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Edo Guber Election is one of the best, says INEC

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that the Edo election was one of the best ever conducted.

INEC made the declaration at a meeting with traditional rulers in Ondo State on Thursday.

The electoral umpire appealed to them to promote peace and ensure voters comply with COVID-19 protocols during the October 10 governorship election.

INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, made three requests.

“First, to continue to appeal to political parties’ candidates and their supporters for peace, as you have always done in your domains.

“Secondly, to call on your people to observe the rules of personal and public safety. This is an election conducted in the context of a global health emergency -the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Thirdly, we seek your prayers for peace in Ondo State. We also seek your prayers for INEC that the election to be held on Saturday will be peaceful, free, fair, transparent, and credible.”

Noting that “Edo was a good election”, he expressed INEC’s determination of a better exercise in Ondo.

He admitted that there was tension before the Edo poll.

Yakubu said: “It was one of the best elections conducted by the Commission such that it remains the only governorship election in the history of Edo State since 1999 whose outcome was not challenged in court.”

CAMA: Nigeria is not a country where one person can be trusted with so much power — Falana

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Human rights lawyer, Mr Femi Falana (SAN), has said on Wednesday, that the newly passed Companies and Allied Matters Act 2020, is an indirect attempt by the Buhari government, to reap where it did not sow 

Falana while faulting some sections of the CAMA law, said attributing too much power to one person, that is, the Registrar General of the Corporate Affairs Commission, especially in a country and under a government which cannot be trusted to respect the rights of Nigerians, is extremely dangerous. 

He said, such powers can easily be abused by clamping down on civil society organisation's in the country.

Falana voiced his concerns at a virtual town-hall meeting, with the theme, “CAMA 2020: Regulation or Repression?” co-organised by European Union-ACT; Open Society Initiative for West Africa; Working Group on Civil Society Regulatory Environment; Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project and the CAC.

Falana began by faulting Section 389 of the law that empowers the CAC to suspend the Board of Trustees of an organisation in crisis and appoint an interim committee to manage its affairs.

Describing the section as a violation of the rights to freedom of association, Falana argued that the CAC should allow organisations to manage their internal crisis in line with their constitutions.

He said, “The organisation has been registered with its constitution; the Registrar General of the CAC has no power to throw away the constitution incorporated with the organisation.

“Once you have registered the constitution of an organisation and it has provided for Board of Trustees, it has provided for accountability mechanisms, you must respect such provisions of the organisation’s constitution that has been registered.

“The point being made that we should allow this law to work before we point out these very dangerous provisions will not be the best approach.”

Faulting section 842 of the law which empowers the CAC to take over the funds in the bank accounts of an organisation in crisis, he said it was tantamount to “obtaining money by false pretence.”

Falana also condemned Section 831 of the law, which, he said, empowers the RG of the CAC to forcefully merge two organisations.

Furthermore, he described as most offensive, Section 851 of the law, which empowers the CAC to set up an Administrative Proceedings Committee, headed by the RG of CAC, to resolve internal disputes in an organisation.

Falana said, “The Administrative Proceedings Committee will be headed by the Registrar General of the CAC; so, he is going to be the accuser, the prosecutor and also the judge to decide who is wrong or right. He is also going to be empowered to impose penalties on any organisation who fails to file returns. These powers are draconian.”

The RG of CAC, Alhaji Garba Abubakar, however, said the new law should be allowed to operate first and given “benefit of the doubt; and if there are challenges we will address them by way of amendments.”

Rail Contract: When will Buhari do something good for the masses? — PDP slammed Buhari over approval of $2b

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There is a bit of fuss over the Buhari administration's decision to spend about $2 billion on a railway contract that would link Nigeria to Niger Republic.

The contract which would cost $1,959,744,723.71, was approved by the Federal Government on Wednesday, as disclosed by the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, following a meeting of the Federal Executive Council presided over by the President.

Amaechi while addressing State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, said that the money approved for the development of the proposed rail line linking Kano-Dutse-Katsina-Jibia and to Maradi in Niger Republic was inclusive of Value Added Tax.

The 248-kilometre line which if completed, is expected to aid the transportation of crude oil, is designed to connect three Northern states – Kano, Katsina and Jigawa states – as well as seven senatorial districts, according to PUNCH.

The minister said, “The first approval for our ministry is the award of contract for the design, manufacture, supply, testing and inauguration of one railway crane of 150-ton capacity for emergency and recovery of rolling stocks.

“This is to sort out situations of accident on the track. It is for a total cost of N3,049,544,000.

“The second one is the award of contract for the development of the proposed Kano-Katsina-Jibia to Matadi rail line in Niger Republic and to Dutse, the capital of Jigawa, for a total cost of $1,959,744,723.71, inclusive of 7.5% VAT.”

But the opposition Peoples Democratic Party and some civil rights groups took issues with FG’s decision, saying the project was a misplacement of priority in a country facing intractable problems of insecurity and harsh economic conditions arising from hikes in fuel price and electricity tariff.

In a reaction to the development, the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbindiyan, said,  “The problem of this regime is that it has never got its  priorities right and at the end of the day, Nigerians are the ones who suffer from these poor choices by these people.

“Let’s even look at it from the point of view of the economy. What is the economic benefit of this project to Nigeria. The Nigerian economy,  as it is today, is not in a state to contain this kind of wasteful spending.”

Just In: Sadiya Farouq marries

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The Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar, has married the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq.

According to multiple sources as reported by Daily Trust, the wedding Fatiha took place on Friday, September 18, 2020, at the Maitama Juma’a Mosque in Abuja.

“It is true that the chief of air staff and the humanitarian affairs minister have gotten married,” one of the sources said.

“Very few people were invited to attend the wedding fatiha because the couple and those close to them didn’t want to publicize the issue,” he said.

Another source said the two have been in love for some time.

“They have been in a relationship for a while and what happened on Friday has put to rest all the speculations about her relationship with President Muhammadu Buhari,” he said.

There were reports in October 2019 that President Buhari and the minister have gotten married, a claim that was dismissed by the presidency.

In his reaction, the President through his Special Adviser on Media and publicity, Femi Adesina, dismissed the rumour, stressing that the “rumour was a deceptive manoeuvre by those who fabricated the news,” The Nation reports.

Adesina noted that the “news was far from the truth.”

I'm not down as you think — Oshiomhole tells Nigerians

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Former national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, says he is not down as some people think following Ize-iyamu's defeat in the last Saturday’s governorship election in Edo state. 

In his first interview with GEE Africa TV since the election, Oshiomhole said he feels good, healthy, and strong and also thank God for the outcome of the election. 

“You know in life, you work hard and leave God for the outcome, you do your best and trust God to bless your effort,” he said.

“I feel good, I feel healthy thank God, I feel strong thank God. In life you win some and you lose some but life goes on. I want to thank everybody, I am sure a lot of people think comrade is down but I am not down. When God says you are not down, you are not down and I am not down.

“I thank Edo people for all they did over the past two, three, four, six weeks, people under the rain under the sun, young ladies carrying babies on their back, I saw elderly women struggling to see my small face, and on election day I was moved to tears when I saw elderly women of 70 to 75 sitting down because the card readers were not working and they were not frustrated with that, they struck me with that. If at their age, they didn’t give up, why should I give up?”

He asked the people to have faith in Nigeria and see it as the only country that they have.

“And I ask our people to have faith in our country, you cannot have faith in another country,” he said.

“I have only have one passport and I am not about to apply for any other passport. This country, we must make it great, we must strengthen democracy, we must improve on it. No matter the outcome of an election or a particular edition of the process, have faith in God and have faith in our country. God bless you all.”

You remain our leader — Iyamu begs Obaseki to return to APC

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The candidate of the All Progressives Congress in the last Saturday Governorship election, Pastor Ize - Iyamu, has urged Governor Godwin Obaseki who defeated him at the polls to return to the APC.

In a television broadcast on Wednesday night, Ize - iyamu said, “We are going to talk to everybody; we are going to bring everybody back. I want to salute my brother, the governor. I will like to appeal to him to return to the party. In every family, we have disagreement.

“Let it not be said that it was this disagreement that pushed him out. I made that mistake before and I have come to realise that it was a grievous error and I will not want him as a senior brother to make the same mistake.

“I will like to appeal to him to set aside his anger and come back. In APC, he is recognised as a leader and it would be difficult for him to be recognised as a leader in the new party he is going.”

Meanwhile, Governor Obaseki had said that he has no plans to dump the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and return to his former party, the All Progressive Congress (APC).

Obaseki, following his disqualification by APC governorship election screening committee, had joined the PDP for his reelection bid and eventually emerged victorious, defeating his closest rival, Osagie Ize-Iyamu of the APC in Saturday’s election with 307,955 votes as against the latter’s 223,619 votes.

Speaking during his appearance on the Morning Show on ARISE TV, the broadcast arm of THISDAY, the governor said he made promises to people of Edo as PDP candidate and it will be immoral and unfair to leave the platform given to him by the PDP to achieve his reelection bid.

”It’s not right to jettison them, I have no plan to return to APC.”

I shed tears during Saturday's Guber election — Oshiomhole breaks silence

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Adams Oshiomhole, former national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), says he was moved to tears during Saturday’s election.

Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), had defeated Osagie Ize-Iyamu, his APC rival, in the election.

Oshiomhole had campaigned vigorously for Ize-Iyamu whose loss some people attributed to his influence in the campaign of the APC candidate.

In his first interview since the election, Oshiomhole narrated how he was moved to tears when he saw elderly women who were determined to cast their ballot despite some hitches in the process.

He said rather than get frustrated over how malfunctioning card readers slowed down the process, the people waited patiently.

Oshiomhole said while many expected him to be downcast over the outcome of the exercise, he is feeling good.

He spoke to GEE Africa TV.

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