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South East: A Time to Regroup

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Igbo Governors
  • South East: A Time to Regroup

This is not the worst time to be an Igbo in the Nigerian political sphere, in fact, it is actually the best time for Igbo politics. However, it will take some dynamic thinking to realize this. Say what you want about Tinubu but he understood this early and he played the game well, “you cannot go and play in the big leagues if you do not have big players who turn up and show up.”

You cannot go and play in the big leagues if you do not have big players who turn up and show up.

What does that mean? Look at the present crop of political leaders in the South West and immediate environments (from the 6 states to Kogi and Edo) and you can actually pick enough people called “Tinubu boys” who have political clout and weight. These are people who have been tested and have the strength and dynamism. Even those who are deemed estranged like Fayemi and Fashola. And guess what, they also show up meaning they hold down their own house and can turn up political numbers any day. Do a number of Tinubu Boys in Lagos alone and you will be shocked, from Hamzat to Leke Pitan. Not trying to praise Tinubu but this type of alliance is needed. I have not seen one single politician in the South East that commands such respect across the board in the South East. How can you position yourself for National Politics if you have not conquered regional politics?

How can you hold your own when you can’t show up to a party meeting with at least fifteen boys who are willing to work for you from all the states? Almost every South East politician is just popular in each of his/her state. This is the problem governors who perform like Obaino and talkers (even though he does too much) like Peter Obi has. They need people to fight for them and hold down other states for them.

You call it godfatherism, I say it is alliances. Imagine if Okorocha can boast of having a huge support base from not just Imo but also Ebonyi, Abia, Rivers, and Enugu. That is 5 states. He is already in a good position for any political negotiation and he is more likely to get what he asks for if he wants to form an alliance with anyone.

You call it godfatherism, I say it is alliances.

Saraki did not become this influential by locking himself in Kwara. No, he played his politics in his region. Same as El Rufai. People have no idea the politics that happened on the morning of the primaries between Fashola, El Rufai, and Tinubu. That could have cost President Buhari the ticket if not for alliances.

Similarly, Akpabio is facing the same problem, his support basically stops in Akwa Ibom (which the governor is doing his best to uproot) outside the state, none. At least, Amaechi even though he is as dramatic as a woman (no disrespect to women) but he is bringing his boys out and giving them posts who will in turn spread his own political clout. That is not even national politics, but regional.

People wonder why the Tinubu group can be so confident about Lagos. Because they have done the work of 100 years. They have almost every traditional leader, every market leader, every motor park, and almost every structure on the informal side and the formal side, they allow the social media boys do the dirty fight. If you don’t know, you can’t beat the Tinubu boys on Twitter and Facebook. They are always ready.

This is the time for the South East politicians to forge intra-regional alliances. Have one or two politicians in the South East and parts of the South-South who can boast of at least 30 percent of voters in each state in terms of Senators, House of Representatives, State assemblies, etc., and then launch for the National scale.

This is the time for the South East politicians to forge intra-regional alliances.

However, playing the victim card while expecting things to fall into your arms will not help the region. The South East has to stop claiming marginalization, everybody in Nigeria has been marginalized but not everyone chooses to wear it on their sleeves. Stop attacking other tribes because you feel they have it better or they made better calculations, if you lose, take that loss with your chest, go home and work on it, come back to another fight smoking and looking new (political fights are not every 4 years, they are every re-run election, every party ward primary, every local government poll) put your players in position that will help spread your influence so when they call your name in one place, the response is heard from 7 places. That is a political influence.

The South East has to stop claiming marginalization, everybody in Nigeria has been marginalized but not everyone chooses to wear it on their sleeves.

And politicians have to stop looking like tribal bigots –even if you are, you are a politician, polish yourself. See how commissioners in Lagos, went to be senators, ministers, and governors. Don’t restrict your planning to one tribe. Ambode did a lot of the financing of Edo politics on Tinubu’s behalf now, they have a governor they can plan with. Governors in the South East have to capture grounds outside their state, make none indigenes commissioners and advisers and send them to be senators in their states but what have you in their states. Defeatist.

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.

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Government

Oyo State Budgets N330M Monthly To Support Community Policing In LGAs

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Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State

Oyo State Governor, Seye Makinde has said that the state has set aside a monthly budget of N330 million to be spent on security across the 33 local governments in the state.

The governor who disclosed this in Ibadan said each local government in the state is expected to spend N10 million to support the security of lives and property in their domain.

He said part of the measures was the instruction to local government chairmen to involve traditional rulers as well as other voluntary residents in policing their areas.

Each local government is to spend N10 million monthly on this security arrangement.

Makinde explained that the initiative amounts to spending N330 million in the 33 local government areas, besides other efforts the state government had put in place to tighten security.

“We said each local government should set up a security committee, which should include traditional rulers and voluntary people willing to police their areas.

“I encouraged them to budget N10 million to service the committee every month. For the entire state, that’s N330 million per month by all local governments, excluding what we are doing generally at the state level,” the governor told a group on a visit to him during the recent Muslim festival.

“On security, most of the data in the past months shows that things are now improving. The Igangan incident, some days ago, was only falsified by some people who were saying that Fulani herdsmen had invaded Igangan again. The truth is actually about the NCS and smugglers. They know each other.

“Customs officials were accused to have entered Igangan, which is not a border town. But we are working with Federal authorities and they have arrested most of them.

“The gun that was collected is still with us. I said I won’t release it until I get the attention of the Federal authorities.

“In the Constitution of Nigeria, Oyo State is a federating unit. We are not saying Federal agencies should not carry out their operations here. But they must tell us; they must inform us. They may not disclose the details of the operation to us, but we must know about it.

“If we had known about the operation, we would have pre-informed the security detail in the town and those who died could have been alive. The Amotekun Coordinator that died in Igboora would have still been alive today.

“How can you go operating in an unidentified vehicle in a town where the security tactics have been heightened? As they wanted to enter the town, they were confronted because we have heightened security in all of those places.

“So, we will keep appealing to them and to our people that false information won’t help anybody. Nobody will profit politically from the security issues we are faced with. It is our collective responsibility. The people will play their part and the government will play its own part,” Makinde said.

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Security Operatives Arrest Sunday Igboho in Cotonou, Benin Republic

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The security operatives in Cotonou, Benin Republic have arrested Yoruba freedom fighter, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho.

An anonymous source privy to the arrest disclosed on Tuesday morning.

According to the source, Sunday Igboho was arrested in Cotonou while trying to travel to Germany from the West African nation.

President Buhari-led administration is now working with the Benin government to repatriate him to Nigeria.

The source said, “Sunday Igboho has been arrested in Cotonou. He was arrested about an hour ago.

“He was supposed to travel to Germany through Cotonou this night. He wanted to leave Africa through Cotonou. He was arrested by security operatives in Cotonou.

“They are planning to bring him back to Nigeria.”

It would be recalled that the Department of State Services had declared Igboho wanted after its operatives carried out a bloody midnight raid on his residence in the Soka area of Ibadan, Oyo State.

DSS Public Relations Officer, Peter Afunnaya, had advised Igboho to turn himself in to the nearest security.

“Those cheering and eulogizing him may appeal to or advice him to do the needful,” Afunnaya said. “He should surrender himself to the appropriate authorities. He or anyone can never be above the law.”

Pelumi Olajengbesi, one of the lawyers representing Igboho and others arrested in his House, told SaharaReporters he had not confirmed the news of Igboho’s arrest in Cotonou.

“I will contact Yomi Aliu (SAN) to verify the news,” he said.

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IOM Ethiopia Appeals for USD 40 Million to Assist Additional 1.6 Million People in Northern Ethiopia

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Northern Ethiopia - Investors King

Nearly two million people affected by the crisis in northern Ethiopia desperately need life-saving assistance, including water, medicine and shelter, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said today as it issued an urgent appeal for USD 40 million to help internally displaced men, women and children, including newborn babies. 

Since the outbreak of the conflict eight months ago in Ethiopia’s Tigray Regional State, millions of people are enduring unimaginable suffering, including forced displacement, hunger, death, and destruction of private and public property.

In Tigray, IOM has been providing support to more than half a million people, including displaced children, women, men, and vulnerable groups such as pregnant women and persons with disabilities. This includes shelter and provision of essential items such as food, water, clothing, medicine and supplies for babies, as well as sanitation and hygiene services.

IOM has also been supporting camp coordination and management efforts, providing mental health care to those in need, and producing Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) reports to shed light on the evolving situation.

Nearly USD 70 million (USD 69.3M) is needed to respond to the needs of internally displaced populations in northern Ethiopia but only USD 28.7 million has been received this year. IOM needs an extra USD 40.6 million for the remainder of 2021 to be able to continue and further expand its response to help the displaced.

“The nearly two million people displaced by this crisis continue to live in inhumane and undignified conditions and require critical and urgent support,” said Maureen Achieng, IOM Chief of Mission to Ethiopia and Representative to the African Union and UNECA. “IOM Director General António Vitorino said it before, and we say it again: we must act without delay to meet the needs of people in the region.”

The situation in Tigray remains volatile. In partnership and coordination with other UN agencies, IOM is committed to delivering life-saving humanitarian assistance, to continue reaching people in need. IOM is planning to significantly scale up response programming and increase the deployment of senior IOM staff in the region despite the severe shortage of funding.

IOM’s response is aligned with the Inter-Cluster Coordination Group’s (ICCG) – a cooperative effort among sectors and the Humanitarian Country Team to improve the national response – Northern Ethiopia Response Plan, which estimates that 5.2 million people are in dire need in the worst-case scenario of this escalating humanitarian crisis.

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