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We won’t recognise speakers elected through fraudulent means – Obasa warns Edo, Bauchi governors over Assembly crises

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The Speaker of the Lagos House of Assembly and Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of State Legislatures, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, on Sunday urged the governors of Edo, Godwin Obaseki, and Bauchi, Bala Mohammed, to immediately resolve the crises that have engulfed the respective Houses of Assembly in their states.

Speaker Obasa asked for the reversal of their proclamations of the Houses of Assembly in both states as well as the elections of principal officers adding that illegality should not thrive on the altar of perceived personal ego and interest.

The Speakers’ Conference Chairman warned strongly that the body would not recognise any Speaker of a state legislature that emerges through fraudulent means or violation of the Constitution and Business Rules of the affected House of Assembly as the organisation cannot condone illegality.

In a statement personally signed by the Speaker, he admonished the governors to adhere to the Nigerian constitution as well as the rules of the Houses of Assembly, which stipulate how principal officers should emerge. He also noted that no society can progress when its stakeholders are at daggers-drawn.

Obasa frowned at the drama that happened recently in the Edo state Assembly where nine members would elect the principal officers in a 24-member House in an inauguration that allegedly held at 9.30 pm.

In Bauchi, recall that 11 out of the 31 elected members of the ninth House of Assembly also elected principal officers in what Speaker Obasa described as “questionable manner.”

The crisis in Bauchi has led to the emergence of two speakers in the state as well as issues about litigations.

“A situation where a minority number in a State House of Assembly takes control of its activities over the majority is condemnable.

“No lover of democracy in the country should support the charade that happened recently at both Houses of Assembly. If we must make progress, we must work in an atmosphere of peace, love and unity.

“We must also all call on the governors to do the needful by reversing their actions and acting in accordance with the laws backing up the legislative arms of the affected states,” the Speaker said.

Obasa argued that even though Section 92(1), Chapter V of the 1999 Constitution simply states that there shall be a Speaker and a Deputy Speaker of a House of Assembly who shall be elected by the members of the House from among themselves, Section 98(1 and 2) clearly stipulates that voting must be by simple majority.

Specifically, Section 98(2) states expressly: “Except as otherwise provided by this Constitution, the required majority for the purpose of determining any question shall be a simple majority.”

While reacting to the injunction secured by the 11 members of the Bauchi House of Assembly stopping the majority in the House from parading their elected Speaker and Deputy, Obasa cautioned the Judiciary against unnecessarily meddling in the affairs of the State Legislatures.

Obasa said the injunction from the Bauchi State High Court was frivolous and must be stopped.

“Why should any reasonable court grant injunction in favour of 11 against 20? Why should the Judiciary interfere in the business of the Legislature which is supposed to operate on the principle of separation of powers?” Obasa queried stressing that this was part of the discussions recently at a two-day conference on the implementation of autonomy for State Legislatures and Judiciary in Abuja.

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Sowore: Reps order immediate investigation of DSS’ court invasion

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The House of Representatives, on Tuesday, called for an investigation into the invasion of an Abuja Federal High Court by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS).

The lower legislative chamber directed its relevant committees to probe the alleged DSS invasion of the court.

Minority Leader of the House, Ndudi Elumelu raised the matter on the floor of the House during plenary. He stated that the occurrence was an abuse of the sanctity of the court.

The lawmaker described DSS action as “one arm of government attempting to overpower another, which will spell doom for the country’s democracy.”

Recall that last Friday, DSS operatives reportedly chased out lawyers from an Abuja Federal High Courtroom, attacked journalists before re-arresting Omoyele Sowore, the convener of RevolutionNow Movement.

The DSS has since denied invading the courtroom

The spokesperson of DSS, Peter Afunanya, had insisted that the activist’s supporters had acted an “orchestrated drama” inside the court.

Afunanya had claimed that none of its officers was involved in the incidents recorded in the courtroom.

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BREAKING: Buhari sacks Muiz Banire as AMCON chairman, appoints Adamu

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Edward-Adamu

President Muhammadu Buhari has sacked Muiz Banire as the Chairman of the Governing Board of the Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria, appointing Edward Lametek Adamu as new chairman of the Corporation.

This was contained in a letter read on the floor of the Senate by the Senate President, Senator Ahmad Lawan.

The letter, dated December 9, 2019, reads: “In accordance with Section 10(1) of the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) Act, 2010, I hereby present Mr. Edward Lametek Adamu for confirmation as Chairman of the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria by the Distinguished Senate.

“While hoping that this request will receive the usual expeditious consideration of the Senate, please accept, Distinguished Senate President, the assurances of my highest consideration.

”Banire was appointed as AMCON Chairman in 2018.

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Buhari appoints new FIRS chairman

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President Muhammadu Buhari has appointed Muhammad Nami to replace Babatunde Fowler as chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).

Fowler, whose tenure ended on Monday, was confirmed for a four-year tenure by the senate on December 9, 2015.

He is expected to hand over to the most senior director on the board until the senate confirms Nami as FIRS chairman and the new board.

According to a statement by Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity, Nami is a tax, accounting and management professional with three decades of practical working experience in auditing, tax management and advisory and management services.

“He is an expert in rendering advisory support services to investors in respect of new business start-ups and management of existing businesses. He has also continuously rendered outsourced services to clients in trading, service and manufacturing sectors of the nation’s economy,” the statement read.

Muhammad Nami attended Bayero University Kano and Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, where he obtained a bachelor’s degree in sociology (1991) and a masters of business degree (2004) respectively.

He is a fellow of Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria, Institute of Debt Recovery Practitioners of Nigeria and Associate Member of Nigerian Institute of Management (Chartered) and Association of National Accountants of Nigeria.

He started his career with PFK in 1993 and rose to the position of a senior consultant in charge of tax management and advisory services.

He is currently the managing consultant of Manam Professional Services (chartered tax practitioners and business advisers) based in Kaduna, Abuja, Niger state.

Muhammad was appointed as a member of the presidential committee on audit of recovered stolen assets in November 2017.

The FIRS board is composed of a member representing each of the six geographical zones and statutory representatives from a select number of ministries and government agencies.

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