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Alleged budget padding: ACF condemns suspension of Senator Ningi

The Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, has condemned the suspension of the immediate past Chairman of Northern Senators Forum, Sen Abdul Ninigi, by the Senate, saying the interests of the North are at stake.

A statement by the National Publicity Secretary of ACF, Prof. Tukur Muhammad-Baba, explained that the Senate ought to have investigated the issues raised by the senator to establish the veracity of his claims instead of the suspension.

It urged the Senate to act with more circumspection in dealing with criticisms of its operations.

Ningi had alleged that N3.7 trillion was not attached to any specific project in the 2024 budget passed for implementation.

ACF noted that the allegation has since been denied by the 10th Senate as lacking in veracity, stressing that the interests of many communities in Northern Nigeria are at stake.

It said rather than the route of a rushed suspension of Ningi, ACF prefers a thorough investigation of the allegation by a statutory or ad hoc committee of the Senate.

It said the allegation of padding, as well as those related to the inclusion of items that benefit specific communities of some senators as “constituency projects”, stand unaddressed with all attendant negative implications for the Red Chamber and the executive.

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Edo condemns clash between LP candidate, Akpata and UNIBEN SUG

NBA charges Buhari, NASS to ensure approval of Electoral Bill in interest of national progress

Candidate of the Labour Party in the 21 September governorship election in Edo State, Olumide Akpata, SAN, has allegedly clashed with the Students Union Government of the University of Benin (UNIBEN).

The clash occurred on Friday, during a visit by the Senior Advocate to the Ugbowo campus of the University.

This was disclosed in a statement Saturday night, by the State Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, the Chris Osa Nehikhare.

The statement read thus:

“The Edo State Government condemns in the strongest terms the violence associated with the Labour Party candidate, Mr. Olumide Akpata’s visit to the University of Benin on Friday, April 12, 2024.

“Claims and counterclaims have been made by Mr. Akpata and the Student Union Government (SUG) of the University in statements issued by both parties on April 13, and active investigation is ongoing on the issue.

“The Edo State Government, however, warns in the strongest terms that it will not tolerate violence or this sort of irresponsible behaviour which was associated with the visit of Mr. Akpata to the institution.

“Government has the primary responsibility to ensure the security of lives and property in the State and will spare no effort to ensure that anyone who breaches the peace, no matter how highly placed, will face the full weight of the law.

“We hereby call on all Edo people to go about their lawful businesses without let as relevant agencies progress with their investigation into the said matter.”

Akpata responds:

Meanwhile, Mr Olumide Akpata has responded to the incident. Akpata in a video clip found on Facebook, blamed the incident on his political enemies.

“What was designed to be an apolitical and innocent homecoming at my Alma Mater, the great University of Benin, yesterday, 12 April 2024, when the Senior Staff Club of the University of Benin had invited me for an interactive session, investiture as an honorary member of the Club, and to also confer an award of excellence on me took a dramatic and unfortunate turn last night.

“Regrettably, those who are most threatened by my candidacy resorted to the tired old tactic and deployed thugs masquerading as students alongside some students to disrupt and mar a sacred University Staff event.

“In the process, one lecturer was injured and is now receiving treatment. While wishing him a speedy recovery, let me assure all the good people of Edo State and Nigerians in general that I am undeterred by last night’s fiasco and that I remain resolute in my determination to bring about the desired change in Edo State come September 2024.”

(PM)

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Akpabio Meets South-South APC State Chairmen, Tasks Them On Party Unity

President of the Senate, Godswill Akpabio, has charged the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the South-South region to work harder so that the visibility of the party in the region will grow from one state to more states.

Akpabio gave the charge while receiving APC State chairmen from the South-South region in Abuja on Sunday.

Akpabio, who noted that he understood the challenges being faced by the state chairmen, assured them that “in the days ahead, a meeting of critical stakeholders comprising State chairmen, National Assembly members, Ministers and other Appointees from the region would be convened to work out modalities to support the party at various state chapters, as a way of engendering unity and understanding, amongst all party members to foster social cohesion between the party and elected/ appointed officials in Government.”

The Senate President used the opportunity to thank President Bola Tinubu for the Lagos-Calabar coastal road project, describing it as very visionary.

In his brief remarks on behalf of his colleagues, the Cross River State chairman of APC, Barrister Alphonsus Ogar, commended the harmonious working relationship between the Senate President and the only APC Governor from the South-South, Senator Bassey Otu of Cross River.

The chairmen declared their total support for Akpabio’s commitment towards the infrastructural development of the area especially the on going Lagos – Calabar Coastal road and railway line being embarked upon by the Tinubu administration.

According to Ogar, “the completion of this project within record time would immortalize President Tinubu in the hearts of the people of the region.

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DSS arrests El-Rufai’s political ally, Aisha Galadima over post on Gov Sani

Aisha Galadima, a strong political ally of the former governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, has been arrested in Kaduna.

The arrest, a source told DAILY POST, was connected to a post on her Facebook page, criticizing Governor Uba Sani.

The female politician was picked up by the operatives of the Department of State Services, DSS, from her residence on Sunday afternoon.

The development was confirmed by one of her brothers, who said, “Aisha has just been arrested by DSS at her Tudun Wada residence in Kaduna.”

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