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Take Bullion Van Petition Against Tinubu Seriously, Transparency International Tells EFCC

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Anti-corruption group, Transparency International, has advised the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to take the petition against All Progressives Congress leader, Bola Tinubu, seriously.

Speaking with The PUNCH on Monday, the Head, Transparency International Nigeria and Executive Director of Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre, Auwal Musa, popularly known as Rafsanjani, said the EFCC must prove to Nigerians that it is not a partial organisation.

Rafsanjani told The PUNCH that the EFCC had arrested several persons for vote buying during the last elections.

He said the anti-graft agency must therefore not betray the confidence Nigerians have in it.

The TI boss said, “We think that the fight against corruption must be seen to be real and whoever is involved in any act, no matter how powerful, the law must take its course. That is the only way that citizens can continue to have confidence in the anti-graft agency.

“For me, this petition should be taken seriously and the EFCC should not waste time before working on it because similar things happened during the elections where some politicians were arrested with money.

“In this case, nothing has happened to the man (Tinubu) and citizens are calling for action so that there will be no impunity in the system. I think it will be in the interest of the anti-corruption agencies to be proactive and take action that will make citizens have confidence in the anti-corruption war.”

The Convener, Concerned Nigerians, Deji Adeyanju; and others including Ariyo-Dare Atoye of the Coalition in Defence of Nigerian Democracy and Constitution and Adebayo Raphael of the Free Nigeria Movement, had submitted a petition to the EFCC last month.

The activists had asked the EFCC to investigate Tinubu who admitted to having two cash-laden bullion vans on his premises on the eve of the Presidential election in February.

There have been reports, however, that the EFCC had abandoned the petition because of the personality involved.

The EFCC is currently prosecuting the son-in-law and lawyer to the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, for allegedly attempting to distribute $2m ahead of the same election.”

The Punch

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Lawan: NASS Will Approve Any Request from Buhari

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The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, on Thursday said any request from President Muhammadu Buhari would make Nigeria a better place, and such would be acted on “expeditiously.”

Lawan spoke when the Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Itse Sagay visited him in his office on Thursday.

Sagay had called for the timely passage of the Special Criminal Court and other similar bills, saying such would  help the anti-corruption war and ensure that the fight was successfully won with speed and energy.

He also appealed to the Senate to consider the confirmation of the acting Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Ibrahim Magu.

Responding, Lawan said, “This is a new Senate. Going by our rules and I believe that goes for the House of Reps too, any issue that was not concluded in the last National Assembly, will have to start all over again.

“So, as far as we are concerned, those bills will have to come again and start to go through the process from the very beginning.

“We are ready. In fact, we are in a haste if those bills are ready for us to start working on them.”

Lawan said there was no request before the Senate for the confirmation of the acting chairman of the EFCC.

“I want to assure you that any request that comes from Mr President is a request that will make Nigeria a better place in terms of appointments or legislation.

“When such request comes, the Senate will act expeditiously to ensure that we play our part in the confirmation or passing of legislation appropriately.”

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Buhari Hails Jonathan @ 62, Says His Humility, Patriotism Will Continue to Resonate

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President Muhammadu Buhari has praised former President Goodluck Jonathan’s humility and patriotism, saying that the qualities will continue to resonate.

This is contained in a message to congratulate his predecessor, who has turned 62.

The message, signed by his media aide, Mr Femi Adesina, reads, “President Muhammadu Buhari felicitates former President Goodluck Jonathan on his 62nd birthday, joining the nation in praying for longer life, good health and more strength to keep serving the nation.

“President Buhari rejoices with family, friends and political associates of the former president, lauding him for good counsels to leaders within and outside Nigeria since he left office, sharing his experience of serving at different levels of governance.

“President Buhari believes the former President’s legacy of humility and patriotism will continue to resonate, inspiring generations to come on the sacrifices made for the stability of democracy and promotion of sustainable development.

“The President wishes the former President and his family more years of joyful celebrations.”

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Tottenham Hotspur: Pochettino Out, Jose Mourinho In

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Jose Mourinho was on Wednesday appointed Tottenham’s new manager to replace the sacked Mauricio Pochettino, with the club languishing 14th in the Premier League.

The Portuguese former Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester United manager signed a contract until the end of the 2022/23 season, the north London club said in a statement.

Pochettino, 47, transformed Spurs’ fortunes after arriving from Southampton in 2014 and although he failed to win a trophy he took the club to the Champions League final for the first time in their history just six months ago.

But the Argentine was sacked on Tuesday, with Tottenham struggling in the league after picking up just three wins from their opening 12 games.

This season they were knocked out of the League Cup by fourth-tier Colchester United and suffered an embarrassing 7-2 defeat at home to Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

“I am excited to be joining a club with such a great heritage and such passionate supporters,” said Mourinho, who has won domestic titles in a record four different countries.

“The quality in both the squad and the academy excites me. Working with these players is what has attracted me.”

Spurs Chairman Daniel Levy said: “In Jose we have one of the most successful managers in football. He has a wealth of experience, can inspire teams and is a great tactician.

“He has won honours at every club he has coached. We believe he will bring energy and belief to the dressing room.”

Spurs hailed their new boss, saying in their statement: “Jose is one of the world’s most accomplished managers having won 25 senior trophies.”

He won Champions League titles with Porto and Inter Milan.

The 56-year-old Portuguese won three Premier League titles over two spells in charge of Chelsea and returned to England to manage Manchester United in 2016.

Mourinho was sacked last December following a poor run of results and has been out of work since, most recently working as a TV pundit.

His first match in charge will be the London derby away to West Ham on Saturday.

(AFP)

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