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President Goodluck Jonathan (left), receiving Easter greeting card from sgf, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim (right),  during Easter homage to the President in Abuja last Sunday. With them is the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Christian Pilgrims  Commission, Mr john Kennedy Opara.  Photo: NAN

President Goodluck Jonathan (left), receiving Easter greeting card from sgf, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim (right), during Easter homage to the President in Abuja last Sunday. With them is the Executive Secretary, Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission, Mr john Kennedy Opara. Photo: NAN

FCT
Nigeria’s in-coming First Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari, says
women would enjoy a better deal under the President-elect, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, as soon as he is inaugurated.
This is conveyed in an Easter message released in Abuja last Monday by  Director, Media and Publicity, APC Presidential Campaign Organisation, Malam Garba Shehu.
According to the message, the wife of the president-elect assured Nigerian women that they would witness a better deal when her husband formally takes office on May 29.
It said, ‘’I wish Christian women the abundant blessings of the Easter celebration.
“Nigerian women are among the hardest working social groups, but have remained economically and politically marginalised.
“Under my husband’s government, honest labour and hard work would be adequately rewarded, while corruption would be fought aggressively.”

Kano

Governor Rabiu Kwankwaso of Kano State has ap
plauded President Goodluck Jonathan for his magnanimity by conceding defeat to General Muhammadu Buhari in the March 28 presidential election.
The governor commended Jonathan last Sunday while briefing newsmen in Kano, on the outcome of the last Presidential and National Assembly Elections in the country.
“I want to commend the President’s action in conceding defeat. This shows that President Jonathan is a true statesman,” he said.
The governor, who also congratulated Buhari on his victory, attributed the success of the election to the determination of Nigerians to have a change in leadership.
Kwankwaso assured Nigerians that Buhari would run a transparent government.
He said the new administration would fight corruption and provide maximum security to citizens of the country.
Kwankwaso then urged the President-elect, to live up to his campaign promises to justify the confidence reposed in him.

Kogi

Pastor Dapo Afolabi of the Redeemed Christian Church
of God has urged Nigerians to remain calm and peaceful during the forthcoming Gubernatorial and House of Assembly elections on April 11.
Afolabi in his sermon titled, “God’s relationship’’ on Easter Sunday in Lokoja, said that it was the relationship we had with God that he used to manifest his wonders.
He urged Nigerians to build a new relationship with God so that he could always fight their battles, saying that if not for God those beating the drums of war would have prevailed.
He thanked God for the peaceful conduct of the Presidential and National Assembly elections and prayed to God to help Nigeria during and after the April elections.
Afolabi urged Nigerians to pray for the President-elected, Muhammadu Buhari, for God to assist him to pilot the affairs of the country.
Also, the Spiritual Head, Brotherhood of the Cross and Star, Olumba Olumba-Obu, has called for peace and tolerance among Nigerians.

Kwara

Eight political parties in Kwara State, under the aegis
of Congress of Nigeria’s Political Party (CNPP) have declared their support for the re-election of Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed.
CNPP Chairman in Kwara State, Alhaji Adebayo Lawal, told journalists at a news conference last Monday, in Ilorin, that the political parties had resolved to garner votes for Governor Ahmed.
Lawal listed the political parties as Action Alliance (AA), Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA), United Progressives Party (UNPP) and Social Democratic Party (SDP).
Others are United Democratic Party (UNP), Citizen Popular Party (CPP), All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and African Congress of Democrats (ACD).
Lawal, State Chairman of AA, was joined by the governorship candidates of the other political parties to declare their support for the APC in the forth-coming elections.

Nasarawa

The Catholic Bishop of Lafia Diocese, Dr Mathew Ishaya,
last Monday, urged Nigerian leaders to evolve strategies that would alleviate the suffering of the victims of terrorism and other evil acts.
Ishaya stated this when he spoke with newsmen in Lafia.
He said the call had become imperative in order to improve the standard of living of the victims of violence in the country. Ishaya said the nation should give those people a sense of belonging.
“The security challenge facing the state and some parts of the country such as terrorism, communal crisis, among other evil acts, have affected our lives and the socio-economic development of the country negatively.
“Our brothers and sisters have been displaced; they are homeless due to the activities of Boko Haram, communal crisis and other forms of violence in the society. There is need to assist in reducing their suffering.”

Niger

The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Niger State has
called on the state government to look for an alternative place for the relocation of the Madalla market along Abuja-Kaduna Road.
The call is contained in a statement issued last Monday by the party’s Publicity Secretary in the state, Mr Jonathan Vatsa.
The party noted that the present location of the market close to a highway, had led to loss of lives and property.
“We are worried that despite collecting N1.8 billion loan to build the ultra-modern market, the government of Dr Muazu Babangida Aliyu in Niger State has refused to understand the danger of the market still being located along the high way.
“There is no gain saying that the market has witnessed fatal accidents, ranging from tankers veering into the market and most times, setting people and their wares ablaze,” it said.
The party then challenged the state development company to explain the delay in re-locating the market, in spite of the huge resources collected for the purpose.

Ondo

The Ondo State Governor, Dr Olusegun Mimiko,  has
appealed to the people of the state to vote en masse for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidates in the forthcoming governorship and House of Assembly elections.
Mimiko made the appeal while speaking with newsmen in Akure last Sunday.
The governor said this was necessary to ensure further promotion of peace and effective governance in the state.
“Voting for our candidates will guarantee continuity of peace and prospects for the state.
“The people should demonstrate their desire to maintain and further promote peace and growth in the state by voting for the PDP candidates jostling for seats in the state’s legislative chamber,” he said.

Plateau
Former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, has said
the peaceful conduct of March 28 presidential poll won by Maj.-Gen Muhammadu Buhari, has shamed doomsayers that Nigeria would break up in 2015.
“No one will ever repeat that wild and arrogant prediction that Nigeria will go under; those doomsayers have been shamed and Nigeria will grow from strength to strength’’, Gowon told newmen in Jos.
While recalling the prediction that the country would disintegrate in 2015, Gowon declared that those that made the prediction did not reckon with Nigeria’s ability to solve its problems.
“The nation has always had the mechanism to tackle its concerns and this election and its peaceful outcome have proved that a united and focused nation would always survive and move toward greatness’’, he said.

Sokoto

Governor Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto State says the Presi
dent-elect, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, has urged APC supporters nationwide to shun violence and provocation while celebrating his victory.
Our correspondent  reports that Wamakko passed down the message in Sokoto at the monthly stakeholders ‘ meeting of the All Progressives Congress.
‘’ I was with Buhari two days ago in Abuja and this was his main message to the members and supporters of the party in the country. “While celebrating, we should be cautious so as not to endanger the lives of others, cause violence or destruction of property, and or cause the killing or maiming of other Nigerians,’’ Wamakko, said.
According to the governor, without peace and unity, the much-needed change cannot be brought about successfully by the incoming APC-led administration.
He said that the meeting was to show appreciation to God for the “invaluable and epoch-making successes recorded by the APC during the landmark March 28 general elections.”

Yobe

The Chairman of Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC)
in Yobe State, Alhaji Umar Kukuri, last Sunday, advised governorship candidates in Saturday’s election, to emulate the sportsmanship of President Goodluck Jonathan, by accepting defeat if they lost in a transparent election.
Kukuri, who made the call at a press conference in Damaturu, said Jonathan’s courageous action had opened a new chapter in Nigeria’s democracy .
“If the president can concede defeat, there is no candidate that is too big to concede defeat after losing election.
“Let us be reminded that in every election, there must be winners and losers; we should, in the spirit of sportsmanship as exemplified by President Jonathan, accept election results in good faith,” he said.

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Group Urges Police To Apologise To Protesters

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The Alliance on Surviving Covid-19 and Beyond (ASCAB), has asked the Nigeria Police to apologise for violating the fundamental right of the protesters to freedom of expression.
A statement by the human rights group yesterday, by its Interim Chair, Femi Falana (SAN), also accused the police of deliberately contravening Section 83 (4) of the Police Establishment Act 2020. 
The section provides that “Where a person or organization notifies the police of his or its intention to hold a public meeting, rally or procession on a public highway or such meetings in a place where the public has access to, the police officer responsible for the area where the meeting rally or procession will take place shall mobilize personnel to provide security cover for the meeting, rally or the procession.”
The group noted that Section 36 of the Constitution guarantees the fundamental right of the Nigerian people to freedom of expression including the right to protest against policies of the government. 
Many Nigerians in many states across the country trooped out on Saturday, June 12 to mark the day– Democracy Day – with protests against bad governance. 
The protesters chanted ‘Buhari must go’ in apparent dissatisfaction with the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government that has seen security, economy, youth employment rate and some other sectors and indices worsen. 
However, there were arrests and harassment of peaceful protesters by the policex particularly in Abuja, Lagos and Cross River. 
The group in the statement said, “For having the audacity to insist on their fundamental right to protest against unpopular policies of governments, teams of armed police personnel fired teargas to disperse the peaceful rallies. As if the unprovoked attack was not enough, the Police brutalised and arrested scores of protesters in Lagos, Abuja and Calabar (Cross River State capital). 
“Since the protesters who were arrested during the peaceful rallies did not commit any offence, they have since regained their liberty. But the police authorities ought to apologise for violating the fundamental right of the protesters to freedom of expression.
“More so that the Police had deliberately contravened Section 83 (4) of the Police Establishment Act 2020 which provides that ‘Where a person or organization notifies the police of his or its intention to hold a public meeting, rally or procession on a public highway or such meetings in a place where the public has access to, the police officer responsible for the area where the meeting rally or procession will take place shall mobilise personnel to provide security cover for the meeting, rally or the procession.’
“While commending the protesters for conducting the themselves in a matured and peaceful manner, we condemn the official lie that the protesters were teargassed to prevent hoodlums and miscreants from hijacking the peaceful rallies. Since the Police admitted that protesters committed no offence whatsoever why were some of them arrested? Why were the so-called hoodlums and miscreants who wanted to cause mayhem and unleash violence on the protesters not arrested? 
“Or were they treated like sacred cows because they had been hired to disrupt the peaceful rallies of the protesters? Why were the scanty pro-government protesters who were reported to have fought openly in Abuja over their booty not arrested for breach of the peace in the Federal Capital Territory?

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‘MKO Most Acceptable Nigerian Democrat’

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Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, has described the late Chief Moshood Abiola, widely believed to have won the June 12, 1993 presidential poll, as “the most acceptable democrat cherished by Nigerians”.
Mohammed said this in Gamawa Local Government Area (LGA) of the state during the distribution of empowerment items to youths and women under the Kaura Economic Empowerment Programme (KEEP).
He said the empowerment scheme historic as it coincided with Democracy Day which he described as an unforgettable day in the history of Nigeria.
The governor, who was full of praises for the late business mogul, said Abiola provided the country with a lot of empowerment programmes without considering the tribe, language and geographical location of the beneficiaries.
“Our launching of this empowerment programne today is historic and passionate; we remember today is democracy day and we decided to do it on this day.
“This is because Chief Moshood Abiola, who we are celebrating, empowered several people.
“He did that across board without considering the religion, language and origin of those that benefited from the gestures.
“Abiola will remain in our memory as the most acceptable democrat or politician in Nigeria.
“We all voted for him and that is why myself, my deputy and the government decided honour to him this day by coming to Gamawa and Zaki to empower the people,” he said.
Mohammed noted that democracy day meant remembering people who had empowered the masses, adding that the late Abiola was in that category.
The gesture, he said, was also to show appreciation to the people who brought his administration to power, adding that his government had a lot to offer to the people.

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Buhari, Bello Greet Abubakar At 79

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President Muhammadu Buhari has felicitated former Head of State, retired Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, on his 79th birthday, joining family members and friends to celebrate with the iconic leader.
The president’s congratulatory message is contained in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, in Abuja yesterday.
Buhari noted that Abubakar’s legacy of setting the country on the path of democracy and good governance, and passionate pursuit of peace had continued to yield results.
He congratulated the General for another age, appreciating his patriotism and visionary leadership style of always advocating unity, projecting maturity and wisdom on national discourse, and providing a rallying point for the future of the country.
The president noted the goodwill that the former Head of State had continued to attract to the country, both at national and international levels.
He particularly lauded him for sacrificing his time and resources to reach out to individuals and institutions on the need to work for the growth of Nigeria.
Buhari prayed for increase in wisdom, strength and long life for the former military leader that midwifed return of democracy to the country in 1999.
Similarly, Governor Abubakar Sani-Bello of Niger has felicitated former Military Head of State, Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar (Rtd), on his 79th birthday.
Sani-Bello, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mrs Mary Noel-Berje, last Saturday in Minna eulogised Abubakar and described him as a “complete gentleman”.
According to him, the former head of state is a patriot who has remained “consistent and significant” in the progress and development of the country.
He said Niger and the country were indeed lucky to have an outstanding leader and statesman who had consistently remained on the path of promoting national unity and integration, as well as pursuit of global peace.
“Undoubtedly, your resolve to rededicate yourself to the service of our fatherland and humanity in general is a clear testimony of your statesmanship and influence which cuts across the length and breadth of the country,” Sani-Bello said.
He noted that at 79 years, Abdulsalami had remained a reference point for good governance, diplomacy and conflict resolution.
He prayed Allah to grant him sound health, many more years of wisdom, courage and determination to continue to offer selfless service to the nation and humanity.

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