2015: Those Who Laughed While Others Wept

Fri, Dec 25, 2015
By publisher

BREAKING NEWS, Winners & Losers


THE ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, was a big winner in the year 2015. The party successfully displaced the past ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, from power after 16 years of stay in power in Nigeria.

Riding on the platform change mantra, the APC won the presidential position with President Muhammadu Buhari as candidate in the election held on March 28. It was the first time opposition would defeat the ruling party in Nigeria. With presidential election results from all but one of Nigeria’s 36 states counted, and Buhari clearly in unassailable lead, the then President Goodluck Jonathan telephoned the APC candidate on March 31, to concede defeat.

  • In the legislative elections held on Saturday, March 28, the APC won 60 seats in the Senate, while the PDP won 49 seats. And in the House of Representatives, the APC won 225 seats as against 125 seats won by the PDP.
  • In the state governorship and state legislative elections held on Saturday, April 11, the APC was the biggest winner. Out of the whole 36 states of the federation, the APC won in 22, while the PDP won in 13 states.
  • Bukola Saraki, a former governor of Kwara State, was a winner on June 9, as he defied the directives of the APC leadership to contest the presidency of the Senate and won. Ahmed Lawan, his major rival for the position lost. Saraki was also able to get Ike Ekweremadu, a senator of the opposition PDP elected as deputy Senate president. Similarly in the House of the Representatives, Yakubu Dogara thrashed Femi Gbajabiamila, the party favourite, to win as speaker of the House, on June 9.
  • On July 28, Femi Gbajabiamila, a member representing Surulere Federal Constituency of Lagos State, was elected the majority leader of the House.
  • After winning at the poll held on April 11, when he was elected governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa of the PDP again won at the state election petition, on Monday, October 26. The losers in the matter were Great Ogboru, candidate of the Labour Party, LP, and O’tega Emerhor, candidate of the APC.
  • Similarly, the Supreme Court of Nigeria on Thursday, October 29, upheld the victory of Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State, candidate of the APC, at the April 11 election. The main loser was Emeka Ihedioha, former deputy speaker of the House of Representatives and candidate of the PDP, who challenged the incumbent all the way to courts.
  • The Senate, on Thursday, October 29, confirmed the nomination of Mahmood Yakubu, a professor of political science, as chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC. It also confirmed the nomination of Solomon Adedeji Soyebi, South-West; Mohammed Mustapha Lecky, South-South; Amina Zakari, North-West; Antonia Taiye Okoosi Simbine, North-Central and Baba Shettima Arfo, North-East, as national commissioners.
  • Godswill Akpabio, former governor of Akwa Ibom and Senate minority leader, was a winner on Friday, December 11, when the Court of Appeal in Abuja upheld his as senator representing Akwa Ibom North-West senatorial district. Inibehe Okori, candidate of the APC and his major opponent was the loser.
  • Momoh Jimoh-Lawal was a loser on Thursday, December 10, when he was removed by his colleagues as speaker of the Kogi House of Assembly. Winner from the removal was Godwin Osuyi, who took over as speaker.
  • Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, a prince, from the Giesi ruling house in Ile-Ife, Osun State, was a big winner when he was elected to the throne on October 26. The throne became vacant following the death of Okunade Sijuwade on July 28. Ogunwusi formally received staff of office as the 51st Ooni and coronation on December 7.
  • Winifred Ekanem Oyo-Ita, former permanent secretary, ministry of Science and Technology, was a winner on October 20, when she was named the new head of the civil service of the federation. The 51-year-old civil servant assumed her new position on October 21.
  • Among the major losers in the years were Marilyn Ogar, former spokesperson of the Department of State Services, DSS, and 44 other senior officials who were compulsorily retired on Thursday, September 3.
  • Nigeria’s under-17 football team known as Golden Eaglets won the U-17 World Cup final against Mali, in Chile on Sunday, November 8. By that win, Nigeria is the leading winner in the age tournament with five wins in its belt.
  • On Saturday, December 12, Nigeria’s Dream Team VI was a winner when it became African champion for the first time by defeating Algeria 2-1 at the final in Senegal. The Nigeria’s U-23 team had already book its ticket for the 2016 Olympics in Brazil by qualifying for the final.
  • The Nigerian under-20 team, popularly called the Flying Eagles, was a hero in March 2015, when it defeated Senegal 2-1 to be crowned champion of the 2015 African Youth Championship.
  • Also in football, the home based Super Eagles qualified for the 2016 Home Based Confederation of African Football. The Super Eagles also qualified for the final qualifying stage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.
  • The U-20 Women National Team, Falconets, qualified for the 2016 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup.
  • In athletics, Nigeria had an impressive outing at the 2015 All African Games in Congo Brazzaville, winning 20 medals. The team Nigeria won 10 gold medals, seven silvers medals and three bronze medals.
  • The Super Falcons of Nigeria were losers, having failed to progress to group stages of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada, which held between June 6 and July 5.
  • The Falcons also failed to qualify for the women’s football events at the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.
  • The team Nigeria similarly failed to win any medal at the 2015 IAAF World Championship in Beijing, China, which was held in August.
  • On July 21, President Pierre Nkurunziza won a new term in office after an election marred by violence and a boycott by the opposition. According to Pierre Claver Ndayicariye, head of the electoral commission, Nkurunziza garnered 69.41 percent of the votes cast in the polls that took place on Tuesday, on July 21. Agathon Rwasa, the president’s nearest rival, got 18.99 percent of the vote cast.
  • In the presidential election held in Ivory Coast on October 25, 2015, Alassane Ouattara, incumbent president, won a second term in a landslide victory over his closest rival Pascal Affi N’Guessan.
  • In the general elections held in Burkina Faso on November 29, Roch Marc Kabore was proclaimed the winner of the presidential election. Kabore, will thus, become the country’s first new leader in decades. The election of the former prime minister represents a pivotal moment for the West African nation, which has been ruled by leaders who came to power in coups for most of its history since independence from France in 1960.

— Jan 4, 2016 @ 01:00 GMT

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