The immediate past National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, John Odigie-Oyegun, has accused his successor, Adams Oshiomhole, of working to undermine Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State.
Odigie-Oyegun and Oshiomhole are both former governors of the state.
He said the national chairman was guilty of anti-party activities by working against the interest of the governor ahead of the governorship election holding next year.
Odigie-Oyegun spoke while reacting to the decision of the APC National Working Committee on the crisis rocking Edo State House of Assembly.
Nine out of the 24 lawmakers were inaugurated on Wednesday after the election of Principal Officers.
The APC had in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, LanreIssa-Onilu, condemned the action.
“As a party that has made a commitment to change, we strongly reject any attempt to recourse to brigandage of the past, when democratic practices were defined by the inordinate whims of people in power.
“It is an unfortunate reminder of Peoples Democratic Party’s queer brand of democracy. Practices like this are unacceptable under APC-led administration.”
The APC vowed that it would use all democratic means necessary to ensure the right thing was done.
Meanwhile, Odigie-Oyegun, who spoke through his Special Assistant on Political Affairs, Chief Ray Murphy, lamented that Obaseki was receiving the highest distractions from his own political party and not from the opposition Peoples Democratic Party.
He said, “Today, there is rancour in Edo State. They all boil down to godfatherism that is heating up the polity in the state.
“Obaseki is the executive governor of Edo state and he should be allowed to exercise the powers vested in him by the law. To what purpose is the APC chairman putting the state under tension?
“As a governor under APC platform, he should be allowed to run out his tenure before they decide whether to bring him back or not. There are so many antics going on and you don’t need to be a prophet or Babalawo to trace where they are coming from. They are coming from the APC.”
Odigie-Oyegun stressed the need for APC to remain united, adding that the power game was all because of the 2020 governorship election.
“I want to think that they are all targeted at weakening the governor of Edo state. Ordinarily, the man in Edo should be given every support so that he can succeed to fend off the opposition PDP already around the corner.
“I have not heard that PDP or Edo leaders want to remove Obaseki. What has been trending is how his predecessor who happens to be the party chairman does not want him back in the office.”
He added, “This party must be stronger because we cannot go into the 2023 general elections with this discordant tunes especially as President Buhari will not be contesting.
“We need to get our acts together. Oyegun has no personal grievances with Oshiomhole but Nigerians must know that he cannot go to equity with unclean hands.”
Calls placed to the Chief Press Secretary to Oshiomhole, Simon Ebegbulem, indicated it was not available.
He had also yet to respond to a text message sent to him by our correspondent.
In his reaction, the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has charged Adams Oshiomhole, National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, to respect the decision of the party in the state concerning the inauguration of the State House of Assembly.
He said this while berating Oshiomhole over his remarks concerning the inauguration of the State House of Assembly.
Obaseki’s charge was contained in a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Communication Strategy, Crusoe Osagie.
The statement reads: “We read with utter astonishment, a statement credited to the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, with respect to Governor Godwin Obaseki’s alleged role in the inauguration of the Edo State House of Assembly.
“Apart from the fact that he based his conclusion on a totally false and baseless premise, we believe that he could have shown that he does not have a vested interest by simply inquiring from his friend, the governor or any official of the State Working Committee of our party as to what actually transpired.
“His failure to satisfy the basic tenets of natural justice, which makes fair hearing from all sides of a matter mandatory, has clearly exposed his bias on this issue. For the avoidance of doubt, all the decisions relating to the leadership of the Edo State House of Assembly recently elected by the House were taken by the State Working Committee and leaders of the party from across the state.
“In reference to the rule of party supremacy, which our national chairman so eloquently professes, the governor and all party members are obliged to respect the party’s decision, as we expect the national chairman to also do.”
Meanwhile, the National Chairman of the All Progressive Congress, APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, weekend, said that he would not need short-cut to sustain his position in the system.
Oshiomhole stated this while reacting to the allegation that he was behind the crisis in the Edo State House of Assembly because he has allegedly constituted himself as a godfather and wanted to dictate what happens in the state.
The APC national Chairman who was reminded that he fought godfatherism in the state but was now being accused of playing the same role he once fought to a standstill, told State House correspondents that sought his opinion on the brouhaha arising from the inauguration of the Edo State Assembly that the issue of him playing the role of a godfather was all accusation.
He rhetorically asked, “What is the evidence? It’s all about accusation. The media has a duty. They have to give you the particulars of that godfatherism. What’s the evidence? I am a democrat.
“That I accept the credit, not only that I fought godfatherism, I launched the one man one vote campaign to fight against election rigging anywhere in Nigeria and by the special grace of God under PDP (Peoples Democratic Party) with (Chief Tony) Anenih alive, and at his best, I won all the 18 local government areas and I won 95 percent of the total votes cast in my second term election.
“So, Edo people know me and I know them. I don’t need short-cut to sustain my position in the system. But you know that there is nobody in Nigeria who is not open to accusations. The important thing is that he who accuses should give you proof.”
Asked on his position over the ongoing argument and brewing crisis over the inauguration of the Edo state House of Assembly, he said,” It’s about rule of law. As journalists there are questions you don’t need to ask me because you know the answer. You know the law provides for how the House should be proclaimed transparently.
“The day it’s announced, members-elect are informed of date and time for inauguration. These are clearly spelt out in the Nigerian constitution. And just last week (about two weeks ago), you were all witnesses to how President Muhammadu Buhari issued proclamation letter to the Clerk many days before, stating date and time of the inauguration of the two chambers of the National Assembly.
“Even while we are still negotiating to ensure that our party was not divided on the floor of the House, without prejudice to the outcome of those negotiations, the President issued proclamation because he is obliged by the constitution to do so whether he likes it or not and he did.
“He did it transparently. He has led us by example. For me, it’s very embarrassing if any state governor, particularly of APC extraction, will do anything that is less than what the constitution says and the example that our President has set.”
He said that in the case of the Edo State House of Assembly inauguration, the proclamation was not publicised and that the members were not informed, adding that the inauguration took place at 9:30 pm. He said the time was what a Supreme Court judgement described as “nocturnal hours.”
He further added, “Business of parliament are done transparently; they are not secret cult. Now you have 24 member House, 19 members protested. You have six and you carry people in their short knickers (sic). Even in the House they have rules, the dress code. So, it happened in Edo, it has happened in Bauchi.
“Like Edo, Bauchi used the minority of 10 to go and proclaim the House and lock out 20 APC members and got those 10 people to elect, exactly the way Edo did with six and then co-opted other three people to become nine and even at that it is nonsense.
“For us, these are completely illegal. And that is why we said so. If it is wrong, it is wrong whether it is done by APC or by PDP; whether is the Chairman’s state or not. The law is blind to those sentiments. I believe by the end of the day, the solution is return to the rule of law.
“Let’s properly follow the law; let the parliament do what they have to do but people have the right to lobby for people they want and whom they prefer. This is also legitimate. Like you saw in the National Assembly, after all the lobbies people have the right to vote and you saw them in the National Assembly conducting secret ballot.
“We have an APC Senator, who in spite of all the efforts invested by all our leaders including Mr President, insisted that he will contest. The law allowed him so, we couldn’t stop him. The President could have said SSS (State Security Services) please find excuse to invite him for questioning the day before; put him away until the elections are over.
“But we won’t do that. That is not the change we promised. The change we promised is to try to improve in the ways public institutions are managed and how rules are implemented. I believe that it will be resolved.”
UBEC, RSUBEB Begin Digital School Construction In Rivers
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.
Rivers United Beat Young Africans Of Tanzania 1-0
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
NJC Okays Six Chief Judges, 30 Others For Appointment
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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