An aide to the Rivers State Governor, Simeon Nwakaudu has insisted that the role allegedly played by the Nigerian Army in the 2019 governorship election in Rivers State was shameful and underscores the rot in the security agency.
Nwakaudu who is the Special Assistant to the State Governor on Electronic Media also described the governorship candidate of the African Action Congress (AAC), Engr Biokpomabo Awara as a comedian following the latter’s comments during a radio programme in Port Harcourt last weekend.
Recall that Engr. Awara who was a guest on the said programme monitored by The Tide had said that he is loved and accepted by Rivers people as shown by the results of the election.
But Nwakaudu in a statement wondered why Awara was commenting on an election he neither campaigned for nor presented himself to Rivers people, saying the AAC governoship candidate was not known before the March 9. 2019 poll.
The statement reads, “I must say that Amaechi’s boy, Engr Biokpomabo Awara is a comedian of some sort. Imagine him appearing on radio to talk about an election that he never campaigned for and did not present himself to the people for consideration on any platform. In the strictest sense of the word, Rivers people did not know Awara before the March 9, 2019 Governorship Election.
“This is a man who ran under a party that had no House of Assembly candidates anywhere in the state. The party virtually had no agents and had no posters of their Governorship candidate anywhere in the state. It is surprising that the same man continues to play the Ostrich just to please his defeated master.
Nationally and internationally, the truth about the 2019 Rivers State Governorship Election is known. Rivers people won. They stood firm and resisted the criminal alliance that attempted to steal their mandate.
“The 2019 Rivers State Governorship Election was a manifestation of the terrible rot in the Nigerian Army. Soldiers of the 6 Division were captured on video in different Constituencies attempting to rob election results and abduct Electoral Officials.
“In one case in Ogu/Bolo LGA, women were captured on video pulling down a soldier who invaded a Collation Centre. In Okrika, ONELGA, Abua/Odual, Ikwerre LGA similar videos outlined the criminal activities of soldiers.
“The most horrific was the failed attempt by soldiers of the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army to invade INEC Headquarters in Port Harcourt. The aim was to abduct the REC and other officials and thereafter manipulate the electoral process. Like other previous attempts, it was foiled by vigilant Rivers people.
Awara has the right to appear on radio to express himself, but he should restrict himself to the financial fortunes that fell his way by virtue of the unfortunate AAC/APC/ARMY ALLIANCE.
“He (Awara) is a wealthy man today on that score. But he should continue to find an appropriate means to do penance for the several Rivers people murdered by the Nigerian Army and F-SARs, simply because they attempted to impose him on Rivers people.
”It is disingenuous to lie about an election where he had no political relevance. Till date, where are the political followers of Awara? Wike’s aide advised Awara to focus on the internal conflict of the AAC, a political party built on anti-people schemes. A party where her leaders are ever willing tools in the workshop of political crooks. In Rivers State, the AAC/APC/ARMY alliance will continue to fail.
Nwakaudu further said that it is shameful that Biokpomabo tried to insult the Judiciary because he lost at the Rivers State Governorship Election Tribunal, saying, “This is not surprising. He is following the footsteps of his sponsors. Whenever, they lose, they pull down the roofs. They throw around baseless allegations and rant aimlessly. Anyone associated or birthed by the APC is usually anti-Rivers. They strive to destroy the state.”
Sanwo-Olu Signs Anti-Open Grazing Bill Into Law
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Monday, signed the bill to prohibit open cattle grazing and trespass of cattle on land in the state into laws.
With the law, Lagos has joined some states in southern Nigeria that have anti-open grazing laws in place.
The law is coming more than two weeks after the September 1 deadline set by the Southern Governors Forum for states.
The governor also signed the Lagos State Domestic And Sexual Violence Agency Bill, into Law.
Meanwhile, the state government has said it is committed to tackling the menace of drug abuse frontally to reduce the ravage among youths in the state.
Sanwo-Olu stated this on Monday at the Lagos House, Ikeja, during a courtesy visit by the delegates of Anglican Communion Church of Nigeria, led by the Archbishop Metropolitan and Primate, Most Reverend Henry Ndukuba.
Sanwo-Olu said his government was building a massive rehabilitation hospital at Ketu-Ejirin to tackle drug abuse, adding that his administration would partner with the Church to ensure that the people lived a better life.
He said governance started from the leadership of spiritual homes, noting that government and church can jointly build a community that would outlive all, while restating the commitment to improve the movement of people on road, water as well as building rail infrastructure to make Lagos a livable city.
Speaking earlier, Ndukuba thanked the governor for partnering with the church in the welfare of the people and commended him for his outstanding performance in tackling Covid-19.
Also present at the courtesy visit were the Deputy Governor, Obafemi Hamzat, Chief of Staff to the Governor, Tayo Ayinde, Secretary to the State Government, Folashade Jaji, Commissioner for Information, Gbenga Omotoso, among other dignitaries.
Okowa Tasks NASS On True Federalism
Delta State Governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, has called on the National Assembly to embody in the 1999 Constitution being amended, true federalism and independence of Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).
The governor made the call on Monday at a nationwide sensitisation on the review of the existing revenue allocation formula held at Unity Hall, Government House, Asaba.
He explained that an independent RMAFC would carry out its functions independently, including laying its proposals directly before the National Assembly for approval.
According to the governor, the current practice where recommendations of the commission are presented to the President has led to the non-review of the revenue allocation formula since 1992 as no President demonstrated the political will to forward the amendments to the parliament.
He commended RMAFC for ongoing sensitisation of the states before a zonal exercise where recommendations from the states would be received.
“For quite some time a lot of talks have gone on in the revenue allocation and it’s very unfortunate that in this country we are still operating a revenue allocation formula that was actually reviewed in 1992.
“As we look forward to a new revenue allocation formula, we hope that you come out with something that is fair, justifiable and equitable.
“But, the challenge is that when you have done all this work, you are going to eventually, by the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, lay this before the President and the President ought to lay it before the National Assembly.
“There is a challenge there and there has always been a challenge there, because what is there in our laws that will ensure that the President lays the recommendations of RMAFC before the National Assembly?
“We hope that the National Assembly takes a look at this amendment because RMAFC is supposed to be an independent commission, a commission on behalf of all federating units and component parts of the federation.
“They cannot tie your hands; the constitution ought to be amended to enable chairman of RMAFC to directly lay before the national assembly whatever review it has come up with so that nobody stands it down,’’ he said.
Okowa stated that the National Assembly must do what was right because “a nation is a nation.
Reps Query Presidential Committee Over Assets Seized From Past Leaders
The House of Representatives on Monday ordered the Presidential Implementation Committee (PIC) on Landed Property to produce reports of all assets seized from former Nigerian leaders.
Members were more particular about the late Head of State, Sani Abacha, whose property and money were recovered by the Federal Government.
The chairman, ad-hoc Committee on Abandoned Property, Ademora Kuye, said the House wanted a report on all assets seized from Nigerian leaders in and out of Nigeria, particularly Abacha.
He said this when the Executive Secretary of PIC appeared before the committee in Abuja.
“We need to know the state of those property and to also know if the property have titles of deed,’’ Mr Kuye said.
The committee also queried the sale of federal government’s assets held in trust by the PIC.
Mr Kuye said the committee discovered that some of the property the PIC claimed to have sold were either not sold or were not paid for, contrary to claims made by the PIC.
He added that some of the seized houses which the PIC claimed were vacant were still being occupied.
He directed the PIC to furnish the House of Representatives committee with up-to-date reports of federal government’s assets sold, amount realised from the sales, those yet to be sold and those under litigation.
Mr Kuye also asked that the PIC must state the amount of money remitted to the federal government from the sales with evidence of remittance, adding that all assets pointed out to the committee but not included in its first report should be forwarded to the House of Representatives committee.
Responding to Mr Kuye’s submissions, the Executive Secretary, PIC, Bala Samid, stated that some of the people occupying government quarters had refused to vacate them.
He added that as soon as the occupants were approached for payment or to vacate the houses they went to court to obtain injunctions restraining the PIC.
“We approached the federal government to report them and the federal government said that we should give them time”.
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