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Ministerial Screening Ends on Monday as Senate Extends Bow and Go Method

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Ministerial Screening in Nigeria
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 By Jude Opara, Abuja

The Senate, on Wednesday 24th July, 2019 showed signs that the ongoing ministerial screening will end by Monday next week after it successfully screened 18 people as at press time on the second day of the exercise.

This is also as the upper legislative chamber has continued with the bow and go method which it has been adopting for former members of the National Assembly.

The Senate had said it amended its Standing Orders, to expand and extend the privilege to accommodate former members of State Houses of Assembly.

However, before he took his bow, Senator Tayo Alasoadura who was also the first to be screened on the second day in his opening remarks tasked the Senate to try and pass the contentious Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB) before the end of the legislative year.

He further argued that the bill is very important for the development of the economy despite the fact that the 8th Senate passed it while President Muhammadu Buhari declined assent.

He equally hampered on the need for the passage of the Nigeria Nuclear Energy Regulatory Bill, arguing that the world is going nuclear and scientific. 

Before proposing for him to take a bow, Senate Minority leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP Abia South) explained that the 8th Senate actually passed the PIG bill but the President refused to sign it into law.

“It is not our fault that the PIG bill was not signed. Do everything to convince your colleagues in the Executive, the need to sign the bill because we don’t mean any harm.”

In his remarks, the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan assured that given the importance of the bill to the development of the country, the Senate will have to work together with the Executive so that it will be accepted by the Executive.

It was the same case with the nominee from Yobe Abubakar Aliu who was equally asked to bow and go because he is from the state of the Senate President.

But the Senate Minority leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe who proposed for his taking a bow called for a specific duty schedule of ministers of state to avoid rancour witnessed in Transportation, Peteoleum, Education and Agriculture ministries between the ministers and ministers of state.

However, Danjuma Goje (APC Gombe) said there has always been clear cut schedules of duty for ministers of state. 

He said that the conflicts always arose but not as a result of lack of schedule of duties but due to personal ego between the two ministers.

Also screened was Maj. Gen. (Rtd) Bashir Salihi Magashi who answered questions largely on security issues.

While responding to a question on the seeming lack of cohesion among the Service Chiefs, the nominee said the Nigerian military is one of the best in world adding that they have entered into a number of defence pacts with other countries.

However, he accepted that the relationship between the Service Chiefs has not been cordial because each of them usually dwell in trying to please the nation. 

Others screened include; Mustapha Baba Shehuri from Bornu State, Amb. Zubairu Dada of Niger state, Timipre Sylva of Bayelsa state, Ramatu Aliu of Kogi state, Adeniyi Adebayo of Ekiti state, Mohammed Abdulahi of Nasarawa state, Chris Ngige of Anambra state, Sunday Dare of Oyo state and Bello Mohammed of Adamawa state and Sa’adiyu Umar Farouk of Zamfara state.

Of the 13 nominees who appeared before the Senate, eight were asked to bow and go for various reasons adduced while only five were asked questions.

Those who answered questions are; Sa’adiyu Umar Farouk, Sunday Dare, Gen. Bashir Magashi, Mohammed Abdulahi and Mustapha Shehuri. 

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Peter Obi Promises to Change the Country for the Better

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Presidential candidate of Labour Party (LP), Mr Peter Obi has asked Nigerians to hold him accountable if a new Nigeria fails to emerge with him as president.

Obi threw the challenge in Abakaliki on Friday at his campaign rally.

He pledged to reform Nigeria back from consumption to production.

The LP candidate assured that the country would be restored when most qualified candidates with character, trust and competence were elected.

He maintained that the 2023 general elections must be based on character and not on or and tribe.

“We will offer you a new Nigeria and also secure and unite the country.

“Let no one deceive you with religion or tell you it is their turn. Just vote people that understand governance.

“I am not contesting as an Igbo man, a south-easterner, but as a Nigerian who is most qualified and competent to revive the country,’’ Obi said.

He commended the people of Ebonyi for their solidarity and support for the Labour Party.

He urged the electorate to vote for Mr Edward Nkwegu, the gubernatorial candidate of LP in Ebonyi to build a better nation.

In his remarks, National Chairman of Labour Party, Mr Julius Abure, appreciated the people of Ebonyi for their show of solidarity, support and commitment to the party.

Abure said the LP would produce most intelligent and credible candidates to fight poverty and insecurity in the country. (NAN)

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Alia Polls 219,009 at  APC Governorship Re-run in Benue 

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From David Torough, Makurdi

Rev. Fr. Hyacinth Alia has again, won the gubernatorial primary rerun election conducted by the Sen. Bashir Lado led rerun committee. 

Alia polled a total number of 219,002 to defeat 12 other aspirants to emerge winner.

Recall, that the court of appeal sitting in Makurdi while delivering judgement in a case filed by one of the gubernatorial aspirants, Prof.

Terhemba Shija directed the party to conduct a primary re-run election in eleven(11) local government areas of the state.

While announcing the result at the APC Secretariat Makurdi, which also served as the collation Centre for the rerun, Sen. Lado, Chairman of Benue State Rerun Election Committee stated that the primary election rerun which was won by Rev. Fr. Dr. Hyacinth Alia was not only free, fair and credible but represented the wishes of  APC members in Benue State.

Chairman of the party in the State, Comrade Augustine Agada while commending APC members in the state for a peaceful primary election, thanked them for their show of maturity during the rerun and termed the results of the election as no victor no vanquish, explaining that the winner in the election is not only Fr. Alia but for the entire Benue APC family.

In a good will message, Amb. Prof. Stephen Ugba who spoke on behalf of party Stakeholders, commended Benue APC for a successful exercise and called on all those who participated in the primary election to see themselves as winners. 

The party immediately after the declaration of results went into a Special Congress to ratify the primary elections. 

The Congress unanimously ratified and adopted Rev. Fr. Dr Hyacinth Alia as the candidate of APC  Benue state for the position of governor.

The Special Congress was attended by members of the State Executive Committee of the party, Critical Stakeholders, teeming members of the APC in Benue state and members of the press.

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Man Slumps, Dies At FCMB Bank In Rivers

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Man has allegedly slumped and died in front of a branch of the First City Monument Bank at Ikwerre Road, Mile 1, Rivers Stateon Tuesday.

The man’s death, according, to a Twitter user, Dokubo, Kenneth Promise #EndSARS, who posted it on his Twitter handle @dokubo_kenneth, was due to frustration resulting from hostile treatment meted out on him by the customer service officials of the bank.

According to the report, the man (whose name was withheld) had been trying to withdraw money but could not, as the bank asked him to do an affidavit in order to have access to his money.

Dokubo further said the victim went with his next of kin to the bank as judicial workers had been on strike, jeopardising any process of swearing an affidavit.

Man dies at @MyFCMB in Port Harcourt due to frustration and unfriendly treatment by the customer service attendants of a bank,” Dokubo tweeted.

 

The man was said to have been vomiting and begging having been in the queue for five hours before he collapsed and died.

“An eyewitness at the scene of the incident disclosed that a man who hails from Asari-Toru Local Government Area of Rivers State, a customer of (First City Monument Bank) FCMB died in front of the bank.

“He was refused access to his own money since Friday even when he came with his next of kin. He was asked to go to the court to get an affidavit knowing the court is not in session.

“Narrating the event, she added, ‘The man was vomiting and at the same time begging for him to have access to his own money yet he was denied. After he was left unattended to for more than 5 hours, he just died now a few minutes ago at FCMB, Education Bus Stop, Ikwerre Road, Mile 1, she said,’” Dokubo reported on Twitter.

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