Good morning! Here are 10 things you need to know this morning:
1. The Rivers State Elections Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja has sacked Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Owaji Ibani and 20 other lawmakers. Ibani is representing Andoni constituency in the state assembly.
The sacked lawmakers were elected in the last election believed to have been marred by violence and malpractices.
2. The Imo State Government has denied media reports that the State Governor, Rochas Okorocha beat his wife, Nneoma Nkechi to a pulp after she requested that the governor pay civil servants their outstanding arrears.The denial was contained in a statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Sam Onwuemeodo. The government described the report as unfounded and bare-faced lies.
3. The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) on Monday said it has withdrawn the data floor price for service providers in the telecommunications industry. According to NCC, the Floor price which is a government or group-imposed price control was removed in order to ensure sustainably, growth and development of the data service market.
4. Following the cancellation of the Rivers State Governorship election which was won by Chief Nyesom Wike, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State says it has dedicated its victory over Chief Wike of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the tribunal to its members who lost their lives during the campaign and the election period. The party alleged that over 100 APC members lost their lives in the last election.
5. Report has it that the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), the nation’s telecommunications regulator, has placed a fine of $5bn (£3.5bn) on mobile company, MTN Nigeria, for its failure to disconnect subscribers with unregistered SIM cards bought before January 2012.
6. The Delta State Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Asaba Monday dismissed the petition filed by Chief Great Ogboru of the Labour Party challenging the election of Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP). The tribunal ruled that Ogboru’s petition lacked evidence, therefore, he could not prove his case beyond reasonable doubts.
7. The Federal Government on Monday added one more charge to the one count charge preferred against former Security Adviser to ex-Preident, Goodluck Jonathan, Sambo Dasuki. The additional charge is that of money laundry. After series of objections to the additional charge, the judge adjourned to October 28.
8. President Muhammadu Buhari has set up an eight-man panel, mostly made up of officials of the All Progressives Congress, APC, on positions in Federal Government boards, parastatals and agencies. The committee is headed by Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Engr. Babachir Lawal.
9. The national leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has summoned an emergency meeting of the party’s national caucus. The meeting, scheduled to hold on Thursday, is to look into the alleged onslaught against the party and its candidates in the last general elections.
10. Report has claimed that the Senate will today screen the nominee for INEC Chairmanship, Professor Mahmud Yakubu. The report further claimed that the essence was to save the coming Kogi and Bayelsa
Tribunal judgements: PDP National Caucus set for emergency meeting
The national leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has summoned an emergency meeting of the party’s national caucus.
The meeting, billed to hold on Thursday, is to discuss what the it described as “the current onslaught against the party and its candidates in the last general elections, by the APC-led Federal Government”.
A statement on Monday by the PDP’s National Publicity Secretary, Chief Olisa Metuh, said the meeting will focus on the “unrelenting schemes” by the APC and its Federal Government to use some “unpatriotic elements” in the judiciary to advance their plot to take over states won by the PDP, particularly Rivers, Akwa-Ibom, Delta, Taraba and Abia states.
“The meeting is in furtherance of the decision of the leadership of the party to fully activate its structures in stiff resistance to the manipulations, coercions and threats of the APC-led government.”
The statement added that it was in line with the unbending determination by the PDP not to, in any way whatsoever, surrender any mandate freely given it to by the people at any level across the country, no matter the pressure.
Afenifere fires back at Kwankwaso, describes ex-gov’s remarks as clash of civilizations within the Lugard cage
PAN-YORUBA socio-political organisation, Afenifere, has faulted remarks made by former governor of Kano State, Senator Rabiu Kwakwanso, who allegedly justified the activities of Fulani herdsmen in the South West.
Senator Kwakwanso had said over the weekend that “the issue of conflict between the farmers and Fulani herdsmen is not common to the South west alone. It is not even common to Nigeria. It is all over the sub region.
In a statement, Afenifere’s publicity secretary, Mr. Yinka Odumakin said “In a replay of the sordid episode of 2000 when Arewa leaders rudely stormed the office of then Oyo state governor, Alhaji Lam Adesina on behalf of nomadic cattle rearers, former Kano state governor and serving Senator, Rabiu Kwakwanso came with verbal daggers to the same city at the weekend asking the age mates of his father to “shut up.”
According to him, it is another sad day for the clash of civilizations within the Lugard cage when a man who has occupied all the offices Kwakwanso has held, opens his mouth in a people’s domain and all he vomits make listeners to confuse him with a herdsman or Boko Haram chieftain.”
The statement reads: “Kwankwaso’s grouse with Yoruba leaders was our call for an end to the criminal activities of Fulani herdsmen in the region at the recent summit in Ibadan and that the Yoruba nation may reconsider its place in a union that could not protect us and would not allow us to protect ourselves if we did not see any sign to restructure Nigeria into a proper federation.
“The declaration is not anywhere near the statement of Gen Yakubu Gowon on August 3 1966: “there is no basis for Nigerian unity, which has been so badly rocked, not only once but several times.” or the theme of the North’s revenge coup of July 29,1967 titled ARABA, an Hausa word meaning “let us divide it”.
In addition, Afenifere said “In all his ramblings in Ibadan, Kwakwanso did not condemn the abduction of Chief Olu Falae, the killing of innocent farmers, raping of women and destruction of crops and farmlands in the course of the grazing activities of Fulani herdsmen. He only tacitly justified their activities by offering excuses for their criminal conducts.”
“The issue that we are talking about, education is very important. If all Fulani are given opportunity to go to school, I don’t think they will risk their lives and their animals going into the bush, where there are reptiles. I think the key thing is education.
“Kwakwanso wants Yoruba “understanding of the situation” while his kinsmen continue to draw their blood, violating their women and destroying their farmlands until Mallam decides to give them education may be when we celebrate another centenary.
“The double speak of Kwakwanso is galling as he was a few months ago celebrating the hordes of Almajiris in the north as a positive development that provides a demography that could easily be herded for electoral process.
“Rabiu Kwakwanso in an interview he granted Vanguard Newspaper on April 26,2015, lambasted the wife of former President of Nigeria for “insulting” the north over the menace of Almajiri children which he considered a thing of ‘pride,’ saying, “Look at what the wife of the President said about us-northerners. She was just castigating the North almost at every opportunity. You cannot insult us and think that you can get away with it. This democracy is a game of numbers, and that is why we went back and put almajiris together to get about two million votes.
“The issue of almajiris have been opened to abuse in this country and turned into insults for us. Almajiri here is a positive word but the way they see it is that we are beggars, that we produce so many children that we cannot take care of, and that is what the First Lady was saying and we kept quiet because we had our own way of answering her and we did exactly that on the 28th of March.”
“Kwankwanso further said that the Fulani should be given the opportunity to go to school as if the Yoruba were the ones who denied them such opportunity in almost 40 years that the north has held power since independence.
“With the uncouth, rude and insensitive remarks of Kwankwaso and his ilk in the North which are like pouring salt on injury, it is coming clear to us that there may be a grand agenda with the activities of the Fulani herdsmen either as an advance party of Boko Haram into our territory or an expansionist project.
“The Yoruba leaders therefore stand by every word in the Ibadan declaration,” said Odumakin.
‘Posting corps members to Boko Haram-ravaged states is optional’
DIRECTOR-General of National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Brigadier-General Johnson Olawunmi, has stated that posting corps members to perform their national service in the states ravaged by Boko Haram in North- Eastern Nigeria is optional.
Brigadier-General Olawunmi made the clarification while answering questions from journalists at the weekend after closing the one week preparatory course for NYSC state coordinators at the NASME Barrack, Makurdi, the Benue State capital.
The NYSC boss who assured those that voluntarily choose to do their national service in the zone of adequate security and welfare, further said no corp member has been killed in the area since he assumed duty as director general.
He charged the course participants to make use of the knowledge gained during the training in order to justify the resources invested in the programme and directed the course coordinators to get all the lectures delivered in soft and hard copies to serve for reference purpose.
We’ll shut down Nigerian embassy in India-pro-Biafra activists
Some pro-Biafra activists under the aegis of Indigenous People of Biafra have threatened to destroy the Nigerian embassy in India over the detention of the Director of Radio Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu.
The activist, who wore vests bearing the insignia of Biafra, staged a protest at the Nigerian High Commission building in New Delhi to demand the release of Kanu.
In a five minute Facebook video, the activist, among other demands, said if Kanu was not released within the next 24 hours, they would destroy the embassy.
The protesters, who chanted a Biafra solidarity song, “Biafra save my bullet when I die,” said not even the Indian police would stop them if Kanu was not released.
One of the activists said, “Today we are all over the world and we are making it very clear. We know your families all over the world. If Nnamdi Kanu is not released within 24 hours, we will bring down this building. Kanu has not done anything wrong, he is a prisoner of conscience kidnapped by the operatives of the Department of State Services. But we are warning that if they fail to release him, we will break down this embassy. Go and call all the police in India, they cannot stop us. We don’t joke about our leader. We are not afraid of jail.”
Another member of the group said, “We don’t mince word. There should not be a clause to his release. After all, this embassy was built with our money. No matter the number of Indian police they put here, we will bring this building down. We are ready to die. We are dead already so we are not afraid of death.”
An unidentified man at the embassy said he would convey their demands to President Muhammadu Buhari.