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A socio-political activist, Reno Omokri has shared his thoughts on the main threat to the presidential ambition of the Labour candidate (LP), the presidential candidate, Peter Obi.

The former presidential aide insisted that Obi’s supporters are the greatest hindrance to his presidency.

Sharing his thoughts via Twitter, the supporter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, said Obi’s allies are uncontrollable.

He wrote: “Peter Obi’s supporters are the main threat to his ambition. Their aggressiveness and his inability, or unwillingness to control them turn people off.

 

Peter is not a bad candidate. I have NEVER said so. I always said Peter is a good candidate, but Atiku is better!”

The convener of the Concerned Nigerian Movement, Deji Adeyanju has revealed why the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo will keep promoting the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi.

Adeyanju said it is a strategy by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to divide the opposition ahead of the 2023 general elections.

He further stated that APC might have an agenda to support the former Governor of Anambra State, especially in the South-East.

Adeyanju also encouraged Keyamo to keep saying Obi is more competent than the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democrats Party, Atiku Abubakar to get Dino Melaye pissed.

The activist stated this while reacting to Melaye’s comment against Keyamo on Saturday.

Melaye while reacting to Keyamo’s comment where he said Obi is more competent than Atiku, said the minister is acting under the influence of drugs.

[Naijanews]

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Finance, Senator Solomon Adeola, has said Ogun State ex-governor Senator Ibikunle Amosun cannot play God in the state’s politics.

 

Adeola, the All Progressives Congress (APC) senatorial candidate for Ogun West in the 2023 general election, in a statement he issued yesterday, said: ”My attention has been drawn to reports credited to a statement made at the 50th anniversary of Abeokuta Club by Senator Ibikunle Amosun, erstwhile governor of Ogun State and APC senator representing Ogun Central, that the 2019 general election that saw the emergence of Prince Dapo Abiodun as the Ogun State governor was rigged and he is going to work against Prince Abiodun’s re-election in 2023.

”These invidious utterances would have been left unanswered as yet another ranting from a personality imbued with a sense of over bloated ego of messianic proportion in Ogun State politics. However, with 2023 general election around the corner, it is appropriate to join issues with a supposed APC member with a record of serial anti-party and anti-people tendencies aping to play God in the affairs of Ogun State.

 

”As a stakeholder in APC, Ogun State and the administration of Prince Abiodun, and by God’s grace and the will of the people, the senatorial candidate of Ogun West for the 2023 general election, I state with all emphasis that Senator Amosun shamefully dropped the ball in his assertion that the 2019 electoral victory of Prince Abiodun was rigged, even after the said election was judicially validated right up to the highest court of the land.

 
 

”The revolt of the people of Ogun State against this attempt to play God by a mere mortal was what saw to the surprise emergence of Prince Abiodun as the arrow head of a democratic struggle fully supported by genuine democrats in Ogun State. Our party, the APC, saw through the anti-democratic tendencies of their then governor and rightly threw their weight behind the people of Ogun State with Prince Abiodun emerging as the governor with majority votes against Senator Amosun’s acolyte, Adekunle Akinlade, foisted on misguided APC members in the race under another party, the Allied Peoples Movement (APM).

”To the glory of God, Prince Abiodun has discharged and is discharging his role as governor creditably to all sections of the state, in contrast to the sectional administration of Amosun in Ogun State. He is completing projects abandoned by Senator Amosun, while starting new ones across the three senatorial districts of the state.

”I use this medium to alert the National Working Committee of the APC to this anti-party activity of Senator Amosun in Ogun State and to henceforth be wary of his moves and suggestion on any matter. As it is, he is already plotting a repeat of APM against his party, the APC, in the days towards 2023. But genuine APC members are solidly behind Prince Abiodun as our governor and will support his re-election in 2023.”

 

Efforts to get Amosun’s reaction at press time were unsuccessful, as he did  not pick his calls.

[Nation]

Aggrieved Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) lawmakers in the National Assembly have debunked reports of backing down from the threat to impeach President Muhammadu Buhari over the worsening insecurity in the country.
Naija News recall that the opposition lawmakers had vowed to impeach Buhari if he fails to address the insecurity in the country within six weeks.

Speaking with PUNCH in an interview on Sunday, PDP senator representing Osun East senatorial district, Francis Fadahunsi, said it was not true that the opposition party was retreating on their move to impeach the President.

Fadahunsi said the lawmakers would also remove the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan from office ahead of the moves against Buhari, adding they cannot keep dying in silence.

He said: “Who said so? Who are the opposition (lawmakers) that met? You did an interview with Senator Gershom Bassey who said that we meant what we said. Those people saying such are not feeling fine.

“Even northern senators are in support of the impeachment; you heard Senator Clifford (Ordia) from Edo, Senator Bulkachuwa (Mohammed) and the rest. So, who are those that told them so?

“Bulkachuwa had earlier moved the motion but the Senate President shot him down because we were not around. Very soon, we will push him out of the place instead of dying one after the other and keeping silent.”

Corroborating his colleague, the All Progressives Grand Alliance lawmaker representing Abia South, Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, also debunked the claims that the opposition senators had jettisoned their decision to remove Buhari.

Abaribe stated that he was not aware of such a decision as the plenary was adjourned on the same day they moved to impeach the president.

He said: “No such thing. We went on break that same day. “I’m not aware of any such development. Most likely untrue.”

Also supporting her colleagues, the Senator representing Ekiti South Senatorial District, Abiodun Olujimi, said the reports that the senators were aborting the impeachment were untrue.

According to her, it was a unanimous agreement to impeach the president and they haven’t held any meeting since the last plenary.

She said: “I am not aware of such a decision, it was a settled issue that we have all agreed on the impeachment of the President if the insecurity state of the nation was not addressed.

“We haven’t held any meetings since then; at least to the best of my knowledge. So, things remain as they are.”

No Impeachment Move
Reacting, spokesperson for the Senate, Ajibola Bashiru, said the senate was not aware of any impeachment threat.

Bashiru said that there was no impeachment notice and a media walkout did not constitute an impeachment move.

He said: “Honestly, I don’t know anything about that, I am not aware that they have even filed any motion. Before you talk about an impeachment procedure, there must be a motion.

“There was no motion to this effect, neither was there any application. So, I don’t know about any impeachment move.

“If you want to talk about impeachment, there must be an impeachment notice. Was there any impeachment notice? A media walkout is different from serving an impeachment notice.

“So, I am not aware of any impeachment talks in the first place, I can only talk of the procedure before the National Assembly, not politics. And as far as I know, there is none before the National Assembly.”

[NAIJANEWS]

The kingdom of God suffereth violence and the violent shall take it by force. That’s a saying in the Holy Bible and Tinubu’s grabbing of the presidential ticket of the All Progressives Party, APC, could be described as a forceful takeover.

Or, how else does one interrogate his landslide victory at the June 7/8 primaries of the party and not come to that conclusion? More so, in a field of over 10 aspirants?

Whereas his co-contestants went after delegates, Tinubu, who also goes by the alias of Alakanbi, and the thunderous title of Jagaban ‘Borgu, went after the aspirants themselves; meaning, once he got the aspirants to his corner, the delegates were harvested for him. Whichever way he did it, he did it. Some strategies.  Some sagacity.

So, for Tinubu, having fought the first part of the battle of his life by taking the presidential ticket, he is bracing for the second part, which is the presidential election proper.

In this political season, you cannot write anything about Tinubu without mentioning Emi lo Kan, Eleyi or O lu’le….   Or, ‘recruit 50million youths’. Or the story of agbado, cassava and Garri?  In fact, it will be a grave injustice and a disservice to Tinubu’s usual romance with theatrics not to mention those.  Or, is it about the way he shovels up the flaps of his agbada in a slow-motion-like manner?   He is a man of drama.

However, make no mistake, Tinubu is a serious man, a very serious man. 

Yes, individuals are given to make slips while speaking. And erroneous attributions or statements not apt or correct in all materials particular are not the franchise of one presidential candidate, as Peter Obi and Atiku Abubakar have equally fallen, as all mortals do, into the mire. So, they can all be forgiven.

But beyond these niceties and packaging, however, there are issues Tinubu must contend with. How does it appear when Tinubu says he will continue with and build on the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari? Or the choice of his running mate, who is also a Muslim like himself? Or his health?

Some answers are provided to some of these questions. At least, in 2019, he told President Buhari some uncomfortable truth about the state of the nation and the way to go. You can only counsel. On his same faith choice, he has been telling Nigerians of other faiths to trust him. It is his choice and whatever arises therefrom, the burden remains his.

To those who discuss his health, it is worth mentioning that one of the greatest American Presidents, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, FDR, was wheeled into the White House in 1932, after defeating the Republican incumbent President, Herbert Hoover, by a landslide electoral votes of 472 to 59. According to TIME, GREAT PEOPLE of the 20th CENTURY, FDR “suffered a chill that was misdiagnosed, then the horrifying paralysis of polio”, ensured that he never walked again unaided – with braces or with the aid of a wheelchair.  He went on to lead America for an unprecedented four terms. But that was in 1932.

This is 2022/2023. The challenges of today are as humongous as those faced during the Great depression, which FDR pulled America and, indeed, the world through.  Again, Nigeria is not America. Nigeria is a country that President Buhari has led for seven years that, against expectations, if truth be told, cannot be said to have fared much better in the areas of insecurity, economy, education, corruption and the like. Tinubu says he’s up to the task.

As usual, we have pieced together his views in recent times regarding what he stands for and what he plans to achieve across some issues, using content in the public domain (in his own words and his speeches) . The opportunity of a fuller interview with the candidate is being explored and would be published later. But we can hold him down to the following statements.

A message to youths

We are working hard for youths to change the dynamics, to change the story of Nigeria, to be bold enough to start new initiatives, to change the story of huge potential to reality, to imagine that we are one of the most brilliant and most committed individuals in this country.  We are youths.  I’m here not for me alone but for you, for tomorrow that you represent.  You, youths have represented us well.  We feel your anger when you are angry.  I don’t blame you. 

The promises of the past have failed to realise that you build a future from kindergarten to high school, to the university and all of that needs serious reforms. I disagree with excuses that we cannot help it.  We can help it.  We must develop the can-do attitude.  Youths must change the story; the story of potential to reality.  Banditry, tribalism, poverty has no tribal mark.  We, as a nation, can feed ourselves by being creative, visionary and committed.  We cannot continue the lamentation of the past. 

Push, we must push.  We must be ready.  Youths are the reason why I’m contesting.  I want to be president for the youths.  Enough of excuses.  Enough of bitterness. Enough of disunity.  We are going to mix the energy of the youth and wisdom of the old to avoid a dangerous agitation, so that Nigeria is handled carefully.  We can promote unity and common destiny and common patrimony in a better and more creative way.  What we’ve done in Lagos can be brought to bear in Nigeria.

Perseverance, great understanding is a common bond flowing in our veins as Fulani and Yoruba. Once you create peace, you create investment friendliness and you create a destination for investment 

Austerity and inflation

Let’s pay attention to the issue of austerity and inflation.

It is only the state that must constrain itself on a balanced budget.  It is only the local government that must restrict itself and balance the budget.

Sovereignty is that of Nigeria and it is only the federal government that has that sovereign power and must use it for the benefit and development, quality of life of Nigerians.  That’s why it is sovereign. 

APC and President Buhari’s reign

President Muhamamdu Buhari has already laid a solid foundation in security, economy, and anti-corruption. We will build upon this for the salvation of our people.

We formed this party to give the people of this land the progressive good governance they deserve so that they may live as well and as peacefully as any people on the face of this earth. This corrective journey began with the election of President Muhammadu Buhari. At this convention, we must take the next step toward the proper and necessary direction.

In 2015, the All Progressives Congress won the election to halt the drift in our nation’s governance, redirect our path, and make clear our national priorities. We dedicated this party to the guiding principle that government must be for the benefit of each and every Nigerian before it is for the benefit of any single one of us. No one is above legal rule or regulation. Within this context, the APC under President Muhammadu Buhari has governed with patriotic and disciplined commitment these past seven years.

The Buhari government has championed needed reforms, ranging from an innovative petroleum industry law to measures that are aimed at improving power and electricity generation for all Nigerians. Government has invested heavily in building modern airports and railway networks and roads. Every Naira is better managed than in prior administrations. The Buhari government has done more with much less than its PDP predecessors did. Despite economic difficulties wrought by protracted global recession, the APC-led government has progressed in diversifying the economy, improving food security through intense investment in the agricultural sector.

On terrorism

The successive PDP administrations did next to nothing with the plenty they had. What they did with our nation’s abundance is no secret. But what they did not do was even a greater embarrassment. They left abandoned infrastructure projects all across the nation. The APC completed them. They allowed ISWAP/ Boko Haram to erect strongholds. The Buhari government has been compelled to wage great war against these threats because of the decade of neglect by the PDP.

The PDP should have uprooted this evil when it was but a seed. The APC-led government is now left to contend with the dangerous tree it has become. Yet, as surely as I can state my name, the next APC government shall uproot this evil such that, never again, shall it try to take hold in this land.

Blunt counsel to Mr. President

Forecasters are predicting a global recession within the next 12-18 months (Pre Covid-19).  I render these observations not to frighten anyone but because they ring true. Wisdom requires that we accept reality instead of obscuring it under the cloak of wishful thinking. We must build policies that interact with the world as it is, and not with the world as it should be. 

We must recognize these harsh economic tidings as advance warnings to the wise. Hence we must think deeper and work harder for our people in Nigeria.  I would be a most wicked friend (to Buhari) if I knew a storm was approaching yet convinced you to ready your family for an outdoor picnic under the tallest tree. The truth is always a more valuable guardian than fantasy.

Working for the people

Wages stagnate while prices are on a ceaseless march upward…. We must amend our basic ideas about the economy. We must divorce ourselves from our fixation with GDP rates and similar statistics. These things were initially intended to be indicators, suggestive measurements. However, we have misinterpreted these road maps by treating them as if they were the destination itself.  This has caused us to distort the organic relationship between the people and the economy. This dominant train of thought has made the people servants to the dictates of abstract economic theories. In a more effective system, the economy would be fashioned to serve the concrete needs and legitimate aspirations of the people.

Our economy must be redefined to be an efficient yet moral social construct with the primary goal of optimizing the long-term welfare of the people through the sustained, productive and full employment of labour, land, capital and natural resources. To pull the nation from poverty, the government must play a decisive role. It must at times direct and even develop markets and opportunities. This is nothing novel. I am only restating what the established economies did when they were young and assumed their trajectories toward growth.  We must do more than simply work for the people. Government must “work for the people in a way that enables them to better work for themselves.

Power

Affordable and reliable power will drive the industrialization that shall provide jobs in our cities and produce needed goods for all our people. In a more poetic rendering, it will take our people out of the dark ages and bring the nation into the light of a better day. 

I believe we will work to increase electricity generation, transmission and distribution by more than 50 percent.  We require serious and bold reforms to achieve this. What is happening to our gas pipelines? Whatever we have to invest now for our future is a task that must be done boldly. Put experts together for a more constructive reform to improve generation, transmission and distribution by any means necessary. We cannot afford to be too legalistic about this.

Infrastructure

We must commit ourselves to a national highway system linking our major cities and towns, our centres of commerce, with each other. This will save lives, spur commerce, cut costs and bring Nigerians closer together.  Water catchment and retention systems in strategic locations should also be introduced to end the destructive cycles of flood and drought affecting many areas.  In working to transform the face of our economy, the government must also enact policies that encourage industrialization and modern agricultural practices.

We must applaud President Buhari for the historic innovations made in the agricultural sector. We must further encourage him to do even more. Government funded social security for the aged and government backed affordable housing and mortgage facilities are things we must continue to explore in an aggressive manner.   Our goal is nothing less than enabling people to enjoy lives free of penury and lack.

His experience to lead

I step forward because I can help lead our nation to become what it ought to be.

I do not say this as a boast. I claim not to be special nor great. My training, experiences, and acquired knowledge are what is special and uniquely suited for this moment. I am merely a conduit, a servant of a cause much larger than myself . Now is a time for progressive vision and singular purpose. There is a general agreement that 2023 will be an encounter with destiny, when our nation shall need a certain type of leader to realise a better Nigeria.  My experience in office and the knowledge gained through hard work, tough trials and patient undertaking have prepared me for this hour. I am a man of purpose with a serious mission. My vow is to use all that I know and all of my abilities to the benefit of the nation and its people. I do not step forward because I think this nomination is my due. I step forward because I can help lead our nation to become what it ought to be.

A daring-do mentality

Do we dare reform our national economy such that prosperity grows as poverty vanishes?  Yes, we dare.

Do we dare provide meaningful education and jobs for our youths so that they may strive for a better future? Yes, we dare. Our teeming youth population is our nation’s greatest asset. We will create jobs for our youth from the Zamfara and Osun gold deposits to the vast agricultural lands across the country. We will create new opportunities in the FINTECH sector, the creative and entertainment industries, digital skills and other areas.

Do we dare feed our nation and provide the farmer a solid income for his toil? Yes, we dare.

Do we dare construct a society where the vulnerable, the weak, the disadvantaged and the elderly are attended to and loved? Yes, for we must care for those who cannot care for themselves.

Do we dare muster our collective strength to conquer terrorism, kidnapping, and violent evil of any form? Yes, we dare.

Security and competition between terrorists and governments for recruitment of youths

We are under-policed and we are competing with armed robbers and bandits to recruit from the youths who are unemployed.  33% unemployed? Recruit 50 million youths into the army and take away from the recruitment source (of terrorist’s). What will they eat?  Cassava, agbado, corn in the morning, yam in the afternoon and all these are grown here and you create demand and consumption for over 5million army of bootcamps. Don’t call these (criminals and terrorists) illiterate.  Anyone who can own a gun, handle a gun, cork a gun, service it, clean the chamber and shoot, is technically competent to repair a tractor in the farm.  We can create jobs here. (So, recruit our youths and get them engaged in farming)

[Vanguard]

The Governorship Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Osun State and Governor-elect, Ademola Adeleke on Sunday vow not to probe the incumbent Governor, Gboyega Oyetola when he takes over as Governor.

Adeleke accused the All Progressives Congress-led government of not giving the transition committee adequate cooperation.

The Osun State Governor-elect expressed hope that the current administration would work hand-in-hand with the transition committee before the handover date.

The spokesperson of the Governor-elect, Olawale Rasheed stated this on Sunday in a chat with Vanguard.

 

According to Rasheed, Adeleke’s administration has plans to reveal its policy after studying the handover note by the outgoing government.

He further stated that there is no form of breach of trust between the incoming and outgoing administration.

Rasheed said, “There is no form of breach of trust between us. It is normal for hiccups like these to happen when there is a change of government between two parties. We are hopeful that we will get more cooperation as we move forward.

“We won’t be probing the present administration. What we will do is just go through the handover notes to put issues in perspective before announcing our policy statement.

“To probe an administration will also amount to wasting precious time of the new administration and with the people’s expectations from us; that will be expensive for us.

“So far, so good, we have put in place a transition committee to liaise with the administration to facilitate a smooth transition, though we have not been getting what we expected. We have submitted our letter to them and it has been acknowledged, so we expect adequate cooperation.”

 
[Naijanews]

The lawmaker, representing the Benue North-West senatorial district, Senator Orker Jev, speaks about the six-week ultimatum the opposition Senators gave the President Muhammadu Buhari to tackle insecurity in the country and other issues

In the build up to the 2023 general elections, you declined to seek re-election, which paved the way for Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, to emerge as senatorial candidate unopposed. Were you afraid of the governor?

In fairness, let me say I am one of the luckiest politicians around. I have won five elections in my life. The first was my election into the state Assembly during the late General Sanni Abacha’s transition; we were not inaugurated but I won the election. Then, I won election thrice to the House of Representatives and now the Senate, making it five times.

So I count myself very lucky because I know how some people struggled to win one election and never got to win it.

If you understand the political landscape of Benue State, we emphasised fairness.

In our local parlance, it is known as ‘eat and give your brother’.

So, in the Benue North West, known as Zone B, there are two geo-political zones; the Jemgba and Minda axis.


So, in my estimation and the way I do my own things, I think it is unfair to say I want to continue. Though some politicians may insist on continuing until they are eased out, I don’t want my own case to be like that.

So, the second month after our inauguration in 2019, I told the governor that I would not be seeking re-election to the Senate. The governor asked me why, but I told him it was for fairness and that by 2023 it would be his turn. The governor, however, declined, saying that God had not spoken to him about it. But I told him that if he eventually decided not to contest, I would still not change my position. So, I told him that I was doing it in the spirit of fairness.

And a lot of people around him never believed me. They said that I was only trying to trick the governor, so I would pounce on him at the appropriate time.

At one point, the major opposition party in the state reached out to me and said that I should contest on their platform, saying that they knew that I would not get the nomination in the Peoples Democratic Party because of the governor’s factor, but I declined.

Basically, to answer your question directly, I thought it was fair that after 16 years the Jemgba occupied the senatorial seat, it should go to the other side, Minda.

Like you rightly said, in the spirit of fairness, why can’t this spirit prevail and the governorship seat rotate to Benue South senatorial district, known as Zone C, the Idoma?

Why not? I would take it if it was left to me and I had the power, but this one was within my power to take the decision and I took it. That is to show that I value fairness. When it comes to that matter, it is beyond me.



You see, at the last PDP governorship primary at the Aper Aku stadium, you will discover that the people of Zone C did not vote for their candidate.

Sometimes, certain things are beyond you. It is not for me to go and insist that this should happen. But I think we will get to a stage one day when such a thing will happen.

But for now, the average politician has their own calculation of some of these things. I don’t want to hold a forte or condemn anybody. If it is within my capacity to make a decision, I will take it just like I took it in the aforementioned.

It will interest you to know that a lot of people from the Minda axis who are supposed to benefit from my decision reached out to me to hold on to the senatorial position until they are ready, but I declined. So that is how politics is done. People talk about their own interests, but as for me, I have no apology for the decision I took. Any decision I take on what I stand for, I have no regret.

In 2019, when you defeated Senator George Akume, you did not allow the victory to overwhelm you as you declared that you remain Akume’s boy, but today you are close to the State Governor, Samuel Ortom. How do you strike a balance between Akume and Ortom?


From the first day I joined politics, I resisted the issue of godfatherism. I have leaders and I give them all their dues, but the idea of a godfather I abhor because I have read so much about and I see it is not a positive phenomenon.

Even now, I am dissuading my people not to abuse anybody on social media, especially my leader, Senator Akume. I started politics with him (Akume) during the Abacha transition programme when I contested a House of Assembly seat and he wanted to be governor until we parted ways around 2017.


I did politics with him, we had our differences, and I left him and crossed over to the governor. The truth is that no relationship is perfect, even between husband and wife, but the good news is that whenever I have an issue with him (Ortom), he is very approachable, and I express my point of view, and we resolve the issue; unfortunately, I cannot say the same for the other.

Opposition Senators slammed six weeks’ warning on the President Muhammadu Buhari to tackle the security situation in the country or face impeachment. Was it an empty threat?

Well, that day, we went into executive session. I think only one person among all the senators present objected to the impeachment.

Almost everyone, regardless of party affiliation, was dissatisfied with the state of the country.

Everybody has agreed that insecurity is the number one problem we have in this country. At the point we were talking, it had come to the nation’s capital. There are some representatives who can no longer go to their places again because of insecurity in their areas. Now it has come to the nation’s capital, so where are you going to run to?

So, the whole thing was driving home to everyone, and we have some people who have been core supporters of the President for the past three years or so, not just the APC but hard core supporters, as I always cite Senator Bokachua, who is still a member of the APC as we speak. But the assault on the capital territory is a tipping point for everybody, including the hard-core supporters of Mr. President.

Of course, several other issues were discovered, but that was the core issue. So the insecurity has reached the stage that the APC senators can no longer come out to defend the president.



For instance, when I appeared on Channels TV, the anchor of the programme told me that to balance it, he had invited an APC senator but none of them came to defend the president on the programme.

So also, I was invited to a programme at Radio Nigeria. As I prepared to honour the invitation, I saw a text message from the anchor that they were calling off the programme because there were efforts to get another senator from the other side but nobody was ready to come.

Nobody is happy with what is happening in the country and no one is ready to stake his neck to defend what is indefensible. Some of us, even as opposition people, don’t seriously expect that the President will be impeached, but like a Tiv proverb, which translates to ‘there is no decent way of crying.’ So it was our cry to the President to do something about insecurity.

So, let us hope that in those six weeks he will wake up because I heard what the spokesman for the president said which is very unfortunate. They think their job is to come and defend what is indefensible.

The other time, one of the spokesmen was on air calling senators anarchists for doing our constitutional duty instead of focusing on why we raised that issue, and what we said was that insecurity has gotten out of hand.

Have they forgotten that the man said he was coming to solve insecurity problems and was given the opportunity to address the bare minimum of what he promised, but he was unable to do so, and you are saying that no president can solve his country’s problems?

In other climes, Governor Samuel Ortom should have been applauded for sounding the alarm earlier than now that it would not be a surprise if one day these bandits entered the villa.


Rather, he (Ortom) was abused and called names by the Presidency, and this is the situation we are in today. These people are so daring and have threatened to kidnap the President. They once attacked the convoy of the President, the most protected man in the country today.

In the event that he (Mr. President) refuses to wake up, what is going to happen?

Let me tell you that impeachment is the only option we are seriously considering. I am talking from my vantage point, although some of us are expecting him to sit up. Whether it succeeds or not, this is a constitutional matter. Our constitution provides for impeachment.

[PUNCH]

Zenon Petroleum & Gas Limited, an oil marketing company in Nigeria has served a Winding Up petition against Prudent Energy and Services Limited over the inability of the latter to repay a debt of $ 6 million.

Prudent Energy & Services through its entity, Ignite Investments and Commodities Limited owns 74% of Ardova Petroleum a company listed on the Nigerian Exchange.

Billionaire investor Alhaji AbdulWasiu Sowami is the Chief Executive Officer of Prudent Energy & Services and the chairman of Ardova Petroleum.

 

According to information shared with Nairametrics, a winding up petition to wind up Prudent Energy and Services Limited to has been presented at the Federal High Court, Lagos in Suit No. FHC/L/CP/1450/2022 on the grounds of the inability of Prudent Energy and Services Limited to pay the debt of $6 million.

Background of the debt

Our sources suggest the debt is the balance of the purchase consideration paid for the acquisition of Forte Oil in 2019 from Femi Otedola’s Zenon Petroleum & Gas Ltd.

“The debt is alleged to have arisen from the sale conducted in 2018 where Zenon Petroleum & Gas Limited and its affiliates sold 74.02% of the issued share capital of Forte Oil Plc. (now Ardova Plc.) to Alhaji AbdulWasiu Sowami and Ignite Investment & Commodities Limited. As security for the deferred consideration for the sale of the shares, Prudent Energy and Services Limited and its Chief Executive Officer, Alhaji AbdulWasiu Sowami provided a guarantee in favour of Zenon Petroleum & Gas Limited and its affiliates for the prompt payment of the deferred consideration as at when due.”

The deal was valued at about $200 million in 2019 when the transaction was consummated. Apparently, the agreement allowed for the payment to be made in tranches, and $6 million appears to have fallen due.

Our sources confirm that Zenon Petroleum alleged in its petition that the sum of $6 million is “part of the deferred consideration” which “became due on 18 June 2022” but is yet to be paid “despite the demand letters served on Prudent Energy and Services Limited and its CEO” Alhaji Sowami.

What this means

Nairametrics analysis of the petition suggests Zenon is seeking a winding up of Prudent Energy which will enable it to seize control of Ignite’s shareholding in Ardova Plc.

  • Prudent Energy’s shareholding in Ardova is valued at about N12.6 billion. Ardova currently has a market capitalization of N16.9 billion.
  • At a black market exchange rate of N600/$1, the $6 million is about N3.6 billion about 21.3% of the total market capitalization of Ardova.
  • Ardova share price has also failed to reclaim the share price highs associated with Forte Oil (before it was sold).
  • Meanwhile, Ardova also recently acquired Enyo Retail and Supply, a downstream company.

Latest on Ardova

Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) lifted the suspension placed on trading in the shares of Ardova Plc.

[Nairametrics]

  • The Exchange had earlier suspended nine companies including Ardova from the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) on Friday, July 1, 2022, for failing to file their Audited Financial Statements for the year ended 31 December 2021.
  • Ardova Plc recently announced the release of its 2021 Audited Financial Statements and Q1 2022 Unaudited Financial Results.
  • The company reported a loss of N3.8 billion for the year ended December 2021 its first loss since it was acquired by Prudent Energy.

Being a publicly quoted company, Nairametrics expects Ardova to respond to these allegations in the coming days.

…this is a developing story.

Rivers State Governor and former presidential aspirant, Nyesom Wike has disclosed his recent findings about unhealthy plans by some politicians ahead of the 2023 general elections.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain while speaking during a Sunday night broadcast said he has been informed that some unnamed politicians were recruiting hoodlums to disrupt processes before and during the forthcoming polls.

Wike said the revelation, based on intelligence reports further suggested that some owners of hotels and entertainment spots were renting out their spaces to the unnamed political groups for the gathering of the said thugs across the state.

The governor vowed not to take the intelligence report lightly.

 

Wike warned that he will not allow any political party, be it PDP, the All Progressives Congress (APC) or the Social Democratic Party (SDP) disrupt the peace of the state.

The governor stressed that his administration will not treat with fairness any politician caught in the act no matter the status of such individual.

Wike said the state will not condone any act of mayhem, thuggery or violence before and during the coming polls.

 

He said: “Accordingly, we have already alerted and set the security agencies on the trail of these misguided politicians and leaders of political parties and stop them in their tracks with the full weight of the law.

“We also wish to warn owners of hotels and proprietors of relaxation centres to take notice and desist from releasing their facilities for politicians and party leaders to use to meet and plot against the peace, safety and security of our State.”

Wike reiterated his administration’s “unwavering commitment to safeguarding the sanctity of lives and property throughout the State and to reassure everyone that we shall continue to spare no effort to keep Rivers State safe and secure.

“We urge residents to be vigilant while going about with their normal activities and promptly report any suspicious gatherings or movements in your vicinity to the attention of the security agencies for necessary action.”

“These are very turbulent times in our country as the level of insecurity across all parts has never been this bad. The state government and security agencies have laboured hard to secure the prevailing peace we are determined to sustain for the progress of the State and wellbeing of citizens.”

[Naijanews]

FOLLOWING due diligence, the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Ali Ibrahim (Pantami),has been conferred with a fellowship status by the Chartered Institute of Information Security, CIISec.

The honour was bestowed on the minister after rigorous interviews and evaluations.

With the award, Pantami becomes the first and the only African fellow admitted into CIISec, among 89 other fellows. 

CIISec Fellowship is awarded to individuals who have earned respect and authority within the Cybersecurity community and have demonstrated a commitment to develop the profession.

 CIISec (the Home of Cyber) is the only genuine information and cybersecurity institution granted the Royal Charter of Incorporation status in the United Kingdom since 2018. 

The institute has been dedicated to raising the standard of professionalism in information and cybersecurity.

Information from the website of the institute shows the name of Professor Isa Ali Ibrahim on the updated list of current fellows and the only African among 89 other fellows. 

According to the institute, “Fellow is the highest level of attainment in the Chartered Institute of Information Security’s (CIISec) membership levels and is there to  recognize industry leaders in the information/cyber security profession; meet the aspirations for recognition of achievement and contribution to the profession, within the current membership body; and attract those in the profession with higher levels of skills, experience, respect and attainment.

Some of the fellows are David Alexander; Leslie Anderson; Rory Alsop; Darren Argyle; Paul Baird“Professor Richard Benham; Steve Benton; Owen Birnie; Martyn Boston; Phil Brooke; Kevin Brown; Nathan Clarke; Alessandro Crompton; Andrew Cobbett; Dr. Allan Cook and John Cook. 

Others honoured include Phil Cracknell; Peter D’Ardenne; John Davies; Dr. Jon Davies; Dr. Budgie Dhanda; Inderpal Dhami; Professor Paul Dorey; Professor Daniel Dresner; Ethan Duffell; Chris Cooper Phill Everson; Mike Faulks; Mike Fell and David Ferbrache.

The list includes Peter Fischer; Daryl Flack; Professor Steven Furnell; Jean-Christophe Gaillard; Mike Garside; Chris Gausden ;Andre Gorvel; Mary Haigh and Edward Hamilton

The details on the award revealed the procedures for being a Fellow of CIISec.

Another brief added:   “The process for becoming a Fellow requires a nomination by either a CIISec Board Member, Full member, or a Fellow member, which is then followed by rigorous interviews and evaluations to determine a candidate’s suitability.

“The hierarchy of individual membership of CIISec is as depicted in the membership hierarchy chart.

“Professor Pantami, who is a passionate advocate of acquiring professional skills that meets the demand of the future work environment (he has authored a book on the topic) joins the league of top cybersecurity experts in the world, and the first from the African continent that is awarded the Fellowship of the chartered institute.

[VANGUARD]

The Federal Government through the Budget Office of the Federation has revealed that it will begin the implementation of its proposed excise duties on telecommunication services and beverages in 2023.

This is despite backlashes from the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, and the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria.

Pantami had during the maiden edition of the Nigerian Telecommunications Indigenous Content Expo organised by the Nigeria Office for Developing the indigenous Telecom Sector, slammed the five per cent tax on telecoms services. He said, “The Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy is not satisfied with any effort to introduce excise duty on telecommunication services.

 “Beyond making our position known, we will go behind the scenes and go against any policy that will destroy the digital economy sector. We will go to any extent to legitimately and legally defend its interest.”

The Budget Office of the Federation, which is under the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, revealed its plan in its ‘2023 – 2025 Medium Term Expenditure Framework and Fiscal Strategy Paper,’ which was released on Friday.

According to the ministry, this was in a bid to boost its non-oil revenue streams. The minister further said that it expected excise duty revenue to grow exponentially because of the introduction of telecoms service charge.

 Discussing the tax which is under the purview of the Nigeria Customs Service, the government said the NCS would introduce frameworks for recovering duties, taxes, and appropriate fees from transactions conducted over electronic networks.

 

Explaining one of the strategies that would be implemented to improve Customs’ revenue collections over the period 2023-2025, the office said, “Full implementation of excise duty on telecom services, alcoholic, sugar-sweetened beverages, cigarettes and tobacco products.

“Therefore, excise revenue is expected to grow exponentially because of the introduction of the telecom service charge and SSBs”

It explained that the law now empowered the FIRS to appoint anyone as its agent to withhold or collect VAT and remit same to the service.

Stating the government’s plight, the budget office said, “Revenue generation remains the major fiscal challenge of the Federal Government.

 

“The systemic resource mobilisation problem has been compounded by recent economic recessions. Recognising that domestic revenue mobilization is important for sustainable development, the Federal Government has instituted the Strategic Revenue Growth Initiatives to improve government revenue and entrench fiscal prudence, with emphasis on achieving value for money.

“These measures include improving the tax administration framework, including tax filing and payment, as well as the introduction of new and/or further increases in existing pro-health taxes like excise on sugar-sweetened beverages, tobacco, and alcohol. Mixed reactions have greeted the implementation of these measures.”

Speaking at a stakeholders’ forum on the implementation of excise duty on telecommunications services in Nigeria, the Minister of Finance Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, who spoke through Assistant Chief Officer of the Ministry, Mr Frank Oshanipin, said, “The duty rate was not captured in the Act because it is the responsibility of the President to fix rate on excise duties and he has fixed five per cent for telecommunication services which include GSM. 

“It is public knowledge that our revenue cannot run our financial obligations, so we are to shift our attention to the non-oil revenue. The responsibility of generating revenue to run the government lies with us all.”

Responding to the new levy, the Chairman, Association of Licensed Telecom Owners of Nigeria, Gbenga Adebayo, had said telecom consumers would bear the burden of this additional five per cent tax, bringing the total tax paid by consumers to 12.5 per cent.

A report by The PUNCH had revealed that the Federal Government would generate about N160.46bn from excise duty on telecom services if it is implemented in 2023.

Speaking to our correspondent, the President, National Association of Telecoms Subscribers, Adeolu Ogunbanjo, said, “There is ample time to continue to advocate against it before then. They are set to implement and impoverish more people on their way out.

“It is unfortunate that despite the minister’s resentment, they are still going ahead. Why appoint the minister at all. Ministers are to advise the president on matters that are within their purview. They shouldn’t implement it, otherwise, Nigerians will react to this insensitive nature of the government. Let them look to other sectors, why telecoms?

“We will mobilise Nigerians to go against this.”

MAN had earlier opposed the imposition of taxes on alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, saying that it would hurt the industry.

[PUNCH]

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