PRESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan has pledged that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, government would continue to do its best for the people of Bauchi State and Nigeria in general. Jonathan, who spoke at the Ibrahim Babangida Square in Bauchi as part of his campaign for re-election, said that with the peoples’ continued support, no “retrogressive force” would be able to dislodge the ruling party from power.
The President told party faithful who gathered for the rally that no amount of opposition would also be allowed to halt the good work his administration was doing for Bauchi people. While urging the people to vote the PDP candidates at all levels, Jonathan said no amount of opposition would stop the good work his administration was doing for people of Bauchi and also promised to continue to empower youths with education, skill acquisition programmes and job creation so that they would not be used to perpetrate violence.
Jonathan acknowledged that the State had produced great leaders with a particular reference to Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, first Nigerian prime minister. “The great man never instigated us against each other. He preached peace, unity and oneness,” the president said.
Earlier, Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State, reminded the people that insurgency was not created by the Jonathan administration. He said even Mohammed Yusuf, the late Boko Haram founder, was not killed during his presidency, and therefore, urged the people to support PDP at all levels.
But all these fell on deaf ears of some thugs who had mingled to with party members to foment trouble. The thugs pelted the president’s convoy with stones, thereby causing a hasty departure of the campaign team. Unconfirmed report stated that as many as six presidential bodyguards were injured by the stone throwing thugs.
Indigenes of Abia State in Diaspora Endorse Ikpeazu
A GROUP of indigenes of Abia State residing in the United Kingdom, Ireland and other Europe countries Uche has endorsed Okezie Victor Ikpeazu for governorship seat of the state. The group led pledged its total support for Ikpeazu’s governorship ambition. Having read and studied the development blueprints and policies of produced by Ikpeazu and considering his past antecedents, the group considered it very imperative to endorse him for the Abia State governorship seat on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. In its show of support, the group donated some campaign materials to Ikpeazu.
In his response, the PDP candidate applauded the association’s gesture and re-emphasised his administration’s commitment to involve Abians in the diaspora in the building of the state. “Continuity drives development. You cannot abandon the already built infrastructures for new ones; our administration shall improve on already developed infrastructures by Governor Theodore A. Orji,” Ikpeazu said, adding that he would also develop a Diasporan village in Umuahia, capital city.
FG To Recall Soldiers from International Duty
FEDERAL Government is contemplating the possibility of recalling Nigerian soldiers on international assignment as peace keepers abroad. Mike Omeri, coordinator, National Information Centre, who disclosed this in Abuja, on Thursday, January 22, said that the recalled soldiers would help to enhance the operational capability of the military fighting against insurgency in the North-East.
Omeri, who briefed the press on security issues across the country, said: “Nigeria and her neighbours should improve on the effective management of their borders, while the Abuja Regional Intelligence Fusion Unit should collaborate with the Intelligence Coordination Centre based in Chad, in intelligence sharing.
“Offer of military and humanitarian assistance from regional and international bodies should be deployed along Nigeria’s common borders with neighbouring countries, with a clear mandate, command and control, as well as rule of engagement.”
The federal government’s decision was said to have been informed by the meeting of a number of African countries that converged on Niamey, Niger Republic, on Tuesday, January 20, with the aim of seeking authorisation from the United Nations Security Council, through the African Union, to set up fund and deploy a more effective multi-national force to fight Boko Haram in North-East of Nigeria.
Fayose Deserves Sanction
THE National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, on Wednesday, January 21, wants Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, to be severely sanctioned for the offensive advertisement he placed in some newspapers on Monday, January 19. The commission said having reviewed the controversial advertisement placed by Fayose, it said the advertisement material amounted to “hate speech.”
The verdict was pronounced at a stakeholders’ roundtable organised by the NHRC for civil society groups, mainstream and social media partners in Abuja, on Wednesday. Chidi Odinkalu, chairman of the NHRC, who addressed journalists at the forum, decried the death-wish publication by Fayose, saying it offended public decency and violated all known norms of decorum.
Odinkalu said the governor, who is a member of the National Council of States, which makes decisions for the security of the country, should have exhibited caution and statesmanship in sending out the message. He said that the governor went too far in his controversial message not minding that even the children of the former Northern leaders he showed to have died in office might feel bad while the same party also expected them to cast their votes for them in the forthcoming elections.
Odinkalu said that the governor’s advertisement was not only in bad taste but it also violated Section 95 of the Electoral Act and should be made to pay for such open infraction.
Section 95(1) and (2) of the Electoral Act says: “A political campaign or slogan shall not be tainted with abusive language directly or indirectly likely to incite religious, ethnic, tribal or sectional feelings.
“Abusive, intemperate, slanderous or base language or insinuations or innuendos designed or likely to provoke violent reaction or emotions shall not be employed or used in political campaigns.”
We’ll end Boko Haram insurgency soon, Jonathan
PRESIDENT Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday, January 20, assured Rilwan Suleiman Adamu, Emir of Bauchi, that Boko Haram insurgency would end soon. The president gave the assurance when he visited the emir in his palace on Thursday in continuation of his nationwide campaign for re-election.
The president told the Emir and members of the Bauchi Traditional Council that his administration had achieved a lot, but expressed regret that the ongoing Boko Haram insurgence had taken attention away from his achievements. But he insisted that his administration would soon put an end to the insurgency.
“When we moved round in 2011, we got massive support from you and since then, we have been working hard to justify your support. Insha Allahu, we will also succeed this time. The unfortunate Boko Haram excesses are taking attention away from our numerous achievements. Everybody wants security, everybody wants to be safe and to be able to move freely. I am therefore assuring you that we will bring the situation to a reasonable degree and will eventually end it very soon,” he said.
Jonathan said his government had worked hard to reposition agriculture, promising that if re-elected, he would work with Bauchi leaders to develop the abundant mineral resources in the state as part of the measures to diversify the country’s economy away from crude oil.
Responding, Adamu thanked Jonathan for the respect and love he has for the traditional institution. Similarly, he commended his efforts to end insurgency in the North-East and expressed hope that the abducted Chibok schoolgirls would be found and rescued soon.
“We also appreciate your expressed commitment to free and fair elections and the signing of the Abuja Peace accord as it will encourage our people to embrace peace instead of acrimony,” the Emir said.
The president was accompanied to the palace by Vice-President Namadi Sambo, Ahmadu Ali, national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Bala Mohammed, minister of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, and many other party leaders.
— Feb. 2, 2015 @ 01:00 GMT