Weekly political notes
Saraki Says Police IG Idris Plotting To Frame Him
The Senate president, Bukola Saraki, has alleged of a plot by the Inspector General, Ibrahim Idris, to frame and implicate him.
Saraki said this on Wednesday, telling senators he wanted to call their attention to it.
He alleged that the police chief had transferred some criminal suspects undergoing interrogation in Kwara to make statements in Abuja to implicate him.
“Last night, my state governor revealed to me an information at his disposal that a group of suspects who have been arrested in our state for cultism, whose investigation has been completed and were about to be under prosecution under the state law on the advice of DPP and the ministry of justice, all of a sudden they were ordered to be transferred to Abuja this morning,” Saraki said.
Hmmm, Oga Saraki, this is not only a serious allegation, it has grave consequences. It is hoped you will be able to substantiate it when the time comes. Let it not be that you are trying to run the IGP down for refusal to honour the Senate summon; an action that has not gone down well with you and your colleagues.
Well, it is interesting that Saraki got the information from his successor and governor of his state, who happens to be the chief security officer of the state. It is believed that by his position, the governor ought to know about such plot and he is expected to be readily available to expatiate on it when called upon.
IGP Idris, are you there? Just be ready to state your own side of the story. This particular allegation against you is too weighty to sweep under the carpet. Your image is at stake.
There is need for you to be more professional in your duty, especially as 2019 elections come close and your credibility is being put to question.
Ex-Governor Jonah Jang Remanded In Prison
The Plateau State High Court has remanded a former governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jang in Jos prison.
The court made the decision after it denied an application by Jang’s counsel, Robert Clarks, for his bail following his arraignment by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Wednesday.
Jang, who is currently the senator representing Plateau North district, is facing a 12-count charge of diverting N6.3 billion alongside a former cashier in the office of the Secretary to the State Government, Yusuf Pam.
Well, there is nothing new or strange about remanding Jang in prison custody. That was expected immediately he was denied bail.
The only thing new is that Jang has joined the league of ex-governors that were once remanded in prison custody for alleged corruption. But the irony of it is that most of them are not only walking free today, they are occupying appointive and elective positions in this government.
So nothing spoil. Jang’s case may not be different. Jang knows this. That is the reason he or his relations and supporters may not be worried or bothered. It is a question of time. Jang will regain freedom and the matter will linger in court as usual.
After all, corruption cases against ex-governors who left office in 2007 are still in court today and none of them has been convicted. So who says Jang will be jailed soon? Reason is that anti-graft agencies usually fail in diligent investigations and prosecution, while justice system is very slow and appears compromised.
Omo-Agege Resumes At Senate
Delta Central Senator, Ovie Omo-Agege, whose suspension by the Senate was quashed by the Court, has resumed legislative duties.
Omo-Agege was at the chamber briefly Wednesday morning. The senator signed the attendance register and left before the start of plenary.
His resumption was ordered by a judgment of the Federal High Court, which nullified his lengthy suspension from the Senate.
It is clear that the senate leadership has lost the battle for now. So, the Senate has no option than to obey the court judgment and wait for the outcome of the appeal.
2023 Presidency: Lawan Woos Ekweremadu To APC
Senate Leader Ahmed Lawan (APC, Yobe) jokingly lured the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, to the All Progressives Congress (APC) with the presidency come 2023.
Lawan, while congratulating Ekweremadu on his 56th birthday during Tuesday plenary told the Enugu lawmaker not to waste and rot away in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Lawan is entitled to his opinion and has just spoken like a typical Nigerian politician, who plays politics with every opportunity. If not, who told Lawan that APC is disposed to giving southeast zone the 2023 presidential ticket?
Is Lawan saying that 2019 presidential election is a done deal for APC and the problem of the party now is about who flies the party’s presidential ticket in 2023?
Well, it is hoped that Ekweremadu, being an experienced politician is not carried away by Lawan’s rhetoric. This is because not all that glitters is gold and politics is the more you look, the less you see. But it will not be a surprise, if Ekweremadu heeds Lawan’s advice.
After all, Ekweremadu is a Nigerian politician, whose major preoccupation is to always remain relevant in the political arena.
Igbo Summit: IPOB’s Threat Can’t Stop Us-Ohanaeze
Despite threats by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) to disrupt the May 21, 2018 proposed summit by Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, on Tuesday, said there was no cause for alarm.
Reacting to IPOB’s threats, Chairman of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Anambra State chapter, Chief Daniel Okeke Ogene, said in Awka, that members of IPOB are Igbo sons and daughters, who must not traditionally dictate to their fathers what to do or what not to do.
By this threat, IPOB members are truly biting more than they can chew. It seems they have not learnt any lesson from their runaway leader, Nnamdi Kanu.
Why should Ohanaeze leadership be bothered when similar threat by IPOB ahead of Anambra governorship election ended up an empty talk?
Without being told IPOB members should know that they don’t have the capacity to disrupt Ohanaeze summit in Awka because security agents will not spare them.
IPOB members should be reminded that despite their gragra and braggadocio, there are no two governments in Nigeria and Anambra and no right thinking government will condone plot to break down law and order.
It is time for IPOB members to be reasonable and thoughtful. And also realise that Igbo who they claim to be fighting for have been at the losing end of their activities.
So, it is time for IPOB to change strategies to see if majority of Igbo can embrace them. It is ironic that IPOB is fighting the same Ohanaeze leadership that has been so defensive and protective of it since assuming office.
There May Be No Elections In 2019–Bafarawa
Ex-governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Attahiru Dalhatu Bafarawa, has expressed doubts over the possibility of Nigeria holding the 2019 general elections.
He said the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Federal Government is too disorganised and reckless to be entrusted with a crucial national assignment such as a general election.
According to Bafarawa, the atmosphere of insecurity in the country, particularly the wanton destruction of life and property by agents of darkness are serious pointers to the fact that an election will be a dangerous gamble.
Bafarawa is sounding like a broken record. If Bafarawa and his party are not ready for 2019 elections, he should keep quiet. After all, he was a foundation member of the APC before defecting to the PDP at the peak of 2015 elections, following disagreement over who to head the party in Sokoto State.
If 2015 elections could hold peacefully amidst insecurity in the Northeast region and prediction by some prophets of doom that Nigeria would break up, there is nothing on ground now showing that 2019 elections cannot hold. Besides, the consequence of not holding 2019 elections will be anarchical.
Senate, Reps Pass 2018 Budget,
Raise Spending To N9.1 Trillion
The Senate and the House of Representatives have passed the 2018 budget, raising it by N500 billion.
Both Houses on Wednesday approved a budget that rose from N8.6 trillion to N9.1 trillion, six months after it was presented by the executive.
Both houses of the National Assembly on Tuesday received the budget report of their appropriation committees.
At the Senate, the chairman of the senate committee on appropriation, Danjuma Goje, said the increase of N500 billion was done in consultation with the executive.
Passing the budget is one thing and proper implementation of it is a different ball game. It is quite unfortunate that the budget is being passed very late in an election year.
Of what impact will the budget be to Nigerians and what are the assurances that it will be implemented to the letter?
This is considering that the performance ration of previous budgets have been very poor. It is hoped that the increase in the budget figure is not for the politicians to have slush fund to be used in 2019 elections
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