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Northerners against restructuring are selfish – El-Rufai

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Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, has condemned fellow northerners opposed to restructuring, saying that they are doing so for selfish purpose.

He pointed out that there was a difference between the position of Northern Elders Forum against restructuring and northerners as a region.

The governor argued that there are over a 100 million northerners whose interests were at stake and stressed that whatever advantages an individual was getting for might not apply directly to the entire North.

“We have the highest number of out-of-school children. We have the highest poverty rate. We have the lowest JAMB cut-off rate. So, what are the advantages in the North in the current situation?

“As the governor of Kaduna State, I have had to look at these issues and try to see how I can get the people of my state up on the ladder. I think you need to differentiate the knowledge from a few and the voice of the silent majority,” he said.

El-Rufai, however, regretted that certain people present restructuring in a derogatory way in a manner that portrays all the northerners as backward people.

He said, “The way some people present restructuring is so insulting and derogatory. We should have an honest conversation on what is working and what is not. We don’t have anything to benefit making derogatory remarks against a particular group of people because of restructuring.

“If there are northern leaders today by virtual of the fact that I am a governor, I must be there. So, who are these northerners against restructuring? Who are they? Who are they speaking for?

“So, let us have a very honest, unemotional conversation without looking down on people or insulting them or framing them” he noted.

El-Rufai, who is also chairman of the APC Restructuring Committee, said the draft bill produced and submitted by his committee in January 2018 was stepped down for fear of politicisation ahead of 2019 general elections.

But he was quick to add that some interested members of the ruling party were making frantic efforts to get the draft bill presented to the National Assembly for consideration before the end of the tenure of the present administration.

The governor said the committee made some recommendations and a draft bill available for onward transmission to the National Assembly, which every lawmaker could take up and sponsor as a private bill.

He said, “We do not need executive bill to start action on the draft bill submitted by the committee.”

He insisted the position of the party and the President to see the draft bill passed into law, adding that consideration of the bill would soon take off.

On insecurity in the southern Kaduna, the governor said the violence in northern Kaduna was more devastating than the insecurity in southern Kaduna as perceived by the public.

He, however, did not give details concerning the real causes of the violence, promising that he would make himself available only if a separate session would be arranged to discuss the issue.

El-Rufai argued that population could only be controlled through the education of the girl-child.

He said, “There is a lot of debate on that because countries that have tried to curtail demographic growth like China have now reversed themselves. Singapore even pays you to have children.

“The current thinking in the developing economics is that population growth is not bad if you can ensure that population growth rate is faster and the population is educated and healthy.”

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Politics

PDP governors insist on e-transmission of election results

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The Peoples Democratic Party Governors’ Forum has insisted on electronic transmission of election results, saying it will guarantee free and fair poll.
The Senate had passed The Electoral Act Amendment Bill to empower the Nigerian Communications Commission to determine the electronic transmission of election results, while the House of Representatives adopted the use of technology “where practicable”.
Addressing journalists in Bauchi after the PDP governors met on Monday, Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal, said the electronic transmission of election results must be part of the country’s laws.
“On the electoral act amendment bill, the governors identified the need for a free, fair and credible elections in the country and called on the national assembly to entrench electronic transmission of results of elections in the nation’s electoral jurisprudence,” Tambuwal said.
The governor urged the Independent National Electoral Commission, NCC, and Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF), among other government agencies, to deploy the necessary infrastructure that would facilitate the electronic transmission of election results.
“The governors noted that the method was prone to massive rigging and such other electoral malpractices as evidenced in the 2018 APC primary elections. Political parties should be allowed to decide their method of conduct of primaries as such would promote internal democracy,” he said.
The governors also called on Nigerians “to use the opportunity of the PDP e-registration exercise which will kick off soon, to register as PDP members, while PDP members should update their membership electronically”.

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PDP governors meet today on insecurity, e-transmission of poll results

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Official positions and suggestions by the governors of the Peoples Democratic Party on insecurity situation in the country and electronic transmission of election results by the electoral body are expected to be made known today Monday July 26 after their meeting in Bauchi.
The party announced in a statement by the Director-General of the PDP Governors’ Forum (PDP-GF), Cyril Maduabum, on Sunday.
Maduabum said that PDP governors would, at the meeting, examine and deliberate on the current state of the nation, and the state of their respective states.
He said the health of Nigeria’s democracy, including the electoral act amendment, constitution alteration bills, pending before the national assembly, would also feature in discussions at the meeting.
Maduabum said the meeting would continue to interrogate the federal government’s response to insecurity that was still pervading the country and proffer workable solutions.
He said that the governors would continue to benchmark and exchange information and ideas on best practices on various aspects of governance in their respective states, which had become major beacons of light, delivering substantial democracy benefits through projects and policies impacting on the lives of Nigerians.
“The Governors will also receive Reports of some of the committees working on various aspects of party repositioning, including the e- Registration programme of the Party.”
Maduabum said that Bala Mohammed, Bauchi state governor, would be the chief host, while Aminu Tambuwal, forum chairman, would preside over the meeting.

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Politics

APC clears 17 of 20 Ogun LGA poll

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Ogun State Independent Electoral Commission has declared chairmanship candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) winners in 17 out of the 20 local government areas in Saturday’s council poll.
Among the winners are veteran journalists and publishers: Wale Adedayo (polled 9,660, Ijebu East); Babatunde Emilola – Gazal ( polled 6,178, Ijebu – Ode); Odulate Olashile (polled 20,925 Sagamu); Shuab Ladejobi (polled 14,985 Odogbolu) and Odusanya Bolaji (polled 25,701 Ijebu-North).

Results from the remaining three LGAs – Ado/Odo/Ota, Ifo and Abeokuta- were being expected and may be declared from 1:30pm on Sunday.
About 12 political parties, including Labour Party(LP); New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) and Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) participated in the exercise.
But a faction of PDP pulled out at the eleventh hour from the contest.
Chairman of OGSIEC, Babatunde Osibodu, who announced the results in batches, described the election as one of the most peaceful, credible and fair in Ogun State.

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