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NPA, NDDC Looting: PDP Demands Amaechi, Usman’s Sack, Prosecution

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…Says Agencies Are Now APC Cash Cows

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) demands the immediate sack, investigation and prosecution of Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, as well as the suspended Managing Director of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman, over exposed looting of over N165billions in the agency.

The Party in a statement issued in Abuja by its National Publicity Secretary Kola Ologbondiyan asks the transport minister to come clean on his reported connection in the alleged involvement of his wife, Mrs. Edith Amaechi, in the exposed N48 billion contract scam currently rocking the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).

He said the foul stench of corruption oozing out of the NPA, NDDC and other agencies of government in the last six years has shown that our MDAs have become the cash cows and Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) of greedy leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and their cronies in government in their unbridled looting of our patrimony under President Muhammadu Buhari’s watch.

“Our party asserts that the fact that it took the minister a clear six years (2016 to 2021) to query the NPA Managing Director over the alleged looting of N165 billion unremitted operating surplus of the agency, which is under his purview, is suspect and raises public belief that he (Amaechi) only acted apparently to shied himself after indicting audit documents had already been exposed”.

“This is in addition to reports from the office of Auditor General which also unearthed the looting of unremitted deduction to Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) amounting to N3,667,750,470. $148,845,745.04, Euro 4,891,449.50 and £252,682.14 under the suspended NPA Managing Director and Amaechi’s ministerial supervision”.

According to the Statement, the audit report also exposed another N15.18 billion allegedly siphoned through shady Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) projects by the NPA, an agency under Amaechi’s ministerial purview.

The PDP therefore rejects the obvious attempt at a coverup in the recourse to an Administrative Panel of Enquiry recommended by the Transport Minister to investigate the NPA fraud, in which he also has some questions to answer.

The party insists that both the minister and the indicted NPA Managing Director should be handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for investigation and possible prosecution.

Moreover, Nigerians are appalled that fingers of fraud allegation are also pointing to the wife of the Transport Minister in a N48 billion contract scam under the sacked NDDC’s Managing Director, Nelson Bambraifa, who was reportedly nominated into that position by the minister of transportation, Amaechi, but fired on allegations of corruption.

The PDP describes as unpardonable that the humongous sum in the NDDC contract scam involving the wife of the transport minister was allegedly siphoned under the guise of offering training to unsuspecting youths in the area.

“It is indeed disgraceful that under the APC that promised to fight and end corruption in our country, the public space is awash with revelations of sharing of government revenues among concubines, wives, girlfriends and family members of top APC leaders. This can only happen under the watch of an absentee president, who also condone corruption”.

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APC Picks Ondo Gov Candidate Apr 25, Pegs Form At ₦50m

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Ahead of the November 16, 2024 governorship election in Ondo State, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has released its timetable and schedule of activities leading to the party’s selection of a candidate on April 25, 2024.

The APC timetable released late Monday was signed by the party’s National Organising Secretary, Sulaimon Argungu.

According to the party, the sale of nominations, expression of interest and delegates forms for contestants will begin on April 3 and end on April 10, 2024, while primary election is slated for April 25, 2024.

Like its governorship primary in Edo State which produced Monday Okpebholo as the flag bearer, the APC pegged the price for the Expression of Interest and Nomination forms at N10m and N40m respectively for Ondo.

The party said female aspirants and persons living with disabilities are to pay for Expression of Interest while the Nomination Form is free.

“Youths from 25 to 40 years are to purchase Expression of Interest forms with a 50% discount on Nomination Forms,” the APC stated.

Some of the top contenders for the APC ticket in Ondo include Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa, former Ondo deputy governor, who succeeded the late Governor Rotimi Akeredolu after the latter’s death on December 27, 2023. A former Commissioner for Finance in the state, Wale Akinterinwa; as well as Senator representing Ondo South, Jimoh Ibrahim, also want the party’s ticket.

Ondo and Edo are two of the eight states where governorship elections are held off-season due to litigations and court judgements. The others are Anambra, Bayelsa, Ekiti, Imo, Kogi and Osun.

Already, political gladiators are squaring up in the two states where governorship polls will hold this year. 19 political parties are expected to field a candidate each but the polls, like previous ones, will turn out as two-horse races or at best three-horse races.

 

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Edo Guber Poll: Uzodinma Heads APC Primary Election Committee 

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Chairman of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF) Hope Uzodinma is to head the seven-man All Progressives Congress (APC) Edo Gubernatorial Primary Election Committee.

A statement late Tuesday night in Abuja announcing the names of various committee members by the party’s National Organising Secretary (NOS), Sulaiman Muhammad Arugungu showed that the committee will be inaugurated on Thursday by the National Chairman, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje by 4 pm.

His committee is to conduct the party’s shadow election on Saturday, February 17 in the 193 wards of Edo State to determine APC gubernatorial flag bearer in the September 21 governorship election.

Cross River Governor Bassey Otu will serve as Deputy Chairman of the committee while Alh. Rabiu Suleiman is appointed as Secretary.

Other members are former Osun Deputy Gov Mrs Titilayo Laoye-Tomori; Plateau 2023 APC governorship candidate, Dr. Nentanwe Yilwatda Goshwe, Hon. Umar Hassan and Lawan Garba.

The party also announced Barr. C. C Udenwa as Chairman of the five-man Election Appeal Committee while Alhaji Yunusa Mohammed will serve as Secretary.

The APC cleared all the 12 aspirants jostling for its ticket to contest the September Edo governorship election.

The 12 aspirants are: Prince Clem Agba; Senator Monday Okpebholo; Lucky Imasuen, Hon. Anamero Sunday Dekeri; Pastor Osagie Andrew Ize-Iyamu; Engr. Gideon Ikhine; Col. David Imuse (Rtd.); Gen. Charles Ehigie Airhiavbere (Rtd.); Prof. (Sen.) Oserheimen Osunbor; Blessing Agbomhere, Hon Dennis Idahosa and Ernest Afolabi Umakhihe.

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Fresh Crisis Hits Labour Party  Over N3.5bn

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A fresh crisis is brewing in the Labour Party (LP) over the 2023 general election finances.

The National Treasurer, Mrs. Oluchi Oparah, has demanded accountability from the National Chairman, Julius Abure, over N3.5 billion realized from sales of forms and other donations to the party.

Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Monday, February 12, 2024, Opara said that LP has been plagued with financial mismanagement and corruption.

She alleged that Abure owns several houses and property.

Oparah said: “I stand before you today with a heavy heart and a sense of duty to the principles of transparency, accountability, and justice. With great reluctance and deep concern, I am compelled to publicly address the media regarding the egregious financial mismanagement and corruption that have plagued our beloved party under the leadership of Mr Julius Abure, the current National Chairman.

“As national treasurer, I am constrained to come before you and the public today because the internal mechanisms of our party have failed woefully to bring Mr. Abure to account for his brazen abuse of office and misappropriation of party funds.

“His appetite for power has grown unchecked, and he has deliberately undermined my duties and authority as stipulated in the party’s constitution.”

Meanwhile, the party has dismissed the allegations.

The party’s National Publicity Secretary, Obiora Ifoh, said: “With the exception of the National Treasurer whose tenure is about to end in few weeks’ time, and who has served for 8 years as National Treasurer without a single record of party accounts, no other member of the national working committee has raised any issue of embezzlement against our National Chairman who made a pledge on assumption that the party has to be revamped.

Evidence is our proactive outing in the 2023 general election as the party presented for the first time a very good presidential candidate.

“Let it be said that the Labour Party has not earned N3.5 billion as claimed and that the National Chairman has not embezzled any money that belongs to the party as alleged.

 The records are there, except that Ms Oluchi Opara don’t even understand simple accounting even as a treasurer. An External Auditor is engaged by the party and our account is under constant scrutiny of INEC or other regulatory bodies.

“Abure does not own several houses and property as spuriously alleged by our estranged National Treasurer, even though no law prohibits him from owning properties.”

 

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