INEC office fire, Obasanjo’s warning top political stories last week


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Over 5,000 card readers were destroyed in a fire incident that occurred at the headquarters of INEC in Ondo State late Thursday barely one month to the governorship election in the state. The incident occurred few days after hoodlums largely made up of NURTW members barricaded the entrance of the Ondo State House of Assembly. Also, the presidency organised a two-day retreat to review the performance of ministers who clocked one year in office on August 21 while former President Olusegun Obasanjo again lamented the current situation in Nigeria.

Presidency holds retreat for ministers

A two-day retreat for the review of the performances of ministers, permanent secretaries and other top government officials opened at the State House, Abuja, on Monday.

The ministers were inaugurated on August 21, 2019.

Declaring the event open, President Muhammadu Buhari, represented by his deputy, Yemi Osinbajo, said there would be negative consequences if the government continues with the business of fixing or subsidising the prices of petrol.

President Muhammadu Buhari at the ministers retreat [PHOTO CREDIT: @ProfOsinbajo]

He said the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) approved that tariff adjustments had to be made but only on the basis of guaranteed improvement in service.

In his remarks, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, said the first year of Mr Buhari’s second term in office had been the most productive of the government.

Hoodlums take over Ondo Assembly Complex

Thugs on Monday barricaded the entrance of the Ondo State House of Assembly complex, creating a huge stir among lawmakers and staff of the assembly.

The hoodlums, who comprised members of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, were at the complex at the instance of the Speaker of the House, Bamidele Oleyelogun.

The incident occurred barely a month to the October 10 governorship election in the state.

Mr Oleyelogun later claimed that the hoodlums were in the assembly complex for prayers.

Buhari inaugurates committee on Agenda 2050

On Wednesday, President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated the National Steering Committee to “oversee the development of the Nigeria Agenda 2050 and Medium-Term National Development Plan (MTNDP) to succeed Vision 20:2020 and the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) 2017 – 2020.”

The committee is co-chaired by a businessman, Atedo Peterside, and finance minister, Zainab Ahmed.

President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurates steering committee of Nigeria's new development plan, Agenda 2050. [PHOTO CREDIT: @ProfOsinbajo]

“The main objectives of these Successor Plans are to lift 100 million Nigerians out of poverty within the next 10 years, particularly given the World Bank’s projection that Nigeria will become the world’s third most populous country by 2050 with over 400 million people,” Mr Buhari said.

Ohanaeze demands additional states, LGAs for South East

The highest Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, on Thursday, asked President Muhammadu Buhari to send a bill to the National Assembly requesting the creation of additional states and local government areas in the South East geo-political zone.

Ohanaeze made the request through its spokesperson, Chuks Ibegbu.

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The South East geo-political zone is the only one with less than six states. It comprises Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo States.

The group lamented the losses the states and their people have incurred for having the least number of states and local government areas in Nigeria.

Edo 2020: Deputy governor’s wife accuses Oshiomhole of threat to life

Maryam, wife of the deputy governor of Edo State, Philip Shaibu, on Thursday, accused a former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole of threatening to kill her.

In a petition she sent to the police through her lawyers, Idemudia Ilueminosen & Co, Mrs Shaibu said Mr Oshiomhole did not only threaten to deal with her but also sent thugs to monitor her in Etsako West Local Government Area to carry out the threat.

She demanded an investigation into the threat.

Over 5,000 cards burnt as INEC head office in Ondo goes up in flames

INEC headquarters in Akure, the Ondo State capital, was gutted by fire on Thursday.
The incident occurred at about 7.30 p.m., according to the commission’s Facebook account.
The spokesperson of the commission, Festus Okoye, who was in Ondo State at the time, confirmed the development.

He however told PREMIUM TIMES that the incident would not affect the October 10 governorship election.

Akure INEC office in flames

“The burnt card readers cannot affect the election. 4,141 belongs to the Ondo State INEC office while the remaining 1,000 were brought from Osun,” he said.

“Since it is one month to the election, we will just take smart card readers from other states to replace the burnt one so that the election won’t be affected. So, rest assured that it will not affect the conduct of the election,” he said.

The governorship election in the state holds on October 10.

CJN inaugurates tribunal judges for Edo, Ondo governorship polls

The Chief Justice of Nigeria, Tanko Muhammad, on Thursday inaugurated members of the Edo and Ondo States Governorship Elections Petitions Tribunals.

The elections hold on September 19 and October 10, respectively.

Inaugurating the 85 judges at the Supreme Court Complex in Abuja, Mr Muhammad urged them to conduct their affairs in a manner that they would be confident to answer to God.

He said he will not condone any act of recklessness, abuse of power and public trust.

He added that justice dispensation should be done with the fear of God and in line with the oath of office and the law.

Ex-President Jonathan canvasses electronic voting to check electoral fraud

Former President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday said only electronic voting would guarantee credible elections in Nigeria and other parts of Africa.

Mr Jonathan, who was Nigeria’s leader between 2010 and 2015, spoke at the 2020 edition of Osasu Show Symposium.

Former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan at the Osasu Show Symposium. [PHOTO CREDIT: Official Twitter handle of TOS]

He said true democracy is only attained when votes count.

“And taking a critical examination at the way elections are conducted across the continent at least from the ones I’ve observed, I’ve seen that the only way that we can get there is through electronic voting,” he said.

Obasanjo says Nigeria sliding into failed state

A former Nigerian President, Olusegun Obasanjo, said on Friday that Nigeria was slowly becoming a failed, divided state, and the poverty capital of the world.

Mr Obasanjo, who fought in the Nigerian civil war, said he had never seen the country in such a bad state, attributing it to poor management of its diversity.

The former president spoke in Abuja at a consultative dialogue attended by various socio-cultural groups.

Among the groups were Afenifere, Middle Belt Forum, Northern Elders Forum, Ohanaeze Ndi Igbo and Pan Niger Delta Forum.

PDP demands reversal of petrol price hike

Nigeria’s main opposition party, PDP, asked the federal government to reverse its decision on the removal of subsidy which led to an increase in the price of petrol to N160 per litre.

The party, through its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, demanded an immediate downward review in the pump price of fuel, adding that the attempt to justify the increase to N160 was unacceptable to Nigerians.

“The PDP totally rejects this attempt to hinge the increase in fuel price on presumed removal of oil subsidy,” he said.

Mr Ologbondiyan said it was not logical to predicate the increase in the price of the commodity on a faulty comparison with costs in other countries.

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