A political analyst and university teacher, Dr. Ken Nweke has declared support for the Independent National Electoral Commission (ONEC) on the de-registration of 74 political parties, saying the decision was in order.
The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu had said the electoral body has the constitutional powers to do so, noting that most of the affected parties did not meet the requirements for continued existence.
Nweke while speaking with The Tide said the reduction of political parties from the initial number of more than 90 will enhance the political process in the country.
Nweke who is an associate professor of Political Science at the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Port Harcourt also said many of the parties that were deregistered had no foundation in the country.
“If political parties are reduced for instance from the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria that we have about five or so, this would guarantee some kind of stability in the political process in Nigeria.
“Rather than modelling after the United States of America that has multiplicity of political parties, in Nigeria usually, two parties dominate,” Nweke, who is a former Commissioner in the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (RSIEC), stated.
The university don also called for the amendment of the constitution to streamline party formations in the country.
Nweke said many of the deregistered political parties can’t even produce a counsellorship seat in a local government, let alone making impact in the respective states, describing it as ridiculous.
“The highest that has ever happened you may have three, four political parties having some states or controlling some states. But where you have over 92 political parties and almost 95 percent of the political parties that are registered do not control even one councillorship seat of a local government, “It is something that is ridiculous. It is something that is unbelievable. It is something that must be checked in order to advance the course of our democracy in this country.
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Bode George Urges FG To Relax Lagos Lockdown
A former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olabode George has urged federal government to relax the lockdown it imposed on Lagos State as a result of COVID- 19 pandemic.
George, who made the call in a statement in Lagos, yesterday said the lockdown imposed since March 29 was adversely affecting livelihoods and bringing up security challenges.
He said though government intended to curb the spread of the virus with the lockdown, the directive had left many Nigerians hungry at home without palliatives.
The PDP chieftain noted that there must be a balance between curbing the spread of the virus and protecting livelihoods and asked the government to relax the lockdown while putting safety measures in place.
“Everywhere in Lagos is now locked down. The markets, banking halls, the local grocery shops, the supermarkets, the transportation services are all halted, frozen by the federal government directives since March 29.
“On the surface level, the federal government’s position is to ensure safety, prevent communal spread of the virus and banish this scourge from our shores.
“Lagosians have been staying at home for about a month now. In a largely informal economy where most of our people depend on daily wages, the burden of lack of income is devastating.
“There is a natural growing anger in Lagos as the most vulnerable are ravaged with hunger,” George said.
Prince Charles, Kagame, Others Condole Buhari Over Loss Of Kyari
Prince Charles has condoled with President Muhammadu Buhari, the government and people of Nigeria over the death of Abba Kyari, the former Chief of Staff to the President.
According to a statement by Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, in Abuja, last Wednesday, Prince Charles described the death of Mallam Kyari was “a desperately sad news”.
Prince Charles regretted that the death of Kyari had occurred through “this pernicious virus…I can only begin to imagine what an immense gap Mr. Kyari’s untimely death will leave in Your Excellency’s life and my heart goes to you and Mr Kyari’s family”.
In a message through the Embassy of Rwanda in Abuja, President Paul Kagame, the government and people of Rwanda extended their heart-felt condolences to the Nigerian leader.
Kagame used the opportunity “to express solidarity to the government and people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as we are faced with the Covid-19 global crisis”.
The former Vice president, Architect Namadi Sambo in his own message to the President, described the death of Abba Kyari as a “monumental national loss”.
In his condolence message to the president, an industry leader and businessman, Abdulsamad Rabi’u said he was deeply saddened by what he described as “this colossal loss”.
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