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Dissolution Of Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission Illegal-ALGON

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Seyi Makinde

The dissolution of the Oyo State Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC) by the state government has been criticized by the Association of Local Government of Nigeria, ( ALGON) Oyo state chapter.

In a statement sent to journalists on Sunday, July 7 and signed by its chairman, Prince Abass Aleshinloye, ALGON said the dissolution was illegal, unconstitutional and arbitrary, adding that the commission has a statutory five-year tenure which ends in 2021.

Describing the action of Governor Seyi Makinde as yet another faulty and illegal step in the series of lawlessness and executive rascality the government of Oyo state is now known for, Aleshinloye said the governor’s statement that all the entitlement due to the members of the dissolved commission would be paid in order to absolve the state of any liability is “laughable and humiliating of the commission’s members.”

Further, he said: “We have become an endangered state with Governor Seyi Makinde’s unending assault on all that is legal and constitutional. We woke up to the announcement of the illegal and reckless act of dissolution of the statutory commissions in Oyo state this week by the governor. “In his ill-conceived attempt to avoid the self-inflicted liability occasioned by his lawless act, he made a promise of ‘naira rain’ to members of the illegally dissolved commissions as a ‘compensation’ to members of the bodies.

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Not only is this laughable, humiliating of the distinguished members  of these commissions who he has presented as if they are hungry for gain rather than to serve, it is also embarrassing  and smacks of poor administrative judgement and disregard for all that is hallowed in any sane clime.”

Aleshinloye advised the governor against the planned monetization as, “illegalities cannot be monetized and commercialized,” adding that monetization of lawlessness does not cure its illegality.  He described the action as corruption in its basest form, “morally reprehensible, unconstitutional and cannot stand the test of law.”

He wondered where the governor would source the money from and described the action as a further “plunder of our commonwealth” in a state he has described as bankrupt. Aleshinloye further said the governor would be incapable of demanding prudence and probity from workers if he was also laying bad examples. “If a worker is found collecting two or more person’s salary now, is it different from what Mr Governor is authorizing and doing now? We have had an administration reputed and branded as the, builder of modern Oyo state, but it seems Governor Makinde is gaining notoriety as the initiator of a lawless Oyo state

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“It is our prayer that our people will not follow this example. When President Buhari assumed office in 2015, he worked with the INEC, FJSC,NJC, CBN and other commissions duly constituted till their tenures expired. We thought this introduced a new spirit into governance in Nigeria, but clearly our governor still lives in the unfortunate past,” he said. Aleshinloye called on ALGON members, secretaries, councillors and supervisors to  ignore the directive to a committee set up earlier to probe the accounts of elected local government administration by the governor. He described the committee as another illegality that is  unknown to the Nigerian constitution and an affront on subsisting court judgement.  “We therefore join the good people  of Oyo state to demand a reversal of such poor and reckless executive decision,” he concluded.

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Politics

Happy Times For Peter Obi

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Peter Obi

 

A loss such as the office of the Vice President would make any man sober.

Peter Obi, the vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), in the last election is not an exception to this rule.

Since the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), declared President Muhammadu Buhari winner of the election, Obi has not had a reason to celebrate.

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However, he had no choice but to clear his head of issues such as lawyers and tribunal when he added a year to his age yesterday.

Devoid of a carnival-like celebration, the shindig to celebrate the former Anambra State governor at 58 still brought smiles to his face.

 

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Presidential Poll: PDP Closes Case With 62 Witnesses

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The Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, on Friday, July 19 closed his case at the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Abuja.

The duo of Abubakar and the PDP closed their case after calling 62 witnesses out of the 400 earlier speculated would testify in the case.

Abubakar is challenging the outcome of the February 23, presidential election on the grounds that the result of the election was manipulated to favour President Muhammad Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Closing the case, Chris Uche SAN, informed the tribunal that they would not be calling any other witness after former Osita Chidoka, the 62nd witness had finished testifying for the petitioner.

Chidoka, a former Corp Marshal FRSC informed the tribunal that he was the National Collation Agent and Head of PDP Situation Room for the February 23, 2019 presidential election.

He admitted that he was not there when results were transmitted as well as not seening the INEC server. However, the witness told the tribunal that the INEC Chairman, Mahmoud Yakubu had consistently told them at various times during meetings that a server would be used for the purpose of electronic transmission of results.

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Chidoka said he was there when the results were collated by INEC, and that it was done manually.

Though he could not disclose the serial number of the server in which results were transmitted to by party agents, however he reminded the INEC counsel that card reader was not mentioned in their meeting with Mahmood Yakubu but it was used in the election.

Responding to questions from Yakubu Maikyau, counsel to the APC, Chidoka revealed that the INEC Chairman had told him and other stakeholders during meetings prior to the 2019 general elections that they should assume the election was being conducted under the new electoral act, (which was later not signed into law).

He wondered why the commission spent a whooping N27billion on Information Technology, only to come out and tell Nigerians that it did not deploy server for the purpose of electronic transmission of election results.

Chidoka also told the tribunal that the INEC Chairman had told him that it would be immoral for the electoral body not to use electronic transmission of results after N27bn had been spent on IT facilities and equipment.

Earlier, David Nyoga from Kenya, had testified at against the election of President Muhammad Buhari.
Nyoga, an expert in information technology, told the tribunal that from his expert analysis, four websites were discovered to belong to INEC.
Upon cross-examination by counsel to Buhari, Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), the witness said his analysis was based on data supplied by a whistle blower.
The witness further told the tribunal that the information contained in the report of his analysis were extracts made from three of the four websites.

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He confirmed that “Fact.Com was created on March 12, against the February 23 presidential election.

Under cross examination by counsel to All Progressives Congress (APC), Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), the witness maintained that INEC chairman can authorise access to the server.

On whether he was engaged and paid for the job, the witness answered that only the logistics for the job were paid for.
“I was not paid but logistics were paid for.”
However, he admitted that he was not granted access to the site by INEC chairman.

He also admitted that the same scientific method, without authorisation, can be used to alter the information contained on the website.

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Ogboru Closes Case In Delta Governorship Tribunal

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Chief Great Ogboru, the governorship candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the March 9, election in Delta State has closed his case at the election petition tribunal sitting in Asaba.

His petition is challenging the return of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP), as the winner of the 2019 election.

In a bid to prove his case, Ogboru and the APC called 20 witnesses to prove allegations of electoral fraud contained in the petition marked EPT/DT/GOV/01/2019.

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The petitioners tendered volumes of documentary evidence, including voters’ registers and results from polling units (forms EC8A to EC8E) before Justice Suleiman Belgore-led three-man panel.

The petitioners alleged that the conduct of the March 9, governorship election did not comply with the provisions of the law, insisting that Ogboru scored the highest number of valid votes cast.

They prayed the tribunal to declare the first petitioner (Ogboru) winner, as well as an order directing the third respondent (INEC) to withdraw the Certificate of Return issued to the first respondent (Okowa), and issue him (first petitioner) a fresh Certificate of Return.

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Meanwhile, the tribunal has adjourned to July 23 for the first respondent (Governor Okowa) to open his defense.

This followed an application by the first respondent’s counsel for extension of time to enable him study the case of the petitioners.

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