Jamaican opposition leader Peter Phillips on Friday announced his resignation, after preliminary results gave Prime Minister Andrew Holness a landslide victory in legislative elections, according to daily newspaper The Gleaner.
Phillips said he had written to the Chairman of his People’s National Party (PNP) and asked for arrangements to be made to select a new head, according to the daily.
Holness’ Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) scored 49 of the 63 parliamentary seats up for grabs in Thursday’s elections, with the preliminary count almost complete, the electoral commission said late on Thursday.
The PNP lagged far behind, with only 14 seats.
The result would give Holness another five-year term in office.
The Gleaner called it “a shocking defeat for the PNP, which saw a surprising upset for several of its top stalwarts and popular names.”
About 1.9 million people were eligible to elect members of the House of Representatives on the largest island in the English-speaking Caribbean.
Voter turnout was given as 37 per cent, down from 48.4 per cent in 2016.
Campaign rallies and door-to-door campaigning had been restricted after the number of new coronavirus cases surged.
Jamaica has recorded nearly 3,000 infections and almost 30 deaths from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.
The incumbent was nevertheless seen as having done a relatively good job in handling the pandemic, including by quickly closing the borders in March.
The government has also received praise for its economic policies, with unemployment falling to a historic low of 7 per cent in October 2019, according to World Bank figures.
But the pandemic left hundreds of thousands of Jamaicans without jobs or with low incomes, leading to the government reopening the tourism-reliant island’s borders in mid-June.
The opposition criticised Holness for calling elections during the pandemic, accused the government of corruption, and pointed to high crime levels.
The elections took place under safety measures, including temperature checks and wearing of face masks.
Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)https://nnn.ng/jamaican-opposition-leader-resigns-after-election-defeat/
Edo 2020: NCFront commends security on neutrality, wants more from INEC on logistics
The National Consultative Front (NCFront) on Sunday commended stakeholders for peaceful and credible Edo gubernatorial election, applauding the security for its neutrality and professionalism.
The group disclosed this in its “Major Assessment and Verdict on Edo Governorship Election”, it issued.
It was jointly issued by Comrade Isa Aremu, Dr Tanko Yunusa, Prince Chris Azor, Mr Georgina Dakpokpo, Ayaba Olubunmi and Mr Ejiro Ofoye on behalf of NCFront Elections Monitoring Team.
The nonpartisan group, which commended the security for visible neutrality and professionalism in preventing thuggery and attempted malpractice in some polling units, advised the officers not to rest on their oars.
According to the group, more are still expected from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), on logistics and in the conduct of some political parties and their agents.
The group said that party agents were expected to be more adherent to subsisting electoral ethics and rules, which forbade voters’ inducement, vote buying, thuggery and violence during elections, ballot snatching and stuffing.
It said that the political parties should always exercise respect for the Peace Accord their parties and candidates signed before elections.
“NCFront wishes to call on the INEC, as the main elections management body in Nigeria to always ensure that improved elections logistics are henceforth put in place and deployed on time.
“INEC must urgently employ latest technology required to make elections transparent and credible in Nigeria so that elections are not ruined by violence and ultimately decided by the Courts instead of the electorate.
“However, the Police, being the lead security agency, would still need to do more to assure the Nigerian electorate, especially, through improved conduct of its personnel that they can reliably stand on the part of the law in maintaining peace and order during elections.
“This must be done instead of their regular recourse to intimidation of eligible voters, which has always occasioned recline of voters on election day and electoral manipulation in another instance,” it said.
The group, however, commended INEC for being above board in its conduct during the poll.
The NCFront also commended the Edo people for the relative peace witnessed during the poll and credibility of the electoral process, inspite of the violent build up.
The group while congratulating the winner of the election called on Gov. Godwin Obaseki to be magnanimous in victory by extending the hands of fellowship to all his fellow contestants in building a united and stable government and state.
NAN reports that NCFront, a nonpartisan pan-Nigerian conscience group, deployed 600 cadres of observers/monitors, in conjuction with its INEC accredited partners, in the 18 Local Government Areas of Edo for monitoring of the governorship elections.
The group commended INEC for giving priority to Persons Living with Disabilities (PLWDs), and other vulnerable groups especially the elderly during the electioneering process.
It, however, added that some of the polling units were not accessible to some categories of PLWDs.
Edited By: Donald Ugwu
Youths should be drivers of innovation, creativity for a better Nigeria- Ex-VC Bell University
Prof. Isaac Adeyemi, the former Vice Chancellor, Bells University of Technology, Ogun, has charged Nigerian youths to harnessy their knowledge via the internet to be drivers of innovation and creativity for a better Nigeria.
“The youths are the most vulnerable to the post COVID-19 events, including the educational system.
“To position themselves for a successful career, the youths being exposed to technology should take the initiative to see to it that they use the knowledge for innovation and creativity.
‘’That will develop the economy of the country because each country is trying to design means of survival to float,” Adeyemi said.
The former VC said through collaboration with local or international agencies or organisations, some of which are online, youth can leverage and adapt knowledge to suit local situations.
“This can translate into national or state activities that can grow the economy of Nigeria and put it in the global stage.
Also speaking at the event, Prof. Seyi Osunade, Associate Professor, Computer Science department, University of Ibadan, said based on what was happening right now with the effects of COVID-19 pandemic, government and education stakeholders should do more of advocacy.
“That is creating an awareness for the youths on what the pandemic is, that it is real and people still need to take precautions.
“Though the number of infected people are dropping, people still need to take precautions and as schools are preparing to resume, people should work towards maintaining the safety protocols and adhere to COVID-19 guidelines.
“Our curriculum should focus more on practical skills and expressions, that is they should teach things that our students can do here to provide local solutions to our challenges.
“Things they can develop into products, because if we can adapt the knowledge we have into a working solution it will go a long way for us.
“Technical and vocational education should be encouraged more even in our normal school curriculum,” Osunade said.
The Pioneer of SSII, Mrs Omokehinde Deji-Akinpelu said the organisation was focused on community service.
She said that the initiative started formally in 2014 with mentoring of undergraduate students at Lead City University.
Deji-Akinpelu stated that the vision of the organization was to raise purpose driven young men and women who would become world renowned in conduct, character and competence.
“We are set out to impart them with positive values and right attitude to life that will enable them become accountable and responsible adults
“You will agree with me that part of what we are facing today with our political leaders in Nigeria is lack of right mentoring.
“Some of these youths are taking wrong steps and decisions because they lack right and proper mentoring, we need to address this for a better Nigeria.”
Deji-Akinpelu further stated that youths would rather model their lives after celebrities and people they don’t even have direct access to and that had its disadvantages.
Two of the participants who spoke to NAN, Oluwatobi Oduola and Ayomide Olukorede said their passion to influence teenagers and mentor them towards greatness fueled their participation.
They identified lack of sense of direction and career choice as major challenges teenagers are faced with and the need to help as many youths to succeed in life despite all odds.
Edited By: Bayo Sekoni
Dep. speaker House of Reps mourns Zazzau Monarch
Rep Ahmed Wase, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, says the nation has lost a paragon of virtue as a result of the demise of Emir of Zazzau, His Highness, Alhaji Shehu Idris.
Wase, in a statement issued and made available to newsmen by Mr Umar Puma, his Chief Press Secretary, on Sunday in Abuja expressed regret over the passage of the emir.
He stated that the royal father passed on at a critical period in the history of the nation when his wisdom was needed most.
Wase said he was saddened by the loss of the emir, adding that he joined the people of Zazzau Emirate Council, the governor of Kaduna state, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, and the entire country to mourn the late royal father.
According to him, we have lost one of the illustrious traditional rulers, a loving father, a man of peace filled with wisdom and a paragon of virtue.
“He was a stabiliser and a virtuous man who ruled with the fear of God and contributed immensely to the development of his Emirate, Kaduna state and the nation at large.”
He asked Allah to console the family he left behind, the people of Zazzau Emirate and Kaduna state over the unfortunate but inevitable occurrence.
“We cannot question Allah’s decision, but may Allah forgive all his wrong doings while on earth and grant his soul abode in Aljanna Firdaus,” he said.
The News Agency of Nugeria , reports that the emir died at the Military Hospital, Kaduna, on Sunday.
Edited By: Benson Iziama/Donald Ugwu
Renown Ibadan-born businessman, Adegoke joins APC officially in Oyo
He made the announcement while addressing his supporters on Sunday in Ibadan.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Adegoke, a political disciple of Sen. Rasheed Ladoja, is the Ajia-Balogun Olubadan of Ibadanland.
NAN also recalled that Adegoke contested the House of Representatives seat for Ibadan South-West/North-West Federal constituency in 2015 on the platform of Accord Party (AP) and lost.
He was also part of those who worked for the emergence of the present administration of Gov. Seyi Makinde under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.
Adegoke, who is eyeing the Oyo South Senatorial seat, said his decision was after several consultation with his political associates, leaders and supporters across the 33 local government of the state.
Adegoke thanked his supporters for their concern on the matter, saying there was no cause for alarm.
According to him, “Few days ago there was a fake news story that I, Olooye Adegboyega Taofeek Adegoke has decided to stay back in the PDP.
Supporters expressed joy over the news coming from their political leader and benefactor.
Edited By: Bayo Sekoni