2023: APC rejoices as court approves Kaduna gov candidate

A Federal High Court in Kaduna has affirmed Senator Uba Sani as the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress for the 2023 general elections in Kaduna State.

Sani Sha’aban, a candidate for the APC, had his nomination rejected because of alleged irregularities in the primary election that was placed in May. Sani is also the incumbent senator for Kaduna Central.

However, the action seeking Sani’s disqualification was denied by the presiding judge, Justice Mohammed Garba Umar, who delivered the ruling in Kaduna on Friday, claiming that the court lacked the authority to do so.

Consequently, Justice Umar struck out the suit for contravention of the provision of the National Judicial Council policy direction.

Reacting, counsel to Sha’aban, John Mshelia said he would approach his client and then get directives on whether or not to appeal the case

The judgment was hailed as “a hallmark of justice” by Prof. Muhammad Sani Bello, Director-General of the Kaduna APC State Campaign Co

“It is a thorough and timely intervention in the nation’s quest to deepen democracy, minimise intra-party divisions and entrench the rule of law. We congratulate Malam Sani Mahmood Sha’aban for resorting to the justice system in his quest to right perceived wrongdoings. Sha’aban challenged the method used in the primary election that produced Uba Sani as the party’s flag bearer in the state. This is the mark of a true democrat.

“Now that the allegations of discrepancies and fraud said to have characterised the conduct of the primary election of the party in the state have been  dismissed, the APC can comfortably carry on with the campaign to win the hearts and minds of the electorate.”

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Bandits Blocked Zamfara Highway, Attacked Police Station and Stole Phones of Police Officers

On Tuesday, October 25, robbers broke into a police station in the Magami town of Gusau, Zamfara state, and seized the phones from the on-duty police officers.

According to Premium Times, the gunmen entered the neighborhood about 3:40 p.m. and headed straight to the police station.

Abdul Balarabe, a local journalist, claimed that the incident may have been intended as a direct message from the terrorists to the state’s security authorities.

He said, It was also learnt that after collecting the phones of the police officers, the terrorists shot into the air, causing commotion before they went back into the bush.

The Nation also reported that some bandits attacked the Funtua-Gusau highway in the state on same Tuesday.

Balarabe further revealed that a commuter was shot twice in the leg when the driver of the vehicle he was travelling in refused to stop after being ordered to by gunmen.

He added that when soldiers arrived at the scene and cleared the road, the terrorists escaped through a bush path and blocked Wanzamai to Yankara for over 30 minutes.

“From what I’ve learnt so far, the terrorists didn’t hurt any of the policemen they found at the counter but only collected their phones and other valuables and made some threats.”

“Around 1pm today (Tuesday), the terrorists came out in large numbers and blocked the road. The person shot was in a vehicle that refused to stop.”

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2023: Walk for Tinubu sparks Osun APC, PDP rivalry

Thousands of supporters marched in support of the All Progressives Congress presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, and his running mate, Kashim Shettima, in Osogbo, the Osun State capital under the direction of the state governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, an action that has pitted the ruling party against the People’s Democratic Party, which chided the state government for wasting the state resources on what it called a worthless event.
Ecstatic members of the All Progressives Congress took Osogbo, the Osun State capital by storm on Tuesday, as they turned out in large numbers to participate in a walk meant to gather support for the presidential candidate of the party in the 2023 general election, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
As early as 8 am, APC members had started gathering at the Oke Fia Government House, from where they took off and moved through major streets in the state capital amidst drumming and dancing, creating awareness of Tinubu’s presidential ambitions among the residents.
The 10km walk led by the state governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, also had in attendance the deputy governor, Mr. Benedict Alabi; the party’s state chairman, Gboyega Famoodun; and a large number of party members dressed in vests with a large portrait of Tinubu and his running mate, Kashim Shettima. Lady Crushed By Lebanese Hit-And-Run Driver
As the long procession of participants moved from Oke Fia to Olaiya Junction, then through Oja Oba and back to the Nelson Mandela Freedom Park, Osogbo, where Oyetola and other leaders of the APC addressed them, the traffic situation across the metropolis became chaotic.
Many motorists plying routes through Osogbo had to make a detour to beat the gridlock. Those trapped in the traffic jam had to wait for the procession to ease before they could continue their journey.
Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party, the party preparing to take over the reins of the state by November 27, having won the last July 16 Osun governorship poll, while reacting to the event, accused Oyetola of expending state resources on the event.
The party, while describing Oyetola as a bad marketer advertising a bad product, told the electorate in Osun to punish APC by voting against all candidates running on the platform of the party in the 2023 polls.
However, Oyetola, while addressing participants at the end of the walk, which took them over two hours at the Nelson Mandela Freedom Park, Osogbo, said the event was a means of reciprocating the kind gestures of Tinubu and expressing Osun’s support as a state for his presidential ambition.
He noted that at this critical time in the history of Nigeria, there was no room for an experiment on the choice of the nation’s next president, and stressed that Tinubu remains the best man for the job, considering his political pedigree and antecedents.
He said, “Asiwaju is a pathfinder and leader per excellence. He is not only a problem solver, a genius, a roadmap designer and an implementer, who, out of little or nothing, turned around the socio-economic fortunes of Lagos State.
“As a state, we declare our unalloyed support for Asiwaju and his candidature because we know that he is the only candidate that is fully prepared with a workable action plan to turn around the fortunes of our dear nation and build a virile economy that we can all be proud of.
“Additionally, he is the only man that has the required capacity and political wherewithal to reposition the country.
“I appreciate our people who took out time to participate in the walk. It shows that we are truly ready for the growth and development we desire as a country.
“Let me urge those who are yet to collect their permanent voters’ cards to ensure they do so, as another window has been made available for collection.
“On Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s mandate, Osun stands. With this crowd, it shows that our party is still the party to beat in Osun. Asiwaju remains the candidate to beat as the presidential candidate.
“Let me give you more assurance that I’ll reclaim my mandate in court. I’m so confident of that. I’ll reclaim my mandate by the grace of God.”
Meanwhile, the PDP, while expressing its displeasure with the event, in a statement titled, “Pocket Your Unelectable Candidate and Prepare Your Handover Notes,” called on Governor Oyetola to prepare his handover notes, calling him a failed governor marketing a bad product for the presidency.
The party, in a statement signed by State Caretaker Chairman, Dr Adekunle Akindele, said the governor insulted the sensibility of Osun people by expending state resources on a walk at a time he should be preparing his handover notes.
Adekunle, who questioned Oyetola after losing to a PDP candidate at the governorship poll, further said, “How long will Oyetola take the people of Osun State for a ride?
“A man soundly defeated at a gubernatorial poll and who has further destroyed whatever remains of his goodwill by his refusal to concede defeat is hosting a rally with taxpayers’ money. Mr. Oyetola’s conduct is reprehensible and his party should be fully punished by the Osun people in the next round of elections.
“Our people must weed out the bad loser and his allies, not only from the governorship seat but at all levels of elected offices. Our people must reproach the likes of the Iragbiji politician to teach a lesson that election is a sport and actors must be sports-like.
“We call on Mr. Oyetola to withdraw to his office and craft his handover notes for whatever it may be worth. He might be able to answer some questions that come up after he leaves the office. Osun people don’t need a futile marketer with unedifying presidential material.”
Responding to the allegation that Oyetola expended state resources on the walk, Osun State Commissioner for Political Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations, Taiwo Akeju, said the claim was untrue.
Akeju, who claimed Oyetola did not use state funds for the governorship election, said he would not use public funds for political projects and challenged the PDP to provide evidence to back up the claim.
He said, “It is not true. Governor Oyetola will never do so. This is a man that did his own election without dipping his hands into state coffers for funds. If he didn’t do that during his governorship election, he would not use state funds to prosecute any other political project.
“I advise the PDP to always verify its claims before coming out with them. We are law-abiding and we know what is ideal and lawful. We are decent, and we do things with a fear of God. Oyetola is our image as a party in Osun and, looking at him, the whole world knows we are decent in Osun APC.
“They should not just be dishing out absolute falsehood because they want to react to the loud ovation that greeted Tuesday march by APC in Osun. We know they are uncomfortable with the large crowd that followed our governor during the march. They should not be afraid yet.”
When asked if Tinubu has a realistic chance of winning the state in next year’s election, given that the APC lost the governorship election in Osun in July, Akeju, full of confidence, said, “By God’s grace, Asiwaju will win handsomely. We have about 80 per cent of voters on our side presently.”


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Death toll in Niger floods rises to 195

195 people have died and more than 322,000 have been impacted by flooding brought on by severe rain in Niger, according to an official toll on Saturday.

The country of West Africa is currently experiencing one of its deadliest rainy seasons ever.

According to statistics from the Civil Protection Service reviewed by AFP, as of October 21, 211 people had been reported injured while 59 people had drowned and 136 had died in crumbling homes.

More than 263,000 people in Niger, which is located in the dry Sahel, were reportedly hit by floods during the rainy season earlier this month, which claimed 192 lives.

More than 30,000 dwellings, 83 classrooms, 6 health centers, and 235 grain stores have been damaged by the rains.

Maradi and Zinder in the country’s center, Dosso in the southwest, and Tahoua in the west are the areas most severely impacted.

In 2021, 70 people were killed and 200,000 people were affected. The death toll in 2020 was 73.

In neighbouring Nigeria, more than 600 people have died since June in the deadliest floods in a decade.

“According to all our studies, we can link these rains to climate change,” head of the national meteorological agency Katiellou Gaptia Lawan told AFP.

The “rainfall is intense”, while runoff water can no longer make its way into the soil because it has been “degraded by human activity”, he explained.

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PCN Seals 379 Pharmacies, Medicines Shops in Rivers

The Port Harcourt, Obio/Akpor, and Ikwerre local government districts of Rivers State have 379 pharmacies and patent medicine outlets closed, according to the Pharmacy Council of Nigeria (PCN).

According to the federal government agency, among the offenses that resulted in the closure of the stores were selling drugs without a prescription, operating without a license, and having inadequate storage facilities.

Mr. Stephen Esumobi, Director and Head of Enforcement Department, PCN, briefed journalists on the development yesterday in Port Harcourt. He said the goal of the action is to make sure that stakeholders adhere to the necessary standards of behavior in their activities.

Esumobi stated that the PCN enforcement team visited 543 locations where pharmaceuticals were sold during the monitoring period and added that the organization is now better equipped to fulfill its legal obligations to control every element of pharmacy practice.

He said, “The PCN over the years established structures in the states for effective engagement and regulating of stakeholders in the drug distribution chain across the country. 

“In spite of the efforts of the council in Rivers State so many patent medicine shop owners and other stakeholders have chosen to operate in total disregard for public safety. Most patent vendors are not registered with PCN and engage in activities far beyond their scope thereby endangering public health.

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2023: Tinubu Vows to End Petrol Subsidy, FX Crisis

If elected President the following year, Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives  Congress  (APC)    promised to end the contentious gasoline subsidy that eats up trillions of Naira annually and to address the forex crisis that is impeding the economy in his 80-page manifesto, which was unveiled in Abuja yesterday. 

Aisha, the wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, stated in a BBC interview yesterday that the governing APC would win the 2023 presidential election and “hand over to another APC government.” This is a related development.

The State House Banquet Hall hosted the unveiling of Tinubu’s campaign platform, titled “Renewed hope: Action Plan for a Better Nigeria,” as well as the inauguration of the APC Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) by Buhari. Aside from phasing out fuel subsidies, Tinubu pledged in his platform to speed up the Petroleum Industry Act’s full implementation and to put in place additional beneficial policies to entice investment in deepwater assets within six months. “I will fully deregulate the downstream sector and make sure that local refinery capacity will match domestic consumption needs to safeguard the stability of the petroleum product supply,” he declared.

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2023: Youths hold rally for Tinubu in Lagos – photo speaks

On Saturday, youths who identified themselves as Bola Tinubu’s supporters held a rally in several significant locations throughout Lagos State. Tinubu is the APC’s presidential candidate.

The APC logo and an image of Tinubu were displayed on white vests worn by the supporters, who were there in huge number

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Nigeria aviation to begin operations with 20 petrol-aircraft

Only nine of the 20 new gasoline aircraft that the federal government bought for Nigeria Air’s fleet have been delivered in time for the airline’s launch in December.
At a meeting with House Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila on Friday, Hadi Sirika, the minister of aviation, revealed this and assured him that Nigerian Air would launch as previously authorized.
Gbajabiamila raised concern over the project at the meeting held at the National Assembly Complex, stating that a few things needed to be clarified.
“The issue of the national carrier is very important. It is something we are all paying attention to. We just want to make sure we get it right. There have been some misgivings. Some issues have been raised. But there are issues that need clarification,” he said.
Sirika, however, claimed that at the just finished ministers’ retreat, President Muhammadu Buhari (ret.) given a directive to guarantee the objective was accomplished.
“When I came in as a minister, we didn’t arrogate to ourselves knowledge and wisdom. We believe in the stakeholders on whose behalf we are servicing. Having been made minister, I came out with a road map which in my little wisdom will help transform civil aviation in Nigeria.
“I ran it through the system within the ministry and we commissioned some consultants to conduct a market survey and see where we are as an industry at that time. We set out to concession our airports not to privatise but to concession the airports.
“We also set out to put a proper airline the size, capacity, dynamics and the population and the markets and the complexity of the nation, Nigeria and also set out a leasing company and develop the cargo terminals and so on.
“When I came to the House of Representatives, I found out that the act that was signed by Jaja Nwachukwu in 1963 was the act that we were using charging pounds and shillings in 2003. We hurriedly, as we were departing in 2007, got the civil aviation passed in 2006 with some imperfections.
“There were some important ones. roadmaps and to God be the glory that today we have done what we thought is good as an act. So, all these roadmap items are private-sector-led and driven. It’s intended to do the framework and the foundation and steer it in such a way that it will be beneficial to the people and make it a private sector initiative to which the government has some interests, understanding the civil aviation in value addition, improving the GDP and jobs.
“The national carrier is in the works and we have advanced significantly just yesterday, Mr President in concluding the retreat has directed that this airline must work between now and December. And it will work by God’s grace.
“We have ordered 20 brand new training aircraft that use petrol. So far nine have been delivered. All these in the national carrier efforts,” he stated.
Sirika emphasized that by providing every Nigerian with the chance to join the airline, particularly those who work in the aviation industry, the Federal Government is ensuring the viability of the initiative.
“We have so far from all the submissions identified the partners, and the investors and we are currently negotiating and processing the AOC. We are twerking the business case in such a way it will give us an advantage and set in in the most efficient manner. So, I want to commit here by the grace of God, between now and the end of the year, the airline will work.”

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#ENDSARS: Police issue protesters warning, victims lament failed compensation

Indications suggest that several states have not yet complied with the direction issued by the National Economic Council, which is chaired by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, to compensate those who have suffered due to police brutality in the nation. The directive was issued one year ago.
To mark the second anniversary of the #EndSARS demonstrations, campaigners have announced gatherings for today at the Lekki tollgate and other locations around the nation (Thursday).
Police, however, issued a caution against using violence while protesting.
Youths’ nonviolent protests against the abuses and violence of the police Anti-Robbery Squad, which was disbanded, served as the inspiration for the #EndSARS processions.
However, the demonstrations turned violent on October 20, 2020, when thugs took control of them and attacked the demonstrators, police stations, and businesses.
According to reports, during the commotion, 51 people, 11 police officers, and 7 troops perished. Following the order, 28 states and the Federal Capital Territory set up panels, while Yobe, Borno, Jigawa, Kano, Kebbi, Sokoto, and Zamfara failed to do so.
Over 2,500 petitions were submitted to the panels across the nation.
However, two years after the deadly protests, many states had yet to implement the panels’ recommendations, including compensation for victims of the violence.
In October 2021, the NEC after a meeting directed state governments to pay compensation to the victims of police brutality across the country.
Following this, the Lagos State government paid N420m, while Osun State Governor Gboyega Oyetola presented the sum of N53.2m to 13 victims in May.
The National Human rights commission panel also known as the Abuja panel paid N439m and the Ekiti State government disbursed N21.25m.

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FG sues Meta; Facebook owner, seeks N30bn penalty

The Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria says it has lodged a suit against Meta Platforms Incorporated (owners of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp platforms) and its agent AT3 Resources Limited at the Federal High Court, Abuja Judicial Division.

According to a statement on Tuesday by the apex regulatory body for Nigeria’s advertising ecosystem, ARCON is seeking a declaration among others that the continued publication and exposure of various advertisements directed at the Nigerian market through Facebook and Instagram platforms by Meta Platforms Incorporated without ensuring the same is vetted and approved before exposure is illegal, unlawful and a violation of the extant advertising Law in Nigeria.

According to PUNCH reports, ARCON stated that Meta Platforms Incorporated’s continued exposure of unvetted adverts had also led to loss of revenue to the Federal Government.

ARCON is seeking N30bn in sanction for the violation of the advertising laws and for loss of revenue as a result of Meta Incorporated’s continued exposure of unapproved adverts on it’s platforms.
The statement read in part, “ARCON reiterates that it would not permit unethical and irresponsible advertising on the Nigeria’s advertising space.”

According to ARCON, the Council is not regulating the online media space. Rather, it’s focus is on advertising and marketing communications on the online platforms in line with its establishment Act.

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