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Defection: “You Are On Your Own”, Ebonyi NASS Members Tell Umahi

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Senators and House of Representative members from Ebonyi State, on Wednesday, distanced themselves from their governor, Mr. David Umahi, who defected from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The announcement came barely 24 hours after Umahi defected to the APC.

In a press conference on Wednesday, the caucus, which consists of five House of Representatives members and three senators, said no member of the caucus was leaving the PDP

Reading the resolution on behalf of the members, the caucus leader and former governor of the state, Mr. Sam Egwu said they would remain card-carrying members of the PDP, the platform on which we were elected

Egwu faulted Umahi for accusing the PDP leadership of being unfair to the southeast geo-political zone.

He also accused the government of being an ingrate, claiming that the man had benefitted immensely from the PDP.

“For the sake of clarity, we wish to state that not a single member of the Ebonyi State PDP caucus of the national assembly is defecting to the APC.

“The three distinguished senators and five House of Representatives members remain proud card-carrying members of the PDP, the platform under which we contested and won elections in 2019.

“The major reason given by Umahi for defecting from the PDP to the APC is now in the public domain which is that the PDP has not been fair to the people of the southeast on the issue of zoning the presidency and vice presidency.

“While we support that it is the turn of the southeast to fly the presidential flag of any of the major political parties come 2023, yet we consider it impolitic, indecent, and unwise to give ultimatums and conditionalities in a bid to secure zoning.

“Indeed, if there is any Ebonyi person who should remain eternally grateful to the PDP, that individual ought to be Governor David Umahi.

“This is a man who was appointed the Ebonyi State chairman of the PDP, made deputy governor of a PDP administration, and was elected for two terms under the banner of the PDP.

“As governor, his two younger brothers were elected to principal offices of the PDP; one (Mr. Austine Umahi) as the national vice chairman (southeast) and another (Mr. Maxwell Umahi) as the deputy state chairman of the PDP.

“As democrats, we concede Chief Umahi’s right to join any political association of his choice.

“However, as federal lawmakers, we are not unaware of the Supreme Court decision that candidates are products of political parties.

“What it means is that political office holders are not at liberty to migrate from one political platform to another, particularly when there is no division in their party.

“We wish to use this opportunity to thank the leadership of our great party, the PDP for their prompt action in dissolving the ward, local government, state and Zonal structures of the party in Ebonyi State, and their announcement of a state caretaker team.

“We also wish to thank teeming members and supporters in our various constituencies who have remained undaunted and committed to their membership of the PDP.

“We also wish to thank the South-East caucus, and indeed the entire PDP family of the national assembly,” he added.

The briefing was attended by all the Ebonyi State federal lawmakers.

Also in attendance was the senate minority leader, Mr. Enyinnaya Abaribe from Abia State who showed solidarity with his colleagues.

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Protests Erupt in Jos Over Sexual Abuse of Underage Girls by Lebanese

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Tension was high yesterday at the Abattoir community, Jos South Local Government Area of Plateau State as residents, mostly women and young girls protested the alleged sexual molestation of about 14 young girls in the area by a Lebanese.

The alleged molestation, the protesters claim, has been ongoing for years without anything being done but when the man was eventually arrested and handed over to the Police, he was said to have been released from the Police station hence the protest.

It was gathered that the Lebanese was arrested and handed over to the Police on Thursday after the parents of two of the minors in the community reported that their children were sexually molested.

Apart from the two girls, 12 more girls also confessed that they were also at different times molested by the suspect whom they said did unprintable things to them.

The protesters called for justice to be served and appealed to Government, NGOs, and Civic Society Organizations to intervene so that the issue is not swept under the carpet like previous ones.

One of the protesters, Abigail Haruna said, “This thing has been going on for almost 20 years. I grew up in Abattoir here and I have been hearing about it. This time around, about 14 girls between the ages of 10 to 11 are involved. A Lebanese man in Abattoir here used to sexually molest the girls, one that is 11 is pregnant. This should not be allowed to fester.”

Another protester, Esther Emmanuel added, “Since when I was little, I heard about this man that he uses little girls to do blue film but we never took any action but thank God this case came up yesterday (Thursday). Parents of the girls went to the Police station to report.

“It is really annoying that this thing has been happening but we never did anything about it. None of these girls are up to 15 years. Two of the girls are pregnant, one has HIV, this is annoying. The problem is that when it happens, you will not hear anything again, the issue will just die off like that.

“The parents are left with their children, they will be asked to go and take care of their children and will even be blamed for refusing to talk to their children. If we go to their country, will they allow that? We want justice to be served. The man was arrested but now what we hear is that he has been released.”

But the State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Gabriel Uba when contacted said “The Police is aware of the situation and investigation is ongoing to ascertain the true state of the matter.

“Nobody is happy to hear such a devilish act, investigation is ongoing. Nobody released the man, if they don’t get vital information, they will do things out of ignorance. The matter has been transferred to the State CID, the man has not been released.”

(Vanguard)

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Crime

We can’t raise N160m, parents of abducted Greenfield university students, staff cry out

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Photo source: Channels Television

Parents of the remaining 16 kidnapped students and three staff of Greenfield University, Kaduna on Friday gathered to pray for the safe release of their children.

This was even as they appealed to the Federal Government to urgently assist them in rescuing their children from the bandits.

According to them, the bandits are demanding N160 million cumulative ransom for them to release the remaining 16 students.

“We are worried about their safety. The innocent students had spent 24 days in the kidnappers’ den.

To this end, speaking on behalf of the parents, the Chairman of the parents’ forum, Marcus Zarmai, appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to use his office to secure the release of the students before something sinister happens to them.

According to him, the kidnappers are demanding a sum of N10 million on each of the 16 students, making N160 million.

“Even after, we the parents have collectively paid them over N60 million ransom for the release of our children and they failed to release them.

Zarmai said, having exhausted all the money they have to pay as ransom, “We, the parents are appealing to the Federal Government to assist us to pay the ransom demanded or find any other way to ensure the safe return of our children.”

Recall, the man behind the abducted students had three weeks ago threatened to kill the 16 students if the ransom is not paid.

However, Sheikh Ahmed Gummi had come out to say they have reached out to the bandits and they have agreed not to kill the remaining students.

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Former Defence Chief Joshua Dogonyaro is Dead

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General Dogonyaro died in Jos on Wednesday at the age of 80.

Dogonyaro, a retired lieutenant general, died at the age of 80 on Wednesday.

The first son of the deceased, Joseph Dogonyaro, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in a telephone interview in Pankshin, on Thursday.

“Daddy has been sick for some time until yesterday when he had a stroke and we rushed him to the Jos University Teaching Hospital (JUTH) for medical attention.

“Unfortunately, early this morning (Thursday), around 3.00 a.m. precisely, he breathed his last.

“His death comes as a rude shock to us as a family. We are going to miss his love and warmth as a grandfather, father, brother, uncle and supporter,” he said.

Joseph said the family was trying to cope with the shock of the general’s demise and would discuss the funeral arrangements soon.

He described his father as “a General who was so faithful and loyal to the nation, Nigeria.”

“He was a general who had no bias mind as a detribalised Nigerian. He served this nation faithful and identified with all Nigerians and Africa as a continent.

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