Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Camapign Council in Kogi State has passed a vote of no confidence on the State Police Commissioner, Busari Hakeem and warned that with his presence, Kogi people should not expect rancour-free election by November 16.
Deputy Director, Public Communication of the Council, Austin Okai Usman in a statement said the police activities in the state have been reduced to taking instructions from the APC- led government in the state.
The council noted that with serious concern, the activities of the state police command under the current CP, has reduced the contest to a battle between the Police and PDP.
“ This is a clear indication that virtually all government officials in Kogi and top APC members and their thugs, were being protected and at the same time using the state police Commissioner’s men to chase, harass, intimidate and threaten to kill PDP members across the state”
The council said the police hierarchy under Busari Hakeem lacked the partial stance to supervise and monitor the election while urging the IG to urgently effect his removal without further delay to avoid breakdown of law and order in the state.
The PDP also expressed serious reservation on the continuous detention of DCP Ejeh Suleiman Abutu in SARS custody who was abducted by APC private army from his residence, taken to Dekina Governor’s lodge, tortured for confession under duress and later forced the police hierarchy to accept the records of the illegal activities of Bello/Onoja’s men.
PDP also appealed to the IG to without further delay remove the police Commissioner in the interest of fair play, security of lives and properties and to avoid reprisal attacks from any side of the political divide, particularly the PDP.
The council said it has also been informed of the plans by the state government to enlist and incorporate the army on special operation, into the unholy desire to retain power at all costs.
It also asked the Commandant, Army Records, Major General Adewale Ogunkale to closely monitor the activities of his men, so as to insulate them from the ongoing infiltration of security agents by the state government.
But when contacted for his reaction, the CP expressed sadness that in spite of all he was doing with his men to ensure a free and fair election, some people are still castigating him, stressing that why must it be the PDP alone in all the political parties that is always complaining.
His words: “ Honestly, PDP is not fair to me for accusing me wrongly; they asked for police security, we provided them, we have never treated any party above the other and if any of my men are caught conducting themselves in a way that is not professional, let them call my attention to it and we will deal with them.
“ I know this is the time of election and every party is using all means to get power. I Know a man was arrested with guns, they should allow the police to do their job; if he is not found wanting, he would be released, but let them not give a dog a bad name in order to hang it”.
Group Condemns Call For Jonathan’s Suspension
A political pressure group, the Niger Delta Youth Coalition (NDYC), has condemned calls by some stalwarts of PDP for suspension of the former President of Nigeria, Dr Goodluck Jonathan for hosting the newly elected Governor of Bayelsa State, Hon David Lyon of the APC.
National Coordinator of NDYC, Prince Emmanuel Ogba, who reacted to the call for Jonathan’s suspension, Wednesday in Port Harcourt said what the former President did does not amount to anti-party activity because by his position, Jonathan is a father to Bayelsa State.
“ We in NDYC think that the former President should rather be applauded for openly embracing the new governor irrespective of the political party he belongs to.
“ As a former governor of the state and President of the country, we expect Jonathan to restrict himself to advisory and fatherly roles not only to Bayelsa State but in Nigeria at large.
“Those calling for his suspension based on anti-party activity are myopic and should grow up. Such myopic views are the things dragging us backward politically”.
Ogba rather commended former President Goodluck Jonathan for setting the right precedence for Nigerian politicians to follow, stressing that politics should be played with the spirit of sportsmanship.
According to the group leader, Nigerian politicians should emulate Jonathan’s open way and large heart in politics and shun the ‘winner takes it all syndrome’.
“ Are those calling for the suspension of Jonathan suggesting that he should have chased the new governor and his team away from his house as former Governor and President in the name of PDP?” he queried.
He noted that Seriake Dickson as governor did not take full advantage of the presence and advice of Jonathan and should naturally be allowed to face the consequences of his actions and inactions.
He said what happened in Bayelsa in the last governorship election is healthy for the nation’s politics and a big lesson for other sitting Governors who according to him, are behaving as if they have conquered their states and therefore could take the people for granted.
By: Chris Oluoh
…As PDP Denies Rift With Ex-President
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) says it has nothing against former President Goodluck Jonathan over the just concluded Bayelsa governorship election.
PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan disclosed this in an interview with newsmen on Wednesday after a meeting of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) in Abuja.
There were reports in the media that Jonathan may be sanctioned by the party following the defeat of PDP by All Progressives Congress (APC), at the November16, governorship election in Bayelsa State.
Ologbondiyan said that the issue of Jonathan was not part of matters discussed at the NWC meeting.
“The issue of former President Goodluck Jonathan did not come up at the meeting and it was not discussed.
“You must know about the procedure and processes in our party. If we do not have a report or an issue before us, we cannot delve into.
“As we speak now, we do not have any matter concerning Jonathan before us in the party,” he said.
Ologbondiyan said that the only issue discussed at the meeting was the November 16 election in Kogi and Bayelsa, of which the National Chairman, Mr Uche Secondus would formally address the press on the party’s position yesterday.
“We have taken a decision to go to court long before but beyond that, we are going to take other measures which the national chairman will disclose.
“We have not done a post mortem of the election. We have only weighed the circumstances that surrounded the election.
“We have also looked at the global condemnation of the election. We have reviewed the role of INEC and the role played by security agencies. Formally, the party will come up with a position,” he said.
Ayade Presents N1.1trn Budget For 2020
Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State yesterday presented a budget of N1.1trillion for 2020 to the State House of Assembly.
The budget, tagged “Budget of Olimpotic Meristemasis”, has a capital expenditure of N911 billion representing 82.8 per cent and a recurrent expenditure of N188 billion, representing 17.2 per cent.
While explaining that meristemasis is the active cell that stimulates growth in a young plant, which in this case represented the state, he pointed out that, “the budget will catalyse into existence a great opportunity for the state to put all hands and legs on the pedal.”
He said the decision to set aside 82.8 per cent of the budget for capital expenditure, was indicative of government commitment that will continue to reduce recurrent expenditure and focus on capital expenditure.
On the sectoral breakdown, Ayade disclosed that the health sector has an allocation of N44 billion, education N38 billion, New City Development N35 billion while agriculture was allocated N22 billion and social housing N12 billion, among others.
The governor announced that his administration would sustain its current tax policy with adjustment.
“All low income people like civil servants earning below N100,000 will be exempted from tax.
“Small scale businesses like barbing saloon, hair dressing and others are hereby exempted from taxation,” he said.
He also abolished daily levy of between N500 and N1000 by taxis in the state, noting that they will now pay N2000 only every month.
“We must come to the understanding that indeed any state whose budget is driven by envelope size is limited in vision.
“There are two ways in business and public sector management that you place your budget. It is either that your budget comes as an expression of your envelope size or as an expression of your ambition.
“The prosperity agenda set for this state does not allow me the opportunity of an envelope budgeting,” he said.
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