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“Parkinson’s disease”, “stingy”, “corrupt”: the two main presidential candidates in Nigeria deliver a bitter end to the campaign, each calling for the arrest of the other by resurrecting old corruption scandals.

Nigerian politics is plagued by accusations of all kinds, especially concerning dark money affairs. And the favourites for the presidential election on February 25 – Bola Tinubu and Atiku Abubakar, both extremely wealthy septuagenarians, are no exception: they have been repeatedly accused of corruption, which they firmly deny.

More than 93 million Nigerians will be called to the polls to elect a successor to President Muhammadu Buhari, who is not running after two terms.

Africa’s most populous nation faces countless challenges, in particular near-widespread insecurity, a severe economic crisis, and spiralling inequalities. In recent weeks, as the campaign intensifies, insults and accusations have flared between the candidates.

Bola Ahmed Tinubu, candidate of the ruling party (APC), thus accuses Atiku Abubakar, of the opposition (PDP), of having “run a criminal enterprise and built an empire through fraud” by “stealing public funds” between 1999 and 2007, when the latter was vice-president.

Mr. Tinubu, nicknamed “the Godfather” or even “the Boss” for his considerable influence and wealth, calls on his opponent to “withdraw from the presidential race immediately” and “surrender to the forces of the order”. He dubs Mr Abubakar “Mr I Sell Everything”, describing him as “ready to get away with the takings” and calling him “corrupt”.

A US Senate investigation cites Mr Abubakar’s name in a money laundering case.

Between 2000 and 2008, one of his wives at the time, who has American nationality, allegedly “helped her husband repatriate more than $40 million in suspicious funds to the United States via offshore accounts” . according to the report.

The couple is also accused of having received more than 2 million dollars in commission for a contract with the multinational Siemens, which pleaded guilty in this case.

Scathing response from Atiku Abubakar camp rejecting APC ‘lies’ : Mr. Abubakar is blessed with ‘impeccable character and integrity’ … Unlike his ‘narcotics-ravaged’ rival , a sentence full of innuendo.

Mr. Tinubu is accused of having, in his youth, when he was an accountant in the United States, laundered money on behalf of a vast heroin trafficking network , which he denies.

At 70, the APC candidate, former governor of Lagos, has frequently been accused of corruption, without ever being convicted. The “Atiku” team is also calling for the arrest of Mr. Tinubu, accused of preparing an “army of bandits” to “undermine” the February 25 election.

Before continuing: “the candidate of the APC must suffer from manifest Parkinson’s disease accompanied by incontinence” . Bola Tinubu “cannot stand straight or climb (steps) without help, he suffers from visible tremor in his hands and throbs with the slightest physical exertion” , they say.

The health of presidential candidates is a sensitive issue in Nigeria, where President Buhari caused a lot of talk by absenting himself for months during his first term to seek treatment in the United Kingdom for an unknown illness.

Many therefore wonder if Mr. Tinubu, once elected, will not also be absent because of his alleged state of health and let his vice-president lead. The person concerned assures that he is in good health, as evidenced by his viral videos at the gym or dancing.

Six weeks before the presidential election, all shots are thus allowed between the candidates who seek to “discredit” their opponent, explains Udo Jude Ilo , analyst at the consulting firm Thoughts and Mace Advisory. “The candidates, mainly from the APC and the PDP, are seeking to rally public opinion against each other ,” added Mr. Jude Ilo.

Peter Obi , the presidential underdog and Labor Party candidate, is not spared either. Mr. Tinubu nicknames him “Mr. the stingy” , accusing him of not having spent enough on the population when he was governor of the state of Anambra (south-east). Nigeria “now needs stingy people who keep the money for the development of the country”, retorted Mr Obi.

These invectives leave little room for the debate of ideas even though the country is facing immense challenges: inflation that exceeds 20%, nearly 133 million people suffering from “multidimensional poverty” and the daily violence of criminal groups. , jihadists and separatists.

Africa News

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BREAKING NEWS: PDP’s Diri Wins Bayelsa Gov Election



The incumbent Governor of Bayelsa State and governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Douye Diri, has been declared the winner of the State governorship election held last Saturday.

The Returning Officer, Prof Faruq Kuta, who is also the Vice Chancellor of the Federal University Of Technology, Minna, announced Diri winner of the poll at the collation centre of the election on Monday.

Diri polled 175,196 to defeat his closest rival, Timipre Sylva of the All Progressives Congress, who garnered 110,108 votes while the Labour Party polled 905 votes.

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Plateau: Protesters Storm S’ Court Over Sack Of Four PDP Members From NASS



Over 1000 protesters, on Monday, besieged the Supreme Court to register their displeasure over the judgment of the Court of Appeal in Abuja, which sacked four members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Plateau State, from the National Assembly, based on a pre-election dispute.

The placard and banner-wielding groups, under the aegis of Coalition for Justice in Africa, CJA, submitted a protest letter to the Chief Justice of Nigeria, CJN, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola.

According to the protesters, the appellate court, by its judgement, thwarted the wish of electorates in Plateau state, when it declared candidates that lost the National Assembly elections that held on February 25, as winners of the legislative seats.

Speaking with newsmen shortly after the protest letter was submitted to the CJN, the National President of the CJA, Dr. Daniel Okwa, maintained that the judgement of the appellate court was capable of causing a breakdown of law and order in the state.

He said the group was at the apex court to seek the intervention of the CJN, alleging that the verdicts that removed all the PDP federal lawmakers were influenced by some chieftains of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC.

The protest letter, which was obtained by Vanguard, read in part: “The Coalition for Truth and Justice believes that the judgment of the Appeal Court in Abuja is a case of injustice, else, how could one explain a situation where lawmakers of the All Progressive Congress (APC) would boast and predict the outcome of the Court of Appeal judgment even before the pronouncement.

“This is unacceptable and indicates that the justice regime in Nigeria has been thrown to the dogs. What happened in Plateau State is an aberration of immeasurable proportion. There is a distinction between a pre-election matter and a post-election matter.

“The Supreme Court has established this fact on several occasions. It is now a wonder why the Appeal Court would act otherwise and in a despicable manner that tends to truncate our nascent democracy.

“The Coalition for Truth and Justice entirely condemns the actions of the justices of the Appeal Court that sat in Abuja. They displayed insensitivity to the electoral choices of the people. This is a worrisome trend that the Chief Justice of Nigeria must address.

“This is on the heels that the Judiciary, the world over, is regarded as the last hope of the commoner. This presupposes that it is the only place the commoner can get justice. The function of the Judiciary is not to twist the truth or fabricate facts but to interpret the law. The consequence of the interpretation of the law is justice.

“However, what played out in Plateau state negates the Judiciary’s position as the common’s last hope. The Judiciary is for sale to the highest bidder in Nigeria, if such positions could be taken without recourse to the implication of such on the psychological state of the people.

“The Coalition for Truth and Justice is using this protest to drive the point that justice in Nigeria should not be reserved for a section of the country or any political party. What happened in Plateau should not be allowed to stand or repeat itself. The implication of such is that the reputation of the judicial arm of government would be eroded.”

It will be recalled that the appellate court had on November 7, in a unanimous decision by a three-member panel led by Justice Elfrieda Williams-Dawodu, okayed the nullification of the election of a Senator and three members of the House of Representatives in the state that emerged on the platform of the PDP.

The panel based its decision on failure of the PDP to fully comply with a court that was made in 2022, which it said directed the party to conduct congress in the 17 Local Government Areas in the state.

It, therefore, held that though the lawmakers won their respective seats during the National Assembly election that held on February 25, all the scores that were credited them, amounted to wasted votes.

It ordered that candidates that got the second majority lawful votes at the election, should be sworn in as winners of the legislative seats.


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Canada’s Abuja, Lagos Visa Centres Open – High Commission



The Canadian High Commission in Nigeria has said its Abuja and Lagos visa application centres remain open for the processing of immigration, refugee and citizenship applications.

The Canadian High Commission had on Tuesday announced the suspension of operations in its Abuja office following a fire incident at its generator house, which claimed two lives on Monday.

Nigerians had expressed fear that the operations suspension would hamper visa application processes.

But  in a statement posted on its X handle on Thursday, the  Canadian High Commission clarified that its Abuja and Lagos visa application centres remain open and operational.

In the statement by its public affairs staff, Demilade Kosemani, the commission said, “As we continue to mourn the passing of our dear colleague from the High Commission of Canada in Abuja, please note the following information below:

“Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada clients: processing of applications continues. Regardless of the suspension of operations at the High Commission of Canada in Abuja, the Visa Application Centres in Abuja and Lagos remain open.”

Meanwhile, a travel agency, , TMT Travels and Tours Limited, has sympathised with the Canadian High Commission over the Monday tragic fire incident.

In a statement on Thursday the agency’s Chief Executive Officer, Collins Onukwubiri,  said, “We at TMT Travels and Tours Limited shares in the grief and sense of loss of the Canadian embassy in Abuja. The partial burning of the Canadian embassy in Abuja and the death of two workers there was most unfortunate.

“Canada, as a major player in the Nigeria’s travel and tours business, is an integral player in Nigeria’s economy. We know how devastating this unfortunate incident is to them but we want to say that we stand with them in this time and always. We specially condole with the families of the two persons who died in the process.”


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