How I contested against those in Abuja who feel they own Nigeria – Gov Fintiri; Peter Obi says he remains unfazed by lies and propaganda | 5 Things That Should Matter Today

  • How I contested against those in Abuja who feel they own Nigeria – Gov Fintiri
  • INEC writes Buhari, IGP over REC Yunusa’s misconduct in Adamawa election
  • Peter Obi says he remains unfazed by lies and propaganda
  • Binani denies paying N2bn to win Adamawa guber election, claims to be a democrat
  • Melaye shares how he used anointing oil to mobilize Kogi PDP delegates

Across Nigeria’s 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, these are the five top Nigerian news stories you shouldn’t miss:

How I contested against those in Abuja who feel they own Nigeria – Gov Fintiri

Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, Governor of Adamawa State, has made allegations against certain politicians with federal power, claiming they attempted to undermine his victory in the recently concluded gubernatorial election in the state.

After a series of controversies surrounded the election, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) announced the governor as the winner. Professor Muhammed Mele, who served as the returning officer for the election, stated that Fintiri received a total of 430,861 votes, defeating his opponent, Aishatu Dahiru Binani of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who received 396,788 votes.

On Sunday, the electoral body suspended the collation process due to the illegal declaration of the APC candidate as the winner of the election by the then Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Barr Hudu Yunusa Ari, who has since been suspended.

Read also: Fintiri emerges victorious defeating APC’s Binani in tightly contested Adamawa Governorship Election

In a recent interview on a Channels Television program, Fintiri spoke about the incident, claiming that he did not run against Binani but against INEC and those who allegedly influenced the commission. He accused individuals in Abuja of trying to use Adamawa State as a pawn and felt that he had contested against the entire system, including the APC members who were presiding officers during the election.

He said, “I don’t think I have run against any woman in Adamawa State, I ran against enemies of democracy outside Adamawa State.

“I contested against the whole system, I contested against those who feel they own Nigeria from Abuja and they feel they can make Adamawa a scapegoat.

“Even in the election, I didn’t go into the election against the woman, I went into the election against INEC. The whole presiding officers that were conducting the election, all of them were APC members.”

INEC writes Buhari, IGP over REC Yunusa’s misconduct in Adamawa election

Adamawa State gubernatorial election was marred by controversy, after the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) Barrister Hudu Yunusa declared Senator Aisha Dahiru, popularly known as Binani, as the winner of the election. This declaration was made on Monday, despite the fact that the Returning Officer, who is mandated by the Electoral Act to announce such results, had not yet declared a winner.

The REC’s announcement came after a supplementary election was held in 69 polling units on Saturday, in places where it had not been held during the March 18 gubernatorial election. Prior to her declaration, Binani was trailing behind the incumbent Governor Ahmadu Fintiri of the Peoples Democratic Party, who had maintained a margin of 31,249 votes. Fintiri had scored 421,524 votes ahead of Binani, who polled 390,275 votes before the supplementary poll.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) denounced the purported declaration of Binani as the winner, stating that the action of the REC amounted to the usurpation of the power of the Returning Officer, and was therefore null, void, and of no effect. The commission also suspended the collation of results of the supplementary election and summoned the REC to Abuja.

In the aftermath of the illegal declaration, Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), demanded that the controversial REC and other parties involved in the voided declaration should be arrested and prosecuted to serve as a deterrent to anti-democratic forces. The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) also described the action of the REC as an insult to the Electoral Act and to the Commission.

Former Director, Voter Education and Publicity at INEC, Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, stated that Yunusa ought to face some kind of ‘inquisition.’ Osaze-Uzzi spoke on Monday while fielding questions on Arise Television’s Morning Show program. He noted that INEC could not discipline a REC, stating that only the President, acting on the resolution by the two-thirds majority of the Senate, can remove the REC, warning he might face jail time for his action.

The Commission has now decided to write to the Inspector-General of Police for the immediate investigation and possible prosecution of the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) for Adamawa State, Barr. Hudu Yunusa Ari. It has also requested the Secretary to the Government of the Federation to draw the attention of the appointing authority to the unwholesome behaviour of the REC for further action.

Peter Obi says he remains unfazed by lies and propaganda

Presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP) in the February 25 election, Mr Peter Obi, has reaffirmed his commitment to achieving a New Nigeria, despite what he described as lies and propaganda against him. Speaking at the National Executive Council (NEC) meeting of the LP in Asaba, Delta State on Tuesday, Obi stated that he has always lived his life in a law-abiding manner and would never knowingly break any laws.

He acknowledged that obstacles along the way to victory are to be expected, and urged Nigerians to remain calm and steadfast in their journey of reclaiming their mandate of a New Nigeria. “If they come at us through land, air, and sea, we will respond to them through land, air, and sea, but we will remain law-abiding and will never give up on the nation,” Obi said.

Obi explained that the forces that had, over the years, lived off the old order, were bound to fight back, as is being experienced currently. He reiterated his commitment to a Nigeria that will be beneficial to every Nigerian, stressing that the struggle to reclaim the mandate is not about him, as a person, but about millions of Nigerians who reposed their trust in him through their votes.

He said, “Beyond regaining our mandate, I am committed to lifting people out of poverty. I remain committed to transforming Nigeria, starting from the North to every part of the nation.” Obi expressed confidence that victory is achievable and that he will never give up on the journey until it is achieved.

Binani denies paying N2bn to win Adamawa guber election, claims to be a democrat

Aisha ‘Binani’ Dahiru, the All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate in Adamawa state, has denied allegations of bribery against an official of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The denial came after reports emerged that the APC candidate gave INEC officials N2 billion to be declared as the winner of the Adamawa governorship supplementary election, which was held on Saturday following the declaration of the March 18 poll as inconclusive due to alleged irregularities.

The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) of INEC, Hudu Yunusa-Ari, declared Binani as the winner when the results from the remaining local government areas (LGAs) had not been announced. However, INEC subsequently discontinued the exercise, declaring the action of the REC null and void, and stating that the declaration of a winner is the responsibility of the returning officer.

In a statement issued on Tuesday evening, Binani denied giving the sum of N2 billion to “procure a favourable declaration as governor-elect to some unnamed INEC staff”, describing the allegations as “very bizarre, unfounded and wild”.

She added, “I wish to reiterate that I am a Democrat. I have always been a committed Democrat and will never do anything to subvert the democratic process. I am not a do-or-die politician.”

Binani went on to allege that the REC was told to stand down by two INEC national commissioners from Abuja who were supposed to be in Adamawa in a supervisory capacity and that there was a nocturnal visit by some INEC national officers to the Adamawa state government house before the declaration was made. She also accused the collation and returning officers of being selected by the governor of Adamawa.

“The roles of these INEC officers from Abuja and the real mission of the two to the government house should be of interest to all democrats,” Binani said. “I urge all lovers of democracy to take a deeper interest in our electoral process and democracy not only in Adamawa but in the whole country.”

Binani thanked her supporters for their “unflinching support in the midst of half-truths and opposition smear propaganda”.

Ahmadu Fintiri of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was announced as the winner of the Adamawa governorship supplementary election after INEC commenced the collation of election results on Tuesday.

Melaye shares how he used anointing oil to mobilize Kogi PDP delegates

Senator Dino Melaye, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the Kogi State governorship election, has credited his victory in the party’s primary election to God. Speaking on Channels Television’s Politics Today on Tuesday, Melaye dismissed claims that delegates were financially induced, hinting that he is not privy to such information.

“I’m not a staff [member] of the EFCC or ICPC. I wouldn’t know if there was money shared. But if, at my level, I cannot finance a primary, then there’s a problem somewhere. But definitely, God bankrolled me. I bank with the almighty God,” he said.

Melaye went on to reveal his unusual approach to mobilizing delegates, stating that he gave them anointing oil, which he attributed to his success in the primary election. “I just told you that I believe in Philippians 4:19 that God shall supply all my needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. And I am telling you that He did it,” he said.

Following the primary election, several of the runners-up, including former deputy governor Yomi Awoniyi, raised concerns about the process and called for the “right thing” to be done. However, Melaye maintained that the primary was “the fairest and most transparent primary ever conducted in Kogi State,” adding that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) adjudged it so.

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