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22 Apr 2019

It's Unfortunate That After All This Experience, A Man Like You Still Lacks Understanding - Saraki Floors Tinubu

enate President Bukola Saraki says it is "unfortunate" that after 22 months in the legislature, Bola Tinubu, National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), does "not have a better understanding of how the legislature works".

As reported by 247NNU earlier, Tinubu, had accused Saraki and Yakubu Dogara, both former members of the party, of budget padding, saying: “Just look at the way Saraki, Dogara and their ilk hijacked the budget process these past four years,” he said in a statement released by Tunde Rahman, his spokesman.
“National budgets were delayed and distorted as these actors repeatedly sought to pad budgets with pet projects that would profit them. Even worse, they cut funds intended to prosper projects that would have benefitted the average person. After four years of their antics halting the progress of government, we should do all we can to prevent a repeat of their malign control of the National Assembly."

Responding in a statement by Yusuph Olaniyonu, his spokesperson, on Monday, Saraki described Tinubu's allegation as unfounded, fictitious and  an attempt to cast the leadership of the eighth National Assembly in bad light.

Saraki challenged Tinubu to substantiate his claim by making reference to where the National Assembly "sought to pad with pet projects". He described the allegation as careless, irresponsible and callous, while demanding that Tinubu should withdraw it.

“Yesterday, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu released another of his now well-expected quarterly vicious attack on the person of Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki, the President of the Senate,” Saraki said.

“Since we have taken it for granted that Tinubu’s attack on Saraki every three months (quarterly) will come as expected, we would just have ignored his statement but for the fact that it was filled with untruth, fallacies and misrepresentations. It is unfortunate that a man like Tinubu who had been in the Senate (though for 22 months and under a military regime) should not have a better understanding of how the legislature works.

“The passage of budgets is definitely not the exclusive responsibility of the leadership of the Senate. Most of the work is done by the various committees. These committees are headed by senators representing different parties. It is the level of co-operation between the committees and the MDAs in the timely defence of the budget proposals and the ability of the two chambers of the National Assembly to reconcile their figures that usually determine how soon the budget is passed.

“So, if a man like Tinubu is spreading this falsehood about budget passage and delay being deliberately orchestrated by the National Assembly leadership, one wonders whether he tries to even understand what happens in the federal legislature at all or is that the only thing that is of interest to him is ‘jockeying and maneuvering for influence’, as he puts it.

“In all the three budgets already passed by the National Assembly, we challenge Tinubu to make specific reference to where Dr. Saraki and the leadership of the National Assembly 'sought to pad with pet projects' as he alleged. Tinubu should be graceful enough to substantiate this allegation.”

Saraki said he is proud that the eighth assembly has records that are unmatchable by all previous senates in the sheer number of bills passed and its signifance to the economy

“As a leader of the Eighth National Assembly, Dr. Saraki is proud that under his watch, the Senate has surpassed the records of all previous Senate in the number of bills passed, the significance of these bills to the revival of the economy, the fight against insecurity and corruption, improvement in the provision of health service and the education sector, as well as better social service delivery to the generality of the people,” he said.

“The bills passed, motions moved, intervention made and frequent engagement with the people were all directed towards addressing the day to day issues that affect the lives of the ordinary Nigerians.

“However, Tinubu should leave Dr. Saraki out of his schemes and manipulations towards 2023. It is obvious his arbitrary and tactless interference in the process for the emergence of the leadership of the Ninth Assembly is already falling through. Our only advice for him is that if he is interested in the stability of the National Assembly, he should allow the members to elect their leadership in consultations with the party leadership.”

JAMB Launches Probe Into Credentials Of Applicants From Years Back Till Date

Heads are set to roll across the country as the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board has launched a probe into the credentials of applicants dating back to 2009.

This implies that persons who cheated the system to pass the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination to get into school and may have even graduated and participated in the National Youth Service Corps will be arrested and their certificates withdrawn.

The Head, Media and Information of JAMB, Fabian Benjamin, said this during an interview with The PUNCH on Monday.
Benjamin said the probe had begun and it would be completed in record time as JAMB has acquired software which would be able to identify fake biometric data.

Speaking in a separate interview on 95.1 Nigeria Info FM Abuja, the JAMB spokesman said, “We want to do what we call biometric verification dating back to 10 years.

“Even if you are now working and we discovered that someone wrote exams for you, we will publish your name and the law agencies will do the needful.

“We have the biometrics from 10 years ago. We will compare the photos with thumbprints and names.

“We discovered that a candidate could have written exams with 30 different names.”

Explaining how impersonation takes place, Benjamin added, “This is how they operate: My name is Fabian Benjamin, but I will register as Abdullahi Musa and write exams for Abdullahi Musa; but I will use Fabian Benjamin’s picture and biometric data; only the name will be different.

“I will register as John David, as Austin Steven. I will register in the name of anyone that pays me, write exams for that person, but I will use my picture.

“What this means is that when I get into the hall, the biometric data verification will allow me to enter, but I will write the exam for someone else.

“The person for whom exams were written would get into university and, of course, most universities don’t use the pictures of JAMB during admissions. But what we want to enforce now is that the institutions must use the picture of the person.

“We will give the institution the photo and it must match. In fact, only our picture must be accepted by the institution.”

Speaking with our correspondent during a separate interview, the JAMB spokesman said it had become important to expose exam cheats to serve as a deterrent to others.

He said the photos of those found culpable would be published for all to see, even if they have since started working.

Benjamin said, “If you graduated from university and you did not write UTME, it means the foundation is faulty and the building cannot stand.

“We have already started the probe, but we will go deeper after the exams.

“It will not take too long. We are using software, so it will just check the biometric data of candidates and if the biometric data of someone shows about six different names, then it will notify us.

“So, if one person’s photo brings up different names and we have spotted this, we will find out where the person is and then we will pick them up.”

He said the exam body had been able to arrest over 100 persons nationwide for malpractice in the ongoing examinations.

Benjamin said JAMB had written a letter to the Attorney-General of the Federation for advice on their prosecution.

“Even if they are not punished, let the public know that Mr. A who is a doctor became so after someone wrote exams for him.

“That shame alone will serve as a deterrence to others. We must start from 10 years ago, so that others will learn,” he said.

This Picture Of Gorillas Will Make You Rethink The Origin Of The Human Race

From time immemorial, the human race, especially the Africans, have oftentimes had their origination linked to gorillas.

This crude comparison has been used in various forms but mostly for racial slurs. Although still a topic differed upon by scholars, the gorillas of the animal kingdom continue to give this comparison weight with some theatrics.
In the picture above, these gorillas struck flawless, eerily human-like poses in a selfie with park ranger Mathieu Shamavu, who helped rescue the two female orphans when they were babies.

 "Another day at the office..." Shamavu wrote on Facebook, in a post that was shared more than 20,000 times.

The gorillas, Ndakazi and Ndeze, were raised in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and "are always acting cheeky so this was the perfect shot of their true personalities

Lectured in Iraq, murdered in Nigeria… five things to know about Briton killed in Kajuru

On Friday, while Faye Mooney was holidaying alongside Mathew Oguche, her colleague, at the Kajuru resort in Kaduna state, suspected bandits opened fire on the facility, killing the duo and kidnapping four others.

A witness told TheCable Mooney and Oguche were killed while trying to take cover. The incident has left many heartbroken, including family and friends of the deceased. In this piece, we look at five things about her:

The deceased was a staff of Mercy Corps, a humanitarian organisation, where she had been for almost two years. As far back as 2010, she also worked with Amnesty International as an accountability assistant.


According to a statement from Mercy Corps, Mooney finished from the University College of London from where she proceeded to the London School of Economics.


Mooney worked at the University of Soran, Kurdistan in Iran, where she taught English in 2014, and later, at International Business College, Mitrovica, as a lecturer and communications manager.


The late Briton also worked as the co-editor of Womens Views on News, an online platform that chronicles “women’s news, opinions and current affairs” to “redress the gender imbalance in global news reporting by telling the stories that the mainstream press ignores, while at the same time encouraging more feminist writers to become news reporters and editors.”


For two months, from November to December, 2016, she served as a consultant for the National Strategy Against Human Trafficking at the Centre for Peace and Reconciliation, in Kosovo, .


Grieving over her loss, her family said she was an inspiration to everyone including her students and work colleagues.

Guardian UK quoted a family source as saying: “Her bravery and her belief in a better society took her to places others feared. Faye did what she wanted; nothing held her back. Permanently against the grain, Faye was unconventional to the core. Her family and friends are so proud of who she was and of everything she achieved in her short but purposeful life. Her memory will always be cherished.”

Mercy Corps also described her as “a dedicated and passionate” official who had been with them for almost two years.

A statement from the organisation noted she devoted her time to “making a difference in Nigeria, supporting our teams and the communities we work with to tell their stories of impact, and leading efforts to counter hate speech and violence.”

The British high commission also mourned her loss and offered its “most profound sympathies and condolences to the families and friends at this difficult time.”

Police Officer Shoots Man To Escape Mob Attack In Ogun State

A policeman, Insp. Sunday Ogundapo, the team leader of the Zonal Intervention Squad (ZIS), Obada, Ogun, had allegedly shot one Akeem Akinsanya to death in an effort to escape attack by suspected cultists.

DSP Hausa Idris-Adamu, the Zone 2 PPRO, said in a statement that the police team had gone to effect the arrest of some suspected cultists when the team leader was attacked.

“On April 21, at 2 p.m., a team of operatives from the Zonal Intervention Squad (ZIS) Obada Oko area, Abeokuta Ogun State, investigating an alleged case of unlawful possession of arms and ammunition/cultism went to effect an arrest of one Abu ‘m’ a.k.a Regal, a notorious cultist.
“Regal had been implicated by one Afeez Popoola a.k.a Level who had been previously arrested and undergoing investigation by the team; he is said to be the curator of arms and ammunition of the Eiye Confraternity Cassava Perch in Ifo axis of Ogun State.

“The said Abu Regal was arrested by the team around 3 p.m. while in possession of one locally made Pistol with Cartridges kept in a handbag. The items were recovered by the police team.

“Whilst the team was taking the suspects to the station along with the recovered items, a renowned tout popularly known as Obasanjo in company of a host of other suspected cult members ambushed the team and launched an attack on them.

“One Inspector Sunday Ogundapo, the team leader who happened to be in possession of the recovered exhibits was inflicted with machete injuries on his head.

“He was about to be dispossessed of his AK47 rifle, in the process of struggling with the mob, a bullet was accidentally discharged hitting one Akeem Akinsanya and he was fatally injured.

“The remains of the deceased have been deposited at the Ifo General Hospital morgue for postmortem while members of the gang were arrested and are now under investigation.

“Members of the general public are hereby requested to come forward and assist the police with any useful information that will assist in tracking and apprehending all these cultists and other miscreants that are terrorising innocent citizens,” the PPRO said. (NAN)

JUST IN: Court Fixes Date For Osun State Governorship Dispute

The Court of Appeal in Abuja has scheduled hearing for April 24 in the appeals filed by the Osun State Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) against the March 22, 2019 by the Osun State Governorship Election Tribunal.

Information about the hearing date is contained in notices sent to parties by the court’s Registry, a copy of which The Nation sighted on Monday in Abuja.

The tribunal, in a split decision of two-to-one, voided the victory of Oyetola and the APC in the election held on September 22, 2018, but concluded with a rerun on September 27, 2018.
Two members of the tribunal’s three-member panel upheld the petition filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its candidate Senator Ademola Adeleke against the outcome of election, while its chairman dismissed it for being unmeritorious.

Justices Peter Obiorah and Adegboye Gbolagunte gave the majority decision, which replaced Oyetola and APC with Adeleke and PDP as winners of the election.

The tribunal Chairman, Justice Muhammad Sirajo, in his dissenting judgment/minority decision, held otherwise.

He dismissed the petition by Adeleke and PDP on the grounds that the petitioners failed to prove their claims.

In the separate notices of appeal they filed against the tribunal’s majority judgment, Oyetola and the APC ripped the judgment apart, arguing that “it is perverse, replete with contradictions and against the weight of evidence.”

The want the Court of Appeal to uphold their appeals, set aside the majority judgment and dismiss the October 16, 2018 petition by Adeleke and the PDP.

Oyetola and the APC said they were contesting the entire majority judgment, except where it held that it lacked jurisdiction to set aside the INEC Guidelines used for the election; that the allegation of over voting was not proved; that the petitioners did not prove voided votes, and other parts of the judgment where it agreed with their arguments.

They queried the validity of the judgment, which was authored and delivered by Justice Obiorah, who they noted, did not participate in all the sittings of the tribunal during trial.

The appellants are of the view that the entire of the majority judgment is a nullity, because it was written and delivered by Justice Obiorah “who did not participate in all the proceedings of the tribunal and who was not present when all the witnesses gave evidence.”

They noted that Justice Obiorah was absent on February 6, 2019  when the respondents witnesses (RWs) 12 and 13 – Ayoola Soji and Oladejo Kazeem – testified and tendered exhibits, which the tribunal admitted in evidence.

The appellants are contending that, having not attended the tribunal’s siting on February 6, 2019, Justice Obiorah did not see the two witnesses and was unable to examine their demeanour, as required, and therefore, it was unlawful for the judge to have authored a judgment in which he reviewed the evidence given by the witnesses.

In the notice of appeal filed for Oyetola by his lawyer, Wole Olanipekun (SAN), it was argued that: “The writing of and or the participation of the Honourable Justice P. C. Obiorah in the writing of the judgment of the lower tribunal of 22nd March 2019 and delivery of same, vitiates the entire judgment.”

Oyetola and the APC faulted the decision of the tribunal, in the majority judgment, to declare the rerun election unlawful and proceeded to set it aside.

They also faulted the tribunal’s finding that the respondents did not deny the claim by the petitions, through PW74, that the Returning Officer cancelled election in the seven polling units and ordered a rerun.

The appellants said: “The first and third respondents (INEC and APC), in their pleadings, did not admit that it was the Returning Officer that cancelled the result of the election in the seven polling units, but rather, that it was the 1st respondent that cancelled the election in the seven units as distinct from the units’ results.

“Indeed, as pleaded at paragraphs 24, 25, 27 and 29 of the petition, it was the 1st respondent that cancelled the election in the seven units for the reasons alleged by the petitioners.

“The tribunal ought to have held the petitioners bound by their pleadings that it was the 1st respondent that cancelled the election in the units and the fact that the 3rd respondent also pleaded that it was the 1sy respondent that cancelled the election in the units.”

They argued that even if it was any of the electoral officials that announced the cancellation and rerun election, in law, they acted as INEC’s agents of the first respondent (INEC).

The appellants noted that the petitioners did not only fail to tender results from the seven polling units to support their claim that election actually held in the polling units and the results were cancelled;  they also failed to exhibit the votes scored  by the parties that participated in the election, if actually their was an election.

Oyetayo and APC argued that, rather than holding against the petitioners, for not supplying the necessary evidence, the tribunal wrongly relied on the evidence of PW74, which it had earlier expunged from the record for being hearsay.

They argued that, in the absence of vital evidence, “the tribunal ought to have held that the petitioners did not make out the case that there was any election in the seven polling units and that the Returning Officer cancelled the results of the election in the seven units.”

"I messed up a big opportunity and my heart is bleeding right now", Jarrell Miller reacts to drug test against Anthony Joshua fight

Jarrell Miller admitted he 'messed up' after failing a second test for banned substance that saw his world title fight against Nigerian-born Anthony Joshua scrapped less than two months to June 1 fight date.

In a video message on social media channel, Instagram, the American pugilist admitted he is ready to humble himself with 'time to do right' and vowed to 'come back better'.

Miller’s was on the verge of being disqualified from the New York heavyweight bout on June 1, after the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA) revealed to both camps the presence of ‘foreign objects’ in the boxer's sample during a routine test for banned substance, resulting to him being denied a licence to fight at Madison Square Garden.

Miller opted to for a further sample in order to reapply for licence to challenge Joshua, but after turning out positive again for the banned substance it was clearly evident the fight will no longer hold, promoter Eddie Hearn noted.

Reacting earlier after the previous finding on Tuesday, April 16, Miller took to Instagram and tresed that he had “never knowingly taken any banned substance and when I found out the news I was totally shocked.”

“My team and I stand for integrity, decency and honesty and together we will stand to fight this with everything we have.

“This was a voluntarily test that I was very happy to do and these results came just one week after another voluntarily test that I had taken which was completely clean,” he said.

However, on Friday, April 19, the boxer changed the sound of the music, telling fans: “I messed up. I made a bad call. (There were) a lot of ways to handle the situation, I handled it wrongly and I'm paying a price for it.

“I messed up a big opportunity and I'm hurting on the inside. My heart is bleeding right now - I hurt my family, my friends, my team, my supporters.

“But, I'm owning up to it. I'm going to deal with it. I'm going to correct it. I'm going to come back better and I'm humbled by the experience,” added Miller, who stressed that that boxers “go through a lot” and would not like to his fellow fighters a “bad name.”

Earlier, we reported Anthony Joshua will fight a new opponent on June 1 after America’s Jarrell Miller was sent packing after returning positive in a second test for a banned substance, says Joshua's promoter Eddie Hearn.

According to the BBC, Miller was previously denied a license to fight on June 1 after failing the first test from an earlier sample taken on March 20.

Hearn revealed Miller had "failed a second separate test for a further substance,” even as he disclosed that a new opponent will be announced next week to face Joshua, who currently holds the British IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight belts.

Muhammadu Buhari University Set To Be Established In Nigeria

Mrs Aisha Buhari, wife of the President, has expressed her plan to establish a private university to be known as “Muhammadu Buhari University”.

She disclosed this on Saturday during a town haLl meeting in Yola organized by her in collaboration with concern indigenes of Adamawa.

Aisha, who did not however reveal when or where the university would be sited, explained that the university would be established in collaboration with partners from Sudan and Qatar.
Aisha who lamented the challenges facing education and various sectors in the state, called for active support of the state indigenes in complementing government efforts.

“I cannot conclude without suggesting how we can complement the efforts of government in achieving some of its developmental goals.

“On this note, I would like to advocate for the establishment of Adamawa Development Trust Fund through which prioritized developmental projects can be financed and implemented,” she said.

Amb. Fati Ballah also called for reconciliation and forgiveness among the people of the state and the setting up of a committee to come up with a blueprint for the development of the state.

Alhaji Sadiq Daware, who spoke on agriculture at the meeting, noted that 80 per cent of the state land was arable and suitable for farming.

Daware added that with River Benue which passes through the state, the state has the potential for massive irrigation and all year round farming programmes.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that other speakers at the meeting include Prof. Shehu Iya of Modibbo Adama University, Yola, who spoke on education; Prof. Auwal Abubakar of Federal Medical Centre, Yola, who spoke on health; and Mrs Helen Mathias who spoke on women and youths.

Others are Mallam Umar Abubakar who spoke on security; Gen. Buba Marwa on drugs; Sen. Silas Zwingina on Good Governance, and Dr Umar Bindir who spoke on Poverty.

The meeting was also attended by politicians, particularly APC, PDP and ADC members in the state.

Senators Hated The N7m Reduction From Their Monthly Allowance

Olusola Adeyeye, lawmaker representing Osun central senatorial district, says senators earned as high as N20m as running cost until the 7th assembly presided over by David Mark.

Adeyeye disclosed this while reacting to the criticism of his stance that Nigeria’s constitution poes a problem for the country.

Last year, Shehu Sani, senator representing Kaduna central, revealed that members of the upper legislative chamber receive N13.5 million monthly as running cost, in addition to over N700,000 monthly consolidated salary and allowances of each senator.
Adeyeye said he played a pivotal role in prevailing on David Mark, two-time senate president, to reduce the running cost of the lawmakers.

“Let me say that the running costs used to be very significantly higher than the current amount at a time when the naira fetched twice its current value of hard currency,” Adeyeye said.

“I dare say that I was a pivotal anchor of internal pressures that reduced the running costs from what was as high as 20 million naira per month. I had long discussions with Senator David Mark.

“To his credit, I did not need to talk much to convince him about the necessity to reduce the running costs. The knotty issues were the timing and magnitude of reduction.

“That Senator David Mark survived eight years as Senate President, despite stepwise reduction of running costs during his tenure, speaks volumes about his leadership skills and dexterity.

At plenary on Wednesday, Adeyeye told his colleagues that they do not “have the spine to face what we need to give this republic have peace and progress”.

He complained about an imbalance of items listed in the exclusive list compared to the concurrent list while canvassing for the creation of state police.

His statement sparked controversy, with many disagreeing with his stance.

In his reaction, the lawmaker said: “Nigeria’s problems emanate from a cabal of survivalist adventurers in power drawn from all ethnicities. Of the 20 years span of our Fourth Republic, southerners have held power for 14 years! Yet, pundits conveniently heap blames on Northerners and Fulanis as if Obasanjo and Jonathan are northerners.

“One sad aspect of the discourse on the maladies afflicting our Republic is the tendency to project northern states as parasitic on southern oil. But are Osun and Ekiti less parasitic than Kwara and Jigawa in terms of the proportion of their budgetary revenues that are derived from allocations from Abuja?

“If the abuse of State police is sufficient reason for disbanding it, perhaps we should long have disbanded the Nigeria Police for the same reason! Add to that the Nigerian Army, the EFCC and other monopolized instruments of coercion which Obasanjo used repeatedly to subvert elected governments of Anambra, Plateau, Ekiti and Oyo!

“Despite differences because of history and local situations, is it an accident that the vast majority of federalist constitutions across the world make provisions for local or provincial police? Aside from dispensing tyranny and perennial inefficiency, in what aspect of Nigerian life has our Republic benefitted from overbearing centralism?

“To say that all I have done has been to complain is quite disingenuous; it also is a clear pointer to selective recall. In my speech, I cited bringing a solution to the atmosphere of terror and crime which I inherited as Chairman of my Local Government. Was that not a valid example of bringing local ingenuity to solve a local problem?

“In any case, rather than metaphorically drawing daggers at each other’s throats over such matters, should we not expunge the names of the LGs from the Constitution and let each state create whatever suits its logic or lack of it?”

Nigerians React As SAN, Festus Keyamo, Shares Details Of His Time In Prison

Nigerian SAN, Festus Keyamo, who was the spokesman for the Buhari Presidential Campaign this past elections has shared some details about his past to the public.
The lawyer who has been in the crosshairs of critics for the paast few days has shared his experience in jail years back and alluded the support of his mentor, the Late Gani Fawehinmi, in his fight/activism for Nigeria.

See his post below:

The reactins to this post has been mixed however, as some praise him for his activism, others slam him for his support of Buhari and APC:
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