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Otti declares war against Ikpeazu over N191bn debt in Abia

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Otti declares war against Ikpeazu over N191bn debt in Abia

Gov. Alex Otti of Abia State has told his predecessor, Okezie Ikpeazu that defecting to the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, as he is allegedly planning to, would not stop anti-graft agencies from probing him over the huge debt his administration plunged the state into.

Otti who stated this in Umuahia on Thursday, claimed that the Ikpeazu administration bequeathed to him a debt of over N191,239,307,593.67.

Governor Otti who spoke through his Special Adviser on Finance, Mike Akpara, also refuted claims by Ikpeazu’s aides that the former Governor left N24 billion, and another $250 million for the incumbent administration.

Akpara who read from a prepared speech entitled:” Abia Financial Status: Separating Ikpeazu’s Fictions”, said there was no iota of claims in the ex-Governor’s “fictitious claims”.

He said: ”The Alex Otti led-government woke up to the shocking news of the several billions of naira allegedly left behind for the Alex Otti led-government by the former government of Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu.

“We waited to see if Ikpeazu or his Spokespersons would refute the false and offensive claims, but to no avail, rather we saw astronomical increase in the number of his allies and former aides circulating the fake news with the intention to misrepresent facts and deceive the public, especially workers and pensioners whom he treated with utter disdain and disregard.

“For the records, the public should note thus: The Okezie Ikpeazu-led government did not leave any N24 billion in the account of Abia state government as they falsely claimed.

READ ALSO  No plan to suspend Soludo, says APGA

“The $200 million and $50 million dollars they claimed they left for the new administration are loans they were pursuing which is yet to crystalize.

“Outside the humongous financial liabilities left behind by the Ikpeazu-led government, they also left physical liabilities in all our key institutions. For example; our University Teaching Hospital lost accreditation for the first time in history.

“Our only state Polytechnic also lost accreditation. The regulatory authorities predicated their action against these institutions on non-payment of salaries, lack of equipment and lack of infrastructure.

“Poor internal generation of revenue, with the little they generated frittered away in payment to consultants for no added value. They pay as much as 20% which is highly unethical.

“Doctors who have been on strike since February 2023 just called off their strike, and they emphatically stated that they based their decision on their conviction that Governor Otti would solve the problem that necessitated the strike action.

“The elementary question is: if Ikpeazu had the billions he claimed to have left behind for the Otti led-government in April and May, why did he not pay workers and pensioners before leaving office, since Governor Otti just took over from him on the 29th of May 2023?

“If Ikpeazu is trying to preempt anti-corruption agencies by making such provocative false claims, he should know that they work with facts and figures, therefore, even if he runs into the APC to seek refuge as he is planning to do, these anti corruption agencies would pursue and bring him to justice from there.”

READ ALSO  Atiku backs nationwide protest against hardship and hunger, blasts Tinubu

Otti further said that the Ikpeazu administration looted the state treasury and even “picked N2.8 Sure-P fund that dropped into the State’s account three days before Ikpeazu left office”.

He said that but for the frantic efforts made by some of his (Otti’s) Aides, another N3 billion Joint Allocation revenue that accrued to the state at the eve of Ikpeazu’s exit would also have been collected by the ex-Governor and his agents.

He said that the anti-graft agencies were already on their trail, adding that some of his bankers had already given statements at the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

Otti re-affirmed his commitment to pay workers before the 28th of every month, adding that arrangements are being put in place to wipe all outstanding pension arrears before December 31, 2023.

Akpara was flanked at the briefing by the Special Adviser to the Governor on Media and Publicity, Ferdinand Ekeoma; the Accountant General of the State, Mrs Njum Onyemenam; and the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kazie Uko.

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No plan to suspend Soludo, says APGA

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The Anambra government on Thursday said the police arrested a 75-year-old barber, Nwankwo Nweke, for raping an eight-year-old girl in Awka.

Putting our house in order and maintaining peace is of the highest priority, the National Chairman of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Chief Edozie Njoku, has said.

He said the party has no plan to suspend Anambra State Governor Prof. Charles Soludo.

Njoku told reporters in Lagos that the suspension of the party’s lone governor would have sounded good for the opposition parties.

He said: “The current peaceful disposition in APGA made it unnecessary for the party. That would have sounded good for the All Progressives Congress (APC) and probably good for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

“But, if we suspend Soludo today, who is going to be the beneficiary of that misadventure? It will be other parties,” he said.

Praising the media for being objective in their assessment of the crisis rocking the party, the APGA chair said that contrary to wrong perceptions in certain quarters, “many media professionals are upright”.

He said he was encouraged by the insistence of many reporters on getting the true picture of the party’s struggles to the public.

Admitting that a lot of things happened for as long as the battle for the soul of the party lasted, Njoku restated his commitment to reconciliation, inclusiveness and forgiveness to achieve harmony.

He identified the reawakening of members’ loyalty and confidence of party faithful and supporters as the major challenge for him and members of the National Working Committee (NWC).

He said: “There is no party that doesn’t really have a problem. But, peace is crucial. We are reconciling each other and it’s not going to be easy. Nigeria is a place whereby, because of the hardship, we find out that there are so many dissenting views. And when you have dissenting views, you acknowledge that everybody has right to have his or her own views.

READ ALSO  Amaechi has ceased to associate with the party — Rivers APC chairman

“Well, in politics, as you know, people must play politics. Yes, the NWC received suggestion to suspend Governor Soludo from the party. But, that was not resolved. It was discussed and it came to a point that no agreement could be reached on that.”

He noted that the NWC met to review series of reconciliation strategies, while some estranged members have sent messages of goodwill and declared their willingness to return to APGA.

Frowned at attempts by some people to pit him against the Anambra governor, Njoku added that no efforts must be spared in working together to retain the state for APGA.

Source: The Nation

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APC will Win all LG election in Kogi – Governor Ododo boast

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APC will sweep LG election in Kogi – Governor Ododo vows

Governor Ahmed Usman Ododo has expressed optimism that the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, will win all the positions in the forthcoming Local Government election in Kogi State.

Ododo disclosed this on Monday at an expanded State Executive Committee and Critical Stakeholders Meeting held in Lokoja.

The Kogi State Governor stated that the party has performed excellently well in the state and expressed confidence that the party will win overwhelmingly in the October 19 Local Government election.

Ododo maintained that his administration will organize a free, fair and credible election at the Local Government level.

He said, “The election will be between 40 and 60. Meaning, 60 percent for Men and 40 percent for Women. His Excellency Alhaji Yahaya Bello did 35 but we will do 40. Ours is to build and consolidate on the previous achievement. APC will win all the Local Government seats in Kogi State Insha Allah.

“Let me re-echo that the Vice Chairmen will remain women. Nobody will impose anybody on us. Irrespective of your party, I am here to serve the People of Kogi State. This mandate is for the people and my government will be all-inclusive.

According to him, his administration has invested billions of naira in agriculture to ensure food security in Kogi State.

“We must work with President Tinubu for the development of our country. He is doing well to cushion the current economic challenges. I am appealing to Nigerians to support him for the nation to move forward” he added.

READ ALSO  No plan to suspend Soludo, says APGA

On the issue of Local Government autonomy, Governor Ododo said since 2016, Local Government in Kogi State has been granted autonomy adding that the state has never tempered with local government funds.

He urged aggrieved individuals in the state to put aside their selfish interests and work for the progress of Kogi State.

“We must forget our differences and see how we can make use of our resources for our dear State. I am ready to go any length to make Kogi State great. This Local Government election will be a testing ground for all of us. I want to tell Mr President that we will give APC 100 percent. We don’t have any opposition in Kogi State” he stated.

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Amaechi has ceased to associate with the party — Rivers APC chairman

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The Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress has lashed out at the former governor, Rotimi Amaechi, following comments

Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Rivers State chapter, Tony Okocha has alleged that former Minister of Transportation and presidential aspirant, Rotimi Amaechi has ceased to associate with the party.

Okocha made the claim on Tuesday while speaking with journalists in Abuja.

The APC Chairman in the Rivers State also alleged that the former Minister once warned the party Secretary in the state to stop inviting him to party activities in the South-South state.

He said: “On the issue of Amaechi, I have no question to answer. I was Chief of Staff to Rotimi Amaechi, I recall that at one point he got into Law School, and after one year in Law School he became incommunicado. You are also aware that after the presidential primary election, he disappeared into thin air.

“So whether he is still a party member or not I wouldn’t know because all the meetings we called, I give you example of a meeting we called for all the former governors and ministers, he (Amaechi) sent a message to the Secretary of the party and warned him never ever dare send him a message about the party again. So when you meet him ask him where he belong, for me I don’t know where he belong.”

Reacting to a question that Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, ( FCT) is a financier of the APC Rivers chapter, Okocha claimed that his leadership has no working relationship with the chieftain of the People’s Democratic Party.

“When I hear this I laugh because Wike is a member of PDP, unrepentant PDP. We are APC here. Will anybody suggest that because Mr. Wike is a minister under our government of APC we should be at dagger with him?

READ ALSO  Labour Party Senator, Reps member defect to APC

“Wike doesn’t attend our meeting, I have briefed you here, we have held meetings of stakeholders, Wike was never there. So at what point does he influence APC in Rivers State? His influence, as much as you know, is because he is minister under an APC government, so we can’t be in enmity with him. But to say that he influence us, how? What does he do, he pays our bills? Or he attends our meetings? The answer is no.

Source: Tribune

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Atiku backs nationwide protest against hardship and hunger, blasts Tinubu

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The 2023 Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, has backed the planned nationwide protests against hunger and widespread hardship in the country, scheduled to begin on August 1.

In a statement, Atiku slammed the government of President Bola Tinubu for attempting to suppress the protesters, saying it was an exercise in futility.

He noted that Nigerians, including supporters of Tinubu and the ruling APC, are affected by the hunger, anger, and hopelessness caused by the government’s incompetence and cluelessness.

He warned that any attempt to suppress these rights is not only unconstitutional but a direct affront to democracy.

Atiku’s statement reads, “For the avoidance of doubt, the rights of citizens to protest are ENSHRINED in the Nigerian Constitution and AFFIRMED by our courts. Section 40 of the 1999 Constitution (as altered) unequivocally guarantees the right to peaceful assembly and association.

“Chasing shadows and contriving purported persons behind the planned protests is an exercise in futility when it is obvious that Nigerians, including supporters of Tinubu and the ruling APC, are caught up in the hunger, anger, and hopelessness brought about by the incompetence and cluelessness of this government.

“It is deeply ironic that those who now seek to stifle these rights were themselves leading protests in 2012. A responsible government must ensure a SAFE and SECURE environment for citizens to exercise their constitutionally guaranteed rights to PEACEFUL PROTEST. Any attempt to suppress these rights is not only unconstitutional but a direct affront to our democracy.”

READ ALSO  APC will Win all LG election in Kogi – Governor Ododo boast

Source: Daily Post

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Labour Party Senator, Reps member defect to APC

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A federal lawmaker who represents Imo East Senatorial District, Ezenwa Onyewuchi, has dumped the Labour Party (LP) for the All Progressives

A federal lawmaker who represents Imo East Senatorial District, Ezenwa Onyewuchi, has dumped the Labour Party (LP) for the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Majority Leader of the Senate, Michael Opeyemi Bamidele, announced Onyewuchi’s defection during plenary on Tuesday.

Similarly, a member of the House of Representatives, Salman Idris, decamped from the African Democratic Congress (ADC) to the APC.

The lawmaker, who represents Kabba-Bunu/Ijumu Federal Constituency in the green chamber, officially announced his political decision in a letter read on the floor of the House on Tuesday by Speaker Abbas Tajudeen.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Senate admitted Imo State Governor Hope Uzodimma into the hallowed chamber in line with Senate rules.

Uzodimma, the Chairman of APC Progressive Governors’ Forum, and his team were present to witness Onyewuchi’s defection from LP to the ruling APC.

In his letter, Onyewuchi, whose defection brings to three, the number of APC Senators from Imo State, disclosed that he resigned from the Labour Party owing to the crisis in the party.

He also noted that his decision was is in line with the dictates of the constitution.

Shortly after Onyewuchi welcomed by APC lawmakers, he was ushered to take his seat at the APC wing of the Senate Chambers.

 

READ ALSO  APC will Win all LG election in Kogi – Governor Ododo boast
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Edo Guber: There’ll be war if APC… — Obaseki declares

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Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has announced a new minimum wage for Edo workers from N40,000 to N70,000 effective from May 1, 2024.

The Edo State government has condemned attempts by the oppo­sition All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state to negatively spin comments made by Gover­nor Godwin Obaseki, where he warned that if the APC does not allow for a free and fair election in the state, it will be a recipe for crisis in Nigeria.

In a statement, the Commis­sioner for Communication and Orientation, Chris Nehikhare, who clarified the view expressed by the governor during a recent political meeting in the state, ac­cused the opposition party of try­ing to exploit the instrument of violence to influence the outcome of the September 21 governorship election in the state.

Nehikhare said the governor spoke at a stakeholders meeting, on Sunday, July 21, 2024, in Benin City, the Edo State capital, and warned that “if a free and fair election is not allowed to hold sway in Edo State on September 21, 2024, it will trigger a major cri­sis in Nigeria.”

The commissioner said: “The attention of the Edo State govern­ment has been drawn to the nega­tive spin that the opposition party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) is fruitlessly attempting to put to the comments made by His Excellency, Governor Godwin Obaseki, at a stakeholders meet­ing, on Sunday, July 21, 2024, in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

“For the records, we want to restate the comments of the gov­ernor on that occasion which is that: “If a free and fair election is not allowed to hold sway in Edo State on September 21, 2024, it will trigger a major crisis in Nigeria.

READ ALSO  Atiku backs nationwide protest against hardship and hunger, blasts Tinubu

“Recall that on Thursday, July 18, 2024, ahead of the rally to inaugurate the APC National Campaign Council, in Benin City, which was held on Saturday, July 20, 2024, the party assembled a large number of people believed to be thugs, most of them bearing firearms around the precincts of the Benin airport, on Airport Road, Benin City, to cause may­hem in the state, resulting in the unfortunate death of a police officer, Inspector Akor Onuh, at­tached to MOPOL 45 Abuja and the wanton destruction of prop­erties and injuries to several citi­zens who were going about their lawful businesses.”

He added, “The mob then moved around the city, attacking other institutions, including the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) secretariat, inflicting violence and terror on the lawyers in their secre­tariat, with one of the lawyers, Mr. Israel Idahosa, being severely in­jured and his property destroyed.

“They also intimidated and harassed private citizens who were putting on any material that had the insignia of the ruling Peo­ples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Dr. Asue Ighodalo, within the Benin metropolis.

“As they say, the morning shows the day and the APC has clearly shown their plan for the September 21 governorship elec­tion in the state, which is to cause mayhem, make the state ungov­ernable, and take advantage of the chaos to manipulate the forth­coming governorship election.”

Nehikhare noted, “We howev­er want to advise the APC to, for once, read the mood of the nation and understand that with the cur­rent hardship, unattainable cost of living, and pervasive hunger in the country, a slightly irrespon­sible behaviour by the political class can ignite a crisis that will have a domino effect and cause a conflagration across the nation.

READ ALSO  APC will Win all LG election in Kogi – Governor Ododo boast

“This note of caution is even more appropriate with the omi­nous threat of a nationwide pro­test with the potential to degener­ate into a widespread breakdown of law and order.”

He urged residents in the state to go about their activities lawful­ly, noting, “While we urge all Edo people to go about their lawful businesses without fear, we call on the Nigeria police to do their job and apprehend the hoodlums, most of whom have been posi­tively identified and captured in videos, carrying firearms at the location of the crisis.

“The Edo State government, through its robust security video surveillance, is ready to supply these videos taken in real-time to help the police in their inves­tigation.”

 

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