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Ondo Poll: PDP Congratulates Mimiko, Blasts CAN

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The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has accepted defeat and congratulated the Governor-elect in the Ondo State gubernatorial election, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko.

The PDP also commended the people of Ondo State for what it termed “their emphatic rejection of tribalism and narrow political adventurism, which it stressed, were the hallmark of the campaign of the Action Congress of Nigeria (CAN) in the just-concluded gubernatorial election.

The PDP, in a statement yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh, however, hailed its candidate, Olusola Oke for his courage, determination and doggedness, adding, “though the PDP was not declared the winner of the election, the party was happy with the performance of its candidate “who obviously joined the race late.”

“How better do Nigerians say no to the drumbeats of tribalism and political narrowness than what the people of Ondo have just done with their votes? It is a quantum forward leap for those who understand the dangers of undue manipulation of national diversity for narrow political whims and a huge set back, utter rejection for the champions of ethnic politics.

The party hailed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the security agencies for the peaceful conduct of the polls, the PDP, however, urged “them to learn from any observed loopholes so as to continue improving in future elections.”

President Goodluck Jonathan has also congratulated Olusegun Mimiko, the winner of Saturday’s governorship election in Ondo State.

A statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Reuben Abati, yesterday said, “as Governor Mimiko looks forward to the commencement of his second term in Office, the President urges him to be prepared to work even harder to justify the fresh mandate given to him by the people of Ondo state who voted for his re-election on Saturday.”

“President Jonathan assures Dr. Mimiko that the Federal Government will continue to engage constructively and positively with the Ondo State Government in collaborative efforts to achieve faster socio-economic development and better living conditions for people in the state and all other parts of Nigeria,” the statement added.

The statement said President Jonathan wishes Mr Mimiko ‘a very successful second term as Governor of Ondo State’.

Also, the Senate President, Chief David Mark, has congratulated the governor-elect of Ondo State, Dr Olusegun Mimiko, advising him to be magnanimous in victory.

Mark gave the advice in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Paul Mumeh, and made available to newsmen yesterday in Abuja.

The senate president, who noted that election was a game, urged Mimiko to run an all-inclusive government.

According to Mark, the new mandate is a challenge for greater service delivery to the people, noting that he is pleased that Nigerians now appreciates democracy through free and fair election.

Also in his reaction, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Waziri Tambuwal yesterday, congratulated the winner of Saturday’s governorship election in Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko over his re-election for a second term.

In a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Imam Imam, Mr Tambuwal said the governor’s victory was a manifestation of the people’s trust in his leadership abilities.

He said Mr Mimiko should at all times bear in my mind the trust and confidence freely given to him by the populace and should make him re-dedicate himself to the service of the people of the State.

The speaker equally implored the governor to rise above partisan consideration and carry along all people in the task of building the state.

However, Governor Olusegun Mimiko of Ondo State yesterday dedicated his victory in Saturday’s governorship election to the people of the state.

The governor, who spoke to newsmen at the Government House in Akure shortly after he was declared winner, expressed gratitude to the people of the state.

He pledged that he would continue to work harder in the pursuit of good governance in order to justify the confidence reposed in him.

The PDP, however, said it would set up a committee to investigate alleged cases of electoral fraud in the Ondo State governorship election.

Reacting to the return of Governor Olusegun Mimiko for another four-year term with a total vote haul of 260,199, the party said that investigation of the cases would enable the party to decide on whether to seek redress at the Election Petition Tribunal.

The PDP Publicity Secretary in the state, Mr Ayo Fadaka, also told newsmen on phone that security was not adequate in the rural areas.

“ The security provided by the government was not adequate in the rural areas. We are compiling the list of towns and villages affected in the state,’’ he said.

Fadaka also alleged that INEC did not conduct any election in two wards in Ilaje local government areas, and that the ad hoc staff did not turn up.

“ We will definitely seek redress if there are enough reasons from our investigations,’’ he said.

The Ondo State Chairman of the ACN, Chief Olorunshola Adesoji, however, refused to comment on the outcome of the election.

He said on phone that he was unaware of the outcome of the governorship poll and was not in a position to comment.

The Returning Officer, Adebiyi Daramola, had declared Mimiko the winner of the Ondo election having polled the most number of votes.

Mr Mimiko of the Labour Party had polled a total of 260, 199 votes. The PDP placed second with 155, 512 while ACN came third with 143, 512 votes.

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Rivers’ll Ensure Safe, Secure Environment For Economic Growth -Wike .

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Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has said that his administration would continue to support security agencies in the state to ensure a safe and secure environment for the economic prosperity of citizens.
He said the Rivers State Neighbourhood Safety Corps, the Operation Sting and the revitalised C4i security outfits were set up to help provide security to stimulate growth and prosperity of all in Rivers State.
The governor spoke through the Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Tammy Danagogo, at the 2021 Conference/Annual General meeting of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, Rivers State chapter, in Port Harcourt, yesterday.
“This administration has embarked on aggressive infrastructural development and a very deliberate urban renewal efforts around the capital to attract local and foreign investors to stimulate our economy.
“We have also opened up local governments through quality road networks. Upgrade of various social and recreational facilities in various local government areas,” he said.
He commended the state chapter of the NIPR for the choice of the theme of the conference: “Nigeria’s Security Situation: A Factor in Reputation and National Development”, adding that stakeholders must begin to act in a very different, drastic and positive strategy to remedy the already battered reputation of Nigeria.
He urged the NIPR to use its expertise and experience to thrive to galvanise and stimulate the populace and government at various levels for the resuscitation of citizens sense of pride and responsibility of whatever was left of the nation’s image and reputation.
“All hands must be on deck, especially reputation managers to call on government at all levels to begin to act in ways and manner that will help to revive the battered image of this country,” he added.
Welcoming guests and participants to the conference, the Rivers State Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, who is also the state chairman of NIPR, commended the cordial relationship existing between the institute and the state government under the leadership of Governor Wike who is a honorary fellow of the institute.
“Governor Wike has been very supportive of all the activities of the Institute. That is what you also get from a visionary leader who has changed the landscape of Rivers State with infrastructure, with various developmental projects that touch the lives of the ordinary man,” he said.
Nsirim said the state chapter of NIPR was proud to associate with Governor Wike for the giant strides he has recorded and would continue to record until the end of his tenure in 2023.
“As a chapter that is responsive to the development of Nigeria, we have chosen the theme for this year’s conference as our own way of contributing to the national discourse,” he said.
He said the conference would produce a blueprint that would guide national discourse and urged participants to contribute robustly to the conversation.
“It is expected that the fallout of the conference will re-engineer national security and national development with the aim to put our country on the path of rapid growth,” he said.
In his speech, the President and Chairman of Governing Council of NIPR, Malam Mukhtar Sirajo, emphasised on the need for all Nigerians to collaborate to fight insecurity currently confronting the country’s economic and political stability.
He welcomed the theme of the conference, saying that it was coming at the time the institute had gotten sufficient worry about national security, peace and economic development.
In his keynote address, Dr. Ike Neliaku, chronicled the increasing violent crimes that had claimed thousands of lives in the various parts of Nigeria, and submitted that the rising insecurity situation in the country had impacted and would continue to impact negatively on corporate and national reputation.
He said the worrisome development would have concomitant consequence on individual and national development.
Chairman of the conference, Chief Felix Otuwarikpo, said the conference was put together to dissect the current carnage affecting the Nigerian nation.
“As an institute, we will leverage on the conference to proffer solutions to the security challenges affecting the nation,” he said.
The conference also featured the presentation of awards for good public relations and community development to some distinguished members and organisations.

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Church Of Nigeria Honours Wike, Sanwo-Olu, Akeredolu, Others

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The Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) has bestowed awards for exemplary leadership qualities in a challenging economy and dedication in the service of God and humanity on the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike; Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu; Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, and Ogun State Governor, Adedapo Abiodun.
Also honoured is the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof Emmanuel Abayomi, with an award for quality and equitable healthcare delivery.
The awardees were honoured at the standing committee meeting of the Church of Nigeria, at the Diocese of Lagos, Archbishop Adebola and Oluranti Ademowo Resource Centre, Faith Plaza, Bariga, Lagos State.
The Primate of All Nigeria Anglican Communion, the Most Rev. Henry Ndukuba, who conferred the awards on the recipients, said the political leaders were considered for the award for their outstanding role, courageous leadership, and standing firm in defense of Nigerians against insecurity, provision of basic infrastructure to the citizenry and the fight against Covid-19 pandemic.
Addressing the congregation on the state of the nation and the role of the church, Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, admonished the leadership of the church to encourage its members to be part of the governance process in the country.
The governor noted that a situation whereby Christians leave governance for politicians alone is no longer obtainable.
According to Wike, the effect of bad leadership will also affect the church if they remain passive to the issue of governance.
“You must be part of choosing leadership. Don’t say you have no role, you have a role. When you don’t participate, bad leaders will emerge and when bad leadership emerges, you are part of it.
“You must encourage your people to be part of leadership. I didn’t go to any school to study leadership.
“So, nobody should say that as a Christian you cannot be a governor, no. The head of SUBEB in my state is a priest and you can see the leadership he has given to that agency today. You will feel proud about it. That used to be the most corrupt agency, but today it is headed by a priest and you can see the difference.”
Wike decried the inherent injustice that has characterised the Nigerian State, and urged the church to speak against socio-political issues adversely affecting the progress of the country.
“We say we are all one Nigeria. We went to World Bank to borrow money to do specific projects. One of the states that make up Nigeria I hear is Rivers State. And I also know in paying this money back to World Bank, money that comes from the resources of my state will be used in paying back this money. But my state was denied to have projects from that loan.”
The Rivers State governor said a situation where states depend on the Federal Government to survive can no longer be tenable, and insisted that states must be allowed to collect revenues such as Value Added Tax (VAT) to enable them improve the welfare of their people.
“You have gone to take loan and I am one of those states that will pay back those loan and you deny me to benefit from the projects that that money will be used for. I have no problem with that.
“Allow me the one (VAT) the Constitution says I am entitled to, let me collect that one and develop my state.”
He regretted that some governors in Nigeria have refused to think out of the box on how to boost economic activities in their states.
“There is flood in my state, it requires N200millon, I will go to Abuja to beg. Even as a governor, I will knee down before a DG of an agency of government. You will knee down for a director just because of N300million. That is the status of some of the governors of some states.”
In his remarks, Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, commended the church for its support, and announced the waiver of N2billion for land acquired by the Church of Nigeria in Lagos State.
The governor stated that Nigeria and the rest of the world are going through difficult times amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, and used the occasion to canvass for mass vaccination of the citizens.
The Primate of All Nigeria Anglican Communion, the Most Rev. Henry Ndukuba, while speaking on the theme of the conference: “Abiding in Christ: God’s Panacea in an Unstable World”, lamented that Nigeria was fast becoming a land flowing with tears and blood because of the impact of terror, banditry, herdsman attacks on communities and kidnapping.
He said a situation in which communities that are predominantly Christians are targeted one after another in some parts of Kaduna State and North-Central of Nigeria was unacceptable.
“We call on President Muhammadu Buhari to brand the bandits and herders attackers as terrorists and let them be treated as such.”
The Primate urged Nigerians to avail themselves the opportunity 2023 general election offer to exercise their right to choose new leaders.
He appealed to the Federal Government to urgently address the free fall in the value of the country’s currency because of the attendant impact on the store of value and confidence of investors.

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Rivers Begins Process To Check Flooding

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The Rivers State Government has said that it was working with relevant agencies to roll out the process that would check perennial flooding in the state.
The state Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, disclosed this at a media briefing in Port Harcourt, last Wednesday.
Nsirim, therefore, called on those living and doing business in the state to play their part in line with the programme that would be executed by government to address the problem of flooding.
He frowned at the situation where residents of Port Harcourt had turned the drainage systems into refuse bins, and warned that “that is not what it should be.
“The present administration under Governor Nyesom Wike is desirous to make Rivers State a destination of choice and that is why the government has embarked on massive infrastructural development in line with its urban renewal programme.
“So, what is expected of those living and doing business in Rivers State now, is to co-operate with government to ensure that the urban renewal programme and the plan by government to make this state a destination of choice is realised,” he said.
He noted that the state government could not do it alone as it required the support of corporate organisations, civil society groups, religious organisations and the media to enlighten their publics on the need to behave as responsible citizens.
He called on the media to embark on massive enlightenment programmes along the line of the roles of citizens in checking flooding in the state.
“We believe that if the citizens cooperate with government, as government is out to ensure that everyone living and doing business in the state does so in a healthy environment, we believe that in the next few days or weeks we will find a solution to this (flooding),” he said.
Nsirim also announced the names of entrants selected for the essay competition on the title, “Our State Our Responsibility” introduced under the second phase of the #OurStateOurResponsibility advocacy campaign of the ministry launched at the beginning of this month.
He said those shortlisted were expected to be at the conference room of the ministry by 11am on Monday, September 27, 2021, for a physical test to ascertain their original ownership.
Those shortlisted are: Jessica Hart, Samuel William, Amarachi Chimezie, Jasper Dorcas, Jaja Tamunoimiegba Christian, Sophia Oyibo, Blessing Pepple, Anyiam kelechukwu, Deborah Adegbami, Gift Samuel, Okiche Golden, Okiche Miracle, Orovwigwo Deborah, Otuka Goodluck and Ziga Paago.

By: Beemene Taneh

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