President Goodluck Jonathan has released the modalities for the convocation of a National Conference with limited powers.
Alarm bells are ringing in connection with what is considered as a deliberate policy of the present leadership of the Nigeria Police Force headed by the Inspector General of the Police, Alhaji Mohammed Dahiru Abubakar, to ensure that no police officer of Igbo extraction heads the force in about the next 10 years. Alarmed by the shocking development, the International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety) today sent a petition to President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, Senate President David Mark, House of Representatives Speaker Aminu Tambuwal, and Executive Chairman, Federal Character Commission, Prof. Shuaibu Oba AbdulRaheem to seek their urgent intervention into the matter. The petition is copied to the Inspector General of Police himself; Chairman, Police Service Commission, Sir Mike Okiro; and Chairman of Southeast Governors’ Forum, Governor of Anambra State. The petition, a copy of which is in the possession of News Express, was jointly signed by Intersociety’s Board Chairman Umeagbalasi and Head, Publicity Desk,
Former Head of State and Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, General Muhammadu Buhari, yesterday said the party would work to wipe out the insecurity in the country. Buhari said this on a current affairs programme on Liberty Radio, Kaduna yesterday. According to him, the APC is also determined to improve the economic status of Nigerians. “Like I have said, we have to properly secure and manage this country. “You cannot deny citizens their rights to express their opinion and allow some people to brazenly threaten the corporate existence of the country. “And instead of inviting them and asking them to explain themselves to the nation, they are given a ride in presidential jets, when others do it, you go and lock them up or you harass them. That is not the way to do things. “There is also this problem of insecurity in the land, both physical and material, which the All Progressives Congress is about to wipe out, God willing.”
ABUJA—FOLLOWING last Thursday’s release of modalities for the proposed National Conference, an intense lobby by politicians and other people, who want to be nominated as delegates has ensued.To be part of the 492 wise men and women to be saddled with the task of reshaping Nigeria, some serving commissioners are currently pressuring their state governors for a slot. According to the modalities, each of the 36 state governors is expected to nominate three delegates. The presidency, which is expected to nominate about 70 delegates is also being pressured, Vanguard gathered. Already, some ministers considered to be in President Goodluck Jonathan’s good books are being bombarded with phone calls by people angling for a seat at the confab table.The civil society organisations, political parties, ethnic nationalities and other stakeholders are not left out. Many of them will hold crucial meetings on the issue this week.Leaders of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) will meet today to deliberate on whether or not to participate in the conference. APC is one of the five parties slated to nominate 10 delegates.The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), which is in support of the conference, said it would meet to nominate its two delegates, once it gets a letter from the Federal Government on the matter.The apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, said last week that it would convene a meeting soon to pick its nominees just as the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) urged all stakeholders to send their First Eleven to deepen deliberations at the conference. President of the South-East, South-South Professionals of Nigeria (SESSPN), Mr. Emeka Ugwu-Oju, who disclosed that the group will also meet this week, to take a position on the dialogue modalities, said “it will be sad if the governors nominate their houseboys as delegates because their states and geo-political zones will lose out. They must endeavour to nominate people who can represent their states well.”Meanwhile, to get the proposed dialogue going, the Presidency will, this week, write stakeholders, who are expected to nominate their delegates on or before February 20.A presidency source told Vanguard, yesterday, that the Presidency will look at the issue today and start writing the letters to drive the process.The disclosure came as the World Igbo Congress (WIC), the apex organization representing Ndigbo all over the world backed the stance of the Professor Ben Nwabueze-led Igbo Leaders of Thought that the modalities released by the government did not meet the expectations of most Nigerians for convening a confab that will address the multifarious problems of the country.Asked if APC would take part in the conference, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party’s interim publicity scribe, said: “The party will meet tomorrow (today) to take a decision on it” and declined further comments.Select your delegates, prepare agenda, FG tells Nigerians
The Federal Government on Sunday urged Nigerians to pray for the security agents partaking in the ongoing military action to end the reign of terror in parts of the country.The Minister of Information, Mr Labaran Maku, gave the charge at a special thanksgiving service in honour of Maj.-Gen. Chris Olukolade, the Defence spokesman, in Abuja.The service was held at Redeem Christian Church of God (RCCG), Central Parish, Abuja.“We call on the relentless prayers and support of citizens for the security agents as they battle to end the menace of insurgency in parts of the country,’’ he said.Maku, who is also the Supervising Minister for Defence, said the task undertaken by security agents to protect human sanctity against insurgents required the cooperation of all well-meaning citizens.He explained that members of the security community had in the discharge of their duties in recent times sacrificed a lot for the sake of peace, unity and development of the country.“With the support from the Federal Government and the entire public, the present fight against insurgency in parts of the North-East, would be won and peace shall be restored in the affected areas,’’ Maku said.On the elevation of Olukolade to the rank of Major-General, the minister said it came as a result of his contribution in the advancement of the country’s military.“ Olukolade’s promotion was as a result of sheer hard work and dedication to duty as demonstrated in his handling of information on the ongoing military operations across the country,’’ he said.He described Olukolade as an accomplished officer who had served the country dutifully so far, adding that “his outstanding approach to duty should be a model for younger officers to emulate’’.Earlier, Pastor Tunde Oduwole, urged the people not to give up on God, saying God will intervene in the challenges facing the country.Oduwole, however, urged the people to turn away from evil and return to God, adding that those in position of authority must
After weeks of speculation, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, on Sunday announced his resignation from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. Mr. Abubakar said he is now a member of the opposition coalition, the All Progressives Congress, APC, and that he will hand in his resignation letter to the PDP on Monday.Coming amid the turbulence that has since engulfed the ruling PDP for months, the former vice president said he left the party because it has “lost touch with Nigerians”, and has failed to resolve its many crises, mainly instigated by its leadership.“We have, therefore, concluded that that party cannot be redeemed. In short the PDP has abandoned Nigerians, the very people who gave it life and many electoral victories,” the former vice president said in a statement Sunday.Mr. Abubakar is leaving the PDP the second time, having quit the party in 2006 at the peak of his standoff with then President Olusegun Obasanjo ahead of the 2007 elections.He later joined the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, a party that would later, in alliance with other opposition parties, transform to the APC.Mr. Abubakar rejoined the PDP in 2009 after Mr. Obasanjo left office. He said he did so as a new leadership of the party and the country had promised a new direction, inclusiveness, internal democracy, an end to impunity, adherence to the rule of law and respect for the dignity of members and Nigerians.“Sadly, however, those promises have not been kept. In addition, the PDP continues to be beset with many crises, mostly leadership-induced crises,” he said in his statement on Sunday.Mr. Abubakar’s decision to quit the party the second time would hardly be surprising having been one of the leaders of PDP who staged a walkout from the party’s national convention in September 2013.That protest, backed by seven governors-five, whom have already defected to the APC- was the first public demonstration of the bitter divisions within the PDP. It culminated in the formation of a splinter group called the new PDP, which later fused formally with the APC.The former vice president said months after, the party, as well, has failed to address the issues that led to the walkout.“Many founding members of the PDP, I included, continue to be marginalized and excluded from the affairs of the party. For instance as a former Vice President, I am by virtue of the PDP constitution, a member of the party’s Board of Trustees and its National Executive Committee,” he said.“However, I am not invited to the meetings of those organs nor consulted on their decisions, apparently because I dared to exercise my right to contest in the party’s primary election for a chance to be its flag-bearer in the 2011 elections.”Mr. Abubakar remained largely passive with the activities of the PDP after the walkout, and recently announced he was consulting on his political future.The former vice president was later linked with a new party, the Peoples
The purported 2015 presidential ambition of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan has divided the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo. Special Adviser to the President on Inter-party Affairs Senator Ben Ndi Obi, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu and Senator Edwin Onwudiwe said Jonathan had done well and deserved another term. But Ohanaeze Ndigbo President, Chief Enwo Igariwey, said Igbo had not made any statement on the issue, adding that the body would declare its stand at the appropriate time. Eleven states formed what they called Oriental Peoples Movement (OPM), founded by Andy Campbell Onyeaqanam.
Imo State Governor Rochas Okorocha has assured that the All Progressives Congress (APC) will sweep the poll in the Southeast in next year’s elections. He said Ndigbo see the party as a credible alternative to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Speaking at the weekend at a reception for the APC National Organising Secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso, at the Orlu Township Stadium, the governor urged those interested in the liberation and progress of the Igbo to support the APC and remove the PDP from power. He said PDP has no place for the Igbo and enjoined them to ignore the insinuation that APC is a Yoruba party. Okorocha added: “You should ask them how many Igbo occupy sensitive positions in the Federal Government. The only Igbo Service chief was removed. This shows PDP has no plan for Ndigbo”.
Aviation Minister, Princess Stella Oduah, has assured that the ongoing remodelling of airports will be completed in record time
The governments of United States and the United Kingdom have advised the Federal Government to increase its use of non-military approach and regional collaboration to tackle the menace of Boko Haram in parts of Nigeria. The United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr James Entwistle, and the British High Commissioner in Nigeria, Andrew Pocock, disclosed this separately in Lagos and Abuja, where they said the incidences of Boko Haram attacks in parts of the North required new thinking and approaches beyond military diplomacy.The US Ambassador who was at a media roundtable in Lagos said: “The Federal Government must look at the social and economic conditions that gave rise to the insurgency in the Northern parts of the country. “The Federal Government must look at why did it start in the first place? What drew people to this organisation in the first place? Was it lack of employment opportunity? Was it education system?