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Buhari’s Performance On NTA Live Programme Shameful – Ortom |RN

Rose EjembiMakurdi

 

BenueState Governor, Samuel Ortom, has described  President Muhammadu Buhari’s overall performance during the live programme on NTA, on Wednesday night, as shameful and a confirmation that he had lost control to cabals in his government.

The governor said this, yesterday, at NKST Church, Buruku, while interacting with officials of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), during his reelection campaign in the local government area.

The governor, who was reacting to the televised comments on president Buhari on the matter, said the poor outing gave credence to what the president’s wife had said that he has lost control and a cabal has taken charge.

On the planned cattle routes by the Federal Government, Ortom insisted there are no cattle routes in his state and stressed that even if there were such routes which were gazetted, he would have de-gazetted them, as the current population of the state had made such routes untenable.

“At the time such routes were contemplated in the 60s, the entire population of the country was about 40 million, while the current population is about 200 million, thereby, foreclosing the possibility of such routes.”

The governor, who said he battled and overcame financial, social vices as well as security challenges during his first term, said his focus on these areas impacted negatively on his performance, adding that if given a second mandate, the end of his administration would be better than his rough beginning.

Governor Ortom said the All Progressives Congress (APC)-controlled federal government failed to forestall attacks on the state by Jihadists, who openly declared their conquest and occupation agenda on the state and, thereafter, failed to give the people justice when they demanded it. “This development coupled with the deliberate neglect of  Benue people, by not giving them strategic positions in government, prompted me to seek an alternative platform on which to pursue my reelection.”    (The Sun)

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2019: Kidnappings, Killings, Hardship Not Enough Reason To Vote Out Buhari – Sani, ACF Scribe

As the 2019 general elections approach, Secretary General of Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), Mr. Anthony Sani, has said kidnappings, killings and economic hardship in the land are not enough reasons to vote out President Muhammadu Buhari at the coming polls.

Sani noted that even in advanced countries where democracy is being practised, bombings and killings cannot be ruled out, and citizens of such countries never called for dethronement of their Presidents. The ACF scribe therefore called on Nigerians to be patient with Buhari and give him a second chance to take the country to the promisedland. He spoke to NOAH EBIJEin Kaduna.

Sir, how has our country, Nigeria fared in the past year 2018, considering the fact that it witnessed a lot of challenges like kidnappings, bombings and killings by Boko Haram and herdsmen?

Nigeria has been going through challenges just like any other growing nation. And the government is trying its best to overcome the challenges. Such challenges should bring about purposeful leadership and the best in every one rather than frustrations. This is noteworthy considering that order, justice, liberty, peace, common decency and prosperity for all, are never natural order of things but attained through ceaseless hardwork by both leaders and the led.

This government inherited many of these challenges and there was even prediction by some group in America that the country would reach a tipping point by 2015, and the government promised to tame some of the challenges. The government is now three and half years old, it is therefore left for fair minded and public spirited Nigerians to do the fact-check and know whether the fight against Boko Haram has yielded positive results by way of reduction of spread and frequency of attacks or not, whether killing of high profile Nigerians has reduced or not compared to the past or not, as well as noting whether there are consciously directed efforts to tame kidnapping and killings by gunmen compared to the past or not. The records should inform judgement of Nigerian voters during elections.

I say so because challenges are natural concomitant of mechanism of community living. And that explains why there are still reports of killings by gunmen in developed democracies, including America that is 241 years old, and the fact that people rate their leaders on the basis of effectiveness of consciously directed efforts at overcoming the challenges. Nigerians should use the records for informed judgement during elections.

How worried are you that Nigeria is rated as the 3rd world most terrorised country?

Whatever level of worries does not result in wiping away terrorism in Nigeria but what is required has to do with consciously directed efforts to reduce the challenges substantially. I have stated that these challenges predate this regime, which promised to tame them. Whether Nigeria is number one, number two or number three among terrorist nations is beside the point. It is the efforts by the government at taming the menace that should concern most Nigerians as to whether there are notable improvements or not.

There is no doubt that there is economic hardship in the land, and people are blaming it on bad leadership. What do you think is the way out because some people have already concluded to vote out President Buhari in 2019 as the only way to solve the problem of hardship?

The complaints by Nigerians of failure of leadership is not new. Even developed countries complain of failure of leadership. This is precisely because however developed a country is, there would still be people who would suffer from poverty, since no nation can wipe out poverty completely. Recall the import of what Jesus Christ told Judas that “the poor would always be with you”. And that is why multi party democracies provide for people to retain performing leadership and vote out feckless leaders at specified periods.

This government inherited an economy that was in shambles that made the president to admit he almost considered abdication. The recession was foretold by the trio of Soludo, Sanusi and Ngozi Iweala which explained the setting in of the recession in the third quarter of 2015.

The government has exited the recession and trying to diversify the economy starting from agriculture and solid minerals. These cannot be a day’s job. But it is left to Nigerians to decide whether the efforts have yielded enough improvement over those of the past or not.

Leader of Northern Elders Forum (NEF), Professor Ango Abdullahi and Chairman, Northern Elders Council (NEC), Ahaji Tanko Yakassai have reportedly and respectively kicked against the re-election of President Buhari. These are founding members of ACF and elder statesmen who are supposed to stand firmly with ACF. Do you think ACF membership will ever be the same again?

I hope you are aware of the fact that the two groups of Northern Elders Forum and Northern Elders Council were formed because they thought ACF was not politically partisan enough. ACF has been political on issues most northerners share but not partisan. This is because membership of ACF cuts across partisan lines, and any partisan disposition on the part of ACF would be counter productive. More so that the North is hardly one when it comes to partisan politics right from first republic through second republic to the current dispensation. And given the nature of partisan politics, you may wish to note that NEF is in factions where the one led by Alhaji Sani Zango Daura, Paul Talfa and co have endorsed President Buhari while Ango’s faction has passed vote of no confidence on the present regime.

What is more, most members of other fora and platforms in the North belong to ACF which serves as umbrella body. For example, Prof Ango has been a member of ACF and contested Chairman of NEC with Coomasie and was later made the chairman of the ACF’s political committee. It is not long ago that we started hearing him declaring ACF a rival of his Northern Elders Forum. Alhaji Tanko Yakassai has not resigned his membership of BoT of ACF. He has even resigned from partisan politics. I am therefore sanguine that after the topsy-turvy of the electioneering campaigns and temper comes down, most of them will be active members of ACF again. There is no cause for alarm. What has happened is a result of nature of partisan politics.

There are reports that a bill for change from presidential system of government is being considered in the National Assembly. What is your take on it?

I am not sure if the problems of this country have something to do with structure of the country or form of government. This is because we have tried the parliamentary system during the first republic and jettisoned it as feckless. We tried military dictatorship and said it was aberration, and now we are trying the presidential system, which we say is expensive. But when we consider the fact that all these models have worked in some other climes, then it is hard to avoid the conclusion that our problems are inability to manage our national resources prudently and not structure or form of government. See how Lagos state is performing creditably under the same structure and form of government, which some groups believe are not workable. I am therefore more in favour of effective and efficient management of our national resources which come with integrity and credibility devoid of corrupt practices that have collapsed our national ideals, moral values and of our sense of what is right and what is evil.

What is your view about the effect of the president’s refusal to sign the amended electoral bill on the coming elections?

The President has his own reasons for withholding his assent to the bill, one of which is the time factor that does not allow for proficiencies in exclusive use of electronic voting that include electronic transmission of results amid prevalent hacking. He would prefer there is enough time for INEC to master exclusive electronic voting before it is put to use, which cannot happen now. He seems to have a case there. The President also does not want fusion of votes of political parties that have not merged. He may want political parties to merge and promote true multiparty democracies based on distinct manifestos as against the current practice that are devoid of ideology that inspire defections.

Other areas of concern is ECOWAS protocol which does not make for any amendment less than 90 days to the day of the elections.

And so, given those observations and the fact that the current electoral act sired by opposition PDP which claims credible elections in 2015, I think there should be no qualm for its use in 2019. But if wishes were horses, I would have preferred a situation where the two arms of government should come together and single out the card reader for inclusion in the electoral act. This is because INEC has already mastered the use of card reader and the only draw back is its lack of legalization.

What was your reaction to Gov El-Rufai’s committee’s recommendations to the ruling party on restructuring?

Though Governor El-Rufai is a member of Northern States Governors Forum, a member of the ruling party and may have the ears of the President, I do not think the committee consulted the North on this serious issues of far reaching reforms of the polity that include recommendations for resource control, scrapping of local government, merger of some states and introduction of state police. That report cannot be outcome of consultations across the North. This is because the term restructuring means different things to different people, and those who want restructuring that will allow different sections to develop at different pace are those who want unbridled inequality to push the country to a tipping point.  (The Sun)

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Police Interrogate Fani-Kayode Over Anti-Fulani Herdsmen Article |The Republican News

Femi-Fani-Kayode
                                                         Femi Fani-Kayode

Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja

 

The Nigeria Police Force on Tuesday grilled a former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, over a three-part essay titled, ‘Five Useful Idiots and the Spirit of the Accursed Slave’.

Fani-Kayode, it was learnt, was grilled for about an hour and then asked to return on another day for more interrogation.

Confirming his interrogation to our correspondent on the telephone, the former minister said the quizzing was cordial.

Fani-Kayode, however, said he would continue to write more of such articles.

He said, “I had a cordial interview with the policemen. The police were courteous and professional.

“I was invited because of my essay titled “Five Useful Idiots and the Spirit Of the Accursed Slave” which was about Fulani hegemony and terrorism together with other write-ups.  No regrets. I will hit harder and write more.”

In the essay which was published in March, the former minister lambasted the Governor of Plateau State, Solomon Lalong, for blaming the herdsmen attacks on Governor Samuel Ortom’s refusal to scrap the anti-grazing law.

Fani-Kayode also lambasted the Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, for describing the herdsmen attacks in Kogi State as a family affair among Kogi indigenes.

He also knocked a former Minister of Information and current chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, Prince Tony Momoh, for saying the Fulani herdsmen were victims of tribal politics.

The former minister said in the article that the herdsmen attacks were part of a larger scheme to dominate and recolonise Nigeria.  (Punch)

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Oyedepo Tells Buhari: Resign, Get Out Of Office |The Republican News

Jesusegun Alagbe

The founder and presiding bishop of the Living Faith Church Worldwide, aka Winners’ Chapel, David Oyedepo, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to resign over persistent Fulani militant herdsmen killings.

In a YouTube video posted by the church’s official page, the cleric made this call on Sunday at its headquarters in Ota, Ogun State.

With this development, Oyedepo has joined other notable clerics – including the Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Church, Abuja, John Cardinal Onaiyekan; and a former Archbishop of the Catholic Church in Lagos, Cardinal Anthony Olubunmi Okogie – who have asked Buhari to quit his position over failure to secure the lives of Nigerians.

The cleric told his congregation that although he was not partisan, he would not be alive and not talk about the massacre of Nigerians, especially in the Middle Belt, by suspected Fulani herdsmen.

Speaking on the theme, “Enough is enough,” he said, “When I was talking in 2015, people were saying my own was too much, now everybody can see what’s happening. What has moved forward in anybody’s life? You don’t know it’s war. Why are they attacking the Christian communities? Why has nobody been arrested? I can tell you this, the authorities and the powers that be are behind them.

“I will never be partisan; Jesus got me out of it in 1984. But I will not be alive to see innocent people massacred.

“We must wake up and push this evil back. Not one of those so-called herdsmen – they are jihadists – has been brought to book till date. Herdsmen don’t shoot; they have been here all along. They are just taking cover under the herdsmen to assault innocent citizens. They wake up in the night and slice innocent children to pieces. Yet, you have a government in place. What!

“The most honourable thing for any non-performing leader to do is to resign. The most honourable thing is to resign. That’s my own for Mr President. Resign! Get out of office! Even our Islamic friends in the North are calling on him (Buhari) to resign. Because that’s the noblest thing to do. Or are we going to look at one system destroy a whole nation?”

Oyedepo also warned Nigerians against the ceding of land to the Fulani herdsmen for ranching, as proposed by the Federal Government.

He said, “I’m going to say this and I’m not going to be tired. This (Nigeria) will never be a Fulani republic. That is not our terms of the agreement. It will remain a secular nation until Jesus returns. It’s not just (about) land, it’s (about) heritage.

“Forever, I stand on the fact that no government has the authority to collect land from those who own it and transfer it to another person because on the other side (presumably the north), it never happens.”  (Punch)

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Fulani Herdsmen Killings Worse Than Boko Haram, Says United Nations |RN

In this photo provided by the United Nations, members of the United Nations Security Council vote at the United Nations headquarters on Friday, Dec. 23, 2016, in favour of condemning Israel for its practice of establishing settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. In a striking rupture with past practice, the U.S. allowed the vote, not exercising its veto. (Manuel Elias/The United Nations via AP)

The Special Representative of UN Secretary-General for West Africa and the Sahel, Mohamed Ibn Chambas, has expressed concern over the conflicts between herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria.

According to him, the conflicts, which are more pronounced in the Middle Belt region, were becoming “more sophisticated and deadlier.”

Mr Chambas, who is Head, UN Office for West African and the Sahel (UNOWAS), in a report presented to the UN Security Council, said the violence was a major security threat in the region, warning that it risks changing into terrorist attacks.

“Violence between farmers and herders is increasingly a major security threat in the region and risks morphing into the terrorist attacks that have defined the security landscape.

“Farmer-herder conflicts are becoming more sophisticated and deadlier, especially in Nigeria’s Middle Belt.

“During four days in June, new spates of attacks and retribution killings between herders and farmers in this region resulted in scores of deaths,’’ the UN envoy said.

In the Lake Chad Basin, Mr Chambas said in spite of gains made by the Nigerian armed forces and the Multinational Joint Task Force, Boko Haram remained active.

According to the UN envoy for West Africa and the Sahel: “The trend of Boko Haram, using female suicide bombers continue, and reportedly almost one in five suicide bombers is a child. The most recent attacks on a Nigerian military garrison in Yobe and the ambush of a military convoy in Borno are the latest manifestations of the threats still posed by Boko Haram.

“There is a need for increased support to diplomatic, security and humanitarian responses to Boko Haram, in a holistic manner.

“To this end, UNOWAS is providing technical support for a joint summit of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) and the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), on July 30, as called for by Security Council resolution 2349 (2017).”

He explained that the severe depletion of Lake Chad had led to environmental degradation, socioeconomic marginalisation and insecurity for 45 million people.

According to him, an estimated 2.3 million people remain displaced by the aggregate effects of insecurity and climate change.

He appealed to member states to support the humanitarian response to the Lake Chad crisis, which remains critically underfunded and revitalisation of the Lake Chad Basin.

“Let me stress that any military response to security challenges in the region needs to be matched by the implementation of comprehensive strategies linking security and humanitarian interventions to development and human rights initiatives.

“There is also need to increase our collective efforts to address the challenges facing the Sahel region with actions that combine politics, security and development,’’ Chambas stressed.

He said the period under review saw an upsurge in popular discontent in the region manifested through often violent demonstrations calling for political and economic reforms.

“The sometimes violent conduct of security forces, notably in dealing with popular demonstrations, has also fuelled political tensions.

“Commitment by countries of the region and support from the international community will be key to ensuring the effectiveness and accountability of security sector institutions as part of broader security sector reform efforts. Several countries continue to struggle with justice, national reconciliation and human rights challenges. Among those is the concerning number of high-profile arrests, judicial prosecutions and convictions against political and civil society actors,’’ he said.  (The Sun)

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Mass Killings: IPOB Warns Miyetti Allah |The Republican News

IPOB-Crowd
  • Tells herdsmen to forget about ranching in South East

Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has warned the leadership of Miyetti Allah Cattle Breeders Association of Nigeria (MACBAN) against its alleged threat to South East geopolitical zones following the rejection of cattle ranches in the zone.

The group warned that one inevitable outcome of any premeditated attack on Igbo people and easterners living in the north, ‘will mark the beginning of the apocalyptic end of Nigeria’.

A statement by the Media and Publicity Secretary of IPOB, Emma Powerful, said the arrogant tone of the leader of Miyetti Allah’s threat against Igbo and their businesses in the North points clearly to an impending hostile response from them, which IPOB is both duty and honour bound not to ignore.

“We must make it abundantly clear that any attack against Igbos and their businesses in the North will be met with commensurate response in the South.

“Threats and large scale invasions of territories in the Middle-Belt may have had the effect of subduing indigenous Tiv resistance to the Fulani hegemonic juggernauts in the Middle Belt and total collapse of morale in the West, giving what happened at Ado-Ekiti PDP rally on Wednesday, July 11, 2018.”

“Those northern voices who continually pressured Igbo leaders and governors to mistakenly ban IPOB are today silent against the murderous antecedents of their own kith and kin, the Fulani herdsmen.

“Had IPOB not been ill-advisedly banned by South East governors and Igbo socio-cultural leaders, MACBAN would not have had the guts to issue such an insulting statement against Igbo and their business interests in the North.

“One inevitable outcome of any premeditated attack on Igbo people and easterners living in the North will mark the beginning of the apocalyptic end of Nigeria as we know it.

“The sensible decision of, hitherto, docile South East governors to avoid wholesale breakdown of law and order in their region, through the banning of herdsmen activities, should be applauded by Arewa Consultative Forum, Sokoto Caliphate and all advocates of peaceful coexistence in Nigeria, not derided through the mouthpiece of Fulani herdsmen, the MACBAN.

“Giving that 70 percent of Nigeria’s land mass is in the North, as we have been boastfully reminded by many government officials and core northerners over the years, it stands to reason and common sense that ranching activity is better sited at the North, not ‘tiny’ ‘landlocked’ South-East.

“All South East and South South governors must be guided by a popular proverb in Igboland that says, only an irrational man kills his native doctor when those who wish to poison and harm him are still very much around and multiplying.”

Arewa Consultative Forum and their foot soldiers, the MACBAN, must know that IPOB will never tolerate their excesses.

“What we IPOB are asking for and on behalf of those other ethnic nationalities in the Middle-Belt that are too weak to speak for themselves, is to be left alone in peace in the land of our ancestors,” Powerful stated.  (The Sun)

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Bloodbath In Taraba: Over 50 Killed By Fulani Herdsmen Militia |RN

Fulani-Herdsmen3

File Photo: Armed Fulani herdsmen

  • 50 killed in fresh attacks

Billy Graham Abel, Yola

Over 50 people were reportedly killed in another bloody attack in several communities bordering Adamawa and Taraba states on Monday night.

Residents told Daily Sun that some Fulani militia attacked several ethnic villages of Gojefa, Bujum Yashi, Bujum Waya, Sabonlayi and Bujum Kasuwa in Numan Local Government Area of Adamawa State.

Other communities affected by the onslaught included Anguwan Bishop Yotti, Todung, Budon, Bunzum and Bamga Dutse in Taraba State.

Galilee Ishaku, a resident of Sabon Layi, who survived the mayhem said: “The people who attacked us are Fulani. They came when we were in the market because it’s market day. They suddenly entered our village and started shooting. We ran and crossed over the river; they followed us and kept on shooting. Right now, as I am talking, they are in our village, grazing in our farms.

“The people I know that were killed are about 13 but many of our villagers are still unaccounted for.”

Gerald Na’allah, a community leader claimed the attacks have become regular occurrence.

“It usually starts as a rumour and we report it to the appropriate authorities and it eventually happens that they come in and attack and kill and loot. People have stopped going to the farm. No one is farming again.”

The member representing Numan in the Adamawa State House of Assembly, Sodomti Tayedi condemned the attacks and lamented that poverty and starvation loom as residents could no longer go to farm because of the wave of incessant attacks.

She said over 30 people were feared killed in the recent attacks.

According to the lawmaker, hardly a week pass without an attack in her constituency by suspected Fulani militia.

 

She said the rate at which people were fleeing their ancestral homes for fear of the unknown is alarming, adding that the situation might soon result in food crisis in the state.

“Our people are farmers and grazers but my community is now living in fear since these attacks started in November last year and has persisted up till date.

“We are hopeless and helpless; economic activities have stopped. This is farming season and if we cannot go to farms, then poverty and starvation is what is left.

“We are calling on government, as matter of urgency, to come and secure our people and constituency. Since no one is allowed to take up arms, then it is the responsibility of the government to protect the people.”

The Adamawa State decried the attacks on agricultural communities, saying it could lead to serious food crisis.

The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Ahmad Sajoh, while condemning the attacks on communities in Numan and Demsa, expressed government’s concern over the number of people fleeing their ancestral home for fear of impending attacks.

He said government was working with security agencies to restore peace in the affected communities.

Sajoh added that government would provide assistance to victims of the recent attack in Numan and Demsa.

The attack, the fourth in a fortnight by yet to be apprehended killer herdsmen, has led to the death of hundreds of people and destruction of several homes destroyed.

Observers of the situation in the state have called for more proactive measures by security agents to apprehend the attackers and contain the constant attacks on Taraba and Adamawa communities by armed militia.  (The Sun)

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