Good morning Nigeria, welcome to the Naija News roundup of top newspaper headlines in Nigeria for today, Saturday, 3rd June 2023.
It was the pioneer Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Nuhu Ribadu, who once averred that “when you fight corruption, it fights back.” Corruption does not only fight back but fights dirty, so much so that it can turn the table against the whistleblower who is out to rid society of this menace. Indeed, the viciousness and vindictiveness of corruption is enough reason for one of the recent amendments by the outgoing Senate not to be drowned in the fuel subsidy removal pool bogging down the country at this time. That is if Nigeria is serious about accountability and probity in public service. ()
On Tuesday, the upper chamber of the National Assembly amended the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) Act to accommodate two years imprisonment without the option of fine to any individual who writes a false petition or gives false information to commission officials. Under the ICPC Establishment Act, there are provisions for the protection of whoever gives ICPC information pertaining to an offense committed or likely to be committed by any other person.
Following the presentation of a report by the Senate Committee on Anti-corruption and Financial Crimes ICPC Act (Amendment) Bill, 2023 (SB.1115) by the Chairman, Suleiman Abdu Kwari, section (25) (1) was amended to now read: “Any person who makes or cause any other person to make to an officer of the commission…any statement which to the knowledge of the person making the statement, or causing the statement to be made is false, or intended to mislead shall be guilty of an offense and shall on conviction be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding two (2) years.”
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has announced a plan to embark on a nationwide strike from next Wednesday, June 7, 2023.
Naija News reports that the NLC took the decision during an emergency National Executive Council (NEC) meeting on Friday (today) to deliberate on the recent increment in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), also known as petrol.
The meeting, which commenced a few minutes past 12 pm, was attended by executive members of the affiliate unions of the congress.
The trade union group had kicked against the removal of the fuel subsidy announced by President Bola Tinubu on Monday, May 29, while delivering his inaugural speech.
However, after an emergency meeting of the union’s NEC in Abuja today, NLC President, Joe Ajaero, said the government, particularly the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, had up until Wednesday next week to revert to the old price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) otherwise referred to as petrol.
The dismissed former National Publicity Secretary of the Labour Party, Abayomi Arabambi, has asked the party’s presidential candidate, Peter Obi, to stop his quest to overturn the outcome of the February 25 presidential election at the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal.
Arabambi, a member of the Lamidi Apapa-led faction, noted that Peter Obi is wasting the court’s time.
Addressing journalists on Friday, the factional spokesperson said the call became necessary following the event that happened in the Tribunal on Thursday, where the court stepped down hearing the petition filed by Obi and the Labour Party against the election of President Bola Tinubu.
He stated: “We have followed with keen interest the shameful developments and approach by the so-called legal team assembled by Peter Obi challenging the outcome of the February 25 presidential election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), and we have, like many Nigerians, come to the conclusion that Obi is not only taking Nigerians for a ride but would continue to waste the hard-earned resources donated by Nigerians for this purpose to even enrich himself the more.
“Obi attempt to cage the sense of thinking of Nigerians by trickily obtaining money from them to fund the court process, making them believe that there is something for him at the end of the day must stop now.
“All of you here who have been following this case can recall that the day we had an altercation in court with Abure’s group, INEC announced that Peter Obi could not pay for CTC form EC08 and other documents for the election. That now compelled them to only present only thirty percent of the materials they would need for the hearing at the Election Petition Tribunal.”
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has officially made his first set of appointments, four days after his inauguration as the Nigerian leader.
In a statement signed on Friday by the State House Director of Information, Abiodun Oladunjoye, President Tinubu appointed the outgoing Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, as his new Chief of Staff.
In the statement titled ‘President Tinubu appoints Gbajabiamila COS, Sen. Ibrahim Hadejia, DCOS, George Akume, SGF’, the Nigerian leader also appointed a former Deputy Governor of Jigawa State, Senator Ibrahim Hadejia, as the Deputy Chief of Staff.
While the immediate past Minister of Special Duties, Senator George Akume was appointed as Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).
The statement reads: “President Bola Ahmed Tinubu Friday in Abuja announced the appointment of Speaker of House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila as Chief of Staff, and Sen. Ibrahim Hassan Hadejia, a former Deputy Governor of Jigawa State, as Deputy Chief of Staff.
“In a meeting with Progressives Governors Forum (PGF), the President also named former Governor of Benue State and immediate past Minister of Special Duties, George Akume, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF).”
The outgoing 9th Senate on Tuesday passed a bill to amend the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) Act.
Naija News reports that the Senate amended section 25 of the law establishing the anti-graft commission to imprison writers of false petitions for two years without an option of fine.
Presenting his report, Abdu Kwari, chairman of the Senate anti-corruption committee, said there was a need to make the punishment for writing false petitions stringent to deter people from misleading the commission.
Contributing to the debate, senator representing Kebbi Central, Adamu Aliero, said people, including senators, suffer at the hands of the commission due to false petitions.
But according to The Cable, details revealed that the senators whittled down the chairman’s powers, making him a figurehead who would be susceptible to contestations within the commission.
A Benue State High Court has upheld the suspension of former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Iyorchia Ayu.
Recall that Ayu was in March suspended by his Nyorov council ward exco over failure to pay dues, abruptly ending his reign as the PDP National Chairman.
The ward exco had also accused Ayu of anti-party activities after which they passed a vote of no confidence on him.
While reading their resolution at the time, the secretary of the party in Igyorov ward, Vanger Dooyum, said Ayu’s anti-party activities – alongside his allies – contributed to PDP’s loss in his ward and local government in the governorship election.
They also alleged that the PDP chieftain did not vote during the governorship and state assembly elections held on the 18th of March, 2023.
Governors elected on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) have declared support for the fuel subsidy removal initiative being implemented by the administration of President Bola Tinubu.
The Governors on Friday, under the auspices of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF) called on Nigerians to rally behind the government’s decision to remove fuel subsidy.
Speaking on behalf of his colleagues after their meeting with President Tinubu, Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma who is the PGF Chairman, however, raised concerns about the sudden increase in the price of petrol after Tinubu’s inaugural speech on Monday.
He observed that the marketers were still selling old stock but at a new price and they are the ones responsible for the scarcity and price increase.
According to Uzodinma, the decision to do away with fuel subsidy was approved by the Muhammadu Buhari administration, under the National Economic Council led by former Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, when they realized that it was no longer possible to fund subsidy.
The Governor however expressed optimism that the situation will become more bearable when market forces come into play and Dangote’s refinery comes on stream by June.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Friday rejected some documents tendered before the election Petition Court by Peter Obi and the Labour Party (LP), in their suit challenging the victory of President Bola Tinubu.
Naija News reports Obi and the Labour Party presented certified true copies of election results contained in Forms EC 8As from six states of the federation, in support of their petition.
In their joint petition marked CA/PEPC/03/2023, Obi and his Labour Party are contending that President Tinubu was not the valid winner of the February 25 presidential election in Nigeria.
They are debating the eligibility of Tinubu to participate in the presidential contest.
When proceedings resumed on Friday, the petitioners tendered further election results in six other states including Adamawa Bayelsa, Oyo, Edo, Lagos and Akwa Ibom apart from the ones presented on Thursday.
However, the counsel to INEC, Kemi Pinhero (SAN), opposed the admissibility of the additional results from Rivers State, which it said were “strange.”
Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has tabled 13 demands before President Bola Ahmed Tinubu as he assumes office.
The group’s demand was disclosed by Ohanaeze’s Secretary-General, Okechukwu Isiguzoro.
Speaking to Daily Post, Isiguzoro said Tinubu should allow Igbos to benefit from his economic policies, urging the president to ensure the railway line from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri works.
He said: “The free market trade and postulations show that Igbos who are majorly traders will benefit from his economic policies.
“What Ndigbos expect at this moment is in the area of transport, he should look at the rail lines that go from Port Harcourt to Maiduguri.
“He should look at the seaports and ensure no economic leakages.
“Tinubu should go for well-tested technocrats not corrupt politicians, and he must ensure that those who will form the next government are not those who put Nigeria into this mess.
“Tinubu should not recycle old politicians based on party affiliation.
President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on Friday, had a closed-door meeting with Governors elected on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
Naija News reports that the meeting which started at around 11:35 am, was held in the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa, Abuja, the nation’s capital.
The former Governor of Lagos State, who was joined by Vice President Kashim Shettima, is meeting with the governors for the first time since his inauguration as President on Monday.
Present at the meeting includes Governors Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos); Hope Uzodinma (Imo); Abdullahi Sule (Nasarawa); Umar Namadi (Jigawa); Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe); Yahaya Bello (Kogi); Babagana Zulum (Borno) and Mai Mala Buni (Yobe).
Others are Uba Sani (Kaduna); Dikko Radda (Katsina); Father Hyacinth Alia (Benue); Abdulrahman AbdulRazaq (Kwara); Dapo Abiodun (Ogun); Umar Bago (Niger); Aliyu Ahmed (Sokoto); Francis Nwifuru (Ebonyi) and Bassey Otu (Cross River).
That’s the top Nigerian newspaper headlines for today. Read more Nigerian news on Naija News. See you again tomorrow.