Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State has said he wants to be a martyr who will be sacrificed to achieve the much-sought Igbo presidency.
David Umahi made the declaration on Tuesday in Abakaliki while briefing newsmen, noting that only martyrs make sacrifices for the peoples’ interest in difficult times.
The governor, who confirmed that he is defecting from the Peoples Democratic Party to the All Progressive Congress, said he will not regret the decision no matter its outcome.
“I have to lead the protest against the marginalisation of the Igbos by the PDP and I don’t have to consult anybody to lead such a protest.
“I don’t want the PDP to collapse in the South-East but it can collapse itself in the zone if it does not heed the peoples’ advice to entrench justice, fairness, and equity.
“The PDP should be bold to declare its stand on zoning of the presidency to the South-East and if it cannot, should tell us why we are not capable of holding such a position but will come for our votes during elections,” he said.
Umahi said that the decision to leave PDP was not about leadership but about patriotism, justice, fairness and the overall interest of the people.
“I am not vying for any position in the APC so anybody who does not like me over the defection will be fighting the air.
“I will instead play the fatherly role of guiding anyone who wants to vie for any position because it is a waste of time for any governor to seek to replace himself.
“When you are looking for everybody to be loyal to you in politics, you might not get to your destination because destinations are not straight but full of obstacles,” he said.
Umahi said that he will not be disturbed if the APC fails to zone the presidency to the South-East but will depend on God to determine the matter.
“The APC, however, appears to be amenable towards working with the South-East even though the South-East never supported it the way it supported the PDP since 1999.
“We would be 24 years with the PDP by 2023 and Ebonyi, under my administration, will testify the numerous feats we have attained with the support of my friend and father, President Muhammadu Buhari,” he said.
He said his defection has created a political gathering and mass movement, unprecedented in Ebonyi history with both PDP and APC faithful coming together to pursue a common cause.
“I will have no regrets if our agitations are not met in APC as it will be on record that a governor was sacrificed for the betterment of his people on what is rightfully, their due.
“We will still protest if we are still unfairly treated in the APC because protest is the beauty of democracy and if it doesn’t work now, it can work in future,” he said.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is set to announce Governor Godwin Obaseki of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the Saturday 19th September, 2020 Edo governorship election.
According to the results from 17 Local Government Areas confirmed by INEC so far, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate is leading with over 82,000 votes.
As it stands after results from 17 LGAs:
As of the time of filing this report, there is only one local government area left to collate.
However, the total number of voters in Ovia South-West is 73,909.
This is lesser than the margin between Obaseki and Osagie Ize-Iyamu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who is his closest rival.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu in a statement about President Buhari’s presentation of party flag to APC Governorship Candidate in Ondo State, said:
“President Muhammadu Buhari Friday in Abuja urged governing party, All Progressives Congress (APC), to work diligently and ensure fairness in electoral processes, while returning governorship candidate of the party, Rotimi Akeredolu, SAN, for second term in office.
The President, who presented the party’s flag to the candidate at the Presidential Villa, said the reconciliation process in the state branch of the party had provided a solid ground for an easier clear victory for the candidate than he achieved in his first term.”
Garba Shehu further said:
“While assuring Akeredolu of the party’s full support, the President said a peaceful and fair election that reflects the will of the people should be upper most, urging adherence to the regulations of the Independent National Electoral Commission and protocols of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control. President Buhari noted that the party’s mechanism for resolving differences was most effective, and would be sustained to strengthen relationships, and project the objectives of the party as people-focused and development oriented.”
“The APC candidate was presented to the President by the party’s Caretaker Committee Chairman, Mai Mala Buni, who is also the Governor of Yobe State.” He concluded.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) has fired back on PDP and Atiku Abubakar in a statement signed by Yekini Nabena, the Deputy National Publicity Secretary All Progressives Congress (APC).
The APC spokesman said:
“The statement issued by the Media Office of former Vice President, Alh. Atiku Abubakar on the standard sovereign guarantee and sovereign immunity clause embedded in Nigeria’s loan agreements with China to fund the ongoing national railway projects can be best described as unresearched, unintelligent and pedestrian.
As the Minister for Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi has explained the guarantee/clause in the loan deals is standard irrespective of the the country granting the loan.
Perhaps, Atiku and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) could redirect their energies to explaining to Nigerians the status of the failed $460 million Abuja Closed-Circuit Television (CCTV) awarded in August 2010 by the immediate-past PDP administration.”
Mr. Yinka further said that:
“Also, they should explain the over $2billion China loan the PDP administration took between 2010 and 2013 alone; $16billion spent on power with no electricity; fuel subsidy rackets; counter-insurgency funds that were diverted and shared to political cronies among other shocking heists.
Recall that the failed CCTV installation project was initiated by late President Umaru Yar’Adua and awarded in August 2010 by former President, Goodluck Jonathan’s administration to help security agencies in the Federal Capital Territory check the growing insecurity.
Since the agreement became signed, Nigeria has been servicing this loan to China while Nigerians are yet to attest to the visibility of CCTV project and unable to explain the status of the video surveillance project. The matter is subject to a legislative probe.”
“In all of these we are starkly reminded that the PDP remains a corrupted and damaged product. Nigerians must continue to reject the party at all levels of government.
In the area of fiscal discipline, prudence, curbing leakages, are we currently getting it right? An emphatic yes! Every kobo expended on infrastructure counts. Verifiable evidence abound in the fast expanding national railway projects, airport remodelling among other critical infrastructure projects being undertaken by the President Muhammadu Buhari government.
The days of phoney contracts as institutionalised by successive PDP administrations are fast fading.” He concluded.
When I read a piece pen down by the sacked chairman of the All People’s Congress (APC), Umar Haruna Doguwa titled:’’ Kano: Empty Leadership, huge liability,’’ I realized that the man, out of desperation, is carelessly ridiculing himself unnecessarily and exposing his candor and witlessness through misrepresentation of facts in the media. Nobody is envying the embattled former party chieftain from aiming for any office, but definitely not through blackmail and spreading of lies. One cannot overlook the deliberate distortion of facts on the state of affairs in Kano but to put out a response, because it could also help in dissuading desperate politicians like Doguwa using every opportunity to ensure that the people are deceived, just to achieve a selfish interest.
For those who are closer to Kwankwaso know that he always impose his whims on all and exploit them for his personal benefits against collective interest. Even as pioneer APC chairman, you never run the affairs of the party independently talk less of bragging to have organize and coordinate an election. You were just but a rubber stamp, while your master dictate how things were organized and executed.
While I absolutely agree with you that Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje did promise to continue with the legacies of the immediate-past administration of Senator Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso, when he assumed the mantle of leadership on May 29, 2015, the governor has kept to his promise in all spheres of governance This, he did, by fine-tuning most of the policies and, as well, bringing into bear, innovations that have today crowned Kano as a reference point of good governance in Nigeria and beyond.
As I read the article, I wonder how on earth Doguwa did not mention the huge liabilities Ganduje inherited from the Kwankwaso administration which were discovered by the Transition Committee. Since you were part of the government, you ought to have mention how Kwankwaso, who served his last tenure in office between 2011 and 2015, also introduced unworkable policies and programmes as well as execution of projects without financial backing, which allegedly used them to siphon public funds or to make the state ungovernable for the incoming governor.
At the expiration of his tenure, Kwankwaso left a liability of N313 billion for the incoming government. With these debts hanging on his neck, Ganduje also assumed office when there was recession, which resulted in reduced federal allocation, dwindling level of Internally Generated Revenue and the slim nature of the state’s treasury which, however, had not deterred him from deploying his wealth of experience to effectively administer the state.
Some of these projects include Murala Muhammad Way Bridge, the longest in the country named after the Kano Business mogul, Alhaji Aminu Alhassan Dantata, which was inherited at 15 per cent state of execution which has now been completed, commissioned and put to use; the state Independent Power Project at Tiga and Challawa Dams which was inherited at 35 per cent and now at 95 per cent stage of execution; dualisation of Yahaya Gusau Road left at 10per cent and construction of underpass which was left at 15 percent stages of completion. In fact, the contract sum of the project has to be revised because of absence of transparency in the project.
Other projects either uncompleted or abandoned but completed by the Ganduje administration include dualisation of ‘Yantaya Kofar Dawanau and rehabilitation of Ahmadiyya Road awarded in 2013; construction of Dorawa Raod; construction of Rijiyar Gwangwan Road; Rehabilitation of Yusuf Road.
Ganduje also inherited 665 projects valued at N72 billion from Senator Ibrahim Shekarau’s administration out of which N40 billion was paid leaving an outstanding payment of N33.2 billion. Two of such projects include the construction of Giginyu Specialist Hospital (now Muhammadu Buhari Specialist Hospital) and Paediatric Hospital Zoo Road (now Khalifa Sheikh Isyaka Rabi’u Paediatric Hospital). The two hospitals which contracts were awarded in 2007, were abandoned at 35 per cent completion stage respectively. The Ganduje administration completed the construction, furnishing and equipping of the facilities. In fact, the two hospitals are one of the best in the country in terms of standard and state-of-art equipment.
Part of the promise made by Governor Ganduje in his inaugural address, which Doguwa failed to complete is that of the initiation of more people oriented policies and programs for the overall development of Kano state. The noble and modest achievements of the Ganduje administration have, indeed, dismantled the length and breadth of the so-called Kwankwassiyya Movement which has since gone into oblivion. This is so because the article itself depicted the emptiness of the Kwankwassiyya and its foot soldiers, since they have no genuine criticism against the APC administration in Kano, having been intimidated by the uncommon achievements of the present ruling party in the state.
These projects include construction of an underpass at Sharada/Panshekara Junction completed and commissioned by President Muhammadu Buhari; construction of underpasses along Katsina Road by Muhammadu Buhari Way; nearly completed underpass and flyover along Zaria Road by Dangi Roundabout; ongoing construction of Cancer Centre at Muhammdu Buhari Specialist Hospital; rehabilitation and ashphalt overlay of Burum Burum-Saya Saya-Kibiya-Rano- Bunkure-Karfi Road; Tiga-Rurum-Rano and Rano-Sumaila Roads; construction/dualisation of Court Road (now Rochas Okorocha Road); Abdullahi Bayero Road; dualisation of Maiduguri Road (Opp Mobile Police Qtrs)-CBN Qtrs-Zaria Road; construction of asphaltic concrete surfacing from Gidan Maza-S/Gandu-Western Bypass-Kumbotso town and dualised Panshekara-Madobi Junction-Panshekara town Road among others.
I am also gladdened that Umar Haruna Doguwa, has offered me a window to also refresh the memory of discernable good people of Kano and Nigerians on how the Kwankwaso administration killed the education sector in Kano. Kwankwaso abandoned the basic education and that was why Ganduje inherited a dilapidated infrastructure in the sector, with the quality of basic education degenerating, leading to unacceptably low academic performance. In virtually all public educational institutions, primary secondary or tertiary, classes were overcrowded. Basic amenities are either lacking or obsolete.
And just as he was about to leave office, Kwankwaso made a mere declaration for ‘free’ education in the state, deviously with the sole intent to leave the encumbrance on the incoming administration of Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje. If Doguwa cares to find out, as at May 29, 2015, there were only 25,000 habitable classrooms out of the 30,000 available, whereas the total requirement in our 3,000 public primary schools is 45, 000 classrooms. Similarly, there were only 18, 000 toilets as against the total requirement of 35, 000, while 3-seater pupils’ desks were only 198, 832 as against the need of 914, 000. In addition to all these, instructional materials were inadequate while staff morale was at its lowest ebb and as a matter of fact, about 50 per cent of the teachers.
This same thing applies to tertiary institutions in the state that included the two state owned universities. The Ganduje administration inherited only the Senate building at the permanent site of North West University now Yusuf Maitama Sule University with no academic activities. The university now operates two campuses. This is continuity. Many infrastructure projects were also executed at Kano state University of Science and Technology, Wudil by the present administration, while hundreds of courses were accredited with the National Universities Commission (NUC), National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) as well as the National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE). With this development, Sa’adatu Rimi College of Education has already commenced the award of degree.
Funny enough, Doguwa also brought up the issue of the ill-conceived foreign scholarship scheme on which the present administration was left with a huge liability amounting to N8 billion. While as part of his continuity agenda, Ganduje has settled over N5 billion of the liability and still working towards offsetting it, facts are available on how the scheme was used to allegedly swindle the good people of Kano and Kano state government.
Far reaching measures have also to been introduced to reverse the ugly trend by accessing the Universal basic Education Commission (UBEC’s) counterpart funding of about N2 billion which enabled the rehabilitation of classroom blocks, building of libraries, sinking of boreholes, provision of over 15,000 pupils’ furniture, instructional materials, etc. Governor Ganduje also came up with idea of the Education Promotion Committee (EPC) both at the state level and in all the 44 local government areas which has been able to rehabilitate thousands of blocks of classrooms, provision of seats and as well as various instructional materials.
And with the introduction of Free Basic and Secondary Education in the state, which Doguwa overlooked deliberately brushed aside, payment of school fees has been abolished in all the primary and secondary schools. The Ganduje administration has commenced direct funding of primary and secondary schools numbering 1,180 with a total students population of 834, 366 at a total cost of about N200 million per month or N2.4 billion per annum. Furthermore, N357 million has been budgeted to take care of free-feeding for pupils in primary four to six classes in all primary schools across the state.
Similarly, before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ganduje’s government had provided school uniforms to 779, 522 newly enrolled pupils (boys and girls) at the total cost of N381 million which distribution and other instructional materials was flagged off at Mariri Special Primary School in Kumbotso Local Government Area last year.
The state government has also sponsored the funding component of the Free and Compulsory Basic and Secondary Education in the state which was launched at the Sani Abacha Stadium Indoor Sports Hall. During that event, Ganduje distributed cash to over 110,000 schools across the state designed to enable them build capacity and human resource development. He also distributed 790 Digital Classroom All Inclusive Empowerment Solution and tablets to 728 teachers, 39 master teachers, nine senior secondly school officers and 14 principal officers. The programme was aimed at capacity building towards free and compulsory education on School Development Plan (SDP) and ICT appreciation for directors and zonal education directors.
With turn of events, which led to the formal abolishing of the traditional Almajiri system of education in the state, the Ganduje administration is completing arrangements to enroll all 1, 800 repatriated indigenous almajirai to Kano from other states of the northern region into conventional educational system. Kano, which is the only state that has in place, a functional Qur’anic and Islamiyya Schools Management Board had earlier, established 12 integrated Tsangaya Model Schools across the state, 10 of which are boarding.
Each of the facility has dormitory, hostels, cafeteria, toilets and staff quarters among others, while 8, 000 volunteer teachers have been engaged to teach in the various public and Quranic schools across the state in a bid to reduce teaching deficiency in the sector.
Indeed, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje’s launching of free, compulsory basic and secondary education policy has made serious impact with the reduction of the data of out-of-school children in Kano from 1,306,106 to 410,873, from 2015 to 2019. (Refer to the National Education Data Survey (NEDS) Report of 2015 which shows that, Kano had (then) the highest number of out-of-school children with 1,306,106.) The terrifying report then prompted Governor Ganduje to take the issue with all seriousness, with measures aimed at addressing the situation squarely.
However, with the free, compulsory basic and secondary education policy, as contained in the report submitted to the Governor Ganduje by the sub-committee on out-of-school children survey 2019, it was noted that as a result of various intervention programmes the serious drop becomes inevitable.
The survey by the sub-committee was conducted across all the 44 local government areas in the state on house-to-house basis, using village/ward heads under the district heads of each local government area with a view to generating a comprehensive and reliable data that will enable government to effectively implement the laudable free education policy According to the report, from the total number of 410,873 out-of-school children in the state, 275,917 are boys, that represents 67% and 134,956 are girls, representing 33%.
Unlike the Kwankwasiyya and their foot soldiers who play politics with everything, the Ganduje’s administration believes that with the right education, the issue of insecurity and unemployment would become things of the past. Education is a right to every citizen. This explains why in Kano today, there is a law that whoever fails to send his children to school is committing an offence.
Garba is the Commissioner for Information, Kano State
President Muhammadu Buhari joins the All Progressives Congress (APC) in grief over the passing of former member of the National Working Committee, Alhaji Inuwa Abdulkadir, who served as Vice Chairman, North West.
President Buhari condoles with family members, friends and political associates of the party stalwart, who served the country as Minister of Sports and Youth Development, and played a prominent role in the creation and sustenance of the party.
The President believes Alhaji Abdulkadir’s humility, maturity and penchant for facilitating reconciliation among members will be sorely missed at a time the APC is rebuilding and repositioning to deliver on its promises, urging members to always remember and project same legacies of putting the country first.
President Buhari prays that the almighty God will receive the soul of the departed, and comfort his family.
The statement was made available by Femi Adesina, the Special Adviser to the President on Media & Publicity.
The Senior Special Assistant to President Buhari on Media & Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, yesterday, 27th June, 2020, in a statement said “President Buhari and Tinubu still together, analysts need to get their facts right,” while responding to critics who are insinuating a seeming sower relationship between President Buhari and the former governor of Lagos, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. Where he said:
“The very essence of the requests put to the Emergency National Executive Committee meeting of the All Progressives Congress (APC) by President Muhammadu Buhari, which were unanimously approved aim to pull back the party, faced with an existential crisis from the brink of collapse, follow the constitution and take everyone along.
While this action has been widely accepted with great relief by lovers of democracy and the rank and file of the membership, we are concerned that political vulturism masquerading as “smart analysis” is selling the commentary that this is a Buhari-Tinubu “showdown.” Nothing can be farther from the truth.”
Garba SShehu said further that:
“To put the records straight: In the formation of this great party and giving it leadership, President Buhari and Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who are reckoned as the founding fathers of the APC are both inspired by democratic norms, national interest and not at all by partisan motivations. These are the qualities that have made them move past cynical distractions.
They are in touch with one another. Their relationship remains as strong as ever and between the two of them, only they know how they manage their enviable relationship.
Try as hard as they could, the opposition parties have used all their intellectuals and their supporters in the media to break this relationship and have failed. And they won’t.
For President Buhari who has received much of the cynical commentary, Nigerians know him as someone who will not do anything with bad intentions. Neither will he do anything out of partisan motivations or for himself.”
“This whole exercise, that should lead to massive reform and overhaul of the leadership of the party, as he said in that brilliant speech, was ”to save the APC from the imminent self-destruction. We have to move ahead. We have to take everyone with us and ensure that the party is run in accordance with democratic norms and with consensus. We have to work for the benefit of the country.”
The leaders of the party, who have received two successive massive mandates to govern the country and a majority of the states should be judged by how this exercise turns out in achieving these objectives, not cursed at the mere commencement of the process.” He concluded.
Tinubu they don’t know. He defied all corporate persuasion and delved into the murky waters of politics in 1991. Others would have been satisfied as a Treasurer in Mobil plc, an oil firm conglomerate. Not Tinubu. He dropped his resignation letter and bid the oil octopus a final goodbye.
He pitched his tent with the Primrose group, where the likes of Dapo Sarumi and Yomi Edu were already holding forth. They were Major General Shehu Yardua’s political soldiers..
Eventually, Tinubu campaigned for the Senatorial ticked and won resoundingly and emerged as the Senator with the largest vote, country wide during that era. He would have become the Senate President but for the ambition of MKO Abiola, where he was prevailed upon to defer his ambition. Senator Tinubu later mobilized for Senator Iyorcha Ayu who eventually became the Senate President..
He was enraged when Babangida annulled the June 12 election that was won by Abiola “fair and square”. He even mobilized his mother and Other of her Lagos women to prevail on IBB at Aso Rock to de-annul the June 12 election. ” Babangida, ngbo, wonni e’nilo? Iro ni, ema lo oo'( Babangida, they alleged you wouldn’t go, you must go”!) declared Alhaja Mogaji Tinubu inside Aso rock lairs, face-to-face with the dictator, who called himself an evil genius.
When Shonekan was already inaugurated as an Interim National Government President and it appeared the June 12 was being confined into the dustbin of history, it was Tinubu that engaged Professor Kasumu to drag the ING to Court. That eventually culminated to the earthshaking judgement of Justice Akinsanya who later declared the ING illegal..the rest is now history. Hear him:
“The case that went to the court, to Justice Dolapo Akinsanya was engineered and proposed by me, as an elected representative of the people. I was going to challenge the ING, its legitimacy, through Professor Kasumu. Prof. Kasumu was never Abiola’s lawyer. Prof. Kasumu drafted the case on that day. We reviewed it. We were about to go to court and I mentioned to Abiola, what I was about to do. Abiola invited Prof. Kasumu to meet with him. Kasumu met with him. He said we’ll, maybe Abiola himself as the candidate, the custodian of the mandate, should really go for it. We changed it overnight, turned the case round. Eventually Abiola took the case to court. Prof. Kasumu won the case. Justice Dolapo Akinsanya declared the ING illegal.”
I saw pyrrhic dance of so called victory all over the place. It’s quite obvious, many don’t know the man they think they are singing his political dirge. They don’t know Asiwaju Tinubu, the political gamesmaster.
The turning point for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is now complete with the acceptance of the decision of President Buhari at the National Executive Committee (NEC) Meeting of the party called by Mr. Victor Giadom who equally claimed to be the Acting National Chairman after the ouster of the past National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.
The former APC National Chairman on Saturday said he has accepted the decision of the National Executive Committee in good faith.
This is the first time the former APC Chairman will be reacting to the crisis that eventually led to dissolution of the NWC of the party.
He said he had no regret for all the actions he took while in office, while he also pledged his continued support and loyalty to President Muhammadu Buhari.