Friday, September 18, 2015

Dogara Urges Nigerians To Forgive Boko Haram Members

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Yakubu Dogara, has called on Nigerian Christian community, particularly those in North East states to forgive members of the Boko Haram Islamist sect.

He stressed that the country could only make meaningful development when Nigerians begin to forgive one another. He noted that although people’s sources of livelihood and churches were destroyed during the fiery days of the insurgents, the Christian community should, in line with the teachings of Jesus Christ, forgive and look forward to better times.

West Signals U-Turn Over Syria, Seeks Dialogue With Russia

The former president of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, has called for dialogue with Russia in an effort to support the government of Syria to defend itself against ISIL, following a similar call from the White House in what is seen as a U-turn by the West.

Two years after both the US and the UK dropped plans to launch a bombing strike against the government of Bashar al-Assad in Syria over claims he was using chemical weapons against opposition forces, there are growing calls for military assistance to be given to Assad by the West. Sarkozy told Le Parisien newspaper:

It's 'Offensive' That Buhari Prefers To Open Up To The Foreign Media,Says Odinkalu.

Chidi Odinkalu, a professor and chairman of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), believes it is offensive to Nigerians for President Muhammadu Buhari to be unveiling his policies first to the foreign media.

Odinkalu said this on Wednesday while speaking at a conference on the role of integrity and accountability in national development.

INEC Denies Rigging, Hijacking Of Electoral Materials In Rivers Guber Poll

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, said on Thursday, that the allegations of rigging and hijacking of electoral materials in the Rivers governorship election were false.
The Commission stated this when it opened its defence before the State’s Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal sitting in Abuja.

Why We Suspended PDP National Conference – Metuh

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Thursday said the suspension of its proposed national conference was to accommodate all interests within the party.
National Publicity Secretary of the party, Chief Olisa Metuh, stated this in Abuja while briefing newsmen on the issue.  Metuh confirmed that the party’s leadership received a letter from Prof. Jerry Gana’s committee proposing the conference.

Ambode Not Witch-Hunting Fashola -APC

The Lagos State chapter of All Progressives Congress (APC) has stated that the ongoing restructuring of ministries and agencies of government by the governor, Akinwunmi Ambode in the state was not targeted at the former governor of the state, Babatunde Fashola.
Assistant Publicity Secretary of APC in Lagos State, Abiodun Salami made the statement while speaking with Daily Independent on Wednesday.

Anxiety Over Fashola, Amaechi’s Fate In Buhari’s Cabinet

As the September ending deadline given by President Muhammadu Buhari for the appointment of his ministers beckons, anxiety is mounting among the supporters of former governor of Lagos, Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) and immediate past governor of Rivers state, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi over their fate. The two All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftains were among those who worked very hard to ensure the victory of the party, especially during the presidential election.

No APC Gov Aspirant Can Match Me –Dickson

Bayelsa State Governor Seriake Dickson has described the 19 governorship aspirants on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the December 5 governorship election in the state as political jobbers, traders and contractors.

Among the 19 APC governorship aspirants are former Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Timi Alaibe, former Governor Timipre Sylva, former Chief of Staff to Dickson, Diekivie Ikiogha, former Nigeria’s Ambassador to Japan, Emmanuel Otiotio, former senate candidate for Bayelsa Central,Preye Aganaba, former Commissioner Powell Godknows and Tonye Apreala, a female aspirant.

EFCC Declares MD Of Saraki's Company Wanted.

Kennedy Izuagbe, a former director of Societe Generale Bank Nigeria Plc and managing director of Carlisle Properties and Investment Limited, a company owned by Bukola Saraki, has been declared wanted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
According to Wilson Uwujaren, EFCC spokesman, Izuagbe (45) who is being investigated in a case of conspiracy and money laundering to the tune of over N3.6 billion, has gone into hiding and all efforts to reach him have proved abortive.

5 more states receive FG’s bail out funds

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, yesterday said that five more states got its bail-out funds meant to alleviate the financial challenges faced by the second tier of government, in order to pay off outstanding salary arrears of their workers. The Director of Corporate Communications of CBN, Alhaji Ibrahim Muazu, said in Abuja that the states that received the funds were Ebonyi, Ekiti, Imo, Ogun and Oyo. In a statement, CBN said in order for a state to receive bail out funds, it must submit a resolution of the State Executive Council, SEC, authorizing the borrowing. It must also obtain an approval of the states House of Assembly consenting to it and issue an Irrevocable Standing Payment Order, ISPO, to enable CBN deduct at source when its allocations become available. These 5 states now join 10 states (Kwara, Osun, Zamfara, Niger, Bauchi, Gombe, Abia, Adamawa, Ondo and Kebbi) that had previously received bailouts from the Govt.

Army authorities send back pardoned soldiers to fight Boko Haram

The Nigerian Army has deployed 3,032 soldiers that were pardoned to fight Boko Haram insurgents.
These 3,032 soldiers are among the 5,000 dismissed soldiers who were sentenced to death for disobeying a direct order by their commandant to fight Boko Haram insurgents.

It's been reported that on Thursday, the soldiers had been sent to the 7 Division of the Nigerian Army, Maiduguri, following the completion of a two-week reorientation training programme organised for them at the Nigerian Army Training Centre, Kontagora, Niger State.

Buhari cancels visit to Cross River for groundbreaking of 260km highway

According to a NAN report, the proposed visit of President Buhari to Cross River State for the groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of a 260km superhighway has been cancelled. A statement by Christian Ita, the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River, on Thursday, confirmed the cancellation.

It stated that the decision to postpone the ceremony was communicated to the governor in a letter signed by the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari.

Listening to Bashar al-Assad

Like most of you, I spend 1 hour listening to Bashar al-Assad’s interview with the Russian media yesterday.  I have to tell you that I am impressed.

But before I discuss this in more detail, let me confess something which old-time readers of this blog might remember: I used to be very opposed to secular Arab nationalists, especially Baathists.  Not only did I have an extremely bad opinion of Saddam Hussein (which does not prevent me from being outraged at the way he was treated and murdered),