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Oshiomhole to Saraki: Your time is over, APC senators will sack you



Adams Oshiomhole

Adams Oshiomhole

National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Adams Oshiomhole, said Senator Bukola Saraki’s era as Senate President is over as he must be impeached by majority senators from the All Progressives Congress, in accordance with the constitution.

The Senate is due to reconvene next Tuesday, with APC laying claim to 53 Senators and PDP 48. The APC majority may increase to 55 if the party wins the two senate seats in Katsina and Bauchi in bye-elections on Saturday.

Oshiomhole said Saraki cannot preside over the senate and sustain a minority rule, with APC Senators in the majority.

Oshiomhole at a press briefing in Abuja today said Saraki must be impeached in accordance with the Constitution, adding that he would not be the first or the last President of the Senate to be impeached.

“He will definitely be impeached according to law and democratic norms; the only way Saraki can avoid impeachment is for him to do what is honourable.

“This again, led to the issue of character we saw in Sen. Godswill Akpabio who was the PDP leader in the Senate.

“Once he made up his mind to leave the PDP, even before announcing his defection, he wrote to his party as a man of honour, informing them of his resignation.

“Sen. Saraki has demonstrated neither character nor being a man of honour; once he made up his mind to leave the APC, the honourable thing for him to do is to resign,” Oshiomhole said.

“I think Saraki’s time is over; the way he has manipulated the politics of Kwara, he failed to understand that Nigeria’s national project is far more complicated.

“He will not only be impeached, we will have him defeated as a senator in his own senatorial zone by the people of Kwara who are fed up with Saraki.’’

Oshiomhole recalled that Buhari in 2015, got more votes from Kwara Central than Saraki got, adding that his defection to the PDP had no political consequences to the APC with regard to electoral issues.

He clarified that it was the armed robbers that linked Saraki to the Offa robbery in which several persons were killed and not the Federal Government as he claimed.

Oshiomhole also criticised Saraki for never acting in the nation’s interest as he claimed. He said Saraki had always been concerned about his personal interest and how he would remain in power.

“The President of the Senate raised the issue that he had always acted not on the bases of his own personal interest, but on national interest.

“The truth is that it is doubtful if he has ever acted either on national interest or in the interest of his own political party before his recent defection,” he said.

He alleged that while in the APC, Saraki connived with the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) to become the President of the Senate and thereby conceded the position of the Deputy Senate President to the opposition.

The chairman said that Saraki did that to obtain the support of the opposition to become the President of the Senate.

He noted that the action portrayed Saraki for who he was – a person whose personal interest always came first before any other interest, including national interest.

Oshiomhole said Saraki did not stop at that, but went further to appoint PDP senators to head strategic committees whose activities could affect the workings of government and the relationship between the Executive and the Legislature.

He added that Saraki traded such sensitive positions to continue to protect himself against the wish of his party as Senate President.

According to him, the only thing that is constant in Saraki’s mind is how to remain in power even if it is at the expense of his party or the country.

The chairman disclosed that issues had been raised over whose interest the legislature under Saraki was serving, especially with regards to the budget.

He said that while Nigerians expected the APC-led Federal Government to make up for lost time this year in terms of budget implementation and addressing critical infrastructure, the Senate under Saraki was frustrating its efforts.

“The Senate under Saraki chose this period to delay the budget up to the first half of the year.

“This is to coincide with the period of rainy session to make the completion of those aspect of infrastructure, such as road, difficult.

“This was designed to frustrate the capacity of President Muhammadu Buhari to address critical infrastructural deficit,” Oshiomhole said.

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Kaduna killings: I will get you, El- Rufai tells Pastor Paul Enenche



Governor Nasir El-Rufai

Governor Nasir El-Rufai

Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has threatened to ‘get’ Dr. Paul Enenche, the Senior Pastor of Dunamis International Gospel Centre (DIGC), over an alleged incitement.

El-Rufai said this recently when Lai Mohammed, minister of information and culture, paid him a visit in Kaduna.

The governor was reacting to a recent message by Enenche where he blasted El-Rufai for not doing enough to end the killings in Kaduna State.

He said, “The recent crisis we had in Kaduna metropolis in Kasuwan Mageni was largely as a result of hate speech. The second round of crisis was because rumours started circulating that the abducted chief of Agada had been killed and within an hour 22 people were killed and it was totally false,” he said.

“By the time you create a lie like the case of these 22 people, consequences will follow. Even though the ransom was paid and he was freed, before he got to the road, the kidnappers shot and killed him.

“What was the story? The story circulating was that I invited the chief to a meeting and told him that his chiefdom will become an emirate and he disagreed with me and when he was abducted, it was implied that I arranged the abduction. This is what started the crisis and it is totally false.

“I have never invited any chief except when they write to see me. I can depose him. Why will I threaten him? I can abolish his chiefdom or emirate under the law. But this was the story circulating and it raised tension and many people were killed. The programme you launched against fake news is commendable and should be sustained.

“There was a clip going round, a pastor in Abuja that said I was the one that arranged the abduction and murder of the agom of Kachia. I have filed a complaint to the IG. We intend to bring him to Kaduna to try him.

“The clip was circulated in Kaduna and he is in Abuja, we will get him. We know the agents of this kind of careless statements and what is most unfortunate is that the guiltiest are people that we assume should be responsible, pastors, imams and very important people in the society.”
He described fake news and hate speech as fundamental problems confronting the society.

“It is not only the president that was said to be cloned. I am also someone from Mali. Somebody went to my Wikipedia page and changed my birthplace to Bamako, Mali. That the real el-Rufai died when he went on exile in 2009,” the governor said.

“These things are becoming common, you have a whole range of gullible people. We must do something otherwise we are all in danger.”

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Babangida pours encomiums on Buhari



President Muhammadu Buhari and Babangida

President Muhammadu Buhari and Babangida

Former military president, General Ibrahim Babangida, on Sunday heaped praises on President Muhammadu Buhari, acknowledging that the man he toppled in a coup d’etat in 1985 has remained focused and shown tremendous energy and vibrancy in running the affairs of Nigeria since 2015.

Babangida also acknowledged Buhari’s patriotism and commitment to serve the nation diligently with honesty and sincerity of purpose.

Babangida poured the accolades on Buhari in a statement released to the News Agency of Nigeria, ahead of Buhari’s 76th birthday on Monday, 17th December. The Minna hilltop-based army general must have been beaten a flood of greetings expected to be showered on Buhari on Monday.

Babangida noted that President Muhammadu Buhari has been “an excellent role model to many young aspiring politicians and even to the not-so-young, because of the way and manner you have managed to sustain the survival of our country as an indivisible one nation albeit in the face of many daunting diversions.”

“You achieved great success in the fight against corruption, terrorism and other forms of insecurity in addition to getting our country out of economic recession.

“I wish to congratulate you for all the achievements you have recorded in your lifetime and particularly for your humility, deep sense of honesty and faith you have shown in the various aspects of governance, politics and democracy as our President.”

” As we get over our mid-seventies, we can say with all sense of modesty that we should celebrate every birthday anniversary with prayers in order for us to thank Allah for all the blessings and the bounties He showered upon us.

“It is only fair that we pause and reflect in our own different ways on all the life’s challenges we face day by day and the positive strides we have been blessed to attain.”

“ A typical day in the life of a Nigerian President requires faith, poise, patience, tenacity, experience, strategic thinking and quality character for one to get through it.”

“I join the first lady, Aisha and all your children and grandchildren in wishing you many happy returns of your birthday.

” Aisha’s loyalty and support, as the home front commander, is invigorating since by our age we require much comfort, care and affection at home. Welcome to our club of the over 75, ”he concluded.

President Buhari was born in Daura 0n 17 December, 1941 and after his early education in both Daura and Katsina, he joined the army in 1961, one year ahead of Babangida, who joined in 1962. After initial training at the Nigerian Military Training College (NMTC) now known as Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Buhari went for cadet training at from 1962 to 1963 at Mons Officer Cadet School in Aldershot in England.

He was commissioned a second lieutenant at the age of 20 and appointed Platoon Commander of the Second Infantry Battalion in Abeokuta.

From then on, his military career blossomed. At the head of several commands, before, during and after the civil war, Buhari in 1973 attended the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington, India.

After the 1975 coup that brought Murtala Muhammed to power, Buhari was appointed governor of the North Eastern state, where he is now leading, as civilian president and commander-in-chief, a charge of Nigerian troops against Boko Haram insurgency, since 2015.

Buhari was appointed minister of petroleum resources in 1976 by General Olusegun Obasanjo, who succeeded Muhammed after the aborted coup of same year. From 1978 to 1979, he was Military Secretary at the Army Headquarters and was a member of the Supreme Military Council from 1978 to 1979.

After the military handed over power to Shehu Shagari in 1979, Buhari, then a colonel attended the US Army War College, in Pennsylvania, where he obtained a Master’s Degree in Strategic Studies. He returned home to serve at various times as General Officer Commanding, 4th Infantry Division, 2nd Mechanised Infantry Division and Third Armoured Division in Jos, which he deployed to chase out of Nigeria an invading Chadian forces, in 1983.

He was at that post in Jos in December 1983, when he was announced the military head of state, after a coup on 31 December. Buhari was toppled by Babangida on 25 August 1985.

Buhari retreated into civilian life after several years of restriction by the Babangida junta and came out to serve as chairman of Petroleum Trust Fund during Sani Abacha era.

In 2003, Buhari had his first shot at the presidency. He did not win. He tried again in 2007 and 2011 and also failed to win. On his fourth attempt in 2015, he made the record as the first challenger to defeat an incumbent in the presidential election in Nigeria.

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Buhari meets with 36 State Governors over Minimum Wage



Buhari in a meeting with State Governors

Buhari in a meeting with State Governors

President Buhari on Friday met behind closed doors with 36 state governors on the lingering disagreement between them and organised labour on the proposed N30,000 national minimum wage.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) observed that some of the governors were represented by their deputy governors at the meeting which lasted for about 30 minutes.

President Buhari, had on Nov.19, held similar meeting with representatives of Nigerian Governors Forum at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, where the same issue of national minimum wage was deliberated upon.

Representatives of the Governors forum, who met with the president over the issue then, included governors of Zamfara, Lagos, Kaduna and Enugu, while the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige was also in attendance.

The Amal Pepple Tripartite Committee on the Review of National Minimum Wage, had on Nov. 6, submitted its report to President Buhari where it recommended N30,000 as the new national minimum wage.

While receiving the report, the president expressed his commitment to ensuring the implementation of a new national minimum wage and pledged to transmit an Executive Bill (on National Minimum Wage) to the National Assembly for its passage within the shortest possible time.

However, the 36 state governors had since expressed reservation over the proposed N30,000 new minimum wage by the Amal Pepple committee, saying the state governments were not in a stable financial position to pay the new minimum wage.

The Chairman of the Governors’ forum and Governor of Zamfara, Alhaji Abdul’aziz Yari, had on Nov. 15, told newsmen at the end of an emergency meeting of the governors in Abuja that payment of N30, 000 wage was not practicable.

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