TOP 10 NEWS MAKING THE ROUNDS IN NIGERIA TODAY THURSDAY
1. DSS Confirms Plot To Stop Tinubu’s Swearing In, Reveals Next Line Of Action
The Department of State Services (DSS) on Tuesday disclosed that it has identified some key individuals plotting to scuttle the May 29 handover to a new government and force an interim government in Nigeria.
According to the DSS in a statement by its spokesperson, Peter Afunanya, the plot by the identified individuals is to set aside the constitution and undermine civil rule, sponsor mass protests as well as plunge the country into an avoidable crisis in order to make way for the planned interim government.
The statement added that the individuals involved in the plot plan to obtain frivolous court injunctions to forestall the May 29 inauguration of new executive administrations and legislative houses at the Federal and State levels.
The DSS however vowed that it would work with all relevant organizations, individuals, and groups to ensure a seamless and successful inauguration on May 29, 2023, as promised by President Muhammadu Buhari to hand over to a new administration of the President-elect, Bola Tinubu.
The secret police, therefore, warned those plotting to thwart democracy in Nigeria to retract from their devious schemes and orchestrations.
It also warned stakeholders including judicial authorities, media, and the civil society to be watchful and cautious to avoid being used as instruments to subvert the peace and stability of the nation.
2. NJSC Sacks Judge, Demotes Two Others Over Abuse Of Power
The Magistrate Court judge in Salka, Magama local government of Niger State, Mohammed Bako Iya has been sacked with immediate effect.
While Iya was sacked, two others including the Sharia Judge of Kotun Bola Minna and his colleague in Badeggi, Mohammed Baba Enagi, were demoted by one grade levels each.
The Niger State Judicial Service Commission (NJSC) disclosed on Wednesday that the development was with immediate effect.
Giving the reason for the sack and demotion of the judicial officers, the NJSC Secretary, Abdulrahman Ahmed Garafini, at a press briefing in Minna, said they were involved in an alleged case of gross misconduct and abuse of judicial power.
Garafini explained that the decision was taken at the Commission’s 136th meeting on 21st March 2023, after considering the recommendations of the Justice Mohammed Mohammed-led committee set up to look into petitions against the judges.
He advanced that three out of seven petitions were against the sacked judge, adding that two of the petitions were sufficiently proven by the petitioners and the judge unequivocally admitted the allegations brought against him.
The NJSC Secretary revealed that Iya was setting aside his judicial duties by representing and shielding a suspect, Saba Idris, from arrest by police and court.
3. Buhari Swears In Arase As PSC Chairman
On Wednesday, March 29th, President Muhammadu Buhari swore in former Inspector General of Police (IGP) Solomon Arase (rtd.) as the new Chairman of the Police Service Commission (PSC).
Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha; and Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, were among other council members who attended the swearing in ceremony held today at the council chamber before the commencement of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) weekly meeting.
Arase was inaugurated for the new position just two months after the Senate confirmed him as chairperson of the PSC.
Arase who retired in 2016, was the 18th indigenous Inspector-General of Police (IGP) between April 2015 and June 2016 and has served in various capacities including as head of the Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Bureau, the foremost intelligence-gathering unit of the Nigerian police.
Addressing State House Correspondents shortly after the swearing-in, Arase promised to prioritize the welfare of officers and men of the Nigerian Police Force.
He also vowed to address the issue of corruption and the recurring issues between the IGP and the PSC.
4. 2023 Presidential Victory Is My Greatest Birthday Gift – Tinubu
The President-elect of Nigeria, Bola Tinubu has described the February 25 presidential election victory as the greatest birthday gift he has been given.
Tinubu in a personally signed message on Wednesday on the occasion of his 71st birthday, said the opportunity to lead Nigeria and fulfil destiny is a greater gift than any other thing he could ask for on his birthday.
The President-elect while appreciating all those who voted for him, assured that he has a bond to lead Nigeria on the right path and the people of the country would not be disappointed.
The former Lagos State Governor added that the electioneering campaign promises he made were not mere words but a bond that binds him to the task of creating a better Nigeria for the benefit of every Nigerian, including those who didn’t vote for him.
5. ‘We Are Not Yet A Sovereign Nation’ – IPOB Speaks On Biafran Currency, Govt
The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has denied reports that it operates a government in exile, warning that it is not yet a sovereign nation.
The pro-Biafra group made this known in a statement on Wednesday by its spokesperson, Emma Powerful.
The group said the Biafra Radio being operated in the United States does not have anything with it.
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While reiterating that its only agitation is to get the sovereign state of Biafra and the release of its detained leader, Nnamdi Kanu, IPOB warning unauthorized individuals or groups to stop using its name, ESN, M-Branch, or Mazi Nnamdi Kanu in any operation that they carry out.
6, Ayu And His Cohorts Squandered N12.5bn In Two Months — Wike
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has accused the embattled National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Iyorchia Ayu, and the National Working Committee (NWC) of squandering N12.5 billion party funds in two months.
Wike raised the allegation on Wednesday at the inauguration of internal roads in Rumuigbo, Obio-Akpor Local Government Area of the state.
The governor stressed that PDP would regain its force of dominance with the new leadership.
He said: “I believe we should have strong leadership. I can’t support people whose interest is only to amass money.
“I can’t support people where we did congresses and raised about N12.5 billion and, within two months, that money was gone.
“Somebody stayed in office for one year and he is building an institution. I won’t support such.
“That is why we believe PDP will be strengthened with the new leadership.
“I owe no apology to anybody. I said it before, this is the final fight we will fight and we are going to win this fight.”
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7. ‘I Am Undergoing Treatment For Cardiac Arrhythmia, Lung Disease Abroad’ – Akpabio Tells EFCC
A former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio in a letter on Wednesday noted that he will not be able to honour the invitation of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
EFCC had in a letter asked Akpabio to appear at its office on March 29, 2023.
According to Saharareporters, Akpabio, however, in a letter forwarded to EFCC through his lawyer, Umeh Kalu said he would not be available due to ill health.
Akpabio in the letter claimed to be suffering from pneumonia and cardiac arrhythmia.
Pneumonia is inflammation of the lungs, usually caused by an infection while cardiac arrhythmia is an abnormal heart rhythm.
The former minister asked the anti-graft commission to pick another date after the forthcoming Easter and Ramadan holidays.
8. ‘This Is Very Risky’ – APC Chieftain Rejects Muslim-Muslim Senate President, Speaker
The National Vice Chairman (North West) of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr. Salihu Lukman, has kicked against the emergence of a Muslim-Muslim Senate President and Speaker of the House of Representatives.
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The senator representing Kano North, Jubrin Barau; Senate Chief Whip, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu; former Minister of Niger Delta and senator-elect for Akwa Ibom North-West District, Godswill Akpabio and Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, and a few other lawmakers have begun moves to emerge Senate President.
While Idris Wase, Alhassan Ado Doguwa, Tajudeen Abbas, Benjamin Kalu, and others are eyeing the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives.
In a statement on Tuesday titled “APC and Tasks of Negotiating 10th NASS Leadership,” Lukman urged the Abdullahi Adamu-led National Working Committee (NWC) to be more aggressive in driving the process of negotiating leadership of the 10th National Assembly.
The controversial politician warned that the emergence of the same faith leadership might destroy the electoral viability of the ruling party in future elections.
He called on political stakeholders to take a cue from the power-sharing formula adopted in 1999 when former President Olusegun Obasanjo held sway.
9. Why Afenifere Leadership Suspended Me Without Issuing Me Query – Suspended Spokesperson Reveals
The suspended National Publicity Secretary of the pan-Yoruba socio-political organisation, Afenifere, Jare Ajayi, has accused the organisation of unfairly sanctioning him.
On Tuesday, Naija News reported that Ajayi and Afenifere’s National Organising Secretary, Abagun Kole Omololu, were sacked from their position and suspended from the group over a statement condemning a comment made by an Ohanaeze chieftain, Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu.
The duo were suspended indefinitely by the group over alleged misconduct.
According to the communique issued at the end of the Afenifere meeting held at the residence of the leader of the group, Pa Ayo Adebanjo, at Isanya Ogbo Ogun State on Tuesday, the group “observed the uncouth activities and unauthorized statements in its name and to the constant denigration of the organisation, by Jare Ajayi, the National Publicity Secretary, and Abagun Kole Omololu the National Organising Committee.”
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Reacting to his suspension on Wednesday, Ajayi disclosed the group never gave him and Omololu a chance to respond to the allegations levelled against them by the group’s leaders.
10. I’m Leaving Office With My Shoulders High – Wike
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has said he would be leaving office at the end of his tenure as a fulfilled man.
Wike said he would be leaving the office with his shoulders high, and not leaving office to run away from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
He stated this on Wednesday during the commissioning of Rumuigbo Internal Road Network in the Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state.
The governor stated that he has nothing to fear if the anti-graft agency comes to probe his administration, adding that he has served the people of the state diligently and faithfully.
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Wike directed his successor and Rivers State Governor-Elect, Siminlalayi Fubara to show EFCC his many accomplished projects in Rivers if the anti-corruption commission comes for investigation.