Islamic clerics blame ‘reckless utterances’ for southern Kaduna crisis.

The council of Imams and Ulamas in Kaduna state say “reckless utterances of southern Kaduna political and religious leaders” is the cause of the crisis in the southern part of the state.

On December 24, 2016, the Kaduna state government declared a 24-hour curfew Kaura, Zangon-Kataf and Jema’a local government areas owing to the persistent killings going on there.

The curfew has since been relaxed by 12 hours in Kaura and Zangon-Kataf with the exception of Jema’a.

Speaking with journalists on Monday, Abubakar Babantune, chairman of the Islamic clerics, said the southern Kaduna political and religious leaders urged their people to defend themselves.

He said that this has led to the death of Fulani and Hausa people in those LGAs.

“In the last one year or so, Kaduna state has not been in peace resulting from the activities of some mischief makers and the reckless utterances of southern Kaduna political and religious leaders,” he said.

“The council of Imams and Ulamas is most disturbed with the recent events in the southern part of the state in particular the recent demonstration organised by persons who don’t want peace in Kafanchan which led to the merciless killings and destruction of property worth millions of naira.

“To actualize their sentimental zeal by way of making insinuative statements that could destabilize the state, several news report credited to southern Kaduna political and religious leaders urging their people to take arms to defend themselves and nothing was done to prevent its occurrence until the worse had happened.

“Thus, the situation degenerated into the senseless and merciless massacre of hundredth of Hausa/Fulani Muslims in that area.”

Government Moves To End Niger Delta Crisis, Merge Agencies

The Federal Government yesterday moved to end militancy in the Niger Delta region.

Addressing State House Correspondents on the outcome of the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting, Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai joined by the Deputy Governor of Anambra State Mkem Okeke, said governors under the aegis of the Nigerian Governors Forum (NGF) have agreed to form a committee that would collaborate with the Federal Government to combat the menace of vandalism and destruction of oil and power installation among others.

Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udoma Udo Udoma, who also spoke after the NEC meeting, with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo presiding, said the current administration was only on a rescue mission of an economy that was already battered.

El-Rufai also disclosed that the NEC agreed to step up cost saving measures including a reduction of aides, vehicles in the convoy of government officials and merger of agencies as recommended by the Steve Oronsaye Committee on Public Service Reforms and in view of the recession.

“At the federal level, we are suggesting looking at the Orosanye report. We have discussed very important steps to be taken. We have suggested looking at Orosanye report that suggested merger and reduce publications of agencies,” El Rufai said.

According to him: “FG has 580 agencies. They are too many and they cost too much. There is a need to look at those that are duplicated and merge them. That is a report published since 2012. Even within MDAs, we need to consider merging departments. We may not need as many departments as we have. We have discussed implementing a public service renewal programme to get younger people, more IT-saving people into the public service.”

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http://guardian.ng/news/government-moves-to-end-niger-delta-crisis-merge-agencies/

Guinea-Bissau President Dissolves Government In Crisis

Guinea-Bissau’s President Jose Mario Vaz dissolved the government on Monday in an attempt to solve a political succession crisis that has paralysed the tiny west African state.

Guinea-Bissau has been in the throes of a power struggle since August 2015, when Vaz sacked then prime minister Domingos Simoes Pereira, leader of the ruling African Party for the Independence of Guinea and Cape Verde (PAIGC).

Two factions of the ruling PAIGC have failed to resolve their differences over Pereira’s successor, Baciro Dja, since he was given the job in June, with some lawmakers refusing to work with him.

The president said he was dismissing Dja’s administration to follow through on an agreement reached between both sides in neighbouring Guinea last month, with a view to ending the crisis.

“Putting into action the Conakry accord means the government resigning,” Vaz told gathered journalists in the capital, Bissau.

“This agreement did not provide for a unanimous choice of prime minister but one by consensus, and consensus has not been reached, forcing me as head of state and guardian of the constitution to take my responsibilities,” the president said.

This would involve “dismissing the government and naming a new prime minister who will be charged with forming an inclusive government to pull the country out of this crisis”, he added.

The timeframe for naming the new prime minister was not fixed during Vaz’s declaration, but, when contacted by AFP, a source at the presidency said this was likely “in the next few hours”.

President Vaz said that negotiations with 15 dissenting lawmakers last week had not succeeded, adding that without them the Conakry accord could not be fully implemented.

Talks mediated by Guinean President Alpha Conde had envisaged naming a new prime minister, putting together an “inclusive” government and reintegrating the lawmakers into the PAIGC.

A delegation from west Africa’s ECOWAS regional bloc demanded on November 6 that Vaz name a new prime minister and deal with the dissenting deputies with the aim of resuming parliament’s normal functions.

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http://guardian.ng/news/guinea-bissau-president-dissolves-government-in-crisis/

Niger Delta Crisis Festers As Militants Disagree On Stakeholders’ Meeting With Buhari

The hope of ending incessant bombings of crude oil pipelines remain elusive over the weekend as two major violent militant groups, Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) and its Urhobo/Isoko counterpart, Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate (NDGJM) disagreed on the 16 point demands presented to President Muhammadu Buhari during last Tuesday meeting with leaders and elders of the region.

While Niger Delta Avengers maintain that it was not disappointed by the outcome of the meeting between elders of the region and the federal government, its counterpart noted for destruction of oil pipelines upland, NDGJM said the humiliation that came with the meeting of the PANDEF with President Buhari was not a surprise to the group.

Their positions were contained in separate statements issued and signed by Messrs Aldo Agbalaja for NDGJM and Mudoch Agbinibo for NDA, both disagreeing on the contents of the demands as well as the composition of the team that met with the president.

The NDA, which first issued its statement, said   it was not disappointed by the outcome of the meeting between elders of the region and the federal government.

It stated emphatically that the fathers and elders of the region had done the needful and was not disappointed noting that the issues they raised brought to the fore the mistakes of the federalism that sustained the struggle for restoration of their land.

“Our fathers and elders have done the needful we are not disappointed. The issues they raised bring to the fore the mistakes of the Nigerian federalism that have sustained the perennial struggle for restoration of our land.”

The militant group said the demands by their elders and fathers were the minimal legitimate roadmap to setting up the framework to achieving the short, medium and long objective for the restoration of tranquility and development of the region.

“Some are issues that need affirmative actions, the immediate take off of academic activities for the Nigerian Maritime University  (NMU) Okerenkoko for the 2016/17 academic sessions, withdrawing all occupational security agencies and agents in the Niger Delta.

“The Nigerian state genuinely need the cooperation of our people to sustain the flow of the abundant crude oil and gas resources in our land to quench her appetite of developing other sections of the country without regards to the Niger Delta, the people and the environment,” it added.

The militant group said the Niger Delta elders and leaders under the leadership of Edwin Kiagbodo Clark’s Pan-Niger Delta Elders and Stakeholders Forum deserves kudos from all well meaning Nigerians for presenting such minimal demands before the government to pacify a people and region that has being continuously raped and dehumanised since 1914.

It said the demands tabled before President Buhari would lead the roadmap to engender desired peaceful atmosphere that Nigerian state so need if there was sincerity.

Read More: thisdaylive

APC Accuses Mimiko Of Plan To Create Crisis

As the people of Ondo State prepare to elect a new governor on Nov. 26, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state has accused Governor Olusegun Mimiko of plotting to cause mayhem.

The Ondo State chapter of APC, Mr Abayomi Adesanya, made the allegation in a statement in Akure on Sunday.

“We have been reliably informed of the intense mobilisation of thugs and militants, running into thousands, by the Executive Governor of Ondo State, Dr Olusegun Mimiko,’’ Adesanya said.

He alleged that the governor intended to use the recruits to ‘’protest and unleash terror on the good people of the state from Monday, Oct. 31, in Akure, Ondo, Akoko areas and Owo, Ore and Okitipupa.

He alleged that Mimiko on Saturday started disbursing money to mobilise militants and hoodlums from Delta and Edo states as well as a faction of Oodua People’s Congress from Ekiti and Lagos states.

He appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to direct the security agencies to beef-up security in and around Ondo State till the governorship election was concluded.

Adesanya said that the people of the state were desirous of peace, which should not be disrupted by the few self-seeking individuals for political gains.

Reacting to the allegation, the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr Eni Akinsola, described the allegation as baseless.

“This is baseless allegation.

“In the last seven and a half years of Gov. Olusegun Mimiko’s administration, we have no history of violence.

” The people of Ondo State are capable of defending themselves and protecting their territory.

“We have the history of defending our votes and we do not have the history of depending on external forces and this will not be an exception,” Akinsola said.

NAN recalls the Ondo State has been under tension since the announcement of Mr Ibrahim Jimoh as the PDP candidate for the election.

Mimiko said on Friday that he had briefed the president of the danger in the decision by INEC and appealed to the people to remain calm.

Credit: NAN

APGA crisis deepens as party disowns Vice Chairman.

Ifeatu Obiokoye, the National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, said the party never held its National Working Committee meeting, as claimed by Vice-Chairman, South East zone, Nwabueze Okafor.

Obiokoye, via a statement he issued on Wednesday in Abuja, said no such meeting held anywhere.

Okafor said on Monday that APGA’s NWC held a meeting under his chairmanship to ratify the purported suspension of the National Chairman of the party, Dr. Victor Oye.

Obiokoye said: “APGA wishes to assure members and well wishers of the great party that no such meeting of APGA NWC was ever held at anytime or in any place where such decision was ever taken.

“Besides, Okafor as a zonal vice-chairman of the party does not have the constitutional powers to either convene or preside over a meeting of the NWC.”

He said that members of the NWC of APGA remained unquestionably committed to the resolution reached at the peace meeting convened at the instance of the national leader and chairman, Board of Trustees.

Obiokoye said the meeting was held on October 13 under the chairmanship of Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State, which members of the NWC collectively committed themselves to the continued growth of the party.

According to him, Oye is the National Chairman of APGA.

He said in the light of the recent development, the party’s NWC will convene an emergency meeting soon to address issues in the party.

Leadership Crisis Hits Nigerian Community In Ghana

The All Nigerian Community in Ghana has suspended its President, Mr Moses Owharo, for alleged manipulation of the bank account of the association.

A statement by the Public Relations Officer, Mr Barry Ndu, made available to newsmen in Owerri on Thursday said that the suspension was to allow full investigations into the matter.

According to Ndu, the suspension is the decision of congress of ANC which held at its secretariat on Sept. 28 ratified by the board of trustee, members and delegates from other regions of Ghana.

Ndu added that already the matter had been reported to Ghana Police, saying the members want the investigation to follow due process of the law so as to unravel circumstance that led to tampering of ANC United Bank of Africa account.

Ndu stated that ANC account was frozen since 2013 due to court action against the body, but it was recently uncovered that fake resolution purported to have come from the executive council of the association was used to make withdrawal from the account.

It was further revealed that two of the said new signatories were Daniel Obiora and Godwin Onowu, who were neither members of the congress nor executives of the association.

“The congress perceived the action as gross violation of all known rules binding members of ANC.

“For the sake of transparency, due process and in line with the anti-corruption agenda of Nigeria government which all Nigerians must be part of as ambassadors of the country, the executives have decided to immediately suspend Owharo as its president,’’ he said.

He noted that Owharo had equally been summoned by the body to explain his role in the change of signatories and withdrawals made from the ANC Ghana UBA Account.

But in a swift reaction Owharo told NAN that the allegation was false.

Owharo told NAN in a telephone interview that there was no leadership crisis in ANC in Ghana.

“As I speak with you, I am still the president of ANC, Ghana, and the Nigeria High Commission in Ghana still work with me and so those carrying fake report that I am no longer the president are merely spreading falsehood,’’ Owharo said.

Credit:

http://guardian.ng/news/leadership-crisis-hits-nigerian-community-in-ghana/

Police Debunks Rumours Of Crisis In Gidan Waya, Jema’a LG

The Kaduna State Police Command, on Friday debunked rumours of purported crisis in Gidan Waya area of Jema’a Local Government.

This is contained in a statement signed by the Command’s Public Relation Officer, ASP Aliyu Usman.

Usman stated that the rumour was the handy work of ”mischief makers”.

“The Command’s attention has been drawn to a rumour in circulation that there is crisis going on along Gidan Waya axis of the State.

“The Command hereby debunks this rumour; it is baseless, untrue story cooked up by mischief makers,” Usman said in the statement.

According to him, the Command remains resolute in fighting crime across the state and urged members of the public to desist from peddling rumours.

“It is imperative that members of the public desist from rumour mongering and other acts capable of promoting public discord.

”Citizens are hereby advised to go about their lawful businesses without any fear of intimidation as the police personnel deployed across the state are committed to the protection of lives and property of the citizens.”

Read More: dailytrust

Nigerian Banking Industry Seen In ‘Full-Blown’ Credit Crisis – Bloomberg

Nigeria’s banking industry is experiencing a “full-blown financial crisis” as failed fiscal and monetary policies lead to a credit crunch, according to Arqaam Capital.

Unity Bank Plc and Skye Bank Plc are close to being insolvent, while lenders FBN Holdings Plc and Sterling Bank Plc “will need a dilutive capital hike,” Jaap Meijer and Tarek Sleiman, analysts at the Dubai-based investment bank and brokerage, said in an e-mailed note on Monday.

Capital ratios are set to worsen because of currency depreciation and souring loans, they said. Calls to Unity weren’t immediately returned and Skye didn’t reply to questions.

The central bank in July replaced the management of Skye after the lender breached liquidity thresholds, spurring concerns about the health of small- and medium-sized lenders, and reviving memories of bank rescues by the government after the financial crisis in 2009.

Nigerian banks are grappling with a devaluation of the naira, rising bad loans and an oil-dependent economy that’s set to record its first annual contraction in more than two decades.

“Our acid test reveals seven under-capitalized banks” with a deficit of as much as 1 trillion naira ($3.2 billion) in the financial system, Meijer and Sleiman said. A stress test identified FBN as the most under capitalized lender with Unity, Diamond Bank Plc, Skye, FCMB Group Plc, Sterling and Fidelity Bank Plc also showing deficits if they were to fully provide for non-performing loans, according to Arqaam.

“Our bank is strong,” Ikechukwu Mike Omeife, a spokesman for Diamond Bank, said by phone from Lagos. “Our capital-adequacy ratio and non-performing loans are within the statutory requirements.”

Common Challenges

Moody’s Investors Service said on Monday that Nigeria’s five biggest banks share common credit challenges related to the economic slowdown.

Moody’s expects non-performing loans to increase to about 12 percent over the next 12 months. The ratio of non-performing loans to total credit rose to 11.7 percent at the end of June from 5.3 percent at the end of 2015, the Abuja-based Central Bank of Nigeria, which requires banks keep the measure below 5 percent, said in a report on its website.

The five largest lenders, which together hold 57 percent of the country’s banking assets, “are able to absorb all losses under our severe stress scenario,” Moody’s said. Guaranty Trust Bank Plc showed “the greatest resilience” and the other four banks were Zenith Bank Plc, Access Bank Plc, United Bank for Africa Plc and First Bank of Nigeria Ltd., the ratings company said.

To create a capital buffer, Sterling Bank is planning to issue a 27 billion-naira bond and “if the interest rate looks better, we will do it this year,” Abubakar Suleiman, the lender’s chief financial officer, said by phone. “We will do it if the rate goes down to around 15 percent or 16 percent. We don’t want to raise it at a very high rate. If we do it, it will take our capital adequacy ratio to over 15 percent.”

Some Buys

Arqaam rates FBN, Skye, Sterling, Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc, Unity and Ecobank Transnational Inc. as sell, according to the analysts’ report. Zenith, Access and United Bank are rated buy.

Central Bank of Nigeria’s spokesman Isaac Okorafor didn’t immediately answer his phone or respond to text messages. Diamond, Unity and Fidelity didn’t answer calls. Moses Obajemu, a Lagos-based spokesman for Skye, didn’t immediately reply to questions sent to him by text message, as per his request.

Diamond, Fidelity, Wema Bank Plc, FCMB Group Plc, United Bank and Skye recorded declines in Lagos, with Zenith ranking as the most traded stock among the 171 securities on the Nigerian Stock Exchange All Share Index.

Diamond Bank fell 5.5 percent, Fidelity dropped 4.3 percent, Skye Bank slid 4.6 percent and Unity slipped 4.1 percent. Union Bank Nigeria Plc, which is part owned by London-based Atlas Mara Ltd., was the second-biggest gainer, rising 5 percent.

Niger Delta Crisis Will Be Over Soon, Buhari Tells Obama

President Muhammadu Buhari Tuesday assured Barack Obama, the American President, that Nigeria was making steady progress towards resolving the Niger Delta region problem, which had led to economic sabotage on a grand scale.

This is contained in a statement issued by Mr Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity.

Adesina said the president gave the assurance at a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the ongoing 71st edition of the UN General Assembly, holding in New York.“We are making definite progress on how many factions of the militant groups exist, their leadership and operational basis, and we have equally sought the cooperation of the oil majors.

“In a short while, I believe the issues would be resolved,’’ Buhari said.

He thanked America for assisting Nigeria in provision of armaments, training for Nigerian troops, and sharing of intelligence, which had led to the degradation of Boko Haram in the North East.

Buhari said the country was open to support in combating the humanitarian crisis currently ravaging the region.

He said the farming season was good in 2016, with the prospect of good harvest, and “Nigeria is on the road to food self-sufficiency soon.

Read More:

http://guardian.ng/news/buhari-to-obama-niger-delta-crisis-will-be-over-soon/

PDP crisis: Markafi faction asks Abang to hands-off case

The crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party took a dramatic dimension on Tuesday before the Federal High Court in Abuja as a factional Chairman of the party, Senator Ahmed Markafi, and six other members of the party asked Justice Okon Abang to hands-off the case.

Abang had on August 15 issued an order of interlocutory injunction that barred the party from conducting its national convention.

The order, which came barely 48 hours to a convention the party scheduled to take place in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on August 17, equally stopped the Independent National Electoral Commission from monitoring the exercise.

Abang said the party must not sponsor any candidate or conduct election into any of its national offices pending the determination of a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/464/2016, which another factional National Chairman, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, and seven others lodged before the court.

However at the resumed hearing of the matter on Tuesday, Markafi and six other members of the party, through their lawyer, Emmanuel Ukala (SAN), challenged the jurisdiction of Justice Abang to further preside over the matter.

They asked Justice Abang to hands-off the suit and await the judgment of the Court of Appeal on three separate appeals that were entered against his previous decisions on the PDP leadership crisis.

Ukala, who notified the court that the appeals were filed on July 28, August 15 and 16 respectively, said there was the need for Justice Abang to “step aside” from the case. “Once an appeal has been entered, the court below ought to stand aside and allow the Court of Appeal to have the opportunity to exercise its jurisdiction on the matter,” Ukala submitted.

On his part, counsel to the plaintiffs, Chief Niyi Akintola (SAN), who opposed the application, urged the court to ignore the appellants and go ahead with the substantive suit.

Akintola noted that there was nothing stopping the simultaneous hearing of the three appeals and the suit before the high court.

After listening to both sides, Justice Abang adjourned to September 29 to decide on whether or not to hands-off the legal tussle between two the factions.

Aside Sheriff, others listed as plaintiffs in the suit were Prof. Wale Oladapo (National Secretary), Dennis Alonge-Niyi (Deputy National Youth Leader), Alhaji Bashir Maidugu (Deputy National Legal Adviser), Hanatu Ulam (Deputy National Women Leader), Alhaji Lawal Dutsima Anchi (Deputy National Auditor), Chief Okey Nnadozie (Deputy National Organising Secretary) and Chief Olisa Metuh (National Publicity Secretary).

The plaintiffs said they filed the suit for themselves and on behalf of the Executive Committee/National Working Committee of the PDP.

Though only the PDP and INEC were initially cited as defendants in the case, the court subsequently joined Makarfi and six others as defendants in the suit.

Those also allowed into the matter as 4th to 9th defendants were Senator Ben Obi, Odion Ugbesia, Abdul Ningi, Kabiru Usman, Dayo Adeyeye and Aisha Aliyu.

Nigeria In Serious Crisis – UN report

A report released by the United Nations says Nigeria is in a fix. It said the country had been deeply divided along ethnic, religious and regional lines.

 

It painted a gloomy picture of the country’s economy, noting that most of the development and social indices in the country were below acceptable standards.

 

The report, which was read during a consultative meeting on the formulation of the UN Development Assistance Framework IV for the South-East zone, in Awka, Anambra State, observed that for decades, different segments of Nigeria’s population had, at different times, expressed feelings of marginalisation.

The report read, “Nigeria is the most populous nation in Africa and the seventh most populous in the world. Her population will be approximately 200 million by 2019 and over 400 million by 2050, becoming one of the top five populous countries in the world.

 

Nigeria is one of the poorest and most unequal countries in the world, with over 80 million or 64 per cent of her population living below poverty line.”

Borno Insists Sheriff Played Role In Boko Haram Crisis

Borno state Attoney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Barrister Kaka Shehu yesterday gave forty points on how a former governor of the state, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, aided and abetted the Boko Haram insurgency.
Barrister Shehu had last week at the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) conference in Port Harcourt, Rivers State said authorities should scrutinize the role played by Sheriff in the crisis, while he was governor.

 But Sheriff, in statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media, Mr. Inuwa Bwala, asked for immediate retraction and apology from Barr. Kaka Shehu, saying  there was never a commission of enquiry, instituted by the Borno State government or the federal government, which found Sheriff culpable, neither has there ever been a security report that indicted him.
However, Shehu yesterday insisted that Sheriff remained  a suspect in the matter because after winning the gubernatorial election in 2013,   he established a ministry of religious affairs and appointed Buji Foi as commissioner.
Foi was the student and strong financier of the then leader of the Boko Haram, Mohammed Yusuf.
The commissioner wondered how Yusuf, who was captured alive by soldiers, was later killed in police custody, after he had met with Sheriff, saying “the move was probably meant to conceal information that might be revealed by the late Boko Haram leader.”
Credit: dailytrust

Dickson Behind Crisis In Our Party- APC

The Bayelsa State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC), on Monday accused Governor Seriake Dickson of being the behind the crisis rocking the party in the state. The Bayelsa APC in a statement signed by its Publicity Secretary, Mr. Panebi Fortune, said there was an underhand dealing between the suspended Chairman of the party, Chief Tiwe Oruminighe and Dickson.

Oruminighe and few members of the state Executive Committee have been directly attacking the state leader of the party, Chief Timipre Sylva, accusing him of selling appointments to his cronies. Dickson in the heat of the crisis released a statement purportedly supporting the faction of the APC Executive Committee led by Oruminighe.

The party said: “It has become compelling for us to expose the under hand dealings between the governor, Hon Henry Seriake Dickson and the suspended state chairman of the APC, Chief Tiwei Oruminighe alongside two of his accomplices.

“In the last few days, the state and indeed the entire nation has witnessed the outright misdemeanour on the part of the suspended party and two members of the state exco. As a party built on the principles of discipline, justice and fair play, 25 out of the 31 member state exco of the party supended Orunimigha and his co-travellers for gross indiscipline and misconduct.

“However, our attention has been drawn to a statement laced with lies and outright misinformation purporting and insinuating financial dealings between two leading lights in our party, that is our leader, Chief Timipre Sylva and the Hon Minister of State for Agriculture, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri prior to the appointment of the latter as minister. We find these lies very disgusting and ignoble, hence seen as the ranting of a bunch of misled ingrates.

“But our curiosity is that the statement emanated from one Daniel Iworiso-Markson, chief press secretary to Governor Dickson. The question of who is behind the suspended chairman and his ‘boys’ does not need to be asked. What rather baffles us is the rationale behind this incredulous act of anti party and unconscionable desire for monetary gains in the name of politics.

“We wish to state unequivocally that the entire membership of the ?state exco aside the suspended trio of Oruminighe, Julius Eddy and Daniel Marlin is solidly behind our leader, Sylva as well as the minister of state. We call on the relevant security agencies to unravel the source of the attached email statement from Iworiso-Markson”.

Credit: vanguardngr

Probe Rivers Re-run Elections Crisis Now, PDP To Buhari

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has tasked the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government to constitute a panel to carry out a comprehensive and dispassionate investigation into the circumstances surrounding the crisis in the March 19 rerun elections in Rivers State. The National Chairman of PDP, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff made the call at a press conference on Tuesday in Abuja, just as the United States Government, through its diplomatic mission to Nigeria in a statement on Tuesday, condemned reported violence and irregularities that rocked last Saturday’s rerun elections in Rivers State, even as the British High Commission also expressed concern over the level of violence recorded at the polls.

Also on Tuesday, the PDP members in the House of Representatives urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to immediately release results of rerun elections in Rivers. Briefing newsmen in Abuja, the caucus led by Minority Leader of the house, Rep. Leo Ogor, condemned the suspension of the election, saying it was strange to the country’s electoral laws. According to him, in accordance with section 27of the Electoral Act, the Constitution and all Supreme Court judgements, elections were concluded, and results had been announced at the unit levels.

“In this context, anything contrary to the announcement of the result is a breach of all our electoral laws and evidently a coup against the people of Rivers State. “It is very sad that it is the umpire, that is, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that is spearheading this illegality abetted by law enforcement agencies, particularly the military whose attention is needed in the North-East,’’ they said. Ogor briefed the press just as INEC offered automatic employment to a member of the National Youth Corps (NYSC) who lost her sight during the 2011 general elections in Yobe State. Similarly, the commission promised to fully participate in the burial programme of Okonta Samuel, a corps member who lost his life in last Saturday’s rerun elections in Rivers State.

INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmoud Yukabu offered the employment and made the promise when he paid a condolence visit to the Director-General of the NYSC, Brig-General Johnson Olawumi on Tuesday. Professor Yakubu, who regretted the circumstances, which led to the unfortunate death of the corps member, praised the services of youth corps members in the conduct of elections. The PDP National Chairman, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, at the press conference contended that the probe panel would unravel those behind the violence and bring the culprits to book.

The rerun National and State Assemblies’ elections, it will be recalled, were marred by crisis leading to killings, abductions and assassination attempts. The PDP National Chairman said “Whilst we join well-meaning Nigerians to condemn the cases of violence which reportedly characterized the process in some areas, we enjoin the President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to immediately constitute a panel to carry out a dispassionate investigation of the circumstances with a view to unraveling the truth and bringing the culprits to book”.

Sheriff equally condemned the role played by some officers and members of the Armed Forces. He accused them of acting beyond their expected role of maintenance of law and order, alleging that they have taken over the responsibility of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC ) in the conduct of the rerun election. According to him, the military acted in flagrant disobedience of a order of court, and further called on President Muhammadu Buhari to also investigate the role of the military personnel in the election and appropriate sanction meted for those found culpable.

His words, “Our longheld view, proven over the years by our attitude of accepting declared results of elections, is that the mandate of the Nigerian people is sacred and anybody or party which seeks to govern Nigeria or any part of it must solicit and obtain this mandate freely given in an openly contested election where democratic norms and ethos are rigidly observed.

Credit: Thisday

Agatu People Triggered Crisis By Killing 10,000 Of Our Cattle- Fulani Community Leader

The Fulani community in Benue State, accused of killing hundreds in Agatu in Benue State, said Thursday that the crisis started after 10,000 of cattle belonging to its members were killed by Agatu natives.

Ado Boderi, who spoke on behalf of the Fulani community on Thursday, during a meeting between Agatu community, Fulani community and Police Inspector General Solomon Arase, said criminal elements from both sides escalated the crisis despite the quick intervention of the governor.

He said that Fulani herdsmen were a peace-loving people, whose main concern was the problem of cattle rustling.

Akpa Iduh, who spoke on behalf of the Agatu people, decried the continued unprovoked attacks on his people by “Fulani mercenaries”.

Mr. Iduh, who said that the crisis started over five decades ago, lamented that it had recently turned into a war because of the types of weapons the herdsmen were using against them.

He alleged that the “Fulani mercenaries” were killing both children and pregnant women on sight, adding that they were powerless after embracing the Benue Amnesty Programme and surrendered illegal arms to government.

“The herdsmen are bent on turning our land into their grazing area, thereby rendering us homeless and without food.

“Is it because we are minority and poor that they are using their numerical advantage and wealth against us?

“We are going to remain in Agatu until the day they have succeeded in killing all of us.”

The Inspector- General of Police, Solomon Arase, said in Makurdi that the force had deployed enough policemen to end the clashes between Agatu farmers and herdsmen in Benue.

Credit: PremuimTimes

PDP Crisis Deepens As BoT Defies NWC, Sacks Chairman

The crisis in Nigeria’s major opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party, deepened Wednesday as the Board of Trustees, BoT, held its meeting, thereby defying the decision of the National Working Committee that all meetings of the organs of the party be shifted to next week.

The spokesperson of the party, Olisa Metuh, had on Monday issued a statement saying the meeting of the National Caucus of the party had been shifted to Monday next week, while that of the BoT would hold on the morning of Tuesday, February 16th to be followed by a meeting of the National Executive Committee, NEC.

A member of the BoT had on Tuesday informed said that the BoT was “not answerable to the NWC and would therefore, hold its meeting on Tuesday as scheduled”.

The BoT carried out its threat and held its meeting at the Nicon Luxury Hotel in Abuja.

One of the major outcomes of the meeting was the decision to sack its acting chairman, Bello Haliru, and appoint a replacement.

Mr. Haliru is currently facing trial at a Federal High Court in Abuja over allegations he received large sums of money from the embattled former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, through his son.

Briefing reporters at the Wadata Plaza secretariat of the PDP, the secretary of the BoT, Walid Jibrin, said he had been asked to take over as acting chairman, pending when a substantive chairman would emerge.

Credit: PREMIUMTIMES

NUPENG Decries Lingering Fuel Crisis, Kicks Against Subsidy Removal

NIGERIA Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) has reaffirmed its aversion to oil subsidy removal, insisting that such a move can only be carried out when government has fully effected the complete turn around maintenance of four refineries to enable them produce optimally.

While vowing that the union would resist anti-people policies from the Federal Government, President of NUPENG, Igwe Achese, said, the refineries when put in use would cushion the hardship subsidy removal would have on the people.

In a related development, oil workers have alleged that the revised Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) due for presentation to the National Assembly contains anti-labour provisions.

President of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) Francis Johnson, who stated this yesterday at the union’s 4th triennial delegates’ conference, explained that oil workers will resist any provision that promotes job losses.

In a 10-point communique issued at the end of the National Executive Council (NEC), meeting held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, NUPENG attributed the cause of the perennial fuel scarcity to the manner the Federal Government managed the subsidy, stressing that the union was watching how the policies were implemented.

He said: “The union condemned in its entirety the perennial and persistent fuel scarcity in the country and the hardship imposed on the masses, especially at this festive period.

In the circumstance, the NEC in session calls on the Federal Government and NNPC to flood the market with petroleum products to arrest the current prevalent fuel scarcity in the country.
“The current way and manner the subsidy issue is being managed is responsible for the fuel scarcity experienced across the country”, he added.

Credit: Guardian

Leadership Crisis Rocks PDP Caucus Over House Committee Chairmanship

Some members of the Peoples Democratic Party in the House of Representatives are contemplating passing a vote of no confidence on their leadership over what they described as partisanship and favouritism in the appointments of members of the party into the standing committees of the House.

Sources among the aggrieved PDP lawmakers  mainly from the South-west caucus said that they  are up in arms against the  leadership led by Minority Leader, Hon. Leo Ogor,  over the way the affairs of the caucus are being managed,  alleging that the leaders are running a one man show and  not consulting other members before taking important decision that affect  them.

The lawmaker who wants to remain anonymous  also  accused the leadership of favouring PDP members from the South-south in the appointments made so far including the ongoing constitution of the membership of the standing committee of the House.  They also accused some South-south governors of using money to influence the appointments of South-south members in the minority caucus to juicy House committee chairmanship positions to the detriment of  members  from other zones.

“We (PDP members from the South-west)  are even contemplating pulling out of PDP if the leadership continues to marginalise us in the scheme of things, particularly in the composition of leadership of the committees…”

Read More: thisdaylive

Kylie Jenner’s Relationship In Crisis As She Compares Tyga To Drake

Kylie Jenner and Tyga’s relationship is reportedly on the fritz and the two have allegedly been dissing one another in their recent fights.

According to Hollywood Life, the 18-year-old totally insulted her boyfriend’s rap career by comparing him to Drake, and Tyga made a snide remark about Kylizzle’s Snapchat skills.

“She asked him once, ‘Don’t you want to be in the club and hearing the fans rap one of your songs like they do Drake?’” a source told Hollywood Life.

The source added, “She’s not berating him to do so, she’s simply encouraging him.”

Tyga supposedly did not appreciate the comment and the insider said, “He got extremely offended and heated,” adding, “He said, ‘Bae, how dare you compare me to that meathead, Drake. That f–ked up. You don’t know nothing about rap.’”

The 25-year-old “Rack City” singer hit below the belt and reportedly insulted his girl’s selfie taking skills!

“[Rap has] much more skill involved than sitting around Snapchatting all day.”

The reality star allegedly brushed off the comments and the source said, “Kylie didn’t take offense to it,” adding, “All she said was, ‘You’re right’ and ‘I was just trying to motivate you.’”

Credit: intouchweekly

 

PDP Staff Render Apologies To Party Over Crisis

As part of moves at recompense, the workers of the PDP have apologised to the leadership of the party over their actions during the week-long crisis that hit the opposition party.

In an apology letter addressed to the Acting National Chairman, Uche Secondus and members of the NWC, the staff said they regretted their actions.

“Following inflamed passions, several allegations of corrupt practices’ bordering on speculation were raised against our respected members of the NWC. We regret the unintended consequences of our allegations especially the resultant damage caused to the reputation of members of the NWC and the party.

“Arising from the same inflamed passions and frustration, it has now dawned on us that proper channels of communication were not followed in expressing our grievances.

“To this end, we hereby offer our unreserved apology to the members of the NWC as well as the teeming members, supporters and stakeholders of the PDP for this unfortunate development.

“We regret any unintended consequences of our actions and inactions especially considering the efforts of the NWC to reposition the party to play a credible role as an opposition party poised to save Nigeria from emerging fascism,” the workers said.

Creditthisdaylive

Oil Wells Crisis: 2 Beheaded, 4 Injured In Anambra/Kogi Clash

Two people were beheaded at Eziagulu Otu, near the embattled Orient Petroleum Resources Ltd in Anambra East Local Government Area yesterday by armed men suspected to be from Ibaji in Kogi State, who allegedly attacked the people in their farms. Four others, who sustained injuries have been admitted at a private hospital in Onitsha.

The attack came barely 24 hours after members of Board of Directors of Orient Petroleum informed Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State, during a visit, that the company had acquired two new wells in Aguleri and would increase its crude oil production to 3,000 barrels per day in September.

Reports gathered that the attackers, who were armed to the teeth, took the farmers unawares and as many of them ran into the river, the attackers caught six of them, killing two and injuring four. As the news of the attack reached the people of Aguleri in the upland, all those whose relations went to farm became worried. Shortly after, the victims were brought him.

Read Morevanguardngr

 

NASS Crisis: I’ll Crush All Opposition, Mostly APC Members – Speaker Dogara Warns

Speaker of Nigeria’s House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, on Monday, July 27, 2015, warned all members of the parliament, mostly, members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), who are against his leadership, to conduct themselves orderly as the parliament resumes, otherwise, they would be severely dealt with.

According to Daily Independent, Members of the APC Loyalist Group had been at dagger drawn with the speaker over the allocation of the Principal Officers seats meant for the APC in the lower chamber as the Speaker and his supporters under the auspices of Consolidation Group have consistently rejected the desire of the APC National Leadership to foist some persons on the parliament as the Principal Officers.

The plenary was thrown into chaos a month ago when loyalists of the Speaker and members of the APC Loyalist Group engaged in an open fight on the floor of the House as the Speaker refused to read the “anointing letter” from the party Chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun, and was preparing to read out names of his own anointed candidate.

Daily Independent is reporting that while the House was on the forced break, the Speaker’s group played a fast one on the party by offering the contentious seats to some members of the APC Loyalist Group who speedily accepted it and dumped the agitation against Dogara.

However, the rest members of the Loyalist Group at a press conference on Sunday denounced their members who accepted the “Equity Formula” proposed by the Speaker and raised the alarm that plans were afoot to deny some of them access to the chamber as the plenary reconvene on July 27, 2015.

In a response to the Loyalist Group, the Speaker in a statement issued by Hon. Abdulrazak Namdas on behalf of the House Ad-Hoc Committee on Media and Publicity denied any plan to ban any member from the floor of the House today.

In another statement by Aminu Shehu Shagari, the chairman, House Adhoc Committee on Code of Conduct, stern warning was issued to loyalist of Femi Gbajabiamila that the plenary on Monday must be incident-free or they will be heavily descended on.

The terse statement from Shagari read in part: “Members may wish to note that the Committee has been saddled with the responsibility of carrying out the functions of the Standing Committee on Ethics and Privileges.

“As we resume plenary on Tuesday 28, July, 2015, the Committee wishes to call on all members to conduct themselves in an orderly manner.

“The Committee will no longer tolerate any unruly behaviour by any member of the House no matter how highly placed.

“Members who have grievances are advised to explore peaceful avenues of seeking redress instead of resorting to violence on the floor of the House, or the precints of the National Assembly.

“There are adequate sanctions in place to penalise any member who may want to disrupt the peace during plenary, Committee meetings or other legislative functions of the House.

“The House will deal with any member who violates the rules, disrupts plenary, or is found wanting of miscoduct and other sundry offences.

“Members are admonished to demonstrate high standards of ethics consistent with the important role of Lawmaking and the 8th Assembly Legislative Agenda which place emphasis on the wellbeing of the Nigerian people.

“We should all be guided accordingly.

Read more HERE http://newswirengr.com/2015/07/28/nass-crisis-ill-crush-all-opposition-mostly-apc-members-speaker-dogara-warns/#

Buhari Backs APC’s Stand On National Assembly Crisis

President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday threw his weight behind the decision of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to nominate candidates for the various principal offices in the National Assembly.

Buhari, while responding to Thursday’s fracas in the House of Representatives, said he expected the APC lawmakers to toe the party’s line in the election of principal officers. Buhari, who spoke through his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu noted that the lawmakers should have been respected the wish of the party.

He, however, noted that the situation has not gotten out control as it  is still within manageable parameters.

Read More: TheNation

Senate Leadership Crisis, APC Govs To Intervene

Governors of the All Progressive Congress have resolved to wade into the leadership crisis in the senate after meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari to express their displeasure over what is happening in the senate.

Addressing State House correspondents after a closed door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, the governors of Imo and Edo states, Rochas Okorocha and Adams Oshiomhole respectively said the senators cannot continue to act in defiance of the party’s directives.

Governor Okorocha said the governors decided to meet with the president because  “we are not happy with what is happening within our senators in the National Assembly.

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Nigeria Would Have Been In Crisis If Jonathan Disputed Elections- Buhari

The President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari, has again commended President Goodluck Jonathan for conceding defeat at the March 28 polls.

Mr. Buhari, who gave the commendation in Abuja on Thursday when he received Nigerien President Issoufou Mahamadou, said Mr. Jonathan’s action turned around Nigeria’s nervous political process.

He said: “The Nigerien president purposely came to congratulate me on my victory and President Jonathan for the maturity and statesmanship that he exhibited by accepting that he had lost the election.

“His action actually doused tensions and averted crisis in Nigeria.

“Not only Africa but the world has commended the president for that because if he had disputed the elections, there would have been crisis in the country.

“That is what people don’t want, not only Nigerians but other countries. So, he came to commend President Jonathan for his courage and statesmanship.’’

He said Mr. Mahammadou had also come to show solidarity and acknowledge Nigeria’s importance on the continent.
Mr. Buhari said but for colonialism, Niger and Nigeria and all countries living along the border were one as they shared similar cultures, religions and mannerisms.

“As he rightly puts it, if Nigeria sneezes, the rest of Africa catches cold because of its importance, population and resources.

“So, Nigeria and Niger Republic are one entity as one singer from Niger puts it in his lyrics. We share a 1,500 kilometre long border with Niger which stretches from Chad to Sokoto, and all the people living along the borders on either sides are same people.

“The colonialists separated these people when they partitioned Africa at the Berlin conference in 1885. They separated the Fulanis, Kanuris and the Hausas from their brothers who are presently in Niger.

“They separated the Yorubas of Nigeria and the ones in Benin Republic. They also separated the Fulanis and other tribes who were living together as one along the Cameroon border.

“So, all these countries around us were a single entity with people of similar culture and religion before they became separated but time has changed and we thank him for reminding us of our history of brotherhood.’’
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Earlier, Mahammadou said he was in Nigeria to convey the gratitude and salutation of Niger Republic for the peaceful conduct of the? elections held in spite of challenges.

“President Jonathan conceding defeat and this act will have a lasting impact and influence on politics in Africa, West Africa and Africa at large.

“So, I’m here both to congratulate the president-elect and the people of Nigeria for the smooth conduct of the elections,” Mr. Mahammadou said.

Credit – NAN

Borno Appeals To UN To Halt Boko Haram Crisis

The Borno State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) has appealed to the United Nations to intercede in the emerging humanitarian crisis the Boko Haram insurgency has brought in West and Central Africa.

The Chairman of the organisation, Alhaji Grema Terab, said the Boko Haram crisis was assuming “different dangerous dimension” by the day as shown by the recent extradition of about 15 000 locals from Niger. “Today it is Niger that is sending Nigerians parking, tomorrow it may be Chad or Cameroon or any other country in the sub region,” Terab said

He added that the situation call for urgent attention first from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), then the African Union and perhaps the United Nations.

Terab said Borno State alone have borne the brunt of building a new camp for 4 248 indigenes of the state evacuated to Maiduguri.

He lamented that with the creation of the new camp for those evacuated from Niger, the state has 21 camps with over 120 000 internally displaced persons (IDPs), insisting that this had created a heavy financial burden on the state government with several millions of Naira going into the running of the camps.

“As it stands today Borno state government has expended several billions of Naira on the problems thrown at it by the Boko Haram crisis and this has put at a standstill so many other things. We need the assistance of not only the federal government but the United Nations to come out of this quagmire which has put everything in the state at a near standstill.”

Terab added, “It was a pity that the state who have had to bear the burden of 1,5 million internally displaced persons overdrawing the facilities in Maiduguri, has to do it almost alone without appreciable assistance coming from the Nigerian government and international agencies.”

The Boko Haram terror has claimed the lives of more than 13 000 people and displaced about 2 million over the years.

Credit: CAJ News

Police Officer Missing, Two Feared Dead As Fresh Crisis Rocks Nasarawa

Two persons were on Monday morning reportedly killed after some unknown gunmen attacked a passenger bus traveling from Alushi, in Keana local goverment to Lafia, the Nasarawa State capital.

The incident happened in Anguwan Mallam area of Obi Local Government Area of the state.

A police officer, Inspector Ibrahim Adamu, attached to Keana Police division, who was said to have escaped death by whiskers after sustaining gunshot wounds, is yet to be found.

A traditional leader in Alushi Alago chiefdom, the Moye, Mohammed Ozawose, who sustained bullet wounds during the attack died while receiving treatment at the Obi General Hospital.

Some residents of the area who fled to Akunza Migili in Lafia local government, said suspicious movements by youths believed to be of Eggon extraction were seen in the area since Sunday night leading to heightened tension before the bus attack.

The Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) Ismaila Numan, confirmed the incident.

He said the missing police officer, Adamu, and three others, were on a peace mission to Lafia from Keana when they were attacked.