Celebration that followed the Supreme Court victory of Sen Ahmed Makarfi-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), at the residence of Chief Emeh Glory Emeh in Port Harcourt, was further boosted by the visit of over 200 former members of the All Progressives Congress (APC), from Eleme Local Government Area, to announce their exit from the party and support for Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike and the Peoples Democratic Party in the state.
Speaking on behalf of other decampees, former Public Relations Officer of APC in Ward 8 in Eleme, Comrade Felix Ntobari Ogbuji said they were angry with the leadership of APC in Eleme for failing to fulfill its promises.
Ogbuji, who was also coordinator and youth leader of Unit 15 in Eleme, added, “I have been in APC, worked with them and found them to be liars. They find it difficult to keep to their promises.
According to him, “the APC go into projects they are not able to complete. I am tired and fed up with what is happening in APC. Eleme youth are crying. We are angry. APC has used most of the youth and dumped them.
“That is why we decided to embrace what Governor Nyesom Wike is doing because he has brought good things to the people of Rivers State. We have decided to support the governor and beg him to do more for Eleme people so that come 2019, no spirit or human will be able to stop him from being the governor”, the former APC leader in Eleme declared.
Ogbuji, who acknowledged that the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike has empowered a lot of people in Eleme, said they were optimistic that their return to the PDP will encourage the governor to do more for Eleme, just as he added that they were pleased to be associated with the inclusive administration of Wike in Rivers State.
In his response, Chief Emeh Glory Emeh, recalled how APC used to hold its leadership meetings in his house in Port Harcourt, but added that he had to quit the party when it became obvious that the APC was lacking direction.
His words: “As a politician who studied under former Governor Peter Odili, I discovered that things were not going in the right direction, so, I had to leave. Governor Wike has just won the Supreme Court case in Abuja. So, you are coming at the right time when the PDP and the state are celebrating.
“Ahmed Makarfi, leader of our side of the divide in PDP has won in the case against Ali Modu Sherrif. Your coming to my place today is preparatory for Governor Wike to receive you.
“Since over 8,000 persons moved enmasse from APC to the PDP some weeks ago, another 1,728 have also decamped, just as you have done but we are yet to receive them because of the Golden Jubilee celebrations. And now that the celebration is over, Governor Wike will be prepared to receive you all.
“Politics is about interests. It is not about my brother or my sister”.
“The days of primordial sentiments are over. I don’t want to go into the problem of APC before now because you have already made up your minds to cross over to PDP. That’s why you are here,” Emeh explained.
He hinted that his role was to serve as the first anchor for people crossing over from APC to PDP, the same way he did, preparatory to their formal reception by the leadership of the PDP in the state.
The legal practitioner further maintained that Wike has shown that ability to perform should be the precondition for electing someone into office, even as he observed that the primary concern of citizens, irrespective of political, tribal and religious affiliations, are the dividends of democracy aimed at improving the welfare of the citizenry.
Noting that the people will always support whoever was doing the work, Emeh, who was commissioner for transport and aviation during the administration of Dr. Peter Odili, said the visible achievements of Wike in the past two years were eloquent testimonies that God has brought him to advance the course of development in the state.
Obasanjo, Abdulsalami, Sultan, Others Brainstorm On Insecurity
Rising insecurity and agitations for secession by different ethnic groups across Nigeria has attracted the attention of elder statesmen and other national leaders to a meeting in Abuja.
The meeting was organised by Interfaith Initiatives for Peace jointly led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, and Emeritus Cardinal John Onaiyekan, and the National Peace Committee chaired by Gen Abdulsalami Abubakar (rtd).
Reporters were barred from taking part in the closed-door meeting, expected to proffer solutions to the ongoing security challenges threatening the peace and unity of the country.
It was also an exploratory meeting on pressing issues of national unity, security, peace, integration, economic revitalisation and development, women and youth welfare and general progress.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo; former Head of State, General Abdulsalam Abubakar (rtd); Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar; Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi; Tor Tiv, Prof Ortese Iorzua James Ayatse, Emeritus Cardinal John Onaiyekan; President General (Ohanaeze Ndigbo), Prof George Obiozor; and Afenifere leader, Ayo Adebanjo; were all in attendance.
Others sighted at the meeting are President of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba; CAN General Secretary, Joseph Daramola; JAMB Registrar, Prof Ishaq Oloyede; Etsu Nupe, Yahya Abubakar; former Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe, among several political and traditional rulers at the meeting.
Elder statesmen, Chief Edwin Clark, also attended the event at the Congress Hall of Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, but could not participate in the meeting because he could not climb the staircase to the meeting room.
Fighting Corruption Difficult In Democratic Setting, Buhari Laments
President Muhammadu Buhari says fighting corruption in democratic setting is a difficult task to accomplish.
The president disclosed this during an interview with Arise Television which was televised, yesterday.
According to him, the war against corruption has not been easy for him since he became a democratically elected president six years ago.
He, however, stressed that his administration had succeeded in easing out corrupt public officials without making noise about it.
Buhari recalled that much was achieved in the fight against corruption when he was military Head of State in the early 80s “when a lot of people were sent to prisons before I was also booted out”.
The president frowned at the way and manner local government system was being managed, saying the local government administration was almost non-existent in the country.
He cited situation where state governors continued to starve the local governments of funds saying “in a situation where N300million is allocated to local government and they are given N100million is not fair”.
On activities of bandits and kidnappers particularly in the North-West and North-Central zones, Buhari said he had given the police and Armed Forces the instructions to be ruthless with bandits and vandals terrorising innocent citizens across the country.
He stated that he had told the security agencies to treat bandits and other criminals in the “the language they understand.
“Problem in the north-west; you have people over there stealing each other’s cattle and burning each other’s villages.
“Like I said, we are going to treat them in the language they understand.
“We have given the police and the military the power to be ruthless. You watch it in a few weeks’ time there will be difference.
”Because we told them if we keep people away from their farm, we are going to starve. And the government can’t control the public.
“If you allow hunger, the government is going to be in trouble and we don’t want to be in trouble.
“We are already in enough trouble. So, we warn them sooner than later you’ll see the difference,’’ he said.
On farmers/herders clashes, the president said the problem had persisted because old cattle routes and grazing areas had been violated by development, adding that those who had taken over such traditional arrangements would be dispossessed.
On the fight against insurgency, Buhari dismissed the assertion that majority of Boko Haram members were foreigners.
According to him, the majority of the Boko Haram members are Nigerians, saying this was further corroborated by Borno State Governor, Prof Babagana Zulum.
The president stated that his administration had done a lot to fight the terrorists and insurgents but the problem in the “North-East is very difficult.”
Igboho Declares June 12 Day Of Protest, Warns Buhari
Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, has declared June 12 as day of protest for Yoruba nation agitators.
The self-acclaimed Yoruba activist said the agitators will hold ‘peaceful rallies’ across the South-West region on Saturday, June 12.
Igboho, who spoke through his spokesman, Olayomi Koiki, in a live video programme aired, last Wednesday night, called on South-West governors to cooperate with the peaceful protesters during the exercise.
He warned the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration not to attack the agitators.
He said, “Let us warn the Federal Government that if there is bloodshed this weekend, the international community is watching, if the military kills any Nigerian this weekend, it is going to be very hot.
“The Yoruba nation rally will go ahead in every part of Yoruba land and the rest of the country where it will hold.
“Red alarm will begin on Friday. People should stock up food Items from Friday night.
“We are not backing down this weekend; we are ready to take back what belongs to us.”
He also enjoined agitators to ‘fast’ on Friday.
This is coming after NANS under the leadership of its National President, Comrade Sunday Asefon, had declared June 12 as National Day of peaceful protest to call on the government to act decisively towards addressing insecurity.
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