The leaders of the Middle Belt communities and delegates known as the Southern and Middle Belt Alliance have endorsed the presidential ambition of the Labour Party candidate, Mr Peter Obi of Labour Party ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Other groups that also endorsed the former governor of Anambra State in a communique read by Rev. Aminchu Adamu, at the ‘Middle Belt Save Nigeria Conference’ held in Jos, Plateau State on Saturday, were trade unions, market leaders, students, religious and youth leaders in the middle belt region.
A statement made available to our correspondent by the Peter Obi Support Group on Tuesday, indicated that the leader of the Middle Belt Community Leadership Delegates, Mr Joshua Mape, led the endorsement of Obi.
Mape, who lamented the economic hardship of the people in the region as a result of bad governance and insecurity in the region, said that Obi has what it takes to turn the economic fortunes of the country around just as he did when he was the governor of Anambra state.
He said, “Peter Obi is a wealth creator and we believe, he will transform Nigeria by moving the country from a consumption economy to a productive economy and he will also reduce the cost of governance the way he did while he was the governor of Anambra State.
“Under his watch, Anambra was the least indebted state in the country. He returned all public schools to missionaries with N600m take-off grant, Anambra also has the best road network under his administration.
“We support Peter Obi because we believe in justice and fairness.”
The representative of Youth and Students Alliance, Mr Augustine Danladi, also expressed dissatisfaction on the inadequate funding of the country’s higher institutions of learning and the apparent indifference of the present government to the precarious situation.
Danladi, however, opined that with the emergence of Peter Obi as the president, the higher institutions will be better funded, and the nation’s education sector will be transformed.
“We know what he did when he was the governor of Anambra state. He took the state from number 24 to number one in WAEC results in the country. I am confident that if given the chance, he will do the same thing at the nation’s education sector”, Danladi stated.
Also, the representative of market groups and traders in the Middle Belt also supported the ambition of Peter Obi saying that they are sure of his capacity to industrialise the nation.
On their part, SAMBA, and Peter Obi Support Network under the platform of Political Action groups said that Peter Obi has the character and credibility to make Nigeria work again adding that he is a man who is ready to take Nigeria from a consumption economy to productive economy.
The groups said, “Obi has shown from his track record that he is competent, and he has what it takes to move Nigeria forward. He has the character and credibility; he is a man who is ready to take Nigeria from consumption economy to productive economy.”
Religious group in the middle belt represented by Rev. Aminchi Adamu said they are under perpetual fear to attend at their place of worship because of insecurity in the country.
Adamu further submitted that the groups look forward to vote Peter Obi as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in February 2023.
Responding, the presidential candidate of Labour Party, appreciated the groups for the confidence reposed in him by their endorsement.
Obi who spoke via a recorded video message said he has been listening to the deliberations despite being in faraway Germany.
He said, “I appreciate your sacrifice, I have been listening to your deliberations, I thank you most sincerely for your trust in me. I assure that I will bring development to Nigeria.
“Next year’s presidential election must not be based on tribe or religion, but on competence and character. I assure that we will build better Nigeria together.”
AIB Signs MoU With Saudi Arabia On Training For Aircraft Engineers
The federal government has signed an agreement with Saudi Arabia on training of aircraft accident investigators between the two countries.
The Accident Investigation Bureau of Nigeria, which has transmuted to National Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB) signed for Nigeria, while the Accident Investigation Bureau of Saudi Arabia signed for the Arabian country in Abuja yesterday.
Speaking after signing the MoU, the commissioner of AIB-N, Akin Olateru said: “there is one aviation in the world and the rule of the game is cooperation. There is no one country that is an island. We need to work together as a team to enhance safety.
“We are both established. We both have equipment. We both have human capital but there are a lot of lessons we can learn from each other.”
Speaking on the details of the MoU, Olateru said, “Saudi Arabia will help us in the area of human capital development, we can engage ideas and its all about improving safety for the flying public.
We are going to have constant exchange of ideas.
There will be some form of training exchange programme.
This agreement would have signed before COVID but we are glad, it is signed now.”
Also speaking, the director-general, AIB Saudi Arabia, Abdulelah Felimban said: “We came to meet our counterpart in Nigeria, the Accident Investigation Bureau of Nigeria to open the channels of communication, of cooperation, of sharing experiences, learning from each other and benefiting from the capabilities that each of us have.
“We do investigations to ensure and promote sir safety.
Our business is to collect data, evidences, analyse them and put forward recommendations to make our skies safer.”
Man Electrocuted While Stealing High-tension Wire In Abuja
A middle-aged man, identified simply as Ezekiel, was electrocuted while trying to steal a high-tension wire in the Utako area of the Federal Capital Territory.
The incident occurred on Saturday night.
A commercial driver, who asked to be identified only as Hassan, told our correspondent on Sunday that Ezekiel sustained severe burns from the incident.
He said, “This early morning, a man known as Ezekiel, was electrocuted. He wanted to steal a wire from the high tension belonging to the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company and in the process of doing that he was electrocuted.
“We heard the sound of an electrical spark in the night and also heard the scream of the man.
“If not for the fact that saw, plier, and torchlight scattered on the ground, I would have thought that he wanted to commit suicide. But with those tools, he went there for a mission. The man was lucky he did not die, but he sustained multiple burn injuries.”
The FCT Police Public Relations Officer, Josephine Adeh, confirmed the incident.
Adeh said, “Our men while on patrol came in contact with him; he had severe burns, and they rushed him to the Wuse General Hospital where he is currently receiving treatment. He will definitely be prosecuted but we will wait till he fully recovers. His tools are in our custody.”
Aisha Buhari Withdraws Suit Against Detained Undergraduate
Wife of the president, Aisha Buhari, has withdrawn the defamation of character suit she filed against a 500-Level student of the Federal University, Dutse, Aminu Adamu, before the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Adamu was arraigned on Tuesday before Justice Yusuf Halilu by the FCT Commissioner of Police following a complaint by Mrs Buhari over a tweet by the defendant on a one-count charge bordering on defamation of the character of the president’s wife.
He pleaded not guilty to the charge and was subsequently remanded at the Suleja Correctional Centre in Niger State by the judge, pending hearing of his bail application.
The matter took a happy turn for Adamu on Friday at the hearing of his bail application when the prosecution counsel, Fidelis Ogbobe, informed the court that the president’s wife had decided to withdraw the case against the defendant following the intervention of well-meaning Nigerians.
Based on the development, Ogbobe then applied for the withdrawal of the case, hinging the application on Section 108 (2) (a) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015.
Ruling on the prosecution’s application to withdraw the case against Adamu, Justice Halilu commended Mrs Buhari for her gesture.
The judge, however, admonished parents and guardians to monitor their children and wards.
He thereafter discharged the defendant.
Adamu’s travails began in June when he tweeted on his Twitter handle, @aminullahie Catalyst, in which he screenshot Mrs Buhari’s image and wrote in Hausa “su mama anchi kudi talakawa ankoshi”, meaning, “mama has eaten monies meant for the poor to satisfaction”.
Following the president’s wife’s complaint, the police traced Adamu to Dutse, Jigawa State, five months after his tweet and arrested him on the premises of the university, brought him to Abuja and allegedly drove him straight to the Presidential Villa, where he was allegedly beaten and tortured.
His arrest and alleged torture on the instructions of the president’s wife were greeted with outrage from Nigerians, prompting the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), the umbrella body of Nigerian students, to first apologise to Mrs Buhari for Adamu’s indiscretion and pleaded for his release.
The body, however, later threatened a mass protest by students against Mrs Buhari pending when Adamu would be released.
The planned protest was scheduled to commence on Monday.