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2019: Atiku begins consultations, hints of working with Fayose

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Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and the Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, may reach a pact ahead of the presidential elections in 2019.
Remarks by both parties showed that they would discuss possible alliance and make this known very soon.
While fielding questions from newsmen on Wednesday during a visit/consultation with members of the Peoples Democratic Party on 2019, Abubakar hinted that he would discuss his ambition with Governor Fayose whom he described as a force to reckon with in PDP.
He said: “He calls the shots and when he does so, we all take the queue.”
Responding, Fayose, who described Abubakar’s ambition as legitimate and a welcome development, said though he was expecting the former VP to discuss his presidential ambition with him privately as other aspirants would do, he nonetheless assured him that in spite of his aspiration to rule the nation, the party’s interest would be placed above individual aspirations.
He said: “He (Abubakar) has not spoken to me privately about it and may be he would do that in our private meeting, but his body language obviously shows he has an ambition, which is legitimate.
“We will all examine everybody and we will play a level playing ground.
“As he has come, others will still come.
“On the issue of being Vice President, like I said in the Book of Ezekiel 37:33, the Bible says God asks that can this bone live?
“And the Prophet answers and says Thou Knoweth.
“All these questions are questions for God and He has answer for them.
“Man has no answer.
“You may wish anything for me, but God’s wish is supreme.
“I deserve to serve this country as president.
“I have paid my due.
“I am not a hidden voice.
“I have all it takes to lead this country, but whichever way it goes, the interest of our party comes first.
“It is above our individual aspiration.
“Whoever the party finally picks as the party’s candidate will be supported by others.”
Abubakar, who refused to comment on former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s condemnation of President Muhammadu Buhari’s government, said Nigerians are to evaluate the letter he wrote.
He, however, advised the electorate not to vote the All Progressives Congress in the 2019 presidential election.
He said: “APC has failed this country.
“That party is not the solution to our country’s challenges.”
The former VP, who lauded Fayose’s warm reception and described the governor’s reception of him at Akure Airport as regard for him, said: “Since my return home to PDP, this is the first state I am visiting for consultations with party leaders.
“This is not surprising as Fayose and I had struck a good relationship since his first tenure as governor and I was VP.
“He is blunt and straightforward, a sharpshooter in politics and I respect him for that this.
“But above all, he is also the chairman of our party’s Governors Forum.
“Today among the governors, among the party members generally, he calls the shots and when he does so, we all take the cue.
“I have visited this state severally with other governors in the saddle.
“What I have observed has been a monumental development in terms of infrastructure in the state and the quality of life of the people, but as a politician, anywhere we were driving along the road, from Akure, he was receiving cheers all through, while the road from Akure to Ekiti was bad that from Ekiti into the state is splendid.
“I have seen what you have achieved and your footprints are all over the state capital.
“I commend you for that and for your leadership.
“I believe you have quite a lot to offer for our country.
“Another unique thing the governor has done is telling me that his deputy is being supported as the party’s candidate in the next election.
“This is a very rare feat in the democratic system of our country.
“How many deputy governors have succeeded their governors?
“It means he has foresight and wants someone to continue his good works and I hope if you have the opportunity by the grace of God, you will continue the good works.
“I am coming back to campaign with you for 2018 polls.”
Responding to the former VP’s remarks, Fayose, said: “I thank God for your life, your resilience and tolerance and patience in your walk through life.
“It only takes resilience to follow life.
“Most times, you only get bouts instead of encouragement.
“I welcome you to the state because you were quite supportive when I wanted to come at first time.
“While others were not, you supported us.
“We only celebrate the bad things men do to us, we don’t celebrate good works.
“It would have been better if we celebrate good works.
“Today, we don’t celebrate good works, we reward it with celebrating supplanters.”
Assuring Abubakar that his return to PDP would yield fruits, Fayoe said: “I want to assure you that we only have leadership in Abuja, real party is in the states and at the local government level.
“We have done it before, we will do it again.
“I won the last election because it was not the people who wanted me to go away, but it was Obasanjo that sent me away.
“That was why they voted for me overwhelmingly in 2014.
“Let us keep forging ahead.
“Frustrations could make a man to look stupid.
“I was frustrated out of PDP but I returned victoriously.”
Taking a critical swipe at Buhari’s government and Obasanjo’s Tuesday outburst, Fayose said: “I am not disappointed because I never voted for Buhari and I will never stop being against him.
“I was not too young when Buhari came first time and we knew the hell he took us through.
“At his first time, he was putting people in jail and he was not in charge.
“It was his deputies that were in charge.
“The man is dark in the mind.
“We have seen Buhari, we have seen failure.
“Nigerians wanted a man that would whip them and he came and gave them bulala and they continue to manage him.
“Now the message has come from Obasanjo, who was Buhari’s greatest promoter and navigator, telling him to go home.
“The end has come to the APC, our suppressors and oppressors.
“You can only rule a country as diverse as Nigeria if you are truly a leader.
“Currently, there is 45 per cent reduction in economic situation.
“I can tame herdsmen effectively if I am the president of this nation.
“Tell everyone, if you vote APC, it is second and final suffering you are inviting.”

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POLITICS

Kogi East Senate: APC, Echocho enlist thugs to harass electorates during election

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Fresh information at our disposals has revealed that the Kogi State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and its senatorial candidate for Kogi East district in the 2019 general elections, Alh. Jibrin Isah Echocho have enlisted thugs to disrupt the forthcoming senatorial election in the zone, this newspaper gathered.

According to sources, the APC has perfected a grand plan to engage the services of thugs to harass electorates that are not committed to the party thereby forcing its candidate on the people.

We were further informed that the APC and Echocho planned to cause commotion if things don’t go their way.

Sources further disclosed that the party has enmarked over N100 million to implement the plans.

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NEWS

Amosun, Ogun APC faction set to decamp

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Indications emerged on Wednesday that Governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State and the entire All Progressives Congress structure in the state may decamp from the party on Thursday (today).

Elders of the party at a meeting on Wednesday evening in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, resolved that the controversy on the gubernatorial ticket should be put behind them as they prepare for the 2019 elections.

The resolution was arrived at after Governor Amosun had reportedly briefed the elders on all attempts made to validate the election of Hon. Abiodun Akinlade in the gubernatorial primaries in the state penultimate week.
The primaries ran into troubled waters when the State Chairman of the party announced the election of Akinlade, while the Chairman of the National Working Committee on the gubernatorial primary announced Prince Dapo Abiodun as winner of the election.

The conflict remained unresolved and the Presidency directed primaries into state and federal legislative houses to establish the truth about conflicting claims of strength between the group led by Vice President Yemi Osibajo, Chief Olusegun Osoba and Dapo Abiodun on the one hand and Governor Amosun on the other.

The Amosun group claimed to have won all available seats, including three Senate, nine House of Representatives and 26 House of Assembly seats, leaving no seat for the Osinbajo/ Osoba group.

The son of Osoba, Olumide, who contested the House of Representatives ticket for Abeokuta Federal Constituency, was said to have been defeated by Hon. Muiz Kazeem by 23,000 votes to 4,050 votes.

However, the result, which was announced by the NWC committee in Abeokuta did not resolve the crisis.
The Osinbajo/Osoba group, which though accepted the result, consented to Akinlade as gubernatorial candidate but on the condition that they were given two out of the three senatorial tickets, four out of the nine House of Representatives tickets and 13 out of the 26 House of Assembly tickets.

The Amosun group rejected the request, insisting on the party respecting the outcome of the primary elections.
“It is clear that a candidate who lost all senatorial, representatives and Assembly seats could not have won the gubernatorial ticket. The party should do the right thing or else we leave,” a party official who pleaded anonymity said.

He explained that the party leaders had given up on the national leadership of the party but it was Governor Amosun who insisted on pursuing their aspirations on the platform of the APC because of his closeness to President Muhammadu Buhari.

The source added: “He told us that the President had instructed (the National Chairman of the APC, Adams) Oshiomole to announce the authentic result of the gubernatorial primaries, but he refused.
“If the President cannot enforce his orders, then he has lost control of his government and it is a waste of time defending him at the expense of our own future.
“If he refuses to accept our request, we will leave the governor alone with his friend.”

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POLITICS

Delta South Senate: I’ll sponsor bills to legalise local refineries – Uduaghan

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Senatorial candidate of All Progressives Congress, APC, in Delta South Senatorial District, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, has promised to work towards the enactment of a law legalising local refineries, if elected.

The former governor of Delta State said this Wednesday on his verified Facebook page. In his words: “About 6,000 illegal refineries operational in the country, were reportedly destroyed by the Joint Military Task Force, JTF, in 2015.

“Some of these refineries were actually glorified rickety science projects. There is likelihood that there will be a good number of well set up refineries among them.

“The illegal refinery industry has been around for years and has grown. Can a country that is struggling to operate its four legal refineries afford to destroy illegal refineries?

“The poorly set up makeshift contraptions are dangerous and should be done away with, but the youths should be engaged in proper refineries.

“This is the origin of the call for the upgrade of the so-called illegal refineries, and if possible, they should be licensed.

“The illegal refineries that are being destroyed offer a lot of employment to the youths.

“Is the government not simply shortchanging the country with the sustained posturing and grandstanding of describing the local refineries in the Niger Delta as illegal and criminalizing their operations?’’ the former governor disclosed.

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