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Forget ethnicity, religion, Nigerians are the problem of Nigeria

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President Muhammadu Buhari has reflected on the complexities of the Nigerian condition, concluding that neither ethnicity nor religion was to blame, “but we ourselves,” for inherent injustices, Presidential spokesman, Femi Adesina disclosed in a statement.

The President spoke recently while receiving members of the Muhammadu Buhari/Osinbajo (MBO) Dynamic Support Group, who visited State House, Abuja, to present a compendium of five years’ achievement of the administration.

President Buhari went into the trajectory of his struggles to get justice at the courts, after disputed results of presidential elections in 2003, 2007, and 2011, submitting that people who ruled against him were of his own ethnic stock and religious persuasion, while those who stood up for him were of other faiths and ethnicity.

“Our problem is not ethnicity or religion, it is ourselves,” the President submitted.

His words: “After my third appearance in the Supreme Court, I came out to speak to those who were present then. I told them that from 2003, I’d spent 30 months in court.

“The President of the Court of Appeal, the first port of call for representation by presidential candidates then, was my classmate in secondary school in Katsina. We spent six years in the same class, Justice Umaru Abdullahi. 

“My legal head was Chief Mike Ahamba, a Roman Catholic and an Ibo man. When the President of the court decided that we should present our case, my first witness was in the box.

“Ahamba insisted that a letter should be sent to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to present the register of constituencies in some of the States, to prove that what they announced was falsehood. It was documented.

“When they gave judgment, another Ibo man, the late Justice Nsofor, asked for the reaction from INEC to the letter sent to them. They just dismissed it. He then decided to write a minority judgment. That was after 27 months in court.

“We went to the Supreme Court. Who was Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN)? A Hausa-Fulani like me, from Zaria. The members of the panel went in for about 30 minutes, came back to say they were proceeding on break. They went for 3 months. When they came back, it didn’t take them 15 minutes, they dismissed us.

“In 2007, who was the CJN? Kutigi. Again, a Muslim from the North. After 8 months or so, he dismissed the case.

“Again in 2011, because I was so persistent, Musdafa, a Fulani man like me, from Jigawa, neighbor to my state, was CJN. He dismissed my case.

“I’ve taken you round this to prove that our problem is not ethnicity or religion. It is ourselves.

“I refused to give up. I had tried to wear Agbada after what happened to me in Khaki. Something was done to me, because I did something to others. You know it. In the end, I myself was arrested, sent to detention, and they were given back what they had taken. I was there for three and a quarter years. This is Nigeria.

“I hope historians and intellectuals would document this, because it is a fantastic state of political development. Let our grandchildren and great grandchildren see how we came along. We didn’t get it as easy as other people think. Not because God has given us great population and resources. We have suffered along the line.

“I try to mention these things because you got yourselves together, used your resources, energies without any input from me. I cannot thank you enough. I’m very grateful to you and to Nigerians because in 2019, I visited all the states, the people that turned out to see me across the country (because I’m dedicated to serve Nigeria and Nigerians), the love is genuine.

“Thank God that over the years, they can’t accuse me of corruption. And I’ve been everything; Governor, Minister of Petroleum Resources, Head of State, President and in my second term. I thank you that nobody forced you, but you got together, used your energy, time and resources, I thank you very much. I assure you, history will do you justice.”


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Commissioner empowers 3,000 people in Kogi

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Kogi state commissioner for works, Dr. Abubakar Ohere
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The Kogi State commissioner for works, Dr. Abubakar Sadiq Ohere on Sunday empowered over 3,000 men and women across Kogi Central District.

The gesture according to the commissioner is part of the Kogi State government’s efforts to support small scale traders as well as artisans in the state. Each person got N20,000.

The event which took place at Ahogede, Bariki ward of Okene Local at the residence of Alhaji Jimoh Karaku , had in attendance , Alhaji Yahaya Karaku , a former chairman of the local government and a leader of the APC in Kogi Central as well as many party leaders and supporters from across Okene Local Government.

The commissioner said the empowerment was also part of Governor Yahaya Bello’s, inclusive government and the need to to spread dividends of democracy to people at the grassroot.

Many of the recipients expressed gratitude to the commissioner. They said the cash donations will help their various businesses .


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Pro-Putin party wins majority in Russian elections despite declining support

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Mayor of Moscow Sergei Sobyanin addresses supporters of the United Russia party. Photograph: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images
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Partial results show ruling United Russia party will retain power in parliament after winning over 45% of the vote

Russia’s ruling United Russia party, which supports president Vladimir Putin, retained its majority in parliament after a three-day election and a sweeping crackdown on its critics, despite losing around one fifth of its support, partial results on Monday showed.

With 33% of ballots counted, the Central Election Commission said United Russia had won just over 45% of the vote, with its nearest rival, the Communist party, at around 22%.

Although that amounts to an emphatic win, it would be a weaker performance for United Russia than the last time a parliamentary election was held in 2016, when the party won just over 54% of the vote.

malaise over years of faltering living standards and allegations of corruption from jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny have drained some support, and a tactical voting campaign organised by Navalny’s allies appears to have inflicted further damage.

Kremlin critics said the vote was in any case a sham and that United Russia would have fared much worse in a fair contest, given a pre-election crackdown that outlawed Navalny’s movement, barred his allies from running and targeted critical media and non-governmental organisations.

The result looks unlikely to change the political landscape, with Putin, who has been in power as president or prime minister since 1999, still dominating ahead of the next presidential election in 2024. Putin has yet to say whether he will run.

The 68-year-old leader remains a popular figure with many Russians who credit him with standing up to the west and restoring national pride.

Partial results showed the Communist party finishing in second place, followed by the nationalist LDPR party with around 9%. Both parties usually back the Kremlin on key issues.

At a celebratory rally at United Russia’s headquarters broadcast on state television, Moscow mayor Sergei Sobyanin, a close ally of the Russian leader, shouted: “Putin! Putin! Putin!” to a flag-waving crowd that echoed his chant.

Allies of Navalny, who is serving a jail sentence for parole violations he denies, had encouraged tactical voting against United Russia, a scheme that amounted to supporting the candidate most likely to defeat it in a given electoral district.

In many cases, they had advised people to hold their noses and vote Communist. Authorities had tried to block the initiative online.

The election commission was slow to release data from online voting in Moscow, where United Russia traditionally does not fare as well as in other regions. Pro-Kremlin candidates were leading in the majority of the city’s 15 districts before the online votes were tallied.

Golos, an election watchdog accused of being a foreign agent by authorities, said it had recorded thousands of violations, including threats against observers and ballot stuffing, blatant examples of which circulated on social media, with some individuals caught on camera depositing bundles of voting slips in urns

The Central Election Commission said it had recorded 12 cases of ballot stuffing in eight regions and that the results from those polling stations would be voided.

The Kremlin denies a politically driven crackdown and says individuals are prosecuted for breaking the law. Both it and United Russia denied any role in the registration process for candidates.

One day we will live in a Russia where it will be possible to vote for good candidates with different political platforms,” Navalny ally Leonid Volkov wrote on Telegram messenger before polls closed on Sunday.

One Moscow pensioner who gave his name only as Anatoly said he voted United Russia because he was proud of Putin’s efforts to restore what he sees as Russia’s rightful great power status.

“Countries like the United States and Britain more or less respect us now like they respected the Soviet Union in the 1960s and 70s. The Anglo-Saxons only understand the language of force,” he said.

There was also widespread apathy, with official figures showing turnout at around 47%.

“I don’t see the point in voting,” said one Moscow hairdresser who gave her name as Irina. “It’s all been decided for us anyway.”

Source: (The Guardian)


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Kogi: Gunmen invade church, kill one worshipper, abduct two

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Gunmen invaded a church in Kabba, Kogi, on Sunday, killed one person and abducted two worshippers.

The church located at Okedayo Area on Kabba-Okene Road was invaded at about 10.15 a.m. as the day’s worship went underway.

Police’s spokesman in Kogi, William Aya, confirmed the incident.

He described the invasion as unfortunate, saying that the police would go after the perpetrators and ensure that they face justice.

Kayode Akanbi, a worshipper who was present when the gunmen arrived, said service was barely underway when the incident happened.

Mr Akanbi told newsmen on the phone that the gunmen, numbering six, were armed with guns and cutlasses and did not mask up.

“We were trying to commence the normal service.

“We just started the call to worship and I was interpreting the pastor’s message when suddenly the gunmen entered from the main entrance and raised their guns.

“They shot sporadically and everybody started scampering to safety.

According to Mr Akanbi, two of the oldest members were abducted and taken away by the gunmen.

He said also that the gunmen killed a 45-year-old worshipper in the process, adding that the spouse of one of the two abducted worshippers and another male worshipper sustained gunshot injuries.

Mr Akanbi said police later visited the scene to take the dead to the mortuary at the General Hospital, Kabba while the two injured persons were taken to Lokoja for treatment.

Newsmen recall that the Nigeria Correctional Service facility in Kabba was invaded by yet to be identified gunmen in the late hours of Sunday, 12 September

During that invasion, 240 inmates were forcefully released by the gunmen while 114 have so far been rearrested.

Source: (NAN)


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