Tag Archives: pdp

I cannot continue in PDP, Umahi is lucky to have left – Matawalle

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According to the governor, the extent of bad blood in the PDP is partly responsible for Mr Umahi’s defection to the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, saying “everyone feels welcome only in a house where he feels comfortable”.

Governor Bello Matawalle of Zamfara State has said that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is becoming hostile for its members, lamenting over his recent experience with his governor colleagues from the South-South region of the country.

Mr Matawalle, who made the lamentation in a statement on Friday by his media aide, Zailani Bappa, commended Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State “for his bold decision” to leave the party.

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He said: “If this trend of generating bad blood amongst us continues unabated, our great party will increasingly be on the receiving end as we move towards the election year, 2023.”

Speaking further, Mr Matawalle said: “I am having a very bad experience of recent from some of my PDP governor colleagues which I still find very puzzling.

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“For instance, the South-South governors [who had been] accusing me in the media are PDP Governors.

“They are also the same people who brewed controversy over the so-called Zamfara gold, [which was] premised on deliberate misinformation and outright lies.

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“Surprisingly, it is the APC Federal Government which has all the correct records on the gold mining issue that came out to defend me in this saga.

“As PDP colleagues, I expected the governors to contact me first and find out my own side of the story before unleashing their venom in the media,” Mr Matawalle posited.

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“As the brouhaha lasted, I commended President Muhammadu Buhari for being supportive of our efforts to organise the economic sector in the state to avoid using the mineral deposits to promote insecurity in our dear state”

“Today, the Federal Government is issuing licences to deserving companies to operate in the mining sector in the state. The biggest company with an investment of billions of naira is owned by a Nigerian from Anambra state.

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“And I wonder where the idea of Zamfara state owning the gold mines emanated from. As at now, the state Government does not have a hand in any of the mining activity in the state because the constitution does not empower us to do so,” Mr Matawalle noted.

The governor, therefore, called on the South-South governors “to eschew intellectual idleness and support its people to operate modular refineries as provided by the law and lift their people out of fear rather than sit behind and start chasing shadows rather than substance.”

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#Newsworthy

Ebonyi: PDP suspends Reps members, senators over Umahi’s defection to APC

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The three Senators are Sam Egwu, a former governor of the state, Michael Ama Nnachi and Obinna Ogba.

The People’s Democratic Party, PDP, in Ebonyi has suspended the three Senators from the state and five House of Representatives members over anti-Party activities.

The suspension came as a surprise as the elected members on Wednesday vowed to remain in the party, despite the defection of Governor Dave Umahi to the APC.

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But the PDP Chairman, Barrister Onyekachi Nwebonyi suspended them, accusing them of anti-party activities.

The suspended House of Representatives members are Chukwuma Nwanzunku, Sylvester Ogbaga, Livunus Makwe, Idu Igariwey, Victor Aleke and Chris Usulor.

The party further invited them to appear before its disciplinary Committee to defend themselves over the allegations today.


#Newsworthy…

Ebonyi: NASS disowns David Umahi over defection to APC

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The National Leadership of the PDP had in a statement denied that Umahi dumped the party because of alleged injustice.

The Ebonyi State People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Caucus in the National Assembly has disowned Governor David Umahi over his defection to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Governor Umahi had on Tuesday formally announced his defection from the PDP to the APC.

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The Chairman of the Ebonyi National Assembly caucus and former Governor of Ebonyi State, Senator Sam Egwu, at a press conference in Abuja, said though Umahi has the right to join any political party of his choice, the reasons he advanced for his defection were untenable.

He said the National Assembly members from the state, would not abandon the PDP because of Umahi.

Egwu said: “We remain proud card carrying members of the PDP, the platform on which we contested elections in 2019 and won.

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He insisted that the Governor should be the last person to jump ship having benefitted immensely from PDP in the past which included his appointment State PDP chairman, election as deputy governor and two-term governor on the platform of the party.

Egwu while reading the text of the press conference, said: “We, the undersigned members of the Ebonyi State PDP caucus of the National Assembly, wish to address our fellow PDP members and other well-meaning Nigerians, on the defection of the Governor of Ebonyi State, Chief David Umahi from the PDP to the APC.

“For the sake of clarity, we wish to state that not a single member of the Ebonyi State PDP caucus of the National Assembly is defecting to the APC.

“The three Distinguished Senators and five House of Representatives members remain proud card-carrying members of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), the platform under which we contested and won elections in 2019.

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“The major reason given by Chief Umahi for defecting from the PDP to the APC is now in the Public domain which is that the PDP has not been fair to the People of the South East on the issue of zoning the Presidency and vice Presidency.

“While we support that it is the turn of the South East to fly the Presidential flag of any of the major political parties come 2023, yet we consider it impolitic, indecent and unwise to give ultimatums and conditionalities in a bid to secure zoning.

“Indeed, if there is any Ebonyi person who should remain eternally grateful to the PDP, that individual ought to be the Governor David Umahi; a man who was appointed the Ebonyi State Chairman of the PDP, made deputy governor of a PDP administration, and was elected for two terms under the banner of the PDP.

“As Governor, his two younger brothers were elected to principal offices of the PDP; one (Mr Austine Umahi) as the National Vice Chairman (South East) and another (Mr. Maxwell Umahi) as the Deputy State Chairman of the PDP.

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“As democrats, we concede Chief Umahi’s right to join any political association of his choice.

“However, as Federal Lawmakers we are not unaware of the Supreme Court decision that candidates are products of political parties.

“What it means is that political office holders are not at liberty to migrate from one political platform to another, particularly when there is no division in their party.

“We wish to use this opportunity to thank the leadership of our grate party, the PDP for their prompt action in dissolving the ward, local government, state and Zonal structures of the party in Ebonyi State, and their announcement of a state caretaker team.

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“We also wish to thank teeming members and supporters in our various constituencies who have remained undaunted and committed to their membership of the PDP.

“We also wish to thank the South East caucus, and indeed the entire PDP family of the National Assembly.

“The lawmakers were joined at the press conference by the Minority Leader of the Senate, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (Abia South).”

The text of the press conference was signed by Senator Sam Ominyi Egwu, Senator Obinna Ogba, Senator Mike Ama Nnachi, Rt. Hon. Sylvester Ogbaga, Rt. Hon. Igariwey Iduma Enwo, Rt. Hon. Chukwuma Nwazunku, Rt. Hon. Edwin Anayo and Rt. Hon. Livinus Makwe.

Senate Minority Leader, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (Abia South), joined the Ebonyi State PDP lawmakers at the press conference.


#Newsworthy

Storyline: PDP constitutes Ebonyi caretaker committee

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All our leaders, members and teeming supporters in Ebonyi state and the southeast are by this guided accordingly.

Following the dissolution of the Ebonyi State Exco of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, the National Working Committee (NWC) has constituted a state caretaker committee to pilot the affairs of the party in Ebonyi state in line with the provisions of the constitution of the PDP .

Disclosing this in a statement signed by Kola Ologbondiyan, National Publicity Secretary, the party listed the following as its Ebonyi state caretaker committee.

  1. Hon. Fred Udeogu – Chairman
  2. Barr. Luke Nkwegu – Secretary
  3. Dr. Gideon Osi – Publicity Secretary
  4. Hon. James Alaka – Organizing Secretary
  5. Mrs. Amaka Igboke – Women Leader
  6. Barr Mudi Irenede – Legal Adviser
  7. Barr. Ibeshi – Youth Leader
  8. The decision of the NWC in this regard is pursuant to the powers conferred on it by the provisions of the PDP Constitution (2017 as amended).

#Newsworthy

Ebonyi Gov, David Umahi defects to APC from PDP

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He also said that he has no deal with the APC or any member of the party with regards to zoning of the presidential position to the southeast.

The Governor of Ebonyi state, Governor David Umahi has formally defected to the All Progressives Congress, APC from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

Umahi diclosed to newsmen in Abakaliki that he moved to the APC because of injustice metted out to the Southeast by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

More to come….


#Newsworthy…

2023: PDP reveals APC members who will form new party

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Ologbondiyan also confirmed that the National Executive Council (NEC) of the party would meet on Thursday.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has claimed that some disgruntled members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) will form a new political party ahead of the 2023 general elections.

The National Publicity Secretary of the party, Kola Ologbondiyan, hinted this while speaking on NoRM‘s known Media on Monday.

“We are aware in the Peoples Democratic Party that there are those who are losing out in APC and they are contemplating a third force just as they did in 2014.

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“And as such, they are looking at coming to the PDP and breaking the party by taking members of the PDP to create a new political party,” Ologbondiyan said.

The PDP spokesman also insisted they were not bothered about which region of the country APC will zone its presidential ticket for the next election.

“The PDP is a holistic political party and we are not going to allow distractions. The leadership of the PDP under Prince Uche Secondus is steadying the party for the purpose for which Nigerians are aligning with us come 2023,” he added.


#Newsworthy…

Secondus, S/West crisis: PDP Govs disagree

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During the week, the crisis rocking the crisis in the zone escalated with the setting up of parallel zonal reconciliation committees by the two factions.

There are strong indications that all may not be well among the governors of states controlled by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

A prevailing cold war within the PDP Governors’ Forum is attributed to the inability of the governors to agree on the fate of the National Chairman of the party, Uche Secondus, once his tenure expires in December.

Reliable sources also claimed that the ongoing intra-party crisis rocking the southwest zone of the party is another reason why the governors are allegedly at loggerheads.

Findings made by Noble Reporters Media indicated that while some governors are appealing to party leaders to consider allowing Secondus to get another term of four years in office, some others have made it clear that they would prefer that someone else takes over the leadership of the opposition party ahead of the 2023 general elections.

Reliable party sources claimed that the division created by the second term ambition of the national chairman is festering by the day.

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A source at the national secretariat of the PDP said: “Secondus is not hiding his desire to secure a second term come December. And he enjoys the support of some prominent members of the party, especially within the camp of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, whose desire to seek the presidential ticket of the party is also an open secret.

“Some governors of the party, particularly those loyal to Atiku, are also working for the national chairman to retain his seat.

“But a number of PDP governors and chieftains are also determined to see the back of Secondus once his tenure ends in December.”

“Some sources have named Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State as one of those opposing the continued stay in office of the national chairman.

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“Also mentioned among those who may not want Secondus to continue in office are Governors Aminu Tambuwal, Ifeanyi Okowa and Ben Ayade of Sokoto, Delta and Cross Rivers states.

“And going by recent events within the party, the governors of Adamawa, Bauchi and Akwa Ibom appear to be working for Secondus to continue in office.

“It is not clear whether the national chairman will get the support of Governor Nyesom Wike of his native Rivers State.

“Wike, you will recall, was Secondus’ main supporter four years ago when he got his current mandate. It appears the duo differ over who should get the 2023 presidential ticket of the party, among other issues.”

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NoRM also gathered that the governors’ forum is currently torn apart by the crisis rocking the party in the Southwest.

According to reliable sources, Governor Makinde is angry that some of his colleagues are tacitly supporting moves by ex-governor Ayo Fayose to undermine his leadership of the zone.

He has also allegedly expressed concerns that the national leadership of the party is indulging Fayose and his group in the Southwest.

A source said: “The governors are also not on the same page on how best to resolve the crisis in the Suthwest. While Governor Makinde expected the national leadership and his fellow governors to be unequivocal in their condemnation of Fayose and his supporters over the crisis, some of the governors have been unflinching in their belief that the former Ekiti governor is an asset the party cannot wish away in the zone ahead of the 2023 general elections.

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“But some others have openly accused Fayose of acting the scripts of a former presidential candidate of the party who desires to clinch the ticket again in 2023.

“Others have even accused the former governor of plotting to emerge as a vice presidential candidate in 2023.

“Last week in Abuja, a PDP governor publicly warned Governor Makinde against pushing Fayose and his supporters out of the party.”

NoRM also gathered that the pro-Fayose group have been able to convince the Secondus-led National Working Committee (NWC) to refrain from supporting Makinde against Fayose in the raging crisis.

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Their argument, NoRM gathered, is that Fayose controls the larger chunk of the party members in the zone as against Makinde; an argument that may not be unconnected with the number of state chairmen in each of the warring factions.

Taking sides with Fayose, four out of the six state chapter chairmen in the zone have constantly accused Makinde of sidelining the party structures in the zone. They include Deji Doherty (Lagos), Clement Faboyede (Ondo), Dr. Sikirulai Ogundele (Ogun) and Elder Sunday Akanfe (Osun).

The Oyo State governor enjoys the support of only two state party chairmen.

Fayose also enjoys the backing of the recognised zonal caretaker committee members-Dayo Akintan, Mustapha Sikiru Banana, Martins Abiloye, Prince Nekan Olagbegi, Mrs. Funmi Ogun, Wahab Owokoniran and Mrs. Fadeyi Ayo Awolowo.

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Makinde’s group had earlier set up a committee headed by former Osun State governor, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, to reconcile aggrieved members of the PDP. Chief Saka Balogun, Chief (Mrs.) Kofoworola Bucknor-Akerele, Ambassador Omolade Oluwateru and Barr. Olayinka Kukoyi are members.

Dayo Ogungbenro, Acting National Vice-Chairman of the PDP, Southwest, issued a communiqué after the meeting.

The parallel panel instituted by Fayose’s faction is headed by Femi Babalola and has Chief Kolapo Ogunjobi, Ahmed Okandeji Mustapha, a lawyer, Chief Idowu Odeyemi and Chief Tunde Akindehin as members.


#Newsworthy…

N168/N170 fuel price is too bad! – PDP decries.

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This according to Ologbondiyan was in addition to the government’s inability to fix our refineries and end crude oil theft.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to reverse the increase in the pump price of fuel which increased from N159 to N170 per liter.

The party in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan, on Friday in Abuja, rejected the increase describing it as unbearable to Nigerians.

Ologbondiyan said it was also unacceptable given the prevailing economic crunch already confronting Nigerians.

He said that the PDP insisted that the increase in the pump price would worsen the already “suffocating economic” situation in the country.

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He added that such a hike would be an additional log tied on the economic neck of Nigerians.

Ologbondiyan said that the government had no justification to increase the cost of fuel to anything above N100 per liter, let alone N170.

He said that there was no such justification when there were practical options to maintain affordable prices given Nigeria’s production capacity and potentialities.

Ologbondiyan decried the continuous increase in the pump price of fuel.

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He added that government had yet to come clean on the parameters being used for the hike in prices vis-a-vis Nigeria’s production, export, and accruing revenue.

He said that energy officials had withheld the facts regarding the status and volume of oil production, sales, and accruing revenue.

He added that fraud in the management of the country’s oil resources was responsible for the high costs and hardship being suffered by millions of Nigerians who could barely afford their meals and basic necessities of life.

He called on President Muhammadu Buhari to take steps in the fulfillment of his campaign promise to revamp Nigeria refineries while urging him to get more competent hands to run the oil sector.


#Newsworthy…

EndSARs: All these wouldn’t have happened of you’ve spoken as ‘a father’ – PDP schools Buhari.

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The opposition party condemned the killing of citizens who were exercising their civil right at the Lekki Toll Gate.

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on Wednesday (today), urged President Muhammadu Buhari to take responsibility for the genocide that happened on Tuesday, October 20 in Lagos State.

PDP in a statement signed by its spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, charged the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Presidency to take responsibility for the shooting and reported killing of peaceful protesters by military operatives at the Lekki toll gate.

The opposition party said this in a statement signed by its spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, noted that a well-structured response from the President as the number one citizen of the nation, would have calmed frayed nerves and averted the crisis rocking the country at the moment.

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According to Ologbondiyan: “President Buhari is the Commander in Chief of the armed forces and the buck stops on his table.”

A part of the statement reads: “Our party is however shocked at President Buhari stance, particularly his inability to demonstrate the capacity for concerned, attentive and proactive governance and command structure, while the nation he presides over dangerously slides into anarchy.”

“A well-structured governance response from Mr President, as the father of the nation, would have calmed frayed nerves and averted the crisis, violence, deaths, destruction of property and the avoidable loses we are
witnessing today,” PDP reiterated.

Meanwhile, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, has called on the protesters of End SARS to continue with the movement despite the killing of demonstrators.


#Newsworthy…

Ebonyi LG Poll: PDP Wins All Chairmanship, Councillor Seat. [Nigeria]

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has won all the chairmanship and councilorship seats in the elections conducted in the 13 local government areas (LGAs) of Ebonyi State.

The Chairman of the Ebonyi State Independent Electoral Commission (EBSIEC), Jossy Eze, announced this on Sunday in Abakaliki, the state capital.

He disclosed that among the 13 political parties that participated in the polls conducted on Saturday, the candidates of the PDP won all the 13 LGAs and cleared the 171 wards in the state.

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Eze explained that EBSIEC adopted the chairmanship results for the 13 LGAs as announced by various LGA returning officers, as well as the councillorship results announced at the 171 electoral wards.

He commended all stakeholders involved in the conduct of the elections, especially the contestants for their spirit of sportsmanship.

The EBSIEC boss also thanked the state government “for not interfering in the conduct of the elections,” noting that this helped in making the polls credible, free, and fair.

He said, “The elections have been won and lost, but the victory is for everybody who participated in the elections.

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“The winners should carry everybody along and everyone should contribute to delivering democratic dividends to people at the grassroots, which the local government areas represent.”

In the poll conducted in Abakaliki LGA, Emmanuel Nwangele was declared the winner of the chairmanship position while Obiageri Oko-Enyim, Eni Uduma, Chinyere Nwogbaga, won the chairmanship seats in Afikpo North, Afikpo South, and Ebonyi LGAs respectively.

Similarly, Dr Nora Alo won the chairmanship seat in Ezza North LGA, while EBSIEC declared Kenneth Eze, Stephen Orogwu, Henry Eze, and Onyebuchi Ogbadu as the chairmen-elect in Ezza South, Ikwo, Ishiellu, and Ivo LGAs.

Others who won the chairmanship seats in the polls included Paul Nwogha (Izzi LGA), Chinyere Iyioku (Ohaozara LGA), Clement Odah (Ohaukwu LGA), and Felix Igboke (Onicha LGA).


#Newsworthy…

774,000 Jobs: Scheme Politically Motivated – PDP flare, makes rejection.

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Caucus in the House of Representatives has rejected the 774,000 jobs from the Special Public Works Programme of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.

The party, in a statement by the leader of the Caucus, Rep. Kingsley Chinda dissociated itself from the scheme, describing it as politically motivated.

He accused the APC-led government of misusing Nigeria’s scarce resources with the intention to expend N52 Billion under the guise of “creating employment” for only three months.”

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Read Full Statement Below:

The PDP Caucus in the House of Representatives has unequivocally rejected and dissociated itself from the Special Public Works Programme of the Buhari led APC Administration.

The caucus signed by its Chairman Kingsley Chinda (PDP Rivers) is strongly admonishing its members to ignore the letters written to Senators and House of Representatives members by APC State Coordinators of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) on behalf of the Minister of State (Labour and Employment), asking for the nominate of  30 and 25 individuals respectively from each Local Government Area in their constituency.

The statement reads ” The Caucus  considers this correspondence –  a condemnable attempt to bribe and hoodwink the institution of the National Assembly into complicity in the misapplication of Nigeria’s scarce resources for the implementation of a questionable, misguided, absurd and arguably unlawful scheme that alarmingly intends to expend N52 Billion under the guise of “creating employment” for only three months.”

“This regrettably is the most unsustainable employment scheme implemented by any government”

“While the caucus espouses the eradication of poverty and the creation of gainful and sustainable employment for the burgeoning population of unemployed Nigerians under this administration, it flies in the face of reason and common sense why this government insists on expending enormous resources for the implementation of a politically motivated transient Programme, dubiously shrouded as “employment” having no empowering or enduring benefit to ordinary Nigerians especially when several viable and veritable job and wealth-creating alternatives exist for the application of the funds.”

Rep Chinda said “Elementary division of the approved Programme budget of N52billion by 774 LGA’S in Nigeria implies expenditure of N67.184million (about $150,000) in each LGA of Nigeria which if applied judiciously and transparently will suffice for the establishment of a Viable Industry in each LGA”

“He added that for several years to come will provide gainful, enduring and sustainable direct and indirect employment for more than 100 skilled and unskilled poor unemployed Nigerians per LGA and provide an invaluable opportunity for future growth, skill acquisition and economic development.”

“New International Labour Organization (ILO) data reveals that Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMES) account for a staggering 70% of employment worldwide, as they constitute more than 90% of enterprises in all developing countries of the world and in addition to creating employment, they are the engines of economic growth and social development contributing up to 70% of the GDP of all countries in the world (ILO 2019).”

” According to World Bank estimates, 600 million jobs will be needed by 2030 to absorb the growing global workforce, which makes SME development a high priority for many governments around the world (The World Bank 2020) and should ordinarily be of extreme priority to the Nigerian Government”.

“From the estimated sum of N67.184million intended to be expended in each LGA of Nigeria, N1million per SME can be utilized for the creation and development of 67 SME’S per LGA who will engage in viable and lucrative businesses in the Agriculture, mining and other value chains that in most instances would be peculiar to each individual LGA and create gainful employment for up to 3 or more poor Nigerians per SME.”

“Even in emerging markets and developed countries of the world, Micro Enterprises which are usually categorized as having less than 10 employees constitute between 75% to 95% of businesses in the country (OECD 2020, The Company Warehouse n.d.), it can very confidently be inferred that these enterprises probably constitute up to 99% of the businesses in Nigeria”.

The creation and development of 67 SMES in each LGA will provide at least 134 actual sustainable jobs per LGA and 103,716 nationwide. The impact on Nigeria’s economy and GDP will be astronomical and will set Nigeria on the path to economic growth and development. The gains to Nigerians and Nigeria’s socio-economic growth and development can be sustainable and enduring if the Nigerian government (Executive and Legislature) tackles the three cardinal challenges faced by SME’S which according to the International Labour Organization (ILO 2019) include Regulatory Environment.

Access to Finance and Skills shortages by instituting, amending or repealing legislation to avoid complex rules and regulations that impede SME growth, consistent provision of significant financial intervention to SME’S and adequately funding NDE, SMEDAN and other relevant government agencies to continuously provide sublime entrepreneurship training and skill acquisition.

This is common sense and not rocket science! The inability of the Buhari-led APC administration to conceptualize viable ideas for the expenditure of N52billion for the benefit of ordinary poor Nigerians as has been eloquently elucidated by the PDP Caucus of the House of Representatives emphasizes the dearth in cerebral capacity and acumen within the administration to proffer solutions to the myriad of issues bedevilling the nation and informs its inability in more than 5 years to record significant achievements in the administration’s focal campaign tripod of Security, Corruption and Economy.

The Minister of State (Labour and Employment) further bolstered this obvious deficiency when in an attempt to explain and defend the administrations reasons for initiating the Special Public Works Programme, during his speech on Thursday 28 May 2020 displayed alarming ignorance in erroneously likening the Programme to initiatives utilized by industrialized nations like the United States, during the Great Depression and later adopted by Colonial African and Asian countries to tackle poverty and spur economic recovery, growth and development (Premium Times 2020).

“While the concept behind the Buhari administration’s Special Public Works Programme appears to be similar, fundamental differences exist in the initiation, implementation and duration when compared to the innovative programmes utilized by industrialized nations during the great depression and similar initiatives by African and Asian nations as alluded to by the Honourable Minister.”

“These programmes were usually instituted by formal legislation creating dedicated sources of revenue for engagement of poor unskilled workers in the development of specific significant public infrastructure for an extended period for the benefit of current and future generations.”

“The remuneration of workers was either equal to or more than the related countries minimum wage (depending on skillset) with extensive opportunities for skill acquisition while responsibility for implementation of such programmes was domiciled with the heads of the relevant agencies.”

“On April 8, 1935, the US Congress approved the Emergency Relief Appropriation Bill which funded the Works Progress Administration (WPA) one of the agencies under the New Deal programmes created by President Franklin Roosevelt to relieve the economic hardship of the Great Depression, this National Works Program employed more than 8.5 million people on 1.4 million public projects before it was disbanded in 1943 after 8 years (as shown in the Library of Congress 2020, Wikipedia n.d.). Many famous American Landmarks like The Camp David Presidential Estate in Maryland were built under the WPA (Wikipedia n.d.). Similar Public Works Programmes in China (Elegant, S., Ramzy, A. 2009), India, Ethiopia and Rwanda (Zimmermann, 2020) and recent collaborations between ILO and several countries around the world are instituted by formal legislation with dedicated consistent funding,  targeted at development of major public infrastructure for extended periods with extensive opportunities for skill acquisition and are either permanently part of the countries extant laws (like India) or have been in existence for decades (like China, Ethiopia and Rwanda).

” None of the countries mentioned by the Minister instituted Public works programmes for three months with no guaranteed consistent source of funding, no specific public infrastructure intended to be developed, no available opportunity for skill acquisition, no plan for implementation or coordination between MDA’S, no transparent identification of unskilled poor target population, politicisation of recruitment procedure and payment of remuneration less than the minimum wage of the country”

“The Buhari administration’s insistence that the Special Public Works Programme is an employment intensive scheme implies that the monthly stipend of N20,000 proposed by this administration as remuneration for target workers is a violation of the provisions of the National Minimum Wage Act 2019 enacted under this same administration which stipulates in Section 3(1-3) that every employer shall pay a minimum wage of not less than N30,000 to each worker every month, the minimum wage shall be the minimum total amount of money an employer of labour is required to pay the lowest-paid worker or employee monthly and any agreement for the payment of wages less than the national minimum wage are void.”

“The powers to grant exemptions conferred on the Minister of Labour and Employment in Section 4(2) of the act requires an order through the National Labour Advisory Council and published in the Federal Government Gazette taking into consideration reports from National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission or other such body that may make representation for such exemption”

“The PDP caucus is unaware of the constitution of the National Labour Advisory Council by this administration till date as is statutorily required and as was demanded for by the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) since 2018 or any subsisting order for exemption published in the Federal Government Gazzette which if in existence is another violation of the Act having not been issued through the National Labour Advisory Council. There is also no record of any report from the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission or any other body making representation to the Minister for exemption from the provisions of the National Minimum Wages Act.”

” The President who endorsed the payment of N20,000 for implementation of this programme, the Minister who has hijacked and is superintending its implementation and the NDE’s Director General who is the agency’s accounting officer is in violation of extant provisions of the National Minimum Wages Act and should be sanctioned according to provisions of Section 9 of the Act. Ironically the Act never envisaged that the Minister who in Sections 11-13 is saddled with the enforcement and monitoring of the implementation of the Act would be its chief violator.”

“The probable illegality of this Programme is further emphasized by certain actions of the Minister of State Labour and Employment which appear to be in violation of the NDE Act. All powers bestowed on the Minister in the Act are clearly on the substantive Minister, the Minister of States assertion about being the supervising Minister of the NDE is alien to the Act, any internal policy’s or directives within the Ministry flowing from Nigeria’s flawed Ministerial appointment system cannot supersede provisions of formal legislation”

“The initiation and appropriation of funds for the Special Works Programme under the NDE and not the Ministry was based on the statutory mandate of the agency and confers responsibility for implementation on the agency. According to Section 20 of the Procurement Act, the NDE Director-General is the agency’s accounting officer and will be held accountable for the expenditure of funds appropriated for the agency”

” The NDE DG’S public outcry about being oblivious of the processes instituted by the Minister of State for implementation of the Programme indicts the Minister who in excising the implementation of this Programme from the Management of NDE has arrogated powers to himself not conferred on him by the NDE Act and prevented the DG from performing his statutory functions and assuming responsibility for the expenditure of funds allocated to his agency.”

“In his 28 May 2020 speech, the Minister of States reference to provisions of Section 16(1) as justifying his creation of Special Committees known as State Selection Committees across the 36 states of the federation and the FCT is flawed and at variance with that provision of the Act which indicates the substantive minister can from time to time constitute a Special Committee of the Directorate and not special committees”

“Considering the cost implication of the creation of this Special Committee as stipulated in Section 16(2) of the Act which allows the NDE Board to prescribe allowances payable to organizations and persons elected as members of the Special Committee of the Directorate, the Act does not suggest the creation of several committees across the 36 states which will unreasonably incur expenditure on behalf of the government”

“The skewed composition of members of the State Selection Committees in favour of APC members, political thugs and party stalwarts confirms the suspicion that these State Selection Committees are conduits for misappropriation of Nigeria’s Commonwealth for settlement of APC members and for the prosecution of a false employment narrative and façade”

“The PDP Caucus of the House of Representatives as members of the National Assembly do not exonerate themselves from responsibility in the approval of funds for implementation of the misguided Special Public Works Programme and unreservedly apologize to Nigerians for the planned misapplication of their scarce resources”

“The recent revelations from the House of Representatives probe of the NDDC, the surreptitious introduction and questionable consideration of the controversial Water Resources Bill;  the attempt to railroad the House into the passage of the plagiarized Infectious Diseases Bill and the clandestine consideration and passage of the CAC Act are a few examples of the current dictatorial, biased and divisive modus operandi of the APC led 9th National Assembly were decisions are taken on behalf of members without their full knowledge or participation, issued hinging on statutory functions and privileges are concluded upon by individual members in leadership positions and were opposing views are unwelcome and stifled”.

“The Caucus has resolved to employ legislative and lawful processes including the institution of legal action were necessary to address any encroachment on the performance of our statutory functions and fundamental human rights.”

“The blatant and brazen disregard of a co-equal arm of government and elected representatives of the Nigerian people by the Minister of State who was grandstanding before the Nigerian people and the tacit approval of his actions by the President in authorizing his continued implementation of this skewed programme regardless of definite pronouncements by the National Assembly and apparent violations of legislation in this regard confirms the Buhari administration’s aversion to the Rule of law, constitutional provisions and institutions and disinterest in the wellbeing of the Nigerian people.”

“The ulterior motives of this administration in the implementation of this programme are obvious and no longer left to conjecture! This is an APC initiative intended to enrich APC stalwarts by creating opportunities to pilfer Nigeria’s resources under the guise of creating employment.”

“The intended allocation of slots to elected political officials as suggested by the Minister are as follows; Governors – 40, Senators – 30, House of Representatives Members – 25, Ministers – 50, House of Assembly Members – 20, Council Chairmen – 20, Religious organizations and organized bodies – 20, which gives a total of at most 205 in each LGA. What is the plan for engagement of the balance of about 795 individuals and how will ordinary Nigerians who are not stalwarts or members of the APC participate in this scheme when the State Selection Committees were selected by this APC administration and are composed of APC members?”

“Multiplication of N20,000 by 1000 persons in each of the 774 LGA’S of the country gives a total of N46.44billion as the actual amount to be utilized for the programme in three months leaving a balance of N5.56billion when deducted from the total approved sum of N52billion. Why is there a surplus of N5.56billion and what is this amount intended to be utilized for in three months when the CBN is supposed to make payments directly to the accounts of beneficiaries? ;

“Are the banks who are supposed to handle registration and collation of data of beneficiaries selected through a transparent process in line with extant laws of Nigeria or were they simply selected because they are cronies of the Minister of State and this administration? Is this administration admitting its inability to fight corruption and indicting its own agencies by inferring that transparency of the process can only be guaranteed through banks? ;

“Will the government be charged by the banks for the provision of services that should ordinarily be carried out by the relevant government agency? Are there really any public works identified to be maintained by 1000 persons in each LGA for three months when most LGA’S in Nigeria hardly have any infrastructure? The questions are innumerable!”

“This programme has obviously not been very well thought out and is destined for failure from the onset. It will, unfortunately, be a monumental waste of the nation’s resources and another sad footnote in the chequered history of the Buhari Administration! We admonish the government to jettison the planned three-month Special Public Works Programme for more sustainable alternatives that will utilize related funds to the benefit of Nigerians.”

“This is a defining moment for the APC leadership of the National Assembly whose inaction has elicited the appellation of a lame-duck legislature from the Nigerian populace who have lost faith in the ability of the 9th assembly to hold this administration accountable for their actions.”

“The only path to redemption for the 9th Assembly is to refuse to fund the programme subsequently until the executive engages the legislature appropriately.”

God Bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

REP. O. K. CHINDA.

(LEADER, PDP CAUCUS)

23rd  August, 2020


#Newsworthy..

[Lagos] PDP calls Sanwo olu to public debate on IGR.

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The Lagos State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has criticised the administration of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Following a meeting of the State Executive Committee, the party challenged the present administration to a public debate on the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and acclaimed expenditures of the state government.

According to the State Publicity Secretary, Taofik Gani, this formed part of the resolutions of the party reached at the end of its meeting held on Monday.

It faulted the ruling APC over purported claims that it has given advice and progressive suggestions to the governor, both privately and publicly in the interest of the resident.

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The opposition party accused the APC of failing and extorting the people, describing the party as “very arrogant and incompetent,” as well as not fit and proper for the present challenges in the state.

It also resolved to take up the ruling party – vote for vote, and strategy for strategy ahead of the forthcoming bye-elections and the general elections in 2023.

The PDP stressed that the inadequacies identified in the Sanwo-Olu led administration would be its winning asset going into any future election in the state.

It noted that those aspiring for elective posts would commence their screening on Tuesday, saying the PDP remained resolute as a united party to winning the bye-elections in the state.

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The meeting also congratulated the newly set-up South West Caretaker Committee, saying it has confidence in the committee to steer the geo-political zone of the party to electoral victories.

It assured aspirants in the bye-elections that there would be a level playing field and urged them to accept the results of the screening and primaries in the spirit of sportsmanship.

The party also asked them to direct all valid information concerning the PDP to the officially recognised party secretariats at the state and local government area (LGA) levels.

It warned individuals who act reactionary, especially those coming from outside the state to steer clear of Lagos or be publicly exposed and disgraced.


#Newsworthy…

OndoDecide’20: Eyitayo Jegede picks Ikengboju Gboluga as running mate

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The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State, Eyitayo Jegede has picked Hon. Ikengboju Gboluga as his running mate.

Mr. Jegede made the announcement via his Twitter page on Tuesday.

“I am pleased to announce that Hon. Ikengboju Gboluga will be working with me in seeking your mandate in the October 10, 2020 governorship election”, he said.

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Hon. Gboluga is a member of the House of Representatives representing Okitipupa/Irele Federal Constituency.

This comes barely 24 hours after the governorship candidate of the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) in Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi, selected a running mate for the October 10, 2020 election.

Ajayi who is the current Deputy Governor of the state picked Gboye Adegbenro as his running mate.

The deputy governor had last week officially defected from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to ZLP in Akure, the Ondo state capital.


#Newsworthy…

EdoDecide’20: We did not cause violence at PDP Campaign – APC denies

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Ahead of the September 19 governorship election in Edo State, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has denied its involvement in the violence that occurred during a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) rally.

Speaking during a press conference in Benin City, the Edo State Capital, APC candidate, Osagie Ize-Iyamu distanced his party members from the incident.

Ize-Iyamu explained that the party’s campaign across the state has been generally peaceful and that his party has no reason to encourage violence in an election it is confident of winning.

“We heard of so much violence during the PDP rally in Etsako-West and they are accusing us of the destruction and shooting, saying APC is causing trouble.

Edo APC candidate, Osagie Ize-Iyamu speaks of the violence in Etsako-West Local Government Area of the state on August 13, 2020. (Noble Reporters Media / Adigun Michael Olamide)

“We did not go near their activities, we did not destroy any of their billboards and have no hands in any of the violence that took place at their rally.

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“We don’t believe in violence and have no intention to encourage our members to be violent,” the APC candidate said.

He called on law enforcement agencies to rise to the occasion and bring perpetrators of electoral violence to book.

This comes two days after armed thugs purportedly stormed the venue of the PDP campaign in Apana community in Etsako West Local Government Area of the state.

No life was lost as security operatives were able to disperse the thugs to enable the PDP to conduct its rally.


#Newsworthy…

OndoDecide’20: Days after leaving PDP, Ajayi defects to ZLP.

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The Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi, has officially defected to the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP).

He made the announcement on Friday at a colourful ceremony held at the state secretariat of the party in Akure, the state capital.

Addressing a crowd of party faithful at the event, the deputy governor said he was happy to join ZLP and was confident that the party would win the forthcoming governorship election.

He appealed to all loyalists of the party not to exercise any anxiety but be united and work for the party’s success in the poll.

Ajayi was received into the ZLP fold by the state party chairman, Joseph Akinlaja, and other leaders of the party in the state.

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In an earlier remark, Akinlaja told the deputy governor that the ZLP members in Ondo were happy to receive him and his teeming supporters across the state into the party.

He was full of confidence that with the governorship election conducted under a free and fair atmosphere, ZLP would win convincingly.

The party chairman also disclosed that the official declaration of Ajayi as the ZLP governorship election would take place later.

Ajayi’s defection to the ZLP, which is in line with his resolve to contest the October 10 governorship election in the state, has put an end to the speculations that Ajayi planned to leave the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

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In June, the deputy governor left the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the PDP, where he contested for the party’s governorship primary election.

He was, however, defeated by Mr Eyitayo Jegede who won the PDP’s governorship ticket, prompting Ajayi to leave for the ZLP to actualise his ambition of becoming the governor of the state.

Although some of his supporters agitated that Ajayi be picked as Jegede’s running mate, that was not the case as another person was chosen for the position.

The deputy governor’s exit from the APC followed a disagreement between him and the state governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, who has since emerged as the APC flagbearer for a second term in office.


#Newsworthy…

OndoDecide’20: Ajayi’s exit will not affect our victory – PDP

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The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has reacted to the exit of the Ondo Deputy Governor, Agboola Ajayi, from the party.

The PDP noted that Mr. Ajayi’s exit will not affect the party’s victory in the October 10, governorship election.

Mr. Ajayi on Monday resigned his membership from the PDP.

The PDP, in a statement by its Publicity Secretary, Kennedy Preretei, in Akure, the state capital, reads, “The Peoples Democratic Party in Ondo State has received the exit of Deputy Governor of Ondo State, Agboola Ajayi from the Party, from just online publications.

“As a party, we are have not received his letter of resignation but we wish him well in his political journey.

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“Agboola Ajayi joined our party on June 22, 2020, and participated at the Governorship Primaries having received a waiver from the National Secretariat of the Party.”

According to the statement, the exit of Agboola from the PDP will not affect the prospects of the party in winning the October Gubernatorial Elections this year.

The statement concludes: “The PDP remains solid, strong and more determined than ever before to win the forthcoming Governorship elections with a credible and competent candidate in the person of Eyitayo Jegede, (SAN).”

Mr. Ajayi in his resignation letter said his decision was a result of the call by the majority of the good people of Ondo State to give hope to the hopeless, provide credible and purposeful leadership in the State.

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However, the chairman of the PDP in Apoi Ward II of Ese-Odo Local Government Area, Festus Oboro, is said to have acknowledged the receipt of the resignation letter on the 9th of August, 2020.

Hon. Ajayi left the APC and rejoined the PDP on June 21, 2020, at his home town, Kiribo.

He contested the governorship primary election in PDP but lost to Eyitayo Jegede.

The deputy governor in his latest communique reassured his supporters to remain focused and committed as he will be announcing his next line of action shortly.


#Newsworthy…