Science and Tech Minister, Onu Baggs 2017 Best Performing Minister Award

The Minister of Science and Technology, Chief Ogbonnaya Onu has bagged the Coalition of Civil societies in Nigeria’ 2017 award as the Best Performing Minister in Nigeria.

Announcing the coveted award in a statement signed by the Secretary of the Award and Privileges Committee, Patriot Wilson Attah, on behalf of the Board of Civil Society Coalition in Nigeria, the group noted that, the ogbonnanya On u is the first serving official of government in the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to receive this award.

In its notification letter to the Minister on the meritorious award, the Civil Society Coalition in Nigeria noted that he bagged the award based on his “prudence, accountability, transparency, and patriotism displayed in the cause of discharging his duty as the Honourable Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in the year under review.”

The statement read in part, “it may interest you to note that, Civil Society Organizations mostly criticized government and it’s activities and in rare occasion, appraise its performance which today, you are the first recipient of Civil Society Coalition Award as a serving cabinet member of the Buhari’s administration. That makes this award very symbolic.”

The coalition is made up of civil society organisations drawn from across the six geopolitical zones of the country.

 

The ward shall be presented before end of February 2018, the coalition said.

Source: StreetReporters.ng

 

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Condemnations Trail IBB, Obasanjo’s Anti Buhari Statements

A non-governmental organisation under the aegis of the New Initiative For Credible Leadership (NICReL) has lampooned the former military President, Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida and other nigeria’s former leaders over their plots against the reelection of President Muhammadu Buhari for a second term in office.

Addressing newsmen at a press conference in Abuja, the Executive Director of the group, Rev. Steven Onwu, maintained that the retired General’s statement tagged ‘Towards a National Rebirth’, through his spokesperson, Kassim Afegbua, asking President Muhammadu Buhari not to seek re-election or for Nigerians to vote him out in 2019 if he decides to contest and “the spate of attempts by some former leaders to ingratiate themselves into the polity” were attempts to “truncate our hard-worn democracy.”

According to the group, the hostility with which Nigerians received the statement initially prompted IBB to walk back the statement but he somehow got the bluster to frog march Afegbua to the studios of a national television to stand by the initial claim”.

Rev. Onwu noted that “such double-dealing prevarication from the man dubbed “The Evil Genius” is not new because such maneuvers were his stock in trade in his days as a military dictator.

“We dare say there will be more of such in the days ahead as he thinks he still have it in him to leave up to his moniker of “Maradona”.

“Kindly note that former military head of state and former president, Dr. Olusegun Obasanjo only a few days ago, apparently singing from the same hymnbook issued a statement with which he called on Nigerians to form or join a Coalition for Nigeria Movement (CNM).

“Nigerians should further note that: Babangida was one of those that sponsored the Obasanjo in his failed coup attempt under the Sani Abacha dictatorship, which promptly landed Obasanjo in jail for treason.

“Upon the demise of the dictator and Obasanjo’s release from jail, Babangida was among the cabal that imposed him on Nigeria, albeit under a compromised election that set the tone for dubious elections in the country.

“Babangida’s spokesman, Kassim Afegbua, is on the steering committee of the Obasanjo-founded Coalition of Nigerian Movement”, he said.

He added that “Considering the health condition that has kept the former dictator homebound, Afegbua and a handful of others are his proxies on the new project to jeopardize Nigeria’s democracy.

“Another foot soldier of the supposed coalition has called on a couple of other former military chiefs to issue their own statements, which indicates that this campaign of instability is something that was well hatched for synchronized activation.

“The people coalescing in this manner are connected one way or the other with the grand corruption that has kept Nigeria in the doldrums and they are also the ones that are losing their grips on the illicit revenue from corruption under the ongoing reforms.

“Even in the midst of these ominous conjugations however, we could not but notice the dark humor of the man credited as the father of corruption and the one that institutionalized corruption in Nigeria now grandstanding on the same issue in his desperation for relevance.

“IBB’s era as President saw Nigeria sat comfortably at the highest perch on the Global Corruption Index.

“Without him repenting and publicly apologizing for our commonwealth in addition to making restitution, he has suddenly found the courage to become Nigeria’s latest anticorruption crusader”, the group observed.

The New Initiative for Credible Leadership (NICReL), therefore, called on Nigerians to put the Obasanjo, IBB, and the other members of their “evil alliance (that are yet to come out) on notice that they shall be held responsible for any breach of peace in the run up to the 2019 General Elections.

“Their statements and utterances clearly indicate that they are secretly engaged in other activities destabilize the country even though the specifics of such evil machinations are not yet known.

“We shall lead our own coalition of the affected to attract the full weight of the law upon anyone that causes instability in the polity.

“We urge the Federal Government to immediately place anyone associated with threatening stability of Nigeria in this manner under watch.

“Caution must however be exercised in taking them in for questioning because their objective is to whip up sentiment around such reaction in their bid to find something with which to provoke civil unrest across the country.

“To this end, we advise the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, to cancel his declaration of Afegbua wanted as this will only make him more relevant.

“His activities should rather be monitored and discretely investigated until there is overwhelming evidence to arraign him for any crimes committed in the course of implementing the agenda of the Evil Genius”, the group said.

How Maina Recovered Fresh $44m, N486b Stolen Funds

Former Chairman of the defunct Pension Reform Task Team, Dr Abdulrasheed Maina may have aided the discovery of missing $44 million belonging to the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), PENSION COMM, HEAD OF SERVICE UNREMMITTED TSA FUNDS etc.

This is even as he also assisted in the discovery of another N486bn belonging to the Nigerian Pension Commission with Pension Custodians.

Nigerian government, in an effort to add impetus to its anti graft war, began a whistleblower policy, which has helped the government recover trillions of stolen federal government funds.

The former presidential task force boss who pledged to assist the President Muhammadu Buhari administration in recovery of over N3 trillion trapped pension funds in 97 outfits in the country is said to have commenced tracking the funds.

Recently, the Attorney General and Minister of Justice of the Federation Mr Abubakar Malami broke the news to the sitting Senate Committee on how Dr Maina gave intelligence which led to the recovery and savings of N1.3 trillion for the federal government in early 2017. Also in the news was the plan by the President to reassign him with a view to recovering trapped funds across different sectors of the economy. Insiders disclosed that Maina is already on track.

It was reported that he is also to assist in recovery of other funds trapped in different agencies like the recently reported unaccounted funds lodged in Banks under the office of the Head of Service of the Federation, which has not been remitted into the Treasury Single Account (TSA) of the Federal Government of Nigeria, the NNPC, PENCOMM and the NIA funds.

The newest development is said to have excited the Presidency, which is not leaving any stone unturned in the efforts to recover all looted funds by public officials.

Sources from the presidency had disclosed that Mr President is interested not only in the recovery of the trapped N3 trillion pension funds which is said to be stashed in different places but the credible intelligence he already provided which has yielded results and is continuing to yield more positive results. These funds will be used by the Government to ensure that Nigerians have a taste of Democracy dividends beginning 2018. Government is said to be highly interested and want the funds urgently recovered.

The source had disclosed that “The new coming of Mr Maina has started rattling Heads of agencies but as indicated by our source that “it will be more interesting in the coming months, as his sole responsibility will be to recover not only the N3tr but other government funds being siphoned by some greedy Nigerians to the detriment of the economy in all MDA’s.”

The source further revealed that, Mr. Maina has compiled list of all those involved and those still keeping some funds and will soon be released especially those involved in the pension scam, NIA, PENCOMM and NNPC hidden funds and would further give more insight into those former Heads of Services and Top Officials both within and outside Government who took so much funds and are hidding them. Maina is said to have compiled with supporting documents on how his led PRTT was able to recover the N282 billion and N1.6 trillion between 2010 and 2013, and how these funds were shared.

Our source further disclosed that the EFCC under Magu may be belittled to realize that what Maina recovered is 100 times more than what they have been chasing since the inception of the Asministration.

He has also given unrefutable evidences on how the 222 Pension properties were shared and those involved.

Government is said to have been working with Maina on these funds without the Anti graft agencies involved so that the facts and full details could be seen from a different angle.

Sources at the presidency indicated that Maina has been operating under the radar to be able to get all the facts without any interfereance. “so much unaccounted and unremitted funds are still being used and siphoned by some Heads of MDAs including Anti graft agencies.

Gov Shettima Hands Over Chibok Girl, Pogu to NSA

Governor Kashim Shettima has handed over the recently rescued Chibok girl, Salomi Pogu, alongside Jamila Adams with her 16 months old daughter to the National Security Adviser (NSA), Babagana Monguno, in his office in Abuja.

‪Jamila a 14 year old became friends with Salomi during captivity by Boko Haram in a village in Gwoza Local Government Area.‬

The NSA, while receiving the girls, on Thursday, assured the Governor of adequate care and psychotherapy before reintegration into the society. ‬

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Herdsmen/Farmers’ Crisis: Buhari’s Clear Message On Tolerance By Philip Agbese

Something epochal and unique amazed the senses of Nigerians on Monday, January 15, 2018. President Muhammadu Buhari had an exclusive audience with a Benue delegation led by the state Governor, His Excellency, Governor Samuel Ortom to fraternally dialogue and explore ways to resolve the internecine conflict between herders and farmers in our home state.
IGP Idris Ibrahim with Samuel OrtomThe Benue delegation to the Presidential villa in Abuja was by no means, a venerated assemblage of state leaders, which never watered its substance by partisan trappings.
The team which met with Mr. President comprised political leaders, traditional rulers and elders of the state.
The Tiv Paramount Ruler, Tor Tiv V,  HRM Orchivirigh Professor James Ayatse also registered presence personally.
The mutual parley became imperative based on the seed of discord sawn by enemies of the people as reflected in the herders and conflict. The conflict appeared to have exacerbated with the New Year Day bloodbath in Guma and Logo LGAs of Benue State.
 No doubt, the pains and sorrows from the dastardly acts created loopholes and cracks which have been actively exploited by intolerant elements, perpetually committed to the disunity of Nigeria.
There have been bitter conversations, misconceptions, inexplicable theories and trenchant calls for the severance of the essential cord that binds and unites the people as Nigerians and, especially, Northerners in this instance.
However, President Buhari’s utterances; his unexpressed feelings and  intentions all pointed to the mindset of a President not just saddened by the unfortunate incidents, but determined to  invoke the  full wrath of the law on the perpetrators of the evil.
More pungently, Buhari was unambiguously insistent on the necessity of tolerance in all interactions among Nigerians no matter the bitterness and disappointments.
But decoding this flank of the series of  President Buhari’s messages in specific connotations  to the Benue delegation and by implication, Northern Nigerians, it reminded of the timeless message of the revered modern beacon  of the Northern region, the Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Ahmadu Bello, who once echoed that ;
 “Here in the Northern Nigeria we have people of many different races, tribes and religions who are knit together to common history, common interest and common ideas; the things that unite us are stronger than the things that divide us…”
This message encapsulates twin indispensible ingredients of national cohesion and progress- tolerance and its end-result of unity. It is not just for Northerners in the specific instance alone, but a recipe for peaceful and harmonious co-existence of all Nigerians.
Therefore, the same engrained spirit unconsciously or consciously spurred President Buhari when he met the Benue delegation in the light of the herders/farmers bloody skirmishes by declaring;
“Your Excellency, the governor, and all the leaders here, I am appealing to you to try to restrain your people. I assure you that the Police, the Department of State Security and other security agencies have been directed to ensure that all those behind the mayhem get punished.
“I ask you in the name of God to accommodate your countrymen. You can also be assured that I am just as worried, and concerned with the situation.’’
The President’s drift must not be lost on the altar of any personalized interpretations. The audience before him was Benue leaders; but indubitably, they assumed his ordained status of leaders, representative of Nigeria.
Therefore, he was conveying a message wrapped in a template that is relevant to all segments of Nigeria.
Put differently, Buhari was addressing Nigerians through their leaders on the dire necessity of tolerance and hospitality to fellow countrymen and women as worthy virtues to imbibe.
The President’s endearing message on tolerance was quite inspirational and thought-provoking.
The unuttered feelings were unmistakably that in all human existence, anywhere around the globe, disagreements are bound to exist and, sometimes, expressed with violence.
It is undeniably the consequences of intolerance, which is a solution-provider and problem-solver in most disputes, ultimately harvesting peace and unity.
Enmity, hate and bloodshed could be averted when tolerance of one another’s excessiveness is accorded its prime position in the hearts and lives of people.
But the import of the Presidential message is open for every community, ethnicity, section or region to ruminate and accord it a special place in existence.
Northern Nigeria particularly with its disparate peoples and cultures, must necessarily accept and consummate a resurrection and refinement of this message of tolerance from Mr. President.
More than a few would agree that the North of yesterday or in the days of Sir Ahmadu Bello appears to have lost track of its communal values and soul, which exuded tolerance, peace and unity. It now radiates with destructive flames all too often.
And the unfortunate development is creating avoidable lacunas actively exploited by “emergency friends” of the North.
 In the days of yore, the geographical North was home to all Nigerians irrespective of tribe or religion and what propelled this seamless relationship was tolerance, mutual trust and understanding.
But these virtues and values have regrettably eclipsed among Northerners.
Today, there is a damaging resort to inexplicable inclinations and pursuits of the self-interest, as against the collective. Hate and vengeance have replaced fraternity and unity.
The delight to resolve differences through the sword, rather than dialogue has negatively redefined the social architecture of the people.  These proclivities cannot offer any remedy or solace to the affliction or even developmental challenges of the people.
It is time for self-assessment and a conscious reabsorption of the abandoned old positive values.
Benue state particularly, should refresh its cord of brotherhood with dialogue, which a few years back, had Kaduna as the proud epicenter of Northern dialogue, hub of Northern intellectualism, and unity.
This should replace the apparent tilt to the deceptive voices from the South, hell-bent on exploiting the conflict among brothers to their advantage.
The same elements preaching the artificial friendship would desert the people once they succeed in stoking and consolidating the fire in Benue or anywhere else in the North.
No Nigerian is oblivious of the endowments and blessings of Benue as a beautiful bride, courted by virtually all.
But it must not lose sight of the reality that not all the suitors are genuine, as many are masquerading vampires and disguised torturers or preys waiting to devour the people at the slightest opportunity.
If Benue people consciously expose themselves to their machinations, it would make them very vulnerable and such posturings have serious setbacks on the entire region, as peace not secured at home, would certainly elude you in foreign lands.
There is therefore, there is the need for a rethink, as no problem among brothers would defy solution with dialogue.
And it imposes the necessity to re-embrace the Kaduna tradition with its motely of dialogue vents for peace and unity.  No sacrifice should be considered too much for the peace and unity as canvassed by forefathers.
The most auspicious time, when leaders are expected to deploy wisdom or think with undiluted senses is now, rather than the casual glance at issues, as fired by the tide of “disaster” commentators.
 Benue state Governor Ortom must be alert before he is consciously hoodwinked to throw the proverbial baby together with the bathwater.
It is neither love nor affection, if a man who sights your house on fire, but offers you fuel, instead of water to quench it. The same man would disappear from sight when the fire explodes uncontrollably.
The signs are already manifest, as  can be gleaned  in the incident of  the recent conflagration in parts of  Makurdi, as   none of the war canvassers  risked any  assistance to the people of  Benue.
It was the same Benue leaders and people, who resolved to initiate dialogue and applied their capacity for peace building, in conjunction with Nigerian Security agencies that quenched the conflagration.  These are great and enviable lessons in self-worth.
The recent memories of  IPOB’s Nnamdi Kanu  saga is relevant and suitable here. At his time of tribulation, the great warmongers on social media; the activists and the venomous voices of “emergency friends” scurried away, at the sight of the “Python” when he arrived the doorstep to stage a dance.
Tolerance and dialogue is the panacea to peace and unity. But war is destructive and irrecoverable. Nigerians should adopt it as a national anthem.
*Agbese writes from the UK.

Open Letter to Shekau: Now That It Is Finished By Mustapha Ali

Dear Abubakar Shekau,

NOW THAT IT IS FINISHED

I want to use this special season of the 2018 New Year to write this open letter to you and the few adherents, you are still brainwashing, shielding and hypnotizing to feebly sustain the visit on humanity with erratic insurgency atrocities in some obscure communities in Nigeria’s Northeast.

The image your supporters proclaim on cyber space is far from reality and hence the need to write you this medium. I have spent the best part of my adult life in Borno state and the Northeast generally.

I am aware of the evolution of Boko Haram terrorism, a resentful, aberrant and inhuman religious sect, you have led for years.

I am also aware of Boko Haram insurgency’s various stages of metamorphosis; from a small sect to when it enlarged and became untamable or very wild and the ghost of its formal self now. I equally know of the period when you blossomed in atrocities; recklessly bombing public places, security formations, schools and marketplaces etc. There was a time your gang victoriously held Nigerians captive, by invading communities and villages, killing and abducting innocent citizens unhindered.

I know of when you captured swathes of territories or communities in Nigeria; deposed traditional rulers, appointed your own Emirs and foisted your flags in conspicuous places.

Dear Shekau, that was time then, when you publicly boasted of invincible might and strength. The reality now is quite different, since President Muhammadu Buhari became the leader of our great country, Nigeria.

His appointment of the Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Lt. Gen. Tukur Yusufu Buratai as leader of the Counter-insurgency war has been your greatest setback and nemesis.

A courageous, disciplined, patriotic and outstanding soldier, Gen. Buratai instantly changed the face of the anti-terrorism war.

He took the war to you in the forests, mountains, caves and to your Camp Zero in Sambisa Forest in he Northeast.

You were lucky enough to escape, but abandoned your copy of the Holy Koran and the Boko Haram insignia , which you cherish so much, symbolizing your defeat and surrender.

May I remind you that scores of your fighters were not as lucky as you, as they were consumed in the inferno of this encounter with Nigerian troops.; many surrendered thereafter and have kept surrendering to the Nigerian Army.

Shekau, even a blind man knows you are now a spent force and the sect, a shadow of itself .

You have been depleted; you have suffered in irrecoverable damages. That’s why you have been on the run.

Its even difficult for you to appear in recorded videos and brag like before. You neither have physical nor mental stability, to co-ordinate and execute the heinous atrocities on Nigerians and humanity anymore.

This reality is clear enough to discern. As Boko Haram’s factional leader, Abubakar Shekau, you are now unarguably the most flustered and distressed leader of a rebel sect anywhere in the world today.

You have lost the capacity to execute your habituated brutality, satanic and vicious brand of terrorism, recklessly bombing, killing and abducting Nigerians as was the experience in the past.

Shekau, you once declared in one of your numerous videos that the Boko Haram battle is finished. It means invariably that you bowed to the supremacy of the Nigerian state and its security forces.

In August 2017, your rival leader, Abu Musad Al-Barnawi, had predicted that the Nigerian military will defeat you and your Mujahiddeen (Commanders) who believe in the violent application of Islamic doctrines adopted by your sect.

This prediction has come to pass. It is senseless for you to continue to allow your followers to meet untimely deaths in the hands of the Nigerian military.

You have against all sound reasoning continued to feign might and preaching to the remaining few commanders not to surrender.

Death has been their reward in the hands of the military and this cruelty to your foot soldiers is very ungodly. I elect upon myself to counsel you that no wise fighter continues with a losing battle.

You are losing Commanders and foot soldiers almost daily in the hands of the Nigerian security forces.

It is extremely ridiculous and the earlier, you retrace your steps, the better for you and the few surviving Commanders.

Please save yourself from this discomfort and impending disgrace as the manhunt for you is very strong and widespread. Why deprive yourself and followers who desperately want to renounce your violent ideologies and turn to God?

It is never too late, as with genuine repentance, God will forgive your sins and make you appreciate the value of humanity.

God has this power and He can even turn them into His messengers in spreading the light of truth and love for humanity. Let me assure you that you don’t have to be scared to take this move or decision.

I trust that the Federal Government and some international organizations will arrange for exit programs for you and your gang of reprobates.

This is the most viable option at your disposal now and the earlier you take full advantage of it, the better.

Don’t be misled by any false illusion that the Federal Government and the world are interested in negotiating with your team any longer.

This possibility does not exist anymore, as the Nigerian military has taken over the game and are fully in charge.

I wish to reassure you and your few supporters that if you desire to surrender and disappear into exile anytime soon, some humanitarian organizations are willing to assist you with conditions that may be different from your mindset.

Be aware that accepting defeat on its strength alone is another sign of your own victory, as I believe it is completely needless to sustain the losing of more foot soldiers in the hands of the Nigerian military.

This is my New Year message to you and your supporters.

And I pray you to harken to the voice of reason, as regret is the last wailing of an obstinate fly.

Yours ever,

Mustapha Ali

Nwoko Hails Emergence of Secondus As bNew PDP Chairman

A former member of the Federal House of Representative, Prince Ned Nwoko, has congratulated Prince Ike Uche Secondus, as the New National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP). Prince Ned Nwoko who is aspiring to contest for Delta North Senatorial ticket.

Prince Ned Nwoko is the promoter of Stars Private University in Idumuje Igboko, Delta State. He advised the new PDP chairman to use his new office to promote unity and fair play within the party.

He described Chief Secondus as “Total Chairman”, and urged the new PDP helmsman to enthrone internal democracy within the fold.

In s statement issued in his Maitama home, Abuja, Prince Nwoko said: “I want to congratulate the elected National Chairman of our great party; PDP, other elected Officials, the other Leader of the party, the Chairman of the organising Committee; Governor of Delta State, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa and his members, the delegates and every member of our great party on the successful conclusion of the elective convention, held yesterday, the 9th of December, 2017, at Abuja.

“It is therefore, my prayers that, the almighty God, shall direct the steps of the Chairman and the other elected Officials, in their avowed determination to enthrone internal democracy and the repositioning of the party towards achieving the desired overwhelming victory in the 2019 general election.

“God bless the PDP, God bless Nigeria”, he prayed.

Ademola Slated for Sack Before Resigning, Says NJC

Justice Adeniyi Ademola pulled a fast one on the National Judicial Council, by hurriedly announcing his resignation, a spokesman for the council revealed today.

According to Soji Oye, NJC’s Director of Information, the council recommended on Wednesday the compulsory retirement of Ademola, along with Justice O. O. Tokode, both of the Federal High Court, for misconduct.

The decision was taken at the Council’s 84th meeting on Dec. 6., chaired by the Chief Justice Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghe.

Ademola apparently getting wind of NJC’s decision, hurriedly notified the council of his decision to voluntarily retire from the bench.

Ademola was due for retirement on April 9, 2018, when he would attain the mandatory retirement age of 65 years.

The council said its decision was pursuant to its findings on the allegation in the petition written against Ademola by Committee of Anambra State PDP House of Representatives Members-Elect.

The council said the petitioners alleged gross misconduct in the handling of a matter they filed before Ademola.

The council urged the public to disregard news circulating that Ademola had voluntarily retired.

“The purported voluntary retirement is clearly an afterthought as council had taken action before his decision to forward any voluntary retirement letter.”

The council further said that Justice Tokode was also recommended to the President for compulsory retirement with immediate effect.

It said this followed its findings on the allegation contained in petitions forwarded by Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) and Miss Abimbola Awogboro.

“The petitioners accused the judge of misleading the Federal Judicial Service Commission and the National Judicial Council.

” This was by submitting six judgements he claimed to have personally conducted while practising as a lawyer; a pre-requisite for his application for appointment as a judicial officer, and was so appointed.

“The investigation committee of council, however, found that the judge personally conducted only one of the six cases submitted.

” Therefore, Council decided to recommend his compulsory retirement and the refund of all salaries and allowances he earned since his purported appointment to the position of a Judge to the coffers of the Judiciary.”

The council said in the interim, both judges were suspended from office with immediate effect.

The council similarly issued warning letters to Justices A. N. Ubaka of the National Industrial Court, Justice A. M. Lawal of Lagos High Court and Zainab Sadat of the High Court of Niger and placed them both on a watch list.

However, the council dismissed the petition written by Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff, former interim chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, accusing Justice A. Liman of the Federal High Court of corruption.

Source: The Street Reporters

 

Anti-corruption War: Nigerians React to Maina’s Re-instatement

Some Nigerians have reacted to the recent reinstatement of the former Chairman of Presidential Committee on Pension Reform Taskforce Team (PRTT), Abdulrasheed Maina, into the federal civil service, saying the development is a victory over corruption and age-long pervasion of the civil service rules and labour laws.

It could recall that Maina while fighting corruption in the pension sector through the PRTT in 2010 recovered over 200 billion Naira in cash but, as some Nigerians put it, “in the process, the hunter became the hunted as corruption forth back and was sacked illegally.”

It could also be recall that Maina led PRTT recovered 1.6 trillion Naira both in cash and assets within a period of one year.

However, as the Coordinator of the North Central Youth Leaders Forum, Hon Alfa Nma said in his reaction to Maina’s reinstatement, “some corrupt pension looters ganged up against Maina and he was framed to be corrupt.

“Maina’ car was shot on his way from the Presidential Villa since then, Maina went into hiding.

“So, who will not run away when it has become obvious that people are after your life?”‘ Hon. Nma said.

He recalled that Senator Kabir Gaya who earlier accused Maina of stealing 195 billion Naira soon renounced his accusation when he declared that the said money was found to be lodged in the federal government’s account, which is part of the (Treasury Single Account (TSA) of the Buhari’s administration.

The group, the North Central Youth Leaders Forum, had earlier called on President Buhari to sustain the anti corruption war, urging him that while fighting corruption, he should look into the files of those fighting corruption in the previous administration and were framed up.

According to the group, the advice was with a view to determining the merit or otherwise of some cases to not only clear them but also to make them part of the anti corruption war as in the case of Maina.

Mr. Ibrahim Kuru who spoke from Kaduna noted that the reinstatement of Maina is a victory over corruption, saying that “it would be a victory for the corrupt people in the system if obvious cases of people who were framed up for doing the right thing were not looked into.

On his part, Comrade Okpokwu Ogenyi who spoke from Abuja hailed Maina’s reinstatement, saying it is a plus for the anti corruption war of the President Buhari administration.

According to Mr. Torkuma Aso who is a Makurdi-based business man, “any reasonable person would commend President Buhari for righting the wrongs of the past by reiterating Maina”.

Also, in his reaction, the Chairman Federal Concerned Pensioners, Mr David Adodo who spoke from Lagos said that President Buhari has rekindled the hope of Nigerians injustice of the past can be corrected by Maina’s reinstatement.

He said, ” a bunch of clueless people will sit at your homes and operate on hearsay, even when they do not have a copy of the civil service rules.

“You don’t jump into conclusions and engage in a smear campaign on a man who has done nothing to offend you.

“People are not just sacked or dismissed if they are not political appointees.

“If you are a career civil servant, there are rules and processes to follow and it was obvious that the process that led to the sack of Maina was flawed and the President should be commended”, Mr Adodo said.

25 Political Parties to Adopt Ojiba as Consensus Candidate in Anambra

No fewer than 25 political parties and their candidates out of the 37 in total who fielded candidates for the November 18 governorship election have opted to adopt a sole candidate ahead of the poll.

Their move to support one candidate for the election became necessary, according to them, in order to defeat the so called big parties.

The development arose out of what some Interparty Advisory Council (IPAC) members and their candidates in the election, described as intimidation from the self-acclaimed big parties and their candidates, have continued to shun their programmes.

The self-acclaimed big parties that boycotted the IPAC activities were listed as the ruling All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), All Progressives Congress (APC), and United Peoples Party (UPP).

IPAC member parties and their candidates accused them of shunning the recent debate organised by the Interparty Advisory Council, while it was alleged that they never cared to communicate with the organisers on the reason for their absence.

A source spoke on condition of anonymity, because he he was not authorized to speak to the media on the development, disclosed that the over 25 parties who participated in the debate entered into series of meetings after the governorship debate session where idea came on the dare need for them to seek ways to work together by pulling their human and fiscal resources into backing one candidate who has the capacity to give the self-proclaimed mega parties a good fight and eventually defeat them at the forthcoming election.

“This will be likened to the case of Goliath and David in the Bible where the so-called mighty fell to the neglected. The five mega parties, most especially the APGA, PDP and APC, look at us as if we are pretenders in the race.

“But they failed to realise that politics is still a game of numbers. If we play our cards well and drop selfish considerations aside, our coalition will defeat all those parties some people erroneously think are the real contenders. It will surprise them when we do it” the source said.

Asked if it was not an obvious gang up for the sake of wrestling political power, the source said, “No, it’s a determination to rescue Anambra and make the lives of our people better.

“There is so much suffering in the land because of bad governance and we have candidates with track record of touching lives of people around them”, the source added.

Another source revealed that On the possible candidate that will emerge out of the coalition, it was gathered that the permutations are between Obiora Stephen Mbah of the PRP and Akunwata Ojiba Ejoh of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, ACPN.

However the odds seems to favour Akunwata Ojiba since he comes from Onitsha zone, the Anambra North.

Mbah of PRP is from Anambra Central whose zone just relinquished power after straight eleven years between Obi and Ngige as governors.

Akunwata Ojiba, a retired Customs Officer, sources say has shown visible presence and above the average seriousness with his party (ACPN) in a very aggressive campaign and endorsements across the three senatorial zones of the state.

It was reliably gathered that the coalition has as its chairman, Barrister Basil Onuora of the Green Party of Nigeria and Mr. Chris Nweke of AAPP as Secretary.

However, the executive members of the coalition have maintained sealed lips on the development, urging newsmen to wait for an official date for the unveiling of the coalition’s agenda.

But some other parties who are also actively committed to the actualisation of the coalition’s objective include ACD, BNPP, PDC, DPC, among others.
Akunwata Ojiba has been on a noiseless campaign and grassroots mobilisation ahead of the election.

 

Agitations: NFF Cautions Media Organisations Over Hate Speeches

A nongovernmental, Nation First Foundation (NFF), at the weekend urged media organisations in the country to avoid using their platforms to promote hate speeches.

Expressing dismay on the ongoing war of hate speeches from personalities, socio-political leaders, politicians, groups, religious and regional leaders, the National Coordinator of the foundation, Onianwa Elidad, also acknowledged the role played by media organisations in shaping the destiny of the country during and after colonialism, struggle for restoration of democracy on May 29, 1999, checking politicians, and protecting the downtrodden Nigerians.

However, he counselled them to shut their doors against those who spread hatred and marshal out divisive speeches that unnecessarily overheat the polity.

“We in Nation 1st Foundation has become very concerned with the speedy hate speeches are moving on media platforms following agitations calling for secession and quit notice.

“We are urging media organisations to avoid these hate speakers and writers under any organisation to promote division and acrimony in the name of activism and struggle.

“We know they bring money to pay for adverts and sponsor special publications and productions on hate speeches, but we are appealing that such hate speeches should be taken off the list of adverts and news items for publication for the sake of national interest.”

Meanwhile, the National Public Relations Officer of the NFF, Mohammed Ali, disclosed that the Foundation has concluded plans to begin regional integration within the country based on dialogue and much understanding to create a strong bond among young people, religious and regional leaders, socio-cultural and political organisations that would foster peace, unity, equity and justice.

“We have deemed it necessary to put together various linkages that would project national interest based on regional integration cutting across various views, interests, organisations, regions and religions. We want to ensure that the long standing sentiments and barriers that have stunted the progress of our country are weeded out completely through values rebirth and restoration of patriotism.

“We also believe in the strength and impact of genuine dialogue. We will use this bridge to link and cement the proposed integration moves we are talking about because the people have to sit and speak out their differences and settle amicably on lasting solution that would protect the integrity of our sovereignty and nationhood.

“This would be all encompassing basically by the ‘common people’ whose interest has been hijacked by some few elites who pretend to represent the people but unfortunately have used that top project and negotiate basically about themselves and continue to suppress the voice of the majority.

“We are going to start this national assignment by ourselves without any sponsorship from anybody, and we believe it would further strengthen our unity and propel our progress as a country, which all would have access to the common good of our blessed nation endowed by God”, Ali stated.

Agitations: Shun hate Speeches, NFF Urges Socio-political Organisations

On the heals of increasing agitations and hate speeches across the country, a nono-governmental organisation, the Nation First Foundation (NFF), has called on Nigerians to mind their utterances in the interest of national unity and cohesion.

The group charged socio-political organisations across the country to promote national interest instead of overheating the polity through imprudent agitations that raise unnecessary tension.

The advise was given in Abuja by the National Coordinator of the foundation, Onianwa Elidad, after assessing the speeches as a result of agitations from some socio-political groups, which has increased disaffection among various tribes and geopolitical zones in the country.

Elidad said when such organisations jettison national interest at the detriment of the people and their future that indicates self interest and relevance based on unwarranted ego without considering the consequences of such statements.

He said: “We in Nation First Foundation (NFF) sees Nigeria and Nigerians as above our personal interest, and including all other Nigerians, no matter highly placed they are.

“We have decided to stand with the masses, and stand to condemn anybody, group, organisation, region, religion, party, and others whose actions, activities and moves are against national interest.

“Our vision, mission and movement is to re-enact the dreams of the founding fathers of our nation and to instill the tent of nation first before any other ambition.

“We want to make it clear to all socio-political groups based on religion, politics and beliefs that Nigeria’s interest must be promoted and protected no matter what.

“It is also imperative to state that Nigeria and Nigerians are inseparable, therefore should be upheld above individual interest. It is not good for socio-political or socio-cultural groups to be used by some selfish politicians, religious and tribal leaders to promote disunity and disaffection in the country.”

He further stated that now it has become important for the various nongovernmental organisations to embark on the mission to propagate messages and sensitisations that would promote peace, justice, and unity.

In similar vein, the National Secretary, NFF, Adekunle John, acknowledged and stressed that Nigeria’s unity has been strengthened and sustained by her diversity over the years.

“It is important to make it here at this point that every tribe, ethnic group, region, and individuals are important, and nobody is a slave or servant to the other. Rather we are to complement each other and consolidate on our diversity instead to allow persons and groups that not mean well for the future of this country to push and hit the heads of youth to favour their personal interest.

“We the young people should wise up because when the trouble gets heated by these people who are beating drums of hate and calling for violence they would leave the country with their families in seconds. Let us continue to uphold our unity”, John stated.

In his advice, the National Public Relations Officer, Mohammed Ali, cautioned that the leaders when talking about the way out of the issues of threat to national unity the youth should be carried along and made to participate actively, because they will be the ones those who are against national interest would use to promote their interest.

“We want the well meaning leaders show are for nation first to involve and engage the youth in discussing how to preserve and protect  national unity, and we advice that they should be carried along because those against national interest could used them to achieve their own interest at the detriment of other Nigerians”, Ali said.

 

The group charged socio-political organisations across the country to promote national interest instead of overheating the polity through imprudent agitations that raise unnecessary tension.

The advise was given in Abuja by the National Coordinator of the foundation, Onianwa Elidad, after assessing the speeches as a result of agitations from some socio-political groups, which has increased disaffection among various tribes and geopolitical zones in the country.

Elidad said when such organisations jettison national interest at the detriment of the people and their future that indicates self interest and relevance based on unwarranted ego without considering the consequences of such statements.

He said: “We in Nation First Foundation (NFF) sees Nigeria and Nigerians as above our personal interest, and including all other Nigerians, no matter highly placed they are.

“We have decided to stand with the masses, and stand to condemn anybody, group, organisation, region, religion, party, and others whose actions, activities and moves are against national interest.

“Our vision, mission and movement is to re-enact the dreams of the founding fathers of our nation and to instill the tent of nation first before any other ambition.

“We want to make it clear to all socio-political groups based on religion, politics and beliefs that Nigeria’s interest must be promoted and protected no matter what.

“It is also imperative to state that Nigeria and Nigerians are inseparable, therefore should be upheld above individual interest. It is not good for socio-political or socio-cultural groups to be used by some selfish politicians, religious and tribal leaders to promote disunity and disaffection in the country.”

He further stated that now it has become important for the various nongovernmental organisations to embark on the mission to propagate messages and sensitisations that would promote peace, justice, and unity.

In similar vein, the National Secretary, NFF, Adekunle John, acknowledged and stressed that Nigeria’s unity has been strengthened and sustained by her diversity over the years.

“It is important to make it here at this point that every tribe, ethnic group, region, and individuals are important, and nobody is a slave or servant to the other. Rather we are to complement each other and consolidate on our diversity instead to allow persons and groups that not mean well for the future of this country to push and hit the heads of youth to favour their personal interest.

“We the young people should wise up because when the trouble gets heated by these people who are beating drums of hate and calling for violence they would leave the country with their families in seconds. Let us continue to uphold our unity”, John stated.

In his advice, the National Public Relations Officer, Mohammed Ali, cautioned that the leaders when talking about the way out of the issues of threat to national unity the youth should be carried along and made to participate actively, because they will be the ones those who are against national interest would use to promote their interest.

“We want the well meaning leaders show are for nation first to involve and engage the youth in discussing how to preserve and protect  national unity, and we advice that they should be carried along because those against national interest could used them to achieve their own interest at the detriment of other Nigerians”, Ali said.

 

Coalition Blames Sabotage, Not Lami Amodu Over Queens College Deaths

A group of six non-governmental and civil society organisations, The Coalition of Civil Societies on Human Rights and Anti-Corruption in Nigeria has blamed sabotage as possible cause of death of some students at the Queens College Lagos.

The Coalition in a letter to the Senate Committee on Basic and Secondary Education probing the cause of deaths at the Federal Government’s Unity School, insisted that from their findings after an investigation, “we are convinced that what may have happened resulted from acts of sabotage by some desperate persons”.

The former Director/Principal of the College, Dr (Mrs) Lami Amodu, has been accused of culpability in the death of some of the students.

The Coalition, in the letter address to the chairman of the committee and jointly signed by its Chief Convener, Alhaji Sabo Ode and the Director of Public Affairs, Comrade James Ezema, urged the Senate “to ensure that justice is done and that the innocent is not punished for doing that which is right and insisting that the right thing be done in the right way.

 

“As part of our efforts to ensure justice for all, irrespective of class, tribe or social status, when the news of the regrettable incident that led to the death of some students at the college broke, we moved to make our findings on what may have happened”.

 

The groups that constitute the coalition include Professional Women League, Africa Women Network, Centre for Social Justice Equity and Transparency, Save Humanity Advocacy Centre, Stand Up Nigeria, and Conference of Minority Tribes in Nigeria.

 

According to the Coalition, “over time, as we found out, a cartel has been operating within the Queens College Old Girls Association of the school, who always dictated to the management and found for the first time a woman who stood against them.”

 

Spelling out it findings, after an independent investigation carried out by the Coalition, the group said: “Mr Chairman and members, we found out that within her 18 months stay on the saddle in the college, Dr Lami Amodu did all things within her power and within the ambit of bureaucracy to effect long lasting changes that were geared towards improving facilities on ground.

 

“The shocker, for us, was that the incident of stooling and subsequent casualties did not occur in the college until after a meeting held on January 22, 2017, by the Queens College Old Girls Association.

 

“Our findings showed that while the meeting held in the college hall, some old girls found their way into the hostels and the kitchen areas without authorisation of proper permission.

 

“A week later, specifically on January 31, 2017, some students were reported to have started stooling and vomiting but luckily the college and health officials promptly managed and contained the menace.

 

“All of these points to the fact that Dr Lami Amodu understood both the challenges at hand when she assumed office and made efforts to ensure they were addressed”, the group observed.

 

According to them, “One other striking finding was that fact that Dr Amodu was seen as “very strict”, “very hash” and “rude” by certain persons.

 

“On attempt to find out why, we discovered that it was her uncompromising recourse to due process and her resolve that the right thing must be done the right way were the virtues that earned her those tags.

 

“We believe that the old girls and other collaborators, who have resorted to frivolous petition writing, may have played a role, resulting to the stooling and vomiting incident in the college and the subsequent deaths.

 

“More so, some of the deaths occurred after the former Principal had been transferred.

 

“For instance, the death of Sodipo Praise, an Orphan who died on March 30, 2017 occurred nearly two months after Dr Amodu had been transferred.

 

“Our findings equally showed that the young Praise reported to the clinic on 20th February 20, after Dr Amodu had left the school, with feverish condition and was placed on anti-malaria drugs, with follow up treatment until the college went on midterm break.

 

“From home, Miss Praise was referred to the Lagos State University Hospital after her ailment continued at home”, the group revealed.

 

“We gathered that she was diagnosed of liver enlargement and perforation of intestine and later died after surgery, even when she was never treated for stooling and vomiting previously at the college.

 

“Mr Chairman and members, there is more to the issues being raised and allegations being levelled against Dr Amodu. For instance, she was recently accused in a petition of buying an SUV for 17 million, an allegation we have also investigated and found to be false.

“The SUV, which was not for personal use was left in the school after her redeployment. Its purchase, we also found, went through due process and had board approval after the board decided it was very necessary because of the state of the old bus the school had, which was in a very bad condition.

 

“From our investigations we also found out facts on  the allegation of 17 million naira on SUV, which is  also not  true as the findings of the investigation have proved contrary in which the purchase of the SUV went through due process and had board approval after the board decided it was very necessary because of the state of the old bus the school had which was in a bad condition and the Sport Utility Vehicle is still used at Queens College Lagos  by the principal till date and not a private property of Dr. Mrs Lami Amodu”, the group noted.

 

 

Human Rights Abuses: Global Amnesty Watch Calls for Speedy Implementation of SBOI Reports

The Global Amnesty Watch, an international humanitarian organization has endorsed the report of the Special Board of Inquiry (SBOI), which investigated the alleged war crimes man by the Nigerian Army personnel in the fight against insurgency in the North East and Internal Security Operations in the South Eastern part of the country.

Recall that the Nigerian Army had said on Thursday that it was studying the report of a special panel that investigated allegations of human rights abuses against the army.

The panel headed by a retired major general, A.T. Jibrin, submitted its report to the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai last week at the army headquarters in Abuja.

Mrs Helen Adesola, Nigerian Representative of GAW, said it was clearly established that all the allegations of rights abuses, extra-judicial killings, forced disappearances were mere concoctions from the imaginations of those of those that have been issuing inaccurate reports.

According to her, “Other instances of documented abuses were transposed from a previous era to give the impression that the cases in question were recently committed.

She added, “The report, which should be given the widest publicity possible, should now put to rest the controversies that had raged around the efforts by Nigerian military authorities to secure the country and keep citizens safe from terrorists and other life threatening criminals.

“The revelations that certain unauthorized organizations were able to obtain classified military documents and signals through leaks is one that should keep the world worried as it implies staffers of such organizations could have been engaged in passing vital Army strategies and troop movement to terrorists, making it difficult to protect civilians.

“We have noted calls for independent investigation and further probes suggested by certain organizations.

“The Global Amnesty Watch however wishes to caution the Nigerian Army and the Federal Government of Nigeria to resist the temptation of being drawn into a popularity contest of pleasing smaller groups to the detriment of the larger population,” her statement added.

The GAW urged the military authority not compromise the interest of the people in the areas affected by terrorism, insurgency and other crimes because they want to be compliant with the request of a narrow spectrum of activists.

She added, “The response for an independent investigation or commission of inquiry must be realistically balanced with the safety and security of citizens since such exercise can compromise national security.

“Nigeria must never lose sight of the fact that the Army is its institution as a sovereign nation and no amount of blackmail should force it to surrender state institutions to fifth columnists especially in this era that terrorists have infiltrated the ranks and file of various military which the Nigerian Army has successfully insulated itself against.”

 

Terrorists Behind US Suit Against Nigerian Military, Says MPN as Group Demands Investigation of Plaintiffs

A civil liberty organisation, Movement of the People of Nigeria, on Wednesday alleged that the persons behind the lawsuit against personnel of Nigerian military authorities in the United States, were not Nigerians “but terrorists and extremists.”

The group, which demanded an investigation of their real identities, however promised to raise its own team of lawyers to confront anyone desperate to rubbish the image of the country or attempts to further diminish its citizenry before the international community.

The Chairman, Board of Trustees of MPN, Dr. Innocent Oche Pita, told journalists in Abuja that the suit was aimed at causing a diplomatic row between Nigeria and US.

The suit was said to have been instituted by some persons against Nigeria’s military leadership before a US District Court for the District of Columbia.

But the MPN described it as an abuse of the Torture Victims Protection Act and Alien Tort Claims Act Complaint of the United States.

“The world is aware that Nigeria has suffered in the hands of terrorists and extremists and the Biafra agitators are another brand of terrorists that must not be admitted into the United States, Nigeria or any other peace loving nation.

“It will be wise for the Donald Trump’s administration and the security agencies to discretely investigate the plaintiffs as regards their activities in the United State before they become the kind of nuisance that is presently threatening the United Kingdom and other European countries”, MPN alleged.

The MPN said much as it was glaring that the US courts lack jurisdiction to try such issues, there is no record or evidence that the Nigerian Military abused the rights of any citizen within or outside the territory of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

The group said those who fear such “are common criminals who had held the country by the jugular in the recent past through acts like banditry, kidnaping and gun-for-hire.”

According to Pita, the suit is nothing short of a calculated attempt to rubbish the US judiciary for its liberal stand on human rights and protection of lives.

He said it was to allegedly abuse the law under which the suit was filed so that it no longer serves the purpose for which it was crafted, “and to use it to cause strain in Nigeria – US relations.”

MPN said, “Secrecy in a case that claims to be as grounded as the plaintiffs claimed is dubious as it implies that criminals can hide under such unanimity to further questionable agenda. The plaintiffs would only fear exposing their identities either because they are not real in the first place or that they are persons with criminal records in the US.

“Our position is that these people behind the suit are not Nigerians and should stop dragging the name of our country’s military to the mud.

“This is why we are worried that even non-Nigerians can be coached to give evidence since it is apparent that the people that filed the suit are not honest enough to show themselves.

“We will raise our own team of lawyers to confront anyone or any group that is out to rubbish the image of our great country or attempts to further diminish its citizenry in the eyes of citizens of the world”, the group said.

CNPP Calls for Scrapping of State Electoral Bodies, Mobilises for Protest Over Benue LG Polls

The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) has begun mobilisation to protest what it described as a rape of democracy in Benue State local government election, calling for the scrapping of State Electoral Commissions across the country if democracy most thrive at the grassroots level.

It further described the purported local government election in Benue and the inauguration of its outcome in the state as a deliberate effort to foist a one party democracy on the state by Governor Samuel Ortom.

The CNPP Secretary General, Chief Willy Ezugwu, told newsmen in Abuja on Tuesday that the umbrella body of all registered political parties and associations in Nigeria still rejects the “process and its outcome remains unacceptable to us.

“Therefore, we’re already mobilising Nigerians and the civil society groups across the country to resist this imposition and open threat to our democracy.

“As I’m talking to you, all the Civil Society and Human Rights organizations in the country have united to end this impunity once and for all. We shall use Benue as an example and a warning to other state governors who are tramping the tenets of democracy under foot through a charade they call council elections.

“I can tell you that the sham in Benue was orchestrated by Governor Samuel Ortom and the chairman of Benue State Electoral Commission, John Tsuwa Tor on the 3rd of June 2017 to exclude political participation at the local level.

“That is why we want state electoral bodies scrapped. We are happy that the good people of Benue State boycotted the election as a major voice in protesting against the establishment; that explains the unprecedented voter apathy on the day of the election. The Benue people spoke loud and clear”, he said.

Asked what the special interest in Benue was, Chief Ezugwu swiftly responded, “If we condone this, it will go down in world’s history and will embolden other Governors and their State electoral body to continue with this practice in Nigeria.

“If this charade is allowed to stay unchallenged, it will be tantamount to truncating Nigeria’s democracy and uprooting it from the roots”, he said.

Asked to give details of the planned protest, he said, “When we get to the bridge, we will cross it. The details have been concluded and the civil society groups are set.

“And we are insisting on the total cancellation of the exercise and a return of over N1.2 billion siphoned in the name of the failed election”, the CNPP said.

Full Text of The Kaduna Declaration, Issuing 3 Months Notice To Biafrans To Leave North

THE KADUNA DECLARATION

BEING A JOINT POSITION PAPER ISSUED BY THE AREWA CITIZENS ACTION FOR CHANGE, AREWA YOUTH CONSULTATIVE FORUM, AREWA YOUTH DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION, AREWA STUDENTS FORUM AND NORTHERN EMANCIPATION NETWORK ON THE IGBO PERSISTENCE FOR SECESSION
June 06, 2017

PREAMBLE
The persistence for the actualization of Biafra by the unruly Igbo of South-Eastern Nigeria has lately assumed another alarming twist which involved the forceful lockdown of activities and denial of other people’s right to free movement in the South-East by the rebel Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its overt and covert sponsors.

This latest action and similar confrontational conducts which amount to a brutal encroachment on the rights of those termed as non-indigenous people residing and doing lawful businesses in those areas illegally demarcated and defined as Biafra by the Igbo, are downright unacceptable and shall no longer be tolerated.
OBSERVATIONS
Concerned by this persistent Igbo threat to national integration, the above-named Pan-northern groups met with several others and reviewed the current position of the North and jointly came up with the following observations:

1. IGBO PROVOCATION
a. The Igbo people of the South-East, without remorse for the carnage they wrought on the nation in the 1960s, are today boldly reliving those sinister intentions connoted by the Biafran agitation that led to the very first bloody insurrection in Nigeria’s history.

b. Emboldened by the apparent indifference of the Nigerian authorities, the Igbo secessionist tendency is widening in scope and action at every stage, with adverse effects on the law-abiding people of other regions residing in or passing through the East, while the Igbo leaders and elders by their utterances and direct action or inaction appear to support and encourage it.

c. This is happening irrespective of the undisputable fact that:

i. The cruel Igbos have done and are doing more damage to our collective nationhood than any other ethnic group; being responsible for the first violent interference with democracy in Nigeria resulting in a prolonged counter-productive chain of military dictatorship.

ii. The Igbos similarly orchestrated the first, and so far, the only civil war in Nigeria that consumed millions of lives and sowed the seed of the current mutual suspicion and distrust.

iii. The Igbos are also responsible for Nigeria’s cultural and moral degeneracy with their notorious involvement in all kinds of crimes, including international networking for drug and human trafficking, violent robberies and kidnappings, high-profile prostitution and advanced financial fraud.
iv. At the peak of the devastating Boko Haram violence in some parts of the North, available records show that the Igbo people have variously been apprehended while attempting to convey catches of dangerous arms and ammunition to the troubled regions.
v. There are today sufficient reasons to suspect that some Igbos masquerade as Fulani herdsmen to commit violent atrocities across the country in order to cause and spread ethnic disaffection.
vi. It is also on record that since the inception of the current democratic dispensation, the Igbos have shown and maintained open contempt and resentment for the collective decision expressed by majority of Nigerians at various stages via generally acceptable democratic processes.
2. DOCILE NORTHERN RESPONSE
a. While these provocative acts of aggression persist and grow in dimension with each new move, leaders of the North whose people are at the receiving end of the threats, appear helplessly unperturbed.

b. Rather than endorsing a concise framework for pre-emptive action to protect and safeguard the interest of the North and its people, leaders of the region at every stage tend to seek the cover of a flimsy and long-discarded excuse of having fought in the 60s to keep Nigeria united.

c. Without pursuing a resolute action-plan, these northern leaders have adopted and have been dragging its people into a pitifully pacifist position in order to sustain an elusive national cohesion that has long been ridiculed by the Igbos.

OUR STAND
1. From today, June 6, 2017, when this proclamation is signed, the North, a critical player in the Nigerian project, hereby declares that it will no longer be disposed to coexisting with the Igbos and shall take definite steps to end the partnership by pulling out of the current federal arrangement.

2. This conclusion is necessitated by the realization that it since ceased to be comfortable or safe to continue sharing the same country with the ungrateful, uncultured Igbos who have exhibited reckless disrespect for the other federating units and stained the integrity of the entire nation with their insatiable criminal obsessions.

3. Rather than certain sections holding the whole country to ransom at every stage, each should be allowed to go its own way as we categorically proclaim today that the North is fed up with being the same country with this pack of acrimonious Igbo partners.

4. The North hereby openly calls on the authorities and other national and international stakeholders to acknowledge this declaration by taking steps to facilitate the final dissolution of this hopeless union that has never been convenient to any of the parties.

PRELUDE TO FINAL SEPARATION

1. RECOVERY AND CONTROL OF LANDED PROPERTY
As a first step, since the Igbo have clearly abused the unreciprocated hospitality that gave them unrestricted access to, and ownership of landed properties all over the North, our first major move shall be to reclaim, assume and assert sole ownership and control of these landed resources currently owned, rented or in any way enjoyed by the ingrate Igbos in any part of Northern Nigeria.

Consequently, officials of the signatory groups to this declaration, are already mandated to commence immediate inventory of all properties, spaces or activity in the north currently occupied by the Igbos for forfeiture at the expiration of the ultimatum contained in this declaration.

In specific terms, the groups are directed to compile and forward an up-to-date data of all locations occupied by any Igbo in any part of Northern Nigeria including schools, markets, shops, workshops, residences and every other activity spaces.
2. RELOCATION NOTICE
Secondly, with the effective date of this declaration, which is today, Tuesday, June 06, 2017, all Igbos currently residing in any part of Northern Nigeria are hereby served notice to relocate within three months and all northerners residing in the East are advised likewise.

3. ENFORCEMENT
All northern civil society and pressure groups are by this declaration mandated to mobilize for sustained, coordinated campaigns at their respective State Government Houses, State Houses of Assembly, Local Government Council Secretariats and Traditional Palaces to mount pressure for steps to be taken to ensure enforcement of the directives contained herein.

CONCLUSION
In conclusion, we are hereby placing the Nigerian authorities and the entire nation on notice that as from the 1st October 2017, we shall commence the implementation of visible actions to prove to the whole world that we are no longer part of any federal union that should do with the Igbos.
From that date, effective, peaceful and safe mop-up of all the remnants of the stubborn Igbos that neglect to heed this quit notice shall commence to finally eject them from every part of the North.
And finally, all authorities, individuals or groups are hereby advised against attempting to undermine this declaration by insisting on this union with the Igbos who have thus far proved to be an unnecessary baggage carried too far and for too long.
SIGNATORIES TO THIS DECLARATION:
1. Nastura Ashir Sharif
FOR: AREWA CITIZENS ACTION FORCHANGE

2. Amb. ShettimaYerima
FOR: AREWA YOUTH CONSULTATIVE FORUM

3. Aminu Adam
FOR: AREWA YOUTH DEVELOPMENT FOUNDATION

4. Alfred Solomon
FOR: AREWA STUDENTS FORUM

5. Abdul-Azeez Suleiman
FOR: NORTHERN EMANCIPATION NETWORK

6. JoshuaViashman
FOR: NORTHERN YOUTH VANGUARD

7. Mohammad A. Mohammad
FOR: NORTHERN YOUTH STAKEHOLDERS FORUM

8. Mohammed Tasiu Pantami
FOR: NORTH EAST ASSEMBLY

9. Nathaniel Ajegena Adigizi
FOR: NORTH CENTRAL PEOPLE’S FRONT

CNPP Backs Labour’s Calls on FG to Review Capital Oil and Gas Chairman’s Detention

The Conference of Nigeria Political parties (CNPP) has thrown its weight behind the call by the United Labour Congress (ULC) for the release the Chairman of Capital Oil and Gas, Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah, in order to pave the way for negotiation with company’s management.

The umbrella body of all registered political parties and associations in the country in a statement signed by its Secretary General, Chief Willy Ezugwu appealed to the federal government to consider the fate of the numerous workers employed by the privately owned company and release the detained oil magnet or charge him to court for prosecution.

“Like the ULC observed, federal government’s promise to provide jobs and its desire to tackle unemployment in Nigeria will be a mirage if actions or inactions of government lead to job loses or contribute to the widening of the unemployment gap.

“As at today, more jobs have been lost in the private sector than the federal government has created due to harsh economic environment in the country as a result of the current recession.

“Our fears is that the continued detention of the Capital oil and Gas chairman without trial will not only lead to the sack of over 5,000 workers directly and indirectly engaged by the company but will also send frightening signals to foreign direct investors that Nigeria is a country where the rule of law is scarce.

“No serious foreign investor would invest in a country with history of detention without trial”, the CNPP observed.

While calling on Acting President Yemi Osinbajo to intervene in the matter to halt impending massive job loss in the company and other sister companies owned by Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah, the political parties and associations said that the federal government must ensure that justice is seen to have been done in all cases involving its citizens at home and abroad.

“We are aware that the federal government is exploring diplomatic channels to intervene in cases involving Nigerians in some foreign lands. But it would amount to a joke taken too far if the same government detains its citizens involved in a mere commercial transaction dispute indefinitely without opportunity to defend themselves in a court of competent jurisdiction.

“Acting President Yemi Osinbajo must save the President Muhammadu Buhari administration from further damage to its reputation in the international community by releasing or charging Dr. Ifeanyi Ubah to Court.

“It will be very shameful for the federal government to be seen as directly or indirectly contributing to further job losses in the country”, the CNPP noted.

SOURCE: TheStreetReporters

BREAKING: CNPP Backs Labour, Students, Vows to Resist Fuel Tax

The Conference of Nigeria Political Parties (CNPP) has thrown its weight behind Nigeria’s organised labour over planned increment of prices of petroleum products, accusing the National Assembly of taking more anti-people decisions than resolutions that could better the lives of the already impoverished masses of Nigeria.

 

“We assure the Senate and the federal government that their proposed N5 be per litre of fuel tax will be resisted”, the CNPP vowed in a statement by the Secretary General of CNPP, Chief Willy Ezugwu on Sunday.

 

The Alhaji Balarabe Musa led umbrella organisation of all registered political parties and associations in Nigeria also warned the Presidency of the imminent consequences of adding to the pains of the ordinary people of Nigeria by raising the pump price of fuel under any guise.

 

“Our findings have shown that the bill titled ‘National Roads Fund (Establishment, etc) Bill 2017’, proposing that N5 to be paid per litre of fuel imported into the country is a ploy by the federal government to impose more hardship on Nigerians at a time the burden of recession in the country is becoming unbearable.

 

“We thought that the federal government should be thinking of reducing the already biting hardship in the country after failing to fulfil the promised increment in minimum wage and non-payment of arrears of workers’ salaries and allowances in the past two years.

 

“It seems that the current government at the federal level and their National Assembly collaborators enjoy inflicting more and more pains on Nigerian masses.

 

“We wonder why the Senate Committee on Works in its final report on the bill would make such proposal. Are they saying that the only way this government can raise funds is by increasing pump price of petroleum prices and punishing the masses?”, the CNPP queried.

 

The Nigerian organised labour, students and others have vowed to resist any attempt by government to indirectly or otherwise introduce a hike in the bump price of fuel, given the economic hardship in the country.

CULLED FROM: TheStreetReporters.com

BIAFRA: AN OPEN LETTER By John Paul Iloduba

REPRESSION OF THE INNOCENT POPULATION OF NIGERIANS BY SEPARATISTS IN THE SOUTH-EAST: THE WORLD MUST ACT NOW

On May 30, 2017 small businesses in Abia, Anambra, Enugu, Imo and Ebonyi were forced shut down by separatists as part of activities marking the 50th anniversary of the declaration of the moribund Biafra Republic.

The separatists attempted the same economic blockade to some extent in Rivers, Delta and Bayelsa states while they were completely rebuffed in Edo, Akwa-Ibom and Cross River states.
These separatists operated under names like Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Movement for the Actualization of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) Biafra Independence Movement (BIM) and assortments of street gangs that act as the militant wings of these groups.
The extent of suffering and economic hardship unleashed on the helpless population can be gauged from the headlines of newspapers in the aftermath of the punitive action.

The Vanguard reported that “Biafra sit-at-home: Total shutdown in S-East” while the Sun read “Biafra: South-East shuts down” and the Guardian has “Sit-at-home order grounds South East”.
Separatists leaders quoted in all the reports gave the misleading impression that owners of these small shops and businesses voluntarily complied with the directive to shutter their premises to mark the anniversary of the tragic republic but the opposite was the case.

Owners of these businesses were repeatedly threatened with arson, looting and rape (of women) for any business that dares to defy the orders of the Biafran “Supreme Leader” not to open for transactions.
Apparently, in an effort to avoid confrontation with the armed militant wing of the aforementioned groups, government security operatives refrained from interfering.

Past interventions by security operatives to prevent economic blockades had resulted in their personnel being attacked and some killed by the militants in the process.
Unfortunately, while the approach of the security agencies averted confrontations, the economic blockade has further impoverished the low income earners that were forced to go one day without earning their livelihood. It must be stated here that the majority of the families that bore the brunt of this oppression from Biafran militants earn less than $2 per day ? the implication of this loss of income for one day will amplify over time to further impoverish them.
More unfortunate is the fact that the sponsors and warlords that declared the forced closure have businesses that are considered too big to harass and were therefore not affected by the shutdown. These businesses include big brands like hotels and supermarkets chains that opened in other cities, oil firms that operated in other parts of the country and other firms with branded names that do not give away their Igbo ownership.
We therefore call the attention of the world to this atrocity, which has become more frequent as the separatists continue to find new excuses for declaring sit-at home orders that effectively translate into forced closure of businesses.

Well meaning countries and international organizations must condemn the activities of the Biafran militants as the terrorism that it is.

Actions must be demanded to protect the vulnerable population from being further impoverished by economic shutdowns that have no connection with the genuine calls for fiscal restructuring of Nigeria.
Demands must be made of the Federal Government of Nigeria not to again abandon the wellbeing of its citizens for political consideration. It is the responsibility of the government, through its security and military agencies, to uphold the Constitutionally guaranteed freedom of movement and freedom to earn income from legitimate means that applies to all Nigerians.

Yours faithfully,

Iloduba is Director of Strategy, Igbo for Nigeria Movement [INM], Awka, Anambra State.