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Tinubu Reacts To Election Shift, Tells Nigerians What To Do

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Bola Tinubu

All Progressives Congress National Leader and Co-chair of the party’s Presidential Campaign Council, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said though the postponement of yesterday’s Presidential and National Assembly elections was painful, all those who actually came out to vote and those who intended to vote in the postponed elections must maintain their commitment.

“Do not allow this delay to deter you from the expression of your democratic rights. What you had set your mind to do on February 16, keep your mind and heart on for February 23,” he said.

In a statement he personally signed, Asiwaju Tinubu was reacting to the postponement of the Presidential and National Assembly polls by one week by the Independent National Electoral Commission.

The former Lagos governor said though he appreciated the enormity of the logistical challenge that elections in a vast nation like ours poses to INEC, “we are still pained that the Commission could not meet this challenge within the time allotted.

“We are also perplexed that INEC literally waited so late in the day to make known the obstacles preventing it from keeping faith to the election schedule. INEC could have and should have given the nation more ample and earlier warning. This could have perhaps lessened the pervasive disappointment that we all now feel. It also would have helped people better order their steps”.

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The full statement reads: “As the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress and simply as a Nigerian, I must express my profound concern and dissatisfaction with the unexpected, late hour postponement of the presidential and national assembly elections by INEC. According to INEC, the one-week postponement of the election from February 16 to February 23 was compelled by logistical difficulties encountered by the commission in transporting essential election material to polling in various parts of the country.

“While we appreciate the enormity of the logistical challenge that elections in a vast nation like ours poses to INEC, we are still pained that the Commission could not meet this challenge within the time allotted. We are also perplexed that INEC literally waited so late in the day to make known the obstacles preventing it from keeping faith to the election schedule. INEC could have and should have given the nation more ample and earlier warning. This could have perhaps lessened the pervasive disappointment that we all now feel. It also would have helped people better order their steps today.

“We have reports of eager voters rising early to leave their homes to cast their ballots only to be told upon arriving at their appointed polling stations that the election had been postponed. This should not have happened for it could well discourage people from coming out when the election takes place. Thus, we heartily commend those people for coming out in exercise of their fundamental rights and duties as citizen voters, who vote by vote, seek to build and perfect our democracy. For each voter is in part an architect and each one of your votes is a brick by which, when lain together, shall construct a strong democracy in such a way that it shall forever stand and endure. Thus, we appeal to all who actually came out to vote and to those who intended to vote today, to maintain your commitment. Do not allow this delay to deter you from the expression of your democratic rights. What you had set your mind to do on February 16, keep your mind and heart on for February 23.

“INEC has stated the reason for the delay and has expressed regret over the inconveniences it has caused. We must take INEC’s statement at face value and hold to the belief that INEC understands even more than ever the sober and grave responsibility it has to our nation and our democracy. INEC can only properly discharge that responsibility by conducting free and fair elections. While we cannot go back to repair what did or did not happen to cause this postponement, we all must encourage INEC to do all that is necessary so voting can smoothly proceed on February 23. Whatever our political affiliation, we must encourage INEC to overcome the difficulties in order to rise to this most important occasion. INEC must commit itself more than ever before to perform to its utmost so that these elections will be remembered as a free and fair exercise consonant with the best of international standards.

“In the end, elections must be held in such a manner that every vote carries the same weight and no vote is minimized because elections took place much earlier or later in one place than in another. Thus, it is better to experience a slight delay to conduct the elections properly rather than to conduct the elections piecemeal and uneven fashion. No one will absolve INEC if such a fate befalls this all-important election. The electoral body must use the one-week extension mend its logistics gaps and lapses. This delay has clearly provoked significant anger and disappointment among the people. The voters were ready and INEC should have been equally as prepared and ready as the voters. Yet, we ask that the people contain their anger and remain calm. Let no one be tempted to breach the peace because of this delay.

“In the greater scheme of things, a one-week delay is not overly burdensome when compared to the importance of conduct of free and just elections in the establishment of representative democracy and good governance in our land. Please, persevere just a bit longer to ensure that the elections on February 23 truly reflect the will of the people. Whatever obstacles may come, be they large or small, let us show the world the Nigerian people will not be deterred from realizing the democracy for which we have fought and sacrificed so long and so hard to achieve”.

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Court Stops INEC, Senate From Enforcing Judgment Sacking Ifeanyi Ubah As Senator

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The Federal High Court in Abuja, on Thursday, stopped the Independent National Electoral Commission and others from giving effect to the April 11, 2019 judgment of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory ousting Ifeanyi Ubah as the Senator representing Anambra South.

The FCT High Court judge, Justice Bello Kawu, in a ruling, on January 17, 2019, declined Ubah’s request to set aside the earlier order issued in the earlier April 11, 2019 judgment.

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S/Court Judgement: Mysterious Owl Attacks Gov Ortom Inside Church

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Shortly after the Supreme Court of Nigeria affirmed the election of Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, he was unexpectedly attacked at the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Makurdi, by a mysterious owl.

According to Daily Post, Ortom was in the church for a special thanksgiving service, when the strange bird attacked.

An eyewitness, Prince Tordue Abe, narrated how the bird, on Tuesday night, found its way into the Church, the exact time the Governor was giving his testimonies and went straight to the altar where Ortom was kneeling down for his testimonies.

But for the prompt efforts of some youths, the night bird, which is superstitiously believed to be a witchcraft bird, would have landed on the Governor’s head.

“It happened few minutes ago while the Governor was on his kneels praying at the Redeemed Christian Church Makurdi.

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“An Owl flew in and headed right towards the direction of the Governor. On sighting the Governor the owl bowed before the Governor and together we rushed and killed it.

“Whatever it was they planned against the Governor, the Holy Spirit brought it to a halt.

“Indeed Governor Ortom is not just a man of God but a powerful man of God,” Abe said.

The apex court had on Tuesday delivered judgement in an appeal brought before it by Barr. Emmanuel Jime of the All Progressive Congress (APC), challenging the decision of the Court of Appeal to have upheld the election of Ortom, who contested under the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in the March 9, 2019 guber election in Benue.

In a 30-second judgement delivered by Justice Sylvester Ngwuata, the Supreme Court reaffirmed the victory of Governor Ortom, saying, “The judgement of the Tribunal and Court of Appeal need not to be disturbed”.

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Supreme Court Verdict On Imo: Jonathan, Wike Challenged For Keeping Mum

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A group, PDP Renaissance, has challenged former President Goodluck Jonathan as well as the Governor of Rivers state, Nyesom Wike, to speak up against the recent Supreme Court’s judgment that sacked the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Emeka Ihedioha as the governor of Imo state, declaring Hope Uzodinma of the ruling All Progressive Congress Governor of Imo state.

The group, in a statement on Wednesday, said the continued silence of the two party leaders is unacceptable.

According to the group, the two party leaders must speak up against injustice meted on a fellow party member as silence would pass for patting the unjust doer on the back.

According to the statement, “Our attention has been drawn to the grave silence from former President Goodluck Jonathan and Rivers Governor Barr. Nyesom Wike on the controversial Supreme Court ruling that sacked the Imo state Governor, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha for the All Progressives Congress’ candidate, Hope Uzodinma.

As leaders of political thought, we had expected former president Goodluck Jonathan and governor Nyesom Wike to condemn the judicial usurper that took place in Imo state that made our great party to lose a governor.

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It is worthy of note that former President Jonathan has often been described as the true reflection of democracy in Nigeria and as such, we expected him to voice out his opinion on matters, such as this, which make mockery of our judiciary system.

Governor Nyesom Wike, we understand, is a supposed friend of the ousted governor Emeka Ihedioha.

Wike and Former President Jonathan’s silence in condemning this anti-democratic move by the APC through a well-orchestrated judicial manipulation to gift the APC candidate, Hope Uzodinma, votes that were never cast for him is not a welcome development.

It was Martin Luther King who once said: In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies but the silence of our friends.

This is no time to play political correctness when we are faced with people that are determined to destroy our very sacred institution.

The Judiciary plays a very important role in every democratic society. The Judiciary ought to provide impartial adjudications of disputes between the state and individuals, between individuals, and between different levels of government within the state. If the Judiciary which serves as a foundation for the rule of law and democracy is destroyed and men of good conscience stay silent, then there is trouble.

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