Biafra Nations Youth League (BNYL) has demanded the immediate withdrawal of troops of the ‘Operation Atilogwu Udo’ from the Southeast region.
The Nigerian Army had on November 1 launched another army operation code named ‘Operation Atilogwu Udo’, which is in continuation of the ‘Operation Python Dance.’
Reacting, BNYL warned the federal government that should the ‘Operation Atilogwu Udo’ carry on with the activities of the Python Dance 1 & 2, there would be crisis in the region.
National Leader of BNYL, Princewill Chimex Richard, in a statement on Saturday, wondered why the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration would militarize the east every year “whereas other regions, especially in the North where bandits and terrorists are killing people on a daily basis are being ignored.”
He said: “This government does not want peace. It is wrong to militarize a region that is violence free.
“If the purpose of doing this is to put fear in us, then they have failed, because before we embarked on this struggle, we have signed our death warrant with the creator.
“Nothing can frighten us again, but I assure them that they will fail in their bid to stop us.
“We are only considering the advice of our advisors. Not that we cannot adopt the Southern Cameroon style of agitation since we may not want another war.”
Sowore: SERAP Condemns Re-arrest, Invasion Of Justice Ojukwu’s Court
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has strongly condemned the violent re-arrest of Omoyele Sowore and his co-defendant, Olawale Bakare by officials of the State Security Service (SSS), and the apparent harassment and intimidation of Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu on Friday.
Armed SSS officials reportedly stormed the courtroom, causing pandemonium at the court and physically assaulting Mr Sowore. The judge reportedly had to take cover. She had earlier ordered the SSS to release Sowore within 24 hours and also pay him N100,000 for improper legal conduct. The SSS then released Mr Sowore only for him and his co-defendant to be violently re-arrested.
Reacting, SERAP’s Deputy Director, Kolawole Oluwadare said: “The appalling invasion of the courtroom and the ill-treatment of Sowore and Bakare is a blatant attack on the rule of law and the sanctity and integrity of our justice system. An independent judiciary, free from intimidation and harassment is a basic precondition to a functioning democracy under the rule of law.”
SERAP’s statement read in part: “The violent re-arrest of Sowore and Bakare right inside the courtroom is a textbook case of a mockery of justice and abuse of the judicial process. It drives home the failure of the Nigerian government to fulfill its constitutional and international human rights obligations to respect citizens’ human rights and observe the rule of law.
“What happened in the courtroom is a fatal blow to human rights and the independence and integrity of the judiciary. SERAP is seriously concerned that the Government of President Muhammadu Buhari is not observing fundamental international human rights and due process standards.
“We urge the Nigerian authorities to immediately and unconditionally release Sowore and Bakare and end the fragrant attack on the rule of law. “If Nigerian authorities are serious about human rights and the rule of law, they should hold those responsible to account. Only then will Nigerians have full confidence in this government’s ability to protect their human rights, obey the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary.
“The United Nations Human Rights Council, African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and members of the international community should urgently put pressure on the Nigerian authorities to end serious violations and abuses of human rights and threats to the rule of law in Nigeria.”
Kogi Gov’ship Election: Melaye Declines Appointment As PDP Campaign DG
Senator Dino Melaye has turned down his appointment by the Kogi State campaign of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the November 16 governorship poll.
Stakeholders in the state’s chapter had during a visit to the Abuja secretariat of the party yesterday touted Melaye as the Director General of the party’s campaign council.
But in a swift reaction, the senator, who did not accompany the stakeholders on the visit, said in a tweet and on his Facebook page declined the appointment.
He wrote: “Let me state categorically that I have turned down the position of Director General of the PDP Kogi State governorship campaign council.
“I wish the PDP all the best. When truth is a casualty, there is chaos.”
Melaye had contested and lost the party’s September 3 primary election and had subsequently filed an appeal to the leadership of the party complaining that most of the ballot boxes containing his delegates’ vote were snatched when armed thugs invaded the venue of the exercise.
But the leadership of the party had insisted that the number of votes in the said missing ballot boxes was not enough to invalidate the victory of the winner of the primaries, Mr Musa Wada, who scored over 700 votes against Melaye’s 70.
Majority of the 12 aspirants that contested the primaries with Wada however pledged to work for the unity and success of the PDP in the election.
Speaking on behalf of other aspirants, Muhammed Shuaibu Tettes, said the aspirants accepted the outcome of the primary election in good faith.
Tettes said: “As members of the Kogi PDP 2019 G-12, the urgent need for intra-party cohesion and unity of purpose at this moment is recognised.
“It is for this reason that the candidacy of Engr. Musa Wada is considered worthy of undivided support as the task to rebuild Kogi starts in earnest.
“Considering the reconciliation efforts of Engr. Musa Wada and his preparedness to actively partner with other aspirants that lost the ticket, we have accepted him as a partner in progress in the liberation struggle and also accept to work with him in the overall interest of the PDP and Kogi State.”
Some of the party chieftains that were at the secretariat in solidarity with the candidate were a former governor of the state, Capt. Idris Wada, who lost the ticket to his younger brother.
Also at the party secretariat were Emmanuel Omebije, Princess Grace Iyeh Adejoh, Dr. Joseph Ameh Erico, Alhaji Kabiru Haruna, Adebayo Averehi and Aminu Abubakar Sulaiman.
Gov. Ihedioha Launches 13.5bn Road Projects In Imo
The governor of Imo state, Emeka Ihedioha, has launched the construction of 13.5bn rural road project.Ihedioha
The World Bank assisted Rural Access and Mobility Project (RAMP) include 380.7 kilometres of the rural road across the 27 Local Government Areas of the state.
Speaking at the flag-off at Onuimo, Isu and Mbaitoli LGAs of the state, Governor Ihedioha assured the readiness of his administration to partner development agencies for the betterment of the state.
The governor said he approved the swift payment of the counterpart fund to activate the project upon assumption of office.
The Imo no one citizen who decried the poor states of roads in the state said the project will boost Agriculture and socio-economic development in the state and reduce rural-urban migration.
In his words, “As soon we assumed office, the RAMP project attracted our attention, and so came under review. Our task teams and committees analyzed the program and its processes, and being satisfied with its objectives, immediately ratified it, then provided the necessary approvals and directives therein including updating payments of counterpart funds.”
He continued, “As a State, and indeed as a person, we are particularly grateful to the two (2) institutions that have made today possible – The World Bank and the AFD (the French Development Bank). As a policy of State, we will continue, as a matter of fact, to intensify our engagements with the development partners and multilateral institutions, in order to leverage on their pedigree.”
The governor revealed his administration’s intention to revive the Imo Rural Roads Maintenance Agency (IRROMA), to ensure that no part of Imo State rural areas remained inaccessible due to bad roads.
“In order to ensure that beyond the construction of these projects, their continuous use is guaranteed, we will revive the State Road Maintenance Agency. This will ensure that our roads remain in satisfactory conditions even years after construction, ” Ihedioha said.”
Governor Ihedioha assured that construction on the state’s urban and major link roads will commence in earnest.
“Let me use this platform to say that in the next few days, massive construction will commerce on Imo urban and major link roads. You will agree that we met a road network in a deplorable state of disrepair. We have painstakingly gone through the path of due process – from the design to the procurement.
“We have involved the Ministry of Works, as never before, in the process. We want to deliver durable roads that will stand the test of time. Be assured, the development will get to ALL parts of Imo State, no discrimination or exclusions.”, he concluded.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Rural Development, Richmond Osuji, said the state government approved the payment of 15% Initial Mobilization Fund for the project.
He disclosed that the state government has mapped out fund to compensate owners of properties that will be affected in the course of the project.
Osuji promised that the Bureau for Rural Development will ensure the compliance of the contractors with the technical specification, budget and timeline for the completion of the projects.
In his speech, the National Coordinator of RAMP, Udandoma Ularamu, stated that Imo state is the fifth state in the country that have partnered with the agency.