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Emefiele terrorism allegation: Southern, Middle Belt Leaders berate FG for embarrassing the country

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President Muhammadu Buhari should put his house in order, andSave Nigeria from repeated, unwarranted national embarrassments over Emiefele Terrorism allegation, the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum has charged.This was contained in a statement that was jointly signed by Leader, South South/PANDEF, Chief Dr. Edwin Kiagbodo Clark, , Afenifere Leader, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, President, Middle Belt Forum Dr. Pogu Bitrus and Secretary-General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Worldwide Ambassador Okey Emuchay.The statement pointed out that the admonition became expedient and instructive following the reported recent, disgraceful, attempt by the Department of State Services (DSS) to surreptitiously obtain an ex-parte order from the Federal High Court, Abuja, to arrest and detain the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele.

“The action of the Department of State Services is not only a travesty of the nation’s judiciary, but also a grave disservice to the Nigerian state, and a mortification of the nation’s image.

“It is unthinkable that the DSS would recklessly and carelessly accuse Mr. Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, of financing terrorism and involvement in economic crimes of national security dimension. “This is not only shameful but a disgrace to the Buhari administration and the Nation. And capable of unsettling the socioeconomic tractions of the country.”
The statement asked rhetorically
“What is the evidence that the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, is involved in terrorism financing?

“If the allegations against the CBN Governor are genuine, why didn’t the DSS present its findings to the President for consideration and necessary action?

“It is common knowledge that the Governor the Central Bank, has been carrying out Mr. President’s directives and instructions religiously.
“We wonder whether it is those instructions given to him by the President, which he carried out that make him to be a terrorism sponsor? Or there are personal actions and activities he has carried out without the president’s approval and instruction?

“The CBN Governor has been doing everything to salvage the nation’s economy with several intervention schemes in agriculture and SMEs, etc, to ensure that individuals, households and businesses across all sectors of the economy receive support to sustain their operations and livelihoods, especially during COVID and even in post-COVID era.

“It was thwarting that the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele, practically “apple-polished” certain sections of the country with the apex bank’s intervention schemes to boost production of farm commodities, providing smallholder farmers with inputs, in kind and cash, particularly in the Northern States that supposedly have comparative advantage to produce rice, maize, wheat, cotton, tomato, roots and tubers like cassava, potatoes, yam, etc.
“The CBN interventions have reportedly led to huge drop in rice importation, in recent years; which has been publicized widely as one of the key achievements of the Buhari administration. “Sadly, the same Godwin Emefiele is now being labeled terrorism sponsor. What a shame!

“It is bemusing that Mr. Yusuf Bichi (the Director General of the Department of State Services), and his backers, presumed all citizens have been “conquered”.

“Allegedly acting on a petition, the DSS filed a secret suit at the Federal High Court, Abuja, on 7 December, under Section 66 of the Terrorism Prevention and Prohibition Act, 2022 to request a court order for Mr. Emefiele’s arrest and detention for 60 days, in the first instance.

“But, the respected judge, Justice John Tsoho, who is the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Abuja, in his ruling on 9th December 2022, rejected the application on the grounds that the DSS failed to provide sufficient evidence to warrant the issuance of an arrest warrant against Mr. Emefiele.

“SMBLF applauds the courage and bravery of the judge; it is gratifying to know that there are still men and women of character and integrity, who can firmly defend and uphold justice, without fear or favour.
“By this singular act, Justice John Tsoho has written his name in gold, and shall remain indelible in the hearts and minds of all patriotic Nigerians and people of goodwill across the world.

“The judge in his ruling also inferred that there was no seeming indication that the President approved the action of the DSS.
“Now, if indeed, President5 Muhammadu Buhari was not aware of the plot, then, it would be inexcusable to allow Mr. Yusuf Magaji Bichi remain a moment longer in office as Director-General of the Department State Services.”

The forum therefore demanded that the DSS boss be relieved of his position, without any delay, for being disloyal and discourteous to the President and the nation. “Mr. Yusuf Magaji Bichi should also be made to render an unreserved public apology to the nation and to the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele.

“We are not in the least surprised at the way and manner Mr. Yusuf Bichi has been running the DSS since he assumed that office; his appointment as Director General of the DSS itself, in the first place, leaves much to be desired.

“The group called for a thorough investigation of the incident, even a Public Inquiry, to unveil the officials, and, others behind the disgraceful and subversive plot, with appropriate sanctions duly meted out.
“This is a very sensitive matter, and Government must give it the serious attention, it deserves.
This misadventure has further brought to the fore the disturbing gaps and discordance in the Buhari Administration, which account for the many Policy conflicts and misdirection in the governance ofvthe Country.

“SMBLF, therefore, further urges Mr. President to put his “house” in order, and save the Country from recurring catastrophic haemorrhage.
“SMBLF recalls that it was in comparable manners that the former Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen, and several other top public office holders from the smSouthern and Middle Belt Regions of the Country, have been scandalously removed from office.

“It is imperative to underscore the fact that SMBLF, as a responsible organization, comprising prominent statesmen, who have served, and still serving, and contributing immensely to the betterment of our dear Country, Nigeria, will not stand idly by, where any venal act, at any level, against any citizen, or section. “SMBLFA maintains that it is unfair that people would be so casually harassed, brutalised and brazenly persecuted, merely because of their ethnicity, or religion, or for serving their Fatherland diligently, meritoriously.”Truth be told, there are elements within, and outside, the Buhari administration that do not want Mr. Godwin Emefiele to remain in office, as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria; the reasons are not farfetched. 

Recall that barely forty-eight hours after the announcement of the redesign of the country’s currency by the CBN, the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Hajia Zainab Ahmed, disowned the Policy.

She went on to assert that the redesigning, which the apex bank said is aimed at fighting banditry and kidnapping for ransom, controlling the amount of money in circulation, fighting inflation and addressing issues of corruption and hoarding of naira notes by individuals, if implemented, would portend great consequences for the Country and its economy.

“Similar disagreeable remarks were made by other top officials, with outrageous postulations and disparaging commentaries also peddled to discredit the person and Office of the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

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CUPP scribe describes Lagos-Calabar highway contract as highway of fraud

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**Says N3000 toll fee is exorbitant

The General Secretary, Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP), Peter Ameh has aligned with the ascertion of Former vice president Atiku Abubakar that Lagos Calabar highway contract as high way to rob the Nigerian people.
The CUPP scribe said it is high way to fraud saying that the cloud hovering over the award of the contract have all the trappings of corruption and abuse of power
In a statement he issued in Abuja on Friday Mr. Ameh said the process lacks transparency and due process, as the contract was awarded without proper oversight and competitive bidding process.
According to him, the cost of building the road per kilometer is outrageous and unacceptable.
“We are already worried that due process was not followed in both the selection and award of the contract for the project.”
He said, the intention of Federal government that vehicles would pay an average of N3,000 per toll is not acceptable and should be rejected by all Nigerian citizens as it will further increase the burden on the Suffering masses of our country.
“Anything above 300 Naira will create a lot of hardship but worst case scenario 500 Niara will be totally intolerable. Let the people breath.

“We all know that there are institutions and bodies, agencies that are created by law to take care of matters of this nature, ranging from the Federal Executive Council, which sits to consider the economic imperative of this kind of gigantic project, the National Assembly which has been constitutionally mandated to apprropriate the funds, Bureau of Public Procurement which looks at the entities that will execute the contract without the federal government spending above and beyond what the project would ordinarily have cost, and etc.

According to him, constitutional democracy which we practice, funds are not arbitrarily expended without the authorisation of the legislative arm, which controls the purse of the nation and the president ought not to have doled out a trillion naira plus to his friends without authorisation.

“But in the event that the coastal highway is a build-operate-transfer-project, due process must also be followed with the aforementioned institutions and agencies which ought to have put in their knowhow with their input taken into consideration.
“If President Tinubu, as reported in the dailies and social media, has awarded the contract to the Chagourys who are alleged to be his bossom friends and business partners without due process and due consideration to the constitutional and statutory provisions, the National Assembly (that is if we have a functioning and responsible parliament that is not beholden to the Executive Branch) is obligated to set up an ad-hoc committee to investigate and possibly call the president to order because doing what he is alleged to have done is a breach of the Constitution which he has sworn to uphold and protect.
“APC government has failed to deliver on the promises of open government and has decided to use government to reward their friends and cronies at the expense of tax payers.
All government contracts must follow open and competitive bidding process.

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Classified document claims Abure entered agreement with NLC in 2022

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It appears there is no end in sight over the dispute between the Labour Party(LP) and the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) as the suspended National treasurer of the party Oluchi Okpara has leaked a document that confirmed that NLC had a pact with the LP against the claims of Julius Abure.

The political wing of the NLC at a stakeholders meeting had sacked Abure and its NWC declaring the recent convention in Nnewi that returned Abure and his co-travelers as kangaroo

However, Abure Claimed the NLC has no power to dismiss him and the National Working Committee, as recently announced.
The document confirmed that the Labour Party had an agreement with the NLC

The Document indicated that there was a dispute between the duo which was mediated by INEC in 2022 showing the signature of LP national chairman, Abure and that of Ayuba Waba of the NLC

The document titled, “Report of Mediated Settlement between The Nigeria Labour Congress and the Labour Party by the Independent National Electoral Commission Zambezi Crescent Maitama, Abuja reads,

“We bring you fraternal greetings from the Nigeria Labour Congress {NLC) ard the Labour Party (LP). 

“We write to Inform you that the mediation initiative brokered by the independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the dispute between the Nigeria Labour Congress and the Labour Party has been successfully consummated on the 27” of June 2022.
“The consummation of the resolution is established in a TERNS OF SETTLEMENT which was willingly reached without any duress whatsoever between the two parties, the NLC and the Labour Partv and validated by the signatures of the President of the Nigeria Labour 
Congress, Comrade Ayuba Wabba, mni. the National Chairman of the Labour Party, Barr. Julius Abure, General Secretary of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Comrade Emmanuel Ugboaja, and the National Secretary of the Labour Party, Alhaji Umar Farouk Ibrahim. 

The National treasurer of the Party  Mrs. Oluchi Oparah, who made the document available to the Guardian on Thursday  said, “The mark of a good and trustworthy person is in his ability to keep his word and respect agreement reached in the course of mediation settlement agreement in the Presence of Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC) between the Nigeria Labour Congress, (NLC) and Labour Party, (LP)

“It is only a morally bankrupt individual  who has no moral character that will reached, sign an agreement and then go publicly to deny such agreement. 

“The document above will prove to you what I have been saying about the existence of an agreement between the Labour Party and Nigeria Labour congress.

“Abure and his cohort can not continue on this path of lies and deception to justify their illegally convened and purportedly conducted national Convention.

“This agreement was sign consequent upon the mediation brokered by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) between the Nigeria Labour Congress NLC and the Labour Party which commenced on the 26th of April 2022 and at which commitments were made for an improved cordial relations between the two parties consequent on the court Judgement by Justice Gabriel Kolawole delivered on the 20th March 2018. 
This mediation settlement agreement was signed by Bar. Julius Abure and  Alhaji Umar Farouk the National Secretary of Labour Party on behalf of the Party while Comrade Ayuba Wabba, President of Nigeria Labour Congress and comrade Emmanuel Ubiaja, General Secretary of Labour Congress signed for the union

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Boat Mishap: NIWA Commiserates with AGN, victims’ families

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By Friday Idachaba, Lokoja.

The National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) has commiserated with the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) and families of the deceased victims of the unfortunate April 10, boat Mishap on the River Niger that claimed four lives.

The NIWA Management, in a statement signed by Engr Dakio Horsfall, Ag GM (Marine), expressed deep regret over the boat mishap which occurred Wednesday on the River Niger en route to Asaba in Delta state at about 2 pm.

The boat accident which claimed the life of a famous Nollywood actor, Jnr Pope and three others with one, still missing, according to the statement, involved two boats.

NIWA, in the statement, commiserated with families of the deceased and prayed the good Lord to repose their souls.

“Regrettably, the unfortunate accident involved an unregistered fiberglass boat with 12 persons on board and a privately owned wooden boat with a lone driver.

According to the statement, Preliminary reports indicated that the accident resulted from a frontal collision between the two boats due to over speeding.

“Sadly, two people died at the scene of the accident, two more bodies were recovered 24 hours later off-site, while seven persons were rescued”, the statement said.

It further explained that upon receipt of report of the accident through its community-based structure, the Authority immediately deployed its search and rescue team to the scene for rescue activities.

“This team and other stakeholders, including the local divers, swung into action and have continued the search and rescue effort since Wednesday. As of the last count, one person is still unaccounted for” the statement added.

The statement further revealed that the Marine Department of NIWA has also activated its accident investigation mechanism with a view to determining the cause(s) of the accident and make appropriate recommendations.

The Authority reiterated the need for all users of the inland waterways to, mandatorily, adhere to all established safety protocols which include the completion of passengers manifest at the loading and offloading points.

Others are compulsory usage of life jackets on the waterways, avoiding over speeding, and yielding to weather dictates, at all times.

NIWA seized the opportunity to appreciate efforts of the Marine Police, local divers/fishermen, Maritime Unions, and other good-hearted Nigerians who rose to support the Authority in its rescue efforts.

“The National Inland Waterways Authority hereby assures all Nigerians of its continuous efforts aimed at promoting safer inland waterways for the use of all”, the statement said. (Ends)

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