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June 12: PDP reacts to Buhari’s Democracy Day speech, attacks President

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The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has condemned President Muhammadu Buhari’s Democracy Day speech.

PDP said Buhari showed disregard for the tenets of democracy and lack of “commitments or assurances on fundamental issues of constitutionality, rule of law, separation of power, justice, fairness, free speech and rights of citizens, which are the hallmarks of
democracy.”

In a statement by its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, the opposition party stressed that Buhari showed no remorse over the alleged manipulations, infractions and

violence that characterized the 2019 general elections, under his watch.
The statement reads: “We invite Nigerians to note how President Buhari’s address clearly shows a disregard for the tenets of democracy as he (Mr. President) had
no clear commitments or assurances on fundamental issues of constitutionality, rule of law, separation of power, justice, fairness, free speech and rights of citizens, which are the hallmarks of democracy.

“Mr. President also had no regrets for the manipulations, infractions and violence that characterized the 2019 general elections, under his watch, for which the nation now has an unprecedented 766 election petitions,
including the highly manipulated Presidential election.

“President Buhari did not express any form of remorse for the barefaced constitutional violations, assault on institutions of democracy, particularly the legislature and the judiciary; human rights violations, assault on the media and the general siege mentality in the polity under
his watch.

“It is sad that on a day like this, Mr. President dwelt on false performance claims and had no soothing word for millions of compatriots that have been subjected to the worst form of economic misery, that they are now resorting to suicide and slavery mission abroad.

“He also had no words of hope for the victims of escalated insurgency, kidnapping, banditry and bloodletting in various parts of our nation.

“How can this administration superintend over a Democracy Day celebration when it has questions of constitutional violations, electoral manipulations, media clampdown, victimization of opposition, emasculation of free speech, brutalization, arbitrary arrests and illegal detention, as already detailed in various reports, including those by the United States Department of State.

“It is disheartening that the same electoral manipulation, violations and injustices for which the icon of June 12 Democracy Day, Chief MKO Abiola died, have brazenly taken center stage under the APC misrule.

“Today, just like on June 12, 1993, our citizens are despondent, particularly over the rigging of the February 23, 2019 Presidential election as their quest for a people-oriented and inherently democratic leadership to move our nation forward was frustrated, consequent upon
which our party and our presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, are seeking justice.”

PDP, however, urged Nigerians not to despair but continue in their aspiration for the retrieval of its stolen presidential mandate at the tribunal “so that the nation will have a truly democratic and purposeful leadership for the good of all.”

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Arewa

IGP, Buhari govt under fire for negotiating with bandits, funding herdsmen with N100bn

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A pro-democracy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, HURIWA, has condemned the Inspector General of police for branding armed bandits in the North as ‘freedom fighters.’

HURIWA, while also condemning the decision by some northern governors of Katsina, Zamfara and Sokoto States to negotiate with armed Fulani bandits said the bandits are responsible for hundreds of deaths and the destruction of property in the states.

The rights group accused the Inspector General of Police, Alhaji Mohammed Adamu of choosing to ‘wine and dine’ with armed bandits rather than wielding the big stick against the lawless mass murders in the North West of Nigeria.

In a media statement signed by the National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko and the National Media Affairs Director, Miss. Zainab Yusuf, it said the interview ”in which the police chief supported the ongoing unconstitutional unholy communion between Northern State governors and armed bandits will go down in the history of what would be left of Nigeria as the darkest period of the Nation-state because it is inconceivable that an officer of the law would boldly defecate on top of the sacred laws of the Country.”

The statement reads, “Let it be known to the current IGP Mohammed Adamu that his latest statement equating criminal armed mass killers as same as the Niger Delta agitators is not only disingenuous, pedestrian, spurious, puerile and myopic, but it is a direct affront to the constitution of Nigeria”.

”It was absolutely wrong to have compared the Niger Delta agitators who took up arms to compel the multinational crude oil producing entities to stop polluting and destroying the ecosystem and the overall environments with pure brigands and armed bandits in the North West who have no cause for their odious, atrocious and totally unlawful actions of killing children, women and old people all in the name of seeking to obtain the unlawful opportunities of dialoguing with politicians for financial benefits. It is so wrong that the IGP is being allowed to defecate on the constitution. This trend of thought is similar to a victim of rape championing the cause of the rapists.

”It is totally incorrect to compare Niger Delta agitators with armed bandits of North West unless the political class in the North alongside their allies in the security forces are now accepting the responsibility for setting up the bandits in their bid to win big compensations for the criminals.

“The Niger Delta agitators fought for a just cause and were never known to have killed civilians. Niger Delta is the region that has provided 98% of the mainstay of Nigeria’s economy by way of crude oil resources. The environment was devastated and the people whose livelihoods were devastated by the activities of crude oil explorations demanded for justice. Why will the IGP compare these freedom fighters that killed no civilians to armed bandits of North West who killed hundreds of their own people?”

HURIWA. therefore, demand the sacking of the IGP Mohammed Adamu for playing the role of the advocate for Northern armed bandits in direct contradiction with the constitutional provision which necessitated the creation of the police as an institution of law enforcement”.

Similarly, the right group also described the budget of N100 billion proposed for the implementation of the National Livestock Transformation Plan as an ‘attempt by the central government to grant compensation package to members of the armed Fulani herdsmen who are nothing but terrorists that ought to be prosecuted and locked up for killings and destruction of farmlands and farmers including Catholic priests in all parts of Nigeria.

HURIWA said that the proposal submitted on Thursday to the National Economic Council by its Sub-Committee on Farmers/Herders’ crisis is a direct affront to constitutionalism because the central government plans to bribe aggressors whereas the victims of the terror attacks by armed Fulani herdsmen are left to their fate and to wallow in poverty and want.

” HURIWA is of The opinion that the NEC meeting presided over by a severely incapacitated and weakened Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja is simply an efforts to smuggle from the backdoor the RUGA SETTLEMENT PROGRAMME for Fulanis which most Nigerians in the South and parts of Northern States especially in the North Central states rejected. We read that the Chairman of the sub-committee and Governor of Ebonyi State, Mr Dave Umahi, made the presentation to NEC. Also disingenuously, Mr. Umahi explained that contrary to the widely held belief, the NLTP was not about cows alone but had three planks, including care for persons displaced by farmers/herders’ crisis and education programmes.

”He also repeated the propaganda lines of the Presidency that states are free to use any animals of their choice in implementing the programme. It’s a big shame that the governor said the committee proposed that the Federal Government would bear 80 per cent of the N100bn, while participating states would support with the balance of N20bn and land for the programmed and added that the programmed remained voluntary and would accommodate only states that expressed participation interest”.

HURIWA, therefore, called for a discontinuation of the discriminatory policy of rewarding armed Fulani herdsmen for their criminal activities of killings of farmers and destruction of communities all across Nigeria.

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Buhari

Nigeria Labour Coalition Vows To Frustrate Buhari’s Trade Agreement With Morocco

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A coalition of labour and trade unions have vowed to frustrate
Nigeria’s fish and fertilizer trade agreement with Morocco.

In a press briefing on Wednesday, the 20-organization strong
partnership – Nigerian Movement for the Liberation of Western Sahara
(NMLWS), accused Rabat of selling phosphate and seafood from the
Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic to Nigeria.

The group chaired by Ibrahim Gambari, Nigeria’s former foreign affairs
minister, said it would picket companies in Nigeria that process
fertilizer from phosphate supplied by Morocco.

“We put all those dealing in stolen Western Sahara natural resources
including their fishes on notice that they cannot continue to do
business as usual,” the group stated.

“After giving this notice to the Nigerian companies dealing in stolen
Western Sahara resources, we will picket them across the country and
bring them before our courts. This also includes supermarkets selling
sardines and fishes from Morocco because 92 percent of these fishes
are stolen from the Western Sahara coast. The group accused President
Muhammadu Buhari of supporting the self-declaration of independence by
the Western Saharan state in 1984 and doing the opposite 35 years
later.

“Nigeria in December 1984 then led by General Muhammadu Buhari,
recognized the SADR as an independent African country. This was after
the Saharawi had thrown off the colonial yoke of Spain. It is,
therefore, inconceivable that 35 years later, under an elected
President Muhammadu Buhari, Nigeria would tolerate the occupation of
the same country by a sister African country and be receiving the
natural resources of Western Sahara plundered by Morocco,” it added.

The President Muhammadu Buhari administration had in December 2016,
reached an agreement with the state-owned Moroccan firm OCP, to
produce 1 million tons of locally manufactured fertilizer annually.

The memorandum of understanding signed with the company included the
supply of raw materials for fertilizer production such as phosphate.

The group insisted that while it wanted Nigeria to develop its
fertiliser capacity, it will not permit the use of stolen resources.

It stated further, “This movement supports the development of Nigeria,
but not with stolen resources. We insist that although our country
needs fertilizer, but not that produced with the blood of our brothers
and sisters in Western Sahara. About this, we are definite. This
principle is planted in the Nigerian culture of non-exploitation of
other peoples and defender of colonized peoples as we did in the
struggle for the liberation of countries like Guinea Bissau,
Mozambique, Angola, Zimbabwe, Namibia, and South Africa.”

Despite a 1975 judgment denouncing Morocco’s claim to SADR by the
International Court of Justice, Morocco went on to forcefully occupy
the territory. After a bloody war, Moroccan forces pushed most of its
population into refugee camps in Algeria.

Morocco left the Organisation of African Unity now African Union in
1984, for recognizing the independence of SADR. It recently rejoined
the AU but is still laying claim to the mineral-reach Western Sahara.

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Xenophobia: What Anambra Assembly asked Buhari to do for Air Peace boss

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Anambra State House of Assembly has urged the Federal Government to make Air Peace Airline a National Carrier for its contributions in the evacuation of stranded Nigerians in South Africa.

The lawmakers also urged President Muhammadu Buhari to confer on Chief Allen Onyema, Chairman of Air Peace, a national honour for his philanthropic gestures and contributions to human development.

The resolution followed a motion by Dr Pascal Agbodike (Ihiala Il), and supported by 28 others, which was unanimously adopted at the plenary.

Agbodike moving the motion at a special session in honour of Onyema, said that Air Peace boss transported Nigerians in danger out of South Africa free of charge.

He described Onyema as: “a humble, non-tribalistic, generous, humanitarian and patriotic Nigerian who deserved to be recognised.

“It is on record that his airline is a reputable one, and has won awards such as 2019 Best Carrier in West Africa, 2019 Local Airline of the Year, and many others.

“Air Peace was also used, as a chattered flight to transport the victorious Super Eagles after successfully securing the third place position in the just concluded 2019 AFCON hosted in Egypt.

“Onyema, through his NGO, Foundation for Ethnic Harmony in Nigeria, was instrumental to the peaceful settlement between the Federal Government and the Niger Delta militants.

“In view of this act of national service and selflessness, Chief Onyema truly deserves a national honour,” he said.

Contributing, Mr Nonso Okafor (Nnewi), said Chief Onyema should be given a national honour lesser than the Grand Commander of the Order of Niger (GCON).

“He is not a politician or a government official; he is just an individual, and yet he played a very great role in our nation.

“Conferring him with a national honour is not negotiable, he earned it,” Okafor said.

Also, Dr Pete Ibida (Njikoka ll), described Onyema as a nationalist who believed in the unity of Nigeria and a man of universal character.

“He is a pride to the ‘Igbos’ and to Nigeria as a whole. A national award is not enough, his airline should be made a national carrier,” Ibida said.

In his remarks, Mr Obinna Emeneka (Anambra East), also described Onyema as a man with deep sense of patriotism, generosity and humility, urging Nigerians to emulate his virtues.

According to him, if Nigerians begin to show love, irrespective of ethnic backgrounds like Onyema did, Nigeria will be a better country.

The Speaker of the House, Mr Uche Okafor, commended Onyema for solely volunteered to alleviate the sufferings of Nigerians in the hands of South Africans.

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