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APC wants LGs abolished

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The committee on true federalism set up by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to collate the views of Nigerians has recommended the abolition of local government as a third tier of government from the country’s constitution. The committee chaired by Kaduna State governor, Nasir el-Rufai will present its report to the public today. Confirming the submission of the report today, APC national publicity secretary, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, said yesterday that the public presentation is part of the process that will lead to its validation by other organs of the APC before the party’s final position would be announced. On the scrapping of local government from the constitution, the committee report obtained by LEADERSHIP noted: “ In conformity with conventional principles of federalism, LGAs should be no more than administrative units and in line with empirical findings during consultations, the committee recommends that the LGA should be removed from the federal constitution and states be allowed to develop a local administrative system that is relevant and peculiar to each respective states”. The special panel also endorsed the establishment of state police, including a recommendation that the Petroleum and Land Use Acts be amended to allow all the states to control their mineral resources, except as it affects offshore oil. While submitting the committee report to the National Working Committee (NWC) at the APC secretariat last Thursday, Governor el-rufai had hammered on the subject, saying the committee was surprised at the outcome of the submissions it received on the matter. He said, “Local government autonomy is a very interesting subject in which we were surprised at the outcome. There were divergent opinions on this issue. We recommend that the current system of local government administration provided for by the constitution should be amended and that states should be allowed to develop and enact laws to have local government administration system that is peculiar to each of them. “What we heard from Nigerians is that as far as local government is concerned, there is no one size fits for all. We all come from different histories, different cultures, different administrative systems and we believe that the constitution should ensure that there is a democratic local government system in every state. But considering the details of and the nature of that local government system, the number of local governments should be left to the states and state houses of assembly. “We proposed amendments to Sections 7, 8, 162, the first schedule, part one and the first schedule of the constitution to give effect to our recommendations. The section that lists the local governments and their Headquarters should be removed so that local governments are no longer named in the constitution. “States can create their local governments and determine the structure of their local governments. We are by this, recognizing that in a federal system, you cannot have more than two tiers of government. Having three tiers of government is an aberration. There is nowhere in the world where our research has shown us that you have more than two federating units.” On resources control, the committee in the report noted the “the growing agitations for states to exercise control over natural resources within their respective territories and pay taxes or royalties therefrom to the Federal Government”. el-Rufai argued during his presentation that, while there will be amendment to legislations governing this, the “Petroleum Act will be amended to show that states can now issue oil mining licences; the Land Use Act, Nigeria Minerals and Mining Act, the Petroleum Profit Tax Act 2007 would all need to be amended. “So, we have proposed amendment that will ensure that minerals, mining and oil are vested in the states except offshore minerals”, he added. The APC national chairman, Chief John Odigie Oyegun, promised that the report will be considered and decided upon by mid-February by the various organs of the party. Oyegun said: “I am going to promise that before the middle of February, it would have been considered and decided upon by the major structures of this party, the NEC and the Caucus of the party. And whatever is thereafter agreed will be presented to the authorities as the considered views and decisions of the APC for appropriate implementation”.

-Culled from Leadership

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POLITICS

Senate 2019: Projections favour APC’s Uduaghan in Delta South

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Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the 2019 general elections will kick off with the Presidential and National Assembly elections on Saturday, 16th February 2019. As it stands in Delta South Senatorial District, the All Progressives Congress, APC, candidate representing the district, Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan is the most favoured to win the seat at the expense of his opponents.

A lot of factors are currently working in his favour, chief among them being the popularity he earned while in the saddle as the governor of Delta State. Emmanuel Uduaghan who is the immediate-past executive governor of the state has so far garnered over 50 endorsements from eminent political groups in and around the senatorial district. This is unprecedented in Delta South and probably one of the biggest electoral boosts for the politician, stemming from his sterling qualities and achievements while in office as the governor. Investigations show that ifone counts every infrastructure dotted all over the state, a greater percentage of them would definitely bear his fingerprint of approval.

The people of Delta South Senatorial District are also disenchanted with Uduaghan’s closest rival who incidentally is the incumbent senator representing the zone.  By May 2019 Senator James Manager would have spent 16 years in the red chamber. Those spoken to said they were tired of his representation, and that they have not absolutely felt much impact of the senator, who would have served out four terms as a senator but is nevertheless vying for the position once again on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

Uduaghan’s vision and plans for Delta South which indirectly touch the Niger Delta region seem to have endeared him the more to the electorates. Aside from him, no other aspirant has been able to tell the people their plans, just as he continues to run issue-based campaign, laying out achievable programmes for the people of Delta South. In his words, he is on the race to offer his people quality and effective representation that will put smile on their faces if given the mandate in 2019.

While adopting Dr Uduaghan as its preferred choice for the senate seat, one of the groups, the National Association of Itsekiri Graduates (NAIG) had asserted: “Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan with his wealth of experience as the immediate-past governor of Delta State will bring his experience to bear on his job as the senator representing Delta South Senatorial District.

“He is the most respected of all the candidates, he is a planner and strategist, he is development-oriented and that is what Delta South Senatorial District wants; besides that he cares for the downtrodden.”

Ijaw Liberation Movement (ILM) had supported the claim. According to the group, “We followed Dr. Uduaghan’s painstaking effort to develop our area, nay the whole state, while he was governor of Delta State. We are also aware that he stepped down for our son to continue a few years ago, so he is the most suitable person for the job now.”

Dr. Uduaghan is Itsekiri, and for the 2019 elections, that is a plus. Since 1999, no Itsekiri has occupied that position. In the interest of equity and fair play, his ethnic stock places him better in the hearts of the people of the three major ethnic groups making up Delta South which include Ijaw, Itsekiri and Isoko. The last time an Itsekiri man occupied the senate seat was in 1979; that is about 40 years ago. From 1979 till the current dispensation, five senators have represented Delta South Senatorial District. Out of these five, two were from Isoko (Senator Stella Omu and Senator Francis Okpozo of blessed memory) and another two were from the Ijaw tribe (Chief E.K Clark and Senator James Manager, the incumbent). The first and only senator who was from the Itsekiri stock was Chief Franklin O. M  Atake in 1979.

More welcoming is the fact the political groups which pledge support for his electoral bid are spread across the three ethnic groups. Prominent among them are Ijaw Liberation Movement (ILM), Isoko Political Revolutionary Force, (IPRF) and Itsekiri Youths Vanguard.

What’s more the magnanimity displayed by Uduaghan when he withdrew from the race for Senator James Manager to continue in 2015 in order to ensure that peace reigned in the state was applauded by all and sundry who now believe the time has come for him to give a shot at the position with their full backing.

So as Nigerians look forward to the elections coming up in the next few weeks, the Delta South Senatorial District electorates are ready to roll out their drums to welcome the most perfect and fruitful senate representation in Dr. Uduaghan.

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Senate 2019: Projections favour APC’s Emmanuel Uduaghan in Delta South

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Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the 2019 general elections will kick off with the Presidential and National Assembly elections on Saturday, 16th February 2019. As it stands in Delta South Senatorial District, the All Progressives Congress, APC, candidate representing the district, Dr. Emmanuel Eweta Uduaghan is the most favoured to win the seat at the expense of his opponents.

A lot of factors are currently working in his favour, chief among them being the popularity he earned while in the saddle as the governor of Delta State. Emmanuel Uduaghan who is the immediate-past executive governor of the state has so far garnered over 50 endorsements from eminent political groups in and around the senatorial district. This is unprecedented in Delta South and probably one of the biggest electoral boosts for the politician, stemming from his sterling qualities and achievements while in office as the governor. Investigations show that ifone counts every infrastructure dotted all over the state, a greater percentage of them would definitely bear his fingerprint of approval.

The people of Delta South Senatorial District are also disenchanted with Uduaghan’s closest rival who incidentally is the incumbent senator representing the zone.  By May 2019 Senator James Manager would have spent 16 years in the red chamber. Those spoken to said they were tired of his representation, and that they have not absolutely felt much impact of the senator, who would have served out four terms as a senator but is nevertheless vying for the position once again on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

Uduaghan’s vision and plans for Delta South which indirectly touch the Niger Delta region seem to have endeared him the more to the electorates. Aside from him, no other aspirant has been able to tell the people their plans, just as he continues to run issue-based campaign, laying out achievable programmes for the people of Delta South. In his words, he is on the race to offer his people quality and effective representation that will put smile on their faces if given the mandate in 2019.

While adopting Dr Uduaghan as its preferred choice for the senate seat, one of the groups, the National Association of Itsekiri Graduates (NAIG) had asserted: “Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan with his wealth of experience as the immediate-past governor of Delta State will bring his experience to bear on his job as the senator representing Delta South Senatorial District.

“He is the most respected of all the candidates, he is a planner and strategist, he is development-oriented and that is what Delta South Senatorial District wants; besides that he cares for the downtrodden.”

Ijaw Liberation Movement (ILM) had supported the claim. According to the group, “We followed Dr. Uduaghan’s painstaking effort to develop our area, nay the whole state, while he was governor of Delta State. We are also aware that he stepped down for our son to continue a few years ago, so he is the most suitable person for the job now.”

Dr. Uduaghan is Itsekiri, and for the 2019 elections, that is a plus. Since 1999, no Itsekiri has occupied that position. In the interest of equity and fair play, his ethnic stock places him better in the hearts of the people of the three major ethnic groups making up Delta South which include Ijaw, Itsekiri and Isoko. The last time an Itsekiri man occupied the senate seat was in 1979; that is about 40 years ago. From 1979 till the current dispensation, five senators have represented Delta South Senatorial District. Out of these five, two were from Isoko (Senator Stella Omu and Senator Francis Okpozo of blessed memory) and another two were from the Ijaw tribe (Chief E.K Clark and Senator James Manager, the incumbent). The first and only senator who was from the Itsekiri stock was Chief Franklin O. M  Atake in 1979.

More welcoming is the fact the political groups which pledge support for his electoral bid are spread across the three ethnic groups. Prominent among them are Ijaw Liberation Movement (ILM), Isoko Political Revolutionary Force, (IPRF) and Itsekiri Youths Vanguard.

What’s more the magnanimity displayed by Uduaghan when he withdrew from the race for Senator James Manager to continue in 2015 in order to ensure that peace reigned in the state was applauded by all and sundry who now believe the time has come for him to give a shot at the position with their full backing.

So as Nigerians look forward to the elections coming up in the next few weeks, the Delta South Senatorial District electorates are ready to roll out their drums to welcome the most perfect and fruitful senate representation in Dr. Uduaghan.

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POLITICS

I’ll remove Lekki Toll Gate if elected gov – Agbaje

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The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Lagos State, Mr Jimi Agbaje, has said if voted next year, he will dismantle the Lekki Toll Gate, which he described as illegal.

Agbaje, who said though the toll gate was built by a concessionaire, it had since been bought over by the Lagos State Government, wondered why residents were still being made to pay tolls to pass

The PDP candidate, according to a statement on Sunday, said this in response to the one-hour toll-free passage recently given to all motorists by his All Progressives Congress counterpart, Babajide Sanwo-Olu.

Agbaje said, “Unfortunately, the toll gate is opaque because no one knows its financial records. So, asking people on your campaign trail and others to pass without paying for just one hour is absurd and regrettable.

“Good road is a fundamental right of citizens and we promise to deliver on this and many other things.

“At the moment, most Lagos roads are impassable because of their poor condition. Now, motorists are compelled to pay heavily for passage.

“How about the so-called alternative routes? Ideally, government should have provided alternative routes to the Lekki Toll Gate, but the available alternate route is in a terrible shape, so everybody is forced to use the toll gate and pay.

“Therefore, yesterday’s drama by the governorship candidate of the APC is a farce. Nobody was deceived by the party’s action which also smacks of disrespect and bondage.”

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