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Kogi bye-election: stakeholders express fear over vote buying

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Kogi bye-election: stakeholders express fear over vote buying

Participants at a stakeholders meeting organized by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Kogi State in Lokoja have expressed fear over possibke repeat of the vote buying that characterised the recent Ekiti Governorship election in next month’s Lokoja/Kotonkarfe constituency by-election.
The death of the deputy majority leader in the House of representative Buba Jibrin sometimes in March 2018, necessitated a rerun election in the Lokoja/Kotokarfe federal constituency.
Many of the participants who spoke kept expressing the fear that the desperation with which the Ekiti election was won and lost may be brought to bear in the Lokoja/Kogi Bye election billed for August 11, 2018.
Some who spoke accussed the security agents as the pawn in the hands of the unscrupulous politicians that use them to buy the votes in remote villages.
They therefore pleaded with the resident electoral Commissioner to rise up to the ocasion by ensuring the polling units are not made porous for such activities.
The representative of the Justice, Development and Peace Commission (JDPC) Lokoja Catholic Diocese, Simon Enejo pleaded with INEC to ensure the secret ballot system is reinforced to ensure cubicles are built at the polling units to conceal the voters from unsuspecting vote buyers who may want to ensure the voters actually voted for their candidate before payment.
He said vote buying has been with the Nigerian electorates but not to the extent of its being carried out at the polling units during voting proper as experienced during the Ekiti polls.
According to him, the poverty and hunger in the land makes it almost impossible for prospective voters to reject any gratification for votes however, he said if they are protected with the real secret ballot then they can vote with their conscience even after collecting the money.
The resident electoral Commissioner Professor James Apam said they have learnt from the Ekiti election and that they would try as much as possible to shielf the voters from possible vote buyers who may be hanging around to see whether the voter actually voted for their preffered candidates.

He said if there are other shops where votes are being sold and bought voters should not go to those shops even as he charged security operatives to go and close those shops.
“We learn everyday and as much as possible we would not allow that to happen around us.”
The deputy commissioner of police Monday Kuryas said vote buying is a security matter and therefore it should be everybody’s concern.
He said the onus rests on the voters to say no to vote buying as the giver and the taker are equally cupable.

In a related development, the assistant parish priest of the church of the archangels Gadumo Lokoja Rev. Fr Micheal last Sunday Osunayi challenged Nigerians to guide against selling their votes to unscrupulous politicians who will deceive them with some thousands of Naira only to win election and turn them in to paupers.
Speaking during his sermon on Sunday on the role of good Shepherd which is self sacrifice he said David as a good shepherd always made sure he tended the sheep by making sure none is devoured by lions.
He was speaking against the backdrop of the recent Governorship election in Ekiti was characterised by vote buying and intimidation of voters.
“What we are experiencing in Nigeria in terms of election and vote buying is a very dangerous trend that must be halted before the 2019 election if not the gains we have made so far will be eroded as international observers will loose confidence in the outcome of the election.
“We talk about good leadership yet the same leaders use money to entice voters who are mostly poor masses that will still bear the brunt of their I’ll conceived agenda.”
He said because the people are helpless due to poverty they dont know what to do but collect the money to solve their immediate needs only to continue with a worse outcome in leadership
“When they do that they will be contributing to the failure of the leadership in the country,
I am advising them to let their vote count as when they collect the money they should remember that the money will not last for that day and they have four years of bad leadership to contend with.
He admonished them to learn to work for their future rather than the immediate need by rejecting any inducement that will compel them to sell their rights (votes) because they know who is the best and capable hands to lead them
“Let them be bold to say they don’t need their money to vote for whom they believe can deliver the goods.
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Zamfara Bye-election: 2 persons feared dead in Bloody clashes among rival thugs

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Zamfara Bye-election: 2 persons feared dead in Bloody clashes among rival thugs

Clashes between rival political thugs have left 2 people dead in Zanfara ahead of the by-election tomorrow
The police imposed a 24-hour curfew in Bakura and Talata Mafara LGAs after two persons were killed and several others injured
The thugs also destroyed several vehicles and billboards in the areas.
The Assistant Inspector-General of Police in Charge of Zone 10, Mustapha Muhammad, said the curfew was to avoid breakdown of law and order.

There has been tension in the state as two leading candidates of the opposition All Progressives Congress and the ruling People’s Democratic Party ended campaigns yesterday at the same time.
The contest is mainly between APC’s Bello Dankande Gamji and PDP’s  Tukur Ibrahim Tudu though 12 candidates of other parties are also in the race.
The PDP had earlier alleged that the APC was planning to disrupt the election by arming thugs; the allegation which the latter dismissed.

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Lamido asks Buhari to beg God for mercy for failing

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Lamido asks Buhari to beg God for mercy for failing

Having failed Nigerians on his campaign promises, President Muhammadu Buhari should be sober with a contrite heart by returning to God to beg for mercy, former Jigawa state governor, Sule Lamido has said.


The former governor was speaking against the backdrop of the recent gruesome killing of 43 farmers by Boko Haram terrorists and bandits in some parts of the North.

Lamido who was monitored on the BBC Hausa service in Abuja said Buhari should drop his ego by seeking God’s forgiveness.
“There is no way a government can continue successfully without sabotage but you need to be strong enough to overcome such challenges. If really, he cannot withstand this he has to resign, but we can’t be accepting sabotage as a reason.

“He has failed totally, if not that he failed how will he allow some people to slaughter 43 people? How will he allow bandits to raid villages and set them on fire and rape their women? Definitely something is wrong somewhere,” he said.

On the future of the country, Sule Lamido said, “Allah is merciful to his servants we hope our prayers will be answered, but Buhari has to go fisrt. He should ask himself that what offences has he done to Allah. He need to wake up in the mid night, drop his arrogance and pray. He should ask for Allah’s forgiveness on the offences he has committed.

“He is arrogant and always speaking with pride. Many people have said it and we have seen it. In the last four years if you said something like this you will be cursed but now the truth has come. The problem is he doesn’t listen to what people are saying, but everyone has spoken out. People are tired, the Ulamas, the masses, the traditional leaders and all people have spoken out.”

“When Buhari was sick Nigerian prayed for him  and they are still doing but he failed to address their challenges,” he added.

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Gender Equality: NASS careful not to enthrone further discrimination says Omo-Agege

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Gender Equality: NASS careful not to enthrone further discrimination says Omo-Agege 

By Joseph Sunday


The Deputy President of the Senate and Chairman, Senate Adhoc Committee on Constitution Review, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege has described the bill on Gender Equality sponsored by Senator Biodun Olujimi as challenging in that it may be difficult to achieve the goals without enthroning new set of discriminations. 

Senator Omo-Agege stated this in Abuja when he hosted a delegation of a non-partisan organisation, Women in Politics Forum led by Ebere Ifendu.
The Delta Central lawmaker assured women that their interests would be protected, but not to the detriment of the constitutional provisions against discrimination of whatever form.He said they want to strengthen women participation.Omo-Agege called on the Executive arm of government to always engage the Legislature before signing treaties and agreements.
This, he explained, will enable accelerated domestication by the National Assembly.

He also tasked the forum to help in mobilising the House of Representatives in concurring to the Sexual Harassment Bill passed by the Senate as well as the domestication of the Violence Against Persons  (Prohibition) Act in all the states of the Federation.
 In her remarks Ifendu called for the inclusion of Affirmative Action in the Constitution.
She cited African countries like Kenya, Uganda, Senegal, Rwanda and Seychelles to buttress her position.
According to her there is no better time than now to achieve an inclusive democracy. Further more, she said we need to move from civil governance to true democracy where women, youth and persons with disabilities will have equal opportunities to participate in governance,” she claimed.

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