JUSTICE Valentine Ashi, a federal high court judge in Abuja, on Wednesday, December 10, ordered security agencies, including the police and operatives of the Department of State Service, to confiscate a book titled: My Watch, written by former President Olusegun Obasanjo. Ashi said the book, which was presented to the public in Lagos, on Tuesday, December 9, contravened the order of the court restraining the publication.
The judge also gave Obasanjo 21 days within which to explain why he should not be punished for contempt of court for his action. “I hold the defendant not only in contempt of the court, but to show cause why he should not be punished for contempt and ordered to undo what he has wrongly done… The defendant, whether by himself, agents, servants, privies or whatever name called, is hereby restrained from further publication or offering for sale or distribution, in any way or manner, the book called My Watch or the like of the visual or written materials which contains a re-publication or statement extracted from the letter referred to by the plaintiff,” Ashi said.
The judge, had on December 5, restrained Obasanjo from publishing the book pending the determination of the N20 billion libel suit instituted against him by Buruji Kashamu, a member of the Peoples Democratic Party in Ogun State. Alex Iziyon, SAN, counsel to Kashamu, had in his ex parte application before the court on December 5, argued that Obasanjo should not be allowed to go ahead with the publication of the book since it contained issues related to the matter in the libel suit.
The book was said to have contained to a letter dated December 2, 2013 written by Obasanjo to President Goodluck Jonathan, in which Obasanjo allegedly described Kashamu as a fugitive wanted for drug offences in the United States. Thus, Iziyon had argued that it would be wrong for Obasanjo to be allowed “to proceed to comment on, write books about or make publications on the issue yet to be decided by the court.”
In granting Kashamu’s application, the court fixed Wednesday, December 10, for the continuation of the substantive libel suit. But Obasanjo on Tuesday, December 9, made a public presentation of the book, arguing at the venue of the event that the book had been published before the court was misled into making the orders. The former president said the judge ought to be punished for making such order.
Female Bombers Kill Six in Kano
SIX persons were killed and seven others were injured on Wednesday, December 10, when two female suicide bombers blew up themselves at Kantin Kwari textile market in Kano. The incident occurred less than two weeks after a similar suicide attack killed more than 100 persons at the Kano Central Mosque….
An eyewitness said the suicide bombers were denied access when they asked to use the convenience which led to a serious argument that drew a large crowd. Sensing that a noticeable crowd had gathered at the scene, one of the suicide bombers immediately detonated her bomb.
In his account, Abdullahi Abubakar, a leader of the market traders union, said the blasts hit a parking area rather than the main market. He said the attackers were in their late teens and were accompanied by a man who disappeared after the girls blew themselves up.
Adenrele Shinaba, commissioner of police, Kano State Command, who confirmed the bomb attack said “the blast was a twin suicide bombings carried out by two young girls in hijab. They came by the market and asked to be directed to a public convenience; the bombs detonated, killing them and four others.” Shinaba said that at least seven persons were injured in the attack. The incident which triggered panic in the restive city compelled the authority to shut the textile market to forestall looting and also to enable the security agents comb the market.
Our Grouse Against PDP Primaries in Bauchi – Chigari Foundation
THE outcome of the gubernatorial primaries of the Peoples Democratic Party held in Buachi State on Monday, December 8, is not pleasing to some persons. In a press statement issued by the Chigari Foundation, Community and Youth Resource Centre, Misau, Bauchi State, the group said it was disappointed and therefore rejected the primaries election because it was fraught with irregularities.
According to the statement signed by Muhammad Ali Pate, chairman of the centre, the primaries were marred by harassment and intimidation of delegates, inconclusive election and violation of Section 19(k) of the guideline which provides for modified secret ballot system. “We observed that delegates were coerced into voting the alleged predetermined winner. The initial organisation of the election clearly indicated an effort to identify which delegates voted or did not vote for the predetermined candidate, and was reinforced by creating fear of repercussion if the delegates did not chose the candidate,” Pate’s statement said.
Besides, the group claimed that the results of five local government areas were summarily rejected and excluded in the computation of the votes, even when there were unresolved issues on the casting of the votes those areas. In contravention of the party guidelines for primary elections, the statement claimed that delegates were deliberately crowded and clustered in order to make the secret ballot completely impossible. “It is hard to believe that five local government delegates numbering about 2000 or more persons could be asked to assemble at the same time to cast their ballots without the possibility of a delegate protruding into what the other is doing,” the statement argued.
As if that was not bad enough, the Foundation alleged that the situation created an opportunity for touting, an avenue for people to induce people to vote for their preferred candidates and also collect ballot papers of others to write on their behalf. “Bauchi State is facing great challenges, including dwindling economic performance, rising poverty, poor education, high unemployment, rising insecurity indicative of failed politics in the state. The PDP as a party was supposed to offer a level playing field for emergence of credible candidates in order to successfully compete and offer good governance for the development of the state after winning election. We hope that our complaints will resonate with national leadership of the party and that justice will be done for members of the party in Bauchi and the people of the state,” the statement said.
— Dec. 8, 2014 @ 01:00 GMT