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CAN wants INEC to prosecute faulty card reader procurers

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CAN wants INEC to prosecute faulty card reader procurers

The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Kogi State chapter has tasked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure all contractors that supply substandard card readers that almost marred the 2015 general election be prosecuted and made to refund the money.

The Kogi State CAN chairman Bishop John Ibennu who gave the charge yesterday during a courtesy visit to the State Resident Electoral Commissioner Professor James Apam said they should be made to pay heavy damages.
“Our leaders dont like dealing with some of the people who can give us the right thing rather they will go and patronize people who gives us fake things.
“How can Nigeria give a contract if satellite hoisting to China and they turn around to tell us the satellite is missing in the space that they will give us another one. Are we kids or children?”
He charged the commissioner to make sure he raises the issue anytime they have a national meeting make sure all those who supplied those fake card readers be made to refund all the money after which they should be sued for the damages they have caused the nation over the years.
He raised alarm over the exclusion of States in the Middle Belt from the all important test running of the Electronics voting platform that he alleged is currently happening in four States in the north.
He described it as an undue prefferential treatment for the Northern States in matters relating to election
In his words, “During one of our meetings at the National CAN and the Inter Religious and Inter Faith Council we heared reliably that in four States in the North the Electronics Voting is being tested.
“We want to know if that is true because our source is very reliable. Electronic voting that has not yet been adopted. We are yet to get it right with the card reader and some persons have started test running electronic voting.
“This is not fare any more. Who brought them? How are they using them? As a representative of the christian community in Kogi State when we come up we have to raise such issue of national concern.”
On the collection of PVC he also pointed out that during the 2015 election Borno State where Bokoharam was ravaging had 89% of PVC collection while Kogi State where there was no such insecurity had about 52% PVC collection.
He asked for the magic that took place there to be re-enacted in Kogi so that the people should be able to collect their PVCs.
He indicated that Ogun State and Lagos State did a lot of sensitization and awareness before they were able to achieve about 48%.
“This is not rigth some drastic measure has to be carried out. We are aware that that period PVCs for people in the South were being sent to the North and those of the North to the South. “We want to say that it is immoral and we will only stop short of saying it was deliberate and we want you to take it up at the national level that in this election season it should not repeat itself. We want the PVC collection rate to be as high as 80% if possible 99%.”
He also expressed concern over the recent statement credited to
INEC in Abuja that PVC that are not collected will be burnt adding that if it was refuted let it be made publicly.
The chairman also charged the REC to Tabulate the list of uncollected PVC local Government by Local Government so that politicians and Local Government ï can sensitize their people to ckome forth for the cards.
Responding, the Resident are working hard to improve on the functionality of the card readers adding that card readers must be used for all voting in the 2019 election.
He said any polling unit where card read reader is bypassed the results would be cancelled.
On the issue of electronic voting Apam said it has not yet been placed on the table for consideration.

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MBF shocked over Buhari’s failure to address Nigerians 48hrs after murder of protesters

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MBF shocked over Buhari’s failure to address Nigerians 48hrs after murder of protesters 

The Middle Belt Forum (MBF) has expressed dismay that more than 48 hours after the unprovoked murder of protesters, President Muhammadu Buhari is yet to address Nigerians.This was contained in a statement that was issued by National President of the Forum Dr. Pogu Bitrus.Bitrus said it is sad that the youth who were shot were not criminals but patriotic citizens marching against the brutality of the nation’s police
He said the police for long horrified victims and citizens and made Nigeria the shame of the international community.Bitrus said evwn though the youth were proudly holding the national flag and reciting the national anthem when they were brutally shot at.He said inspite of all thePresident has remain aloof not finding it appropriate to address the nation.This he said is a clear sign that Nigerian President is obviously devoid of wise counsel on the bloody turnout of the #EndSARS protests that have claimed scores of lives across the country.  He said there was shooting of scores of #EndSARS protesters in various states, especially Lagos, Imo, Delta, Plateau and Abuja, among others.That he said has shown how the nonviolent marches have snowballed into mindless killings of protesters, paving way for a trail of bloodshed in a supposedly peaceful exercise. “Tuesday’s shootings of protesters who were holding the Nigerian flags  at the Lekki Toll Gate in Lagos, and the attendant destruction of private and public property, have thrown thick clouds of uncertainties over our nation’s skies, thereby unleashing ominous signs on our country. “Arising from these bloody protests made possible by gory confrontations between the #EndSARS demonstrators and hoodlums, the leadership of the Middle Belt Forum (MBF) totally condemns the vicious violence that rocked the foundations of our dear country.He said all were happening amidst allegation of deployment of soldiers that has so far been denied by the top army command.”As the umbrella organisation representing ethnic nationalities in the defunct Northern region, the MBF is grimly at pains over these coldblooded murders and violation of citizens’ rights to hold rallies against police brutality and demanding for a better country for all. 
“In a democratic nation like ours, these nonviolent demonstrators ought to have been given protection by the state in order to forestall a possible hijack of these peaceful rallies by hired hoodlums. “Considering the rising spate of bloody confrontations with alleged thugs that were hired to introduce violence in the #EndSARS protests so as to tarnish the peaceful dispositions of demonstrators, we call on President Buhari to intervene and stop further killings of these youths.
He said the youths were simply exercising their fundamental rights.
MBFalso drew the attention of the world to the cruelty of the police and demanding for a better country where the system works for citizens. Considering also the sequence of destruction and killings of citizens, including destruction of private and public property in various parts of the country, the Forum advise President Buhari to quickly address the nation and make clear-cut commitments, with timelines, towards addressing the demands of the youth. It is only enough that in times of grave crisis that we are presently passing through, only the President, who is the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, should be seen leading from the front.    The forum appeal to President Buhari to immediately set up an independent judicial panel of enquiry to unearth circumstances under which the killings were perpetrated with the intention of bringing to book all those responsible for the unprovoked murders. 
The Forum also pleadd with the President to make public the outcome of the panel’s investigation and ensure that those found guilty are punished so as to serve as deterrents to others. “Justice can only be fully served when the Federal Government compensates families of victims who lost their lives in the course of these peaceful protests. “It would only serve the purpose of justice for the government to settle all bills accrued by protesters still receiving medical attention in various private and public hospitals.” The Forum condoled with victims and family members of slain demonstrators whose blood represents the supreme sacrifice they have paid for the future of our Nigeria. 

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IPAC cautions on deployment of Military against peaceful protesters

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IPAC cautions on deployment of Military against peaceful protesters

**condemns infiltration by criminal elements

The Acting President of the Inter Party Advisory Council of Nigeria, Chief Ralph Okey Nwosu,
has urged Federal Government to reverse its decision to deploy the military during the pendency of the peaceful protest being carried out by Nigerians across the federation.
This was contained in a press statement that he personally signed and was made availlable to the Guardian.
He said, “We want to state categorically that the Nigerian Police and not  the military, remains the rightful agency saddled with the responsibility of attending to Nigerians during such legal protests.
“The Inter Party Advisory Council of Nigeria is deeply concerned over the activities of hoodlums who continue  to infiltrate the peaceful protests with the aim of undermining its very essence and causing harm to the Nigerian society.”
He called on the Inspector General of Police to remain vigilant and focused on the roles of officers and men deployed to provide protection for Nigerians,  as they exercise their rights during the protests.

“More than ever before, the services of the Nigerian military are needed now in the north eastern part of the Country and should be so deployed to tackle the menace of Boko haram and ISWAP terrorists ravaging the northern Nigeria.

“We maintain that Nigerians have a constitutionally guaranteed right to freely assemble and express themselves and such inalienable rights must be protected by law enforcement agencies.

“We expect Nigerian governments at all levels to, as a matter of urgency, look into the demands of Nigerians,  which remain the subject matter of the lawful protests, and provide immediate solutions thereto.”
He said, the political parties are agencies of the Nigerian society and elected persons remain agents and servants of the people hence all political players must respect the collective will of  the people.

“Nigeria remains the very light on the African continent and must be seen as such through the entrenchment of best democratic practices.”

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EndSARS Protests: NGO urges FG to deploy legal, constitutional means

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EndSARS Protests: NGO urges FG to deploy legal, constitutional means


By Friday Idachaba

Patriots for Growth and Development Initiative (PGDI), a Kogi-based Non‐Governmental Organization has called on Federal and State Governments to deploy every legal and constitutional means to end the nationwide EndSARS protests.

Mr Isaac Salami, Executive Director of PGDI who made the call at a Press Conference on Monday in Lokoja.

Salami said the call had become necessary to protect lives and livelihoods of Nigerians in view of the escalating acts of disruption, attacks and killings in recents days in parts of the country.

He said that the trend, if not quickly arrested, could plunge the nation into a state of anarchy as he attributed it to efforts of Fifth-columnists.

He described it as “A careful planned effort and hardwork of Fifth-columnist and enemies. If you see crises coming into peaceful agitations like this know that the 5th Columnists are at work to subvert the relative peace and unity in Nigeria.

Salami noted that President Muhammadu Buhari in his October 12, national broadcast, stated that the disbandment of SARS was only the first step in government’s commitment to police reform.

He held that the government had started implementing all the five-point demands of the protesters and did not see any justification for the escalation of the protests.

“We therefore see no reason why the protesters should continue to be on the streets thereby creating opportunities for negative characters to perpetrate anarchy leading to threat of lives and livelihoods of Nigerians.

“We clearly understand that the original intentions of the protesting youths is for an end to SARS, and Police reform. We also affirm the constitutional and democratic rights of every patriotic Nigerian to protest.

“But the violent dimension that the supposed peaceful protest has taken in the past few days has shown that some enemies of the State are marauding as protesters to unleash mayhem and confusion on the peace and unity of Nigeria.

“We ask the government at the Federal and State levels to use every legal and constitutional means to protect lives and livelihoods of all”, he said.

Salami also called on all patriots and leaders to lend their voices and support to end the protests across the country while the citizens await and monitor implementation of the demands “to a logical conclusion.” (NAN)

FDJ/

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