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Group Advises Atiku Not To Contest In 2023

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A Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) support group, known as the PDP Action 2023, has advised former vice president Atiku Abubakar not to contest for the 2023 presidential election.
The group’s Chairman, Mr Rufus Omeire, gave the advice in a statement issued in Abuja on Wednesday.
The group advised Abubakar to rather seek to become the chairman of the party’s Board of Trustees (BoT), and not to be the party presidential candidate for 2023.
It noted that Abubakar, who lost the 2019 presidential election to President Muhammadu Buhari, would be 77 years old in 2023, hence the age would no longer be on his side to run.
The group also accused Abubakar of abandoning the party and Nigerians after the 2019 general elections.
“It is very shameful that since he lost the presidential election, he moved to Dubai, abandoning all members of PDP, all the stakeholders, and millions of ordinary Nigerians who voted for him and PDP in 2019.
“It is a betrayal of trust for Abubakar to neglect the feelings and sacrifices of ordinary voters who supported him and PDP in 2019.
“Now 2023 elections are once again at hand, he has returned and started politicking once again. Apparently, the only thing he is very good at, is politics.”
The group also accused Abubakar of abandoning the party at its time of crisis but to come around during presidential election.
“Also, he is widely considered detached from the PDP anytime the party is in turbulence, but only gets active in party affairs when it’s about time for presidential nominations.
“Several groups and individuals in the PDP have accused him of abandoning them shortly after he lost the 2019 presidential election,” the statement read in part.
The group said that since Abubakar returned from Morocco he had not attended to PDP crisis, but only visited Governors Nyesom Wike of Rivers, Godwin Obaseki of Edo and Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom States.
It added that Abubakar also attended the funeral of the father of Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta.
It also noted that Abubakar thereafter moved to Edo to meet Obaseki.
“However, as the PDP was embroiled in crises, two weeks ago, one would have thought that as the last flag bearer of the party, that he would stay engaged to find a solution. No.
“He rather travelled to Morocco to see his new wife. Of course he is entitled to his family life and privileges.”
He expressed surprise that Abubakar in his letter to the PDP National Working Committee claimed that he has been living in Dubai to improve on his education, to learn how to rule Nigeria.

“We think that time has come for Abubakar to step aside and allow others, preferably the younger generation, to step forward.
“He can be asked to take the position of the Chairman PDP Board of Trustees where he will play an advisory role to younger politicians, as an elder statesman.”
It described PDP ACTION 2023, as a group desirous of assisting the PDP to play its appropriate role as the main opposition platform in Nigeria, and focused on helping to deliver good governance for Nigeria.
He expressed optimism that the party’s governors would address the PDP leadership crisis.
“The current crisis in PDP is a normal struggle in party politics.
“We believe PDP Governors and stakeholders will soon resolve the crisis and PDP will emerge stronger.
“For PDP to achieve this aim, it should present an acceptable candidate for President in 2023,” it advised.

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Obi: You Can’t Speak For Afenifere, Tinubu Campaign Slams Adebanjo

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The All Progressives Congress APC Presidential Campaign Council has slammed Afenifere leader, Pa Ayo Adebanjo for attempting to turn the pan-Yoruba sociocultural association into his personal estate and using same to canvass support for the Labour Party LP presidential candidate, Mr Peter Obi.
Director, Media and Publicity of the council, Mr Bayo Onanuga in a statement on Saturday titled “Our Reaction to Baba Ayo Adebanjo and his new Ohanifere Venture”, said “Papa Adebanjo does not speak for Afenifere”.
According to the council, Pa Adebanjo is free as an individual to support anyone he likes, in furtherance of his democratic rights.
“We know for a fact that Baba has turned Afenifere into his personal estate as Acting Leader. We are also certain that there was nowhere Afenifere, as we know it, met and took a decision to adopt Mr. Peter Obi as a candidate for 2023 presidential election.
“We respect the age of Baba Adebanjo but he can not turn Afenifere into his personal franchise for any political alliance.
“We are very much aware that Baba Reuben Fasoranti, the real leader of Afenifere had stated clearly that Pa Adebanjo has always been speaking for himself on many national issues using the name of the group.
“It is our well considered position that Pa Adebanjo cannot appropriate Afenifere. Baba is just an individual who is free to support any politician of his choice. As an individual, he cannot equate himself with the socio-cultural and socio-political organisation”, the council stated.

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2023 Polls: IPC Begins Training Of Media Monitors

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The International Press Council (IPC), last Friday began the training of 12 Media monitors in Lagos to prepare them for the monitoring of the coverage and reportage of the electoral processes and the 2023 elections by the print and online media.
The essence of the 18-month monitoring that will commence on October 1, 2023, is to assess the level of compliance with professional and ethical standards by newspapers, including online ones, being selected for the exercise.
Among others, the monitoring will be done within the context of the expectation of the Nigerian Media Code of Election Coverage, which spells out the responsibilities expected of journalists and other media professionals at elections.
The Media Election Code was endorsed by umbrella media professional bodies and associations, and close to 300 individual media outlets in 2018.
It enumerates what journalists and media management should do to ensure social responsibility and integrity; equitable access for parties and candidates; media access for disadvantaged groups including women, persons with disability and youths; conflict sensitivity and the avoidance of hate speech.
The training of the monitors is one of the activities under component 4 (Support to media) of the European Union Support to Democratic Governance in Nigeria-Phase 2 (EUSDGN II) project, being implemented by IPC, along with its partner, the Institute for Media and Society.
The overall goal of the media component is to “Support the consolidation of democracy in Nigeria with the media (broadcast, print and online media) helping to facilitate the key ingredient of credible elections through engagement and professionalism in coverage and reportage of the electoral processes.”
The specific objective is to ensure that, “The Media, including New and Social Media, provides fair, accurate, ethical and inclusive coverage of the Electoral Process.”
The two-day training , the first day of which was facilitated by Mr. Edetaen Ojo, Executive Director of Media Rights Agenda (MRA) and Mr. Sanmi Falobi, Project Manager of IPC, aimed to build the skill of the monitors on the processes and methodologies of media monitoring.
“Against the background of the prevalence of misinformation and disinformation especially by political actors, all we are seeking to achieve is for the Nigerian media to contribute to the credibility of electoral information before, during and after the 2023 elections”, said the Executive Director of IPC, Mr. Lanre Arogundade.

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2023: ‘Same-Faith Ticket, Blunder Laced With Hidden Agenda’

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The Christian Awareness Initiative of Nigeria, CAIN, last Saturday night, said no amount of blackmail would stop a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, and an erstwhile Secretary to Government of the Federation, Babachir Lawal, from publicly condemning the decision of the All Progressives Congress, APC, for fielding a same-faith presidential ticket.
The Spokesman of CAIN, Yusuf Kanhu, who said this in a statement he personally signed accused supporters of the APC of hiring mercenaries to tarnish the image of the duo.
Kanhu in the statement made available to journalists in Abuja described the Muslim-Muslim ticket of the APC as a “blunder”laced with “hidden agenda”
He explained: “The decision by Nigerian Christians through the umbrella Association to reject the same faith ticket was not against any particular party but advice to all political parties. Sadly the presidential candidate of APC ignored the advice and picked his vice from the same faith.
“The Christian Umbrella body came out in the first place to reject the idea and challenge Christians in APC to tell their party and Candidate to do what is right and good for the unity of the country.
“Hon Yakubu Dogara and Babachir Lawal respected the call of their leaders and proved that they are not going to betray the position of CAN just to satisfy their belle.
“Interestingly, the APC candidate and some of his supporters instead of making an honest effort to convince Christians and especially those Christians in their party about the reason for their action have chosen to recruit faceless people and are creating unknown groups with funny names to castigate the Christian body and the courageous Christians from their party that are telling them the danger and implication of their ill advised decision.
“We wish to inform the APC candidate that blackmail will not stop Dogara, Babachir, and others from telling them the truth.
“Nigerian Christians know the difference between fake Christian groups from genuine groups such as Northern Christians Youth Initiative with her faceless coordinator Hon. Mike Msuaan Msuaan.
“We can go on to name many hungry people who have not attended any church service in the last 10 years but are cashing on the desperation of the APC candidate to show that he has Christians’ support to start none existing Christian groups to enable them to get their share of the cake in circulation.
“The church in Nigeria and especially in the North knows the voices and names of their genuine leaders fighting for justice which is different from the newly born and newly introduced names that are only speaking to get money from their sponsors.
“Sponsoring fake people and groups to insult others will not correct your big blunder and will only make more Christians accept the fact that the decision has a hidden agenda.”

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