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2019 Election: Buhari Fails To Attach Necessary Supporting Credentials, Tells INEC Is With Military

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Over 70 out of the 91 political parties are presenting presidential candidates that will participate in the 2019 Presidential elections, The PUNCH can report.

Our correspondent, who visited the FCT office of the Independent National Electoral Commission on Thursday, reported that over 70 names had been posted as of Thursday night.

The list was posted with INEC’s timetable which fixed October 25 for the publication of candidates of political parties across the country.

Some of the candidates include: President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress,  former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party, Obadiah Mailafia of the African Democratic Congress,  and  former Governor Donald Duke of the Social Democratic Party.

A source at INEC said the figure might be higher than 70.

He said, “So far, over 70 candidates have been counted. A more comprehensive list will be published on Friday.”

The source said the ballot paper for the presidential election would also be long, adding that the announcement of election results in 2019 might even take longer.

Meanwhile, the various candidates’ credentials were made available to journalists on Thursday.

Buhari again failed to attach necessary supporting documents, insisting that they were in the custody of the military.

In the affidavit which he swore to, Buhari said, “I am the above named person and the deponent of this affidavit herein. All my academic qualification documents as filled in my Presidential form, APC/001/2015 are currently with the Secretary of the Military Board as of the time of this affidavit.”

On his part, Atiku submitted all relevant documents, with a Diploma in Law in 1969 from the Ahmadu Bello University being his highest qualification.

The former Vice-President also attached tax returns indicating that he had paid N10.8m in tax from 2015 to 2017 while declaring his income within the period as N60.2m.

PDP chairman to head Atiku Presidential Campaign Council

There are strong indications that the PDP is working towards creating the 2019 Presidential Campaign Council to be headed by its National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus.

The council will complement the PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation headed by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki.

Some of the positions, which are considered sensitive, had yet to be filled before Atiku travelled out of Nigeria.

However, before leaving, the party was said to have secured his approval before releasing some names, which included that of Saraki.

Apart from Saraki,  those whose names were mentioned included those of the Governor of Sokoto State,  Aminu Waziri Tambuwal as zonal coordinator for North-West;  Governor of Gombe State, Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo , zonal coordinator, North-East; Governor of Benue State, Dr Samuel Ortom, zonal coordinator, North-Central; Governor of Rivers State, Mr Nyesom Wike as zonal coordinator, South-South while a former Governor of Ekiti State, Mr Ayodele Fayose,  was named as the zonal coordinator for the South-West.

Others whose names listed included the Governor of Ebonyi State,  Dave Umahi, zonal coordinator, South-East; a former Minister of Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Relations, Kabiru Tanimu Turaki (SAN), as the Chairman, Legal Matters,  and Governor of Akwa Ibom State,  Emmanuel Udom,  as the Chairman, Fund Raising Committee.

Since the publication of the names, it was gathered that individuals had been mounting pressure on the leadership of the party to get appointed into positions said to be strategic in the campaign team.

On Thursday, our correspondent gathered that some names were being brandished as new appointees into the campaign council.

These positions included those of the spokesperson for the campaign, directors of contact and mobilisation, finance, strategy and others.

However, the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan, said that the party had yet to name other members of the Presidential Campaign Council.

He described the list as phoney, and asked the members of the party to ignore it.

He said, “The attention of the PDP was drawn to a phoney post circulating in the social media and purporting that the PDP has released further names to make up its 2019 Presidential Campaign Council.

“The fabricators of the post even went further to allocate offices to certain individuals, claiming the same to be officially assigned by the leadership of our great party.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the PDP has not released any further names other than those earlier released as members of the Presidential Campaign Council.

“Currently, the only names and offices assigned and released by the party are those of the Director-General and Zonal Coordinators of the 2019 Presidential campaign.”

He cautioned that any other names being bandied around and purported to have emanated from the party should be discountenanced accordingly.

“The party, therefore, urges all members to remain calm and await further announcement by the National Working Committee on the composition of the Campaign Council in due course,” he added.

Our correspondent, however, gathered that Secondus would head the Presidential Campaign Council.

A source close to the party told our correspondent that the party and Atiku were trying to avoid the mistake made by the campaign organisation of former President Goodluck Jonathan in 2015, which insulated the party in his campaigns.

The source said, “Atiku is a core party man. He knows the implications of running an individual campaign.”

“Being a team player, he wants to carry the party along in whatever he does.  In fact, the party will drive the campaign. Because of this, all the members of the National Working Committee of the party led by Secondus will play major roles in the campaign.”

Meanwhile, 10 political parties have so far adopted Mr Gbenga Olawepo-Hashim as their presidential candidate.

Olawepo-Hashim, who originally emerged the candidate of the Alliance for New Nigeria, has since been adopted as the candidate of the Peoples’ Trust.

This was contained in a statement from his media office which indicated that the presidential hopeful would be flying the flag of the Third Force, having consolidated his candidature ahead of the general election.

His party composition, aside from the two major parties, the ruling All Progressives Congress, which is fielding President Mohammadu Buhari,   and the Peoples Democratic Party, which is fielding former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar.

The 10 parties that have adopted him as a candidate are led by the Olisa Agbakoba-led National Intervention Movement.

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Kogi Guber: PDP Has No Candidate, Says Smart Adeyemi

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Smart Adeyemi is the Director-General, Yahaya Bello/Edward Onoja Campaign Council ahead of the governorship election in Kogi State slated for November 16, 2019.

Adeyemi explained why he accepted to lead the APC campaign. What are your expectations in this election? OF course, I expect that we are going to win with a very wide margin. It is so imminent, so obvious that the electorate is going to give us their support. I expect a free and fair election that will be violence-free.

I do believe that we will score not less than 75 percent votes across the state. This is because as I speak to you today I do not think the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party has a candidate for now. Their candidate is still a subject of litigation where prominent members of the party have gone to court with about 40 members who are delegates and from my knowledge of election cases, even though I am not a lawyer, I hold the view that their primary election was inconclusive, because the election was collated the next day inside somebody’s private residence. I don’t think PDP has a candidate for that election.

But our prayers for the election are that the PDP has a candidate, we don’t want to win an election while we are in our bed sleeping, we want to have a good contest where issues will be the focus. Other stakeholders are apprehensive the elections could be marred by violence. Are you worried? As far as the APC is concerned, I can tell you very authoritatively that we do not have any plans for violence.

It is not our own way of life, it is not what we believe in and we do not have people with criminal tendencies occupying strategic positions in our party to push for violence.

But can you say that of the main opposition party? The answer is no. There is someone in the PDP standing trial for six different criminal offences. Why don’t you go and meet these people to ask them. It is not APC you should ask. Much as the government tries to douse the cry about the backlog of salaries and pensions, the cry has persisted. Do you think it is all politics? The cry out will persist.

After the bailout the federal government gave to us, salaries have been settled, but I will tell you that those people whose names were inserted into the wage bill are the ones making noise. There is a panel working on how these people will be exposed and prosecuted, including their sponsors.

Under the PDP governments, there are people they categorised as stakeholders. Every stakeholder collected salaries from the local governments running into millions of Naira; they don’t work, but they tell you that it is your benefit as a stakeholder.

PDP should not push us to the point of publishing names and the atrocities they committed and I say this with every sense of responsibility. I am not saying that we didn’t owe at a point in time but it was not the picture painted. When the first exercise of getting to know those who are genuine workers was done, a lot of them were discovered not to have letters of employment, a good percentage of them, they don’t have an office.

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Nigeria Is Being Led By A Terrorist Govt, Says Australian Islamic Scholar

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A Popular Australian Islamic Scholar, Imam Tawhidi, has said Nigeria is being led by a terrorist government.

Killings of Nigerians including soldiers and other security agencies have increased since the coming of President Muhammadu Buhari, who once boasted to islamise Nigeria. He’s regarded as an extreme muslim apologist.

A fulani himself, fulani hersdmen have killed many Nigerians, abducted many and destroyed farmlands with no government action, a situation many ascribe to the government protecting its own. According to the scholar, Nigeria now has the most corrupt country in Africa, run by a terrorist government that habours terrorists.

Imam Tawhidi, who enjoys huge following on social media and writes against Islamic terrorism wrote, “We have ignored Nigeria in the discussion about terrorism. Nigeria is the most corrupt country in Africa.

“It is home to a terrorist government that harbours terrorists just like the government of Pakistan. “Boko Haram were given the green light in their early stages. We Remember. Now all of a sudden Nigeria wants to lead the war against terror.

“Indeed, ‘my enemy is also my sword, I shall use him to kill with and then break the sword’.”

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Buhari Govt Currently Pays 621,000 Poor Nigerians N5,000 Each Monthly – Presidency

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The Special Adviser to the President on Social Investments, Maryam Uwais has said that 620,947 poor and vulnerable Nigerians are benefiting from the National Cash Transfer initiative.

Mrs Uwais made this public through a statement on Saturday in Abuja. She also said that an earlier report of 6.6 million poor and vulnerable Nigerians benefiting from the scheme and are paid a monthly stipend of N5000 was false.

She explained that the programme is a key component of the National Social Investment Programme of the federal government. She said, “Although 1,491,296 households, comprising 6,056,872 individuals have been captured on the National Social Register, only 620,947 of them are currently receiving the monthly payments and are being supported by trained community facilitators.

I also want to clarify reports making the rounds that the Federal Government made a budgetary provision of N30 billion for 2020, as against the usual 500 billion benchmark for the N-SIP since 2016.”

“Nothing has changed in the budgeting cycle as relates to the Social Investment Programmes (SIP). The SIP budget has always been pegged at N400 billion, while another N100 billion has been domiciled in the Federal Ministry of Finance, as counterpart of the Social Housing Fund.”

She said she expects that there will be no longer shortfalls in budgetary releases.

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