Defection to APC won’t shield corrupt politicians from prosecution —Lai Mohammed - Naijaray
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Defection to APC won’t shield corrupt politicians from prosecution —Lai Mohammed

The Federal Government on Monday assured that the gale of defection in the nation’ s party politics will not shield any corrupt politician from investigation and prosecution.

The Minister of Information and Culture , Lai Mohammed , gave the assurance when he paid an official visit to the Abuja office of The Authority newspaper .

Fielding questions from members of the editorial board of the paper, the minister said that defection, even to the ruling All Progressives Congress, would not immune politicians who had looted the nation’ s economy from being prosecuted .

“ Nigerians should be rest assured that the fact that some persons are moving from one party to another does not mean that they will escape prosecution.

“ Nobody will escape investigation and prosecution on the ground that he or she has moved to APC.

“ We have shown that with a former governor and a member of our party that was convicted. We will never terminate anybody ’ s prosecution on the ground of decamping.

“ However, it is not for the Executive to do the work of the Judiciary , ’’ he said.
The minister said that the defections being witnessed were not premised on the allegation of escaping justice.

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He said some defected for “ political calculation and personal reasons .”
Meanwhile, the minister had reiterated that the ruling party was not perturbed by the gale of defection , especially by members of the National Assembly.

“ We did not just start noticing this . The foundation for it was laid the day Dr. Bukola Saraki became the Senate President.

“ In every part of the world , when a party has the majority in Parliament , the party decides who is going to be the leader of the parliament .

“ This is a case where the party was still waiting for the President to resolve the issue when Saraki, from the back door , emerged as Senate President .

“ From then, we have known , because his emergence was illegal and against the wish of the party, ’’ he said.

The minister said that to make the matter worse, Saraki made a deal with the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, by conceding the Deputy Senate President ’s position.

“ In the last two years , the National Assembly has been behaving as if the opposition was in control. We have a Senate President that is so hostile to the government.

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“ For three years , budgets are passed only in June. As I speak today, there has been no disbursement on capital project in the 2018 budget .

“ Critical appointments are also being delayed and the government is being blackmailed every day ,’’ Mohammed alleged.

“ I have never seen in history where a leader of parliament will announce the defection of 15 members from his own party.

“ The proper thing is , if you are loyal to your party, you put stumbling blocks on such defection ,’’ the minister argued .

Mohammed said that Kwara , his state and that of Saraki , which is the epicenter of the defection , remained solidly behind APC and Buhari

Politics

2019 elections: PDP plotting to operate ‘container economy’ – Tinubu 

The National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has said that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, was plotting to operate “container economy” if voted into power in 2019.

Tinubu made the allegation while reacting to the Vice Presidential debate.

Speaking at the Oyo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi’s Roundtable entitled: ‘The Imperatives of Building Institutions for Lasting Legacies,’ held at Ibadan, yesterday, Tinubu said the outcome of the debate has shown that the ‘developmental economy’ of APC cannot be compared with the ‘container economy’ of PDP.

The former Governor of Lagos State argued that the developmental economy would take Nigeria to a secured next level of economic prosperity.

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He, however, stated that the container economy would return the country to perpetual slavery and poverty.

The former governor also assured that he would support the APC governorship candidate for the 2019 poll in the state, Chief Adebayo Adelabu.

He said: “I saw the debate yesterday, to crown my remarks. You could see the difference between a developmental economy and a container economy.

“Is Oyo State going APC? Oyo State is APC. It is progressive politics. I said in one place before, our Moses has crossed the Red Sea, no going back to Egypt. Success all the way.”

He stated that he did not feel bad if opposition parties in the State associated him with the process that threw Adelabu up as governorship candidate.

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“If we do indirect primary again, I will still vote for your (Governor Ajimobi) choice of successor, because reforms, re-engineering, reinvigoration of the institutions can only continue beyond us. If the foundation is bad, the house will crumble,” he said.

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Ogun APC Governorship Candidate, Dapo Abiodun, In Certificate Scandal


Adedapo Abiodun, the APC gubernatorial candidate in Ogun State, has been caught in a messy scandal that could see him disqualified as the flag-bearer of the party in next year’s election.

Dapo Abiodun, governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ogun state, is enmeshed in allegations of perjury over his post-secondary school qualifications, TheCable can report.

According to documents seen by TheCable, Abiodun declared only his West African School Certificate (1978) in the Form CF001 that he submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on October 23, 2018, ahead of the 2019 general election.

However, when he ran as the APC senatorial candidate (Ogun east) in 2015, he claimed to have attended the University of Ife, Ile-Ife (graduating in 1986) and Kennesaw State University, Atlanta Georgia, US (1989) in his INEC form CF001, backed by an affidavit he swore to at the high court, Abeokuta, Ogun state.

Curiously, while he listed B.B.A. (hons) accounting as the degree he got in 1986 as at then, he was silent on what he studied at Kennesaw State University.

However, in his official curriculum vitae, he claimed to possess another degree, B.Eng (hons) in civil engineering, presumably received in 1989 from the American university.

Also, on the website of Heyden Petroleum Limited where Abiodun is MD/CEO, underneath his name were listed B.Sc civil engineering and BBA accounting.

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If he proceeded immediately to Kennesaw after graduating from Ife in 1986, he would not have finished before 1990 as civil engineering is a four-year course at the university.

There are strong suspicions that he did not do the compulsory national youth service, even though he finished his first degree in 1986 — going by the INEC form CF001 that he filled ahead of the 2015 election, supported by an affidavit.

Abiodun was born on May 29, 1960 and was 26 in 1986 when he claimed to have finished his first degree. The age limit for national service is 30.

Apart from the possibility of having committed perjury either in 2014 or 2018, there is also the possibility that he skipped the compulsory national service, which is punishable under the law.

Section 13 of the NYSC Act states:

(1)Any person (b) who refuses to make himself available for service in the service corps continuously for the period specified in subsection (2) of this section, is guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine of N2,000 or to imprisonment for a term of twelve months or to both such fine and imprisonment.

A criminal conviction will also mean the offender is barred from holding public office.

Section 182 of the 1999 constitution states:

  1. (1) No person shall be qualified for election to the office of Governor of a State if – (e) within a period of less than ten years before the date of election to the office of Governor of a State he has been convicted and sentenced for an offence involving dishonesty or he has been found guilty of the contravention of the code of Conduct.
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Earlier this year, he was appointed chairman of the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) by President Muhammadu Buhari.

In 2012, he was appointed chairman of the Depot and Petroleum Product Marketers Association (DAPPMA), a position he still holds.

Abiodun has been having a running battle with Ibikunle Amosun, governor of the state, and the state working committee of the APC over his endorsement by the national body of the party for the 2019 governorship election, instead of Adekunle Akinlade, the governor’s choice.

The APC candidate had accused Amosun of plotting to upturn the decision of national working committee (NWC) of the ruling party to recognise him as the guber candidate of the state, while accusing the governor of being “desperate to install” Akinlade at all cost.

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Politics

2019: Mohammed Junaid steps down as Donald Duke’s running mate

2019: Mohammed Junaid steps down as Donald Duke

The Social Democratic Party (SDP) has substituted the running mate of Donald Duke, its 2019 presidential candidate.  

Shehu Musa Gabam, who is also the National Secretary of the party, replaces Mohammed Junaid, the party announced on Thursday. Alfa Mohammed, SDP national publicity secretary, said the substitution was done long ago.  

He said Junaid’s substitution was subjected to deliberation at the party’s leadership level which he was a member. Mohammed said the consensus was that Junaid should step down as running mate for strategic reasons.  

“Hence, as a genuine party man, he voluntarily stepped down and thereafter signed all the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) forms required to perfect the substitution process.

He remains one of our highly respected leaders the party is proud to have. Meanwhile, the substitution which was done long ago now has Shehu Musa Gabam from the North East as our vice presidential candidate” he said.

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