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2019 presidency: Buhari knows nothing about democracy, vote Atiku – Amaechi tells Igbos

A First Republic Minister, Chief Mbazulike Amaechi, has said that President Muhammadu Buhari does not understand the language of democracy.

According to him, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has repeatedly given a clear assurance that he would restructure the imbalanced federation.

He, therefore, called on Igbo electorate to vote for Atiku and his running mate, Peter Obi, to get Nigeria on the path of progress again.

Amaechi addressed reporters at his country home at Ukpor in Nnewi South local government area of Anambra State on Tuesday.

He said, “As the very last surviving nationalist, freedom fighter and minister of the first republic still alive, I feel compelled to say something and warn those who may be plotting to plunge the country into a major crisis that may threaten the very foundation of our federation.

“Nigerians must brace up and defend democracy and the federation itself. There is grave danger ahead. Those who destroyed democracy is 1983 are up again to deprive the people of their fundamental rights.

“They don’t understand the language of democracy. From what they are doing to the judiciary and legislature, one can imagine what will happen if for any error they are returned to Aso Rock.

“I call on the international community to help and expose the evil plans, of a cabal who wants to perpetuate themselves in power even if they lose the election.

“They have been badly marginalized, exploited, denied of their rights in a federation that they played a major role in founding.

“Atiku has also taken our own Peter Obi as his running mate. I call on Ndigbo at home and everywhere in Nigeria to turn out in totality and vote for the Akiku/Obi candidacy for the president.

“I speak the minds of the great nationalists like Nnamdi Azikiwe, Ahmadu Bello, Abubaker Tafawa Balewa, Obafemi Awolowo, Dennis Osadebay, Aminu Kano, M.I. Okpara, Maitama Sule, S.L. Akintola, Herbert Macaulay, Festus Okotie-Eboh, Nwafor Orizu, Joseph Tarka, Eyo Ita, Odeleye Fedahunsi, Muhammadu Ribadu, Zanna Bukar Dipchadima, Kola Balogun, Margret Ekpo, Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, HajyaGambo Sawaba, Mary Nzimiro, Maggie Obinwe, Malam Umoru Altune, Bisi Onabanjo and others who have been silenced by death in pleading with Nigerian Voters to vote into power, the rare gift of Atiku/Obi presidency so that fraternal love and unity may return in a democratic united Nigeria.

“In the other elections, they can vote for their individual parties or conscience. Ndigbo should not mind a small band of mercenaries and Judases who went to Wuse Market at Abuja, bought some Red Caps, adorned the caps and trouped to Aso Rock, spoke some sweet nonsense, received some greasy handshakes and sheepishly smiled home. They represent nobody but their treacherous selves.”

On the call for boycott of the election by Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Amaechi added, “As a political father in Nigeria and Igboland, I had appealed to the youths of IPOB, in the interest of Igboland, not to pursue their election boycott programme. It is counter-productive and suicidal.

“I call on the government to de-proscribe IPOB. It is primitive injustice to leave the gun- bearing Fulani herdsmen and their jungle comrades in Zamfara State alone and turn to kill the youths of IPOB because they are Igbo.”

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Arewa

BREAKING: INEC postpones Nigeria elections, announces new dates, gives reasons

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has postponed the February 16 presidential and National Assembly elections.

The polls will now hold Saturday February 23.

This was one of the decisions reached early Saturday morning in a meeting INEC chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu had with the 12 national commissioners in Abuja.

Addressing the media, Yakubu explained that the shift was mainly due to logistics problems faced by the commission.

“Following a careful review, the commission came to the conclusion that proceeding with the elections will not be feasible”, he said.

Yakubu added that the decision was taken in order to give the nation a free, fair and credible exercise.

“Furthermore, the governorship and state houses of elections will hold on Saturday March 9”, the electoral chief added.

The national elections are expected to hold at 119,973 polling units across the country while collation of results will take place in 8,809 Registration Areas or Wards, 774 Local Government Areas and 36 States and the FCT.

It will not be the first time that the commission would postpone a scheduled general election.

In 2015, the presidential election was shifted from February 14 to March 28th, 2015; while the governorship and assembly elections scheduled for 28 February were shifted to 11 April.

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Buhari

#NigeriaDecides2019: Where Buhari, wife will vote on Saturday

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Daura, Katsina State, says it has concluded arrangements for Saturday’s Presidential and National Assembly Elections.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that President Muhammadu Buhari and his wife, Hajiya Aisha are expected to cast their votes at Sarkin Yara A Electoral Ward in Polling Unit 003, in his hometown Daura.

NAN also reports that Sarkin Yara A has 9,242 registered voters with polling unit 003 comprising only 898 voters.

INEC said that 187 was Buhari’s serial number on the permanent voter card with which he would be identified by the relevant officers before he would be allowed to cast his vote.

He will be participating in the exercise for the fifth time as a presidential candidate under different political platforms since he ventured into politics in 2003.

He lost three times and subsequently won in 2015, defeating the incumbent president, Dr Goodluck Jonathan who was seeking re-election after the completion of the first four years in office.

The former president conceded defeat even before the then Chairman of INEC, Prof. Attahiru Jega, formally declared the winner of the presidential race.

NAN reports that the ancient city of Daura is peaceful and normal business activities are going on and enthusiastic feelings among the people who are anxiously waiting for D-day.

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Arewa

Nigerian Newspapers: 10 things you need to know this Friday morning

Good morning! Here is today’s summary from Nigerian Newspapers

1. An early morning fire on Thursday razed down a police station in Ajalli, Orumba North Local Government Area of Anambra State.

The mystery fire did not also spare patrol vehicles that were parked in the premises of the police station, as two of them were burnt down.

2. The Presidency has accused some Afenifere leaders and Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF) leaders of receiving bribe from the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Atiku Abubakar.

President Muhammadu Buhari’s personal assistant on social media, Lauretta Onochie, on Thursday night alleged that Yinka Odumakin and Chief Ayo Adebanjo received large deposits into their banks accounts before their endorsement of Atiku.

3. Members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Rivers State yesterday, blocked the entrance of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, office in Port Harcourt.

Thousands of party members blocked INEC office on Aba Road in Port Harcourt, around 8am, insisting that the electoral commission must obey the ruling of Court of Appeal and relist their candidates for Saturday’s election.

4. The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in Benue State has confirmed that some hoodlums in military uniforms attacked one of the commission’s vehicles.

The Benue State Resident Electoral Commissioner, Dr Nentawe Yilwatda, disclosed this when addressing journalists on the preparation for the Saturday elections on Thursday.

5. The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), has released the colours of the ballot papers and boxes for the Presidential and National Assembly Elections on Feb. 16.

According to the release, different colours of boxes and ballot papers will be used for the Presidential, Senatorial and House of Representatives ballots at the polling stations.

6. President Muhammadu Buhari has urged Nigerians to vote right in Saturday’s presidential and national assembly elections.

He also assured Nigerians of free, fair and creddible polls at a live broadcast on Thursday.

7. Kano Police Command on Wednesday night arrested two male suspects in possession of 14 sacks of fake ballot papers.

Police Public Relation Officer, DSP Haruna Abdullahi, confirmed this while parading the suspects at the Bompai Police Headquarters, Kaduna, on Thursday.

8. Dr Rufus Akeju, the Ondo State Resident Electoral Commissioner, on Thursday advised election observers in the state to exhibit the highest level of integrity and professionalism in the discharge of their duties during the general elections.

Akeju, who gave the advice while briefing accredited election observers and party representatives in Akure, noted that an election monitor has some level of lawful authority over the conduct of elections and officials unlike observers.

9. The Minister of Interior, Lt.-Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazau (rtd), has directed the closure of all Nigerian land borders with effect from Friday, Feb. 15 to Sunday, Feb. 17 due to the Saturday’s Presidential and National Assembly elections.

The Comptroller-General, Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Mr Muhammad Babandede, in Abuja, said that there would be restriction of movements across the Nigerian borders during the election on the days announced.

10. Buba Galadima, the spokesman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, presidential campaign organisation, has pointed out how the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar will rescue Nigeria from recession if elected on Saturday.

Galadima said Abubakar will use his vast knowledge in business and running of modern economy to take Nigeria out of recession if elected, come Saturday.

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