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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

Edo Primaries: Court Orders PDP to Show Cause why 381 Delegates Should be Excluded

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A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday, ordered the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to show cause why 381 delegates elected on Feb. 4 at its ward congress should not participate in the primary scheduled for Thursday.

Justice Inyang Ekwo made the order in a ruling on the ex-parte motion moved by the plaintiffs’ counsel, Adaze Emwanta.

Justice Ekwo thereafter ordered that the defendants be served with all the court processes within two days of the order.

Reports says that three aggrieved ad-hoc delegates, on behalf of the 378 others, had sued the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the PDP, its national secretary and the vice chairman, south south as 1st to 4th defendants respectively.

In the ex-parte motion marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/165/2024 dated Feb. 7 but filed Feb 8, the plaintiffs sought for two orders

These include an order for the defendants or their agents not to act but to show cause why the reliefs of the plaintiffs in their originating summons should not be granted with regard to the plan of the 2nd, 3rd and 4th defendants to exclude them and 378 other delegates, whose names and election results are contained in “Exhibits BID 8A to 8L,” from participating in the primaries.of Feb. 22 in Edo.

The plaintiffs, which include Hon Kelvin Mohammed, Mr Gabriel Okoduwa and Mr Ederaho Osagie, on behalf of others in 12 local government areas and 127 wards, averred that it would be in the interest of justice for their reliefs to be granted.

Upon resumed hearing on Wednesday, counsel for the plaintiffs, Emwanta, told the court that all efforts to effect the service on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th defendants were unsuccessful.

He said though INEC was served on Monday, the other three defendants evaded service.

He, therefore, said that a motion for substituted service on the PDP and others had been filed.

He said a party seeking to be joined in the suit also served their application on him earlier in the day.

The lawyer said since there was no opposition to their motion for substituted service, he moved in terms of the application.

He said their sole prayer was to serve them by pasting the processes at the PDP headquarters.

Justice Ekwo, who granted the application, ordered that the service be effected within two days.

The judge then asked INEC’s lawyer, Hassan Aminu, if they had filed any application but he responded in the negative.

He said though they were served on Feb. 20, they did not file any process because “we have no issue with the order.”

The judge adjourned the matter until Feb. 28 for the PDP, its national secretary and vice chairman (south south) to show cause why the reliefs should not be granted.(NAN)

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POLITICS

Senate Pushes for Nigerian Medical Graduands from Ukraine, Sudan to Sit for July, Nov MDCN Exams

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By Eze Okechukwu, Abuja

The senate has called out the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) to allow Nigerian medical graduates from Ukraine and Sudan to sit for the MDCN exams in July and Nov without any discrimination, particularly those that the wars in both countries did not affect their academic activities.

The upper chamber also urged MDCN to in no distant time, work toward the conduct of the MDCN exams in each geo-political zone of the country like the Law Schools, to reduce the cost on the students and their parents.

The senate resolutions followed the adoption of a motion at plenary yesterday which was sponsored by Senator Oyewumi Olaler from Osun state titled: “Discrimination Against Medical Graduands from Ukraine by the Nigeria Medical and Dental Council.

In his lead debate, senator Olalere said that the issue of medical graduates from Ukraine universities has drawn attention of National Assembly since 2022, pointing out that in 2023, the House of Representatives and the Ministry of Health concluded with the Medical and Dental Council to allow the students that graduated from medical schools in Ukraine to participate in the qualifying exams like other students, or at best, organise a makeup programme for them before the exam.

The senator noted that MDCN has slated a referral programme for the 2022 graduates alone at Federal Medical Centre Gwagwalada at the cost of N1.5 million per student to be paid in one and half weeks.

He said the concerned parents of the affected students had visited the National Assembly complex to lodge their complaint during the vacation of the Senate for extension of the deadline for payment to one month from one and half week.

Olalere, who is the Senate Deputy Minority leader, said the war in Ukraine affected the eastern part of Ukraine and Kyiv, the capital, adding that the entire western Ukraine was not affected.

According to him, the students were on campus doing their programme unhindered as confirmed by the Ukrainian Ambassador to Nigeria.

He explained that since the war in Ukraine did not affect all the universities, especially, students in Western parts of Ukraine, students who graduated from those universities in 2023 should be allowed to sit for MDCN exams henceforth without any hindrance.

Other senators who supported the motion included Senators; Adamu Aliero, from Kebbi state Abdul Ningi from Bauchi state among others.

In a related development, the senate also urged the Committee of Nigerian Vice Chancellors to allow Nigerian students arriving from war torn countries to be admitted into Nigerian universities to complete their studies.

President of Senate Godswill Akpiabio in his remarks thanked the sponsor of the motion, saying that it was a popular motion and elicited comments from the lawmakers.

He expressed belief that the resolutions of the senate would be adhered to by MDCN and the Vice Chancellors to ameliorate the sufferings of concerned Nigerian medical graduates from the war affected nations.

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POLITICS

Edo Election: PDP Approves Delegates List

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By Johnson Eyiangho, Abuja

National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has approved the delegates list for the Edo State Governorship Election Primary to nominate a candidate for the Sept. 21 governorship election in the state.

It has also approved the conduct of the Edo State Governorship Election Primary for Thursday, Feb.

22 at the Lawn Tennis Court of the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City.

The NWC in a statement by the PDP’s Spokesman, Hon.

Debo Ologunagba yesterday charged all delegates, aspirants, leaders, critical stakeholders, members of the party and the public to note the official date and venue and be guided accordingly.

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