Top Nigerian Newspaper Headlines For Today, Saturday, 25th March, 2023
Good morning Nigeria, welcome to the Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Saturday, 25th March 2023.
Elections: Nigerians Must Resist Politicians Stoking Ethnic Hate
While the United States and the British government have announced plans to impose sanctions on Nigerian politicians who instigated violence and perpetrated electoral fraud and anti-democratic exercises during the just-concluded general election, local authorities are yet to condemn or arrest agent provocateurs whose actions and utterances led to the loss of lives, limbs, and livelihoods of Nigerians and prevented voters from exercising their franchise. America categorically decried the “use of inflammatory ethnoreligious language by some public and political figures.” This newspaper expects that the US and UK will proceed to impose visa restrictions on these sponsors of violence and persons whose incendiary claims during the general election could have set Nigeria aflame. The West shouldn’t be deterred from this righteous path by the investments of these provocative politicians.
The UK Minister of State for Development and Africa, Andrew Mitchell, in a statement issued on Wednesday, stated that “members of our observation mission personally observed violence and voter suppression in numerous voting locations,” adding that “we are collating relevant information, with a view to taking action against some individuals.” The statement from the United States Embassy in Nigeria read: “We call on Nigerian authorities to hold accountable and bring to justice any individual found to have ordered or carried out efforts to intimidate voters and suppress voting during the election process.” When foreign missions, which are usually diplomatic and speak tongue in cheek about happenings in their host countries, become this censorious, it highlights the extent of the bad behaviour they have to rebuke.
Adeleke vs Oyetola: Appeal Court Delivers Ruling On Osun Gubernatorial Election
The Appeal Court sitting in Abuja has delivered a ruling on the Osun State governorship election contested by Governor Ademola Adeleke and his predecessor, Gboyega Oyetola.
The Court on Friday stated that the All Progressives Congress and Oyetola failed to prove its overvoting case against Adeleke.
The Court of Appeal set aside the decision of the Osun State Governorship tribunal and upheld the Governorship of Senator Ademola Adeleke.
In a ruling on Friday, the Appeal Court affirmed Adeleke as the authentic governor of Osun State.
Recall that the former governor of the state and candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) had challenged Ademola Adeleke’s victory in the July 16 governorship election before the election petition tribunal in Osun state.
The tribunal, led by Justice Tertse Kume, in a split judgment of 2 to 1, sacked Adeleke based on irregularities in 744 polling units across ten local government areas of the state.
It cancelled the alleged illegal votes and declared Oyetola, the winner on legally valid votes.
Banks To Open On Saturday And Sunday As CBN Begins Massive Deployment Of Naira Notes
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Friday directed all Deposit Money Banks (DMOs) to open for operation on Saturdays and Sundays.
Naija News reports that the apex bank has also commenced massive deployment of banknotes from its vaults to commercial banks across the country as part of a coordinated effort to ease the circulation of banknotes of various denominations.
This was made known on Friday by the Acting Director, Corporate Communications Department of the CBN, Dr. Isa AbdulMumin.
According to The Whistler, Abdulmumin stated that a substantial amount of money, in various denominations, had been received by the commercial banks for onward circulation to their respective customers.
The CBN spokesperson said the apex bank has also directed all banks to load their Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) as well as conduct physical operations in the banking halls through the weekends.
“Branches of commercial banks will operate on Saturdays and Sundays to attend to customers’ cash needs,” he noted.
Withdraw My Suspension Within The Next 48-Hour – Shema Threatens PDP
Former Katsina State governor, Ibrahim Shehu Shema, has asked the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to withdraw the suspension slammed on him within 48 hours.
Naija News recalls that the PDP had referred governor Samuel Ortom of Benue state to a Disciplinary Committee and suspended Ayo Fayose, Shema, and Anyim Pius Anyim, among others.
In a letter dated March 24, 2023, and addressed to the National Chairman of the party, Iyorchia Ayu, Shema said if his suspension was not rescinded the PDP leadership should consider him out of the party effective from Saturday, March 25, 2023.
Shema also asked the NWC to disband what he called the “illegal caretaker committee ” of the PDP in Katsina state and recognise the “duly elected” executive committee in the state.
Number Of National Assembly Seats, Governorship Seat Won By Labour Party
The Labour Party (LP) in the just-concluded general elections took Nigerians by surprise with level of votes they pulled across the country.
The presidential candidate of the party, Peter Obi, in the election shocked the political scene with the number of votes he pulled as declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
As declared by INEC, the former governor of Anambra State emerged third in the electoral process, behind Bola Tinubu and Atiku Abubakar.
A declaration which has been challenged by the LP presidential candidate and has seen him file an appeal before the tribunal.
LP did not stop there as the governorship candidate of the party in Abia State, Alex Otti on Wednesday was declared as the governorship-elect by INEC.
Otti’s victory in Abia State makes it the first time another party would be leading the state which has been led by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) since 1999.
Court Orders Service Of Petitions On Tinubu Through APC
The presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and President-elect, Bola Tinubu was on Friday accused of deliberately avoiding petitions filed by Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Labour Party (LP).
Following the report, the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC), sitting in Abuja, ordered that Tinubu should be served with copies of petitions seeking to nullify his election, through substituted means.
A three-man panel of the court led by Justice Joseph Ikyegh directed that the petitions should be served on Tinubu, through the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The court passed the ruling following the separate ex-parte applications filed by the presidential candidate of the PDP, Atiku Abubakar and the LP flagbearer, Peter Obi.
The duo accused Tinubu of deliberately avoiding the service of their petitions on him.
They told the court that several attempts they made to effect service of the petitions on Tinubu proved abortive.
Tinubu Avoiding Our Petition – Peter Obi, Atiku Tells Election Tribunal
The candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has been accused of deliberately avoiding petitions filed by his opponents to nullify his election.
Naija News reports that the accusation was made by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar and his counterpart in the Labour Party, Peter Obi.
It was gathered that Atiku and Obi have re-approached the Presidential Election Petition Court (PEPC) with ex-parte applications, seeking to be allowed to serve the petitions on Tinubu, through substituted means.
In their applications before the court, Atiku and Obi decried that all effort to effect personal service of their petitions on him, proved abortive.
Recall that Tinubu, who was on March 1, declared as the winner of the presidential election, is currently out of the country.
Owning to an affidavit of urgency that accompanied the motion ex-parte, the court said it would hear Atiku and Obi’s applications by 11am today (Friday).
CJN Ariwoola Returns To Nigeria After Medical Check Up In London
The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, has reportedly returned to Nigeria after seeking medical attention in London, the United Kingdom.
Naija News reports that a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) and an ally of the Supreme Court head, Ahmed Raji, made this known in a statement on Thursday in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
Raji disclosed that Justice Ariwoola went to London on Saturday for his routine medical check-up and returned to the country on Thursday morning.
CJN Ariwoola allegedly disguises on wheelchair for secret meeting with Tinubu in London – Sources
He also described the reports that the CJN was sighted in London in a wheelchair, purportedly planning to meet with the President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, as false and aimed at tarnishing the image of the apex court and the chief justice.
Tension As EFCC Set To Arrest Governors, Two Ministers After May 29
The Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Abdulrasheed Bawa, has revealed that the anti-graft agency plans to go after some outgoing governors and other public officials after May 29.
Naija News reports that the second tenure of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration alongside that of some governors would come to an end on May 29, 2023.
The governors are among public officials that enjoy immunity and therefore could not be arrested or tried while in office.
Speaking in an interview with Daily Trust on Thursday, Bawa said more arrests would be made immediately after May 29.
The EFCC boss, however, refused to give names or the number of public officials that would be brought under the law.
Bawa also disclosed that at least two ministries are currently under the radar of the commission for fraudulent activities that border on procurement processes, adding that one of the ministries committed fraud on about 20 contracts to the tune of N4 billion.
Another Top APC Member Suspended
The National Deputy Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Murtala Yakubu, has been suspended for alleged gross insubordination and anti-party activities among others.
Naija News reports that Yakubu l is also a member of the National Working Committee of the APC.
The APC spokesperson was sanctioned by the executive members of his local constituency in Ward 1, Igalamela/Odolu Local Government Area of Kogi State.
His suspension was contained in a letter dated March 20 and titled, “Suspension of Your Membership From Ajaka Ward 1,” and was officially signed by 27 members of the executive team of the ward, including the ex-officios.
Naija News reports that the letter was also sent to high ranking members of the party including the APC National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi; North Central Vice Chairman, Kogi State Chairman, Kogi East Zonal Chairman and the State Party Chairman.