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And The Campaign of Blackmail and Calumny Against INEC Continues

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INEC Cancels Election In Kogi

And The Campaign of Blackmail and Calumny Against INEC Continues

INEC–  Following the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal judgement of 6th September 2023 which affirmed that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu (GCFR) was duly and validly elected in a ruling that was detailed, diligent, logical,  intellectual and based on the provisions of the law as stipulated, after dissecting all the points raised by the petitioners and counter arguments of the respondents, the losers and their supporters have now changed gear again in their campaign of blackmail and calumny to INEC.
Immediately after the conduct of the successful and credible 2023 presidential elections and before the declaration of the results and the winner by the electoral umpire, the two major losing candidates having seen the handwriting on the wall, jointly addressed a world press conference where they both called for the cancellation of the election on the grounds that the election was characterized by fraud and malpractice.
And The Campaign of Blackmail and Calumny Against INEC Continues
But surprisingly, in a 360% turn around, both the 2nd and 3rd placed losers candidates again changed the music as they went their different ways, but this time, both the 2nd and 3rd placed losers claimed differently that they won the election and called on INEC to declare each of them separately as the winner.
This new twists to the claims of the 2nd and 3rd placed losers can best be described as the theatre of the absurd because if you both claim that an election was rigged and should be cancelled, how can you in the same breadth turnaround and claim victory in the same election that you both claimed was flawed? How dishonourable and criminal can one be in trying to claim ownership of the proceeds of a flawed process?
Having failed in their shenanigans, both losing parties and candidates approached the presidential election petition tribunal which is statutorily established by law to adjudicate on grievances arising from the election, petitioning their complaints which was the right thing to do instead of their naked dance of shame.
As expected, the labour party and it’s candidate continued to cry all over the public space that their mandate was stolen at the presidential election and that they were going to retrieve it at the presidential election petition tribunal based on a new found ground of the winner not scoring 25% in Abuja which is mandatory according to their own law and not the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
To actualize their plots in tandem with their campaign methods of abuse, curse, bully, intimidate and threaten violence on political opponents and supporters, the labour party and it’s supporters changed the object of their campaign of blackmail and calumny from INEC to the judiciary like never witnessed before our political history.
After listening to all the parties in the presidential election petition tribunal proceedings, the parties were directed to file and adopt their final written addresses, consequent upon which counsels were told that they would be notified of judgement day.
Thus 6th September 2023 was scheduled as judgement day. On the judgement day, Nigerians and the rest of the world watched for over 13 hours how the honourable Justices of the Presidential election petition tribunal painstakingly dissected the issues and ruled on points of law that all the petitioners grounds for petitioning the tribunal over the conduct of the 2023 presidential election was vague, unspecific, nebulous, generic and lack merit.
The tribunal even highlighted the fraud of the petitioners in subpoening “experts” who were exposed during cross examination as card carrying members of the petitioners party and were intended to mislead the panel. In the landmark courageous, thorough and law based ruling, the judges dismissed 10 out of the 13 witnesses testimonies of the labour party, the peoples democratic party witnesses also suffered similar fate for being biased, unworthy and unreliable witnesses.
A known and shameful exposure of the fraudulent claims of the petitioners especially the labour party by the tribunal was that, the labour party in challenging the victory of the duly and validly declared winner, claimed to have deployed 133, 000 party polling agents to polling stations nationwide on election day,  but in order to be clever by half, it deliberately refused to produce not even one of it’s party polling agent or a polling station result sheet form EC8A to buttress it’s allegations because it knew that doing so, will damage it’s case beyond repair.
Sadly, the losing parties, candidates and their supporters have now changed gear again even when they have rejected the PEPT judgement and stated that they were going to the supreme court for redress, by making INEC the scapegoat for their misadventures at the polls and in the PEPT.
They are now on a fresh round of campaign of blackmail and calumny against INEC, that it was it’s failure to transmit the results electronically that resulted in their electoral loss at the polls and the tribunal even when the judgement of the court vindicated INEC of complying substantially with the provisions of the law. Yet this was the same LP and PDP that refused or failed to produce just one results sheet form EC8A of just one polling station from its 133, 000 party agents deployed to polling stations nationwide on election day to buttress it’s lies, falsehood and misinformation of electoral manipulation against INEC.
As they continue in this rigmarole of campaign of blackmail and calumny against INEC for their electoral and judicial waterloo, let it be stated emphatically that every anti democratic elements trying to imperil our democracy by whatever means, are on an exercise in futility.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Thank you.
Yours Sincerely,
Nelson Ekujumi,

Politics

Why We Must Protect Nigeria’s Democracy, Obasa, Fashola, Foreign Diplomats Speak

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Why We Must Protect Nigeria’s Democracy, Obasa, Fashola, Foreign Diplomats Speak

 

 

Despite its challenges, democracy in Nigeria must be protected by every citizen, speakers at an event to commemorate the country’s 25 years of unbroken democratic governance organised by the Lagos State House of Assembly have warned.

Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, former governor of Lagos, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, foreign diplomats, and business experts argued on Wednesday evening that democracy has benefitted the Nigeria since 1999 when the country began its fourth republic.

Others who spoke at the event include Prof. Eghosa Osaghae of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, Dr. Muda Yusuf, former chairman of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce, and Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM).

Dr. Obasa said Nigeria deserved to celebrate because in the last 25 years, the country has successfully transferred power from one administration to another, uphold the principles of representation, accountability, and the rule of law.

“Our democracy has endured despite challenges and setbacks. We have faced elections, protests, and debates, but our commitment to democracy has remained unwavering.

“We have demonstrated that democracy is not a destination but a journey, and we are proud to be on this path. We must continue to guard it jealously, for it is the foundation upon which the fabric of our nation’s progress is built.

“We must continue to promote democratic values, protect human rights, and ensure that our democracy remains perpetually unbroken,” the Speaker said while recalling the struggle and sacrifice made by well-meaning Nigerians during the struggle for democracy.

Obasa noted the roles so far played by the state legislature in the scheme of Nigeria’s progress to include promotion of good governance, accountability, and the rule of law as well as passage of bills that have transformed the lives of citizens.

“As a transformative and people-centric legislature, the House of Assembly has delivered impactful laws and representation, reforming justice, social welfare, and security systems, and driving tax reforms, infrastructural development, and transportation improvements.

“These have attracted significant attention from local and international admirers, leading to frequent visits from international representatives and private citizens seeking to learn from us, exchange ideas, conduct research, or participate in exchange programmes,” the Speaker said.

He urged Nigerians to continue to support state Houses of Assembly to further deepen democratic values and bring governance closer to the grassroots.

FASHOLA
The former governor of Lagos said 25 years of democracy has provided an opportunity for effective representation of the people as well as freedom to make laws.

Urging Nigerians to hold on to democracy very jealously, he argued that the federal system practised in Nigeria remains important to the country’s growth.

“For those who are understandably impatient with democracy, I hear them. It can be a tedious way to govern. There is no better way to order our affairs. I will not trade the liberties it offers for anything else.

“We are a federal state and let me tell you why. We have multi-level legislative houses from the local councils to the National Assembly. We have multi-level judicial system.

“We also find different levels of government exercising different forms of responsibilities and this you can find in the exclusive and concurrent lists and, of course, what you can’t find in those two lists, is the residual authority that resides in the states. For example, the Senate cannot make laws on landlords and tenants laws and rent control,” he said.

Speaking about some changes that have happened in Nigeria in the last 25 years, he recalled the ‘famous resource control case’ which originated from Lagos and was resolved through the constitution making some states earn better now. He also recalled the matter relating to local government creation during the administration of Asiwaju Tinubu as governor.

“As at 1999, if you wanted to build a house in Lagos, you would go and get permit in Abuja. It was the Lagos State government that went to court to stop it,” he said adding that the cases were fought and won because of the quest for a perfect union.

Urging support for President Tinubu’s administration, expressed optimism that wages and salaries and issues with the creation of state police would become reality.

FOREIGN DIPLOMATS
The Consul General of the French embassy in Lagos, Laurent Favier, while congratulating Nigeria, said “democracy is not a state of perfection but something people have to fight for at all times. It is a political structure that must be deepened.”

He expressed satisfaction with how democracy in Nigeria has ensured freedom just as he urged the country not to relent in making citizens happy.

On the other hand, Weert Börner, Consul General of Germany, said his country with 16 states, practises same federal system as Nigeria adding that this results in healthy competitions.

He affirmed that Nigerians enjoy freedom of opinions, one of the characteristics of democracy.

He commended Nigeria over its Electricity Act which gives states power to generate electricity noting that Germany followed same part 25 years ago resulting in about two million electricity producers in the country.

Consul General of the Embassy of Italy, Ugo Boni assured that the government of his country will continue to be a trustworthy companion of Nigeria while the British Deputy High Commissioner, Lagos, Jonny Baxter, said: “In these challenging times, it is important that we support each other in our shared commitment to democracy.

“Nigeria’s democratic resilience and significance in West Africa serves as an example to other nations seeking to strengthen and protect their own democracies.”

“The UK looks forward to partnering with Lagos and Nigeria in the next 25 years and more.”

Michael Ervin, political and economic section chief at the US Consulate General, Lagos, said Nigeria is an example of how diverse people can unite and ensure freedom for all.

He congratulated Lagos Assembly and noted that Lagos opens the door to the development of Nigeria.

 

Why We Must Protect Nigeria’s Democracy, Obasa, Fashola, Foreign Diplomats Speak

Eromosele Ebhomele
Chief Press Secretary to the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly.

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LG funds: S’Court reserves judgment

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LG funds: S’Court reserves judgment

LG funds: S’Court reserves judgment

 

The Supreme Court, on Thursday, reserved judgment in the suit filed by the Federal Government against the 36 state governments, seeking to enforce the financial autonomy of the 774 local government areas.

The court reserved judgment after the parties adopted their briefs.

In the suit filed by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), the Federal Government accused the state governments of stifling local governments and withholding their funds.

But the 36 states, through their AGs, vehemently opposed the suit and urged the Supreme Court to dismiss it.

 

 

In the suit, marked SC/CV/343/2024, the Federal Government wants the apex court to enforce the autonomy of the local government by, among other things, stopping state governors from appointing caretaker committees to administer local governments in their states.

The Federal Government wants the Supreme Court to rule that any local government manned by a caretaker committee instead of an elected local government chairman and councillors should have their funds from the Federation Account withheld.

It also wants the court to rule that funds due to local governments from the Federation Account should be paid directly to them instead of through the state government to guarantee their autonomy.

 

 

 

The seven man-panel, of the apex court led by Justice Garba Lawal, announced that parties in the matter would be communicated when the judgment was ready after parties in the suit adopted their processes on Thursday.

All 36 states in their response opposed the FG’s suit and appealed to the court to throw out the suit.

The AGF, on his part, asked the apex court to grant all the reliefs sought by the Federal Government in the suit.

The AGF said,  “I adopt and rely on these processes. I urge My Lords to overrule the various objections and grant the originating summons.”

While some states claimed that they were denied fair hearing and weren’t served, the AGF clarified that he sent copies of the affidavits to the defendants via WhatsApp and emails.

He added that the court bailiff also served the defendants in their various state liaison offices in Abuja.

The PUNCH reported that the Federal Government, in the suit, is urging the apex court to issue “an order prohibiting state governors from unilateral, arbitrary and unlawful dissolution of democratically elected local government leaders for local governments.”

 

 

 

In the suit predicted on 27 grounds, the Federal Government accused the state governors of gross misconduct and abuse of power.

The FG, in the originating summons, prayed the Supreme Court to make an order expressly stating that funds standing to the credit of local governments from the Federation Account should be paid directly to the local governments rather than through the state governments.

The justice minister also prayed for “an order of injunction restraining the governors, their agents and privies from receiving, spending or tampering with funds released from the Federation Account for the benefits of local governments when no democratically elected local government system is put in place in the states.”

The Federal Government further sought “an order stopping governors from constituting caretaker committees to run the affairs of local governments as against the Constitutionally recognised and guaranteed democratic system.”

The originating summons was backed by a 13-paragraph affidavit deposed to by one Kelechi Ohaeri of the Federal Ministry of Justice.

Ohaeri, in the affidavit, averred that the AGF instituted the suit against the governors under the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court on behalf of the Federal Government.

He said, “The Constitution of Nigeria recognises federal, state and local governments as three tiers of government and the three recognised tiers of government draw funds for their operation and functioning from the Federation Account created by the Constitution.

 

 

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Nigeria At 25: Group Lauds Governor Fubara For His Outstanding Contributions

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Appraising Fubara's One-Year Footprints in Rivers* By Tony Uwakwe

Nigeria At 25: Group Lauds Governor Fubara For His Outstanding Contributions

 

 

 

A group under the auspices of the
Ijaw Development Vanguard (IDV), on Wednesday, in Abuja, hailed the Governor of Rivers State, Siminalayi Fubara, for his outstanding contributions to Nigerians democracy and the development of Rivers State.

The group in a statement marking 25 years of uninterrupted democracy in Nigeria, signed by it’s President, Comrade Sylva Mark Goodman, commended Governor Fubara for contributing to the growth of Nigeria’s democracy by providing dividends of democracy to the people of Rivers State and Nigerians living or visiting Rivers State.

The Ijaw group hailed Fubara’s giant strides in the area of critical infrastructure, health, education, empowerment, amongst others, which has deepened the belief of Rivers people in democracy.

IDV also described Governor Fubara as an asset to Nigeria’s democracy for his distinctive style of politicking.

“Fubara’s style of politics is rare in this part of the world. Despite the huge distraction from the enemies of Rivers State, Governor Fubara has conducted himself in a peaceful and lawful manner to ensure peace in Rivers State.

“Fubara deserves our commendation for not allowing his detractors deter him from providing the dividends of democracy to the good people of Rivers State.

“Since Governor Fubara has not let Rivers people down, we are standing by him,for he is an asset to Nigeria’s democracy with his distinctive style of politicking,” the group said.

Comrade Goodman restated the importance of placing Nigeria’s democracy in the hands of people like Fubara, who have shown uncommon democratic qualities.

“For our democracy to continue to grow, we must place the protection and defence of our democracy in the hands of people like Fubara, men and women who have proven their leadership qualities in various capacities over time, so that they can nurture it and we can continually enjoy the dividends of democracy in Nigeria.”

IDV also praised Chief M.K.O Abiola and everyone who paid the price for Nigeria’s democracy, describing them as the heroes of our democracy.

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