Jonathan, most performing president since independence, says Okupe


Abuja  – Dr Doyin Okupe, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs,  said on Friday that President Goodluck Jonathan, remains the most performing president the country has had since independence.

Okupe said this at the Public Affairs Forum held in Abuja.

The four-day forum was organised under the auspices of Okupe’s office to highlight the achievements of the Jonathan-led administration.

Okupe said that although previous Nigerian leaders performed well within the circumstances they found themselves, none of them achieved half of what President Jonathan have achieved in four years.

The presidential aide described as “nonsense” claims that the Transformation Agenda of the President existed only in the media.

“It is nonsense to say that the Transformation Agenda of Jonathan existed in the television. We have not spoken about what he has done. We are going to overwhelm Nigerians during the campaign.”

He said it was regrettable that not much had been done to sell the good performance of the Jonathan`s administration to Nigerians.

Okupe, however, held that past Nigerian leaders contributed immensely to the development of the country to their best abilities as each of them recorded his own achievement.

He said that the Jonathan-led Federal Government would showcase its achievements to Nigerians during the presidential campaign for 2015.

This, he said, would convince the people that Jonathan remains the best option for the country in the years to come.

He, however, advised Nigerians to shun the antics of the opposition, saying that in spite of their criticism, they had not told Nigerians what they would offer, if given the opportunity to govern.

“This election will be a ‘no contest’ affair. We are telling the world what Jonathan has done. We will not stop until well beyond February. 2015,” he said.

Also speaking, the Minister of Transport, Sen. Idris Umar, presented the ministry’s achievements in the last four years during the event with the theme “Jonathan`s administration: Four impactful years”.

He said the resuscitation and modernisation of the Nigerian Railway system had reached an advance stage.

The minister highlighted various stages of work on new and existing rail lines in different parts of the country, many of which, he said, would be completed by the end of the year.

He stated that the Jonathan-led administration had repositioned the Nigerian port system in line with global best practices.

The administration, he said, had also increased the use of inland waterways and enhanced maritime safety and security.

The minister said that the administration had also improved the inter-model coordination of the Nigerian transport system and enhanced private sector participation in transportation in the country.

“These achievements have certainly impacted positively on the actualisation of the Transformation Agenda of Mr. President to the overall benefit of the Nigerian economy and the citizens,” he said. (NAN)

Rivers PDP secretariat burnt


CP orders 24-hour surveillance

The police averted a  fire disaster, in the early hours of Friday, as suspected arsonists set the Rivers State secretariat of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in Port Harcourt, ablaze.

The arsonists, numbering  four, were said to have been seen standing near the two-storey building with one of them holding a jerrycan, at about 4:35a.m.

The incident occurred less than 24-hours after 14 PDP governorship aspirants in the state held a rally, in Port Harcourt, the state capital, protesting the rejection of zoning by the state leadership of the party.

Some members of the party, including the 14 governorship aspirants, had been calling for the removal of the Felix Obuah-led state executive to pave way for a caretaker committee to conduct the party’s forthcoming primaries.

The night guard watching over the PDP building    became suspicious of the arsonists and   asked for  their mission.  He reportedly threatened to shoot them if they refused to leave the area.

The arsonists were said to have  ignored the guard’s threat  and instead  tried to get hold of him and ended up pouring some of the fuel on his legs, while one of them headed to the ground floor entrance of the building and tried to force the gate open.

The guard and other security men seeing the building had been set on fire, raised the alarm which  attracted   other residents of the area  to the scene  who   helped in  preventing the fire from  spreading.

Commenting on the incident, the state PDP chairman, Mr Felix Obuah, attributed the fire incident to some desperate politicians who he said “do not want the ward and local government congresses, scheduled for today, to hold.

“They are trying to force the cancellation of the ward and local government congresses schedule   for  this weekend.

“Let me say that no matter the desperation of that group, our congress must go on as planned,” he said

Nigeria must diversify its economy – Aganga


By DAUD OLATUNJI, ABEOKUTA

The minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Dr. Olusegun Aganga, has called for the diversification of economy saying it is the only way the country could achieve economic development.

The minister who made reference to the feat achieved by the former Premier of the Western Region, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, urged the present leaders to emulate past leaders, who used natural resources to improve the lots of their people and regions.

He said this on Friday as the 6th convocation lecturer of Bells University of Technology, Ota, Ogun State, while speaking on the topic: Emergence of Nigeria as Africa’s leading economy: Challenges for the Future.

According to him, for the country to maintain its position and even improve as the leading economy in Africa, it must encourage the growing of farm cash crops and embrace new standards in processing technologies.

He said, “We need to diversify our economy. We need to go back to the good old days when the proceeds from Cocoa were used to build the Cocoa House in Ibadan.

“We must improve the standard of what we produce and export.

“If we must compete, we must acquire the necessary skills, we must provide an environment where there is finance for the private sector. We cannot be competitive if we don’t link innovation with industry.”

“While he explained that the new economic status of the nation has been attracting foreign investors with many heads of state and presidents leading several investors from their nations to Abuja, he added that “the best time to invest in the country is now.”

The vice-chancellor, Prof. Adebayo Adeyemi noted that for the transformation agenda of the federal government to yield the necessary fruit it must ensure it has inbuilt components of knowledge economy.

According to him, knowledge economy relies on intellectual capabilities than on physical inputs or natural resources only.

He said, “Leading edge economies are now being driven by technologies based on knowledge, information, production and dissemination. It has been established that the widely accepted pillars of knowledge economy are economic incentive, innovation, education and information infrastructure “.

Vanguard

Katsina 2015: Tsauri Threatens PDP over Ticket


1201F14.PDP-Logo.jpg - 1201F14.PDP-Logo.jpg

PDP logo
From Ibrahim Shuaibu in  Kano

Katsina State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), governorship aspirant Alhaji Umar Abdullahi Tsauri has said that the party stood the risk of losing the governorship seat in 2015 if he was denied the ticket,

According to him, the party had the option of either giving him the ticket and win or allow him leave and lose the governorship seat.
Tsauri who spoke to reporters in Kano shortly after he held a rally in Marhaba Cinema said no amount of threat or intimidation would prevent him from pursuing his ambition.

He said only God could give power to whoever He liked, hence his decision to seek the post from Him, adding that his decision to contest the gubernatorial election under the platform of PDP was borne out of his commitment to promote peace, unity and development in Katsina State.

“PDP has a choice either to pick me, win election or let me go and lose election. Shema cannot win election; everybody knows that, between these choices, whichever they chose will affect Shema because you cannot give Dutsinma the governorship seat and still give them another seat.

“Shema political calculations about his survival after he leaves office is such that informed this open hatred. If I am to leave PDP for another party the hatred will reduce, even though APC has offered me ticket but I refused.
‘’My intention to contest the position is borne out of my desire and commitment to bring the desired change and ensure human development’’, he said.

Tsauri said he got the permission from the police to conduct the formal declaration but he was surprised to hear the withdrawal of the permission over the radio.

He alleged that his disagreement with the incumbent revolved around the issue of loyalty, not his capability to deliver dividends of democracy to the people of Katsina State.

“Ibrahim Shema believes poverty breeds obedience, it is only when people are poor that he can be guaranteed of their loyalty and he saw me trying to remove the shackles off them and by that I’m encouraging disobedience against him and his government, which is not my intention”, he pointed out.

He accused Governor Shema of trying to scuttle his ambition and ensure that by all means he did not scale through.
’What happened in Katsina was a clear attempt by some people who do not wish me well’’, he said.

The governorship  aspirant who urged the people of the state not to be deterred by what happened last Saturday, called on them to continue to give him the necessary support to ensure his victory at the polls.

Boko Haram kills 30 in Gombe blast


A bomb blast victim (lying on the floor) being attended to by medical team in Gombe... on Friday.

No fewer than 30 persons were killed on Friday when a bomb was detonated by some suspected Boko Haram insurgents at a bus terminus in Gombe.

Some residents of the town, who spoke to our correspondent, said the blast occurred at about 9am when the bus terminus was full with travellers.

The residents claimed that about 30 corpses lied at the bus terminus immediately after the explosion

An eyewitness, Ibrahim Issa, said, “It was quite unfortunate that today (Friday) will go down in the history of Gombe as Black Friday as the usually packed full terminus of the state transport authority aka Gombe line was attacked by suspected terrorists. “At about 9 am, an improvised explosive device went off at the park, while passengers were boarding commercial vehicles to various destinations across the country.

“The blast left scores of people dead, with many others sustaining various degrees of injury and 12 vehicles were affected.”

Addressing journalists at the scene of the incident, the Gombe State Commissioner of Police, Kudu Nma, said it was unfortunate that such a thing occurred in the state where peace had always been enjoyed.

Nma could, however, not ascertain the number of casualties at the time of filing this report, but a mortuary attendant with the Specialist Hospital confirmed that 23 bodies were brought from the scene of the incident.

It was also learnt that a body was deposited at the Federal Teaching hospital.

The police commissioner, however, confirmed the arrest of three persons suspected to be masterminds of the attack. The suspects were said to have sneaked into the park in a Volkswagen Sharon bus, with the inscription Yobe line on it.

When our correspondent visited the state Specialist hospital, tension rose as many people thronged the facility to check if their relatives were among the victims.

Meanwhile, the state Governor, Dr. Ibrahim Dankwambo, said eight people lost their lives as a result of the blast. He said this at the Federal Teaching Hospital, Gombe, shortly after visiting survivors of the incident, who were receiving medical attention.

Dankwambo, while describing the day as a sad one for the state and the entire nation, said eight people lost their lives and 46 others were injured but majority of them had been discharged from the hospital, while 15 were still on admission.

Copyright PUNCH.

The Amaechi I know must be regretting joining APC now –Nyesom Wike, ex-minister


Chief Nyesom Wike

The immediate past Minister of State, Education, Chief Nyesom Wike, in this interview with OLALEKAN ADETAYO, speaks on his ambition to become the governor of Rivers State, his quarrel with Governor Rotimi Amaechi and his stewardship as a minister

How will you respond to those who hold the view that by resigning your ministerial position for your governorship ambition, you are leaving certainty for uncertainty?

If you say I left certainty for uncertainty, you are asking whether I am sure of winning the election. What you should understand in life is that there is nothing that you partake in that does not involve risk. Every human endeavour involves taking risk. However, this type of risk, I can tell you, is the one that has a success rate of 80 per cent and a failure rate of 20 per cent. So I will say that I am not leaving certainty for uncertainty.

The Peoples Democratic Party is the predominant party as far as Rivers State is concerned. So there is no fear for anything. The structure is on ground. What we need to do is to work with everybody to ensure that the All Progressives Congress does not go back to the Government House although we know that it was the mandate of the PDP that the governor took to the APC.

The current governor is said to be doing well. What new things are you planning to bring on board if elected governor of Rivers State in 2015?

We are bringing so many things. We will ensure good governance. Good governance is not only about constructing roads. Good governance also includes or respect for the rule of law. Look at the state House of Assembly, today, state lawmakers sit in the Government House. So they are at the beck and call of the governor. Whenever he wants them to sit and approve something for him, they sit in the Government House and do it. Thereafter, they adjourn.

That is not democracy. We will give the legislature the required independence.

We will also give the traditional rulers their deserved respect. We will also give attention to infrastructure. Take for instance, there are only two roads in Rivers: Ekwere Road and Aba Road. Port Harcourt roads are bad, go and check. Look at the schools too. As the Minister of State, Education, I had to apply to the Presidency to intervene in some schools. We have been able to intervene in not less than 20 schools in the state.

So, as far as education is concerned, the state government will just build one modern primary school along the road and showcase it to every Tom, Dick and Harry that comes into Rivers State. Meanwhile, these schools are not in the rural areas. What the governor does is to build some of these schools on the road to deceive people that more schools have been given a facelift. Look at the health sector, all the general hospitals are dead. No one is functioning.

Look at how the government has wasted millions of naira talking about the mono rail. Is that what the people need now? What traffic are they going to curtail From what point to what point? Where the mono rail is, there is no single traffic. There is no population there and it is not more than 2km. As I speak to you, the mono rail is stalled. Each day, they advertise that they are on course. As I speak to you now, when they read this interview, they will tell workers the next day to move there so that people will see them working.

Look at the Karibi Whyte Hospital, the governor demolished the teaching hospital we used to have in Port Harcourt and said he was going to build a 1000-bed hospital. As I speak to you, nobody knows where that hospital is located. We have a lot of things to do, particularly in building our people’s confidence. Everybody has lost confidence in Amaechi’s administration. That is where we are. So, there are so many things that we are going to do and we are going to drastically pursue them. I have talked about the education sector, health sector, judiciary, etc.

We have a stadium within the city, he abandoned that stadium and said he was going to build a new stadium where there are no people living yet. That is to just let it be that he built a stadium, meanwhile there is Liberation Stadium in the city.

How will you react to reports that the political calculation in the state does not support an Ikwerre man becoming the governor after Amaechi who is also from Ikwerre?

Who does the calculation? Politics is all about propagating theories. If you say it does not favour one area, which area does it favour? I do not want to become governor because I am an Ikwerre man. It has to be put in perspective that I want to become governor to redeem my party, to make sure that APC which has no business to be in Rivers State is gone forever.

I don’t want to see myself as running because I am an Ikwerre man. I want to see myself as running because I have something to offer, to make a change for Rivers State to become the state that people want it to be.

PDP is not the ruling party as it is today in Rivers State. As an opposition party, what you are required to do is to field a candidate that has the capacity to match the ruling party for it to be able to take over the machinery of government. Opposition parties do not talk about whose turn it is. You only talk about whose turn it is when you are in government. The circumstance the PDP found itself today is such that it must go for whoever has the capacity and the confidence of the electorate to win the election. That is what the PDP needs.

All these talks are the imagination and propaganda of the APC government in Rivers State because they know who to be afraid of. They have said bringing out Wike is a walk-over for them, so we are helping them to win. They should not bother themselves.

How will you rate your performance as a minister?

How will I set examination for myself and mark it? Those of you who are out there should be able to know. When we were given the opportunity, did we make any impact? But as a human being and with the kind of support I got from my colleagues and the President, I think we did make a lot of impacts, particularly at the basic education level.

You can see it everywhere. Take for example, when we came on board, how many people wanted to go to Unity Colleges? But now, look at the huge number that apply to go to the colleges, not less than 200,000 for only 20,000 capacity. That confidence has been brought back. There were so many changes brought to the colleges, employing new teachers, putting basic infrastructure that were hitherto not there.

It was when we came on board that we pursued the issue of almajiri education; it was not there before. The issue of girl education was tackled. We are not saying we have achieved what we ought to achieve but we can see the progress that we have made. Look at the issue of vocational schools not only for skill acquisition but also for basic education. Fundamental changes and innovations have been put in place during our administration.

What were the personal efforts you put in to resolve the crisis between the Federal Government and the Academic Staff Union of Universities?

For me, it is not a personal thing. It was a collective effort put together by the government. The President in particular played a lot of role; although it was when I was there as the Supervising Minister of Education that the matter was resolved. Prof. Ruqqayatu Rufai did a lot before she left. I continued from there. We thank God that we were able to resolve it but I cannot say it was my personal effort. But as the then Supervising Minister, obviously, I did make a lot of impact to see that the strike was called off. But fundamentally, the President played a very crucial role in resolving that impasse.

How do you feel when people speak harshly about the quality of Nigerian graduates, describing them as half-baked?

Well, because of the quality of education we have had, you know that education was bad in the past 10 to 20 years. That is why it is not easy for you to see a turn-around immediately, it takes time. That is why the Federal Government is injecting fund to revitalise not just the higher institutions but also the primary education because if you get it wrong at the primary education level, it will be difficult at the tertiary level.

Lack of basic infrastructure is a problem. Lack of qualified teachers is also a problem. The Federal Government has been able to focus on these issues: infrastructure and quality of teachers. Training and re-training of teachers, making sure that teachers are availed with current happenings and are able to compete globally with their colleagues. You can see today that out of 13 centres of excellence by the World Bank, Nigeria alone has 10. Ten Nigerian universities are centres of excellence for research purposes. It has never happened before.

Back to Rivers politics, is it true that Governor Amaechi was instrumental to your appointment as a minister?

It depends on what you mean by being instrumental. He sent more than 10 names to the President for nomination and my name was one of those names. The word “instrumental” may be difficult because people have submitted names and Mr. President rejected such names.

He may be right after all by accusing you of stabbing him in the back?

That is a laughable thing. When you say “betrayal” and “stabbing,” we must have agreed on something. Maybe he said when you go to that place, do this and now you are not doing that. Or that there is something we agreed on that I refused to implement, that is when you can talk of stabbing or betrayal. Did he tell me that as I go to the Federal Executive Council, I should oppose Mr. President’s policies and I am not doing that? Did he tell me that as I get to that place, he will leave the PDP and I will have to join him? So when he says stabbing and betrayal, one should ask what actually he is talking about. Or is he expecting that as he is taking on Mr. President and ridiculing the office of the President, I should have supported that? Is it that because I did not support him in abusing the President and his office, I have stabbed Amaechi and betrayed him?

Look at the person talking about betrayal. Everybody in this country knows that Governor Amaechi was not in the state, he was in Ghana. Most of the people who are running around Amaechi now were nowhere to be found. I challenge anybody. I know that when I did my thanksgiving, when God saved me from the hands of those who wanted to assassinate me, the governor said one quality I have is that I am a man of character. He is on tape. He said this because when he was in Ghana, I championed his fight here. I knew what was on ground. There was everything for me to have betrayed him and I did not do that. So is it when he became a governor that I will start betraying him? When I had all the opportunity to betray him, I did not do that. It is laughable. I championed his re-election, I did not betray him. It was a big hell. You see, in politics, when you disagree with somebody, the only way you describe it is that the person has betrayed you. Where is the betrayal? If you hear the circumstance of my appointment as a minister, you will know who really betrayed who. If not by God’s grace, I won’t have been a minister. You can submit somebody’s name and go back to say that he is not the person you want. You can submit somebody’s name and the State Security Service will disqualify the person and you will come back to tell the person that it is no longer your business since it is the SSS that disqualified him. We know what happened in my case. So who actually betrayed who? Amaechi stabbed me in the back after I had passed through what I passed through for him and with him. When he got the power, he now saw that I was a threat. People started telling him that this man that did everything and made sure you became a governor, what you should do first is to edge him out.

You worked with the governor as his Chief of Staff and the Director-General of his campaign organisation, what is the cause of this current disagreement?

When he saw that I was to run for Senate, he denied me that with the hope that he was going to run for Senate in 2015. Unfortunately or fortunately for him, he became the chairman of the Governors Forum. He then saw the forum as an avenue to really launch his political aspiration in the country, which is now manifesting. The whole essence of Amaechi was not really to make me a minister, he believed that if he sent me out of the state, my influence would be cut and I would lose the support of the people because I will not always be there. He does not understand that God does not work that way. While he pushed me away so that I would not be relevant in the state, he did not know that God had a different plan. God said you are not just pushing him away, you are making Nigerians to know him more. Before he knew it, it was too late for him.

So it was like ‘let me push him out’ and God turned it around. He lobbied that I should be given a Minister of State. Of course, as a Minister of State, what are your powers? But God does not work that way. The whole thing is ‘take him out of the state, I will see how he wants to do whatever he wants to do. I will be free to put anybody I want to be the governor. If this man is in the state, he will likely give me a problem, so let me push him out.’ But pushing me out even became more problem for him.

With this glaring difference between you and the governor, is there any possibility of the two of you reconciling and becoming best of friends again?

The issue of best of friends is neither here nor there. We are both in different political parties. I think one day, he will realise that he has made a mistake and come back to the party that produced him. The party that made him to be speaker for eight years, the party that made him to be governor for almost eight years and the party that made him whatever he is today. I believe knowing him well, at his most quiet moment, he is regretting. Also knowing him well for his ego, he will say instead for him to do that, people will now know that he has lost his conscience, so he will remain where he is. If not that, if you ask him very well, he knows that he made a terrible mistake.

Like I said, PDP is a family, we will welcome anybody, prodigal sons can change. There is nothing wrong in forgiving him.

The Grassroots Development Initiative is an association you are sponsoring in the state to add to the political strength of the PDP. Do you think the group is achieving this aim?

Absolutely yes. That is what you can see today. Before now when Amaechi was in the PDP, we knew it, we saw it coming. We did not have the capacity to use the PDP to mobilise. So we formed this association to use it to mobilise, knowing well that he would one day jump ship. We want to ensure that the PDP does not die. So when he was moving out, the GDI became the strength of PDP. That is why we can talk about PDP in Rivers State. A party that has no governor, a party that people thought it was over when the governor jumped ship. GDI has done tremendously well.

How do you react to reports that the group is responsible for some of the political violence recorded in some of the local government areas of the state, especially in Obio/Akpor, Etche and recently in Port Harcourt and of course in Abuja?

What was the violence in Obio/Akpor? APC wanted to hold a rally and the police said they did not obtain permission, which is the normal thing to do. Where is the violence in Port Harcourt?

In Abuja, we came here for the reintegration committee. I was there and those who petitioned were there. A BoT member was there, former governor of Rivers State, Dr. Peter Odili, was there, all National Assembly members were there, all assembly members were there. They were there to make presentations to the committee. Where was the violence?

You know that in politics, we can be here discussing while supporters may be quarreling outside. So where is the violence? Of course, they may be struggling to come in. Those are natural things in politics. Did it affect us not to do what we were doing? Did it stop the panel from taking reports from people? It did not. So I don’t know the violence they are talking about. GDI is not a violent group.

What is your response to insinuations that you are a stooge to the President and his wife?

What is the meaning of a stooge? Stooge to do what? Do I need to wait for the President to tell me that somebody wants to cut short my political participation? Do I have to wait for the wife of the President to tell me that I should participate actively in politics? We are not kids here. Does the President need to tell me to go to court to realise our mandate? So, if I am the President’s stooge in Rivers State, who are his stooges in other states? I am very happy with the kind of President we have: very calm, very humble. We decided not to even tell the President when we were fighting this war because he is somebody who does not believe that there should be crisis.

But for us, we know Amaechi very well. My father tells me that when a mad man flogs you, one mistake you must not make is to start running. When you are running, the mad man will continue to flog you. But if a mad man flogs you, take something and hit the mad man back. He will feel the pain and he will start running. That is what is happening in Amaechi’s case. One mistake you must not make is to allow him intimidate you. So, I am not a stooge to anybody. Mr. President has never called me one day to go and fight Amaechi, neither has his wife done that.

As the primaries of the PDP draw nearer, what are you expecting as an aspirant?

You don’t prepare for examination because it holds tomorrow. You start preparing for examination from the day your lecture starts. The problem of most people is that they only prepare for election when the timetable is out. For those of us who know politics, we have been involved in it. We have started participating from time, to make ourselves available to the party, to make sure that we build the party to make it strong. You can see the difference. A student who starts preparing from the first day of lecture and a student who starts preparing because there is examination cannot be the same.

I have never asked anybody to impose me and I don’t want any imposition. What I want is for people to test their popularity; that is internal democracy. But a situation where somebody will come and tell you that it is his father’s turn, therefore somebody should not run for election, is that democracy?

Our team is quite sure today that if they do free and fair election in Rivers State, we will win very well. We are ready to face anybody in the election. Even at the general election, we are ready for the APC. They know we are ready, that is why APC people cannot sleep. The members can’t sleep and so they planted their moles in the PDP to cause problems, to say that it is the turn of A or B, when they know that we are in the opposition.

Copyright PUNCH.

Man needs N8m for kidney transplant


 

Anokwuru

 

Obinna Anokwuru would have loved to celebrate his 35th birthday partying with family and friends on October 23, 2014, but the young man’s fate did not afford him such pleasure. In fact, only a few of his friends and family could wish him happy birthday: they seem not to have the emotional strength to wish him one.

In 2012 when Anokwuru was feeling unusually weak and dizzy, he had no idea of the pain ahead. Handsome and well-built, some of the female friends that once admired him had since stopped calling him. The feeling of love for him has now turned to that of sympathy – how emotions can quickly fade!

After proper diagnosis by medical experts, it was discovered that one of his kidneys had failed. And since then, the once smiles-beaming face of the bachelor has shrunk. Sitting down on a couch in his apartment with a protruded belly, it seems like his world is crashing right in his face. His business is gone already; and he is afraid his life may be gone also if he is unable to raise the fund for a kidney transplant in an Indian hospital.

Anokwuru before the illness

The Edo State indigene told Saturday PUNCH, “Two years ago, I came home unusually feeling dizzy and weak. I thought it was malaria or probably fatigue. When it was getting worse, I went for a medical checkup and there I got the most unexpected news about me.

“Doctors said I had kidney failure. I was shedding tears because I knew what that meant. I was told to start dialysis, which has wiped away all my savings and other resources. If I fail to go for the dialysis, I feel severe pain in my body. This suffering is too much for me and I wish this cup will pass over me. This is not the kind of life I wished for.”

Since he barely had the strength to talk long, his sister, Mrs. Lorretta Udemba, said since his predicament began, friends and relatives had spent almost all their life savings to save her sibling. She added that his situation had become a nightmare to the family because “we are drained of all our resources.”

“Obinna’s medical condition was first detected in 2012, and he immediately started dialysis, which the family was able to sustain for some months. But we have not been able to continue with it due to financial constraints. Right now, his condition has deteriorated as you can see how helplessly he is sitting,” she said.

Udemba added that her brother used to go for dialysis twice a week to stay fit – each session costing N50,000. She also disclosed that every month since 2012 when the illness started, the family spends about N500,000: N400,000 for dialysis and N100,000 for drugs and other contingencies. This has caused the family to be financially strained.

But despite the dialysis, his condition is not getting any better, and doctors have advised that kidney transplant in an Indian hospital would be the way out of his predicament – at a cost of N8m ($48,000). Unfortunately, the family does not have the wherewithal to bear such cost.

Born to the family of late Bright and Celine Anokwuru, Obinna’s father was once the national auditor of the Nigeria Labour Congress, where he served together with the current governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole.

“We urgently need the help of kind-hearted people to assist us with the cost of sending him abroad for the kidney transplant, which has been estimated at N8m, excluding the amount we will give to the kidney donor. We will not take any kind gesture for granted. Please come to our aid before my brother dies,” Udemba pleaded.

Obinna and his sister, Lorretta Udemba, could be reached on 08029002341, 08033026271, and 07033462302. His account details are also as follows: Name: Anokwuru Victor Obinna; Account numbers: GT BANK (0116983382) or ECOBANK (2951027692).

Copyright PUNCH.

Mubi Attack: Terrorists kill Emir’s son, torch Badeh’s house


 

BY OUR REPORTER

Following Wednesday’s attack by Boko Haram terrorists on Mubi, the economic nerve center of Adamawa State and the subsequent attacks on Thursday, reports said yesterday that the house of the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh has been burnt down.Also destroyed was the hospital/clinic which the CDS built in memory of his late mother some years ago which had not only served the people of Vimtim but also provided first aid Medicare for wounded soldiers prosecuting the battle to dislodge terrorists from the North East.

A security source who made the disclosure to Saturday Vanguard yesterday, noted that on entering Vimtim, the primary target of the terrorists’ was the house of the CDS, adding that when they located the home of the Chief of Defence Staff, they were over heard, shouting, ‘bring out the family of Badeh for slaughter, search the whole house, do not let any of them escape’.However, no member of his family was in the house when the attackers arrived.Also, a son of the Emir of Mubi who was said to have relocated to Vimtim in the wake of Wednesday’s attack on their palace was said to have been recognized and killed by the terrorists.Lamenting the shocking development, the source said investigations have now revealed that many supposed residents or visitors into Mubi in the last four days before the attack were Boko Haram members who infiltrated the town on the pretext of being traders or family relations running from the terrorists attacks in other places.

“What really caused the pandemonium and panic that assisted the terrorist gain a upper hand was that as soldiers were in the frontlines marked out to repel the sect members coming from Uba axis in Borno, bombs and gunfire attack was coming from inside Mubi and communities which resulted in confusion”, the source said.Asked how this was possible, the source said tales of some of the people that escaped the attack show that many of them were told that they should not say their prayers in the town that day as it may be the last day they say such prayers in that town.

They however failed to alert security agencies with such information until the deed was done.On the next line of action, the source only said that security forces were not resting on their oars.Meanwhile, several attempts to get the Director of Defence Information, Major General Chris Olukolade to speak on the attacks proved abortive as he did not pick phone calls nor reply to text messages.

Oyo Guber 2015: Akala jittery ahead of PDP Ward Congress


Akala

Ahead of the People’s Democratic Party’s ward congresses across the nation, Oyo State PDP governorship aspirants are making moves for political re-alignment.One of such moves came from former Gov. Adebayo Alao Akala’s camp on Tuesday, Oct. 28th at the Molete, Ibadan residence of Chief Adigun Irawo, staunch member of People’s Democratic Party and a leader from Oyo North Senatorial District

In attendance at the meeting were five of the seven PDP aspirants of Ibadan extraction, otherwise known as G7, with two other front line politicians from Okeogun area (Dr. Saka Balogun and Chief Adetoro) with another Ibadan indigene, Chief Nureni Akanbi, who is not an aspirant.

The focus of the meeting, according to our impeccable source, was with a view to persuading the Ibadan five aspirants to align with Akala’s camp for the next governorship election, so as to be able to neutralize Senator Teslim Folarin’s grip on the party’s state exco, come Nov. 29th primaries.Our source further added that the three politicians of Okeogun extraction virtually went on persuasive note, urging the five aspirants that included Prof. Taoheed Adedoja, Kehinde Olaosebikan, Dr. Soji Adejumo and Gbolarunmi Azeem, to kindly consider their past relationship with Akala.It should be remembered that the five aspirants have in the past being in government with the former governor.In their collective response, however, the five Ibadan aspirants were reportedly said to have asked the Okeogun party leaders to advise their kinsman (Akala) to step down his governorship ambition instead.

“Akala should rather anoint one of us and back him up for the election. He should be ready to play leadership role and king maker, in Oyo State PDP, but not an aspirant,” said one of the aspirants on behalf of the rest of them.

vanguard

Keshi invites Ike Uche


Uche

After swearing that he will never invite Ikechukwu Uche to play for the Eagles as long as he remains coach, Stephen Keshi yesterday ate his words after inviting the Villarreal forward for this month’s 2015 Cup of Nations qualifying matches against the Red Devils of Congo and Bafana Bafana of South Africa.

Uche is called for the first time in nearly two years, and there is also a first senior team opportunity for Nasarawa United midfielder Tony Edjomari.

Home –based defender Solomon Kwambe also return, and Aaron Samuel (who got one of the goals against Sudan), Hope Akpan, Sunday Emmanuel and home –boy Emem Eduok have further chances after being called for the matches against the Falcons of Sudan.

Skipper and goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama, defenders Godfrey Oboabona and Elderson Echiejile, midfielders Ogenyi Onazi and Mikel Obi, and forwards Ahmed Musa, Emmanuel Emenike and Babatunde Michael are also invited.

All the players are expected to report at the Bolton White Apartments, Wuse, Abuja on Sunday, 9th November.

vanguard

 

PDP rakes in millions as final candidates emerge


By Henry Umoru
It has been a very busy and hectic period for the National Organising Secretary, but one striking consolation is that it is a period of Naira rain for the PDP, a period a former National Chairman of the party would say ‘Oja Ata’.

According to the 39 page document,  the Expression of Interest Form Code PD002/P went for N2 million which should be obtained from the PDP National Secretariat or such other places as may be designated by the National Executive Committee of the Party, just as the Nomination form Code PD003/P was purchased for N20 million, totalling  N22 million.

Governorship aspirants picked the  Expression of Interest form Code PD002/G for N1 million and N10 million to get the nomination form Code PD003/G, totalling, N11 Million.

Why I want to govern Delta in 2015 - Omo-Agege

A Senatorial Aspirant purchased the Expression of Interest form for N500, 000.00 and Nomination form for N4 million; an aspirant to the House of Representatives got the Expression of Interest form for N500,000.00 and nomination form for N2 million while for the State House of Assembly, an aspirant paid  N200,000.00 for the Expression of Interest form and N1 million for the Nomination form. In all these, female aspirants in line with the tradition of the party will not pay for the nomination forms.

With all the collections made from sale of forms, 15 % of the nomination fee shall be remitted to the State Chapters of the party and 5% to the Zone.

One interesting aspect in the picking of forms is that of Stakeholders, leaders, Elders of the party are coming together to purchase  forms for aspirants. A case that played out was when Indigenes, leaders, Stakeholders and elders of PDP from the Federal Capital Territory, FCT led by Ambassador Ayuba Ngbako purchased expression of interest and nomination forms for the Senator representing the FCT and Chairman, Senate Committee on Power, Senator Philip Tanimu Aduda to return to the Upper Chambers in 2015.

Also at the National Secretariat to pick his forms to contest the Imo State Gubernatorial election was Senator Ifeanyi Ararume who disclosed that it  was a collective decision by all PDP Stakeholders in the State to chase out governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State, adding, “I am here to pick up my nomination form and expression of interest form for the governorship race in Imo state.

“I served the nation at the highest law making body for eight years, 1999 to 2007. If I pick ticket now, this will not be the first time I am picking the ticket and I believe that the people of Imo state will look at every aspirant and pick the best to represent them because Imo state deserves good governance

For Delta State, the list is long, we have former Speaker, House of Assembly, Victor Ochei; Chairman, Senate Committee chairman on Health, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa; Ovie Omo- Agege; Tony Chucks Obuh; immediate past Special Adviser to the President on performance monitoring and Evaluation, Professor Sylvester Monye; Senator representing Delta Central, Senator Emmanuel Aguaravwodo;  Former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder Godsday Orubebe; Olorungun Kenneth Gbagi; Mrs Esther Uduehi; Andrew Warri, among others who have picked their forms to contest for the Delta State PDP governorship primary election.

Ararume

Also at Wadata Plaza to pick her forms to contest the Akwa Ibom State governorship election was, the representing Akwa Ibom South in the upper Legislative Chamber, Senator Helen Esuene who stressed that what should be paramount was having the blessings of the people and not those of the governor.

Besides Esuene, PDP PDP has Hon. Okpolupm Etteh; Nsima Ekere, Umana Okon Umana, Obong Bassey Albert, Ime Bassey Albert,  Benjamin Okoko,  Udom Emmanuel, Barrister  Asukwo Okpo, Engr. Larry Esin,  Engr. Michael  Onofiok, Barr. Ekpeyong Etekim, among others as aspirants.

For Oyo State, the PDP has former Governor Christopher Alao-Akala; former Chairman, Oluyole Local Government Council, Hon. kehinde Olaosebikan; Professor Taoheed Adedoja, Engr. Seyi Makinde, Professor Soji Adejumo, Senator Teslim Folarin, Hazeem Gbolarumi, Elder Wole Oyelese, Dr. Azeez Adeduntan; Dr. Gbola Adetunji, Dr. Babalola Owolabi.

For Lagos State, the PDP aspirants include Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, Dr. Segun Ogundimu, Chief Tunde Daramola, Mr. Ade Dosunmu, Engineer Adedeji Doherty and Mr. Jimi Agbaje.

In Ogun, the governorship aspirants in the PDP include Sikirulai Ogundele, Kayode Amusan, Ishaq Akinlade, Segun Adewale, Anthony Ojeshina, Rafiu Ogunleye and   Sina Kawonise.

From Katsina State,  PDP aspirants include Ibrahim Muhammad Idah , Umar Abdullahi Tsauri Tata, Alhaji Sunusi Dan Bello Na Adiyalle, Kabir Abdullahi Barkiya, Ahmad Aminu Yar’Adua, Eng. Nura Khalil, Arch. Musa Sada, Musa Adamu Funtua and Nasiru Umar Dutsima.

In Sokoto, the PDP aspirants are Deputy Governor Mukhtari Shagari; Senator Abdallah Wali, Senator Abubakar Umar Gada and Alhaji Yusuf Sulaiman, just as in Borno State, the PDP aspirants are   Alhaji Gambo Lawan and former Governor Mohammed Goni.

 Ndoma- Egba

In Kebbi, the governorship aspirants in PDP include Deputy Governor Ibrahim K.Aliyu, Sen Mohammed Magoro, Sen. Tanko Ayuba, Bala Na’Allah, Gen Muhammadu Dan’Hanne Isah, Alhaji Zubairu Turaki, Mansir Shehu Mansa, Alh Hussani Adamu, Bala Kaoje, Alh Sama’ila Sambawa and Elder Ishaku Daudu.

At the National Secretariat to pick his forms was former National Chairman of PDP, and Senator representing Benue North East senatorial district, Senator Barnabas Andyar Gemade who wants to  return to the upper legislative chambers in 2015, with a vow to floor Governor Gabriel Suswam who is interested in the position at both the primary and general election.

According to him, he would do all that was within his reach to make the race uncomfortable for Suswam if he insists in contesting and emerging the candidate for the position during the primary election for 2015 general poll, adding, “I am the current senator representing Benue North East District and I am going back in 2015. That is why I have come here. I think political contest is a democratic one and the winner will always remain who receives the greatest support from the public.

Governor Mukhtar Ramalan Yero of Kaduna State was also at Wadata Plaza to get the forms  for his re- election into the Kassim Ibrahim House.

Besides Yero, in Kaduna, PDP aspirants include Jimmy Nabaida Dung, Hassan Felix Hyat, Air Commodore John Bako Ajeye (rtd) and Senator Haruna Zego Aziz.

In Nasarawa, those in the PDP gubernatorial race include the immediate past Minister of Information, Mr Labaran Maku; former Governor, Aliyu Akwe Doma, Senator John Danboyi; serving Senator Solomon Ewuga, Dameshi Barau Luka, retired Col. Jibrin Bala Yakubu, Michael Abdul, Shaibu Kore and  Musa Oseni.

Akala

In Bauchi,  the PDP aspirants include  Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Abdul Ningi; Senator Babayo Garba Gamawa; Dr Musa Babayo; Dr. Mohammed Ali Pate; Barrister Ahmed Ibrahim Dandija;  Alhaji Aminu Hammayo, Alhaji Muhammad Sani Alamin, Alhaji Mohammed Nadada Umar, Alhaji Magaji Udubo, Senator Abubakar Maikafi, Barrister Haruna Umar, Senator  Baba Tela and Alhaji Shehu Gabam, just as the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory Administration, Senator Bala Mohammed who weighed the options, refused to tender his letter of resignation to join the array of aspirants from the State.

Those contesting for the PDP ticket in Zamfara State are the former Governor, Alhaji  Mahmud Aliyu Shinkafi, Rep. Bello Mutawalle, Alhaji Ibrahim Shehu Gusau, Alhaji Sagir Hamidu and Alhaji Bashir Adamu.

Former Minister of State, Niger Delta Affairs, Chief Sam Ode was there and he picked forms to run for the Benue State governorship election where he promised to build on the present level of governance of Gabriel Suswam with Agriculture, Food security,  Education, industrialisation, welfare of the people, among others forming his major priorities.

At the National Secretariat to pick his forms to contest the Kwara State governorship election was the immediate  past Chairman of the Federal Character Commission, FCC, Prof. Shuaibu Oba Abdulraheem, saying that  Saraki dynasty died with former Senate Leader, late Dr. Olusola Saraki.

Oba said, “ I have decided to join the race on the platform of the PDP in Kwara State principally to join and support Mr. President in the transformation agenda. Also, to do my quota to the best of my ability to bring the dividends of democracy to my people, to do all things that are righteous, dignified, to bring people out of squalor, poverty, ignorance and disease and to show that good governance does not need to be expensive, it is only bad governance that is expensive, we want to be able to demonstrate that to the people.”

For Kwara PDP, we also have the Chairman, Lubcon Oil, Alhaji Jani Ibrahim; Senator Suleiman Ajadi Makanjuola, Mr. Dele Belgore, Senator Gbemisola Saraki, Architect Kale Belgore; Senator Simeon Ajibola; Mr. Ben Duntoye, Engr. Sunday Babalola;  Chief John Dara;  Chief Yekeen Alabi; Mr. Bio Ibrahim and Malam Shuaib Abdullahi.

•Senator Ifeanyi Okowa flanked by his wife and Professor Sam Oyobvbaire during his governorship declaration in Asaba, Delta State.

Also there to pick forms to contest the Imo State Governorship election was the Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Emeka Ihedioha, saying that, “the failure of government in Imo State in the last few years required a drastic change in the leadership of the State.”

Ihedioha  who accused the Imo government of giving less priority to issues that affect the people, disclosed that his main motive for joining the governorship race was to redress what he termed, the imbalances in infrastructural development of the State particularly the area of education, just as expressed satisfaction for his services in the legislative arm of government, adding that the legislature has played very strategic roles in stabilising democracy in the country.

Also from Imo State are Prof. Jude Njoku; Senator Chris Anyanwu, Mr Bethel Amadi, Charles Onyeagbako, Humphrey Anumudu, Chief Ikedi Ohakim, Chief Jerry Chukwueke, Lady Clara Njoku, Chief Charley Amanze, Engr. Emma Ojinere, Chief Chris Brown Amadioha, Chief Charles Onuoha, Dr. Ngozi Olehi, Chief Ken Ojiri, Barr. Ken Njemanze and Chief Benjamin Nzimako.

In Niger State, PDP has Deputy Governor Ahmed Musa Ibeto, Sen. Nuhu Aliyu, Alhaji Moh’d Bawa Rijau, Alhaji Matane, Dr. Mustapha Abdulsalam, Engr. Mustapha Bello; the Chief of Staff to Governor Babangida Aliyu, Umar Mohammed Nasko; Alhaji Mohammed Babangida; Col. Isa Kontagora, rtd  and Saleh Sahabi to contest for the 2015 Niger State governorship primary election.

Interestingly, governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger State has also purchased forms to contest for Niger East Senatorial district where former Deputy Governor and a member at the just concluded National Conference, Senator Nuhu  Shem Zagbayi who was elected in August during the by- election following the death of Senator Awaisu Kuta.

Majority leader of the House of Representatives, Hon. Mulikat Akande, also picked her expression of interest and nomination forms at the National Secretariat,  boasting that she will succeed the present speaker, Aminu Tambuwal. The defeated Zamfara State governor in the 2011 governorship election, Alhaji Mahmud Aliyu Shinkafi also picked forms to contest the election, saying the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP will not repeat the mistakes of the past.

As the exercise continued, more aspirants were at the National Secretariat for the forms.  Former  Minister of Police Affairs, Alhaji Adamu Waziri Maina was there to pick the  forms for the fourth time to contest the Yobe State  gubernatorial election.

Waziri  who served at the just concluded National Conference, described himself as a perennial loser who had picked forms in 2003; 2007; 2010, failed and here again in 2014, just as he expressed optimism that he would win this time, adding,  ”Good governance requires entrusting the state to educated person with reputation in the civil service”.

Other PDP aspirants from Yobe include the former Minister of State, Finance, Dr. Yerima Ngama and Alhaji Ibrahim Talba.

The immediate Minister of State, Education, Nyesom Wike also picked his forms to enable him contest the Rivers State Governorship election. Though the forms were purchased for him by a group under the aegis, PDP Stakeholders in Rivers State, led by former Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives, Austin Opara.

Also in Rivers State, Senator Lee Maeba who represented Rivers South East in the Senate; Prince Tonye Princewill; Elemchukwu Ogbowu and Nimi Walson- Jack are there.

In Plateau State, PDP’s aspirants include Deputy Governor Ignatius Longjam, Senator Victor Lar, Mr Jethro Akum, John Clark Dabwan, Engr. Jimmy Chetto, Sir Fidelis Tapgun, Arch John Alkali, Haruna Dabin, Prof. Longmas Wapmuk, Prof Sonni Tyoden, Mr Samson Jidauna Dimka, Godfrey Miri, Sen Gyang Pwajok and Bishop Musa Wuyep.

The immediate past Minister of State, Niger Delta Affairs and former minister of state for power, Arc. Darius Ishaku picked his forms to contest the Taraba State PDP governorship primary election, saying it was the turn of Taraba South.

In Taraba, besides Kente and Ishaku, other PDP aspirants are Acting Governor Garba Umar, Agbu  Kefas and Ezekiel Irimiya, just as  Senator Joel Ikenya and  Senator Emmanuel Bwacha may have dropped their gubernatorial ambition to support Ishaku who has the backing of Gen. Theophilus Danjuma, rtd.

In Benue State, the PDP aspirants include the immediate past Minister of State, Trade and Investment, Dr. Samuel Ortom; the Deputy Governor, Chief Steven Lawani; former Vice Chancellor, Benue State University, Professor David Ker;  Terhemba Tarzoor, Hingah Biam, Sam Ode, Dave Iorhemba, Engr. Roseline Ada Chenge, Barrister Harris Paul Ogbole, Tivlumun Nyitse, Barr. Alex Adum, Mike Aondoakaa,  Terhemba Shija, Peter Chieshe, Mathias Oyigeya, Andy Uwuokwu, Eugene Aliegba, Felix Atume;  Prince Simon Aondona, Simon Anchaver, Engr. David Nongo, Samuel Utov and Madam Veronica Shimave.

The immediate past Minister of Health,  Professor Onyebuchi Chukwu picked forms to contest the Ebonyi State Gubernatorial primary election, just as Senator Paulinus Igwe did same and in Abia State, Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Publicity, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, among others picked the forms.

President Goodluck Jonathan at a meeting with the PDP governors had insisted on the presentation of popular candidates, warning that the Party cannot afford to lose any state to the opposition. We wait as events unfold.

vanguard

Intrigues as govs, senators engage in swap contest


As the 2015 general elections draw near, many second term governors have declared their intention to contest for Senatorial seats amid tough opposition from serving senators, Fisayo Falodi writes

Some state governors and senators are desperate to swap elective offices in the 2015 general elections for the purpose of remaining in the corridors of power.

While the governors are seeking to represent their senatorial districts after the constitutional two terms limit of their tenure, some senators are hoping to succeed them.

Pundits, who have been watching the development closely, described it as a stock in trade of many Nigerian politicians who will do everything to remain relevant politically.

In what political analysts have likened to demanding retirement benefits for themselves, the governors are believed to be doing everything to achieve their dreams, including using their closeness to the Presidency to engage the occupants of the eyed senatorial seats in serious battle to achieve their aims.

Some of the governors, analysts said, had ensured that their stooges got elected as senators to represent their districts to make it easier to succeed them.

The urge by governors to seek election into the Senate began in 2007 when many of them who were elected in 1999 served out their second term in office. Then, former Kebbi State Governor, Alhaji Adamu Aliero, was elected to represent Kebbi Central Senatorial District after he served two terms in office as governor.

The current Senate has 10 former governors in its fold, including Bukola Saraki (Kwara), George Akume (Benue); Kabiru Gaya (Kano), Shaba Lafiagi (Kwara), Abdullahi Adamu (Nasarawa), Joshua Dariye (Plateau), Chris Ngige (Anambra), Bukar Abba Ibrahim (Yobe) and Ahmad Rufai Sani Yerima (Zamfara).

Saraki contested and won election into Kwara Central Senatorial District in 2011 to replace his biological sister, Gbemisola Saraki, who was elected to represent the senatorial district in 2007. Gbemisola had attempted, with the support of her late father, Dr. Olusola Saraki, to succeed Bukola in 2011 as the state governor, but she failed to realise her ambition as she was denied the PDP governorship ticket. She later defected to the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria to contest in the governorship poll, but lost to the PDP candidate, Mr. Abdulfatah Ahmed, who many believe, is Bukola’s stooge.

The current Enugu State Governor, Sullivan Chime, is also involved in a serious battle to replace the senator representing Enugu West Senatorial District, Senator Ike Ekweremadu.

Chime is currently serving his second term as the governor and his senatorial ambition was said to have triggered off cold relationship between him and Ekweremadu. Supporters of the two gladiators, as expected, have become sworn enemies all in a bid to ensure that their principals get the PDP senatorial ticket.

Governor Martin Elechi, who is also currently serving his second term, is not left in the race for the senatorial seat as he declared not long ago that he would contest for the Ebonyi Central Senatorial seat.

Elechi declared his ambition to contest for the senatorial seat at the 34th state executive council meeting of the PDP in Abakaliki. He said he accepted to contest following consultation and pleas from major stakeholders in the senatorial district.

Many other governors elected on the PDP platform, who will round off their term in office on May 29, 2015, were said to be eyeing senatorial seats in their various states. Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State last year during a retreat in Uyo announced his intention to replace the current senator representing Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District, Alloysius Etok, in 2015.

Delta State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, is to engage Senator James Manager in a serious battle over the Delta South Senatorial seat. Manager, who is the Senate Committee Chairman on the Niger Delta, is a close associate of President Goodluck Jonathan, and he is said to be using his relationship with the President to get the PDP return ticket.

Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State had on February 16, 2014 declared his intention to run for the Senate during a civic reception jointly organised in his honour by the people of Ikwuano, Umuahia North and Umuahia South local government areas.

He had said, “For some time now, there has been much pressure from different groups, communities, individuals and organisations that I should run for the Senate. Since this is coming from my people, I have no choice than to accept the demand.”

Governors Babangida Aliyu of Niger State and Isa Yuguda of Bauchi State are also working round the clock to win elections into the Senate next year.

But Benue State Governor, Chief Gabriel Suswam, may meet stiff opposition even within the PDP to achieve his senatorial ambition. There is already an intense battle between Suswam and the senator currently representing Benue North-East, Barnabas Gemade, as the governor is seeking to replace the former PDP national chairman in the National Assembly next year.

Suswam, who spoke at a special thanksgiving service organised for him at the NKST Church, Ugba in Logo Local Government Area of the state, said he was compelled to run for the senatorial seat after several months of prompting by his kinsmen.

He had said, “For a long time, people have been calling on me to formally declare for the Senatorial seat because they said that it would not be in their interest that I should finish my tenure as governor and remain idle. That is why I have come to my immediate constituency to tell the people that I have finally decided to run for the Senate in line with their wish.”

But Gemade expressed the confidence that he would floor Suswam in a contest for the PDP ticket. The former PDP national chairman believes that it will be impossible for the governor to defeat him in the party’s forthcoming primary.

Gemade had told journalists when he purchased his nomination form at the PDP secretariat in Abuja that he was not afraid of facing Suswam, adding that he had faced similar challenges in the past, but emerged victorious.

He had said, “Many people have come to me and asked if I could stand the governor. I said of course, I have stood many before. I will stand this one too.”

In Plateau State, Governor Jonah Jang and the senator representing Plateau North, Gyang Pwajok, may swap as it was once rumoured that the senator is keeping the seat in trust for Jang. Both of them are said to be nursing the ambition of contesting in the 2015 general elections.

Jang, who turned 70 recently, may bow to pressure by some of his political associates to contest in the poll, but Pwajok, who was said to have been endorsed by Jang, had openly declared his intention to succeed the governor.

He had said, “People say I have received the blessing of Governor Jang to be the next governor in 2015. But let me say that it is not Jang’s blessing; it is a divine endorsement for a bigger mandate in Plateau State.

“At the moment, I have the mandate of the people of my zone whom I am currently representing at the Senate for the last two years, but now I have got a sort of encouragement by key leaders in the state, including Governor Jang to seek a higher office.”

Governors Ibrahim Shema of Katsina State and Saidu Dakingari of Kebbi State, like their colleagues, are also warming up for the major battle to represent their respective senatorial districts next year.

Even the current Lagos State Deputy Governor, Mrs. Adejoke Orelope Adefulire, has declared her interest in representing Lagos West Senatorial District next year. Her posters, as expected of a person who means business, have flooded strategic locations in the senatorial district.

She plans to replace Senator Ganiyu Olarenwaju Solomon, who has declared his intention to succeed the state governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, next year.

Some of the governors may, however, need to work hard to realise their ambitions as the current occupants of their preferred seats are not likely to surrender easily.

As zealous as the governors have been going about their senatorial ambition, analysts believe many of them are considering election into the senate as a form of compensation or retirement benefit.

An elder statesman and former governor of old Kaduna State, Alhaji Balarabe Musa, believes those with robust experience should seek election into the Senate among the governors.

He said, “The governors have the right to seek election into the Senate; I don’t see anything wrong in their ambition, but they should avail the country the benefit from their experience. They should prove this with robust debate on issues that will move Nigeria forward.”

The elder statesman, however, blamed the perceived desperation for the senate seat by some of the governors on Nigeria’s political system which seems to have failed to regulate politicians’ activities.

Prof. Solomon Akinboye of the Department of Political Science and International Relations, University of Lagos, believes that a few of the governors who have performed well with empirical evidence may replicate their performance in terms of contribution to robust lawmaking process if elected into the Senate.

He said, “Intellectual capability is another factor that must be considered. Lawmaking requires painstaking analysis of issue and debate, so, those who have the capacity can seek election into the Senate.”

Akinboye, however, agreed that some of the governors might be seeking election into the Senate because of their intention to stay close to power.

“Of course, they want to keep themselves close to power because once they have tasted power, they will not want to relinquish it,” he said.

Copyright PUNCH.

UNPAID WAGES: Shark FC, other football players sleep in front of Rivers Govt House (PHOTOS)


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Kaduna armourer arrested for selling police weapons to criminals commits suicide in cell


Deputy Superintendent of Police Nanbol Audu, who was the officer in charge of the Kaduna Armory, has killed himself days after he was paraded with two others for stealing and selling police weapons to criminals and rich people in the state. He was paraded this past Monday October 27th
DSP Audu, an officer who had served in the police force for 30 years and was due to retire in five years, shot himself in the stomach around 5.40am  October 31st inside his detention cell at the police headquarters in Kaduna, it was announced on radio today. The state police commissioner Umar Shehu confirmed the incident.
According to the state police commissioner Umar Shehu, the three men were arrested on October 20th as they tried to leave with 11 rifles that had been provided by DSP Audu from the state armory.
A search on them by other suspicious police officers revealed the stolen armory and N400,000 cash. When interrogated, Audu confessed to the crime and said he provided the guns to the men for personal protection from the Fulani herdsmen who were killing his people in Jos, Plateau state.

MUTINY: Court halts execution of soldiers sentenced to death


 

The Federal High Court, Abuja, has ordered the Nigerian Army to stay the execution of the 12 soldiers condemned to death by Army General Court-Martial following their alleged involvement in mutiny.

The order was given on Tuesday, October 28, 2014, by Justice Gabriel Kolawole, in a fundamental rights case filed by Olisa Agbakoba against the Chief of Army Staff, the Commander, Army Headquarters Garrison, Mogadishu Cantonment, Asokoro Abuja, and the Attorney General of the Federation.

It would be recalled that Brigadier-General B. T. Ndiomu, Commander, Army Headquarters Garrison, Mogadishu Cantonment, convened a nine-man General Court-Martial to try 18 soldiers for mutiny, insubordination and other military offences.

The mutiny took place at Maimalari Military Barracks on May 14, 2014. The Court-Martial convicted and sentenced 12 soldiers to death by firing squad.

As a result, Agbakoba had approached the Federal High Court to set aside the death sentence, on grounds of violation of fundamental rights of the soldiers and inconsistency with the Constitution. The Case is No. FHC/ABJ/Cs/708/14

The Chief of Army Staff and the Commander, Army Headquarters Garrison, Mogadishu Cantonment are both represented by a counsel. The case was called in court on October 28, 2014.

Meanwhile, counsel to the army requested adjournment. The Federal High Court adjourned the case to December 8, 2014 but ordered stay of execution of the death sentence, pending the determination of the Case. The implication is that the army has been stopped from carrying out the death sentenced, pending the determination.

Tambuwal drags FG to court over removal of his security aides


A day after his security aides were withdrawn by the Federal Government, the Speaker of the House of Reps, Aminu Tambuwal, has filed a suit against the FG before a Federal High court in Abuja.

Tanbuwal filed the suit today Oct. 31st asking the court to declare that the withdrawal of his security aides while he’s still the Speaker is unlawful and unconstitutional. He also asked the court to restrain FG from further infringing on his rights and privileges. There are reports they are trying to declare his seat vacant and organize a bye-election for the purpose of replacing him. Tanbuwal asked the court to restrain FG, INEC, PDP and IGP from doing this. In the meantime, he wants the court to order FG to return his security detail pending the determination of the suit.

DEATH THREAT: Niger Delta militant leader Tompolo replies Festus Keyamo


Popular lawyer, Mr. Festus Keyamo, has alleged that militant leader, Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, has threatened to kill him.

But Tompolo’s Media Adviser, Mr. Paul Bebenimibo, swiftly denied the allegation, saying his boss, after reading Keyamo’s letter to Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan over Warri South-West LGA polls, “called him to say he should stop dragging his name into the matter.”

Dismissing Keyamo’s allegation, Tompolo’s media aide Mr. Bebenimibo said: “Tompolo called him to ask him why he is dragging him into a matter that he had no hand in because Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is a political party and anything concerning the party should be discussed with the governor, who is the leader of party.”

He claimed that Keyamo had called Tompolo several times in the past, requesting him to buy some property, but his boss told him he had no money to buy property.

Mr Bebenimibo asked: “Why should Tompolo threaten Keyamo? What for? Tompolo only told him to stop dragging his name into what he knows nothing about.”

In a petition to the Director General, Department of State Services, DSS, and Inspector General of Police, Keyamo claimed Tompolo called him at exactly 10.30p.m. on Tuesday, October 28, and warned that he and his boys would kill him over his letter to Governor Uduaghan, calling for justice over the alleged substitution of the duly nominated PDP chairmanship candidate, Mr. Weyimi Omadeli, for Tompolo’s brother, Mr. George Ekpemupolo, in last Saturday’s council polls.
The petition read: “I know the subject of this petition, Tompolo, is a favoured citizen of this government, and I am not. I know Tompolo is close to those in power at the moment, whereas I am an ordinary citizen.

“I know Tompolo has money and influence, which are factors that are widely acknowledged to aid a suspect walk away with murder in Nigeria. But I have none of these. I know Tompolo has instrument to kill human beings, and I have none.

“In the circumstance, I am making this petition public so that when you refuse to attend to my complaint and outcry, the ordinary people of this country will, at least, know from where my death came and I will not join the long list of unresolved murders. My killer, should, at least be known.”

Borno’s Civilian JTF Beheads 41 Boko Haram Fighters


Forty one members of the Islamic fundamentalist group, Boko Haram, were beheaded by the vigilante group in a Borno village, Gur, it was gathered on Friday.

A member of the youth vigilance group in the area, Mala Yusuf, recounted that after a failed attack on Sabon Gari in Damboa Local Government Area of Borno state, a combined team of military men and members of the vigilance group otherwise know as Civilian JTF, went after the insurgents and killed 41 of them.

He said the militants were pursued from Sabon Gari, in Damboa Local Government to Gur area around Mandafuma village, in Biu Local Government Area, where they engaged the sect members in a gun battle which lasted for about two hours.

He said after the clash, 41 members of the sect were killed.
He said as a proof that they were killed, the youth vigilance members severed the heads of the terrorists and
brought their heads to show to the public.

He said, “The vigilance beheaded the insurgents after the shootout and took their heads to Biu to show the people that the Boko Haram insurgents are human and not some beasts and so, people should not fear them but to join hands with security operatives to ensure that the sect, who are enemies of Islam and the people of Nigerians, are defeated.

We heard that the insurgent went to attack Sabon Gari, where people are just returning to their homes after three months of exile as internally displaced persons in various camps across the state. We went after them to foil the planned attack.

“We were able to repell them and seeing that they headed towards Mandafuma in Biu Local Government, we went after them and we were able to ambush them at Gur.
“We engaged them in fierce battle with the soldiers and 41 of them were killed, one of them was taken alive.”

3 Arrested over Gombe Motor Park Bomb Explosion


Three suspects have been arrested in connection with an early morning bomb explosion at the Gombe Motor Park which left an unconfirmed number of persons dead and several others injured.
The State Commissioner of Police, Mr Kudu Nma, told newsmen in Gombe that a vehicle with an inscription “Yobe Line’’ was reported to have brought the suspected bombers to the park.

“A vehicle which was suspected to have carried the bombers who came in with Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) was recovered.

“Unfortunately for them, they were caught when they were about to run away,” he said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the explosion had gone off around 9.30 a.m. at the park,
leaving many dead and several others with various degrees of injuries.

The explosion had occurred at a time when many passengers were at the park boarding vehicles to various
destinations.

NAN reports that there was pandemonium around the area immediately after the incident as hundreds of youths from different directions descended on the park.

They threw stones at security personnel and other rescue workers who were evacuating corpses and the injured.

The security operatives had to shoot into the air to disperse the rampaging youths.

The bodies of the victims were later conveyed to the Gombe Specialist Hospital, while those injured were also taken to other hospitals for treatment.

At the Specialist Hospital, a mortuary attendant who pleaded for anonymity said 23 corpses were deposited there.

Meanwhile, the park and the surrounding area have been cordoned off while normalcy has been restored.

Also, many residents of the city have been visiting the hospital, trying to check if their relatives were among the victims.(NAN)

No Regret Allowing Man Massage my Butt -BBA’s Lilian Afegbai


 

Big Brother season 9 housemate, Lilian Afegbai was evicted after two weeks in the house, making her the fastest Nigerian housemate to be evicted..However, Lilian who was more renowned for her twerking skills says she has no regrets and will be a star regardless..

She also shutdown allegations that she was acting like Karen Igho in the house..She told the Nigerian Tribune

I wasn’t trying to imitate Karen, I’m Lilian and I am different. I have my own personality. For those who think I was trying to imitate Karen, well, welcome to my world.”

On her plans

I am taking a cue from Gideon Okeke. He did not win, but today, he is a star. I lasted two weeks in the house, and for those two weeks, I showcased myself and entertained Africa. Everyone was glued to their TV. But now, I am out here and people get to see me on the TV. I have been on Tinsel, Afriwood, but people didn’t know me. Now they will know me and talk about me and my moves. I am going to show Africa what I can do. I may not have won, but trust me, I am going to be bigger than the winner.

On her infamous butt massage

In the real world, I can have a friend and ask him or her to give me a massage. I had no ulterior motives. Luis gave me a massage and I did not have second thoughts. It didn’t lead anywhere. I did not have any negative thoughts. It was just a mate giving me a massage in the house.

On  if it wasn’t too early to have such kind of massage

That was how I felt at that point. If I was in my house, I would go to a spa or look for a friend to massage my body. I did not see anything wrong in it. There is something people don’t know: we had been locked down for over a month; it wasn’t easy.

El-Rufai: Withdrawal Of Tambuwal’s Security Details Plot By FG To Assassinate Him


el-rufai-36997890A former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory and governorship aspirant in Kaduna State on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, in Kaduna on Friday, alleged that the withdrawal of the security details of the Speaker, House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, was a ploy by the Federal Government to eliminate him (Speaker).

El-Rufai, who accused President Goodluck Jonathan of orchestrating the withdrawal of Tambuwal’s security aides, alleged that the Speaker was one of the targets of snipers being purportedly trained by agents of the government.

Speaking to journalists after picking his expression of interest and nomination forms to contest the Kaduna governorship election in 2015 yesterday, el-Rufai, who is presently Deputy National Secretary of the APC, maintained that Tambuwal was one of the targets of the killer squad.

“That was why the Inspector-General of Police, on the order of Jonathan, withdrew the Speaker security aides”, he added.

Warning that no harm must befall the Speaker, the governorship aspirant noted that it was irresponsible on the part of the Inspector-General of Police and the Federal Government to have withdrawn Tambuwal’s security details.

He explained that the withdrawal was done deliberately so as to pave the way for the “killer squad” to eliminate the Speaker for defecting to the APC.

According to el-Rufai, the removal of the Speaker’s security is part of the continuation of the Jonathan-led government’s penchant for impunity.

He, however, reminded the Jonathan government that impunity had limitations and called on the Nigerian government to learn from Burkina Faso when the people were fed up with the government.

El-Rufai said, “The withdrawal of Tambuwal’s security aides is on the order of the President Goodluck Jonathan. The IG doesn’t act that way. The president ordered the IG to order the removal; its just the continuation of the Jonathanian impunity.

“This people have no respect for the law. They have no respect for rules. They think they are in power to abuse their control of coercive instruments of power and we should warn them that impunity has limits. If anything happens to Tambuwal (Speaker), the whole world would hold them responsible.

“He (Speaker) was on the list of those to be taken out by snipers. So, if anything happens to him, we know that it was done intentionally so that this will succeed.

“They should look across Burkina Faso and see what is happening when a government overstays its welcome or engages in wanton impunity. They should learn from history. I think it is very irresponsible on the part of IG and the government to do that”.

The former minister also warned the police and other security agents to desist from being partisan ahead of the 2015 general elections, saying Nigerians were fed up with the current government of the Peoples Democratic Party.

Boko Haram Take-Over Of Mubi: Military Role Suspicious, Jonathan Not Worth Commander-in-Chief Title – Atiku


Atiku-Abubakar1PRESS RELEASE

Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar has condemned the recent Boko Haram overrun of Mubi and the hoisting of their flag in Adamawa State’s second largest town, as a tragic act and a worrisome affront to the corporate integrity of Nigeria.

Mr. Abubakar, who was abroad when the attack took place in his home State on Wednesday, 29 October, told a group of journalists on arrival on Friday that: “with what I have gathered so far from online news reports and other sources from Mubi town, the situation is very unfortunate and undermining for our country”.

“If the reports are true that the Armed Forces had abandoned their assigned duty posts a few days before the overrun, it was an indication that the attack was not sudden after all. If the Soldiers also left behind their ammunition and armoured carriers at the mercy of predatory insurgents, it raises a question of complicity in the sordid episode”, he said.

He described as most unfortunate a situation where unsuspecting civilians who had relied on security agencies for their protection and were expecting an improvement in their security status as a result of the announced Ceasefire, were suddenly left defenceless and at the mercy of the marauders.

Mr. Abubakar frowned at the suspected connivance that might have fuelled the sudden retreat of the military in the face of imminent invasion of a vital commercial town, less than three hours away from Yola the Adamawa State capital.

“No Commander-in-Chief or General that is worth his salt will surrender his territory with folded arms and running heels”, Mr. Abubakar said.

“On every occasion that leaders from the North East raised an alarm about the dangerous trend, we have either been ignored or called names”, he recalled.

“If there’s any iota of truth in the suspicion of the people that they were deliberately abandoned, then it becomes a dangerous trend and a bad omen for Nigeria and all Nigerians”, he said.

The former vice president said he is heading to Yola to meet with those managing the displaced people and see what assistance he can render to reduce the sufferings of the people.

2015: Jonathan Must Complete 2nd Term, Says Billionaire Businessman, Arthur Eze


Arthur-ezeBillionaire businessman and major financier of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Arthur Eze, has declared that the re-election bid of President Goodluck Jonathan was a done deal.

He made this declaration in Abuja during a meeting of the Elders’ Advisory Council of Goodluck Support Group on Friday.

Another businessman and founder of Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing Company Limited, Chief Innocent Chukwuma, at the occasion, donated 24 vehicles manufactured by his company to the group, pledging to do more in the coming days.

Eze, in his remarks, urged all Nigerians to support Jonathan in fulfilling his political aspiration.

He argued that some regions in the country had already been given the chance to produce Presidents of Nigeria, therefore, it would amount to injustice to prevent Jonathan from contesting for a second term.

He said, “Goodluck Jonathan must complete his second term. Nobody will take it from him. After his eight years in office, another region can take over. The South-West has done its eight years. Some parts of North have done their own. Jonathan has to complete his own term”.

Also speaking, a former Deputy Senate President and chairman, Elders Advisory Council of GSG, Sen. Ibrahim Mantu‎, urged supporters of the president to hit the ground running, adding that securing the re-election of President Jonathan was a tax that must be paid.

He said, “Now that Mr. President has picked his nomination form, it is time to hit the ground running. It is time to come all out and ensure that we campaign for the re-election bid of President Jonathan”.

‎Speaking in the same vein, the Special adviser to President Jonathan on Inter-party Affairs, Senator Ben Obi, said: “I stand in full support of this group as part and parcel of promoting the re-election bid of President Jonathan. This organisation brought a new lease of life when it endorsed President Jonathan. Our duty as aides to Mr. President is to mobilise and ensure that this organisation continues to move forward”.

FoI Act Not Binding On 36 States – Court


lawcourtA Federal High Court in Lagos on Friday ruled that the 36 states of the federation could not be made to provide any information based on the Freedom of Information Act.

Justice Okon Abang stated this in a judgment he delivered pursuant to a suit filed by The Legal Defence and Assistance Project against some states of the federation.

The judge ruled the FoI Act, being an enactment of the National Assembly, was only binding on the Federal Government and its agencies.

He also held that the Act was neither a residual law nor was it on the concurrent list of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

Abang further ruled that if it was the intention that the FoI Act should be binding on states, the Houses of Assembly of each of the 36 states of the federation should have been carried along in the process of its enactment.

He said the Houses of Assembly of the states of the federation were empowered by the Constitution to make laws for their respective states, and not the other way round.

The Attorney General and Commissioners for Finance of the states were sued by the applicant over their refusal to provide an information requested under the FoI Act.

The states are Lagos, Imo, Rivers, Abia, Akwa Ibom and Delta.

The applicant had written a letter to the states requesting information on the bond raised by the states in the capital market.

The request letter was dated December 12, 2011.

Specifically, the applicant had requested details of the amount raised and received by the respective states from the Nigerian capital market through public offers or private placement between 2007 and 2011.

Shekau Releases Video, Denies Ceasefire Pact With FG, Forecloses Possible Return Of Abducted Chibok Girls


Abubakar ShekauThe purported leader of the Boko Haram sect, Abubakar Shekau, who was reportedly killed by the Nigerian military, has appeared in a latest video released yesterday, denying claims of a ceasefire agreement with the federal government.

This is just as the terrorist leader disowned one Danladi Adamu, who claimed to be the secretary of the sect and has been in talks with the federal government on behalf of the sect for a possible permanent ceasefire deal and release of all persons held in captivity by the insurgents.

Recall that despite the announcement of a ceasefire agreement with the Islamist sect by the Chief of Defence Staff, Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh, the sect had continued its attacks on states in the north eastern part of the country as well as carried out more abductions.

Shekau, speaking in the latest video, dashed the possibility of the abducted Chibok girls being released, saying they had already been married out to his fighters even as he maintained that the war against the Nigerian state continues.

“We don’t know that imposter called Danladi Adamu, we have never mandated him or his like to speak on our behalf because in this war there is no going back.

“The issue of the girls is long forgotten because I have long married them off”, Shekau said.

Meanwhile, members of the #BringBackOurGirls advocacy group have expressed worry over the rising spate of insurgency in towns in the North-East of Nigeria in spite of a purported ceasefire agreement gleefully announced to the whole world by the federal government.

“Let no one pretend that we are not facing the most substantial threat to the integrity and existence of our country. What more extreme manifestations are we waiting for than the evidence of a rampaging group of terrorists carrying out heinous carnage in Mubi in Adamawa, Borno, Yobe and Gombe barely two weeks after the Chief of Defence Staff publicly conveyed a stand down order to our troops who were in the front prosecuting the war?” the group said in a statement signed by 14 of its leaders.

Ember Months: Lagos, No Go Area For Criminals – Police Commissioner


Kayode AderantiThe Commissioner of Police, Lagos State Police Command, Mr Kayode Aderanti, on Friday declared the state as a no-go-area” for criminals particularly during the ‘ember’ months.

Aderanti, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos warned criminals to stay clear as there would be no hiding place for them in the state.

The CP, who denied claims by some residents that crime had been on the increase in Lagos, added that crime had drastically reduced since he assumed office in September.

He said, “The crime rate in Lagos, from all available data, is not on the increase. We have been able to stabilise Lagos.

“Everyday, I receive reports from all the divisions in the state and there is nothing to indicate that we are having problem with the level of crime.

“So, that one, you can score us high. But we don’t want to rest on our oars; we believe that we can still work and do better because the good people of Lagos deserve better.

“And because of the special status of Lagos, we have to devise means and strategy to ensure that we curtail all acts of criminality.”

The commissioner said although the command was still having some pockets of challenges, “but I believe we are on course”.

The police boss added, “Since I came on board, we’ve arrested a lot of criminals, these are verifiable facts. The issue now is that you don’t commit crime in Lagos and get away with it.

“All the cases brought here since I came on board are cases that had happened 12 months ago and we have been able to burst them and arrest all those people that are involved”.

Van Gaal Rallies for Early Goal at the Etihad


Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has braced himself for the local affair at Manchester City and hopes his charges get off to a fast start on Sunday.

The Dutch boss, 63, has managed derby games in Holland, Germany and Spain, with the ‘El Clasico’ one of those fixtures that easily reflects in one’s subconscious. As he continues to chart new course in England, the former Barcelona tutor admits the Manchester derby has all tendencies to go down as “the biggest derby” he shall manage.

“It is one of the 38 matches we have to play but, for the fans, it is unbelievably big as a rivalry,” stated van Gaal. “I have felt that, also with a lot of the players in the squad but especially with Ryan Giggs.”

Fresh from a 1-1 draw at home to leaders Chelsea, Van Gaal admits confidence is at a healthy level and will be looking to capitalise on City’s poor run of form. Manuel Pellegrini’s men are winless in their last three matches but the manager warns there is need to be at alert.

Louis van Gaal Wants Manchester United to Take Their Chances at Manchester City. Image: Man Utd via Getty.

“When you lose, it’s a very bad week for the Manchester United fans but also for the manager of Manchester United. I can assure you of that.

“Our goal is to win the game. It is possible. We are growing, we are developing ourselves. What we have seen of City in the last matches was not so good. But that was also [the case] last year, warns Giggs. You never know.”

Assistant manager Giggs is responsible for oppositions’ analyses and also presents his findings to the players.

Having served in the same role under David Moyes in the last campaign, when the ‘Red Devils’ were thrashed 4-1 at the Ethad Stadium and being privy of a vast knowledge of local derbies from his playing days, Van Gaal explained how the 41-year-old Welshman was unable to hide his passion during pep talks and preparations.

He noted: “When he (Giggs) presented the analysis on City, I felt more tension with him. It was good to see that.
“Everywhere it is the same because the derby is between rivals in the city. He knows it, he has the experience as a player and now as an assistant manager. We don’t have to accelerate this feeling because it is football and you have to play the game, not only a game with emotion but also in a tactical way. That we are doing, that is how we are preparing. He has transferred the idea of emotion and I have transferred the idea of how we have to play.”

One way United will have to play is to hit the ground running and manifest every salient opening on the scoreboard, according to Van Gaal. They made good progression with the ball at home to Chelsea last Sunday, but waited until dying minutes for Robin van Persie’s leveler after Didier Drogba’s strike early into the second half.

“I hope we can score out of our first chance because we have created a lot of chances against Chelsea,” he said. “I think always in our games that we have played in the Premier League, we didn’t score from our first chance and then it is more easy to win the game.”

The other way is for players like Marouane Fellaini, who has been in top form since scoring his first United goal in the 2-2 draw with West Ham at Old Trafford, to “continue” laying siege in the middle of the park. The Bulgarian’s header led to Van Persie’s late strike against Chelsea and is highly favoured to continue in his role.

“He (Fellaini) has made a great contribution and also the assist for the [Chelsea] goal,” he remarked. “He has had a lot of time out injured but when he is fit I have played him. He has to continue with that because then I am very pleased.”

Van Gaal is “very disappointed” that seven of his players are yet sidelined for the derby, but laughed off reports suggesting that Wayne Rooney was a doubt with a foot problem. As well as the skipper, Antonio Valencia returns but Radamel Falcao has been ruled out through injury.

“Rooney was not injured,” Van Gal. “The media was writing that but he was never injured. Maybe his shoes were too tight, that is possible, but he was never injured.

“He shall play, he is my captain. That is all I can say to you.”

Jonathan Felicitates With Akande On 70th Birthday


Nike-AkandePresident Goodluck Jonathan has felicitated with a former Minister of Industry, Chief (Mrs.) Nike Akande, on the occasion of her 70th birthday.

In a congratulatory letter signed by his special adviser on media and publicity, Reuben Abati, and addressed to Mrs. Akande, President Jonathan commended her remarkable achievements, which he said emanated from her unwavering commitment to professional excellence and the highest ideals.

The letter read, “As you celebrate your 70th birthday anniversary on Saturday, November 1, 2014, it is with a profound sense of joy that I, on behalf of the government and people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, felicitate with you and your family.

“Your noteworthy accomplishments have spanned the worlds of business, finance and administration up to the level of the membership of the highest decision making body of our nation, the Federal Executive Council”.

The president also commended the ex-minister for her worthy legacies which he said had become sources of inspiration to many people.

Allow Akwa Ibom People Decide Their Next Governor – Bassey Tells Akpabio


bassey albertAhead of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship primaries slated for November 29, nationwide, one of those jostling for the party’s ticket in Akwa Ibom State, Obong Bassey Albert, has called on the governor, Dr. Godswill Akpabio, to let the people’s will prevail on the choice of a successor.

Speaking at an interactive session with journalists in Abuja, Bassey, who hails from Uyo Senatorial District said, “I have been mentored by His Excellency, Governor Godswill Akpabio being the commissioner of finance for seven years. I was part of his success story; I was part of the uncommon transformation of Akwa Ibiom State. With due respect, I have what it takes to continue where my governor stops as an insider. I am in the best position to step into his shoes. I have what it takes to take the state to the next level. My blueprint is ready and it would be unfolded in Uyo next week Thursday.

“As a human being, Governor Akpabio has the right to prefer any of us as his successor, there is nothing wrong with that but my appeal to him as a leader is to let the people of Akwa Ibom decide the next governor. He should let the internal democracy of our great party, PDP, be the method to be used to determine the next governor of the state”.

Albert recalled the roles he had played as a finance commissioner and said they were enough to help him build on the foundation already laid by the outgoing governor.

“As the commissioner of finance for seven years, I was part of the uncommon transformation in the state. I prepared and supervised the implementation of the budget for seven years. The increase in the internally generated revenue (IGR) from a paltry sum of N350 million monthly to N2 billion originated from my table, to the glory of God. His Excellency discovered me, nurtured me and I have justified the confidence he has in me”, he stressed.

I left Chelsea because I was not appreciated – Fernando Torres


Fernando Torres has revealed that he left Chelsea for AC Milan because he was not appreciated well enough at Stamford Bridge.

Torres joined Chelsea in January 2011 as the then British record transfer fee of £50 million (€63m), having seen his remarkable early standards at Liverpool suffer a dip.

The former Liverpool and Atletico Madrid player did not live up to expectation at the Bridge as he could not replicate his goalscoring form and never truly justified his price-tag during his three and a half years at the west London side.

“Mourinho has always been good to me,” Torres told Cuatro. “The decision to leave was a personal one because I needed more, I needed to feel important.

“Mourinho and I have a good relationship and still today we continue to talk to each other.”

Speculation was rife during the summer that Torres could return to Atletico this summer but the 30-year-old claims such a move was never an option.

“There wasn’t a genuine option to return,” he added. “The media speculated it and I didn’t like that.

“I’ve said it many times: I won’t go to Atletico to retire. I will go if I have motivation to compete because their team today is very different than when I was there.

“I follow them every weekend, but they were never an option that were real.”

Torres - Copy

Nigeria won’t qualify for 2015 Nations Cup: Congo coach confident they will beat the Super Eagles


Congo national team coach, Claude Le Roy is confident that they will defeat Nigeria and qualify for the 2015 African Nations Cup tournament.

Nigeria will travel to Brazaville next month for the all important clash against the Congolese, which could make or mar their qualification hopes.

The Super Eagles are currently third in the group, and have just four points after four matches in the group.

While Congo is second in the group with seven points, trailing South Africa who occupy the top spot with eight points.

And Le Roy is confident that they will beat the Super Eagles and end their qualification hopes.

“I am sure that we will qualify for next year’s AFCON because we are not going to lose at home to Nigeria. I am confident that we will beat Nigeria, which will guarantee our place in next year’s AFCON,” Le Roy told Radio France International.

“The magic for us was beating Nigeria in Calabar. That result was so crucial for us and we are not going to let our effort go in vain when Nigeria come to Congo”, added Le Roy.

Le Roy

[Photos] Bola Tinubu Returns To Nigeria


TINUBU-1

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, national leader of the All Progressives Congress, on Thursday returned to Nigeria via the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja, after a short London Trip.

It is rumored that the reason for the trip is linked to the former Lagos governor’s failing health.
TINUBU-2
Although the APC has vehemently denied the reports in the past, photos posted on Facebook by Sunday Dare, media aide to Tinubu suggest that the ‘Jagaban Borgu’ is quickly becoming frail and losing vigor.

Tinubu was greeted at the airport by the former Lagos State Justice Commissioner, Professor Yemi Osibajo and a few other loyalists. TINUBU-3

Gombe Bomb Blast: Latest Update – 25 Dead, Three Arrested


Three suspects have been arrested in connection with the bomb blast that rocked Gombe Line Motor Park in Gombe town this morning.

The blast reportedly killed at least 25 people and injured many others. Over 12 vehicles belonging to Gombe line were also destroyed.

Abdullahi Kudu Nma, State Commissioner of Police, has told reporters that the command has arrested three people in connection with the blast that went off at 9:30am, about 15 minutes after a military patrol team left the area.

Gombe state has been relatively peaceful and safe from the incessant Boko Haram attacks.
bomb blast - gombe

IK Uche is Back: Keshi invites 25 Super Eagles players for 2015 Nations


Ikechukwu Uche has been recalled to the Super Eagles national team by Stephen Keshi after being out on international wilderness for almost two years.

In first his assignment since coming back as national team manager, Keshi released a list of twenty-five players that he has invited for Nigeria’s 2015 African Nations Cup qualifiers next month.

Nigeria has two very important games to win against Congo and South Africa, if they wish to qualify for next year’s Nations Cup tournament.

The eye-catching name on the list is IK Uche who is returning to the Super Eagles after being out for a very long time.

The Villarreal FC striker who fell out with Keshi and has not featured for Nigeria since the 2013 African Nations Cup, but both men seems to have now sorted out their differences .

Meanwhile Keshi continued in his tradition of calling up locally based players, this time inviting seven who ply their trade in the Nigeria Professional Football League.

But there was no place in the team for Victor Moses who missed the last qualifiers against with an injury, although he has recovered from the injury.

Full list of invited players:
Goalkeepers: Vincent Enyeama, Austin Ejide and Chigozie Agbim

Defenders: Elderson Echiejile, Juwon Oshaniwa, Efe Ambrose, Solomon Kwambe, Godfrey Oboabona, Kenneth Omeruo and Azubuike Egwuekwe.

Midfielders: John Mikel Obi, Ogenyi Onazi, Hope Akpan, Raheem Lawal, Omatsone Aluko and Tony Edjomari.

Forwards: Ahmed Musa, Emmanuel Emenike, Gbolahan Salami, Osaguona Ighodaro, Ikechukwu Uche, Aaron Samuel, Sunday Emmanuel, Babatunde Michael and Emem Eduok

2015: PDP Gives Returning Governors Automatic Tickets


PDP-GovsThe Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has announced automatic tickets for its governors seeking second terms in office.

The offer means the governors will have to refuse to run before other candidates are considered.

The only the PDP governor seeking a second term is Ibrahim Dakwambo of Gombe State.

While the governors of Kaduna, Taraba and Adamawa States may be seeking re-election, they will be starting their first term as they merely completed the terms of their former governors.

It also emerged Tuesday that President Goodluck Jonathan was only publicly endorsed as the sole candidate of the party after he had been given the right of first refusal.

Adamu Mu’azu, the PDP National Chairman said Thursday that the party leadership had decided to give automatic tickets to state governors running for second term, who had performed creditably well, to re-contest their position in 2015.

According to him, the governors will be given the right of first refusal.

Mr. Muazu spoke when the president obtained his nomination forms at the party office in Aubja on Thursday.
Mr. Jonathan assured Nigerians that he would continue to work with them to move the country forward.

The president said that no matter how strong a president was across the world, he was only an individual that on his own, could do nothing.

“You alone cannot change the society. For you to succeed, you work with people; so if you are succeeding that means we have a team that is working to transform this country.

“So I will work with all Nigerians to make sure that we move our country to the next level”, the president said.

He said the days of saying that Nigeria was a potential great country was over, adding that, “Nigeria is a great country”.

This, he said, was demonstrated in the way the country collectively handled the Ebola case with the whole world being happy with Nigeria.

President Jonathan, however, added that it was time for all hands to be on deck to move the country to the desired level in the years to come.

He thanked Nigerians generally and reassured that his administration would not let the people down.

The president also expressed gratitude to the PDP leadership for giving him the right of first refusal.

“First let me thank God for today and Nigerians that are here today for this brief ceremony.

“Let me thank the leadership and all members of our party for believing in me and for giving me the right of first refusal.

“I could have still picked the forms if they did not give me, but giving me the right of first refusal has attracted more people that ordinarily it would have had”, the president said.

He specifically thanked the PDP national chairman and members of the party`s National Executive Committee, NEC, for unanimously endorsing the decision of its other organs that adopted him as the party’s sole candidate for the 2015 presidential election.

The president also thanked the PDP Governors’ Forum for providing the N22 million for purchasing the nomination and expression of interest forms for the election.

He thanked members of the Transformation Ambassadors of Nigeria, TAN, and other Nigerians for their contributions towards the purchase of the forms.

“I remain most grateful for their gesture and I thank them for believing first in this country, secondly for believing in the PDP because they know that this form is for the PDP ticket and lastly, for believing in me”, he said.
(NAN)

PDP Bars Adamawa Gov From 2015 Race


Bala NgilariAhead of the 2015 general elections, Governor James Ngilari of Adamawa State has been barred from contesting the governorship election of the state on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party.

The party said it was bound to comply with the agreement it entered into with governorship aspirants from the state about two months ago.

The decision to ban Ngilari was taken at the meeting of the members of the National Working Committee of the party in Abuja on Wednesday night.

National Publicity Secretary of the party, Chief Olisa Metuh, disclosed this to journalists in Abuja, Thursday.

According to Metuh, the next governorship candidate of the party would come from the Central Senatorial District of the state, which has never produced a governor.

Ngilari is from the northern part of the state.

He said, “On Adamawa, the NWC has decided that the decision and agreements of the candidates in Adamawa during our last exercise would be upheld.

“Accordingly, the governorship election in 2015 has been zoned to Adamawa Central. All aspirants, who bought forms (eight of them) that signed the agreement and withdrew are advised to come and exchange it without any payment with the new 2015 forms.

“It means they are entitled to run since they are from the same senatorial zone. The party will fully implement that agreement”.

It would be recalled that the former acting governor of the state, Alhaji Ahmadu Fintiri and seven other governorship aspirants in the state stormed the PDP national headquarters in Abuja on Wednesday to insist that Mr. Ngilari must not be allowed to contest the governorship primary of the party in the state.

The eight aspirants insisted that the zoning arrangement earlier reached with them by the party must be respected.

Apart from Fintiri, those who also visited the party to register their grievances were a former political aide to President Goodluck Jonathan, Ahmed Gulak; son of a former PDP national chairman, Awwal Tukur, former minister of health, Idi Hong; Mr. James Barka, Aliyu kama, Marcus Gundiri and Abubakar Girei.

A former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crime Commission, Nuhu Ribadu, who was part of the team with whom the agreement was made, was conspicuously absent.

Has footballer Joseph Yobo joined politics? See photos


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Looks like joining politics is the new trend among our famous folks. Former Super Eagles captain JosephYobo is the new ambassador of the PDP Ward 2 Ward Initiative. He is pictured above with other members of the group while on a courtesy call on the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Olisa Metuh, yesterday Wednesday October 29th. See another pic…

Source: LIB

Bomb blast reported at Gombe Line motor park this morning (PHOTOS)


A bomb went off at the Gombe Line motor park in Gombe state around 9am this morning which has resulted in the death of at least 30 people. Eye witnesses say the bomb was planted by a man who came and dropped his bag in a Kano line bus and left. NEMA officials are said to be at the scene right now removing the dead bodies and taking the injured to the Gombe State Specialist Hospital. Hoping to get more info from the blast later. See more photos below:

Gombe State Specialist Hospital this morning
 Photo Credit: Twitter/@WilsonIsTalking
 

Photo: EFCC declares man wanted


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Find the EFCC press release below…
The public is hereby notified that Salisu Taiwo aka Olusola Enitan, whose photograph appears above is wanted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in a case of Conspiracy, Obtaining Property and Money by False Pretences and Issuance of Dud Cheques. Taiwo under the pretext of renting a property, situated at Magodo GRA, Lagos, and purchasing items for its furnishing, issued cheques totaling N11, 398, 500.

But before the cheques could clear, he evacuated all the furniture and electrical appliances purchased by the property owner at his instance and sold them at give away prices at Alaba Market Lagos.

Dark complexioned Taiwo is 39 years old and 5.7 Feet in height. He speaks Yoruba and English fluently.

His last known address is Block A, Flat 35, Alarab Estate Akute, Ogun State.

Anybody with useful information as to his whereabouts should contact the Commission in its Enugu, Kano, Lagos, Gombe, Port Harcourt and Abuja offices or through these numbers 09-4604620, 070-26350721,070-26350722,070-26350723,070-6350724, 070-26350725 ; its e-mail address: info@efccnigeria.org or the nearest Police Station and other security agencies

GRAPHIC PHOTOS: Ghanaian Soul Singer Lady Jay Allegedly Attacked By Her Manager


Lady Jay

Ghanaian neo-soul singer Lady Jay was allegedly attacked and badly beaten by her manager.
It is not clear where the photos of the assaulted musician were taken from, but reports circulating in the local media say the woman was head-butted by her manager, following which she was rushed to the 37 Military Hospital for treatment, Spy Ghana provides.
It was added that the incident was duly reported to the police for investigation.
The picture above is a picture of how she looked before the attack. Abd below is how she looked after the attack:

Lady Jay

Lady Jay

Lady Jay

Stomach Infrastructure Is A Welfare Programme, Ayo Fayose Enlightens Nigerians…


Newly sworn-in Governor of Ekiti State who has been criticised for making provision for stomach infrastructure immediately he got into office has explained why he actually created an office for it.

Fayose while speaking at the PDP national secretariat yesterday, when he accompanied President Goodluck Jonathan to pick his presidential forms said, even Britain does it. His words;

If you look at Britain, as rich and as comfortable as they are, in the entire time, they find their way to address the issue of the poor and less privileged masses in their country by what they call social security. Food is a social security, you can’t be talking to a hungry man, he would be distracted by any means. Secondly, when we say stomach infrastructure, it is a welfare programme, a programme that would keep the heart of a man stable.”

Folorunsho Alakija Named 9th Richest Woman In The World


American’s website, Wealth-X has named Nigeria’s oil mogul, Folunsho Alakija has the 9th richest woman in the world. According to the website the selection was done based on the richest woman in each region of the world. Check out the list below with their estimated net worth;

S/No Estimated Net worth             Name                                 Region

$37.9b                                      Christy Walton                           North America

$31.3b                                      Liliane Bettencourt                     Europe

$14.8b                                      Gina Reinhart                             Pacific

$6.3b                                        Vanessa Paola Slim                    Latin America

$6.3b                                        Soumaya Slem de Romero         Latin America

$6.3b                                        Johanna Monique Slim Ayub     Latin America

$.3b                                          Uang Huiyan                              Asia

$4.2b                                        Shari Arison                               Middle East

$1.2b                                        Folorunsho Alakija                     Africa

 

Keshi Seeks Time to Decide on Eagles Return


Stephen Keshi says he needs time to mull over the possibility of returning to coach Nigeria.

The ex-Nigeria international says he will take his time to make the “difficult” decision of whether to return as coach of the Nigeria national team.

Keshi was dismissed from the Super Eaglels coaching role earlier this month after guiding the African champions to just four points in four Africa Cup of Nations (Afcon) qualifying matches and was replaced by a consortium of coaches headed by Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) technical director Shuaibu Amodu.

Following a meeting with the country’s football stakeholders in Abuja this week, President Goodluck Jonathan ordered that the 52-year-old be recalled and given a new contract- a position shared by Amodu who himself has requested the coach be allowed to finish the 2015 Afcon qualifying series.

“It is a very, very difficult decision. I am not sure I would say ‘no’ for now or ‘yes’ to the order,” Keshi told reporters after meeting with sports minister Tammy Danagogo on Thursday.

Keshi Led Nigeria to the Second Round of this Year's Fifa World Cup. Image: Getty.

“I still have to think about it because we all want peace. I want a settled mind before making the decision. I don’t have issues with anybody because life is too short. This is my country. I am always willing to offer my service.”

Keshi also reiterated his resolve not to let money determine his decision.

He added: “If I separately wanted a contract, I would have opted for the offer made by Equatorial Guinea because the offer they made was bigger than what Nigeria offered. But this is my country and I want to serve it.”

The former Togo and Mali coach led the Eagles to a third Afcon title last year in South Africa and also qualified Nigeria for last summer’s World Cup in Brazil, where they lost out in the second round to France.

Nigeria are third in their pool in the race to Morocco 2015 and need defeat Congo in Point-Noir by two-goal margin to improve their chances. They must also win their final qualifier at home to South Africa. Both remaining matches are slated for November.

Source: Reuters.

Ohakim and Wife Join the Funeral Service of late High Chief Sir Chilaka Okwuonu


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Osun poll: Security beefed up as tribunal begins pre-hearing


By Gbenga Olarinoye
OSOGBO—Osun State Election Petition Tribunal yesterday began pre-hearing of the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, candidate in the August 9 governorship election in the state.

The candidate, Senator Iyiola Omisore is challenging the victory of Governor Rauf Aregbesola of All Progressives Congress, APC.

There was heavy security at the Osun State High Court, Osogbo, venue of the tribunal as security operatives mounted road blocks along the roads leading to the court, checking motorists and people.

Senator   Omisore and his party, PDP, had petitioned against Governor Rauf Aregbesola of the APC and Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.

While PDP is represented by four Senior Advocates of Nigeria, SANs, and 24 other lawyers, Governor Rauf Aregbesola, who is the first respondent in the petition, was represented by four SANs and 14 others.

The Justice Elizabeth Ikpejime- led reconstituted election tribunal arrived the court around 9 a.m., and appealed to the parties to cooperate with the panel to ensure fair hearing on the petition.

The tribunal chairman also cautioned against spreading falsehood over the activities of the tribunal, condemning the rumour that was spread last week that the tribunal had given order for the recounting of the votes.

While calling for cooperation of the parties involved in the matter, Justice Ikpejime also appealed to political parties to allow the tribunal do its job without distraction.

At the commencement of the proceedings, Aregbesola’s lead Counsel, Akin Olujimi, SAN, PDP lead Counsel, Alex Izinyon SAN, and INEC lead Counsel, Ayotunde Ogunleye, welcomed the new members of the tribunal, promising to cooperate with them.

The Petitioner’s lead lawyer, Dr Izinyon  urged the tribunal to take the entire petition together so as to fast-track the pre-hearing of the matter and move to the witness, noting that two months have been spent out of the six months stipulated by law to finish the process.

But, Counsels to governor Aregbesola, APC and INEC, the 1st, 2nd and 3rd defendants respectively, Olujimi, Rotimi Akeredolu and Ogunleye, insisted that any challenge on jurisdiction to the competence of the panel must first be heard before moving forward.

Citing various laws of Electoral Act and Appeal Court decisions, the three defendants urged the tribunal to decide on pending application before moving forward to others.

Counsel to the petitioners, Izinyon, submitted that the application can be heard together, citing the case of Enukeme v Onumazi and others, reported in the Election Petition Law Report, 2014, Court of Appeal.

Meanwhile, the Tribunal has fixed Monday for ruling on the request by the PDP and its governorship candidate, Senator Omisore that the tribunal should not determine the competence of their petition at the pre-hearing stage.

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Keshi: Fans react


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With Stephen Keshi in line to return as Super Eagles coach, fans have shared their views on this latest development.Below are views of some football fans from different parts of Nigeria:Nwankwe Tarilaye,TM Bayelsa United from Yenegoa-Keshi should not return. What kind of working relationship will he have with a board that pushed him out?Bakare from Offa- Kwara State: Sacking him isn’t the solution at first but if he would be back,the Boss must learn from criticisms of all Nigerians.

Shuaibu Haliru from Sokoto: Keshi shouldn’t be brought back, he uses a lot of self interest in his squad. We have good talented players out there, players like Obasi, Uche, Abdullahi Shehu, Sherif Isa but they never get called up.Ojobi: Keshi won’t help Nigerian football because of his arrogant stand on locking out some very good players.Chikere Nwankwo: It’s laughable and a shame if Keshi agrees to go back to his vomit. What about the many countries he claimed were after his signature? The President by this action has slighted the Pinnick board. What it means is that nobody can talk to Keshi again. We’re in for poor results from the Eagles

Kendrick from Benin: I’ll be ashamed if Keshi accept to return back as Eagles coach. He has done his best and that’s the best he can give. I pray to God that Keshi should not come back, he wants to kill Nigeria football with his pride.

Biodun Adeyemi: President Jonathan should have allowed the NFF to have their way. He is causing more trouble for them by this action of ordering the return of Keshi. What about the girls who have been kidnapped for months?

Timothy from Markurdi: Keshi should never accept to return as the Suoer Eagles coach, his good record is fading with the current problem in Nigeria football. Let him keep his pride and good record than to spoil it now. Even though he qualifies the Eagles for Morocco 2015, the Eagles can’t do well in the tournament. It is obvious. For Keshi I advice him not to return to this job .

Egiom from Port Harcourt: Keshi has done well for Nigeria but He should take a bow and leave for good.

Uche Dibia: Will Keshi change his arrogant nature and invite better Nigerian players than the journey men he invites from China?

Mohammed from Taraba: Keshi is the best for Nigeria no doubt about that, I don’[t know why NFF sacked him in the first place. I think he is the right person for the the job.

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Burkina army seizes power after uprising


 

The army’s seizure of power in Burkina Faso on Thursday amounted to a “coup”, an opposition leader told AFP, adding that they consider the president’s departure “non-negotiable”.President Blaise Compaore, who has ruled the country for 27 years, “is again in the process of duping the people,” said opposition leader Benewende Sankara.

“We have been saying for a long time that he must hand in his resignation. His departure is non-negotiable.”Burkina army seizes power after uprising against veteran rulerBurkina Faso’s President Blaise Compaore was toppled on Thursday as the army took power after protesters set parliament ablaze in a popular uprising against the veteran leader’s 27-year-rule.

The demonstrators earlier forced the government to scrap a vote on controversial plans to allow Compaore to extend his reign, with tens of thousands of people joining a mass rally in the capital Ouagadougou calling for the strongman to go.Hundreds of people stormed parliament and other public buildings including the national television headquarters, ransacking offices and setting fire to cars, despite a heavy police and army presence across the capital.

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Banky W: “I’m sad I didn’t get to be on MI’s new album”


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R&B singer and also lead henchman of EME — Banky W has revealed he is sad that he is not on M.I’s 3rd album, The Chairman released today, as a featured artiste.

Banky made this known today via Instagram while urging fans to go out and buy copies of the album.

While thanking MI for inspiring him and describing the new album as a classic, wrote: ‘Bigups to my favourite rapper on the continent, @mi_abaga on the release of his album. Thank u for continuing to inspire me. Sad that I didn’t get to be on the album, but proud of U, inspired by ur work and wishing u nothing but the best always. Yall make sure u cop this classic.’

The Chairman album, which is M.I’s third full-length studio album, features artiste like Wizkid, Seyi Shay, Ice Prince, Olamide Reminisce, Patoranking, Runtown, Sarkodie, 2face, Nosa, Koker, Sound Sultan, Emmy Ace and Bennie Man.

The two stars are not exactly new to collaborating on projects as they have been on two tracks before at different times in their career.  In a song titled ‘Feeling It’ off Banky W’s The W Experience album, the ‘Lagos Party’ star featured the rapper who is fond of describing himself as the ‘short, black boy’ while they also hooked up to deliver ‘Still together,’ an ode to Nigeria for the country’s 50th independence anniversary in 2010.

Yvonne Nelson all excited for the American premiere of ‘Folly’


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Famous Ghanaian actress, producer and model — Yvonne Nelson seems really excited this morning as she shared this post with her fans on her Twitter page: ‘FOLLY premieres this Saturday 1st Nov in New York (empire cruise 23rd street) and Sunday 2nd in DC at (stonefish lounge) Come out and see this amazing movie…..come out lets interact and take some selfies. For more info on tickets call 3474792011 / 3472571796 @iamelizabethd.’

According to the movie’s Facebook page, the premiere will be a star-studded event to be hosted by Nosa Igbinosa and will be held at the top notch Empire Cruises’ HABOR YATCH located on East 23rd street & FDR Drive in New York City. In more exciting news for those partaking in the premiere, the movie will be screened while the boat cruises around New York City Downtown.

The film, parading stars like Uche Jombo, Alexx Ekubo, Joseph Benjamin, Joke Silva, Elizabeth U. Daniels, Belinda Effah among others, was directed by Alex Mouth and produced by Elizabeth Daniels.

Focused on Rhoda, who seems to have a perfect life until recklessness turns her world upside down in what will become wasted years later in life, the movie puts the story of love gone sour on the front burner, highlighting the thin line between promises and betrayal.

Wondering why the project is connected to Yvonne Nelson, an actress and producer herself, it might not be unconnected with the friendship she shares with Daniels who is the producer of the movie.

Yinka Ayefele’s dad to be buried in January 2015


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Final plans are set for the burial of Yinka Ayefele‘s recently deceased father, High Chief Taiwo Ayefele who passed away on his 76th birthday on Sunday October 12, 2014.

The burial has been slated to hold in January 2015.

To commence with a lying-in-state ceremony on Thursday, January 22, 2015 at the Ipoki Ekiti Civic Centre from 5pm while the service of songs will hold on Friday, January 23, at Orita Market, Iwaro street in Ipoki Ekiti.

The final burial ceremony of Pa Ayefele, who is survived by Yinka, Niyi, Oluwole and Olumide Ayefele, will hold at Our Saviours Anglican Church in the same town on Saturday, January 24, 2015.