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PDP Senators To Meet With Govs, Makarfi, Sheriff

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Senators of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, have resolved to meet with governors elected on the platform of the party to find political solution to the lingering crisis in its fold. The senators, who met, yesterday, at Hearing Room 1, Senate Wing, also discussed the letter they received from the National Chairman of PDP, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, intimating them of the need for him to meet with the lawmakers.
The PDP Senate Caucus considered it imperative to meet, yesterday, to brainstorm on the letter and the need to meet with governors of the party before honouring the invitation extended to them by Ali Modu Sheriff.
Addressing journalists after the meeting, Senate Minority Leader, Senator Godswill Akpabio, who confirmed receipt of a letter from Sheriff inviting the caucus to a meeting with him at the party headquarters, said the letter was dated March 6, 2017.
Akpabio noted that they were looking for a political solution to solving the problem the party was confronted with, adding that the senators would first meet with the governors, intimate them with the invitation and to know if it was desirable to meet with Sheriff and forum of PDP Governors .
According to him, the caucus will also meet with other organs of the party as well as the Ahmed Markafi-led Caretaker Committee of the party before honouring the invitation from the national chairman.
Sheriff and Makarfi, Akpabio added that the caucus would then meet with the Board of Trustees, BoT, of the party, former governors and National Assembly members. It was, however, not clear when the meeting between Sheriff and the lawmakers will take place.
Akpabio said: “We held this meeting because there was a letter from Senator Sheriff to the caucus and so we had to meet first to know whether this is the right time, whether the meeting is right or not.” and what we agreed is that let the leadership first meet with the Sheriff group, the Makarfi group, then the BOT and see whether we can come to a consensus.
He said: “We discussed about the overall wel lbeing of the nation, we also discussed about the ongoing issues in our party and then we discussed the way forward. ‘’We also used that opportunity to pray and wish the President quick recovery and quick return to the country.
“As a caucus, we believe strongly in peace and we believe in Peoples Democratic Party so that Nigeria can have a robust democracy. We believe that without the PDP being strong and united, Nigeria may slide into a one party state and democracy may be in peril.
“We also said if it is possible that while the judicial processes are on, that as a caucus, we should also pursue the alternative platform of having out-of-court settlement and this can only start with us meeting with our governors and, thereafter, meet with the leadership of the party, the two groups and all the other strata of the party, that is the Board of Trustees, former governors, National Assembly members and, of course, the National Caretaker Committee, the recently pronounced chairman by the Court of Appeal so that we can spearhead a major political turnaround that will involve the whole stakeholders and bring holistic peace to the party
“If we succeed in doing so, this could even be a major way out, instead of continuous processes in court.
We will pursue that option without prejudice to the ongoing court processes until we can arrive at a solution where we could at the end of the day use what we have, with the totality of all agreeing as consent judgment.”
Asked to react to cases of defection, Akpabio, who noted that there was no such case but interest playing out, said: ’I don’t see any “defection” happening, I only see interest playing out. PDP in the Senate is still very strong and very robust.
We started with 49 senators and we are still well over 44 and we are still going to get more. “So how can you say defection of two or three senators who have interest outside the chambers will affect the unity and strength of the caucus.
That is not true. Please ignore some of those things because every politics is local.
“There are local circumstances that may make everybody to decide the party to go. Even if there were no wranglings in PDP, there will still be defections.  If you assess your chances of a re-election in 2019 in your locality and then you see that a would-be opponent is five times your size, what do you do?  You have to start looking for an alternative platform so that you don’t lose out in 2019 and would that mean that it is PDP issue, no, it means personal issue.  “So, anything that has to do with the strength of the PDP dwindling is propaganda and I don’t want you to engage in that.
“Let me use this opportunity to assure our teeming supporters across the nation that the party is still very strong and as you know, every politics is local.
So the struggle for chairmanship at the party secretariat does not in any way diminish the strength of the party in all the wards of the nation , in the 774 local governments.

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UBEC, RSUBEB Begin Digital School Construction In Rivers

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As part of government’s efforts to realize its dream of making the nation’s educational system a global digital community, the Federal Government, through the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) and the Rivers State Universal Basic Education Board (RSUBEB), have commenced the construction of a modern digital Smart Basic School in the state, with 14-month completion schedule.
The school, which is a pilot modern basic education facility, is designed by UBEC in collaboration with RSUBEB to entrench digitization of ICT-driven basic education system across the 36 states and FCT, Abuja.
Speaking with journalists at a brief handover ceremony of the proposed smart school site to UBEC by RSUBEB at the Community Primary School, Uzuoba in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state, over the weekend, the National Consultant, UBEC Smart School Project, Prof Masud Abdulkarim, said the school was designed to incorporate digital technology into the basic education system in the country, which he said, has been in practice in advanced countries for years.
Abdulkarim stated that the desire of the Federal Government was to ensure that Nigerian children were not left out in the digital space, saying that the school would have great impact on the youth and give them equal opportunity to compete globally in the technology world.
He described the school as the first of its kind in the history of the country, adding that the school would have four categories that would take care of the nursery, handicapped, primary as well as junior secondary students with a maximum of 35 persons per class of two streams.
Abdulkarim noted that with the strategy, no fewer than 700 children would be enrolled into the school.
According to him, the school would afford the children the opportunity to become robotic engineers, artificial intelligence (AI) engineers and ICT engineers, and added that as future leaders, they need to be equipped and encouraged.
The UBEC consultant commended the state government for the provision of the school for the construction of the smart school, and described the site as the most suitable across the 23 states so far visited.
“Let me thank the RSUBEB for the site, in fact, it is the best and most suitable site among the 23 states we have so far visited. Because it has an existing school structure with a fence to protect our equipment and infrastructure. Moreso, the project will impact on the schools around because they will benefit from our Wi-Fi”, he stated.
Abdulkarim called on the host community to jealously guard the project as a growing child, till its maturity to adult stage, saying that they were important stakeholders in the project.
Also speaking on behalf of the Chairman of Rivers State Universal Basic Education Board (RSUBEB), Ven Fyneface Akah, a commissioner in the board, Chief Faith Amaso, called for synergy between the contractors and host community in other to remove every impediment that may affect the delivery of the project on schedule.
Akah opined that the project, when completed, would improve basic education in the state, and expressed happiness over the commencement of the project in the state.

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Rivers United Beat Young Africans Of Tanzania 1-0

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Rivers United Football Club of Port Harcourt, yesterday, at the Adokiye Amasiemaka Football Stadium, trounced the Young Africans Football Club of Tanzania 1-0 in a return leg match of the ongoing Confederation of African Football Club Champions League competition.
The stadium, which was filled to capacity, witnessed a trilling encounter, which saw the crowd craving for more.
It would be recalled that Rivers United had defeated the Young Africans of Tanzania 1-0 in the first leg of the championship at the Benjamin Mkapa Stadium, Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, last Sunday.
Reacting to the feat, the Chairman of Degema Local Government Area, Hon. Michael John Williams, expressed joy over the victory of the Rivers United FC of Port Harcourt against the Young Africans of Tanzania in the ongoing Confederation of African Football (CAF) Champions League.
The match, which ended 1-0 in favour of the Rivers United FC, took place at the Adokiye Amiesimaka International Stadium in Rivers State, yesterday.
Top government officials in the state, including Rivers Deputy Governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo; LG council chairmen and commissioners, amongst other sports enthusiasts, graced the event.
Speaking on the outcome of the match, Williams stated that the Rivers United players exhibited the Rivers team spirit, which culminated in their victory.
The political heavyweight in Degema LGA, noted that nothing would be impossible for Rivers people to achieve when they work together in unison and firm determination.
He added that the massive support and huge investment in the sports sector by the Governor Nyesom Wike administration, also motivated the Rivers team, who worked hard to secure a back-to-back victory.

By: Nelson Chukwudi

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NJC Okays Six Chief Judges, 30 Others For Appointment

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The National Judicial Council (NJC), has recommended the appointment of chief judges and 30 others as judicial officers to beef up judicial functions in some states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
At its 95th meeting held on September 15 and 16, 2021, the council considered the list of candidates presented by its Interview Committee, and recommended the 36 successful candidates to their respective state governors for appointment as heads of courts and other judicial officers in Nigeria.
They are Hon. Justice Richard O. Olorunfemi as chief judge, Kogi State, Hon. Justice Joe Itsebaga Acha for Edo, Hon. Justice Akintoroye Williams Akin for Ondo, Hon. Justice Husseini Baba Yusuf for FCT, Hon. Justice Ekaette Francesca Fabian-Obot for Akwa Ibom, and Hon. Justice J. O. Adeyeye for Ekiti State.
Others are Hon. Kadi Baba Gana Mahdi as Grand Kadi, Yobe; Umaru Ahmad Liman as Grand Kadi, Bauchi; Hon. Justice Osagede Osado Emmanuel as President, Customary Court of Appeal, Nasarawa; Hon. Justice Mashud Akintunde Akinfemi Abass as President, Customary Court of Appeal, Oyo State; and Siyaka Momoh Jimoh Usman as President, Customary Court of Appeal, Kogi State.
Three judges are recommended for High Court of Gombe, and they are Zainab Abdulkadir Rasheed, Abdussalam Muhammad, and Daurabo Suleiman Sikka.
Akwa Ibom has Effiong Asukwo Effiong; Bauchi has Nana Fatima Jibril; while Kaduna High Court has Abdulkarim Mahmud.
The three candidates recommended for Katsina State are Kabir Shuaibu, Ibrahim Ishaku Mashi, and Ibrahim Abubakar Mande, while Prof Alero Akeredolu was recommended for Ondo State.
Four successful candidates for Oyo State are Olusola Adebisi Adetujoye, Folabimpe Beatrice Segun Olakojo, Prof Taiwo Elijah Adewale, and Kareem Adeyimika Adedokun.
Kogi State has three candidates, and they are Abubakar Sule Ibrahim, Abdullah Sulyman, as well as Aminu Ali Eri.
Two Kadis for Sharia Court of Appeal are Adamu Kuna Jibril and Ahmed Baba Bala, while the four for Bauchi are Musa Sani Abubakar, Mahdi Manga, Khamis Al-Hamidallah Muhammad and Sani Musa with Ondo State having one in the person of Orimisan James Okorisa and Oyo Customary Court of Appeal having Ajadi Olubukola Omolayo.
A statement by the NJC Director of Information, Mr Soji Oye, and released in Abuja, yesterday, said that all the recommended candidates are expected to be sworn-in after approval by President Muhammadu Buhari, and their respective state governors, and confirmation by the respective state Houses of Assembly.

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