You Are A Liar, Senate Hits Back At SGF Lawal; Insists On His Removal

The Senate on Thursday hit back at the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, after he dismissed the legislative body as saying “balderdash” over the call for his removal and prosecution.

The Senate had on Wednesday asked President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend Mr. Lawal and ensure his prosecution over alleged breach of Nigerian laws in handling contracts awarded by the Presidential Initiative for the North East, (PINE).

An ad-hoc committee of the Senate on “mounting humanitarian crisis in the North East” led by Shehu Sani submitted its interim report on Wednesday and indicted Mr. Lawal for allegedly receiving N233 million contract to clear invasive plant species in Yobe State through a company, Rholavision Nigeria Limited.

The Senate alleged he remained a director of the company till September 2016, over a year after his appointment, in breach of Nigeria’s code of conduct for public officials as enshrined in the 1999 constitution.

Rholavision was incorporated in 1990 by Mr. Lawal, he confirmed, to carry out information and communication technology services.

But it was found by the Senate to be handling a N233 million bush clearing contract in the North East in 2016.

The Yobe State Government said the contract was never executed.

But less than an hour after the Senate indicted him and called on authorities to punish him, Mr. Lawal accompanied his principal, Mr. Buhari, to the National Assembly to present the 2017 budget proposal.

Read More:

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

PDP Crisis: Sheriff Insists Rule Of Law Must Prevail

The disputed National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Ali Modu Sheriff, has said that the rule of law must prevail for the party’s crisis to be resolved.Sheriff made the statement when he received some members of PDP Board of Trustees (BoT) Reconciliation Committee, led by Prof. Jerry Gana, in Abuja on Tuesday night.

According to him, the crisis continues to linger because leaders in the party are not alive to their responsibilities and keep perpetuating it.“I am ready to listen at any time to the committee but for the crisis to be fully resolved, the rule of law must be followed. The moment we want to use one impunity to address another, it will not work.

“If our leaders had taken their responsibilities, we would never have had most of the problems we are facing today.

“When a leader refuses to stand up to his responsibilities, there will be a problem.

“Why am I saying this? Some of our leaders are party to our problems,” Sheriff said.

Briefing newsmen after a closed-door session, Sheriff commended the efforts of the BoT toward reconciling feuding parties and affirmed his availability now that the BoT was now better informed on the crisis.

Read More:

NLC Insists On Reversal Of Electricity Tariff Increment

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has urged the federal government to muster the necessary courage to revisit and review the privatization exercise of the power sector given the painful intractable problems around the sector.

The congress also insisted it would embark on a one day national strike and protest in collaboration with the Trade Union Congress of Nigeria (TUC) to protest the hike in electricity tariff in the country.

These, among others were part of the resolutions reached at the end of its Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting held in Abuja and made available to journalists.

The resolutions which were contained in a communique signed by NLC president, Ayuba Wabba, also called on government to do all that is necessary to dismantle the cabal in the downstream sector of the oil industry.

The communique reads in part, “CWC observed that in the aftermath of the nation-wide rallies and pickets, DISCOs had assured Nigerians they would make available metres to customers within a limited time via the process of accelerated production and distribution/sale of metres. CWC noted that nearly three months after, most customers continue to be subjected to estimated billing.

“CWC observed that the dwindling quality of service continues to place Nigerians in an unfortunate situation of paying higher for darkness. CWC accordingly resolved to call an emergency meeting of NEC in conjunction with TUC to perfect the process of a one-day national warning strike/protest to impress on government the resolve of the labour movement, civil society organisations and Nigerians not to accept the increase.

Credit: Leadership

APC Can’t Win Any Election In Rivers, Wike Insists

Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has declared that the All Progressives Congress, APC, is not in a position to win an election in the state, accusing the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi of sponsoring violence to remain politically relevant.

Wike informed that with the proofs of corruption against Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation resorted to blackmailing the leadership of the APC that he would reveal to the public how much he invested in the party’s campaign if he was not confirmed as a minister.

This is even as the Senate Caucus of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, led by Minority Leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio insisted that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, must release the collated results of the March 19, 2016 rerun elections. Speaking during a solidarity visit by the PDP Senate Caucus, Governor Wike said the Minister of Transportation lost his local government area and Federal Constituency, hence his desperation to influence the release of the results. He said: “Any person who loves Mr President won’t be causing unnecessary crisis for him. We have problem in the North East, problem in the South-East, so there is no need for another problem in the South-South .

“It is good that the elections were held so that Nigerians will know the truth about the polity. If elections are held 20 times, PDP will win”.

The governor decried the role played by soldiers during the rerun elections. He said the military were directly involved in the elections at polling units and at the collation centres in direct violation of the Electoral Act. He regretted the killing of the corps member, Samuel Okonta during the rerun elections, but stressed that investigation into the type of bullet that killed him must be made public. He confirmed that the state government will immortalise the late corps member.

Credit: Vanguard

Senator Insists Chibok Girls Are “Alive”, Explains How To Rescue Them

The Senator representing Kaduna Central senatorial district, Shehu Sani, has assured that the missing Chibok girls will be found, but counseled that the Federal Government must negotiate with some persons to “extract” the girls from their current danger.

He also said that current events in the country had revealed that the reign of bloodshed by Boko Haram in the last seven years was sustained by the greed of a few who profited from the situation.

Mr. Sani spoke in Akure on Wednesday as a discussant at a symposium held as part of the 40thAnniversary of Ondo State and the seventh anniversary of the Olusegun Mimiko-led administration.

“Something that has bothered some of us here in line with the insurgency is, when will the Chibok girls be freed,” he asked.

“Someone said the Chibok girls will never be free, but I can tell you that they will be free and they are alive.”

Mr. Sani had in the past been named as a contact person through which the Nigerian government sought to negotiate with Boko Haram.

A civil society leader at the time, Mr. Sani later accused the former Goodluck Jonathan government of not showing sufficient commitment to the proposed talks.

Credit: PremiumTimes

Buhari Insists There Will Be Ministers Without Portfolio, Reason Being…

It is now confirmed that the screening and confirmation of the ministers has been concluded.

This is because the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, has handed over the final list of ministers who scaled through the confirmation process.

During the meeting in the Presidential Villa, the President again explained that the Federal Government might not be able to fund all the existing ministries, given the unavailability of funds.

President Buhari emphasized that his administration would not have 36 ministries because of the economic downturn.

Recieving the list of 36 ministerial nominees confirmed by the Senate from Dr Bukola Saraki, he commended the Senate for a job well done, especially as the National Assembly passed all the names he submitted.

Telling his critics that they cannot stop him from telling the country the truth, he insisted that some of the ministers would stay without portfolio following an economy that has been battered.

Credit: ChannelsTV

Armed Forces Will Annihilate Boko Haram By December, Buhari Insists

Despite the recent bomb blasts in Abuja and some states in the North-east, President Muhammadu Buhari has said he remained fully confident that by the end of this year, Boko Haram’s ability to attack, seize, ravage and hold any Nigerian territory will have been completely obliterated.

A statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, said the president spoke when he met with the Commander of United States Africa Command, Gen David Rodriguez.

Buhari said with greater support from his administration in terms of improved training, equipment, logistics and welfare, the Nigerian Armed Forces were well positioned to meet the December deadline which he gave to them to end the Boko Haram insurgency.

The president seized the opportunity of Rodriquez’s visit to restate his appreciation of the US  support for Nigeria’s efforts to overcome terrorism and insurgency.

Buhari said: “We must thank the United States of America for sending training teams and equipment to us. The positive results of our collaboration are evident.

“Structured attacks by the insurgents have reduced and by the end of the year, we should see the final routing of Boko Haram as an organised fighting force.”

Read More: thisdaylive

Lagos Insists On Same Resumption Date For Schools

Lagos State Government yesterday directed all schools to commence the 2015/16 academic session, saying the state would no longer condone disharmony in the calendar.

The government, citing poor turnout of pupils on resumption of the new session, also urged parents and guardians to cooperate by presenting their wards for the new academic session.

Permanent Secretary (PS), Lagos State Ministry of Education, Olabisi Ariyo, while monitoring day-one activities in public schools yesterday, said there was no point extending the holiday as some stakeholders had recently clamoured in the state.

Read More: ngrguardiannews

Presidency Insists Buhari Never Promised Specifics in 100 Days

The presidency has again reiterated its position and that of the All Progressives Congress (APC) that President Muhammadu Buhari never promised Nigerians that he would achieve specific things within his first 100 days in office.

It maintained that the document tagged “One Hundred Things Buhari Will Do in 100 Days” and another one, “My Covenant With Nigerians” did not emanate from the authentic channel of the campaign’s media department.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President, Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, who made the presidency’s position known yesterday, was responding to criticism that has trailed the denial by both the presidency and the APC that the president made such promises.

Read More: thisdaylive

Jonathan’s Centenary City Project Was ‘Fraud’, PDP Chieftain Insists

he National Vice Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Southsouth, Dr. Cairo Ojuigbo, has questioned the integrity of ex-Goodluck Jonathan’s administration Centenary City Project in Abuja.

Ojuigbo, who spoke in Abuja through his lawyer,  Kayode Ajulo, alleged that the integrity of the processes leading to the project was doubtful.

The party chieftain,  who also chairs the Nigeria Export Processing Authority (NEPZA), was reacting to a report that former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Anyim Pius Anyim sued him for maintaining a similar position in media interviews.

Anyim, in the N1 billion libel suit filed by his lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN), claimed that Ojuigbo’s position wasa slander on his person and could scare foreign investors.

Ojuigbo said had instructed his lawyer to file a counter-suit once he received the court papers.

The PDP chieftain, who expressed his determination to ensure that those behind the project, who acted unlawfully, were prosecuted, said he had petitioned the Inspector General of Police (IGP).

Ojuigbo, who maintained his position, insisted that the “processes leading to the Centenary City, were elaborate and conceived to defraud the government and Nigerians.”

Read More: thenationonlineng

President Buhari Insists On Slashing Number Of Ministries, Agencies

President Muhammadu Buhari has said his administration was seriously looking for ways of cutting down the cost of governance by reducing the number of ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs).

The president, who stated this at the weekend when he met with the Nigerian community in Benin Republic, assured, however, that in cutting down the number of MDas, he would not take the interest of Nigerians, including those living in Diaspora, for granted.

He also assured Nigerians living in Diaspora that his administration would consider their requests of setting up of consular offices where necessary to enable the embassies coordinate and respond to their urgent needs in an expeditious manner.

President Buhari, who was in Benin Republic on a one-day visit and to attend the country’s 55th independence anniversary, met with Nigerians living in the country immediately after he was hosted to a launch by the country’s president, Boni Yayi.

Responding to requests made by the Nigerian community in Benin Republic through the Nigerian Ambassador, Dr. Lawrence Obisakin, he assured that the government would next year look at the possibility of creating more consular offices in Benin Republic.

Responding to requests for two more consulates in Benin Republic to complement the Nigerian embassy, Buhari noted that even though the federal government was trying to whittle down the number of MDAs, he would include their request in next year’s budget.

He said, “I think I will direct your ambassador to make the request to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs so that by the time we are doing the next budget, it would be included.

“Although we are trying to cut down on the number of ministries, the morale of Nigerians in Diaspora must be considered. This is because we are so many. We are aggressive whether in business or other facets of life. So, we as a government will do everything possible to look after Nigerians wherever they are.”

Read More: leadership

APC Insists Jonathan, PDP Not Cooperating With Buhari’s Transition Committee

The All Progressives Congress, APC, has insisted that the Jonathan Administration is not cooperating with the party’s Transition Committee, while describing the Peoples Democratic Party’s spokesperson, Olisah Metuh, as a man with an incurable disdain for the truth.

”We say, with all sense of responsibility, that as of today, May 14th 2015, just about two weeks to the May 29th handover date, no shred of information as to the status of governance from any Ministry, Department or Agency of government has been given to our Transition Committee,” the party said in a statement issued in Abuja on Thursday by its National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed.

”If that qualifies, in Metuh’s lexicon, as cooperation, then there is a problem somewhere. We dare Metuh or anyone for that matter, to controvert the fact that not a line of handover note has been handed over to our Transition Committee. Until then, Metuh has egg on his face,” it said.

APC restated its earlier advice to Mr. Metuh to urgently undertake a crash course in how to be an opposition party spokesperson so he won’t talk or write himself into avoidable trouble in the days ahead.

The party admonished the PDP spokesperson to always cross-check the information available to him in order to separate rumours from facts, saying had he done that, he would not have issued the statement in which he tried to cast aspersion on the APC by accusing it of ”fabricating lies” over the issue of the Jonathan Administration’s non-cooperation with the APC’s Transition Committee.

”Metuh decided to put his foot in his mouth when he latched on to the statement made by our Transition Committee Chairman, forgetting that in making his statement, the Chairman was only acting the statesman that he is by not saying anything that will put the federal government
in bad light.

”A discerning party spokesman, rather than a rabble-rousing one, would have understood the elder statesman’s stand for what it is instead of using it as a peg to issue a needless, hollow statement that puts his party and government in bad light. We had decided to allow sleeping dogs to lie, but now that Metuh has stirred the hornet’s nest, it is time to put out the facts for Nigerians to judge.

”What happened was that, following the request by our Transition Committee to meet with them, they invited us to what was the first formal meeting between both Transition Committees. But the meeting was a mere photo-op, as it yielded nothing concrete as far as handover notes are concerned.

”In fact, what we met at the so-called meeting was far worse than what we had thought. Whereas we had hoped to get their handover notes on May 14th (the date they had indicated to us informally), they told us point blank that the notes won’t be ready until May 24th. Because this date falls on a Sunday, that means we won’t be getting the handover notes until May 25th, just four days before the May 29th handover date ”How do they honestly expect us to peruse thousands of pages of handover notes, ask pertinent questions and seek necessary clarifications within four days? Because we want a smooth transition,

we asked if we could meet with some of the ministers pending the release of the handover notes, but they said no. When one of their members even suggested that the whole process be fast-tracked, they did not budge.

”Despite this set back, we decided not to put the whole issue in the public domain, until the babbling Metuh decided to look for trouble, describing the deliberate stonewalling by the Jonathan Administration as cooperation,” it said.

APC assured Nigerians that whether or not the Jonathan Administration cooperates with it during the transition, the party will live up to expectation by providing purposeful governance.


Governor Chime Should Face EFCC- Group Insists

The last is yet to be heard on the political crisis in Enugu State as some residents of the state have called on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, to probe Governor Sullivan Chime’s administration.

This is coming after a pro-Chime group had chided the Enugu lawmakers for initiating impeachment moves against the Governor.

However, another group equally took to the streets protesting against the move by another faction to remove the Speaker, Hon. Eugene Odo from office.

Read More: dailypost