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Sylva, APC lose bid to stop Bayelsa Governorship Election Petition Tribunal

Nigerian govt loses out as oil price hits $100 for first time in seven years

The Bayelsa Governorship Election Petition Tribunal has dismissed a fresh motion filed by All Progressives Congress, (APC) and its governorship candidate, Timipre Sylva asking the panel to recuse itself from handling their petition challenging the election of Gov. Douye Diri.

Chairman of the tribunal, Justice Adekunle Adeleye dismissed the motion after listening to arguments from counsel.

The News Agency of Nigeria, (NAN) reports that Mr Tunde Falola represented Sylva, Mr Charles Edosanwan represented the Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC), and Mr Chris Uche, SAN was for Diri.

Mr Chukwuma Machukwu-Ume, SAN represented the Deputy Governor while Mr Tayo Oyetibo, SAN represented the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).

Counsel to the petitioners told the tribunal that his clients filed the fresh application because they were convinced beyond reasonable doubt that they could not get justice from members of the panel.

The two petitioners further stated that the tribunal had exhibited strange circumstances that made them believe that they would be denied a fair hearing.

Falola therefore, asked the tribunal to step aside from the petition so that a fresh panel could be constituted to hear and determine their petition.

In a brief ruling, Justice Adeleye said that the President of the Court of Appeal in a letter dated March 5 mandated the tribunal to go ahead and hear the petition irrespective of any application by the parties.

The judge said that the letter of the Appeal Court president had overtaken the request by the petitioners for the disbandment of the tribunal.

Meanwhile, all the respondents, through their respective counsel, opposed the request for members of the panel to recuse themselves.

The respondents in the suit are Diri, his deputy, INEC and the PDP.

They argued that the application was an attempt to prevent the respondents from presenting their defense against the petition.

The respondents further argued that the motion by the APC and Sylva was a calculated attempt to blackmail the tribunal members to do their bidding.

The four respondents said that the petitioners closed their case even when the time allocated to them had not expired; hence, there was no basis for the allegation of denial of fair hearing.

The respondents also held that APC and Sylva were part of the pre-hearing session and both agreed to the schedule of time as agreed upon by all the parties.

Adeleye adjourned the hearing until March 13 and 14 for INEC to open and close its defence.

(NAN)

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Politics

Presidency solidly behind Ganduje – Kano APC

The leadership of All Progressive Congress (APC) in Kano, on Friday, declared that the Presidency is fully backing the National Chairman of the party, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje in the current political war being waged by his detractors to unseat him.

The party said that the Presidency has been giving Ganduje every support and encouragement he deserves to retain his seat and continue his assignment as the helmsman of the APC at the national level.

The spokesperson of APC in Kano, Alhaji Ahmad Aruwa, denied accusing the Presidency of fueling the crisis against Ganduje.

Aruwa who was quoted in a short video that went viral on social media pointing accusing fingers at some element in the presidency igniting the confusion that led to the purported suspension of Ganduje insisted he was quoted out of contest.

He said he has firm loyalty to President Bola Tinubu led Federal Government which accounted to the overwhelming support the president received in Kano during the last general election.

He made the clarification on Friday while reacting to media report that quoted him accusing the presidency of sabotaging Dr. Ganduje on the purported suspension of his membership from APC.

Aruwa maintained that those trying to reconstruct his comment on the persecution of Dr. Ganduje were the enemies of the party who have invested resources to destroy the mutual relationship between the president and the former Governor of Kano.

He insisted he has no intention to and would not constitute any act that would, damage the loyalty and mutual respect that exit between the National Chairman of the party, Dr. Ganduje and President Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

The Kano APC spokesman further asserted that Dr. Ganduje remains the only strong pillar and dependable defender who can guarantee the future political success of president Tinubu’s political in Kano.

According to him: “We have high respect for our president and leader of our party, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and he remains our choice of leader in Kano. We have demonstrated our commitment to the political ambition of president Tinubu in the last general election and we are ready to do more in subsequent election.

” We equally want to declare that our leader and national Chairman of our great party Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje is committed and remains loyal to the president regardless of whatever anybody may want to ochestrate. No amount of plot will divide the mutual relationship between the president and Ganduje.” ( PM)

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Damagum remains PDP acting national chairman

Alhaji Umar Damagum, will continue as the Acting National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic party, pending the election of a new chairman in August, the National Executive Committee (NEC) has said.

This, the party said was to ensure reconciliation and to take care of other issues within the party.

“We will look at the issue of leadership and look at the issue of our constitution where it will be and we will do it without rancour,” chairman of the PDP Governors Forum and Gov. Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State told journalists at the end of the 98th NEC meeting of the party on Thursday in Abuja.

“In the next two months we will see a lot of activities, leadership is a responsibility. We said in September that we would have come out from our congresses.

Bala added that the successful conduct of the party’s NEC meeting was an indication that there was no dissension and rancour within the leadership.

“It was planned that the party will have an explosion. PDP is more than that, we have gone beyond all these ideocracies. This party is a united party that is guided by experience and constitutionality.

“There were a lot of permutations and mischievous thinking outside there. But we looked at all the issues and we worked along our guidelines and constitution. There is no problem or dissension and problem among members,” he said.

Also speaking, Damagum said that the leadership of the party was not a do or die affair.

“This is not a matter of life and death. I am still an elected member of this NEC. Even if I revert to deputy national chairman I’m still a member of NWC. The issue of surviving or not does not emerge,” he said.

Also, the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr Debo Ologunagba said that issue of the party leadership would be considered in August.

“Our party emphasizes the need for reconciliation and stability within the party at this time. Therefore, the issue of the National Chairman, Damagum, has been deferred to the next NEC meeting, which is tentatively scheduled for Aug. 15,” he said.

Ologunagba later read the communique at the end of the meeting, saying that the NEC tasked all organs, leaders, stakeholders and members of the PDP to close ranks and put aside their differences and work together to reposition and return the PDP to power.

He said that the NEC also received and approved the timetable for the party’s congresses across the country.

“NEC also approved the Reconstitution of the Party Disciplinary and Reconciliation Committees to further ensure the stability of the Party.

“Similarly, NEC approved the extension of the life of the Party Constitution Amendment Committee to allow it to receive new amendment proposals for inclusion in its deliberation and final report for consideration by NEC.

“NEC commended the efforts of the National Working Committee in its effort towards rebranding the Party including the new look PDP Logo which is widely accepted by Party members and Nigerians in general.

“NEC charges all Party members to continue to work together for the success of the PDP for the benefit of Nigerians and sustenance of Democracy in our country,” he said.

Ologunagba said that the NEC advised President Bola Tinubu to convene a special National Security Council meeting to proffer a holistic solution to the current security challenge facing the country.

He said that the NEC also urged Tinubu to rejig his economic team to include individuals with proven integrity and competence to assist in repositioning the economy.

“NEC further demands that the Federal Government should review all policies and programmes which are stifling the economy with suffocating effect on the lives of citizens; including the increase in price of fuel without cushioning measures, hike in electricity tariff, increased taxation and implementation of adverse fiscal policies,” he said.

The meeting was attend by former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mr Nyesom Wike, NWC members, BOT members, serving governors and members of the National Assembly.(NAN)

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Kano court reverses Ganduje’s suspension

A Federal High Court in Kano has halted the suspension of the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje.

The ruling came on Wednesday after Ganduje filed an ex parte motion seeking to enforce his fundamental right to fair hearing.

The respondents in the application are the Police, Department of State Services, DSS, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, and nine others.

On April 16, APC executives in Dawakin Ward, Tofa LGA of Kano State, suspended Ganduje over alleged corruption.

However, the State Working Committee, SWC, of the APC in Kano nullified the suspension and punished the ward executives.

But a Kano High Court presided by Justice Usman Na’Abba upheld the suspension.

In the ex parte order delivered on Wednesday by the Federal High Court and made available to newsmen on Thursday, a Kano High Court presided by Justice A. M Liman ruled that the suspension should not be implemented until the case filed by Ganduje is heard and determined.

“All the respondents, their servants, agents or privies are hereby restrained from implementing and/or giving effect to the purported decision reached during the purported emergency meeting of the alleged executive members of APC Ganduje Ward, held at Ganduje Ward of Dawakin Tofa Local.

“All the parties are hereby mandated to maintain status quo before the purported emergency meeting of the alleged executive members of APC Ganduje Ward, and to stay action in respect of this matter pending the hearing and determination of the substantive application,” Justice Liman said.

The judge subsequently fixed April 30 to hear Ganduje’s suit

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