Obasanjo Exposes State Governors’ Involvement in Failed Third-Term Plot; Super Eagles Squad Set for Sierra Leone Clash in AFCON Qualifier | 5 Things That Should Matter Today

  • Obasanjo Exposes State Governors’ Involvement in Failed Third-Term Plot
  • Super Eagles Squad Set for Sierra Leone Clash in AFCON Qualifier
  • Nigerian Navy Denies Involvement in Oil Theft, Challenges Asari Dokubo to Provide Evidence
  • Lagos State Government to Demolish Unsafe Buildings in Alaba International Market
  • President Tinubu to Hold Important Meeting with Bill Gates and Aliko Dangote

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

Obasanjo Exposes State Governors’ Involvement in Failed Third-Term Plot

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has shed light on the controversial third-term agenda, implicating some state governors in the failed attempt to extend term limits beyond 2007.

In an exclusive interview with media personality Chude Jideonwo, Obasanjo discussed his tenure in office and addressed the issue of corruption.

During the interview, Obasanjo revealed, “The governors, some of them, were doing it for themselves. Because if the president did a third term, they too would have had a chance for a third term.” This statement further confirms his previous denial of seeking an extended stay in office and points to the involvement of influential governors in the failed constitutional amendment bill.

Segun Osoba, a former governor of Ogun state, previously criticized Obasanjo’s book ‘My Watch’ for containing perceived inaccuracies, claiming that the former president had almost “gone on his knees” to seek support for a third term.

Read Also: Peter Obi Still the Best Candidate for Nigeria – Obasanjo

Additionally, former President Goodluck Jonathan, who served as both president and governor during that period, corroborated Obasanjo’s desire for a third term, acknowledging that it faced resistance from the national assembly.

The failed third-term bid was a turning point in Nigerian politics, and its impact extended to the legislative arena. Ken Nnamani, former senate president, disclosed that lawmakers in the fifth national assembly sacrificed their political careers to halt the controversial agenda.

Addressing allegations of embezzlement, Obasanjo asserted that his strength lies in fundraising and not embezzlement. He urged those unable to match his financial acumen to refrain from castigating him.

Similar to President Muhammadu Buhari, Obasanjo’s leadership journey encompasses both military and civilian roles. He governed Nigeria as a military head of state and later returned as a civilian president, ushering in the country’s fourth republic.

Super Eagles Squad Set for Sierra Leone Clash in AFCON Qualifier

The Super Eagles camp is buzzing with anticipation as all the invited players for Sunday’s crucial Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Sierra Leone have arrived and begun training.

The presence of key players like Napoli’s Victor Osimhen, who played a pivotal role in securing their first Serie A title in 33 years, and Taiwo Awoniyi, who single-handedly saved Nottingham Forest from Premier League relegation, brings hope for goals and victory against the Leone Stars.

Clinton McDubus, a renowned football analyst and podcaster, expressed confidence in the performance of Osimhen, Alex Iwobi, Taiwo Awoniyi, and Divine Nwachukwu if given enough playing time. McDubus believes that these players have the potential to shine and make a significant impact on the game.

Nigeria finds itself in a critical position, as Guinea Bissau has claimed the top spot in Group A after a 1-0 win over Sao Tome & Principe. With 10 points from five games, Guinea Bissau holds a one-point lead over Nigeria. To secure a place in their fourth consecutive AFCON, Nigeria must ensure that Sierra Leone fails to defeat them in the upcoming group match on Sunday.

The Nigerian players face the challenge of disproving past accusations of underperforming in national team matches. McDubus acknowledges that national team football presents unique obstacles such as limited training time to build chemistry, more rigid systems due to knockout/tournament football demands, and the need to adapt quickly to unfamiliar teammates and systems. Additionally, Nigeria lacks a defined playing philosophy, often resulting in excessive tinkering.

According to McDubus, players’ motivation to give their all for the national team stems primarily from their passion for the country. However, this may not be as professionally rewarding as club performances, where players receive better financial compensation and enjoy more comprehensive injury management. The risks associated with going the extra mile for the national side may lead some players to give only the bare minimum effort to avoid these risks.

Nevertheless, McDubus believes that with most European leagues on break, Peseiro’s squad has the opportunity to showcase their best performances. The players will be eager to end the season on a high note without any external considerations holding them back, potentially unleashing their full potential and devastating prowess.

Nigerian Navy Denies Involvement in Oil Theft, Challenges Asari Dokubo to Provide Evidence

In a private meeting with President Bola Tinubu, Asari Dokubo, a prominent Niger Delta leader, has leveled serious allegations against the Nigerian military, claiming that they are responsible for 99 percent of oil theft in the country.

Dokubo expressed his concerns about the rampant oil bunkering orchestrated by notorious naval commanders who serve as kingpins. He reported that President Tinubu has assured him of a thorough investigation into these allegations and pledged to take decisive action to put an end to this shameful practice.

Dokubo further revealed the existence of powerful cabals operating from Abuja, vowing that their reign of influence would soon come to an end, indicating that many individuals will face consequences for their involvement in oil theft. He expressed his willingness to deploy his own group to assist in curbing these illicit activities.

The former militant leader refuted the common misconception that ordinary citizens of the Niger Delta region are responsible for oil theft. He argued that these individuals lack the resources and capabilities to carry out such sophisticated acts of theft. Dokubo emphasized that the relentless criminal activities of oil thieves have severely affected the livelihoods of the people in the Niger Delta, constituting a crime against humanity.

Dokubo also accused the military of blackmail by claiming insufficient armaments to combat insecurity while alleging that they had surreptitiously supplied weapons to insurgents, thus perpetuating the insurgency.

Last year, General Lucky Irabor, the Chief of Defence Staff, pledged to investigate oil theft in the Niger Delta following an incident at the Trans-Escravos pipeline in Delta State. He expressed his commitment to conducting a comprehensive investigation to uncover the individuals involved and the duration of their activities.

The Nigerian Navy swiftly responded to Dokubo’s allegations, dismissing them as baseless. Commodore Adedotun Ayo-Vaughan, the Director of Naval Information, challenged Dokubo to provide names of those involved in oil theft, questioning the credibility of his claims. Ayo-Vaughan insinuated that Dokubo made these accusations merely to gain favor with President Tinubu.

The naval spokesman highlighted the achievements of the Nigerian Navy’s Operation Dakata da Barawo in combating oil theft in the Niger Delta. He cited the recent arrest of the illegally-entered ship, Heroic Edun, and subsequent court fines imposed on the ship’s owners as evidence of the Navy’s dedication to addressing crude oil theft.

Ayo-Vaughan listed additional accomplishments between April 2022 and June 2023, including the arrest of suspects, vessels, and the destruction of illegal mining sites, storage tanks, and wooden boats.

Ayo-Vaughan emphasized that the Nigerian Navy’s efforts have resulted in significant quantities of stolen oil being prevented from reaching the market, valued at over N71.8 billion based on current prices. He challenged Dokubo to provide evidence and names to support his claims, firmly asserting the Navy’s active involvement in the fight against oil theft.

Lagos State Government to Demolish Unsafe Buildings in Alaba International Market

In a joint operation, the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA) and the Lagos State Task Force have initiated the process of removing distressed buildings in the Alaba International Market located in Ojo Local Government of Lagos State.

The enforcement team, responsible for re-sealing several buildings previously marked with quit seal notices, emphasized that this measure is necessary to prevent potential disasters. Occupants were advised to vacate these structurally defective buildings, as they pose significant dangers.

During the delegation’s inspection, it was observed that some of the buildings undergoing reconstruction were tilting. The enforcement director highlighted the existence of multi-story buildings that were sinking but still being extended with additional floors. One of the sinking plazas showcased beautifully adorned shops in the front row, while the back of the building was noticeably tilted on marshy land.

Some traders claimed that they had made payments for building approvals prior to undertaking renovations. In response, the General Manager of LASBCA, Mr. Gbolahan Oki, explained that the government would demolish these buildings to prioritize the safety of lives. Oki expressed concerns about the impact of rainfall, fearing that such buildings could collapse and cause mayhem.

The government has taken a proactive stance and plans to demolish approximately 17 buildings, which were not among the 349 previously announced for demolition.

Oki stated that occupants of these buildings had received multiple notices since 2016 to take necessary actions, but they had been uncooperative and even resorted to harassing enforcement officials. Due to this persistent resistance, the assistance of the Lagos State Task Force was sought to ensure a smooth operation.

Oki emphasized that the fear of defective buildings collapsing during rainfall has led to a sense of urgency in saving lives. He stressed that the lives of Lagos residents are of greater value than any property. All identified buildings are slated for demolition between now and Monday, as adequate notice has been given by LASBCA.

The general manager confirmed that the identified buildings are beyond repair, citing their tilting angles and various types of cracks as signs of distress. He also highlighted that the government has established LASBCA district offices across all divisions, making the process of obtaining building approvals more accessible.

Oki advised Lagos residents with valid land documents and building plan approvals to visit or contact LASBCA offices for authorization before commencing construction. This proactive measure aims to ensure effective monitoring and supervision of construction activities in the state.

President Tinubu to Hold Important Meeting with Bill Gates and Aliko Dangote

President Bola Tinubu is expected to hold a significant meeting with Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Chairman of Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, unless there are any last-minute changes. The meeting is scheduled to take place on Monday at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.

The news was disclosed by Aliko Dangote after a private discussion with President Tinubu at the State House on Friday. While Dangote did not provide specific details about the purpose of the meeting, he stated that he and Bill Gates would be visiting the president together.

Dangote expressed, “I did not come to do much. I only came to inform the President about our visit with Microsoft co-founder and my friend Bill Gates. We will both see the president on Monday when we come together.”

The nature of this anticipated meeting between President Tinubu, Bill Gates, and Aliko Dangote remains undisclosed at this time.

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