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Boko Haram Has Been Defeated, Shattered, Says Buratai

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Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Burata

The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, has declared that the Nigerian Army has defeated Boko Haram terrorists and has also deprived them from re-grouping anywhere in Nigeria, adding that the insurgents have been rendered incapacitated.

Buratai, who was on a familiarisation tour of military units and formations under the 3 Division of the Nigerian army, disclosed this yesterday when he paid a courtesy call on the Gbong Gwom Jos, Da Jacob Gyang Buba, in his palace at Jishe, Jos.

The army chief said: “Your royal majesty I’m here this morning to pay a courtesy call on you before embarking on my familiarisation tour to units and formations under the 3 Division and indeed Operation Safe Haven (OPSH) here in the Plateau State.

“You can see that our efforts in the North-east have really paid off as the incessant bombing of market places and places of worships and populated areas has virtually stopped now. And I can assure you and the people of the state that they will never witness Boko Haram attacks like you witnessed in the past.

“For a long time now, we have not had any case of that nature here in Plateau State and other parts of Nigeria, it is because of the efforts of the military in the North-east. The Nigerian army has not only succeeded in rooting them from their camps in the region, we have been able to blocked these criminal elements from crossing down to these areas or re-building their camp anywhere in Nigeria.

“I want to assure you that we would remain resolute in the discharge of our duties. I want to particularly commend you on your role as the Gbong Gwom Jos, including all the moral support you gave us through wise counsel. We must acknowledge your support.”

Responding, Buba said: “The success of the Nigerian army over Boko Haram did not come to me as a surprise because I know very well that the Nigerian army historically has always distinguished itself wherever they had served; the history is simply replaying itself.

He also appreciated President Muhammadu Buhari for waging a successful fight against insurgency in the country.

Meanwhile, a group, Concered Professionals Congress (CPC), yesterday said the new initiative by the Defence Headquarters code-named Operation Safe Corridor aimed at rehabilitating, de-radicalising and re-integrating about 800 repentant Boko Haram members into the society will quicken the peace process and boost ongoing re-construction efforts in the North-east region.

CPC described the initiative as novel, bold and courageous at this critical moment in the history of the nation, saying the move would inspire hope, strengthen faith and restore confidence among Nigerians in the unity, stability and indivisibility of the country.

According to its Coordinator, Tukur Musa Tilde and its Chief Media Strategist, Emeka Nwapa, who addressed journalists in Lagos, the group said the move by the military high command to de-radicalise the repentant sect members can offer them another opportunity to contribute to the growth of the society while living their normal lives again, and ultimately advance the frontiers of humanity in the nation.

Expressing regrets over the “incalculable damage” which the gruesome sect had done to the destinies of several persons, families, institutions, communities and careers in the last five years, the group praised the Nigerian military leadership for galvanising the patriotic and gallant troops in alliance with other security forces in the country to downgrade Boko Haram terrorists in the country thereby setting the stage for robust global interest for rebuilding programmes.

CPC further observed that ‘Operation Safe Corridor’ offers the nation and its citizens a great opportunity to re-invent and reinforce its unity, sovereignty and indivisibility in line with the aspirations, dreams and philosophy of one nation.

The group argued that Liberia and Sierra Leone were instances of countries with worse cases of crimes committed by citizens against fellow citizens as well as felony against the state “but are today living in admirable peace and harmony because the ex-combatants willingly surrendered and were de-radicalised, rehabilitated and re-integrated by their people into the society.

“We have reviewed the unfolding situation in the North East regarding the military’s offer to de-radicalise and rehabilitate about 800 repented Boko Haram members. We believe Operation Safe Corridor being executed alongside Operation Crackdown has tipped-off the sect’s final defeat necessary to fast track the peace process towards rebuilding of the region.

“As a people and a nation capable of forgiving and forgoing wrongs, this initiative has further advertised the totality of our oneness which the entire world should recognise in line global best practices.

“We are even more pleased with the patriotic zeal, gesture and support of Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo, the Gombe Emirate and the good people of Gombe State and the environs, among other participating stakeholders for providing the space to accommodate the ex-sect members,” Tilde said.

The group praised the courage and sincerity of the sect’s 800 repentant members for denouncing their membership of the group and willingly surrendering to the military’s de-radicalization and rehabilitation programme, pointing out that it is no longer news that many of them were either drugged, deceived or coerced into the activities of the sect.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Government

In The Fight Against Corruption, No Individual is Bigger Than The State – Buhari

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Muhammadu Buhari

In response to the suspended acting EFCC Chairman, Ibrahim Magu, President Muhammed Buhari, lamented that the anti-corruption war becomes endangered “when persons entrusted with the responsibility of that magnitude become suspects themselves.”

Buhari, whose vision is to put an end to corruption in Nigeria, believed that every aspect of the nation’s life is enshrined in corruption and it’s of major concern when leaders of institutions saddled with the mandate to fight the menace are found in the waves of the corruption they claimed to be fighting.

This act is a great abomination not only because it strikes at the root but it also trivialises and undermines the anti-corruption crusade itself, the President explained.

He further said that in a bid to put an end to this great abomination, he had set up Ayo Salami Panel to unravel the mystery behind the mystique of Magu’s alleged involvement in corruption that his administration is fighting.

Buhari said that his administration is ready and willing to go all out in the fight against corruption, and no one is too big nor above the law to become a victim of anti-graft’s sledgehammer.

The president said, “However, the stark reality of widespread corruption becomes poignant when allegations of corruption touch on the leadership of an institution set up by law to coordinate and enforce all economic and financial crimes.

“It is an abomination that strikes at the root and undermines the government’s anti-corruption programme.

“It was in response to the serious allegations against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission that I set up a panel headed by the Honourable Justice Isa Ayo Salami, retired President of the Court of Appeal, via an Instrument dated 3rd July 2020 pursuant to the Tribunals of Inquiry Act (Cap T21, LFN, 2004).

“We recognise that there are more grounds to cover in the war against corruption, and we are prepared to go out to possess those lands by cutting off any stream that nourishes the seed of corruption and supports its growth.

“Let it be known that in the fight against corruption, no one is too big to tackle, as no individual is bigger than the Nigerian State!”

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In Search For The New EFCC Chairman, Justice Ayo Salami Panel Advises Buhari to Look Outside The Police Force

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EFCC

Justice Ayo Salami’s panel advised President Muhammadu Buhari to look outside the Nigerian Police Force for the new Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

A credible source confirmed that President Muhammadu Buhari may have decided to follow the panel recommendation to avoid a similar fate to that of Magu, the former chairman.

The source also confirmed that the panel recommendation was a result of sleaze allegations against suspended acting Chairman, Ibrahim Magu. Also, that search team would be constituted in the next few days to slim down the possibilities of finding the right candidate to bring into reality the President’s vision of a corrupt-free anti-graft agency.

The source further confirmed that “the sleaze and abuse of office allegations against Magu, a commissioner of police, were overwhelming,” and that he may be put on trial.

As advised by the panel, the new EFCC chairman should be in interim position for two years.

It was suggested that the recommendation from the Justice Ayo Salami panel might have pinned Magu, according to Femi Adesina, the presidential spokesman, he advised president Buhari to consider looking into other law enforcement or security agencies, as well as considering important and diligent staff of EFCC in his plans to appoint the next EFCC chairman, as s provided in the EFCC Establishment Act of 2004.

Following the Justice Ayo Salami panel recommendation, Salami said “Your Excellency, permit me to say that four successive chairmen of the EFCC from inception have been drawn from the police. Therefore, in appointing a new chairman of EFCC, consideration should be given to candidates from other law enforcement or security agencies and qualified core staff of EFCC as provided in the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (Establishment Act 2004).

“It is also important to point out that at the moment, 970 policemen (114 drivers, 641 mobile policemen and 215 operations), are on secondment in the EFCC.

“Therefore, an exit plan for the disengagement of the police and other personnel within two years from now should be considered. This will address the issue of non-promotion of core staff for over nine years.

“Your Excellency, our thinking here is that whoever you are appointing other than a core EFCC staff, should be in transitional capacity of two years during which period, the arrangement would be made for the appointment of any of the core staff who has been commended by National Crime Agency, UK and other international law enforcement for their professionalism”.

Justice Ayo Salami appreciated the president for giving members of the panel an avenue to serve the country.

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Ezekwesili Presents Research Findings on Fixing Nigeria’s Politics

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A quest to understand the interconnection between politics and economic performance in a democratic society motivated Richard von Weizacker fellowship and research study at the Robert Bosch Academy in Berlin, Germany, Dr. Obiageli Ezekwesili said on Wednesday.

She stated this at the public launch of #FixPolitics, where she presented findings from her fellowship research on how to fix politics in Nigeria and Africa more broadly.

Ezekwesili invited 124 Nigerians from diverse fields of endeavour and geopolitical zones to collaborate on designing the research findings over the last one year as a Work Study Group. The group is the co-leadership organ responsible for an integrated citizens-led actions to fix the broken political system.

She pointed out that politics in Nigeria was not fulfilling the core requirement of a democratic system, which was to provide good governance for the common wellbeing of citizens.

“My research findings primarily reinforce that the poor state of affairs in Nigeria is the consequence of the quality of politics at play. Politics is at the heart of everything any society can or will become. The essential process of democracy is not complete without politics,” the 2019 Nigerian Presidential candidate said.

In her study, she established primarily that in a democratic system, “there are three triangular pillars which determine the kind of outcomes that politics will produce for the people.

Explaining the concept, the former World Bank vice president said, “On the right angle or demand side of the triangle is the electorate; on the left or supply side is the politicians, political class and parties; and at the top is the regulatory – constitutional, legal, electoral and institutional context within which the politics happen.”

According to her, these tripod pillars create an interconnecting network of actions that determine the outcomes of every political system.

“Every pillar or angle of the triangle must function effectively and concurrently with the other two to enable the right quality of politics that will deliver strong economic performance for a people.

“In evaluating the outcome of politics in Nigeria and Africa, my study established that the quality of the electorate, quality of political class and quality and lack of independence and capacity of political institutions constitute a structural and systemic problem for democracy and must therefore be fixed by citizens,” Ezekwesili said.

She also said, “The research found that Nigeria is ridden with politicians without competing ideas of how to solve the problems of citizens, who lack a culture of public service and subordinate the common good to their personal and narrow interests.

“The constitutional, legal, institutional and regulatory environment is compromised by the political class to more frequently act without independence, fairness and adherence to the rule of law. The political space is thus completely monopolised by the supply side of governance, that is the political class, thereby causing political, economic and social stagnation for the nation and people.

“Currently in our politics, voters generally lack the level of influence necessary to compel the right political processes and good outcomes that serve the good of all in society.

“The bright prospect is that evidence from the #FixPolitics research shows that citizens are the only angle of the triangle that can act and propel systemic change by collectively and decisively acting for their common good.”

To alter the status quo, Ezekwesili said only the electorate “have the incentive to correct the abnormality in a political system.”

She added, “It is the collective effort of citizens that can change the quality of political class and compel the kind of constitutional and electoral changes required to achieve good governance.”

Delivering a keynote address, former President Felipe Calderon of Mexico said there was an enormous gap between the interests of the citizens and that of the politicians, which he saw as a major problem to a democratic setting.

“To fix politics in Nigeria, the citizens and the politicians must work together and represent the same in practical life,” he said.

Calderon further said that “citizens must change their perception of politics and political participation rather than holding to a view that politics is for corrupt and dishonest people.”

According to him, corrupt people are quite the opposite of what politics stands. “To fix politics is what happens when the people participate and take responsibility to provide political participation with ethical sense and ethical parameters,” Calderon added.

In a goodwill message, former President of Malawi, Dr. Joyce Banda, said politics should be seen as an inclusive love affair and if institutionally implemented, “Africa will witness a great change in its democratic system.”

While dissecting the dynamics of democracy, three intergenerational panels with discussants like Prof. Atahiru Jega, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, Pastor Tunde Bakare, Aisha Yesufu, Iyinoluwa Aboyeji, Jude Abaga(also known as M.I Abaga), Cynthia Mbamalu, Yemi Adamolekun, Samson Itodo, among others, agreed that there was an emerging consensus to fix politics in Nigeria as the status quo was untenable and unsustainable.

Speakers like Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, Ayo Sogunro, Ndi Kato, Adewunmi Emoruwa, and Dr. Usman Bugaje highlighted that “there is a need for young people and women to fully engage in partisan politics, create platforms for political engagement, use politics as a tool for framing a shared vision based on a new dominant value orientation of public service, connect the elite with the grassroots and mobilise the Nigerian public to mount pressure on the legislature for the right constitutional and electoral changes.”

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