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NASS Leadership: Protests Rock APC Secretariat Over North-Central Marginalisation




…aggrieved party supporters threaten to disrupt NWC meeting

Monday’s crucial meeting of the National Working Committee of All Progressives Congress was almost disrupted by pockets of protest by aggrieved members of the party.

The scores of demonstrators under the aegis of APC North-Central Stakeholders stormed the national secretariat of the party to register their displeasure over the alleged marginalisation of their region in the zoning of the Senate presidency.

This was even as they insisted that the North-Central would not accept anything less than Speaker of the House of Representatives as compensation for the sake of equity and federal character.

While the drama was playing out in front of the secretariat, the NWC members were holding a crucial meeting to determine which regions and consensus candidates should be given the positions of Senate presidency, Speaker and other principal offices ahead of the 10th Assembly inauguration.

The critical roundtable, which started at about 1.00pm, has the National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu; National Secretary, Iyiola Omisore and the majority of the NWC members in attendance.

Multiple sources had earlier told our correspondent that the decision to ratify the positions was taken after the party leadership met with the president-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, on Friday.

Chanting solidarity songs and displaying several banners that read, “It’s time to reward North Central,” “North Central deserves Speakership position” and “We say NO to imposition of Speaker,” the protesters made spirited attempts to disrupt ongoing NWC meeting.

The effort was, however, rebuffed by stern-looking policemen who mounted guard at the entrance to the national headquarters of the APC.

Speaking with our correspondent, the spokesman for APC North Central Stakeholders, Salihu Ibrahim, disclosed that they find the alleged plan to scheme out North Central from the Senat3 sharing formula as outrageous.

Ibrahim also lamented that it would be unfair and selfish for the leadership of the party not to accord them the Speaker after all the efforts and votes they contributed to Tinubu’s victory.

He said, “Our purpose of storming the APC secretariat today is to see the APC national chairman. We want to ask him what is good for the North Central after much contribution to the growth, development and achievement of APC today. But to my greatest surprise, we learnt that North Central is not considered for the senate president and Deputy Senate president zoning. The party is not even seeking to compensate us with Speaker, which from every indication is going to be zoned to the North East. That is the height of marginalisation.

“It is disappointing to know that this is happening under the watch of the national chairman of APC, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, who is also from the North Central. So we want to ask him, what is good for us in the North Central? What was the yardstick or parameter that APC is deploying for the sharing formula of principal offices?

“After all, it is on record that we contributed a lot tirelessly. We all have them on record. That was why we came out here to protest this marginalisation. We need to remind all of us who are members of APC and the people of Nigeria that the president-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, we are all celebrating today emerged as the flagbearer of APC based on the ideology of the party zoning the presidency to the South.

“It is outrageous to discover that we are not going to be given the chance for Senate president, Deputy Senate president and even the speaker. We cannot take this. That’s why we won’t leave here today until we hear from our father, the national chairman of the APC. We are therefore asking that the Speaker of the House be zoned to the North Central.”

Barely one hour after the protest, a second group of demonstrators from the same region drummed their way to the party secretariat screaming they want to see the party leadership address the unfair treatment meted to North Central.

The protesters, who identified themselves as North Central Democratic Coalition, also demanded the office of the Speaker or nothing.

Addressing journalists, the leader of the group, Ben Amodu said, “We have come here in our numbers to demand the zoning of the Speakership position in the North Central. A non-action implies that the region would be left out of the scheme of things because the vice president is from the North-East and the North-West is in strong contention for Senate leadership position.”

As of the time of filing this story, a third group of demonstrators under the umbrella of Coalition of APC Geo-Political Zones Support Group braved the heavy downpour to join other protesters to press own the same demand.

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I Won’t Abandon Atiku – Dele Momodu




The Director of Strategic Communications of the Peoples Democratic Party Presidential Campaign Council, Dele Momodu, on Monday, insisted that the February 25 presidential election, which produced President Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress, was manipulated.

In a statement tagged, “I stand on rule of law,” issued a few hours after  Tinubu’s inauguration as Nigeria’s 16th President, Momodu insisted that the judiciary still had to decide the authentic winner of the poll.

Momodu said he would stand by and not abandon the presidential candidate of his party, Atiku Abubakar, for any gains.

The PDP stalwart said, “My position on the state of our country, Nigeria, is simple and straightforward. I’m a loyal member of the PDP who owes absolute allegiance to Nigeria and its rule of law. My political party, the PDP and others, passionately hold the view that the last presidential election was savagely manipulated by the ruling party APC and the cases are already in courts.

“Nothing will make me abandon my party on the altar of convenience and profit. Win or lose, I will continue to stand on this principle without any malice or prejudice against those who think otherwise. Democracy is a game of choice and I’m resolutely standing by our candidate, the former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar,  who has taken the honorable and peaceful step of going to court to seek redress. This is the only way we can deepen our hard-earned democracy. Sacrifice is not always convenient but painful.”

He commended those who took the initiative of challenging the electoral outcome in court, saying, “I salute and respect the Wazirin Adamawa and others like my dear friend and brother, former Governor Peter Obi, the Labour Party presidential candidate, for promoting the best tenets of democracy in Nigeria and I’m willing to encourage them rather than discourage their onerous quests.”

Last week, the suit filed by the PDP seeking the disqualification of the Vice President, Kashim Shettima, on grounds of alleged double registration, was dismissed by the Supreme Court which ruled that the party lacked the locus to institute the suit in the first instance.

Atiku and Obi both turned down invitations extended to them by Tinubu to attend his inauguration ceremony, citing different reasons, not unrelated to the fact that they are in court to challenge the process that brought him to power.

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Start By Publishing Your Assets, Investments, SERAP Tells Tinubu



As Bola Tinubu assumes Nigeria’s presidency today, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has advised him to promptly make public his assets, income, investments, liabilities and interests. He is also charged to impress it on his vice, Kashim Shettima, to toesame line.

The group, in a letter dated May 27, 2023 and signed by deputy director, Kolawole Oluwadare, also urged the Lagos State ex-governor to prioritise respect for human rights, media freedom, rule of law and the judiciary.

It recalled Tinubu’s recent promise to “kill corruption,” reminding him that the outgoing administration in 2015 made similar promise that was not kept.

SERAP said: “As Nigerians have witnessed for eight years, (outgoing) President Muhammadu Buhari has neither ‘killed corruption’ nor obeyed court judgments on transparency and accountability.

“Publishing details of your assets, income, investments and liabilities and encouraging your deputy and others to do same would allow Nigerians to know your worth and that of other public officials.

“If your election is upheld by the judiciary, your government can use transparency in asset declarations as a means of promoting public accountability and ending systemic corruption in the country.”

According to the group, Buhari’s “broken promises to make specific details of his assets public and to kill corruption have opened up the country’s political and electoral processes to a money free-for-all, discouraged political participation and contributed to impunity.”

It continued: “Although (outgoing) President Buhari’s march to Aso Rock was predicated, in large part, on his campaign rhetoric to ‘kill corruption’, corruption remains widespread among high-ranking public officials and in ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs).

“Making public details of your assets, liabilities and interests would reduce unjust enrichment of public officials, ensure integrity in public offices and promote transparency and accountability, as well as good governance.”

The body noted that enforcement of court judgments is critical to national interest and restoration of rule of law in the country.

SERAP added: “The incoming government, therefore, has a responsibility to improve citizens’ trust and confidence in government. But it will be difficult for the new government to be trusted if its leaders do not come clean about their assets and income.

“Disclosure of income, assets and conflicts of interest can serve as powerful tools to draw attention to abuse of public office, help prosecute corrupt offenders and create a culture of scrutiny in the public sector.”


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2023 Northern Presidency Failed Because Peter Obi Left PDP – Okowa




The outgoing Delta State Governor and 2023 vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ifeanyi Okowa has stated that a northerner could have succeeded President Muhammadu Buhari if Peter Obi didn’t leave the PDP.

According to Okowa, the PDP had analyzed and concluded on how to present a northern candidate, with a southern running mate as the best way to counter the All Progressives Congress (APC) from getting massive bloc votes in the 2023 elections.

The party threw its presidential ticket open with a former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar eventually emerging as the PDP candidate.

However, the Delta State Governor said the decision of Obi to join the race for the ticket threw up southeast and religious sentiments and his eventual decision to dump the party for the Labour Party affected the votes of the PDP.

He made the submission during a chat with journalists on Sunday in Asaba.

According to Okowa, the northern presidency would have succeeded if Obi didn’t leave the PDP.

“I belong to the PDP and for me as a person and for the majority of the people in the PDP, they believed that our pathway to victory was to have a northern candidate and a southern vice,” he said.

“Why? Because we were not a majority.”

“The only thing that turned our reasoning out was when Obi came out from the south-east and there were a lot of feelings that came in among the Christians.

“So it ate very deep into our votes and that is what led to the loss of the elections,” Okowa added.

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