INEC chairman, Yakubu, steps aside, hands over to Mu’azu – Newstrends
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INEC chairman, Yakubu, steps aside, hands over to Mu’azu

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Prof. Mahmood Yakubu on Monday handed over the leadership of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to AVM Ahmed Mu’azu (retd.) as acting chairman of the commission, pending his (Yakubu’s) clearance by the Senate.

Yakubu’s five-year tenure ended Monday but has been nominated by President Muhammadu Buhari for a second term.

Speaking at the ceremony, Yakubu noted it would be inappropriate for him to remain in office beyond November 9 without confirmation by the Senate.

He said, “You may recall that the current commission was inaugurated in three batches. The chairman and five commissioners were sworn in on 9th November, 2015, followed by another six commissioners on 7th December, 2016 and one more commissioner on 21st July, 2018.

“The commission is a constitutional body whose members are appointed for five years which may be renewed for a second and final term. This means that my tenure and that of the first set of five commissioners ends today.”

Yakubu also said, “As you are already aware, our work as election managers requires us to enforce the law, regulations and guidelines. In doing so, we must demonstrate strict respect for, and compliance with, the Constitution of Nigeria and subsidiary laws.

“Consequently, it will be inappropriate for me to remain in office beyond today, 9th November, 2020, without confirmation by the Senate and swearing to another oath of office as provided by law.”

According to him, pending the conclusion of the statutory process, the other national commissioners have resolved that Mu’azu should oversee the affairs of the commission.

“It is therefore my pleasure to hand over to him in the interim. We have worked as a team for the last four years. Therefore, there is nothing new to anyone of them,” he said.

He thanked members of the commission for their support, especially the Resident Electoral Commissioners, the Secretary to the Commission, the Director-General of the Electoral Institute, Directors.

He said he had enjoyed the tremendous support and cooperation of members of the technical team, heads of the various security agencies deployed to INEC and other personnel of the commission nationwide, adding that he looked forward to working with them again.

Mu’azu commended the outgoing chairman of INEC and his colleagues for the privilege and confidence reposed in him to oversee the commission.

He promised to handle the affairs of the commission with all due diligence.

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Court stops Rivers PDP From holding state congress

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Court stops Rivers PDP From holding state congress

A Rivers State High Court in Port Harcourt has issued an injunction preventing the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) from conducting its state congress in Rivers State.

The court’s decision effectively bars the PDP from holding the congress, pending further proceedings.

The court issued the order in response to a lawsuit filed by a group of plaintiffs, including Hon. David Chiinedu Omereji, Hon. Prince Solomon Eke, Isodoye Tobin, Goddy Manfred Pepple, Okiah Precious Chigozirim, Hon. Orolosama Peter Amachree, Goodfriday Nweke, Alfred Letam, Hon. Wechie Ndubisi Raymond, Mrs. Erebie Michael, and Hon. Ogenma Idalunimulu, against the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its national officials, namely; National Chairman; National Financial Secretary, and National Organising Secretary.

The lawsuit, with the suit number PHC/2282/CS/2024, was filed at the Rivers State High Court.

Justice Sobere Biambo, the trial judge, heard the application for an interim injunction filed by the aggrieved members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on July 15, 2024.

The applicants, represented by Eberechi Adiele (SAN) and S.O. Orlu, Esq., sought to restrain the defendants, including the PDP national officials, from conducting the party’s congress in Rivers State, scheduled for today.

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After considering the submissions of the learned counsel for the claimants/applicants, Justice Biambo is set to determine the application.

The hearing took place at High Court 13, Port Harcourt, with the judge carefully reviewing the arguments presented.

“IT IS ORDERED: That an order of interim injunction is hereby issued restraining the defendants and each of them, either by themselves servant, agents, assigns or otherwise however from holding or carrying out the People Democratic Party (PDP) Congress in Rivers or be rescheduled to be held on any other date or any other location.

“That an order interim is hereby issued stopping or suspending the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Congress in Rivers State scheduled to be held in Rivers State on the 27th of July, 2024 or to be held on any other date or any other location pending the determination of the motion on notice already filed.

“That an order interim is hereby issued restraining the defendants by themselves, servants, agents or otherwise howsoever, from taking any decision or giving any directive to further extend howsoever the already expired tenure of the last State, Local Government and Ward Executive Officers of the People Democratic Party(PDP) in Rivers State.

The Court adjourned till the 19th of July, for the motion on notice already filed.

Court stops Rivers PDP From holding state congress

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Intervene in APC chairmanship tussle, group tells Tinubu

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Intervene in APC chairmanship tussle, group tells Tinubu

A pressure group within the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has called on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to intervene in the party’s ongoing chairmanship dispute. This comes amid renewed pressure from North Central stakeholders seeking to reclaim the party’s chairmanship position.

The North Central Reality Movement (NCRM), led by its national chairman, Ibrahim Muhammad Rabiu, expressed these concerns during a press briefing. Rabiu highlighted that the insistence on Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje as chairman erodes grassroots support in the North Central Zone.

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Rabiu warned that this issue could negatively impact the party’s performance in the 2027 general election. He pointed out that internal party crises, particularly in Zamfara, result from the current national leadership’s inability to resolve disputes effectively.

He cited the example of the South-South zone, which replaced Dr Betta Edu as a Women’s Leader, and questioned why the North Central zone was not given a similar opportunity when the former chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, resigned.

“We are appealing to the president to stabilise the party by ensuring the North Central reclaims its leadership position. This will help resolve the ongoing crises before the 2027 elections. As we speak, if not for FCT Minister Nyesom Wike, who was even appointed from a different party, none of our appointed APC leaders have given us infrastructural campaign tools for 2027,” Rabiu added.

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LP warns NLC to stop demarketing Peter Obi

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Peter Obi

LP warns NLC to stop demarketing Peter Obi

The Labour Party (LP) Directorate on Mobilization and Integration has cautioned the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) National Transition Committee (NTC) to cease undermining the party and its 2023 presidential candidate, Peter Obi.

The Directorate reaffirmed Julius Abure as the legitimate National Chairman of the LP, as confirmed by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the party’s highest decision-making body. They urged the NLC NTC to respect the reconciliation efforts initiated by Obi or to seek legal redress if they have any grievances.

This response comes after an unsigned statement allegedly released by the NLC NTC, which described Abure as the former National Chairman of the Labour Party and instructed party stakeholders to boycott planned congresses in Anambra, Imo, Delta, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

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In a statement on Monday, Marcel Ngogbehei, the Director General of the LP Directorate on Mobilization and Integration, criticized the NTC’s statement as “childish, malicious, and misleading.” Ngogbehei emphasized that the NLC has no authority to establish a transition committee for any political party in the country, calling their actions alien to the law and suggesting they test their constitutionality in court.

The Directorate highlighted the NTC’s divisive nature and urged Labour Party supporters to ignore their tactics. Ngogbehei encouraged LP stakeholders to remain focused and attend the upcoming party congresses as announced by the Abure-led National Working Committee (NWC).

The Labour Party also accused the NLC NTC of collaborating with the government to weaken opposition parties like the Labour Party and prevent them from holding the government accountable. The statement said, “NTC has become a destructive agent seemingly working for the government to eliminate any perceived opposition structures in the country; the citizens are groaning under government policies that have left Nigerian workers poorer. Rather than the current NLC learning from the Oshiomole years of courageous leadership and engaging the government to protect the interests of Nigerian workers and citizens, they are busy meddling in political party affairs, attempting to demarket the only true opposition party in the country.”

LP warns NLC to stop demarketing Peter Obi

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