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Nigeria election: World Bishops make fresh demand to President Buhari

The Supreme Council of Bishops also known as World Council of Bishops, has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to assent to the Electoral Amendment Bill.

The bishops made the appeal following the discrepancies that characterized the recently concluded Presidential, National Assembly, Governorship, State House Of Assemblies, and Area Councils in Abuja Nigeria’s elections.

The Founding Primate of the Council, His Eminence, Archbishop Polycarp Sunday made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, Nigeria.

He said that the Senate and House of Representatives had passed the Electoral Bill for the fourth time.

NAN reports that the bill seeks to amend the election laws of Nigeria, otherwise called Electoral Act.

The Act also guides how INEC handles operations and how members of staff of INEC go about the business of conducting elections for states and at the federal level.

“We, the Global Council of Bishops worldwide, are appealing to President Buhari to assent positively to amended Nigeria’s Electoral Bill, not minding the fact that the time frame is short.

“We posit, this electoral amendment bill be given a fair hearing, and be acted upon speedily with all the support it requires by the Presidency, as Nigeria’s Senate and House of Representatives have passed the bill for the fourth time now, which indicates its transparency and importance, despite Mr. President’s refusal to assent to this bill.

“Nigerians desire a true and positive change to an electronic system of voting in our General Elections, other than the usual ballot box and thumb printing form of voting our nation has been practising over a decade; as Nigerians have come a long way in accommodating electoral and political changes dating back to the days of National Electoral Commission (NEC), in the days of Mr. Humphrey Nwosu in the late 90’s.”

His Eminence, however, appealed to all levels of government and INEC to explore all avenues to prevent rigging all forms of electoral malpractices witnessed in the just concluded 2019 Nigeria’s Election Nationwide, with a view to ensuring fairness in Nigeria’s upcoming general elections come 2023.

His Eminence, called on all religious bodies across the country to support INEC and ensure the upcoming 2023 General Elections is transparent, less stressful as new electoral reforms to an electronic system of voting is introduced in Nigeria, and ”I employ all Nigerians to come out en mass in the March 23 supplementary elections scheduled to hold in six (6) States where the results of the elections were declared inconclusive, as we vote for a credible, God fearing and an articulate leader, and in the 2023 general elections as well.

“We pray, Nigeria will succeed and survive the 2019 general elections.

“We demand it be free, fair, and violent free to the emergence of a credible leader that will take all Nigerians in All Our Six (6) geopolitical zones of our nation to the Promised Land,’’ he added.

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Arewa

EFCC grills Kwara SSG, excos, lawmakers over N400m gift approved by Gov Ahmed

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Ilorin Zonal Office has commenced investigations into the alleged illegal payment of about N400million to some members of the Kwara State House of Assembly and the State Executive Council members before the expiration of their tenures.

The commission, in a statement, said it is “currently interrogating the Secretary to the State Government, Sola Isiaka Gold and the Clerk of the State House of Assembly, Kperogi Halimat Jummai over the alleged payment which did not follow due process.

“Kperogi who confirmed that the Lawmakers have received their severance gratuity told EFCC operatives that the payment was approved by the State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed.”

It noted that all the 25 Lawmakers and some members of the State Executive Council two weeks ago received about N400million severance gratuity before the expiration of their tenure despite the fact that the State is owing workers about three months salaries.

The petitioner said even though the Lawmakers and members of the State Executive Council are entitled to severance payment, it was the next administration that was supposed to pay the money.

It was further alleged that the State Government with selfish intent, swiftly paid the money before the expiration of their terms.

“More worrisome was the issue of furniture allowance running to hundreds of millions of naira according to the petitioner, which they wanted paying along with severance gratuity”, it added.

EFCC revealed that, in a letter written by the Speaker, Kwara State House of Assembly, Dr. Ali Ahmed to the State Governor, it was confirmed that the Lawmakers were entitled to severance gratuity at the end of their tenure due to terminate on June 7, 2019.

“In accordance with the provisions of the Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission (RMA & FC) Honourable Members are entitled to 200 percent of their annual basic salaries as their severance gratuity allowance at the end of their tenure of Office”, the Speaker’s letter added.

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Atiku vs Buhari: Heavy security ahead of Wednesday’s tribunal sitting

Ahead of the Wednesday sitting of the Presidential Election Tribunal hearing the case of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Atiku Abubakar against President Muhammadu Buhari at the Court of Appeal, the FCT Police Command has announced water tight security.

A statement on Tuesday sent to DAILY POST by DSP Anjuguri Manzah, Police Public Relations Officer, said there will be diversion of traffic at Goodluck Ebele way and Shehu Shagari Way.

While apologising for the inconveniences the arrangement might cause, the Command explained that it was part of proactive measure to beef up security at the venue and forestall any act that could disrupt the Tribunal sitting and result in the breakdown of law and order; especially clash between supporters of both parties.

“In view of this development, members of the public are advised to use alternative routes to their destinations on Wednesday.

“The Command reiterate its commitment to the protection of lives and property in the Federal Capital Territory”, it said.

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Crime

Anambra CP orders arrest of tricycles, buses operating with curtains, tinted glasses

The Anambra State Commissioner of Police, Mustapha Dandaura, has ordered the arrest of commercial shuttle bus or tricycle operators with tinted glasses or curtains in the state.

The CP gave the order on Tuesday in a statement in Awka, where he ordered that such vehicles or tricycles be impounded.

He further asked residents of the state to avoid patronizing them in order not to fall victims of their nefarious activities.

He said, “Information at the disposal of the Anambra State Police Command revealed that hoodlums in the State are using commercial vehicles especially shuttle buses and KEKE NAPEP with tinted glasses and thick curtains (which shield their interiors) in Awka, Onitsha, Ekwulobia, Oko and other densely populated areas to rob unsuspecting passengers and disposes them of their valuables without being detected by the law enforcement agencies.

“In view of the foregoing, the Commissioner of Police CP Mustapha Dandaura has ordered with immediate effect, the arrest of any commercial vehicle especially shuttle bus driver or Keke riders found operating with tinted glasses or curtains in the State and such vehicles/Keke be impounded by the Police.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the Command will commence intensive stop and search Operations to enforce this order to the letter.”

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