Connect with us

News

Wike, Ozekhome, Fani-Kayode Accompany Fayose To EFCC …Ex-Gov Has Nothing To Hide -Wike …As Fayemi Assumes Office In Ekiti

Published

on

Supporters of former Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose, yesterday, besieged Wuse II Annex of Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Abuja, in solidarity with the former governor.
Fayose, whose tenure as governor of the state, ended on Monday, reported at the EFCC office to honour an earlier invitation by the commission.
He had assured the commission that he would present himself at 1 p.m. yesterday, and at precisely 12.59 p.m., the former governor showed up at the commission’s Wuse office.
He was accompanied by Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike and former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode.
Before Fayose’s arrival, some of his supporters and rights activists had thronged the EFCC’s premises.
The supporters wore T-shirts with inscriptions as “Fayose Bold, Dogged, Constant’’ and “Fayose, the Conscience of Nigeria’’.
One of the supporters and human rights activist and lawyer (SAN), Chief Mike Ozekhome, who addressed newsmen, said “This is a government governed by constitutionalism, a constitutional democracy.
“The government should not instil fear in him and people. Fayose is here, he has reported to EFCC.
“Once a person decamps to APC, he becomes politically cleansed of his political leprosy.
“We cannot continue to live in self-denial; we cannot continue to be afraid,” he said.
Another activist, Mr Deji Adeyanju, said that they were not in support of corruption, but that they were at the EFCC as stakeholders.
“It is not that we are here to support corruption; we are here to say that if the EFCC here believes that Fayose has some questions to answer, good and fine.
“We have seen how they made Babachir come here in the afternoon and he left in the evening on the same day, and he answered questions and he was released.
“So, corruption is not fighting back; nobody is defending corruption. We are here as Nigerians and as stakeholders.
“I’m in the civil society; we are here to make sure that Fayose enjoys the same privileges that Babachir enjoyed when he came here,” he said.
A member of Ekiti State House of Assembly, Mr Dayo Akinlayo, who was among the supporters, said that he was at the anti-graft agency’s office to lend support to Fayose.
“He is our brother, he is our mentor, leader, who has done wonderfully well for Ekiti.
“He has managed Ekiti resources well in spite of the meagre resources,” he said.
Fayose, whose tenure ended on Monday, had earlier said that he would report at the EFCC on Tuesday.
In a letter to the commission some time ago, he said his term of office “to which I enjoy immunity against investigation and prosecution shall lapse by effluxion of time on Monday, Oct. 15, 2018.
“As a responsible citizen of our great country, who believes in the rule of law, I wish to inform you of my decision to make myself available in your office on Tuesday, 16th October, 2018 at 1pm.
“It is to clarify issues or answer questions within my knowledge.’’
However, the former Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose, has said that despite his promise to turn himself in to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission in Abuja, the agency’s men still cordoned off his street yesterday morning.
He said he reported at the EFCC office in accordance with his promise.
Fayose arrived at the EFCC Annex in Wuse II at exactly 12.59 p.m., a minute before the 1p.m. he had promised to report at the commission.
Fayose’s tenure as governor ended on Monday midnight, and he had, on Saturday, presented a handover note to the Secretary to the Ekiti State Government.
Speaking to newsmen on arrival at EFCC office, the former governor said, “I am here in line with my promise that I will be here on the 16th of October.
“And, like I said to EFCC, they should await my arrival. This morning, they have been to my house; they cordoned off my street, which I feel personally was unnecessary. It was unwarranted.
“When a man says he is coming, Nigerians should be given benefit of the doubt.
“I had led Ekiti, and the best I could give, I have given. Therefore, every question, whatever they need to ask today, I will be able to respond appropriately.”
He had, in a letter to the EFCC sometime ago, said his term of office “to which I enjoy immunity against investigation and prosecution shall lapse on Monday, October 15, 2018.
“As a responsible citizen of our great country who believes in the rule of law, I wish to inform you of my decision to make myself available in your office on Tuesday, 16th October, 2018 at 1pm.
“It is to clarify issues or answer questions within my knowledge.’’
One of those who accompanied him to EFCC office, Rivers State Governor Wike, said, “He wrote a letter to EFCC that he will submit himself on October 16.
“He is hale and hearty, and I believe that EFCC should know he is well. Our fear from the present report that we have is that he may be harmed.
“But, let Nigerians know that he came by himself to the EFCC without anybody harassing him. So, that is why I brought him here today.”
On his part, Fani-Kayode said, “We are here to stand in solidarity with our friend and brother. He is going in hale and hearty; we trust God and we believe he will come out the same way.
“And, as authority, we take note of the fact that the international community and the whole world is watching what is going to happen here; what they are going to do to him.”
Fayose wore a T-shirt with inscription: “EFCC, I Am Here.”
He clutched a small travel bag and also bore a backpack as he was led into the commission by EFCC officials.
Meanwhile,the Governor of Rivers State, Chief Nyesom Wike yesterday insisted that the immediate past Governor of Ekiti State, Ayodele Fayose has nothing to hide.
Wike said this while explaining why he accompanied Fayose to the office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, in Abuja.
Fayose had stormed the anti-graft agency office in company of Wike, former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode, and his supporters.
However, Wike maintained that justice will surely take its course, adding that Fayose had served his people well.
In a tweet, Wike wrote: “I just escorted my friend and brother @GovAyoFayose to the EFCC office. We stand up to intimidation, we have nothing to fear. Justice will surely take it’s course.
“He has served his people openly and has absolutely nothing to hide. We shall overcome.”
Meanwhile, Dr Kayode Fayemi was, yesterday, in Ado-Ekiti, sworn-in as Ekiti State governor by the Chief Judge of the state, Justice Ayodeji Simeon Daramola.
It would be recalled that Fayemi had defeated the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) candidate, Prof. Kolapo Olusola, and 33 other candidates to win the state’s governorship election.
The 53-year-old governor is a native of Isan-Ekiti in Oye Local Government of Ekiti State.
He was defeated by Mr Ayodele Fayose in 2014.
The new Deputy Governor, Chief Bisi Egbeyemi, was first to take the oath of office.
After taking the oath of office for his second coming to finish his eight years tenure, Fayemi inspected a guard of honour mounted by the police.
Among political leaders at the inauguration of the governor were the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapher, and Governor Nasir El-rufai of Kaduna State.
One of APC national leaders, Bola Tinubu, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Ogunwusi Ojaja II, among other dignitaries, attended the ceremony.
Meanwhile, thousands of residents of Ekiti and members of the All Progressives Congress (APC), yesterday, thronged the Ekiti Parapo Pavilion to witness the swearing-in of Dr Kayode Fayemi and Chief Adebisi Egbeyemi as governor and deputy governor of the state.
Fayemi, a former Minister of Mines and Steel, was sworn in as the sixth governor of Ekiti, amid pomp and ceremony.
The deputy governor, Adebisi Egbeyemi took oath of office at exactly noon, while Fayemi took his at 12:20 p.m., amid ovations from the crowd.
Fayemi served his first term as governor of the state between 2010 and 2014 under the platform of the defunct ACN.
The 14,000-seater pavilion was already filled to capacity as early as 8 a.m. by residents and party loyalists from the 16 local government areas of the state.
The early morning rain, which many regarded as a sign of good omen for the new government, did not stop people from attending the inauguration, as many were seen trekking long distances to get to the venue.
The Chairman of the Tricycle Association of Nigeria, Ekiti chapter, Mr Akinola Talabi-Ifa, had earlier declared that passengers going for the inauguration would be conveyed free of charge throughout the state as part of the union’s contribution to success of the exercise.
Most markets, shops and public offices were shut as traders and workers all moved to the pavilion to witness the ceremony.
Aside from those inside the Pavilion, several others stayed outside as they could not gain entry to the pavilion.
In carnival-like manner, men and women in different attires bearing the inscription and portrait of the new governor sang his praises while dancing and drumming.
Security in and around the venue was tight as men of the Nigerian Army, police, Customs, Civil Defence and many other security personnel searched persons going into the venue at virtually all gates.
President Muhammadu Buhari was represented at the occasion by Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha.
Also present at the occasion were: Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State; Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State; Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State and Governor Abiola Ajumobi of Oyo State.
In his inauguration speech in Ado-Ekiti, Fayemi said the state’s economy was heading to a state of emergency.
The governor appealed to the federal government for assistance to bail out the state through the Economic Stabilisation Fund.
While committing to address the problems of unpaid salaries of workers, Fayemi said: “We should join hands to resuscitate the ailing economy.’’
He also called on investors and multi-national corporations to return to Ekiti.
The governor said the state was currently battling with more than N170billion debt piled up by the government of former Ayodele Fayose.
The state, he said, would embark on social investment, education, agriculture and rural development.
“We are ready to work with everyone to create a landmark progress.
“We are committing to world best practices and deploy all skills to honestly work for the progress of the state.
“We will work to integrating the aspiration of the state to the programme of the federal government.’’
He said the state would return to the fold of other states in the west to fast track economic development.
“We will take full ownership of the challenges ahead of us.’’

Continue Reading

News

Tinubu Lauds Dangote’s Diesel Price Cut, Foresees Economic Relief

Published

on

President Bola Tinubu, yesterday, applauded Dangote Oil and Gas Limited for reducing the price of Automotive Gas Oil, also known as diesel, from N1,650 to N1,000 per litre.
The Dangote Group recently reviewed downwards the gantry price of AGO from N1,650 to N1,000 per litre for a minimum of one million litres of the product, as well as providing a discount of N30 per litre for an offtake of five million litres and above
Tinubu described the move as an “enterprising feat” and said, “The price review represents a 60 per cent drop, which will, in no small measure, impact the prices of sundry goods and services.”
In a statement signed by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Ajuri Ngelale, Tinubu affirmed that Nigerians and domestic businesses are the nation’s surest transport and security to economic prosperity.
The statement is titled ‘President Tinubu commends Dangote Group over new gantry price of diesel.’
Tinubu also noted the Federal Government’s 20 per cent stake in Dangote Refinery, saying such partnerships between public and private entities are essential to advancing the country’s overall well-being.
Therefore, he called on Nigerians and businesses to, at this time, put the nation in priority gear while assuring them of a conducive, safe, and secure environment to thrive.
This statement comes precisely a week after Dangote met President Tinubu in Lagos, where he said Nigerians should expect a drop in inflation given the cut in diesel pump prices.
“In our refinery, we have started selling diesel at about ¦ 1,200 for ¦ 1,650 and I’m sure as we go along…this can help to bring inflation down immediately,” Dangote told journalists after he paid homage to President Bola Tinubu at the latter’s residence to mark Eid-el-Fitr.
The businessman said his petroleum refinery had been selling diesel at N1,200 per litre, compared to the previous price of N1,650–N1,700.
He expressed hopes that Nigeria’s economy will improve, as the naira has made some gains in the foreign exchange market, dropping from N1,900/$ to the current level of N1,250 – N1,300.
Dangote said this rise in value has sparked a gradual drop in the price of locally-produced goods, such as flour, as businesses are paying less for diesel. Therefore, he asserted that the reduced fuel costs would drive down inflation in the coming months.
“I believe that we are on the right track. I believe Nigerians have been patient and I also believe that a lot of goodies will now come through.
“There’s quite a lot of improvement because, if you look at it, one of the major issues that we’ve had was the naira devaluation that has gone very aggressively up to about ¦ 1,900.
“But right now, we’re back to almost ¦ 1,250, ¦ 1,300, which is a good reprieve. Quite a lot of commodities went up.
“When you go to the market, for example, something that we produce locally, like flour, people will charge you more. Why? Because they’re paying very high prices on diesel,” he explained.
He argued that the reduced diesel price would have “a lot of impact” on local businesses.
“Going forward, even though the crude prices are going up, I believe people will not get it much higher than what it is today, N1,200.
“It might be even a little bit lower, but that can help quite a lot because if you are transporting locally-produced goods and you were paying N1,650, now you are spending two-thirds of that amount, N1,200. It’s a lot of difference. People don’t know.
“This can help bring inflation down immediately. And I’m sure when the inflation figures are out for the next month, you’ll see that there’s quite a lot of improvement in the inflation rate, one step at a time. And I’m sure the government is working around the clock to ensure things get much better,” Dangote added.
He also urged captains of industry to partner with the government to improve the lives of citizens.
“You can’t clap with one hand,” said the businessman, adding, “So, both the entrepreneurs and the government need to clap together and make sure that it is in the best interest of everybody.”

Continue Reading

News

Court Halts Amaewhule-Led Assembly From Extending LG Officials’ Tenure

Published

on

The Rivers State High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has issued an interim injunction directing the maintenance of status quo ante belum following the move by the Martin Amaewhule-led Assembly in Rivers State to extend the tenure of the elected local government councils’ officials.
The Amaewhule-led Assembly, which is loyal to the Minister of Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, had amended the Local Government Law Number 5 of 2018 and other related matters.
Amaewhule, explained that the amendments of Section 9(2), (3) and (4)of the Principal Law was to empower the House of Assembly via a resolution to extend the tenure of elected chairmen and councilors, where it is considered impracticable to hold local government elections before the expiration of their three years in office.
But the court asked all the parties to maintain the status quo ante belum pending the hearing and determination of motion on notice for the interlocutory injunction.
The court presided over by G.N. Okonkwo also ordered that the claimant/applicant would enter into an undertaking to indemnify the defendants in the sum of N5million should the substantive case turned out to be frivolous.
The court fixed April 22, 2024 to hear the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.
Okonkwo also issued an order of substituted service of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction, originating summons and other subsequent processes on the defendants.
The orders were made following a suit filed by Executive Chairman, Opobo-Nkoro, Enyiada Cooky-Gam; Bonny, Anengi Claude-Wilcox; and five other elected council officials challenging the decision of the Amaewhule-led House of Assembly to extend the tenure of local government areas.
Also named as defendants in the suit are the Governor of Rivers State, the Government of Rivers State and the Attorney-General of Rivers State.
The claimants/applicants are praying the court for a declaration that under section 9(1) of the Rivers State Local Government Amendment Law number 5 of 2018 the tenure of office of the chairmen and members of the 23 local government councils of Rivers State is three years
A declaration that the tenure of office of the elected chairmen and members of the local government areas would expire on the 17th of June 2024 having commenced on the 18th of June 2021 when they were sworn in.
A declaration that the defendants cannot in any manner or form extend the tenure of office of the chairmen and members of the local government areas after the expiration of their tenure.
An order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendants from extending the tenure of office of the chairmen and members of the local government areas.
An order of perpetual injunction restraining the 28th, 29th and 30th defendants (the Governor, the Government House and the Attorney-General) from giving effects to any purported extension of the tenure of the chairmen and members of the local government areas.
They also prayed for an order of interlocutory injunction directing all the defendants to maintain the status quo by not elongating the three-year tenure of the chairmen and councilors.
The claimants further sought an order of interlocutory injunction restraining the defendants from extending the tenures of the chairmen and the councilors.

Continue Reading

News

Nigeria’s Inflation Rate’ll Drop To 23% By 2025 -IMF

Published

on

In a recent release of its Global Economic Outlook at the International Monetary Fund/World Bank Spring Meetings in Washington D.C., on Tuesday, the IMF provided projections for Nigeria’s economy, indicating a significant shift in inflation rates.
Division Chief of the IMF Research Department, Daniel Leigh, highlighted the impact of Nigeria’s economic reforms, including exchange rate adjustments, which have led to a surge in inflation rate to 33.2 percent in March.
Nigeria’s inflation rate rose to 33.2 percent according to recent data released by the National Bureau of Statistics.
Also, the food inflation rate increased to over 40 per cent in the first quarter of 2024.
Leigh stated, “We see inflation declining to 23 per cent next year and then 18 percent in 2026.”
This is however different from the fund’s prediction of a new single-digit (15.5 per cent ) inflation rate for 2025 which it predicted last year.
He further elaborated on Nigeria’s economic growth, which is expected to rise from 2.9 percent last year to 3.3 percent this year, attributing this expansion to the recovery in the oil sector, improved security, and advancements in agriculture due to better weather conditions and the introduction of dry season farming.
The IMF official also noted a broad-based increase in Nigeria’s financial and IT sectors.
“Inflation has increased, reflecting the reforms, the exchange rate, and its pass-through into other goods from imports to other goods,” Leigh explained.
He added that the IMF revised its inflation projection for the current year to 26 percent but emphasised that tight monetary policies and significant interest rate increases during February and March are expected to curb inflation.
An official of the IMF Research Department, Pierre Olivier Gourinchas commented on the global economic landscape, mentioning that oil prices have risen partly due to geopolitical tensions, and services inflation remains high in many countries.
Despite Nigeria’s inflation target of six to nine percent being missed for over a decade, Gourinchas stressed that bringing inflation back to target should be the priority.
He warned of the risks posed by geo-economic fragmentation to global growth prospects and the need for careful calibration of monetary policy.
“Trade linkages are changing, and while some economies could benefit from the reconfiguration of global supply chains, the overall impact may be a loss of efficiency, reducing global economic resilience,” Gourinchas said.
He also emphasised the importance of preserving the improvements in monetary, fiscal, and financial policy frameworks, particularly for emerging market economies, to maintain a resilient global financial system and prevent a permanent resurgence in inflation.

Continue Reading

Trending