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…Reschedule meeting for today

Insist apex bank, others must honour the summons

…says it’s unpopular policies hampering the economy must be discarded

The ad-hoc committee of the House of Representatives constituted to interface with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, and bank chief executive officers on the January 31 deadline for withdrawal of old naira notes said yesterday that late delivery of invitation letters to invitees stalled the meeting.

Chairman of the committee and majority leader of the House, Ado Doguwa, told his colleagues an hour after they had gathered for the meeting.

Recall that the time for the meeting was 3 pm but Doguwa did not enter room 301 of the new building in the House of Representatives, the venue of the meeting, until 4 pm.

By 4:05, a member of the House, Uyem Idem, was asked to say the opening prayers.

Thereafter, Doguwa told the members of the committee that they had scheduled to meet with the CBN officials yesterday (Wednesday) and subsequently take the bank CEOs today (Thursday). 

He, however, said a communication received from the CBN liaison officer stated that due to late arrival of the letter, the bureaucracy could not work on it.

Doguwa said the meeting with the apex bank had been rescheduled for  today by 1 pm, while that with bank CEOs would come up later,

He said: “This is the House ad-hoc committee to interface with the CBN and bank operators with regards to resolving the issue of the phasing out the strategy of the old naira notes and to bring into circulation the new naira notes, among other reasons. 

“We also have other factors we have discussed on the floor of the House yesterday and ultimately, the House mandated this ad-hoc committee to come up with a strategy to engage the officials of the CBN and CEOs of the commercial banks.

‘’It is, therefore, my pleasure to, at this point inform members of the committee, first of all, that we scheduled today’s (yesterday) meeting based on the letter we have signed out only with officials of the CBN and we have scheduled bank operators to come up tomorrow (Friday). 

“So, it is like we, ab initio, invited them separately based on the nature of the engagement. It is a fact-finding thing and like I always say, this is not something to witch-hunt anyone. It is a simple fact-finding mission by the parliament, which obviously holds the proxy of the Nigerian people. So, we decided to take them separately. 

“We have scheduled today for the officials of the CBN and tomorrow for bank operators and CEOs of commercial banks and on that note, I would like to communicate with members of the public that based on communication I just received from CBN, it is that our letter of invitation got to the bank very late yesterday.

“You can all agree with me that the resolution was taken at the end of our sitting yesterday, January 24, 2023, and before we could finish the necessary procedures, the letters were sent to the CBN late.

‘’So, the liaison officer of the bank spoke to us this evening (yesterday) that they were not able to really act on the letter to allow for their engagement today.

“On this note, I would like to convey to this committee and members of the public and the press here with us that we have conceded to allow the CBN officials to come tomorrow (today) by 1pm, so we could engage them and immediately after the engagement with them, we would engage the bank operators.”

Banks warned against boycotting meetings Doguwa also warned the banks against boycotting the meeting, emphasizing that the summons of the House must be taken very seriously.

The chairman added that no unpopular policies hampering the economy of the country and affecting the people negatively would be allowed to sail through.

“For the purposes of clarification, I want to say without any fear of contradiction that the parliament is always an institution that represents the Nigerian people.

‘’When there is any need it calls for an invitation to any government employee like it is the case here with the CBN, the governor of the CBN, his directors, deputy directors, all departmental heads, I believe our own employees of the Nigerian people, and when there is a kind of summon from the institution of the parliament like this, we expect every up and doing employee to only respect that invitation. 

“On this note, I want to say on behalf of the House of Representatives that we have taken this from the point of perhaps, giving them the leverage or benefit of the doubt that yes, the letter got to them late yesterday and on no account, I repeat, would we have a repeat of this failure tomorrow (today).

‘’None of us here is acting in his personal capacity. None of us here is acting for any personal reasons, especially on a matter like this where Nigerian people and economy are threatened by a lot of dangers by the policy of a government department. 

“Those of here who are working for the Nigerian people, we cannot sit down here and watch policies of the government that are not unpopular, threaten the survival of our economy to continue.

‘’I hear some of them saying it is a matter they have decided. It is a matter that no one goes back about it. This is the supreme institution of Nigeria’s democracy and I want to say without any fear of contradiction that for whatever policy the government is undertaking, especially at a critical period like this, Nigerians must know and whoever is involved must know that definitely, the interest of the Nigerian people holds sway.

‘’So, there is no policy whatsoever that cannot be reversed,   good or bad, as long as that policy or the reversal of that policy is going to be in the overall interest of Nigerians.

“We would not endanger our economy. We would also not allow anybody to endanger our economy. CBN must appear before this committee of the House of Representatives tomorrow (today) by 1 pm to discuss this very critical matter.

‘’It borders on the survival of our economy and our people, the businesses are shut down all over; agriculture is suffering. petty businesses in the villages are also suffering. I understand that in some places, even dowry, bride price is not being accepted. So, this is a serious issue,” Doguwa said.

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Obi’s visit to Southern Borno makes it the first time in the history of the country a presidential candidate would visit the Boko Haram-ravaged region.

The Labour Party Presidential candidate, Peter Obi, has made a surprise visit to Southern Borno, a region that was badly ravaged by the activities of the terrorist group, Boko Haram.

Obi ‘s visit to the North-East state on Wednesday, January 25, 2023, was part of his campaign tours in the North ahead of the February 25 presidential election.
Recall the former Anambra State Governor had earlier attended the Labour Party Presidential rallies in Gombe and Bauchi states this week.

Pulse reports that Southern Borno comprises nine Local Government Areas including towns like Gwoza, Hawul, Askira Uba, and Chibok.
Obi was accompanied on the trip by his running mate, Datti Baba-Ahmed , Labour Party National Chairman, Julius Abure , Borno State governorship candidate, Captain Ibrahim Mshelia , and the Deputy National Campaign Manager, Isaac Balami .
While addressing the jubilant natives who came out to meet the frontline presidential candidate, Obi promised to alleviate the suffering and wipe the tears inflicted on the hardworking people of the region.

Obi’s words: “I am one of you and feel your plight. I know that you are all hardworking and want to go back to your farms. I am giving you my word that this insecurity issue will be a thing of the past in my administration and I will ensure that my government gives you the best of life. Thank you for everything you have done for the country and I will never forget you. A new Nigeria is possible!”
In his remarks, Balami, who also doubles as the Obi/Datti’s deputy national campaign manager, expressed satisfaction over how Nigerians have been working hard to enthrone Obi and his running mate as Nigeria’s president and Vice President respectively.

He said: “Borno people love Obi and need him. My people have long rejected the politics of religion and ethnicity that our leaders used in the past and are now embracing competence and capacity. You can see that from the surprise visit today.
Even with the short notice of his visit, the moment he landed and they knew he was in town, they swam to him like bees. Peter Obi is the only presidential candidate that has this messianic aura woven around him and he is the man to beat at the presidential polls.”

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The Social democratic Party (SDP) has promised to reduce the rate of poverty in Nigeria and provide opportunities for the youths if elected into office.
The Vice presidential candidate of the party, Yusuf Buhari made this known while representing his principal, Prince Adewole Adebayo on a visit to HRH Oba Joseph Olubiyi Toriola Ajibise Ogo 1 (Ogunsua of Modakeke) of Ile Ife, Osun State on Wednesday, 25th January.

While speaking to the traditional ruler, he said the SDP is inspired by chapter 2 of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria which states that sovereignty belongs to the people, hence when leadership is set up by the people, their job is to look out for the welfare of the people.

He highlighted some of the problems faced by citizens of Nigeria as a result of poverty, saying these are the things the party aims to address if elected.
He said, “We are trying to keep it as simple as possible. We have major problems in this country kabiyesi, poverty is all over the place.
“In the north, some of them go to the dustbin to pick the back of the watermelon, scrape it, they will just leave the white part, cut it like yam put salt and that is what they will boil for their children.

“If you go around some areas at night, you’ll see some people sleeping everywhere on the streets, no shelter. If you go to the hospitals, patients are all over on the floor, no bed, only one doctor with thousands of patients. Nigerians do not deserve this. Nigeria is a blessed country. We have resources, we have professionals, If we can put our house together, all of these things we are seeing, we’ll not be seeing them Kabiyesi”, he added.
He noted that the past 16 years have not improved the welfare of ordinary citizens, and the ruling party has no intention of making things better. He added that the SDP is on this journey in order to make things better for Nigeria.

“16 years have gone 8 years have gone, we notice that it only gets worse every four years. Now again they’ve come with stories telling us that they will improve our welfare but then but before God, before man, before all of us, right on international TV, they are accusing each other of criminal activities.
“I think this is the only time we should pay attention to them and actually listen to them. These criminal accusations that they’re making against each other has nothing to do with us. Kabiyesi, we are on this journey because we make a difference and we are convinced that Nigeria will come first”.
He noted that his principal, prince Adewole Adebayo has decided to dedicate the rest of his life to public service in order to change things for the better in Nigeria.

“My principal Prince Adewole Adebayo said he has dedicated the rest of his life to public service. I share in that vision of what he’s saying, I share in that. This is why we are on this journey.
“We are here to assure you of all the plans that we have set out, even when we get there we’re going to achieve them. We know it’s going to be difficult but we will achieve them by the grace of God”.

While addressing journalists, the Vice Presidential candidate assured that Nigerian youths would have a lot to benefit from the party because they believe the youth are the ones making great achievements for Nigeria as it stands, despite the failure of the government.
In his response, HRH Oba Joseph Olubiyi Toriola Ajibise Ogo 1 prayed for God to help the SDP accomplish its race.
He said, “Well once again I welcome you all. Iwure is better done in Yoruba than in English,so I’m going to do it in Yoruba. But I must say that I am touched by your plan and your vision, so I pray that God will help you to accomplish your race”.

He further gave his ‘iwure’ (royal prayer) for the SDP presidential campaign team.
The campaign team entourage consisted of Dr.Olu Agunloye – National Secretary of SDP, Mr Silas Alani – National Vice chairman south west, Chief Godwin Osigbeme – Director of protocol, Sen. Ugochukwu Uba – Director of Finance and Prof Femi Olufumilade.


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The National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party has released a timetable for a fresh governorship primary to elect a new standard bearer for the party in Abia State.

This decision was sequel to the sudden death of the former standard bearer, Prof. Uche Ikonne.

The NWC made this decision public via a statement signed and issued by the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Hon. Debo Ologunagba, in Abuja, on Friday.

The statement read in part, “Following the sad event of the death of our Abia State Governorship Candidate for the 2023 general elections, Prof. Uchenna Eleazar Ikonne, and pursuant to the provisions of Section 33 of the Electoral Act 2022, the NWC has released the Timetable and Schedule of Activities for the conduct of a fresh Governorship Election Primary in Abia State.

“The Timetable and Schedule of Activities are as follows;

“ Notice to INEC – Friday, January 27, 2023

“Sale of Forms – Friday, January 27- Tuesday, February 31, 2023

“Last day for the Submission of already purchased Forms – Wednesday, February 01, 2023

“Screening of Aspirants – Thursday, February 02, 2023

“Screening Appeal – Friday, February 03, 2023

“State Congress (Gubernatorial Candidate Nomination) – Saturday, February 04, 2023

“Fresh aspirants other than those who contested in the earlier primary are permitted to participate in the current exercise.“

The party enjoined all its leaders, critical stakeholders, teeming member, and supporters of the PDP in Abia State to be guided by this accordingly.

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