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Submit yourself to EFCC probe, PDP tells Oshiomhole

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has challenged the new National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, to immediately submit himself to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over alleged humongous corruption allegations hanging on his neck.

The party said in a statement issued in Abuja on Sunday by Kola Ologbondiyan, its National Publicity Secretary, that Oshiomhole lacks the rectitude to speak in public as a leader at any level, whatsoever until he clears the allegations that he diverted billions of naira meant for the people of Edo state while he was governor.

PDP noted that since the petition against the former Edo State Governor at the EFCC is in the public domain, “the newly coronated” national chairman would do the APC, Buhari Presidency, the EFCC as well as himself a lot of good by quietly submitting himself for investigation and possibly, prosecution.

According to the party, since one of the campaign footstool upon which APC was elected into office is fighting corruption, it will be incongruous for Oshiomhole to go about his new assignment with an allegation of corruption, even as tiny as a strand of hair.

The main opposition party added: “It is also instructive for the new chairman to understand that Nigerians are no longer inclined to sophistry, illogical arguments, deceits, contrivance and recourse to abuse as a method of the campaign.

“As such, the PDP would be prepared for engagements that have the potency of rescuing our people from the hunger and starvation which the APC has sunk them.

“However, the essence of Oshiomhole’s emergence as President Muhammadu Buhari’s sole candidate was not lost on Nigerians as the Presidency imposed him as a pliable instrument to frustrate other would-be presidential aspirants of APC extraction and hand the ticket to President Buhari, who, obviously is afraid to stand a presidential primary due to his failures in office.

“With Saturday’s charade, APC and its Federal Government, which claims to have zero tolerance for corruption, have eaten their vomits, confirming that they have been hypocritical and trending on lies, deception and propaganda.

“With the outcome of the Saturday’s convention, the APC has kissed internal democracy goodbye in the selection of its candidates at all levels as the national leadership, led by people burdened with corruption allegations, cannot but submit to the whim and caprices of those who granted them official protection from prosecution.

“President Buhari and his handlers should, however, note that manipulating the APC convention and seizing the party’s Presidential ticket cannot help them as Nigerians, are now fully rallying on the platform of the repositioned PDP in their quest for a new President, who truly has the competence to effectively run a united, secure and prosperous nation, come 2019.”

Recalled that a Benin City-based anti-corruption crusader, Bishop Osadolor Ochei had asked a Federal High Court in Abuja for an order of mandamus compelling the EFCC to commence criminal proceedings against the governor. (Tribune)

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POLITICS

Group replies PDP on Trader Moni, says Nigerians not for sale

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A political group in Nigeria has rejected the main opposition party’s claim on Trader Moni, a Social Investment Programme (SIP) initiated by the Buhari government.

Reacting to the claims of PDP, Sunday Akinloye, chairman of the Initiative to Save Democracy (ISD) explained that Nigerians are not for sale at any price.

He noted that because the PDP is a heavily corrupt party, its sees any money transaction as a bribe-giving relationship. “The PDP must note that Nigerians are wiser now and are not for sale. The Trader Moni scheme is very laudable as it has reached close to one million Nigerians.

Akinloye noted that the All Progressives Congress led government does not believe that Nigerians can be bought but instead they have dedicated their service towards the betterment of the people. “The traders who accessed Trader Moni early are already paying back the loan. Nigerians must know that these loans are tied to Bank Verification Numbers and must be repaid.

“The traders were not even asked for their Permanent Voters Card as claimed by the PDP. All you need to be eligible is to be a petty trader.

“The PDP merely reflects their kind of corruption-minded politics which failed to benefit the people for 16 years. They are bitter that they added no real value to Nigerians and will do anything to pull down a good government.

Akinloye explained that while there are so far over 809,000 beneficiaries of TraderMoni, over 1.1 million Nigerians – market women, traders, artisans, farmers – are currently beneficiaries of Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), which comprises FarmerMoni, MarketMoni and TraderMoni.

FarmerMoni loans start at N300,000 and are for farmers in farming clusters, via farm aggregators, while MarketMoni is a 6-month interest-free credit of between N50,000 and N300,000 for small businesses – medium-scale traders, market women, artisans, and youth in market associations – under the auspices of their cooperative societies.

Under the TraderMoni scheme, beneficiaries can get access to a higher facility ranging from N15,000 to N100,000 when they repay N10,000 within the stipulated time period.

“PDP are insulting Nigerians by suggesting that our people are for sale,” Akinloye stressed, “No amount is good enough, our people’s right to choose their leaders is priceless, let PDP stand on their own record and stop this abuse of our collective identity,” he added.

He then went on to explain that TraderMoni, which is part of the Federal Government’s Social Investment Programme (N-SIP), is designed to assist petty traders across the country expand their trade through the provision of collateral and interest-free loans from N10,000. The loans are repayable over a period of six months.

The scheme, which has since been formally launched in 33 states and the FCT, is expected to reach 2 million petty traders by the end of the year,

Also, through TraderMoni scheme, the Buhari Administration aims to take financial inclusion down to the grassroots, and uplift Nigerians at the bottom of the pyramid, considering the contribution of petty traders to economic development.

The Federal Government is also aware of the fact that many of the petty traders don’t have what the commercial banks require to grant them loans.

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POLITICS

Senate 2019: Uduaghan appoints Mallam-Obi as campaign DG

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Mallam-Obi

Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan, the immediate past governor of Delta State and the All Progressives Congress (APC) Delta South senatorial candidate in the 2019 elections, has appointed his former political adviser, Mr. Charles Mallam-Obi as the director-general of his senatorial campaign.

According to a statement signed by Dr. Uduaghan’s Special Assistant on Media, Mr. Monoyo Edon, Mallam-Obi was appointed on Wednesday November 7, 2018 after a crucial meeting with members of his caucus in Warri, Delta State.

Mr. Mallam-Obi who is to see to the day-to-day running of the Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan Campaign Organization hails from Oleh in Isoko South Local Government Area of Delta State. He holds a bachelors degree (Bsc) in Economics from the Lagos State University (LASU).

The statement further said that other positions in the campaign organization would be announced to the general public on a later date.

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POLITICS

Delta South 2019: Youth Group backs Uduaghan for senate

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A formidable group in Delta State known as Inspired Youths is drumming support for ex-governor and Delta South senatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Emmanuel Ewetan Uduaghan to represent the zone in 2019.

The group which spoke through their leader, Joy Omodafe reiterated that their support for the former governor was not unconnected with his landmark achievements during his tenure in the state as governor.

She disclosed that they were prepared to mobilize thousands of their supporters who are mostly youths and women from across Delta South Senatorial District come 2019 elections especially as it has to do with their representation in the upper chamber of the National Assembly.

Members of the group whose opinions were sampled agreed that they have not been feeling the impact of democratic dividends for a long time, but in 2019, things would be different as they are looking forward to a quality representation with Dr. Uduaghan at the National Assembly.

Between the two heavyweights who are the major contenders: the immediate past governor of the state, who is of the All Progressive Congress (APC), has been posing a problem to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate and incumbent senator representing the district, Senator James Manager as he is generally adjudged to have good ideology and developmental programmes.

Pundits are of the opinion that the former governor is most favoured to represent the people of Delta South who are said to be tired of bad representations by previous representatives.

Their argument is hinged on the fact that those who have been in the National Assembly for the past 19 years have failed to make any meaningful impact on the lives of the people.

The group also disclosed that one of the reasons they are prepared to follow the former governor is that he is synonymous with excellence, “He is not only a hard worker but a master planner whom observers believe stands a better chance with the growing strength and popularity of the APC in the state.

“This political oracle held forte while Chief James Ibori was away and the fortunes of the Peoples’ Democratic Party in the state did not dwindle nor did they lose the state to the opposition.”

Joy Omodafe who is also the managing director of OJ Blizz, a popular event centre in Warri, equally stated that as governor of Delta state, Dr. Uduaghan created a lot of landmark achievements which still stands today in the Big Heart state.

“One, as Delta State governor, he did a lot for the state in health, education, roads, human capital development, job creation and meeting the needs of youths and the aged.

“There is no one who did not benefit from his programmes and this has endeared him to the people. Dr. Uduaghan commands respect amongst all the ethnic groups in the state, so it will be difficult for his opponent to defeat him,” she said.

Also lending their voices in support of Dr. Uduaghan’s senatorial move, some members of the group, whose base spans across the eight local government areas of the senatorial district, said the group has mapped out plans to embark on massive grassroots rally to all the local government areas.

They disclosed that their resolves to campaign for him was based on his antecedents in peace building and achievements in public offices he held in Delta State.

The group cited some of his landmark achievements to include the 7.6km Umeh Road in Isoko, which ended 30 years of abandonment of the agrarian community, the Abigborodo Bridge project in Warri North, Ugbenu Koko Road, the 0-5 years free health care delivery programme across the state and the revolutionary Uduaghan Park, “which brought transportation across Delta State to an easy and comfortable ride with lowest fares”, and these make him eminently qualified to vie for the prominent legislative position in 2019.

The group also noted the construction of “10 International Model Schools” in the three senatorial districts of Delta State, the construction/renovation of hundreds of schools, the introduction of EDUMARSHAL programme to ensure the downtrodden children go to school free of charge as well as the payment of enrollment fees for SSCE candidates as some other reasons that informed their decision to back Dr. Uduaghan’s senatorial ambition. She also noted that the ex-governor’s current empowerment programmes and provision of teaching and learning materials to schools in the rural areas are quite commendable.

They summed up that a man who sacrificed his senatorial ambition for the sake of peace in Delta State, particularly inter-ethnic harmony in Delta South in 2015 should be given all the necessary support to represent Delta South in 2019. They also describe the former secretary to Delta State Government as “an intellectual and bridge builder with the requisite national as well as international connections for the job.

Speaking further on the immediate-past governor, the group expressed appreciation to the former governor for heeding to the cry of the people from the region, which has been neglected and grossly marginalized by the Federal Government due to lack of robust and effective representation at the upper house of the National Assembly.

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