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Kogi People Anxious to Re-elect Me Gov – Bello

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Kogi- tate Governor-Yahaya Bello
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By Mathew Dadiya, Abuja

Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello has said that the people of the state were eager to vote him for a second term in office on November 16, 2019 because of his achievements in the last four years.

The governor who said he was fully prepared to win the forthcoming governorship election in the state, added however, that he was not going to take anything for granted.

Bello spoke to State House correspondents at the weekend after meeting President Muhammadu Buhari along side the All Progressives Congress(APC) National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole.

The Governor who is seeking reelection at the 16th November, 2019 governorship election in the state said he was prepared for the coming election even before the Presidential and National Assembly elections in February 2019 adding however, that he was not taking anything for granted.

His achievements, he said, were there for all to see and the people of his state were now anxiously waiting for November 16, 2019 to vote for him.

He said that his achievements included up-to date salaries payment, inspite of settling backlogs when he assumed office.

Nightlife in the state, he said, was back because of improved security situation .

The governor also said he was committed to free, fair and credible election.

“As regards level of preparedness, I am not just preparing now, I have been ready for this election even before the last general election that produced Mr. President, the National Assembly and the state houses of assembly.

‘So, we are well prepared for the election. As for victory, I think by the grace of God it is assured.

“Like the chairman has said, we are not going to take anything for granted. Whether the candidate of the opposition party is strong or not, we will approach the election with seriousness and ensure that it is conducted freely and fairly and we will become victorious by the grace of God. On November 17, we will be announced the winner.”

He denied PDP’s allegations that he planned to scuttle PDP primaries.

“If you monitor all the activities of the PDP in Kogi state, right from the Ward congresses to the local government congresses, to the state congresses, it has always been marred or characterized with violence, guns, maiming of each other and all kinds of attacks.

So the outcome of the last primaries they conducted shouldn’t take anyone by surprise.

“We have a larger number of delegates in Kogi state. We started our exercise early enough and finished early enough in peace. I am not a member of PDP, I wouldn’t go in there and conduct it for them.

“So it is their character, it is their stock in trade and that is what they are known for and so should rather look inward rather than pointing accusing fingers outside.

“You see, when you have a cancer and you don’t treat it but rather you are treating malaria, you will never get rid of cancer. So that is the problem the PDP has, they have cancer and should treat the cancer and shouldn’t look outside.

Asked what message he was taking to Kogi electorates for the next four years, he said “The citizens of Kogi State have actually seen my performance against the performance of previous PDP Governors. In less than three and half years, they have seen all my wonderful performances.

“In fact starting with even the issue of salaries, it’s just that all along, I have chosen not to speak about the issue of salary because it is a problem I inherited.

“And in any case governance is a continuum, you inherit both assets and liabilities. When you inherit assets, you make use of it, when you inherit liabilities or trouble you try to solve it, you don’t complain about it.

“So I refused to make comment about the issue of salaries.

As a matter of fact, the issues of salaries arrears I have already accepted by my immediate predecessor he inherited from Ibro’s administration.

“These past two PDP Governors couldn’t solve it, I have come to solve it. That already is a kudos to this administration that the people of Kogi State should vote for us.”

Bello also boasted that every local government in the state have various projects completed by his administration.

“Every local government in Kogi are dotted with various infrastructural development. The people of Kogi State have spoken before in the last general election, they will speak again.”

On security, he said “Lastly, if you look at Kogi State in the past, if you are a traveler you will hold your breath. The inhabitants as early as 6:30 they will only manage to pray their morning prayer and in the evening they will manage to pray their evening prayer and go to bed, but today, even along the streets of Kogi you will see people jogging, exercise, night life is back as a result of improved security situation in the state today.

“Kogi State is the second safest state in Nigeria today, I didn’t say it. We have various bodies that rate the performance of various government and administration, Nigeria Bureau of statistics and the rest of them, they said it.

“So if you look at it, we have performed so wonderfully that the people of Kogi state are eager that 16th November should come and let them speak with their votes and I know they will speak very well and re-elect me, the APC and we shall become victorious.” he said

Asked if he was going to carry along the labour leaders he proscribed, Bello said “Well, it is not a battle we are going into, we are going into a contest, one I know is going to be free and fair and I am going to win that election by the grace of God. The APC under the leadership of the national chairman, we are going to campaign vigorously well and we shall become victorious.

“The people who have decided to become rebellious to bring down the institution of higher learning at certain point in time have today seen the benefits of telling them to please give peace a chance.

“They have given peace a chance and you can see the last strike, Kogi State didn’t go on strike, we have very stable educational system in Kogi State. As per all the labour leaders in Kogi State, we are moving on harmoniously, you can confirm from the various chapters.

“If not because they are not politicians, labour leaders would have taken the fore front to campaign for my re-election.” he said.

POLITICS

S’Court Judgment: Jigawa to Conduct LG Election Soon – Official

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The Jigawa Government says it will soon conduct Local Government Elections in the state, following the recent Supreme Court judgment on Local Government finanacial autonomy.

The Commissioner for Information, Youths Sport and Culture, Mr Sagir Musa, said this during an interactive session with newsmen in Dutse on Wednesday.

Musa said that the State Executive Council (EXCO) had considered and approved a request by the state Independent Electoral Commission (JISIEC) to conduct the election.

The commissioner further said that the EXCO’s decision “is in line with the provision of Section 197(I) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and the JISIEC Law No. 3 of 2012 (as amended)”.

According to him, the EXCO decision is in compliance with the recent Supreme Court judgment that all the Local Government councils in the country must have democratically elected officials and that elections are to be conducted in all the states of the federation within three months.

Meanwhile, an Executive Bill seeking to repeal JISIEC Law 2024 and re-enact Law 2012 has passed the first and second readings at the Assembly.

This followed a motion moved by the Majority Leader of the house, Mr Lawan Muhammad, and seconded by Mr Muhammad Inuwa at Friday’s plenary session.

Muhammmad said that the bill seeks to repeal the JISEIC amendment No. 1 Law, No. 7, 2024 to re-enact Sections 64 and 65 of the JISEIC Law Cap J19, Laws of Jigawa State 2022 and for related matters.

After a unanimous voice vote by the members, the Speaker, Mr Haruna Aliyu, referred the bill to the House Committee on Local Government.

Aliyu asked the committee to report back to the house on July 30. (NAN)

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POLITICS

Edo guber: Appeal Court Affirms Ighodalo as PDP Candidate

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The Appeal Court sitting in Abuja has rejected an appeal to nullify the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) primary election that produced Asue Ighodalo as its candidate for the upcoming Governorship Election in Edo.

The appellate court, in a unanimous decision by a three-member panel led by A.

M Lamido, on Monday, dismissed the appeal filed by the embattled Deputy Governor of the state, Philip Shaibu.

Shaibu was earlier impeached from office but recently got reinstated by the court.

While dismissing the appeal marked: CA/ABJ/CV/642/2024, for want of merit, Lamido held that it found no reason to set aside the May 27 judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja.

The court further ruled that the trial court was right for refusing to invalidate the outcome of PDP primary election based on the suit by the appellant.

It awarded a N1million cost against the appellant.

Justice James Omotosho of the Federal High Court had, in his judgment that was affirmed by the appellate court, held that Shaibu lacked the legal right to seek to nullify the outcome of the primary poll.

Omotosho further held that the plaintiff did not meet the condition precedent to confer such a legal right on him.

According to the court, no evidence was adduced to establish that he participated in the primary election he sought to nullify its outcome.

Omotosho held that it was a basic requirement of the law that a plaintiff must take part in a disputed election to be able to challenge its outcome in court.

He said that there was overwhelming evidence that the plaintiff was never physically present at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City, where the primary election of February 22 took place.

Report says that Shaibu had in the suit prayed the court to issue an order stopping the INEC from accepting or recognising Ighodalo
as the gubernatorial flag bearer of PDP in the election.

He contended that the primary election that produced Ighodalo was not conducted in compliance with both the Electoral Act and party Constitution.

He prayed the court to, among other things, compel the party to conduct a fresh primary election in the state.

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POLITICS

Senate, Women Society Push for Domestic Staff Inclusion in National Wage Scheme

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By Eze Okechukwu, Abuja

The Senate and National Council for Women Society (NCWS), have sought for the inclusion of domestic servants in the proposed N70,000 National Minimum Wage Scheme.

The Senate and the Women group made the call yesterday at the national assembly during a public hearing on a bill seeking for an Act to provide for the Domestication and Registration of Domestic workers and Employers in Nigeria.

The public hearing on the bill sponsored by Senator Babangida Hussaini (APC, Jigawa North West) was organized by the Senate Committee on Employment, Labour and Productivity and was chaired by Senator Diket Plang (APC, Plateau Central).

The Senate’s call for the inclusion of domestic servants in the National Minimum Wage Scheme specifically came from Senator Osita Izunaso (APC, Imo West) during his remarks at the public hearing.

“As a member of this Committee, I feel strongly that part of the provisions to be included in this bill is the domestic workers; be it house maid or servants in the proposed N70, 000 National Minimum wage law.

“As N70, 000 is being planned to be the lowest wage for the lowest public workers, so should be the case for the least domestic workers.

“We are going to put it in the bill for implementation by all employers”, he said.

Senator Izunaso however suggested that instead of domestication and protection of domestic workers and employers, the intent of the bill should be changed to registration and protection of domestic workers and their employers.

In a similar call, the Acting National President of NCWS, Mrs Geraldeen Etuk aligned with the Senate’s position for the inclusion of domestic servants in the proposed National Minimum Wage law.

Speaking from the sidelines, the sponsor of the bill, Senator Babangida Hussaini said though he was elated by the general support the bill got from the various stakeholders; from the Minister of Labour to other relevant stakeholders he expressed reservations on the practical implementation of the additional scope of inclusion of domestic workers in the national minimum wage.

“There is no point making a law that cannot be implemented. However, i’m happy that the generality of stakeholders at the public hearing supported the bill and by extension, the proposed law”, he said.

Earlier in his remarks during the session, the Chairman of the Committee, Senator Diket Plang said an agency will surely be set up for the implementation of the proposed law. But in the interim, the Ministry of Labour and Productivity will drive the operation from the onset.

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