A former Bayelsa State governorship aspirant on the platform of the Labour Party (LP) in the 2023 gubernatorial primaries, Chief Diekivie Ikiogha, has indicated his desire to defect to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State.
This came to light at the weekend during a chat with Newsmen in Yenagoa, the state capital.
Chief Ikiogha, a pioneer alumnus of the University of Port Harcourt is a bosom friend of former President Goodluck Jonathan.
The party chieftain revealed that his political sojourn to the Labour Party during and after the just concluded presidential elections and the governorship primaries in the state was borne out of his desire to develop the state.
The Tide learnt that Chief Ikiogha who had also been a gubernatorial aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress(APC) during the 2019 governorship poll had also been appointed by previous administrations as Commissioner and Chief of Staff, Government House, respectively.
He noted that his planned defection to the PDP was largely premised on Governor Diri’s sterling performance in office, especially in the area of infrastructural development, saying that he (Diri) was also one of the founding fathers of the state, and that prior to the formation of the APC and his (Ikiogha) pitching of tent with the LP recently, he had been a member of the PDP where he served the state in various capacities.
“The reasons why I defected from the PDP to the APC, and from the APC to the Labour Party, and now going back to the PDP, my original party, was due to my quest to see the rapid development of Bayelsa State. And for me, I’m so worried that Nigeria and my state, Bayelsa, haven’t reached the height they ought to have attained as a state and nation”, he said.
The Epie-born politician who lauded the state governor for his developmental milestones, however noted that his reason for leaving the Labour Party was because of the fractionalization of the party from the state to the national Secretariat.
This is just as he maintained that upon consultations with his political associates and friends, he believed the only alternative for him was to return to the PDP where his services and contributions were better acknowledged.
“I’ve compared, consulted and critically analysed that none of the candidates can unseat governor Douye Diri in the forthcoming November 11 Polls in the state.
“Diri is one of the founding fathers of the state, and so he knew the problems and challenges of the state, and he’s solving them gradually. The Governor has a listening ear, and has promised to right all perceived wrongs within his time in office”, he said.
“I’ve met with the governor and informed him of my desire to return to the PDP after my sojourn in both the APC and Labour Party.
“But before I finally move back to the PDP on the 31st of this October, 2023 I’d want to consult with the father of all Bayelsans and by extension, father of all Nigeria’s current politicians. And you know whom I’m talking about”, Ikiogha added in apparent reference to former President Goodluck Jonathan.
By: Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa
Kogi Gov’ship: Tribunal Gives INEC 48hrs To Grant SDP Access To Election Materials
The governorship election petition tribunal in Kogi has given INEC 48 hours to issue certified copies of electoral materials on the November11 off-cycle election in the state to the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
It also ordered INEC to allow SDP’s forensic experts to examine some electoral materials.
The materials include the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System and result sheets for Adavi, Okene, Okehi, Ogori-Magongo, Ajaokuta, Lokoja, Kogi and Bassa Local Government Areas.
The tribunal ruled on Saturday in Lokoja that the SDP requested the materials to prove its case in the petition it filed against the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) at the election.
Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Ado Birnin-Kudu, gave the order following two ex-parte motions filed on November 19 by the SDP and by its governorship candidate, Muritala Yakubu-Ajaka.
Justice Birnin-Kudu said the orders became imperative in view of the time constraints the tribunal has to discharge its mandate.
“The order is in compliance with Nigeria’s 1999 Constitution (as amended) and with the Electoral Act (2022).
“INEC is hereby ordered to produce all the documents being sought by the plaintiffs within 48 hours to enable proceedings to go smoothly and without hitches,’’ he declared.
SDP and Mr Ajaka earlier filed seven ex-parte motions to support their demand but withdrew five and pursued two.
Lead counsel to the petitioners, John Adele (SAN), had earlier told the court that efforts made to obtain certified copies of materials used in the six local government areas from INEC had been fruitless.
“Time is of essence in this matter, and that is why we filed the motions to your lordship to help to salvage the situation.
“Each time we approached INEC since Nov. 13, its officials failed to avail us with even one of the electoral materials for which we requested.
“We believe that if your lordship grants our application, INEC will do the needful to enable us to prosecute this case within the time limit,’’ he prayed the tribunal.
Justice Birnin-Kudu adjourned the case to Wednesday, Nov. 29, for submission of the report of compliance by INEC and continuation of the hearing.
The SDP and Mr Ajaka are challenging the victory of APC and its candidate, Usman Ododo, at the election petition tribunal.
INEC declared Mr Ododo as the winner of the election with 446,237 votes, while his closest rival, Mr Ajaka, got 259,052 votes.
Provide Clarification On ‘Clerical Error’ In Kano Guber Judgment, Akpata Tells A’Court
Former president of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Mr Olumide Apkata, has called on Monica Dongban-Mensem, President of the Court of Appeal, to provide “cogent clarifications” on the “clerical error” in the Kano governorship election judgment.
The appellate court in Abuja had affirmed the verdict of the Kano state governorship election petition tribunal which sacked Abba Yusuf, candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), as the governor.
However, the certified true copy of the judgment contained contradictory resolutions, with the judge ruling in favour of, and against the governor, at the same time.
Addressing the situation on Wednesday, Umar Bangari, Chief Registrar of the Court of Appeal, said the purported discrepancy was a clerical error that did not affect the court’s final decision.
“What happened in the part of the judgment is just a mere clerical error that ought not to draw any issue. The court is empowered to correct such clerical error and would be done as appropriate,” he had said.
However, in a statement on Saturday, Akpata said during his time as NBA president, he had openly queried the “sub-optimal manner” in which potential justices of the Court of Appeal were being screened and had warned of the potentially negative and detrimental consequences.
The former NBA president said since the end of his tenure, he had at different times, revisited the issue of the sub-optimal recruitment process.
Ondo Crisis: ‘Akeredolu Remains Gov’
As the months-long crisis between factions loyal to the Ondo State Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), and his Deputy, Mr Lucky Aiyedatiwa, seems to have ended, the Presidency has declared that Akeredolu remains the Governor of the State.
This was according to a statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Chief Ajuri Ngelale, on Saturday.
The clarification came amidst reports that President Bola Tinubu may have ordered the state lawmakers to invoke the doctrine of necessity and declare Ayedatiwa the acting governor.
The Tide’s source reported that the deputy governor, lawmakers, and others involved embraced peace and vowed to maintain the status quo, after hours of deliberations between the President and state officials, including members of the All Progressives Congress, who converged on the Aso Rock Presidential Villa, Abuja, until late last Friday night.
In the statement, the Presidency affirmed that Akeredolu remains the governor.
The statement reads, “In his bid to restore political stability in Ondo State, President Bola Tinubu, late on Friday, waded into the months-long crisis between factions loyal to the Executive Governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, and the Deputy Governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa.
“This followed marathon negotiations between the President and the Deputy Governor, representatives of Governor Akeredolu, federal and state lawmakers of Ondo, officials of the state’s chapter of the All Progressives Congress, and other stakeholders in the state at the State House, Abuja.
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