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Gun Shots Threaten PDP’s Governorship Primary in Bayelsa




As predicted by some observers, the governorship primary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Bayelsa State for the November 16, governorship election has begun amidst high tension, shooting and many uncertainties.

There are 21 aspirants vying to become the flag bearer of the party, with Senator Douye Diri, representing Bayelsa Central in the senate emerging as the preferred choice of the out- going governor, Seriake Dickson.

On Tuesday morning there was uncertainty as to where the primary election would hold as party officials declined to disclose the venue, citing security reasons, even as many roads were blocked by stern – looking security operatives.

Journalists also had a hard time to secure accreditation tags as the State Publicity Secretary of PDP, Barr. Osom Macbere who came to the NUJ press center to distribute the tags complained of insufficient number of tags provided by the Commissioner for Information, Daniel Iworiso Markson.

It was alleged that the insufficient tags was a deliberate ploy by the state government to tactically reduce the number of journalists who would have access to the venue of the primary election ostensibly to minimize the spread of the ugly scenes that were allegedly programmed to happen at the venue.

At Ijaw House along the Sani Abacha Way in the state capital, where the accreditation of delegates was later taken to, the atmosphere there looked like a garrison as the combined presence of police, both regular and mobile force, including men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps literally out- numbered the crowd outside the gigantic edifice.

A Deputy Commissioner of police, and Commander of the State anti crime squad, code named Operation Doo Akpo, DCP Asufie was having hectic time controlling the movement in and out of the venue as some youths were patrolling along the Sani Abacha road chanting war songs.

As the tensed situation around the venue was getting more charged, sporadic gun shots were heard from a distance, and this prompted a riot of clicking sounds as the security men readied their riffles for any eventuality.

Some journalists who already found their way inside the premises rushed out to escape for dear lives, while others yet to be checked in by the police voted with their legs.

The Returning Officer for the primary election, and governor of Taraba State, Mr. Ishaku Dairus had earlier hurriedly left the venue in his convoy.

It was learnt that the desperation by the outgoing governor of the state, Seriake Dickson to foist a successor on the state and the determination by other aspirants not in the governor’s political family, Restoration Caucus to resist the imposition heightened the tension.

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ENSUBEB Executive Chairman Flags-off Agric Education Training




From Sylvia Udegbunam, Enugu

The Executive Chairman of Enugu State Universal Basic Education Board (ENSUBEB), Associate Professor Hyginus Banko Okibe has flagged off the 2022/2023 Agricultural Education training programme for head teachers, teachers, and pupils at Independence Layout Primary School, Enugu.

Professor Okibe emphasized the importance of agriculture for economic development and growth, stressing that the country’s major problem is hunger due to people not engaging in farming activities anymore.

He noted that schools should be exposed to agricultural skills and technology; he however announced that there will be an agricultural trade fair, where produce from all schools will be showcased.

The Commissioner for Agriculture and Agro Industrialisation, Dr. Patrick Nwabueze Ubru, in a keynote address, highlight the importance of agriculture, stating that without it, there will be no life.

He disclosed that 12,000 bags of fertiliser will be distributed to registered farmers in the state and noting that non-farmers will not receive farming inputs and fertilisers.

Ubru reiterated that agriculture occupies an important space in the Governor’s vision and manifesto as one of the developmental areas for reviving the economy.

He said that Enugu State has introduced dry season farming with solar pumping machines and embarked on three-cycle rice production, making it the largest producer of cassava in the country.

He further disclosed plans to establish agricultural processing industries in the three senatorial zones of the state.

Dr. Amaka S. Ngene, Executive Chairman of STVSMB and former Permanent Member of ENSUBEB, appreciated the guests and emphasized that the agricultural education training programme is child-centered, aimed at making agriculture a future career or hobby for the pupils.

She enumerated the objectives of the training, including the provision of requisite skills for self-employment.

Hon. Nwakaego Ajah, Permanent Member 3, thanked the Executive Governor of Enugu State, the Executive Chairman of ENSUBEB, and UBEC for the initiative in making Agricultural Science more practical-oriented at the Basic Schools.

She urged the learners and teachers to take the training serious and also promote their dignity in labour.

 The event featured lectures on food crops, planting, and care, and the distribution of farm inputs and plants to various schools.

The highlight of the occasion was the decoration of Dr. Amaka Ngene by the Commissioner for Agriculture and Agro Industrialisation.

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Police Arrest 3 Suspects over Gold Theft in Abuja




 The Police said they have arrested three suspects over house breaking, robbery of gold and other valuables in Abuja.

The Force Public Relations Officer, ACP Olumuyiwa Adejobi, said this during a media briefing in Abuja.

He added that the suspects were arrested following an investigation by operatives of the Intelligence Response Team (IRT).

ADejobi said further investigation revealed that the prime suspect in the case was a fish trader at the Kado fish market in Abuja.

He said the suspects had raided three houses in the Lugbe area of Abuja before getting to the fourth house where they jumped the fence and used a motor jack to expand the bars of the burglary.

Adejobi said the suspects expanded the bars of the burglary and had access into the house where they searched for items they could steal.

He said in the process, they found a safe in the house, went away with it and used a hammer and chisel to break the safe forcefully and found money, documents and gold.

“Upon the discovery, the prime suspect contacted a buyer to dispose of the items where he realised over N60 million after selling the items,” he said.

Adejobi said operatives of the IRT had also arrested 16 suspects in connection with theft and robbery of motorcycles and tricycles in Plateau.

He said the suspects, who were particularly involved in moving around at late night, picking up any tricycle parked without supervision, were arrested following credible intelligence.

The police spokesman said the suspects were also involved in moving around and stopping motorcyclists on the road while parading themselves as police officers with fake identity cards.

He said the members of the syndicate, who posed as policemen and accused motorists of late night movement, were engaged in confiscating motorcycles and telling them to go to the nearest Police Division to retrieve the motorcycles.

He said the suspects had so far stolen several motorcycles which they had sold to the receiving group in their syndicate.

Adejobi said police operatives had recovered eight motorcycles and 11 tricycles from the suspects.

He said police operatives had in the past six weeks arrested a total of 1,284 suspects over the offences of armed robbery, kidnapping, rape, homicide, cultism and other criminal offences.

Adejobi said 307 of the suspects were arrested over armed robbery, 296, kidnapping, 301, homicide, 176, rape and defilement, and 204, cult related offences.

The police spokesman said 284 firearms, 6702 ammunition of various calibres, 107 vehicles were recovered from the suspects while 97 kidnap victims were rescued during the period under review. (NAN)

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Ebonyi LGA Elections Witness Low Turnout, Late Arrival of Materials




The Local Government election in Ebonyi has suffered voters’ apathy and boycott by opposition parties as only the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) presented candidates for the exercise.

The election was held in the 171 wards of the 13 councils of the state on Saturday.

People came out in trickles to vote while election materials and officers of the Ebonyi State Independent Electoral Commission (EBSIEC) arrived late to many polling units.

The electorates, who spoke with newsmen attributed the apathy to the non-fielding of candidates by the opposition parties.

In most units, the electoral officers and materials arrived late as accreditation and voting commenced simultaneously at 10:40 a.


There was low voter turnout in Oroke Onuoha Community Primary School polling unit, Oroke Onuha Playground unit, Ebonyi Local Government as well as at the Stadium polling unit 003 in Abakaliki local government area.

In some areas in Abakaliki metropolis, people were seen going about their businesses, though there was restriction of human and vehicular movements.

An electorate, Mr Chigozie Nwafor, said the low turnout was due to non-feilding of candidates by opposition parties.

“You can see, it is only the candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) that are in for the elections and no other parties,” Nwafor said.

Another resident and politician, Onyeka Nworie, alleged that the EBSIEC did not give political parties a level playing ground to participate in the elections.

According to Nworie, only the APC, the ruling party in the state, was participating in the elections.

“PDP, Labour Party, All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) are nowhere to be found,” he said.

Also in Polling unit 003, Edukwu Oferekpe in Izzi local government area electoral officers and materials arrived late.

Ms Lucy Nwogbaga, Returning Officer at the Edukwu Oferekpe Unit, said that the voting could not start early due to the early morning rain.

“There were also delays from the collation centre. We could not move and go to the polling on time,” she added.

On voter turnout, Nwogbaga expressed hope that the electorates would come out to vote and noted that the processes had been smooth.

Mr Chukwu Eze also attributed the low turnout to the early morning rain in the state. (NAN)

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