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Bayelsa Poll: APC Flags Off Campaigns

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Former Governor of Bayelsa State, now Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva has described the Governor Seriake Dickson’s administration as insensitive and corrupt.

Sylva handed down the accusation during the week at the gubernatorial campaign flag-off of the All Progressives Congress, APC, which held in Ogbia town, headquarters of Ogbia Local Government Area of the state.

According to the petroleum minister, in Governor Dickson’s eight years of governance, the latter has received from the federation accounts allocation committee no fewer than N1.6 trillion without any corresponding development in the state.

The minister said,” sometimes I wonder when my friend, Governor Dickson tells Bayelsans that he has spent N30b on the Opolo-Elebele road project, he also said he has spent N60billion on the Bayelsa International Airport project at Amassoma. This makes it the most expensive Airport project in the world. But he who said he has built an Airport is not even flying through it. Governor Dickson for eight years received N1.6 trillion  as allocation and other accruals to the state but Bayelsans is there development? Do you have light? students are your bursary paid?’’

Calling on Bayelsans to vote out the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on November 16th, National Chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole  lauded the party’s guber candidate, Chief David Lyon for his humility and unassuming disposition, describing him as a consummate business man with a listening ear.

The former Edo State governor noted that stet led APC government would create jobs for youths and secure lives of citizens as well as secure their properties. The Party bigwig maintained that the APC candidate even as a business owner has in his payroll more than 5000 employees across the state working in his company which protects and secures National Assets, earning him respect and admirations within and beyond the state.

In his campaign speech, Deputy President of the Senate, Senator Ovie  Omo –Agege took a swipe on the PDP led government in the state, saying it is surprising that upon their arrival to the state, the amount of allocations the Dickson’s administration is known to have received from the Federal Government is not in tandem with development on ground.

Omo-Agege urged Bayelsans to vote en masse for the APC candidate in the forthcoming governorship election so as to usher in fresh ideas geared towards the development of the state.

The senator noted that the state is blessed with both human and natural endowments which when adequately harnessed would give the state and its people a face lift.

In his acknowledgment to the Ogbia people, Lyon promised to, amongst other things, overhaul the Imiringi gas turbine to restore uninterrupted power supply to Ogbia communities and other parts of the state just as he said the security challenges in the state and unemployment would be curbed.

Lyon said, “Ogbia is a great land in Ijaw Nation. Our Father Late Chief Melford Okilo did well. The gas turbine he built to give light to Ogbia would be made to work again so that Ogbia Kingdom and other parts of the state can be connected with electricity 24hrs. Goodluck  Jonathan too is from this great land, infact he was the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and is respected all over the world. This land is blessed”.

The Governorship hopeful solicited for votes from the Ogbia people, stressing that a vote for him is a vote for development and empowerment.

Meanwhile, the traditional rulers, Chiefs and opinion leaders of Kolokuma/Opokuma Local Government Area (KOLGA) of the state have thrown their weight behind Lyon’s candidacy.

This is coming just as the APC campaign train arrived the ancient towns of Kaiama, Odi and Sabagreia for its governorship campaigns.

Addressing people of the area, Lyon pledged to bring his wealth of experience in the private sector to bear in the governance of the state, stressing that the local government is known to have produced great sons and daughters of the state.

The Ologbobiri-born politician called on the Kolokuma/ Opokuma electorate and party faithful to vote for him, assuring them that he would run a populist and humane government if elected into office as governor of the state.

 

Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa.

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Obasanjo, Abdulsalami, Sultan, Others Brainstorm On Insecurity

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Rising insecurity and agitations for secession by different ethnic groups across Nigeria has attracted the attention of elder statesmen and other national leaders to a meeting in Abuja.

The meeting was organised by Interfaith Initiatives for Peace jointly led by the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar, and Emeritus Cardinal John Onaiyekan, and the National Peace Committee chaired by Gen Abdulsalami Abubakar (rtd).

Reporters were barred from taking part in the closed-door meeting, expected to proffer solutions to the ongoing security challenges threatening the peace and unity of the country.

It was also an exploratory meeting on pressing issues of national unity, security, peace, integration, economic revitalisation and development, women and youth welfare and general progress.

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo; former Head of State, General Abdulsalam Abubakar (rtd); Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar; Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi; Tor Tiv, Prof Ortese Iorzua James Ayatse, Emeritus Cardinal John Onaiyekan; President General (Ohanaeze Ndigbo), Prof George Obiozor; and Afenifere leader, Ayo Adebanjo; were all in attendance.

Others sighted at the meeting are President of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba; CAN General Secretary, Joseph Daramola; JAMB Registrar, Prof Ishaq Oloyede; Etsu Nupe, Yahya Abubakar; former Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe, among several political and traditional rulers at the meeting.

Elder statesmen, Chief Edwin Clark, also attended the event at the Congress Hall of Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, but could not participate in the meeting because he could not climb the staircase to the meeting room.

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Fighting Corruption Difficult In Democratic Setting, Buhari Laments

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President Muhammadu Buhari says fighting corruption in democratic setting is a difficult task to accomplish.

The president disclosed this during an interview with Arise Television which was televised, yesterday.

According to him, the war against corruption has not been easy for him since he became a democratically elected president six years ago.

He, however, stressed that his administration had succeeded in easing out corrupt public officials without making noise about it.

Buhari recalled that much was achieved in the fight against corruption when he was military Head of State in the early 80s “when a lot of people were sent to prisons before I was also booted out”.

The president frowned at the way and manner local government system was being managed, saying the local government administration was almost non-existent in the country.

He cited situation where state governors continued to starve the local governments of funds saying “in a situation where N300million is allocated to local government and they are given N100million is not fair”.

On activities of bandits and kidnappers particularly in the North-West and North-Central zones, Buhari said he had given the police and Armed Forces the instructions to be ruthless with bandits and vandals terrorising innocent citizens across the country.

He stated that he had told the security agencies to treat bandits and other criminals in the “the language they understand.

“Problem in the north-west; you have people over there stealing each other’s cattle and burning each other’s villages.

“Like I said, we are going to treat them in the language they understand.

“We have given the police and the military the power to be ruthless. You watch it in a few weeks’ time there will be difference.

”Because we told them if we keep people away from their farm, we are going to starve. And the government can’t control the public.

“If you allow hunger, the government is going to be in trouble and we don’t want to be in trouble.

“We are already in enough trouble. So, we warn them sooner than later you’ll see the difference,’’ he said.

On farmers/herders clashes, the president said the problem had persisted because old cattle routes and grazing areas had been violated by development, adding that those who had taken over such traditional arrangements would be dispossessed.

On the fight against insurgency, Buhari dismissed the assertion that majority of Boko Haram members were foreigners.

According to him, the majority of the Boko Haram members are Nigerians, saying this was further corroborated by Borno State Governor, Prof Babagana Zulum.

The president stated that his administration had done a lot to fight the terrorists and insurgents but the problem in the “North-East is very difficult.”

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Igboho Declares June 12 Day Of Protest, Warns Buhari

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Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho, has declared June 12 as day of protest for Yoruba nation agitators.

The self-acclaimed Yoruba activist said the agitators will hold ‘peaceful rallies’ across the South-West region on Saturday, June 12.

Igboho, who spoke through his spokesman, Olayomi Koiki, in a live video programme aired, last Wednesday night, called on South-West governors to cooperate with the peaceful protesters during the exercise.

He warned the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration not to attack the agitators.

He said, “Let us warn the Federal Government that if there is bloodshed this weekend, the international community is watching, if the military kills any Nigerian this weekend, it is going to be very hot.

“The Yoruba nation rally will go ahead in every part of Yoruba land and the rest of the country where it will hold.

“Red alarm will begin on Friday. People should stock up food Items from Friday night.

“We are not backing down this weekend; we are ready to take back what belongs to us.”

He also enjoined agitators to ‘fast’ on Friday.

This is coming after NANS under the leadership of its National President, Comrade Sunday Asefon, had declared June 12 as National Day of peaceful protest to call on the government to act decisively towards addressing insecurity.

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