C/River primary: PDP affirms Odey as candidate, denies role in primary



The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), National Working Committee (NWC), said it was not involved in the conduct of the party’s primary election by the Committee set up for the Cross River North Senatorial District by-election.

The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan, gave the clarification at a news conference on Tuesday in Abuja.

Ologbondiyan said that the attention of the NWC had been drawn to misleading comments by one of the aspirants in the primary, Mr Jarigbe-Agom Jarigbe, wherein he made spurious allegations against the NWC.

He said that ordinarily, the NWC should not honour such a “reckless and irresponsible allegation” with a response.

Ologbondiyan said that being a responsive leadership, Mr Uche Secondus-led NWC in the interest of the teeming members and supporters of PDP in Cross River state, had decided to put the record straight.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the Cross River North Senatorial District election was duly conducted by a five-man electoral panel, with a comprehensive delegates list issued by the party.

“At the end of the exercise, a majority report by three members of the electoral panel, signed by the Chairman, Secretary and a member of the committee was sent to the NWC.

“The report indicates that three aspirants: Mr Jarigbe and two others were in attendance along with INEC officials and security agencies at the time of accreditation of delegates,’’ he said.

Ologbondiyan noted that the report also contained the accreditation of agents of the aspirants, one of whom represented Jarigbe.

“However, according to the report, during voting, Jarigbe and two other aspirants, Mr Lupkata Nicholas and Mrs Mary Eru, staged a walk-out, having been part of the exercise from the beginning.

“The majority report indicated that at the end of the exercise, which was abandoned by Jarigbe, an aspirant, Dr Stephen Odey scored 450 votes to defeat Jarigbe, who scored 90 votes.”

“On Sept. 7, the Chief Returning Officer, Mr Taleb Tebite, returned Odey as winner and also submitted to the national secretariat the delegates list used for accreditation, ballot papers, (used and unused).

“He also submitted original result sheets, Certified True Copies (CTC), of INEC report from Cross River state and the police report, as required,’’ he said.

Ologbondiyan said that on the other hand, two members of the committee submitted a minority report to the national secretariat in which they presented the name of Jarigbe as winner with 381 votes.

“It is instructive to note that the minority report submitted by the two members did not contain the original party result sheets as approved by the Party Electoral guidelines.

“It did not also contain the used and unused ballot papers as required for authentication.

“What is more, the congress purportedly conducted by the two members was done outside the authorised and approved venue for the exercise.

“Moreover, the report of the Appeal Panel indicated that there was no appeal against the report submitted by the Chief Returning Officer.

“The report was accordingly approved by the congress as conducted and the election of Odey, as candidate of our party,’’ he said.

Ologbondiyan explained that the decision of the NWC in accepting the election of Odey was, therefore, completely in compliance with the constitution and the extant guidelines made thereunder.

“The NWC was in no way involved and played no roles, directly or remotely, in the conduct of the election by the committee set up for the purpose.

“It is, thus irresponsible, thoughtless and childish of Jarigbe to point accusing fingers at the NWC for his electoral failure and self-inflicted woe.

“Such is condemnable and completely unacceptable to the national leaders and members of our great party across board.”

The NWC according to Ologbondiyan cautions Jarigbe to desist from such unwarranted attempt to bring PDP to disrepute, adding that the act was frowned at by the constitution of the PDP.

Edited By: Dorcas Jonah/Donald Ugwu
Source: NAN



We have finally caged the lions from Edo politics, says Gov. Obaseki



Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo has said that his re-election in the just concluded governorship election for another four years has finally sent the lions and tigers into the zoo to be caged permanently from Edo politics.

Obaseki disclosed this on Monday in Benin while addressing a crowd of PDP supporters at the popular Kings square shortly after a victory match round the Benin Metropolis.

The Governor was accompanied by his Deputy Gov. Philip Shaibu, Chairman Edo PDP Campaign Council, Dan Orbih, House of Rep. Member, Ogbeide Ihama, among others.

According to him, the message of Saturday’s governorship election means I should go and work for Edo people. It is clear, the Edo people have spoken loud and clear.

“You have helped me caged the lions and tigers in the State, you will never see them again in Edo because they are all in the zoo now where they belong.

“Today, I promise you that we will work for Edo people because no one will hinder us from delivering the dividend of democracy to Edo people.

“My Deputy, Philip Shaibu, and I will go back to the office and work for Edo people. I want to thank everyone residing in the state; you spoke and we have heard you and ready to ever work for you.

“The next four years in the state will be the one that all citizens will live to remember as we will consolidate on our developmental achievements in the State. Thank you all,” he said.

Earlier, the Chairman of Edo PDP Campaign Council, Mr Dan Orbih, said that the victory had shown that Edo people rejected godfatherism, money bag politics and given the mandate for development of the State.

“With your support and votes you have started a new dawn in Edo Politics, Nigeria’s democracy and by extension that the State will never remain the same again as Obaseki’s re-election has ended godfatherism in the State.

“Obaseki’s re-election has shown that Edo people are wiser, and the state is in the path of development as the people have spoken loudly and have finally silenced godfatherism in Edo Politics,” he said.

Edited By: Saidu Adamu/Donald Ugwu
Source: NAN





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Group condemns attacks on women during governorship election in Edo



An Advocacy Group known as Stop Violence Against Women in Politics (STOPVAWIP), on Monday condemned violent attacks against women in some polling units and wards during the Saturday’s governorship election in Edo.

Mrs May Ekido, the coordinator of STOPVAWIP, told newsmen in Benin that the group received no fewer than 150 calls during and after the elections on various degree of attacks on women

Ekido, who is also the Deputy coordinator of the Girls Power Initiative, expressed concerns on how women who constitute over 48 per cent of voters were intimidated and disenfranchised due to violence on them.

“Women were not allowed to participate fully due to hijacking and destruction of election materials in some polling units, sporadic shooting, assault by party activists on female voters, INEC officials, and observers.

“Others are high cases of coercion by party activists to vote for a particular candidate.

“We, therefore, condemn any act that hinders women’s political participation,” she said.

Ekido explained that an elderly woman was assaulted and injured while preventing party activists from carting away election materials from her Polling Unit at Tipper garage in Egor local government area.

“We have since reached out to her and provided counseling services from professionals working with Vivian Sexual Assault Referral Centre.

“A woman, the late Mrs Yado Odogbo, of Tolota village, was shot and killed in Polling Unit 6 in Ikoro Ward, in Ovia South-West.

“A female observer deployed by YIAGA Africa to Polling Unit 7, Ward 3 Ewatto, Esan South East, was attacked, given matchet cuts and almost killed,” she added.

She, however, called on the National Assembly to expedite action in the review of the Electoral Act and Constitution in order to reform Nigeria’s electoral process to be more inclusive, secure and transparent.

According to her, we are also calling on the Edo State House of Assembly to enact the Violence Against Persons Prohibition (VAPP), bill, to protect women and punish perpetrators of gender-based violence in the state.

Ekido further explained that the Stop-VAWIP campaign is an initiative that seeks to establish the link between gender-based electoral violence and the low level of participation of women in politics.

Edited By: Donald Ugwu
Source: NAN

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Kuje PDP inaugurates leaders of South-West group



The Kuje Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the FCT, has inaugurated leaders of its South-West members members resident in Kuje Area Council.

The inaugurated chairman of the geopolitical zone, Amos Oluwaniyi, was sworn-in alongside nine other members of the party executives in the area.

Mr Clement Ojotene, a lawyer, administered the oath of office on the new executives at the Kuje Area Council township hall on Monday.

Mr Sunday Zaka, FCT PDP chairman, in a remark, said that the executives were saddled with the responsibility of uniting the party and bringing back members that defected to other parties.

According to him, PDP still commands huge supporters in the country and is battle ready to clinch power at the Presidential and local government levels come 2023.

“In order to have effective and successful party, we must have competent field workers who can execute any work assigned to them.

“I am urging every electorate in Kuje Area Council to remain focused and canvass votes for PDP at the Presidential and local government level.

“They should be resolute and remain law abiding for peaceful coexistence; PDP is united in Kuje and will remain so,” he assured.

Alhaji Mohammed Ismaila, the PDP Chairman in Kuje Area Council, said the inauguration was part of the responsibility the national chapter had given the FCT chapter.

Ismaila congratulated the officials and called on the party supporters to continue to be law abiding and be focused toward achieving desired targets in 2023.

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ECOWAS Court set to resume from extended vacation on Oct. 7



The ECOWAS Court will be resuming its activities on Oct. 7, after its three months vacation.

This is contained in a statement issued in Abuja on Monday by the media office of the justices.

The court will deliver judgment in nine cases filed against eight some member states.

It added that the cases were also filed against Nigeria’s Cross River State and the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID) and listed in the latest course list released by the Registry of the Court for the period Sept. 25 to Oct. 28.

According to the court, among those listed for judgment is a case filed by Counsellor Kabineh Muhammad Ja’neh, a former Justice of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Liberia against the government.

“The former Justice is challenging his removal from office on the grounds that it did not follow due process while he was not granted fair hearing.

“In another of the cases scheduled for judgment, a former staff of the ECOWAS Commission, Prof. AbdulSalami Nasidi, sued the Commission alleging the wrongful termination of his appointment,” it said.

It recalled that the Court began sessions and judicial activities to guarantee continuous access to justice and timely delivery of justice in line with its mandate.

It noted that the virtual operations were in a bounnd to adhere to the safety guidelines recommended by the West African Health Organisation (WAHO) and the WHO following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic earlier in the year.

“The Court held its inaugural “virtual” court session on June 22, 2020 after it adopted a new Practice Direction in May 2020 that allowed the use of Electronic Case Management System for electronic filing (e-filing) and Virtual Court Sessions as part of measures to ensure the safety of its members, staff, lawyers and other stakeholders.

“Hon. Justice Edward Amoako Asante, President of the Court had stated in July 2020 that the Court would proceed on annual vacation from July 15 to Sept. 15, 2020 in accordance with Article 24 of its Rules,” the court added.  

Edited By: Sadiya Hamza
Source: NAN

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