* seeks support for Buhari, el-Rufai
The Women Leader of the Ireland chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ms Joyce Antonza Ibrahim has defected to the All Progressives Party, (APC).
Speaking at a ceremony held at Africa’s foremost restaurant in Dublin, Ireland, The Heritage Restaurant, Ibrahim disclosed that her decision to join the ‘Next Level’ train of the APC was borne out of her conviction that the Kaduna State governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai is commitment to elevating women to leadership positions.
Ibrahim, a keen promoter of girl child’s education and gender balance in politics, said President Muhammadu Buhari’s efforts in fighting corruption and creating an enabling environment for the girl child’s education also swayed her to joining the party.
Ibrahim who hails from Sanga Local Government Area in Kaduna State frowned at the suggestion that the APC deputy governorship pick by Governor el-Rufai is religious.
She said it was ridiculous to reduce the empowerment of women to religious bias when they should be talking about her capabilities and what she will bring to the government.
The Chairman of Board of Trustees (BoT), Chief Mrs. Olubunmi Salako, while receiving Ibrahim into their fold encouraged Nigerians in the Diaspora to get involved in who governs in the country.
She opined that Diaspora should not be noted for only dollar remittances but for also shaping the direction of the country by getting involved and influencing family members on who to vote for.
Salako also encouraged all the people who attended the ceremony not to despair by the fake news stories from the opposition but keeping the ‘Next Level’ train going so that corruption will not be enthroned again.
The chairman of APC Ireland, Prince Hammed Adefioye said he was elated to have a mobiliser and a woman of substance in their midst and said the forces of genuine change are joining the next level train.
The presidential candidate of the PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has promised to work to hand over power to the younger generation if elected. He said yesterday at a rally in Calabar that if he becomes president next Saturday, he would be the last aged president in the country.
“When I win the presidential election, I will be a transitional president,” he said, adding that time had come for all to work towards handing over power to a new set of rulers.
“We will actualise Ayade’s key projects such as the deep seaport, the super highway, etc to create massive jobs for people of the state,” he added.
Opposition political parties on the platform of the Coalition of United Political Parties on Friday called for the arrest and prosecution of the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, over alleged N2.5bn Digital Switch Over fraud rocking the National Broadcasting Commission.
The coalition’s spokesman, Imo Ugochinyere, in a statement said the commission’s Director-General, Kawu Modibbo, who is currently being prosecuted on the matter was being used as a scapegoat to save Lai Mohammed.
Ugochinyere said it was surprising that a government that claimed to be fighting corruption could retain a minister whose ministry oversees the commission enmeshed in fraud as its spokesman.
He said, “Opposition political parties have expressed concern over the pressure being mounted by the Presidency on the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission to discontinue the investigation of a N2.5bn Digital Switch Over fraud rocking the National Broadcasting Commission because the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, whose ministry supervises the commission is linked to the fraud.
“It is surprising that President Muhammadu Buhari will keep boasting of fighting corruption while in the real sense of it, his government is corruption personified.
“The Federal Government is currently prosecuting the Director-General of the NBC, Kawu Modibbo, on the matter while Lai Mohammed is left alone despite that he was linked to the fraud.”
He added, “What we have seen so far is that Alhaji Mohammed has continued to make inflammatory comments in order to continue to appease the Presidency for shielding him from prosecution.
“We therefore demand the arrest and prosecution of Alhaji Lai Mohammed over this monumental fraud to prove that this administration is indeed committed to fighting corruption.”
The Kaduna State High Court 2 has issued a warrant for arrest against the Chairman of the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) for contempt of court.
The arrest warrant was issued on Friday following a suit between Mallam Nasir el-Rufai and Today’s Publishing Company Limited.
A warrant form directed the police to arrest the CCB boss
and produce him before the court reconvenes on February 13, 2019.The suit had been pending before the court.
Today Publishing Company, publisher of The Union Newspapers, had filed an application requesting the court to subpoena the CCB chair to produce the governor’s asset declaration in the court.
The presiding judge, Justice Mario Mohammed, granted the approval based on the application filed by counsel for The Union Newspapers, J.N. Egwuonwu (SAN), during the continuation of defence at the previous sitting.
Egwuonwu, represented by Hiifan Abuul, had written an application to the court to subpoena the CCB to tender the asset declaration of the governor before the court, but he refused to appear.
President Muhammadu Buhari says it is the responsibility of his government to imprison those who enrich themselves at the expense of the country.
Buhari said this at the presidential rally of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos on Saturday.
He said if re-elected, he would continue the fight against corruption and fulfill all the promises he made in 2015.
“I assure you, whoever is entrusted with public property, his primary responsibility is to account for it,” he said.
“If the proper thing is not done, we will eventually get a hold of them, take away what they have stolen and get them in prison. This is our duty, this is our responsibility and I assure you we will continue to do it.
“I assure you that the promises we made in 2015, based on which you elected us, we’ve made tremendous progress and I have mentioned through others what the administration is doing on security, economy and fighting corruption.”
Nobel Laureate, Wole Soyinka and his civil society group, Citizens Forum, has endorse a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Kingsley Moghalu, for the February 16 presidential election. He made the announcement in a statement personally signed by him and obtained by TheMomentNG on Friday.
Mr Moghalu, a lawyer and university professor, is running on the platform of the Young Progressive Party, YPP.
Mr Soyinka, a professor, had a few days ago called on Nigerians not to vote for President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC), as well as his main challenger, Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party.
He said both parties and their candidates have failed Nigeria and have nothing new to offer the country.
The Nobel Laureate is one of Nigeria’s most popular and respected figures. How he will use his public profile to woo votes for Mr Moghalu in next week’s election however remains to been seen.
Read Mr Soyinka’s full statement endorsing the YPP candidate below.
NEW DIRECTIONS IN A TIME OF DECISION
The nation has been brought to her knees. Internally, the blaring media testimony needs no augmentation. Beyond her borders, Nigeria is the tale of citizens designated pariahs of the global community for whom special dossiers are opened, and units of security agencies are specifically assigned.
Online transactions are programmed to reject basic usage once the word ‘Nigeria’ is inserted in the Data profile. There are few nation left, within or outside the continental borders where – no matter the codeword – a Nigerian ‘room’ has not been designated.
Her humanity litters the sand trails of the Sahara, it lines the Mediterranean sea-bed with the bones of a desperate generation, seeking ‘green pastures’. Lines from my poems have been appropriated and embossed as epitaphs on the tombstones of Nigerians washed up the isle of Catania and accorded dignified burials by total strangers, certainly paid more respect than Nigerians themselves consider due to their own humanity.
Other would-be migrants have been slaughtered by religious fundamentalists on the shores of Tripoli, while waiting for their precarious crossing on suicidal boats. Yet others end up as commodities in the slave markets of Libya and Mauritania, hundreds recently rescued and airlifted – credit where credit is due! – repatriated by government.
It was not always thus. Numerous Nigerians believe that it need not remain so. There is always a choice to be made outside any presumptuous orders – in reality associations guaranteed to perpetuate social disorders and the politics of inequality. This is not the thinking of any one individual but of a large section of this populace. If it were not, there would not have been a record number of nearly a hundred political groups aspiring to take over the reins of governance.
We do not need any instruction however to estimate that several of the aspiring groups are mere plants, raised to sow confusion. It redounds to the credit of a few individuals, including some of the candidates themselves, who embarked on efforts to winnow down their own ranks, then seek a consensus candidate as standard bearer for the battle against the two political behemoths.
Over the past few months, we studied the careers, experiences and track records of most of the presidential aspirants, and most intensely those actually short-listed by the opposition parties themselves. Like millions of Nigerians, we watched the debates. I physically interacted with some of the acknowledged top contenders, in some cases several times. We participated in HANDSHAKE ACROSS NIGERIA, where some candidates presented their briefs. Among others, I delivered a keynote address. We watched television interviews. We have exchanged notes with highly respected international Civil Servants. The drive towards Consensus among these dedicated groups sometimes took the form of test questionnaires to the aspirants, including items such as: ‘Who among the contestants would you choose, if you did not emerge as the ultimate preference?’
There was nothing complicated about assessment parameters: mental preparedness, analytical aptitude, response to the nation’s security challenges, economic grounding, grasp of socio-political actualities, including a remedial concern with the Nigerian image in foreign perception etc. etc. not forgetting a convincing commitment to governance and resource decentralization – commonly referred to as Restructuring. The Forum rejected retrograde propositions of a political merry-go-round, which urge the electorate to choose this or that candidate in order to ensure “our turn” at the next power incumbency. Overall, the exercise was exacting but also – therapeutic. It proved yet again that there is over-abundant leadership quality locked up in the nation, and that it is a collective shortcoming that the political space has not been sufficiently opened up to let soar such potential. Well, to cite the Chinese proverb: a journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.
Let me reiterate: there is over-abundant, but stifled leadership material, and there can be no excuse, now that that potential of high quality is being manifested, for constricting the political space in a population that is nudging two hundred million. And that statement is of course specially addressed to those who took part in this exercise, those who deliberated opted out of it, some of whom were assessed anyway. Such potential compelled us to exercise utmost rigour in what proved to be a most daunting exercise. The final determination however is – the flag-bearer of the Young Progressive Party – KINGSLEY MOGHALU.
I shall conclude with a somewhat interesting aside. I met Moghalu again on Monday morning, February 4th, and informed him of the Forum’s decision. During our discussion, I happened to ask him – what is the meaning of Moghalu. I was curious, because it had taken quite some time along the way for me to know to which ethnic group the name belonged. He replied, it means – “Evil Spirit, Leave me Be!” Then I asked him for his other names and he spelt them out: “Actually my full names are Kingsley Chiedu Ayodele Moghalu”. Eyebrows raised, I asked, How come, Ayodele? A piquant revelation resulted: “Oh, that came from Mrs. Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti. She was friends with my father. Mrs. Kuti was my godmother, and she gave me the name Ayodele”.
I was learning this for the first time. Moghalu’s CV is however in the public domain – his publications, record, and vision. The above is just a side-note that contains its own mild, thought provoking instruction, for those who care to examine the distractions of ethnic equivocations, and the rigid mind-sets and stereotypes imposed on products of circumstance.
That immediate task being now completed, Citizen Forum will now join forces with those who pray, “Evil Spirit, leave us be!” – at least those who subscribe to the belief that political elections are not a Do-or-Die Affair!
Here is a list of nominees in the major categories for the Grammy Awards, which will be handed out on Sunday in Los Angeles.
Rapper Kendrick Lamar leads the nominations with eight, followed by Canada’s Drake at seven.
Folk rocker Brandi Carlile is the most-nominated female artist with six nods:
– Album of the Year –
Cardi B, “Invasion of Privacy”
Brandi Carlile, “By The Way, I Forgive You”
Various Artists, “Black Panther: The Album, Music From and Inspired By”
– Record of the Year, recognizing overall performance on a song –
Cardi B, Bad Bunny & J Balvin, “I Like It”
Brandi Carlile, “The Joke”
Childish Gambino, “This Is America”
Drake, “God’s Plan”
Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper, “Shallow” (from “A Star Is Born”)
Kendrick Lamar & SZA, “All The Stars” (from “Black Panther”)
Post Malone featuring 21 Savage, “Rockstar”
Zedd, Maren Morris & Grey, “The Middle”
– Song of the Year, recognizing songwriting –
Kendrick Lamar and SZA, with songwriters Al Shuckburgh, Mark Spears and Anthony Tiffith, “All The Stars” (from “Black Panther”)
Ella Mai with songwriters Larrance Dopson, Joelle James and Dijon McFarlane, “Boo’d Up”
￼Drake with songwriters Daveon Jackson, Brock Korsan, Ron LaTour, Matthew Samuels and Noah Shebib, “God’s Plan”
Shawn Mendes with songwriters Teddy Geiger, Scott Harris and Geoffrey Warburton, “In My Blood”
Brandi Carlile with songwriters Dave Cobb, Phil Hanseroth and Tim Hanseroth, “The Joke”
Zedd and Grey, with songwriters Sarah Aarons, Jordan K. Johnson, Stefan Johnson and Marcus Lomax, “The Middle”
Lady Gaga with songwriters Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando and Andrew Wyatt, “Shallow”
Donald Glover (Childish Gambino) and Ludwig Goransson, “This Is America”
– Best New Artist –
Childish Gambino, “This Is America”
Joyner Lucas, “I’m Not Racist”
Janelle Monae, “Pynk”
Cardi B, “Invasion Of Privacy”
Mac Miller, “Swimming”
Alice in Chains, “Rainier Fog”
Fall Out Boy, “Mania”
Greta Van Fleet, “From the Fires”
Weezer, “Pacific Daydream”
Kelly Clarkson, “Meaning of Life”
Ariana Grande, “Sweetener”
Arctic Monkeys, “Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino”
National Leader of the APC, Chief Bola Tinubu, on Saturday, charged prospective voters to cast their ballot for the APC in the forthcoming election.
Tinubu, addressing the mammoth crowd of supporters at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos, venue of the party’s Presidential campaign, said that the opposition in 16 years failed to put Nigeria on a pedestal of growth despite enormous resources.
He said the Buhari administration had done a lot with meagre funds and resources just in four years.
“Today is a demonstration of democracy and it is not all about President Muhammadu Buhari. Lagos is very sure for voting Buhari and APC largely in the next election.
“All the common men belong to this economy, they must share part of the democracy, we must improve the infrastructure, that is the only way, we must create jobs,” Tinubu said.
He said Buhari, in his campaign in 2015, made promises which he had fulfilled since he assumed office.
Tinubu noted that if the opposition had been dedicated to power generation in their 16-year rule, investors that left the country before 2015 would have remained in the country.
“When I was governor of Lagos State for eight years, I introduced industrial power generation system.
“Obasanjo and Atiku opposed it, I went to court and with the help of Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, we won.
” Please do not vote for him (Atiku)”.
Tinubu also sensitised the people on how to cast their votes on election day, saying “today, I want to teach the opposition a lesson”.
” Vote appropriately in the ballot paper for the APC and avoid your vote been void.
” Use your index finger instead of your thumb, and ensure you wait till the votes are counted.
Earlier, Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State reiterated the commitment of the state to unalloyed support of President Buhari
“We appreciate the President in the last three and half years. The 2019 election is not about tribe and religion, but it is all about job , economy and infrastructure.
“In Lagos, Airport road is making life comfortable for every Lagosian. PMB has refunded some of the money we used for projects in Lagos.
“We need to continue in that direction. PMB has created the ground work for growth”.
The Founder and General Overseer of Restore Church of Christ, Mr Oluyele Folahan Braithwaite, is dead. He died at the age of 62.
￼Born on July 4, 1956, in Lagos, late Oluyele Folahan was the first son of the late legal luminary, Dr Tunji Braithwaite.
A member of the family, Olumide Braithwaite, said the deceased was a sickle cell sufferer and died of heart failure at a Lagos Island hospital.
Folahan attended CMS grammar school, Lagos, Mill field school England, Ahmadu Bello University and Buckingham University England where he obtained a degree in Law.
He was married and blessed with twins. (Vanguard)
…No, you’ve been on our wanted list — Police
A 37-year-old suspected member of a notorious robbery gang, Philip Rome has been having difficulty convincing operatives of the Inspector General of Police Special Intelligence Response Team, IRT, that he was a first- time robber.
Rome was arrested recently by the IRT operatives, in Ugor Community in Ugheli South Local Government Area of Delta State alongside two other members of his gang; Saturday Isegini and Oke David, following an intelligence report detailing how members of the gang have carried out several armed robbery and kidnapping operations across Delta State.
Two locally made short guns, seven live cartridges and a robbed Volkswagen Golf 3 car, were recovered from Rome and members of his gang at the time of their arrest.
Rome, who was released few months ago from the Warri Prisons, however pleaded during interrogations that the robbery operation that led to his arrest was the first and only robbery operation he had undertaken with the gang.
He stated that one of his friends Eseletu, who he said he met at the Warri Prison, lured him into joining the gang adding that he was arrested after his first operation where the Volkswagen Golf 3 car, N500,000 and mobile phones were robbed
But a source at the IRT disclosed to Saturday Vanguard that Rome was not a first time offender as he claimed stating that he alongside his gang members were on the wanted list of the Delta State Police Command and the Department of State Security, DSS, following their heinous criminal activities.
The source said following intelligence report received by the office of the Inspector General of Police, a crack team of operatives was swiftly deployed to Delta State to trail and apprehend members of the gang.
According to the source; “The three suspects and others at large were notorious armed robbers and kidnappers who had been terrorizing Uhgeli, Patani, Warri and Sapele areas of Delat State. They have been involved in series of armed robberies and kidnappings, they are not first offenders, some members of their syndicate are still in prison.
They are among criminals on the wanted list of the police for kidnapping and armed robbery in Delta State and we were deployed to this state to arrest them. We caught them while they were planning another robbery operation. We tracked and arrested them after they have successfully robbed a man of his Golf 3 wagon car and a lady passenger from whom they took some cash and other valuables.
They took the vehicle to Kokori where it was hidden with the intention of using it for kidnapping and armed robbery the next day before they were arrested. The car, two locally made short guns and seven live cartridges were recovered from them”, the source stated
When Vanguard interviewed Rome, he said he got into crime following his inability to secure a job after he lost his security guard job in Portharcourt, Rivers State.
In his confession, Rome who is from Ugheli South, Local Government Area of Delta State said; “I have a four year old child, I was formerly working with a security company which secured a security contract from Intel Logistics Port Harcourt, where I was deployed to and worked for over five years earning N32,000 monthly.
But I was sacked on December 2012. When my father died, I took permission to attend his burial but I stayed longer than the period I was given and I was sacked. After I was sacked, I went back home, I had no job and I had a friend residing in Ugor community, Ugheli who I visited and while I was there some people brought a vehicle to him but when they left, the police showed up and arrested three of us. We were charged to court as car snatchers. While I was in Warri Prison, I developed friendship with one Eseletu, I don’t know what brought him to prison but we became friends.
I spent eight months in prison but before I left the prison I gave him my contact. When he came out he called me on phone and asked me to meet him in Warri where he asked me to join him in armed robbery. Eseletu then called and asked me to meet him in Ugheli where he introduced me to Saturday Isegini and Oke David who were his gang members and he wanted four of us to go for a robbery operation. He brought out two locally made guns and said we would stop at Agbara junction while pretending that we were going to Warri.
He flagged down a vehicle which we entered with our bag containing the guns. A woman then entered the vehicle and when we got to a point we robbed the woman and snatched the vehicle from the driver. Eseletu took the vehicle to his uncle’s house in Kokori where we all slept and agreed that we were going to use the car to rob a supermarket the following day. But when Oke was arrested, he led the police to arrest Saturday and I but Eseletu escaped because his people informed him that the police were looking for him .
On his part, 36-year-old Saturday Isegini, who is a primary four drop-out and a taxi driver confessed during his interview that he was one of the gang’s drivers. He told Vanguard that the leader of the gang, Eseletu who was on the run invited him to join the gang when he was looking for money to buy a vehicle which he could use as taxi.
He said, “I dropped out of school at Primary four, I am from Afiseri Community, Ugheli South Local Government area of Delta State. I am a cab driver and operate along Ugheli to Bayelasa State, I make close to N8000 daily, but my vehicle got spoilt and the owner said he didn’t have money to fix it. I then went to a ghetto along Patani Road where they sold Indian hemp.
Each time I got there I would see Eseletu spending money and he used to buy Indian hemp for me. He later urged me to join his gang after I told him that I needed money to buy a vehicle.
I joined him in one of his operations and we robbed a vehicle from a man. I drove the vehicle to Eseletu’s uncle’s house in Kokori and we were plaining to use the vehicle for another robbery when the police came and arrested me. I regret getting involved in crime, I hope the police will show mercy on me”, he pleaded. (Vanguard)