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NigeriaAt60: We ‘re proud of her accomplishments -APC governors

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) governors, under the auspices of Progressive Governors Forum (PGF) have said that they are proud of the accomplishments of the country as a democratic nation.

In a statement issued Wednesday in Abuja by the PGF Chairman and governor of Kebbi state, Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, the forum however appealed to all politicians and parties to embrace the new political culture of accepting the outcome of electoral results.

“On this auspicious occasion of the 60th anniversary of Nigeria’s independence, the PGF wishes to join President Muhammadu Buhari, all our revered leaders – traditional, religious, organised private sector, labour, civil society, women, youth, persons with disabilities, political leaders across all our political parties – and indeed all Nigerians to celebrate this historic day.

“We in particular commend and congratulate the Nigerian people for their resilience and faith in a united democratic Nigeria. 60 years of independence and nationhood were years with moments of rasping experiences.

“Coming out of these years as a united country gives us all the reasons for celebration, most especially because we are today emerging as a stable democracy having been in our Fourth Republic for 20 years now with six successful general elections.

“Therefore, emerging as a stable democracy, we can say with confidence that the growing confidence of our people to our fledgling democratic system of governance is indisputable.

“As governors elected on the platform of our party, APC, we reaffirm our commitment to the principles that democratic governance should lead to improved welfare for the mass of our citizens. This imposes a responsibility on all elected representatives to work for policies that promote the
wellbeing of citizens.

“Guided by the manifesto of our party, since 2015, our governments in all our states controlled by the APC and at the federal level have remained focused, implementing pro-people initiatives across all sectors.

On this occasion of our 60th Independence Anniversary, we want to specially celebrate our leader, President Muhammadu Buhari, for being a source of indiscriminate leadership at this point in our national life.

“At a time when partisan affiliation is expected to influence political choices both with respect to government initiatives, beneficiaries and location, President Buhari is providing indiscriminate leadership ensuring that all Nigerians from all parts of the country irrespective of all our differences receive equal treatment.

“Under the leadership of President Buhari, our politics is today being refined to ensure indiscriminate development of all parts of the country. In addition, the President is inspiring all of us in APC to change our political culture especially in relations to electoral contests.

“Unlike what obtains in other parties where the operative culture is to manipulate electoral contests to produce set outcomes, the environment in our party, APC, is being made more liberal. With such a liberal atmosphere, combined with impartiality of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), as a governing party, our electoral probability, in all elections, is even.

“We win or lose elections depending on our ability to convince electorate to vote for our party and our candidates. And when we lose in a fair contest, we concede defeat and congratulate the winner.

“This is the next level politics already in play, championed by APC. We appeal to all politicians and parties to embrace this new political culture in Nigeria. We are proud of our accomplishments as a democratic country and as a political party and hereby restate our commitment to make all our states models of good governance with records of rapid human development and progress founded on the principles of social democracy in line with provisions of our party constitution and manifesto.

“We shall continue to take all the necessary steps to roll out programmes in our states that will facilitate development of synergy, experience sharing and collaboration. We felicitate with all Nigerians and reiterate our commitment to the democratic development of Nigeria, while putting in place programmes to improve the welfare and living conditions of all Nigerians.

“This is the basis of our programmes for massive infrastructural projects both at federal levels and all our states. We congratulate all Nigerians on this 60th Independence Anniversary and pray for many more years of democratic development!” PGF noted in the statement.

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2023: ‘Buhari’s successor can come from any part of Nigeria’ – Sheriff

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Sheriff

… says APC must work harder than ever before to gain the confidence of Nigerians in order to retain power beyond 2023.

Ahead of the 2023 general elections, a former governor of Borno State, Ali Modu Sheriff, has asked Nigerians to choose a leader with capacity irrespective of where he or she comes from.

The leader, he said, can hail from any part of Nigeria as long as he can bring succour to Nigerians.

He made the statement in Abuja while receiving members of an All Progressives Congress (APC) pressure group, Frontier for Equality Leadership and Good Governance, on Thursday in Abuja.

The group had visited the former governor to ask that he contests for the position of APC National Chairman.

While he asked Nigerians to discard ethnicity and religion when choosing the next president, he said competence should be the main focus of Nigerians in making a choice.

“Unless we believe in ourselves as a nation, and believe all of us are equal and believe that a good leader will emerge from any part of the country, regardless of religion, tribe or where he comes from, we will not succeed in getting the country we dearly love.

“We must put our differences aside and look for leaders from anywhere.

“If the man that will bring succour to Nigeria is coming from a mountain in Ogoja (Cross River), we should go and look for him. If it is in the extreme end of Adamawa, we should go and look for him. If he is coming from the end of Anambra, we should go and look for him. We must do soul-searching and look for a leader,” Mr Sheriff said.

Leadership cross

The former governor also warned Nigerians against criticising their leaders and asked that prayers be made for them.

“When I see people criticise leaders on what they know nothing about, I pray for them because you will only know the challenges of this country when you are saddled with responsibility. When we have leaders we should pray for them that God will intervene, we should not curse our leaders.

“If you must blame any leader you must look at the followers, what have we done? To help our leaders to be strong – and we have to do soul searching.

“Everyday we wake up with a different challenge and these challenges are not only for our leaders, we must understand that, it is for all of us,” he said.

APC’s burden

Mr Sheriff who was once the National Chairman of Nigeria’s main opposition party, PDP, stated that the APC might have lost the trust of Nigerians.

READ ALSO:  Anambra 2021: Stella Oduah dumps PDP for APC

The party, he said, “must work harder than ever before to gain the confidence of Nigerians in order to retain power beyond 2023”.

He noted that by the end of the tenure of the President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023, “the APC would have to work extra-hard to gain a fraction of the 12 million votes which the Buhari administration carried over the years”.

In response to the group’s for him to contest for the national chairmanship of the APC, he said he would only contest “if the position is zoned to the North-east”.

Mr Sheriff’s comments comes amidst uncertainty as to where the presidential ticket for the APC will be zoned to.

Although he is yet to officially declare his intention to run for the position of chairmanship, PREMIUM TIMES had reported him saying his decision to contest is largely dependent on how the position is zoned by the party.

“…Whether I will run for the office or not will be determined by what the caretaker committee takes as a decision on where the leadership of the party will go. Whether it will go to another place or it will remain in our zone.

“If it goes to another zone, I will not contest. But if it stays in our zone, I will contest,” he had said.

He is among other key political players jostling for the position.

Others are former governor of Nasarawa State and serving senator, Tanko Al-Makura; his counterparts from Borno and Gombe, Kashim Shettima and Danjuma Goje, who are also serving senators; former governor of Zamfara, Abdulaziz Yari; a former member of the House of Representatives from Bauchi, Ibrahim Baba; and a former chairman of the Action Congress of Nigeria in Abuja, Sunny Moniedafe from Adamawa State.

The party is expected to hold its national elective convention before the end of the year.

It is, however, not clear when Mr Sheriff and other aspirants will publicly declare their intent to contest.

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Zambia’s Hakainde Hichilema sworn in as President in rare victory for an African opposition leader

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Zambia’s newly-elected president, Hakainde Hichilema, has been sworn into office after pulling off a stunning rare victory for an African opposition leader.

Hichilema was inaugurated Tuesday morning at a ceremony attended by leaders such as Tanzania President Samia Suluhu Hassan and Malawi leader Lazarus Chakwera.

Zambia’s second female Vice President Mutale Nalumango was also sworn in during the ceremony.

Hichilema defeated outgoing President Edgar Lungu in a landslide by almost one million votes in his sixth attempt at becoming ruler of Zambia.

It was a stunning turnaround for the politician known as HH — Hichilema spent several months in prison in 2017 for what were widely seen as politically motivated treason charges. The charges were dropped under intense international pressure.

After initially indicating he may challenge the result, Lungu addressed the nation following the elections, saying: “Based on the revelations issued at final results, I will comply with the constitutional provisions for a peaceful transition of power.

Despite conceding defeat early, Lungu was booed by some of the crowd as he made his way to the stage at the packed Heroes stadium in the capital Lusaka to hand over power.

Hichilema called Tuesday “a new dawn in Zambia,” in a tweet ahead of the ceremony. “As I sit here in our vehicle being driven to Heroes Stadium, I see the love, the joy and the jubilation as people line the streets on our way. I’m overwhelmed with gratitude. I love you all so much,” he added.

An example for Africa

Opposition leaders from other African countries were also invited to the event.

Nelson Chamisa, opposition leader in Zimbabwe, told CNN: “This is a significant and fantastic for what is possible for the future of Africa. Zambia is an inspiration to stubborn laggards in democracy. Strong institutions are key for effective power transfer and smooth transitions,” he said in a statement when asked about the significance of today’s inauguration.

Chamisa added that Zambia is an excellent example to be emulated on the continent.

“Africa in general and Zimbabwe in particular needs leaders not rulers, strong institutions – not strong men. Leaders must lead and leave, serve and go. Zimbabwe must be free and Democratic. Freedom can be delayed but never denied,” he said when asked what the message for Zimbabwe is.

It is the third time that power has shifted peacefully from a ruling party to the opposition since the southern African country’s independence from Britain in 1964.

There was a huge turnout of mostly young people, some who came dressed in their academic robes to protest lack of employment post graduation.

Joseph Kalimbwe, a youth representative of Hichilema’s UPND party told CNN

Young people gave us the vote. Four million young people between the ages of 18 to 24 registered to vote. It was a huge turnout and it was very personal to them. They want to ensure the mistakes of their parents were corrected. They have voted for our leader on basis he has better policies and ideas and can strengthen our state institutions.”

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Politics

Uche Secondus Suspended As PDP National Chairman

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Court suspends Uche Secondus as PDP National Chairman

 

Uche Secondus
Uche Secondus

The leadership crisis currently rocking the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, worsened on Monday as a High Court in Rivers State has restrained Uche Secondus from parading himself as the National Chairman of the party.

The order was given by Justice O. Gbasam at the State High Court sitting in Degema local government area of the State on Monday.

The judge who gave the order, also approved the suspension of Secondus as a member of the party pending the hearing and determination of motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.

The order followed a complaint brought before the court by some aggrieved members of the party.

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