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IGP deploys DIG, AIG, 11 CPs for Ondo poll – PDP, ZLP renew alliance talks

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The Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has deployed the Deputy Inspector General of Police for Research and Planning, Adeleye Oyabade, to lead the police team that will ensure maximum security of people and electoral materials during the October 10 governorship election in Ondo State.

This came as the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) may have resumed their an alliance ahead of the governorship election.

But the All Progressives Congress insisted it would lose no sleep over the talks between the two parties.

Also deployed to assist the DIG are Karma Hosea Hassan, Assistant Inspector General of Police in charge of Federal Operations (FEDOPS), Department of Operations, Force Headquarters Abuja, and 11 Commissioners of Police.

A statement by the Force Public Relations Officer, DCP Frank Mba, on Friday, gave the information.

It stated, “The Coordinating DIG, Ondo Gubernatorial Elections has been charged by the IGP to bring his wealth of experience to bear by ensuring the due enforcement of all electoral laws throughout the period of the election.

“CP Garba Baba Umar will be in charge monitoring/evaluation and will be assisted by CP Habu Sani. Other senior police officers deployed to handle other layers of security in the state are: CP Abiodun Alabi, CP Bishi Omololu, CP Ashafa Kunle, CP Akeera M. Yonous, CP Buba Sanusi, CP Audu Madaki, CP Evelyn Peterside, CP Sadiku Gbenga and CP Abutu Yaro.”

It also stated, “The IGP has warned that no security aides will be allowed to accompany VIPs or political appointees on the day of the election, noting that severe punishments will be meted out to anyone who violates the order.

“Officers and men of the Force as well as personnel of other security agencies deployed for the election have also been charged by the IGP to conduct themselves professionally and work in line with best practices as highlighted in the Code of Conduct and Rules of Engagement for Elections.:
“He also enjoins members of the public, especially politicians and their supporters to cooperate with the police and other security agencies in the national assignment of guaranteeing a hitch-free gubernatorial poll.”

Meanwhile, the PDP and ZLP are said to be making efforts to renew their rumoured alliance as some PDP governors, including Nyesom Wike of Rivers State and Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, are reportedly mounting pressure on former Ondo State governor Segun Mimiko, to support the idea of working together.

A former attorney general and justice commissioner of the state, Mr. Eyitayo Jegede, is running on the platform of the PDP while the incumbent deputy governor Agboola Ajayi is the standard bearer of the ZLP.

Ajayi first defected to the PDP from the APC and then switched to the ZLP after failing to get the PDP governorship ticket.

A report by The Nation quoted some sources as however saying the PDP did not trust Ajayi.

Jegede was also said to be uncertain about the pact with the ZLP since the terms or conditions would involve making certain concessions to the ZLP, which he considered might be a burden.

But Ajayi was said to be enthusiastic as this could help him unseat the incumbent governor, Rotimi Akeredolu.

Ajayi had contested the PDP ticket with Jegede, who rejected pressures on him to make him his running mate, after his victory at the primary.

The Nation’s source said that reality dawned on Jegede last week that a helping hand was required from the ZLP to narrow the contest to a two-horse race.

Wike, said the source, explained to him that any financial assistance to him by PDP governors on the election might be futile unless the PDP’s position was strengthened by the coalition with ZLP.

According to the source, Wike and Makinde maintained that PDP and ZLP in Ondo are the same.

Although Ajayi is pushing for collaboration, PDP leaders also considered the imperative of holding talks with Mimiko who lent the ZLP as election platform to the deputy governor.

Mimiko is confronted by two challenges: the rift between him and Jegede over how the preparation for the 2016 election was handled by the former governor has not been resolved; and the emotional gulf between them.

Mimiko is also said to have never perceived Ajayi as a formidable candidate outside the APC and PDP, adding that the former governor has been attending Ajayi’s campaigns with reluctance.

The prospect of pact has energised Mimiko, who has intensified his criticism of the Akeredolu administration.

The source said prominent PDP leaders as well as former President Olusegun Obasanjo had reached out to Mimiko on the need to close ranks with the PDP.

Giving the APC’s position on the possible alliance, the state’s Commissioner for Information, Mr Donald Ojogo, said it was “a reactionary contraption that will not work.”

He also said, “It was obviously motivated by greed and selfishness, oiled by ego-driven contents and bitterness. Those whose aims are not altruistic are bound to fail and get further decimated in their numbers.”

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Buhari to present 2023 budget proposal to NASS Friday

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President Muhammadu Buhari will present the 2023 Appropriations bill to a joint session of the National Assembly on Friday.

The appropriations bill will contain budget proposals for the 2023 fiscal year.

He made this known in a letter to the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, which was read out at the start of plenary on Tuesday.

The formal budget presentation is scheduled for 10am

and it will be the last main budget Buhari will be presenting as he will leave office on 29 May 2023 when his second four year term will end.

The Federal Government is already proposing an aggregate expenditure of N19.76 trillion for the 2023 fiscal year with a budget deficit of about N12.41 trillion.

Some key assumptions in the proposal include an estimated oil benchmark of $70, crude oil production put at 1.69mbpd, exchange rate of N435.57/$ and inflation rate at 17.16 per cent.

The Federal Government pegged growth rate at 3.75 per cent because it believes that “Growth is expected to be moderated to 3.30% in 2024 before picking up to 3.46% in 2025.”

The Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, had disclosed that the federal government will borrow over N11 trillion and sell national assets to finance the budget deficit in 2023.

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ASUU also corrupt, undermining govt investment – Buhari

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President Muhammadu Buhari has said a number of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) are involved in corrupt practices.

He said the corruption in the universities and other institutions was undermining government’s funding and investment in education.

ASUU has been on strike since February 14 over increase in lecturers’ allowances and salaries as well as improved funding for the universities.

Buhari has appealed to the union to call off the strike but the lecturers have stood their ground.

The President on Tuesday while declaring open the Fourth National Summit on Diminishing Corruption organised by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC), Office of Secretary to Government of the Federation (OSGF) and Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), said ASUU was no less complicit in the corruption in tertiary education.

He said corruption in the education sector had continued to undermine investments, while critics downplayed funding by focusing only on budgetary allocations, urging a more comprehensive re-evaluation of expenditure.

The President said, “This year’s summit will mirror how corruption undermines educational policies, investments and create an unfriendly learning environment for our youths.

“Incessant strikes especially by unions in the tertiary education often imply that government is grossly underfunding education, but I must say that corruption in the education system from basic level to the tertiary level has been undermining our investment in the sector and those who go on prolonged strikes on flimsy reasons are no less complicit.

“The 1999 Constitution places a premium on education by placing it on the Concurrent List, thereby laying the responsibilities of budgeting and underwriting qualitative education on both the Federal and State Governments.

“The total education budget for each year is therefore a reflection of both federal and state budgets and should be viewed as other financial commitments in their totality.

“The allocation to education in the federal budget should not be considered via allocation to the Federal Ministry of Education and also academic institutions alone, but should include allocation to the Universal Basic Education, transfers to TETFUND and refund from the Education Tax Pool Account to TETFUND.

“Corruption in the expenditure of internally generated revenue of tertiary institutions is a matter that has strangely not received the attention of stakeholders in tertiary education, including unions.

“I call on stakeholders to demand accountability in the administration of academic institutions and for unions to interrogate the bloated personnel and recurrent expenditure of their institutions. Let me also implore the Unions to work with the government to put faces and identities to names on the payroll.

“Due to declining resources, the government cannot bear the cost of funding education alone. I task our academics to attract endowments, research and other grants to universities, polytechnics and colleges of education similar to what obtains in other countries.”

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Seven police officers dismissed, 10 others demoted

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The Police Service Commission (PSC), on Tuesday, dismissed seven senior police officers over gross misconduct.

The commission also announced the demotion of 10 other officers through reduction in rank.

These decisions were taken during the continuation of the 15th plenary meeting of the commission.

The meeting is expected to end on Thursday, October 6, 2022, according to a report by The Trust.

Presided over by its acting chairman, Justice Clara Ogunbiyi, the meeting considered all the Pending Disciplinary Matters (PDM) before the commission.

The PDMs, which totalled 47, also treated some appeals from dismissed police officers.

Addressing newsmen shortly after the meeting in Abuja, the spokesman for the commission, Ikechukwu Ani, said, the dismissed officers include one CSP, one SP and five ASPs.

He said that one SP was retired in public interest, adding that the commission reduced the ranks of one CSP to SP, three SPs to DSP, and two DSPs to ASPs.

The commission further reduced the ranks of four ASPs to Inspectors.

10 senior police officers, including an ACP, a CSP, a SP and two DSPs were given the punishment of severe reprimand.

Five ASPs were also awarded the punishment of severe reprimand.

Thirteen officers received the punishment of reprimand; two are to receive letters of warning while four officers were exonerated.

Ani quoted Justice Ogunbiyi as saying the commission would henceforth give the desired attention to Pending Disciplinary Matters so that those found guilty are punished immediately while those found not guilty are cleared to continue with their career progression.

Justice Ogunbiyi called on police officers to ensure they operate within established rules and avoid taking laws into their hands.

The commission, she said, would continue to work to sustain a professional police force.

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