I’ll work hard for Nigeria – Tinubu tells Buhari at APC rally finale; Vote buyers now collecting account numbers – Shehu Sani | 5 Things That Should Matter Today

  • I’ll work hard for Nigeria – Tinubu tells Buhari at APC rally finale
  • Vote buyers now collecting account numbers – Shehu Sani
  • NRC suspends train services for general elections
  • Malami, Emefiele face contempt charges for defying Supreme Court ruling
  • Appeal Court affirms Oyebanji’s election

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

I’ll work hard for Nigeria – Tinubu tells Buhari at APC rally finale

If elected, All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate Bola Tinubu promises to “work tirelessly” for the country.

On Tuesday, during the APC presidential campaign’s grand finale held at the Teslim Balogun stadium in the Surulere area of Lagos state, Tinubu praised President Muhammadu Buhari for his efforts in supporting his presidential ambition.

In preparation for Tuesday’s final campaign event, Buhari landed in Lagos early Tuesday morning.

The ex-governor of Lagos promised “diligent and robust” implementation of all of his policies during the gathering.

“I heard loud and clear the level of confidence you have in me. In a distant country, Mr. President told them of my characteristics and his faith in my capacity to do a good job as a president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. I thank him very much,” the APC candidate said.

“He returned yesterday and said he must come to Lagos to attend this rally. He never missed his word and promise. He promised to give to you the future of this country – to lay it in the hands of the youths. I want to say thank you very much.

“I assure you that as you worked hard for me, I will work hard for Nigeria. As you give Nigerians the hope to renew their faith in their country, I will sustain that hope. I will bring it to those who look helpless today.

“All the agenda in our programme – renewed hope manifesto – will be pursued diligently and vigorously with all our energy.”

Vote buyers now collecting account numbers – Shehu Sani

Shehu Sani, a former senator representing Kaduna South, said that election day “vote buyers” are using an alternative strategy to influence the next presidential and national assembly elections on Saturday.

Voter buyers, he claims, are now gathering the bank account information of potential “vote sellers.”

Sani’s remarks come after the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) redesigned the naira, causing widespread cash shortages.

The activist had previously claimed that certain governors had hidden away the old naira notes for the purpose of vote buying, but that the CBN’s redesign of the naira had rendered the plundered monies unusable.

Sani said that politicians are doing more than just offering financial incentives in the form of online transfers of cash to voters; they are also offering “palliatives,” or comforts, in return for votes.

“Vote buyers have resorted to collecting the account numbers of the electorates.

“There is also sharing palliatives in return for votes,” Sani said on Twitter.

NRC suspends train services for general elections

The Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) has announced the suspension of rail services in the country.

This was confirmed in a statement issued by NRC’s spokesman, Mr. Mahmood Yakubu on Tuesday.

According to him, rail services would be suspended from Saturday, Feb. 25 to Monday, Feb. 27.

He said the services were suspended to enable Nigerians to exercise their voting rights at the presidential and National Assembly elections of Feb. 25.

Train services to be put on hold are Abuja-Kaduna, Warri- Itakpe, Lagos-Ibadan, and Iddo, Lagos-Ijoko interstate mass transit.

Yakubu added that normal train services would resume on Tuesday, Feb. 28.

Malami, Emefiele face contempt charges for defying Supreme Court ruling

The states of Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara have filed a motion for contempt against Abubakar Malami, the Attorney General of the Federation, and Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank, for allegedly failing to comply with a Supreme Court order to extend the expiration date of the old N200, N500, and N1000 notes.

The three states that first brought the suit against the Federal Government’s naira swap policy have now filed new petitions with the Supreme Court warning the AGF and Emefiele of the potential implications of continuing to ignore the court’s February 3 ruling.

When a request was made by the attorneys for the three states, the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court issued two copies of Form 48, one to the AGF and one to Emefiele.

It has been learned that the documents are part of the processes presently pending evaluation by the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court received the paperwork on February 15, and copies seen by the court revealed that it was served on the CBN governor and the AGF the following day, on February 17.

Form 48 is a notice of the consequence of disobedience of a court order, which could be followed with the issuance of Form 49, should the disobedience persists.

When parties were in court on February 15, the lawyer to Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara states, Abdulhakeem Mustapha, SAN, complained that the Federal Government and its agencies have failed to comply with the order and have allegedly directed the rejection of the old notes.

Mustapha said his clients have since filed a notice of non-compliance with the court order.

He demanded that the court take action against the respondent (AGF) to protect the dignity of the court.

Appeal Court affirms Oyebanji’s election

The election of Mr. Biodun Oyebanji as governor of Ekiti State on June 18, 2022, has been affirmed by the Court of Appeal.

Chief Segun Oni, the unsuccessful candidate for governor from the Social Democratic Party (SDP), filed an appeal, and the Appellate Court, in a ruling given virtually on Tuesday, rejected his arguments and ruled against him on all four concerns.

The court dismissed the appeal and ordered N200,000 in costs against the appellants.

Judge Hamma Barka, presiding over a three-person Appeal Panel, affirmed the December 29, 2022 ruling of the Election Petition Tribunal, which had found that Oni’s petition failed miserably on all fronts where he was disputing Oyebanji’s return as the vote winner.

The court agreed with the Tribunal’s finding that Oyebanji was eligible to run for governor since he had been lawfully nominated in the All Progressives Party (APC) governorship primary in Ekiti State on January 27.

Even though the Respondents claimed that Deputy Governor Mrs. Monisade Afuye was in possession of a forged Ordinary Level Certificate from the West African Examinations Council (WAEC), the court sided with the Tribunal and found that Afuye was indeed qualified to run for that office on those grounds.

The appeals panel concurred with the Tribunal’s finding that the 5th Respondent, Deputy Governor Mrs. Monisade Afuye, was eligible to contest stating that she possesses the bare minimal academic criteria to stand for the election.

The court ruled that Oni and SDP’s (the petitioners/appellants) attempts to introduce new questions of fact that were not presented in the initial petition were not permissible under the law.

In the same vein as the Tribunal, the appeals panel decided that Mai Mala Buni, governor of Yobe State, and James Akpanudoedehe, secretary of the APC Extraordinary Caretaker Convention Planning Committee, were both legally able to sign Oyebanji’s nomination papers.

The Election Petition Tribunal chaired by Justice Wilfred Kpochi on December 29, 2022, upheld Oyebanji’s election holding that Oni’s petition lacked merit.

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