THE crisis dogging the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) may have become more interesting with a remark by former Vice President Atiku Abubakar that a plan to split the embattled party had remained in the works for four months. In an interview in his Abuja home with a team of journalists from Rariya, a Hausa newspaper based in Abuja, Atiku also spoke on the situation of things in the ‘new PDP.’ Atiku, who had led a withdrawal of a number of governors from the venue of a recent PDP convention, claimed that “we have been planning for some time because we have spent almost four months planning how to split the PDP.” The former number two man in the country said that he decided to join the plan because the reasons of the sponsors aligned with his long-standing grouse about the situation of things in the party.
THE South-West geo-political zone, yesterday, was divided on how the outcome of the proposed National Conference should become law. While some agreed that the report should be sent to the National Assembly for consideration as declared by President Goodluck Jonathan, others said a referendum of the people is sufficient. However, another opinion said the National Assembly should make a law to back the confab so that the dialogue will not be an exercise in illegality. This came as Itsekiri leader, Chief Mrs Rita Lori-Ogbebor, who attended the hearing, said the Itsekiri ethnic nationality is in full support of the conference, adding that she will embark on extensive mobilization across the country to drum up support for the exercise.
Boko Haram, the terrorist group that has made parts of northern Nigeria virtually ungovernable, is desperate to extend its campaign of violence to the country’s south. Information available to News Express indicates that the misguided Islamists have started making overtures to potential partners in the south with a view to penetrating the region. An impeccable source who spoke with News Express disclosed that Boko Haram leaders have made contacts with some kidnap kingpins in the south with a view to convincing them to join forces with them since both parties have grievances against the Nigerian society. The source specifically mentioned the recently apprehended Delta kidnap lord, Kelvin Oniarah, as one of those contacted by Boko Haram.
Controversy has continued to trail the removal of the exspokesman of the defunct Borno State’s Joint Task Force (JTF), Lieutenant Colonel Musa Sagir of the Directorate of Army Public Relations (DAPR) . The officer was removed after the JTF in Borno State was abolished, giving rise to the new 7 Division, Nigerian Army, to inter alia, take full charge of the ongoing military operations against the Boko Haram insurgents in the North East. Saturday Mirror learnt that Sagir’s removal came without a redeployment, a situation which led to his embarking on leave. Sagir replacement with a Lieutenant Colonel like him, according to a source, was an indication that there was no place for the former spokesman of the JTF. Sources at the Headquarters, Nigerian Army, further told Saturday Mirror that the directorate was yet to consider where Sagir would be resuming after the expiration of his leave.
There was confusion at Ogba Junior Secondary School yesterday in Lagos State as 25 pupils collapsed after inhaling a chemical waste discharged
The 7 Division of the Nigerian Army in Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, has appealed to journalists to, as a matter of urgency, give a total blackout to Boko Haram activities in the country. The army division said doing so will not only boost the confidence of members of the public but will also put fear in the heart of the sect’s members as most of them have been killed and dislodged from their camps. Spokesman of the Division, Lt.-Colonel Mohammed Dole, made this appeal yesterday in Maiduguri in an interview with journalists on the update of the ongoing operation of the division. He said the sect’s members were fleeing Goho and Marguba villages in Beneshiekh, the council headquarters of Kaga, where scores of the terrorists had been killed in a raid of the terrorists’ camps.
The International Monetry Fund, IMF, yesterday, called on the Federal Government to implement timely policy actions to avert risk of oil price shock and reversal of foreign capital inflow looming over the country and other s in the sub-saharan Africa region. IMF Director, African Department, Antoinette Sayeh made this call in Lagos at the presentation of the Africa Regional Economic Outlook for the region. But Deputy Governor, Economic Policy Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Mrs Sarah Alade, said that the CBN is aware of these risks and has put in place a framework to mitigate them. In a presentation titled, “Sub-Saharan Africa: Keeping the Pace”, Sayeh identified the risks to the growth of the Nigerian economy as commodity price risk and the reversal of foreign capital inflows. She said these risks have increased not only in Nigeria but in the Sub-Saharan region significantly over the years.
The Nigerian Army, on Thursday, said it had destroyed two suspected operational vehicles of the Boko Haram sect in the ongoing operations in Maiduguri. The spokesman of the 7 Division of the Nigerian Army in Maiduguri, Lt.-Col. Mohammed Dole, announced this in a statement. Dole said that the destruction was to get rid of insurgents terrorising motorists on highways in Borno State. “We have been able to identify camps used by the terrorists in planning attacks against motorists and innocent villagers in Kaga Local Government Area of the state.
NATIONAL leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), General Muhammadu Buhari, in Kano, on Thursday, said the party is on a tough and ruthless recruitment drive across the country. Buhari, speaking after a meeting with the Kano State governor, Dr Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, at the Government House, Kano, said “we are here to convince you that we don’t feel comfortable without Kano in our fold. We are people-oriented party, our concern is the development of Nigeria and Nigerians.” Speaking after about one hour meeting with Governor Kwankwaso, the interim national chairman of the party, Chief Bisi Akande, said “leaders of the APC decided to come in solidarity with you, because some of you have been persecuted in your party.”
President Goodluck Jonathan, yesterday, lamented that the crises in some parts of the country has slowed down economic development. He stated this while being presented with the 2013 Africa Peace Award from the United Religions Initiatives URI, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja. According to the president, internal stability is essential for the development of the…