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Senator, Rep Fight At Airport

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A member of the House of Representatives representing Michika/ Medagali Contituency of Adamawa State, Adamu Kamale escaped death yesterday while trying to force his way into an helicopter
The incident reportedly took place at the Yola International Airport after Kamale had a brush with the Senator representing Adamawa central senatorial zone, Abdulaziz Nyako over the distribution of relief materials to internally displaced people.
The national assembly members and some other stakeholders were set to be on their way to deliver relief materials to Madagali following the bomb blasts that rocked the area when the clash occurred.
They were arranged to go as a team while NEMA officials supervised the delivery but Senator Nyako allegedly refused to allow Kamale join the flight.
Narrating the incident, a security source told newsmen that:
“A helicopter was arranged by the Air Force to convey some of the stakeholders to where the materials were to be distributed on Wednesday. However, minutes before the take-off, drama ensued at the airport. Kamale was billed to travel on board the helicopter with Senator Abdulaziz Nyako, Air Commodore Sunday Ohemu and others,” the source said.
“But, while they were about to board the helicopter, Senator Abdulaziz Nyako was seen saying that, ‘Kamale should not be allowed to use the helicopter as he (Nyako) is the chairman of the delegation.’ This caused drama and hot argument.”
Speaking on the incident, Kamale said: “Following the unfortunate incidence of bomb blast explosions in Madagali, which is one of the local governments in my constituency, the Governor of Adamawa State, together with other well-meaning Nigerians including members of the National Assembly solicited for relief materials from the National Emergency Agency (NEMA) for the people of Madagali. “
As the honourable member representing the area, I personally called on the director general of NEMA earlier on Monday the 20th of November, 2017 to ensure the delivery of the relief materials. Arrangements were made with all the stakeholders, including Senator Abdulaziz Nyako, who is the chairman, senate committee on IDPs /NEMA to deliver the relief materials. Air Commodore Ohemu was assigned by NEMA to supervise the delivery. “
A helicopter was arranged by the Air Force to convey some of the stakeholders to where the materials was to be distributed on Wednesday, November, 21st, 2017 by 9am. I was billed to travel on board the helicopter with Senator Abdulaziz Nyako, Air commodore Ohemu and others. “
To my utmost dismay, while I was to board the helicopter, Senator Abdulaziz Nyako ordered that I should not be permitted to use the helicopter as he is the chairman of the delegation. “All my efforts to draw the attention of the Senator and the Air Force officer failed and in the process, the Air Force officer ordered his men on ground to assault my person and to put me in the guardroom. They tore up my dresses. I sustained a lot of bruises from my forceful withdrawal from the helicopter,” Mr. Kamale said. He added, that: “The people of Madagali have suffered several attacks and have been traumatised for many years. As their representative, I have never seen Senator Abdulaziz Nyako in Madagali to commiserate with the people of the area over the several unfortunate incidences.
“I cannot explain this sudden ‘monopoly’ of the Senator on the Federal government’s relief materials meant for the people of my constituency,” Mr. Kamale said.
On his part, Nyako denied assaulting Kamale. He, however, went to tell his own version of the story. He said: “Last week, I was at NEMA headquarters for oversight function being the chairman, senate committee on IDPs/ NEMA.
They requested me to be part (of the process) and to chair the relief materials’ distribution in Gulak, Madagali. So they assured me they would provide me with an aircraft, and they requested that I should provide them with the list of those who will be in my entourage.
“Naturally I provided the names of members of my committee in the Senate and I was also informed by the DG NEMA that Senator Binta Masi Garba (representing the area) will want to be in attendance.
So I included her name and that of the chairman, House of Reps committee on NEMA /IDPs, Hon.Jibrin Galjumari. “To our dismay, after we all boarded the helicopter and the crew had finished all checks and engine was set on with propeller rolling, about to take-off, to our shock, the man in question (Mr. Kamale) from nowhere just jumped in, in what could be described as suicidal mission. He wanted to ‘climb’ the aircraft, a serious situation he put us in. “
So he should thank God for saving his life, not blame me the senator said.

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Senators Fault Buhari’s Planned Farm Settlements

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Some senators have expressed concerns over plans by the regime of President. Muhammadu Buhari, to establish farm settlements in each of the 108 senatorial districts in Nigeria.
They noted that any arrangement to acquire land by the Federal Government at the moment without giving details of what it would be used for, might face stiff resistance from various communities.
The President had last month, directed the National Agricultural Land Development Authority to set up the integrated farm estates in 108 senatorial districts nationwide.
Already, the policy has been greeted with criticisms from the leadership of the various ethnic groups in the middle belt, and southern part of the country, describing it as an attempt in disguise, to create grazing areas for cattle.
The Senator representing Edo South Senatorial District, Matthew Urhoghide, said the Federal Government should give details of the project before approaching state governments for land allocation.
He said, “We are in the Senate to represent our people. I know what my people want
“What we quarrel against is open grazing; we are not against ranching. We are not saying that a Fulani man that has a herd of cattle cannot come to the South to do the business of ranching but he cannot come to carry out open grazing.
“Grazing has two effects. It leads to wanton destruction of farmland. You cannot use animal husbandry to destroy crop farming. There are also criminal cases associated with it including murder.
“If the Federal Government is coming to get land in my state for ranching, it is okay because we need beef, which would be richer, when it is from the ranching system.
“However, the government should make its intention very clear on the policy to avoid major clashes and crisis.”
Similarly, Senator Abba Moro, representing Benue South in the red chamber said government could make arrangements for herders to do the business of ranching but not at the  expense of the farmers.
He advised the Federal Government to go to the drawing board and come up with a modern arrangement to make ranching the way to go.
He said, “When government policies are viewed with suspicion, when citizens lack trust in government policies, then something is wrong.
“Until we address the root causes of conflicts between herders and farmers, and genuinely come out with the right way to go through dialogue, any policy that is thrown at the citizens will be looked at with suspicion which would cause some level of tension.

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Senator Wants Improved Network For Results Transmission

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The Senate Chief Whip, Sen. Orji Kalu, says  Nigeria requires 95 per cent of national network coverage to enable electronic transmission of election results in the country.
Kalu said this in an interview with The Tide source yesterday in Abuja.
Recall that 52 senators on July 15 voted against electronic transmission of results in the forthcoming general election while 28 voted for and 28 absentees.
The senators insisted that the Independent National Electoral Commission should be compelled to seek clearance from Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) while the National Assembly would have to approve the verdict of NCC.
Kalu, insisted the current network coverage was inadequate.
“I have never been against transmission of results , I only said we don’t have adequate coverage where we live,this is the issue.
“We have coverage, but it is not adequate.
‘Like Abia North Senatorial District where I come from, there is no adequate coverage, may be 43 per cent coverage, so how are we going to do that.
“ I believe in electronic transmission,but I want to quickly urge the NCC to deploy their technology to ensure wider coverage; I believe in that process because it is transparent.
“ I don’t want to listen to officials who want to buy equipment and make commissions, I am telling myself the truth, if we even have a coverage of 95 per cent it will be okay, but we have below 50 per cent in the entire country.
“I am not talking about my constituency.
“ It wasn’t a party decision to vote against e transmission and not a clique decision, it was out of my conscience.
“ I can only do what I will do that will benefit all Nigerians,” Kalu said.

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Igbo Stakeholders Decry Absence Of S’East Govs At Forum

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The absence of four Governors of the South-East in the Southern Governors’ Forum meeting held last Thursday in Enugu has been strongly condemned by members of the Concerned Igbo Stake-holders Forum (CISF). 
The leader of the group, Mr Chukwuma Okenwa told newsmen in Enugu that there was no justifiable reason that would be enough for these governors to be absent in a meeting of such magnitude.
According to him, it was wrong particularly coming at a time when the region is battling socio-economic and security concerns stemming from the sit-at-home order issued by the proscribed separatist group, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
His words: “The absence of the Governors of Abia, Ebonyi, Imo and Anambra States leaves a lot to question the commitment of these governors to the growth and advancement of the South-East in missing a crucial meeting held within their geopolitical zone.
He further described as very disturbing the conspicuous absence of the Anambra Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, or a representative from the state at the meeting. 
Okenwa said that the body language of the South-East governors in recent times leaves no one to doubt that these governors have magnified their interest above that of the region and Ndi-Igbo in general.
“Their gaze at the forthcoming elections in 2023 is becoming an unbearable distraction for them in delivering their mandate to the people,” he also lamented.
The group, therefore beckoned on Ndi-Igbo, regardless of political party affiliation, to unite and formidably negotiate a favourable space in the political scheme of things.
According to him, when this is done, we will ensure an unhindered growth and development of all Igbos, he added.

By: Canice Amadi, Enugu

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