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THE NATION

We won’t suspend anti-grazing law in Ekiti, Fayose replies defence minister

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Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti state, has said that the call by Mansur Dan Ali, minister of defence, that states should suspend the implementation of the anti-grazing law is an affront to federalism practised in the country.

The minister who made the call at a security meeting with President Muhammadu on Tuesday, said there was need to negotiate safe routes for the herders.

“The need to employ other channels with the affected states to reduce tension by suspending the implementation of the anti-open grazing law while also negotiating safe routes for the herders,” Gusau, spokesman of the minister, quoted Dan-Ali as saying.

But in a series of tweets on Tuesday, Fayose wondered why it is difficult for the federal government to support cattle ranching.

The governor said the federal government should be concerned with finding a way of taking the herdsmen out of the bush in view of giving them a better life through ranching.

“Call by the FG through the minister of defence, Dan-Ali that states should suspend implementation of the anti-grazing law is an affront on federalism that is practised in Nigeria. It is amazing that at the level of the presidency, they still see states as appendages of the FG,” he tweeted.

“January this year, the minister of defence blamed passage of anti-grazing law in some states as the cause of killings by herdsmen. Today, he is still singing the same song. Is there something to this old system of nomadic cattle rearing that they are not telling Nigerians?

“Why is @MBuhari not rearing his cows through open grazing? Why is it so difficult for the FG to support cattle ranching? Here in Ekiti, the anti-open grazing law stays. It is the presidency that should stop looking the other way while herdsmen go about killing Nigerians.

“Me thinks the Presidency should be concerned about how to take the herdsmen out of the bush and give them decent life by embracing cattle ranching. How can anyone be pleased subjecting his own people to a life of following cows through the bush from Yobe to Lagos?” Fayose said.

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THE NATION

The ICON Newspaper re-brands, changes name to The Witness

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Fastest growing Nigerian tabloid, The Icon has changed its name to The Witness as part of its re-branding process to serve its teeming readers better.

According to its managing director, Mr. Julius Akpovire Enyeh, the news medium headquartered in Lagos, in a bid to expand its reach, decided on a lot of changes, one which is the change of name that also affects its online version.

Akpovire said the readers and followers of the king of the newsstands were in for a refreshing experience as a result of the new changes. He also assured all of sustaining the newspaper’s continued tradition of churning out unbiased reports and on-time news dissemination as well as leading in delivering breaking news as they happen.

The Witness is available in newspaper tabloid form and online at www.witnessngr.com

The Witness is a new publication in newspaper tabloid format that covers News, Business, Politics, Health, Fashion, Entertainment and Sport. As part of its name indicates, the major focus of the newspaper is on happenstances around Nigeria, and other parts of the world to report interesting news as it breaks.

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THE NATION

Tribunal upholds Gov. Obiano’s election

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The Anambra governorship election petition tribunal has upheld the election of Governor Willie Obiano in the Nov. 18, 2107 polls.

It will be recalled that Praise Okechukwu, candidate of the Mega Progressives Peoples Party in her petition prayed the tribunal to annul Obiano’s victory for non-substantial compliance to the electoral act.

The All Progressives Grand Alliance and the Independent National Electoral Commission were also respondents in the suit.

Justice H. A Olusiyi, chairman of the tribunal in a unanimous judgment ruled that the petitioner had not proven her case substantially to invalidate the election.

Onyechi Ikpeazu (SAN), counsel to Obiano, described the judgment as welcome as the election in question was the best in the history of Anambra and that the victory was convincing.

Ikpeazu said it was the institutional right of the petitioner to have contested the poll but it was not necessary.

He said: “It was the confirmation that the past election was about the best in Anambra.”
Emeka Etiaba (SAN), counsel to INEC, also lauded the tribunal for a job well done.

Etiaba said: “You know there were three petitions, we raised preliminary objections and based on that, one was struck out and in its wisdom, the tribunal decided to hear these other ones and one of them has been decided in our favour today.”

On his part, Nkem Ekweozoh, counsel to Okechukwu, said he would appeal the ruling as he was not satisfied with the decision.

Ekweozoh said some aspects of his petition were not addressed in his application to inspect sensitive materials which INEC refused to make available to him.

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THE NATION

‎IGP, Ibrahim Idris drags Senate, Saraki to court over summons

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The hide and seek between the Senate and the Inspector General of Police Ibrahim Idris has taken a legal dimension with a suit by the latter challenging his summons by the Senate.

In a suit marked FHC/ABJ/ CS/ 457/2018, the police boss is seeking an injunctive order of the Abuja division of the Federal High Court restraining the Senate and Senate President Bukola Saraki of their assigns, agents or any committees from insisting that he must appear before the upper legislative chambers in person, to the exclusion of any of his subordinate officers.

On why he could not honour the Senate invitation in person, the IGP said he had been directed by the President to be among the presidential entourage embarking on a two day official trip to Bauchi State and therefore on the said April 26, 2018, he was in Bauchi State on assignment.

“That as a result of the above development, he then directed and delegated the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Operations, an Assistant Inspector General of Police and the Commissioner of Police, Kogi State, who had adequate knowledge of the two subject matters which the Senate required briefing, to appear before the Senate on April 26, 2018 on his behalf.” the suit explained.

However, the plaintiff told the court that the Senate refused the appearance of the aforesaid officers.

Besides, the Inspector General of Police in the suit filed by his counsel, Dr. Alex Izinyon, urged the court to declare that the letters inviting him by the Senate dated April 25, 2018 and April 26, 2018, relating to pending criminal proceedings against Senator Dino Melaye in court of law is beyond its powers under section 88 of the 1999 Constitution and same is contrary to the Senate Standing Order, 2015, and the provision of section 6(6) (b) of the 1999 Constitution, and, therefore null, void and of no effect.

In an 11-paragraph affidavit in support to the suit, the IGP said in the letter dated April 26, 2018, with the heading “Invitation to brief the Senate on the inhuman treatment of Senator Dino Melaye over a matter that is pending in Court,” it clearly showed that the Senate is aware that the said Senator Dino Melaye is facing criminal charge in a court of law and that he is not answerable to the Senate but to the Judicial Arm of Government trying the matter.

The deponent, Lukman Fagbemi, averred that the said Senator Dino Melaye is facing a charge of criminal conspiracy and illegal possession of firearms before a court of competent jurisdiction in Kogi State.

Citing the case law in IGP vs. Kabiru Seidu, aka Osama & 3 ors, the plaintiff argued that once the charge is before a court of competent jurisdiction, it is only the Judicial Arm of Government that adjudicates and disposes of the matter one way or the other and not subject to oversight functions of the Senate under section 88 of the 1999 Constitution, as claimed by the Senate.

He further argued that the Chapter Viii Rule 53 (5) of the Senate Standing Order prohibits any reference to any matter in which any judicial decision is pending, in this case the charge before the court in Lokoja, Kogi State is still pending.

In addition, the police boss submitted that there is no where the discussion on Dino Melaye’s case by the Senate will not relate to or impact on the matter in court.

That under the 1999 Constitution, and the Police Act, the holder of his office (IGP), can delegate or direct the carrying out of its functions by the Deputy Inspector General of Police, Assistant Inspector General of Police and Commissioner of Police.

In an originating summons dated April 30, 2018, the IGP posed five questions for the determination of the court, including the following:

  • Whether the letters dated April 25 and 26, 2018 by the 1st and 2nd defendants (Senate and Senate President) to the plaintiff to appear before it on 26th April, 2018 and 2nd May, 2018 or any other date do not relate to the office of the plaintiff by virtue of section 215 (1) (a) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999.

He sought seven declarative reliefs from the court, should the questions be answered in his favour.

Meanwhile, the legal team to the Senate President in a counter affidavit accused the IGP of using the court to avoid honouring his invitation.

(The Sun)

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