The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Lagos State on Thursday met with various security agencies in the state to ensure successful supplementary election in Ajeromi-Ifelodun Federal Constituency on Saturday.
INEC Spokesman, Femi Akinbiyi, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) after the meeting of the Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) that the commission was ready to conclude the exercise.
NAN reports that the meeting, held at the INEC Office, Sabo-Yaba, had representatives of various security outfits including the Police and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in attendance.
Others at the meeting were representatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), the Department of State Security (DSS), the Nigerian Army, the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
Mr Akinbiyi said the security agents had given assurance that there would be safety of men and materials for the election.
He said: “The commission is fully prepared for Saturday April 27 supplementary election in Ajeromi-Ifelodun Federal Constituency.
“Today, we held an Inter-Agency Consultative Committee on Election Security (ICCES) meeting on the issue, and at the end of the meeting, they (security agencies) assured the people of the affected area that there is going to be adequate security of men and materials for the elections.
“As such, people in the constituency should come out en masse and vote for the candidate of their choice,” Mr Akinbiyi told NAN.
According to him, the supplementary election becomes imperative due to the margin of lead between the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and that of the All Progressives Congress in the February 23 election.
“As a result of the court order that directed the commission to release the result of the election conducted on February 23, the commission declared the result on April 17 and the election was declared inconclusive.
“This was because there were anomalies, over voting and non-compliance to the use of smart card readers in some polling units in the area.
“We have 71 polling units where the elections were cancelled for reason of over voting and violence,” he said.
These, he said, cut across eight registration areas (Wards), with the total registered voters in the affected areas being 43, 660.
According to him, the materials for the poll are in the custody of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and will be retrieved on Friday for onward movement to the constituency, then to the Registration Area Centres (RACs).
“We will retrain some of the ad hoc staff that will be engaged for the poll same Friday at the RACs. The smart card readers that will be used for the area have been reconfigured,” the Public Relations Officer said.
According to the commission, the affected areas are: Ward 02, Awodi Ora with three polling units; Ward 03, Wilmer with six polling units; Ward 04, Olodi with one polling unit and Ward 05, Tolu with 27 polling units.
Others are: Ward 07, Ojo Road with two polling units; Ward 09, Alaba-Oro with two polling units, Ward 10, Mosafejo with 18 polling units and Ward 11, Temidire 2 with 12 polling units.
The PDP candidate, Rita Orji polled 31, 982 votes, while Kolawole Taiwo of the APC scored 28, 758 votes in the result declared by the commission for the February 23 election.
The difference between PDP and APC is 3,224.
Insecurity: FG Resuscitates Special Terrorism Prosecution Courts
Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami, has said that special terrorism prosecution courts will soon be resuscitated in Nigeria.
In a statement on Thursday, Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations to the AGF, Umar Gwandu, said the decision is part of efforts to address insecurity.
“The federal government is committed to ending insecurity in the country. The courts are to bring to book all those found guilty in connection with terrorism, so as to serve as a deterrent to others,” the statement read.
“In addition to the prosecution of 400 suspected Boko Haram financiers, the measures taken by the government will counter the twin trouble of insurgency and insecurity in the country.”
On April 30, 2013, Ibrahim Auta, the former chief judge of the federal high court, made a practice direction that amended the order 48 rule 4 of the federal high court (civil procedure) rule 2009, which took effect on June 3, 2013.
The practice direction was intended to fast-track criminal trials relating to offences of terrorism, kidnapping, trafficking in persons, rape, corruption, and money laundering cases, and ensure that delays in criminal trials are largely eliminated.
Under this practice, the court shall ensure that criminal cases are fully ready for trial before hearing dates are agreed, in order to minimise undue adjournments and delays.
Parties involved in the trials are also expected to focus only on important matters relating to their cases.
$65m Fraud: ICPC Declares Buhari’s Son-in-Law Wanted
The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) has declared Gimba Yau Kumo, son-in-law of President Muhammadu Buhari, wanted over an alleged $65 million fraud.
In a notice published on Thursday, Azuka Ogugua, spokesperson of the anti-graft commission, said Kumo is declared wanted alongside Tarry Rufus and Bola Ogunsola over alleged misappropriation and dispersion of national housing funds.
Kumo, a former managing director of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, married Fatima, the president’s daughter, in 2016 at Daura, Katsina state.
“The persons whose pictures appear above, Mr. Tarry Rufus, Mr. Gimba Yau Kumo and Mr. Bola Ogunsola, are hereby declared WANTED by the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) in connection with issues bordering on misappropriation of National Housing Funds and diversion of the sum of Sixty Five Million dollars ($65,000,000),” the ICPC said.
“Anyone who has useful information on their whereabouts should report to ICPC Headquarters Abuja, any of the ICPC State Offices or the nearest police station.”
In April, the senate committee on public accounts summoned Kumo to explain the alleged irregular award of N3 billion contract when he was still at the bank.
Igbo Aren’t Violent People, Ignore ‘Rumour’ of Attack on Lagos – Ohanaeze Tells Sanwo-Olu
Apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has asked Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, to ignore threats of attacks on the state.
On Monday, Hakeem Odumosu, Lagos commissioner of police, said the command is probing threats of attacks by the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Oodua Republic agitators.
The groups have, however, denied the allegations.
Speaking at a meeting with Sanwo-Olu at the Lagos government house on Thursday, George Obiozor, Ohanaeze president-general, said the “rumour” is intended to distract the governor from delivering good governance to the people.
Obiozor said Igbo people are not known for acts of violence.
“Today, the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo worldwide, in the company of Igbo elders and leaders in Lagos, are here to pay you (Sanwo-Olu) a solidarity visit and to further reassure you that Ndigbo are not violent in nature, neither are we known for acts of violence anywhere we live,” Gboyega Akosile, chief press secretary to the governor, quoted Obiozor as saying.
“[On] the constant and periodic dangerous insinuations, rumour, gossip and callous statements that Ndigbo in Lagos or any part of Yorubaland contemplate or instigate violence in Lagos or any part of Yorubaland, we wish to state clearly that anywhere this dangerous rumour or statement is emanating from is aimed to cause division, crises and conflict amongst us.
“We think that this rumour is intended to distract the Lagos State Government from its efforts to provide good governance for all and cause disaffection between Ndigbo who live in Lagos and their host community, which is the second home of several Ndigbo.
“The quick denial of this rumour by members of IPOB and Yoruba groups in Lagos and across the south-west was a source of relief.
“The Igbo nation is renowned for being agents of development, not destruction. Ndigbo are builders and their contributions to the development of Lagos State are evident and exemplary.”