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Dengue Wins Guber Poll With Sliding Margin

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Appeal Court Affirms Ododo As Kogi Governor

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The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has upheld the election of Usman Ododo of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the governor of Kogi State.

The three-member panel of justices, in a judgement delivered on Thursday, July 11, 2024, agreed with the state election tribunal that the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and its governorship candidate, Murtala Ajaka, failed to prove all the allegations in their petition beyond reasonable doubt.

The Appeal Court held that the petitioners’ witnesses were incompetent because their statements did not accompany the petition in line with electoral laws.

The appellate court also held that the issue of alleged certificate forgery against Ododo ought to have commenced at the Federal High Court, being a pre-election matter.

The Appeal Court held that the appellants could not prove their case “beyond reasonable doubt”, thereby upholding Ododo’s election.

SDP and Ajaka had, in the petition, sued the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Ododo, and APC as 1st to 3rd respondents, respectively.

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Emotional Sanusi Narrates How Wigwe Saved Him When He Was Dethroned As Kano Emir

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Former Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II
Former Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II
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The former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor said he was thinking he would leave the Herbert Wigwe behind.

A former Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi II, broke down in tears on Wednesday while paying tribute to former Group Chief Executive Officer of Access Holdings Plc, Herbert Wigwe.

Addressing the crowd present for the night of tribute to the 57-year-old, the former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor said he was thinking he would leave Herbert.

“I was thinking I would die and leave Herbert. We have all heard about him, about his loyalty,” he said in an emotionally laden voice.

He recalled how the late banker stood by his side all through his travails after being removed as Emir of Kano by former Governor Abdullahi Ganduje.

According to the former Emir, Herbert assured him of his unflinching support and loyalty.

To match words with action, Lamido said Herbert provided a plane for him at the tarmac in Kano to convey him to Lagos.

“When I had problems in Kano, I called him about six months before I was told to leave Kano. I said to him, ‘Herbert I know you are doing all your best to solve all these problems, but I am convinced that this is what is going to happen.

“He said to me, ‘Your Highness, don’t worry. Whatever happens, don’t worry. We are here for you.’ On the day I heard on the radio that I was dethroned, I called him and said I wanted to come to Lagos.

“The announcement was made about 9 am, by noon Herbert had a plane at the tarmac in Kano. The plan then was to take me into exile for many years. I put my family on that plane and sent them to Lagos, with no phone calls. Herbert received them and put them in a hotel.

“Later, he got them accommodation. For months, when I came, they stayed there. Your Highness, if you want to travel, just call Shola.”

The former CBN said the late Access Bank CEO and his partner Aig Imoukhuede, were crucial to his success during his five-year stint at the apex bank.

He also narrated how they helped resolve a serious challenge in the banking sector at the time.

“The objective then was to link the banking sector assets to the real economy and Aig and Herbert in Access Bank were chosen as the chairpersons on the subcommittee on economic development. Most of what I achieved in the Central Bank would not have been possible without them.”

“About two years ago, I put all my savings in a trust for the education of my children because I have many. My priority as a father is to make sure that when I pass away, they will have a good education.

“Paul was a solicitor put in that trust, Herbert was the lead protector. Paul will remember when we had the first formal meeting, I said, ‘Herbert I am placing you in charge of this trust for the education of my children because I know that even if I died and did not leave any money, you will educate our children,” he said.

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FG’ll Go After Economic Saboteurs Next Year, Bamidele Reveals

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Senate Leader, Michael Opeyemi Bamidele
Senate Leader, Senator Michael Opeyemi Bamidele
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Insists N’Assembly will pass 2023 appropriations bill on Dec. 30

The Leader of the Senate, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele has revealed that the federal government will, from next year, go after economic saboteurs who made lives difficult and unbearable for Nigerians.

Bamidele, also Chairman of the Southern Senators Forum in the ninth National Assembly, insisted that the National Assembly would pass the 2024 appropriations bill on December 30 to sustain the January-December budget cycle.

He made this disclosure at a session with journalists in Iyin Ekiti on Monday, saying all federal lawmakers would have to cut short their holidays to ensure speedy passage of the 2024 appropriations bill.

At the session, Bamidele expressed grave concerns about the activities of economic saboteurs who were doing everything to keep exchange rates high against the Naira or trying to make the Naira unavailable to the people who kept their money in banks.

He therefore revealed that the federal government “will, from next year, go after economic saboteurs who are making life difficult and unbearable for Nigerians. The federal government will charge, prosecute and punish them for their acts of economic sabotage.

“All these will take place next year. In the long run, those who mopped up the Naira and Dollars from the markets will face the consequences of their actions. Those who mopped up the Dollars to keep commodity prices will definitely not escape justice.

“Those who are speculating are also on the watch list of the federal government. At some points, the federal government will have to go after them,” the senate leader revealed the plan of the federal government.

Beyond all these activities of economic saboteurs, Bamidele assured Nigerians that Nigeria would witness a true era of Renewed Hope that would herald development, progress and prosperity, citing diverse plans the administration of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu had put in place to transform the national economy.

He revealed the plan of the federal government “to invest heavily in agriculture and agro-allied industries. We are equally doing all we can to harness our solid minerals potential as much as what we derive from the sale of crude oil. We are determined to sustain the daily production of 1.7 million barrels.”

Providing further updates on the 2024 appropriation bill, the senate leader assured Nigerians that the National Assembly would pass the budget on December 30.

“To ensure the passage of the budget, We abridged time to make all ministries, departments and agencies appear before the joint sitting of all the relevant committees of both the Senate and House of Representatives.

“This has already reduced the time for the budget defence process by half rather than appearing before the Senate first and House of Representatives later. The resolution has also removed the need for harmonisation. In essence, we have been able to save time.

“We have also been sitting beyond our regular sitting days. We have sat on Saturdays. We may even sit on Sunday as we are approaching another year. We only give ourselves three days to go home and celebrate Christmas.

“We are reconvening on December 29. Our hope and determination is to pass by December 30. On January 1, 2024, Mr President will have the 2024 appropriation bill at his desk for assent so that its implementation can take off in earnest,” Bamidele explained.

Speaking about the consequence of fuel subsidy removal, Bamidele said the federal government was not unmindful of its impact on Nigerians, though defended the decision of the federal government to it.

He explained that the federal government took the decision in the best interest of Nigerians because Nigerians were not really benefiting from the fuel subsidy regime.

He said: “We are not unmindful of the immediate impact of the fuel subsidy removal. But we are convinced subsidy removal is a right decision taken because no other person than a cabal in the oil and gas industry and their promoters in the government were benefitting from the fuel subsidy regime.

“No one else is actually benefiting from the fuel subsidy. It was not about the people because the masses were not benefitting from it in any way. It was a major source of bleeding in our economy.

“This administration did the right thing by putting an end to the fuel subsidy regime. Part of what we have seen after the fuel subsidy removal was a fight back from those who were the beneficiaries of the fuel subsidy regime.

“They are doing everything possible to make sure the pump price of premium motor spirit goes up because we are more of a consumer economy. We do not produce. A lot of things we are consuming in Nigeria are imported.

“What this means is that if Naira is devalued either consciously against the Dollars or commodities imported to Nigeria, we have to spend more to bring these things. The supplier will have to sell them at a higher rate. This trend is making commodity prices go out of the reach of the Nigerians.

“People’s income has not increased. Yet, they have to pay double for a bag of rice today compared to what they paid one or two years ago. This is extremely painful for all Nigerians. How many Nigerians can afford a bag of rice today without a corresponding increase in their income?

“Nigerians are working so hard. But the prices are rising out of their purchasing powers. These are some of the immediate effects of very drastic economic decisions taken by the federal government. But its long term effect will, God’s grace, stabilise the economy.”

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