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Ondo Poll: Group Decries Money Politics, Violence

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A few days to the conduct of the Ondo State governorship election, an NGO, SING Nigeria, has condemned the rising violence and money politics playing out in the State.
In a statement signed by its coordinator, Idris Usman, the group urged candidates of the various parties to present their manifesto, planned policies and reforms to the electorate, rather than resort to violence.
The statement reads:
‘Ondo election is just days away and the atmosphere in the state has become tensed with all forms of violent attacks in campaigns. It becomes bothersome that instead of presenting tenable manifestoes, policies on reforms needed and even positions on critical issues to the people, campaigns have been turned into a ground for a show of force by various contestants which have clearly affected the perceptible index of voters’ turnout negatively
‘SING Nigeria uses this medium to call on all security agencies to step up their vigilance and establish a more robust network to help track violence in elections and ensure that all potential threats are taken care of as Ondo State has a long line history of electoral violence. which is why adequate sensitisation be engaged in these few days left before elections.
‘On the other hand, money politics deserves beaming of searchlight as it is gradually creeping to the centre stage of our electioneering. More so that various forms of inducements vis-a-vis buying and selling of votes; thus SING Nigeria’s End Money Politics campaign seeks to address this issue by engaging critical stakeholders.
‘It is, however, imperative at this point to advise that electorate to shun all electoral vices that might mar the integrity of the process. It is hence a testing ground for a paradigm shift in Ondo State as it has a history of electoral violence. ‘Politicians should also coordinate their campaigns in manners that conform with international best practices devoid of violence, hate speeches, threats to life and all other negative engagements that will spur unwanted actions.
‘Conclusively, government should provide an enabling environment for the voters to cast their votes and to ensure actual independence of INEC without any form of interference in the process.’

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Court Restrains Oyo Assembly From Impeaching Makinde’s Deputy

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The Oyo State High Court presided over by Justice Oladiran Akintola on Wednesday restrained the House of Assembly from further continuing with the impeachment process against the Deputy Governor, Engr. Raufu Olaniyan.
According to the court, the status quo must be maintained, pending the hearing of the application for interlocutory injunction before it.
The House of Assembly was billed to read Olaniyan’s reply to their allegation on Wednesday morning but the court placed hold on further process regarding the impeachment. The court adjourned the matter till Tuesday, July 5, 2022 for continuation of hearing.
The adjournment was to allow the Assembly to file its reply to that of Olaniyan at the court. Director of Legal Services, Olabanji, represented the Assembly, while Chief Afolabi Fashanu (SAN), led Olaniyan’s legal team.
Olaniyan had dragged the parties to court to seek an injunction to stop what he described as “faulty process” of his impeachment.
Twenty-three lawmakers, who are members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), had earlier accused the deputy governor of gross misconduct, abuse of office, financial recklessness, among other allegations.
In a petition entitled, ‘Petition and Notice of Allegations against the Deputy Governor of Oyo State, His Excellency Engineer Rauf Olaniyan’, he was accused of gross misconduct, abuse of office, financial recklessness, abandonment of office and official duties and insubordination.
“This is in accordance with section 188 of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended)”, the petition read in part.
The lawmakers gave the deputy governor seven days to respond to the allegations.
The lawmakers who signed the petition included: Fadeyi Muhammed (Ona Ara), Onaolapo Sanjo (Ogbomosho South), Babalola Olasunkanmi (Egbeda), Adebisi Yussuf (Ibadan South-West I), Okedoyin Julius (Saki West), and Adebayo Babajide (Ibadan North II).
Others were: Kehinde Olatunde (Akinyele II), Olajide Akintunde (Lagelu), Mustapha Akeem (Kajola), Popoola Ademola (Ibadan South-East II), Owolabi Olusola (Ibadan North-East II), Olayanji Kazeem (Irepo/Olorunsogo) and Ojedokun Peter (Ibarapa North).
The remaining lawmakers were: Dele Adeola (Iseyin, Itesiwaju) Gbadamosi Saminu (Saki East/Atisbo), Mabaje Adekunle (Ido), Oluwafowokanmi Oluwafemi (Ibadan South-West II), Akeem Adedibu (Iwajowa), Fatokun Ayo (Akinyele I), Rasak Ademola (Ibadan South-East I), Obadara Akeem (Ibadan North-West), Oyekunle Fola (Ibadan North I) and Adetunji Francis (Oluyole).

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Lawyers Ask Court To Disqualify Atiku, Tinubu, Obi Over Running Mates

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Three lawyers have filed a suit before the Federal High Court in Abuja, seeking the disqualification of Bola Tinubu, Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi, as presidential candidates.
The plaintiffs want the court to issue an order restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from recognising Tinubu, Abubakar and Obi as presidential candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party (LP), respectively, in the 2023 elections.
According to the motion filed on Wednesday, the plaintiffs said the presidential candidates breached laws guiding the process for election by contesting their parties’ tickets without running mates.
In the suit dated June 29, the plaintiffs — identified as Ataguba Aboje, Oghenovo Otemu and Ahmed Yusuf — said the decision of the presidential candidates to contest the primaries without running mates, goes contrary to the constitution.
INEC, the attorney-general of the federation (AGF), APC, PDP and LP are listed as first to fifth defendants, respectively.
In the suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/1004/2022, the plaintiffs want the court to determine whether the constitutional qualification for the office of the president is equally applicable to the office of the vice-president.

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PDP Govs Boycott Osun Campaign Council Inauguration As VP Slot Crisis Rages

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Only two out of the 13 governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were present at the inauguration of the party’s campaign council for Osun State governorship election.
Although all the governors were listed as members of the campaign council, only Governors Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta and Ishaku Darius of Taraba State attended the event held at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja.
National chairman, Dr Iyorchia Ayu and the party’s presidential candidate, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, were also absent, but their absence was however unavoidable, as Atiku  is currently in Dubai where he had travelled to some days earlier, while Ayu is on a two-week vacation.
The absence of the PDP governors comes amid concerns about frictions within the party over the way the choice of the presidential running mate was handled.
Atiku had settled for Delta State governor, Sen-Ifeanyi Okowa, despite Governor Nyesom Wike’s emergence as the candidate of a 17-member advisory committee.
Although efforts are being made to appease Wike over the matter, the Rivers State governor, who is in Turkey for vacation with his Abia State counterpart, Okezie Ikpeazu, had played host to leaders of opposition parties, fueling insinuations that he might dump PDP.
While Benue State governor Samuel Ortom was a guest on Arise TV from his state, other governors who were absent did not give any explanation for their absence.
Speaking at the inauguration, Okowa who admitted that there was so much work to be done ahead of the Osun election, said, “Osun state obviously is a PDP states. We have great leaders who have a very clear understanding of the politics in that states.
“I want to urge all our leaders and our followers in the state to please quickly bridge the gaps of divide that is amongst us, because victory stares us right in the face, God has gone ahead of us. It is for us to follow the wish of God and to deliver the state to the PDP.
“There is a lot of work to be done. It is not a fun fare, And I believe that the membership of the campaign counselors inaugurated today are capable enough to truly go out there to deliver the state to the PDP
“ I want to make an appeal to the campaign Council. It is not about being inaugurated in Abuja. The work to be done is in Osun state.

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