LP prepares lawsuit against APC and Sanwo-Olu; FG announces May 3 as the start date for census | 5 Things That Should Matter Today

  • LP prepares lawsuit against APC and Sanwo-Olu
  • ‘I can’t be intimidated by threat of visa ban’ — Fani-Kayode replies British envoy
  • FG announces May 3 as the start date for census
  • PDP suspends National Chair Ayu with immediate effect
  • FG closes Total bridge in Lagos for six weeks of maintenance work

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

LP prepares lawsuit against APC and Sanwo-Olu

The Labour Party (LP) is preparing to challenge the victory of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in the Lagos gubernatorial election held on March 18.

On March 20, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) declared Sanwo-Olu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the winner and Governor-elect.

According to the results announced by the Returning Officer, Prof Adenike Temifayo-Oladiji, VC, Federal University of Technology Akure, the incumbent governor polled 762,134 votes, defeating Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour of the LP who scored 312,329, while Olajide Adediran of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) received 62,449 votes. The total number of accredited voters was 1,182,620, with 1,173,631 votes cast and 17,953 rejected.

The tension ahead of the election reached its peak on election day when APC supporters disenfranchised Igbos and Yorubas who “look like” Igbos. In many polling units across the state, thousands of residents were unable to vote due to harassment, intimidation, and violence involving the use of dangerous weapons.

Before the official declaration of the results, Dayo Ekong, the LP Chairman in Lagos, expressed concern over the blocking of voters in Alimosho, Eti-Osa, Ibeju-Lekki, and other local government areas.

Before the declaration, LP Chairman in Lagos, Dayo Ekong decried how people were blocked from voting in Alimosho, Eti-Osa, Ibeju-Lekki, among other Local Governments.

“There are no results from over 1,000 units. People died…people were disenfranchised. This election is a sham…an election marred by violence!

“I want to tell you, Mr. Gbaje, the REC, that you have failed the youths. You have failed the masses, and you have not done the right thing,” she stressed.

In his remarks, Rhodes-Vivour, alias GRV alleged “collusion” between the APC and electoral officials in efforts to return Governor Sanwo-Olu.

“The results being released by INEC do not represent the wishes of the majority of peaceful Lagosians…results from our agents and situation room indicated that we won,” he said.

The candidate and his party are now proceeding to the court, seeking to upturn INEC’s pronouncement.

‘I can’t be intimidated by threat of visa ban’ — Fani-Kayode replies British envoy

Femi Fani-Kayode, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has vowed not to be intimidated by the “veiled threat of a visa ban” after British deputy high commissioner to Nigeria, Ben Llewellyn-Jones, described some of his comments during the general election as “inciteful.”

In a tweet on his Twitter page on Sunday, Fani-Kayode said he would not take lessons on “what to say or how to speak” from the UK envoy. Fani-Kayode is also the APC presidential campaign council’s director of new media.

Earlier, Llewellyn-Jones had faulted the APC chieftain’s several comments, including those deemed derogatory, divisive, and inciting to the opposition.

Responding to the British envoy’s remarks, Fani-Kayode said he was “not one of those Nigerians that bows, shakes, shivers, and trembles before the British or indeed any other foreigner.”

“I wonder who the hell he thinks he is. Nigeria stopped being a British colony 63 years ago, and we need no lessons from him on how to run our affairs or conduct our politics,” Fani-Kayode wrote.

“Neither will we accept lessons in decency, etiquette, what to say, or how to speak from a British civil servant. I advise this Englander to respect himself and remain a silent observer when it comes to the politics of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. As a nation, we are not a poodle of the British, and we came of age 63 years ago.”

Fani-Kayode also added that he is not intimidated by the British envoy’s veiled threat of a visa ban and that he does not need validation or endorsement from him or his ilk.

FG announces May 3 as the start date for census

Nigeria’s National Orientation Agency (NOA) has announced that the country’s population and housing census will take place from May 3 to May 5, 2023. The NOA Director-General, Garba Abari, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN).

The federal government had initially planned to conduct the census after the general election in 2023. However, the postponement of the gubernatorial and state house of assembly elections necessitated a change in the date of the exercise.

Abari explained that the census would capture every person, household and structure in the country for national planning and project execution purposes. He also described the census and the 2023 elections as major national events with significant importance.

According to Abari, the shift in the census date was due to INEC’s decision to tinker with its electoral timetable. “The gubernatorial election, as you are aware, had to be shifted by one week. This had a telling effect on the date of commencement of the census,” he said.

The NOA boss also highlighted the importance of the census to national development, security, infrastructure development, education, health, and other demographic considerations. He assured the public that the commission is ready to embark on the exercise.

“Most of the information that has gone out to the public about the census, such as awareness creation, sensitisation, enlightenment, and advocacy, have all been taking place,” he said.

The census is a long process that involves training, sub-training, retraining, house listing, and population capture. The NOA is working hard to ensure that every Nigerian is aware of the exercise’s importance and the role it plays in national development.

PDP suspends National Chair Ayu with immediate effect

The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Iyorchia Ayu has been suspended by the party.

The suspension of Ayu was effected by the Ward Executive of the party in Igyorov Ward of Gboko Local Government Area, LGA, of Benue state.

Addressing the media Sunday, on behalf of Kashi Philip, the Ward Chairman, the Ward Secretary Mr. Vangeryina Dooyum explained that Dr. Ayu was suspended by the Executive for alleged anti-party activities.

The Secretary stated that the decision to suspend the National Chairman was reached after the leadership reviewed his conduct at the end of the just concluded general elections.

According to him, “We observed with utmost dismay that, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu who is the National Chairman of the PDP worked against the success of the party in Igyorov Council Ward.

“It is on record that, he has also failed to pay his Annual Subscription Fees as provided under Section 8 (9) of the constitution of the PDP 2017 (As Amended).

“Further investigation also revealed that, he did not vote during the Governorship and State Assembly Elections held on March 18, 2023.

“It was also discovered that, most of his closest allies worked for the opposition party, the All Progressive Congress, APC, and hence, the abysmal performance of the PDP in Igyorov Ward.

“In view of the foregoing, we hereby pass a Vote of No Confidence on Dr. Iyorchia Ayu and suspend him as a member of our party with immediate effect. The suspension takes effect from March 24, 2023.”

FG closes Total bridge in Lagos for six weeks of maintenance work

The Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) says the total bridge in the Apapa area of Lagos has been closed to pave way for repair and maintenance works. 

The bridge is said to be at the Mobil road junction inward Apapa.

In a statement on Sunday, the NPA said the federal ministry of works and housing closed the road at about 11:35 am on Saturday for road maintenance works. 

The NPA said the road closure will remain for two months and a half, adding that relevant security agencies are on ground to manage the traffic situation in the affected areas. 

“Given the impact the closure will have on port users, the authority in partnership with LASTMA, police, FRSC, and the Nigerian Navy have worked out alternative routes and are on ground to manage the traffic situation in the affected areas,” NPA said.

“The authority wishes to solicit the understanding and cooperation of all stakeholders as we continue to support measures to mitigate the temporary disruptions.”

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