Top Nigerian Newspaper Headlines For Today, Tuesday, 7th February, 2023
Good morning Nigeria, welcome to Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Tuesday, 7th February 2023
1. Court Stops CBN, Buhari From Extending Deadline For Old Naira Notes Phase Out
The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, has stopped the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) from suspending or extending the February 10 deadline for the phase out of the old naira notes.
Naija News reports that the presiding judge, Justice Eneojo Eneche, gave the ruling on Monday in a motion by five political parties.
Justice Eneche also stopped President Muhammadu Buhari and 27 commercial banks from interfering with the deadline or issue any directive contrary to the said date.
The judge also granted an order directing the Chief Executive Officers (CEOS) of the banks, to show cause why they should not be arrested and prosecuted for the financial sabotage of the country, by illegally hoarding and not disbursing the new N200, N500, and N1000 bank notes, despite supply of such notes by the apex bank.
In the 27 grounds by the applicants, they made out a case showing that politicians who ostensibly were in possession of illicit funds were the ones who wanted the policies suspended.
2. Lawan Defeats Machina In Supreme Court As Yobe Senatorial Candidate
The supreme court on Monday declared the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan as the senatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for Yobe north.
APC had filed a suit against the candidature of Bashir Machina before the apex court.
APC has claimed that Lawan was the authentic Senatorial candidate for Yobe North in the 2023 election.
The counsel for the party, Sepiribo Peters at the last hearing argued that the primary election held on 28 May last year which produced Machina was in breach of the Electoral Act 2022.
Peters contended that one Danjuma Manga who conducted the primary election which produced Machina was not nominated by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party.
He told the court that the APC cancelled the primary poll on account of the irregularities observed during the exercise.
Peters argued that the other primary held on 9 June was conducted by the APC NWC, and produced Lawan as the party’s authentic candidate.
However, Machina’s lawyer, Sarafa Yusuf prayed to the Supreme Court to dismiss the appeal for lacking in merit on the ground that the Senate President did not challenge the suits at both the trial and lower courts.
He also pointed out that Manga who conducted the primary election where Machina emerged, was a member of the NWC-appointed Committee to carry out the exercise.
Justice Centus Nweze, however, in a judgement on Monday faulted the approach of Machina in commencing the suit at the Federal High Court Damaturu division by way of originating summons and without oral evidence to prove allegations of fraud.
3. He Came To My House – Ayu Reveals PDP Governor Leaving Wike’s G5 Soon
National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Iyorchia Ayu, has revealed that one of the five aggrieved governors of the party is dumping Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike’s G5 group before the 2023 general elections.
Ayu alleged on Monday that Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu, was in his house two days ago, and they have resolved the crisis between them.
Naija News understands that the PDP national chairman disclosed this while wooing Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, a member of the G-5, to support the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.
According to him, Ortom now has nowhere else to go and hence, should return to the main factions of the PDP ahead of the forthcoming polls.
However, while speaking on Monday to a crowd of supporters during the PDP Presidential Campaign in Makurdi, Benue State capital, Ayu begged Ortom to come back to the PDP main fold so they could rebuild the party.
He said: “I’m appealing to my younger brother, Governor Samuel Ortom, to come back to the party so we can rebuild the party. Ortom has nowhere to go.”
Ayu stressed that Ikpeazu visited his home after his preferred governorship aspirant lost his bid at a rerun primary election, which was held following the candidate’s death, whom Ikpeazu preferred as his successor.
“We have resolved the problem with Governor Ikpeazu, and he is coming back. Two days ago, he was in my house because his candidate lost the primary,” Ayu said.
4. Court Orders IGP To Arrest, Detain EFCC Chairman, Bawa
A High Court sitting in Kogi State on Monday directed the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Usman Baba to arrest the Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa.
The court gave the order following Bawa’s alleged disobedience to a court order.
The IGP was also ordered to remand Bawa in Kuje prison for the next 14 days until he purges himself of the contempt.
The presiding judge, Justice R.O. Ayoola in his judgement granted the application for committal to prison of the EFCC chairman for disobeying a court ruling delivered on November 30, 2022.
In the case, the EFCC chairman was directed to produce the applicant in the case, Ali Bello.
Ali Bello had dragged Bawa to court for arresting and detaining him illegally, with the court ruling in his favour, only for the EFCC to arraign him for alleged money laundering three days after the ruling.
The EFCC’s applications for setting aside and staying of execution of the ruling were refused for want of merit.
The Court had, in Form 49, Order IX, Rule 13, marked, “HCL/697M/2022” and titled, “Notice to Show Cause Why Order of Committal Should not be Made,” asked the EFCC Chairman to appear before it on January 18, 2022, to explain why he should not be jailed for flouting the order given on December 12, 2022, in a case filed by Ali Bello against the EFCC and Bawa, as the 1st and 2nd respondents, respectively.
The court ordered that the EFCC and Bawa be served the motion of notice together with Form 49 by substituted means.
5. ‘My Suspension From PDP Ill-Conceived And Unwarranted’ – Nnamani
A former Enugu State Governor Chimaroke Nnamani has maintained that his suspension from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) by the National Working Committee (NWC) was ill-conceived and unwarranted.
Nnamani insisted that his right to a fair hearing was violated by the party because neither was he informed of any complaints against him nor was he invited to any matter.
According to him, his suspension by the NWC is defective in both moral and constitutional support.
Naija News reports that the lawmaker, in a statement signed on Monday, stated that “The PDP ‘Penkelemesi’ suspension without hearing is incurably messy and will collapse.
“My decision to pitch tent with Asawaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu was necessitated by the PDP’s refusal to comply with its own constitution to wit; that key political office should at all times be rotated between the South and North to guarantee harmony, peace, fairness, equity and justice.
“As it is now, there is no fairness, justice and equity in the PDP because both the presidential candidate and the National Chairman are from the same region.”
He also suggested to the PDP leadership to try to address issues within the party going forward.
6. Nigerian Air Force Jet Crash-lands In Lagos Airport
A Nigerian Air Force jet reportedly crash-landed today at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos.
Reports reaching Naija News revealed that the aircraft crash-landed on Runway 18R with six passengers onboard.
The development was said to have caused panic at the airport. Fortunately, there were no casualties.
“Airforce jet crash-lands in Lagos airport at Runway 18R,” SaharaReporters quoted a source.
He added: “It happened at an area called at 18 right, right at the Lagos airport.
“It had a landing gear problem, meaning the tires refused to come out for landing. The pilot landed the aircraft on the bush, a smart move. Six people were on board; they are all safe.”
7. 13 Parties Threaten To Boycott 2023 Elections Over Naira Redesign
Thirteen out of the 18 political parties have threatened to withdraw from the February 25 and March 11 general elections over the naira redesign policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The National Chairman of the Action Alliance, Kenneth Udeze, made this known at a briefing by a Coalition of Chairmen of Political Parties on Monday in Abuja.
Udeze said the 13 parties will withdraw their participation from the 2023 electoral process if the naira redesign policy of the apex bank is suspended or cancelled.
He added that they will boycott the forthcoming elections if the new deadline of February 10 for the phasing out of the old naira notes is further shifted as demanded by some governors of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The AAC chairman, however, stated that the parties commended President Muhammadu Buhari on the redesign of the N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes.
Udeze said the 13 parties also knocked the Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara State Governments for heading to the Supreme Court to get a court injunction to extend the deadline for the validity of three old notes.
8. Aisha Buhari Is Part Of The Cabals In Aso Rock, I Am Not Afraid Like El-Rufai – Naja’atu Mohammed
A former Director in the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Council, Naja’atu Mohammed has said that the First Lady, Aisha Buhari is part of the cabals in Aso Rock.
Recall that Naija News earlier reported that the Governor of Kaduna State, Nasir El-Rufai during an interview on Channel Television said that some individuals in Aso Rock were trying to sabotage the ambition of the APC presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu.
He had said, “I believe there are elements in the villa who want us to lose the election because they didn’t get their way; they had their candidate. Their candidate did not win the primaries. “
“They are trying to get us to lose the election, and they are hiding behind the president’s desire to do what he thinks is right.”
Reacting, the first lady backed El-Rufa’i over his claim that some elements in the presidency are plotting to sabotage Tinubu’s victory.
She voiced her support for El-Rufai when she shared a clip of the interview containing the governor’s main allegation against the saboteurs who are non-members of the party and are exploiting the president’s goodwill for their selfish ends.
However, Naja’atu while featuring on the Arise TV Morning Show said that unlike El-Rufai, she was not afraid to mention names.
9. Three APC States Drag Buhari’s Govt, CBN To Court Over Naira Scarcity
Three state governments currently being ruled by the All Progressives Congress (APC) have dragged President Muhammadu Buhari’s government to court over the new naira policy introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Reacting to the current hardship suffered by their state citizens following the CBN’s naira redesign policy, the governments of Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara reportedly dragged the Federal government before the Supreme Court, seeking a restraining order to stop the full implementation of the policy.
In a motion ex-parte filed on their behalf by their lawyer, Abdul Hakeem Uthman Mustapha (SAN), the three northern states are urging the apex court to grant them an interim injunction stopping the Federal Government either by itself or acting through the CBN, the commercial banks or its agents from carrying out its plan of ending the timeframe within which the now older versions of the 200, 500 and 1000 denominations of the Naira may no longer be legal tender on February 10, 2023.
The Plaintiffs in the suit are the three Attorneys-General and Commissioners of Justice of the three states, while the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), is the sole Respondent.
10. Desperate Politicians Arming Cultists To Scuttle 2023 Elections – Wike
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has accused some “desperate politicians” of recruiting and arming cultists and other miscreants to be used to attack and intimidate voters during the forthcoming elections.
In a state broadcast on Monday, the governor said the rising cases of cultism in the state during this electioneering period are sponsored by politicians to settle political scores.
Wike added that some party support groups in the state are a vehicle for thuggery and cult activities sponsored by disgruntled politicians ahead of the polls.
He was reacting to reports that about 30 members of the Atiku Support Organisation were arrested by armed policemen during a meeting in the state capital.
The governor also directed the security agencies to raid any suspected area occupied by cultists, militant support groups and other miscreants being used by politicians to disturb the peace, safety and security of the state.