Who Disrupted LP Rally In Ebonyi State?
The Ebonyi State Government has denied dispersing the rally of Labor Party and also denied bring aware of any such rally in the State. Speaking through the Special Assistant on Media and Strategy, Chooks Okoh, said he was not aware of the disruption of the march by the supporters of the Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi, in the state on Saturday.
He, however, added that the organisers did not pay the required fees to stage the march.
The governor’s aide said, “The attention of the Executive Governor of Ebonyi State has been drawn to some online publications and rumours making the rounds that he ordered the disruption of a gathering in support of one of the presidential candidates in the 2023 elections. This is not true.
“The Executive Governor of Ebonyi state is certainly not aware of any disruption of any gathering as he didn’t order any.
“He is a democrat who believes firmly in the rule of law. He wishes every contending politician the very best and will insist on a level playing ground for all. If it is true that the police dispersed people, the answer will surely rest with the police.
“For record purposes, the relevant government agencies had approved the use of Abakaliki Township Stadium for a rally by the Labour Party subject to the payment of some specified fees. Rather than pay the fees, it was gathered, the organisers chose to empty into the streets causing some untold hardships on the hapless citizens going about their daily pursuits.
“The police, we are told, had to step in to restore law and order. The Governor appeals to all citizens to always abide by the dictates of the law and decent living so that law and order will always reign supreme.
“He wishes all political parties and their candidates well and enjoins all to play the game by the rules.”
Also, Ebonyi Police Command, on Saturday, said it acted base on the Rules of Engagement, reiterating that organisers of the rally did not pay the specific fees, as directed by the State Government.
The Police Public Relations Officer, in the state, SP Chris Anyanwu, stated this in a statement, a copy of which was made in to the Press.
The statement read, “Several unfounded allegations of Police high-handedness have been renting the air with regards to the One-Million-Man-Rally organised by the Labour Party and other loyalists of the Peter Obi Presidential Campaign in Ebonyi State.
“It is pertinent to put the records straight in spite of all false allegations and the Press release from the State Government.
“Granted that the organisers of the rally had a brief meeting with the Police Command authority represented by the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Operations, it was expected that the group should abide by the outcome of the meeting and the requisite conditions given by the State Government which includes payment of a certain amount of money for the use of the Stadium as a take-off point as well as another refundable sum of money as a collateral in case of any damage to Government property/infrastructures.
“It was, therefore, unfortunate when the Command got wind of the fact that the organisers of the rally failed to meet up with the obligations and threatened to go ahead and conduct the rally threatening that nobody, not even the State Government would stop them from going on, against the decision of the State’s Gubernatorial candidate for Labor Party, Dr Edward Nnwegu’s decision to stop the rally in order to avoid the looming catastrophe.
“Armed with credible intelligence, the State Police Command sensing that if not checked, the rally will become turbulent and create a state of insecurity in the State, decided to nip it at the bud.
“So in a bid to proactively curb the impending turbulence, police men were despatched to the newly proposed take-off venue, Pastorial Center for the purpose of maintaining law and order.
“Unfortunately, while the Police men were properly deployed to ensure that there was no breakdown of the law, the radicals and mischief-makers among the rallyists became violent and started hauling missiles on the police operatives, uttering all manners of imprintable statements on the Police and the Government. Many of them even went physical to assault and attack the police men.
“So in response, and guided by the Presidential pronouncements/order at the era of the unpopular END-SARS protests, the police personnel on duty rose to the occasion to dislodge the violent and criminally oriented attackers.
“After taking control of the situation, the rally continued and ended up peacefully. This is even depicted in the video clips captured during the peaceful rally.
“I, therefore, on behalf of CP Aliyu Garba psc(+), the Commissioner of Police, Ebonyi State, state that the Police in Ebonyi State acted professionally and within the rules of engagement in order to ensure that peace and order prevails in Ebonyi State.”
Labour Party Slashes Governorship Nomination Fees From N25m To 15m
The Labour Party on Tuesday announced that the cost of nomination and expression of interest forms for its governorship aspirants interested in contesting the off-season elections in Bayelsa, Kogi, and Imo states has been pegged at N15 million naira.
The cost of the forms, which was formally pegged at N25 million was slashed to N15 million to allow for more participation.
The party national chairman, Julius Abure, revealed this while addressing journalists shortly after the political roundtable at Denis Hotel, venue of closed-door meeting between the Labour Party presidential candidate, Peter Obi and the LP senators and House of Representatives members-elect in Abuja.
The PUNCH reports that there were stern-looking security agents, who mounted guards at each entrance to the venue and were seen frisking participants and guests coming for the event.
The heavy flow of both human and vehicular traffic caused a bit of stir as bystanders and residents in the area watched as the politicians strolled into the venue with their orderlies.
But when Obi turned up for the meeting, the ambience was charged with many party supporters screaming ‘Peter Obi’ and ‘Ellu P.’
The parley, which was held to fine-tune strategies ahead of the inauguration of lawmakers for the 10th National Assembly, failed to commence at 12 noon as earlier scheduled.
Abure stated that both Obi and the party’s National Working Committee were impressed with the quality, willingness to address issues and composition of the new lawmakers-elect.
He said, “Today, we had a very robust engagement with our senators and House of Representatives members-elect. We agreed that we must always remember the magnanimity of the people who freely gave us their mandate.
“Our members in the National Assembly will make the difference in their conduct, utterance and the quality of legislation.”
Continuing, Abure also announced a slash in the cost of nomination and expression of interest forms for the LP governorship aspirants interested in contesting the off-season elections in Bayelsa, Kogi, and Imo.
He said, “After considering the complaints and the intervention of our presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi, we have reviewed downward our governorship nomination fees, for Bayelsa, Kogi, and Imo, we have reduced our nomination fees from N25 million to N15 million for the governorship.
“We have also resolved to return the N25 million nomination fees paid by one of our aspirants in Imo State, Humphrey Anumudu who lost his life last week.”
Bauchi Assembly: PDP Wins 22 Seats, APC 8, NNPP 1
The Peoples Democratic Party has won majority seats of 22 out of the 31 Bauchi State House of Assembly seats in the March 18 governorship and state Assembly elections.
This is contained in the list issued by the Deputy Director, Voter Education, Independent National Electoral Commission, Bauchi, Mr Aliyu Shaba, on Tuesday.
The list also showed that the All Progressives Congress won eight seats while the New Nigeria People’s Party clinched one seat.
In the results announced by INEC, the constituencies are Duguri Gwana, Abdullahi Dan-Bala – PDP; Kirfi, Umar Habibu – PDP; Bauchi – Jamilu Dahiri – PDP; Zungur Galambi, Yusuf Ahmed – PDP, Dass, Abdullahi Ahmed – PDP, and Bogoro, Musa Nakwada – PDP.
Others are Lame Toro, Lawal Garba – PDP; Toro Jama’a, Saidu Hamza – PDP; Ningi, Abubakar Sulaiman – PDP; Ningi Bura, Tanko Bura – PDP; Hardawa Misau, Babayo Akuyam – PDP; and Dambam Dagauda Jalam, Mohammed Garba – PDP.
The PDP also won Ganjuwa East, Ladan Mohammed; Ganjuwa West, Adamu Kawu; Katagum Zaki, Bello Maiwa; Sakwa Zaki, Wanzam Mohammed; and Itas Gadau, Abdullahi Yusuf.
Similarly, Disina Shira constituency was won by Hodi Jibir – PDP; Shira, Hassan Auwal – PDP; Giade, Adamu Abubakar – PDP; Madara Chinade, Katagum, Ala Ahmed – PDP, and Gamawa, Sarkin-Jadori Bello – PDP.
The APC won Azare Madangala Katagum, Saleh Zakariyya; Udubo Gamawa, Lele Mohammed; Pali Alkaleri, Garba Aminu; and Darazo, Sulaiman Darazo.
Malam Dauda Lawal of APC also won Sade Darazo state constituency; APC’s Yahaya Maikudi for Chiroma Misau; Abdul Rishi for Lame Toro – APC; and Abdulrasheed Adamu for Lere Bula – APC, while Mubarak Haruna of NNPP won in Jama’are constituency.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the 9th Assembly have no female member.
Ihedioha Withdraws From Imo PDP Governorship Race
Former Imo State Governor, Emeka Ihedioha, has announced his withdrawal from the Peoples Democratic Party, governorship primaries in the state.
In a letter dated March 27, 2023, addressed to the office of the National Chairman of the party, Ihedioha said, “As I turned 58 years last Friday, March 24, I had cause to reflect on so many things, including the state of the Peoples Democratic Party.
“Having been a member since formation in 1998, I align myself with the request made by our state chapter to the National Working Committee, for a consensus choice of candidate regarding the 2023 governorship primaries.
“In the interest of harmony and unity of the party, I have elected to make the personal sacrifice of withdrawing from further participation in the processes leading to the emergence of the gubernatorial candidate.”
“I am profoundly grateful for the opportunity to have served my various constituencies both as a legislator and governor. I am also proud of the positive impact I made, particularly in the seven months I served as the Governor of Imo State.”