The Big 5: Osinbajo says allegations by House of Reps Committee against him are baseless; A 2nd term for Buhari will eclipse Nigeria – Agbakoba | Other top stories

These are the stories you should be monitoring today:

The Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has reacted to a report by a House of Representatives committee indicting him for allegedly approving N5.9 billion illegally for the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), for which its Director General, Mustapha Maihaja, is currently being probed by the lawmakers.

As contained in a statement by his media aide, Laolu Akande sent to Premium Times, Osinbajo described the allegations as false and misleading, stressing that the presidential approvals were well within the clear constitutional authority of the Acting President, who needed to take emergency steps to forestall acute food shortages in the affected States and there was nothing illegal or unconstitutional about them.

“All insinuations on this matter regarding purported indictments and perceived violations of due process or the constitution are baseless and totally false. Such interpretations are flawed and should be utterly ignored,” the statement read.

Prominent rights activist and former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Olisa Agbakoba has taken a swipe at the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration over its approach to national security and its fight against corruption, explaining that a return of the President for a second term would eclipse Nigeria.

In an interview with Vanguard, Agbakoba who said a political office holder is judged by the four years he has ruled, scored the administration zero on corruption noting that he thought an anti-corruption programme would mean that they would conduct it in a clear way. He also stressed that the national security architecture under the President is obsolete, laughable and a disgrace.

This government is totally bad. I am not in government but I can take them at their face value. They promised us three things: Strong war on corruption, strong economy and national security. Which one have they done well? None? With all the loans they have taken for security, Boko Haram is still waxing strong. They are still kidnapping and killing.”

Contrary to an allegation by Governor Akinwunmi Ambode that he once underwent rehabilitation at the Gbagada General Hospital over mental related issues, the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has told the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that he had never at any time been adjudged to be of unsound mind.

Sanwo-Olu, who disclosed this in the Form CF001 submitted to INEC in fulfillment of requirements qualifying a candidate to run for public office in the country as specified in sections 65, 106, 131 and 177 of the 1999 Constitution, in responding to a question in the form “Have you ever been adjudged a lunatic or declared to be of unsound mind?” ticked “No.”

“It is also known that he doesn’t have the competence to do what he is being propelled to do. This is somebody that has gone for rehabilitation before. The records are there at the Gbagada General Hospital,” Governor Ambode had said on September 30 in the heat of the battle for the governorship ticket of the party.

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has cautioned Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna, over what it described as  “his unguarded comment” about its Vice Presidential candidate, Peter Obi, where he referred to him as a tribal bigot.
In a statement on Saturday by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP said Obi who is well known for his nationalist disposition cannot in anyway be associated with tribal bigotry and urged the Governor to face the myriad of problems “he has caused in Kaduna State for which the people have resolved to vote him out.”
“Governor el-Rufai should not attempt to export the kind of inciting and inflammatory statements that have led to conflagration and bloodletting in his Kaduna state to our national political firmament,” the party said.

Hundreds of residents on Saturday fled Judumri, a village on the outskirt of the Borno capital, into Maiduguri, as suspected Boko Haram gunmen attacked the town in the evening while Muslims were concluding their prayers, Premium Times reports.

The report also said that a 21-year-old man, Ahmed Ibrahim, who was seen dragging two of his younger siblings, narrated how the attack happened.

“It started at about 6.30 p.m. when we began to hear heavy sounds of shooting coming from the bush area behind our community which is not far away from the Federal High Court. Initially we thought of running into our houses but soldiers guarding the parapets asked everyone to leave at once. That was why we had to leave en masse,” he said.

A reporter of the news medium however said he sighted at about 7:30pm, several military and police trucks filled with armed personnel driving at top speed towards the attacked location.

And stories from around the world:

Hundreds of Central American migrants resumed their march north through Mexico on Saturday, en route to the U.S. border where President Donald Trump has effectively suspended the granting of asylum to migrants who cross illegally. (Reuters)

Yemeni forces, backed by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, have seized control of a hospital in the western city of Hodeidah which was taken over by Houthi fighters earlier this week. (Al Jazeera)

Four British ministers who back remaining in the European Union are on the verge of quitting Theresa May’s government over Brexit, the Sunday Times reported, as pressures built on the prime minister from all sides. (Reuters)

Florida has ordered a machine recount of votes for state governor and senator following Tuesday’s closely fought mid-term elections, officials say. (BBC)

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