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Conservatives take aim at cancel culture and ‘woke aggression’

cancel culture

Conservatives take aim at cancel culture and ‘woke aggression’

The Tory party conference has opened with a battle cry against “woke aggression”, with cabinet ministers decrying “cancel culture” and expected to rail against leftwing bias at the BBC.

Oliver Dowden, the new Conservative party co-chair, set the tone for the conference as he hit out at people who see Britain as “dominated by privilege and oppression that should view its values and history with shame”.

He criticised cancel culture, which he described as “bullying and haranguing of individuals” for their views, and claimed Labour “has got woke running through it like a stick of Brighton rock”.

“Anyone who dares resist this argument – anyone who objects to this woke aggression – is branded as instigating culture wars,” he said during a speech in Manchester. He voiced support for Kemi Badenoch, the minister who is seen as “anti-woke” and has spoken out against schools supporting “the anti-capitalist Black Lives Matter group” or uncritically teaching “political race theory”.

Dowden’s words suggest the Conservatives are trying to draw a dividing line between themselves and Labour before the next election by attempting to associate the opposition party with so-called woke issues and identity politics.

In a sign that Dowden, formerly the culture secretary, is expected to be an anti-woke attack dog in his new role as chair, he told members: “That is why we must be robust in empowering [institutions] to stand up to this bullying. To defend the interests of taxpayers who ultimately fund them. And to keep our national heroes like Nelson, Gladstone and Churchill in the places of honour they deserve.”

The same theme of defending institutions and sectors against leftwing criticism ran through other speeches and fringe events. Nadine Dorries, the new culture secretary, is expected to warn against leftwing bias at the BBC and tell the broadcaster “what is expected of it if it wants to keep the licence fee”.

The new foreign secretary, Liz Truss, one of the most popular cabinet ministers, said the Conservative party had to “reject the zero-sum game of identity politics, we reject the illiberalism of cancel culture, and we reject the soft bigotry of low expectations that holds so many people back”.

Speaking at a fringe meeting about her role as women and equalities minister, Truss said there should not be a separate cabinet role for that function. “I fundamentally don’t agree with identity politics,” she told the Telegraph event.

“I don’t agree with the idea that you should have different policies for women or men. What I think is you should make sure your policies are accessible to everybody, so you should be, in the criminal justice system, making sure women are being treated fairly, gay people are being treated fairly, black people are being treated fairly,” she said.

“If you have a separate women’s ministry, you’re looking at people through the lens of being women. The thing I care about … is your ideas, your talent, your work ethic. I don’t care whether you’re a woman or a man, and that’s the approach I take.”

Truss and Dowden raised the case of the Labour MP Rosie Duffield, who after being accused by party activists of transphobia said she was concerned about attending the Labour conference.

“She is right that women have cervixes, but more than that, she’s also right to be able to express her view, and I’m a huge believer in free speech,” Truss said. “And I think when we try and sort of brush things under the carpet and can’t have an honest, honest and sensible debate, I think that’s a huge problem for British politics.”

Another Tory MP, Chris Loder, spoke out against what he saw as people “pushing a vegetarian or vegan agenda who think it better to ship avocados 5,000 miles for breakfast rather than to have milk or beef from the farm around the corner”. Delegates at a Young Conservative fringe made speeches decrying “wokeism in our universities”.

However, Frank Luntz, the rightwing US pollster, had a warning for Tories at another fringe event, saying they would regret engaging in culture wars. “I’m scared to death of woke. But not just of woke coming to the UK the way that it’s come to America, because it’s destroying our universities, media, entertainment and all the things that have an impact on how we think. But I’m also afraid of how you all use it,” he said.

“Because you can win an election with it, I promise you. If you want to run a woke campaign, the public will be on your side. But you will destroy your country in the process … I cannot stand what’s going on in academia in this country right now, but don’t play into it, because you’ll regret it in the end.”

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I Will Soon Start Signing Death Warrants- Bala Mohammed

Bauchi state governor, Bala Mohammed has disclosed that he will soon start to sign death warrants.

Mohammed made this known on Friday in Bauchi while signing the Violence against Persons Prohibition (VAPP) bill and a bill for the establishment of the Bauchi state penal code, into law.

In Nigeria, state governors are legally backed to sign the death warrants.

Since 2012, no governor has been reported to have signed death warrants.

“We will soon be signing some death sentences because there are many and because of justice which has to be taken to a logical conclusion

“I know some governors are running away from signing the death sentences because they exercise restraints on the basis that there may be some element of error.

“But to me, I will leave it to my lord (the chief judge) who will prosecute. It’s not my fault. If it is brought to my attention, I will do it.”

“As for the Violence against Persons Prohibition Act, we know that we are the first in the northern part of the country to enact the law, which is a member’s bill incidentally from the honourable speaker, and it has earned us a lot of respect in the country.

“But because of some noticed gaps, it was taken back and it was corrected. We thank the house for making the corrections.”

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Court Sacks 13 Ebonyi LG Bosses, 171 Councilors

A Federal High Court sitting in Abakaliki has again nullified the Ebonyi Local Government Elections and sacked all the 13 Council chairmen in the state.

The court also sacked all the councilors and 171 ward chairmen of the state.

The court had on Aug. 25, nullified the council polls of May 31.

Ruling on the matter with suit NO: FHC/AI/CS/224/2022 on Friday, Justice Fatun Riman ordered the seizure of the monthly federal allocation of the chairmen pending when rightful Chief Executives were elected into office.

Fatun restated that the councils election by the State Independent Electoral Commission (EBSIEC) on May 31 was illegal and unconstitutional.

Mr Mudi Erenede, Counsel to the plaintiff said he was happy over the judgment and commended the court.

“In the judgement today, the court has agreed that the Ebonyi State High court has no powers to override or set aside the judgment of the Federal High Court because it is not an Appeal Court.

“Those people, who are parading themselves as chairmen are not there legally.

“They were appointed by whoever that appointed them. CBN, Attorney General of the Federation, Federal Ministry of Finance are all defendants in this suits,” he stated.

The counsel to Ebonyi State Government, Mr Roy Nweze, said there was no need responding to a judgment that had already been delivered by the court.

Nweze said that the matter would be appealed without delay.

(NAN)

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Naval College Graduates 245 Officers, Personnel

The newly graduated personnel of the Officers’ Application Course 20 of the Nigerian Naval Engineering College (NNEC), Sapele in Delta, have been urged to remain committed to the service of the nation.

Rear Adm. Monday Unurhiere, the Flag Officer Commanding (FOC), Naval Training Command, made the plea at the graduation ceremony of the 245 Under Training Personnel of the Officers’ Application Course 20 in Sapele.

Unurhiere, represented by Rear Adm. Baratuaipri Iyalla, said that the call became necessary in view of the security, economic and social challenges currently facing the country.

The naval chief urged the graduands to make deliberate efforts to improve themselves on the job by way of taking advantage of modern technology and also tapping into the wealth of experience of their superiors.

“Let me remind you that as officers of the Nigerian Navy, you are charged with enormous responsibility and your unswerving allegiance is to the Nation.

“The confidence reposed in you must not be taking for granted, especially at this time that our national aspirations are being threatened by numerous security, economic and social challenges.

“As such, you may find yourself being called upon to serve beyond your technical capability due to the prevailing situation in the country,” he said.

Unurhiere acknowledged the efforts of the Chief of Naval Staff (CNS), Vice Adm. Awwal Gambo, for creating the enabling environment for training and continued financial support to NNEC.

According to him, this has helped the College to contribute more to the technological advancement of Nigerian Navy and the nation at large.

He urged the graduands, especially the under training personnel, to maintain the current tempo in sustaining training and other naval activities.

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