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Weekly political notes


President Muhammadu Buhari

End Threats To Nigeria’s Unity, Buhari Orders Security Chiefs
President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered security chiefs to end all threats to national security and protect Nigeria’s unity.He gave the order on Tuesday at a meeting with members of the National Security Council at the Aso Rock Presidential Villa in Abuja.

The directive was expected of Buhari, considering the rising ethnic agitations across the country; which many believe are a threat to the country’s security. Besides, Buhari, his vice, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo and others have said repeatedly that Nigeria’s unity is non-negotiable. They have remained unapologetic about it. This is despite the clarion calls for the country’s restructuring.

It is hoped that the security agents will carry out the directive in line with international best practices, to avoid human rights abuses. It is also expected that the rampaging herdsmen, who have been treated with kids’ glove will be decisively dealt with this time.

Meanwhile, is Buhari saying that with this directive, Nigerians have no right to agitate or protest for fairness and equity in the polity, even in a democracy?

PDP’s Presidential Candidate Will Come From North-Makarfi
The Chairman of the National Caretaker Committee of the PDP, Senator Ahmed Mohammed Makarfi, has given a hint of how the party will handle the issue of zoning ahead of 2019 elections.

He said leaders of the party would ensure that collective decisions of the party were allowed to hold sway at the end of the day. Makarfi, in a chat at his residence in Kaduna, said PDP would adopt what was obtained in the previous presidential primaries, where those that did not agree with decisions on zoning were allowed to contest; but at the end of the day, the party had its way.

Makarfi said the decision of Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu led-committee on the issue has not changed, and the party was expecting all its members to abide by it.

This is just a re-affirmation of Ekweremadu’s committee report, which zoned the 2019 presidency to the North. While the party’s decision to zone the presidency to the North in 2019 is strategic and expected, it is now to be seen who the party will handover the ticket. This is because whoever picks the party ticket will go a long way in determining the party’s success or failure in the poll.

For this germane reason, it is expected of the party to pick a candidate, who has national following and the character to dislodge the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). Otherwise, PDP may not return to power in 2019, despite APC-led government’s flip-flop.

Arewa Youths Insist On Referendum For Biafra
The Arewa Youth Coalition has faulted President Muhammadu Buhari over his insistence that the unity of the country is non-negotiable. The group urged the government to conduct a referendum to provide an exit door for those who do not want to be part of Nigeria.

Rising from a town hall meeting for the Northeast geopolitical zone, on Tuesday, the coalition disagreed with Buhari on the non-negotiability of the unity of the country.

National Chairman of the coalition, Alhaji Yerima Shettima stated in Gombe that Nigeria should create an exit door for the Biafra agitators by convening a referendum.

Hmmm, with this development, it is obvious that the October 1 quit notice, issued by the coalition should not be taken lightly, despite assurances by the security agents. Again, Buhari should listen to the voice of reasoning and do the needful now.

For members of the coalition to continue to insist on its earlier position, shows that they are unrepentant. It will be good for a referendum to be conducted, not only for Biafran agitators, but also for other ethnic agitators. It may be a sure and easy way to restructure the country without rocking the boat.

Provide Agreement With Ojukwu, IPOB Tells Buhari
The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) on Tuesday disagreed with President Muhammadu Buhari, on his statement that late Biafran leader, Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, agreed with him on the need for one indivisible entity called Nigeria.

IPOB in a statement made available in Awka by its Media and Publicity Secretary, Comrade Emma Powerful, said the statement was unverified, adding that it was comical.

The IPOB statement reads: ‘’We the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its leadership worldwide under the command and leadership of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, wish to bring to the attention of Nigerians and the world at large, the unfounded statement credited to the Nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari during his latest comical nationwide broadcast about discussions he had with the late Biafran leader, General Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu, in 2003 at his home town in Daura, Katsina State about Nigeria remaining one.”

IPOB’s request may not hold water since it was not a party to the acclaimed meeting Buhari and Ojukwu in 2003.Whether Buhari and Ojukwu agreed on the indivisibility of Nigeria or not is immaterial because it is not within their constitutional responsibility to do so on behalf of Nigerians.

Meanwhile, Buhari’s claim to have met with Ojukwu may not be unfounded, considering that Ojukwu was a foundation member and once a Board of Trustees, (BoT) member of All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), a party Buhari was its presidential candidate twice. So, it is possible they had such discussion formally or informally in the spirit of esprit de corps, but it cannot be binding on Nigerians. So it is needless for anyone to ask Buhari for evidence, when the so-called meeting was of no effect in the first place.

Why Buhari Will Work From Home-Presidency
PRESIDENT Muhammadu Buhari, who on Monday notified the leadership of the National Assembly that he has resumed work after his medical vacation in London, United Kingdom, may work from his house, the presidency said on Tuesday.

However, Personal Assistant to the President on New Media, Bashir Ahmad, who explained through his twitter handle, said the President will temporarily operate from his official residence, also located in the villa.

He said: “Some renovations are ongoing at the office. He will be back to the main office after the works,” he twitted.While this explanation is necessary even when its veracity is neither here nor there, Nigerians are not interested in where President Buhari works from, provided he is not doing his work through proxy.

After all, the 1999 constitution, as amended, is not specific on where the president should operate from. It is hoped the renovation will not be endless, while President Buhari uses this opportunity to combine official duties with bed rest.

Meanwhile, asking questions or raising eyebrows cannot change anything, unless you are not aware that the President just returned from long medical vacation and still deserves some rest, whether in the office or at home.

El-Rufai, Deputy, Others Shut Kaduna To Celebrate Buhari’s Return
KADUNA State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, his deputy, Barnabas Bala and youths on Tuesday, shut major roads in the state capital to celebrate the return of President Muhammadu Buhari from medical vacation. 

The governor, who was not on ground to receive the President when he arrived the country last Saturday, rolled out drums and danced for about five hours from Murtala Square and terminated at Sir Ibrahim Kashim House.

Business activities were temporary suspended as business owners closed their premises to join the celebration. The crowd moved along major streets like WAFF Road and Independence Way, where Mallam Nasir El-Rufai was spotted ‘digging it out’.

El-rufai and his government officials action is in line with the barrage of political sycophancy that is ongoing across the country since President Buhari returned. From Abuja to some APC controlled states, the situation remains the same. It would be recalled that the Kogi State governor, Yahaya Bello had earlier declared public holiday in his state to celebrate Buhari’s return.

Trust Nigerian politicians, this is their familiar turf, so more of these will be witnessed in the days ahead. It is not because of the love they have for President Buhari. It is because of what they are looking forward to benefit from his presidency politically and otherwise, when the chips are down.

FG Spent N1.3trn On Capital Projects In 2016 – Osinbajo
Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, said on Monday that Buhari administration spent N1.3 trillion on capital projects in 2016, the highest in the history of the country.

Osinbajo disclosed this at a plenary of the 2017 Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) national conference in Lagos with the theme: “African Business: “Penetrating Through Institution Building.”

The sub-theme of the plenary was “Conversations With The Vice-President” moderated by Miss Zain Asher, a CNN news anchor. “The Federal Government spent about N1.3 trillion on capital projects in 2016, the highest in the history of the country.

With due respect to Osinbajo, how did he arrive at this conclusion without specifics and details on how the money was spent and on what? Nigerians deserve to know, because it is their money and they need to feel the impact of the projects. It seemed that Osinbajo played to the gallery or goofed in this direction.He has said it. It is up to you journalists to investigate. But you guys are too lazy!!

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