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Never Again Interim Govt: Tinubu’s Victory Different From June 12 -SWAGA

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South West Agenda for Asiwaju, SWAGA, has warned that never again will Nigeria embrace an interim government, insisting that Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu victory at the polls is different from the annulled June 12 1993 presidential election

The leading support group for the Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu Presidency, vowed that never again will the installation of Interim National Government, ING be allowed in the country after 24 years of democratic rule.

National Coordinator of SWAGA, Senator Adedayo Adeyeye, told newsmen in Abuja, that the likes of National Democratic Coalition NADECO who fought to enthrone democracy in the country will not allow it

He noted that the present situation is different from that of June 12, 1993 presidential election when the results were not fully declared.

The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has since declared Tinubu the winner of the February 25, 2023 presidential election and issued with the certificate of return while he, along with the vice president-elect, Senator Kashim Shettima, would be sworn-in on May 29 in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT.

Adeyeye cautioned those calling for an interim government as a way of placating the grievances of some politicians following their loss in the presidential election, saying such calls were geared towards possible anarchy.

While urging all Nigerians to resist the move, he said that in every election there must be a winner and loser, and that Nigerian politicians must develop the spirit of sportsmanship in their electoral contests rather than threatening national peace and unity.

He said: “I am not saying the elections are perfect, but from the point of view of INEC and point of view of any objective Nigerian, these elections are very good and transparent making it the best ever to be conducted since 1999.

“I want to appeal to all Nigerians to disregard the noise making of these people who want to create anarchy and that Nigerians should begin to reason and desist from fake prophets.

“I saw a video and I think this is what is propelling the so-called ‘Obidients’. A fake pastor was saying that yes, Tinubu will be declared but he would not be sworn in. And an interim government would be formed and the government will give it to Peter Obi.

“And I, Adeyeye will be a citizen of this country and allow that to happen? It is not going to happen. We will join forces with others to oppose it.”

According to the former lawmaker, any attempt to install ING is capable of destroying the country and tear it apart.

“You want to destroy the country, you want to tear it apart and say bye bye to Nigeria? Some of us who are patriotic citizens of this country will not allow that.

“Would I have voted my candidate and he emerged and he was declared and you will now say no, you are looking for an interim government? On what ground are you looking for that?

“What will be the legitimacy of that interim government? Who voted the interim government and who constitutes the interim government? On what mandate will the interim government will be constituted and who and who will be members? These are the big questions to ask.

“Millions of Nigerians have exercised their civil rights and a winner has emerged. Well, you may not the person. That’s the beauty of democracy.

“I want to say that interim government will never happen again in this country. Some of us who fought for NADECO will not allow it. In the case of June 12, 1993, the results were not even declared.

“But in this case, the results have been declared, we have a President-elect. May 29 is around the corner and a new president would be sworn in. Anything short of that means you are asking for Nigeria to come to an end. Therefore, those calling for interim government should go and bury the thought. It will never happen.

“Elections are over now and I have been waiting for the past four weeks for any of the opposition political parties to come out with their own version of results apart from what INEC uploaded, nobody has come up with anything other than shouting that they’ve been rigged.

“That’s the proof of rigging. Yes, you can say from our agents these are the numbers of votes given to us by our agents and these are the figures uploaded by INEC. We’ve not seen such claim by anyone yet.

“Instead, they’ve been spreading hatred, trying to create anarchy and cast aspersions on the integrity of the INEC officials. They have been creating impressions not only within the country but in the international community that the election was anything but free, fair and transparent, without any proof, without any evidence and any alternative results they can present anywhere.”

Adeyeye further said that, “now they have gone to court, good let them go and prove their cases in court. But for you to be demonstrating everyday and going to foreign embassies in Nigeria that your elections were rigged; I will never agree with that.”

He, therefore, praised the INEC and in particular thanked its chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu for giving Nigerians an election which according to him, has further engendered the unity of the country.

“This is the type of election that brings unity to the country.

“A candidate from South West was able to win in Jigawa, Zamfara and Sokoto. This is in spite of the fact that it was a Muslim) Muslim ticket. We buried religious and tribal sentiments.

“A candidate from southeast was able to win in Lagos and Plateau, while Atiku was able to win in Osun. I think this should be able to bring Nigerians closer and unify us rather than threatening our togetherness,” he stressed.

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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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