Connect with us

Politics

Periscoping 2020 (2)

Published

on

On Thursday, February 6, 2020, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), de-registered 74 political parties, leaving, only 18 as duly recognised political parties in Nigeria.
Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu who broke the news to journalists in Abuja at a press conference, said the decision of the commission was in line with the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as well as the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).
According to the commission, those that are qualified to exist as political parties include: Accord Party (AP), Action Alliance (AA), African Action Congress (AAC), African Democratic Congress (ADC), All Progressives Congress (APC), All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and Allied Peoples Movement (APM). Others are: Labour Party (LP), New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), National Rescue Mission (NRM), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Peoples Redemption Party (PRP), Social Democratic Party (SDP), Young Progressives Party (YPP) and Zenith Labour Party (ZLP).
Prof. Yakubu said INEC de-registered the 74 political parties for failing to satisfy the requirements to operate as contained in the Fourth Alteration to the constitution and also fixed the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo on September 19 and October 10, 2020, respectively.
The Nigerian Senate, on Thursday, February 6, 2020, constituted a 56-member Constitution Review Committee to handle all bills seeking alterations in the provisions of the 1999 constitution.
Dr Ahmad Lawan, President of the Senate, said eight principal officers of the senate will serve as steering committee within the larger committee with the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege as chairman.
In the House of Representatives, the lawmakers passed for second reading, a bill seeking to give local government full financial and administrative autonomy.
After seven months in office, the Deputy Senate President, Ovie Omo-Agege, for the first time, presided over plenary on Thursday, February 6, 2020, after the Senate President, Dr Ahmad Lawan sought to leave the chambers to attend to other matters outside.
For the second time in three weeks, the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), took its protest to the embassies of the European Union (EU), United Nations (UN) and France, condemning among other things, what it termed ‘threat to democracy’ by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) on Tuesday, February 11, 2020.
The protest which took off from the party’s National Presidential Campaign headquarters, Maitama, Abuja, attracted key members of the National Working Committee (NWC), led by the National Secretary of the party, Senator Ibrahim Tsauri.
The Supreme Court, on Tuesday, February 11, 2020, affirmed the Bayelsa State governor-elect, David Lyon, as the valid candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the last governorship election in the state.
A five-man panel of the court led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili unanimously dismissed the appeal filed by Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, who had instituted his case, seeking to be declared the valid winner of the September 4, 2019, primary election of the APC in Bayelsa.
The Supreme Court, on Thursday, February 13, 2020, sacked the governor-elect of Bayelsa State, David Lyon and his deputy, Biobarakumo Degi-Eremieoyo.
The apex court, in a unanimous decision by a five-man panel of Justices led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili held that Degi-Eremieoyo presented a forged certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
It held that the Form CF 001 Degi-Ermieoyo submitted to INEC for the purpose of the November 16, 2019, governorship election in Bayelsa State contained false information of fundamental nature.
Friday, February 14, 2020, Senator Douye Diri of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was sworn-in as the 5th Executive Governor of Bayelsa State.
An Abuja Division of the Federal High Court, on Monday, February 17, 2020, restrained the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from de-registering 31 political parties.
The restraining order followed an interlocutory motion that was brought before the court by two plaintiffs led by the Advanced Congress of Democrats (ACD).
The sacked governor-elect of Bayelsa State, David Lyon and the All Progressives Congress (APC), lost their bids to overturn the Supreme Court ruling of February 13, which removed Lyon as the duly elected governor of the state on February 28.
In a ruling, the Supreme Court dismissed the application for review of the judgment which rendered Lyon’s election invalid because of what the five-man panel of Justices attributed to the alleged certificate forgery committed by Lyon’s running mate, Senator Biobarakumo Degi-Eremieoyo.
According to Justice Amina Augie who read the judgment, the applications lacked merit, adding that the decisions of the court are final.
No fewer than four Hilux patrol vehicles loaded with battle-ready mobile and regular policemen, on Thursday, February 27, stormed the headquarters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Abuja.
The arrival of the security agents forestalled a possible bloody clash of the pro and anti-protesters against the National Chairman of the ruling party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.
A High Court sitting in Lokoja declared the removal of Elder Simon Achuba, as Deputy Governor of Kogi State by the State House of Assembly as null and void, adding that the subsequent nomination of Chief Edward Onoja did not follow due process.
Delivering judgment on the matter brought before the court by Elder Achuba on Thursday, February 27, Justice John Olorunfemi of the Lokoja High Court 4 declared the removal of the former Kogi State Deputy Governor from office by the Assembly as a violation of the constitution.
The Director, Legal Services of INEC, Oluwatoyin Babalola, on Monday, March 2, disclosed that the commission had proposed 34 amendments to the Electoral Act.
Speaking at the opening of a week-long retreat on the review of the electoral legal framework jointly organized by the commission, the European Centre for Electoral Support (ECES) and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) in Lagos, Babalola said there are certain shortcomings in the electoral legal framework that needed to be addressed through legislation.
On Monday, March 2, the sacked governor of Imo State and his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), again asked the Supreme Court for an adjournment to a later date for the hearing of their application for a review of the court’s judgment sacking Ihedioha.
When the case was called, their lawyer, Kanu Agabi (SAN) said the 1st and 2nd respondents- Hope Uzodinma and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) – just served them some documents before the court began sitting.
The Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu said in Lagos, while declaring open a retreat on the Electoral Legal Framework, on Monday March 2, that the commission had begun to review a draft of the Electoral Act Amendment Bill that will include stringent punishments for election violators.
He said that the commission had in late 2019 received the draft of the bill from the senate committee on INEC which had earlier been presented to the executive for assent before the 2019 general elections.
A seven-man panel of Supreme Cout Justices led by the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Tanko Muhammad, on Tuesday, March 3, voted six-to-one, with the majority agreeing to dismiss the application by Hon Emeka Ihediohas’s lawyer, Chief Kanu Agabi (SAN), that the court should review its judgment sacking his client as governor of Imo State.
A justice of the Supreme Court, Justice Chima Nweze, who gave a dissenting judgment, noted that the Supreme Court is permitted by law to overrule itself.
“The reasoning in the judgment will, sooner or later, haunt our electoral jurisprudence” Justice Nweze said, adding that his argument was an appeal to the “brooding spirit of the law”.
Reacting, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said the verdict of the Supreme Court on the review of its judgment on the Imo governorship election was a disconcerting endorsement of electoral fraud, which places a huge burden on the court and the Lord Justices.
The PDP, however, noted that in the face of the sad verdict, Justice Chima Nweze’s judgment presented a glimpse of hope for the nation’s judiciary.
On Tuesday, March 3, the Oyo, Ogun, Lagos and Osun States, Houses of Assembly, respectively passed a bill to establish a regional security outfit codenamed ‘Amotekun’.
The Oyo State House of Assembly passed the Oyo State Security Network Agency Bill, 2020 Codenamed Operation Amotekun. In Ogun State, the state House of Assembly also passed the State Security Network Agency and Amotekun Corps Bill.
In Lagos State, the state House of Assembly, at plenary, passed the bill to create Amotekun Corps as a special unit of the Lagos State Neigbhourhood Safety Corps, while in Osun State, the State House of Assembly passed the Osun Security Network Agency and Amotekun Corps Establishment Bill 2020 after it was read for the third time.
The House of Representatives, on Tuesday, March 3, resolved that the National Assembly should suspend plenary for two weeks to enable the management install facilities to screen and detect coronavirus.
A Federal Capital Territory High Court, on Wednesday, March 4, gave an order restraining Comrade Adams Oshiomhole from parading himself as National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
In his ruling, Hon. Justice Senchi Z. Danlami gave an order of interlocutory injunction restraining Comrade Oshiomhole from parading himself as the National Chairman of the APC pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.
After weeks of speculation and suspense, governors of South-South States of Rivers, Edo, Delta, Bayelsa, Akwa Ibom, and Cross River, on Thursday, March 5, agreed to establish a regional security outfit to tackle peculiar challenges in the region. This came on the heels of the passage of the bill for the establishment of South-West security network, Amotekun, by State Houses of Assembly in states of the region.
Addressing journalists in Asaba at the end of the meeting of the Forum of Governors in the South-South, Chairman of the forum and governor of Delta State, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, said the governors had agreed to resuscitate the BRACED Commission, a regional economic and integration platform.

 

By: Opaka Dokubo

Continue Reading

Politics

Your Appeal Needless Distraction, Stop Denigrating Judiciary, Diri Admonishes Sylva

Published

on

Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has described the appeal filed by the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the November 11, 2023 poll in the state, Chief Timipre Sylva, as a needless distraction.
In his reaction shortly after the Appeal Court sitting in Abuja dismissed the application of Chief Sylva and the APC for lacking in merit, Governor Diri said the case was not only a distraction for him but for the entire state.
A statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Daniel Alabrah, quoted the governor as saying that he was not surprised about the outcome of the case given the character of the APC candidate.
He said the verdict was a victory for the people of the state and that he was ready to meet Chief Sylva at the Supreme Court.
“It (the appeal) is a distraction not only to me but also to the government and people of the state. You also know the character of the person involved. So this is not unexpected.
“However, it is victory for Bayelsa State and I do not think I want to waste my time calling on anybody to work with us. They already said they are going to the Supreme Court. So, we will meet them there”, he said.
Meanwhile, speaking with journalists shortly after the court session, counsel to Governor Diri, Mr. Chris Uche (SAN), explained that the appellant (Sylva) failed to provide evidence and that the verdict of the appeal court vindicated his legal team and the election tribunal, which earlier upheld Governor Diri’s election.
Mr Uche said by the victory, the governor can now concentrate on his service to people of the state and expressed the confidence that, given the facts of the case, the verdict of the Supreme Court will not be different.
Meanwhile, Governor Douye Diri, has admonished Chief Timipre Sylva to face the reality of his serial losses at the courts and stop casting aspersions on the judiciary.
The Tide reports that the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja last Thursday, July 18, upheld the judgement of the Bayelsa State Election Petition Tribunal and affirmed the re-election of Senator Diri as governor of the state.
The appellate court ruled that Chief Sylva’s case lacked merit as he could not provide convincing evidence to invalidate the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that election did not hold in 182 polling units.
But, Chief Sylva, in a statement reacting to the judgement, accused the appellate court Justices of breaching several portions of the Nigerian Constitution.
He also said the judgement “sadly reflected some of the concerns expressed by the CJN recently.
“By referencing the “concerns” of the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Sylva was trying to be smart by half. To be sure, there were no conflicts or inconsistencies in the judgement of the Appeal Court as the verdict was clear as crystal and consistent with the earlier judgement delivered by of the state election tribunal.
“After losing the November 11, 2023 governorship poll, Sylva poured dirt on INEC. Having lost at the tribunal and the appellate court, the APC candidate now acts the bad loser he is by denigrating the judiciary.
“For a man whose party already accepted defeat in the election, one wonders the “stolen mandate” that Sylva lays claim to. For us in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the governorship poll was won through the overwhelming support and endorsement of the Bayelsa electorate. The well-delivered verdicts of the tribunal and appellate court have equally put a seal to the votes of the Bayelsa people. Sylva can only play to the gallery by whipping up sentiments to deceive those gullible enough to believe him.
“There are no two mandates in Bayelsa State and the overwhelming majority of people of our state know who has it. Sylva can only lay claim to a phantom, non-existent mandate.”

 

Continue Reading

Politics

Ndume Hails Zulum For Resettlement Of IDPs In Borno

Published

on

Senator representing, Southern Borno and immediate past Majority Whip of the Senate , has hailed Borno State Government for its efforts in the ongoing Reconstruction Rehabilitation and Resettlement (RRR) project which led to the resettlement of thousands of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) back to their ancestral homes in 10 communities of Gwoza Local Government Area.
For over a decade, insurgency in the State and its environs led to exodus of the people of Gwoza including those in the Mandara Mountains from their homes. Gwoza was declared Boko Haram caliphate, until troops recaptured and liberated the town few years ago.
Senator Ndume noted that since the return of peace in the areas, Governor Babagana Zulum has not only resettled displaced people, but has also embarked on monthly distribution of food and non-food items as palliatives to the people.,
According to the Senator, resettled communities include Pulka, Limankara, Warabe, Ngoshe, Kirawa, Izge and Bitta. Others are Hambagtha, Modube and Yamtake villages, even as he said, the people of Ashgashiya, Wala and other communities would return to their ancestral homes soon.
His words “I want to specifically appreciate Borno state government under the leadership of Governor Babagana Zulum who injected huge resources that led to the resettlement of thousands of IDOs back to 10 liberated communities of Gwoza.
“These include not only Gwoza, but Pulka, Limankara, Warabe, Ngoshe, Kirawa, Izge and Bitta. Others are Hambagtha, Modube and Yamtake villages. I am happy to inform you that very soon, the people of Ashgashiya, Wala and other communities would return to their ancestral homes by Allah’s grace.”

Nneka Amaechi -Nnadi

Continue Reading

Politics

Edo Guber: If APC Does Not Allow Free, Fair Poll, It’ll Trigger Crisis – Obaseki

Published

on

The Edo State government has condemned attempts by the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state to negatively spin comments made by Governor Godwin Obaseki, where he warned that if the APC does not allow for a free and fair election in the state, it will be a recipe for crisis in Nigeria.
In a statement, the Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Chris Nehikhare, who clarified the view expressed by the governor during a recent political meeting in the state, accused the opposition party of trying to exploit the instrument of violence to influence the outcome of the September 21 governorship election in the state.
Mr Nehikhare said the governor spoke at a stakeholders meeting, on Sunday, July 21, 2024, in Benin City, the Edo State capital, and warned that “if a free and fair election is not allowed to hold sway in Edo State on September 21, 2024, it will trigger a major cri­sis in Nigeria.”
The commissioner said: “The attention of the Edo State govern­ment has been drawn to the negative spin that the opposition party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) is fruitlessly attempting to put to the comments made by His Excellency, Governor Godwin Obaseki, at a stakeholders meeting, on Sunday, July 21, 2024, in Benin City, the Edo State capital.
“For the records, we want to restate the comments of the governor on that occasion which is that: “If a free and fair election is not allowed to hold sway in Edo State on September 21, 2024, it will trigger a major crisis in Nigeria.
“Recall that on Thursday, July 18, 2024, ahead of the rally to inaugurate the APC National Campaign Council in Benin City, which was held on Saturday, July 20, 2024, the party assembled a large number of people believed to be thugs, most of them bearing firearms around the precincts of the Benin airport, on Airport Road, Benin City, to cause mayhem in the state, resulting in the unfortunate death of a police officer, Inspector Akor Onuh, attached to MOPOL 45 Abuja and the wanton destruction of properties and injuries to several citizens who were going about their lawful businesses.”
He added, “The mob then moved around the city, attacking other institutions, including the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) secretariat, inflicting violence and terror on the lawyers in their secretariat, with one of the lawyers, Mr. Israel Idahosa, being severely injured and his property destroyed.
“They also intimidated and harassed private citizens who were putting on any material that had the insignia of the ruling Peo­ples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate, Dr. Asue Ighodalo, within the Benin metropolis.
“As they say, the morning shows the day and the APC has clearly shown their plan for the September 21 governorship election in the state, which is to cause mayhem, make the state ungovernable, and take advantage of the chaos to manipulate the forthcoming governorship election.”
Mr Nehikhare noted, “We howev­er want to advise the APC to, for once, read the mood of the nation and understand that with the current hardship, unattainable cost of living, and pervasive hunger in the country, a slightly irresponsible behaviour by the political class can ignite a crisis that will have a domino effect and cause a conflagration across the nation.
“This note of caution is even more appropriate with the ominous threat of a nationwide protest with the potential to degenerate into a widespread breakdown of law and order.”
He urged residents in the state to go about their activities lawfully, noting, “While we urge all Edo people to go about their lawful businesses without fear, we call on the Nigeria police to do their job and apprehend the hoodlums, most of whom have been positively identified and captured in videos, carrying firearms at the location of the crisis.

Continue Reading

Trending