Tag Archives: politician

We had an agreement, don’t forget – SGF remind IGP


The Southeast Governors Forum has told the Inspector General of Police, IGP Adamu Muhammed, to revert to the agreement they had on community policing.

The SGF issued a communique on Sunday which accuses the IGP of not sticking to the agreement they had when he paid a visit to their region.

The communique was read by the Chairman of the forum, Governor David Umahi, who revealed that state assemblies have been asked to enact laws to give legal backing to their security plan.

The communique reads: “The recent communication from the Inspector General of Police to our Governors on community Policing composition is not in keeping with the agreement we reached with him during his last visit to the South East.

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“In the circumstance, we cannot begin implementation of it until the programme reflects our earlier agreement. The South East Governors and their leaders request the IGP to revert to our initial agreement reached on community policing at Enugu.

“The forum agreed that all South East States Houses of Assembly should commence the process of enacting the state security laws in line with the South East joint security programme.”


#Newsworthy…

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Abike Dabiri-Erewa fight with Pantami get Messier. ‘Dirty Game’


After a series of confrontations between Nigeria’s communication and digital economy minister Isa Pantami and chairman of Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM) Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the fight over an office space took another turn late Sunday.

The disagreement between both government officials became public after NiDCOM published a video in February on its Twitter and accused Pantami of masterminding the eviction of its staff from office space at the Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) building in Abuja.

NCC is under the control of the ministry Pantami heads.

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Dabiri-Erewa doubled down on that claim in an interview. The interview was aired on Friday and was later published.

But Pantami said on Twitter on Sunday that he was responsible for the eviction, claiming that the media reports did not tell “a true story.”

He has since deleted the tweet.

Dabiri-Erewa, however, insisted that Pantami was to be blamed for the problem, stopping just short of calling the minister a liar.

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She accused the minister of disrespecting her because she is a woman.

“An Islamic scholar should not lie Hon Minister,” Dabiri-Erewa tweeted, “You did that to me cos I am a woman. Your disrespect for women is legendary.”

“Left the ugly incident behind me since Feb. But pls release all our office equipment. Public office is transient.”

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She asked the minister to “tell us where he locked up our equipment and release them. After the lockdown, we will settle for some options we already have.”

The missing properties, NiDCOM spokesman Abdur-Rahman Balogun said, include two units of single face data ports, 24 port patch panel, Mikrotik RB 750G router, Mikrotik cloud router switch, two Headsets with microphones, two Digital PABX, 4u Server racks, Patch cables, HP desk jet 1012 all in one printer, files and documents.

NCC in a statement by its spokesman Henry Nkemadu dismissed the claims on Sunday and said the report of forceful eviction was not true.

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Pantami in a tweet thereafter accused NiDCOM chairman of telling a “Big fat lie” and did not provide any explanation of events that led to the alleged eviction. He also did not speak on the allegation that NiDCOM’s working equipment was locked up in NCC building

The had since then deleted the tweet where he spoke on the issue, accusing NiDCOM chairman of telling lies.


#Newsworthy…

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Tension as Buhari probe office of Kyari, Osinbajo, Others


Presidency aides silent amid intrigues
A wave of apprehension is sweeping through Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) as President Muhammadu Buhari begins a probe into the office of the late Chief of Staff Abba Kyari. The investigation may lead to all appointments and approvals made by Kyari without Buhari’s permission being cancelled.

This is as pundits said the volte face by the president in directing a reversal of over 100 decisions by Kyari could create more problems than it is trying to solve.

Also, a source within the Presidential Villa suggested that the power block that produced the new Chief of Staff Ibrahim Gambari might be the force fighting back.
Sleep might have already begun eluding many officials in the MDA’s on account of contracts okayed without Buhari’s approval. If this is what the president is targeting with a view to shoring up his sagging profile, analysts say trouble looms for those who cut illegal deals with the late CoS.

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Though no reason was given for the president’s action, reports suggested no less than 150 memos that didn’t have his authorisation may have been uncovered.
Special Adviser on Media and Publicity Femi Adesina declined to confirm or refute the report. “I’ve seen your text. I’ve seen your text,” he simply said and ended the call. Also, Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity Garba Shehu did not reply to a text message seeking a confirmation on the development.

Sources told NobleReporters yesterday that the directive might just be a continuation of the bickering that produced a deep crack within the ranks of the president’s men last February.

The first sign that all was not okay within Buhari’s inner cabinet emerged in December 2019 when National Security Adviser Babagana Monguno wrote a memo to the president alleging interference by Abba Kyari. He accused the late Kyari of usurping presidential powers and directed service chiefs to ignore instructions by the latter.

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Monguno’s account of a connection between Kyari’s alleged ‘meddlesomeness’ and an acute spectre of insecurity that had gripped the country was contained in a series of confidential circulars he addressed to top administration officials on national security.

The NSA also accused the chief of staff of sidestepping the president’s directive, to impose his own decision for implementation; a claim some analysts said was all but a direct accusation of treason against Kyari.

The revelations, first published by an online portal, appeared to undercut an integral aspect of the president’s response to critics: that there is unity among security chiefs towards the common interest of defeating terrorists and armed bandits, rather than an admission of clumsiness or crack in his team.

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In media interviews after the memo leaked, Chief of Army Staff Tukur Buratai said insecurity was being confronted across board in the Buhari administration. But Monguno’s memo showed he and other service chiefs had been taking controversial orders from Kyari, despite warnings from the NSA that such a practice was not only unconventional but also in violation of the constitution.

The first signs of war between the NSA and the CoS, two of Buhari’s most powerful aides, was the open letter which revealed both men locked in a bitter confrontation amid raging insecurity.

Perhaps the most potent of allegations raised against the chief of staff by the NSA at the time was that he had been flagrantly discarding decisions already taken by the president and imposing his own recommendation(s).Observers saw this as a jarring allegation bordering on treasonable felony.

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Since Buhari settled down in office in 2015, Kyari’s role as the chief of staff made him, perhaps, the most-courted associate of the president, arguably more than the president’s wife and other family members.

The chief of staff’s influence exposed him to some of the worst scandals of the administration. Shortly after telecoms giant, MTN, was slammed with a record fine in 2015, Kyari was the one who allegedly played the middleman in negotiating the fines, a role that threw up allegations of fraud when the scandal broke.

An MTN official who allegedly played a key role in the negotiation was said to have lost her job amid the controversy. But Kyari held on to his position, going forward to take part in bigger deals on government’s behalf. Kyari’s influence was also a matter of serious concern for Aisha Buhari, the president’s wife, who had repeatedly lashed out at the chief of staff for allegedly ‘caging’ her husband and making her redundant in the government.

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Last November, another online newspaper reportedly obtained documents showing Kyari overriding Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on a crucial decision on RUGA projects, a series of economic palliatives designed to curtail the herdsmen crisis. It was unclear when President Buhari began his friendship with Kyari, but there is little question that it remained deep and robust since 2015.

When the president was re-elected in 2019, he issued a directive to all his appointees to clear files and memos through Kyari on any matter that required presidential attention. The president did not even single out his vice president as an exception to that restriction.

Monguno’s argument in his memo was that the chief of staff did not swear to a constitutional oath and should, therefore, not be seen issuing directives that carry serious implications for the nation. When it comes to national security, Kyari’s job “stops at conveying Mr. President’s written directives,” the NSA argued.

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Kyari, according to those conversant with the inner workings of Aso Villa, had his hand in every pie, because he was “leveraging his sound education, brilliant intellect and experience in bureaucracy and business.”

One of the areas, which was used to criticise Kyari’s competence, was his stint at the failed Africa International Bank (AIB), which he presided over. His political opponents tried to define the late CoS as the architect of the negative public perception of the Buhari administration. They also contended that although every government throughout history is wont to harbour a kitchen cabinet, caucus or cabal, “the remarkable distinction is whether the kitchen cabinet is public-spirited or self-centered.”


#Newsworthy…

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Labour Minister hint on Presidency interest come 2023


The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige, has said he reserves the right to contest for Senate or presidency in 2023.

Ngige made the remark while dismissing reports that he was interested in contesting for the Anambra governorship election billed for next year.

He spoke in his hometown of Alor, Idemili South Local Government Area of Anambra State, on Sunday.

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Ngige, who was a former one term governor of the state, however, declared that he has no interest in becoming governor because he’s on a national assignment as Minister.

Ngige said: “Yes, there have been speculations that I am eyeing the governorship of Anambra State. They have written about it in a lot of media. I am a politician. They have the right to speculate on my next move. My next move is very vast.

“Elections will come in 2023, I have a right to vie for any position. I can vie for Senate.

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“I can vie for president if I so wish. Election will be coming in Anambra State, latest November 2021 to elect a successor to Obiano. I am not disqualified. I have a right to say I can run.

“I don’t have interest for now in Anambra governorship because I am on a national assignment.”


#Newsworthy…

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Solomon Ogunji, Abia Commissioner is Dead


Abia State Government on Sunday announced the demise of its Commissioner for Environment, Solomon Ogunji.

The State Commissioner for Information, John Kalu in a statement said Ogunji died on Saturday after a brief illness related to high blood pressure.

“It is with great sadness and a deep sense of loss that we announce the demise of a member of Abia State Executive Council and the Honorable Commissioner for Environment, Dr Solomon Ogunji, who passed away on Saturday, 23rd May, 2020, at the Abia State University Teaching Hospital, Aba, after a brief illness related to high blood pressure.

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“Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu, who received the sad news with shock yesterday has personally communicated and condoled with the family of the bereaved and is currently in mourning,” the statement read in part.

Kalu therefore prayed that God will give the family of Ogunji the fortitude to bear the loss and rest his soul in the bosom of the Lord.


#Newsworthy…

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Just in: Fawad is just Nobody – Mufti says.


Central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee Chairman Mufti Muneeb-ur-Rehman has said that Fawad Hussain Chaudhry is just nobody and he should not interfere in affairs of the Ruet Committee.

Talking to the media after announcing sighting of the Shawwal moon on Saturday evening, Mufti Muneeb said that Prime Minister Imran Khan should take notice of Fawad Chaudhry’s interference in affairs of the Ruet Committee. He said that Fawad Chaudhry has his own deprivations and frustrations. He said that he condemns Fawad Chaudhry’s interference in Sharia-related matters. He asked Fawad Chaudhry to tell the nation on oath how many prayers he offered and how many times he had been on fasting in the holy month of Ramazan. He said there should be a ban on Fawad Chaudhry and he should not be allowed to interfere in affairs of other departments.

Fawad Hussain Chaudhry, the federal minister for science and technology, said earlier on Saturday that all Muslim countries, even Bangladesh, would celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr on Sunday and Pakistan would be the only country in the world to celebrate the religious festival on Monday if the moon is not sighted on Saturday evening.

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Giving scientific data, Fawad told a press conference: “The Shawwal moon was born on May 22 at 10:30pm and will be visible between 7:36pm and 8:15pm tonight in Badin, Thatta and Pasni.”

Greeting the nation on the eve of Eid-ul-Fitr, Mufti Muneeb said people should be careful and greet each other verbally instead of embracing keeping in view the coronavirus outbreak in the country.


#Newsworthy…

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Breaking: Biden’s opposing attorney drop Tara’s case


The attorney working with Tara Reade, the former Joe Biden Senate staffer who alleged he sexually assaulted her in the 1990s, said Friday he is no longer representing her, just two weeks after he first began working with her.

Douglas Wigdor said in a statement the decision to drop Reade came on Wednesday of this week, and that it wasn’t a reflection on the veracity of her claims. But he offered no specifics on why he and his firm are dropping her.

Wigdor said he and others at his firm still believe Reade’s allegation against Biden: that he digitally penetrated her and groped her in the basement of a Capitol Hill office building when she worked as a low-level staffer in his Senate office in the spring of 1993. Biden has vehemently denied her claims, and multiple current and former Biden staffers have said they have no recollection of such an incident.

In his statement, Wigdor said his firm believed that Reade has been “subjected to a double standard” in the media and that much of the coverage surrounding her biography had little to do with her claims against Biden. The news was first reported by The New York Times.

Wigdor fielded numerous media questions in recent weeks surrounding inconsistencies in Reade’s biography and the legal challenges she’s faced. This week, The Associated Press and other media outlets published extensive biographies of Reade, revealing she appears to have exaggerated her educational achievements, was mired in endless financial difficulties and faced frequent lawsuits with individuals who said she defrauded them or failed to pay bills.

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Defense lawyers in Monterey County this week began investigating whether Reade committed perjury when she testified under oath that she had a college degree from Antioch, as first reported Friday by The New York Times. Antioch University told the AP that Reade never obtained a diploma from the school, and Reade herself could not produce evidence of the degree she claims to have earned there.

Lawyer Roland Soltesz peppered her with questions about her background before she qualified as an expert witness on domestic violence in a 2018 attempted murder trial. She also touted her experience in Biden’s office, saying she served as a legislative aide and helped work on the Violence Against Women’s Act, he said. His client was convicted and is now serving a potential life sentence.

“She was a good witness,” Soltesz said. “She came across as believable.”

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Wigdor is well known for his work on prominent cases related to sexual harassment and assault. He represented six women who accused Harvey Weinstein, the disgraced Hollywood producer, of sexual misconduct. He has also represented a number of Fox News employees in cases alleging gender and racial discrimination at the network. And he’s a frequent political donor, giving tens of thousands to Democratic politicians in New York and about $55,000 to Donald Trump in 2016, according to Federal Election Commission records.

Wigdor’s firm originally said in a statement that they had taken on Reade as a client because they believed “every survivor has the right to competent counsel.” Wigdor told the AP at the time that he thought Reade had struggled to find a lawyer to represent her because many attorneys in his space “tend to be Democrats or liberals,” and Reade has accused the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee of sexual assault.


#Newsworthy…

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Joe Biden keep mute on whether Klobuchar would run alongside him.

Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden is joined on stage by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) during a campaign event on March 2, 2020 in Dallas, Texas. Klobuchar has suspended her campaign and endorsed Biden before the upcoming Super Tuesday Democratic presidential primaries. Ron Jenkins–Getty Images


Joe Biden said Thursday he knows what qualities he’s looking for in his vice-presidential pick but stressed that he was far from a decision.

“I honest to God don’t know who — I promise you — right now,” he said on CBS’s “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.”

Asked about reporting that Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota had agreed to be vetted, Biden said “no one’s been vetted yet by the team.”

Biden said the lawyers working on the search are wrapping up a process of reaching out to a “preliminary list of people” to “ask them general questions” including “what are they interested in, why would they be interested in the job or not interested in the job.”

Pressed by Colbert on whether Klobuchar is on his short list, Biden responded that she’s “first rate” but said he wasn’t “getting into” where she stands in the process.

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He described vetting, which he underwent in 2008 to become Barack Obama’s running mate, as “a very invasive process” of looking at past votes, financial statements and health records. He suggested that one reason why he wouldn’t volunteer a list of names under consideration is “because if someone’s not chosen the presumption is not necessarily true that there must be something wrong.”

Biden said that as he considers his choice, he is keeping in mind the advice he received from an Obama aide. “The best way to put it is what one of Barack’s close advisers, who’s also a friend, said, ‘think to yourself: You’ve got an important decision, who’s the last person you want in the Oval Office to talk to you?’”

Biden has said he will choose a woman to be his vice president.

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Others believed to be in contention are California Senator Kamala Harris, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren and Nevada Senator Catherine Cortez Masto. And earlier Thursday, Florida Representative Val Demings said she was on Biden’s “short list.”

New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham said she has been asked for references, and Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer told NBC’s “Today Show” on Tuesday that she’d had opening conversations with the campaign about joining the ticket.


#Newsworthy…

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PDP publicity secretary in Imo resigns.


Damian Opara, the Publicity Secretary of the Imo state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party has resigned from the party.

Opara resigned on Thursday in a letter he addressed to the state chairman of the party.

The politician who thanked the party leadership for the opportunity to serve as its spokesperson for four years did not disclose the reason for his resignation.

The two-paragraph letter which was sighted by our correspondent reads, “With honour, I, Hon Damian Opara, the State Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Imo State chapter, with due respect, resign as the State Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Imo State chapter with immediate effect.

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“I thank the party for the opportunity given to me to serve as the Imo state chapter publicity Secretary.”

While he didn’t disclose his next political move, his allies said that he had joined the All Progressives Congress.

One of the aides of the state governor, Modestus Nwamkpa, said that Opara, has joined APC.

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He said, “The State Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Hon Damian Opara, has resigned. He is now a son of the APC.”

Opara’s resignation came a few months after the PDP Chairman in the state, Charles Ezekwem, resigned.


#Newsworthy…

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HURIWA attack Buhari over systemic appointments of Fulani, Kanuri and…


A Civil Rights advocacy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has expressed apprehensions over the lopsided appointment by the President Muhammadu Buhari-led federal government.

HURIWA condemned the continued domination of strategic appointments by Hausa, Fulani, and Kanuri extraction under Buhari’s administration.

It stressed that due to the deep-seated Northern Muslims domination of all strategic federal appointments under Buhari including the skewed appointments in the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and the Federal Inland Revenue Services (FIRS), the next government may need to “convoke a year-long National Constitutional Conference to try to mend the deeply broken fences.”

A statement sent by HURIWA’s National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko reads: “The current Government under President Muhammadu Buhari has skewed all strategic appointments to favour his cronies and political affiliates in the Core Moslem North and a sprinkling of some Christian Northerners but millions of Northerners are left marginalised just like the heavily marginalised Southerners under the current administration.

“However the impact is felt more in the far North whereby due to a large-scale state of wars by armed hoodlums many poor individuals in places like Sokoto and Katsina States have since the last two years migrated into Niger Republic for succour and security whilst only a few Northern elites with assets offshore are the few controlling the national assets under the watch of the selective administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

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“Last year, NobleReporters learnt that Many Nigerians residing in Katsina State have fled to neighbouring Niger Republic to escape persistent attacks by kidnappers and bandits. In addition to evacuating their family members, the Nigerians are also acquiring plots and building houses in Niger Republic’s towns of Maradi and Dan Issa. This is even as some of them have obtained resident permits, allowing them to stay in the West African country.”

HURIWA blamed the unequal redistribution of national wealth for the total state of anarchy in the North.


#Newsworthy…

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PDP says Buhari and Boss Mustapha are Nigeria’s major confusion.


The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has said that the broadcast delivered yesterday by SGF Boss Mustapha is causing confusion in the polity.

The broadcast which was to be delivered by President Buhari was done by Boss Mustapha which saw him declare an extension to the lockdown in Lagos, Abuja, Ogun and Kano.

In a statement issued by the PDP spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party stated that the power to declare a lockdown is not vested in proxies.

The statement reads: “Our party points out that nowhere in our laws are the powers to broadcast Presidential executive orders to declare curfew and restriction of movements vested in the Office of the SGF.

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“The action of the SGF has brought serious confusion in the polity regarding the legality or otherwise of the directives contained in the SGF’s announcement.

“Such powers are vested in the person and office of Mr. President and not exercisable by proxy, directly or indirectly; which makes the action of the SGF a recipe for serious constitutional crisis in our country.

“Our nation is a state governed by dictates of the law, particularly in the exercise of powers vested in statutory offices, especially that of the President.

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“The PDP holds that the announcement by the SGF is, therefore, another manifestation of abuse of our statutory offices arising from the abdication of responsibilities by President Buhari since the last five years, which had also become more pronounced in this fight against COVID-19.

“Our party, therefore, invites Mr. President to end the confusion in the polity, arising from the action of the SGF, by immediately addressing Nigerians in his official capacity to fulfill the demands of our laws in respect of the necessary protocols on restrictions and other management procedures in the fight against the spread of COVID-19 pandemic in our country.”


#Newsworthy…

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CoS: Former UN Sec-Gen happy with Gambari’s appointment


Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon has described the appointment of Prof Ibrahim Gambari as Chief of Staff to President Muhammadu Buhari as a great asset to Nigeria and Africa ”in a broader sense.”

A statement by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media, Mallam Garba Shehu, said Ki-moon’s message was contained in a letter of congratulations addressed to Prof Gambari.

According to the statement, in the letter dated May 18, the former UN Secretary-General wrote: ‘I would like to sincerely congratulate you on your recent appointment as Chief of Staff to H.E. President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria.

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”Your appointment is a great asset not to the President of Nigeria but also your country Nigeria and Africa in a broader sense.

”I am confident that your invaluable experience gained while serving the UN, with various important leadership roles, will help your leadership in addressing these challenging times caused by COVID-19.

”I shared this good news with the former Minister Yoo Chong-ha, your good friend and former Foreign Minister of Korea. He sends his warmest congratulations to you.”

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The statement also said the UK High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, had also expressed delight with the appointment of Prof Gambari as the Chief of Staff to the President.

The statenebt stated that the High Commissioner said the Mission looks forward to working closely with the Chief of Staff on ”our shared agenda in the challenging COVID-19 times.”


#Newsworthy…

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Presidency wants Senate to approve Lamido as SEC DG.


President Muhammadu Buhari has written formally to the Senate for the confirmation of Mr. Lamido Yuguda as the new Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

He is also requesting the upper chamber to confirm three nominees as full-time commissioners of the Commission.

The president’s request was contained in a letter written to the President of the Senate, Dr Ahmad Lawan, and read at plenary on Tuesday.

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The letter read in part: “Pursuant to Section 3 and 5(1) of the Investment and Securities Act 2007, I write to request for confirmation by the Senate, the appointment of the following four nominees as Director General and Commissioners of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Their CVs are attached herewith.

“Others for confirmation are: Mr. Lamido A. Yuguda, Director General; Reginald C. Karausa, full-time Commissioner; Ibrahim D. Boyi, full-time Commissioner; and Mr. Obi Joseph, full-time Commissioner.”


#Newsworthy…

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Infectious diseases bill: Gbajabiamila faces impeachment threat. [Nigeria]



As controversy continues to trail the Infectious Disease Control Bill before the House of Representatives, the Speaker, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila’s seat seems to be hanging in the balance as forces not comfortable with his recent style of leadership are said to be moving against him.

NobleReporters gathered that the recent face-off between the leadership of the House led by Gbajabiamila, the state governors and former Speaker of the House and now governor of Sokoto state, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal may cause Gbajabiamila his seat if not properly handled.

According to the source, the governors who are allegedly not happy with the way the House of Representatives responded to their advice that the Infectious Disease Control Bill be “stepped down” until proper consultations are made, are mobilising against the Speaker who is the lead sponsor of the Bill.

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The source further disclosed that the governors at a recent meeting in Abuja had “secretly” agreed to push for the Speaker’s impeachment through their various representatives at the green chamber.

He said some of the governors openly accused the Speaker of being “arrogant” in his approach to “national issues” a development they said should be checked to maintain the cordial relationship between the Legislature and the Executive.

Speaking further, the source stated the governor of Sokoto state, Hon. Aminu Tambuwal’s loyalists who felt slighted that the governor was accused of misleading and misguiding other members of the Governors Forum are also “spoiling for war”.

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He said some members of the House already have grudges against the Speaker over allegation of overbearing especially in handling the donation to the fight against the coronavirus also known as COVID-19.

It was also alleged that the Speaker has been making frantic efforts to get his political godfather to rally the governors to shelve their plans and create an avenue for dialogue.

It would be recalled that the governors operating under the aegis of Nigeria Governors Forum, NGF had recently urged the National Assembly to step down the proposed Infectious Disease Control Bill, 2020 introduced by the House of Representatives until an appropriate consultative process is held.

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Chairman of the Forum, Dr. Kayode Fayemi who is also the Governor of Ekiti state had in Communiqué at the end of the Forum’s eight teleconference meeting added that the consultation must include a public hearing to gather public opinion and concerns on the proposed Bill.

However, responding to the advice by the Governor’s Forum, the House of Representatives said it does not legislate for the states and therefore should not be “cowed” from doing its Constitutional responsibility.

The spokesman of the House, Hon. Benjamin Kalu in a statement regretted that Hon. Aminu Tambuwal who is a former Speaker of the House stood a better position to rightly inform the Governors Forum but failed to do so.

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Hon. Kalu went ahead to call for the disqualification of Tambuwal who is also the Governor of Sokoto state from a proposed consultative meeting with the Nigeria Governors Forum accusing him of being biased towards the Infectious Disease Control Bill insisting that Tambuwal misled and misguided the Forum into asking the House to step down the Bill.

“We assume that his position was informed by his well-known personal and partisan opposition to the emergence of the current leadership of House led by Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila considering his obvious stance in 2015 and 2019,” he stated.

He said that the House of Representatives would proceed with the legislative work on the controversial Infectious Disease Control Bill because according to him, the House of Representatives and National Assembly in general are not under the control of any state governor.

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Also the House of Representatives has insisted on the consideration of the contentious Control of Infectious Diseases Bill explaining that it has not been stopped by a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.

In a statement yesterday, he House regretted that a section of the media had erroneously reported that the Federal High Court in its ruling on suit no FHC/ABJ/CS/463/2020 last week had stopped the further consideration of the bill.

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The House spokesman explained that though the applicant, through a motion ex parts, had sought an order of the court suspending the consideration of the bill, the court declined to grant the reliefs sought by the applicant so as to allow the respondent to appear before it and enter a defence.

When contacted, the Chief Press Secretary to the Speaker, Mr. Lanre Lasisi asked for time to comment on the matter but never did at the time of going to press. Also the spokesperson of the Nigeria Governors Forum, Abdulrazaq Barkindo could not be reached.


#Newsworthy…

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Just in: PDP fix Edo primary election date. [Nigeria]


Members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Edo State will on June 23 and 24 choose a candidate for the state governorship election scheduled to hold in September.

The party stated this in a timetable and schedule of activities signed by its National Organising Secretary, Col. Austin Akubundu (retd.)

The document also showed that the sale of expression of interest and nomination forms will begin on Friday, May 29, while June 2 has been set aside as the last day for the submission of the forms.

Read Also: If I decide to make my son ‘chief of staff’ no one can stop me – Gov. Akeredolu

The party will screen candidates for the primary election on Thursday June 4, while Saturday June 6 is the date fixed for the consideration of appeals emanating from the screening exercise.

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Ward congresses to elect a three-member ad hoc ward delegates will hold on June 9 and appeals arising from the ward congresses will be entertained on Friday, June 19.

The party further stated in the document that Local government congresses to elect one national delegate and persons with disability per local government is scheduled to hold on June 16.


#Newsworthy…

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COVID-19: PDP give Buhari govt 2 days ultimatum to find missing Chinese doctors. [Nigeria]


The main opposition, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has given the President Muhammadu Buhari government “a 48-hour ultimatum to declare the whereabouts of the medical team from China who were brought in purportedly to assist the nation in its fight against the spread of the COVID-19.”

In a statement shared on its Twitter handle on Saturday night, the main Party was reacting to a declaration by the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, that he cannot account for the whereabouts of the Chinese team.

“More so, the minister’s statement had heightened apprehensions in the public space that the Chinese team, whose identity and activities have been shrouded in secrecy, might have been brought in by a certain cabal for another purpose outside the general public good,” the PDP said.

COVID-19: FFK question where about, mission of Chinese doctors. [Nigeria]

The PDP said it was suspicious, creepy and weird that Dr. Ehanire, who oversees health matters in the country and had repeatedly assured that the Chinese were brought to render medical services and trainings; “and even went personally to receive them at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja on April 8, 2020, in an elaborately publicized event, can no longer account for the team.”

The party said it was worried that the Buhari government was not telling Nigerians the truth, and is “playing politics with the lives of our citizens and health safety of our nation.”

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The main opposition said it holds that the government’s inability to account for the Chinese team amounts to direct betrayal of public trust, “which has heightened fears of conspiracies by certain unpatriotic interests in the APC and its administration to compromise the health architecture of our nation and expose our citizens to danger.”

COVID-19: FG confirm all Chinese doctors missing. [Nigeria]

“Nigerians can recall how the Federal Government had failed to respond to demands by our party and other well-meaning Nigerians for the particulars of the members of the team, their medical status, scope of operation, detailed itinerary within our country as well as the safety of the equipment they brought into our nation.

“Our party had expressed worry over scary reports of escalation of the scourge in certain countries reportedly after the arrival of Chinese medical personnel in those countries and insisted that the @OfficialAPCNg administration should be held responsible should there be any sudden upsurge in COVID-19 infection and deaths in our country, with the arrival of the said Chinese medical team,” the party said.

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The party noted that before the arrival of the medical team from Asia, Nigeria’s nation’s coronavirus data stood at 254 confirmed cases with 44 successfully treated by Nigerian doctors and 6 deaths but had skyrocketed to 5,450 cases and 171 deaths as of today.

The PDP said it was insisting that the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 led by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha “should immediately come out with the truth and provide explanations on the whereabouts of the team in the next 48 hours so as to douse the tension in the country.”


#Newsworthy…

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Update: Why Buhari Appoints Gambari As CoS. [Nigeria]

.. Tinubu Sanwo-Olu, others optimistic on governance
.. CUPP urges caution over appointment


The newly appointed Chief of Staff to the President (CoS), Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, yesterday declared he was picked for the job because President Muhammadu Buhari needs his competence and loyalty to succeed.

Asked what Nigerians should expect from him as Chief of Staff, Gambari told reporters at the Presidential Villa in Abuja: “We have not started. I’ll have to find out. I don’t report directly to the nation, I report to the president.”

He said he would be offering his “loyalty, competence and support” to the president, adding that as the chief of staff, his guiding principle would be “to serve the president to the best of my ability.”

Buhari formerly announced Gambari as the chief of staff shortly before the commencement of the resumed Federal Executive Council (FEC). During the session, a moment of silence was observed in honour of some deceased members of FEC at various times including a former Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, the late Chief Richard Akinjide and the late Chief of Staff, Mallam Abba Kyari.

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Gambari, Nigeria’s former permanent representative to the United Nations (UN) arrived at the Villa at 10:40 a.m. and was received by senior presidency officials including the director of protocol, Alhaji Yakubu Ahmed and the permanent secretary, State House, Mallam Tijani Umar.

Also present were the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs (Office of the Vice President) Amb. Abdullahi Gwari and Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media, Mallam Garba Shehu.

Reactions, meanwhile, have been trailing the appointment of Gambari, with the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Bola Ahmed Tinubu saying: “At this time when the entire world is combating the coronavirus pandemic and the economic consequences thereof, Prof. Gambari’s expertise and international reputation will help Nigeria galvanise national, regional and international efforts and resources to contain this viral menace and advance Nigeria’s interests on other important matters.”

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) in a statement affirmed: “Indeed, Prof. Gambari ticks all the boxes as a round peg in a round hole. The APC is confident that Gambari, a prince of Ilorin Emirate, will bring to bear his scholarly intellect, international network, professional and administrative experience in ensuring the smooth running of the office of the president and support the government to provide good governance and successfully deliver the Next Level programmes for the benefit of Nigerians.”

Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said he had no doubt that the “appointment is a major win for the presidency and the nation as a whole, especially coming at a time when Nigeria is confronting a major challenge with global outlook.”

He added: “The choice of Prof. Gambari as successor to the late Mallam Abba Kyari is commendable. Gambari is not just an academic or a diplomat; he is a fine gentleman, a decent Nigerian who epitomises the Nigerian dream.”

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On his part, Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq said: “The appointment is clearly fit for purpose and is deserving for our own Prof. Gambari whose record of service as a diplomat and global statesman is unblemished.”

AbdulRazaq, who is the governor of Gambari’s home state, prayed to God to protect the CoS on the “delicate national assignment.”

Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello noted: “Just as the late Chief of Staff Abba Kyari played a prominent role in the success of the Buhari administration, your coming in to fill the vacuum will further add more colour to the administration’s achievements.”

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Bello’s Yobe State counterpart, Mai Mala Buni said he was optimistic that Gambari would deploy his wealth of experience to bring good governance to bear on the Buhari administration.

According to a former national secretary of the Labour Party and constitutional lawyer, Dr Kayode Ajulo, “Prof. Gambari is a core technocrat with robust wealth of experience. We expect nothing else than those lofty ideas on good governance as being promoted by the UN and the Prof. Gambari-Albright Commission.” He further prayed that the “appointment comes with the much-needed additional expertise and sanity in the country’s seat of power.”

The Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE) also praised the choice of the new CoS, saying: “YCE is convinced that the appointment of Prof. Gambari is indicative of President Buhari’s determination to run a people-centered progressive administration that will command the respect of the international community.”

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The Joint Action Committee of Northern Youths Association (JACOM) noted: “We have no doubt in our minds that his huge experience as a seasoned diplomat, his wisdom and guidance, will help the administration strive to much greater heights in delivering the dividends of democracy to ordinary Nigerians, especially the teeming youth of this great country.”

But the opposition group, the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP), said it was welcoming the appointment with caution. “We shall watch him closely as he resumes duty at the Presidential Villa. We shall hold him responsible for all his actions and judge him by them,” the coalition said.

Explaining its cautious stance, CUPP said it “is not unaware of the fact that Prof. Gambari is a die-hard agent of the late military dictator, Sani Abacha, and did everything on earth to defend the numerous atrocities of the Abacha regime while serving as General Abacha’s UN representative, including supporting the evil execution of the late activist, Ken Saro Wiwa, and the annulment of June 12 election.”

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It added: “In the meantime, the CUPP is calling on Prof. Gambari to use the experience he has garnered on the global stage for years to assist the country and to pull out his boss, the president, from the deep pit of incompetence where he has sunk.

“We remind him that with his new appointment, he has been placed in a strategic position to help re-direct the nation from the path of destruction which his boss has been moving it to.”

Also, a former deputy national publicity secretary of the APC, Timi Frank, urged Gambari not to toe what he termed “the usual path of Villa cabal.”

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“I urge you on behalf of Nigerians to bring your wealth of experience and fatherly disposition to unite the country as you carry on your duties as the chief of staff to the president.

“It is a fact that you are not the president but I believe you can influence people-oriented policies in order to ameliorate the hardship in the country. Be the people’s chief of staff.”


#Newsworthy…

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Keyamo blast Nigerians in reaction to appointment of new CoS.


Festus Keyamo, Minister of State for Labour and Employment, has reacted to the appointment of Ibrahim Gambari as President Muhammadu Buhari’s new Chief of Staff.

Buhari had confirmed the appointment of Gambari, a former Under Secretary with the United Nations, UN, during Wednesday’s Federal Executive Council, FEC, meeting in Abuja.

Gambari hails from Ilorin, the Kwara State capital.

Reacting to Gambari’s appointment, Keyamo lamented over the bias of some Nigerians towards key government appointees.

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In a tweet, the Minister expressed his disappointment that Nigerians research the tribe of new appointees before searching out their qualifications.

He tweeted: “Profound congratulations also from us to Professor Ibrahim Gambari. We are extremely proud and excited to have him on board.

“It is quite sad that we have pushed ourselves to the point in this country that when any public appointment is announced, most Nigerians would first research the tribe of the appointee before they research his academic qualifications and competence for the job!”

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Recall that former Aviation Minister Femi Fani-Kayode had claimed that Gambari was from the Fulani extraction in Kwara State.

Fani-Kayode also alleged that the new Chief of Staff would further use his office to establish the Islamization and Fulanization agenda of Buhari.


#Newsworthy…

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Update: Ibrahim Gambari breaks silent on CoS Appointment. [Nigeria]

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The new Chief of Staff to the President, Professor Ibrahim Gambari, has made it clear his primary allegiance would be to President Muhammadu Buhari and not the public.

Gambari stated this while speaking to State House correspondents on Wednesday, shortly after his appointment was made official.

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He thanked Buhari for deeming him worthy to serve in the new capacity and promised to serve to the best of his ability.

“I thank the President of the Federal Republic for giving me the opportunity to serve him and of course, the country,” he said.

Asked what Nigerians should expect from him as Chief of Staff, he said “we have not started, I’ll have to find out. I don’t report directly to the nation, I report to the President.”

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Gambari also assured Buhari of his loyalty, competence and support”.