Credible Election, Key To Niger Delta Peace
A former militant leader in the Niger Delta from Ogoniland, in Rivers State, Chief Solomon Ndigbara has advocated a credible election as the only panacea for sustainable peace in the Niger Delta region.
He therefore, urged the Federal Government to take the path of transparency to ensure violence free in future polls.
Chief Ndigbara who said this in an interview with newsmen shortly after handing-over his guns to the government said that credible election in the region will check the imposition of candidates by politicians, who are in the habit of recruiting youths as thugs during elections.
According to him, this situation has led most youths in the region into criminality.
He urged youths in the Ogoniland and other parts of the Niger Delta to embrace the Federal government by laying down their arms, stressing that the only thing that can lead to the rapid development of the region is peace and stability.
The former militant leader further urged for sincerity on the part of the federal government as far as the amnesty is concerned as that would discourage them from going back to the creeks.
Chief Ndigbara who was formerly known as Osama Bin Laden said that having repented, he is now brother Solomon B. Ndigbara.
Youths Have Lost Faith In Nigeria, Gbajabiamila Laments At Valedictory Session
The outgoing Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, says many young Nigerians have lost faith in the country.
Gbajabiamila spoke on Wednesday at the valedictory session of the ninth House of Representatives.
He said the country was losing some of its “best and brightest” brains to other countries, adding that urgent action must be taken to avert a “painful consequence”.
Gbajabiamila said despite the “considerable investments we have made to improve our public infrastructure and the numerous reforms we have enacted to change how we administer the government”, the country still faces many “significant challenges”.
He said the challenges have caused many young Nigerians to “wonder if the promise of democracy will ever become real in their lives”.
“Too many of our young people have lost faith entirely and are choosing in droves to seek their fortunes and their futures in other lands.
“We are losing some of our best and brightest, and if we don’t act now, the consequences of this loss will shortly become painfully evident”, Gbajabiamila said.
He said the government must ensure that the economy is “healthy, vigorous, growing” and that all Nigerians will have equal opportunities to succeed through their labour, hard work and ingenuity”.
Gbajabiamila further said the citizens must be protected from marauders, insurgents, petty criminals and assorted villains who wish to harm them.
He also said the government needed to “restore faith in our young people so that so many of them no longer feel like the only way to achieve their best aspirations is to chase their fortunes in far away, often, hostile lands.
“With each new day, we have an opportunity to make the hard choices and take the necessary actions to guarantee our nation’s future”.
With each new day, we have less time to act and a more outstanding obligation to act quickly,” he added.
After the valedictory session, the House was adjourned sine die.
The 10th National Assembly will be inaugurated on June 13.
INEC Releases Final List Of Governorship Candidates In Bayelsa, Imo, Kogi
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has released the final list of candidates for the November 11 governorship elections in Bayelsa, Imo and Kogi States.
The gubernatorial candidates in Bayelsa include Governor Diri Duoye (PDP), Timipre Sylva (APC), Eradiri Udengmobofa (LP), Osuluku Binalatefa (SDP) and Ogege Mercy (APP).
The candidates for Kogi are Leke Abejide (ADC), Dino Melaye (PDP), Malam Ahmed Ododo (APC) and Suleiman Fati (ZLP). In Imo, the candidates include Governor Hope Uzodimmma (APC), Anyanwu Samuel (PDP), Odunzeh Ben(NNPP) and Achony Nneji (LP).
Festus Okoye, the INEC National Commissioner on Information and Voter Education Committee, said in a statement that the commission approved the list at its regular meeting on Tuesday.
Mr Okoye added that the decision was in line with the provision of section 32(1) of the Electoral Act 2022, requiring the publication of the list not later than 150 days to election day (June 9), following the period for voluntary withdrawal and substitution of candidates by political parties under section 31 of the Electoral Act 2022.
“The final list has been uploaded to the commission’s website and social media platforms. The same will be published in our state and local government offices in the affected states on Thursday, June 8, ahead of the statutory deadline of June 9,” the INEC official explained.
The list showed that all 18 political parties fielded candidates for the Kogi poll, while 17 parties fielded candidates for Imo and 16 parties in Bayelsa.
The list also showed that two political parties fielded female candidates for the Bayelsa poll, while only one party fielded a female candidate for the Kogi poll.
Mr Okoye reminded political parties and their candidates that in line with the timetable and schedule of activities for the election, the campaign in public would officially commence on Wednesday, June 14, in line with section 94(1) of the Electoral Act 2022 and end on November 9 (24 hours before election day).
“We urge parties and candidates to conduct their political activities with civility and decorum as peaceful electioneering heralds a peaceful election. Political parties and candidates have a responsibility to de-escalate tension ahead of the election”, the INEC Commissioner stressed.
Atiku, PDP Accuse INEC Of Failure To Provide Election Documents After Collecting N6.69m
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has blamed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for clogging the wheel of progress of his petition.
On Wednesday in Abuja, Alhaji Abubakar told the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC) that despite paying N6.69 million to the commission for certified true copies of documents he intends to tender in evidence, the commission failed to make the documents available.
Speaking through his lawyer, Chris Uche, the petitioner said it was discouraging for the commission to say that some of the documents they paid for were outside Abuja.
“We thought all these documents would be made available to us, and we won’t have to go to the states to collect,” stated the lawyer.
Mr Uche then proceeded to tender certified true copies of documents for 10 out of 21 local government areas of Kogi, the only documents the commission had made available for the day.
The petitioners also tendered form EC8D for Anambra.
The form EC8D is the form for election results from Anambra.
Alhaji Abubakar asked the PEPC to declare him Nigeria’s president-elect. He urged the court to cancel the election and order a fresh election due to alleged irregularities that marred the February 25 poll in thousands of polling units.
These are part of the seven prayers anchored on five grounds in the petition he filed against President Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
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