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National Assembly threatens to impeach Buhari, lists demands

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…FG to suspend anti-grazing laws in states to appease herdsmen***

The National Assembly (NASS) has tabled a list of demands before the Muhammadu Buhari administration, asking it to implement them, lest they  invoke “the Constitutional Powers of the Parliament”, a bye-word for impeachment.

The demands were listed as part of  the outcome of an emergency executive joint session of both chambers of the National Assembly on Tuesday.

The meeting passed a vote of confidence on Senator Bukola Saraki, the Senate President, now the subject of police investigation over the 5 April robbery in Offa, Kwara state.

In contrast, the National Assembly members passed a vote of no-confidence on the Inspector General of police, who they want the president to remove because of what  they considered to be his “outright disregard for constitutional authority of both the executive and the legislature”.

The  lawmakers who met for over three hours in closed door, did not spell out  what the “constitutional powers of the Parliament”, is but legal pundits said the only power they have is to set in motion an impeachment proceedings against the President.

Among the list of demands, the legislators want the Buhari administration to  address the current security situation in the country.

They frowned at the constant harassment of legislators and other political actors, especially those who seem to hold a contrary view from the executive or those who are critical of the executive arm.

The legislative arm called on the executive to show sincerity in the fight against corruption, adhere to the rule of law and refrain from the “intimidation of Nigerians”.

They threatened that they may be forced to invoke their constitutional powers if the conditions were not met.

Below is the detail of the conditions from the Joint Session of the National Assembly:

1.The Security Agencies must be given marching orders to contain all the sustained killings of Nigerians and protect the lives and properties of Nigerians — as this is the primary duty for any responsible government.

2.The systemic harassment by the executive of perceived political opponents — people with contrary opinions in the legislature and the judiciary — by the police and other security agencies must stop.

3.There must be strict adherence to the rule of law and protection for all citizens by the President and all his appointees.

4.The President must be held accountable for the actions of his appointees and must be ready to sanction, those that carry out any act, that will ridicule or endanger the country and our democracy.

5.The government should show sincerity in the fight against corruption by not being selective and also prosecute current appointees that have cases pending against them.

6.The sanctity of the National Assembly should be protected and preserved by the federal government… and prosecute those who invaded the Senate to seize the mace.

7.Democratic elections must be competitive and inclusive by removing the current reign of fear and intimidation — particularly as we approach the forthcoming 2019 elections.

8.The National Assembly will liaise with the international community through the IPU, the APU, ECOWAS Parliament, Pan-African Parliament, EU, US Congress and the United Nations to secure our democracy.

The National Assembly will also engage with civil society organisations, trade unions and NGOs to further deepen and protect our democracy.

The President must take immediate steps to curtail the growing level of poverty and unemployment in Nigeria — especially now that we have an advantage of high oil prices.

Both chambers of the National Assembly hereby pass a vote of confidence on the Senate President, the Speaker and the entire leadership of the National Assembly.

We also hereby reaffirm our earlier resolution on the vote of no confidence on the Inspector General of Police, who does nothing but preside over innocent Nigerians with an outright disregard for constitutional authority of both the executive and the legislature.

The National Assembly will not hesitate to invoke its constitutional powers if nothing is done to address the above resolutions passed today.

In the meantime, in order to reduce tensions caused by the passage of the controversial anti-grazing law in three states, the federal government is considering suspending the implementation of the law, while negotiating safe routes for cattle herders.

This was part of discussions held at the security council meeting on Tuesday, presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari with service chiefs in attendance.

The anti-grazing law is already operational in Benue, Ekiti and Taraba States, states that have experienced the most violence and a spate of mass murders since the law went into effect last year.

In Ekiti State, the law, signed by Governor Ayo Fayose in 2016, prohibits open grazing between 6:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.

Governor Samuel Ortom followed suit in 2017 with a law that places an absolute ban on open grazing across Benue State.

The law, which went into effect in November 2017, has been blamed for the escalating violence which has left hundreds of residents dead in attacks linked to Fulani herdsmen across Benue since January 1.

Taraba State passed the anti-grazing law on July 2017, but law came into effect in January 24th this year, with a caveat that it will be implemented gradually after aggressive awareness campaigns across the state.

Minister of Defence Mansur Dan-Ali, in a statement signed by his Public Relations Officer (PRO), Colonel Tukur Gusau, suggested the “need to employ other channels with the affected states to reduce tension by suspending the implementation of the Anti-Open Grazing Law while also negotiating safe routes for the herders.

“The urgent need for the Nigeria Police and Department of State Services to prosecute all the suspects arrested in states. The need to hasten the establishment of a National Commission on the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons in Nigeria.”

Although the suspension of the law is in line with the demands of Miyetti Allah association of cattle herders, Dan-Ali’s positions is against past recommendations by the Ministry of Agriculture and the National Economic Council (NEC) that the option of cattle ranching be adopted to end the frequent clashes that have left thousands of people dead and several farmlands raided and destroyed.

Dan-Alli also suggested the launch of a joint task force operation, similar to Operation SAFE HAVEN in Jos, with headquarters in Gusau, to cover Zamfara and Birnin Gwari axis of Kaduna State, where kidnappings and killings have also been on the rise.

According to the minister, the Council considered the killings and kidnapping in the North-West, particularly along Abuja-Kaduna expressway, even as the service chiefs reviewed the activities of armed bandits and other criminal elements in Anka, Maru, Kaura Namoda and Atalanta Mafara in Zamfara State.

While noting that incidents of herdsmen-farmers clashes in Benue and Taraba had subsided, the minister disclosed that several arrests had been made in connection with killings and destruction of property.

He added that he informed the Council that the US government conveyed to the federal government matters pertaining to the implementation of Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act Section 231.

“It is pertinent to state that the award of contract for the procurement of the Mi-35M helicopters was completed before the act was signed into law in August 2017,” he said.

The Nigerian Army, he noted, has launched Operations LAST HOLD to flush out insurgents from their hideouts in the Lake Chad Basin area and to liberate communities to enable IDPs return to their homes.

The operation, he said, is to last till the end of August.

Those at the meeting included Babagana Monguno, National Security Adviser; Mansur Dan-Ali, Minister of Defence; Ahmed Abubakar, Director-General of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and Ibrahim Idris, Inspector General of Police are attending the meeting.

Others in attendance are, Chief of Defence Staff, Gen. Gabriel Olonisakin; Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai; Chief of Naval Staff, Rear Admiral Ibok Ekwe Ibas; and Representative of Chief of Air Staff, Air Marshall Abubakar Sadique.

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Edo Assembly Impeaches Deputy Governor, Shauibu

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Edo Assembly Impeaches Deputy Governor, Shauibu

The impeachment followed the adoption of the recommendation of a seven-man judicial panel led by retired Justice Stephen Omonua.

At plenary in Benin, the Majority leader of the house, Charity Aiguobarueghian said the report of the 7-man panel presented to the house found Shauibu culpable of disclosure of government secrets.

Aiguobarueghian further disclosed that though the panel was unable to establish the case of perjury against the deputy governor, it made two findings and one recommendation upon which the decision to impeach the deputy governor was anchored.

According to him, “the seven-man judicial panel of inquiry recommended that the deputy governor be impeached on the ground of disclosure of government secrets.’’

During voting on the motion, 18 out of 19 members present at plenary voted for the impeachment of the deputy governor while one abstained from the headcount and voting process.

The Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai conducted a head count of the lawmakers who voted for and against the impeachment of Shaibu.

The clerk said with the figure, the house stated that it met 2/3 (16 members of the House was needed to carry out the impeachment).

The assembly thereafter upheld and approved the recommendation of the seven-man panel and thereafter impeached the deputy governor.

The speaker, Blessing Agbebaku directed the Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai to forward copies of the impeachment to Gov. Godwin Obaseki for assent.

The Edo House of Assembly on Monday impeached the Deputy Governor, Mr Philip Shaibu.

The impeachment followed the adoption of the recommendation of a seven-man judicial panel led by retired Justice Stephen Omonua.

At plenary in Benin, the Majority leader of the house, Charity Aiguobarueghian said the report of the 7-man panel presented to the house found Shauibu culpable of disclosure of government secrets.

Aiguobarueghian further disclosed that though the panel was unable to establish the case of perjury against the deputy governor, it made two findings and one recommendation upon which the decision to impeach the deputy governor was anchored.

According to him, “the seven-man judicial panel of inquiry recommended that the deputy governor be impeached on ground of disclosure of government secrets.’’

During voting on the motion, 18 out of 19 members present at plenary voted for the impeachment of the deputy governor while one abstained from the headcount and voting process.

The Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai conducted a head count of the lawmakers who voted for and against the impeachment of Shaibu.

The clerk said with the figure, the house stated that it met 2/3 (16 members of the House was needed to carry out the impeachment).

The assembly thereafter upheld and approved the recommendation of the seven-man panel and thereafter impeached the deputy governor.

The speaker, Blessing Agbebaku directed the Clerk of the House, Yahaya Omogbai to forward copies of the impeachment to Gov. Godwin Obaseki for assent.

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Court Remands Emefiele In EFCC Custody As Trial Begins April 11

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Emefiele: CBN disbursed N12.65bn as agriculture intervention since January; N1.09 trillion since 2015

An Ikeja Special Offences Court on Monday remanded the embattled former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, for alleged abuse of office and fraud to the tune of $4.5 billion and N2.8 billion.
It was reported that Justice Rahman Oshodi remanded Emefiele in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) custody while his co-defendant, Henry  Isioma-Omoile, was remanded in the Ikoyi custodial centre.
Oshodi remanded the defendants pending the determination of their bail applications on April 11.
The judge adjourned the case until April 11 for the determination of bail application and commencement of trial.
Earlier, EFCC arraigned Emefiele on a 23-count charge bordering on abuse of office, accepting gratifications, corrupt demand, receiving property fraudulently obtained and conferring corrupt advantage, while his co-defendant was arraigned on a three-count charge bordering on acceptance of gift by agents.
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
EFCC counsel, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN) had asked the court for a trial date following the defendants’ not guilty pleas.
Oyedepo also informed the court that the prosecution would be asking for a closed section for some of its witnesses who were willing to come to court to testify but scared for their lives.

Counsel to the two defendants, Mr Abdulakeem Labi-Lawal, had in their bail applications, urged the court to grant them bail on self-recognizance and liberal terms pending the determination of the case.
Labi-Lawal, in a 35-paragraph affidavit, said that the first defendant (Emefiele) complied with the bail application given to him by Justice Hamza Muazu in his ongoing fraud trial in Abuja.
He added that the charges against the first defendant were bailable.
“Though the first defendant was granted administrative bail by the prosecuting authority, he is seeking bail based on self-recognizance, and he is ready to attend trial.
“The court should also take into consideration the status of the first defendant as he was the former CBN governor of the country,” the counsel said.
The defence counsel further said that Emefiele religiously presented himself before Justice Hamza Muazu in Abuja to answer allegations before him.
According to the counsel, the first defendant was not at flight risk as he was the first person to arrive in court.
He also prayed the court to grant bail to  Emefiele on liberal terms
Labi-Lawal also moved a bail application for the second defendant and urged the court to grant him bail on liberal terms.
Prosecution counsel, Oyedepo, did not oppose the bail applications.
Oyedepo, however, urged the court to exercise its discretion judiciously in granting bail to the defendants.
In one of the charges, EFCC  alleged that Emefiele abused the authority of his office as CBN  governor by allocating foreign exchange in the aggregate sum of $2.2 billion without bids, the act which was prejudiced to the rights of Nigerians.
It also alleged that the ex-CBN governor corruptly accepted an aggregate sum of  $26.5 million from NIPCO Plc through Donatone Ltd.
The commission also accused Emefiele of receiving the sum of $400,000 from Source Computer Ltd. on account of the approval of a “contract” in favour of the said company by CBN.
The anti-graft also alleged that Emefiele used his position as the governor of CBN  to confer corrupt advance on his associate, Limelight Multidimensional Services Ltd. by approving payment of an aggregate sum of N900 million to the company.
Emefiele was also alleged to have used his position as the CBN governor to confer a corrupt advantage on Comec Support Services  Ltd. by approving the sum of N149 million to the company.
EFCC also alleged that the former CBN governor used his position to confer a corrupt advantage on  Andswin Resources and Solutions Ltd. by approving payment of the sum of N398 million to the company.
EFCC also accused Emefiele’s co-defendant (Isioma-Omoile) of giving the sum of $100,000 to the governor as a gift reward for allocation of foreign exchange.
According to the prosecution, the alleged offences violate Sections 8, 10, and 19 of the Corrupt Practices And Other Related Offences Act of 2000, Sections 65, 73, and 328 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State 2011.

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NAGAFF Vows to Stop Kwankwaso from Taking Over NNPP

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NNPP inaugurates 2023 Presidential Campaign Council, Aniebonam remains BoT Chairman

…Votes N150m take off professional fees for lawyers to begin litigation warfare!

Members of the National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders (NAGAFF) will vehemently resist the taking over of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) by the group noted to be loyal to Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso.

It would be recalled that the NNPP was originally founded by the National Association of Government-Approved Freight Forwarders NAGAFF, largely to provide a credible platform for maritime industry stakeholders to make a national impact within the nation’s political space.

It. would also be recalled that the former Governor of Kano, Senator Kwankwaso latched on the NNPP, after his effort to run as the flag bearer of another political party was dimmed by former Vice President Atiku Abubakar who emerged as the PDP presidential candidate.

NNPP inaugurates 2023 Presidential Campaign Council, Aniebonam remains BoT Chairman

Alhaji Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso

Presently, a statement issued by the NNPP National Publicity Secretary, Dr. Clement Iwegbuna, lamented that what started as a child’s play is becoming a reality with the body language and actions of Senator Kwankwaso to highjack NNPP from the original owners, the members of  NAGAFF.

In a swift move, the president of NAGAFF, leading the pack of resourceful young freight forwarders said the original are poised to match money for money and contact for contact to retrieve NNPP from the people tagged ungrateful.

The statement revealed that the sum of N150,000,000 has been contributed as a take-off professional fee for the lawyers to take on the serial litigations upcoming.

NAGAFF accused Kwankwaso of court abuse with the institution of a court case involving INEC at Kano State High Court. “And so what does it take someone who held the position of minister of defence and member of the national assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to know that it is out of jurisdiction to do so.

NNPP is a national party and INEC is a federal commission. “Let Nigerians be told that there is a new order in Nigeria judiciary at the moment. If Senator Kwankwaso likes let him, Elder Buba Galadima and all of them who are the former members of the National Working Committee led by Alhaji Abbah Kawu who was alleged not to be able to write a statement at the state police command, Abuja when he reported a case against Mr Phillip Oyana the Zonal Secretary North Central of New Nigeria Peoples Party.

“Our young, vibrant and informed lawyers shall meet him and his cohorts in court. Once again we hold no malice against any person. All members of NNPP and NAGAFF are children of God and always ready to show love to all manner of people who may come our way,” the statement further said.

The statement directed and appealed to all members of NAGAFF and NNPP to keep the peace of the society and be law abiding and respectful to the constitution of Nigeria.

“Regret to note that Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso had avoidably prided himself to have brought NNPP to relevance and recognition. Tell the American marine that trash for the fact that Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso forgot to note that NNPP is as old as People’s Democratic Party of Nigeria spanning over 24 years in existence. He joined less than 2yrs ago.

“We consider Senator Kwankwaso as someone who is avoidably arrogant and proud for no good reasons. This is because NNPP provided him the opportunity to contest the Presidency of Nigeria 2023 with great men like the current president of Nigeria, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar (PDP) and Mr. Peter Obi of the Labour Party

“Let it be on record that if NNPP were not winning elections for the period under review it would have been deregistered like the one he facilitated which was called Alliance National Party. As a matter of fact, the current headquarters of NNPP in Abuja is the same office used by the defunct Alliance National  Party whose chairman was one Moshood.

“We also know that the current executive Gov of Kano Alhaji Abbah Kabir who was shortchanged in the previous elections took advantage of us as children of God to be protected and today those evil men could not stop him from becoming the Gov of Kano State.

“Therefore senator RABIU MUSA Kwankwaso should be taught the principles of humility and gratefulness to people who have been nice to him.

“In all of these, he may wish to distance himself from elder Buba Galadima if he wants to make headway in politics. The former President, Gen. Buhari did realise and distanced himself to combine with Asiwaju B. A. Tinubu, the grand master to become the President of Nigeria.,” advised.

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