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NASS leadership: North-West backs Akpabio for Senate presidency



Stakeholders of the All Progressives Congress in the North-Central have protested against an alleged exclusion of the zone from the leadership of the 10th National Assembly, which will be inaugurated on June 5, as PUNCH reported.

The stakeholders, including lawmakers, said this on Sunday as the APC state chairmen in the North-West supported the decision of the national leadership of the party to adopt Senator Godswill Akpabio (South-South) and Senator Barau Jibrin (North-West) as Senate President and Deputy Senate President respectively.

But North-Central stakeholders, in separate press conferences in Abuja on Sunday, were unanimous in faulting the reported decision of the APC leadership on the Senate presidency and the position of the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Akpabio (Akwa Ibom) and Barau (Kano) were said to have been adopted for the Senate positions, while Tajudeen Abbas (Kaduna) and Benjamin Kalu (Abia) would become the next leaders of the House.

But the Convener of the North Central APC Stakeholders, Dominic Alancha, in his address titled ‘10th National Assembly: We Demand Justice, Equity and Fairness for North Central Zone’, in Abuja on Sunday, said, “We are constrained to register our disappointment and to protest the decision of the APC leadership to zone two presiding positions, Deputy Senate President and Speaker in the 10th National Assembly in favour of the North-West to the total exclusion of the North-Central and other zones in the country.

“Having won the 2023 presidential elections fair and square, we expect the leadership of the APC to be guided by the principle of justice and fairness in zoning leadership positions in the parliament, and had thought that factors like commitment to the success of the party, level of contributions and the need for fairness, equity and justice to all would guide the decision.”

The stakeholders said it opposed the plan to zone the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives to the North-West zone because that would imply undue favouritism, lack of fairness and the marginalisation of other zones.”

Later on Sunday, the Forum of North-Central Former House of Representatives Members in APC, in a communiqué issued at the end of an emergency meeting, faulted the exclusion of the North-Central.

Stakeholders protest exclusion
In the communiqué titled ‘Need for Justice and Equity in Allocating Key Offices in the National Assembly,’ the group that the position it had taken on the matter was in the best interest of the incoming Tinubu-led administration and for the greater good of Nigeria.

When asked if aspirants from the North-Central should abide by the APC zoning plan or fight for the right of the zone, Idris Yakubu, a member of the fourth Assembly who spoke on behalf of others, stated that the stakeholders had the responsibility of alerting the party and Tinubu to the “dangers ahead if they decide to continue in their folly of doing what we heard they are thinking of doing.”

But the APC chairmen in the North-West described the choice of Akpabio and Barau as a clear testimony of the President-Elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and the APC national leadership’s readiness to salvage the country from its socio-economic woes.

The APC chairmen who threw their weight behind the Akpabio-Barau ticket, also described the President-Elect as unbiased and detribalised as he prepared to take the mantle of leadership on May 29.

Speaking on behalf of his colleagues in Kano on Sunday, the Jigawa State Chairman of the APC, Alhaji Aminu Sani, said the President-Elect had done a wonderful job of maturity and patriotism that would change the narrative of ethnoreligious politics in the country.

Of the seven states in the zone, only the Zamfara State APC chairman was absent. Those present were from Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi and Sokoto states.

Sani said that he and his colleagues felt that the Akpabio-Barau ticket would produce good leadership for the 10th National Assembly that would work assiduously for the betterment of Nigeria.

“Barau Jibrin for example is a man of integrity who has never been found wanting in all his national life and he is somebody who is focused, that is why his decision to withdraw his ambition and accept to be Deputy Senate President clearly shows that he is a level-headed person and as such, he deserves commendation,” Sani said.

The North-West APC chairmen, therefore urged the newly-elected Senators to, without rancour or disagreement, rally around the choice of the President-Elect and indeed the APC national leadership so that Nigeria would have Leaders who understand themselves and be ready to forego their sentiments for national growth.

Another group, Defenders of Constitutional Democracy, commended Tinubu and the leadership of the APC for endorsing Abbas for the Speaker of the 10th House, saying the North-West deserves to be rewarded for its loyalty to the party.

Convener of the DCD, Aliyu Abdullahi, and the Director of Contact and Mobilisation, Chukwuma Okoro, gave the commendation in a statement issued on Sunday and titled ‘10th NASS Speakership: Group Hails Tinubu, APC’s Choice of Abass Tajudeen…Says North-West Deserves Reward for Loyalty, Hard Work.’

The DCD claimed that the North-West where Abbas hails from delivered the highest number of votes to the APC in the presidential election and it was only proper that the zone “be rewarded with the Number Four position in the country.”

But a group, North-West Progressives Forum, on Sunday, insisted on the candidacy of a former Governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari, a former Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, as the next President of the Senate.

The forum argued that neither the APC nor Tinubu had made any official pronouncements on the party’s zoning plan, saying the reported plan remained null and void.

Convener of the group, Nasir Dambatta, while addressing a press conference in Kaduna on Sunday, said there was no justification in allowing the South-South zone to claim Senate Presidency when the presidency had gone to the South-West.

However, another pressure group in the APC, Renewed Hope Professionals, on Sunday called on Tinubu to maintain neutrality during the election for leadership positions in the 10th Assembly to avoid the mistakes of 2015.

The National Coordinator of RHP, Kinu Kabirwa, who issued the warning in a statement obtained by The PUNCH in Abuja, said the President-elect’s neutrality became necessary because “the very cornerstone of a healthy democracy is the freedom of choice,” adding that “the imposition of candidates by those in positions of authority has led to a legitimacy crisis in the country since the return to democracy in 1999.”

Meanwhile, a leading contestant for the post of Speaker of the House, Aliyu Betara (APC/Borno), is scheduled to officially declare his speakership bid on Monday (today) despite reports of zoning plan by the APC.

Yusuf Gagdi from Plateau State in the North-Central had gone ahead to declare for Speaker on Friday amidst reports of zoning against the North-Central where he represents.

In a related development, it was learnt on Sunday that the National Working Committee of the APC would hold a crucial meeting on Monday to conclude discussions on the National Assembly leadership positions.

Multiple sources who spoke to our correspondent disclosed that the decision was a fallout of a closed-door meeting between the party leadership and the president-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, on Friday.

A source in the party said, “The Friday’s meeting between Asiwaju and the party leadership was held at the Defence House. Aside from Adamu, there were the two deputy chairmen for North (Senator Abubakar Kyari) and South (Emma Enekwu) and the national secretary (Iyiola Omisore) in attendance.

“Arising from that meeting, we understand the president-elect has given them (NWC) the green light to ratify both the zoning and the consensus candidates for the six available seats in both Red and Green Chambers. I have a strong belief that position will be taken on Monday,” one of the sources said.

When contacted, the Deputy National Organising Secretary of the APC, Nze Chidi Duru, confirmed that the NWC would meet on Monday (today).

Duru also said the party would not sanction any aspirant, who failed to support the party’s position until the consensus arrangement had been concluded.

He said, “Yes, it is true the president-elect met with the leadership of the NWC. By that, I mean Kyari, Enekwu and Omisore. My understanding is that a decision was made to zone the positions. That being the case, they will now report back to us. Once that is done and the party accepts the position, I will be surprised if any party member discusses otherwise.

“There is this need to have a united seamlessly party position. It doesn’t stop anybody who wants to go against the party position. It doesn’t stop anybody who wants to go against the party’s decision from doing so. But if you have a party, there will be consequences for behaviour like that.”

The Director of Publicity for the APC, Bala Ibrahim, also supported his position.

According to him, every senator-elect has the right to consult or lobby for the position, saying it is left for his colleagues to decide who will best serve the interest of the masses.

“There is nothing wrong with that. It is the beauty of democracy. It allows everyone to try his luck, popularity and will of the people over his own ambition. Every aspirant is going to be given a level playing field to advertise and woo members to his side. It is for the senators-elect to decide who think will be able to champion their cause,” he stated.


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I’m not desperate to contest for 2027 presidency – Obi



The Labour Party, LP, presidential candidate, Peter Obi on Wednesday declared that he’s not desperate to be president in 2027.

The Labour Party, LP, presidential candidate, Peter Obi on Wednesday declared that he’s not desperate to be president in 2027.

Obi said he only want to lift the poor and less privileged Nigerians out of difficult situation.

Addressing journalists in Abuja, the former Anambra State governor, lamented that some people shy away from discussing pressing issues confronting Nigeria.

“We live in a system where public office holders and politicians are only seen during elections. I can tell you that it is an everyday job. I have said it several times that I am not desperate to become the president of Nigeria. But I am desperate to see the poor and less privileged Nigerians being pulled out of their difficult situation daily.

“That is what I am desperate to see. And all of us can do it as well. You can’t even be happy or fulfilled when several million (Nigerians) don’t know where the next meal will come from,” he said.


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APC primary: Jimoh Ibrahim to battle Aiyedatiwa’s victory in appeal



The senator representing Ondo South Senatorial District, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim and four other aspirants have filed an appeal challenging

The senator representing Ondo South Senatorial District, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim and four other aspirants have filed an appeal challenging Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa’s victory in the recent All Progressives Congress primary elections.

The petition was filed with the APC Primary Election Committee, chaired by former Bauchi State Governor, Mr Mohammed Abubakar

They are demanding the cancellation of the governorship primary and the conduct of a fresh primary.

The appeal was filed by Senator Ibrahim, Folakemi Omogoroye, Olugbenga Edema, Jimi Odimayo, and Wale Akinterinwa.

They characterised the process as underwhelming, a derision of democracy, and a total disregard for established democratic principles.

Senator Ibrahim presented four key reasons to support his appeal for the cancellation of the election.

These reasons include the lack of adherence to the rules, failure to provide necessary electoral materials, failure to accredit agents, and instances of gross misconduct.

He said, “This is an appeal to your committee to cancel the Primary election held in Ondo state on 20th April 2024 on the ground that there was no election in the 203 wards, and this is evidenced from the many petitions before your committee as captured on the grounds below.

“Ground One, non-compliance with your rules, I paid the sum of N100m for the validation of over 40 thousand party members and those members were not allowed to be revalidated across Ondo State, this was because no voters register was made available in the wards to which members could be validated

“On ground two no provision of electoral materials electoral materials were provided for the conduct of the election, the local government electoral officials were kept in the hotel during the period of the election for several hours and only result sheets were given to them. The ward electoral officers were provided by one of the aspirants, Lucky Ayedatiwa.

“Ground three non-accreditation of agents. My agents were not accredited in all the wards, and they did not sign the election result sheet since none was made available to them.

The fourth ground he presented is gross misconduct.

“I received in my house in the village, Igbotako at 7 pm on the day of the election the local government returning officer and members of his committee.

“They informed me that they were in my house to capture my vote but I sent them away since my house is not a polling venue. The returning officer said he was instructed from above.

“Based on the four grounds stated above, the election should be cancelled and re-conducted immediately,” Senator Ibrahim said.

On her part, Omogoroye advocated for the election to be cancelled and urged the appeal committee to conduct a new election.

She said, “I am urging you to cancel the election and order a fresh election in which all the laid down guidelines for a credible election will be followed and a level-playing ground will be assured and ensured for all players in the election.

“Anything short of this is an open endorsement of the robbery of Saturday by the leadership of our party.”


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Wike’s loyalist rejects Fubara’s redeployment, resigns as commissioner



The Rivers State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Zaccaeus Adangor, SAN has rejected his redeployment to the Ministry

The Rivers State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Prof. Zaccaeus Adangor, SAN has rejected his redeployment to the Ministry of Special Duties (Governor’s Office), and consequently resigned from the State Executive Council.

Adangor’s resignation came barely 24 hours after the state Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, redeployed him in a minor cabinet reshuffle on Tuesday.

Fubara, in a letter issued on Tuesday by the Secretary to the State Government, Dr Tammy Danagogo, redeployed Adangor alongside the State Commissioner for Finance, Isaac Kamalu, who himself was moved to the Ministry of Employment Generation and Economic Empowerment.

Adangor and Kamalu, as well as seven other commissioners who had previously resigned from Fubara’s cabinet in the heat of the political crisis that rocked the state, are loyalists of the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike.

Adangor’s resignation was contained in a letter he personally signed, dated April 24 and addressed to the SSG on Wednesday and obtained by our correspondent.

The letter was titled, “Cabinet Reshufflement: Notice of Rejection of Deployment and Resignation from the Rivers State Executive Council.”

Adangor accused Fubara of willfully interfering with the performance of his duties as Commissioner.

He further said the governor had in the last few weeks directed him not to defend, oppose, or appear in suits instituted against his office and the Government of Rivers State by persons admittedly hired and sponsored by the Government of Rivers State.

The six-point letter reads, “My attention has been drawn to your letter dated April 23, 2024, and widely circulated on social media whereby I was “deployed to the ministry of special duties (governor’s office).

“Further to the referenced letter, I hereby give you notice of my rejection of the said deployment and resignation from the Rivers State Executive Council with effect from the 24th day of April 2024.

“I wish to state for the record that I am no longer willing to continue to serve in the administration of His Excellency, Siminalayi Fubara, Governor of Rivers State, in any capacity whatsoever.

“It is important to mention that the Governor of Rivers State had in the past couple of weeks willfully interfered with the performance of my duties as the Honourable Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Rivers State, by directing me not to defend, oppose, or appear in suits instituted against the Honourable Attorney-General and the Government of Rivers State by persons admittedly hired and sponsored by the Government of Rivers State.

“Having served the Government and good people of Rivers State dutifully as a member of the Rivers State Executive Council for the past five years, it has become imperative for me to quit the administration in order to preserve my reputation.

“I wish the administration of His Excellency well.”


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PDP crisis worsen as over ten more chieftains dump party after Ihedioha



The entire leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Okigwe zone (Imo North Senatorial zone) has reportedly stepped down from their

The entire leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Okigwe zone (Imo North Senatorial zone) has reportedly stepped down from their positions within the party and withdrew their membership, citing that the party no longer aligns with their political goals.

Naija News reports that this is coming shortly after a former Governor of Imo state, Emeka Ihedioha, renounced his affiliation with the party, emphasizing that the party lacks the ability to uphold its regulations or implement necessary internal changes.

The other party chieftains who just announced their membership withdrawal had criticized the National leadership for disregarding the ongoing turmoil within the state chapter of the party despite numerous appeals and pleas for intervention, which, according to them, have been left unresolved.

During a press briefing held on behalf of the party’s Okigwe Zonal executive in Owerri, the capital of Imo State, Sir Stanley Ekezie, expressed disappointment in the National leadership’s failure to operate as a robust and effective opposition party, instead veering towards a path of inevitable failure and deterioration.

The statement read: “Sequel to recent occurrences and happenings in the Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP), We the Okigwe zonal Committee and its top leadership, at an emergency meeting held earlier today, Tuesday 23rd April 2024, have arrived at the conclusion that the developments witnessed at the recent Board of Trustees, National Caucus, National Executive committee meetings respectively at Abuja, have indubitably demonstrated that the hitherto formidable PDP has, from every indication, not only failed to function as a strong and virile opposition party but has rather set itself on a collision course with complete failure and decline.

“Those of us in the South East, and in Imo state in particular, have had to contend with the contrived, prolonged and ongoing crisis, which the National leadership of the party, despite several representations and entreaties on the matter, has ignored, neglected or refused to resolve. All of these inevitably culminated in the dismal and disgraceful results recorded by the party during the off-season governorship election in November 2023, over which the PDP at the National level was still playing the ostrich.

“As a consequence, therefore, and in consideration of these acts of disdain and disregard for the leadership of the South East PDP, we have unanimously resolved to tender our individual and collective resignations from the party, through our respective Ward Chairmen across the six local governments Areas of Imo North Senatorial District.”

The politicians noted that their next political steps would be made public in due course after relevant consultations and deliberations.

Present at the press conference were; Mrs Amarachi Owuamanam, former acting Okigwe Zonal chairman, Sir Stanley Ekezie, for Ex officio of South East zonal PDP, Chief Chris Okewuluonu, former Chief of Staff, Government House under Former Governor Emeka Ihedioha, Hon Jonas Okeke former House of Reps Member. Others are the State Legal adviser, Kissinger Ikeokwu, and State Publicity Secretary, Mazi Mmerenini.

Naija News 


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El-Rufai: Kaduna Assembly commences probe



The Kaduna State House of Assembly has commenced a probe into the financial transactions of the state government under former

The Kaduna State House of Assembly has commenced a probe into the financial transactions of the state government under former governor Nasir El-Rufai.

In a letter to the Commissioner of Finance from the office of the clerk of the Kaduna State House of Assembly referenced LEG/S.382/VOL.II/615, the House requested for submission of memorandum and documents regarding financial transactions from 2015 to May 2023.

The letter, signed by Barr. Sakinatu Hassan Idris (Mrs.), Clerk to the Legislature said, “The Kaduna State House of Assembly at its One Hundred and Fiftieth (150th) Sitting on Tuesday, 16th April, 2024, Resolved and Constituted an Ad-Hoc Committee to investigate Loans, Financial Transactions, Contractual Liabilities & Other Related Matters of The Government of Kaduna State from 29th May, 2015 to 29 May, 2023, in accordance with Order XVI Rule 9 of the Standing Orders and Rules of the Kaduna State House of Assembly, 2019 and Section 103, 128 & 129 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as Amended).”

The letter added, “Accordingly, I am directed to request you to forward to the Ad-Hoc Committee Memorandum to be accompanied with the Underlisted DOCUMENTS and all other documents you consider relevant to the assignment of the Committee:-

(i) (a) Total Loans from May, 2015 to May, 2023 with the approvals of the Kaduna State House of Assembly, the Accounts into which the Loans were Lodged and draw. downs as recorded by Project Finance Management Unit (PFMU) & Debt Management Office (DMO).

(b) Relevant State Executive Council Minutes of meetings, Council’s Extracts and Resolutions with regards to the Loans.

(c) Payments and Outstanding Labilities to Contractors from May, 2015- May, 2023.

(d) Reports of Salaries paid to Staff from 2016-2022.

(e) Dloyd Reports on KADRIS from 2015 to 2023.

(ii) Terms, Purpose and Conditions on those Loans.

(iii) Appropriation items related to the LOANS.

(iv) All Records of payments made to all Contractors engaged by the State Government and relevant documents from May, 2015 to May, 2023 including Bank Statements.

(v) Modalities for payments of contracts.

(vi) Documents of all payments made to the contractors.

(vii) Sales of Government Houses/Properties and Accounts the proceeds were lodged and how the money was expended.”

It said that 30 copies of the memo/documents should reach the office of the Clerk to the Legislature on or before Thursday, 25th April, 2024 by 10:00 am.


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BATTLE LINE… Fubara under pressure to sack Wike loyalists, redeploys commissioners



Governor Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers State yesterday effected a cabinet shakeup redeploying former Commissioner for Justice

Governor Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers State yesterday effected a cabinet shakeup redeploying former Commissioner for Justice and Attorney-General, Prof. Zacheaus Adangor to the Ministry of Special Duties (Governor’s Office).

With the redeployment of Adangor, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, critics think that he does not make enough input, in challenging Pro-Wike 27 Lawmakers also in overriding the Governor and passing six Bills into Law since he staged a comeback into the cabinet.

However, according to the State government announcement issued by Dr. Tammy Danagogo, Secretary to State Government, SSG, the Commissioner of Finance, Barr. Isaac Kamalu has also been redeployed to the Ministry of Employment Generation and Economic Empowerment.

They are to hand over to their respective Permanent Secretaries with immediate effect.

It was reported that there is pressure on Governor Fubara to rejig his cabinet for nonperformance and dividend loyalty. They are among Nine Commissioners who are known loyalists of Nyesom Wike, Minister of Federal Capital Territory, who had earlier resigned from cabinet and were recalled.

It is also noteworthy that Emeka Woke, who until recently former Commissioner of Special Duties was Chief of Staff to former Governor Nyesom Wike for Eight years has been a vocal critic of Fubara’s administration.

There have been persistent calls by stakeholders for the Governor to sack him from the cabinet.


The former Commissioner of Justice, Prof. Zacheaus Adangor has been redeployed to the Ministry of Special Duties (Governor’s Office).

The former Commissioner of Finance, Barr. Isaac Kamalu redeployed to the Ministry of Employment Generation and Economic Empowerment.

They are to hand over to their respective Permanent Secretaries with immediate effect.

Dr. Tammy Danagogo

Secretary to the State Government.

23rd April, 2023.


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