Saraki Ask Code Of Conduct Tribunal To Dismiss Case Against Him, FG Counsel Calls For His Arrest

As the trial of Senate President Bukola Saraki for alleged “false declaration of assets” begins at the Code of Conduct Tribunal in Abuja, saraki’s counsel Magaji has prayed the tribunal to throw out the case for lack of locus standi

The trial of saraki had commenced earlier today irrespective of a federal high court order which temporarily halted the trial.

The prosecuting counsel had argued that the high court does not have supervised jurisdiction? over the tribunal, hence an injunction from the high court does not subsist.

The prosecuting counsel, MS Hassan, had asked the court to issue a bench warrant against Saraki for failing to appear before the court after being summoned insisting that Saraki should be arrested within two hours and brought to court.

However, Counsel to Saraki, Magaji in a counter argument submitted that the prosecuting counsel, who is a deputy director at the ministry of justice and who signed the charges against the senate president, has no locus standi on the matter.

He argued that the charges could only be brought against Saraki by the attorney-general of federation, who is yet to be appointed by the president

He then urged the court to strike out the case for incompetence.

Saraki,s counsel also notified the tribunal about the interim injunction of the federal high court temporarily halting the trial.

He argued that the trial could not proceed because the ministry of justice, the chairman of the tribunal? and CCB were all deemed as defendants in the pending suit before the high court.

However, ?the prosecuting counsel, argued that Saraki’s counsel had no right to object to his prayer for the arrest of the senate president, since he was not present in court.

He told the tribunal to discountenace and dismiss the application of the defendants, adding that the law does not state that only the attorney?-general can institute criminal proceedings against anyone.

“It is not exclusive to the attorney-general alone to institute criminal proceedings. An officer in his department can do so as well,” he said.

“The accused cannot be in the comfort of his house and expect his lawyers to the job for him.

“We urge this court to issue a bench warrant for the arrest of the accused person because objection cannot be taken in absentia.” Mr hassan told the tribunal.

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Buhari Calls JP Morgan’s Bluff, Says No To Naira Devaluation

President Muhammadu Buhari has ruled out possible devaluation of the naira in the near term, putting paid to speculations of an imminent relaxation of the current foreign exchange rule by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

JP Morgan has based its suspension on the fact that the CBN adopted currency measures that were making transactions too complicated. JP Morgan was particularly irked that the CBN refused to officially sell dollars to importers of items like toothpick and other products readily available in Nigeria.

Buhari said on Tuesday in an interview with France 24 that he does not think the country’s currency, the naira, should be devalued again.

“I don’t think it is healthy for us to have the naira devalued further. That’s why we are getting the central bank to make modifications in terms of making foreign exchange available to essential services, industries, spare parts, essential raw materials and so on — but things like toothpicks and rice, Nigeria can produce enough of those,” Buhari said.

Nigeria’s central bank has imposed progressively tighter restrictions on access to foreign exchange in an effort to prop up the naira, which has been sliding since the slump in global crude prices last year. In June, it restricted access to foreign exchange for the import of 41 items ranging from rice and toothpicks to steel products and glass.

The central bank had introduced series of measures including directing commercial banks to pay for their dollar purchases 48 hours in advance, banned them from accepting foreign currency cash deposits and excluding about 41 items from access to official foreign exchange market in a bid curb dollar demand, stem illicit financial flows and conserve its foreign exchange reserves.

-Leadership

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Mugabe Delivers Wrong Speech In Zimbabwe Parliament, Opposition Calls It ‘Historic’ Blunder

Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe has delivered the wrong speech at the opening of a new session of parliament, repeating an address he gave to the legislature last month.

The 91-year-old leader read the 25-minute-long speech through to the end on Tuesday, apparently unaware that he was delivering the same text he presented during his state of the nation address last month.

“There has been a mix-up of speeches resulting in a situation where… the president delivered the wrong speech,” said presidential spokesman George Charamba.

“The mix-up happened in his secretarial office,” Charamba was quoted as saying in the state-owned Herald newspaper’s online edition.

“The error is sincerely regretted and corrective measures are being considered.”

Mugabe, Africa’s oldest leader, earlier this year fell down the steps leading from a podium. He was unhurt, but video of the fall went viral on social media.

Meanwhile, the country’s  main opposition party, Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), which is critical of Robert Mugabe’s long rule, said the parliamentary blunder committed by Mugabe called into question his fitness to hold office.

“This is a historic blunder. Anyone who is still of a sound mind would have quickly picked it up that the speech was the wrong one,” MDC spokesman Obert Gutu told Reuters.

“But it dovetails with what we in the MDC have been saying that Robert Mugabe is no longer fit for purpose. He should resign,” Gutu said.

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Student Union Leaders Budget N1.8m For Phone Calls

Student Union executives and legislators at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, have budgeted N1, 837, 550 to make official phone calls between August, 2015 and January, 2016.

In a copy of the Student Union budget made available to our correspondent and debated by members of the OAU Student Representative Council on Sunday evening, the leaders also had a separate budget for internet facilities and sending of bulk Short Message Service.

The sum, which did not also include the one for purchase of phones, was budgeted by the leadership of the Central Executive Council and Students’ Representative Council led by Mr. Omotayo Akande and Mr. Adebari Aare respectively.

Others are the clerk, deputy speaker, halls of residence executives, chairmen and secretary of transport, judicial, and budget and finance committees.

The student union leaders, who in totality budgeted N26, 090, 469 for their various needs, are expecting an income of about N15m.

Read More On Punch

 

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Fayose Attacks Buhari Again, Calls Him A Northern President

Ekiti State Governor Ayo Fayose has again attacked President Muhammadu Buhari, accusing him of carrying out a “tainted ethnic and tribal colouration inimical to the country’s unity.”

Fayose, reacting to the appointments by the President, accused Buhari of carrying out what he called “northernisation of Nigeria.”

In a statement yesterday by his Special Assistant on Public Communications and New Media, Lere Olayinka, Fayose said it was wrong for Buhari to have made 31 major appointments and only seven would come from the South.

He said the appointments “negate the principle of federal character and it appears the unity in diversity of Nigeria is being taken for granted by the President.”

“Under Buhari, are people from southern Nigeria only meant to be hounded and harassed by anti-corruption agencies and the Department of State Services while those from the North are meant to enjoy Federal Government’s juicy appointments?” he asked.

Apart from lopsided appointments made by the President, the governor said he was worried that the construction of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway had slowed down while work had stopped on Lokoja-Abuja road.

These roads, he said, “are the major roads linking the southern part of Nigeria with the North.”

“Also, we have been told by the Federal Government that the Second Niger Bridge project has been suspended and one is now beginning to remember how Buhari cancelled the Lagos Metroline Project in 1985 at a loss of over $78m (then) to the Lagos tax payers.”

Fayose, who noted that the country could only move forward if there was equity and fairness, said those who made the constitution and enshrined the principle of federal character were mindful of the nation’s ethnic diversity, adding that President Buhari’s running Nigeria as if he was a Northern Nigeria’s President was not in the country’s interest.

His words: “They said the President made the appointments on merit and I wish to ask whether there are no competent people in the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the South, especially in the Southeast where no one has been appointed.

“Are they saying Igbo leader like Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, who graduated with a first-class degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Lagos, is not competent to be appointed as Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF)?

But the Presidency appealed to Nigerians to ignore Fayose.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said appeal to ethnic and regional arithmetic would not give back to the Peoples Democratic Party what it lost at the poll.

He said, “Let me say at this stage that mere appeal to ethnic and regional arithmetic will not give back to the PDP what they lost. They seem to be making a dangerous calculation with their recent outbursts.

“The mere appeal to sectional and religious will not give the party its lost relevance or electability. Nigerians are smarter than Fayose thinks.

“The governor’s outbursts are intended to be a trigger for a clash between communities in areas where deliberate attempts had in the past also been made by the PDP to stoke ethnic and religious fault-lines.

“Our appeal to Nigerians is that they should ignore these tantrums. President Buhari is a healer not a divider.”

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Video Evidence From Buhari’s Chatham House Speech Where He Called “100 Days Promise” A Fraud

The social media has been buzzing with criticism of the comment credited to the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu over two documents said to contain promises the president would achieve within his first 100 days in office.

Shehu had in an article, Understanding Buhari In 100 Days denied authorising any document as the Director of the Media and Communications unit of the APC presidential Campaign Council during the 2015 presidential election.

He said: “In the course of electioneering, the presidential campaign had so many centers of public communication which, for whatever reason were on the loose. There is a certain document tagged “One Hundred Things Buhari Will Do in 100 Days” and the other, “My Covenant With Nigerians”. Both  pamphlets bore the authorized party logo, but as the Director of Media and Communications in that campaign, I did not fund or authorize any of those. I can equally bet my last Kobo that Candidate Buhari did not see or authorize those publications.”

Since that viral article, Shehu and by extension President Muhammadu Buhari has been under fire for denying the promises it purportedly made while campaigning to Nigerians.

Most commentaries suggest that the President deceived Nigerians with the promises just to get their votes only to renege few months after.

However, video evidence from the paper presentation by President Muhammadu Buhari in February, 2015 at the Chattam House in London gives credence to the denial by Garba Shehu.

During the question and answer session at the Chattam House presentation, an audience member had sought to know what to expect from Buhari within his 100 days in office.

The question from the audience member and Buhari’s response goes thus:

Question

In view of the current state in Nigeria in terms of the huge, huge need for change, and therefore the cry for the general to take power and bring about the change, the high expectation is such that people will really be looking for some quick solutions in view of this deep, deep need for change. What would the general do in, say, the first 100 days when elected to power, to sustain these expectations that the Nigerians have for him to bring about positive change?

Answer By Muhhamadu Buhari

“The second one: high expectations and what to do with the first 100 days. Yes, I respect that question because quietly I was thinking about these high expectations. Those who are following the trail of our campaigns can see how people are turning out, some becoming emotional and crying. I am really getting scared that if I get there they will expect miracles within the next week or months. That would be very dicey handling that one. I think we have to have a deliberate campaign to temper high expectations with some reasonableness on the part of those who are expecting miracles to happen.”

“Just to go first to the ‘first 100 days’, some of it is fraudulent and I don’t want to participate in any fraud in any form. Nigerians know that we are in trouble as a people and as a country.”

“When we get there we will quickly get correct intelligence of what is on the ground and inform Nigerians and just learn what I have just read. We will make sure that the appropriation and application of public resources will not be allowed. You would be surprised by how much savings we will realize. That saving will be ploughed back into development and this is what I can promise. But I would remove that ‘100 days’”

READ: My Manifesto and Vision for Nigeria – Muhammadu Buhari

See the video below. Watch from the 34th minute to the 36th minute.

 

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Orubebe Blasts Oshiomhole For Criticising Jonathan, Calls Him Villa Sycophant

Ex-Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder Godsday Peter Orubebe, Tuesday, took a swipe at the Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole over his recent criticisms of former President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration, describing him as a villa sycophant who is willing to switch allegiance to whoever is in power.

Orubebe who lambasted Comrade Oshiomhole, while speaking with selected journalists in Abuja, further berated the governor for speaking against former president, Dr. Jonathan who he said was a great leader.

He said “Oshiomhole is an ingrate and a popular villa sycophant who is quick to switch allegiance to whomever is in power.”

Descending heavily on Comrade Oshiomhole for what he described as “disrespecting the former President, Orubebe advised incumbent president Muhammadu Buhari to watch out for the likes of the Edo state governor, who according to him, will choke Buhari with acclamations in a bid to have inroad and access to dip their hands into the nation’s cake.

Orubebe, who also accused Oshiomhole of being problem and major sycophant under the immediate past administration as the Chief Adviser on Economic and Labour matters and particularly on subsidy removal to Jonathan, regretted that ‘Human memory is short, emphasising that ‘it’s unfortunate that Oshiomhole who should talk like a governor is today, biting the fingers (Jonathan) that fed him and seems to have forgotten in a hurry that he once cried around the former president for assistance and recognition.

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Rivers APC Calls For Trial Of Wike, Others For Murder …Congratulates Peterside On Election Tribunal Victory

The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State has made a passionate appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to hasten to fulfil his pledge that those who perpetrated various acts of violence during the last general elections would be duly punished so as to serve as a deterrent to others who may be contemplating such acts in the future.

“We appeal to our Dear President to quickly look at the issue of Rivers State, where Chief Nyesom Wike and other Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) henchmen planned and executed a mind-boggling campaign of violence that claimed over a hundred APC members and supporters in their desperate bid to capture power. Wike and his people should be prosecuted for murder without delay to restore hope to the families whose breadwinners were slain during the elections. Wike and his evil collaborators should be brought to justice, as this is the only way the souls of our people killed because of these elections can rest in peace,” Rivers APC said in a statement on Thursday in Port Harcourt and signed by the Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya.

The party told Chief Wike to correctly read the handwriting on the wall and start packing his bags in readiness to leave the Rivers State Government House which he has been occupying since May 29 due to the wrong verdict of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) announcing him as winner of the April 11 governorship poll in the State. “We happily welcome the striking out, yesterday by the Rivers Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja, of the eligibility suit filed against the APC gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Dakuku Adol Peterside, by Chief Wike. With this, the stage is set for the unraveling of the big scam that saw Chief Wike illegally occupying the Rivers Government House. For Wike, there is no more hiding place. He should start packing his bags as his ouster is imminent,” Rivers APC said.

The party congratulated Dr. Dakuku Peterside for all the successes he has so far recorded at the Tribunal and urged him not to relent until the infamous victory of Wike against the wishes of Rivers State and her people is completely upturned. “We remain fully convinced that Dr. Peterside is the popular choice of Rivers people and that he will retrieve his stolen mandate sooner than later,” Rivers APC said.

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Dr. Brimah Calls For The Arrest Of Governor Shettima In The US

Vociferous rights advocate, Dr. Peregrino Brimah of the Nigeria ENDS organization has begun a campaign for the arrest of serving Borno State governor, Kashim Shettima while he is in the United States, accompanying Nigeria’s new president, Muhammadu Buhari on a four-day State visit.

Earlier, Yesterday, Dr. Brimah had in a very detailed article written on reasons why he believed the Borno governor was culpable in the Boko Haram crisis plaguing Nigeria and that he was also extremely corrupt. Dr Brimah in the article caption asked if the two presidents meeting, Obama and Buhari were aware of Shettima’s alleged atrocities.

He has taken his campaign to twitter today with hashtag #ArrestShettima and tweets to US officials to apprehend the governor who is covered with immunity in Nigeria.

Supposedly under advice of Governor Shettima who Buhari took along to the US being governor of the most terror plagued State, the Nigerian president was in a TV interview suggesting a non-specific amnesty with the Boko Haram terrorists which has been the aggressive position of the State governor accused on inaction and corruption, according to Brimah.

Dr. Brimah importantly points out that governor Kashim Shettima is on video on several occasions, just like the ousted president of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, saying that he is restraining himself from speaking the truths (about Boko Haram) so heads (of elite and politicians) do not roll.

Quoting the governor from May 13th, 2014:

Leadership calls for restraint, if I should speak, heads will roll.” – Today.ng

Dr. Brimah in his article called this “aiding and abetting terror” and asked for governor Shettima to be immediately detained and forced to “spill the beans” so Nigeria’s masses’ heads can stop rolling. He wrote that as the US suggested, Boko Haram cannot be dealt with by military force alone, but its sponsors and politicians who created it and assisted it over the years must also be dealt with immediately to bring holistic and lasting end to the crises.

PRESS RELEASE from http://ENDS.ng [Every Nigerian Do Something] Email: info@ends.ng Twitter: @EveryNigerian

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President Buhari Calls For A More Effective Global Coalition Against Terrorism

President Muhammadu Buhari has called on the international community to unite and forge a stronger worldwide consensus for more effective action against global terrorism.

In a condolence message to the government and people of Egypt on the recent murder by terrorists of the country’s  Attorney General, Hesham Barakat,  and the killing of about 70 Egyptian soldiers in the Sinai Peninsula, President Buhari restated his conviction that concerted global action was needed to overcome terrorism in all parts of the world.

President Buhari said that having borne the pain of terrorist attacks themselves for many years, Nigerians shared the anguish of Egyptians as they mourn their compatriots who lost their lives in Cairo and the Sinai Peninsula.

While condoling the government of Egypt and the families of the victims, President Buhari reaffirmed Nigeria’s commitment to working with other countries facing terrorists’ threats to overcome the scourge of violent extremism.

No country, the President added, can afford to be indifferent to the threats of terrorism because of its pervasive and destructive nature.

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APC Leadership Watchdog Calls For Oyegun’s Resignation

A group, APC Leadership WatchDog has called for the resignation of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Oyegun.

The group in a statement by its National Coordinator, Johnson Yusuf said Oyegun;s resignation has become necessary so as the save the party of further embarrassment.

Although it acknowledged the sterling contributions of Oyegun particularly during the campaign of the APC which led to its eventual success at the polls, the group said the skills and leadership attributes of Chief Oyegun are not amenable to suit the purpose of a party in power.

“Chief Oyegun has now displayed his lack of management and leadership experience to coordinate a governing party in order to deliver maximum support to a President elected on its platform.”

The group said the current crisis in the National Assembly which the Oyegun led leadership have failed to manage can only be attributed to two possible reasons.

“There are only two possible reasons for this obvious mismanagement of a party that signify change- it is either Chief Oyegun lacks the ability to deliver on his redefined assignment, or he has compromised.”

The statement by the group reads in full:

A CALL FOR IMMEDIATE RESIGNATION OF OYEGUN AS APC CHAIRMAN

PRESS STATEMENT BY THE APC LEADERSHIP WATCHDOG (ALW)

The inability of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie Oyegun to manage a progressive party such as ours is getting increasingly obvious every day; and there is need for the octogenarian party chairman to immediately resign and save all of us further embarrassment. This would be in the best interest of everyone.

While we appreciate the stewardship of Chief Oyegun so far, especially his contributions to the campaign and the eventual victory of our party at the polls; we are troubled with the realization that the skills and leadership attributes of Chief Oyegun are not amenable to suit the purpose of a party in power. So while his age and experience were valuable during the campaigns, Chief Oyegun has now displayed his lack of management and leadership experience to coordinate a governing party in order to deliver maximum support to a President elected on its platform.  While Mr. President has hit the ground running as evidenced from decisions reached and moves  made so far, Chief Oyegun has not even hit the ground at all; but instead lying flat on the ground while the party that portray so much hope run into series of avoidable and needless crisis. This is highly unfortunate.

The need to separate politics from governance, in order for the former not to derail the latter, has led the President to concentrate squarely on delivering purposeful governance to the country;  while leaving the coordination and management of party politics in the hands of Chief John Oyegun as the party Chairman. However, it is regrettable that Chief Oyegun has failed to live up to the expectations of a majority of the party members. And there are only two possible reasons for this obvious mismanagement of a party that signify change- it is either Chief Oyegun lacks the ability to deliver on his redefined assignment, or he has compromised.

With the manner Chief Oyegun and his team of National Working Committee (NWC) handled the leadership crisis in the National Assembly, even the failed PDP had to deride our party as one led by “inexperienced” people. For how long would we continue to endure insults and uncouth language from people whose very inexperience has pushed out of office? But still, the APC of today under the chairmanship of Oyegun is making a lot of us wonder if it is still the same party we worked and campaigned with.  We are not alone- many Nigerians are now wondering if this was the same APC they voted for.

Before this embarrassment gets deeper and much more unbearable, we call on Chief Oyegun to do the honorable thing by placing the party interest far and above his personal desires. We also call on the leaders of the party and specifically the members of the NWC to safe our party from going deeper on this voyage of self-destruction. Chief John Oyegun should please resign in order to save the party and his members from further headache.

While at it, other members of the party whose recent acts and actions have become inimical to the continued progress and survival of the party should immediately retrace their steps.  In the light of this, we specifically call on Senate President Bukola Saraki to quickly return to the path of rectitude.  Since the party has resolved to respect the office Senator Bukola now occupies and also accept his emergence; the Senate President must also in turn respect and be loyal to the party. It is time Senate President Bukola Saraki realises that the politics part of his ambition is over.  Now is the time to use that office to coordinate and rally the National Assembly behind the vision of Mr. President and that of the party.

WE hope all concerned would do the needful and thread on the path of honour and the ideals of a true progressive politics.

Johnson Yusuf

National Coordinator

 

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ZImbabwe Blast SaharaReporters Journalists, Calls Them Boko Haram Reporters

Zimbabwe has reacted angrily to Nigerian journalists who ambushed President Robert Mugabe during last week’s inauguration of Muhammadu Buhari as Nigeria’s president.

Journalists identified as reporters from Sahara Reporters ambushed Mugabe and his African Union (AU) delegation demanding that he steps down from his position as Zimbabwe’s head of state.

The reporters demanded to know from the 91-year-old leader, who has been in power since independence from Britain in 1980, when he would step down and handover power to a democratically elected successor after more than three decades in power.

However, Harare has hit back, with outspoken Minister of Information, Prof. Jonathan Moyo, likening the journalists in question to “brothers and sisters of Boko Haram”.

The Islamic militant Boko Haram has over the years embarked on a reign of terror in Nigeria where it has killed thousands and displaced about 1.5 million people from the North-eastern region of the country.

If Nigerian journalism has come to this, then God help Nigeria since nobody has monopoly over such uncouth misconduct. It is a sad tale of a man biting a dog when journalists make news they should be covering,” Moyo said.

“Free countries have rules, including diplomatic courtesy, not the display of Boko Haram journalism. Of course, those are human beings, but are they journalists or Boko Haram?” asked Moyo.

Relations between Zimbabwe and Nigeria have sometimes been frosty over the years.
Mugabe has previously labelled Nigeria as a corrupt nation.

Former Nigeria head of state, Olusegun Obasanjo, courted detestation from some Zimbabwean political leaders during his stint as mediator to the deadlock between Zimbabwe and former colonialist, Britain at the turn of the millenium.

•Culled from CAJ News

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