The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on Monday expressed fears of participating in the upcoming gubernatorial elections being planned for Edo and Ondo States in 2020.
It also re-echoed its disappointment in the conduct of the just concluded Kogi and Bayelsa governorship elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
PDP, therefore, tasked the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to embark on electoral amendment through the National Assembly to address most of the challenges in conducting elections in the country.
The PDP National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus said this while addressing INEC delegation who came to carry out a routine verification exercise at the party’s national headquarters in Abuja.
While addressing some of the operatives of the electoral umpire, Secondus alleged that the INEC integrity was at stake given the trajectory of elections it has conducted so far in the country.
He pointed out that some of the INEC staff had compromised their offices.
In his words: “INEC as presently constituted has integrity questions. Some of the staff have compromised their offices.
“We advise that INEC should go back to the drawing board and consider the past elections it has conducted.
“Even INEC needs a reform. We can’t continue this way. Is either we practise the American model or adopt the Egyptian model where soldiers shall be part and parcel of the election process.
The PDP National Chairman affirmed it was time for INEC to submit the necessary amendments to the National Assembly so that an improved legal framework can be put in place for a free and fair election to be achieved.
He, however, added that the conduct of the 2019 general elections set Nigeria backwards.
Some of the bitter lessons, according to Secondus, are: thuggery, killing, militarisation of voting scenes and disruptions of voting process.
Others are the alleged INEC involvement in operating the APC agenda, brigandage, intimidation, coercion and manipulation of results, hijacking of election materials and deployment of military helicopters among others.
Plateau Youths Hold Solidarity Walk For Gov Mutfwang
Plateau State youths, under the aegis of Plateau Support Network, on Saturday, organised a road walk in support of Governor Caleb Mutfwang’s administration in the state
Speaking at the event, the coordinator of the group, Sokshak Shikse, said that the walk was to identify with the developmental strides of the governor.
Mr Shikse explained that the walk, devoid of tribal, religious and political inclination, had participants from all parts of the state.
He said that Plateau people overwhelmingly voted Mr Mutfwang as governor, hence the solidarity walk would spur the governor to do more toward the growth and development of the state.
“A few months after his inauguration, the administration of Governor Caleb Mutfwang had made tangible progress in ensuring the security of lives and property, rehabilitation of roads, provision of other social amenities, and human capital development, among other developmental strides.
“His passion for fostering unity and peaceful coexistence among various demographics in the state has been noticed by all.
“Indeed, the people of Plateau have, within a short time, witnessed the dividends of exemplary leadership, a quality which the state has been bereft of for many years.
“These, and much more, are the reasons the Plateau Support Network and, indeed, responsible citizens of the state have gathered here to express our unequivocal, unalloyed and resounding support and vote of confidence on the governor.
“We believe that the works of faithful public servants of his ilk leave legacies that will positively affect the lives of generations yet unborn, as evident in the civilizations of history,” he said.
Mr Shikse, who said that most Plateau residents were dismayed by the Appeal Court judgment that nullified the election of the governor, called on the judges of the Supreme Court to critically look into the matter and act in accordance with the law.
“The popular will of the peace-loving people of Plateau, as expressed at the polls on March 18, is under a looming threat.
“We only ask that the court recognises and respect the mandate given by the people to the governor, and strictly adhere to the provisions of the constitution regarding the process of its judgment.
“We have faith in the hallowed chambers of our judiciary and believe that her worthy Judges will execute temperance and an unwavering sense of justice while hearing and judging the appeal at the Supreme Court, God helping them.
“The people of Plateau will hold on to their witness of our dear state rising out of the ashes of gross mal-governance and our strong faith in the actions of Gov. Caleb Mutfwang,” he added.
The youths commenced the walk from the famous secretariat junction and moved to other parts of Jos, chanting solidarity songs.
They were also holding placards with different inscriptions.
Economic Hardship: N’Delta Youth Leader Demands Apology From Buhari
The Coordinator of the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), Eastern Zone, Opobo/Ibani Clan, Hon. Ibitamuno Cookey-Gam, has called on former President Muhammadu Buhari to publicly apologize to Nigerians for allegedly inflicting hardship on them in place of quality leadership in the eight years that he presided over the affairs of the country.
Hon. Cookey-Gam stated this in an interview with journalists in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, recently.
While reacting to statement as credited to Buhari that Nigerians are difficult to govern, Hon. CookeyGam berated the former President, accusing him of subjecting the citizens to penury, hunger, indebtedness, killings and other forms of mis-governance.
According to the youth leader, the perceived difficulty of Nigerian people was, in fact, a manifestation of the incompetence, cluelessness and general weakness of the former President’s governance style of the country.
Hon. CookeyGam admonished Buhari to look for something better to do for himself, stressing that his government offered nothing to Nigerians within the life-span of that administration.
He said, “It is as clear as crystal that life in Nigeria was exceptionally better during the reign of Goodluck Jonathan as President before Buhari and his APC beguiled Nigerians and brought in a complete deceptive, corrupt and incompetent regime that wrecked Nigeria’s economy and foisted an era of hardship, pains, sorrow and mass destruction of lives and people’s properties in Nigeria”.
The youth activist said it was regrettable that at a time when the Nigerian electorate expected Buhari and the APC to be remorseful and plead for forgiveness, he chose to do otherwise.
“If there is any political party, globally, that should never seek for electoral votes due to its multiple failures, that party remains the All Progressives Congress (APC) “, he said.
He added: “Nigerian electorate are aware that instead of President Bola Tinubu to demand for the probe of Muhammadu Buhari’s unproductive government for eight years, he is only trying to cover it up as they currently divert public attention from their inability to articulate matters of governance, as well as Buhari’s incapability to tell Nigeria how he turned the country to a debtor nation overnight”.
The IYC leader called on President Tinubu to shun the idea of covering Buhari’s sins and bring the former President to account for stewardship of the country in the past eight years.
By: Bethel Toby
Diri Inaugurates Bayelsa Founding Fathers Forum’s New Exco
The Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has inaugurated the newly elected executive council members of the Bayelsa State Founding Fathers Forum (BSFF).
Addressing the forum at the Ijaw House, headquarters of the Ijaw National Congress (INC) in Yenagoa, Governor Diri who was represented by the Bayelsa State Commissioner for Ijaw National Affairs, Elder Erasmus Patrick, said he was pleased with the activities and contributions of the forum towards the development of the state.
“As a member of the Bayelsa State Founding Fathers Forum, I appreciate all your inputs towards the development of the state. What the founding fathers initially wanted was the creation of, at least, three homogeneous Ijaw states. But for now, we have only Bayelsa which is the ‘Jerusalem of all Ijaws’’, Governor Diri said.
Speaking on the occasion, a former Acting President of the INC and Chairman of the electoral committee, Engr Charles Ambaiowei, noted that most programmes and projects executed by successive administrations of the state were in tandem with the vision of the founding fathers documents.
He applauded the the administration of Senator Diri for considering the BSFF as an active participant in the developmental affairs of the state, noting that like the Government, the BSFF members meant well for the state in all ramifications.
In his speech, the out gone chairman of BSFF, Chief Benedict Guembe, eulogized members for their steadfastness and dedication to the cause of the forum, noting that members were very supportive in their contributions of ideas, resources and physical energy towards building a stronger and more united body .
Delivering his inaugural speech, the newly sworn-in chairman, Elder Itelimo Frank Omiebi, thanked members of the forum for finding him worthy to occupy the position as their leader.
He promised consistent consultations with his executives and other members to make the forum better, noting that he would leverage on his experience to lead the forum to greater heights.
Other members of the new executive council of the Bayelsa State Founding Fathers Forum include, Elder Timi Kay Ogoriba, Vice Chairman; Professor Prince Ebiowei Kainga, Secretary; Fitzgerald Fetongha, Assistant Secretary; and Dr Napoleon Wessey, Treasurer.
Also inaugurated were: Pastor (Mrs) Lovinah Ikeni Imo, Financial Secretary; Mr Boro Fezighe Ikoli, Publicity Secretary; Mr Akponanabofa George, Organizing Secretary and Dr Ebiegberi Domo-Spiff, Legal Adviser.
The rest were: Mr Kakiri Woyengidubamo, Provost; Chief Erekake Clerk Peretubor, Ex-officio (Bayelsa West); Mr December Samson, Ex-officio Bayelss (Central) and Amb. Eric Tonye Aworabhi, Ex-officio (Bayelsa East).
By: Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa
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