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Gang Up Against Oyegun: Is History Repeating Itself?



By Eric Elezuo

In what look like a repeat of the sequence that saw the defeat of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2015, the All Progressives Congress (APC) is fast heading for destruction as a gang up initiated to remove the incumbent chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, is fast gaining momentum, TheBoss can reveal.

The notion to either retain or remove Oyegun has created a deep gulf in the ruling party leading to sectionalisation of the different forces for and against the embattled chairman.

In a resolution reached on February 27, 2018 at the meeting of stakeholders of the party, leaders as well as governors on the ticket of the party had cast a vote of confidence on the chairman and his group, urging them to accept tenure elongation of up to one year as against a possible convention of the party later scheduled for May 14 when the present crop of party leaders on all fronts was supposed to relinquish power.

Oyegun’s endorsement also received the blessings of committee of APC local government chairmen and wait for this… President Muhammadu Buhari himself.

Those were the days when the going was rosy for the now disturbed chairman. He was practically riding high and enjoying the support of the party at the highest level, all to the detriment of a national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. Tinubu has not played down his reservation for the person of Oyegun and the position he occupied since their battle for the soul of Ondo State, which Oyegun won.

Both party bigwigs had argued over the choice of the candidate for the APC during the Ondo State Governorship election. Tinubu’s choice of Segun Abraham was set aside by Oyegun as Rotimi Akeredolu was presented, and he eventually won the election. He demystified Tinubu’s invincibility in South West politics, and that temporarily put paid to his commandeering status of a political stalwart.

However, in a twist of fortune, President Buhari, in his address at the APC’s National Working Committee (NWC) on March 28, 2018, reclined his support for the tenure elongation of Oyegun and his co-travellers. He cited his turnaround decision on advice given to him by the Attorney-General of the Federation.

“But Oyegun’s problems were far from over as Electoral committee of the party hastily released a timetable that perfectly took care of the impending election, stating that a change of leadership was obvious. Oyegun’s fate was sealed. The gang up went a step further to put forward a formidable candidate in the person of the former Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole”

The president’s turn-around, in the real sense, was seen as a capitulation to Bola Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor and prominent party leader, who has been pushing hard to ease Oyegun out of office. Observers say that he was able to get the President’s attention to do his bidding because of his ambition to seek a second term in office which it is believed Tinubu can conveniently bring about.

The President’s declaration pitched him against Oyegun and in favour of Tinubu. It was not long before all those who sang Oyegun’s praises just a month before turned around and screamed ‘crucify him’; it was a case of whosoever the president be for, no partyman can be against him.

Much as the Oyegun-camp fought spiritedly, obtaining a resolution that was reportedly adopted unanimously by members of the All Progressives Congress National Executive Committee (APC-NEC), giving the current National Working Committee (NWC) an approval to continue overseeing the affairs of the party for another one year in the absence of a valid convention, the status quo has refused to change.

Though the resolution could see Oyegun remain the chairman of the party until after the 2019 elections, it was seen as faulty by those who want him out of office.

“If for reasons of inability to fulfill constitutional and or legal conditions requisite for the conduct of a valid elective congress or convention, then the party may as a last resort leverage on the NEC resolution of February 27, 2018 which in our view is lawful in the circumstances,” one of the resolutions stated.

But Oyegun’s problems were far from over as Electoral committee of the party hastily released a timetable that perfectly took care of the impending election, stating that a change of leadership was obvious. Oyegun’s fate was sealed. The gang up went a step further to put forward a formidable candidate in the person of the former Governor of Edo State, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.

Oshiomhole’s choice received the blessings of South-South Leaders of the APC including the only governor of the party from the region, Chief Godwin Obaseki in whose domain the meeting to endorse the former labour leader, was held.

National Vice Chairman of APC in South-South Zone, Ntufam Eta, said majority of South-South Zonal executive committee members present at the meeting agreed to deliver Oshiomhole ahead of APC national Convention.

“The Edo State chapter, led by its Chairman, informed us that the decision was unanimously accepted by the Edo APC Caucus. During the deliberation, the delegation from Rivers State kicked against Oshiomhole’s candidacy, but the voice vote of the zonal executive committee defeated their position, while that of Adams Oshiomhole prevailed and stood as the position of the zonal executive committee of the Party.

“We have done our part. It is now left for the membership of the National Convention to do theirs and we pray that they follow our lead. This is our honest prayer”, he said.

Oyegun was absent at the deliberations though it was said that an invitation was extended to him.

The gang up took a new dimension earlier with a bloc that wants the embattled national chairman of the party out of the office taking their case to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Coming under a group which tagged itself, the “Buhari/APC Anti-Corruption Support Group”, Oyegun’s opponents had stormed the EFCC with a petition accusing the national chairman of corruption.

It was revealed that the protest at the EFCC secretariat was part of a well-coordinated plot to discredit the party chairman against his wish to remain the chairman ahead of the 2019 general elections.

The petition taken to the EFCC, it was further revealed was a follow up to a recent protest memo addressed to the national chairman of the party by its six zonal chairmen.

Bearing placards with the inscriptions such as “EFCC Must Probe Oyegun Now!” “Audit APC’s Account Now’’, and “Oyegun is Killing the Anti-Corruption Policy of Buhari,” members of the group, led by Ishola Adeshina, asked the anti-graft agency to probe the accounts of the ruling party, alleging that Oyegun had been  running the accounts of the party without a recourse to majority of national officers of the party.

In his reaction, the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Bolaji Abdullahi said that the NWC was “not miffed” as he noted that it was within the right of the petitioners to demand for accountability on the finances of the party. He, however, submitted that they were wrong to have engaged in street protests in Abuja.

He said: “I haven’t seen the petition. But if they are asking for a probe of the national working committee, I don’t have any objection. But there is a laid down procedure in the party for demanding for accountability, not street shows.

In the memo, they accused Chief Oyegun of usurping their functions and of alleged financial misdeeds.

In the petition dated January 17, 2018, and signed by Chief Pius Akinyelure (South-west), Comrade Mustapha Salihu (North-east), Alhaji Zakari Idde (North Central), Inuwa Abdulkadir (North-west), Hon. Emma Eneukwu (South-east) and Ntufam Hilliard Eta (South-south), the zonal chairmen alleged that the income and expenditure of the party had never been brought to the consideration and approval of the NWC.  The chairmen further argued that ‘’issues about the finances of the party, have been shrouded in secrecy, saying “Article 14b (iii) of the party’s constitution on finances has been grossly abused since the inception of this body. The state of the financial affairs of the party is shrouded in secrecy and lacking in transparency such that it makes it virtually impossible for members of the National Working Committee to authoritatively defend the various expenditure and incomes.”

If the APC succeeds in removing their chairman before or in June, when a national convention is supposedly billed to take place, they would’ve toed the line of the PDP which fought tooth and nail to remove its chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur in 2014, just months before the party was defeated in the 2015 general elections.

It would be recalled that the clamour for the removal of Tukur led the forming of the newPDP and the subsequent defection of five governors and a host lawmakers from the party. These eventually led to the defeat of the party at the national level.

“The gang up took a new dimension earlier with a bloc that wants the embattled national chairman of the party out of the office taking their case to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)”

However, the endorsement of Oyegun by some leaders of the party from North-East, North-West and North-Central, recently could create a poser in the equilibrium as the convention draws closer in June.

The leaders, who also called on Tinubu and other APC leaders in the South-West to back Oyegun’s candidacy praised Oyegun for unifying the ruling party, fostering collaboration and encouraging engagements that neither diminishes others moral worth.

The stage is set for a major political intrigue!

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Just In: Tribunal Nullifies Kano Gov’s Election, Declares APC Candidate Winner




The Kano Governorship Election Petition Tribunal has sacked Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf, declaring the All Progressives Congress (APC) winner of the March 18 election.

Yusuf, who contested on the platform of the New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP), was declared winner of the election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

While Nasir Gawuna, his APC rival congratulated him, the party proceeded to court.

On Wednesday, the three-man panel ordered withdrawal of certificate of return which INEC presented to Governor Yusuf and directed a certificate of return to be issued to Gawuna.

The court deducted 165,663 votes from Gov Yusuf total as invalid votes, stating that the ballot papers (165,663) were not stamped or signed and therefore declared invalid.

Daily Trust

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Tinubu Addresses 78th UNGA (Full Text of Speech)




Nigeria’s president, Bola Tinubu, on Tuesday addressed the 78th session of the United Nations General Assembly, ongoing in New York.

Read full speech below:


Mr. President,

Heads of State and Government, Secretary-General,

Distinguished Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Mr. President,

On behalf of the people of Nigeria, I congratulate you on your well-deserved election as President of this Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

We commend your predecessor, His Excellency, Mr. Csaba Korosi for his able stewardship of the Assembly.

We also commend His Excellency, Antonio Guterres, Secretary General of the United Nations, for his work seeking to forge solutions to humanity’s common challenges.

This is my first address before the General Assembly. Permit me to say a few words on behalf of Nigeria, on behalf of Africa, regarding this year’s theme.

Many proclamations have been made, yet our troubles remain close at hand. Failures in good governance have hindered Africa. But broken promises, unfair treatment and outright exploitation from abroad have also exacted a heavy toll on our ability to progress.

Given this long history, if this year’s theme is to mean anything at all, it must mean something special and particular to Africa.

In the aftermath of the Second World War, nations gathered in an attempt to rebuild their war- torn societies. A new global system was born and this great body, the United Nations, was established as a symbol and protector of the aspirations and finest ideals of humankind.

Nations saw that it was in their own interests to help others exit the rubble and wasteland of war. Reliable and significant assistance allowed countries emaciated by war to grow into strong and productive societies.

The period was a highwater mark for trust in global institutions and the belief that humanity had learned the necessary lessons to move forward in global solidarity and harmony.

Today and for several decades, Africa has been asking for the same level of political commitment and devotion of resource that described the Marshall Plan.

We realize that underlying conditions and causes of the economic challenges facing today’s Africa are significantly different from those of post war Europe.

We are not asking for identical programs and actions. What we seek is an equally firm commitment to partnership. We seek enhanced international cooperation with African nations to achieve the 2030 agenda and Sustainable Development Goals.

There are five important points I want to highlight.

First, if this year’s theme is to have any impact at all, global institutions, other nations and their private sector actors must see African development as a priority, not just for Africa but in their interests as well.

Due to both longstanding internal and external factors, Nigeria’s and Africa’s economic structures have been skewed to impede development, industrial expansion, job creation, and the equitable distribution of wealth.

If Nigeria is to fulfil its duty to its people and the rest of Africa, we must create jobs and the belief in a better future for our people.

We must also lead by example.

To foster economic growth and investor confidence in Nigeria, I removed the costly and corrupt fuel subsidy while also discarding a noxious exchange rate system in my first days in office. Other growth and job oriented reforms are in the wings.

I am mindful of the transient hardship that reform can cause. However, it is necessary to go through this phase in order to establish a foundation for durable growth and investment to build the economy our people deserve.

We welcome partnerships with those who do not mind seeing Nigeria and Africa assume larger roles in the global community.

The question is not whether Nigeria is open for business. The question is how much of the world is truly open to doing business with Nigeria and Africa in an equal, mutually beneficial manner.

Direct investment in critical industries, opening their ports to a wider range and larger quantity of African exports and meaningful debt relief are important aspects of the cooperation we seek.

Second, we must affirm democratic governance as the best guarantor of the sovereign will and well-being of the people. Military coups are wrong, as is any tilted civilian political arrangement that perpetuates injustice.

The wave crossing parts of Africa does not demonstrate favour towards coups. It is a demand for solutions to perennial problems.

Regarding Niger, we are negotiating with the military leaders. As Chairman of ECOWAS, I seek to help re-establish democratic governance in a manner that addresses the political and economic challenges confronting that nation, including the violent extremists who seek to foment instability in our region. I extend a hand of friendship to all who genuinely support this mission.

This brings me to my third crucial point. Our entire region is locked in protracted battle against violent extremists. In the turmoil, a dark channel of inhumane commerce has formed. Along the route, everything is for sale. Men, women and children are seen as chattel.

Yet, thousands risk the Sahara’s hot sand and the Mediterranean’s cold depths in search of a better life. At the same time, mercenaries and extremists with their lethal weapons and vile ideologies invade our region from the north.

This harmful traffic undermines the peace and stability of an entire region. African nations will improve our economies so that our people do not risk their lives to sweep the floors and streets of other nations. We also shall devote ourselves to disbanding extremist groups on our turf.

Yet, to fully corral this threat, the international community must strengthen its commitment to arrest the flow of arms and violent people into West Africa.

The fourth important aspect of global trust and solidarity is to secure the continent’s mineral rich areas from pilfering and conflict. Many such areas have become catacombs of misery and exploitation. The Democratic Republic of the Congo has suffered this for decades, despite the strong UN presence there. The world economy owes the DRC much but gives her very little.

The mayhem visited on resource rich areas does not respect national boundaries. Sudan, Mali, Burkina Faso, CAR, the list grows.

The problems also knocks Nigeria’s door.

Foreign entities abetted by local criminals who aspire to be petty warlords have drafted thousands of people into servitude to illegally mine gold and other resources. Billions of dollars meant to improve the nation now fuel violent enterprises. If left unchecked, they will threaten peace and place national security at grave risk.

Given the extent of this injustice and the high stakes involved, many Africans are asking whether this phenomenon is by accident or by design.

Member nations must reply by working with us to deter their firms and nationals from this 21st century pillage of the continent’s riches.

Fifth, climate change severely impacts Nigeria and Africa. Northern Nigeria is hounded by desert encroachment on once arable land. Our south is pounded by the rising tide of coastal flooding and erosion. In the middle, the rainy season brings floods that kill and displace multitudes.

As I lament deaths at home, I also lament the grave loss of life in Morocco and Libya. The Nigerian people are with you.

African nations will fight climate change but must do so on our own terms. To achieve the needed popular consensus, this campaign must accord with overall economic efforts.

In Nigeria, we shall build political consensus by highlighting remedial actions which also promote economic good. Projects such as a Green Wall to stop desert encroachment, halting the destruction of our forests by mass production and distribution of gas burning stoves, and providing employment in local water management and irrigation projects are examples of efforts that equally advance both economic and climate change objectives.

Continental efforts regarding climate change will register important victories if established economies were more forthcoming with public and private sector investment for Africa’s preferred initiatives.

Again, this would go far in demonstrating that global solidarity is real and working.


As I close, let me emphasize that Nigeria’s objectives accord with the guiding principles of this world body: peace, security, human rights and development.

In fundamental ways, nature has been kind to Africa, giving abundant land, resources and creative and industrious people. Yet, man has too often been unkind to his fellow man and this sad tendency has brought sustained hardship to Africa’s doorstep.

To keep faith with the tenets of this world body and the theme of this year’s Assembly, the poverty of nations must end. The pillage of one nation’s resources by the overreach of firms and people of stronger nations must end. The will of the people must be respected. This beauty, generous and forgiving planet must be protected.

As for Africa, we seek to be neither appendage nor patron. We do not wish to replace old shackles with new ones.

Instead, we hope to walk the rich African soil and live under the magnificent African sky free of the wrongs of the past and clear of their associated encumbrances. We desire a prosperous, vibrant democratic living space for our people.

To the rest of the world, I say walk with us as true friends and partners. Africa is not a problem to be avoided nor is it to be pitied. Africa is nothing less than the key to the world’s future.

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Chicago Court Orders Chicago State University to Release Tinubu’s Academic Records to Atiku




A federal court in Chicago on Tuesday night ruled that Chicago State University (CSU) must turn over all records relating to President Bola Tinubu to Atiku Abubakar within two days, saying the former vice-president has been able to sufficiently satisfy the purpose for seeking the records, according to the ruling seen by Peoples Gazette.

The move is part of Atiku’s ongoing push to prove Tinubu’s ineligibility to be Nigeria’s president.

Judge Jeffrey Gilbert also ordered a deposition of designated CSU officials within two days after the records have been released, noting further that the process can be conducted during the weekend if necessary.

“For all of the reasons discussed above, Atiku Abubakar’s application pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1782 for an order directing discovery from Chicago State University for use in a foreign proceeding [ECF No. 1] is granted,” Mr Gilbert ruled. “Respondent CSU shall produce all relevant and non-privileged documents in response to requests for production Nos. 1 through 4 (as narrowed by the court) in applicant subpoena within two days of the entry of this memorandum opinion and order.”

“The deposition of respondent’s corporate designee shall proceed within two days of the production of documents. The parties can modify the dates set by the court by mutual agreement. Given the tight time frame under which the parties are operating, the deposition can, if necessary, occur on a non-weekday,” the court added.

The order comes hours after Mr Abubakar filed his appeal to the Supreme Court, following the September 6 judgement of the presidential election petitions tribunal that upheld Mr Tinubu’s victory.

Mr Abubakar had on August 2 filed an application for the court to order CSU to produce documents relating to Mr Tinubu, as well as leave to get the school’s administrators to authenticate any documents submitted under oath.

Mr Abubakar said the documents would be used as part of his ongoing challenge against Mr Tinubu’s election earlier this year.  The candidate of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party said Mr Tinubu should not have been allowed to run for president because he had submitted a forged document under oath in violation of the Nigerian Constitution.

Section 137 (1)(j) of the Nigerian Constitution (amended in 2010) specifically stated that no one would be legitimately elected president of Nigeria if the person “has presented a forged certificate to the Independent National Electoral Commission.”

Peoples Gazette

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