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Fake Bishops : You’re causing disunity,disaffection , Group tells CAN

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Muslim Media Watch Group of Nigeria has condemned in strong terms the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN and accused it of causing disaffection and disunity in Nigeria following its allegation that the clergy men that attended Kashim Shettima’s Unveling as Vice President running mate ti Asiwaju Bola Tinubu were fake Bishops

Reacting to a statement credited to the Vice President of CAN, Rev. Joseph Hayab that the Christian religious leaders that were present at the unveiling of Senator Kashim Shettima as vice presidential candidate of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Wednesday in Abuja were hired to attend the event, MMWG, in a statement by its national coordinator, Alhaji Ibrahim Abdullahi, queried why they need to be known to CAN or Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN or any church for that matter asking whether Nigerians would vote on the basis of church or mosque we attend?

According to the reports, Hayab claimed that Christian religious leaders that attended the event yesterday were not known to CAN.

“Why were they silent over Christian-Christian tickets in Southern states of the country for the past 42 years ( i.e. 1979 to date) but now crying over Muslim-Muslim ticket now! It stated that with 18 political parties in the country, CAN and its cohorts have condescend so low to campaign against a political party when 17 others are available for them those that believed in their campaign of divisiveness,” it stated.

The group described as unpatriotic and condemnable for CAN to believe that true Christians would support its divisive roles in the nation’s polity.

It stated that responsible Nigerians would not tow the line CAN, adding that “since Nigeria’s independence both Muslims and Christians have never voted based on religious lines rather, they have been voting based on their conscience stating further that what informed Muslims voting for Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan would guide true Christians to vote for Muslim-Muslim ticket this time around.”

The group wondered why a religious body like CAN could believe that all the adherents of Christian faith in Nigeria would vote for a Christian as the president when religion has never being the yardstick used to consider who to vote for but competence, capacity and capability which have always determine who to vote into offices.

MMWG further described CAN as “an unregistered political party masquerading as a religious body; and that its attempt to set Nigerians against themselves using politics would bounce back negatively on it, as its campaign of calumny against a political party and its candidates is devilish, unprogressive, unpatriotic and irrational and by the grace of God would fail.”

The group, therefore, called on true Muslims and Christians in Nigeria to ignore the divisive campaign of CAN and vote for the candidates of their choice in the forthcoming general elections, saying that “CAN’s religious bigotry and fanaticism is irreligious and condemnable.”

“Today, Nigerian Muslims are proud to have contributed to the successes of thousands of Christian leaders of today having been assisted to greatness by various Muslim personalities
notable among which are the Vice-President, Professor ( Pastor) Yemi Osinbajo who benefitted greatly from Prince Abdul-Jabbar Bola Ajibola – former President of the World Court in the Hague and Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

“Also, late Buruji Kashamu and Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State who were nurtured among thousands of others by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Aleogo Raymond Dokpesi, the proprietor of AIT Television and Raypower FM Radio station who also benefitted from Alhaji Bamanga Tukur as well as Mr. Olusola Akanmode, the Chief of Staff to Atiku Abubakar who was the Vice President in 1999 to 2007′ to mention just a few.

“All the great benefactors mentioned here were Muslims, who empowered known committed and dedicated Christians without minding the fact that they are committed Christians. The negative reactions of some church leaders and fanatical Christians would not make Muslims in Nigeria to change their good attitude to Christians,” the group stressed.

It, however, commended “the nationalistic and patriotic views expressed on Muslim-Muslim ticket by Prof. Pat Utomi, Mr. Sam Omatseye, Mr. Babajide Kolade Otitoju and Pastor Tunde Bakare who have behaved as intellectuals who could not be swayed to backing Christian fanaticism and fundamentalism at the expense of good leadership we are envisaging for Nigeria.”

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EDSG Trains Batch- 9 Vigilantes, Hunters.

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….. As Gov Obaseki Signs Edo Security Corps Bill into law

By Sim Omo- Benin City

As part of efforts to combat crimes, criminalities, cultism and other social vices bedeviling the state, the governor Obaseki led administration has commenced training of batch Nine hunters and operatives of Vigilantes, bringing a total of over ten thousand Vigilantes and hunters so far trained by the state to tighten security in every nook and cranny

Similarly Governor Godwin Obaseki has signed the State security Corps Bill into law

Speaking at the commencement of the batch- nine training exercise at the Police Training School in Ogida, the State Co-ordinator of the Edo security and Vigilantes network , Col. Kole Omomia( Rtd) commended Governor Obaseki and the state government for prioritizing security in the state and its continuous commitment to providing the necessary logistics for the state’s security apparatus to function

He noted that the training of the corps operatives which included the hunters, as in the instance of the batch- 9 who are currently here today, are concerted effort and determination of the state government to put her citizens at the fore front to enjoy peace, tranquility and have an enabling environment that would promote growth, development and investments.

Col. Omomia reiterated that the trainees would undergo series of exercises such as medical fitness, bio-data, teekwando, Judo, Drills, Parades and mental fitness and other activities ancillary to the job

According to the State Cord, the training would cut across the three senatorial districts in the state , with about One thousand, three hundred,(1300) Vigilantes and hunters expected to be trained in Batch- 9

He, however,urged the trainees to key into the program with keen interest and participate fully.

Recall that only recently, the state governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, singed the Bill establishing the State security Corps, formerly known as the Edo State Security Vigilante Network,ESSVN, into law

By the establishing Act, the Corps is now a statutory body recognised by law and would perform its roles as provided by the Act

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HAILING THE SUPREME COURT ON LG ALLOCATION JUDGMENT

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Prof Mike Ozekhome, SAN,CON, OFR

The supreme court judgement on

July 11, 2024, directing the Federal Government to pay allocations due to Local Government Areas directly to their account thereby abolishing the old practices of State-Local Government Joint Account,is timely and courageous.

What the judgement has done is more like interpreting section 162 of the Constitution, which provides for a joint State-Local Government Account. In which case, money is normally paid to state governors’ accounts and then for them to disburse to the local governments for them to share. But what has been happening is that, as I noted in 2020,over three years ago, the state governors, have been behaving like ”bandits”, waylaing local governments funds along the way and thus impoverishing them leaving them with nothing to work, just a little for salary. And nothing to actually work for the people whom they represent.
I agree totally with the judgement of the supreme court to grant full financial autonomy so that money is released and paid directly to the 774 local government councils which constitute the third-tier of government,to develop their places because the LGAs are grassrooted and nearest to the people. Rather than allow overbearing state governors throw their weight around and muzzle the local governments and seize their purse,they will now allow LGs breath some air of freedom.

If you take a look at our situation, Nigeria is operating a very lopsided federation,more like a unitary system of government. Where the federal government is supposed to be a small government,it is controlling 67 items on the exclusive legislative list. That is why the federal government gets the lion share of the federation account , the lion share of the money that comes to the federation account to the tune of 52.68%. The states get 26.72% while the entire 774 local government councils in Nigeria get just 20.60% of the monthly allocation by the Revenue Mobilization Allocation and Fiscal Commission, RLASMC.

The question is, what is the federal government doing with almost 53% of the national income? That is because it is a government that is behemoth.That is elephantine. A government that intrudes and intervenes in areas that should not concern it at all. What is the federal government’s business with licensing cars and trucks for states? What is its business with the Marriage Act, dealing with how people marry and wed in Nigeria and how they live together as husband and wife and separate or divorce? What is the federal government’s business with unity schools? A whole FG operating secondary schools? What is their business? Why is the FG not allowing states generate their own power, operate their own railway stations, if they have the capacity? Why should the federal government not allow states have their own police force? Even for the local governments to have their own police force as we have in the United States and other advanced countries of the world where even tertiary institutions have their own police?

The truth is that the federal government is overbloated and overpampered. That is why it is using too much money and make the centre become too attractive,eating deep into funds that ought to be meant for the states and local government areas. The states take not only that which belongs to the states, but also waylays at source that which is meant for the local government areas. No Nation grows that way.

So, I see this judgment as epochal,having

far-reaching effect because money will now be made available directly to the local government areas who will no longer be subservient, like fawning slaves to state governors. In fact, the judgement even went further to say that no state government has the power henceforth to dissolve local government areas. This is because we have been seeing cases where inspite of the provisions of section 7 of the 1999 constitution that give autonomy to local government areas, states normally go ahead and dissolve local government areas ND appoint caretaker committees for them.This is whimsical and capricious.The Supreme Court has said this can no longer go on and that henceforth, no state government should ever be able to dissolve any local government area in Nigeria for any reason whatsoever and howsoever.

The judgement is salutary, timely and regenerative. It should be upheld by all governments and people in Nigeria for better democratic dividends.I see this as victory for our wobbling democracy, even if we are far removed from true fiscal federalism where the federating units control and utilize their God-given resources while paying royalty or tax to the central government. This case is one big plus for tested court room gladiator, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, the Attorney General of the Federation, who initiated the case at the apex court, invoking its original jurisdiction.Surely,to jaw-jaw is better than to war-war. God bless Nigeria.

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Ex+Abia gov, Senator Kalu backs part-time legislature

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Chairman, Senate Committee on Privatisation, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu has backed calls for part-time legislature at both federal and state levels.

Senator Kalu (APC Abia North) said this would help the nation cut costs and enhance the citizenry’s trust in the polity.

The former Abia governor said this in an interview published on his verified Facebook page over the weekend.

On calls for part-time legislature, Senator Kalu said, “I think it will be a very good idea if my colleagues and other members of the Houses of Assembly will agree that we can sit for three months and do constitutional amendment first.

“So we can sit four times a year and if there’s any emergency, there will be emergency sitting. We can come to do a presidential bid on that basis and go back instead of sitting on a full-time basis.

“Not only the Senate and the House of Representatives, but all the legislative houses in Nigeria will be part-time.”

Senator Kalu maintained that this would be part of austerity measures to reduce cost of governance, arguing that regional government is another viable alternative.

“If we’re going for regional government, it also means that the ministers, the legislators, will be the same. I’ve been tinkering with the idea of how we can save money to run Nigeria because the country needs money.

“I will encourage the President, the National Assembly to make these kind of laws. This will help him, and this will help the system, and this will help everybody,” he said.

The ex-governor explained that contrary to misconceptions among Nigerians, senators are not paid enough.
U
“But I want Nigerians and my colleagues to do a quick constitutional amendment so we can go and be a part-time sitting Senate and part-time sitting House of Representatives, and other 36 state houses of assembly in Nigeria.

“That will bring trust and bring relief to the Nigerian people,” the ex-governor said.

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