The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has warned “President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressives Congress, APC, to perish the thoughts of staying in power a day beyond May 29, 2019.”
In a statement signed by its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP also cautioned the, “Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu not to allow the APC and the Buhari Presidency to use him to execute their plots to frustrate the conduct of credible 2019 elections and push for illegal tenure elongation for President Buhari.”
PDP said it was, “Aware that the mooting of postponement of the already scheduled general elections by the INEC Chairman, is a product of series of clandestine meetings between his commission and the APC on ways to frustrate the 2019 elections, having realised that there is no hope for President Buhari in the polls.”
The statement reads, “Nigerians and the international community have also noted the various ploys by INEC to frustrate credible elections, including its stiff opposition to the amendment of the Electoral Act by the National Assembly to check APC rigging plans in addition to its exposed collaborations with INEC to manipulate the voters register, enrol underage voters and secretly creating 30,000 illegal polling centre in certain remote areas from where it plans to allocate fictitious votes to the APC.
“Nigerians may recall that the PDP had earlier alerted of the plot by the Buhari Presidency to enmesh the 2019 elections into a needless controversy by deliberately delaying the presentation of the election budget to the National Assembly until the time the parliament was proceeding on annual recess.
“Ostensibly to ensure that the election does not escape controversy, President Buhari demanded that the fund be taken from already approved budget for lawmakers’ constituency votes, despite entreaties by well-meaning Nigerians for a fresh budget for the elections.
“Seeing that Nigerians are standing shoulder to shoulder with the PDP to resist and dismantle their rigging machinery, the APC and Buhari Presidency are now trying to use INEC to frustrate the elections and cause crisis in our country.”
The party, therefore, “rejects this plot by APC and INEC. The 2019 election must hold as scheduled. Nigerians are ready for elections and cannot wait to vote out President Buhari and his dysfunctional APC.
“In that wise, our party cautions the INEC Chairman to open up, expose the Buhari Presidency and immediately commence the application of its constitutional First Line Charge funding instruments instead of entangling itself with the plot to destroy our nation,” the statement added.
Bayelsa Assembly Committee on Environment To Curb Unlawful Sand Dredging Activities.
With various complaints and pettitions by communities impacted by the activities of illegal sand dredging and mining in the Bayelsa State, the state House of Assembly has organised a public hearing on a bill to regulate the operations of sand dredging to ensure that the environment is not adversely impacted on.
The bill tagged ” Regulation of Sand Dealing and Dredging Operations Bill 2019″ according to the House Committee on Environment is aimed at gathering inputs from experts, technocrats and the public in order to formulate a people-friendly bill that will serve the best interest of Bayelsans.
The House Committee Chairman on Environment and member representing Nembe Constituency one, Hon. Ebi Ben Ololo noted that the public hearing became necessary on the need to remediate the environment and tackle the challenges posed by sand dredging operations in the state.
” The importance of this bill cannot be overemphasized because it can save lives. You are aware a number of times so many communities and their representatives have sent pettitions to this House, specifically the Chairman House Committee on Environment as per the environmental degradation that has taken place as regards the illegal sand dealing and dredging activities in various communities all around the state”, he said.
“With those number of complains and pettitions we thought it wise to put up a bill to take care of those issues. Most important thing is that we all know that public hearing is a mechanism by which parliamentary Committees obtain information, deal with the information obtained and also exchange views with experts and the public so as to fine-tune whatever bill there is for the public hearing to come up with a top class bill that will be people- friendly and also save lives of the people in Bayelsa”, he added.
” Lots of suggestions, contributions, opinions and interactions have been made as regards this very important bill, like we have assured the representatives of the various groups that we will go back in our committee, look at those very important areas where they have suggested and also fine tune the bill. So that in no distant time we will come up with a very formidable bill that will stand the test of time. That the people will benefit from”, Ololo reassured.
He lauded participants for their insightful contributions and opinions during the public hearing, promising that the Committee would do justice to come up with a bill that would meet the expectations of Bayelsans.
In her contribution, House Chief Whip and member representing Yenagoa Constituency 2, Hon. Ebiowu Koku Obiyai lamented the deliberate connivance between communities and the sand dealers, warning that if nothing is done to regulate the activities of sand dredgers Bayelsa communities will be eroded away.
The House Whip also expressed concerns on the activities of companies carrying out dredging business near bridges and sued a delibrate efforts by all in order to save the bridges from collapse.
By Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa.
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