Donald Trump became the first US president in history to be impeached twice when the House of Representatives voted Wednesday to charge him with inciting last week’s mob attack on Congress.
The Senate will not hold a trial before January 20, when Democrat Joe Biden assumes the presidency, meaning the real estate tycoon will escape the risk of being forced to leave early. He will, however, depart in disgrace — and likely due to face a Senate trial later.
The only question in the House had been how many Republicans would join the Democratic majority.
In the end, 10 Republicans broke ranks, including the party’s number three in the House, Representative Liz Cheney.
Holed up in the White House, Trump had no immediate reaction but he earlier issued a brief statement insisting that he opposed violence among his supporters.
“In light of reports of more demonstrations, I urge that there must be no violence, no lawbreaking and no vandalism of any kind. That is not what I stand for,” he said.
“I call on all Americans to help ease tensions and calm tempers. Thank You.”
Reflecting the fear of upheaval, armed National Guards deployed across the capital and central streets were blocked to traffic.
In the Capitol building itself, guards in full camouflage and carrying assault rifles assembled, some of them grabbing naps early Wednesday under the ornate statues and historical paintings.
Trump survived a first impeachment almost exactly a year ago when the Republican-controlled Senate acquitted him of abusing his office to try and get dirt on Biden’s family before the election.
This time, his downfall was triggered by a speech he delivered to a crowd on the National Mall on January 6, telling them that Biden had stolen the presidential election and that they needed to march on Congress and show “strength.”
Amped up on weeks of election conspiracy theories pushed by Trump, the mob then stormed into the Capitol, fatally wounded one police officer, wrecked furniture and forced terrified lawmakers to hide, interrupting a ceremony to put the legal stamp on Biden’s victory.
One protester was shot dead, and three other people died of “medical emergencies,” bringing the toll to five.
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told the chamber that Trump “must go.”
“He is a clear and present danger to the nation that we all love,” she said.
And Democratic lawmaker Ilhan Omar branded Trump a “tyrant,” saying that “for us to able to survive as a functioning democracy there has to be accountability.”
But Nancy Mace, a newly-elected Republican congresswoman said that while lawmakers “need to hold the president accountable,” the speed of the impeachment “poses great questions about the constitutionality.”
The top Republican in the House, Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, said that while Trump deserves censure, hurriedly impeaching will “further divide this nation.”
– McConnell open to impeachment –
Trump, who has been stripped of his social media megaphones by Twitter and Facebook, and finds himself increasingly ostracized in the business world, is struggling to impose his message — let alone any kind of resistance.
His refusal to accept any responsibility for the horrifying scenes on January 6 — including his insistence Tuesday that his speech was “totally appropriate” — has infuriated allies and opponents alike.
The main question now is to what extent former Republican allies in the Senate will turn on their party’s figurehead. Last year, they acquitted Trump overwhelmingly after the House impeached him for abuse of office.
Powerful Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell has made clear there is no time before Trump’s January 20 exit to hold an impeachment trial, given that the Senate is in recess until January 19.
However, he said Wednesday that he was open to the possibility of voting to convict Trump in a trial, which could still be held after Biden takes over.
“I have not made a final decision on how I will vote and I intend to listen to the legal arguments when they are presented to the Senate,” McConnell said.
The New York Times reported Tuesday that McConnell is signaling privately that he believes Trump did commit impeachable offenses.
This presents a potentially fatal shift in the ground under Trump’s feet, because it could lead other Republican senators to join in convicting Trump with the goal of turning the page in the turbulent relationship between the party and former reality TV host and real estate magnate.
Meanwhile, the increasingly toothless Trump’s social media woes deepened late Tuesday when video-sharing giant YouTube said it was suspending his official account for at least a week, out of concern his videos could incite violence.
He is also being cut out by the business world, threatening his financial future once he leaves the White House.
The latest blow to the Trump empire was when the mayor of his native New York City, Bill de Blasio, announced Wednesday a termination of contracts to run a golf course, two ice-skating rinks and a carousel in Central Park.
“New York City doesn’t do business with insurrectionists,” de Blasio, a Democrat, tweeted.
There was a new twist to the lingering crisis between Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese Matthew Kukah and the Muslim Solidarity Forum (MSF), on Tuesday as the Islamic group warned the cleric to “quickly and quietly leave” Sokoto, the seat of the caliphate.
MSF said Kukah’s “innuendos and parables” in his speeches were against Islam and its adherents, adding that they were provocative.
The threat by the forum came barely 24 hours after Kukah accused the Jama’atu Nasril Islam (JNI), the umbrella body of Muslim groups, of inciting violence against him over the Christmas message
The cleric, according to reports had in the message accused the Muhammadu Buhari administration of not living up to expectation due to mounting economic and security challenges confronting the nation.
He said Buhari was “institutionalising northern hegemony against national interests,” adding that if a President of non-Northern extraction had done a fraction of that, he would have been removed from office via coup de tat.
The cleric, who later said he was misquoted in the portion of the message about coup, maintained that that “he is more interested in how religion can be used to foster unity.”
His words: “The Secretary-General has accused me of being an enemy of his religion, Islam. He accused me of what he calls, firing an arrow at the heart of Islam and Muslims in Nigeria. He says I have been accorded respect and accommodated in Sokoto and I have turned around to bite a finger that has fed me.
“He poses a question: How can Muslims continue to be hospitable to one who proves to be an ingrate many times over? How can Muslims be comfortable in associating with a bitterly vindictive person disguised in the garb of a religious cleric?
“I can only take this statement from the secretary-general of JNI as a clear case of incitement to violence against me.”
But at a news conference in Sokoto, Sokoto State, the MSF aligned with JNI, accusing Kukah of not only unable to “appreciate in his Muslim hosts or their religion,” but disparaging them with “provocative and uncouth language..”
Acting Chairman of the forum, Prof. Isah Maishanu, described Kukah’s comments as an attempt to break the age-long peaceful coexistence between the predominantly Muslim population and their Christian.
Although Maishanu said the MSF was not holding brief for the President, he urged the Catholic mission to stop Kukah’s “malicious vituperations” against Islam and Muslims.
He alleged that the cleric’s comments signified a deeply-rooted and blind pathological hatred for Islam.
To buttress the group’s belief that the Bishop disliked Islam, Maishanu alleged that Kukah opposed Shari’ah law’s implementation in some Northern states claimed that Christians were being denied places of worship and protested in the heart of Sokoto over the killing of a Christian priest.
His words: “Kukah who lives peacefully and happily at the centre of the seat of the caliphate for almost a decade now, enjoying the peaceful atmosphere of the city that is founded on the teachings of Islam and benefitting from the goodwill of Muslim leaders right from childhood and up to this moment could not see anything good to appreciate in his Muslim hosts or their religion, to disparage them.
“Rather, he is always using provocative and uncouth language. His callous statements and acts of hatred is unbecoming of someone who parades himself a secretary to the National Peace Committee and a member of Nigeria Inter-Religious Council (NIREC).
“We therefore call on Kukah to immediately stop his malicious vituperations against Islam and Muslims and tender an unreserved apology to the Muslim ummah or else, quickly and quietly leave the seat of the Caliphate, as he is trying t break the age-long peaceful coexistence between the predominantly Muslim population and their Christian guests.”
Maishanu noted that Muslim leaders out of magnanimity, shown goodwill to the bishop, adding that he was taking their kindness for granted.“ To Kukah, the Acting MSF chairman said: “ We call on him to act as Bible commands’ seek ye truth and it shall set you free’, by embracing the pristine monotheistic teachings of Jesus, son of Maryas, finally revealed by Allah the Almighty Lord, through the last Prophet ,Muhammad.”
However, efforts to reach the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar to comment on the stand of the forum did not yield result as he was said to be away.
Also, the state JNI leadership could not be reached on phone. The Sultan heads the JNI.
Efforts to speak with the General-Secretary of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Joseph Daramola, were also futile as he neither picked his call nor replied text messages.
Paul Pogba said he is “always happy” when he is winning after scoring the only goal in a 1-0 victory at Burnley that took Manchester United top of the Premier League for the first time in three years on Tuesday.
Despite continued speculation over his future, Pogba has played an increasingly important role in recent weeks to aid United’s first serious title challenge since legendary former manager Alex Ferguson retired in 2013.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men now lead defending champions Liverpool by three points ahead of a top-of-the-table clash between the two most successful sides in English football history at Anfield on Sunday.
“I’m always happy when I win,” said Pogba, who has been consistently linked with a move away from Old Trafford at the end of the season.
“I’m happy we are playing well and happy we are at the top, but there is a long way to go and we have big games coming up.”
United have now taken 29 from the last possible 33 points to recover from just two wins in their opening six games of the season.
The signing of Bruno Fernandes shortly after Burnley won 2-0 at Old Trafford nearly a year ago in the last meeting between the sides has transformed United’s fortunes.
And if Pogba can finally produce consistent displays worthy of the then world record fee United paid for the Frenchman in 2016, there is reason for Solskjaer to believe he can end the club’s eight-year wait for a league title.
“I’ve always said Paul is a big, big player for us,” added Solskjaer. “He is a good character in the dressing room, he is always one the lads look to (because) he’s a world champion.
“We are seeing the best of Paul at the moment. He’s getting better and better every game.”
The manner of victory against a Burnley side that had not lost at home since October also suggests United have the ability of champions to grind out a result when they need to.
The first-half was dominated by controversy over a series of VAR reviews as both sides escaped without having a man sent-off for challenges by Luke Shaw and Robbie Brady, while United had a goal harshly ruled out for a slight push by Harry Maguire when he powered home a header at the back post.
The visitors upped the pressure in the second-half and got their reward 19 minutes from time when Pogba’s volley from Marcus Rashford’s cross deflected off Matt Lowton and through the legs of Nick Pope to head to Anfield leading Liverpool.
“We couldn’t be going there at a better time to play them,” added Solskjaer. “We are in good shape, good form, hungry, these boys want to get better and that’s a test again.”
Everton win at Wolves
Everton moved back into the top four and within four points of United as they overcame an injury crisis to beat Wolves 2-1 at Molineux.
Carlo Ancelotti was forced to start without a recognised striker without Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison only fit enough for a place on the bench.
The Toffees took an early lead when Alex Iwobi converted Lucas Digne’s cross but were pegged back when Ruben Neves levelled for Wolves.
Michael Keane’s towering header won the game 13 minutes from time to bolster the Blues’ European ambitions.
“We adapted really well to the characteristics of the players we had,” said Ancelotti.
At the other end of the table, Sheffield United ended a 20-game winless league run as Billy Sharp’s penalty earned a 1-0 victory over 10-man Newcastle.
The Blades still face an uphill task to haul themselves off the bottom of the table as they sit nine points adrift of safety.
But Chris Wilder’s men ensured they will not set an unwanted record by going a full top-flight season without a win thanks to another night to forget for Newcastle.
“It looked like we got our identity back,” said Wilder. “It was us with the handbrake off, going for it and playing well in and out of possession.”
The Magpies could yet find themselves dragged into a relegation battle as they remain eight points above the drop zone in 15th, but have played two games more than Fulham in 18th.
A former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Sabur Dimeji Bankole, will, on Friday, January 15, tie the nuptial knot with Miss Aisha Shinkafi Saidu, daughter of the Governor of Kebbi State, Alhaji Atiku Bagudu.
Bankole, who divorced his first wife in 2017, had, in the past few years, been a much sought after bachelor in the circle of eligible spinsters both within and outside Nigeria.
Friday’s marriage ceremony will draw the curtain on speculations regarding his matrimonial intentions since the divorce.
The Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 on Tuesday said schools across the country will resume on Monday, January 18, 2021 pending the review by the federal government.
Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu had on Monday said the federal government would review the resumption date of schools as a result of rising cases of Coronavirus.
“On the January 18 resumption date, we are reviewing it. We are going to review it.
“At the PTF meeting today, we considered it, and tomorrow, the ministry is going to take it up,” he said.
But PTF National Coordinator, Dr Sani Aliyu in a TV programme on Tuesday said what the minister of Education said on Monday was that the ministry was going to do a review of resumption.
He said Adamu never said the Education ministry was going to change the date of resumption, saying that what he said was that “they will review the situation and let the nation know.”
Aliyu stated emphatically that resumption date for schools nationwide remained January 18 until the Ministry of Education comes up with an alternative date.
Force Police Public Relations Officer, Frank Mba is now the commissioner of Police Force Public Relations, as 20 other Commissioners got new postings with immediate effect.
Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu approved the postings on Tuesday.
According to a statement issued by the Deputy Force Public Relations Officer, CSP Aremu Adeniran, the redeployment took effect immediately.
Affected by the redeployment are: Haladu Musa, posted to Border Patrol, FHQ, Abuja; Sikiru Akande to Cross River; Aliyu Garba to Ebonyi; Abubakar Bature to Airport command; Yusuf Ahmed to Department of Operations, FHQ); Aliyu Alhaji to Adamawa; Ngozi Onadeko to Oyo; Mohammed Aliyu to Enugu and Frank Mba (Force Public Relations).
While CP Adeleke Bode was posted to Kebbi State; Philip Maku was posted to the Special Protection Unit, Force Headquarters, Abuja; Ali Aji was posted to Sokoto; Ohikere Idris to Armament, FHQ, Abuja; Daniel Sokari-Pedro to Commandant, Police College, Ikeja, John Amadi to Port Authority Western, Lagos, among others.
The POSTINGS AT A GLANCE:
i.Kebbi State – CP Adeleke Adeyinka Bode, mni
ii.SPU, FHQ, Abuja – CP Philip Maku
iii.Sokoto State – CP Ali Janga Aji
iv. Armament, FHQ, Abuja – CP Ohikere S. Idris, fsi
v. CMDT Police College Ikeja – CP Daniel Sokari-Pedro, mni
vi.Port Authority Police (PAP), Western, Lagos – CP John O. Amadi, mni
vii. Oyo State – CP Ngozi Onadeko, fdc
viii. Enugu State – Mohammed Ndatsu Aliyu
ix. Border Patrol, FHQ, Abuja – CP Haladu Musa Rosamson, fdc
x. Cross River State – CP Sikiru Akande
xi. Ebonyi State – CP Aliyu Garba
xii. Airport Command – CP Abubakar Umar Bature
xiii.Department of Operations, FHQ – CP Yusuf Ahmed
xiv. Adamawa State – CP Aliyu Adamu Alhaji
xv. Training and Department – CP Babaita Ishola
Moyo Thomas, nee Ojo, the former FCMB staff who had two children for Adam Nuru, the managing director of the bank, is now involved in a hide and seek game, on the internet.
She had two children for Nuru while married to Tunde Thomas.
She revealed the heart shattering news to Thomas, after she escaped to the U.S. in 2017.
Thomas could not bear the shock and died on 16 December, 2020.
His friends are now mounting a campaign to get Nuru sacked on ethical grounds.
On her LinkedIn account, Moyo has done an identity change.
She is no more Moyo Thomas, but Mo David.
People who have been tracking her discovered her trick and blew the whistle on Sunday.
She responded by removing her photo from the new profile, but left her history with FCMB intact.
Moyo now claims she works for Park Nicollet Health Services, Minneapolis, in America, as a recruitment manager.
Moyo attended Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife from 1998 to 2004, where she read economics.
She later went for a Masters degree in International Human Resource Management at Cranfield School of Management, in UK.
She worked for FCMB for almost 13 years in the human resource department.
Literary icon Prof. Wole Soyinka may no longer want to comment on the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
He told an on-line TV in a chat that went viral yesterday that “for the sake of sanity, one must imagine that the regime of the President Muhammadu Buhari does not exist”.
The Nobel laureate, who was seen being interviewed onboard a train, described the new Lagos-Abeokuta-Ibadan standard gauge train, as marvellous and long overdue.
He told the Kaftan TV reporter that he would not like to talk about the Buhari administration because he imagined the regime doesn’t exist.
When asked whether the new train was a plus to Buhari’s regime, he said: “I don’t want to talk about Muhammadu Buhari’s administration. I think it is best for my sanity just to avoid that overall question. I can take bits and pieces of Nigeria’s present predicament but I think for one’s sense of balance, one must forget the existence of the Buhari administration.
Famous transporter, Augustine Ilodibe Jnr. was among the three persons who died of COVID-19 complications in Lagos on Monday.
The death of the 42-year old, who inherited his billionaire father’s business in 2007, was made known by a family member.
The two other victims have not been identified.
Lagos now has 250 death toll of COVID-19 patients in the state, according to the NCDC.
Ilodibe’s death was announced by Obinna Ilodibe.
“With great sadness we announce the passing unto glory of our dear son, husband, father, brother and uncle, Ekene Dili Chukwu Augustine Chukwunonso ILodibe (Junior) who died this morning from complications of COVID-19 in Lagos.
“We pray that his soul rests in peace and the Lord comfort his family and all of us he left behind.
“In consideration of the current pandemic, we kindly ask that you respect and maintain safety protocols through calls and messages to the family rather than physical visits.
Augustine Ilodibe took over his father’s transport business in 2007.
He was the first son of Chief Augustine Ekene Dili Chukwu Ilodibe.