Connect with us


Democracy day: Ireti urges Nigerians commitment to democratic tenets



Sen. Ireti Kingibe (LP -FCT) has urged Nigerians to remain committed to the ideals of democracy as it remained the best form of government.

Kingibe, whose victory in the Feb. 25, Senatorial election was affirmed by the Elections Petitions Court on Tuesday, made this call in a statement to mark the International Democracy Day.

She said that in spite of the hiccups and challenges faced by the nation since its return to democracy, Nigeria has held together and fared better under civilian democratic rule than it did under authoritarian regimes.

“As we mark the International Day of Democracy, it is fitting that we celebrate the gains achieved by our adherence to the rule of law.
“It is indubitable that we are not where we had expected to be when we commenced this democratic journey in 1999,.

“However, we have certainly made progress in terms of greater respect for the rule of law, the dignity of the human person, and the fundamental human rights of Nigerians.

“We must consolidate on these gains as we press for more commitment from everyone including governments across all levels, for greater tolerance and acceptance of our ethnic and religious diversity,”she said.

According to Kingibe ,it is an incontrovertible fact that the things that bind Nigerians together are far more resilient than the centrifugal forces threatening the country’s unity.

“If we stand firm , together, we will defeat these forces, and only then can our nation fulfill its manifest destiny of being the voice of black people everywhere in the world.”

Kingibe assured residents of Abuja that her tenure as their representative would usher in an era of improved security, healthcare, peace as well as provision of social infrastructure in the Federal capital.

She promised to hold the mandate given to her by FCT residents sacred and to fully discharge the mandate to their satisfaction.

She said she would work relentlessly with her colleagues in the National Assembly and members in the executive branch of government, to ensure qualitative improvement in the well-being of FCT residents .


Court stops PDP from dissolving Rivers chapter EXCOS



A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Wednesday, restrained the national body of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from dissolving the Rivers’ chapter of the State Executive Committee (SEC) over alleged anti-party activities.

Delivering judgment, Justice Inyang Ekwo, said he found that the case of the plaintiff, Mr Desmond Akawo, succeeded on merit.

Akawo, the Rivers’ PDP Chairman, had sued the party and Dr Iyorchia Ayu (the immediate-past National Chairman representing himself and members of the National Working Committee (NWC) and National Executive Committee (NEC)) as 1st and 2nd defendants.

The plaintiff also joined the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as 3rd defendant in the amended originating summons marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/112/2023 and filed on March 9 by his counsel, Dr Joshua Musa, SAN.

Akawo sought the court’s determination whether having regard to the provisions of Section 223 of the 1999 Constitution and Article 47(1) of the Constitution of the PDP (as amended In 2017), they were not entitled to serve our their term.

He said he and other members of the SEC, the LGA executive committees and the ward executive committee were elected and sworn-in pursuant to the state’s congress held on March 21, 2020 and were entitled to complete their four-year term which expires on or about May 22, 2024.

Akawo, in the affidavit which he personally deposed to, averred that the PDP ans its national chairman on Jan. 4, prior to the general elections, threatened to unilaterally dissolve the Rivers’ chapter of SEC and replace the same with an Interim Caretaker Committee.

He, however, said that prior to the threat, neither any member of the state committee nor himself had ever been queried by them.

He, therefore, sought an order of injunction restraining the party and the national chairman from dissolving, suspending or truncating the tenure of the Rivers’ SEC, the LGA executive committees and the ward executive committees until May 22, 2024, when their four-year term would expire, among other reliefs.

Justice Ekwo held that the PDP and its national chairman did not deny Akawo’s averments.

“Essentially, the 1st and 2nd defendants have admitted the case of the plaintiff on this issue.

“The law is that facts admitted need no further proof;” he said.

The judge, who granted all Akawo’s reliefs, declared that the party and its national chairman cannot unilaterally and without reasonable cause, dissolve the state’s EXCOs who were democratically elected for a four-year period.

He also gave an order of injunction, restraining them from appointing any person or group of persons as interim caretaker committee in the state until May 22, 2024.

Justice Ekwo further gave an injunction order restraining INEC from according recognition or accepting any name as caretaker committee of the PDP in the state except those democratically elected and represented by Akawo in the suit.

Continue Reading


PDP says tribunal judgement declaring Lalong Senate seat winner “strange”



The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Plateau has rejected the judgement of the National Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal that gave the Plateau South Senate seat to Mr Simon Lalong.

Its Chairman, Mr Chris Hassan, rejected the judgement while briefing newsmen on Tuesday in Jos.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the tribunal chairman, Justice M. B. Tukur, on Monday declared Lalong winner of the Feb. 25 national assembly polls.

It also nullified the election of Mr Peter Gyendeng of Riyom/Barkin Ladi Federal Constituency and declared Fom Dalyop of the Labour Party (LP), who came second, as the winner.

The duo had approached the tribunal to challenge the emergence of Napoleon Bali and Gyendeng, both of the PDP, as Senator and House of Representatives member respectively.

The tribunal, in knocking off the winners, relied on the petitioners’ claim that they were wrongly nominated as the PDP had no structure when they emerged as its candidates.

Hassan, while rejecting the judgement, insisted that justice was not served by the Judges’ opinions.

”The PDP watched with dismay and trepidation the nulification of the elections of our Senator representing Plateau South and House of Representatives Member representing Barkin Ladi/Riyom Federal Constituency.

”We reject the outcome of the judgement in its entirety because justice was not served and it did not reflect the law and the interest of the majority of the people as freely expressed at the election.

”The judgement was an electoral robbery which is unacceptable to the people of Plateau because it is contrary to the will of the people of the constituencies which was freely expressed via the votes we got in the election,” he said.

Hassan maintained that the tribunal erred to have relied on the internal squabbles of the PDP to deliver its judgement in favour of the petitioners.

He explained that his party had since complied with the judgment of Justice S.P. Gang and conducted a fresh congress, insisting that the party currently has “a solid and valid structure”.

He added that the decision of the tribunal on the matter had utterly fallen short of expectation, saying that it was bereft of an iota of justice.

The chairman described the judgements as a diversion of the undiluted will and choices of the people in the light of the consolidated judgements recently delivered by the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.

”In this case, the PDP had since complied with the judgement of Justice S. P. Gang through a repeat congress in September 2021 which was dutifully monitored by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as required by law.

”This same congress was affirmed by the Federal High Court sitting Jos in a judgement delivered by Justice D. V. Agishi in the case of Augustine Timkuk versus PDP validating the state executive of the Party as duly elected.

”This same judgment was also unanimously affirmed by the court of Appeal, Jos in favour of the PDP in a ruling by Justice T. Y. Hassan, Justice I. A. Andenyangtso and Justice O. O. Goodluck, delivered on 11 Feb., 2023.

”The fact remains that PDP has a valid and solid structure through which our mandate was given and we are optimistic that by the special grace of God, it will stand.

”This is because same position was affirmed by the seven judgments of panel two of the National and State Assembly Election Petitions Tribunal which is a sister panel to this one,” he said.

Hassan, however, said that the party would explore legal means to retain its mandate, adding that the judgement would not destroy its confidence in the judiciary.

He called on the supporters of the party to be law abiding and support Bali and Gyendeng to succeed in office.

Continue Reading