The chieftains of the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) have continued to advance reasons for coming together to fight “a common enemy” in the 2019 general elections.
Last Monday, a coalition of 39 political parties converged in Abuja to sign a memorandum of understanding that would see them field a joint Presidential Candidate in 2019 to confront the All Progressives Congress (APC) likely candidate, President Muhammadu Buhari.
For National Chairman of the Reformed All Progressives Congress (R-APC), Alhaji Buba Galadima, Buhari’s inability to make a positive difference in the lives of Nigerians three years after taking over the reins of government, informed the decision of his group to join the CUPP in its bid to form a government of national unity.
Galadima, a long-time associate of the President is not only worried by what he called the lack of vision for a nation struggling to catch up with the rest of the world but also by what he personally “knows” about the retired Army General.
According to Galadima, he has access to what perhaps not many Nigerians know about their President.
All these, according to him, make the re-election of Buhari and the continuation of the APC administration a disservice to the nation beyond 2019.
He said, “He (Buhari) is a military general, but we know him and you know that I know him. If I were him and if I were his advisers, I would advise him not to attempt to contest. I have my reasons. If what I know, if what I have access to and I know; I assure you that General Buhari not only will lose the election but will lose his deposit.”
“The R-APC boss is equally not happy that a government that got elected on the strength of its anti-corruption credentials would in his words, be thinking of offering carrots to willing pawns ahead of the polls, in a bid to brighten its chances”, he said.
“They are thinking of setting aside public money which they accused others of using during elections for this purpose, warning that alternatively they might use the big stick because you know a desperate person can do anything.”
He can kill if he has power, he can arrest and detain but whichever one they choose, we are prepared to lay down our lives to save our nation.”
On his part, Barrister Godson Okoye of the United Democratic Party (UDP), the need to secure freedom for Nigerians is the sole reason to align forces with other parties to rescue Nigerians from the grip of the APC-led government of President Buhari.
“Rescue Nigeria is a task that must be done. We are in a serious project and the project is to guarantee freedom of choice,” said Okoye, who added that “until the rights of the people are guaranteed, there will be no end to the crises and bloodletting in the country.”
Taking a slightly different position was Chief Peter Ameh, national chairman of the Progressive People’s Alliance (PPA).
Ameh said in all development indices, the nation has never witnessed more perilous times like in the past three years, stating that the only thing left for good-spirited Nigerians to do, was to speak up and ‘dare the lion in his den.’
Meanwhile, the Sokoto State Governor, Dr. Aminu Tambuwal has attributed the recurring killings in most parts of the country to the failure of leadership, lamenting that the harvests of deaths were not what Nigerians voted form in 2015.
Canvassing a comprehensive overhaul of the nation’s security architecture, which he said was not working, Tambuwal noted that “the growing spate of mindless shedding of innocent blood, especially of policemen and other security personnel on their lawful duty posts, has brought a new dimension to the reprehensible state of insecurity in the country”.
He commiserated with families of citizens, who lost their lives in the killings.
In a statement, the governor said with the killing of security agents on their duty posts, “the question from every law-abiding citizen today is: ‘Who will protect us, when even those constitutionally charged with the responsibility of protecting our lives and property have, themselves, become vulnerable targets of criminals’? Where shall we run to for protection, when the institutions of state put in place to protect us are being progressively dismantled by opportunistic criminality and the trained personnel are also on the run?”
His words: “Last May, three policemen were shot dead in Sokoto State by kidnappers, who abducted a Syrian national they were escorting. A few days later, four police officers were ambushed and killed in Benue State.
“Last week seven policemen were reportedly gunned down in cold blood in Abuja, and their arms and ammunition were taken, by unknown persons. This is happening amidst repeatedly reported cases of attacks on police stations and other security facilities in various parts of the country…
“It bears repeating for me to state here that Nigeria’s security architecture and the strategies currently adopted and deployed for national security, if any, need a comprehensive overhaul. It is not working. The needless waste of life everywhere, both those of trained security personnel and ordinary citizens, is a drain on the nation’s resources and an unacceptable diminution of our valuable human capital.
“Every policeman or military personnel is someone’s father, mother, brother, sister, uncle, aunt or friend. The number and frequency of deaths are undermining our humanity, making us less sensitive to the gravity of the situation we are in today and also creating a new generation of Nigerians, who may get accustomed to inhuman acts as the norm.
“The worst part of all this is that these deaths are avoidable and the killings preventable. It boils down, at the end of the day, to the failure of leadership. Nigeria cannot progress and be part of a 21st Century forward-looking world by creating new batches of mourners every other day. This is not the way to go. That is not what Nigerians voted for in 2015. That is not what will build a virile, united, united, politically stable and economically prosperous African Giant.”
FG Sets Up To Recover Illegally Refined Crude Oil
In a bid to block revenue leakages, the Federal Government, yesterday, inaugurated an Inter-Ministerial Committee to tackle illegal refining of crude oil in the Niger Delta region of the country.
Members of the committee, who took their oath at the office of the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami, SAN, were drawn from the Ministry of Defence, the Nigerian Army, the Navy, Defence Headquarters, the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), as well as from the Federal Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Environment, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), and the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA).
The Solicitor-General of the Federation (SGF), and Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Justice, Mr Umar Mohammed, who represented the AGF at the event, said the major mandate of the committee, was “the recovery of illegally refined petroleum products (crude oil) in the dug-up pits found around the creeks of the Niger Delta”.
According to the SGF, “In line with the policy of the current administration on security and economy, as well as the preservation of the environment from negative hazards.
“The office of the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, in collaboration with all stakeholders, have put in place a mechanism for effective and efficient management of illegally refined products recovered from dug-up pits found around the creeks of the Niger Delta.
“This mechanism was agreed by the relevant stakeholders and submitted to the Attorney-General of the Federation, who considered and approved the establishment of the Inter-Ministerial Committee for the purpose of implementing the Mechanism known as Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) For the Recovery of Illegally Refined Petroleum Products (Crude Oil) in the Dug-Up Pit found around the creeks of the Niger Delta”.
The SGF said the Federal Ministry of Justice would coordinate the process and the Secretariat of the Inter-Ministerial Committee.
“The responsibility of the Inter-Ministerial Committee is to detect, report, evacuate, assess and ensure transparent disposal of the product with due consideration to the environment.
“The Inter-Ministerial Committee shall be guided by the SOP, developed for the project.
“The content of the SOP is drawn from the provision of the Asset Tracing, Recovery and Management Regulations 2019.
“It is my hope that the proceeds from this exercise will be a source of additional revenue for the country”, the SGF added.
FRSC Threatens Sanction Against Fleet Operators Over Speed Limit
The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) says it will sanction any fleet operator found sabotaging the implementation of the Speed Limit Device.
Corps Marshal Boboye Oyeyemi said this during the 2021 annual safety managers retreat yesterday in Abuja.
The retreat aimed at sensitising safety managers on the implementation of the Road Transport Safety Standardisation Scheme to attain best practices in fleet operations.
The theme of the retreat is: “Assessment of Speed Limit Device Implementation in Nigeria: Prospects and Challenges”.
Oyeyemi, represented by Deputy Corps Marshal, Motor Vehicle operations, Mr Hyginus Foumsuk, said that the corps would also sanction Speed Limit Device vendors identified for complicity.
The corps marshal expressed concern on the spate of road accidents and needless loss of lives, especially involving fleet operators.
“These, according to many experts investigations, could have been avoided if the concerned safety managers had been responsive in their duties,” he said.
Oyeyemi said that recent findings by the corps have also revealed a low level of compliance on the installation of Speed Limit Device and associated sharp practices among some fleet operators.
He noted that these practices included tampering with Speed Limit Device and connivance with vendors to deceive enforcement operatives.
This, he said, was with compliance certificates without actual installation of the device, calibration above the approved speed limits and others.
According to him, these shall no longer be tolerated as the corps will not hesitate to sanction violators henceforth.
Oyeyemi urged relevant stakeholders to address the decline on the proper vehicle maintenance as well as implementation of the passenger manifest by fleet operators and the drivers’ recruitment policy.
“We all know the essence of the passenger manifest and the significance of its proper implementation. You are therefore urged to take these issues seriously in the interest of safety.
“Passenger manifest is considered pivotal, thus its enforcement should continue along other traffic offences to compel the needed compliance. It is therefore pertinent that strict adherence to the existing policies be sustained,” he said.
“There is need for fleet operators to introduce improved practices to ensure the safety and comfort of their passengers in compliance with traffic regulations.
The Director-General, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission, Mr Babatunde Irukera, commended the efforts of the corps on road safety.
Irukera noted that injury and fatality on the road were caused by speed, describing speed as a catalyst, aggravator and mitigator.
He urged motorists to take cognisance look into installing Speed Limit Device to avoid road traffic crashes and save lives and property.
He, however, assured FRSC of the commission’s support to punish violators, saying that excessive speed attracts a penalty.
Sokoto Assembly Approves 2021 Virement Request Of N155m
The Sokoto State House of Assembly yesterday approved Governor Aminu Tambuwal’s request of N155 million virement warrant on some capital projects in 2021 approved budget.
This approval followed the consideration of a letter by the state governor presented at the plenary by the Speaker, Alhaji Aminu Achida.
Alhaji Bello Ambarura, the All Progressives Congress (APC) leader in the assembly, had moved a motion asking the lawmakers to consider the request at its plenary session.
Ambarura said that the request was necessitated by the present administration’s commitment to addressing a number of developmental projects.
- Rivers5 days ago
Group Wants Ekpeye People To Pursue Common Goal
- Politics5 days ago
Reps Query Presidential Committee Over Assets Seized From Past Leaders
- Politics5 days ago
Chieftain Urges Kanu, Ighoho To Join APC
- Politics5 days ago
Sanwo-Olu Signs Anti-Open Grazing Bill Into Law
- Opinion5 days ago
OurStateOurResponsibility: An Insight
- News5 days ago
North Can Live Without VAT Accruals, NEF Boasts …Backs Wike, Southern Govs On Fiscal Federalism, Restructuring
- News5 days ago
NYSC Advises Corps Members Against Risky Engagements
- Business5 days ago
FG Moves To Raise GDP Per Capita To $2,300