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PDP Moves To Rebuild, Seeks Consensus For New Chairman

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As the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) awaits the Supreme Court verdict on the 2023 presidential election, the tussle for leadership of the has begun amid realignment of power brokers within.

Checks revealed that the while the pro-Atiku Abubakar group are pushing to seize control of the party, the group loyal to the minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Nyesom Wike is also scheming to take the reins of the party.

It was learnt that the dilemma before the party is the search for a national chairman who can balance the interests within and enhance the fortunes of the party.

This comes as the prospect of a mini convention after the Supreme Court verdict is being discussed in some quarters.

The convention which is being projected to re-access the party’s fortunes after the 2023 polls might see the change of leadership.

It was further learnt that the recent visit of former president of the senate, Abubakar Saraki, to Wike was linked to the search for a consensus.

Wike and Saraki lost last year’s PDP presidential primary to Atiku.

However, Wike and four other governors worked for President Bola Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) instead of Atiku during the election after their demand that a national chairman from the South should replace Dr Iyorchia Ayu.

Wike was however later to be rewarded with the FCT ministerial appointment.

Saraki was appointed into the PDP/Atiku’s campaign team.

 

A party source said despite calls for Wike’s sanction for working with the ruling party, the former governor’s group has insisted that they will not leave the party.

The source said the group had resolved to retain their influence in the party.

“One of the ways to do so is to be part of the power groups that will determine the future of the party by influencing who leads the party from next year,” the source said.

He added that the Wike and Saraki meeting was against the backdrop of the need by the camps to forge an understanding ahead of the tussle for party leadership.

“Failure to do this will lead to the emergence of a hostile chairman who may move against them. They know Saraki as a reconciliatory man, a bridge builder, somebody they can trust to be neutral and have the capacity and resources to rebuild the party.

“The meeting is the first step the Wike group is making. More governors and senators in the group will openly canvass support for Saraki and even visit. Many have silently visited him,” the source added.

When asked, another source close to the former senate president who pleaded not to be named, said he had not made up his mind on the chairmanship yet.

“His position is that we should wait till after the Supreme Court verdict on the Atiku case. Either way the case goes, the next assignment for the PDP is resolving leadership issues and reconciliation,” he said.

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Unknown Gunmen Abduct Channelstv Reporter In Port-harcourt

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Some unknown gunmen have kidnapped Joshua Rogers, the ChannelsTV reporter in Port-Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.

Politics Nigeria learnt that Rogers was picked up close to his residence at Rumuosi in Port Harcourt and to an unknown destination by the gunmen around 9pm on Thursday, April 11.

The reporter was driving his official ChannelsTV branded car when the hoodlums accosted, pointed a gun at him and took him away in the same vehicle.

 

Rogers was said to be returning from his official assignment in Government House after a trip to Andoni for a government event when the incident happened.

Already, the gunmen were said to have contacted his wife and demanded a N30million ransom for bis release.

His cameraman confirmed the incident and appealed to his abductors to set him free unconditionally.

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Lassa Fever Kills 150 In Nigeria — NCDC

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According to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (NCDC), 150 people died from Lassa virus in 125 local government areas throughout 27 states in the federation between January and March 2024.

The NCDC reported that the deaths were recorded with a case fatality rate (CFR) of 18.6% overall from week one to week thirteen, 2024. This is higher than the CFR for the same time in 2023 (17.5%).

In its Lassa Fever Situation Report Epi Week 13, which was released on March 25–31, 2024, the agency revealed that 806 of the 5,295 suspected cases that were recorded were confirmed. Eyes Of Lagos reports,

According to the report, in week 13, the number of new confirmed cases decreased from 25 in Epi week 12, 2024 to 15. These cases were reported in Ondo, Bauchi, Plateau and Edo states.

 

In total for 2024, 27 states have recorded at least one confirmed case across 125 LGAs, even as 62 percent of all confirmed Lassa fever cases were reported from Ondo, Edo, and Bauchi states, while 38 percent of cases were reported from 24 states with confirmed Lassa fever cases.

Of the 62 percent confirmed cases, the NCDC said Ondo reported 24 percent, Edo 22 percent, and Bauchi 16 percent. The predominant age group affected is 31-40 years (Range: 1 to 98 years, Median Age: 32years), with a male-to-female ratio for confirmed cases of 1:1.

From the report, the number of suspected cases (5,295) increased compared to that reported for the same period in 2023 (4,338).

The agency confirmed that the National Lassa fever multi-partner, multi-sectoral Incident Management System has been activated to coordinate response at all levels at the Emergency Operations Centre, EOC.

No new healthcare worker was affected in the reporting week 13, the report noted.

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