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Kogi 2019: Faleke Tackles Yahaya Bello

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With just about three months to the governorship election in Kogi State, the incumbent Governor Yahaya Bello is being tackled by a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and a third term member of the Federal House of Representatives from Ikeja in Lagos, Hon. James Abiodun Faleke.

Abiodun Faleke, who revealed that he had been watching the development in his home state as an indigene of Kogi West, wrote that contenders for the 2019 Kogi Governorship race was on his mind.

The lawmaker expressed concern that it would be dangerous for the APC to field Yahaya Bello for a second term in office and urged the party to consider the feelings of the people of the state and provide another candidate for the election.

“I hope the party, APC will put it’s thinking cap on to put in a process that will allow the people make the choice of who will lead the state from the Party without compromising honour.

“As it is today, I plead with the Party Leaders to put the interest of the people in mind and end the suffering of a people,” he wrote in a recent post in one of his social media handle.

Faleke added in the article, which he personally endorsed, that since “the 2015 abrakadabra process that brought in the current Governor of the state, I strongly believe that the whole world and the party leadership are living witnesses to the worst administration of a government in Nigeria.

“I cannot understand the pride of GYB when with all the available resources at his disposal he CANNOT boast of any meaningful project he has done to alleviate the suffering of the people.”

The Reps member stressed that when opportunity was given to Governor Yahaya Bello “against the wishes of the people,” he was expected to use the tenure to surprise the people in performance and good governance, but that “yes the people were so surprised with his lack of knowledge, and interest of the people at heart.

“I was not surprised that he has failed and will fail again because when you look at his background, after graduation, he served at Revenue Mobilization and Fiscal Commission and rose to level 12, and suddenly became a ‘millionaire’.”

Faleke said further that the people should ask themselves how could a level 12 officer become a millionaire in less than 5 years of graduation if not involved in stealing of government funds.

According to him, Bello was only rewarded with “a victory he was never part of,” adding that how could he have taken the people into heart, and that he got a licence to steal and steal and steal.

“So, as the bad tenure moves to final burial, the APC must be watchful not to make the same mistake.

“When GYB knew that he will be asking for second term from the people, why did he not do what is right with the people? If by any default he gets the party ticket(God forbids), and wins election, then the state will finally go into comatose.

“To the party, I still don’t understand why and how they came to decide on Indirect Primaries despite all available evidences before them? With History of past events on elections and cancellation of elections at the disposal of the Party? We must learn from history.

“If the Party is concerned about the people and their well being, give them access to freely choose their governor, I’m sure the people of the state will take appropriate decision at the ballot, ” he said.

It will be recalled that Faleke was the running mate to the late former governor of Kogi State, Prince Audu Abubakar APC in the November 2015 governorship election in the state.

Abubakar had died shortly before announcement of the results of the election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), which later declared the election inconclusive and later insisted that Yahaya Bello, who came second in the primaries of the APC, would be the candidate of the party In the election.

A rerun election was eventually organised in places where INEC said there was anomalies and Yahaya Bello was eventually declared winner of the election.

With this, Abiodun Faleke, who had shown interest in the office, took the matter to the court of law and pursued it to the Supreme Court, which gave the verdict to Bello.

It was believed in many quarters that Bello pitched his tent with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and worked against the APC in the governorship election after he lost the primaries to Audu Abubakar.

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Yahaya Bello risks disqualification over ‘double registration’

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Natasha Akpoti, a member of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), has asked a federal high court in Abuja to disqualify Yahaya Bello, governor of Kogi, from the November 16 gubernatorial election, over alleged double registration as a voter.

Akpoti was a governorship candidate but she was disqualified by the electoral commission over the invalid nomination of her running mate.

In a suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1221/2019 and dated October 10, Akpoti said Bello allegedly committed the offence of double registration on May 23, 2017 at the government house in Lokoja after he had reportedly registered as a voter in Abuja in 2011.

The suit has the All Progressives Congress (APC) (first defendant) and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) (second defendant) as defendants.

Mike Ozekhome, a senior advocate of Nigeria (SAN), filed it on her behalf.

Akpoti formulated three questions for determination by the court which reads; “Whether Yahaya Bello, the candidate of the 1st Defendant (APC) in the forthcoming Kogi governorship poll being organised by the 2nd Defendant (INEC) has by his act of double registration committed a wrongful act capable of disqualifying him as a voter or person to be voted for having violated the provisions of Section 24(E) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended).

“Whether Yahaya Bello, candidate of the 1st defendant, is on account of his double registration as a voter, a fit and proper person to be sponsored as a governorship to candidate by the 1st Defendant or allowed by the 2nd Defendant to contest as a governorship candidate the forthcoming Kogi state governorship election.

“Whether Yahaya Bello, the candidate of the 1st defendant in the forthcoming Kogi state governorship election is not liable to be disqualified and/or barred from participating or contesting in and/or voting for any political office for the next 10 years, pursuant to his flagrant violation of the provisions of Section 24(E) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended).”

The plaintiff further asked the court to declare that Bello violated section 24(E) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended) by virtue of his act of double registration as a voter, and a declaration that he is liable to be disqualified and/or barred from contesting, participating and/or voting in the November 16 Kogi governorship poll “on account of his wrongful act of gross violation of Section 24(E) of the Electoral Act, 2010 (as amended), which act of violation robs him of the capacity or vires to contest the forthcoming Kogi State governorship election.”

She also prayed for an order of the court disqualifying and/or barring Bello, or directing INEC to disqualify the APC candidate from the governorship race or for any political office for the next 10 years and an order of mandamus compelling or mandating INEC to investigate the allegation of double registration against Bello and as well prosecute him on completion of his first tenure of office as governor in January, 2020, among others.

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‘They want war’ — Oshiomhole reacts to ‘attack’ on residence in Benin

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The Benin residence of Adams Oshiomhole, national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), was reportedly attacked by hoodlums on Saturday evening. 

Speaking after the alleged incident, Oshiomhole said the attackers and their sponsors want a war.

He said those behind the attack are bent on creating a crisis in the state, but that they do not have the numbers to fight dirty.

He asked his supporters to be clam, and to not return ”madness for madness”.

“In a moment like this, it is not madness for madness because many of you I see here, in 2007, you were already strong. During my second term in 2012, you were already strong; Even in 2016, some of you were already deployed as party agents,” he said.

“These people want to create what has not happen for a very long time. They want war and want to cause crisis. They are boasting that they want to crush and crush people. Go and buy crushing machine.

“No man born of a woman can change what God has said. And if God says, no, who can say yes? My own is don’t let them drag you out of the bathroom like Igbo man says and be running after them like the town naked mad men because we are not mad.

“If it comes to the ruffle ruffle that he wants, they don’t have the number. You know that when you start to tell lies, you will have to lie many times to sustain one lie.

“We will not condescend to their level.  But, let me say this. It is clear, Nigeria is a free country. There is freedom of association. Thee is freedom of worship. There is freedom of religion. There is freedom of expression. So, nobody in Nigeria can harass you. Just be the good guys that you are.

“My weapon which is the truth, is more powerful than the weapon of the armed forces in the world. Have I threatened any of you? Have I ever sent any of you to prison? How many of you …have I ever said to any of you that if you do not follow me, I will send you to prison?

“…But, the tradition of Edo people is that if you do something and your father is not happy, he will call you home and say my son, don’t do this again.

“As a father or mother, maturity is the ability to change the habit that you are not happy about. There is no wisdom to do as if you are an angel who has never sinned? Those who want to cast the first stone, may God bless them.

Simon Egbebulam, spokesman of Oshiomhole, told TheCable that the APC national chairman was at a friend’s birthday party when thugs besieged his residence.

He said the thugs, allegedly sponsored by the state government, were repelled by security agents.

”Security operatives and youths of the APC in Edo state on Friday repelled attack by thugs suspected yo be loyal to the state government at the residence of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole in Okorotun Street, Government Reservation Area, Benin City,” he said.

“Oshiomhole came for the purpose of a function that took place in Protea hotel which was his aim of coming to Benin City from Abuja.

“While he was away on the function, some thugs believed to be in the other camp, blocked the entrance to his residence, fanning the embers of war.

“Security men on ground dislodge the hoodlums from gaining entrance into the residence. Brave APC youths also resisted the thugs who took to their heel.”

The Edo state government has denied having knowledge of the attack.

“We have no knowledge of the attack. We have also reached out to the Police, and they affirmed that they do not know about such an attack,” it said in a statement issued by Crusoe Osagie, special adviser to the governor on media and communication strategy.

Oshiomhole and Godwin Obaseki, governor of the state, have been having a running battle spawned by political differences.

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I won’t appoint aides from other states – Governor Oyetola

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Governor Gboyega Oyetola has vowed not to appoint political aides from other states as it was no longer fashionable because indigenes of the state rejected it.

 

The Osun State Governor who made the annoucement at Iwo where the former National Commissioner of the National Hajj Commission and renowned journalist, Alhaji Liad Tella was turbaned as the Asiwaju Muslimi of Iwo land, assured indigenes of working to improve their lives with worthwhile projects and infrastructure. 

He further disclosed that all his political appointees are indigenes of the state which according to him is a move to stop the use of “imported” politicians as political office holders.

Governor Oyetola’s predecessor, Rauf Aregbesola worked with commissioners and aides who were from Lagos and other parts of the country.. 

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