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Shine your eyes, Atiku your best bet, ex-Ohanaeze spokesman in S’Africa tells Ndigbo



Again, Ndigbo have been advised to apply wisdom in making their choice of who to vote for as President in this months presidential election, because of the current realities on ground, which might leave them in the lurch once again if not properly handled.

Ben Benson Okoli, spokesperson of the Atiku-Okowa Campaign Council, in Anambra State, who made this suggestion, explained that this was not the time to indulge in sentiments, but to apply serious deep sense in handling the matter, given the Nigerian political realities, using the past to reflect on the present for future developments.

Okoli, a businessman based in South Africa, spoke at the Murtala Muhammed Airport in Lagos, where he was received by friend and political associates in the Atiku campaigns.

“I’m here to join the growing number of voices calling for Ndigbo to allow more of logic than emotions, to guide the direction they must go, when they step out on February 25 to choose the successor of President Buhari, he told Whirlwindnew, en route Nigeria from Johannesburg.

“I’m here to join the rest of the team to further persuade our people not to yield to the argument that merely participating in the coming elections is all enough for the Igboman. To  succumb to such arguments is not only to squander all we have sacrificed in the Nigeria project but to further diminish our relevance.

“I think and I believe that Atiku-Okowa ticket presents the easiest and fastest way to the Nigerian president of Igbo extraction. I’m persuaded by that trajectory of political thinking because I know it is impossible to go it alone. Ndigbo need a good ally outside the South East to realise that ambition, which is not there now and if Atiku becomes that ally in the future, they will be in the pole position to realise that goal. That is my thinking and that’s why I’m here, Okoli, a journalist and lawyer, also said.


Agreeing that the Nigerian President of  Igbo extraction was long overdue, he was quick to disagree that it was a sufficient defence for what he called “a political suicide,” adding: “Yes, it is a good argument, but it is not good enough for the political suicide some of our people are proposing. The conspiracy to deny the Igboman the opportunity to rise beyond where he is, is deeply entrenched. It is only a strategic repositioning and strong partnerships, rather than emotions, that has the capacity to dismantle it and guarantee us complete freedom.”

Benson, the former spokesperson  Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the pan-Igbo socio-cultural organisation, in South Africa, he observed that it was the dismal failure of this APC government that awakened the new political consciousness that the Presidential candidate of Labour Party (LP) Peter Obi leads, which would make it impossible for the APC candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu to emerge as the President, adding that though the movement must be sustained, the mistake would be in seeing the movement as a once-off event, rather than a process.

“The new political consciousness awakened by the colossal failure of the APC government must be sustained, to the extent that it is viewed as a process, rather than a once-off event. Obi’s movement is incapable of winning a national election in 2023. As a result, I call on Ndigbo to vote for Waziri of Adamawa, Atiku Abubakar, who has over the years, demonstrated amply, his love for Ndigbo.

“He is better positioned to affect the  structural changes that we yearn for. Some of them are required legislative enablements, which the PDP  will have in excess. The kind of structural changes that the Igboman wants is the one that can only be effected by the president that has sufficient legislative support.”


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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Judge orders Yahoo-Yahoo student to clean EFCC premises for two weeks



Justice Aliyu Shafa, of the Federal High Court, Gwagwalada, Abuja, on Thursday ordered a student, Istifanus Irmiya, to clean the premises of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for for two weeks, after he was convicted for internet fraud.

Irmiya, who was docked by the EFCC on a two-count charge, boarding on cheating and impersonation, was also ordered to pay a fine of N100,000, while the phone he used in committing the offence was to be destroyed and burnt.

This was after the culprit, pleaded guilty to the charges and begged the court for leniency, which the court accepted, but insisted that he must carry out the punishment of cleaning the EFCC premises from 9 a.m. to 12 noon daily for two weeks, to teach him a lesson.

Frowning at the rate internets fraud were being committed, Shafa, said: “I have carefully listened to the plea of allocutus made by the convict and the defence counsel. The rate of internet fraud through Facebook, Instagram, Whatsapp, among others in the society is so alarming.

“That he is a first time offender is not an excuse to go scot-free. The rate of Yahoo-Yahoo among youths is alarming. “Many who resort to crime always have ‘I want to get rich quick’ mindset. Sending him to prison might make him more hardened,” the judge ruled.

Irmiya, who pleaded with the court to tamper justice with mercy, promising that he would not indulge in such acts again, said: “I want to beg the court for mercy. I’m deeply sorry for what I have done. I’m a changed person now knowing fully well the consequences of my offence.”

Chibuike Chima, his lawyer, who echoed his pleas, told the court that Irmiya had no previous conviction record and was also remorseful, saying: “Irmiya is the only son of the family and he is seeking admission into the university. He has spent one month in EFCC custody.
“The convict has shown remorse and genuinely repented over the crime he has committed by way of expressing genuine repentance, he has restituted the proceeds of crime which is the sum of 250 Euros. The convict is a first-time offender. He has not be convicted for any other crime of whatever kind. We urge my lord to tamper justice with mercy. We assure this court that going forward, the convict will be of good behaviour.”

The EFCC Counsel, Taiwo Aromolaran, who told the court that Irmiya had sometime in 2022 within the jurisdiction of the court cheated by personation, said that the convict deceived his victim while pretending to be one mistress Clara a female Caucasian.

She said that the convict carried out an illegal act, making one Alex Lexis, a German, to send him the sum of 250 Euros which he received via PayPal and Nosh Apps before transferring the money to his own account domiciled with Polaris Bank.

She said that the convict sometime in 2022, also had in his possession documents containing false-pretence, where he represented himself as a German on his Facebook and KK accounts, created by him with the intent to induce Alex Lexis to deliver money to him.

She said the offence contravened the provisions of Section 321 of the Penal Code Act of the Federation (Abuja), 1990 and punishable under Section 324 of the same Act, adding that Section 6 in conjunction with Section 8 of the advance-fee fraud and other related offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.

Pleading with the court that the cell phone being the instrument used for the crime should be forfeited, Aromolaran urged the court to take into consideration the increase in the menace of internet frauds in Nigeria.

Bewailing the menace fraudsters had caused to the image of the country and to their victims, she told the court that Irmiya and his group, operated as syndicates, saying: “They believe that merely coming to court and pleading guilty is enough to attract the sympathy of the court.”


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BREAKING: Tinubu, hosts G-5 govs at Villa *Intensifies moves to break PDP



It is becoming obvious that President Bola Tinubu, may be working hard to break the ranks of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), as he is currently hosting the five former Governors of the party who former the G-5 Integrity Group, a very powerful bloc in the main opposition party that fought against the ticket of the party.

Nyesom Wike, former Governor of Rivers State, who was the arrowhead of the G-5, comprising Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia, Samuel Ortom of Benue, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu and Seyi Makinde of Oyo, was seen leading the other members to the Presidential Villa, for a meeting with Tinubu, on Thursday afternoon.

The group had vehemently opposed the ticket of Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the PDP in the 2023 presidential election and refused to join the campaigns on the ground that the former Vice President did not support the ouster of Iyorchia Ayu, then National Chairman of the party on the ground that he came from the same North as him.

Incidentally, the meeting is coming few hours after Caleb Mutfwang Governor of Plateau State and Umo Eno of Akwa Ibom, both PDP governors at the same State House Abuja, in what observers are already interpreting as an attempt to woo the top echelon of the opposition party.

The meeting with the G-5 governors, shortly after that of Tinubu with the two PDP governors, is coming as the party and Atiku Abubakar, are trying to prove before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal (PEPT), sitting in Abuja that Tinubu did not win the 2023 presidential election.

Details later…

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