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Speaker Race: Campaign Team Says Gbajabiamila Has Never Been Convicted

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The Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila (APC-Lagos) has never been convicted anywhere, the Femi Gbajabiamila/Wase Campaign Team said on Wednesday.

The Director General of the team, Rep. Abdulmumin Jibrin (APC-Kano) made this known at a world press conference in Abuja.

The news conference followed series of reports claiming that Gbajabiamila was disbarred by the State Bar of Georgia in the United States of America for fraud and subsequently convicted.

He said that in the last few weeks, the media had been washed with what he described as “a reoccurring fabrication of false accusations and outright lies against the person of the Leader House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila.”

Jibrin said that the latest was a live press conference addressed by someone, who claimed to be speaking on behalf of Coalition of United Political Party (CUPP).

According to him, but for the publicity the press conference attracted, we would have simply ignored the baseless and unfounded allegations.

“For the benefit of doubt, we wish to once again state emphatically that Femi Gbajabiamila has never been convicted for any crime in the United States of America, Nigeria or any other country around the world for that matter.

“He has never been accused of corruption and has no corruption case hanging on his neck in Nigeria or anywhere around the world.

“He has not committed perjury and has never committed perjury in Nigeria or any country of the world.

“He was eligible to contest in all previous elections he won and indeed eligible and qualified to contest for the office of Speaker House of Representatives in the 9th Assembly,” he said.

Jibrin said that Gbajabiamila had on several occasions, responded to the allegations and provided clarifications and set records straight that the allegations had been tested and struck out in our court of law.

According to him, the State Bar of Georgia has also written and categorically stated that there is no criminal conviction in the matter relating to Gbajabiamila and he is currently an active member in good standing of the State Bar of Georgia.

He said that Gbajabiamila had not been served any summons by a Magistrate Court neither has he been notified by the Clerk of the Mational Assembly.

Jibrin said the campaign team was worried that those behind the antics were trying to drag the Judiciary and revered judges to what was clearly a hatched Job.

The lawmaker said that the Judiciary must not allow itself to be mixed in such cocktail of dirt.

He urged the general public to disregard the falsehoods being peddled around as it was very strange that a private citizen or organisation file criminal charges against an individual.

According to him, Gbajabiamila in his usual manner has maintained a dignified silence knowing truth to be a constant.

“However, he has now instructed his lawyers to take every necessary legal step against all those involved, their three Parliamentary conspirators and sponsors to seek redress and sue for defamation with immediate effect.

“Indeed Gbajabiamila on his own has put this matter out there in the public domain in the biography titled fearless written by Wale Okediran, a former colleague six years ago.

“Whatever they choose to do, and however, Gbajabiamila and the Deputy Majority Leader, Rep. Idris Wase (APC- Plateau) will be on the floor on the 11th live and direct to be elected Speaker and Deputy Speaker respectively.

“They are to take over from Speaker Dogara, who ceases to be Speaker from Thursday, June 6, 2019 after our valedictory session,” he said.

Jibrin said that the team had written a petition to the Inspector General of Police and other security agencies to get to the bottom of the matter and take all necessary action against CUPP and the sponsors.

He said that Gbajabiamila had a successful private legal practice career both in Nigeria and abroad and had a distinguished career in the parliament being a five term Member.

He said Gbajabiamila rose all the way in the legislature to be the Minority Leader and subsequently Majority Leader, a feat he holds in the history of Nigeria parliament.

Jibrin described Gbajabiamila as a loyal Nigeria, party man, upright, honest, hardworking, competent, level headed, a team player and a uniting force.

He said that the candidature of Gbajabiamila had received the largest number of endorsement across party lines by any speakership aspirant.

Jibrin said that Gbajabiamila had been endorsed by his colleagues members-elect, the president, party leaders, governors and other stakeholders across party lines.

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Details of IBB’s meeting with lawmakers in Minna revealed

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Former Military President, Gen. Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, on Thursday, told members of the Niger State House of Assembly, that they have met the expectations of the people.

IBB stated this when the lawmakers visited him at his Uphill home in Minna.

“I have been looking forward to meeting with you.

“I am proud to say that you have been doing well. You are meeting our expectations.

“We have heard of states lacking synergy among the arms of the government, but in Niger State that should not be your lot.

“Keep a good working relationship between the legislature, the executive and the judiciary. You have been doing this and I want you to keep it up.

“You are closer to the people. It is your responsibility to know what the people need and carry them along all the time. Do not leave them outside your projects and programmes,” he said.

Speaker Abdullahi Bawa Wuse explained that they visited the former President, to get the blessings required to run the legislature effectively.

“We are here to get the blessing of our father; this is because we know your concern and commitment to the development of this state and Nigeria.

“Outside office, you have done more than you did while in office. Your role as a father in the nation has ensured that Nigeria remains indivisible,” Bawa said.

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Tribunal upholds Ikpeazu’s election, dismisses Alex Otti’s petition

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The three-man panel of the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Umuahia, the Abia State capital, and chaired by Justice A.L. Ogumoye, has dismissed the petition filed by 2019 APGA gubernatorial candidate, Dr. Alex Otti against the declaration of Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu.

The tribunal ruled that the petitioner failed to prove the case of over-voting, non-compliance to the INEC election guideline and electoral act.

Recall that Alex Otti had asked the tribunal to cancel fifteen out of the seventeen local government areas’ election results in Abia State.

Otti claimed that the respondents, PDP, and Governor Okezie Ikpeazu who was the governorship candidate of PDP perpetrated excessive malpractice in those LGAs in the last March 9, 2019, election conducted in the state.

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Importers Smuggling Rice In Tyres, Says Economist

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Due to the closure of Nigeria’s borders with Benin Republic, rice smugglers are seeking out more devious ways of importing the product into the country.

National Coordinator of the Institute of Chartered Economists of Nigeria, Dr Oladapo Ganiyu, while speaking with SaharaReporters said that people have resulted to fitting bags of rice into tyres of automobiles. 

Ganiyu, who claims this method is carcinogenic, said the border closure was untimely.

He said, “The closure of the border now is untimely. People are now packing rice inside tyres.

“When the four tyres are rolling, will you suspect there is rice there? The way they are bringing it in, it can cause cancer.

“The people I have spoken with on commercial buses and market women, say the rice is not sweet and it takes time to cook.”

Speaking further, Ganiyu said ICEN will give the government’s new economic team six months before judging their performance.

For over 30 days, Nigeria’s border with Benin Republic and parts of its Northern border with Niger Republic had been closed.

Comptroller-General of Customs, Hameed Ali, insists that the border closure will not cease until concerned West African states stop the smuggling of parboiled rice from their country into Nigeria. 

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