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BREAKING: Essien Udim Stakeholders Blast PDP Elders Over AKHA Crisis, Nse Ntuen

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The Political stakeholders of Essien Udim Local Government have lambasted the actions and utterances of PDP Elders over the crisis rocking the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly and purported rejection of the new Speaker, Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen.

Rising from an emergency meeting convened at the instance of the Essien Udim Caucus Chairman, Arc. Ubokutom Nyah, the stakeholders described the communique issued by PDP Elders as mischievous, self-seeking and a recipe for discord in a bid to further mundane political interest.

Expressing their support to the emergence of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen as the speaker of the Assembly, the leaders affirmed that the development has strengthened the legislature and wondered why the so-called elders did not condemn the recent invasion of the house by the Governor with the aid of hoodlums.

Read Full Communique:

A COMMUNIQUE ISSUED ON SATURDAY 1ST DECEMBER, 2018 AT THE END OF AN EMERGENCY MEETING OF CAUCUS AND STAKEHOLDERS OF ESSIEN UDIM LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA ON THE CRISIS AT THE AKWA IBOM STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY
 
Our attention has been drawn to an advertorial credited to certain political merchants under the aegis of Elders and Stakeholders of PDP in Essien Udim Local Government Area. We are compelled to respond and denounce in all ramifications, deliberations and pronouncements relating to the purported rejection of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen, which we consider inimical to the unity, overall stability and integrity of Essien Udim Local Government Area. We therefore rise to declare that:
 
“We condemn in strong terms, the attempt by the so-called Elders and Stakeholders of PDP in Essien Udim to plant the seed of discord in a bid to promote their parochial, self-seeking and mundane political interests against the overall concern of  Essien Udim and Akwa Ibom people.”
 
“The attempt to either politicize the emergence of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen as the Honourable Speaker or meddle into the affairs of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly without condemning the illegal invasion of the house by Governor Udom Emmanuel with the aid of miscreants and hoodlums who were armed with dangerous weapons, is nothing but an act of scapegoatism.”
 
“With the suspension of 11 members, leaving the house with 15 members, the emergence of Rt. Hon. (Sir) Nse Effiong Ntuen as the Honourable Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly is no doubt, in compliance with the standing rules of the house and the law.”

“Having carefully followed the half-truths, mischief churned out about the purported rejection of the speaker by some elements whose primitive penchant remains the handling of lies and distortions to fit their narrow political narrative, we wish to state unequivocally that such petty assertions in question do not represent the position of Essien Udim stakeholders and remains therefore, a devilish concoction of the sponsors.”

“As leaders and stakeholders rooted in democracy, we respect the wish of any Essien Udim son to their democratic aspirations but shall never be a party to electoral monkey tricks, let alone the rejection of our son and experienced lawmaker like Rt. Hon. Nse Effiong Ntuen, whose emergence as speaker has strengthened and repositioned the place of Akwa Ibom State legislature, bringing to an end, the era of rubber-stamping, impunity and ignominy that characterized the reign of Rt.Hon. Onofiok Luke.”
 
“For the interest of the public who may have been misled, here are the facts: that the former speaker was contemptuous by virtue of the pending court cases when he declared the seats of the lawmakers vacant. Reliable information from the house reveals that the former speaker surreptitiously entered the hallowed chambers of the house from the backdoor, defiling the ethos of the legislature. More so, the mace – the symbol of legislative authority was not used at the purported sitting, a quorum was not formed, and the house since 1999, had never sat for legislative business on Mondays. Therefore, the actions of the former speaker and his cohorts was a formal demonstration of illegality, rascality and ineptitude which has become the landmark of the current administration and befits his impeachment.”
 
“We have also noticed serial efforts by the former speaker and the Governor to disparage and malign the hard-earned personality of our dear son, Distinguished Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio as if he is the apparition hunting their sinking political career and impending defeat at the forthcoming elections. We are fully aware that the desperations are just emerging and as events unfold, these characters will clearly adopt further mischief to advance this nefarious project. It is on this basis that we condemn this very unpatriotic, selfishly patronizing and self-serving posture of the declarants and warn them to desist henceforth. No amount of white wash or media propaganda of a few antagonists can change the resolve of the masses from sending these characters where they belong; the dungeon of history.”
 
“We are particularly embarrassed that instead of working with all stakeholders to sustain the legacies of Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio which heralded massive infrastructural transformation across the state, the acclaimed elders are chanting the endorsement of an administration they have described as ‘promoting security of lives and poverty’. This is not a discovery but a confirmation that is utterly insulting to the people of Essien Udim and Akwa Ibom State at large.”
 
“What can our so-called elders say about the killings of over 500 people in Ukanafun and Etim Ekpo Local Government Areas? What about the permanent curfew that has crippled the mercantile and social life of Ikot Ekpene? What can they say about the abandoned FourPoints by Sheraton located at the heartbeat of Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District? What about the Uyo-Ikot Ekpene Road? What about the abandoned Tropicanna and Ibom Mall? What about the grandeur of incompetence, noisemaking and all motion without movement? Should these not be the real concern of elders? Shamefully, the state of affairs of a state renowned for receiving the highest monthly federal allocation is not as encouraging as the talents and potentials of the people this state merit – a life of stateliness, conceit and real democracy is still a dream for the overwhelming Akwa Ibom people.”

“We are deeply concerned about the infrastructural decline particularly in Essien Udim and Akwa Ibom State in general, since the inception of Governor Udom Emmanuel led-administration coupled with inactions, gross display of overzealousness by certain political actors who are bereft of the workings of democracy.”

“Matters bothering on the deployment or redeployment of the Commissioner of Police to a state is an exclusive preserve of the Nigeria Police Force, and they should be allowed to exercise their constitutional responsibility without needless interferences from any quarters including the elders and political parties. Therefore, the ongoing desperate calls from politicians for the redeployment of the present State Commissioner of Police, Mr. Musa Kimo is tactless and totally unacceptable.”
 
“We wish to insist that natural justice, equity, fair play and democratic norms must take their natural course as we step closer to the general elections. We equally charge Governor Udom Emmanuel to call himself and his acolytes to deescalate the emerging preference for impunity and other acts that is undermining the peace and stability of our dear state.”
 
“We believe that the 2019 contest would be won on the basis of superior program of action; upon parade of superior will, competence, knowledge, exposure and experience; in good conscience driven by Godly principles and upon the endorsement and support of the people. We wish to conclude that our collective verdict and response to these antics will be availed through our votes on February 16thand March, 2nd, 2019 respectively.”

Stakeholders present at the meeting include: Elder Friday Udo, Former Secretary to Akwa Ibom State Government, Sir Etekamba Umoren, Atuekong (Dr) Chris Akpan, Obong Godwin Afangideh, Sir (Barr) Ibanga Akpabio, Hon. (Barr) Godwin Akang, Rt. Hon. (Barr) Paulinus Idio, Elder Ekpenyong Ekrikpo, Hon. Joseph Tombere, Hon. Ndifreke Idung, Mr. Patrick Usen, Mr. Andrew Anthony Udoh, Hon. (Leader) Oscar Udom, Obong Anthony Umoren Idung, Hon. Raphael Udoma, Mr. Paul Paul Ibara, Abom Ephraim Okon, Hon. Emmanuel Inyangetor, Hon. Emmanuel Isidore Udoh, Otuekong Hon. Uduak Udo, Mr. Godwin Etokakpan, Mr. Ime Unanam and Elder Thomas B. Inyang.

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BREAKING: Arrested PDP thugs moved to Police Headquarters Abuja

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*As sponsors flee, abandon them to their fate

Some hoodlums who were hired by PDP chieftains to unleash mayhem during last Saturday botched Presidential and National Assembly elections have been moved to the Police Headquarters in Abuja for interrogation.

This is as the sponsors of the violence may have gone underground to evade Police arrest even as the Police have vowed to redouble their efforts and track them down and arrest them to explain their roles in the burning of vehicles which conveyed electoral officials and materials.

Top Police sources said three key members of the Governor Udom Emmanuel administration in Akwa Ibom State, have been linked to the mayhem that was visited on the people of Obot Akara Local Government Area of the state on the eve of the rescheduled presidential election.

According to confessional statements made to the Police by some of the  thugs at the Police Area Command in Ikot Ekpene on Saturday, the hoodlums have indicted three top officials who are wanted to shed more light on their roles in sponsoring militants.

The mayhem, which left four people dead and vehicles completely burnt on the eve of the rescheduled presidential election in the council was carried out by hoodlums imported into the state by three top officials who are indigenes of the senatorial district.

The Police in Akwa Ibom state had arrested over 400 thugs and militants imported into the state by chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party to assist them in ballot box snatching and intimidation of voters.

Parading the suspects at the Police Area Command in Ikot Ekpene, a Police man who pleaded not to be named, disclosed to newsmen that the hoodlums were rounded up at Nto Ndang, Obot Akara after they got hint of their activities at the INEC office.

The Inspector General of Police, Mr Mohammed Adamu is said to have ordered a crack down on perpetrators of election violence and their sponsors. We gathered that those arrested with arms would be treated as terrorists and would be eventually arraigned in court.

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House Okays N30,000 as New Minimum Wage

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The House of Representatives has finally approved N30, 000 as the New national Minimum Wage.

President Muhammadu Buhari had sent a N27, 000 minimum wage bill to the National Assembly last week Thursday.

But the lawmakers adopted the report by the ad-hoc committee set up on the New Minimum Wage Bill which held a public hearing Monday and presented the report to the National Assembly.

The bill has already been passed for the third reading.

The lawmakers were unanimously in support of the adoption of the N30, 000 recommendation by the committee, which labour leaders insisted was approved by the tripartite committee set up by the President.

Details later….

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Governors express concern over increase in arms ahead of elections

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The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) has expressed concerns over the proliferation of arms and ammunition in the country ahead of the February 16 general election.

The Chairman of the forum and governor of Zamfara state, Abdul’aziz Yari, said the governors were also alarmed over the spate of kidnapping across the country.

Addressing journalists at the end of an emergency meeting held with the Office of the National Security Adviser and head of security agencies on Tuesday in Abuja, Yari said the governors have recommended a stronger collaboration and intelligence sharing amongst security agencies to ensure that lives and properties are protected.

According to him, the governors have further resolved to collaborate with security agencies to ensure that the elections are free, fair and credible.

He said: “Governors as major stakeholders, they seek our cooperation so that their job would be easier. We promised to do our best and ensure the election is free and credible. Not only that, we came through the ballot box and we are going through the same process to seek reelection and make sure that the election is free and is commended by the international community as they did in 2015.”

Yari further absolved the presidency of the allegation that the present administration was planning to rig the election saying the president has promised that he is not taking the “election in any way as do or die”.

While speaking, the Acting Inspector General of Police (IGP), Muhammed Adamu reassured Nigerians of a violence-free poll.

He assured further that the security agencies are ready for the election and would ensure that they mop up illegal arms in the system while saying the neutrality of the police shouldn’t be in doubt.

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Atiku writes UK, US others over Onnoghen’s suspension

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The opposition People’s Democratic Party presidential Candidate and former Vice president of Nigeria Atiku Abubakar has petitioned the United Kingdom, United State of America, France and Germany over the suspension of Walter Onnoghen as Nigeria’s chief justice.

“I have chosen to write this letter to Your Excellency for the enviable role that your country plays as champion of Democracy and the Rule of Law,” Abubakar wrote in the letter on Tuesday.

“As a Presidential Candidate in the forthcoming General Elections that will be conducted and supervised by the Government of President Muhammadu Buhari.”

“I feel the urgent need to share with you some of these key violations of the provisions of our constitution and to demand that you pile pressure on the Federal Government to desist from these violations and ensure a level playing field for the General Elections that are only a couple of weeks away.

Nigeria president Muhammadu Buhari on Friday swore in Ibrahim Tanko Muhammed as the new acting Chief Justice of Nigeria to replace embattled Onnoghen.

His swearing-in followed Onnoghen’s suspension by the president, who acted based on an order by the Code of Conduct Tribunal.

Onnoghen is facing a six-count charge of non-declaration of assets when he became the chief justice of Nigeria. Buhari said the allegations against Onnoghen were “grievous enough”.

Onnoghen’s suspension sparked reactions from Nigerians including the U.S. and Uk government

Uk noted that the “timing of this action, so close to national elections, gives cause for concern.”

“It risks affecting both domestic and international perceptions on the credibility of the forthcoming elections,” the statement read.

“We, along with other members of the international community, are following developments closely,” the statement read.

While the United State, on the other hand, said it “is deeply concerned by the impact of the executive branch’s decision to suspend and replace the Chief Justice and head of the judicial branch without the support of the legislative branch on the eve of national and state elections.”

“We note widespread Nigerian criticism that this decision is unconstitutional and that it undermines the independence of the judicial branch. That undercuts the stated determination of the government, candidates, and political party leaders to ensure that the elections proceed in a way that is free, fair, transparent, and peaceful.”

The Nigerian government said the reactions of the two countries were hasty.

The government said it would welcome partnerships for successful 2019 general elections but would not condone unfair interference in matters that are specifically internal.

“Nigeria reserves the right to be insulated from suggestions and or interference with respect to wholly internal affairs and commends international laws, customs and norms that mandate and require nations and the comity to respect this prerogative to all,”  presidential spokesman Garba Shehu said in a statement on Monday.

“Nigeria is confident of its electoral processes and her preparation for the imminent elections and the federal government has supported the independent electoral umpire in both its independence and resources needed to accomplish our desire and insistence on free and fair elections,” he added

But the former Vice president in his letter insisted that the “attempt to muscle out the Chief Justice of Nigeria using phoney charges at a time when His Lordship was primed to play a central role in the fast-approaching nationwide electoral process represents the boldest steps in the march to undermine our democracy,”

“This is undoubtedly an anti-democratic act which my political Party and I reject without reservation and for which I urge Your Excellency to condemn unequivocally,” he added

Abubakar affirmed that the “brazen authoritarian and imperious stride of the President Buhari is the latest action in a series of carefully planned onslaught on our nation’s hard-earned democracy by an extremely power hungry and anxious President and the cabal that feeds fat around him as February 16, 2019, draws nearer.”

Nigerians will be heading to poll less than a month from now to vote in a new president.

Buhari is seeking re-election with Abubakar mounting a strong challenge.

Abubakar, a former vice president during the Olusegun Obasanjo administration from 1999 till 2007, is contesting the office of the president for the fourth time.

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