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S’WEST APC LEADERS BACK SOUTHERN GOVERNORS’ POSITION ON OPEN GRAZING

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…Reject separatist agitations; renew call for federalism, restructuring

…Sanwo-Olu hosts meeting of APC Govs, party leaders
Worried by unabated kidnapping and festering banditry threatening the peace of the nation, All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders in the Southwest met in Lagos on Sunday to deliberate the way forward.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu hosted the meeting, which was held behind closed doors for about five hours, at the State House in Marina. APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, which was chaired by the former APC interim national chairman, Chief Bisi Akande, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila.
Others are Governors of Ogun and Osun states, Prince Dapo Abiodun and Gboyega Oyetola, Minister for Industry, Trade and Investment, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, former Ogun State Governor, Aremo Olusegun Osoba, Gen. Alani Akinrinade (rtd), and Chief Pius Akinyelure.

Coming out of the meeting, the APC leaders strongly condemned separatist agitations and hate speeches, avowing their belief in the unity, stability and sustainability of the country.

They also threw their weight behind the position of Southern Governors on open grazing taken during a summit held on May 11, 2021 in Asaba, Delta State.

Chief Akande, who spoke on behalf of the APC leaders, said the attendees endorsed the ban on open grazing, as the decision would lessen tensions between farmers and herders, while also helping the long-term economic viability of both the farming and herding communities.

He said the party leaders were mindful of the short-term dislocation the ban on open grazing might cause, but added the Southern Governors’ decision was in the best interests of all parties concerned.

The party leaders urged the Federal Government to provide short, medium and long-term finance through the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for States and private individuals who may wish to set up ranches as part of the agricultural sustainability policy.

He said: “We endorse the position of the Southern Governors taken at their summit in Asaba regarding ranching.

We do so because such a decision will lessen tensions between farmers and herders while also helping the long-term economic viability of both the farming and herding communities.

We are mindful of the short-term dislocation this might cause but we are also mindful that this position is in the best interests of all parties concerned.

“We recommend that the Federal and State Governments cooperate fully with one another to enact the necessary measures to encourage this more effective and modern method of cattle-rearing so that both farmers and herders can pursue their livelihoods with greater productivity and in a more cooperative relationship that minimises the friction between these two important pillars of our agricultural economy.”

The APC leaders expressed their concerns on security situation in the country, stressing that terrorism and criminality were threatening livelihoods of Nigerians adversely in many areas.

They urged the Federal Government to continue to allocate sufficient resources to enable the military and security agencies to tackle the security challenges.

The Southwest party leaders used the occasion to renew their call for restructuring and true federalism, where more power and resources are allocated to States to strengthen democratic governance and engender peace.

True federalism, they argued, will empower States to solve localised issues before they transform into national problem.

The party stalwarts said aside mitigating political competition for control of power, federalism would empower grassroots economic development and political reforms that will stand as bulwarks against the terrorism and criminality.

The communique reads in part: “For Nigeria to overcome the present challenges, we must do so with unity of purpose and action.

The desire for peace and the chance for a prosperous and just society is universal and transcends all regional, religious or ethnic divisions. Sadly, many public figures have made statements that spark division and undermine the needed unity of purpose.

“We urge government at all levels, security agencies, and public leaders across the country to do everything possible to prevent tension so that we sustain the necessary unity to defeat these challenges to our national security.

All responsible Nigerians must speak and act in a manner that strengthens our common cause against these common threats to our collective peace, justice and development.

“We restate our abhorrence of violence as a means to achieve either political or economic power and influence.

We strongly condemn violence of any form in any part of the country, regardless of ethnic or regional identity of the perpetrators of the violence or of the victims. Government must do all it can to protect potential victims and to assist those who have previously been victimized by terrorism or widespread banditry.

“We hold to the view that true federalism where more power and resources are allocated to the states will be an essential part in strengthening society and improving democratic governance so that we beat the present challenges but also engender durable peace and security. True federalism and the reallocation of resources and authority that comes with it will empower the states to solve localised issues before they spread and transform into national ones.”

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APC primary: No cause for alarm – Oyetola’s aide

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Osun State Governor Adegboyega Oyetola
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Expresses confidence that Appeal court will set it aside

The Chief Press Secretary to Osun Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, Ismail Omipidan, has appealed to supporters of the governor to remain calm in the face of the decision of a Federal High Court to nullify his candidature in the July 16 Governorship poll.

He noted that their team of lawyers would be challenging the decision at the Appeal Court, just as he expressed confidence that the decision would be set aside.

Omipidan further noted that the case was instituted by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in spite of the fact there is a plethora of decisions flowing from the apex court that frowns upon such a decision.

He said that, for the records, the position of the law is that only members of the APC who participated in the primary election can approach the court to challenge the nomination of Oyetola as the candidate of the party.

“All these are part of the antics of the opposition PDP and some of their collaborators from within to distract us. But like every of their plans, this too has fallen flat on their faces.

“They want to distract us from the Tribunal case. But we shall remain focused until we take back our mandate. We have confidence in the Tribunal to do justice in the case before it, just as we have implicit confidence in the Appeal Court to set aside this latest decision of the Federal High Court,” Omipidan said.

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Nigeria @ 62: Southern Senators To Houses of Assembly, Speed up Review of Constitution Amendment

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Senator Michael Opeyemi Bamidele
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The Southern Senators’ Forum has asked the State Houses of Assembly across the nation to expedite action on the Review of the 1999 Constitution as transmitted to them by the National Assembly, adding that this would be an Independence anniversary gift to Nigerians if done as such.

The Chairman of the Forum , Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, made this known in a statement issued on the occasion of the commemoration of the 62nd Independence anniversary. Bamidele said he is optimistic that most of the challenges facing the nation will be a thing of the past if the salient report becomes law.

Bamidele also urged Nigerians to be optimistic about the future of the nation, notwithstanding the enormity of our current challenges, adding that there is yet light at the end of the tunnel if we have faith in God and take the much needed steps.

He pointed out that just like the political office holders and public servants in general, every citizen has a role to play in the nation building process and with determination, faith and persistence, Nigerians will surely witness a new Nigeria which is headed for growth and development and that is devoid of violence, hostilities, and acrimony.

The statement reads, ” As we celebrate 62nd Independence anniversary of our great nation, I will like to implore the State Houses of Assembly across the Federation to expedite action on the passage of the Review of the 1999 Constitution as transmitted to them by the National Assembly, because some of the problems facing the people of Nigeria are already being addressed in the amendment draft transmitted to the State Houses Assembly.

” The speedy passage of the amendment will serve as the most cherished and memorable anniversary gift you can give to the electorates who reposed confidence in you by voting you as their representatives in the Houses Assembly.

” We must also know that the process of nation building is a collective responsibility of both the leaders and followers in order for us to have the nation of our desire and Nigerians should continue to hope for greater future and with determination, faith and persistence, Nigerians will surely see a nation devoid of banditry, terrorism, kidnapping, ethnic hostilities and acrimony.

” Nigerians should not succumb their future in the hands of the pessimists who are always craving for negative news in the country, but put their trust in God, for He will surely see us through our challenges as a nation”.

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Senator Opeyemi Bamidele Bags National Honour

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Senator Micheal Opeyemi Bamidele
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President Muhammadu Buhari has approved conferment of national honour on the Senator representing Ekiti Central, in the the current Ninth National Assembly, Senator Micheal Opeyemi Bamidele.

The National Honours ceremony is billed for October 11, 2022 in Abuja

This was disclosed in a statement released by Senator Bamidele’s media office , stating that the Chairman Senate Committee on Judiciary is listed among the recipients of the 2022 National Honour Award of the Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON).

The letter conveyed the award was signed by the Minister of Special Duties and Inter-government Affairs, Senator George Akume signed on September 16, 2022.

The letter from the Minister reads, ““I have the honour to formally inform you that the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, has approved the conferment of the National Honours on you, in the rank of CON, Commander of the Order of the Niger.

“The ceremony is scheduled to take place at the International Conference Centre, Abuja on Tuesday, October 11, 2022 at 9am.”

Bamidele is the Chairman of Southern , Senator Forum, and was in House of Representatives between June 2011 to June 2015). He served as Honorable Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Lagos State (July 2007 to February 2011), Honourable Commissioner for Youths, Sports and Social Development, Lagos State (July 2003 to May 2007, Special Adviser to the Governor on Political and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Lagos State (July 2000 to May 2003).

Bamidele obtained law degree in the University of Benun and graduated from the Nigerian Law School, he was called to the bar in 1992. He then proceeded to Franklin Pierce University where he received a master’s degree in law and was called to the New York Bar in January 1999.

Among the bills sponsored by Senator Opeyemi Bamidele is a bill for the Establishment of the Federal University of Medical and Environmental sciences in Ekiti. Also, his Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) Establishment Act Amendment Bill of 2021, seeking to strengthen and extend the life of AMCON, has already been assented to by President Buhari.

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