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Buhari greater than Obasanjo – APC *Explains absence at Tinubu’s campaigns



There is no basis for comparing the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari and former President, Olusegun Obasanjo either in their performance in office on individual standing befor Nigerians, the All Progressives Congress (APC), said on Wednesday.

Festus Keyamo, spokesperson of  APC Presidential Campaign Council (APC-PCC), made the claim while appearing on The Morning Show, a breakfast programme on Arise Television, while explaining the President’s absence at the presidential campaigns of the party.

Against the backdrop of the claims that Buhari’s absence at the rallies, meant that he was not supporting Ahmed Bola Tinubu, the party’s flagbearer for the 2023 presidential election, Keyamo, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), told his host that the former President and the incumbent, cut different characters.

While explaining that Obasanjo, was disruptive, which was evident in the manner he interfered with the government and campaigns of former President, Goodluck Jonathan, he said Buhari was too focused to engage himself in acts that could obstruct the running of the campaigns by making himself the issue.

“As for President Buhari and his supposed lukewarm attitude towards Asiwaju, let me make mockery of our opponents on that. I thought they said President Buhari had no influence. So, why are they excited about that, why are they worried about that?

“I thought they said he did not win the 2019 election and that they were rigged out, but in another breath they tell you that Asiwaju would not enjoy the influence of Buhari. So, Buhari now has influence? You admit, you know that? You know that what he brings to the table is huge?

“President Buhari is not like Obasanjo, who wants to instal a puppet. You saw what he did in 2007, against President Yar’Adua. That was not salutary. That was where the do or die mantra came up, if you remember.

“It was there that he said this election was a do or die affair for him. Now, a leader should not behave like that and President Buhari is well shoulders above President Obasanjo in this respect.

“He was there at our flag-off in Jos. That was enough support. As time goes on, he’s going to make some marked appearances here and there to show that he’s supportive, but at the same time, he wants to show the world and African leaders that he’s aloof to the point that he can conduct a free and fair election. It’s not a do or die for him. He supports our candidate as the chairman of the campaign council as the leader of our party, but he’s not going to come down into the arena so much as to show that he’s going to use same power to swing it to one side.”

Keyamo, Minister of State for Labour and employment, also weighed in on the endorsement of Peter Obi, presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP) by former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, on Sunday, New Year’s day, saying though it was good for the image of the former Governor of Anambra State, it would only stop at showing him off as enhancing the growth of his new party, but would not make him win the election.

Reiterating an earlier position he canvassed at a similar appearance on Channels Television’s Politics Today, he said:

“This is a young party, Peter Obi went there in the last 5 or 6 months, and they are doing well, better than expected.

“It’s not that people expect them to win. No, Labour Party will not win. I can bet with anything that is precious to me on earth. I can tell you, and I am that confident. I put it down that they will not win.”

He also spoke on the crisis in the rival Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), saying the rebellion of of the aggrieved governors in the G-5 Integrity Group, was good for the APC whichever way the camp swung their support.

Hear him: “I want to let all Nigerians know this, including the APC supporters. We want to address our base. Either way the G5 goes is a win-win situation for APC because this G5 is a strong component of the PDP. If they go to Peter Obi, win-win for APC, if they come to us, it’s a plus. Anywhere they go, except Atiku Abubakar, is a win-win for us. Even the votes they are taking to Labour Party will also not give victory to the party.”

He added: “The race before now was between APC and PDP, but as I speak to you, PDP has completely collapsed. If you look at their campaign so far, the PDP will continue to tell you that they are hoping that there will be some kind of upheaval in the north, some kind of reversal of fortune.

“We can say confidently today that the PDP and its campaign as a party has collapsed. The various factors that we have now that have upset the political terrain — Peter Obi and Rabiu Kwankwaso — were the components of PDP in 2019.

“The wheels of PDP are falling off one by one. The endorsement of Olusegun Obasanjo is not against APC, it’s against Atiku Abubakar because he supported him in 2019.”

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Again Nigeria, has missed out in the list of African countries given the official nod to visit Canada without visa, as two other countries for the continent has been added to the list of 13 different countries across Asia, Africa, Central and South America, announced by the country’s authorities.

The Canadian Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Sean Fraser disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday, said visa-free travel is extended to Antigua and Barbuda, St Lucia, Trinidad and Tobago, St Kitts-Nevis, Panama, Argentina, Costa Rica, Uruguay, Morocco, Seychelles, st. Vincent and the Grenadines, Thailand and the Philippines.

While north Africa’s Morocco and East Africa’s Seychelles joined the list, Nigeria the most populous African nation didn’t make the cut, with Fraser, saying: “An expansion of the electronic travel authorization better known as the eTA programs makes it easier for ‘known travellers’ from those countries to come here for fun and business.’

Stating that the expansion not only enhanced convenience for travellers, it would also increase travel, tourism and economic benefits, as well as strengthen global bonds with these 13 countries, he said: “The known travellers from these countries can save a lot of money as a result of the visa exemptions.”

A visitor visa currently costs $100 per person and $500 for a family of five or more, but an eTA only costs seven dollars per person and is valid for as long as five years.

According to the government, introducing visa-free air travel will make it faster, easier, and more affordable for thousands of travellers to visit Canada for up to six months for either business or leisure.

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Police save man, lady accused of ritual murder from lynch-mob in Anambra *Say victims innocent



It has turned out that the two people, a man and a lady, seen in a viral video, being assaulted by an angry mob who were about to set them on fire for allegedly killing two men in Anambra community for ritual purposes, are not guilty of the offence.

Anambra State Police Command, who confirmed on Thursday that the two had been rescued by their operatives, from the hands of the angry mob in Ihiala, Ihiala Local Government Area of the state, who attempted to set them on fire, claimed that they were being wrongly accused.

Spokesman of the command Tochukwu Ikenga, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), and spokesman of the command, who made the disclosure in a statement, said that its operatives rescued two victims and a suspect who was about to be lynched by an angry mob at the Total Junction in Ihiala.

Stating that the incident was not a case of ritual killing but a pure incident of murder, he said: “Preliminary information reveals that the two victims, a man and a woman, who were humiliated and paraded as shown in social media video by the angry mob, were erroneously accused by the mob. The victims were seen at the scene where the murder took place and were not the perpetrators.”

Ikenga, who informed that both the suspect and the victims were currently receiving treatment in an undisclosed hospital while the deceased has been deposited in a morgue, appealed to the public never to take laws into their hands irrespective of assumed offence.

Disclosing that the Commissioner of Police (CP), Echeng Echeng, was already on top of the situation and had since sued for calm, he added that the police boss had also ordered the immediate transfer of the case to the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID), for a comprehensive investigation, while assuring that further developments would be communicated to the public and that all residents to go about their lawful duties.

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Panic! Gunmen storm Anambra Assembly, attempt to bundle away lawmaker



Panic-stricken members of the Anambra State House of Assembly, watched in utter horror on Thursday as one of their colleagues was bundled into a waiting vehicle, by four gun-wielding men, preparatory to being whisked away, before mother-luck came calling.

It took the quick reflexes of security guards at the entrance who locked the gate, to prevent the armed men, who later turned out to be operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) from completing the operation.

The target of the operatives was Onyekachukwu Ike, the House of Assembly-elect member for the Nnewi North constituency, who had joined in the valedictory session for outgoing members, though it is not known why the members of the agency were after him.

Eyewitness account, said the operatives arrived the Assembly complex in three vehicles in a commando version, grabbed the member-elect as he emerged from the venue validectory thanksgiving mass for the seventh Assembly and forced him into their waiting vehicle.

However, it took the eagle-eyed members of the security team of the assembly to truncate the attempt to drive the lawmaker away, because they quickly locked the exit gate, thus halting the operation, as it gave people the opportunity to intervene.

Reacting to the incident, Acting Clerk of the Assembly, Esther Aneto, who bemoaned the manner the operatives carried out the operation, said neither the authorities of the assembly, nor the police was informed about it.

It took the intervention of the Speaker, Uche Okafor, and the Deputy Governor, Onyeka Ibezim, who came to represent the Governor at the Valedictory session before the member-elect was released from the vice grips of the DSS operatives, who however, explained that they had a court order to arrest him.


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