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Sunday, 31 July 2016

Budget Scandal: FG Orders Withdrawal Of Speaker Dogara Security Details


Budget Scandal: FG Orders Withdrawal Of Speaker Dogara Security Details

>Barring last minute changes, indications emerged Sunday that security details of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara may be withdrawn on the orders of the Federal Government over the controversy surrounding the 2016 budget,Vanguard News reports
It was also gathered that a document linking the Majority leader of the House, Femi Gbajabimila with constituency projects worth over N4 billion which is domiciled in Osun and Niger States against the initial N1.8 billion constituency projects allocated to him was in circulation.
This is just as the secretariat of the House Appropriation Committee was on Sunday still under the watch of about four security operatives.
Security sources hinted that the withdrawal of security aides to the principal officers allegedly fingered in the budget brouhaha was ensure that there was no obstruction on the course of investigations.
Investigations revealed that the security personnel that were guiding the appropriation committee secretariat were not the regular operatives from the National Assembly.
Meanwhile about 27 civil society organisations have raised the alarm of alleged conspiracy with external forces against the leadership of the House of Representatives, saying that if nothing was done to apply caution, it would threaten the democracy in the country.
Addressing journalists in Abuja, the national coordinator of Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko alongside other 26 CSOs, said “It is disingenuous for the sacked Appropriation committee chairman, Abdulmumin Jibrin to make any claims of exposing massive corruption in the House, accusing speaker Yakubu Dogara of moves to personally smuggle N30bn into 2016 budget.”
He said that the understanding of the powers of the National Assembly seems to say that the legislature is constitutionally empowered to vet proposed budget since these elected officials were not rubber stamps of the president.
-NewsPunch.org

Saturday, 30 July 2016

BRAKING NEWS: Govt scraps HNDs, merges polys with varsities


From Madu Onuorah, Abuja:
THE Federal Executive Council (FEC) yesterday approved a comprehensive reform of Nigeria's tertiary education system, scrapping the award of the Higher National Diploma (HND) by the nation's polytechnics.
In effect, the award of the HND will be limited to only the students currently admitted for the programmes.
Also, all the programmes currently being run by the polytechnics, which are not technology-based, and which are about 70 per cent,
will be scrapped.
Under the new rule, the polytechnics will now become campuses of the proximate universities with the Vice Chancellors of those
universities appointing provosts for the polytechnics, subject to the ratification of the Universities Councils.
The polytechnics will now be limited to award of the National Diploma (ND) while those desirous of further education will be awarded
the Bachelor of Technology (B. Tech) by the proximate university.
To kick-start the new policy, the nation's two most prominent polytechnics - Yaba College of Technology and Kaduna Polytechnic -
will henceforth be known as City University of Technology, Yaba and City University of Technology, Kaduna.
And to give legal teeth to these approvals, the FEC approved the submission of two Executive bills to the National Assembly for enactment into law.
With education being on the concurrent list, the states may wish to consolidate their tertiary institutions. But if they do not wish to follow the federal example, their programmes will continue to be regulated by the relevant agencies of the Federal Ministry of Education.
The first bill will concretise the setting up of the two city universities while the second will approve the preparation and consolidation
of all federal polytechnics and colleges of education as campuses of proximate universities.
The Ministry of Justice will do the preparation and submission of the two bills to the National Assembly.
Minister of Education, Mall. Adamu, told journalists after the weekly meeting of the council that under the reform measures, her ministry would, however, continue to licence private polytechnics and colleges of education for the award of qualification at ND and National Certificate in Education (NCE) levels.
She said: "There will be no more award of HND.
After we have exhausted the current students under the programme, there will be no more award of HND. This means that there will be no fresh admission for HND programmes. And in addition, any programme that is not technical will be out of the polytechnics. About 70 per cent of polytechnic graduates are in the non-technical courses. It is going to be a rigorous implementation programme."
A ministerial committee to ensure the smooth implementation of all that is required for the take-off of the reform initiatives is to begin work immediately.
Mall. Adamu said: "The HND certificate will remain a legal tender in Nigeria and holders of such certificate will continue to be recognised as the equivalent of first degree holders without discriminatory remunerations and limit to progression in the work place.
The NCE certificate will be retained as the minimum teaching qualification at the basic level of education. Any higher qualifications by
these private or state-owned polytechnics will be only affiliation with a university. So, HND is no longer in existence, but existing HND will be respected and considered legal tender."
The council also approved the Federal Government's formal take-over of the Waziri Umaru Polytechnic, Birnin Kebbi, which will be the College of Technology campus of the Othman Dan Fodio University, Sokoto, as well as the Hussein Adamu Polytechnic, Kazaure,
Bauchi, which will be a College of Technology of the proximate university in the state.
Also, the Alvan Ikoku College of Education, Owerri, Imo State, has been taken over as a campus of the Federal University of
Technology, Owerri.
A state that had never had any federal institution, like Bayelsa, is to have a College of Technology as a campus of the College of Technology of the University of Port Harcourt.
Also, Bali, in Taraba State, is to have a college of technology as a campus of the proximate university.

Friday, 29 July 2016

Nigeria on the verge of collapse, shall we run? Soonest Nathaniel

FIGHT-IN-THE-SENATE

 No! This is not a pro-Biafran publication, it was not sent by some members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) or those from the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) this is a piece for Nigeria by a true Nigerian. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter petrol The state of affairs in Nigeria, calls for serious deliberations, so much tends to be going wrong. Nigerians have for too long been known to bear under the worst of conditions, however, the present situation in the country is one that tends to be breaking their backs and shattering their resolve. There are many issues besetting the nation, so many that Nigerians can only but contemplate running from this place they call home. A proper analysis of some events in recent times, would give one a clearer picture of why we need to be more concerned, lest this nation goes up in smoke. Legislation of shame I have said and will continue to reiterate that the current this 8th National Assembly records the worst legislation Nigeria has seen in all its years. It is not out of place to say the we are being led by the worst legislators in our own history. To make case for the current legislative arm, one finds out that there is no valid point, there tends to be nothing that one can say is the good that has come out from the Nigeria’s hallowed chambers.  From the onset of this dispensation, the legislators showed their incomSaraki Forgery 5petence and have continue day-by-day to give Nigerians reasons to fear. Where shall one begin to speak of the ills in this very important arm of government? Shall we begin from the many allegations against the Senate President, Bukola Saraki or shall we start from the forgery case leveled against him (Saraki) and his deputy Ike Ekweremadu.  It is troubling to see the leaders of the upper chamber appear every other day in court to stand trial for things which should not be heard of them, and though they remain free without any convictions yet, still, it wont be wrong to say that this drama has caused so much harm to legislation in Nigeria at this time in our history. How will the House be able to pass laws that will affect Nigerians positively when those who lead are in and out of court for allegedly breaking the rules, flouting laws and operating not in accordance with the rule of law. Still in the Upper Chamber, the show of shame between Senator Dino Melaye and Senator Remi Tinubu, is reason enough to panic, in that the saga only spells it clear that we are led by people with the lowest of moral values. melaye
 The kind of words and details of acts which was seen upon that sacred floor of the Senate, makes one fear that Nigerians might have placed their fate in the hands of those who will thrash them. In the same vein, the Lower chamber is not left out of this show of shame, as the news of three representatives who went soliciting for sex in the USA, calls for sober reflection. Though we have not heard the last of that case, still to even have such allegation labelled against those who represent Nigeria at the highest level, is sickening. Still in the House of Representatives, the case for and against those who padded and did not pad the national budget, shows that we might in the end be fantastically corrupt, it might mean that we are led by plunderers, ravaging the country right there from their exalted positions. Only recently, the embattled ex-chairman committee on appropriations, Adulmumin Jibrin revealed details about the budget padding, he claimed that Yakubu Dogara the House of Reps Speaker allegedly convinced him to ship over N20 billion into the budget through Service Wide Vote. This again is an accusation again the leadership of the legislature, and though claims and counter claims are being made, and investigations are still ongoing, yet how can we Nigerians be at ease with what we have heard so far? Documents have revealed how top officials of the National assembly padded the 2016 budget to the tune of N481billion, the national assembly also unilaterally jerked the votes meant for constituency projects from N60 billion to N100 billion. I fear that which such assertion as this, this nation risks the chance of an implosion. Impeachment dilemma There has been rumours and speculations that the Senate is seeking to impeach President Muhammadu Buhari, and though this seem to have been played down with many hinting at the limits of its possibility, still it is an issue that calls for concern.Senate president Bukola Saraki at CCT, there are speculations that a move for Saraki’s unsaeting is in the works. With a legislative arm that Nigerians cannot vouch for, one cannot but note that there is no smoke without a fire. It must be noted that the mantra of impeachment has for quite sometime lingered by the doors of the National Assembly, with many calling for the unseating of the Senate leadership; it is this chaos that stirs unease in the hearts of Nigerians. This is because, the Nigerian Senate remains unstable and continue to tussle for power, and the servant leaders in those sacred courts continue to do the masses no good. The Senate is not in anyway helping the cause of President Buhari, some critics claim, there tends to be a silent rift between the presidency and the legislature. One fears that the more the diverse parties cannot come to agree for the common good of the people, then Nigerians will be in for another era of promises which will never see the light of day. Religious war Reports of violence borne of religion are making headlines again, with death and destruction of property recorded in certain parts of the country. We have toed this line before and we surely know that if there is an issue that ticks people off to war the most, then religion it is. At a time when speculation has it that Nigeria is about to be made an Islamic nation, when the government is trying to assuage the fears of the people regarding such a move, killing incited by religion is not a welcomed development.Christians, especially those in the northeastern region and Muslims in the southeastern region stand the greater risk in the wake of violence borne of religious rifts, a subject matter which could be said to have played a major role in the bloody civil war which Nigeria experienced between 1967 and 1970. Experts have said that some clerics within the northern region are to blame for the killings carried out by their followers, this is because they preach and teach those who follow them to see others who are not of their faith as infidels. With these deadly ideologies behind their their minds, religious fanatics much about on the edge, waiting for the slightest form of provocation and they strike in the name of God. Wave of terror, storm of militancy and the dying economy The Nigerian government deserves some praise for the war against the dreaded Boko Haram sect within the troubled northeastern region of the country. According to the Nigerian army, the jihadists have been ousted and all that is left is but a fragment for which the gallant soldiers must remain focused to erase without a trace. However, Nigeria seem to have a system in which when one situation is about being fixed, something else springs up to take its place. The advent of marauders in the guise of herdsmen, has given the nation cause not to close one eye while she sleeps. The re-emergence of vandalism and militant activities in the South-south and Southeast regions is yet another cause for which the people are troubled. Nigeria’s dwindling economic growth has been closely linked to the troubling affairs within the Niger Delta, even the militants have promised to cripple the nation. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter pipeline bombing File: Pipeline bombing in the Niger Delta The Nigerian government has said it is in talks with leaders of the region and lords of the militant groups, however, some very powerful groups within the region are of the opinion that the government cannot get the desired result with the way they are handling the affairs. This assertion has led groups like the Niger Delta Avengers to keep at blowing up pipelines and destroying facilities belonging to oil firms within the south-south and southeast. These are trying times, not only for people within the Niger Delta but Nigerians as a whole as the masses most especially will have to face harsh market prices and crazier living conditions till a truce is brokered. A truce seem far from the issue, now that the military has launched a new operation to counter the militancy within the region. For many, this move is a ‘no good’ as it will only stir more hostilities and in the end lead to no positive outcome. Run! To where? Nowhere is the answer, there is certainly nowhere that can serve as our home. Shall we run to America where the news of hate induced violence is rampant, shall we run to Europe which itself is threatened by terrorism? Share on Facebook Share on Twitter usa-orlando-shooting Scene from Orlando shooting We cannot abandon this ship to founder, it is our collective duty to see that the nation set on the right part again, though that position is a very hard one. Nigerians have become wiser, and we have become more outspoken, those in power understand that Nigerians will not fail to unseat them if they do not perform. The present administration has alot to do in restoring faith to the Nigerian people who they have promised change, for if the promise is not fulfilled, then the people will change their attitude and ideologies. As regards those in the Nigerian legislative arm of government, I will say that a total over hauling is necessary and as regards their move for an immunity that covers their ills and absolves them of all wrong doings for a life time, I say it must not stand. Nigerians have been looked at as a people that are ready to bear with whatever comes their way, however, when the dog is pushed to the wall, there are other actions that follow other than just barking. The masses must not be pushed too far so that the implosion which is feared does not come to pass. Urgently, the APC-led government must chart a course for bringing Nigeria out of its financial mess. Job creation is of the essence, that is the only way by which the teeming Nigerian youths can be rest assured that fleeing this land which they for too long have called home, is not the best. It surely looks greener on the other side, however, what becomes of our fatherland if we all flee? As regards the violence stirred by religion, and the agitations for a divided Nigeria; we broker a truce, and that can only be done by showing respect for all sides of the divide. The government must fashion out a process by which the aggrieved are pacified, compensate where it is necessary, we can come to perfect agreement if truly we are for the good of the people and not for our personal gains. For it seem that so much that has been done in guise of seeking justice for a relegated set of people, has been done for the benefit of only a few. According to the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), there is more to be done to restore peace and come to agreement with the militants in the Niger Delta Region; though I believe that not all the demands of the militants can be met or should be met, still I believe that if they could be stilled during the last dispensation, then they can still be calmed in this era, approach is all that matters. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter france attack Terrorist attacks recorded in France In conclusion, we all Nigerians must begin to look for different ways to make the best of what we have which to many now is “nothing”. Necessity they say is the mother of invention, and we must look deep within us to find that which can profit not just ourselves, but the world around us. Most importantly, for this nation be as great as we want it to be, we must think Nigeria first, not our tribes nor our religion. While we cannot shove our cultures, traditions and religions aside, we must exercise our rights in such a way that it does not infringe on the rights of others. Our society in the end, is a reflection of who we are as a people, there is no doubt that this nation can be great again, to take its rightful place in the affairs of the world.
Naija.com

Nigeria on the verge of collapse, shall we run? Soonest Nathaniel Yesterday 143341 Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Send email No! This is not a pro-Biafran publication, it was not sent by some members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) or those from the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) this is a piece for Nigeria by a true Nigerian. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter petrol The state of affairs in Nigeria, calls for serious deliberations, so much tends to be going wrong. Nigerians have for too long been known to bear under the worst of conditions, however, the present situation in the country is one that tends to be breaking their backs and shattering their resolve. There are many issues besetting the nation, so many that Nigerians can only but contemplate running from this place they call home. A proper analysis of some events in recent times, would give one a clearer picture of why we need to be more concerned, lest this nation goes up in smoke. Legislation of shame I have said and will continue to reiterate that the current this 8th National Assembly records the worst legislation Nigeria has seen in all its years. It is not out of place to say the we are being led by the worst legislators in our own history. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter FIGHT-IN-THE-SENATE To make case for the current legislative arm, one finds out that there is no valid point, there tends to be nothing that one can say is the good that has come out from the Nigeria’s hallowed chambers. READ ALSO: Enjoy surfing with the fastest browser – UC browser From the onset of this dispensation, the legislators showed their incompetence and have continue day-by-day to give Nigerians reasons to fear. Where shall one begin to speak of the ills in this very important arm of government? Shall we begin from the many allegations against the Senate President, Bukola Saraki or shall we start from the forgery case leveled against him (Saraki) and his deputy Ike Ekweremadu. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Saraki Forgery 5 It is troubling to see the leaders of the upper chamber appear every other day in court to stand trial for things which should not be heard of them, and though they remain free without any convictions yet, still, it wont be wrong to say that this drama has caused so much harm to legislation in Nigeria at this time in our history. How will the House be able to pass laws that will affect Nigerians positively when those who lead are in and out of court for allegedly breaking the rules, flouting laws and operating not in accordance with the rule of law. Still in the Upper Chamber, the show of shame between Senator Dino Melaye and Senator Remi Tinubu, is reason enough to panic, in that the saga only spells it clear that we are led by people with the lowest of moral values. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter melaye Sanata Remi Tinubu and Sanatar Dino Melaye The kind of words and details of acts which was seen upon that sacred floor of the Senate, makes one fear that Nigerians might have placed their fate in the hands of those who will thrash them. In the same vein, the Lower chamber is not left out of this show of shame, as the news of three representatives who went soliciting for sex in the USA, calls for sober reflection. Though we have not heard the last of that case, still to even have such allegation labelled against those who represent Nigeria at the highest level, is sickening. Still in the House of Representatives, the case for and against those who padded and did not pad the national budget, shows that we might in the end be fantastically corrupt, it might mean that we are led by plunderers, ravaging the country right there from their exalted positions. Only recently, the embattled ex-chairman committee on appropriations, Adulmumin Jibrin revealed details about the budget padding, he claimed that Yakubu Dogara the House of Reps Speaker allegedly convinced him to ship over N20 billion into the budget through Service Wide Vote. This again is an accusation again the leadership of the legislature, and though claims and counter claims are being made, and investigations are still ongoing, yet how can we Nigerians be at ease with what we have heard so far? Documents have revealed how top officials of the National assembly padded the 2016 budget to the tune of N481billion, the national assembly also unilaterally jerked the votes meant for constituency projects from N60 billion to N100 billion. I fear that which such assertion as this, this nation risks the chance of an implosion. Impeachment dilemma There has been rumours and speculations that the Senate is seeking to impeach President Muhammadu Buhari, and though this seem to have been played down with many hinting at the limits of its possibility, still it is an issue that calls for concern. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter mazaje Senate president Bukola Saraki at CCT, there are speculations that a move for Saraki’s unsaeting is in the works. With a legislative arm that Nigerians cannot vouch for, one cannot but note that there is no smoke without a fire. It must be noted that the mantra of impeachment has for quite sometime lingered by the doors of the National Assembly, with many calling for the unseating of the Senate leadership; it is this chaos that stirs unease in the hearts of Nigerians. This is because, the Nigerian Senate remains unstable and continue to tussle for power, and the servant leaders in those sacred courts continue to do the masses no good. The Senate is not in anyway helping the cause of President Buhari, some critics claim, there tends to be a silent rift between the presidency and the legislature. One fears that the more the diverse parties cannot come to agree for the common good of the people, then Nigerians will be in for another era of promises which will never see the light of day. Religious war Reports of violence borne of religion are making headlines again, with death and destruction of property recorded in certain parts of the country. We have toed this line before and we surely know that if there is an issue that ticks people off to war the most, then religion it is. At a time when speculation has it that Nigeria is about to be made an Islamic nation, when the government is trying to assuage the fears of the people regarding such a move, killing incited by religion is not a welcomed development. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter rccg pastor wife murdered while preaching abuja RCCG pastor’s wife murdered while preaching in Abuja Christians, especially those in the northeastern region and Muslims in the southeastern region stand the greater risk in the wake of violence borne of religious rifts, a subject matter which could be said to have played a major role in the bloody civil war which Nigeria experienced between 1967 and 1970. Experts have said that some clerics within the northern region are to blame for the killings carried out by their followers, this is because they preach and teach those who follow them to see others who are not of their faith as infidels. With these deadly ideologies behind their their minds, religious fanatics much about on the edge, waiting for the slightest form of provocation and they strike in the name of God. Wave of terror, storm of militancy and the dying economy The Nigerian government deserves some praise for the war against the dreaded Boko Haram sect within the troubled northeastern region of the country. According to the Nigerian army, the jihadists have been ousted and all that is left is but a fragment for which the gallant soldiers must remain focused to erase without a trace. However, Nigeria seem to have a system in which when one situation is about being fixed, something else springs up to take its place. The advent of marauders in the guise of herdsmen, has given the nation cause not to close one eye while she sleeps. The re-emergence of vandalism and militant activities in the South-south and Southeast regions is yet another cause for which the people are troubled. Nigeria’s dwindling economic growth has been closely linked to the troubling affairs within the Niger Delta, even the militants have promised to cripple the nation. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter pipeline bombing File: Pipeline bombing in the Niger Delta The Nigerian government has said it is in talks with leaders of the region and lords of the militant groups, however, some very powerful groups within the region are of the opinion that the government cannot get the desired result with the way they are handling the affairs. This assertion has led groups like the Niger Delta Avengers to keep at blowing up pipelines and destroying facilities belonging to oil firms within the south-south and southeast. These are trying times, not only for people within the Niger Delta but Nigerians as a whole as the masses most especially will have to face harsh market prices and crazier living conditions till a truce is brokered. A truce seem far from the issue, now that the military has launched a new operation to counter the militancy within the region. For many, this move is a ‘no good’ as it will only stir more hostilities and in the end lead to no positive outcome. Run! To where? Nowhere is the answer, there is certainly nowhere that can serve as our home. Shall we run to America where the news of hate induced violence is rampant, shall we run to Europe which itself is threatened by terrorism? Share on Facebook Share on Twitter usa-orlando-shooting Scene from Orlando shooting We cannot abandon this ship to founder, it is our collective duty to see that the nation set on the right part again, though that position is a very hard one. Nigerians have become wiser, and we have become more outspoken, those in power understand that Nigerians will not fail to unseat them if they do not perform. The present administration has alot to do in restoring faith to the Nigerian people who they have promised change, for if the promise is not fulfilled, then the people will change their attitude and ideologies. As regards those in the Nigerian legislative arm of government, I will say that a total over hauling is necessary and as regards their move for an immunity that covers their ills and absolves them of all wrong doings for a life time, I say it must not stand. Nigerians have been looked at as a people that are ready to bear with whatever comes their way, however, when the dog is pushed to the wall, there are other actions that follow other than just barking. The masses must not be pushed too far so that the implosion which is feared does not come to pass. Urgently, the APC-led government must chart a course for bringing Nigeria out of its financial mess. Job creation is of the essence, that is the only way by which the teeming Nigerian youths can be rest assured that fleeing this land which they for too long have called home, is not the best. It surely looks greener on the other side, however, what becomes of our fatherland if we all flee? As regards the violence stirred by religion, and the agitations for a divided Nigeria; we broker a truce, and that can only be done by showing respect for all sides of the divide. The government must fashion out a process by which the aggrieved are pacified, compensate where it is necessary, we can come to perfect agreement if truly we are for the good of the people and not for our personal gains. For it seem that so much that has been done in guise of seeking justice for a relegated set of people, has been done for the benefit of only a few. According to the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), there is more to be done to restore peace and come to agreement with the militants in the Niger Delta Region; though I believe that not all the demands of the militants can be met or should be met, still I believe that if they could be stilled during the last dispensation, then they can still be calmed in this era, approach is all that matters. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter france attack Terrorist attacks recorded in France In conclusion, we all Nigerians must begin to look for different ways to make the best of what we have which to many now is “nothing”. Necessity they say is the mother of invention, and we must look deep within us to find that which can profit not just ourselves, but the world around us. Most importantly, for this nation be as great as we want it to be, we must think Nigeria first, not our tribes nor our religion. While we cannot shove our cultures, traditions and religions aside, we must exercise our rights in such a way that it does not infringe on the rights of others. Our society in the end, is a reflection of who we are as a people, there is no doubt that this nation can be great again, to take its rightful place in the affairs of the world.
Read more: https://www.naij.com/894371-danger-this-nigeria-is-about-to-explode-run.html
Nigeria on the verge of collapse, shall we run? Soonest Nathaniel Yesterday 143341 Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Send email No! This is not a pro-Biafran publication, it was not sent by some members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) or those from the Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) this is a piece for Nigeria by a true Nigerian. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter petrol The state of affairs in Nigeria, calls for serious deliberations, so much tends to be going wrong. Nigerians have for too long been known to bear under the worst of conditions, however, the present situation in the country is one that tends to be breaking their backs and shattering their resolve. There are many issues besetting the nation, so many that Nigerians can only but contemplate running from this place they call home. A proper analysis of some events in recent times, would give one a clearer picture of why we need to be more concerned, lest this nation goes up in smoke. Legislation of shame I have said and will continue to reiterate that the current this 8th National Assembly records the worst legislation Nigeria has seen in all its years. It is not out of place to say the we are being led by the worst legislators in our own history. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter FIGHT-IN-THE-SENATE To make case for the current legislative arm, one finds out that there is no valid point, there tends to be nothing that one can say is the good that has come out from the Nigeria’s hallowed chambers. READ ALSO: Enjoy surfing with the fastest browser – UC browser From the onset of this dispensation, the legislators showed their incompetence and have continue day-by-day to give Nigerians reasons to fear. Where shall one begin to speak of the ills in this very important arm of government? Shall we begin from the many allegations against the Senate President, Bukola Saraki or shall we start from the forgery case leveled against him (Saraki) and his deputy Ike Ekweremadu. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Saraki Forgery 5 It is troubling to see the leaders of the upper chamber appear every other day in court to stand trial for things which should not be heard of them, and though they remain free without any convictions yet, still, it wont be wrong to say that this drama has caused so much harm to legislation in Nigeria at this time in our history. How will the House be able to pass laws that will affect Nigerians positively when those who lead are in and out of court for allegedly breaking the rules, flouting laws and operating not in accordance with the rule of law. Still in the Upper Chamber, the show of shame between Senator Dino Melaye and Senator Remi Tinubu, is reason enough to panic, in that the saga only spells it clear that we are led by people with the lowest of moral values. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter melaye Sanata Remi Tinubu and Sanatar Dino Melaye The kind of words and details of acts which was seen upon that sacred floor of the Senate, makes one fear that Nigerians might have placed their fate in the hands of those who will thrash them. In the same vein, the Lower chamber is not left out of this show of shame, as the news of three representatives who went soliciting for sex in the USA, calls for sober reflection. Though we have not heard the last of that case, still to even have such allegation labelled against those who represent Nigeria at the highest level, is sickening. Still in the House of Representatives, the case for and against those who padded and did not pad the national budget, shows that we might in the end be fantastically corrupt, it might mean that we are led by plunderers, ravaging the country right there from their exalted positions. Only recently, the embattled ex-chairman committee on appropriations, Adulmumin Jibrin revealed details about the budget padding, he claimed that Yakubu Dogara the House of Reps Speaker allegedly convinced him to ship over N20 billion into the budget through Service Wide Vote. This again is an accusation again the leadership of the legislature, and though claims and counter claims are being made, and investigations are still ongoing, yet how can we Nigerians be at ease with what we have heard so far? Documents have revealed how top officials of the National assembly padded the 2016 budget to the tune of N481billion, the national assembly also unilaterally jerked the votes meant for constituency projects from N60 billion to N100 billion. I fear that which such assertion as this, this nation risks the chance of an implosion. Impeachment dilemma There has been rumours and speculations that the Senate is seeking to impeach President Muhammadu Buhari, and though this seem to have been played down with many hinting at the limits of its possibility, still it is an issue that calls for concern. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter mazaje Senate president Bukola Saraki at CCT, there are speculations that a move for Saraki’s unsaeting is in the works. With a legislative arm that Nigerians cannot vouch for, one cannot but note that there is no smoke without a fire. It must be noted that the mantra of impeachment has for quite sometime lingered by the doors of the National Assembly, with many calling for the unseating of the Senate leadership; it is this chaos that stirs unease in the hearts of Nigerians. This is because, the Nigerian Senate remains unstable and continue to tussle for power, and the servant leaders in those sacred courts continue to do the masses no good. The Senate is not in anyway helping the cause of President Buhari, some critics claim, there tends to be a silent rift between the presidency and the legislature. One fears that the more the diverse parties cannot come to agree for the common good of the people, then Nigerians will be in for another era of promises which will never see the light of day. Religious war Reports of violence borne of religion are making headlines again, with death and destruction of property recorded in certain parts of the country. We have toed this line before and we surely know that if there is an issue that ticks people off to war the most, then religion it is. At a time when speculation has it that Nigeria is about to be made an Islamic nation, when the government is trying to assuage the fears of the people regarding such a move, killing incited by religion is not a welcomed development. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter rccg pastor wife murdered while preaching abuja RCCG pastor’s wife murdered while preaching in Abuja Christians, especially those in the northeastern region and Muslims in the southeastern region stand the greater risk in the wake of violence borne of religious rifts, a subject matter which could be said to have played a major role in the bloody civil war which Nigeria experienced between 1967 and 1970. Experts have said that some clerics within the northern region are to blame for the killings carried out by their followers, this is because they preach and teach those who follow them to see others who are not of their faith as infidels. With these deadly ideologies behind their their minds, religious fanatics much about on the edge, waiting for the slightest form of provocation and they strike in the name of God. Wave of terror, storm of militancy and the dying economy The Nigerian government deserves some praise for the war against the dreaded Boko Haram sect within the troubled northeastern region of the country. According to the Nigerian army, the jihadists have been ousted and all that is left is but a fragment for which the gallant soldiers must remain focused to erase without a trace. However, Nigeria seem to have a system in which when one situation is about being fixed, something else springs up to take its place. The advent of marauders in the guise of herdsmen, has given the nation cause not to close one eye while she sleeps. The re-emergence of vandalism and militant activities in the South-south and Southeast regions is yet another cause for which the people are troubled. Nigeria’s dwindling economic growth has been closely linked to the troubling affairs within the Niger Delta, even the militants have promised to cripple the nation. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter pipeline bombing File: Pipeline bombing in the Niger Delta The Nigerian government has said it is in talks with leaders of the region and lords of the militant groups, however, some very powerful groups within the region are of the opinion that the government cannot get the desired result with the way they are handling the affairs. This assertion has led groups like the Niger Delta Avengers to keep at blowing up pipelines and destroying facilities belonging to oil firms within the south-south and southeast. These are trying times, not only for people within the Niger Delta but Nigerians as a whole as the masses most especially will have to face harsh market prices and crazier living conditions till a truce is brokered. A truce seem far from the issue, now that the military has launched a new operation to counter the militancy within the region. For many, this move is a ‘no good’ as it will only stir more hostilities and in the end lead to no positive outcome. Run! To where? Nowhere is the answer, there is certainly nowhere that can serve as our home. Shall we run to America where the news of hate induced violence is rampant, shall we run to Europe which itself is threatened by terrorism? Share on Facebook Share on Twitter usa-orlando-shooting Scene from Orlando shooting We cannot abandon this ship to founder, it is our collective duty to see that the nation set on the right part again, though that position is a very hard one. Nigerians have become wiser, and we have become more outspoken, those in power understand that Nigerians will not fail to unseat them if they do not perform. The present administration has alot to do in restoring faith to the Nigerian people who they have promised change, for if the promise is not fulfilled, then the people will change their attitude and ideologies. As regards those in the Nigerian legislative arm of government, I will say that a total over hauling is necessary and as regards their move for an immunity that covers their ills and absolves them of all wrong doings for a life time, I say it must not stand. Nigerians have been looked at as a people that are ready to bear with whatever comes their way, however, when the dog is pushed to the wall, there are other actions that follow other than just barking. The masses must not be pushed too far so that the implosion which is feared does not come to pass. Urgently, the APC-led government must chart a course for bringing Nigeria out of its financial mess. Job creation is of the essence, that is the only way by which the teeming Nigerian youths can be rest assured that fleeing this land which they for too long have called home, is not the best. It surely looks greener on the other side, however, what becomes of our fatherland if we all flee? As regards the violence stirred by religion, and the agitations for a divided Nigeria; we broker a truce, and that can only be done by showing respect for all sides of the divide. The government must fashion out a process by which the aggrieved are pacified, compensate where it is necessary, we can come to perfect agreement if truly we are for the good of the people and not for our personal gains. For it seem that so much that has been done in guise of seeking justice for a relegated set of people, has been done for the benefit of only a few. According to the Niger Delta Avengers (NDA), there is more to be done to restore peace and come to agreement with the militants in the Niger Delta Region; though I believe that not all the demands of the militants can be met or should be met, still I believe that if they could be stilled during the last dispensation, then they can still be calmed in this era, approach is all that matters. Share on Facebook Share on Twitter france attack Terrorist attacks recorded in France In conclusion, we all Nigerians must begin to look for different ways to make the best of what we have which to many now is “nothing”. Necessity they say is the mother of invention, and we must look deep within us to find that which can profit not just ourselves, but the world around us. Most importantly, for this nation be as great as we want it to be, we must think Nigeria first, not our tribes nor our religion. While we cannot shove our cultures, traditions and religions aside, we must exercise our rights in such a way that it does not infringe on the rights of others. Our society in the end, is a reflection of who we are as a people, there is no doubt that this nation can be great again, to take its rightful place in the affairs of the world.
Read more: https://www.naij.com/894371-danger-this-nigeria-is-about-to-explode-run.html

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Edo 2016: PDP aspirant dumps party





Solomon Edebiri, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) aspirant in the June 20 party primaries, said that he had resigned from the party.
Edebiri made the disclosure while speaking with journalists in Obayanton, near Benin on Thursday.
He attributed his decision to leave the party to “dishonesty of the party leadership’’.
According to him, what happened on June 20 was awful and a complete negation of what democratic tenet is all about.
“I can officially tell you that I have resigned my membership of the PDP and that I have also refused to join either the Sherrif faction or any other party.
“My resignation followed the dishonesty of the party leadership who reneged on its pledge to provide a level-playing field for all aspirants at the primaries.
“And we had all also pledged to move with the party beyond the primaries, provided the primaries was free, fair and just.
“There were reports that the party’s institution gave a specific instruction to party chairmen at the Local government level for members to vote for a particular aspirant, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.



“So my understanding is that the primaries was not free, fair and just,’’ he said
“I will not hold Ize-Iyamu (responsible) but the party leadership.
“And I neither want to fight anyone nor remain in the party,’’ he said.
Edebiri also confirmed that the party’s former BOT Chairman, Tony Anenih, reached out to him.
“I refused to honour the invitation to his Abuja residence because of what happened in 2012.
“In 2012, he offered me money to dump my aspiration and join the PDP but I declined.
“In 2016, he still referred to that episode, accusing me of joining forces with Adams Oshiomhole to fight the party.
“Not knowing what he might also say after meeting with him and to keep my sanctity and integrity, I thought the best decision was to avoid meeting with him or any other leader of the party,’’ he said.
Edebiri, however, said that he would continue to serve the people of the state in other capacity through other foundations he had established to serve humanity.
“I have also told my supporters and follower to avoid money politics and eschew violence as no aspiration is worth innocent blood, ‘’ he said.
Edebiri contested the governorship seat in 2012 on the platform of the defunct ANPP and came third.
He joined the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) after he lost the 2012 governorship ticket and was a founding member of the All Progressives Congress (APC), before he pitched tent with the PDP in 2014.
(NAN)

Secret Companies Of Pro-Saraki Senator Umaru David Who Laundered Billions For Abacha Uncovered In Tax Havens




by Joshua Olufemi and Nicholas Ibekwe



In his native Niger State, David Umaru, the All Progressives Congress senator representing Niger East Senatorial District is something of a folk hero.

He was a thorn under the skin of the immediate past administration of Governor Mu’azu BabangidaAliyu. He was an unwavering critic and soon gained the reputation of a whistleblower after be published series of advertorials in national newspapers exposing alleged corrupt practices by the Mr. Mu’azu’s administration.
But one aspect of his life Mr. Umaru would hesitate to see on the pages of newspapers is his dealings in notorious offshore tax havens and his role in laundering money for the country’s most notorious dictator ever, Sani Abacha.
Documents obtained by PREMIUM TIMES from the leaked database of now infamous Panamanian law firm, Mossack Fonseca, revealed that Mr. Umaru incorporated two shell companies in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), a notorious offshore tax haven, and in tiny South Pacific Ocean country, Niue Island.
The first company, Yorkshire Investment Limited was incorporated on April 27, 1998, with a registered address at No2 Commercial Centre Square, Alofi, the capital of the Niue Island.
The company was incorporated by International Trust Company (ITC), a Niue-based registering agent. In other to conceal the true ownership of the shell company, ITC provided two nominee directors for the company – Melvin Scales (Chairman) and Ramses Owens.
But Mr. Umaru was clearly named the true and lawful attorney of the company.
The appointment of nominee directors for shell companies is a common practice in tax havens. The practice involved the appointment of directors only by title. They have no real authority over the company which they supposedly represent and can only act according to the directives of the owners of the firm or that of the person with a power of attorney.
“Know all men by these presents that on this 27th day of April, 1998, we, YORKSHIRE INVESTMENT LTD, whose registered office is situated at 2 Commercial Centre Square, Alofi, Niue (hereinafter referred to as “the Company “) have made, constituted and appointed, and by these presents do hereby make, constitute and appoint Mr. David UMARU (hereinafter referred to as “the Attorney”) as our true and lawful Attorney—in—fact for us and in our name, place and stead, to do, execute and perform all and every act or acts in law needful and necessary to be done in and about and in relation, but not limited to, the following matters:
“To negotiate, conclude, sign, execute and deliver on behalf of the Company such conveyances, transfers, assignments, deeds, documents, licenses, authorities or agreements as said Attorney shall consider necessary or proper to enable it to dispose of or acquire any assets in any part of the world (hereinafter referred to as “the assets”) on such terms as the Attorney shall consider proper or desirable in his absolute discretion,” the company’s article of incorporation read.
Not satisfied by the incorporation of his first shell company, five months later, exactly on September 15, 1998, Mr. Umaru again went shopping for his second shell company – Darweng Holding.
This time, he decided to incorporate it in the British Virgin Islands. Just like he did with Yorkshire Investment Ltd, Mr Umaru appointed Benerly Hunt and Darlene Bayne as the company’s nominee directors while he retained a full power of attorney, which gave him absolute power to “negotiate, conclude, sign, execute and deliver on behalf of the Company such conveyances, transfers, assignments, deeds, documents, licenses, authorities or agreements as said Attorney shall consider necessary or proper to enable it to dispose of or acquire any assets in any part of the world (hereinafter referred to as ‘the assets’).”
There is no evidence that Mr. Umaru was no longer involved with the shell companies before he was elected a senator.
While not all owners or operators of such offshore entities are criminals, owning or maintaining interest in private companies while serving as public officials is against Nigerian laws.
Section 6(b) of the Code of Conduct Act says a public office holder shall not, “except where he is not employed on a full‐time basis, engage or participate in the management or running of any private business, profession or trade.”
This revelation makes Mr. Umaru the fourth serving Nigerian senator, after Senate President Bukola Saraki, his predecessor, David Mark, and Senator Andy Uba, who have been shown to own shell companies in offshore tax havens in clear violation of the country’s law.
Abacha’s bagman
It is unclear what businesses Mr. Umaru transacted with his offshore companies.
But shortly before he ran the companies, Mr. Umaru, who is currently the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Human Rights and Legal Matters, helped the Abacha family to move huge funds around.
An affidavit filed on November 18, 2013, by the US Department of Justice in a suit seeking the forfeiture of assets worth over $500 million stolen by Mr. Abacha and hidden in various in bank accounts in various offshore jurisdiction, revealed how Mr. Umaru acted as the official extortionist and money launderer of the Abachas.
As part of a ploy to extort money from foreign companies, the Abacha regime stopped paying foreign companies for contracts executed. One of the offshore companies was a French Civil Engineering firm, Dumez Group. The Abacha regime owed the company $469 million it refused to pay. In fact, even after the company nationalized and became Dumez Nigeria Limited, the junta still would not release the funds.
Enter Mr. Umaru. The senator, who was then a personal lawyer for the Abachas, approached the owners of Dumez and told them payment could be restarted if they agreed to a 25 percent kickback of whatever they were paid to the Abacha family. The company agreed.
Mr. Umaru then incorporated Allied Network Ltd for the sole purpose of collecting the kickbacks on behalf of the Abacha family. Listed as directors of the company were “Mohammed Sani” and “Abba Sani”, which were aliases of Sani Abacha and his brother, Abba Abacha.
In December 1996, Mr. Umaru opened an account on behalf of Allied Network Ltd at the Union Bancaire Privee (UBP) in Geneva, Switzerland, which was used to receive the payment of the kickbacks from Dumez and another account at the same bank which was used to receive the payment from the Nigerian government.
According to court papers, between August 16, 1996, and May 22, 1998, the Central Bank of Nigeria transferred $389,737,400 to Dumez account at UBP, Geneva. Of that amount $97,375,543 or 25 percent of the original payment was transferred by Dumez to Allied Network Ltd account in the same bank.
In late 1997, Mohammed Abacha, the son of the late dictator, authorised the transfer of $11,114,983, being part of the kickback received from Dumez to an account held by “Mohammed Sani” (Mohammed Sani is the preferred alias of the younger Mr. Abacha). He used the alias repeatedly in most of the money laundering transactions involving his family, including the infamous Malabu Oil deal) at Midland Bank London (Now HSBC Bank Plc) with account number 38175076.
The money was later distributed into two accounts also held by Mohammed Sani in the US via a network of financial institutions.
Mr. Umaru did not answer repeated calls to his mobile number by this newspaper. He also did not reply text message sent to his phone for comment.

Full List: FG Declares War On These Governors


Full List: FG Declares War On These Governors

Following the Attorney General of The Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami’s letter to the Chairman of the Independent Corrupt Practices and other related offences Commission (ICPC) requesting the remission of case files and reopening of cases of corruption against former governors, a list of 31 former governors to be probed in connection with corrupt practices has been released.
The list of the 31 former Governors whose cases are to be re-opened include names of political office holders and party chieftains from the two major opposition political party in the country.
Names on the list include; Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki(former Governor of Kwara State); Senator Godswill Akpabio (former Governor of Akwa Ibom State), Ali Modu-Sheriff (former Governor of Borno State).
Other former governors named are; Orji Uzor Kalu (Abia); Chimaroke Nnamani (Enugu); Saminu Turaki (Jigawa); Sule Lamido (Jigawa); Joshua Dariye (Plateau); Ahmed Yerima (Zamfara); Gabriel Suswam (Benue); Martin Elechi (Ebonyi); Danjuma Goje (Gombe), Murtala Nyako (Adamawa), Ikedi Ohakim (Imo); Obong Victor Attah (Akwa Ibom); Achike Udenwa (Imo); Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa); Gbenga Daniel (Ogun); Jolly Nyame (Taraba); Boni Haruna (Adamawa); George Akume (Benue); Rashidi Ladoja (Oyo); Attahiru Bafarawa (Sokoto), Adebayo Alao-Akala, Usman Dakingari (Kebbi); Adamu Mu’azu (Bauchi); Peter Odili (Rivers), and Lucky Igbinedion (Edo).

Budget Padding Scandal: Ex-Appropriation committee chair, Jibrin, raises 20 questions for Speaker Dogara

Hon.-Abdulmumin-Jibrin-600x416
Embattled former chairman of the House Committee on Appropriation on Wednesday raised 20 questions for Speaker Yakubu Dogara bordering on the unfolding budget padding scandal.
Mr. Jibrin said Mr. Dogara must respond to the questions individually.
The House was thrown into chaos following a decision the leadership took to remove Mr. Jibrin as Appropriation Committee chairman last week Wednesday.
Speaker Yakubu Dogara said Mr. Jibrin was removed because he allegedly betrayed the House and lacked competence in steering the committee.
Mr. Jibrin, however, said he stepped down willingly and denied the charges that he committed treachery and lacked competence.

The 20 questions are as follows:

1. Why did you take the decision to fraudulently shortchange the House by taken away 40 billion naira out of the 100 billion naira allocated for constituency projects and distributing same to yourself and others without the approval of the House?
2. Why did you approach the former house appropriation chairman with written personal requests and list of about 30 billion naira to be inserted into the 2016 budget and his inability to get that done caused a major rift between you all and him?
3. Why did you insert wasteful projects for your various constituencies worth about 20billion naira despite the former appropriation chairman professional advice against such?
4. Why did you ignore his complaint to you that just about 10 standing committees of the House inserted over 2000 projects worth 284 billion naira?
5. Why did you take away the appropriation committee secretariat on two occasions where several insertions were made into the budget which created avoidable tension during the budget process?
6. Why did you direct the former appropriation chair which he rejected to create a strange line item in the service wide vote to allow for a 20 billion naira insertion into the budget under the name of NASS using a former PDP Senator and top politician?
7. Why are you trying to scam members with a fraudulent arrangement to deduct monthly from money meant for members office running cost to fund a so called mortgage arrangement?
8. Why did you abuse your office in a conflict of interest directed an agency to grant loans and a construction company to work on your Asokoro plot and arrange frequent private meetings with heads of MDA’s?
9. Why did you allocate to yourselves the entire 20% inputs reserved for the House after the harmonization exercise?
10. How much did you collect for rent of house and guests houses and how much did Hon Herma Hembe steal from the money that caused the outburst of Lasun?
11. why are you trying to drag the entire House and illegally using the official spokesman of the House into allegations that were made on you and the 3 others ONLY?
12. Why did you consistently block the former chairman appropriation from briefing Hon members and denied him his right to be heard by his colleagues on this matter?
13. Why did you scuttle his effort and Sen Goje’s to assist Mr. President after working so hard consulting ministers on the budget out of envy and vindictiveness that Mr. President granted them audience without you?
14. Why did you insist and ensured that the immunity clause for the House principal officers is inserted into our agenda despite huge resistance from members and the general public?
15. Why did you connive with 5 other members of the House to use some elements of the Nigerian police and thugs in an attempt to blackmail, kidnap, intimidate and silence him and his family?
16. Why are you desperately going round media houses offering money to silent the statements of the former appropriation chairman?
17. Why has it taken you this long to put together such a lame storyt of why you “sacked” the former appropriation chairman after admitting on national TV that he resigned?
18. Is it true that you left a huge mess and allegations of money laundering against you as chairman House services both in the 6th and 7th House?
19. Why have you refused to open up the financial dealings and details of internal budget of the House to your colleagues, Hon members?
20. Why do you have problems with reconvening the House immediately to allow for an independent investigation on the allegations?

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

OGIEMWONYI : THE EXONERATION THAT PAVED WAY FOR CONTINUITY


It is widely believed that Credibility is the value of a leader’s currency that must always be priced at the currency market of public opinion. It is no longer news in the ears of the  Edo electorates that the vast majority of our politicians desperately desires to be enthroned not necessarily on the candid platform of credibility but by taking an ugly and disheartening path of assassinating the characters of their perceived opponents. They are most times successful due to the gullibility of the majority of the electorates.

Engr .(Dr) Chris Ogiemwonyi will forever remain clean and green on the lips of edolites not because he was a saint but because in the means of stiff political terrain in the state, he stood firm and achieved a height at a time many thought he couldn’t. Going down history lane, it became evident as the young Ogiemwonyi grew in the public service that indeed he was destined to lead. In most of his talks ,he has mentioned and vividly expressed his childhood experiences, which depicted princely characteristics that embedded an unshaken courage to challenge, correct and transform any malfunctioning institution. It was the recognition of his exploits as a vibrant, dynamic youth that earned him the traditional Royal  Coral  beads by the Benin Monarch, Omo N' Oba N' Edo Uku Akpolokpolo, Oba Erediauwa,CFR found  Engr. Ogiemwonyi worthy to be recognised of his contributions to the development of Benin Kingdom, Edo state and Nigeria.

It has been said that the true test of a man is ascertained in moments of trials and tribulations. Engr. Ogiemwonyi was heavily struck by a calculated and circulated strategy geared towards striping the faithful Edo electorates of what they would have enjoyed in his better Edo agenda. The do or die, power hungry politicians created a stigma between him and his beloved Edolites by promoting the falsehood of "arrogant". Even the most dictatorial and erratic class of leaders have always accorded respect to the anointed, and isn’t it funny enough to believe that a man of the prestigious caliber of the religious knighthood would not respect his governor ? May God help us to play politics of conscience. Being a man of unquestionable integrity, his better Edo agenda was punctured on the grounds of falsehood yet he relaxed, searched his conscience and stepped to challenge the falsehood to prove that his integrity remains unscathed. Indeed this is a true mark of greatness, a symbol of a lion and the strength of a stallion.

This false "disloyal " episode undoubtedly caused a stoppage to his divine continuity mandate  to Dennis Osadebey Avenue ,but God has never failed in vindicating the innocent.


Someone  would  ask me, why did  Engr . Ogiemwonyi not  win at the APC primaries ; the fact remains he never lost that election but it was hinged on technicalities and highly institutionalized grand conspiracies orchestrated by the powers that be simply because of his support for President Buhari's integrity. They see him as another  Buhari in making  who will  not  play the dirty ball of politics with  them when he gets to Government  house. He never wanted to forment trouble but he chose to step aside and asked his supporters to support the APC governorship candidate for the  September, 10 election.   

Engr . Ogiemwonyi's  political castle/structure did not collapse neither did he lose the election. What happened was a high conspiracy perpetrated by highly placed individuals and authorities; hence, as a man of peace that he is; left that to its fate in order not to endanger the peaceful state of Edo .

That he lost, or not fail, should be left for debates and academic exercises to determine. But all the factual appraisals and re-appraiasals of Engr . Ogiemwony'si person have shown that he did not fail. He was misconstrued!

Is  Engr. Ogiemwonyi  arrogant....? HABA !
And do I hear you used 'arrogant' to allude to the person of  Engr  Ogiemwonyi ? My brother/sister, you 're mistaken courage and outspokeness for arrogance. One of the greatest assets and qualities of Engr Ogiemwonyi  during  his time at the civil service was that he spoke out when the lily-livered and gutless cowards opted to be silent; unlike the present Emperor who would mesmerize the members of the public with lies and half-truths and would leave the people in confusion and totally unenlightened about his policies- Ogiemwonyi never left any one in doubt through words and deeds where he stood on any and every issue at all.

To cynics, his outspokeness spells arrogance.
Ogiemwonyi makes his position known at every point in time; that is why any one could take his words and policy statements to the bank knowing fully well that Ogiemwonyi  is not given in to anything like fudging and mudging things. He believes that we need courage, conviction and hardwork to move the state forward!

Was Ogiemwonyi  lazy..?
Ogiemwonyi  was not a lazy leader, though he had his shortcomings as a human being. He is a man who believes in his visions, he believes in following them religiously even when the larger people do not understand the immediate gains of such vision propelled programmes or projects.

Well, plausibly, he was 'too obsessed' with his visions because he thought the best for  Edo state and was eager to deliver on that noble venture. He was not deluded with his visions rather, the people misunderstood and misconstrued his policies and visions, like every reformer all over the world are misconstrued and misunderstood. But at the end, they laugh last.

Ogiemwonyi  was not interested in his immediate applause and praises from the people, he's rather only interested in bequeathing those legacies believing that at the end of the day, the people and history will judge him not just by what his unrepetant cynics and political opponents would want them believe but by his own deeds.

- Jeffery  Igbinigie

  A public affairs commentator
  wrote  from  Benin

APC govs meet Buhari, resolve to seek Ekweremadu’s removal


Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu
Olalekan Adetayo, and Leke Baiyewu, Abuja
State governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress have resolved to do all within their powers to ensure that Senator Ike Ekweremadu is removed as the Deputy President of the Senate, The PUNCH has learnt.
Our correspondent learnt that this was the fallout of the two-hour meeting the governors had with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, on Tuesday.
The Chairman of the Progressives Governors Forum and Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, had initially told State House correspondents at the end of the meeting that the governors had decided to intervene in the crisis in the National Assembly, without giving details of their intervention.
But a source at the meeting told one of our correspondents that the consensus at the meeting was that it was an aberration for Ekweremadu, who is a Senator from the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, to continue in office as Deputy President of the Senate.
The source stated, “The governors sympathised with the President (Buhari) for working with a National Assembly that is largely seen as unfriendly.
“Particularly, they observed that in the absence of the President of the Senate, the next person is his deputy. They therefore agreed that it was an anomalous situation for a PDP person to continue as the Deputy President of the Senate.
“They sought and got the President’s permission to intervene in the matter in their own way.
“They argued that the truth of the matter is that rarely is there any Senator that emerged without the backing of their governors, hence the governors have some levels of influence on the federal lawmakers.”
Okorocha had, on Monday, said Ekweremadu should get ready to vacate his seat as the Deputy Senate President.
Okorocha had added that a candidate of the APC, Benjamin Uwajumogu, who contested in the last Saturday’s rerun senatorial election in Imo State, would displace Ekweremadu as soon as he joined the Senate.
The governor had said, “The position of Senator Ike Ekweremadu as the Deputy Senate President is at the moment under heavy threat because in no distant time, the APC senator-in-waiting from Imo State, Benjamin Uwajumogu, will take over the seat on the grounds that it is an aberration that a PDP senator from the South-East is deputy to an APC Senate President because, before now, APC could not produce a Senator from the South-East zone.”
Our correspondent further learnt that Buhari at the meeting approved the release of N2bn each to all APC states.
Another source, who attended the meeting, said the decision was based on what happened during the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan.
The source claimed that Jonathan had, before leaving office, released N2bn each to the PDP states at the time from the Ecological Fund.
He was alleged to have exempted APC states and PDP states, whose governors were at loggerheads with him, from the gesture.
“That issue was brought to the President’s attention and he has ordered the release of N2bn each to the APC states that did not benefit during Jonathan’s administration,” the source said.
To further cushion the effects of the downturn in economy on the states, Buhari was also said to have, during the meeting, approved that 50 per cent of money spent by states on federal roads be released to them.
Okorocha had, while briefing State House correspondents after the governors’ meeting with Buhari, said the state governors from the ruling party were concerned about the incessant happenings in the National Assembly and had resolved to look into the matter.
The two chambers of the National Assembly have continued to witness crisis since inception following the emergence of leaders, who were not the preferred candidates of the ruling party, the APC.
Crisis is currently brewing in the House of Representatives following an allegation by a former Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Appropriation, Abdulmumin Jibrin, who accused the leadership of the House of padding the 2016 budget to the tune of N40bn.
Okorocha added, “We have come to reassure Mr. President that the APC governors are solidly behind him in his fight against corruption; his fight against insurgents and all his laudable projects.
“We are concerned about the incessant happenings in the National Assembly and we have taken it upon ourselves to look into the matter; that is the crisis in the National Assembly.
“We are going to look into the matter because we need a strong and vibrant National Assembly to make things move fast in the country.”
Okorocha defended the recent decision of the Nigeria Governors Forum for six state governors to travel to Germany for what they called “vocational training.”
“There is nothing like jamboree trip. We are going to Germany because we cannot do everything here without exchanging ideas. Everything you do in your home and your business, you share ideas.
“So, we want to see how they have done what they have done to succeed. It is the aspiration of Nigeria to be like other countries of the world,” he said.
When asked if the trip would be funded by states, some of who owed workers’ salaries, Okorocha responded, “So, who will fund it, you!?”
Despite the continued hardship in the states, the governor stated that a lot of improvement had been recorded in some states.
He noted that what the states were getting from the Federation Account was close to what they were collecting when crude oil was selling above $100 per barrel.
Other governors, who attended the meeting, included those of Kaduna, Kwara, Zamfara, Benue, Kano, Sokoto, Plateau, Niger, Ogun, Borno, Osun, Edo, Kogi, Adamawa, Nasarawa and Kebbi.
The meeting was also attended by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo; Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal; and the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari, among others.
Ekeweremadu, however, declined to speak on the plans being hatched by the APC governors to remove him as the Deputy Senate President.
One of his aides, who was contacted by one of our correspondents on Tuesday night, said he had no comments until he was well informed on the matter.
Copyright PUNCH.