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2023: Ibori Ex-convict Negative Status Injurious To Atiku’s Presidential Race.  By Agofure Okpodovan

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The presidential race of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, may hit the rocks again if the Turaki Adamawa does not distance himself from an ex-convict and corrupt former governor of Delta State, Chief James Onanefe Ibori.
The media reported that Ibori is currently flirting around with Atiku over who should be his presidential running mate. And it appears failures associated with previous attempts to become President of Nigerian has been wipes off Atiku’s memory . This time around he may be in for another regrets if the PDP presidential candidate refuses to distance himself from an unrepentant criminal and corrupt ex-onvict, Ibori.
Atiku is aware that acute corruption bedevils this country in monumental proportion and Nigerians neither want to hear nor see any trace of corrupt individuals piloting the presidential campaign of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. Ibori is well known locally and in the international community as a  corrupt, crude and hardened criminal who pleaded guilty for looting Delta State treasury during his tenure as governor between 1999 and 2007.
The Econet (now Airtel) unscrupulous transaction and many other shady deals for which Chief Ibori pleaded guilty and was jailed in London, cannot be forgotten in a hurry. About £4.2 million of Delta State stolen funds by Ibori was repatriated to Nigeria last year and withheld by the federal government. Delta State Government is still battling for the recovery of the money and several billions of Naira in foreign currencies hanging in foreign banks, yet to be repatriated.
Atiku as an experienced politician and a forthright presidential candidate of PDP, is aware of the electoral and electioneering disaster that will befall him and PDP over renewed political romance with a hardened fraudster and ex-convict, Chief James Ibori. This should never be allowed to happen at all.
Ibori of 1999 is no longer the Ibori of 2022, in terms of political relevance and control of Delta State politics. The just concluded gubernatorial primary in the state wherein his partner in money laundering and looting of Delta State treasury, Olorogun David Edevbie, was rejected by delegates arrest to the fact that Ibori is an expired politician.
Atiku cannot afford to take Nigerians for a ride, he must stay away from Ibori otherwise his victory in 2023 cannot be guaranteed.
At the just concluded PDP presidential primary in Anuja, Chief James Ibori could not influence one single delegate votw fort Atiku The state governor, Senator Dr Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa, is unarguably the current leader of Delta State politics and Chairman, South-South Governors Forum. He is in perfect control of the state political structures, loved by Deltans, and if Atiku must win in 2023, he should of a necessity avoid ex-convict James Ibori.
It was reported that Ibori accompanied Alhaji Atiku Abubakar to PDP Secretariat for official transactions and this singular act may attract negative public reactions. For him to succeed, he must not be seen to patronise unscrupulous elements, corrupt past leaders and ex-convicts like Chief James Ibori. Atiku must thread with caution this time around.
2023 presidential election is obviously Atiku’s last chance to become Nigeria’s president and he must not waste this golden opportunity because of an ex-convict. Atiku must listen to PDP leaders and NEC of the party to pick his running mate. He must never allow an ex-convict to dictate or determine who become his running mate. Millions of Nigerians will abandon Atiku because of his political romance with Ibori. He must at all cost avoid this foreseeable political and electioneering disaster.
In Delta State, Chief Ibori is no longer in charge of the political structures. He deliberately distanced himself from party politics since he returned to Nigeria after serving his jail term in London. Ibori is only interested in planting rogues in government to steal Delta State resources.
Deltans have resolved never to allow Ibori have access to their state treasury via partners in crime. This also accounted for reasons why his co-conspirator, Olorogun David Edevbie, could not emerge as 2023 governorship candidate in the state. Atiku must not waste this opportunity, he should avoid patronising past corrupt leaders with little or no electoral value.
There is no gainsaying the fact that Ibori is a political leper and a corrupt leader, his personal relationship with Alhaji Atiku Abubakar not withstanding. And if Atiku truly want to win the 2023 presidential election, he must avoid the former rogue governor of Delta State.
As the saying goes “show me your friend and I will tell you who you are.” Darkness and light cannot cohabit, they are separate entities; one is positive and the other is absolutely negative.
Atiku must surround himself with positive leaders and not negative corrupt ex-convicts with no electoral value like Ibori.
If Atiku allow Ibori to dictate who become his running mate, 2023 presidential election will be a monumental disaster for him and his party, because Nigerians will not vote for a candidate who is fraternising with ex-convicts and corrupt past leaders.

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Judiciary

Lagos APC Scribe, Hon. Odesanya,  Urges Lawyers to Participate In Electioneering Process

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The Secretary of the Lagos State chapter of the All Progressives Congress, Hon. Sunmi Lanre Odesanya, has urged lawyers across the country to ensure that they get their Permanent Voters Card and participate in elections.
The legal practitioner made the statement during an interactive session with the executives of the Ikorodu chapter of the the Nigerian Bar Association on Thursday.
Speaking during the session held at the Lagos APC secretariat, Acme Road, Ikeja, the former Chairman of the Lagos House of Assembly Committee on Judiciary, Human Right & Public Petitions said that the purpose of the meeting was to cross fertilise ideas on how to move the party forward.
“The legal profession remains my noble constituency. I’m so proud to be a lawyer. The purpose of this meeting is to cross fertilise ideas with my learned colleagues on how to move the party forward. Lawyers are stakeholders, even if they are not partisan, they should endeavour to get their PVCs and participate in elections.
“There’s a saying that if you fold your hands, the fools will rule over you. I implore this intellectuals, professionals and nation builders not to just fold their hand. As stakeholders, they should participate in the electioneering process. Lawyers are blessed right from heaven with wisdom and knowledge on how to govern the society,” he said.
He assured the Ikorodu NBA chapter of individual and collective engagements whenever the need arise.
“I’m proud of Ikorodu of NBA. There’s the need to tap from their wealth of intellectuality. The community is blessed with intellectuals at the BAR. They are growing in all realms intellectually,” he said.
The APC State Secretary assured the executives that he will put in his best to convince senior colleagues in the legal profession from Ikorodu for moral and financial supports to the chapter.
Earlier in his remarks, the Ikorodu NBA chairman, Idris Kolawole Thanni, highlights some of their challenges and seeks both moral and financial supports for the newly inaugurated administration.
“We have various committees that requires supports. We are newly inaugurated. We committee on Pro bono, Domestic violence, Child right abuse, People living with disabilities, legal aids, police duty solicitors scheme and anti cultism.
“Each of these committees have special tasks and roles they provided freely to indigent people of Ikorodu. We have lawyers stationed in courts to offer free services people brought to court without a lawyer to defend them. By doing this, we help decongest our correctional centres.
“We have lawyers that are saddled with the responsibility of standing in for those that suffers domestic violence, child abuse, rape etc. We offer free legal advice to cultists that wants to renounce their memberships. We have lawyers who also go round to check police cells to see those who were wrongly arrested and detained and get them Justice.
“We don’t have a BAR centre in Ikorodu. We are tenants there. We need a BAR centre for the branch. We will appreciate whoever comes to our aid in this regard by immortalising them. We hope that the secretariat will yield to our requests,” he averred.

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Politics

Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, Wins Primary for Second term

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The Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, has  emerged winner of the state governorship primary of the All Progressives Congress.

In the primary election conducted at the MKO International Stadium, Abeokuta, five other aspirants contested against the governor.

The aspirants include Olubiyi Otegbeye, Mrs Modele Sarafa- Yussuf, Mr Owodunni Opayemi, Remilekun Bakare and Abdukadir Akinlade.

Of the six aspirants, only Abiodun, attended the primary, while agents of all other aspirants, announced their presence and did what was expected of them.

Giving the details of the  election, that was conducted in a peaceful atmosphere,  the Chairman of the Ogun State  APC Primary Election  Committee, Chief Wale Ohu, disclosed that 1,180 delegates, from the 20 local governments, were accredited for the exercise.

Announcing the results, Ohu, said Abiodun scored 1,168 votes, while other aapirants, did not secure any vote, saying that two votes were voided.

Prior to the commencement of the process, Ohu, announced to the delegates and all the leaders of the party that attended the event, that all required agents, were present.

Ohu took time to read out names of the officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and other officials of the APC officials that were sent from the National Secretariat.

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Judiciary

Court sacks Accord Party Exco, NWC

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A High Court of Federal Capital Teritory, Maitama, on Monday has barred the National Chairman of the Accord Party, Hon. Mohammad Lawal Nalado, from further occupying any position in the party.

This was as the court also sacked all the National Executive Members and National Working Committees, who were said to have contested and spent more than two terms in office and so prevented from re-contesting for the same post/office or remain in the same office in acting capacity after the expiration of their term(s).

In a judgment delivered by Hon. Justice O. A. Adeniyi was consequent upon an Originating Summons brought against the National Executive and National Working Committee of the party by Innocent Igboekwe, Prince Joseph James and Jamilu Abass.

Represented by their Attorney, Chief Wakeel Olawale Liady of The Bridge Chambers, the three party members sought a declaration from the court to prevent the national officers of the party not to hold any office in their hierarchy of the party having been sworn-in twice as prescribed by the constitution of the party.

The plaintiff also asked the Court to declare that the tenure of office of Hon. Mohammad Lawal Nalado’s led National Executive Committee and National Working Committee of the party has expired on the 17th of January 2022 having been elected and sworn in on the 18th day of January, 2018.

The declaration stated inter alia: ‘Having regard to the clear and unambiguous provision of section 223 (1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), Section 85 (3) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended) and Articles 19 and 23 of the Constitution of the Accord Party,

‘By the reason of the expiration of Hon. Mohammad Lawal Nalado’s led National Executive Committee and National Working Committee of the ACCORD on the 17th day of January, 2022 there has been a vacuum in the administration and running of the 1st Defendant’s political party.

‘By the reason of the expiration of Hon. Mohammad Lawal Nalado’s led National Executive Committee and National Working Committee of the ACCORD on the 17th day of January, 2022, the 3rd, 4th and 5th Defendants and/or any member of their committee cannot function, act and perform as subsisting members of the National Executive Committee and National Working Committee of the 1st Defendant as from 18th day of January, 2022.

‘The deliberate refusal, failure and negligence of the 3rd, 4th and 5th Defendants to call and hold National Convention and meetings of the National Executive Committee and National Working Committee as required by the law is a gross violation of provisions of the 1st Defendant’s Constitution.

‘The deliberate refusal, failure and negligence of the 3rd, 4th and 5th Defendants to call for the annual auditing of the finance of the ACCORD is an infraction of the provision of 28 (1) of the Constitution of ACCORD.

‘By virtue of provision of section 223 (1) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Section 85 (3) of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), the 2nd Defendant should oblige that the 1st, 3rd, 4th and 5th Defendants to comply with the extant laws on tenure of office and finance of the ACCORD.’

Granting the plaintiff’s prayers, Justice Adeniyi therefore restrained the Accord Party and the National Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) from allowing the Naldo, Michael Lerama, and Barrister Maxwell Ngbudem alongside other executive and the NEC members, who had contested and held party office for two terms from further contesting and holding office after their second term.

The Court also granted an order in favour of the Plaintiff restraining Accord Party and INEC from according or continuing to accord any recognition to the r any other member of the party, who has served during Hon. Mohammad Lawal Nalado’s led National Executive Members and National Working Committee because their tenure of office had expired on the 17th day of January, 2022.

Justice Adeniyi also directed the Accord Party to hold its National Convention/State Congresses with a view to elect members of the National and State executive Committee with ninety (90) days from the date judgement is delivered in this suit.

 

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