Contrary to speculation that the ongoing demolition in Rivers State has been directed to perceived political enemies, Action Congress(AC), says their party leader’s official residence located at the Government Reserve Area (GRA), has been earmarked too for demolition.
In a statement issued on line by the State Secretary of the Party, Hon. Okis Bob-Manuel, explained that members of the task force on illegal structures in the state Ministry of Urban Development visited their party leader’s Government House official residence and marked the dreaded ‘X’ on the walls of the residence.
He stated that the Commissioner for Urban Development, Barrister Osima Ginah, who lead the team was AC representative on Governor Chibuike Amaechi’s cabinet.
Worse still, he noted, Ginah was nominated by the AC party leader, Prince Tonye Princewill, to join the Unity Government of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led administration in the state.
Yet, the walls of the official residence of his party leader was earmarked for demolition, with a threat to pull down within two weeks, or face the wrath of the government.
When contacted, Barrister Osima Ginah says, Prince Tonye Princewill is his brother, leader and close associate, insisting that, “he did not send him to the state cabinet to be biased in his official functions”.
In his words: “I will personally oversee that the task force ensure that the efforts of the Gov. Amaechi’s led administration to restore Port Harcourt to its garden city status are not thwarted in any form by anybody including my party leader”.
Ginah, also AC stalwart, argued that Prince Tonye Princewill was a party to the decision culminating in the on-going efforts of the Amaechi’s administration to restore the beauty and aesthetical value of Port Harcourt.
Therefore he said, his party leader would not protest the ministry’s two week ultimatum that he reduces the fence of his official residence located at the former Deputy Governor’s residence.
The commissioner admitted that the walls of his official residence had earlier been earmarked for demolition, thereby putting to rest speculations from articulated quarters that the ongoing demolition was an exercise of vendetta directed at real or perceived enemies of the government.
But he said, the demotion exercise, was a concerted effort to take the state to the next level.
Ginah reiterated his ministry’s desperate resolve to ensuring the implementation of the urban renewal policy of the administration.
He expressed delight at the response by most residents in old GRA and gave special kudos to the State Police Commissioner, Mr. Bala Hassan, the National Organising Secretary of PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, the Chief of Staff to the Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike for the quick compliance in reconstructing their fences.
When The Tide visited the official residence of the AC leader, the high fences has the dreaded “X” marks, signifying that the fences should be reduced within two weeks.
The AC leader, Prince Tonye Princewill was not available for comment, as he was said to be on a working visit to Europe.
But his Media Consultant, Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze confirmed that Prince Tonye Princewill has directed the pulling down of the affected fence and its immediate reconstruction.
Group Urges NASS To Veto Electoral Reform Bill 2021
The Organisation for Community Civic Engagement (OCCEN) has said that the National Assembly must veto the Electoral Reform Bill 2021 if President Muhammadu Buhari refuses to assent to it.
The group accused Buhari of applying delay tactics in signing the bill just as he did in 2019 which compelled the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to use the 2010 Electoral Act in the conduct of the election, despite its deficiencies.
Speaking to newsmen in Kano, Monday, the Executive Director of OCCEN, Abdu Razak Alkali, said, “the National Assembly has done a wonderful job and this is the first time that the legislature, the CSOs and the generality of Nigerians are on the same page.
“Unfortunately, with two weeks left until deadlines, the President is yet to assent to the bill and has been foot-dragging and unjustifiably delaying on the bill, this should be worrying to every Nigerian because it appears the President is listening and giving priorities to some powerful and selfish categories of politicians.
“Sadly, this issue is taking a similar approach to how the President behaved pre 2019 elections which made INEC to use the 2010 Electoral Act despite all deficiencies in the Law”.
According to him, the President needs to do away with the selfish interests of some Nigerian politicians and focus on what is in the best interest of Nigeria and its citizens.
The director of the civil society said it is very clear to all peace-loving Nigerians that the conduct of the party elections through direct primaries in Nigeria remains the most transparent mode of nominating candidates.
“While the current system of indirect primaries has handicapped women and youths from achieving their political leadership, the direct primaries would surely give them that chances and opportunities,” he said.
PDP Criticises Ondo Gov On Varsity Award
The Ondo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, has again criticized the state Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, over an honorary doctorate degree conferred on him by the Ajayi Crowther University, Oyo, on Saturday.
Akerodolu was conferred with a Doctor of Law (Honoris Causa) Degree, amid fanfare by members of the All Progressives Congress.
State Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Mr. Kennedy Peretei, in a statement titled, ‘Akeredolu’s misrule in Ondo State (7): it is shameless to receive award from a university when yours are under lock and key’, issued in in Akure, on Sunday, condemned the governor for receiving an award when universities in Ondo State were in crisis.
The statement read in part, “…It beats common sense and logical reasoning for a governor whose song is paucity of funds to mobilise almost everybody in the political circle of Ondo State to Oyo for an award. The list is simply endless.
“If the Governor attached so much importance to this award, is it then not an irony that all the state owned-universities which he is Visitor to are under lock and key? Could he receive this award if Crowther University has been closed down like the universities he presides over?
“A cursory look at the footage of the ceremony engenders nothing but pity for a man that can shut down the government of Ondo State for the purpose of a personal award that brings no single benefit to the people of the state.
“Every passing day, the APC government under Rotimi Akeredolu demonstrates that the suffering of the people means nothing to him.
“Otherwise, he should have quietly gone to Oyo to receive his award without putting a strain on the resources of the state. I need not add that in the fullness of time, some of these frivolous spending will be refunded to the Ondo State treasury.”
In response, the state APC Spokesperson, Mr. Alex Kelaniya, said, “The award, no doubt, is in recognition of Arakunrin Akeredolu’s selfless contributions to the development of jurisprudence in Nigeria, enhancement of human rights, and his avowed commitment to good governance.”
‘Nigerians’ll Reject APC Over Hardship’
Deputy Chairman, Senate Committee on Defence and Senator representing Plateau North, Istifanus Gyang, said Nigerians would reject the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2023 elections following the hardship and pains the government have inflicted on citizens.
He described the APC as a failed political party due to it insensitive in addressing insecurity, economic woos and skyrocketing prices of foodstuffs and cooking gas in the country.
Gyang stated this on Monday during the distribution of trader moni to 512 widows and scholarship to 611 students in Plateau North Senatorial District, held in Jos, Plateau State.
“As we go towards 2023, we in Plateau State will have leadership that will prove that what we are seeing now is a total failure, what is going on now is a total failure.
“A government that has no respect to the rule of law, no respect for constitutionality and insensitive to the plights of Nigerians. I challenge the Governor of Plateau State to an open debate”.
Gyang explained that his empowerment programme captured strategically 512 widows and 611 students drawn from the 6 Local Government Areas that make up Plateau North.
“We are empowering 512 widows and 611 students are given scholarship. We are giving the widows N20,000 each and each student will go with N10,000.
“The assistance as empowerment of our constituents is something that has been ongoing, the widows and students are special category that is dear to my heart, knowing what my mother faced following the demise of my father and the difficulties that I went through in school and the challenges of indigent students are what prompted this intervention.
“It is not just something that came without concept; it is a product of personal experience. These two groups deserve attention much more than I am doing but with greater capacity, I will do more to this particular group.
“For the widows, this empowerment is for the petty trading. Recall the Federal Government through the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbanjo, went to the market and distributed N10,000 as trader moni and I am giving N20,000 which I believe will enhance their businesses and those who don’t have to start one.
“For the students, the state government is giving them N5,000 scholarship and I am giving my constituents N10, 000 to alleviate their challenges. I have experienced what it means to be in school without financial support.
“The little I am providing can help the students to get a book and pen and to even have a lunch from it and so that is going to create greater impact, which can better imagine.”
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