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Fayose Accuses APC of Plot to Remove Him from Office, Writes CJN

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Ekiti State Governor Ayo Fayose.
  • Fayose Accuses APC of Plot to Remove Him from Office

Ekiti State governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, has raised the alarm over a new plot by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to remove him from office with the connivance of the judiciary.

Addressing journalists in Lagos yesterday, Fayose said he had already petitioned the acting Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, on the plot.

The governor said the target was to silence him as the voice of opposition in the country, because he had bluntly rejected all overtures for him to defect to the ruling APC or stop talking.

He alleged that at a recent meeting held in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, with several stalwarts and chieftains of the APC in attendance, two former governors of the state and members of the APC, namely Segun Oni and Dr. Kayode Fayemi, now Minister of Mines and Solid Mineral Development, boasted that there was no going back on the latest plan to remove him from office at all cost before the expiration of his (Fayose’s) tenure in October 2018.

The governor, who warned against any plot to destabilise his state, wondered how long the Ekiti APC and its collaborators would pursue their clandestine agenda of reversing an election they lost over 30 months ago and was validated by the tribunal, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.

In a letter he addressed to Justice Onnoghen, Fayose alleged: “Certain APC chieftains were again making subterranean moves to manipulate and compromise a section of the judiciary, particularly some judges, to get through the back door what they failed severally to achieve through the ballot box as well as in open court, even in matters already decided by the Supreme Court.

“The essence of all of this is to silence him as the voice of opposition in the country because he has bluntly rejected all overtures to him to defect into the ruling APC or stop talking.”

The governor added: “At a recent meeting held in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, at which several stalwarts and chieftains of the APC were in attendance, two former governors of the state and members of the APC, namely Segun Oni, a former governor of the state, and Dr. Kayode Fayemi, the Minister of Mines and Solid Mineral Development, boasted that there is no going back on the latest plan to subvert the will of the people of Ekiti freely given.

“Wrest the governance of Ekiti from me at all cost before the expiration of my tenure in October 2018 through an orchestrated but dubious legal process; and thereby render nugatory the sacred mandate of the people given unto me openly and unequivocally when I won in all the 16 local governments of the state while the then incumbent governor, Fayemi recorded zero.”

Fingering the presidency in the latest plot, with Oni and Fayemi as their local arrowheads, Fayose alleged that a concocted fresh suit was being rehashed and will be filed against him on the same old allegation that had been thrashed all the way from the tribunal to the Supreme Court.

He alleged: “This time, the plotters of this judicial coup d’etat plan to procure the services of a compromised or malleable judge to get self-serving ‘jankara’ and kangaroo judgments with the intention of having the Supreme Court reverse itself on the June 2014 Ekiti election.

“Oni and Fayemi boastfully claimed that they have enlisted the assurances of Justice Okon Abang and one or two other judges in the concocted fresh suit, hinged on the report of a useless, senseless, and orchestrated military report not known to the electoral law.”

Urging the CJN to take “notice of judicial pronouncements by courts of concurrent jurisdiction, as well as the scathing remarks of appellate courts on how Justice Abang has been used in the past by anti-democratic forces to endanger democracy and engage in deleterious miscarriage of justice”, he prayed that the judiciary would not succumb to devious plot to undermine its independence and integrity and rubbish its good name and hard-earned reputation any more.

“My Lord, you have a duty to ensure that no judge under your watch is enlisted into this diabolical act by any rampaging anti-democratic elements.

“The embarrassing incidents currently playing out on our national judicial horizon, with several judicial officers, including serving Justices of the Supreme Court, enmeshed in simulated and orchestrated corruption scandals and indictments by agencies of the federal government because they had refused, at one time or the other, to serve the base interests of the ruling APC government in matters pending before their lordships, have kept us wondering whether the judiciary will succumb to these unwarranted harassments and intimidation meant to coerce and cower it into submission and make this very important and indispensable Third Estate of the Realm subservient to the arbitrary wishes, whims, and caprices of the executive and political desperados,” he said.

Describing himself as “a leading opposition figure in Nigeria today who has been very critical of the anti-people policies of the federal government and its anti-democratic actions that endanger our nascent democracy”, Fayose added that “democracy without a virile opposition will eventually turn into a dictatorship, which is currently being experienced”.

He said he would continue to believe in the judiciary going by the open declaration of the CJN to defend the independence of the judiciary; maintain its integrity and deliver a virile and disciplined judiciary that is impartial, independent, non-partisan, and not subservient to the selfish interests of any individual, group or cabal, however powerful or influential they may be.

The governor therefore expressed confidence that Justice Onnoghen in particular and the judiciary in general would not only refuse to fall for the APC’s cheap and pedestrian blackmail, but would also resolutely and confidently defend the hallowed grounds of the judiciary and secure it from desecration by anti-democratic forces running riot all over the country.

The governor, who used the opportunity to speak on national issues, also berated the APC-led federal government for engaging in propaganda when Nigerians are suffering.

First, Fayose wondered why nobody had been brought to justice over frequent killings of Christians in southern Kaduna, saying that what the Christians were going through in the hands of Fulani herdsmen calls for concern.

He called on the Muhammadu Buhari administration to urgently put a stop to the killings in Kaduna State.

The governor said the country’s electoral process was devoid of violence under Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led federal government unlike the situation today.

“Our electoral process was devoid of violence but today the story is different,” he said.

Fayose again described the stories surrounding the adopted Chibok girls as a hoax, adding that the report on the release of the girls was part of the propaganda of the APC when Nigerians were completely tired of the their misrule.

“Some day, the whole story surrounding the Chibok girls will be told. Everything you read and hear about the girls is a hoax. Everything looks stage-managed. There was nothing about the Chibok girls. The girls were camped somewhere and trained. The truth will be told one day.”

But when contacted, the Special Assistant on Media to Fayemi, Mr. Yinka Oyebode, said he would rather not dignify Fayose’s ranting with a response.

According to Oyebode, “It is simply a case of the wicked running when no one pursues.

“It would appear, Governor Fayose wakes up daily in search of new controversies and making one spurious allegation after another. And it does not really matter to him whether such allegations are reasonable, logical or sensible.

“This allegation is not only irresponsible, it is quite unfair to the two former governors of the state.

“And one is not surprised at this, because under Fayose, falsehood has been elevated to the level of statecraft, sustained by the machinery of state.

“My advice to him is: Let the governor go and honour the promises he made to the Ekiti electorate (if he ever made any). Let him pay workers’ their salaries, take governance more seriously and make the state safe for lives, property and investments. If he can do these, then he needs not fear anyone.

“However, this is certainly a poorly contrived alibi for his ineptitude and apparent low capacity for the serious business of governance. It is purely a cheap blackmail that will not fly.”

In another riposte, the president’s media aide, Mr. Femi Adesina yesterday asked Nigerians to accept as the truth the statement issued by the Office of the Vice-President that the federal government had begun payments of N5,000 to indigent persons.

The vice-president’s media aide, Mr Laolu Akande had in a statement on Monday said that the stipend had been paid to poor Nigerians in nine states.

However, Fayose dismissed the statement, describing it as mere propaganda on the part of the federal government.

Responding after the Federal Executive Council meeting held in Abuja yesterday, Adesina said: “On the N5,000 stipend, it was announced specifically from the Office of the Vice-President that the scheme has started in nine states. And then a certain governor came and said it was not true. It’s just a matter of who do you believe.

“This is a government that is built on integrity and accountability. This government will not lie to Nigerians, does not lie to Nigerians, in fact anything you hear from this government you can take it to the bank, believe it.

“So if anybody comes and says it is not true. Choose who to believe; I can tell you that you should believe this government because this government will not lie to you.”

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Businessinsider, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Russia and North Korea Revive Military Pact, Heightening Tensions with US

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Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un have revived a Cold War-era military pact.

The agreement, signed on Wednesday during Putin’s first visit to North Korea in 24 years, commits the two nations to provide immediate military assistance to each other if either is attacked.

This development is likely to exacerbate tensions with the United States and its allies.

The Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Treaty, as the pact is officially named, represents the most powerful treaty signed between the two countries, according to Kim.

“This treaty elevates our ties to an alliance,” he declared during the signing ceremony. The deal stipulates that if either nation is invaded by an armed force, the other will provide military and other assistance “with all the means at its disposal,” in line with Article 51 of the United Nations Charter and the laws of both nations.

Putin’s visit to Pyongyang and the signing of the pact come on the heels of Kim’s trip to Russia in September, an event that has already resulted in a notable increase in arms transfers between the two countries, as confirmed by satellite imagery.

Despite the mounting evidence, both Moscow and Pyongyang have denied any such exchanges.

The renewed military alliance marks a significant escalation in the strategic partnership between Russia and North Korea, which had been relatively dormant since the end of the Cold War.

Analysts suggest that this move is a clear message of defiance to Western powers, particularly the United States, which has been involved in ongoing disputes with both nations over various geopolitical issues.

“The Comprehensive Strategic Partnership Treaty is for defensive purposes,” Kim stated, but experts warn that the alliance increases the risks for the US and its partners in responding to provocations from Moscow and Pyongyang. The treaty not only includes mutual defense commitments but also outlines plans to enhance cooperation in trade and investment, further solidifying the bilateral relationship.

Russian officials emphasized that the pact is a natural progression of the countries’ shared interests.

“This treaty is a testament to the deepening strategic and military cooperation between Russia and North Korea,” said Sergey Lavrov, Russia’s Foreign Minister. “It is essential for maintaining regional stability and countering external threats.”

The US and its allies have expressed grave concerns over the implications of this agreement. “This treaty significantly alters the security landscape in East Asia,” stated a senior US State Department official. “It underscores the need for vigilance and reinforces the importance of our alliances in the region.”

Military analysts are closely watching the developments, noting that the alliance could embolden both nations to take more aggressive stances on the international stage.

“With this treaty, North Korea gains a powerful ally, while Russia secures a foothold in East Asia,” said Alexander Gabuev, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center. “It is a strategic maneuver that complicates the geopolitical calculus for the US and its partners.”

The reactivation of the military pact also comes at a time when Russia is deeply involved in the conflict in Ukraine, where it faces significant opposition from Western nations.

North Korea’s unreserved support for Putin’s actions in Ukraine, as articulated by Kim, further aligns the two nations against common adversaries.

As the international community grapples with the potential ramifications of this treaty, it is clear that the renewed alliance between Russia and North Korea represents a formidable challenge to the current global order.

The coming months will likely see increased diplomatic activity as nations reassess their strategies in light of this development.

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Cyril Ramaphosa Begins New Term Under Coalition Government

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Cyril Ramaphosa

Cyril Ramaphosa was sworn in for another term as South Africa’s president on Wednesday, the beginning of a new era under a coalition government.

The ceremony held at the Nelson Mandela Amphitheater in the Union Buildings saw Ramaphosa take the oath of office before Chief Justice Raymond Zondo.

The event was attended by prominent dignitaries, including Nigerian President Bola Tinubu, Democratic Republic of Congo leader Felix Tshisekedi, and Zimbabwe’s Emmerson Mnangagwa, and was marked by a 21-gun salute and an air force flyover.

Ramaphosa’s reappointment comes three weeks after elections saw his party, the African National Congress (ANC), lose its parliamentary majority for the first time since the end of apartheid.

The ANC secured just over 40% of the vote on May 29, with millions of former supporters either backing a splinter party led by ex-leader Jacob Zuma or abstaining due to dissatisfaction over high levels of poverty, unemployment, and crime.

In his inauguration address, Ramaphosa emphasized the resilience of South African democracy and the need for unity.

“The resilience of our democracy has once more been tested, and the people have spoken loudly that they choose peace and democracy over conflict,” he said. “The voters of South Africa did not give any single political party the full mandate to govern our country alone. They have directed us to work together to address their plight and realize their aspirations.”

The ANC’s unprecedented electoral outcome necessitated a power-sharing agreement with long-time rivals. The main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) and four other parties have agreed to join a government of national unity, supporting Ramaphosa’s leadership in exchange for cabinet and parliamentary positions.

This coalition is expected to prioritize economic growth, investment attraction, structural reforms, and sustainable management of state finances.

The rand strengthened to a level stronger than 18 per dollar for the first time in over ten months, and Johannesburg’s benchmark equity index reached a record high on Wednesday.

Market optimism is driven by the inclusion of business-friendly parties in the government, anticipated to bolster Ramaphosa’s reform agenda aimed at addressing power shortages, logistical challenges, and other economic impediments.

Despite criticism in his previous term for his consultative approach, which opponents labeled as indecisive, Ramaphosa reaffirmed his commitment to inclusive governance.

“Those who would like a president that is dictatorial, who is adventurous, who is reckless, will not find that in me,” he stated last month. “In me they will find a president who wants to consult. All these processes have often been seen as, ‘he is weak, he is not decisive.’ I am decisive, but I want to take people along with.”

The new coalition government faces significant challenges, including negotiating policy differences and accommodating politically powerful figures within the ANC and its partners.

The DA has already expressed concerns over the ANC’s uncosted national health insurance plan and its foreign policy stance.

Susan Booysen, director of research at the Mapungubwe Institute for Strategic Reflection, noted the complexities ahead. “South Africa is really moving into this with minimal on-the-ground preparation and justification,” she said. “The devil is going to be in the exact detail. Once cabinet is announced, some basic agreement will have to be reached on policy positions and on what the red-line issues will be.”

As Ramaphosa begins his new term, the nation watches closely, hopeful that this coalition government can navigate the intricate landscape of South African politics and bring about the much-needed reforms and stability.

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Fubara Appoints and Swears in Caretaker Chairmen for All 23 Rivers State LGAs

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Siminalayi Fubara

Governor Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers State has appointed and sworn in new caretaker chairmen for all 23 local government areas.

This significant action followed swiftly after the House of Assembly, led by factional Speaker Victor Jumbo, screened and confirmed the nominees earlier in the day.

The process began on Tuesday when Governor Fubara submitted the list of nominees to the state House of Assembly.

According to a statement by the Clerk of the House, G.M. Gillis-West, the nominees were summoned for an early morning screening at 8 a.m. on Wednesday.

The rapid succession of events underscores the urgency of the appointments amid ongoing political unrest in the state.

The political crisis intensified as former council chairmen, whose terms had expired, refused to vacate their offices.

This defiance prompted the need for a swift and firm resolution to ensure continuity and stability in local governance.

The swearing-in ceremony took place under tight security at the Executive Council Chambers of the Government House in Port Harcourt, the state capital.

Governor Fubara administered the oath of office to the first batch of eleven caretaker chairmen, with subsequent batches following promptly.

The newly appointed caretaker chairmen are:

  • Abua/Odua LGA: Madigai Dickson
  • Ahoada East LGA: Happy Benneth
  • Ahoada West LGA: Mr. Daddy John Green
  • Akuku Toru LGA: Otonye Briggs
  • Andoni LGA: Reginald Ekaan
  • Asari Toru LGA: Orolosoma Amachree
  • Bonny LGA: Alabota Anengi Barasua
  • Degema LGA: Anthony Soberekon
  • Eleme LGA: Brain Gokpa
  • Emouha LGA: David Omereji
  • Etche LGA: John Otamiri
  • Gokana LGA: Kenneth Kpeden
  • Ikwerre LGA: Darlington Orji
  • Khana LGA: Marvin Yobana
  • Obio/Akpor LGA: Emmanuel Dogwo
  • Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni LGA: Vincent Anyanwu
  • Ogu/Bolo LGA: Margaret Ezenwa
  • Okrika LGA: Chizoba Onyebuchi
  • Omuma LGA: Cynthia Amadi
  • Opobo/Nkoro LGA: Solomon Dokubo
  • Oyigbo LGA: Chima Nwafor
  • Port Harcourt LGA: Isaac Udochukwu
  • Tai LGA: Ruth Michael

Governor Fubara expressed confidence in the capabilities of the newly appointed chairmen and emphasized the importance of their roles in maintaining stability and driving development at the grassroots level.

He urged them to prioritize the needs of their communities and work diligently towards improving the quality of life for all residents of Rivers State.

The appointment of the caretaker chairmen is expected to quell the political tensions that have recently plagued the state, ensuring that local governance continues smoothly and efficiently.

As Rivers State navigates this transitional period, the administration remains committed to fostering a stable and prosperous environment for its citizens.

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