It was this seeming exclusion of Tinubu and others who worked for the emergence of the Buhari presidency that made the wife of the President, Mrs Aisha Buhari, to break protocol by granting an interview with the BBC in October in which she lamented that her husband had been hijacked by some people who did not work for his electoral victory.

These actions, seen as acts to whittle down the powers of Tinubu, made some of his loyalists recently to organise some activities in the South-West, especially in Lagos, with the theme: I Stand with Tinubu. They held a walk and a rally to show support for Tinubu.

Some opponents of Tinubu have said that his sidelining by Buhari serves him right, for he was warned about the consequences of working for a Buhari presidency. But some of his opponents have also kept their political differences aside and spoken against the sidelining of Tinubu, seeing it as a disservice to the South-West rather than to Tinubu as an individual. On his own part, Tinubu has publicly carried on as if all is well, insisting that he will not leave the APC, a party he was instrumental to building.

However, the part that is surprising is from the Buhari’s angle. Even though he has not said anything to confirm that he is intentionally sidelining Tinubu, his actions point to an affirmation. It is obvious that no powerful president would want to have anybody lord things over him, but there is no way a Tinubu can lord things over President Buhari. The office of the Nigerian President is too powerful for such to happen, unless the President willingly allows that.

What does Buhari lose by having more friends than foes around him? Nothing. The North was the core support base of Buhari during the 2015 election. The South-West was the core media base. Even though the votes of the South-West were split between the APC and the PDP, more went for the APC than the PDP. But most importantly, the media support for the APC from the South-West burnished Buhari’s image before the election and has helped to keep Buhari presidency afloat since May 29, 2015.

As a powerful president (with INEC under his control) and a retired general, Buhari can do without Tinubu and get his wish willy-nilly during the 2019 election, either as a candidate or a President who wishes to install his preferred as his successor. If protesters fill the streets in response to a poorly conducted election, he can release the soldiers on them. But what is the essence of taking a more tortuous route when there is a smoother and shorter route?

The South-East and South-South were not favourably disposed to the presidency of Buhari.  Since assuming office, he has done little through his actions and utterances to win their hearts. The South-West has been his strong ally. Rather than worm his way deeper into the hearts of the South-West, Buhari seems to be more concerned about creating some enemies there.

Whatever some people may say, Tinubu is the political leader of the South-West. Unlike other zones which have not had any central political leader since the exit of the first generation politicians, the South-West voters listen to the voice and direction of Tinubu. The reason the South-West still supports Buhari is because Tinubu is still with the APC and has not withdrawn his support.

If Buhari counts on getting positive electoral results through unorthodox means, he may not need Tinubu by his side. But if he needs to get positive electoral results via votes in a free and fair election, he needs Tinubu as an ally.

Buhari needs to start playing politics the way it should be played by maintaining his friends and reaching out to his opponents, so as to win them over. This does not mean sharing money or food to people. It means taking different steps to make those who voted for him to feel proud that they voted for him and to make those who did not vote for him to vow to vote him if he presents himself again. It means inclusive governance: seeing Nigeria as one people with no first-class and second-class citizens. It also means visionary, purposeful people-centred governance.

An astute politician does not need to burn his or her bridges. A savvy politician does not need to ignite many fires around him, which will make him always quenching fires with no time for governance. A seasoned politician never tells a man directly or indirectly: “You can’t do anything to me.” It is completely unnecessary.

Buhari should change his brand of politics to achieve more results and have a happier following.

Arrest Obasanjo, IBB, Tinubu, ex-ASUU President advises

A former President of the Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, Humphrey Asobie, on Thursday advised the anti-corruption agencies to be holistic and go for the ‘big fishes’ in the fight against corruption.

Mr. Asobie, who was the chairman of the board of the Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative, NEITI, made this call while speaking as the guest speaker at the International Anti-Corruption Day (IACD) 2016 roundtable discussion hosted by the United States Embassy.

The discussion had the theme “Corruption: an impediment to the sustainable development goals”.

Mr. Asobie suggested the use of “shock therapy” and “bing bang strategy” in the fight against corruption, stressing that the most important personalities should be taken in.

“Pick OBJ, IBB, (Rotimi) Amaechi, (Bola) Tinubu, Abdulsalami (Abubakar) and Raji (Fashola). They will all think you are mad when you say it,” the professor of Political Science at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, said.

OBJ is the popular name for former President Olusegun Obasanjo while IBB refers to former military ruler, Ibrahim Babangida. Like others mentioned by the don, the former Nigerian leaders have been accused of corruption while in office.

“Corruption is systemic in Nigeria; it’s not just a few certain individuals. It also includes the anti-corruption agencies, they have a problem of corruption.

“It has reached a stage where we are confused as to what is wrong and right, you start to wonder whether it has affected their intellect.

“After speaking at an event in 2013, the then Governor of Anambra State Mr. Peter Obi was provoked, he came to me and said, “I was one of your student but I’ve avoided you because you are at the left and am on the right. All of us are corrupt,” Mr. Asobie said.

In his welcome remark, the U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission, David Young, said the U.S. government is committed to work with Nigeria in fighting corruption and recovering stolen funds.

Sam Saba, the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Bureau, CCB, while speaking said that the major problem the Bureau is facing in the fight against corruption is poor funding.

“The essential thing here is funding, we don’t receive allocation on time and when we do it comes in halves.

“Some countries receive budget of five years but since Obasanjo’s regime, we only receive half and it’s a problem”, Mr. Saba said.

While speaking to journalists, human rights lawyer, Femi Falana, who was also at the event, urged the U.S., Switzerland and other foreign countries who are in possession of stolen funds from Nigeria to release them immediately.

“Nigeria has $458 million stashed away in the U.S., we have filed a suit in Jersey, where the money was kept but the U.S. government is claiming the money should be paid to them so as to help us manage them.

“Similarly, we have $321 million in Switzerland. The Swiss government is saying they won’t release it unless they are allowed to supervise its use. Our government should be prepared to adapt an aggressive ruling to these corrupt foreign agencies. The press should join in this campaign. We should not beg for our money, we should fight for it,” Mr. Falana said.

The 2016 International Anti-Corruption Day marks the 13th anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Convention against Corruption.

To commemorate the event, the U.S. Embassy hosted a roundtable discussion with various stakeholders.

The panel was moderated by Chidi Odinkalu, former chairman of the National Human Rights Commission.

PDP refutes reports of alliance talks with APC National Leader Bola Tinubu

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Board of Trustees (BoT) has dismissed media reports of alliance talks with the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and others.

The Chairman of the board, Senator Walid Jibrin said such reports by the Ahmed Makarfi camp of the PDP were unfounded.

The reports also mentioned former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso and Senator Aliyu Wamakko as part of the talks.

Jibrin said: “I salute Tinubu’s courage for coming out to speak frankly about his position regarding this unfounded rumour and for setting the record straight.

“In Tinubu’s reaction denouncing the report, he criticised the PDP and I can’t understand why anybody would think that we are going to form a new party with somebody who is condemning us.

“The PDP is a golden name, a party formed by respectable and dignified Nigerians like Alex Ekwueme, Jerry Gana, Solomon Lar, Adamu Ciroma, Aminu Wali, Sule Lamido and many others.”

He commended the efforts by the Senator Ike Ekweremadu committee and another led by Prof. Jerry Gana in finding solution to the conflicts within the PDP.

The party described the withdrawal of Governor Wike’s security aides as unconstitutional and asked that the decision be reversed immediately.

“Nigerians will recall that Governor Wike alerted to the plots of enemies to murder him. A serious indication was the withdrawal of more than 70 per cent of security personnel detailed to the Rivers State Government House, by the state Commissioner of Police, Mr. Folusho Adebanjo, working on the orders of the Federal Government.

“Wike has written two letters to the Inspector General of Police (IGP) reporting this obvious breach of his constitutional rights which has received no response. Instead, the Chief Security Officer, who happens to be the governor’s number one line of defence was withdrawn in the reply from the IGP,” the party stated.

I will remain in APC – Tinubu

A National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, has declared that he will not abandon the party.

The former Lagos Governor has come under intense attack, following his call that the National Chairman of the party, John Oyegun, resigns from his position over alleged irregularities during the party’s primary election in Ondo State that produced the State governor-elect, Rotimi Akeredolu.

Following the attack, there has been insinuation in some quarters that the elder statesman may dump the APC.

Reports recently had it that he and former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, were planning to float another political party ahead of 2019.

But the elder statesman who took to his twitter handle @AsiwajuTinubu wrote: “This is a party I laboured with others to build. We would not abandon it for another. Millions of Nigerians who voted are watching and praying.

“APC, is for the people and the national purpose is bigger and more important than any individual desire.

“I have devoted my political life to achieve what has been achieved. My heart is too much of the people and my mind too fixed on establishing.

“Achievements will be had and replicated. Through it all, I, Asiwaju will remain true to the progressive ideals that fuelled the creation of APC.

“In our journey to national betterment, plans and policies will be made, then amended. Mistakes will occur and then corrected.”

Tinubu denies plotting Atiku, PDP mega-party alliance

Former Lagos State Governor, Bola Tinubu, has denied plotting to leave the ruling All Progressives Congress for a new party.

Mr. Tinubu played pivotal role in the formation of the APC and the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari.

But his political clout has been increasingly curtailed as forces within the party realign ahead of the 2019 election.

Mr. Tinubu openly demanded the resignation of the party’s chairman, John Oyegun, after his candidate for the Ondo State governorship election lost to a candidate supported by Mr. Oyegun and President Buhari.

Reacting to a report by Punch on Sunday, Mr. Tinubu said on Monday he was not quitting the party as claimed by the newspaper.

He denied that he was partnering with former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, also an APC chieftain, and the Ahmed Markafi faction of Peoples Democratic Party, to form a mega party.

“This is a party I labored with others to build,” said Mr. Tinubu said on Twitter via his handle @AsiwajuTinubu. “We would not abandon it for another. Millions of Nigerians who voted are watching and praying.”

Mr. Tinubu has faced what appears to be an increasingly hostile political climate in the ruling party.

Last week, the winner of the Ondo polls, Rotimi Akeredolu, dismissed him as not more than a state level APC leader. He was explaining his refusal to include Mr. Tinubu’s name in his victory speech.

Mr. Tinubu did not lose only in Ondo State. Long before the election that held two weeks ago, his candidate for the Kogi governorship election, James Faleke, lost out too, as did those for the leadership positions of the National Assembly.

But despite his apparent frustration in the party, one of Mr. Tinubu’s loyalists, Adesoji Akanbi, a Senator representing Oyo South, told PREMIUM TIMES “Asiwaju will not leave APC which he built; he is a veteran fighter and he is going to fight from within.”

In his tweets Monday, the former Lagos governor said he would not “engage in destructive pettiness.”

“In our Journey to national betterment, plans and policies will be made, then amended. Mistakes will occur and then corrected,” he said.

“Achievements will be had and replicated. Through it all, I, Asiwaju will remain true to the progressive ideals that fueled the creation of APC.

“I have devoted my political life to achieve what has been achieved. My heart is too much of the people and my mind too fixed on establishing positive historic legacy… rather than engage in destructive pettiness.

“This government, APC, is for the betterment of the people and the national purpose is bigger and more important than any individual’s desires.”

Atiku, Tinubu, Makarfi Converge Over Formation Of New Mega-Party

Barring any last-minute change of plans, the proposed mega opposition party in the country will be formed before the end of March, 2017, SUNDAY PUNCH has learnt.

It was gathered that the Ahmed Makarfi faction of the Peoples Democratic Party and aggrieved chieftains of the All Progressives Congress had intensified efforts aimed at forming the party since the result of the Ondo State election was released.

Findings showed that besides the plan to form a new mega party, those involved in the talks were also considering adopting any of the existing political parties as their platform.

It was gathered that those who were participating in the talks included former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar and a national leader of the APC,  Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

A PDP chieftain, who confided in Sunday PUNCH on Saturday, said with what happened in Ondo,  it had become obvious that the Muhammadu Buhari administration was ready to relinquish power despite the fact that it had no solution to the economic recession in  the country.

The source said, “The mega party is still at a formative stage but I can tell you we are making steady progress.

“With what happened in Ondo, you will agree with me that the cabal around the President, including a governor from the North-Central, and some ministers, has hijacked the party structure.

“They have shown more than once that they want to frustrate Tinubu and Atiku out of the APC.  These are tested politicians, who have no plans of retiring any time soon.

“The picture will become clearer before the end of the first quarter of next year (March 2017) because some of our people believe that if we come out now, the cabal will use executive powers to frustrate us.  Others feel it is better to let Nigerians know but our leaders are meeting at home and abroad. We are waiting for them.”

Investigations showed that those involved in the talks were aware of the Federal Government’s plot to thwart the groups’ plan to form a new mega party, informing the plan of the groups to adopt any of the existing parties and uplift it to a mega status.

A PDP chieftain, who confided in Saturday PUNCH, said, “We are working on the plan to form a mega party, but we may adopt any of the existing parties, if the government thwarts our efforts.”

It was also gathered that the Makarfi faction planned to strengthen its electoral strength in the South-East by entrenching rotational presidency in the constitution of the new party.

A top member of the party, who spoke to SUNDAY PUNCH on condition of anonymity, said the group was aware of the plans by the  Buhari administration to make an inroad into the South-East in 2019.

The PDP chieftain added, “The South-East and South-South are areas of our strength. We have noticed that the Presidency has been receiving Igbo leaders at the Aso Rock. This is part of the bid to win the zone in 2019.

“We may have to make some concessions to the South-East to truly show that we care for the zone. These will include rotational presidency.”

For Tinubu, it was also gathered that the group was seriously considering the offer of the Makarfi faction to form a mega party.

It was learnt that the Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, had been reaching out to the Tinubu group on behalf of the faction.

A member of the Tinubu group, who confided in SUNDAY PUNCH, stated, “We do not want to make the mistake we made with Buhari by rushing to support him. We are considering the offer from the PDP faction.”

Besides Tinubu and Atiku, other prominent politicians being targeted by the Makarfi faction include a former Governor of Kano State, Senator Rabiu Kwankanso; the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, and an ex-governor of Sokoto State, Senator Aliyu Wamakko.

It was gathered that the Makarfi faction was aware of the desperate move of the President to woo Saraki.

This, it was learnt, was one of the reasons for the Senate President’s recent frequent visits to the President.

“We have not given up on Saraki. He is one of us and we believe he is going to be part of the mega party we will form,” a PDP chieftain stated.

One of our correspondents learnt that the Federal Government had dropped the Senate Order forgery suit against Saraki in order to ensure his loyalty to Buhari.

It was also believed that the Senate President was instrumental to the emergence of former sports minister, Bolaji Abdullahi, as the National Publicity Secretary of the ruling party.

“Even the trial of the Senate President at the Code of Conduct Tribunal may crumble or never be concluded. It’s all part of the plan to ensure that Saraki does not join the new party to be formed,” a source told one of our correspondents on Saturday.

For Kwankanso, it was gathered that the former governor had almost been pushed out of the APC by his successor, Alhaji Abdullahi Ganduje.

“Kwankanso is going to be part of the new arrangement because for now, he is only a fringe member of the APC,” the PDP source added.

Efforts made to get the reaction of the Makarfi faction were unsuccessful as calls made to the telephone of the National Publicity Secretary of the Caretaker Committee of the PDP, Mr. Dayo Adeyeye, were not connected.

Adeyeye, a former minister of state for works, had, however, once denied that the inter-party committee, set up by Makarfi, was given a mandate to change the name of the PDP.

When one of our correspondents contacted the Special Adviser to Tinubu, Mr. Tunde Rahman, he said he was not aware of the plan to form a mega party.

He said, “I am not aware of that development. I am not aware at all.”

On his part, the media aide to former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, Paul Ibe, dismissed insinuations that his principal was considering dumping the APC.

He accused those he referred to as political jobbers and mischief makers of trying to drag the former Vice-President into their baseless conspiracy theory.

“The statement we issued as far back as 2015 on this vexatious speculation is as valid then as it is valid today.

“The same sets of mischief makers are at it again. The Turakin Adamawa has shown in his words and deeds that he is a committed member of the All Progressives Congress nothing has changed,” Ibe stated.

The statement, which was issued by the Atiku Media Office, described media reports linking Atiku to a new party, as “lies concocted by some mischief makers who were trying to cause disaffection between the former Vice-President and his party.

Political realignment is ongoing, says Timi Frank

But the suspended Deputy Publicity Secretary of the APC, Timi Frank, said, “I can tell you clearly; political re-alignments are going on and people will make their stand known very, very soon. That is all I can tell you for now.”

PDP crisis may delay party formation

It was, however, learnt on Saturday that the factionalisation of the PDP might  delay the formation of the mega party.

It was gathered that the two factions of the party, especially the Senator Ahmed Makarfi-led National Caretaker Committee, were waiting for the outcome of the ongoing factions legal battle to determine the authentic leadership of the former ruling party.

Already, the intra-party committee set up by the Makarfi’s PDP, was said to have met with some aggrieved members of the ruling party..

A member of the committee, who spoke with one of our correspondents on condition of anonymity, said some of the APC leaders the committee met had agreed to leave the ruling party.

He, however, said those who had agreed to defect from the APC, especially those who left the PDP, said they would not return to the former ruling party, but would be desirous of forming a new party with the PDP.

He said, “We have been meeting with politicians, our former members in the APC and those who were never members of the PDP.

“For strategic reasons, I don’t want to mention their names in order not to jeopardise our ongoing plan.

“Let me however say that majority of them are not willing to join our party. They are suggesting that we form a new party to accommodate all other interest groups. That’s where we are now.”

Asked if that condition would be considered, he said that would be determined after the ongoing case involving the Makarfi and the Ali Modu Sheriff factions was determined.

Impeccable sources said the leadership of the Makarfi faction of the PDP would determine whether to merge with another party if it wins the cases at the courts.

The Sheriff faction, however, accused the Makarfi-led group of working with the APC to destabilise the PDP.

It cited the defection of Senator Yele Omogunwa from the PDP to the APC, which it said was as a result of the ongoing talks between the Sheriff faction and those who defected from the PDP to the APC.

Sheriff’s deputy, Dr. Cairo Ojuogboh, told one of our correspondents that Nigerians should hold the other faction responsible if the party died.

He said, “I saw what Makarfi said in The PUNCH and I must say that the defection could be as a result of the talks they said they are having with those that defected from the PDP to the APC.

“They have told the world that those people would return the PDP. Is this a sign that they are coming?

“These people are killing the PDP and this is why we are in court, to retrieve the party from the grips of its enemies.”

Meanwhile, Senator Buruji Kashamu warned that the crisis rocking the party would linger for a long time.

He said the issue might become what he described as a circus show.

The Senator, representing Ogun East Senatorial District, said the final outcome of the leadership tussle would be determined by the apex court.

He said, “Let us not lose sight of the fact that the appellate court is yet to finally determine the issue of the national leadership crisis. Irrespective of what the High courts say, for or against Senator Ali Modu Sheriff or Senator Ahmed Makarfi, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court are still there to adjudicate on the issues, and it could become a circus show.

“Besides, anyone, who is unjustly punished, will not fold his hands and allow his rights to be trampled upon.

“He will do everything legally possible to fight for his rights. And this could result in a series of litigation and create more problems than they are meant to resolve.”

Buhari has high regard for Asiwaju Tinubu – Presidency

Here’s how Femi Adesina addressed the relationship between President Buhari and Asiwaju Tinubu:

Bola Tinubu’s loyalists are saying that after helping to install Buhari as President that he has been betrayed. What’s the position of things?

You are a journalist and a political watcher. You can say whether somebody installed another person. I am sure as a political watcher you know it. You know that getting to political office is usually a combination of factors. Each person has a role he plays and so, I don’t think anybody can come out to say, “I installed this person.” No, it is a wrong word. That person would then be playing God. Asiwaju Tinubu is a political force to reckon with. He played his own part in the emergence of President Buhari and that is why the President has high respect for him.

How would you assess the government you serve in, more than one and a half years in office?
Well, Nigeria is not where it was when he entered office. When you want to assess his government, assess it based on the promises he made.

You know the tripod promises of the All Progressives Congress (APC) of security, reviving the economy and fighting corruption. In terms of security the country, as heaven is as far from hell, that is where we are now, which is far from where we were on May 29, 2015.

We know that by 2015 the entire country was almost overrun and nobody was sure what would happen the next day, the next week, the next month. But we know where we are today that the insurgency is virtually defeated, completely under control. What we are passing through is a mopping up process and the worst we can see is over by the grace of God. So, in terms of securing the country, the President has kept to his promise.

Roads that had been closed for three years have reopened. Emirs and traditional rulers that had fled their palaces have returned and are using the same palaces. Gombe had not had NYSC orientation for two years. They had orientation in Gombe this year.

So, you just need to talk to the people in the North East and they would tell you that it is a new dawn.

They couldn’t farm for almost five seasons. They are back in their farms. Those who fled their villages are back into their villages. We know that there are still skirmishes here and there. There are cowardly suicide bombers here and there but it will be over.

So, the President has kept to his promise of securing the country. Other fronts of insurgency like Niger Delta will be settled. Issues like kidnapping, armed robbery, the government is attending to them.

This government has a capacity to secure the country and is putting that capacity to work. And on anti-corruption, no matter what they say, “Oh, it is one-sided and all that,” what we all know is that the anti-corruption war is well and alive and it is a war that will be fought to a logical conclusion.

Nigeria will never be the same again because the cleansing process is real and that cleansing will permeate every nook and cranny of the country.

The third area is the economy. It is still sticky but it is work in progress. I tell you, as clear as night follows the day, the government will put the economy of this country on a fresh foundation.

So you mean there is light at the end of the tunnel?
Oh, definitely. Even now a new foundation of a diversified economy is being laid for the country. We had had promises of diversification of the economy for five decades. This is the first time real practical steps are being taken to diversify the economy.

Do you know what is happening with agriculture now? So much so that in two years time Nigeria will not import rice again and we will be able to even export.

Tinubu not more than state level APC leader, Akeredolu suggests.

The Ondo State governor-elect, on Wednesday at the State House, suggested former Lagos Governor Bola Tinubu is not more than a state level leader of the All Progressives Congress.

So, Mr. Akeredolu said, mentioning Mr. Tinubu in his victory speech, after he specially acknowledged President Muhammadu Buhari and party chairman John Odigie-Oyegun could have necessitated inclusion of “36 or 37” leaders – referring to the 36 States of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory.

Mr. Akeredolu, accompanied by the deputy governor-elect, Agboola Ajayi, addressed journalists after meeting with Mr. Buhari, and explained why he didn’t mention Mr. Tinubu – reputed for his pivotal role in the formation of APC and emergence of Mr. Buhari – in his victory speech.

In his victory speech after he was declared winner of the election on Sunday, Mr. Akeredolu “profusely” thanked Mr. Buhari; Mr. Oyegun, the “indefatigable and principled Chairman”; and “loyal” governors and ministers – subtly hitting at South West APC leaders, including Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State and his Lagos counterpart, Akinwumi Ambode, who had abandoned him during campaign, allegedly supporting Olusola Oke of Alliance for Democracy instead.

Although Messrs. Tinubu and Ambode have extended congratulations to Mr. Akeredolu, it is apparent, with his subtle denigration on Wednesday, the governor-elect is still angry he was not supported by the former Lagos Governor.

He said, “On the names that were mentioned in my speech when expressing gratitude and that I didn’t specifically thank Bola Ahmed Tinubu. I thanked the President and the leader of our party profusely for the leadership which he showed leading to this election.

“I also thanked our indefatigable chairman for standing by the truth and for his position on this matter that led to this election. I have no reason to do otherwise.

“Party structure to the best of my knowledge is very clear. You have the leadership of the party and that is represented by Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.

“After the election, a chief executive emerges, he becomes a leader of the party, you don’t have to personalise and be looking for leaders all over the place.

“If we have to do that, then I will have to mention 36 or 37 leaders. So I believe the leadership as represented by the President covers all leaders and that tells me it would include Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu, it would include even Baba Akande, Onu, and so many leaders.

“But President Buhari is the leader of the party. So, that is my position there.”

He however denied rift with Mr. Tinubu.

“For me as a person, I believe he is one of the leaders of the party and I don’t see any strain relationship between us. And you would observe that he has sent in his congratulatory message after the election, so what else do you expect?

”I mean all of us see this as victory for the APC, not for Akeredolu, not for us an individual but for the party as a whole. I believe he is a member of the party. Mr. Femi Adesina had issued a release but you journalists just want to put words into our mouths,” said Mr. Akeredolu.

Mr. Akeredolu and his deputy were led to the President by the Chairman of APC Campaign Council in Ondo State, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State.

Mr. Tinubu had backed Olusegun Abraham to clinch APC ticket eventually won by Mr. Akeredolu to contest, and win, last Saturday’s governorship election.

But Mr. Akeredolu’s emergence in the primary saw aggrieved losers like Messrs Abraham and Oke petition APC appeals panel.

The panel invalidated Mr. Akeredolu’s victory but Mr. Oyegun-led National Working Committee overruled the panel, provoking a furious Mr. Tinubu to accuse his party of injustice and demand the chairman’s resignation in a strongly worded letter in which he also renounced the “honorific title” of national leader.

Mr. Tinubu later in his congratulatory message to Mr. Akeredolu called Mr. Buhari the “national leader of the party whose stature and dignity helped guide APC to another victory.”

Bola Ilori, an ex-aide to Mr. Aregbesola, staunchly pro-Tinubu, headed Mr. Oke’s campaign, and many APC card carrying members loyal to the former Lagos Governor, citing “injustice in our party” openly mobilised support for the AD’s flag bearer, fueling allegations Mr. Tinubu backed Mr. Oke who came distant third in the elections.

But the Presidency, in a statement on Monday, said Mr. Tinubu did not work against APC in Ondo, having promised Mr. Buhari he would not be involved in anti-party politics.

The statement also denied any plot against Mr. Tinubu and acknowledged him as “a priceless asset” to the APC.

Mr. Akeredolu reached the pinnacle of his career, becoming President of the Nigerian Bar Association. But in politics, he did not count much to anything when Mr. Tinubu backed him when he first aimed at becoming Ondo Governor in 2012.

But then in the 2012 poll, he came third in that election, coming behind Olusola Oke of PDP then, and Olusegun Mimiko who used Labour Party to clinch a second term.

Tinubu Is a priceless Asset To APC – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday denied reports that he and the National leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu were not in good terms.

According to a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the President said he was in contact with Tinubu during and after the Ondo governorship election.

He described the reports as mischievous, while stating that Tinubu was a priceless political asset to the party whose contributions are known to all.

The statement read, “President Buhari commended Tinubu’s spirit of comradeship in promptly congratulating Rotimi Akeredolu who was elected Governor.

“The President also noted that at a time his administration is preoccupied with governance issues, rumours of divisions and alleged scheming within the party are counterproductive to internal unity and cohesion in APC.


“He appealed to APC members and supporters to ignore rumours that could harm party unity.”

OndoDecides: “Abuja has prevailed over Tinubu”, says Yinka Odumakin.

The Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, considers the victory of Rotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress in the just concluded Ondo governorship election as a blow to Bola Tinubu’s hold on south-west politics, the organisation’s spokesperson has said.

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, declared Mr. Akeredolu winner on Sunday, having polled 244, 842 to defeat his challengers, mainly Eyitayo Jegede of Peoples Democratic Party with 150,380 votes and Olusola Oke of Alliance for Democracy with 126,889 votes.

This outcome, Afenifere spokesperson, Yinka Odumakin, told PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday, meant “Abuja has prevailed over the south-west which worked against Akeredolu.”

“And this is going to have implications for future politics of the south-west,” Mr. Odumakin added.Akeredolu1

Pressed to explain what he meant by “Abuja” and ‘south-west” – Mr. Odumakin said that, “the South West APC has a controlling leadership under Tinubu, or by South West I mean the Tinubu caucus which is the majority in the region.”

“And, at the moment, Fashola (Babatunde), Governor Ibikunle Amosun (of Ogun State) and Fayemi (Kayode) do not belong to that group under Tinubu which was opposed to Akeredolu’s emergence.”

He said Afenifere would watch “these implications” as they unfold.

Mr. Akeredolu’s emergence as the candidate of the APC months ago at the expense of several aspirants, including Olusegun Abraham, backed by Mr. Tinubu, had generated crisis which saw aggrieved defeated aspirants petition the party’s appeals panel.

The panel invalidated Mr. Akeredolu’s victory at the primary poll, but the National Working Committee of the party led by John Odigie-Oyegun overruled the panel, provoking a furious Mr. Tinubu to accusehis party of injustice and undemocratic tendencies, and demand Mr. Oyegun’s resignation in a strongly worded letter through which he also renounced the “honorific title” of national leader of the ruling party.

Olusola Oke, Ondo APC Aspirant    Photo by SaharaReporters
Olusola Oke, Ondo AD governorship candidate

But Mr. Odigie-Oyegun, who hit back at Mr. Tinubu and dismissed allegations against him as reckless, has remained in office, apparently backed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Mr. Tinubu and his core loyalists, including Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State and Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State refused to endorse Mr. Akeredolu and shunned his grand rally attended by Messrs. Buhari, Oyegun, Amosun, Fayemi and Senate President Bukola Saraki in Akure.

One of Mr. Aregbesola’s aides, Bola Ilori led AD’s Mr. Oke’s campaign and many card carrying APC members, citing “injustice” in their party, openly mobilised support for Mr. Oke, fuelling claims Mr. Tinubu backed the AD’s candidate against his own party’s flag bearer.

Mr. Oke joined AD to contest the election after he lost in the APC primary. But despite the support he had from APC members in the south-west, he came distant third leaving over 100 thousand votes between himself and Mr. Akeredolu who faced abandonment by his own party members and leaders in the region.

In his victory speech, Mr. Akeredolu thanked Mr. Buhari, Mr. Oyegun whom he called “our indefatigable and principled chairman”, and “loyal” governors – subtly hitting at his APC governors in the south-west allegedly involved in anti-party activities.

However, hours after Mr. Akeredolu was officially declared winner by INEC, Mr. Tinubu congratulated the governor-elect and noted his “persistence and perseverance”.

The governor-elect first contested the Ondo governorship election in 2012, fully backed by Mr. Tinubu, but came third, trailing Mr. Oke of PDP then, and the outgoing Governor Olusegun Mimiko, who then used Labour to clinch a second term.

Bola Tinubu
Bola Tinubu

In his reaction, Mr. Tinubu also extended congratulations to Mr. Buhari whom he called “the national leader of the party whose stature and dignity helped guide the APC to another victory…”

Mr. Ambode also congratulated Mr. Akeredolu, just after Mr. Tinubu’s reaction on Sunday, and charged the governor-elect to pursue unity of Yoruba through regional integration and economic transformation of the south-west. But Mr. Aregbesola has not issued any public reaction as at the time of filing this report.

The Afenifere and Mr. Tinubu have been on divergent paths since the latter’s tenure as Lagos governor.

Afenifere was the socio-cultural organisation behind the AD in 1999, as Egbe Omo Oduduwa was for the Action Group led by late Obafemi Awolowo in the 1950s.

However, the group did not back the AD candidate in the Ondo election because of the perceived support Mr. Oke enjoyed from Mr. Tinubu.

Tinubu speaks on Akeredolus victory in Ondo.

Former Lagos State governor, Bola Tinubu, on Sunday congratulated Rotimi Akeredolu, the winner of the governorship election in Ondo State.

Mr. Tinubu had been opposed to Mr. Akeredolu’s emergence as candidate of their party, APC, alleging irregularities in the party’s primaries.

The former governor and his key supporters were conspicuously absent during Mr. Akeredolu’s campaign rallies.

However, on Sunday, few hours after Mr. Akeredolu was declared winner by the electoral commission, INEC, Mr. Tinubu asked party members to close ranks “for the good of our party and its progressive ideals.”

Read Mr. Tinubu’s full statement below:

Following the announcement by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) with regard to the governorship elections in Ondo State, I extend congratulations to Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN. on the outcome of the election and for his perseverance and persistence in seeking that office.

I must also congratulate the people of Ondo State for their generally exemplary conduct on election day and for demonstrating their will to shun the regressive politics of yesterday by returning to the progressive brand of politics that has been the trademark of the people of that state.

I congratulate all party members in the state, particularly the party leadership in the Southwest.

Finally, I must express profound congratulations to President Muhammadu Buhari, the national leader of the party, whose stature and dignity helped guide the APC to another victory that should advance the progressive aims of the party and the people.

To all the people and parties in Ondo, your election has been had and held. Now is the time that all must work for the continued development, prosperity and peace of your state and our beloved country.

I appeal to all party members including those who have been disaffected from the primary until today to come together for the good of our party and its progressive ideals.

Afikuyomi Refutes Lalong’s Claim About Tinubu’s Health.

Senator Tokunbo Afikuyomi, a close ally of the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has refuted the claim by Plateau State Governor Solomon Lalong that the conspicuous absence of Asiwaju Tinubu at last Saturday’s Ondo State APC governorship rally was as a result of Tinubu’s ill-health.

 

In a press release issued in Lagos on Tuesday and signed by the Senator, Afikuyomi described the claim credited to the Plateau State governor as absolutely incorrect.

 

According to Afikuyomi, “I travelled to the United States of America with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to witness the recent US elections. We traversed a number of cities together where we engaged with a number of Nigerians who are genuinely concerned about the state of affairs in our dear country.  Jagaban was in a remarkable state of mental and physical wellness. When we ended our trip, I saw him off to the airport in Chicago from where he headed for Europe again. I still met with him in Europe thereafter.

 

“It is therefore absolutely incorrect and most embarrassing for anyone to attempt to invent such a laughable reason for Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s absence at the rally. The fact that somebody went for medical check-up does not mean he is ill. In the likely event that Asiwaju, like all mortals, was ill at all, I doubt if Mr. Lalong would be the first to know by reason of relationship, proximity and trust.

 

“Prominent politicians like Ogun State Governor Ibikunle Amosun have been speaking with Jagaban Tinubu. Governor Amosun particularly communicated with him a day before the Ondo rally and he can never claim not to have spoken with him. I have also remained in constant touch with Asiwaju Tinubu since my arrival in Nigeria. We speak daily as a matter of fact.

 

“I have been inundated with calls by friends, associates and other well-meaning Nigerians trying to ascertain the veracity of this ludicrous claim. I hereby ask all friends and lovers of Asiwaju Tinubu to dismiss the claim and know that he is hale and hearty.”

 

Asiwaju Tinubu, former APC Interim Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande and three governors from the South-west-Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo) and Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos)-were not at the rally.

 

Governor Lalong had in his capacity as the Chairman of the Ondo State Governorship Campaign explained that Tinubu was absent at the rally due to ill health.

 

Lalong was quoted to have told State House Correspondents after visiting President Muhammadu Buhari that, “if a leader was not there and he said he was not there because of ill-health, we have prayed that God will heal him.”

 

Signed:
Senator Tokunbo Afikuyomi

Tinubu Hale, Hearty – Senator Afikuyomi

All Progressives Congress (APC) stalwart Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is hale and hearty, his ally, Senator Tokunbo Afikuyomi said yesterday.

Afikuyomi refuted the claim by Plateau State Governor Solomon Lalong that the absence of Asiwaju Tinubu at last Saturday’s Ondo State APC governorship rally was as a result of his ill-health.

In a statement, the one-time Lagos State commissioner described the claim credited to the Plateau State governor as incorrect.

Afikuyomi said: “I travelled to the United States of America with Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu to witness the recent U.S. elections.

We traversed a number of cities together where we engaged with a number of Nigerians who are genuinely concerned about the state of affairs in our dear country.

Jagaban was in a remarkable state of mental and physical wellness. When we ended our trip, I saw him off to the airport in Chicago from where he headed for Europe again. I still met with him in Europe thereafter.

“It is therefore absolutely incorrect and most embarrassing for anyone to attempt to invent such a laughable reason for Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s absence at the rally. The fact that somebody went for medical check-up does not mean he is ill. In the likely event that Asiwaju, like all mortals, was ill at all, I doubt if Mr. Lalong would be the first to know by reason of relationship, proximity and trust.
“Prominent politicians like Ogun State Governor Ibikunle Amosun have been speaking with Jagaban Tinubu.

“Governor Amosun particularly communicated with him a day before the Ondo rally and he can never claim not to have spoken with him. I have also remained in constant touch with Asiwaju Tinubu since my arrival in Nigeria. We speak daily as a matter of fact.

“I have been inundated with calls by friends, associates and other well-meaning Nigerians trying to ascertain the veracity of this ludicrous claim. I hereby ask all friends and lovers of Asiwaju Tinubu to dismiss the claim and know that he is hale and hearty.”

Asiwaju Tinubu, former APC Interim Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande and three governors from the South-west – Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo) and Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos) – were not at the rally.

Governor Lalong had in his capacity as the Chairman of the Ondo State Governorship Campaign explained that Tinubu was absent at the rally due to ill health.

Lalong was quoted to have told State House Correspondents after visiting President Muhammadu Buhari that, “if a leader was not there and he said he was not there because of ill-health, we have prayed that God will heal him.”

APC Rally: No Big Deal About Tinubu’s Absence- Solomon Lalong

The Chairman of the All Progressives Congress Governorship Campaign in Odo State, Mr. Solomon Lalong, on Monday said the absence of the party leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, and some South West governors at the party’s rally in Akure on Saturday did not make any difference.

He said since President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, were present at the rally, there was no cause for alarm.

Lalong who is the Plateau State Governor spoke with State House correspondents shortly after he and the Minister of Mines and Steel Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, met Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Tinubu and Governors Rauf Aregbesola (Osun); Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo); and Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos) were conspicuously absent at the rally held at the Democracy Park in Akure on Saturday.

Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State was the only APC state governor in the South West who attended the rally.

Tinubu and other governors who did not attended are believed not to be in support of the party’s candidate in the Saturday election, Chief Rotimi Akeredolu.

But Lalong said their absence was not a problem to the party.

He said, “That (their absence) was not a problem. We explained their absence. They sent in their apologies. You heard what happened there.

“As far as we are concerned, the President who is the leader of the party was at the rally. The national chairman was also there. As far as we are concerned, everybody was there.

“To the party, their absence did not make any difference. If a leader was not there and he has said he was not there because of ill-health, we have prayed that God will heal him.”

The governor expressed confidence that the APC would emerge victorious in the Saturday election.

He said he and Fayemi were at the Presidential Villa to thank Buhari for making time out to attend the rally personally.

“We have finished our campaign. You saw what happened at the grand finale. We are not in doubt that APC will win the election in Ondo.

“It is other parties that are scared of the APC and not APC being scared of other parties.

“We have come to thank the President for going to Ondo for the grand finale rally,” he said.

Why I can never disrespect Tinubu — Kayode Fayemi

The Minister of Solid Minerals and Steel Development on Sunday said he would never abuse or disrespect former Lagos Governor, Bola Tinubu, because the politician remained a leader he would continue to hold in high esteem.

 

“Dr. Fayemi subscribes to the highest moral and ethical standard of the Yoruba and as such would not speak evil or seek to demean Asiwaju Tinubu or any of our respected leaders under no circumstance whatsoever,” the minister said via a statement by his special assistant on media, Olayinka Oyebode.

 

“For the avoidance of doubt, Dr. Fayemi has always held and will continue to hold Asiwaju Tinubu in high esteem.

 

“The bond that exists between them dates back to decades of cordial relationship and no peddler of falsehood or group of blackmailers hiding under the guise of politics can put asunder.”

 

The minister was reacting to a false report on a website, with headline : “Tinubu as a leader is responsible for his misfortunes, says Fayemi.”

 

“The highly mischievous and malicious report is nothing but a tissue of lies,” Mr. Fayemi said in his statement, sent to PREMIUM TIMES Sunday.

 

“It must be stressed that Dr. Kayode Fayemi never granted any interview where he made disparaging comments about the person of our highly revered leader Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.”

 

There are widespread speculations in Nigeria that Messrs Tinubu and Fayemi belonged to different camps in the governing All Progressives Congress.

 

Mr. Fayemi was a protege of the former Lagos governor, but the two fell apart after the last governorship election in Ekiti State, which the minister, then an incumbent, lost.

 

The real reason for the collapse of the cordial relationship between the two politicians remained unclear.

 

But there are suggestions that Mr. Tinubu accused Mr. Fayemi of disloyalty.

 

On his part, Mr. Fayemi was said to have become angry with Mr. Tinubu for not supporting him enough in the governorship election he lost to Ayo Fayose of the Peoples Democratic Party.

Buba Galadima: “Buhari may be alone in 2019”

Eighteen months into power, the crisis rocking the ruling All Progressives (APC) is getting more complicated by the day, with many chieftains engaging in fierce war of words. While some party members have expressed the fear of possible disintegration, others say unless urgent steps are taken to avert its imminent breakup, President Buhari may no longer seek re-election on the platform of the APC in 2019 if he decides to go for a second term.

For Alhaji Buba Galadima, one of the close allies of President Muhammadu Buhari who worked with him in the 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2015 general elections, the governing APC has become like an orphan because nobody is there to take responsibility for its current crisis.

Galadima has declared  that Buhari’s lack of interest in party politics, especially in resolving the APC crisis, may lead to its disintegration, thereby leaving him (Buhari) with no political platform on which to run for a second term in 2019 if he decides to seek re-election.

“The APC has been raped aground, and it is only claiming to be in government because it is the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that is actually controlling power,” Galadima told Daily Trust on Sunday, adding that by his utterances, Buhari was not interested in party politics; hence the rancour within the APC.

“Definitely, I know that General Muhammadu Buhari will not want to run on the platform of any party because he has already cast aspersion on party politics and politicians. So we would try to find out on what platform he would contest if he wants to be president in 2019. On what vehicle he would ride, but definitely not on a political party,” he said.

Galadima said certain people were undermining the party; hence the difficulties in having a solid house, pointing out that several meetings of the party were aborted.

“The party had shared invitation letters for Board of Trustees (BoT) meetings and it was aborted. You now have to find out who aborted those meetings. We only met once as the national caucus of the party. Let’s assume that the president doesn’t like the party executive, he’s now the president, he can find a way of easing them out.

“Have you ever seen in the history of Nigeria, where in the secretariat of the ruling party, water is disconnected, electricity is disconnected, salaries of aides and workers are not paid for six months? It’s shameful, it’s disgraceful and we claim to be in government. We are not saints,” he said.

He also disclaimed insinuations that members of President Buhari’s former party, the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) are being favoured so that even if the APC disappears before 2019, he (Buhari) would have something to fall onto.

“Can there be CPC without Buba Galadima and Sule Hamma and AVM Mukhtar Mohammed? What appointment do they have? Have we ever seen the president since he became one?

“Who are the CPC people?  Even the national chairman of the party, Chief Odigie-Oyegun, told me that the president only appointed CPC people. Can you count five people that were CPC and are in this government? I hope you know that the CPC was formed on this desk (referring to his office at Zone 4, Abuja) without even Buhari’s knowledge. So, if they appoint CPC people and I don’t know them, who else would know them?” he asked.

Galadima said those fighting for the presidency ticket of the APC would realise their mistakes when they found themselves in prison.

“For those of us who had worked with the head of this government (Buhari) in the last 14 years, we are not surprised that this is happening. In fact, our view is that the nation is yet to see the better part or the worst part of this government,” he said.

“We never expected any magic to happen; and even while we were there, we took initiatives and responsibilities. This is why people saw things moving in the movement; people saw things being done in the party (defunct APP, ANPP, CPC and APC) in the campaign because there were those who would make initiatives and take responsibility, whether wrong or right.

“For now, there isn’t such kind of group or people within the system. I know that people accuse certain individuals who are close to Mr President, but I consider them innocent,” he said.

Asked if the problem bedevilling the government and the APC as a party was because there was no adequate preparation in terms of blueprint and manpower to take over from the PDP, Galadima said:  “Well, I wish when he was running for 14 years as candidate he had certain people in mind, because from what’s happening, which we all know, is that the president has not appointed more than three people he actually knew.

“Apart from his personal domestic staff that were being paid salaries to work for him as a former head of state, any other person was brought by somebody else. He doesn’t even know them; he doesn’t even have a background check on them because if he knew, or those around him knew, certain people would never have been appointed into some of these sensitive positions,” he said.

Galadima re-echoed the rumble within the hierarchy of the ruling APC, which was hitherto seen as an alternative to the  PDP, which 16 years in government at the centre since the return of democracy in 1999, have been described as wasteful.

But to many political watchers, the purported “hegemony” of the APC is being questioned from within and without; with some founding members of the party saying it would hardly survive 2019. While some believe the crisis in the APC is the consequence of ‘marriage of convenience’ that could not be sealed, others accuse President Buhari of not serving as a rallying point for varied interest.

A senator from the North-East who is very close to Buhari, however, said the president was being undermined by those desperate to take over from him in 2019.

“The rancour in the APC is being orchestrated by some people in order to frustrate and distract Buhari from performing,” he said, stressing that Buhari is so far the only person that has the capacity to bring social reforms in the country, and if he is not supported, the country will fail.

The senator, who wouldn’t want his name in print, drew reference to the recent diatribe between former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai, as well as the fight between the national chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and national leader Bola Tinubu, in addition to a widespread disaffection and fight for the soul of the party in states like Kano, Bauchi, Ondo, Lagos, among others. Pundits believe that it is no longer news that the APC is exploding.

President Buhari has not clearly said he would be going for a second term, but there seems to be a consensus in political circles that he may likely seek re-election in 2019.

Amidst this dicey option, the echo from the South-West, which gives big support to the Buhari project, is not in any way palatable, while in the North, there are pointers to the fact that those who feel they have a stake in the APC have already adjusted their sleeves, gunning for the president’s seat.

In the South-West, supporters of Tinubu are reportedly calling on him to float a new party and strip the APC of his support, saying he has been set aside in the scheme of things.

Under the hash tag #IStandWithTinubu, a grand rally was held in Lagos, where Tinubu’s supporters expressed displeasure over state of affairs in the APC.

The argument is that in the event that Tinubu pulls out of the APC, the party would be ‘too malnourished’ to win re-election although there are insinuations that  President Buhari  is building a new bloc in the zone  through ministers and other appointees.

In the North, a war has broken between Atiku and El- Rufa’I, with each accusing the other of nursing ambition.

“Alhaji Atiku is already running for 2019, and he thinks he can make people like us collateral damage in his attempt to rejuvenate his image.

“This obsession for power inclined him to support the rebellion against the party (APC) that manifested in the National Assembly, and is continuing with obvious disrespect for the incumbent president.

“Everyone knows that I support and will continue to work for the success of President Muhammadu Buhari as he leads our country through tough times,” said El-Rufai in a statement issued within the week.

The Kaduna State governor was responding to an allegation made by Atiku in an interview, in which he claimed that he turned down shares offered him by El-Rufai during the incorporation of Transcorp Hilton.

Analysts believe that both El-Rufai and Atiku are struggling for the presidency in 2019, and that their fight will take a different shape in the event that Buhari goes for a second term.

As the APC is being gradually fragmented as predicted, it means that almost everybody, including the president, would have to look for a different platform to survive.

‘APC lacks leadership’

Senator Abu Ibrahim (APC, Katsina South), however, heaped the blame of the chaos in their party on the national leadership of the party.

“People should not forget that the APC is an amalgamation of different factions, orientations, experiences and even personalities.

“Therefore, if the party wins and forms the government, the party leadership should be able to mash those different groups. There should be a proper and proactive approach while the government is concentrating on governance. Again, they must have some proactive engagement with the government too, but unfortunately, the leadership of the party is not active enough,” he said.

He said Buhari should not be blamed because he has too many things to contend with.  “Buhari is the president of Nigeria, and of course he is the national leader of the party. But who does the day-to-day running of the party?  Who does the day-to-day monitoring of the party?  Who does the day-to-day control of the party?

“Look, the fact is that Mr President is handling lots of serious jobs; somebody who wants to change Nigeria, somebody who wants to crush corruption, somebody who wants to fight insecurity, and then the economy is dwindling. How can he have time to go and be talking on the party? So, the leader (chairman) of the party is the person responsible. If the party is in crisis, it’s his responsibility,” he said.

Senator Ibrahim also dismissed claims that President Buhari has shot his doors for the party leadership; hence their inability to galvanise forces.

“Unfortunately, people thought that as a retired federal permanent secretary, he (Oyegun) should be able to set up internal conflict resolution mechanisms, considering where the party came from, which is amalgamation of various groups.

“The president is facing gargantuan task, the price of oil, the revenue, then fighting insecurity and fighting corruption. I mean these are enough to fill caps. Therefore, he needs an astute political party manager, who will be able to see things, who will be able to create mechanisms that would resolve conflicts,” he said.

Asked if he agrees with the call by Tinubu that Oyegun should resign, Senator Ibrahim said, “Of course, if he likes let him resign, I don’t bother myself. You see, unfortunately, in Nigeria you don’t resign.”

He also expressed reservations over the fight between Atiku and El-Rufai, saying that they were running faster than their shadows. “We have a sitting president. And did he tell you that he’s not going to contest? We have not even gone halfway and we have to perform first before we would start thinking of winning election.

“So, all of them should cooperate with the president to perform and make the party winnable. They all know that if Buhari is going to contest, he will be the first to be considered, he will get the right of first refusal.

“They should be cooperative and control their ambitions until the party and the government reach a certain level and do enough to sure that we would win again. They should advise the president on what to do so that by 2019 we would have no opposition,” he said.

‘Tinubu has been sidelined’

The APC chairman in Lagos State, Chief Henry Oladele Ajomale, who is a core loyalist of Tinubu, said the South-West was sad over the unfolding events in the APC.

“Asiwaju has been somehow taken out of the caucus of the party, the leadership of the party. We believe that it should not be so, having considered the tremendous contributions he made to the success of the APC in the last election.

“I think the party has been hijacked, or Mr. President is not really facing the party as necessary. Perhaps he is concentrating so much on governance without using one eye to watch the party, and that is where the problem is.

“When you say you have a programme in government, that platform should not be abandoned because that is the stage post. And the promises that were given out on that platform during the campaign are what the party should be reminding Mr. President of. These are promises we made, so let us follow them strictly,” he said.

Dispelling the rumour that Tinubu is supporting the move for the formation of a new party in the South-West, Ajomale said: “We are not part of it. I can assure you that we are not part of that.”

‘APC overloaded with problems’

A member of the APC Presidential Campaign Council in 2015, Alhaji Ibrahim Jirgi, said the APC was overloaded with problems.

“There is crisis all over. If you look at the state chapters, they have their own crisis. At the national level, there is a serious problem, and the fact is that the APC is derailing. The plane is full of passengers, but they are mostly PDP card carrying members who are sabotaging the will of progress of the party,” he said.

Jirgi wondered why nearly two years after taking over, hundreds of board members inherited from the previous PDP government are allowed to flourish when those who worked for the APC are left grumbling.

“Where is the fate of the over 5000 President Buhari’s campaign coordinators and the APC campaign council members that were drawn from all over the country?” He said many members of the APC were angry despite the fact that the journey hasn’t gone far.

Re-alignments gone far

A senator who is aware of the developments in the APC told Daily Trust on Sunday that all the stalwarts of legacy parties that merged to form the party are now regrouping and realigning ahead of 2019.

“It is true that the CPC are holding secret meetings independent of the APC, but they are not in it alone as the nPDP and the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) top guns have also formed a new alliance,” he said.

According to him, the #IStandWithTinubu rally staged in Lagos was part of the strategy, and members of the CPC bloc in the APC are fully aware of it. The senator, who is part of the re-alignment, said there was no how the crack in the APC could be cemented before 2019. The senator, who sought identity protection, said South-West governors were teaming up with the candidate of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) in the forthcoming Ondo election against the APC candidate in order to start depleting the influence of the party.

“As I am talking to you, over N800million has been contributed to the AD candidate by the governors of the South-West. The governors are solidly behind the AD candidate. It is by God’s will that our party (APC) candidate will win.

“The defunct ACN and the nPDP are working hard and secretly. They are reviving their political structures and machineries because they feel that they are not being treated well in this administration.

“They said it was as a result of their structures that the APC won the 2015 elections, but they are being treated as second fiddle in this administration, “he said.

 ‘Buhari’s mistake’

A political scientist at the University of Ilorin, Professor Hassan Salihu, said President Buhari made a mistake which is haunting him now. He noted that it would not be ideal for any head of government to detach himself from other arms of government.

“Given the level of political party system in Nigeria, the level of government institutions, it would not be idealistic for one head of arm of government to detach himself from happenings in other arms. As the captain of the ship, he should have had a way of monitoring events if he is not involved directly, and speak to some people in order to get the outcome that will enable him implement his campaign promises.

“The president is idealistic in terms of what should be the relationship between him and the party, but because he so distanced himself in a way, that is why we are having problems in the APC, which is why we are having problem in the National Assembly, translating to the rejection of everything he sent to them,” he said.

APC moves to mend fences

Two weeks ago, governors elected on the platform of the APC moved to address the grievances in the party.

The chairman of the Progressives Governors Forum (PGF) and the Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha, who met with the Odigie-Oyegun-led APC National Working Committee (NWC), said the party leadership needed to make some amendments to enable the party forge ahead.

Okorocha also met with Senate President Bukola Saraki and the House of Representatives Speaker Yakubu Dogara, where he said President Buhari would soon meet the APC leaders to address the problems in the party.

Speaking to newsmen at the APC secretariat after the meeting, Oyegun said: “We noticed that there is so much bitterness among the ranks and members of our party, and there is a need for communication and dialogue, otherwise, division is inevitable.

“The party will be restructured for the purpose of making it stronger, and to move forward as a people and as a party. No one is going to boot anybody out. Where there is need, we shall make amendment in order to save the party and move it forward,” he said.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo also met with Saraki, Dogara and five governors of the APC last Monday, to resolve the rising discontent in the party over lack of consultations by President Buhari in his federal appointments.

The governors who attended the meeting were Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State, Rochas Okorocha of Imo State, Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State, Sanni Bello of Niger State, and Jibril Bindow of Adamawa. Osun State Governor Rauf Aregbesola arrived after the meeting had been concluded.

Also in attendance were the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Babachir David, and the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.

‘Tinubu’s interest well served in Buhari’s government’

Chief Osita Okechukwu, an associate of Buhari and the director-general of the Voice of Nigeria (VON), told Daily Trust on Sunday that the division in the party was not deep enough to cause the kind of rift peddled in the media, and that the president was not engaged in any scheme to give him  advantage come 2019.

He said the national leader of the APC, Ahmed Bola Tinubu, had no reason to complain of marginalisation because his interest was being well catered for in the Buhari-led government.

“Buhari is faced with the task of repositioning Nigeria for development. This is a more urgent task than the 2019 power game. He has been elected to put the country on the path of development, and that’s what he’s doing. If you talk about marginalisation in government, Bola Tinubu cannot complain. His interest is well served in this government. He has not come out to express the discontent that we have read about in the newspapers.

“The current government is an amalgamation of five interest groups: the CPC, which produced Buhari, the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), which produced Vice President Osinbajo, the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), which produced the Minister of Science & Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, the new the New Peoples Democratic Party (nPDP), which produced Senate President Bukola Saraki, as well as diverse individuals and groups from other political groups who joined the APC before the 2015 elections.

According to him, Buhari is not ignorant of complaints by party members. “Those who came together to defeat the PDP want to have their own share of the spoil, mainly through appointments, which have not been forthcoming because this government met an empty treasury. The only substantial amount in the purse when Buhari came in was used to bailout states who owed workers salaries for many months,” he said.

On the allegation that the party is funded by government, Osita said: “Buhari can’t implement PDP’s template for running party offices. He is fighting corruption; hence he can’t engage in corruption.”

APC is disintegrating, Buhari must save it now – Former Party Chairman.

A former Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Kaduna State, Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, said President Muhammadu Buhari must intervene to fix the crisis in the party and save it from disintegration.

Mr. Baba-Ahmed made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria in Kaduna on Sunday.

According to him, the problems affecting the party have been left to linger for too long and must be settled in the next few months, if the party hopes to retain power in 2019.

“Even if you can forgive some of the crisis and blame it on in experience, you cannot forgive the fact that we have tolerated this crisis for too long.

“They have persisted, and that is not something we should excuse, we should not also excuse the existence of massive problems in states and at the national level.

“Those who have the responsibility of fixing the APC as a political platform are not fixing it.

“It is what we are seeing now; a large number of powerful people within APC are walking away from it, thinking that it is beyond redemption.

“That is unfortunate and I think it is a major setback for the party.

“The APC must reinvent itself and rediscover its mission to lead this country, not through a one term presidency or governance, but to actually build a different Nigeria that will meet the yearnings of our children and beyond.”

Mr. Baba-Ahmed stressed that the internal crisis had also affected governance, thereby, making it imperative for the President to quickly intervene and resolve all contending issues within the party.

“Of course when a party is in a problem like this, a number of things happen; governance suffers because you are constantly having your attention diverted by the party’s problems.

“Secondly, in political terms, four years of an administration is only like two years or two and half years.

“In a year’s time, we will not be talking about governing this country, we will be talking about campaign for 2019.

“And if this party doesn’t fix itself at the national level, doesn’t fix all the problems it has in the states, it is unlikely to come back to Nigerians with the confidence it came to us in 2014 /2015, to say give us another mandate.

“If we are not careful the only thing of value and credibility that we can say to Nigerians that is still relatively intact in the APC will be President Buhari.

“And President Buhari more than anybody else, knows that his personality and character alone cannot win him an election.

“He needs a political platform that can mobilize people to support him, and right now, that political platform is disintegrating.

“He needs to do something about it, he needs to allow the party to work together, he needs to ask a lot of people to fix the problems of the party.”

Baba-Ahmed expressed the belief that the problems of the APC were surmountable if the leadership work hard to fix all the underlying issues.

“I am not one of the people who thinks the future is outside APC, I believe that APC can be salvaged.

“However, I am not complacent to say it can just be fixed like that, a lot of hardwork has to go into it, a lot of sacrifices must be made.

“What I think is useful is that, in the next three to six months a lot of people that we suspect are already packing their things to get out of APC, would do so.

“That would give the party an opportunity to know who is left, and then we can just go back to rediscovering the essence of the APC and then possibly to re-engineer the party with the popular base.

“We will need to apologise to people for mistakes made and reassure them that the first four years of the Buhari administration may not have met all the expectations of the people, but if they give our party another chance for the next four years, we will be able to fix this country, insha Allah.”

APC/PDP: A 3rd political force is about to be born. – Jude Egbas

A new political party which will aim to wrest control of the polity from the duo of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) is on its way, various sources privy to the development told Pulse last weekend.

“That political party will be such a strong force and it’s one Nigerians will immediately embrace”, once source revealed to this medium over Pizza on a sunny afternoon in the nation’s commercial capital of Lagos.

Various other political heavyweights in the country have revealed to Pulse that an alignment and realignment of political forces in the nation is currently underway.

“Meetings are being held in the major cities in each geopolitical zone and very soon, we’ll have that party”, one prominent politician in the South West, told Pulse.

PDP supporters protesting in Ondo state

“We just held one of our meetings in Lagos last week and we’ve been holding series of these kinds of meetings as we try to put this political party together”, added the prominent politician who’s been part of these gatherings at the highest levels.

Some of the chaps floating this new political party disclosed to Pulse that they’ll be capitalizing on the poor performance of the APC at the center to make their case before Nigerians.

It’s a strategy they are hoping can be pulled off.

“As you are aware, the APC at the center has been struggling with the economy”, said one Northern politician who spoke to Pulse over the phone. “If things continue the way there are, well into 2017; and given the type of manifesto and programs we’ll present to Nigerians; given the pedigree of the politicians who’ll be selling this party to Nigerians, I can tell you that we’ll displace APC at the center come 2019”, he added confidently.

Tinubu and Oyegun

Some of the politicians spoken to for this story, would not reveal to Pulse the identity of the heavyweights behind this ‘third force’, except to say that the new party will be run by upwardly mobile and young politicians; some of whom are no strangers to the nation’s topsy-turvy political terrain.

“We’ll be a party of the young and old. Unlike the APC and PDP, we’ll actually allow younger Nigerians have a say in the affairs of our party. In the first quarter of 2017, Nigerians will be proud to have a party they can call theirs,” offered another politician.

It also looks like a pretty good time to usher in another political party— with the APC and PDP battling different forms of internal crises.

Bola Tinubu (L) and President Buhari (R)

APC heads into the Ondo governorship election, not throwing its full weight behind standard bearer, Oluwarotimi Akerodolu.

Indeed, APC leader and strongman of South West politics, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is no fan of Akerodolu.

Tinubu’s candidate for the election, Olusegun Abraham lost out in the party primaries.

So miffed was Tinubu about not having his way in Ondo, the Jagaban of Borgu called on APC Chairman John Odigie-Oyegun to throw in the towel for allegedly rigging the primary contest in Akerodolu’s favour.

All Progressives Congress (APC) Leader, Bola Tinubu (L) and Former Vice-President of Nigeria, Atiku Abubakar (R).

Tinubu’s letter was so scathing and vitriolic, Oyegun needed a few more days to pen his response.

Grapevine reports suggest that Tinubu will be pulling the rug from under the APC’s feet by no longer bankrolling the party he helped forge together.

Last weekend, a few loyalists of Tinubu’s took to the streets to say the Buhari Presidency has treated the former Lagos Governor badly in spite of all he’s done for the party.

“The man that started the whole revolution (Tinubu) is now being rubbished because of the inordinate ambition of very few members of the party. They want to destroy the party and that is why we are concerned about what is going on. If we allow a few people to truncate what we fought for, then the promise made to Nigerians would not be fulfilled”, lamented Henry Ajomale who is the APC Chairman in Lagos.

Olusola Oke who is flying the flag of the AD in the Ondo governorship election, is now assured Tinubu’s support, sources close to The Jagaban have told Pulse.

Chief Olusola Oke

 

Oke’s social media campaign has since been taken over by a crop of young men and women who swear by Tinubu.

Tinubu was also ominously absent during the campaign launch of the APC in Ondo–a move that political pundits have linked to the man’s growing desire to severe ties with his party, at least behind the scenes.

“He’s no longer playing an active role in the APC”, said one APC chieftain who craved anonymity for this story. “First, his candidate, James Faleke was badly treated in Kogi and you all saw what happened in Ondo. If Tinubu can no longer have a say in how the APC is run, he’d better keep his distance”, the chieftain lamented.

Ali Modu Sheriff (L) and Ahmed Makarfi (R)

The PDP isn’t faring any better. It has paraded two chairmen in Ahmed Makarfi and Ali Modu Sheriff, since the turn of the year.  It went into the Edo governorship contest with two candidates before eventually settling for one on the eve of voting; and it is playing a similar, disoriented card as it heads into the Ondo governorship election.

It is this disharmony in the two biggest political camps in the country, which the incoming ‘third force’ intends to latch on into reckoning.

The ‘third force’ guys think they are savvy enough to spot a fertile political field when they see one.

And at this stage, all bets are off.

Why Buhari, Osinbajo were absent from Akeredolu’s rally – APC

The All Progressives Congress, APC, in Ondo State says President Muhammadu Buhari and his Vice, Yemi Osinbajo, were absent at its governorship rally due to urgent national matters they had to attend to.

 

APC governorship rally in the state kicked off yesterday at the Democracy Park in Akure, the state capital at about 11am but the President, his Vice and some top-shots of the party were noticeably absent from the event.

 

The state Publicity Secretary of the party, Abayomi Adesanya, while explaining the absence of the President, however, announced that Buhari would be in the State for the grand finale of the campaign, scheduled for November 19.

 

He said, “The President and the Vice President had an emergency state matter they had to attend to and so could not turn up.”

 

Also absent at the event was a National Leader of the party, Bola Tinubu, but his media team while explaining, said the former Lagos State Governor was currently not in the country.

Ondo 2016: Buhari, Osinbajo, Tinubu, Aregbesola absent at APC rally

The crisis rocking the Ondo State All Progressives Congress came to the fore on Thursday as top officials of the party including President Muhammadu Buhari were absent from a scheduled rally.

 

The rally was organised by the Ondo APC to flag off the campaign of Rotimi Akeredolu, its candidate for the November 26 governorship election in the state.

 

As predicted by PREMIUM TIMES, apart from Mr. Buhari, other notable absentees were Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, former Lagos governor Bola Tinubu, and governor of neighbouring Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola.

 

The event commenced on Thursday morning at the Democracy Park in Akure, the Ondo State capital.

 

Introducing the dignitaries present in order of protocol, the National Organising Secretary of the APC, Osita Izunaso, said Mr. Osinbajo was represented by his Chief of Staff.

 

Some serving ministers are also present at the rally.

There is so much bitterness within APC – Okorocha

Imo Governor, Rochas Okorocha says the All Progressives Congress (APC) has not been able to manage its electoral victory, The Punch reports.

Okorocha who is the Chairman of the All Progressives Congress Governors’ Forum said this on Wednesday when he visited the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki.

A statement by the Office of the Senate President quoted Okorocha as saying there was a lot of bitterness within the party since its victory at the 2015 polls.

He said, “This is the very first time I am coming to your office and I am here because I am concerned. I am here because I am a stakeholder. I am here as the Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum — your friends and colleagues in the struggle.

“Mr. Senate President, leaders of this great Senate, you may recall a few years ago that we were all in the trenches, in battle, asking for change in the Federal Republic of Nigeria. I recall vividly the role most of you played in that very struggle. We became a government when no one gave us a chance to be so. And shortly, Nigerians believed in us and entrusted us with the responsibility of leading this nation.

“But one year and several months after, we have not been able to manage this God-given victory very well and it is very worrisome, Mr. Senate President. That Nigerians expect so much from us but yet we seem to be in crisis within ourselves.

“Not crisis made by the opposition parties but crisis created by ourselves for ourselves and which has kept us in totally difficult position that we are not making the headway we need to make as a party.

“One wonders then what went wrong. Where did we get it wrong? And after these troubles and after the much hope we have given to Nigerians, we still cannot work together as a party, as a family. And I noticed particularly that there is so much bitterness in the system — from the party, from the legislature, from the executive, from the governors — and it seems to me like there is no more platform for us to chant those old songs, which we used to sing in the days of struggle for change.

“One wonders, was this what we were asking for or was this the change we were asking for? I think Nigerians expect so much from us and at the end of it all.”

Naij: Panic in APC headquarters as Tinubu withdraws funding.

A senior chieftain of the party who spoke under the condition of anonymity, confided in NAIJ.com that all is not well within the party because of Tinubu’s withdrawal of financial support to the party headquarters.

 “Things have gone from bad to worse,” the party chieftain told NAIJ.com on phone, “Ever since the refusal of President Buhari to fund the party activities, Asiwaju has been the sole financier of the party.

“But he has withdrawn his support due to the way he was humiliated by the party chairman in the Ondo primary.”

Asked to comment on the rumours that there are plans by anti-Oyegun elements in the APC to remove him and include his name in President Muhammadu Buhari’s ambassadorial nomination list, the party chieftain said it is true.

oyegun

APC chairman, Chief John Oyegun is under the spotlight

His words: “I can confirm that the report is true. The truth is even members of the APC NEC have lost confidence in Oyegun.

“Why do you think they have not come out to pass a vote of no confidence on him, which is the norm in politics when a leader is under duress. 

“Majority of the NEC members are tired of Oyegun’s antics and they are all pre-occupied with positioning themselves for government appointments than staying put in party politics.”

NAIJ.com reached out to another chieftain of the party who corroborated the story. He pleaded for his identity not to be revealed because he was not authorized to speak on such matters.

He said: “Baba (President Buhari) has not sent a kobo to the party since he came into office. When we went to Aso Villa to complain, he asked the party chairman how the monies for the forms sold to party aspirants was expended.

 “The party chairman could not give a reasonable explanation, so baba asked us to go and look for ways to make money for the party.

“Tinubu has been the one funding us since then because we could not even approach the governors knowing their situation.” 

NAIJ.com efforts to get the APC official reaction to this report was not successful as at the time it was published.

Yesterday, there were media reports that the national secretariat of the APC in Abuja has been thrown into darkness following the party’s failure to offset the N1.7 million debt owed Abuja Electricity Distribution Company.

An electricity receipt pasted on the gate of the APC secretariat which was seen by Vanguard showed that the party had only recently paid N500, 000 of the debt.

Fashola would have betrayed Tinubu if he were Igbo – Kalu

Igbos who have often blamed the Federal Government for the lack of development in the South-East zone have been told that they have no one but themselves to blame for their woes, a former Abia State governor and businessman, Chief Orji Uzor Kalu, has said.

This is even as he declared that the minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, would have betrayed his political mentor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, if he were to be a Igbo man.

Kalu made the disclosures in the current edition of The Interview magazine, saying: “Igbos are their own worst enemies,” adding that a number of the elite in the region are not only selfish but also get their politics wrong.

According to the Managing Director/Editor-In-Chief of The Interview, Mr. Azu Ishiekwene, in a statement issued yesterday, Kalu was referring to the fractured relationship between Tinubu and Fashola in the latter’s second term as governor of Lagos State, and comparing it to his own internecine war with his successor, Senator Theodore A. Orji, which led to the extinction of the Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA), the party he founded.

“Let me tell you,” he said in an emotion-laden voice, “there were more problems between (Asiwaju Bola) Tinubu and (Babatunde) Fashola, than there were between me and TA (Theodore Ahamefule Orji). But it is the discipline of the Yorubas that kept them at bay. Igbos have no discipline in terms of politics. They are very good traders; they’re good in anything they do, but they don’t understand politics.”

In the interview, described by Ishiekwene, as “the political equivalent of the ogbunigwe (Biafran improvised explosives),” Kalu illustrated his point with a conversation he claimed to have had with President Muhammadu Buhari, who wondered aloud why previous high profile Igbo appointees had done nothing for the region.

Kalu also spoke on the agitation for a state of Biafra and the travails of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu; his relationship with former President Ibrahim Babangida and former Governor Ikedim Ohakim; the recent statement of former Governor Peter Obi; and allegations that while he governed Abia for eight years, his mother ruled.

APC crisis: Fayose condemns attack on Tinubu

Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, has condemned the attack on Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, saying the “humiliation of Tinubu is as good as (the) humiliation of the Yoruba race.”

The governor said allowing the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress to be embarrassed like past Yoruba leaders would not be in the interest of the race.

Speaking through his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Fayose said, “Even though I am not a member of APC and I will never be, I have elected to stand in defence of the Yoruba nation once again by saying no to the continuous dishonourable treatment being meted to Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, having paid his dues.

“If Tinubu is allowed to be embarrassed and disgraced just the way our past leaders were humiliated by these same elements, the Yoruba nation would have been made to suffer for uprightness.”

The governor condemned the Tuesday sponsored protest against the APC leader at the party’s national secretariat.

Some youth groups had protested in Abuja to condemn Tinubu for demanding the resignation of the APC National Chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun, over his role in the Ondo Governorship primaries that produced former Nigerian Bar Association President, Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN).

Oyegun reportedly overruled the majority decision of the National Working Committee of the APC that voted for cancellation of the primaries.

Fayose said, “It is unfortunate that Tinubu is now being vilified in a party he invested heavily in; and his fellow kinsmen that he brought up politically are part of this conspiracy.

“In their desperation, they have even tried to set him against the Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, by insinuating that he tried to prevent his (Osinbajo) emergence as President Mohammadu Buhari’s running mate. This is sad!

“When other tribes protect their own, it is becoming historically common among the Yoruba to allow themselves to be used against their leaders just for momentary political gains at the expense of the collective interests of the Yoruba nation.

“It should be noted that late Chief Obafemi Awolowo was sent to jail by the conspiracy and collaboration of some Yoruba with the external aggressors.”

Fayose argued that Tinubu is a prominent stakeholder and people should not watch while those he used his own sweat to make conspire with others to humiliate him.

“Most importantly, it is my position that irrespective of political affiliation, no leader of the Yoruba nation must be vilified unduly, especially by the same people who humiliated our past leaders such as Obafemi Awolowo, Adekunle Ajasin, Bola Ige, Bisi Onabanjo, Lateef Jakande, and others.

“To me, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu should not be seen just as an APC leader, but acknowledged as a major stakeholder in the Yoruba nation that we must all protect beyond politics.

”It should be recalled that these were among the issues that I raised when I visited Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State a few months ago on the need to work together beyond party affiliations.

“Here in Yorubaland, it is said that if a household is at peace, it is because the bastard child of the family is yet to attain the age of maturity and those people that Asiwaju Tinubu made, but are now being used against him, should watch it.

“I therefore condemn this conspiracy against Asiwaju Tinubu and I admonish those that are hoping to make political benefits from it to have a rethink.”

The governor, who called for greater unity among the Yoruba, added, “We are first Yoruba before becoming members of political parties. It is my opinion that our leaders must be defended and protected, not-minding the personal gains of today.”

How Ondo APC primary election was ‘rigged’ – Akinyelure

ALL Progressives Congress (APC) National Vice Chairman (Southwest), Chief Pius Akinyelure, has explained how the party’s governorship primary was manipulated, culminating in the submission of Chief Oluwarotimi Akeredolu’s name to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as the party’s candidate.

Akinyelure, in a statement, named the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, National Secretary Mai Mala Buni and the National Organising Secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso, as the persons behind the act.

The statement, which the APC National Vice Chairman said enjoys the support of six National Working Committee (NWC) members, accused the trio of using NWC meetings to usurp powers and unilaterally take decisions that their offices did not give them the power to take.

It emerged that as many as three delegates’ lists for the election were in circulation at some point after the first list was tampered with.

Izunaso, according to the statement, single-handedly removed, added or substituted names on the initial list circulated to the party’s 24 aspirants, leading to the emergence of a second list that was altered in favour of Akeredolu.

His action enjoyed the support of Oyegun and Buni, even when other members of the NWC opposed it because it conflicted with the party’s rules.

Akinyelure’s statement reads: “The National Organising Secretary confirmed to the NWC meeting of Monday September 19, 2016 that he actually received objections from some of the aspirants as to the delegates’ list. Then he unilaterally made the adjustments as he deemed fit.

“It is emphasised that the National Organising Secretary performed these adjustments without recourse or reference to the NWC. The NWC was not appraised of his actions before the primary. The National Organising Secretary then issued this altered list to the Primary Election Committee for use in the conduct of the election.

“This altered list became available to some of the aspirants in the early hours of the election day (September 3, 2016). When the election process was about to commence, Chief Oluwarotimi Akeredolu and three other aspirants protested and raised objections as to the delegates’ list to the election committee.

“However, the committee members could not address it as it was not within their competence to do so. They went ahead with the conduct of the election. After the declaration of the results of the election by the election committee, three aspirants petitioned the Election Appeal Committee, alleging discrepancies and the alteration of the delegates’ list provided to them by the election committee and other irregularities.

“Consequent on the above, the NWC of the party received both the Election Committee and the Election Appeal Committee’s reports, which were tabled at the NWC meeting of Monday, September 19, 2016.”

A decision by the NWC to submit the name of an interim substitute to INEC as place holder until a fresh primary was conducted suffered a setback after Oyegun, Buni and Izunaso “blindsided the other members to submit Akeredolu’s name in spite of a six to five votes in favour of presenting the substitute name”.

Oyegun: I have no rift with Tinubu but I can’t be removed on the pages of newspapers

John Oyegun, national chairman of the All progressives Congress (APC), has reiterated that he has no rift with Bola Tinubu, national leader of the party.

The first signs of cracks in the ruling party became public on September 25 when Tinubu — unhappy with the manner of emergence of Rotimi Akeredolu as candidate of the party for the November 2016 Ondo state governorship election — issued a public statement to demand Oyegun’s resignation.

Akeredolu had been declared winner of the primary on September 3, after he polled a total of 699 votes — ahead of Olusegun Abraham, preferred candidate of Tinubu, who polled 635 votes.

The victory appeared to have suffered a setback when the APC appeal committee recommended the annulment of the primary, citing controversies about the delegates’ list. But after the panel was overruled, Tinubu accused Oyegun of  “safeguarding the fraud by perpetrating a greater fraud, arrogating to himself the right to submit the name of Rotimi Akeredolu to INEC as the candidate of the party”.

On Tuesday when he met with President Muhammadu Buhari at the villa, Oyegun was asked to comment on his rift with Tinubu and whether he would heed his demand to step down from office.

“There is no rift with Asiwaju; we [only] have difference of opinion, difference of perception, and I think that is normal,” Oyegun answered.

“Yes, I agree that the nature of the statement was a bit harsh. The method of getting rid of a national chairman, if that is what I will call it, are spelt out in the constitution; they don’t take place on the pages of newspapers.”

Asked why the national executive committee had not met to deliberate on the issues, he said: “It is proper for them to meet and they will all meet at the appropriate time.”

He denied that he was behind the youth protest at the APC headquarters against alleged highhandedness of Tinubu, saying: “God forbid. Anybody who knows me knows that this is not my style.

“I’m equally shocked and I’m going to look into it and find out why and who is behind it.”

Newspapers pictured the two leaders smiling at each other on Monday when they attended the launch of a book in honour of Buhari, and Oyegun expressed shock that state house correspondents were taken aback by the sight.

“Do they know how far back our association goes? Do they know that we were in the trenches together in the NADECO days?” he queried.

“Why can’t people who have mutual respect for each other have different opinions? All we had was difference of opinions. Yes it was expressed a bit harshly but that doesn’t remove the basic fact that we have worked together for a very long time.”

On the Edo state governorship election, which Godwin Obaseki, his party’s candidate, won, he said: “Well it was a hard-fought election; that was clear.

“Two things really. It was more of a referendum first on the performance of the governor, [and] second on the quality of our candidate and most importantly, given the economic situation it was an opportunity for us to measure the continued popularity and acceptability of our president.

“And what it indicated is that by and large the people of this country still have faith, confidence in the fact that if there is any one man that can fix their situation, it is President Muhammadu Buhari.”

Tinubu calls for return of history to school curriculum

All Progressives Congress, APC, National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has made a strong case for the return of History as a subject in the country’s school curriculum, saying any nation which forgets its past has lost a beacon to guide its actions.

Tinubu’s call came in a short remark after reviewing the book, entitled Muhammadu Buhari: The Challenges of Leadership in Nigeria, at the International Conference Centre, Abuja, yesterday.

He said the removal of History as a subject to be taught in Nigerian schools was disturbing, and lamented that the move would cut off younger generations of Nigerians from learning about the nation’s history and tradition as well as past mistakes.

He said: “If countries, including United States of America, teach their students about their histories, why not Nigeria, with its rich history and tradition? History helps a people to connect with the past and learn from past pitfalls.”

He described the book, written by Professor John N. Paden, which is an authorised biography of President Buhari, as an important one.

According to the APC leader, the book attempts a broad characterisation of the different stages of President Buhari’s life and professional career.

Tinubu said: “The book explores how his professional career, his personal life and prior experiences in government shaped and prepared him for the momentous assignment he now has.

“From the book’s pages, we see a man who has lived his life on assignments that always intersected with vital moments in the nation’s history. He was a man on assignment, when, in the military, he served bravely in a civil war to keep Nigeria united.

“He was on national assignment when he became military head of state in a well-intentioned effort to straighten things out, and set Nigeria on a better path.

“When he ventured into politics and competed for the Presidency, culminating in his 2015 election victory, he was still on assignment, showing that there was no other way for this nation to go but the way of democracy, no matter how difficult the path may be.”

Asiwaju Tinubu was one of the four reviewers of the book. Others were former US Ambassador to Nigeria, Ambassador John Campbell; defunct ANPP Chairman and Science and Technology Minister, Chief Ogbonanya Onu; and former External Affairs Minister, Professor Ibrahim Gambari.

Ondo 2016: Senator Alasoadura Begs Tinuba, Says APC Cannot Win Without Him

As the crisis rocking the All Progressive Congress (APC) continues in Ondo State with one of the front line aspirants at the primary election held September 3rd Chief Olusola Oke decamping to Alliance for Democracy (AD), the senator representing Ondo south senatorial district, Chief Tayo Alasoadura has called on the leader of the party Asiwaju to forgive them for the embarrassment they have caused him.

At a press conference held on Monday at the press centre, Adegbemile in Akure, the Ondo state capital, Alasoadura who had once been quoted to have said “Abolowo Tinubu” meaning we are free from Tinubu shortly after Chief Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) was declared winner said the former governor of Lagos state remains the leader of the party.

According to Alasoadura “reflecting deeply on recent happenings within our party, we will see glaringly the extent to which we have embarrassed ourselves and equally brought our national leaders into ridicule as a result of our action and utterances in pursuance of personal ambitions”.

He said while they will continue to appeal to aggrieved members and aspirants to come together and work for the party, the party does not have more time for internal wrangling.

“I strongly believe that there has not been a better time for the APC in Ondo state to harness its political strength, shift grounds to accommodate the differences of others for the purpose of giving to the people a good government they can trust.

 

 

“Now is the time to sink our differences and move forward as a united family to win in the November governorship election for our party by supporting the candidature of Barrister Oluwarotimi Akeredolu by all true democrats.

“Though some party members might have been aggrieved by the process that led to the emergence of Akeredolu, but we don’t have more time for internal wrangling,’ he said.

Oyegun/Tinubu Feud, Atiku Wades In

Former Vice President and a national leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Atiku Abubakar today waded into the altercation between the national chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and another leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

In a statement issued by his Media Office in Abuja, the former vice president said the leadership of the party cannot make rules only to discard it while the game is on.

He charged “the APC on the promotion of rule of law and due process in the conduct of its affairs


noting that they are germane to the unity and stability of the party”.

According to him, “it is imperative for the national leadership of the party to live by the rules of internal democracy and respect for democratic consensus”, warning that “you cannot break your own rules without creating problems.”

Abubakar spoke in light of the face-off between Messrs Oyegun and Tinubu following the party’s decision to jettison the majority report of its Appeal Committee on the primary election in Ondo state which recommended a cancellation of the exercise that produced Mr Rotimi Akeredolu.

I did not ‘bomb’ Buhari – Tinubu

A National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has denied a media report that he “bombed” President Muhammadu Buhari.

Some posts had on between Monday and Tuesday quoted Tinubu as having taken on Buhari following his face-off with the National Chairman of the APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun.

He was quoted to have made snide remarks about the President, including the fact that Buhari begged him to emerge president.

But in a statement by the Tinubu Media Office, the former Governor of Lagos State was distanced from the story.

The statement said: “In the past 48 hours, we have noticed the churning out of falacious and outright malicious stories in the social media concerning Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

“We want to state that the stories are patently false and we urge unsuspecting Nigerians to ignore the lies being spread and the wicked stories about what Tinubu purportedly said or did. The stories being churned out are being done by some fifth columnists who seek to drive a wedge between these leaders. One of such stories is the one entitled ‘Tinubu Bombs Buhari,’ which is fit only for the trash can and a figment of the writer’s imagination.

“Asiwaju Tinubu remains a staunch APC stalwart and supporter of the APC government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari. Tinubu is preoccupied with assisting to find solutions to the present challenges now confronting us as a nation and nothing will distract him from doing this.”

Tinubu, according to the earlier story, allegedly spoke when he received a segment of APC chieftains from the South West who paid him a solidarity visit late on Monday.

He was quoted to have said: “I regret building APC and giving Buhari a platform to become president.

“We all knew he didn’t merit to be president, but you know how we politicians behave when we are desperate for electoral position; We beg.

“That was how President Buhari always and frequently came to my private house here in Ikoyi with his entourage which included that Nasiru and others.

“At a point, he was practically living in my house, under my roof. The room he was sleeping was just 6-7 steps from my own private room. I was building his confidence because he didn’t have it. He was even scared of Atiku and Rabiu.

“What I ate, he ate. My security was his security because he expressed fears about the security provided by the Jonathan government. He was afraid of Jonathan.

“Now they occupy Aso Rock and they think Asiwaju Tinubu is finished. He is using people I brought from obscurity against me. Now they say my mouth is smelling. They say I’m no longer relevant. The battle line is drawn, I will show them the meaning of Asiwaju.

“I know they have surrounded my house. They are there outside. You can’t see them but I know where they are. I see them, but I am not afraid of them. They know that.”

When asked “what next” by one of the loyalists, who said: “What do we do now?” Tinubu was quoted to have replied: “Don’t worry, just watch. Time will tell, I built this party and I can destroy it, but for now I vow, PDP must win Ondo State.”

Buhari, Tambuwal, APC Governors Move To Quell Tinubu, Oyegun’s Rift

President Muhammadu Buhari has endorsed a move by Governor Aminu Tambuwal and two other governors to settle the dispute between All Progressives Congress, APC national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and national chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oygeun.

A meeting between the peace envoys and the two men will, however, not hold until weekend at the earliest, sources in the party told Vanguard. The delay it was learnt was to enable the party give full attention to the Edo State governorship election holding on Wednesday. Oyegun, Tinubu and Buhari The peace move, it was gathered, was launched by interested party stakeholders who were discomfited with the verbal tirade between the two men following the submission of Chief Rotimi Akeredolu’s name as the party’s governorship candidate ford Ondo State governorship election holding in November.

Tinubu had allegedly backed Dr. Segun Abraham who came second in the primary contest that an internal party appeal panel said should be annulled. Odigie-Oyegun, however, rejected the panel report and forwarded Akeredolu’s name to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC as the party’s candidate and by that brought a stinging rebuke from Tinubu last Sunday.

Vanguard gathered that party stakeholders made contact with Governor Tambuwal and the two other governors who were seen to be sufficiently removed from the different tendencies in the party or seen to be non-partisan in the Ondo matter to lead the peace initiative.

“The crisis was not one that should be allowed to fester and so party insiders thought that Tambuwal and two other governors should try to broker peace. Tinubu is not the type of man that we should allow to leave the party,” the party source told Vanguard. It was upon this that Tambuwal who accepted the offer visited the president to inform him of the peace move and the president it was gathered enthusiastically gave his endorsement. It was, however, reasoned that a meeting with the two men would not hold until after the Edo State governorship election.

APC Crisis: Atiku backs Tinubu

A former Vice President and chieftain of All Progressives Congress, Atiku Abubakar, has charged the party to promote the rule of law and due process in the conduct of its affairs, noting that they were germane to its unity and stability.He gave the charge in a statement on Wednesday against the background of the festering crisis trailing the conduct of the APC gubernatorial primary in Ondo State.

 

A former governor of Lagos State and national leader of the APC, Bola Tinubu, had on Sunday demanded the resignation of the party’s National Chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun, accusing him of favouring an aspirant in the gubernatorial primaries in OndoState and forcing his choice through using a sleight of hand.Mr. Tinubu, who alleged that thenational chairman was perpetrating injustice, said the development showed that there was an evil and regressive forcewithin the APC using Mr. Oyegun to derail the party’s democratic and progressive tenets.

 

The name of a former National President of the Nigeria Bar Association, Rotimi Akeredolu, was forwarded to the Independent National Electoral Commission, as the APC candidate in the November election, despite protest by other aspirants and some members of the party’s national working committee.

 

Mr. Abubakar said it was imperative for the national leadership of the party to live bythe rules of internal democracy and respect for democratic consensus, warning that “you cannot break your own rules without creating problems.”He argued that the party was supposed to be an impartial entity in the arbitration of crisis amongst its members in any given election.

 

He further contended that since the APC found veritable reasonsto review the outcome of the gubernatorial primary election it conducted in Ondo State, and was able to establish valid grounds to cancel that election and call for a fresh one, the decision to deviate from its own resolution is a negation of due process and an unfashionable hollow in democratic best practices.

 

“It was wrong for the APC to have set aside a resolution it had reached aimed at resolving the crisis in our party in Ondo State. It is a recipe for acrimonyand division,” he said.

 

The former vice president also noted that pretending a problem doesn’t exist won’t make that problem go away, and therefore,advised the leadership of the party to do a soul searching and address why this problem arose and escalated.According to Mr. Atiku, the party leadership should always be guided by respect for the rules, fairness, equity, neutrality and respect for democratic consensus.

 

He, however, urged aggrieved members of the APC in the Ondo election to exercise restraint in seeking redress to the crisis. He also urged the leadership of the party to retrace its steps and do the needful to restore confidence among the conflicting parties in the state for the overall benefit of the ruling party.

Oyegun Is A Man of Integrity – APC Leaders

Support for the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Oyegun mounted on Tuesday  as prominent leaders of the party lauded his leadership qualities, describing him as “a man of honour, integrity and dignity”.

In a statement in Abuja by the Chairman of APC United Front, Alhaji Ibrahim Musa, the leaders described as laughable the calls on Oyegun to resign as chairman of the APC by Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu and his co-travellers, saying the world has seen a more progressive party under his dynamic leadership

“Chief Odigie Oyegun is not under the influence of a powerful and sinister arm of government. He will never thwart the will of the people” the leaders said.

They praised the national chairman for his strategic roles in internal party governance and in the development and promulgation of party policy.

Listing intellectual depth, credible track record, futuristic vision and personal integrity as key requirements for a progressive leader, the leaders eulogized Oyegun for giving equal rights and opportunities to members of the APC regardless of status, class and affiliation.

“Leadership goes with creativity, sensitivity, compassion, innovation, courage, vision, character, competence, focus, passion, responsibility, self-discipline, service delivery and a very high dosage of patriotism. Oyegun is an embodiment of transparency and accountability” the statement said.

The leaders commended Oyegun for bringing about a more dynamic way of administering the affairs of the party, sacrificing his comfort to work tirelessly for the party and for allowing the wheel of democracy to run constitutionally.

“As a man with impeccable record in governance and party politics, Chief Odigie Oyegun will never derail from the path of honour”

The leaders, who also thanked Nigerians at home and abroad for the confidence reposed on Oyegun, applauded him for the pragmatic steps taken to address the problems emanating from the party’s primaries in Ondo State.

 “Oyegun is an honest and highly effective leader. He has built a reputation anchored on integrity over the years. He is a fountain of quality advice, inspiration, encouragement and hope. He deserves the biggest thanks for being a team player and using his undivided and thorough leadership style in growing the party” the leaders said.

Identifying his commitment to principle in the practice of politics, the rule of law and the best democratic tradition of fairness as some of the attributes that brought him into collusion with Tinubu and others, the leaders commended him for enriching the development journey of the party and the country.
The leaders described the decision of the Appeal Panel as selfish.

“Oyegun is honest, dedicated, committed, and God fearing. He is a consummate politician, proven administrator and a bridge builder. He is a man of honour, integrity and dignity” the statement said.

 The leaders while describing Oyegun as a true democrat, a hard-working, progressive person and leader with credibility, character and calm advised him to continue with his good work.
They also advised Tinubu not to destroy the party with his selfish and anti-democratic agenda.
The leaders, who also recalled the sterling performance of Oyegun during his days as governor of Edo State, said the current national chairman of APC performed excellently in all the sectors.

Alhaji Taiwo Ganiyu
Media Assistant
08035486101

Tinubu’s Allegations Not True – Odigie-Oyegun

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, has said he will not take issue with the National Leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

He, however, said “most” of the allegations in the media report were “not true,” noting that the party would focus on the September 28 governorship election in Edo State, which he said was his “priority”.

Odigie-Oyegun said this on Monday in Benin in response to the call by the former Lagos State governor for his removal.

According to him, Tinubu is a respected leader in the party, and he will have to consult with other party leaders before making a statement.

He said, “Asiwaju is a well respected leader of our party; so, I cannot be seen speaking evil against him. I have to consult properly with other leaders of the party before we make any definite statement. Again, you know we have a crucial election here in Edo, which is my priority right now.

“We do not want to lose focus and I know Asiwaju also wants us to win because we all have worked hard for this. So, maybe, after the election, if there is need, I will speak. If (there is) no need, I will relax. But all I can say now is that most of the things said in the papers about me are not true.”

Odigie-Oyegun stated that he had always believed in internal democracy and the credibility of primaries, which must be taken seriously.

The former Edo State governor added, “I believe that if primaries of parties are not credible, it may derail any democracy. So, I do not play with these things at all. Everybody knows me and I do not joke with my credibility and I have tried to maintain it.’’

“But maybe after Edo election, after we must have emerged victorious, we may speak on some of the issues raised. So, there is no problem at all.”

It was learnt that Odigie-Oyegun came under serious pressure on Monday not to respond to Tinubu’s call on him to resign as the APC national chairman.

The outburst of Tinubu was said to have confirmed the internal wrangling in the ruling party.

However, Odigie-Oyegun, who was said to have been seriously jolted by Tinubu’s accusation, was said to have been prevailed on by some ministers and governors from the APC not to respond to Tinubu’s attack.

I Will Not Trade Words With Tinubu Because I Respect Him – Oyegun

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie-Oyegun said monday that he would not be drawn into a war of words with one of the National Leaders of the party, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, over the allegations levelled against him by the latter on the Ondo State governorship primary until after the governorship election in Edo State.

Tinubu on Sunday took a swipe at Oyegun over the outcome of the Ondo State governorship primary of the APC, declaring that the chairman must step down for rejecting the report of the Appeal Panel set up by the party to review the outcome of the primary in the state and instead submitted the name of Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) as the governorship candidate of the party to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Oyegun who spoke in Benin City, the Edo State capital, said: “Asiwaju is a well respected leader of the APC and as such, I cannot be heard speaking evil against him,” adding that he had to consult properly with other leaders of the party before making any definite statement because “you know we have a crucial election here in Edo which is my priority right now”.

According to Oyegun, “I don’t want to lose focus and I know Asiwaju also wants us to win because we all worked hard for this. So may be after the election if there is need, I will speak if there is no need, I will relax.

“But all I can say now is that most of the things said in the papers about me are not true. I have always believed in internal democracy, that the credibility of primary must be taken seriously.”

He added: “I believe that if the primaries of parties are not credible, it may derail any democracy, so I don’t play with these things at all. Everybody knows me and I don’t joke with my credibility and I have tried to maintain it.

“Like I said, Asiwaju is our leader and we all hold him in high esteem, so I will never join issues with him.

“But may be after the Edo elections, after we must have emerged victorious, we may speak on some of the issues raised. So there is no problem at all.

Bola Tinubu Demands John Odigie-Oyegun’s Resignation Over Ondo APC Governorship Primaries

National Leader of APC, Bola Tinubu, has reportedly asked for the immediate resignation of the party’s National Chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun. According to Vanguard, Tinubu made the demand in a stinking communiqué sent to Oyegun and other party chieftains.

The former Lagos state governor in the letter accused Oyegun of interfering and sabotaging the will of democracy in Ondo State by overriding the decision of the party’s appeal panel that asked for a fresh governorship primary following investigations that showed that the delegates’ list used had been tampered with.
 He alleged that APC was now under threat of being suffocated by anti-democratic forces pretending
to be progressives, His communique reads

“The APC, a party born of the quest for democratic good governance, is under critical threat by those who managed to be in the party but never of it. From the party’s inception, the principles of democratic fairness and justice were to guide APC internal deliberations. Party founders realized that only by intramural fair dealing could the party remain faithful to the progressive ideals that we presented to the Nigerian electorate as our governing creed. If the party could not justly govern itself, it would find it difficult to establish and maintain just government throughout the nation. In essence, the party was the embodiment of a democratic promise made between its members as well as a democratic vow made to the public. Evidently, some errant members believe promises and vows are mere words to be easily spoken and more easily broken.

Chairman John Oyegun has breached these good pledges in a most overt and brazen display. In doing so, Oyegun has dealt a heavy blow to the very party he professes to lead. It is an awful parent who suffocates his own child for the sake of a few naira. The party was supposed to buttress APC members elected to government at all levels. Because of Oyegun’s conduct of our affairs, the party is rapidly becoming an albatross to those it was meant to help. Oyegun’s comportment regarding the Ondo State primary will become the textbook definition of political treachery and malfeasance of the basest order. In early September, the state primary was held. A purported winner was named. Having faith in the ways of the party, Tinubu publicly accepted what he assumed to be a verdict honestly derived. As a democrat, one must face the possibility of defeat and accept such as outcome with as much grace as one would embrace victory. One of the few bright spots during the conduct of the primaries was Jigawa Governor, Alhaji Mohammed Badaru Abubakar. He chaired the primary convention with decorum and impartiality. He was unaware that a tampered list had been slipped into the process. Indeed within hours of the announcement, news began to filter in that gravely disturbed me. Credible allegations of fraud troubled the waters. The delegate list had been materially altered by someone in a strategic position to so do. The names of over 150 valid delegates were excised to make room for an equal number of impostors. This was not a clerical error. The alteration was wilfully executed that the primary would be directed toward a chosen end that bore nothing in common with the will of most state party members. A cunning few had tried to deceive the many into believing they were outnumbered. A conspiracy to steal the Ondo primary had been uncovered. Fortunately, the grand deception afoot had been unable to cover its tracks fast enough. Truth began to cry for justice. “Several candidates filed petitions contesting the result. The party established an investigative board to review the evidence.

In a two to one decision, the panel found the delegate roster had suffered tampering. The panel recommended that a new primary should be held using the valid delegate list. This recommendation was tabled before the National Working Committee (NWC). After many hours of deliberations spanning several days, a final vote was held by the NWC. Before hand, NWC members agreed that the decision of the majority would become the stance of the party. Such is the way of democracy. The NWC voted six against five to cancel the fraudulent results and hold an honest primary. For a moment, it seemed the party would restore its integrity by giving democracy a chance.

However, those who sought to scam an entire state would not let the vote of 11 people spoil their enterprise. After the NWC vote, a noticeably agitated Chairman Oyegun proposed the NWC engage in prayer before concluding the meeting. Adhering to this chairman’s request, NWC members began to pray. Seeing that the others had taken his bait, Oyegun used the prayerful interlude to secretly excuse himself from the meeting. Contravening the NWC decision and in violation of all rules of fundamental decency, Oyegun decided to safeguard the fraud done in Ondo by perpetrating a greater fraud. Oyegun arrogated to himself the right to submit the name of Rotimi Akeredolu to INEC as the candidate of the party. Truth has finally come to light. There exists a regressive element in the party that cares nothing for the progressive ideas upon which this party was founded. They joined the APC because it was the best ride available at the time. Now they want to guide the party into the ditch. They want to turn the party into a soulless entity incapable of doing good, just like they are. When such a person tastes power, they shed all good restraint.


They come to abuse the trust given them as if they are the owners of that trust and not its mere custodians. These people did little to build the party but now will do much to wreck it. Our party was to stand for change. Oyegun and his fellows seem to be on a different wave length. They are the cohort of Unchange.

The APC wants to guide Nigeria into a better tomorrow. Oyegun and the cohort of unchange want to pull Nigeria back into the past where rigging and vote stealing were the old and new testaments of politics. They want the people to think that there is no alternative to their reactionary system of skewed politics and imperious government. Thus, they seek to turn the APC into a factory of the very political malpractices the people soundly rejected in the past election. To choke the APC in this manner is to kill the chance for progressive reform for the foreseeable future. Much more than the Ondo primary is at stake. Oyegun has revealed his team’s game plan: It is the destruction of progressive politics and governance on behalf of the people. As party chairman, Oyegun was supposed to protect our internal processes and be an impartial arbiter, a person in whom all had confidence. Instead, he donned the garment of a confident man, duping the NWC, the party, and INEC in one fell blow. He has robbed APC members in Ondo State of the chance to pick in a fair manner who they believe is the best candidate. As such, he has broken faith with the party and probably has broken a few laws. The consequences of what he has done are more expansive than a man of his scope can fathom,” Tinubu said as he said that Oyegun must have been under some major sinister influence as to allow what happened. “With strong expectation, we await a response to Oyegun’s wrongdoing from those who clamored so long and loudly about Tinubu’s alleged role in the Ondo primary. Leading into the primary, a prominent lawyer from Ondo published lengthy missives alleging that Tinubu was a malicious hand intent on rigging the primary. His letters spoke of his great love for democracy and justice. Though Oyegun has assaulted democracy in a most public and vulgar way, this lawyer’s prolific pen will remain stilled. He dare not publish a word about this travesty. His silence will be sign for all who care to decipher its meaning. The plan was to point the accusing finger at Tinubu. With everyone focused on Tinubu, they would have distracted all attention from the heist they had set in motion. As fate would have it, the trickery they hoped to conduct in the shadows has come to light. Those who so actively attributed imaginary wrong to Tinubu now stand dumb and mute in the face of confirmed impropriety. They remain silent for reasons they cannot divulge.

Oyegun and his ilk turn out to be gangsters adorned in the tunic of party authority. Oyegun has engaged in the strange math where five is greater than six. This smacks of how the PDP conducted its affairs and orchestrated its own downfall. Tinubu disparaged such malpractice when it was not in his party. Tinubu surely disowns it now that it has invaded the party he helped bring to fruition. Tinubu has consciously refused to hold any official position with the party to avoid the perception that he was trying to control all and sundry. Tinubu has even kept his peace for some time despite many things that happened within the party that were not quite right. He exercised this forbearance because the party is young. A collective endeavor cannot avoid the mistakes and errors of organizational newness and evolution. Yet, the wrongs Oyegun committed had nothing to do with newness or the mistakes occasioned by the path of reform. His actions are in the nature of the old wrongs that have afflicted our national politics much too long. If Oyegun wants to walk backward into the past, he has every right to it. However, he has no right to drag the party or any of us with him. Against our choosing. The informal title of national leader of the party was given to Tinubu at the onset which he accepted it as a sign from those who wished to recognize my contributions to the party’s formation. It is an honorific title which he has been proud to wear until today. I would rather not have any title yet reside in a party that honors democracy than hold a title in a party that says it honors me but that treats justice with indecency. I find greater honour and comfort where democracy and fairness are found and respected. Oyegun has done the irredeemable. His coup is an insult to party and to patriot, to reason and to the reform agenda of this government. To remain silent would be to admit the defeat of the reform and progressive change many have labored to bring forth.

While the forces resistant to change and reform are strong, Tinubu dare not submit to them. Tinubu encourages all party members not to submit to them. If we acquiesce in this wrong, the one greater than this shall cascade upon us. “Oyegun’s transgressions are a warning. He is but the mercenary of forces that seek to return the nation to the old ways. If they get away with this infraction, no telling what or whom they will undermine tomorrow. Much is at stake. On the chopping block, lies the future of the political party in which the majority of voters had placed their confidence. To rescue the party, Oyegun must go. He has shown that he and democratic fair play cannot exist in the same party at the same time. If Tinubu is to choose between John Oyegun and progress toward a better Nigeria, the choice has already been made. For those who care about the party, who care about Nigeria and its chance for a better tomorrow, now is the time to stand against this brewing evil before it grows to encompass all we have built and all we hold dear.”

 

Lagos is stable because of solid foundation – Tinubu

A former Lagos State Governor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said that the state has political and economic stability because of a solid foundation.

He told reporters after observing the Eid prayers at Dodan Barracks praying ground in Lagos, that lack of solid foundation contributed to the nation’s current economic situation.

He said economic restrategising and replanning were necessary to achieve sustainable national prosperity.

“The political and economic stability we are enjoying in Lagos today is as a result of a solid foundation. Without a good and solid foundation, we cannot achieve a sustainable economic prosperity.”

On the hardship in the country he said: “We need to re-strategise and re-plan, but that planning period is always a very difficult period in any family, organisation and nation.

“That is what we are experiencing now, but it is for a better and stronger future.”

Lagos State Deputy Governor Mrs Idiat Adebule urged Nigerians to uphold the significance of Eid-el-Kabir, total trust and obedience to God, to accelerate the pace of economic recovery.

Adebule also urged them to celebrate peacefully and reach out to the less-privileged among them.

“We can only enjoy Allah’s favour when we totally trust and obey His will. He is our creator and He knows what is best for us as individuals and as a nation,” Adebule said.

House of Representatives Leader Femi Gbajabiamila, urged Nigerians to be patient and not lose hope.

Gbajabiamila said President Muhammadu Buhari was making efforts to reform the economy.

“I urge us to be prayerful and by God’s grace we shall get better and stronger as a nation”’ he said.

Chief Imam of Lagos Garuba Akinola-Ibrahim called for greater sacrifice from the government and citizens to survive the recession

“In the spirit of Eid-el Kabir, we urge the government to double up efforts to avoid our situation from getting to a critical stage which can rub off negatively on all government’s achievements so far,” he said.

“I also urge the citizens to exercise patience and be prayerful in this trying period.”

Commissioner of Police, Fatai Owoseni called for reflection on the significance of Eid-el Kabir and modest celebration to reduce crime.

Owoseni advised residents to be security conscious and cooperate with security agents to ensure a crime-free celebration.

Photos: Ooni Of Ife, Atiku, Ambode Others Grace Wedding Of Tinubu’s Son

Son of the National Leader, All Progresives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, Seyi and his fiancée Layal on Tuesday had their court wedding and the engagement party is ongoing at the palace of the Oba of Lagos. The event was highly attended by eminent Nigerians. Among those who graced  the event are, Alaafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi III, former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Ooni of Ife Oba Ogunwusi and his wife Wuraola, Governor of Lagos state Akinwunmi Ambode, Sen. Gbenga Ashafa etc…See photos

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tinubu Doles Out N75m For Protest Against Me- Melaye

Senator representing Kogi West Senatorial District, Sen. Dino Melaye has posted on his Facebook page, an allegation accusing Senator Oluremi Tinubu, who represents Lagos Central Senatorial District, of doling out N75 million to women activists to protest against him tomorrow (Wednesday), in Abuja.

Recall that Senator Tinubu, yesterday, wrote to the acting Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Ibrahim Idris, seeking protection from attack by Melaye, following a raging war of words between both Senators, since last week.

In the Facebook post titled: ‘Tinubu plans anti-Melaye protests in Abuja, splashes N75m on Kemi Nelson, others,’ Melaye quoted one Professor Taibat Majekodunmi, National President of the Committee for the Defence of Women’s Rights (CDWR) as saying:

“We have it on good authority that N75 million has been released by Senator Oluremi Tinubu to Kemi Nelson through Tinubu’s sister called Funlola. The money is to organise a protest in Abuja on Wednesday against the chairman, Senate Committee on the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Dino Melaye, with 1,000 protesters from Lagos.

“The protesters have booked for 300 rooms in some in hotels in Abuja. Why did she not organise a protest against the hardship of Nigerian women and widows. As we speak, Alade market in Ogba area of Lagos has been destroyed and all the women rendered shopless. Oluremi Tinubu did not organise protest about that.

“Against the provisions of the constitution of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Kemi Nelson doubles at the State APC Women leader in Lagos and also the zonal women leader of APC in the South West. This will show her greediness and why the Tinubu dynasty has taken over Lagos.

“Women were killed in Kano and Abuja and Mrs. Tinubu is the chairman, Senate Committee on Women Affairs. She did not organise protest over these killings. Mrs. Tinubu has not protested against the skyrocketed price of tomatoes in the market. In the same vein, kerosene is now over N200 per litre and she didn’t organised any protest to that effect.

“Instead, she has taken advantage of the prevailing poverty in the land to hire hungry women in the land to partake in an unproductive protest against Dino Melaye. Women like Funmilayo Ransome Kuti, Hajiya Gambosa Sawaba, Sarah Jubril, fought for woman race without attacking any man. Oluremi Tinubu should emulate the likes of Margaret Thatcher, Indira Ghandhi, Benazir Bhutto and our own dear Dora Akunyili.

“You can imagine what N75 million will do in the lives of widows and hungry Nigerian women. We dare Mrs. Tinubu to go ahead with her planned N75 million protest in Abuja. We will also mobilise Nigerian women against this ostentatious display of wealth while the average Nigerian women wallow in abject poverty.”

“The protesters have already stormed Abuja and have booked for 300 rooms in many hotels,” alleges the statement.

Credit: Vanguard

Saraki, Dogara, Tinubu Task Muslims

Senate President,  Bukola Saraki, has urged Muslims to use this year’s Ramadan fast to pray for peace, security and God’s intervention in tackling the myriad of socio-economic challenges confronting the nation.
In a statement to mark the commencement of this year’s Ramadan fast signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity,  Yusuph Olaniyonu, Saraki thanked God for the grace to participate in another holy obligation.

Speaker of the House of Representatives Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, yesterday appealed to Muslims to use the holy month of Ramadan to offer special prayers for Nigeria and her leaders at all levels.
Dogara, who described the month as a special one which Muslims around the world focus on prayer, fasting, giving out charity and religious devotion, said Nigeria ought not be left out in this period of prayers.
He said through a statement by his spokesman, Turaki Hassan in Abuja that the country was in dire need of special prayers in view of the present state of the economy and the security situation in the country.

Credit: PremiumTimes

I Will Defend Democracy For Life – Tinubu

The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said he will devote the rest of his life to the defence of democracy in Nigeria.

He said Nigeria must keep perfecting its democracy despite the daunting challenges.

The former governor of Lagos State said this in a statement, titled, “We must not take our democracy for granted,” on Sunday.

According to him, the country needed an unrivalled fiscal policy to weather the economic storm.

Tinubu said those that looted the national treasury in the last administration were trying to use the backdoor to continue their corrupt acts.

He said the country could not afford to fall into their deceit in order not to forfeit the nation’s future.

He said, “I have devoted most of my life to the struggle for Nigerian democracy. I would be more than happy to devote the rest of my days so that democracy can thrive and erase the unjust imbalances that have for too long been a heavy surcharge against the lives of most of our people.

“A great historic push and effort are mandated. Change takes boldness, perseverance and moral fortitude; profound change requires even more so. The task is hard but I neither fret nor worry. In my heart, I am comforted by the knowledge that we are so much better and stronger than the obstacle before us. We shall and must overcome it because it is in our nature and it is for our best destiny to do so.”

The APC chieftain said for the Federal Government to accomplish its economic rescue plan, it must dedicate unprecedented amounts for productive expenditure in the areas of transportation infrastructure, power generation, food security and job creation.

The statement partly read, “We have entered a period of stagflation where recession or shrinkage of the economy is accompanied by higher prices. Unfortunately, if we try to fight both at the same time, we fight neither effectively. Given the rate of joblessness and poverty, it is more fitting to fight recession at this point than to focus on inflation.

“We can endure a bit more inflation if it means more jobs and greater aggregate demand that can develop the velocity needed to free the economy of recession’s gravitational pull. We must resist recession; it is harder to shake off once it takes grip of an economy. Restructuring our economy is the most complex challenge before us. On this so much depends. We all must contribute if we are to win.”

Credit: Punch

Michael O. Ogunjobi: This Bitter Change

A cursory look at the state of our polity barely a year after the ‘Change’ revolution ushered in by the 2015 General Elections brings to the fore the tortuous path trodden, like a ‘Long Walk To Freedom’. The plight of the average Nigerian can be best captured in these lines of the late renowned poet Kofi Awoonor, a casualty of the terrorist attack by al-Shabaab militants at the Westgate Shopping Mall in Nairobi, Kenya on September 21st, 2013 in his poem- ‘Songs of Sorrow’-

‘My people, I have been somewhere

If I turn here, the rain beats me

If I turn there the sun burns me

The firewood of this world

Is for only those who can take heart

That is why not all can gather it.

The world is not good for anybody

But you are so happy with your fate;

Alas! The travelers are back

All covered with debt.’

Despite hallowed economic and political problems in our fatherland, emphasis has to be laid on the impact on the average Nigerian.  The hash tag #Bringbackourcorruption is already trending on social media platforms. We do not need to order for copies of- “A Commonsense Revolution” by Senator Ben Murray-Bruce from USA to decipher that times are hard. Obviously, our law makers don’t feel the heat since they can afford exotic cars which cannot be used in their constituencies due to the deplorable state of roads.

Education has lost its ‘nullus secondus’ status to entrepreneurship and skills acquisition. University graduates now make life unbearable for Secondary School Certificate Examination holders, taking all available employment opportunities meant for the latter, despite impressive class of degrees. Even National Youth Service Corps is hapless trying to convince State Governors on the need to pay up debts owed corps members. These enthusiastic youths are awakened, post their aluta years having scaled through the hurdle of Academic Staff Union of Universities’ incessant strikes, the only bane they know, to confront the reality of being rejected at the Place of Primary Assignment where they are meant to engage in their mandatory one year youth service. Having read the tongue-in-cheek love notes of the ruling party- All Progressives Congress and the litany of ‘what they cannot do’ incorporated in their manifesto, the hope of these youths for a stipend of #5,000(Five Thousand Naira) to make up for NYSC monthly allowance of #19,800(Nineteen Thousand, Eight Hundred Naira) which ceases upon completion of youth service had only recently been truncated. Yet their parents are expecting to repay debts incurred during their schooling years when they eventually get the ‘white collar jobs’(sic) now turn mirage.

Of course, they hope to teach their children the nursery rhyme- ‘On My Honour/ As A Scholar/ I Will Do My Best…’. Indeed, they are heroes, turn unsung ‘awaiting future leaders’. Tomorrow seem non-forthcoming. Even to afford garri, sachet water, and kerosene to prepare eba have become ‘mission impossible’, how much more pay utility bills or buy fuel for ‘I beta pass my neighbour generator’. The barometer with which we measure the quality and quantity of happiness of the average Nigerian is nothing but the ‘e go beta’ idiosyncrasy, due to our religious dispositions. Marriages are no longer celebrated, due to bride price palava, yet there are numerous breakups. Criminal acts like rape, kidnapping, ritual killing, amongst others are on the increase.

With numerous virus making waves globally, our medical doctors are groaning. Who bears the brunt- the masses dying of malaria or their leaders going abroad for medical checkup? Our idle youths have become the devil’s entrepreneurs. Our streets are now flooded with depressed souls adopting various strategies to beg, ranging from ‘selling Jesus’; some clad in white asking that you honour Osun, the Yoruba Goddess of River with alms; some unemployed yet sharing fliers of ‘Job Vacancies’; some harassing you with their pitiful look of ‘who will buy my wares?’.

Of note, the least migraine the average Nigerian hopes not to bother about at this stage is an outbreak of epidemics. Sunday July 20, 2014 was the day the nation’s Ebola patient “zero”, or index (first) case – the late Liberian-American, Patrick Sawyer, imported the Ebola virus into Nigeria.
The aftermath of this was the emergence of a heroine, Late Dr. (Mrs.) Ameyo Stella Adadevoh. There is the cliché- “what goes around comes around”. Most times, this has a negative connotation. In the advent of alien ailments like zika virus, laser fever, ebola, and with the hope that the list is not endless, trending globally, no doubt HIV/AIDS will feel slighted, bemoaning its ill fate. There is no gainsaying that our local herbs have so far not led up to expectations. Or rather, we have forsaken the less trodden path of our ancestors.

Of course, we live in an e-world. Our e-mentality condemns our forebears’ ‘once upon a time’ crude ways of doing things. The outcome is that today, different continents of the world now confront peculiar calamities. Third world countries are groaning over sit tight syndrome of political office holders, corruption as canker worm to development, poverty, insurgency, unemployment, underemployment etc. Whereas the ‘G this and that’ are groaning with nuclear weapons rivalry, curtailing immigration, ammunition control, drug abuse, natural disasters, amongst others. Different strokes for different folks indeed! While the latter relish their domineering status, the former is united in resisting suppression.

Despite these variant priorities, mankind is unanimous in this trying moment to combat the menace of alien epidemics which is the prime problem bedeviling global serenity. Concerted efforts are being made by various nations of the world and international organizations. Our fatherland must not be found wanting!

Today, the many sins of Former President Goodluck Jonathan which is being propagated by the various modules of the media like the ‘Good News’, confirms the saying that the fulcrum of greatness is acceding that ‘the buck stops with the leader’. The ruling party have remarkably polluted the minds of the populace by emphasizing shortfalls of their predecessor, but unmindful of the trite point that ‘power does not last forever!’. This has raised a curtain on the culture of ‘yellow journalism’, where the media traffic in salacious fare in an effort to gain readers.

No doubt, there are so many questions begging for answers. Things cannot continue this way, while we claim to channel all our energy towards combatting corruption. Can we continue to suppress ethnic agitations in this tense state of affairs? It seems impossible just as telling a devout mother to dispose the remnant garri she has been preserving for supper simply because she saw a rat drawing ‘X AND O lines’ on same!

Having been compelled by fate to thread the path of ‘Change’ with the All Progressive Congress, how long can we rest on the thin rope of hope, awaiting when the average Nigerian will say, in the words of the poet, ROBERT FROST in ‘THE ROAD NOT TAKEN’– “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—/I took the one less traveled by,/And that has made all the difference”?

The Federal Government of Nigeria must vigorously pursue policies aimed at liberalization of the Nigerian Economy with alacrity. Nigeria operates a federal system of government, and each tier of government adopts its own fiscal policy without proper coordination. Consequently, resources are not properly coordinated and purposefully deployed to projects with specific macro-economic goals, resulting in macroeconomic instability. There is need for strong legal sanctions where money is being spent outside the purpose it is appropriated for. The moral tone of the society must also be raised by all and sundry. Concerted efforts should be made to remove socio-economic injustices, imbalances and inequities in the society, alleviate the suffering of the people and provide job opportunities for the right atmosphere for genuine business and investment to thrive. A re-orientation in our sense of values is very necessary, starting from the highest echelons of society downwards. However, all of these will make no sense to the average Nigerian until he/she can afford the basic necessities of life.

*Michael O. Ogunjobi writes from Lagos.

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Adedayo Osho: Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; Your Role in Nigeria’s Revival

Can we hope that with a reduction of about 17 billion naira from 6.077 trillion naira initially tendered, the passage of N6.060tn, being budget for 2016 will improve the lives of Nigerians under the Buhari presidency? In all sense of honesty, every single socio-economic development indicator is unfavourable to our ‘average citizens’ since past ten months. Only those who lie for a living would brand this proclaimed ‘Change’ as currently effective. And although sermons were preached upon APC ascension of how change usually takes time to materialise especially in fractured societies, the common man cannot continue to wallow in abject poverty while we pretend as if all is moving fine. For instance, it is pathetic seeing a pregnant woman of at least, 6 months, doing vehicle windscreen cleaning job in traffic – predominantly done by young boys in Lagos.

This is where the issue of ballooning wealth gap suffice. With a tiny percentage {very few} elites speedily climbing the ladder of abundant prosperity, their counterpart lower citizens find it difficult to attain middle class. A flurry of revelations even indicates the country’s elites are at no time interested in helping promising and intelligent children of the common man. They are full aware that by so doing, their children, majority of them spoiled brats will face future stiff competition in this brilliant and ambitious folks who possess high degree of civility.

Whatever article, column or open letter, the kind commonly written to President Muhammadu Buhari on state of the nation’s economy and politics should also be addressed to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. Since the latter is APC’s national leader, with such hierarchical ranking and stature in the party making him the proverbial ‘Power behind the Throne’ in the game of politics. His position on topical national issues carry weight and seem to be in a better position to advise the president, more than any appointed official, however highly placed.

Jagaban should as a matter of urgency remind these selfish politicians that APC is a party which has ‘Left of the Center’ as its ideology. Of course, no single party can be traced to any distinct political ideology in Nigeria, the Broom party have little time within the ambience of grace to prove the promised Change will be delivered to even the most hitherto wretched rural dweller: this in itself is the goal of any party which embraced social welfare, limitless opportunity for individual enhancement and progressive national development as it claimed during campaign.

It is increasingly clear at this moment that Nigerians need an efficient government which can lift millions out of sufferings.

– Adedayo Osho

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Hold PDP Responsible For Continuous Fuel Scarcity – Tinubu Tells Nigerians

Following the lingering fuel scarcity that has continued to ravage the nation, the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has asked Nigerians to hold the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, responsible.

 

Tinubu while addressing newsmen in Lagos at the weekend said PDP destroyed Nigeria during its 16-year rule by refusing to pursue what was necessary for the growth and development of the country.

 

He said, “We want to stay focused and redirect Nigeria. We want to reverse the decay of 16 years. We are hearing comments from the PDP left and right. We are saying we want to clear the mess they created. For 16 good years, the PDP destroyed the country. We should not be lamenting over petrol queues today if they had seen what was necessary and done what was necessary for this country.
“We can’t be emotional and live in self-denial. They should have done the Awolowo Road and the Lagos/Ibadan Expressway. If they put priority on our railroad, if they put priority on electricity generation and distribution, we will not be in this mess today.”

 

The former Lagos State Governor, who also dismissed the claim that Nigerians were dissatisfied with the current APC-led Federal Government, noted that people only wanted to see the direction of the government’s economic policy.

 

“Nigerians are not impatient with the APC government; they just want to see the direction of the economic policy and want to be certain of the future. They want to be assured that we will not continue the leaderless, directionless and hopelessness of the past 16 years.

 

“The fact is that Nigerians do not want the importation of toothpicks to continue, we can make toothpicks out of our bamboo trees. Nigeria does not want to import rice or plastic. Nigeria does not want to continue in the direction of the past 16 years. What did they leave behind in our account?

 

Why should certain things that we bring into this country become our priority? Why do we have to import those things that we can produce? The country needs surgical operation in the hands of a very honest Nigerian,” Tinubu said.

Credit : Daily Post

Nigerians Are Presently Paying For The Sins Of PDP – Tinubu, S-East APC

Nigerians are paying part of the sins of the 16-year rule of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, through the lingering fuel crisis in the country, All Progressives Congress, APC, national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, said yesterday. Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu Tinubu’s assertion on the fringes of a reconciliation meeting of APC South-West leaders at the residence of Aremo Segun Osoba, was also echoed by the APC South-East caucus at an interactive meeting at Egede, Udi Local Government Area of Enugu State. Tinubu said: “For 16 good years, PDP destroyed the country. We should not be lamenting about petroleum queues today if they had seen what is necessary and done what is necessary for this country. “We can’t be emotional and in self denial.

If they had done Awolowo Road, if they had done Lagos/Ibadan Expressway, if they put priority on our rails, if they put priority on electricity generation and distribution, we will not be in this mess that we are today. “Nigerians are impatient for what? I research Nigeria,they just want to see the direction of the economic policy and want to be certain of the future that we will not continue in the direction of leaderless, directionless and hopelessness of the past 16 years.”

One year not enough to rectify the rot Spokesman of the South-East caucus, Mr. Osita Okechukwu, who echoed the point also at an interactive meeting said:  “We are paying, unfortunately, for the sins of PDP. I remember vividly in 2010, when Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, then Finance Minister and Coordinator of the Economy, announced to the whole world the award of $23 billion Greenfield Refineries, to a Chinese company. “The refineries were to be located at Bayelsa, Lagos and Kogi states. There was jubilation nationwide. If they had completed the refineries, today we won’t be talking of scarcity or astronomical increase in fuel pump price.

They squandered the money and put Nigerians in harm’s way.” While assuring that the problems were being fixed Okechukwu, however, said one year was not enough for the administration to rectify the rot. Among those present at the interactive session were Mrs. Juliet Ibekaku, Deputy Governorship candidate of APC, Philip Eze, senatorial candidate of the party, local government and Ward chairmen.

Challenged that Nigerians were running out of patience with the new administration, Okechukwu said:  “We can’t stop pointing out the unconscionable wreckage the PDP unleashed on our economy in the last 16 years. The wreckage keeps popping up at each junction, despite the efforts being made to suppress it.”

Buhari Showers Praises On Tinubu At 64

As the national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola TInubu marks his 64th birthday, tomorrow, Tuesday, March 29, 2016, President Muhammadu Buhari has praised his (Tinubu) doggedness, forthrightness, generosity and diligence.

In his birthday message to Tinubu, President Buhari remarked that Tinubu’s rising political profile since he was elected a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in 1992 “is a testimony to his forthrightness, diligence and doggedness, the same qualities that had endeared him to the electorate and given him all-round success as a private sector worker, a businessman and two-term Governor of Lagos State.”

Buhari also commended Tinubu’s visionary leadership style, especially for “creating a formidable opposition party in Nigeria that worked vigorously within a short period to oust a party that had been in power for 16 years”.

The President assured Tinubu that his patriotism and commitment to democracy and good governance, and his generous spirit will always be remembered and appreciated by generations of Nigerians. He prayed that the Almighty God will grant the Asiwaju long life, good health, wisdom and prosperity as he steadfastly supports efforts to promote the development of Nigeria.

Credit: Vangaurd

Performance: Oyegun, APC Beg Nigerians For More Time

National chairman of All Progressives Congress, APC, Chief John Oyegun has said he was unaware of any threat against his continued stay as chairman of the party. Oyegun spoke at the end of a caucus meeting involving president Mohammadu Buhari, the president of the senate, Bukola Saraki, Party’s former and serving governors, senators amongst others held at the presidential Villa Abuja late Tuesday night.

The chairman who admitted reading about the speculation of his imminent removal from office however said it was one of such challenges inherent in the status. He said: “I am not aware that my office is under threat. I led the party to the State House. It amazes me, occasionally it annoys me. That is one of the things you have to endure when you are in a position like mine. “We discussed all the challenges that have occurred since the elections. And we decided on the way forward.” Conscious of the crisis in his party, Oyegun also revealed that a committee has been set up to resolve the crisis. “It was a very serious meeting that discussed serious issues that have to do with the progress of the party.

“Skirmishes among party members are normal. We have set up a committee that is looking into all those issues and will resolve those issues”, he said. Speaking on the performance of his party’s government almost one year after taking over power, the national chairman pleaded for time on the part of Nigerians. He said that the government would come on full stream when the 2016 budget is passed.

“Basically, we are expecting the budget to be out, and once that is done, implementation of our policies will start. “That is what we will use to deliver on our promises to the people. So we are waiting. “Don’t say one year into the present administration, count this year because this is the year we are presenting our budget and implementation will start.” Asked why the recovered loot was yet to be ploughed back into the economy by the government, the chairman said “We don’t just recover money and spend it. We recover money and it will go into revenue. It will be deployed appropriately with the normal legislative approach”.

British High Commissioner to Nigeria Meets With Bola Tinubu, Mike Adenuga & Aliko Dangote

The British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Paul Arkwright met with the national leader of the All Progressives Congress(APC) Chief Bola Tinubu, Globacom Chairman, Chief Mike Adenuga and Chairman of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote. Mr. Arkwright who shared the photos on his official twitter account said he had interesting discussions with the men on UK-Nigeria affairs and business opportunities. See more photos below…

Osinbajo, Tinubu, Atiku, Saraki, Others In Close Door Meeting

Senior leaders of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, are currently meeting with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

The meeting is taking place at the presidential villa.

Those in attendance include Senate President Bukola Saraki, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar; former Lagos State governor, Bola Tinubu; APC national chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun; Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yusuf Lasun; Senate Leader, Ali Ndume; Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal; and a former interim chairman of the party, Bisi Akande, among others.

The meeting is behind closed doors, and its agenda was not immediately clear.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Tinubu Withdraws Suit Against AIT After Apology For Embarrassing Documentary

The African Independent Television has apologized to Bola Tinubu, a national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress, for a documentary it aired before last year’s general election.

In a letter of apology tendered before a Lagos High Court on Friday, Daar Communications, the owners of the TV station, said they hold Mr. Tinubu in high esteem.

“Daar Communications Plc acknowledges that Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is an outstanding political leader of unblemished character and integrity, as well as a leading public figure and opinion-moulder, who has made and continues to make immense contributions to the progress and development of the nation in general and Lagos State in particular,” read the letter.

“Daar Communications Plc admits that in airing the said documentary, it had no intention, whatsoever, to embarrass or diminish the high reputation of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu which it respects and attests to.”

The apology came amid an ongoing Economic and Financial Crimes Commission investigation of alleged illegal receipt of N2.1 billion by Raymond Dokpesi, the owner of AIT.

The TV station had begun airing a documentary on March 1st last year titled, “Unmasking the Real Tinubu: The Lion of Bourdillon, showcasing various properties and companies across Lagos purportedly owned by Mr. Tinubu, described as “Nigeria’s biggest landlord”.

The documentary also claimed that Mr. Tinubu was “charged with narcotics” in 1993 in the United States.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Tinubu Accuses PDP Members Of Trying To Create A Feud Between Him And Buhari

APC National leader, Bola Tinubu, has accused PDP members of the trying to create a feud between him and President Buhari. In a statement he released through his media aide, Sunday Dare, Tinubu said recent publications on social media tagged, ‘Destroy the reputation of Tinubu and his relationship with Buhari’, shows that some disgruntled members of the opposition were out to cause trouble. He stated that he has never granted any interview discussing Buhari and the 2019 election. The statement reads in part;

“The individuals behind the plot are mostly scared PDP elements made frightened by the Buhari anti-corruption campaign. They direct this falsehood at Tinubu in the futile mission of trying to drive a wedge between the President and Tinubu to disrupt the progress being made against corruption and to destabilise the APC. But their PDP is already something by-gone, buried under the mass of its corruption and wrongdoing. They fight for a cause that has no cause. They are mercenaries of all the ills and defects that the people want excised from our body politic. Thus, we must do the people a public service. In the last six weeks, the Tinubu Media Office has monitored the stream of false, distorted media accounts written against Bola Ahmed Tinubu. We have learned that there is a concerted, wilful campaign tagged, ‘Destroy the reputation of Tinubu and his relationship with Buhari’. As part of this ugly plot to cultivate the worst of lies against the national leader of the APC, several blogs and online sites recruited to launch this smear campaign have manufactured stories to advance this sinister plan to taint the public mind with gross lies disguised as news reports and interviews. Fallacious headlines such as ‘Reasons why I collected N9m-Tinubu’ and ‘I will not return N9m-Tinubu”. “I am afraid PDP will stop Buhari in 2019 – Tinubu,’ are being paraded. Try as hard as they can the creators of these false tales and misleading headlines will fail miserably. Their stories cannot stand up to the slightest scrutiny. They are patently false and we condemn in the strongest terms those involved in this anti-Tinubu racket. “While these fellows may think themselves cunning, they might have outwitted their very selves. In writing these stories, they have committed clear libel. In abusing the media office letterhead and name, their misrepresentations amount to forgery. They laugh now but walk on thin ice. Soon, that ice will break and they shall have nothing but the weight of their wrongdoing to blame for their predicament that will soon come. After identifying the bloggers and paid hatchet writers perpetrating these wrongs, the Tinubu Media Office is taking the step to alert the public to beware and be weary of hatchet writers, false prophets and paid bloggers. The Tinubu Media Office has the names and online sites recruited for this campaign and will not hesitate to make them know if they do not desist from their negative mission”he said.

Sen. Gbenga Aluko Denies Alleged Attack On Tinubu

A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti State, Senator Gbenga Aluko, has urged members to forge stronger unity within the party to sustain its foremost position in the politics of the state.

 
He denied insinuations of attack on the APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, saying it was shocking that an honest remark on the resolution of local disagreement within the party could be misinterpreted and manipulated in the social media to set him against the respected party national leader.

 
The former Senator was at the weekend on a visit to the party secretariat in Ado-Ekiti, where he said he was on a “familiarization and assimilation visit” to the leadership of the party and sought the support of the leadership to be accepted into the APC fold.

 

He appealed to the aggrieved members to sheathe their swords, explaining that taking internal crisis for resolution outside the state diminished the credibility and stature of the party leadership in the fountain of knowledge state blessed with wise and credible leaders.

 
Also at another meeting with the local government and ward chairmen of the party at his Ode-Ekiti country home, Aluko insisted that political structures within the party should not be encouraged because such tendency destroyed party cohesion, urging, however, that party leaders should listen to aggrieved members to ensure resolution of the crisis tearing the party into groups and structures.

 
Expressing displeasure over the misinterpretation of his remark on Tinubu, the former Senator said the party National Leader was a man he respected so much that he would not denigrate in the manner some mischief-makers were painting in the social media.

 

 

Credit : Today.ng

Nigerians Need To Be Creative To Boost Economy—Tinubu

Sen. Bola Tinubu, the National Leader of All Progressives Congress (APC), says Nigerians need to be creative and innovative to develop the economy.

 

He told newsmen in Ibadan on Sunday that the diversification of the nation’s economy was always on the drawing board but had never been implemented.

 

“We keep talking about diversification of the economy. It is always in the drawing board. We never implemented it. ”

 

There are so many ways to create and revitalise this economy; it is not as bad into the future as people make it appear.

 

“The past is nauseating, terrible. There has never been any principle of good governance in the past. It has been cesspool of corruption,” he said.

 

The former Lagos State governor said that Nigerians needed to support and encourage the present administration in its campaign against insurgency and kidnap.

 

“We face the challenge. We accept the need for the diversification of the nation’s economy. ”

 

 

There are a lot of variables in the oil sector which we have to look at critically. ” We are not the only country that is affected by the effect of this oil crisis. We have to be more creative in a way that will not hurt the welfare of the people,” he said.

 

 

“We need to look inwardly. There are so many ways and we are blessed to really create local demand, improve our disposable income and manage our own economy. “We have the resources, people and the blessing of both weather and mineral resources but it will take time.

 

 

“There is a gestation, rearrangement and reengineering necessary for the economy to be beneficial to the people. “We must be patient, we must persevere and the leadership must be creative in order to rejuvenate the economy. Just bear with us,” he added.

 

 

Speaking on the influx of defectors into the APC, he said that there was the freedom principle which allow citizens to associate with any organisation or political party they want.

 

Tinubu said that the builders of APC must be tolerant and understand the need to check intrusion of corruption and injustice into the party. “You can’t stop that. You cannot discriminate against that. There is nothing we can do about that. “We cannot prevent people from coming in, the more the merrier, the better, the competitiveness,” he said.

 

 

 

(NAN)

I Made Huge Sacrifice To Ensure APC Victory – Tinubu

The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, says he made a big sacrifice to ensure that the All Progressives Congress did well in the last elections.

Tinubu, who is a former governor of Lagos State, said this at the 70th birthday anniversary of social commentator and National Democratic Coalition chieftain, Prof. Segun Gbadegesin, in Lagos on Monday.

The APC leader said the Peoples Democratic Party ruled Nigeria for 16 years because opposition parties failed to unite.

He recalled that in 2011, his party, the Action Congress of Nigeria; Congress for Progressive Change and the All Nigeria Peoples Party presented separate presidential candidates and the PDP leveraged on the small size of these parties.

Tinubu said there was also a tendency for the leaders of smaller parties to make themselves the presidential candidates of their respective parties thereby causing division within their parties.

He said ahead of the 2015 election, however, leaders of the legacy parties (ACN, CPC and ANPP) that formed the APC, including himself, had to suppress their personal ambitions to be able to “chase away the PDP government led by former President Goodluck Jonathan, because in the past those who float political parties end up as its chairman and presidential candidate.”

Tinubu, who was also part of the NADECO campaign from exile, told the audience that progressive politics was the answer to the problems of Nigeria and that the hope and confidence Nigerians had in the APC before the elections would not be dashed

Also speaking at the launch of Gbadegesin’s book, titled “All The Way: Serving With Conscience”, a former Governor of Ogun State, Chief Segun Osoba, praised the contribution of Gbadegesin to the pro-democracy struggle, with the programmes he anchored in Yoruba Language on the defunct Radio Kudirat.

Osoba described Gbadegesin as a peacemaker saying, “He visited me the other day, to plead that I should reunite politically with my estranged APC family.”

Gbadegesin, a Professor of Philosophy, was the Head of Department of Philosophy and Dean, College of Arts and Sciences, Howard University, Washington DC, United States, who worked as an undercover operative in the dark days of the Gen. Sani Abacha military dictatorship as one of the main anchors of Radio Kudirat; the propaganda organ of NADECO.

TUC Blasts Tinubu Over Renewed Call To Remove Oil Subsidy

The Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) has condemned the push for the removal of subsidy by the National Leader of the All progressives Congress (APC) and former  Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

TUC said that the statement credited to Tinubu during the memorial conference organised in honour of the late Dr. Bala Usman in Kaduna last Friday that the policy has overstayed its usefulness, “is not only unfortunate, it is rather ironic that it was made in the ten year anniversary of Dr Bala Usman, who gave up all privileges in the pursuit of common man’s happiness.

TUC, in a joint statement by its President, Comrade Bobboi Kaigama and Secretary General, Musa Lawal, said that “were Bala Usman to be alive today, he would fight to ensure that the policy is not abolished without functional refineries.”

TUC said that subsidy is an accepted policy the world over targeted at specific items to either cushion the effect of harsh environment for the benefit of the less privileged or to encourage people into less attractive but important aspects of national economy.

“Thus most countries in the world subsidise most commodities to benefit their citizens . But unfortunately the masses of the country never benefited from it, no thanks to the cruel and insensitive posture of successive leadership.”

Credit: Vanguard

Police Arrest Fraudsters Impersonating Tinubu, Lagos CP

The police in Lagos have arrested two men who defraud members of the public with the name of the Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Fatai Owoseni.

 

He said the men also used the name of the former Lagos State governor, Sen. Bola Tinubu.

 

Owoseni made the disclosure on Monday while parading the suspects before newsmen.

 

He said the suspects allegedly opened a Facebook account in his name with his photograph to solicit for fund into a bank account of what the suspects called “CP Owoseni Foundation’’.

 

“The command wishes to inform members of the public that fraudsters have continued to device different methods of duping unsuspecting residents.

 

“The latest trick being used by these dupes is to open a Facebook page using the photographs and information of highly placed individuals.

 

“The commissioner of police, Lagos State and former governor of Lagos State, Sen. Bola Tinubu, were impersonated by these cheats.

 

“The suspects have been arrested and are to be prosecuted,’’ Owoseni said.

 

The commissioner said that he had never operated a Facebook page before and urged the public to beware of fraudsters using the names of highly placed persons.

 

Owoseni said the suspects were soliciting for N20,000 donation to the fake Owoseni Foundation before they were arrested.

 

Similarly, a retired traffic police officer was also arrested for parading himself as a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) under the Lagos State Command.

 

The commissioner said the suspect claimed he was only escorting trucks with goods to the Eastern part of Nigeria after his retirement.

 

(NAN)

Okorocha Denies Accusing Tinubu, Others For Killing Audu

Imo State Governor Rochas Okorocha yesterday denied having a quarrel with Senator Bola Tinubu, saying the envisaged rift only exists in the imaginations of those who have chosen the path of dishonour.

Governor Okorocha, who was reacting to a report published in a social media on Sunday, claiming that he accused Senator Tinubu and other APC members of being responsible for the death of the APC governorship candidate in Kogi State, Prince Abubakar Audu, described such claim as “ungodly blackmail.”

The governor said in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuameodo, that the envisaged rift between Senator Tinubu and himself “only exists in the imaginations of those who have chosen the path of dishonor, because only dishonourable people could have authored such an inglorious write-up. Decent people do not do such thing.”

The governor said he never accused the former governor of Lagos State and one of the key pillars of the APC in the country, Senator Tinubu, of being responsible for the death of the APC governorship candidate in Kogi State, Prince Audu.

Credit: NationalMirror

Senator Oluremi Tinubu Causes Stir In Senate As She ‘Takes Over’ Ekweremadu’s Seat

Seantor Oluremi Tinubu, representing Lagos Central and wife to the national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Ahmed on Wednesday, November 18, raised dust in the Senate when she gracefully sat on the seat meant for deputy Senate president, Ike Ekweremadu, The Cable reports.

Senate

The 8th Senate

It took the reproof of the senators elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party for Tinubu to relocate back to her chair to second a motion for the approval of Lagos state development policy operation loan.

The rebuke came when the senator stood up to speak while still standing in the deputy Senate president corner.

The APC leader’s wife, however, returned back to Ekweremadu’s position, who was absent from plenary immediately after she seconded the motion.

It was learnt that sat in the chair meant for Bukola Saraki’s deputy to hold conversation with the leader of the Senate, Aliyu Ndume.

During plenary, the Senate approved the $200 million loan requested by Lagos state government from the World Bank after a debate on the report of its adhoc committee on local and foreign debts.

Senator Danjuwa Goje from Gombe state had initially urged the Senate not to approve the loan stating that it will leave the state with huge debt burden for future governments but later went ahead to give his support for the loan request.

Contributing on the loan request, Senator George Sekibo from Rivers state  urged the Senate to put proper check in place to monitor how the money is being handled.

In a related development, Professor Ajayi Boroffice, a senator representing Ondo-North, had warned a commercial bank against granting a N7 billion loan request for the Ondo state government.

He had advised that granting such loan few months to the expiration of the tenure of Governor Olusegun Mimiko’s does not make economic sense.

Source:Naij

Kelechukwu Uzoka: “APC, The Campaign Reggae Is Over, Let The Blues Of Governance Start”

The All Progressive Congress (APC) won the last general election massively by overthrowing the People’s Democratic Congress (PDP) the self-acclaimed largest political party in Africa. Now APC is the majority and ruling party in Nigeria. But since after winning the election I still think otherwise because the only thing I see the APC doing is still the same thing they have been doing since their formation accusing the PDP as if PDP is still in power. One may ask, is it that the APC were never ready for governance or that winning the elections came to them as a surprise. The All Progressive Congress is still in the campaign mood six months after being sworn in, if this campaign mood last till the next general election in 2019 then Nigeria is doomed. This campaign mood governance still makes them feel like the opposition party that they cannot even unite in the National Assembly and trying everything possible to hold Nigerians to ransom by their ‘opposition mentality of governance’. Since the formation of APC they have been attacking the PDP and accusing Jonathan’s government of financial recklessness and misappropriation. Now six months after getting into power APC’s story have not changed, all we have been seeing in newspaper headlines is President Buhari accusing Jonathan’s administration of looting trillions of naira and billions of dollars of Nigeria’s money, PDP killed and buried the economy of Nigeria. Oga Buhari please if Goodluck Jonathan is with our money why have you not asked him where he kept it throughout his visit to you in Aso Rock. If it is true that PDP rendered Nigeria bankrupt for the past 16 years, Obasanjo and Atiku are your closest paddy and I hope their recent visit to Aso Rock was for them to tell you where they kept our billion trillions.
 
APC will kill corruption, APC will bury corruption and President Buhari is not corrupt has been the campaign mantra of the APC and from all indications the only policy that this government have as regards how to give us steady power, basic infrastructure of living and making our economy attractive. For President Buhari to tackle corruption he has to build institutions and an independent judiciary that will do the work without fear or favour unless he want to leave the duty of being our president and become the prosecutor and judge of the anti-corruption tribunal but just like the legal maxim ‘nemo judex incusa sua’ you cannot be a judge in your own case. If we want corruption cases to be fast tracked my opinion is that an anti-corruption tribunal should be established by an Act enacted by the National Assembly but the body language of the 8th National Assembly does not seem as if they are ready to do their primary duty rather they are busy fighting over who heads which committee and why were juicy committees not given to ‘our party men’. Now my question is, are all the committees not important for the development of Nigeria? If you do not like the committee you head please vacate your seat as a law maker.
 
The other day some APC Senators led by Senator Oluremi Tinubu walked out of a plenary because it was presided over by Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu who is from the minority party, the PDP. This is a dangerous trend for our nascent democracy. It has been the norm and law that when the Senate President is unavailable to preside over the Senate sitting, his Deputy is to preside. The APC slept on its right to produce a Deputy Senate President and if they want to undo the ascendance of Ike Ekweremmadu as the Deputy Senate President they have the Nigeria 1999 constitution (as amended) for them to read.
 
Finally congratulations to The New Ministers of the Republic. But I ask myself why it took this government six months for the appointment of those persons most of us knew that will make the list of ministers. As a note of advice they should face the enormous task ahead of them and should not try to dabble dip into the politics of talk plenty and do less. Special congratulations to Baba Fash the trinity minister now all those boasting and cabashing that he has been making in Lagos when he was the governor, he should manifest it now. I and majority of Nigerians are expecting nothing less than 30,000MW of electricity being generated, distributed and transmitted in Nigeria by the last quarter of 2017. For the Lion of Ubima, yours is well deserved, you can now complete the Portharcourt monorail project which you could not do as a governor despite having everything at your disposal to do it then. For Lai Mohhammed the job is still the same.
 
Before I drop my pen Dear President Buhari please I need my monthly stipend of five thousand naira promised us during campaign which is now in arrears of about Thirty Thousand naira since your inauguration.
Kelechukwu Uzoka can be engaged on twitter and Facebook via @kaezydon
He blogs at kelechukwuuzoka.wordpress.com
Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Rotimi Fabiyi: The New Ooni Of Ife, The Tinubu Connection, And The Obasanjo Disconnection

  On 28th July, 2015, the multibillionaire king of Ile Ife, Osun State, Nigeria Ooni of Ife Oba Okunade Sijuwade, Olubuse II was officially announced on several news media as being confirmed dead in a hospital in London, United Kingdom after a brief illness. The race to replace him with another prince among the hundreds of Ife princes available (both the late king’s sons and the sons of his extended paternal family members) began in earnest.

   The selection of a new king for Ile Ife was termed a “race” because of how important the ancient town of Ile Ife is in the culture and history of the Yoruba nation. According to the book authored by the multi-talented 19th century historian Reverend Samuel Ayinla Johnson, edited by his younger brother Dr. Obadiah Ajagbe Johnson (who was the 2nd Nigerian to qualify as a medical doctor after Dr Adeniyi Jones broke the record of being the 1st), and titled A History Of The Yorubas From The Earliest Times To The Beginning Of The British Protectorate (a book recognized worldwide and described by wikipedia.org as “… a book of great merit … and a pioneering historical study…”), Ile Ife has been a very sacred town for the Yorubas for hundreds of years before the European colonials started arriving in Yorubaland because there is no king of other Yoruba towns that will ascend the throne of his ancestors without performing (as part of his many traditional rites) a secret spiritual rite that must be administered by representatives of the king of Ile Ife. Briton Professor Robert Sydney Smith likewise wrote in his own groundbreaking book titled Kingdoms Of The Yoruba that “… in ancient and even comparably recent pre-colonial times, the king of Ile Ife was regarded as more than just a king. He was in addition the chief priest of the whole Yoruba nation; what the Archbishop of Canterbury is to Great Britain and the Anglican Church was what the Ooni of Ife was to the Yoruba people …”

   Traditionalism and indigenous spiritualism aside, the social status of the Ooni of Ife is very high and the position he occupies is well respected in Nigeria and beyond. The penultimate Ooni of Ife Oba Adesoji Aderemi (who ruled as Ife king from 1930 to 1980) broke national and international records by being the 1st Nigerian to become a governor (after he replaced the tactful Briton Sir John Dalzell Rankine as governor of Western Region, Nigeria) and also the 1st black man to become a governor in the whole British Commonwealth. He was also a Nigerian federal minister even while still the Ife king; he was involved (with the illustrious political genius Obafemi Awolowo) in encouraging Anthony Enahoro to move the motion for self government for Nigeria in 1956; he was involved in the several constitutional conferences held in London, United Kingdom in the 1950s to determine the future of Nigeria, and he played an important role in the numerous attempts to settle the rapidly exacerbated Action Group Political Crisis of the early 1960s in Nigeria (see the article “Where Were You … When Oba Adesoji Aderemi Became The First Governor In Black Commonwealth Africa” by Banke Adelaja, Historical Flashback Nigerian newspaper, April 1 – May 5, 2015, pages 15 – 19 for more details). The progressive Nigerian politician Chief Obafemi Awolowo never in his lifetime hid the fact that the moral supports and beneficial advices he received from Oba Adesoji Aderemi were partly responsible for his (Awolowo’s) own imperishable political achievements so when Ooni Adesoji Aderemi died at 91 years of age in 1980, Obafemi Awolowo tried his best to make sure his own former employee and close junior friend multibillionaire Prince Okunade Sijuwade became the next king.

   35 years later in 2015, Ooni Okunade Sijuwade died and the present day power brokers in Yorubaland immediately started a race to get their own favourite Ife prince to ascend the Ile Ife throne. Chief Olusegun Obasanjo (who erroneously and self-deceptively sees himself as the most prominent Yoruba alive today even though he has no tangible political structure that is well grounded in Yorubaland or in Nigeria at large) initially struggled to find a way of influencing the selection of the new king but it was the favourite of the real Yoruba leader Bola Tinubu (who is the Asiwaju of Yorubaland and the Jagaban of Borgu Kingdom, whose political structures include 4 state governors out of the 6 states in Yorubaland, and whose brainchild of a political party All Progressives Congress broke records by defeating an incumbent Nigerian president and therefore achieved what no other political party in Nigerian history has ever achieved) that emerged as the present Ooni of Ife. When the 85-year-old multibillionaire Ooni of Ife Oba Okunade Sijuwade (who was the employer of a certain Gabriel Igbinedion that later became a multibillionaire) died on Tuesday, 28th July, 2015, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu (who has been described by wikipedia.org as “… an astute politician …”) initially wanted his long-term friend and close confidant multibillionaire Ife Prince Dipo Eludoyin, MFR (the chairman of Paragon Group that owns the popular Ikeja Mall in Lagos State, Nigeria and several other business interests in China) to be the next Ooni of Ife but Prince Eludoyin politely refused to be the next king of Ife, preferring the life of a quiet and unpublicised international multibillionaire he lives to that of a king of Ile Ife with its expected concomitant publicity and quasi-regimentation. When the pressure from his friends (particularly Asiwaju Bola Tinubu) encouraging him to become king was approaching crescendo, Prince Eludoyin quietly jetted to China (where has a multi-billion naira business empire), vowing to come back to Nigeria only after a new Ooni is installed. It was while Tinubu was looking for another Ife prince to replace the late Ooni Sijuwade that a certain Yoruba king Oba Saheed Elegushi (the Elegushi of Ikate Land, Lagos State, Nigeria) introduced a certain multibillionaire Ife prince known as Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi to Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

   Before becoming a king in 2010, Oba Saheed Elegushi (who has been a cordial business partner of Prince Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi for many years) was a personal assistant to Asiwaju Bola Tinubu during Tinubu’s 8 years as Lagos State governor from 1999 to 2007 and he (Oba Saheed Elegushi) was a Senior Special Assistant On Special Duties to Lagos State Governor Babatunde Fashola from 2007 to 2010. This Tinubu Connection would later make the secretary to the Government of Osun State Alhaji Moshood Adeoti announce on 26th October, 2015 on behalf of Tinubu’s political protégé Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun State, Nigeria that the next Ooni of Ife is the multibillionaire Prince Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi. 2 days later on 28th October, 2015, Ooni of Ife Adeyeye Ogunwusi rode in a convoy of more than 100 cars from Lagos State (where he was hitherto based) to Ile Ife (where he is being made King), part of the convoy including Chief Olusegun Obasanjo who had once again been bested and humiliated by Asiwaju Bola Tinubu (because the victorious and celebrated Ooni Ogunwusi was Tinubu’s choice, not Obasanjo’s choice) but who was trying his best to play to the gallery by  not to showing his disconsolation and dismay which was why he seemed to be “happier than the celebrant’’ during the home-coming car procession of the new Ooni of Ife. On 30th October, 2015, the new Ooni of Ife proceeded to the sacred traditional ritual grove at Ile Ife to commence the compulsory 21-day rites that every new Ooni must do and which some sources said involved eating 401 different light repasts (each representing the 401 traditional gods allegedly worshipped in Ile Ife) made of special secret ingredients from 401 different food saucers while other sources  insist that the number of the secret meals that the new king will consume during the 21-day period will be only 364 in number, not 401 (because the traditional gods of Ife are allegedly 364 in number, not 401) but all these could be safely dismissed as guesses because none of the rumour-mongers will be with him during the rites to know how many special meals he would eat to appease how many traditional gods or if he would even eat any special meal at all.

   Now that the new Ooni of Ife Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi has been proved to be a Tinubu’s choice, one would be mistaking to see him as a pushover, an underling, a minion, or a toady because he himself is an achiever in many directions even though he is just 41 years old.  Born at exactly 1pm on Thursday, 17th October, 1974, Prince Adeyeye Ogunwusi obtained a higher national diploma, HND in Accountancy from The Polytechnic, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria.  His further professional efforts made him become a full member of Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, ICAN, an associate accounting technician, a certified member of the Institute of Directors of Nigeria, an active member of Global Real Estate Institute, GRI, a full director on the Board Of Imperial Homes Mortgage Bank Limited (formerly GT Homes which was a subsidiary of GT Bank Plc), a director of Fina Trust Microfinance Bank Limited, and the sole founder and Managing Director of Gran Imperio Group which is the holding company for many of his multifarious business interests which include real estate, civil construction, manufacturing, facilities management, leisure and tourism, etc within and outside of Nigeria.

   Apart from being an unpretentious philanthropist (he donated rice and tilling equipments to Oyo and Ogun States chapters of Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria; funded the purchase and installation of power transformers and electricity poles in many rural communities across Nigeria; granted scholarships to scores of indigent students; and single-handedly paid for the reconstruction of a 6.5 km road with 1.1 km green extension in a community in Nigeria without any financial intervention from the government), Ooni Adeyeye Ogunwusi has had very close working relationships spanning several years  in the direction of multiple business partnerships with several top-notch kings in Yorubaland some of whom include late Ooni Okunade Sijuade of Ile Ife, Osun State; Oba Saheed Elegushi of Ikate Land, Lagos State; Oba Adedapo  Tejuosho of Abeokuta, Ogun State; Oba Oloruntoyin Saliu of Oworonshoki, Lagos State; Oba Akinloye of Ajiran Land, Lagos State; Oba Mufutau Gbadamosi of Ofa, Kwara State, etc.  A husband to 1 wife (Mrs, now Olori Adedokun Adebisi Ogunwusi) and a father to 1 daughter (Adeola Aanuoluwapo Ogunwusi), he has 450 direct employees and over 3,000 indirect employees in his numerous companies even though he celebrated his 41st birthday on 17th October, 2015 (9 days before his name was announced as the next Ooni of Ife).

   Notwithstanding the petition written by a certain non-governmental organisation named Centre for Human Rights and Social Justice, CHRSJ (chaired by a certain Mr Adeniyi Suleiman) and forwarded to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC requesting it (EFCC) to immediately arrest, detain and prosecute the new Ooni Adeyeye Ogunwusi for an alleged forgery, fraudulent conversion, and obtaining of 400 million naira, history will be made when history repeats itself when the Ooni of Ife Adeyeye Ogunwusi is coronated plausibly in late November 2015 by the bespectacled Governor Rauf Aregbesola who is an Ijesha indigene and who is a political protégé of a bespectacled Lagos-based political giant Bola Tinubu (the same way the late Ooni Okunade Sijuade was coronated 35 years earlier in 1980 by a bespectacled Governor Bola Ige who is an Ijesha indigene and who was a political protégé of a bespectacled  Lagos-based political giant Obafemi Awolowo) and it is expected that Ooni Ogunwusi will have a very long and peaceful reign filled with several unique achievements like the reign of late Ooni Adesoji Aderemi (who became an Ife king at 41 years of age like the present  Ooni Ogunwusi) though nobody wants history to repeat itself with the way the hitherto-healthy, flamboyant money-spraying Lagos multimillionaire socialite Ladipo Bobo Doherty (who was a close friend of Ooni Sijuwade and who married Tejumade, the daughter of Lagos multimillionaire Rex Ibikunle Alakija) suddenly collapsed and died within few seconds after spraying some hard currency during the party organised in honour of Ooni Okunade Sijuade during his coronation ceremony in December 1980 (see the article ‘’Bobo Doherty Is Dead’’, Sunday Tribune Nigerian newspaper, December 7 ,1980, page 1 for more details), fuelling a series of rumours in the direction of the Abobaku Myth(i e the mythical belief that at least one human being must die a strange, sudden death as a spiritual sacrifice during the coronation of a Yoruba king).

   The emergence of multibillionaire Ife Prince Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi as the new Ooni of Ife clearly happened through Tinubu Connection (as detailed above) and it clearly sequelled into a serious Obasanjo emotional disconnection.  Nothing needs to be further said.

                         Engr Rotimi Fabiyi, MNIM, MNSChE, MNSE, COREN Reg,

                        P.O Box 1709, Ikorodu Town, Lagos State, Nigeria

                          +2348184741410, +2348129698326

                        fabiyirotimi@yahoo.com

                        twitter@fabiyi_rotimi

                        whatsapp@08184741410, 08129698326

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

               

Buhari, Tinubu, others offer special prayers for late Emir of Borgu (PHOTOS)

President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday in New Bussa, Niger state, joined hundreds of sympathisers to offer special prayers for the repose of the soul of the late Emir of Borgu, Alhaji Haliru Dantoro, Kitoro 111.

The prayer session, which was led by Alhaji Muhammed Shehu, the Chief Imam of Borgu Emirate Council, was attended by the governors of Niger, Kebbi, Ogun and Zamfara states.

Others at the event included emirs and chiefs, Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu, federal and state government functionaries as well as friends and relatives of the late emir, who died at the age of 77 years.

President Buhari, who condoled the family of the deceased, later signed the condolence register.

“He (deceased) had been a steadfast friend who spared no effort to support us,’’ Buhari wrote in the register.

The President had earlier described the late Emir as “a great patriot and unifier who ruled the people of Borgu Emirate for many years with commendable wisdom, benevolence and an uncommon dedication to duty.’’

He commiserated with the government and people of Niger State on the death of their illustrious traditional ruler.

He said that the late Dantoro would long be remembered and honoured for his notable contributions to the development of his community, state and country.

“The late monarch was a friend and associate of many years, with whom I shared the vision of a peaceful, politically stable, united, progressive and prosperous Nigeria to which every citizen will be proud to belong.’’

Buhari said that he would forever treasure the memories of the late emir as a great patriot, indefatigable unifier and bridge-builder.

“Dantoro did his utmost best as a political leader and traditional ruler to strengthen the bonds that bind Nigerians together in the interest of national peace, harmony and progress,” he said.

The President prayed that Almighty Allah would receive Dantoro’s soul and grant his people a worthy successor who would build on the laudable legacies of his life of service to community and country.

See photos below:

d1 d2 d3 d4 d6 (1) d5

(NAN)

Adamu Auta: An Open Letter To Some Buhari Apologist And APC Loyalist

Change does not just happen. You and I and all of us must appreciate that we all have our part to play if we want to bring change about.  -Muhammadu Buhari
Over the past month of the present administration, one constant attribute that always rare it’s ugly head in any political or economic and social discuss is how perceived Buharist and Apc apologist (some) always come out gun blazing insulting anybody that dare criticise any action been taken by their supposed Baba, while I understand if Mallam Garba Shehu calls certain element “wailing wailers”. ” Brief case crooks” that’s his job he gets paid to defend Mr President actions and Inactions, even though this was how the likes of Ruben Abati and Doyin Okupe started until when power over clouded their Judgement, hope Mall Garba doesn’t tow same line in the near future. My problem is with the loyalist and Buahrist, (some of them) they tend to forget that the same one vote they gave Mr President, it’s the same one vote some of us also gave Mr President, funny enough some of them didn’t even vote for Mr President, while some of us went to our various villages two days before elections rallied people and on the day of election we were at the PU since 6 am till whatever time the whole process ended, some of them where in their room without a PVC watching it on the news, some of them where agents because of they love Mr President, while some where agent because of the money they were going to be paid, same can also be said of those that acted as INEC agent because they wanted a free and Fair election while some where there because of the Money INEC paid them for the exercise whatever the case might be nobody have the exclusive right to think he was better place than any other person in electing Mr President that he or she thinks it is their sworn duty to insult anybody that goes contrary to Mr President actions and inactions.
Just some days back there was a explosion in some areas Abuja while some.of us where thinking of the pain those affected and the pain all those playing that route will go through because of the check points that would now be put in place,the so called buharist (some of them) ironically towed the same line Gejites did, the say – it is people of the Niger Delta that bombed those Places because they want to frustrate Mr President Fight against corruption just because the blast coincided with the arrest of diezieni in far away London. How Myopic can people become when their Principal officers are in power, this was the same thing Gejites said ‘ the North wants to Frustrate Jonathan’s Govt’ SAD. How many of this Buharist(some of them) have actually prayed for this country I repeat this country not Mr President? , how many of them have actually loved Nigeria, we know some of them have never and would never listen to any President October 1st speech but because it’s Buhari they think they now love Nigeria more than us, there are some of them that even to watch the super Eagles they would never do that but today the are Super Eagles supporter myopic or hypocrites?
While they were there pointing fingers their leader was paying visit to the blast victims and also ordering the payment of their Hospital bill, our Security are there doing the need full( May God bless them), ordinary Nigeria’s where there donate blood and other services, the sit and their comfort zone and blame another region for a terror attack on Nigerian soil, ( let me use this medium to ask here – is it this same BH some people want Amnesty to be given too? Rethink again).
Here I was having a Discussion with a suppose Buharist and he made a remarkable and yet unfortunate statement -he said I support Baba for Head the Ministry of Oil because all of us are corrupt even me (the Buharist talking) and I laughed then  I said did you vote for Mr President and he said I supported him with my Mouth just imagine and it’s this same person that thinks he supports Mr President More than me?
Today the suppose Buharist would praise Mr President to the high Heavens they call him ikon Allah, sai Mai Gaskya, I always say to them Buhari is Human and as a matter of fact a Nigeria he was not sent from heaven to save us, he has been living in this Country, instead of you praising him at any given opportunity why don’t you try and emulate all the good characteristics this man has to shape your self and your children for a better tommorow and a bright future, you would hear them say Buhari is one of a kind, I stop them there and I tell them pop and clear we have seen leaders far more better than Buhari when it comes to such qualities Ahmadu Bello, Tafawa Balewa, Aminu Kano just to mention a few and there are many more people around in this country of Ours that more straight forward than Buhari maybe they have not seen them but I have come across such people, today they are people that would tell you Hammid Ali the Custom Boss is far more strict than Buhari, and I ask is Hammid Ali also from Heaven?
We are in a Democratic setting people are entitled to their opinion not all criticism are against Mr President this is the simple logic some Buharist needs to understand, Mr President is a human being and a leader he would and have made some mistakes even though some would tell you he is Mr Perfect, that does not give them any right to Insult someone for airing his personal view that’s differrent from theirs.
May those who understand have the brain to change because with each they passing by what Tupac Shakur said in his song titled “Changes” seems to be true “Some Things Never Change” .
Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself. -Leo Tolstoy.
God Bless Nigeria
Yours Faithfully
(I don’t own a Brief case of work for a Brief case owner)
Adamu Auta
Mail:Adamuauta388@gmail.com
Twitter Handle: @adamu318
Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

Tony Ademiluyi: Bukola Saraki And Karma

The first brush Senate President, Bukola Saraki had with the law was in 2013 when the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission arrested him but later granted him bail twenty-four hours later for financial crimes relating to the time he spent as Executive Vice-Chairman of his family owned bank, Societe Generale Bank of Nigeria. His apologists opined that his travails stemmed from the fact that he became a whistle blower by exposing the billion naira petroleum subsidy fraud as Chairman Senate Committee on Ecology.

His emergence as Senate President was against the directive of his party, the All Progressive Congress. Dogara also towed the same line but at least he had the decency to defeat Femi Gbajabiamila fair and square. Saraki merely cashed in on the quorum rule and crowned himself Senate President when his adversaries were waiting for Godot at the International Conference Centre. This was a rather cowardly act as it portended a morbid fear of a possible defeat and an avaricious love for power at all cost. Never in the history of the Presidency of the Senate since the Second Republic as such a show of shame happened. In the fourth republic, the late Dr. Chuba Okadigbo was the choice of the Senators in 1999 for the exalted seat but the then President Olusegun Obasanjo preferred the late Evan(s) Enwerem. The latter got his way but the impeachment of Enwerem was done by the 109 senators present to pave way for the ascendancy of Okadigbo. A sham quorum was not sought but respect was accorded to the presence of all senators for the election of their helmsman and that has been the trend ever since.

Like the Shakespearean Macbeth who murdered sleep with the regicide of King Duncan, Saraki seems to have followed suit. His wife, Toyin was arrested by the EFCC for some infractions she allegedly committed when she was first lady of Kwara state. The case died down as usual in Nigerian fashion but a signal was sent to the medical doctor turned politician that more darts were to follow.

It was no surprise that the Code of Conduct Bureau charged him before the Code of Conduct Tribunal for false declaration of assets. The sanction is the forfeiture of assets, a ten year ban from holding public office and his disgrace not only from the senate presidency but from the senate as well. He has failed to appear twice before the bureau on the basis of a motion he filed before an Abuja high court while the tribunal has ordered his arrest for failing to obey the summons. The scion of Oloye Sola Saraki has cried blue murder that he is being hounded politically by insinuating that the bureau is acting on external orders – fingers being pointed at the Presidency and is wondering why this is coming up twelve years after he was first sworn in as governor. The ground for a twelve year hiatus by the bureau is rather asinine as a public office holder should be ready to answer questions about his or her past at any time. United States President Barack Obama came out clean with his previous record of marijuana ingestion during the 2008 campaign. Front runner of the Democratic Party and former American Secretary of State, Hillary Rodham Clinton is currently under fire for using her personal email addresses whilst serving the nation as the number three citizen. British Prime Minister, David Cameron admitted to marijuana use while still a student at Eton College. It should not be strange for the holder of a public office to be haunted by his or her past. It is nothing new as the public deserves every right to know with unrestrained access to the minutest details being the watch word. His accusations of the hand of the Presidency in his ordeal is only a futile attempt in currying favor from the public as he even still owes her answers for the way and manner billions of naira disappeared from the till of the defunct SGBN to fund his 2003 elections and how the once moribund bank has now morphed into a sturdy regional bank – heritage bank with the shares of the family still intact while millions of depositors both affluent and indigent wept and gnashed their teeth for decades. Will he still accuse the Presidency this time around?

Apart from his mind boggling assets which raise pertinent questions, he should stop his further display of cowardice by running to the courts to shield him from appearing and defending himself. His alleged loot has given him the financial muscle to hire the best and brightest attorneys so let him prove his innocence in court and cease prattling like a high school lad whose candy was taken away from him.

His rise to the Senate Presidency is only possible because of the banana republic our dear country has been turned into. Will it possible for Ben Madoff to ever hold any position no matter how lowly in Uncle Sam? Can Michael Milken, the King of junk bonds who was an investment genius before he turned renegade run for any public office in God’s own country?

If the change that Nigerians voted for on March 28th is to make any meaning, this should be the acid test for the entrenchment of a corrupt free leadership. Corruption has taken the country centuries backwards and the time for redemption is now.

Let Saraki go to a fair trial. Enough of court shielding and plea bargainings!

TONY ADEMILUYI

Views expressed are solely that of author and does not represent views of www.omojuwa.com nor its associates

CCT vs SARAKI: I Have Had My Own Share Of The Experience- Bola Tinubu

APPARENTLY reacting to the ongoing trial of the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki by the Code of Conduct Tribunal, CCT, leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu yesterday said the present administration cannot overlook certain things in its fight against corruption.

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Meantime, Tinubu has called on Nigerians to often put God and the nation first in their daily activities, saying “What is missing in Nigeria is lack of patriotism, dedication to God and to our people.

Tinubu, speaking after activities for the Eid-il-Kabir celebration at Dodan Barracks, praying ground, said that the ongoing anti-corruption war embarked upon by President Muhammadu Buhari will further strengthen the country’s institutions and fast track development.

This came 48 hours after Saraki appeared before the CCT in Abuja on September 22nd, 2015, claiming that he was not guilty of the charges leveled against him by the tribunal.

According to him, “It is part of nation’s development. We cannot overlook a lot of things. And we cannot personalise a lot of things as if it was vendetta. We have to endure and be patient as we look for justice, equity and a balanced society.”

He stated that to achieve a just and balanced society, the various institutions in the country must be strengthened, adding “If we do not strengthened these institutions, how can they work for the development of the nation? If we fail and result to blackmail, how can the nation reverse the decadence that is perceived in our society?”

Tinubu lamented that citizens often denigrate public officer as one who mismanage public funds allocated to his office.

The APC leader said: “Government officials are no longer believed by the citizens. When one has a public responsibility, the citizens look at it as if the source of wealth to steal and mismanage public funds and do things not included in the democratic norms and values.

‘We have to live by example and by our words. We can be talking about it alone. We have to work it without any iota of blackmail.”

The former governor recalled how he went through such trial and was later discharged and acquainted, saying; “It is not what I haven’t personally experienced.”

His words: “I have been through it. The second week I left office, I was invited by Economic and Financial Crime Commission, EFCC. I went there and answered their questions. Later, I took them to court and I won.

Some years back, after they discovered that my asset declaration had some questions, they claim. It is only then I accused the government of being selective.”

He noted that the country had surmounted some challenges but to avoid a repeat of such, Nigerians must put the nation first and do the right thing.

Tinubu said: “Yearly, we talk about sacrificecharged me to the tribunal. I went and challenged them to show proof. I was later discharged and acquainted because there was no evidence to prove their s and perseverance of people. If we want people to persevere, from the top to the bottom, we have to demonstrate as leaders that we are very serious about nation building too.

“Our leaders should look compassionately at the suffering masses and create the demand locally and diversify our economy. Go through it at once and have a nation that we will all be proud of. Develop citizenship that will be blind to tribe or ethnicity but believe in character.

“It is worrisome that when we meet ourselves outside the country, we embrace one another but immediately we arrive in this country, we revert to ethnicity, tribalism and others. We have to develop a new character and new nation.
“Every day we talk about the potential of this country but where are we, when one looks at a country like India, they don’t have oil but they were able to build an economy for themselves that is thriving today and creating employment for the youths.
“We want everything free but we have not put emphasis on the training of our youths and retraining of our teachers to put education in forefront of investment that is necessary for this country.
“We still believe that education is the weapon against poverty. And to achieve it, we have to rededicate ourselves and make those sacrifices in order to lift the country out of poverty,” he added.

Tinubu bars pro-Saraki senator from APC caucus meetings

The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has barred the lawmaker representing Ondo-Central senatorial district, Senator Tayo Alasoadura, from attending South-West caucus meetings.

The senator was reportedly ostracised for allegedly working against the interest of the party’s South-West leadership and for taking sides with Senate President Bukola Saraki.

Alasoadura was also among the senators that followed Saraki to the Code of Conduct Tribunal in solidarity on Tuesday.

 Punch reports that a reliable source within the party said Alasoadura had been sidelined from all APC South-West meetings for his disloyalty to Tinubu.

The source said, “Alasoadura was a Commissioner for Finance under the late Dr. Olusegun Agagu for over five years. He later defected from the Peoples Democratic Party to the Action Congress of Nigeria. Tinubu accepted him and appointed him the Director-General of the Rotimi Akeredolu governorship campaign organisation in 2013.

“Alasoadura was not even supposed to have emerged the senatorial candidate of the APC in the last election but the party favoured him. However, when he got to the Senate, he returned to his PDP family and started working against the party. He also supported Saraki against the interest of the party.

“When Tinubu convened a South-West meeting in Abuja during the height of the National Assembly crisis, Alasoadura came. However, Tinubu walked him out of the meeting and told his orderly to ensure that the senator was escorted off the premises.

“Tinubu also warned senators present to ensure that sensitive issues were not discussed in the presence of Alasoadura as he was an enemy within.”

Two days after the faceoff with Tinubu, however, the Ondo State senator issued a statement wherein he pledged his loyalty to the party and denied supporting Saraki.

Alasoadura said he was only working in the best interest of his constituents.

An APC leader however said that the fact that Alasoadura accompanied Saraki to the Code of Conduct Tribunal in solidarity on Tuesday, confirmed their suspicions.

He said the party would ensure that he remained irrelevant in the APC.

Punch

“Saraki Has Refused To Assign Any Senate Committee To Me” – Tinubu

Wife of the national leader of All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Oluremi Tinubu, representing Lagos Central senatorial district at the Senate, has said that she is yet to be assigned a committee, in spite of the fact that some standing and ad hoc committees had been constituted by the leadership under Senator Bukola Saraki.

Senator Tinubu disclosed this on Wednesday, at the 15th edition/first in the eighth Senate of Lagos Central Senatorial District town hall meeting, with the theme: “New Chapter, Hope Renewed,” organised by her.

According to her, three standing committees and six ad hoc committees had, so far, been set up by the Senate leadership.

Tinubu said she was unable to brief her constituents on her activities in the eighth session of the Senate because she had not been assigned any committee yet, but promised to give more concrete information at another town hall meeting.

Earlier, Senator Tinubu had endorsed Governor Akinwumi Ambode for a second term in office, ahead 2019 election, declaring that the incumbent would do a second term.

Buhari, APC Not Dictatorial- Tinubu

A leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, on Wednesday dismissed the claim by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that the APC-led Federal Government was dictatorial in nature.

Mr. Tinubu, who was fielding questions from State House correspondents in Abuja after a closed-door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, said the president had been adhering strictly to rule of law.

According to him, President Buhari should rather be commended for stimulating the economy across the states of the federation.
“He was elected on a platform of democracy and he has adhered to rule of law so far.

“What is dictatorship about what he has done? He has helped to stimulate the economy in the various states and that is where the people are.

“So, what is dictatorship?.

“If they don’t have anything to say, they rather be quiet. They created what is wrong here today and we cannot sweep that under the carpet. There must be rule of law.’’

Read More: premiumtimesng

Tinubu Reacts To APC BoT Chair Rift With Atiku

National leader of All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has denied any rift between him and the former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar over their interest in the Chairmanship of the party’s Board of Trustees, BoT.

Urging Nigerians to ignore rumour mongering, Tinubu stated that both of them and indeed, the party’s utmost priority was to galvanize support for President Mohammadu Buhari to succeed.

He said: “Don’t listen to rumours, there is no struggle. Our party is not even looking at the direction of power struggle or anything of such. The support structure is to encourage and support the President as you have heard from Chief Bisi Akande, to help him institutionalize his goal, principle and vision for a new Nigeria.

“There is pitfall in rushing, quick fix, depending upon the depth of the rot. And that rush can cascade into mistakes of unimaginable magnitude. There is equally glory and recovery in slowness, when you have a slow fix of a bad foundation. So to me, I would rather take the one that will last the country and endure for a longer period of time than the rush hour shopping.”

Read Morevanguardngr

Tinubu, Akande meet Buhari after Obasanjo’s visit

The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, and a former Governor of Osun State, Chief Bisi Akande, held a secret meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa on Wednesday.

The visit came less than 24 hours after former President Olusegun Obasanjo met with Buhari.

Addressing State House correspondents after the one-hour meeting, Tinubu, who is a former Governor of Lagos State, said he did not come to submit any ministerial list to the President.

“What can I do about that, they have the right to speculate, they have the right to their lies and I have the right to debunk,” he said.

However, a reliable source said the ministerial list was one of the topics discussed at the meeting.

The source said just as Tinubu was given the power to pick Buhari’s running mate during the electioneering, Buhari was giving him the privilege of filling some positions that should go to the South-West.

He said, “Buhari never marginalised the South-West as is being reported. Most of the northern appointments that Buhari made are those that will work closely with him in the villa and Tinubu was not really interested in them.

“It was Tinubu that recommended Babatunde Fowler to head the Federal Inland Revenue Service and that is the next best thing after oil which many people don’t understand.

“Buhari has insisted that people that are answering to cases of corruption will not be part of his government and Tinubu is aware of this. He has recommended a former commissioner in Lagos for appointment too and he will be part of Buhari’s economic team even if he is not appointed as a minister.”

When asked how many ministerial slots Buhari had given Tinubu, the source said he could not say for sure but added that Buhari was planning to compensate Tinubu for losing out to Senate President Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara during the National Assembly internal elections

He added, “Every state is expected to produce a minister and we already know that there will be some issues with some stubborn state governors. So, if Tinubu loses out at the ministerial level, he will be made to nominate the chairman of some parastatals and government agencies.”

When asked to explain why Tinubu and Akande chose to visit Buhari just a day after Obasanjo, the source said, “It was purely coincidental. Buhari is travelling out of the country tomorrow (today) and Tinubu wanted to tidy up some things before the President’s departure.”

Meanwhile, Tinubu has dismissed the Peoples Democratic Party’s allegations of dictatorship levelled against President Buhari.

Tinubu, in an interview with State House correspondents said the PDP should be quiet, if it did not have anything to say.

The former governor stated that the PDP created the rot that Buhari was cleaning, adding that the rot could not be swept under the carpet.

The PDP governors, after a meeting in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital, on Tuesday said Nigeria was sliding into dictatorship under the leadership of Buhari.

Defending the President, Tinubu said, “What is dictatorship about what he has done? He has helped to stimulate the economy in the various states and that is where the people are. So what is dictatorship? And the institutional paralysis had occurred in the country.

“It is very important for a steady man like the President to really help the nation recover from the paralysis and that is what he is doing so I don’t see what is dictatorial about that. If they don’t have anything to say, they rather be quiet. They created what is wrong here today and we can’t sweep that under the carpet. There must be rule of law.”

He also denied a claim that he went to the Presidential Villa to submit the ministerial list to Buhari, saying, “What can I do about that, they have the right to speculate, they have the right to their lies and I have the right to debunk.”

The APC leader said that there was no power struggle between him and former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar

“Our party is not even looking at the direction of power struggle or anything of such. The support structure is to encourage and support the President as you have heard from Chief Bisi Akande, to help him institutionalize his goal, principle and vision for a new Nigeria,” Tinubu stated.

He defended Buhari against criticisms that trailed his delay in releasing ministerial list, adding that there was a pitfall in rushing.

Tinubu stated, “Rush can cascade into mistakes of unimaginable magnitude. There is equally glory and recovery in slowness, when you have a slow fix of a bad foundation. So to me, I would rather take the one that will last the country and endeavour for a longer period of time than the rush hour shopping.”

Also speaking, Akande, who was at the meeting, said the President “inherited piles of rot.” He said that they discussed the rot the PDP left for it was defeated.

-PunchPunch

What I Know About Buhari, Jonathan, Tinubu- Tunde Bakare

Pastor of the Latter Rain Assembly and one of the conveners of the Save Nigeria Group, Tunde Bakare, has disclosed what he knows about some of Nigeria’s leading political figures.

Speaking in the second edition of The Interview magazine, which hits the newsstand this week, Bakare revealed how President Muhammadu Buhari chose him as running mate in 2011 and the role of the-then national leader of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), later the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, and the drama that followed.

Read More: leadership

APC Lagos Is One Big Family United By A Progressive Cause – Tinubu

Probe Obasanjo, Atiku, Tinubu, Others, LP Urges Buhari

If any probe of those alleged to have looted the nation’s treasury is to have any meaning and not be seen as a selective witch-hunt, then President Muhammadu Buhari should start with all past civilian administrations beginning from 1999.

This was the position of the Chairman, Labour Party of Nigeria (LP), Abdulkadir Abdulsalam, who yesterday urged Buhari to be holistic by extending such probes to former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, erstwhile Vice President Abubakar Atiku, Senate President Bukola Saraki and other former state governors.

Read Morengrguardiannews

I Personally Begged Tinubu, Akande To Make Buhari Presidential Candidate – Dasuki

Immediate past National Security Adviser, Colonel Sambo Dasuki (retd), has revealed that he actively lobbied Asiwaju Bola Tinubu to allow President Muhammadu Buhari, be the presidential candidate of the ACN and CPC in the 2011 race.

Dasuki also insists that as opposed to what is being said in several quarters, he never maltreated nor took part in maltreating Buhari when he was removed as military Head of State in a 1985 coup.

The former NSA, who is on the radar of the Department of State Services, disclosed this to Yushua Shauib in Abuja.

Dasuki said: “I always respect and dignify my seniors and those in positions of authority whether in service or after. Though a young officer, I was reluctant to be among those that arrested him. And I was not.

“I only met him afterward at Bonny Camp with Lawal Rafindadi. There is no way I could have maltreated him as being alleged in some quarters. I am glad most of the actors are still alive.”

Speaking further, Dasuki said he knelt down to beg Bisi Akande, who was then Chairman of Action Congress Nigeria, ACN, to accept the President because “General Buhari is a man to be trusted.”

He said respected Northern elements like Adamu Adamu, Bashir Kurfi, Sule Hamman, Wada Maida and Kabir Yusuf, could testify to his active involvement in the past efforts by Buhari to be President.

He said: “In the belief that Yoruba and south-westerners are never religious fanatics, especially regarding politics, me and my group suggested that Tinubu should be a running mate to Buhari.

“When other elements opposed that proposition, Tinubu team therefore recommended a Buhari-Osinbajo ticket. Unfortunately, the ticket failed to stick as Pastor Tunde Bakare was eventually pushed forward by other forces.”

Source -ynaija.com

Oyegun Lauded For Outstanding Contributions To Democracy

The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) Wednesday praised the All Progressives Congress (APC) National Chairman, Chief John Oyegun for moving Nigeria into a new phase, with the election of a government that is very different from the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) administration in many respects.

The union also acknowledged his leadership qualities and his immense contributions to the success of the party, particularly his role in the making of President Muhammadu Buhari, his visible hands in the making of APC governors and his invaluable contributions to the elections of lawmakers.

In a letter signed by the, Deji Gbolahon Elumoye (Chairman) and Abimbola Oyetunde (Secretary), the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Lagos State Council extolled Oyegun’s exemplary leadership qualities, noting his contributions to the growth of democracy Nigeria.

The letter reads ‘The Lagos Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) is to mark its 2015 Press Week. As part of the events, an Award Night which will be the grand finale of the Press Week activities is scheduled for Friday, September 25 at the Lagos Sheraton Hotels and Towers, Bank Anthony Way, Ikeja by 6; 00pm. We are pleased to inform you of your nomination for the 2015 NUJ Recognition Award. Your recognition for the award to be bestowed on you stems out of a careful study of your administrative excellence in handling the affairs of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to attain a greater height as the ruling party in Nigeria’.

Former Gombe State Governor, Senator Goje Expelled From APC, Accused Of Anti-Party Activities

Former governor of Gombe state and now serving Senator Danjuma Goje has been expelled by his party, APC over allegations of engaging in anti-party activities and forming parallel executive in the state. His expulsion was made known by the Gombe state APC Chairman, Magaji Doho at the party secretariat in the state today July 7th.

“Having gone through the rigours of campaigns and the 2015 general elections, some of our members, led by Senator Danjuma Goje, have decided to have parallel state executives of the party. Secondly, one of our senators representing Gombe-South, Danjuma Goje, is grossly involved in anti-party activities and we have, therefore,
decided to expel him from the party from the first day of July, 2015, to instill discipline in our great party. We have expelled Goje from the APC because of his activities, disloyalty and going contrary to the constitution of the party”he said

Senator Goje is yet to respond to his expulsion

Credit Us For The Bailout Fund – PDP

The national leadership of the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party, has claimed credit for the money released by President Muhammadu Buhari to states as bailout funds.

It said the release of over N804 Billion from the nation’s coffers as bailout to states and local governments across the country would go a long way in alleviating the sufferings of the Nigerian workers in various states of the federation, most of whom, it said, have been without their wages for some months.

PDP National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, in a statement in Abuja on Tuesday, said the party however “notes that a significant amount of the bailout came from savings accumulated in the Excess Crude Account handed over to the Buhari-led All Progressives Congress’ administration by the past PDP-led administration.

Metuh said it was however unfortunate that President Buhari had told the international community and Nigerians that he might not be able to perform in his first 100 days in office because he met almost an empty treasury.

He said the release of the funds by the President could have been an indication that he(President Buhari) was misdirected earlier on.

Metuh said his party would be expecting the President to behave like a true leader by correcting the first impression and statement he made concerning the true situation of the treasury.

He said, “This development is in clear contradiction to the earlier impression given by President Buhari to Nigerians and the international community that they should not expect much from his administration in its first one hundred days because according him, upon assumption of office, he met a virtually empty treasury.

“We want to believe that given the President’s release of such huge amount, he may have realised that he was earlier misdirected on the actual financial state of the nation at the time he took over. In this regard, we expect the President, as a respected statesman, to do the needful to correct that erroneous impression.

“Furthermore, we expect President Buhari’s APC administration, as direct beneficiary of this savings initiated by past PDP administrations, to appreciate the strategic importance of always saving for rainy days and as such guarantee prudent and transparent management of the nation’s resources now under its care.”

Metuh, therefore, charged the APC as a party in government to put its house in order, desist from injecting confusion and distracting the President from settling down to form a government and face the enormous challenges of governance, especially the implementation of his long list of campaign promises to Nigerians.

He added that Nigerians “are no longer interested in insults, tirades and propaganda but in actions and policies that would move the nation forward,” a stance, he alleged, the APC has has failed to recognise.

APC Crisis: Oyegun’s Exit Isn’t A Solution — Senator

Senator Francis Alimikhena, APC, Edo North is the Deputy Chief Whip of the Senate and a retired military officer. In this interview with Vanguard, Senator Alimikhena, who is in his first term in the Senate and the only APC senator from the South-South, speaks on topical issues affecting the Senate and his party.  Excerpts:

What should one expect from you as the Deputy Chief Whip of the Senate?

AlimikhenaI am going to do the best I can for Edo North and Nigeria in general. As deputy chief whip, I will make sure that I make my office very attractive and robust and do what is right for all manner of people.

What are the issues stoking the crisis in your party?

Well, it is a leadership issue and at the same time, it is a family affair. You know in every family, there must be issue and it is good to resolve the issues among the family. It all goes down to misunderstanding. As I can say by my own perception,  misunderstanding and wrong direction are the causes of the wrangling.

There are calls from some quarters that the National chairman of your party, Chief John Odigie Oyegun should resign or be removed. What is your take on this?

I do not believe that he should resign because any decision taken rightly or wrongly is a collective responsibility. If they feel that Oyegun has not done well, it is not only Oyegun that should go, all the National Working Committee, NWC of the APC should go. But I don’t think he should go, it is just a matter of consensus.

When mistakes occur then they can be rectified because if you say one mistake occured here and you say the people that made that mistake should go, what of other people that will come? If they make similar mistakes, will they have to go? I don’t think that it is fair on him for anybody to clamour that they should go because of what has happened.

What is your agenda for the Senator Bukola Saraki led 8th Senate?

Well, I don’t have to set agenda for him because he is an agenda person. He can set good agenda that he believes can be good for the country. You should bear in mind that he was once a governor and he did well in Kwara State and this is his second term in the Senate. He should be able to know the agenda that is good for the country.

Read complete interview here : www.vanguardngr.com

I Would Never Insult Buhari- Tinubu

Former Governor of Lagos state and National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has raised an alarm over a plot by some people to turn him against President Muhammadu Buhari.

The former governor of Lagos State in a statement by his media office said this in response to a report that claimed Tinubu accused President Buhari of moving against the party by helping Senator Bukola Saraki to emerge as Senate President.

Tinubu however said he never made a public statement about the National Assembly since Saraki and Yakubu Dogara emerged as Senate President and the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

The APC leader said he could never insult the President or castigate a government that he helped to form.

Read the statement below:

“The story first published on an online news site and later parroted by other online news outlet is an example of irresponsible journalism. This story has no source. It is a blatant fabrication to serve the interest of its sponsors. Tinubu has not spoken about the Senate election. This story is a perverse fiction. Not journalism…”

Read More: naij

Old Age will Limit My Performance – President Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has admitted that his age would limit his performance as the President of Nigeria.
Come December 17, 2015, Buhari, who was a military governor at 33 and Head of State at the age of 40, will turn 73. He now says he would have loved being a President when he was at a younger age.

Speaking with Nigerians resident in South Africa on Monday after taking part in the 25th assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union in Johannesburg, Mr. President said:

 “I wish I became Head of State when I was a governor, just a few years as a young man. Now at 72, there is a limit to what I can do.”

Despite his advancement in age however, Buhari gave assurance that his administration would make a difference. That what brought him to his current position was his love for the country. The President promised that his administration would “kill” corruption before it wrecks the nation.

“Our government is determined to secure the country, manage the economy, create employment and fight corruption. Some articulate writers have said if we do not kill corruption, corruption will kill Nigeria. This APC administration intends to kill corruption in Nigeria. We will do our best, I assure you,” Buhari stated.

APC Set To Reconcile Saraki, Tinubu

Some leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) are said to have started a process to reconcile the Senate President, Bukola Saraki and the national leader of the party, Bola Tinubu.

The duo fell apart following the sharp differences over the choice of the party’s candidates for the top seats in the National Assembly.

The leaders decided to intervene and settle the dispute in view of its implications for the image of the party and the stability of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

The party leaders have already opened a line of communication between the two .

Read MoreTribune

Northern Group Warns Against Plot To Undermine Bola Tinubu

A group under the aegis of the Patriotic Northern Coalition for Justice, Peace and Equity has called on the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to beware of politicians and elements within the party plotting to undermine the party’s chieftain and national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

The national coordinator of the coalition, Alhaji Babangida Sule Jnr, told newsmen in Kaduna that Tinubu is the bedrock of APC and still commands great respect in his region and in the party, adding that any plot against his interest will be very counter-productive.

“Politicians are already strategising for 2019 and they will stop at nothing to achieve their aim. Some of them are in APC and we have uncovered that part of their aims is to undermine the party’s chieftain, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, because they see him as a stumbling block.

“But we the Patriotic Northern Coalition won’t allow them because we are still grateful to Tinubu for what he has done for the North in the 2015 general elections, particularly his efforts in the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari. We know that many people played crucial roles in the emergence of Buhari, but Tinubu tops them all.

“Personally, I know of the many times he came to Kaduna to meet with Buhari and assure him that he would do all he could to support him and ensure his victory.

APC Insists On Sanctioning Saraki, Dogara; Says Due Process Will Be Followed

The leadership of APC insists they will still sanction Senate President Bukola Saraki and Speaker House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara and others who went against the party’s wish in the just concluded National Assembly leadership elections.

While the party endorsed Senator Ahmed Lawan and Hon Femi Gbajabiamila for positions of Senate President and Speaker House of Representatives, APC said Senator Saraki and Hon Dogara went against their wish and contested for the elections and won with the support of PDP members.

Speaking with journalists after a meeting in Abuja yesterday June 11, the National Publicity secretary of the party, Lai Mohammed said the proposed sanctions on the “erring members” will follow due process.

“The sanctions will follow due process. The party has made it clear that it is not happy with the outcome of the election”.

He said the erring members will be sent a letter notifying them of their misconduct and then given an opportunity to respond.

Security Expert Explains Why Osinbajo Can’t Attend National Security Meetings For Now

A security expert has explained why Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has so far not been allowed to attend any of the national security meetings President Buhari has had with Service Chiefs since he assumed power. On June 2nd and yesterday June 10th, President Buhari met with the Service Chiefs without Osinbajo and this has led to some media houses reporting that the Vice President was “locked out” from the Defence House, venue of the meetings.

A security expert explains why the pastor and lawyer can’t be allowed into such meetings for now. See that below…

The security expert explaned that Vice President Osinbajo is not a trained military officer and so it will take the military some time before sensitive intelligence can be shared in his presence. He also made reference to the Vice President’s affiliation to Tinubu. What he said below…

“I am sure he would have been invited if he had security background. Being a Professor of Law is fine, but in terms of intelligence and access to security information, you are nowhere near the rank of Colonel or equivalent in the Nigeria Military. Look, I have watched some footages that if the VP gets to see, he would lose appetite for days. Now, we have someone who has been in luxury virtually all his life, attaining the position of VP and some people are clamouring for his presence in highly sensitive talks. The truth is that the military hierarchy would not even feel comfortable saying some things in his presence. I can tell you that they respect Prof. Osinbajo as VP but they cannot trust him with information yet.

You cannot compare him to Buhari who served in many military roles, chased away a militia that was threatening Nigeria security, overthrew a military government, became Head of State, fought corruption and went ahead to instill discipline among a stubborn citizenry. The VP would have to go through what is called ‘Stimulation’. This is a process where he is lectured on terms, dealings, operations etc. of the military. His inner strength, strong heart and ability to keep things to himself will first be put to test before he gets access to some classified materials and information. We must understand the fact that Osinbajo was a candidate promoted by Bola Tinubu (ex-Lagos Governor), he was not handpicked by Buhari. If the President had picked a vice, it is likely that such individual may get the access Osinbajo isn’t getting now. Everyone knows the VP has been loyal to Tinubu for decades and he cannot swear that he would not divulge details of these security meetings to his political godfather. So he has to earn it. Tinubu may have used his influence to put him in this position but he must draw a line between blind loyalty and national duty.” he told Daily Independent.

Tinubu: I Won’t Recognise Saraki As Senate President, Unless…

National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Ahmed Tinubu has responded to the emergence of Senator Bukola Saraki as President of the Senate.

Tinubu, while speaking on the development at the national secretariat of the party on Tuesday in Abuja, said, “I will never recognise such a kangaroo arrangement that produced Bukola as the Senate President. “Or how do you want me to recognise a man who deliberately defied his own party because of his personal interest? It is not done anywhere.

“Therefore, recognising Bukola as the Senate President after all he had done to our party today, having gone against the wish and pattern of our great party, honestly will amount to endorsing impunity, and which you should all know I will not ”,Tinubu said.

He added, “For me to recognise Senator Bukola as the Senate President, he must show remorse for today’s action. He had earlier promised to defy the party and the deed has been done. You don’t do that in politics.

“Personal interest must not override that of the party that beget you. It’s a spoken and silent rule of the game, which all and sundry must abide with. “I’m not God, but as far as this party is concerned, I’m a leader and I know what is good for the party at the appropriate time.

Speaking now is not for the party, but for myself. I cannot recognize Bukola as the Senate President.”

Source: Today.ng

APC To Sanction Atiku For Supporting Saraki’s Insubordination

There are indications that the leadership of the All Progressives Congress, APC, may sanction former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar and present Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, over the outcome of the National Assembly elections that challenged the supremacy of the party.

Sources within the APC said Atiku colluded with Senator Bukola Saraki to undermine the will of the party while Tambuwal, who is the former Speaker of the House of Reps, supported Yakubu Dogara who emerged as Tambuwal’s successor.

The suspicion of the APC leadership was reignited by the fact that Atiku was the first person Saraki visited after emerging as Senate President on Monday, apparently to thank Atiku.

A reliable source within the party said the party was aware of moves by the PDP to secure principal offices in the National Assembly over a month ago and that was why the party selected staunch APC members, – Ahmed Lawan and Femi Gbajabiamila – as its candidates for Senate President and Speaker.

The source said the APC knew that the PDP would approach its old members to actualise this plan. Both Saraki and Dogara defected to the APC from the PDP.

The source said, “We started keeping tabs on Atiku in January when he showed that he was not interested in the success of President Buhari when he was our presidential candidate. Our fears were reignited when the then President, Goodluck Jonathan, paid Atiku a visit shortly before the elections.

“A large section of Atiku’s supporters defected to the PDP a day after that meeting with Jonathan and that was why Jonathan’s Special Adviser on Political Affairs, Rufai Alkali, said shortly after that meeting that Atiku would soon return to the PDP. Atiku even admitted himself that he did not attend Buhari’s rallies.

“Don’t you find it curious that the first person that Saraki visited after emerging as Senate President was Atiku? We have information that Atiku told his supporters in the Senate to vote for Saraki and that was what happened. We know that Atiku is still nursing a presidential ambition for 2019 and he is now beginning to build blocks.”

The source said the APC had evidence that Tambuwal supported Dogara so that he (Tambuwal) could retain his influence over the lower chamber of the National Assembly.

He said Tambuwal ensured that Dogara emerged the Chairman, House Services Committee, which is the most influential committee in the House because of his closeness to Dogara.

He said, “Tambuwal is also nursing a presidential ambition and needs to retain control over the House. He will not be able to retain such influence if Gbajabiamila is the Speaker.”

“Tinubu’s Political Career Is Over”- Bode George

A former National Deputy Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Bode George, has said that the political career of the National Leader, All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, is over.

George said this during a telephone interview with our correspondent while reacting to the emergence of Senator Bukola Saraki as the Senate President ahead of Senator Ahmed Lawan, who was the preferred candidate of Tinubu.

Specifically, George said Tinubu should start preparing to quit politics as his political influence has grossly diminished.

The PDP leader said Nigerians had become fed up with Tinubu and Chief Bisi Akande’s style of politics which he alleged involved imposition of candidates.

He said having nominated the APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun; and the Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, Tinubu should have “taken things easy” but “Tinubu continued to push his luck too far.”

He said, “You know I predicted weeks ago that the APC is just a congregation of strange bedfellows. The most beautiful thing about what has happened is that Bola Tinubu’s political influence in Nigeria is coming to a sunset and it is about five minutes to midnight for him.

“If he cannot see this now, then it will be foolish of him. He brought in the APC national chairman and the vice-president and he thinks Nigeria belongs to him. So, he thought what he did in Lagos was what he could replicate at the national level and they have shown him that he cannot continue to be the lord of the manor.

“So, if he is wise, he will slow down. President Muhammadu Buhari, as an army general, has fought more battles than him and has an understanding of things.”

George said the re-election of Senator Ike Ekweremadu as the Deputy Senate President was a victory for the PDP.

He said this was in line with his prediction that the PDP would bounce back. He praised the PDP senators for carrying out a successful ‘political manoeuvre’.

George said, “The PDP was never dead. We were only given a bloodied nose, not a technical knockout. So, this is an opportunity to start regrouping and getting ready for 2019. I want to salute the dexterity and perfect political manoeuvres for which the PDP is well known.

“People like Tinubu and Chief Bisi Akande in Osun have always been local champions. Now, they have come to the national level of politics and they are now learning the tricks that all that glitters is not gold.

“I congratulate Saraki and Ekweremadu. They understand what Nigeria is all about.”

George slammed the National Publicity Secretary of the APC, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, for rejecting the outcome of the elections.

He said the APC had no powers to sanction Saraki.

“The APC would discipline Saraki? Is Saraki a child? They probably think they are playing local politics like the one they play in Lagos State. I welcome them to the real world,” he said.

Credit – punch.ng

Fayose Writes Buhari, “e’ Sir I Have A Minister For You”

The Governor of Ekiti State, Ayo Fayose, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to grant him the privilege to nominate a candidate to fill the slot of the state in the Federal Executive Council.

Mr. Fayose, who made the request in a letter to the President dated May 31, 2015, said if the request was granted by the President, he would send a worthy and competent Ekiti professional for appointment in the federal executive council.

He said, “Should the request be favourably disposed to, I shall be happy to nominate a worthy and competent professional who can always oblige your excellency and your cabinet the benefit of a second opinion in the serious business of governance.”

He noted that he wrote the letter based on the declaration made by the President that he would put the overall interest of the country above political partisanship and biases.

The governor also hinted that his letter was on the strength of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria section 147 sub (2) and (3) which states that, “Any appointment to the office of the Minister of the government of the Federation shall if the nomination of any such person to such office is confirmed by the Senate, be made by the President.

“Any appointment under sub- section (2) of this section by the President shall be in conformity with the provision of section 15 (3) of this constitution provided that in giving effect to the provision aforesaid, the President shall appoint at least one minister from each state who shall be indigene of such state.”

Mr. Fayose argued that since Ekiti is a Peoples Democratic Party state where the state governor, the National Assembly and the state assembly members are PDP, it was expedient that he be accorded the honour of naming the minister that would come from the state.

He noted that this would not be new, saying that late Bola Ige, who was the leader of the Alliance for Democracy and the party’s National Chairman, Ahmed Abdukadri, were made minister and special adviser respectively by the PDP government of Olusegun Obasanjo between 1999 and 2007.

The Special Assistant to the Governor on Media, Lere Olayinka, confirmed the development.

“Yes, he wrote the letter and it has been delivered to the President,” Mr. Olayinka told Premium Times

Source: Premium Times

Tinubu,Tambuwal Fight Over Speakership

The battle for the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives may be causing rift between the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the immediate past Speaker, Aminu Tambuwal. The rift is said to be posing a serious threat to the harmony that exists in the party.

The rift may have inadvertently opened new fronts of dichotomy between the original members of the APC at inception and those that are referred to as joiners.

Attempt by Tinubu to make sure its candidate, Femi Gbajabiamila, emerges the new Speaker have been met with stiff resistance from supporters of Hon Yakubu Dogara, the chairman of the House Services Committee, who is widely believed to enjoy the full backing of the former Speaker and his Deputy, Emeka Ihedioha.

Apart from Tambuwal’s influence in the House, it was further learnt that some of the lawmakers want to cease the opportunity to whittle down Tinubu’s growing powers in the party.

Read More: TheSun

Dokpesi, 7 Others To Testify In Tinubu’s N150 Billion Libel Suit Against AIT

Hearing in the N150 billion libel suit filed against DAAR Communications by national leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, has been fixed for today according to Justice Iyabo Akinkugbe of the Ikeja High Court.

Raymond Dokpesi, the Chairman of the broadcast outfit, is one of the witnesses to testify at the hearing of the suit. Others listed to testify against Mr. Tinubu are Namure Edoimioya, Medan Tenke, Ajibola Adewusi, Olumide Idowu, Stanley Odidi, Nwabueze and Stanley Bassey.

Mr. Tinubu had instituted the N150 billion suit against Daar Communications Plc, owners of AIT, over the documentary titled “Lion of Bourdilion”.

He had alleged that the documentary which the station started airing on March 1, was libellous and aimed at tarnishing his image. However, in a counter-claim filed by AIT on Tuesday, the defendant denied the allegations as contained in the plaintiff’s amended statement of claim.

Mr. Dokpesi, in his statement on oath, said that Mr. Tinubu’s claim was founded on a non- existent ground because the said documentary was not titled “The Lion of Bourdilon”, but “Unmasking the Real Tinubu”. He also said that the documentary, in his honest opinion, was not false and was not aired out of malice to the run the character in question down.

Mr. Dokpesi said AIT, as a member of the fourth estate of the realm, was empowered by Section 22 of the Constitution to at all times, hold those in government accountable and responsible to the people of Nigeria.

He further asserted that the contents of the documentary were facts which had been in the public domain for over two decades. According to him, they were published independently prior to the broadcast and had remained unchallenged till date.

Dokpesi, Others To Testify In Tinubu’s N150bn Libel Suit Against AIT

Hearing in the N150 billion libel suit filed against DAAR Communications by a national leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, has been fixed for May 27.

Raymond Dokpesi, the Chairman of the broadcast outfit, is one of the witnesses to testify at the resumed hearing of the suit.

Others listed to testify against Mr. Tinubu are Namure Edoimioya, Medan Tenke, Ajibola Adewusi, Olumide Idowu, Stanley Odidi, Nwabueze and Stanley Bassey.

Mr. Tinubu had instituted the N150 billion suit against Daar Communications Plc, owners of AIT, over the documentary titled “Lion of Bourdilion’’.

He had alleged that the documentary which the station started airing on March 1, was libellous and aimed at tarnishing his image.

However, in a counter-claim filed by AIT on Tuesday, the defendant denied the allegations as contained in the claimant’s amended statement of claim.

Mr. Dokpesi, in his statement on oath, said that Mr. Tinubu’s claim was founded on a non- existent ground because the said documentary was not titled “The Lion of Bourdilon”, but “Unmasking the Real Tinubu”.

He also said that the documentary, in his honest opinion, was not false and was not aired out of malice to the person of the claimant.

Mr. Dokpesi said AIT, as a member of the fourth estate of the realm, was empowered by Section 22 of the Constitution to at all times, hold those in government accountable and responsible to the people of Nigeria.

He further averred that the contents of the documentary were facts which had been in the public domain for over two decades.

According to him, these were published independently prior to the broadcast and had remained unchallenged till date.

Justice Iyabo Akinkugbe of an Ikeja High Court has fixed hearing till May 27.

Credit: NAN

APC Assures Of Productive Leadership

APC-members organise prayer in kadunaThe National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie Oyegun, has assured that the Muhammadu Buhari’s led administration will live up to expectations during the first 100 days in office.

Mr Oyegun, who was represented by National Vice Chairman of the APC in Southeast, Chief Emma Enukwu stated this in Abakaliki, Ebonyi State capital, during a Southeast Solidarity Rally organized in honour of the President Elect, Muhammadu Buhari, and his Vice, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.

He insisted that the results generated from the Southeast region during the last Presidential elections was not the true reflections and wishes of the people of the Southeast, saying that the APC government will always ensure free and fair elections, meeting the wishes of the masses.

While addressing the mammoth crowd, the Ebonyi state Chairman of the party, Eze Nwachukwu, also commended the leaders of the APC in the country and in the Southeast for their quest to change Nigeria.

Other National Officers who spoke to Channels Television said, most of the people in the Southeast do not believe in the course of the APC before now, it is obvious that with the event, the entire region has defected to the party.

The event was graced by former Governor of old Abia state, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, the National Organizing Secretary of the party, Senator Osita Izunaso, National Auditor of the party, Chief George Moghalu and Deputy National Financial Secretary,  Sunday Chukwu, amongst others.

The event also witnessed the defection of some supporters of other political parties in the state.

Senate Presidency: Akume Faults Tinubu, Akande On Zoning

The Senate Minority Leader and one of the leading contenders for the Senate Presidency, Senator George Akume, on Friday disagreed with the Pioneer National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Chief Bisi Akande and a leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, over their declaration that zoning arrangement won’t be used in sharing of political positions in the National Assembly.

Akume, who spoke with journalists in his Abuja residence on Friday evening, maintained that the party, before now, had adopted a zoning arrangement which favoured the emergence of the next Senate President from the North Central, being his geopolitical zone.

It would be recalled Akande had, earlier this week, said the party would not employ the use of zoning to determine the next senate president and that anybody was free to vie for the position.

In the same vein, Tinubu had told journalists on Thursday in Abuja that zoning will not be used to compromise the quality of leadership for the National Assembly, adding that the party had decided to allow all those interested in the Speakership of the House of Representatives and President of the Senate to contest.

But Akume insisted that zoning was part and parcel of the politics of Nigeria, arguing that Dr. Goodluck Jonathan became the President of Nigeria as a result of zoning.

He said, “Even if zoning is not explicitly stated in the Constitution, there is always this letting to understanding that there must be fairness and balance in the occupation of strategic positions. We should not throw away zoning.

“In every zone, there are capable Nigerians that will hold their own in every endeavour. So, basically zoning is acceptable to me because it ensures stability. I have not heard from the party that they have jettisoned zoning.

“I remember, the last meeting we had, there was this issue that it has been zoned to North Central. I do not know it has been taken away because the party has not said they are taking it away but all I want to say is that the party made a comment on it.

“I am a faithful party man. I was part of the team that negotiated the merger of this party and I am also in the privilege position to talk about the dynamism of APC”.

On the argument that the North-Central, specifically Benue State, had occupied the Senate Presidency since 2007, Akume said there was nothing wrong with the trend even as he argued that the North-West, has also, always produced the President of the country whenever it was the turn of the North.

Lagos Lawmakers Fight Tinubu Over Speakership

Elected members of the Lagos State House of Assembly under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) are set to clash with the national leader of the party, Bola Tinubu over  who succeeds Adeyemi Ikuforiji as Speaker of the House. The lawmakers have rejected Tinubu’s anointed candidate for the post, Wasiu Eshinlokun-Sanni.

Tinubu’s attempts to force the other candidates to step down for Sanni have been rebuffed. The candidates have insisted that they are going ahead with their aspirations.

The other contenders for the speakership race are Adefunmilayo Tejuoso, Mudasiru Obasa, Lanre Osun, Rotimi Abiru and Lanre Ogunyemi.

Tinubu is also facing resistance from Ikuforiji, who prefers to give the position to his stooge and ally, Abiru, in order to fully cover his tracks after leaving office.

Read More: Vanguard

Senate Presidency: We Will Not Compromise Merit- Tinubu

The All Progressives Congress (APC) National Leader, Senator Bola Tinubu, says merit will not be compromised while choosing the Senate President.

Tinubu said this in Abuja on Thursday after holding a closed-door meeting with the President-elect Muhammadu Buhari.

He said he would not go against anything the party decided but assured that merit would not be compromised while making the decision.

He said: “Well, you have heard from the party; you have heard from leadership. My desire is not to rock the party. I am a disciplined party man and we will look at it critically.

“However, the nation is expecting us to take a decisive leadership decision. Merit would not be compromised. You have to be competent; you have to possess the character for the leadership.

“You have to be PAN Nigerian and be a very solid character to lead the National Assembly and that is what we are talking about,” he said.

Tinubu said the party had decided, in a meeting, that zoning would not be considered in choosing the leader because it could “compromise the credibility, qualification of an individual. “Let everybody aspire just like we aspired”.

He said predictions were rife during the APC presidential primaries that the party would run into “chaotic storm”. “We put those people to shame and came up with the best. Expect the best from us always,” he said.

Credit: NAN

How I Will Choose My Ministers – Buhari

President-elect Muhammadu Buhari has dismissed the ministerial lists in circulation on the social media as fake because his ministers will not emerge the way the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) picked members of its Federal Executive Council (FEC) in the last 16 years.

Buhari made this known in an exclusive interview he granted senior editors of Daily Trust at his country home in Daura, Katsina State on Tuesday.
As the May 29 handover date draws closer, there have been speculations about those who would make the next government’s ministerial list. Most of the persons who featured on the speculative list were picked from across the 36 states and the six geopolitical zones, to rhyme with the PDP’s tradition of appointing a minimum of one minister from each state of the federation and six others from the geopolitical zones.

In the interview, Buhari dismissed the speculations, by stating that “I am not speaking about it; I have
not put anything on paper, so nobody has seen it and I haven’t discussed it with anybody; I am just keeping it close to my chest.”

The exclusive interview was conducted in-between a series of emotional activities in which the president-elect met with his primary and secondary school mates and other personal friends to exchange banters because, as he put it, as from May 29, he would be too busy with the affairs of Nigeria, hence it would be difficult to find time to socialise with his cherished friends from his childhood.

Providing an insight into how his ministers would emerge, Buhari said, “I am ardent listener of Hausa Service of Voice of America (VOA) and the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) from 6am to 7am every morning. I am going to quote myself because I heard in one of the interviews that I said the type of people I am supposed to appoint, like in the cabinet and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, and service chiefs, will be different. Definitely my approach is going to be different from what we had under the PDP where governors nominated ministers.”

The president-elect said if state governors are at liberty to appoint their commissioners, he, too, should be at liberty to choose those who would serve with him in the Federal Executive Council.
According to Buhari, he was still looking around for the kind of persons who could help to transform the country, stating that, “I have been around long enough to know people that I can approach for things like that… Deliberately we will look for competent people, dedicated and experienced to head ministries and, of course, there will be schedules for ministers and we will expect them to fill them. Economically we will try and stop a lot of wastages and encourage austerity so that we can fund the ministries. Education and healthcare will get more attention. Of course, security is Number One. Certainly, there is a lot to do but we are hoping that we ‘ll get good people to be in charge of ministries who can apply themselves to their responsibilities so that in no time Nigerians would begin to see the difference.”

When asked if he would present the list of his ministers to the Senate in the first week of the proclamation of the new legislature, Buhari simply responded “I will not make that known before you.”
He spoke extensively on why he is insisting that the principle of separation of powers among the three arms of government should be obeyed; the power sharing in the All Progressives Congress (APC); fuel subsidy; the lack of progress made in the handover from President Goodluck Jonathan to him, and much more.

Source:Dailytrust

Jonathan’s Loyalist, Elder Orubebe Announces Defection To APC

Elder Godsday Orubebe, Nigeria’s former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs has announced his decision to defect from the Peoples Democratic Party,PDP to the All Progressives Congress, APC for the development of the Niger Delta.

The announcement was made via his Twitter handle. See tweets below:

ORUBEBE

 

 

orubebe defect

 

More to follow later………

Ex Govs, Buhari Associates Battle Tinubu

Eleven days to the assumption of office, close associates of President-elect Muhammadu Buhari and  some former governors are plotting to move against the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola tinubu. The plot is to whittle down the influence Tinubu will have on the incoming government.

Buhari’s associates and the former governors are mounting pressure on Buhari to review his ties with the APC national leader. They are accusing Tinubu of not allowing them have a say in the way the new government would be formed.

Many of those opposed to Tinubu in the party have presented themselves and others as candidates in the new government.

Read MorePunch

APC Disowns Ministerial List Circulating On Social Media, Calls It A “Fiction”

The All Progressives Congress on Sunday disowned a list of possible ministers being circulated by some online journalists as “mere fiction.”

According to the APC, the party has nothing to do with the list and urged Nigerians to wait for an authentic list of nominees, which would be made public through the “appropriate channels.”

This was the sentiment of the latest a statement by the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, in Abuja.

According to Mohammed, “Nigerians should disregard these lists and await the authentic list which will be communicated through the appropriate channels at the right time.”

The APC also cautioned the media against using statements attributing actions to the President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, without clarification.

The party said journalists should clarify with authentic party officials and the Buhari Campaign Organisation on any issue having to do with the actions of the President-elect, in order to avoid presenting falsehood as facts.

“The appeal becomes necessary following recent media reports on the actions which the President-elect will purportedly embark upon once he is sworn into office.

“Various people have been quoted in the media on what the President-elect will do or will not do once he assumes office.

“The truth is that these people do not speak for the President-elect, hence the need for the media to clarify such issues with the Chairman of the party, its National Publicity Secretary or the spokesman for the Buhari Campaign Organisation. These officials are always available to clarify issues,” Mr Mohammed concluded.

APC Does Not Believe In Zoning, Says Tinubu

Former Lagos State Governor, Ahmed Tinubu, has disclosed that the All Progressives Congress does not believe in Zoning when it comes to sharing of political office.

He further states that Nigerians should look forward to the incoming APC-led administration and the time has come for change.

Tinubu was briefing reporters at the Benin Airport about the sharing of the political offices. It is now time for progress, Tinubu stated.

Read More: DailyIndependent

 

How We Defeated Jonathan- Tinubu

APC, leader Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, yesterday, attributed the defeat of President Goodluck Jonathan in the last presidential election to a commonsense revolution anchored on a rebellion against the excesses of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

He spoke at a book launch in Lagos where Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka extolled him, and Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State as the drivers of the uprising, which he said, was fast-tracked by President Jonathan’s mishandling of the Nigerian Governors Forum, NGF crisis.

The public presentation of the book “Dynamics of Change: The Amaechi Years”, was witnessed by a cross section of the political class and civil society including governors, former governors, senators among others. Justice Adolphus Karibi-Whyte, who was chairman of the occasion, said the book only offered a glimpse into the vision that stimulated the infrastructure and developments during the Amaechi years in Rivers State.

Amaechi on his part gave a peep into his political challenges, noting how even when he got Tinubu angry before the APC convention, both men set aside their issues for the common goal of achieving victory in the elections that were yet to be held at that time.

Read More: vanguardngr

 

Amaechi Will Continue To Serve Nigeria In Key Positions – Bola Tinubu

Tinubu has showered encomiums on governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State..Speaking inLagos on Thursday while delivering his speech as the special guest of honour at the presentation of the book titled Dynamics of Change: The Amaechi Years, the APC leader said..

“We are here today, because one of the generals in the Common Sense Revolution Army, Rotimi Amaechi is bold and willing to show the world what he has achieved in the task to chart the critical path to total political and economic emancipation of the people whose mandate he enjoyed for 8 years.

“In my view, our gathering to celebrate the landmark achievements of my brother, Governor Rotimi Amaechi, in Rivers State in the last eight years is also another justifiable celebration of idea of Common Sense Revolution for development. The publication of the book, Dynamics of Change: The Amaechi Years is a timely service to history. This occasion is all the more remarkable because of the huge challenges Amaechi has been facing especially in his second term from an extremely hostile federal government. His role as the chairman of the Governors’ Forum invariably brought him into a bitter collision with President Goodluck Jonathan.

“Governor Amaechi and most of the governors want a properly defined federalist relationship with the government at the centre. The President would have none of that as in the notable example of the management of the federation account. This is, therefore, another great opportunity to salute Amaechi’s rare courage of conviction and sense of purpose. The All Progressives Congress (APC) has every cause to be proud of him.

“Rotimi will go on from here to continue to serve Nigeria in key positions. He will not be alone. He will share the company of many change agents and professionals who have cast their lots with the new political order under the Leadership President elect, General Muhammadu Buhari”.

Teenager Impersonates Tinubu, Defrauds Three

Operatives of the State Intelligence and Investigation Bureau, SIIB, have arrested a 19-year-old undergraduate for impersonating Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu. The suspect, identified as Emmanuel Eto, was arrested while attempting to defraud a fourth victim in Lagos.

According to reports, about three weeks ago, the Commissioner of Police, Kayode Aderanti, received a complaint from a retired DIG, Alhaji Rahman Akao, that someone was impersonating a renowned senator on social media and defrauding unsuspecting victims.

He immediately directed the officer in charge of SIIB, SP Ameh Akpa Veronica, to investigate the case. Ameh Akpa Veronica led a team of detectives, who traced the suspect to Delta State, where he was apprehended.

Vanguard gathered that Eto, a National Diploma, ND, 2 student of Delta State Polytechnic, Oghara, created a Facebook account with the politician’s name, which he used to lure his victims with a job offer.

It was learned that he had defrauded three persons before he was arrested, while attempting to defraud the fourth victim.

The suspect said: “I am from Isoko South Local Government in Delta State. I did what I did because my father is late and my mother has been sick for a long while. “She has high blood pressure and has been in and out of hospital. She was recently discharged from the hospital.

“I ask my victims if they are interested in working in Nigerian National Oil Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, or any other blue chip company. They get carried away and I usually ask the victim to pay N26,850 into my bank account for application forms and processing fee.

“It was while I was attempting to defraud the fourth person that I was arrested.

“I am really disappointed in myself. I want my mother to know that I loved her so much that I went into fraud to enable me take care of her medical expense.”

Creditvanguardngr

South-West Senators Tackle Tinubu Over Senate Presidency

The All Progressives Congress (APC) senators-elect from the South-West have joined forces with their Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) counterparts from the region to frustrate Bola Tinubu’s candidate for the Senate Presidency.

The senators have vowed to resist Tinubu’s attempt to impose a candidate on them without their inputs. The senators denied that there is is consensus among them to support Tinubu’s candidate. Tinubu is championing the candidature of Ahmed Lawan from Yobe state.

Read More: NigerianPilot

Trekking Trend: Man Treks From Abeokuta To Lagos For Tinubu, Others

One 28 year old Adam Afolabi Ndabagi has vowed to embark on a-five-day -trekking from Abeokuta to Lagos state to celebrate the victory of the President-elect , Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) at the poll by visiting and appreciating former governor of Lagos state , Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu for providing the platform.

Ndabagi, a fashion designer was born in Sabo,in Abeokuta North local government area of Ogun State and had his schools in the state , said though, his father was a Nupe man but, his mother was an Egba woman.

Speaking with newsmen in Abeokuta, Ndabagi, said he would begin the five -day journey on Monday, (today) from OPIC round about in Oke-Ilewo Abeokuta at 6:am enroute Abeokuta-Lagos old road to Lagos state .

According to him, Tinubu deserves more than what he was planning to do for him, saying, ” for youths to travel far for Buhari, I will trek to Lagos even if Asiwaju Bola Tinubu lives at somewhere far from Lagos, I will also trek there through Ewekoro, Ifo, Sango, Agege. “I want to go and tell him well done for the work he did to help keep Nigeria strong with his political revolution without shedding the blood of any Nigerian. This revolution attracted recognition from international observers. “I will start my journey on Monday by 6a.m. at OPIC roundabout for about five days and I should be through with everything on Friday by God’s grace.

“Apart from that, I will also visit Oba of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu for his tremendous works on the throne of his forefathers by making Lagos good. I will also thank Governor Babatunde Fashola for transforming Lagos state for his eight years on the throne as well as the lawmakers who are supporting him.

“I have been assured by the DPO, Ilupeju Police station as well as my doctor , for safety and my medical safety. Just like some trekked for Buhari, I am only trekking to celebrate him because I am very much happy. I have no money to give him but I would use my agility to trek, sweat to greet him because he is a man of honour”, he said .

When asked how he would pass nights during his journey, Ndabagi said he would look out for head of the village or Seriki of Hausa in the area he got to when never the sun’s sets to pass nights with and continue his journey the following day. He also said he would cover 25km on a daily basis to cover about 100km distance from Abeokuta to Ikoyi to meet with Tinubu.

Creditvanguardngr

Senate Presidency Tussle: Akume Meets Obasanjo, Tinubu, Atiku, Kwankwaso

Ahead of the zon­ing of the Senate Presidency, former governor of Benue State and one of the top con­tenders to the nation’s num­ber three position, Senator George Akume, has intensi­fied consultations, meeting leaders of the All Progres­sives Congress (APC) and other stakeholders.

Akume, last week, met with former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo; the APC National Leader, Bola Tinubu and former Osun State gover­nor, Prince Olagunsoye Oyin­lola, in the South West.

The former Benue State governor, who is returning to the Senate for the third time, met all the leaders in their respective domains in Abeo­kuta, Lagos and Okuku, re­spectively.

Though there was no of­ficial statement after each of the meetings, it was gathered that the parleys might not be unconnected with the position of Senate Presidency.

Sources told Daily Sun that Akume had also met with former Vice-President, Atiku Abubakar, who may likely emerge as chairman of the APC Board of Trustees.

Also, the former governor had visited Kano State Gov­ernor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, a senator-elect. He also met Prof Ango Abdullahi, an in­fluential northern elder; a for­mer Inspector-General of Po­lice, Ibrahim Coomasie and former Kogi State Governor, Prince Abubakar Audu.

One of Akume’s aides, said of the meeting: “Senator Akume is a very highly re­garded statesman in his own right. Consultations with like-minded leaders on issues bor­dering on our socio-politics should be a routine affair.”

On the Senate presidency contest, the aide stated: “If the APC is truly about change, that change should reflect in the way we do things; so, we send a very strong message to all Nigerians that they can be assured of a sense of belong­ing irrespective of where they come from.

“We have produced a Pres­ident-elect from a majority ethnicity; we have produced a vice-president-elect from an­other majority ethnic group. APC must be sensitive to the sensitivities of the minorities across both divides of the Ni­ger.

“Come to think of it, the outgoing President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, is from a minority ethnic group. What is in stock for the minorities in the incoming administra­tion?”

Read Moresunnewsonline

No Fights Between Me & Fashola- Tinubu

The Former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Tinubu, has come out with a statement that there is no fight between him and the current Governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Fashola.

This comes after Oba of Lagos, Riliwan Akiolu, expressed at the Blue Roof event that he had settled the fight between Tinubu and Fashola. The event was held in celebration of the Governor of Lagos.

Tinubu also took to social network, Twitter, expressing that all of this is in the past and what Lagos has achieved is through hadrwork.

Read MoreDailytimes

Tinubu Denies Endorsing Any Candidate For Lagos Speakership

The former governor of Lagos State and national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) had denied endorsing any candidate as the next Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly.

Tinubu, who was reacting to rumours that he has anointed the former secretary of the party in the state, Wasiu Sanni-Eshinlokun to succeed Adeyemi Ikuforiji as the next Speaker of House, said he has no intention of endorsing anybody for the position.

Tinubu was speaking when he met some party leaders in his Bourdillon road, Ikoyi residence. He accused some individuals in the state of using his name for their selfish interests.

Read More: Naij

APC Govs Submit Ministerial List, As Buhari Prepares Cabinet

With just about three weeks remaining for him to be sworn in as Nigeria’s president, Muhammadu Buhari has started putting his cabinet together.

In view of this, the president-elect has reportedly directed governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to forward three names each of their ministerial nominees.

Vanguard learnt that while giving the directive, Buhari said only those who are technically competent and of proven integrity, as well as loyal to the party could be elected.

Buhari, it was learnt, told the governors that once they sent three names each, he reserved the right to choose anyone he thinks was best from the submitted names.

The incoming president, who has often lamented the cost of governance is expected to cut the number of ministerial nominees to the barest minimum, with the slots for ministers of state set to be scrapped. Nigeria have 42 Cabinet ministers, an unnecessarily bloated cabinet, when compared with America’s 15.

However, a source told Vanguard that the staus quo may well remain if Buhari bows to pressure. The incoming president, according to the source, is being pressured by the APC to accommodate ministers of state to “at least compensate women in the party. Left to Buhari, he wouldn’t have more than 20 ministers but there is a lot of pressure on him to use it to compensate the women”.

Aside pressure from his party, the constitution mandated that political parties and cabinet positions reflect the “federal character” of the nation. As such, political parties were required to be registered in at least two-thirds of the states, and each state was required to produce at least one cabinet member. Buhari is therefore expected to have at least 36 ministers.

Meanwhile, APC governors would be meeting with the president-elect today to congratulate him on his imminent assumption of power. At the meeting, issues relating to the party’s interests are expected to be discussed, especially that of zoning of National Assembly leadership slots like Senate President and Speaker of the House of Representatives among others.

Credit – Vanguard

Tinubu Replies Bode George: No Apologies For You

I was informed about a recent interview by Bode George in one of the national dailies and felt it necessary to clarify his claim that I begged him for forgiveness. I don’t know when and how I ever offended Mr.George. I have never wronged the man or even thought of it. I sought no forgiveness because no forgiveness was needed.

I think somehow he is still trying to implicate me as instigating the criminal proceedings once lodged against him. From my recollection, Mr. George was found guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction based on convincing evidence of wrongdoing. He insults the judiciary by implying that his conviction was wrongly derived.

Mr. George seeks to imbue me with more power than I could possibly have.

I am flattered but in all humility I must protest the false assessment. If he can remember, the government of the day was that of the PDP. I have never had nor sought much influence in those circles. He was charged by the government ruled by his own party for an offence concerning financial irregularities at the Nigeria Port Authority, NPA, an appointment he received from that same government. It is an incredible tale indeed to state that somehow I could direct a party that tried to dismantle the progressive political structure of my party to bring down one of its key members.

The more plausible explanation for his legal tribulation was that a member of his own cabal blew the whistle on Mr. George’s antics for reasons that only he and that person truly know. The rest is now history.

I believe he was convicted of “ Invoice Splitting” a violation of financial regulations. This malpractice is a deliberate circumvention of the law so that the culprit may approval expenditures above his mandated authority to do so and without proper oversight.

In the end, it was Mr. George’s own hand and actions that led to his incarceration more than anything I could ever have done.

Mr. George claims the alleged apology was made at the burial of Chief Alao Arisekola. On that date, personalities such as Oba Otudeko and Governor Ajimobi approached me because I did not greet Mr. George initially. They pleaded that, in the memory of the man we were all gathered to honor, I should greet Mr. George. At their request, I turned back and came to greet him by saying “Good Afternoon Egbon”. That was all.

If Mr. George wishes to interpret that as an apology, he has the right to do so. I also have the right to state categorically that no apology was made or even intended.

I think he is trying to find a way to walk back from his election hyperbole that he would go on exile if the APC won the Lagos State governership election. He realizes that Lagos under the APC is a very good place to live afterall. If he wants to remain in Lagos, he does not have to manufacture an excuse or explain away his bad words. Neither the APC nor I have any aims against him. In the election, the people rejected his party and his brand of politics. That is enough for us. We move on to greater progress. We have no time or inclination to trouble ourselves by troubling Bode George. Any trouble he is experiencing is a product of his own mind.

– Bola Tinubu

Senate Presidency: Tinubu Dumps Akume

There are strong indications that the former Lagos State governor and national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinibu may have withdrawn his support for George Akume to become the new Senate President. Tinubu’s decision to dump Akume follows pressure from the Senators that he should allow them elect their own Senate President. The Senators had reportedly told Tinubu that any attempt to impose Akume on them will be rejected.

The decision it was learnt did not go down well with Tinubu considering the fact that he was also pushing for the House of Representatives Minority leader, Femi Gbajabiamila from the South West for the Speakership position.

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