NEWS AND STORIES
Mr. Godwin Obaseki, the Governor-elect of Edo state has stated that his first assignment would be to put a team together for the purpose of preparing the 2017 appropriation budget immediately.
He said the focus of his administration would not change from the incumbent in terms of infrastructure and education, but that job creation and empowerment would be added.
Obaseki who spoke during an interactive session with journalists in Benin City, said he would have to prepare the budget in order to hit the ground running, noting that he has only four weeks to present the budget before the legislative arm go on recess.
His words: “My first assignment is to put together a team and get appropriation for next year because we have to hit the ground running.
“The focus will not change in terms of infrastructure and education. The added focus will be on job creation and empowerment. That is why I need to focus on the budget and ensure I get enough appropriation to emphasis the social aspects which I promised during my campaigns. We will continue to build roads and refurbish schools. What is important is how to get people to work.”
The Governor-elect who ruled out anything like government of unity or having members of the opposition political parties as part of his government, however said he would reach out to the opposition in terms of explaining his administration policies to them.
According to him, “I will not be able to accept anybody from the opposition as a commissioner in my cabinet.”
Recall that at the inception of Governor Adams Oshiomhole administration in 2008, he appointed three members of the Peoples Democratic Party as members of his cabinet.
Commenting on the plight of pensioners in the state, Obaseki noted that 700 out 11,700 documented pensioners that retired under the state civil service were yet to be paid.
He explained that the 700 pensioners were those that retired from 2012 to 2015 and that vouchers for payment for those that retired from 2012 to 2013 were ready.
He said the opposition tried to use it against the APC.
“Some people took advantage of the electioneering campaign to get at us on this issue. People tried to use the anxiety to win election, we will resolve the issues. Pension issues are not as they are reported.
“Vouchers are ready for payment for 2012 and 2013 pensioners. We are waiting for a little savings to pay them. For 2104 and 2015, we need to find the cash to pay them. We pay our pensioners regularly. We will have to help the local government fiscally responsible. We will reduce their cost and increase their revenue so that they can meet their obligations, including pensions and salaries.
The Supreme Court has upheld the election of Mr Yahaya Bello as the duly elected Governor of Kogi State.
The seven-man panel headed by Justice Sylvester Ngwata affirmed the election after listening to the closing statements of all the counsel.
The court also said it would provide reasons for its decision on September 30.
There had been four appeals against the Court of Appeal rulings with the Supreme Court expected to decide if Mr Bello should continue as Kogi governor or vacate office.
One of the appeals was by the immediate past governor of the state and candidate of the opposition PDP, Idris Wada, while another was by Mr James Faleke who was the deputy governorship candidate to late Abubakar Audu.
Mr James Faleke of the All Progressives Congress (APC) had challenged the decision of the Kogi State governorship election petition tribunal which upheld the election of Yahaya Bello as the validly elected governor.
Mr James Falake was the deputy governorship candidate to late Abubakar Audu who died before the conclusion of the governorship election that was to see him elected as governor.
Yahaya Bello was then presented by the party, All Progressives Congress (APC) as replacement for Audu, a decision Mr Faleke challenged, arguing that he should have stepped into the position, having together with the late Audu gone through the election process.
He approached the Supreme Court after being dissatisfied with the judgement of the election tribunal and Appeal Court which both upheld Yahaya’s eligibility.
Channels Tv reports that it is expected that Kogi State would be peaceful in spite of the judgment which would be met with different reactions by parties involved.
The Kogi State Police Command had warned that it would deal decisively, in accordance of the law, with anyone caught taking laws into his hands, as the Supreme Court delivers its judgment.
The State Police Commissioner, Abdullahi Chafi, gave the warning while addressing newsmen at his office on Friday.
The CP further stressed that intelligent report reaching the command revealed that some miscreants were planning to create crisis before, during and after the Supreme Court judgement.
While warning parents to caution their wards, political party heads and their supporters, he said that his command was fully ready to deal with whoever disobeys the law.
He also placed a ban on any kind of public celebration by anybody or groups after the court judgement.
The prosecution led by Rotimi Jacobs has tendered Assets Declaration Form of Nigeria’s senate president, Bukola Saraki as evidence and it has been accepted by the Code of Conduct Tribunal led by its chairman, Danladi Umar.
The defence as usual reserves its objection to the document.
Led in evidence by Jacobs, Michael Wetkas, the first prosecution witness said 15A Macdonald Ikoyi was bought from the Presidential Implementation Committee on sale of FG Properties in the name of Tiny Tee Ltd.
He told the court that the defendant declared 15A and 15B as his property, but when EFCC wrote to Presidential Committee to verify the property, they responded that from their records, the property is no 15, Mcdonald Ikoyi Lagos and another one is Flat 1-4 Macdonald, Ikoyi Lagos.
The letter to the Implementation Committee on Sale of Federal Government Properties from the Investigation team and their response was tendered in court.
The witness said Tiny Tee paid 75 per cent cost of the property which is N123, 750 million from the account of Skyview Properties in Access Bank, then Intercontinental Bank.
When asked by the prosecution counsel who is the owner of the company, Wetkas said Saraki has declared the Company as his own.
He however said the Implementation Committee could not provide a copy of the draft for the payment and Access Bank too could not get a copy of the draft, but instead they referred his team to the Skyview Properties Ltd account in Access Bank where the draft was cleared and also furnished his team with the certificate of the account and opening packages for the account.
Certificate of Identification, Account opening packages, draft for the payment tendered and accepted court.
Malam Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media, says Presidency will soon begin to hold town hall meetings with Nigerians to furnish them with information.
Shehu made this known while answering reporters’ questions in Abuja on Sunday.
According to him, government decided to embark on such meetings because it has realised the importance of information communication to the people at the grassroots.
“I know that there is a plan that the Vice-President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo would start town hall meetings in zones.
“It would then be broken down to the states and so on.
“Government realises that there is a need to take information to the people and there are steps that are being taken in order to ensure that is done,” he said.
Shehu criticised the National Orientation Agency (NOA) for being indifferent to the Federal Government’s change mantra.
“We have an agency like NOA with 773 offices nationwide.
“Each has not less than 5 to 7 staffs and well-equipped, but you know also, sometimes democracy has its own dark side.
“The President came and he wanted to really be fair to every Chief Executive. If he wanted to fire people on assumption (of office), he would have done it and he would not have violated any rule.
“He decided to give everyone a chance to see whether they would imbibe the change mantra, to see whether they were prepared to go along (with him).
“I will say with all sincerity that NOA was a source of worry for us in government; the people and the leadership never believed in what we are doing.
“They never believed in change. They just folded their arms and watched us for the period of 8 to 9 months that they were there.
“I believe the new leadership would begin to formulate things for agencies like that,” he said.
The presidential aide praised Nigerians for steadfastly supporting the present administration especially during a period most people considered to be difficult.
Shehu congratulated Nigerians on the achievements the President had recorded fighting insurgency and explained that the military have tagged their success against Boko Haram a “technical victory” because no city is presently under curfew.
The SSA said that with the passage of the budget by the National Assembly, the next phase for the President would be to rebuild damaged facilities and infrastructure.
He said that with the Central Bank of Nigeria realising more than N3 trillion through the introduction of the Treasury Single Account and the passage of the budget, a lot of activities would pick up.
On the quest by Nigerians to know the amount of money the Federal Government had so far recovered from treasury looters, Shehu said the litigation hurdles associated with the looted funds would have to be scaled before Nigerians were availed of the figures.
The Social Democratic Party, SDP, on Sunday defended the N100 million arms deal money given to its National Chairman, Chief Olu Falae by former National Security Adviser, (NSA) Colonel Sambo Dasuki (retd).
In press statement signed by National Publicity Secretary of SDP, Alhaji Abdul Ahmed Isiaq and made available to our correspondent today in Kaduna, the party said its attention has been drawn to a story in the news, that the National Chairman of SDP, Chief Olu Falae collected N100 million from Colonel Sambo Dasuki (retd), former NSA.
According to the statement, the SDP was approached by the PDP through its BOT Chairman, Chief Tony Anenih for electoral alliance for the re-election of the former president Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.
It also stated that Chief Olu Falae being the National Chairman of SDP summoned the National Executive Committee of SDP to a well attended meeting to consider the PDP’s proposal of Electoral Alliance for the re-election bid of former President Jonathan since SDP did not field a presidential candidate of its own.
“The SDP NEC meeting debated the electoral alliance proposal thoroughly and finally gave overwhelming approval for the electoral alliance with PDP. The NEC further empowered Chief Olu Falae to communicate the readiness of SDP to work with the PDP for the victory of former President Jonathan. In addition certain cardinal objective principles must be agreed upon such are zero tolerance for corruption and acceptance of the Confab report among others.
“Consequent upon this agreement the PDP through Chief Tony Anenih contributed N100 million only to the SDP/PDP electoral alliance project through Chief Olu Falae. The SDP spent well above N100 million for the execution of the project throughout the election period,” SDP explained.
It however posited that neither the SDP nor Chief Olu Falae was aware of Col. Dasuki’s arms deal money through Chief Anenih, stressing that the SDP as well as many Nigerians were aware that the PDP had a fund raising event prior to the election where billions of naira was donated.
It further said the SDP is also conscious of the fact that the PDP had ruled Nigeria for 16 years and it is expected that they are capable of funding their part of the electoral alliance.
It therefore emphasised that neither the SDP nor Chief Olu Falae have anything to do with the $2.1 billion arms deal debacle.
Accord, one of the minor political parties which did not sponsor a candidate in the 2015 presidential election, has confirmed that its leader, Sen. Rashidi Ladoja, received N100m from former Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Tony Anenih, ahead of the election.
Ladoja is a former governor of Oyo State and was the governorship candidate of the party during the last election.
The confirmation of the money he received from Anenih, which was believed was from the $2.1b meant for the procurement of arms, was contained in a letter to the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mr. Ibrahim Magu, by the National Secretary of Accord, Mr. Nureni Adisa.
In the letter titled, “Release of One Hundred Million by Chief Tony Anenih” and dated January 8, 2016, Adisa said that the money was used to money to support the second term presidential ambition of former President Godluck Jonathan.
Jonathan was the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2015 election, but was defeated by President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress.
Adisa’s letter to the EFCC chairman read in part, “Our attention has been drawn to a newspaper report that the sum of N100m was released to the Accord leader, Sen. Rashidi Ladoja by Chief Tony Anenih, the (former) Chairman BoT of the PDP.
“We confirm that the sum of N100m was given to the party through our leader after series of meetings between the leadership of Accord and Chief Tony Anenih in preparation for the 2015 general elections.
Issues discussed at the meetings, according to the statement, include the need to support the presidential candidate of the PDP since Accord had no presidential candidate, the need to ensure that peace was maintained to enhance peaceful movement during periods of campaign, elections and after the elections and the need for the PDP to support Accord’s campaign effort.
“Accordingly, the PDP (former) BoT Chairman, Chief Tony Anenih released the sum of N100m for these purposes through our leader, Sen. Rashidi Adewolu Ladoja.
“The money released was accordingly used for the purposes as stated above.”
Efforts made to get the reaction of Ladoja on Friday were not successful as the former governor didn’t answer calls made to his mobile telephone.
He also failed to respond to a text message sent to him.
The former National Security Adviser, Col. Sabo Dasuki (retd.) was reported to have disbursed varied sums of money to the accounts of some PDP leaders with the aim of using the funds to mobilise for the re-election of Jonathan.
Dasuki, who is currently undergoing trial, is alleged to have diverted $2.1bn meant for procurement of arms and ammunition that the armed forces would have used to fight Boko Haram insurgents.
N260m was reportedly traced to the account of Anenih.
But in a letter to the EFCC, Anenih had explained that the money was a part refund of the money former President Goodluck Jonathan instructed him to release to some political groups for mobilisation and post-election peace advocacy.
The former PDP BoT chairman explained that he was not a direct beneficiary of the money, stated in his letter to the EFCC that N100m was given to the leader of the Social Democratic Party, Chief Olu Falae; N100m to Ladoja and N63m to a group headed by elder statesman, Alhaji Tanko Yakassai.
He said the N260m could not defray the total money, estimated at over N440m that he eventually doled out from his pocket to other groups and individuals on the instructions of the former President.
Both Yakassai and Falae had already confirmed that they received N63m and N100m respectively from Anenih for the purposes specified.
Some residents of Zaria, Kaduna State, and neighbours of the leader of the Shi’ite sect, Sheik Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, yesterday launched a campaign to get the group banned.
Citing alleged hardship caused them by members of the sect over the last 20 years, the Zaria residents said they have had enough.
Their spokesperson, Alhaji Idris Mohammed Baba, told reporters in Kaduna that Shi’ite members routinely hold people in Zaria and Sabon Gari local government areas of the state hostage and tend to run a parallel government in the country.
They claimed that last May, the sect declared 24 youths persona non grata for challenging their activities in Gyellesu community where Zakzaky resides.
According to him, “My experience with Shiite followers is disastrous and terrible. At a point Shi’ite boys threatened to kill me. We are happy over the military action against Shi’ites movement in Zaria because we have fresh air now blowing in our areas.”
He added, “As a community, we wrote letters to the government about the activities of Shi’ites but no single action was taken. We no longer report Shi’ites to police because they will never honour police or security invitation.
“These Shi’ites are an authority unto themselves; they don’t respect the authorities, the security agencies and so on.
“We are Muslims but we discovered that Shi’ites activities are contrary to Islam. They carry dangerous weapons and openly molest innocent people in our areas. Human rights groups should also look into our pains by the sect members.”
Also speaking, another resident, Alhaji Saidu Garba, said the activities of the sect have crippled the once booming economy of the area.
He said: “After El-Zakzaky was released from detention in 1999,he came and settled in Gyallesu. Since then there is no peace in our area. We thank Allah for touching the heart of government and the military for liberating us from Shi’ites untold hardship.”
The Speaker, Delta State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Monday Igbuya on Sunday hailed Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, saying “the governor is on course and determined to turn the state around”
“God places people in authority and when you challenge any man in authority, you challenge God. Notwithstanding the economic challenges, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa deserves commendation” he said.
He also described the April 11 House of Assembly Election in Sapele Constituency as the toughest in his political career.
Igbuya who spoke at the thanksgiving service of Rhema Place Ministries in Effurun, Uvwie Local Government said it was regrettable that that some politicians were pre-occupied with the politics of destruction.
The Delta Speaker who spoke seriously about the last House of Assembly election accused some members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Sapele Local Government of engaging in acts inimical to the growth of the party in the state.
“Some members of our political family worked against my interest and the interest of our great party during the April 11, 2015 House of Assembly Election but i won the election. I also won at the Tribunal and the Court of Appeal” he said.
He appealed to Nigerians not to see politicians as idol worshippers.
“Power belongs to God and when the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice. Not all politicians are idol worshippers. If God says you cannot occupy a position, there is no way you can achieve that”.
Using his life as a testimony and recounting how he challenged God before the election, Igbuya said God made his victory possible.
‘I am not the most intelligent person in Sapele. God made me a member of the Delta State House of Assembly. He also made me Speaker of the Honourable House”.
He urged Nigerians to be dedicated and always seek the face of God in whatever they are doing.
He also urged the people of the state to support Governor Okowa.
“Governor Ifeanyi Okowa will be governor for eight years. Pray for him always so that God can use him to make Delta State more prosperous” he added.
EBIRERI HENRY OVIE
LAGOS — The crisis emerging from the death of Prince Abubakar Audu, the All Progressives Congress, APC’s candidate in the Kogi State governorship election last night took a new dimension as Mr James Faleke, late Audu’s running mate in the election formally asked the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to declare him winner of the election and name him governor-elect.
There was high turnout of voters as accreditation for the Kogi gubernatorial elections began across the state on Saturday morning.
On a drive from Lokoja to Odu Ogbogaya, the home town of Governor Idris Wada who is also the PDP candidate, it was observed that people were all ready for accreditation to start as early as 7.30 am.
Meanwhile, there was high turnout of voters of voters at Odu Ogbogaya ward 001 where Governor Wada is being expected for accreditation.
The governor was yet to show up as at 11 am when this report was complied.
However, it was observed that there were minor hitches with the accreditation as the card readers kept rejecting some fingers.
Also, the security presence is very low and electoral officials are finding it difficult to control voters who are on three long queues.
Sea of cameramen and journalists are waiting for Wada to show up for accreditation at his Odu Ogboyaga ward 001 polling unit.
The governor’s expansive mansion is just about 500 metres to the polling unit.
On Monday October 26, 2015, the Delta State Governorship election tribunal sitting in Asaba with Justice Nasiru Gummi as Chairman, delivered its much anticipated verdict in the case of our Party and Candidate, Olorogun O'tega Emerhor's challenge to the declaration of Dr Ifeanyi Okowa as Governor of Delta State in the April 11 2015 governorship election in the state.
Those who have been following the fireworks of the legal proceedings of the tribunal and indeed all progressive Deltans and Nigerians were shocked at the unexpected verdict and wondered out quite loudly how the PANEL managed the trick of pulling Okowa/PDP from the jaws of a loss and to award them victory in the circumstances of the case!
Although we as a Party had given our initial reaction where we generally condemned the verdict as a grave injustice and an assault on the rule of law, we had refrained from going into the specifics of the case until we are fully acquainted with the facts of the untoward ruling. Having now obtained the certified true copy of and thoroughly reviewed the unfortunate ruling of the tribunal, we can now react as follows:
1) We condemn in the strongest of terms, the unfortunate judgment of the Justice Gummi panel and denounce it as a grave travesty of justice and a major set back to the rule of law and the ongoing regime of the dismantling of impunity in our electoral process!
2) Justice Gummi delivered a judgment that can only be described as cunning, patronising and insulting to discerning legal minds! The judgment fed on deception, pretenses and subterfuge! Generally, the panel pretended to uphold the core case of the petitioners but went ahead to somersault against them. This they did by wittingly and pretentiously accepting and ruling as follows;
a) That INEC has powers to make guidelines for the elections including the designation of Card Readers for mandatory use in the elections.
b) That the non use of card readers and/or non compliance with INEC guidelines is sufficient ground to prove non compliance with the Electoral Act which is a firm ground for cancellation of an election as is the plea of the petitioners!
3) In spite of the above rulings which ORDINARILY appear FAVORABLE to the PETITIONERS, the PANEL went ahead to play DEFENCE on behalf of the RESPONDENTS! The three (3) respondents, Okowa, PDP and INEC in their pleading and witnesses statements before the panel, had admitted an argued that "INEC guidelines were mere instructions and the use of card readers was ultra vires to the Electoral Act, that the card readers failed during election operation and that they resorted to manual accreditation and lawfully so as that is what is recognised by the Electoral Act."
The star witness of the 1st respondent and secretary to the state government, Hon Agas was on record to have stated this position in his disposition and verbal testimony where he further confirm the fact that the respondents resorted to manual accreditation upon the failure of the card readers!
How come then did the panel held that " no evidence was adduced to show that manual accreditation took place"? In law, do you require further evidence to substantiate an admitted fact? To further HELP the respondents, the panel went on to dismiss Hon Agas crucial admission and evidence as hearsay! Wonderful!
Panel helping respondents to expunge evidence of non compliance with INEC guidelines/ electoral law! HOW ON EARTH THE PANEL ARRIVE AT THE CONCLUSION THAT NO MANUAL ACCREDITATION TOOK PLACE IN DELTA STATE ELECTIONS? CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT? This must be the N3 billion Question!
4) Going further to HELP the respondents, the panel went on to DISCREDIT the certified card readers accreditation report admitted as exhibit from INEC when it ruled that " THERE IS UNCERTAINTY AS TO WHETHER THE ADMITTED CARD READERS ACCREDITATION REPORT CAPTURES ALL OF THE ACCREDITED VOTERS"! How did the tribunal arrived at this ruling? The respondents NEVER at anytime pleaded nor canvassed this position.
The panel claims that petitioners' subpoenaed INEC ICT witness Mrs Abimbola oladunjoye agreed under cross examination that " it could be PROBABLE for accredited voters for upload to the server in abuja to still be outstanding as at May 29, (six clear weeks after the April 11 elections) when the server was shut down".
The same witness was, however, categorical in her recorded testimony that the state offices where constantly supervised by INEC head office to ensure that all data were uploaded, that in the case of Delta, there is no shred of evidence or communication to indicate that any such data upload was outstanding as the time the server was shut!
Yet, it was more appealing to the panel to latch on the word "PROBABLE" and rule that the certified true copy of card readers accreditation report as at August 13th that showed accreditation figure of 715,392 as against only Okowa scoring 724, 680 was POSSIBLY INCOMPLETE and may, therefore, not be relied upon to cancel Okowa's election! AMERICA WONDER!
5) Not stopping there, the panel dug deeper and went for the jugular of the petitioners' case. The petitioners had through its star witness Barr Ore Ohimor, testified and placed before the tribunal an analysis of over voting being a comparison of card readers accreditation per polling units and form EC8A results from the same units.
This analysis which was admitted as an exhibit showed over voting in 1,847 polling units or 61% of the 3, 329 polling units across the 25 local government areas of the state as captured in the accreditation report! Over voting in 61% of polling units? And what did the panel do? In order to HELP the RESPONDENTS further, the panel dramatically decided to ruled to EXPUNGE Barr Ohimor's analysis from the tribunal proceedings! And why? That the fatal analysis was only front loaded with the reply of the petitioners to the respondents and ought to have been front loaded with the original petition! WHOW! TECHNICALITY UPON TECHNICALITY!
6) Ultimately, the panel had to contradict itself to provide the FINAL HELP to the respondents! The respondents have argued for the dismissal of the petitioners' case on the point of law that only one of the petitioners signed the petition. The petitioners relied on the appeal court case of IBRAHIM V SHERIFF ( 2002) which was the subsisting legal position that allow any one signatory to sign unbehalf of all petitioners. The respondents, however, resorted to a recent case of BALOGUN V AKPATASON ( August 2015 ) decided after the petitioners' case has been instituted!
The PANEL, knowing they where about to take a risky plunge first tried to wet the grounds! Now hear the panel " ......although if we HAD an OPTION as to which to adopt between Balogun v Akpatason and Ibrahim v Sheriff, we would certainly have PREFERRED Ibrahim v Sheriff because we FEEL it ACCORDS with what is FAIR and JUST in the circumstances of the petition...." So what did the panel rule? Your guess is as good as mine! They rule for the respondents against their FEELING of what ACCORDS with what is FAIR and JUST!
As you can see from the foregoing, the petitioners lost the case to the PANEL and NOT Okowa and PDP! Which is why they should be mindful of their celebration which shall be very short live! APC Delta state roundly REJECTS this evil judgement which was clearly PROCURE by means other than legal! This is a daylight robbery with too many finger prints left behind. Our legal teams already have our instructions and we will surely meet Okowa and PDP and test this robbery at the appeal court! APC SHALL LAUGH LAST!
In the meantime, we will like to use this opportunity to appeal to our APC party faithfuls, supporters and well wishers to be calm and be of high spirit! The end of PDP 16 plus years of misrule in Delta is insight! Please be reminded that as we are about to turn the corner, it may appears to get tougher; that it truly gets darkest before dawn!
Also please be comforted and assured that at the Supreme Court, it shall be the same court that will decide the fates of Rivers, Akwa Ibom and Delta State! At that point, it will be: ONE COURT, SAME FACTS, SAME JUDGEMENT! No Shaking! VICTORY IS NEAR!
GOD BLESS APC!
GOD BLESS DELTA STATE!
GOD BLESS NIGERIA!
(PROPHET JONES ODE ERUE)
APC Delta State Chapter.
The Speaker, Delta State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Ovwigho Igbuya on Monday congratulated Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa for his victory at the Tribunal. He also praised the judiciary for remaining the protector of the oppressed.
In a statement issued in Asaba by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Henry Ebireri, the speaker described the April 11 governorship election as the fairest and freest in the history of the state.
“Your victory at the Tribunal shows that the people of Delta State clearly authorized your candidature. “It also shows that the judiciary is the last hope of the common man’’ he said.
He commended Okowa for running a transparent and accountable government and also placing the state on the world map for good, growth and development.
Igbuya who also praised the governor for the pragmatic steps taken to address the problems in the various sectors, the development of democratic culture and stable polity, the creation of jobs for the people and the elevation of politics beyond the mundane levels of wrangling, greed and selfishness, said the governor in the last six months focused on administering the State, with the fear of God and for the good of the people.
““Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa is a caring governor. He believes in merit and places top priority on the welfare of the people. He has relentlessly pursued a vigorous policy for provision of social facilities and infrastructure” he said.
Emphasizing that God threw up Governor Okowa to develop the state, the speaker urged the governor to keep up the good works.
He enjoined Chief Great Ogboru and Olorogun O’tega Emerhor to support Governor Okowa in transforming the state.
“There is no victor, no vanquished” he said
The speaker, who further thanked the people for the confidence reposed on Okowa, said the governor would continue to deliver dividends of democracy to them.
“With your continued support, understanding and cooperation, Okowa will firmly expand on the gains recorded so far” the statement said.
The Tribunal dismissed the petitions of the Labour Party (LP) and All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidates in the 2015 governorship election, Chief Great Ovedje Ogboru and Olorogun O’tegha Emerhor.
Delta Speaker praises Amori
The Speaker, Delta State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Ovwigho Igbuya on Saturday praised the judges of the National and State House of Assembly Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Asaba for upholding the election of Senator representing Delta Central senatorial district, Chief Ighoyota Amori.
He also praised the distinguished member of the Nigerian senate for his extraordinary leadership, accessibility to his constituency and support for Governor Ifeanyi Okowa.
“Chief Ighoyota Amori is a senator that is focused on his job” he said.
In a statement issued in Asaba by his chief press secretary, Mr. Henry Ebireri, the speaker said the victory of Amori at the tribunal was a great happiness for the entire people of the senatorial district.
“Amori’s victory is both historic and spectacular. It is the triumph of democracy and a clear sign of the trust and confidence that the people of Delta Central have in him”.
Labeling his victory as a great milestone in the development of the Urhobo nation, Igbuya applauded the judges for keeping Delta Central firmly on the road to development,
He commended the people of Delta Central who gave Chief Amori the mandate to articulate, defend and espouse their interests in the senate.
“Chief Ighoyota Amori is a blessing to the Urhobo nation, a reliable and dependable representative and a politician who is leading creditably with the interests of the masses as priority” the statement said.
Igbuya who also congratulated his colleagues urged National Assembly members from Delta State to continue to collaborate with the state government to enhance even and speedy development of the state.
South – South Journalists pledge support to Delta Speaker
Media practitioners of oil and gas producing areas of Nigeria have pledged to cooperate with the Delta State House of Assembly Speaker, Rt. Hon Ovwigho Igbuya.
They also praised Hon. Igbuya for bringing about a more dynamic way of administering the affairs of the Delta State House of Assembly.
The professionals who paid courtesy call on Mister Speaker in Asaba lauded him for his good work in the state, particularly the positive impact on the communities in the oil and gas producing areas.
The media professionals who also acknowledged the Speaker’s leadership qualities, his strategic roles in the development of the state and his immense contributions to the development of the oil and gas producing areas, especially the timely passage of the DESOPADEC Amendment Bill and other steps so far taken said they would continue to pray for the success of the Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa led Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) administration.
“It goes to show that the House under your dynamic leadership is determined to bring smiles to oil and gas producing areas of Delta State”
The journalists while describing Hon. Igbuya as a personification of selfless service to Delta State congratulated him for his victory at the Tribunal.
They commended the Peoples Democratic Party government for its support and immense contribution to the development of the region, urging Deltans at home and abroad to join hands with the Speaker to strengthen the pillar of good governance.
During the visit, leader of the team, Prince Pere Botu briefed the speaker on the Programmes and the progress being made in the state. Discussions were also focused on the group’s work in other states.
EBIRERI HENRY OVIE
CHIEF PRESS SECRETARY TO THE SPEAKER
DELTA STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY
STATEMENT TO THE SENATE BY SENATOR UDOMA UDO UDOMA ON THE OCCASION OF HIS
MINISTERIAL SCREENING ON 13TH OCT., 2015
I am delighted to be appearing today before this distinguished Senate. I recall with very fond memories my two terms in the Senate as the PDP representative for Akwa Ibom South. I feel privileged to have had that experience as the Senate is made up of eminent Nigerians who have distinguished themselves in various walks of life, and who are expected to play an important role in stabilising the polity. Being in the Senate is a unique experience and I, indeed, consider my time in the Senate as truly the highpoint of my career, which is why I bear the title with pride. When I left this distinguished Senate in 2007 my intention was to concentrate on my professional and corporate interests. And I have to say, with all modesty, that things have gone well for me and I am now the chairman of two of Nigeria’s iconic institutions; UAC of Nigeria Plc. and Union Bank of Nigeria Plc., as well as having been able to play a part in helping my law firm to become one of the largest commercial law firms in the country. I was therefore quite surprised to have been invited by President Buhari to serve as a Minister in his Cabinet since I have not been very active in partisan politics in recent years. However, after careful consideration, I have decided to accept the nomination for three reasons: Firstly, I am inspired by the personal example of President Muhammadu Buhari. I am impressed by his integrity, his abhorrence of corruption and his determination to run a transparent and accountable administration. His commitment to get Nigerians back to work thereby reducing unemployment; his resolve to tackle the current high level of insecurity, particularly the menace of boko haram; his identification with the common man and his desire to reduce the poverty and suffering of the masses; and above all, his commitment to re-orientate the Nigerian value system: these all resonate with me. And if he believes I can help him to fix our country, I am flattered by his confidence in me and have therefore decided to answer his call. And I intend, if my nomination is confirmed by this Distinguished Senate, to give my very best in the discharge of what will be a very onerous responsibility, particularly because of the times we are in. The second reason I have decided to answer the call of Mr President is that I sincerely believe, with all humility, that I have something to offer. I have had extensive private sector experience in motivating and managing large numbers of people, in setting objectives and meeting them, in cost management and driving costs out of operations, and most importantly, in turning around moribund institutions. I also understand the way public institutions work, having been the pioneer chairman of the Corporate Affairs Commission, and more recently, the chairman of the Securities & Exchange Commission, and I fully appreciate the very difficult challenges involved in implementing the public sector reforms which will be required to bring about the change Nigerians want. I have chaired a Presidential Committee that examined the incentives required to stimulate private sector growth in the economy. I have also chaired a Federal Government Task Force that extensively examined the reforms needed in the oil industry, and supervised the production of a draft Petroleum Industry Bill for consideration by Government. And whilst a member of this Distinguished Senate, I served, for some time, as chairman of the Appropriation Committee, and subsequently as Senate Chief Whip. I will, therefore, not be going into Government to begin to learn about the issues, and the problems. In short, I feel ready and prepared to hit the ground running in tackling the challenges inherent in trying to bring about change in the public sector, and to bring about change in Nigeria. Finally, these are very difficult economic times for Nigeria. With the dramatic fall in the prices of crude oil, public sector finances are under pressure. Many States have difficulty in just paying salaries. The Naira is being buffeted; the values in the Nigerian Stock Exchange have been seriously eroded and we have experienced significant destruction of wealth as the economy continues to slow down. These are very difficult times. Times in which all Nigerians of goodwill must come together to work with Mr President to salvage the situation. The elections are over. We must now all work together for the betterment of our country. As President Buhari said in 1983, ‘This generation of Nigerians, and indeed future generations, have no country other than Nigeria. We shall remain here, and salvage it together’. Distinguished Senate President, distinguished Deputy Senate President, distinguished Leaders of the Senate, distinguished Senators; it is for the reasons I have just indicated that I appear before you this morning to seek your confirmation to serve as a Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. I will be pleased to answer any questions you may have for me.
Thank you for your attention.
Senator Udoma Udo Udoma
Tuesday, 13th October, 2015