Category Archives: South-South

Edo Assembly invasion: Police arrest 7 pro-Obaseki thugs with firearms

The Edo State Police Command has arrested seven pro-Obaseki thugs involved in the siege laid at the Edo Assembly complex on Thursday to prevent the majority of elected members, who have since impeached the former Speaker and replaced him with Rt. Hon. Victor Edoror, from sitting in the complex.

The arrest was made yesterday when the Police responded to an emergency call from 17 elected members of the Edo Assembly who came under attack by thugs reportedly directed by the Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, to prevent plenary from holding at the Complex.

The thugs identified as Festus Agbonrenren (25 years), Odion Osayande (23 years), Ogbeiwe Wilfred (52 years), Morgan Uwaigboe (47 years), Osayomore Salami (25 years), Ifeoluwa Oladele (36 years), and Iginobaro Collins (26 years) were arrested with five double-barrel long guns, two single barrel long guns, and ten live cartridges within the premises of the Assembly complex.

Sources have confirmed that the arrested thugs have all confessed that they were mobilized by the Special Adviser to Governor Obaseki on Political Matters, Edo South, Mr. Osaigbovo Iyoha, and his Special Adviser on Parliamentary Issues, Mr. Kabiru Adjoto.

Governor Obaseki made an appearance at the Assembly Complex on Thursday to offer a robust defense of the actions of the thugs and the destruction of parts of the Assembly complex under the guise of ‘renovation’, although he failed to answer questions from journalists who sought an explanation on how an Assembly of 24 elected members could be formed and presided over by 7 lawmakers purportedly loyal to the Governor.

Meanwhile, an activist group in Edo State, Democracy For All, has condemned the actions of the Governor and demanded an immediate prosecution of the arrested thugs and their sponsors.

In a statement released on Friday morning, the group denounced the invasion of the Assembly Complex as an ‘egregious crime and affront on the constitution and the rule of law’, insisting that the arrested thugs, who have confessed their ties to the Edo State Governor, must be made to face the wrath of the law alongside their accomplice no matter how highly-placed.

Its statement read in part: “It is a shame that in Edo State today that we have a Governor who is insisting that a House of 24 members should be led and constituted only by 7 members. And to sustain this illegality, he has turned to violence, vandalism, and dark politics.

“While we thought our democracy has evolved and left certain ugly trends behind, Governor Godwin Obaseki, by his actions on Thursday, set us back many years with his flagrant abuse of office, violation of the integrity and expected character of his esteemed position, and the promotion of violence and illegality.

“Our first demand goes to the Police and it is to immediately commence processes for the prosecution of the arrested thugs and their direct sponsors, Mr. Osaigbovo Iyoha and Mr. Kabiru Adjoto.

“Their prosecution will signal to the world that Nigeria is neither home to criminality nor a jungle where appointees of government can break the law at will and threaten law and order through the sponsorship of thuggery, violence, and unfortunate contribution to arms proliferation.”

PHOTONEWS: Edo PDP Women Storm Benin City Centre, Reject APC

Thousands of women on Friday morning stormed the Benin City Ring Road Friday morning, chanting and praying against the All Progressives Congress (APC)

They said they don’t want the APC anymore in the state.

The women however, wore insignia of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Photos:

President Muhammadu Buhari endorses Ize-Iyamu

Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mai Mala Buni, on Friday said that President Muhammadu Buhari has endorsed the governorship candidate of the party in the September 19 elections, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

Buni, who stated this while briefing State House correspondents after presenting the APC candidate to the President said that Buhari gave his blessings to the candidate.

Pastor Ize-Iyamu at the briefing debunked the allegation that 14 members-elect of the Edo State House of Assembly sat in his house on Thursday to impeach the Speaker of the House and elect a new one.

1. Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mai Mala Buni, on Friday said that President Muhammadu Buhari has endorsed the governorship candidate of the party in the September 19 elections, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

2. Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mai Mala Buni, on Friday said that President Muhammadu Buhari has endorsed the governorship candidate of the party in the September 19 elections, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

3. Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mai Mala Buni, on Friday said that President Muhammadu Buhari has endorsed the governorship candidate of the party in the September 19 elections, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

4. Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mai Mala Buni, on Friday said that President Muhammadu Buhari has endorsed the governorship candidate of the party in the September 19 elections, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

He said: “Let me debunk the statement that 17 members of the State House of Assembly sat in my sitting room, it is not true.”

He also said that there was no truth in the insinuations that President Buhari did not want to see him, alleging that it was a falsehood being spread by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.

Also speaking, Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State described his Edo State counterpart and candidate of the PDP in the September elections, Godwin Obaseki, as a liability to the PDP.

“I can assure you that Governor Obaseki is a liability to the PDP. I can assure you that we are contesting against a governor who failed most woefully.”

Edo Assembly:17 Members Inaugurate Parallel Assembly, as Another Speaker Emerges

The impasse rocking Edo State House of Assembly took a new turn when 17 members-elect in the state inaugurated a parallel speaker for the Assembly, on Thursday, 6th August 2020.

Jungle Journalist Media Ltd learnt that the members-elect are loyalists of the former national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and staunch supporters of the party’s candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

They were joined by three lawmakers who had earlier been inaugurated.

The inauguration which was held at an undisclosed venue, saw a former Speaker of Edo Assembly, Victor Edoror, emerging Speaker, after a motion for the impeachment of Frank Okiye was not opposed.

Mr. Sunday Aghedo, (APC Ovia SW) had moved a motion signed by the entire members calling for Okiye’s impeachment, and was seconded by Hon. Ohio Ezomo (APC Owan West).

The motion nominating Edoror was moved by Hon. Washington Osifo (APC Uhunmwonde) and was seconded by Hon Eric Okaka (APC, Owan East).

Mr Chris Okaeben (APC, Oredo West) moved the motion that got Hon Emma Agbaje (APC, Akoko-Edo II) who acted as Speaker ex tempore, elected as Deputy Speaker.

Before the election, 12 out of the 14 members who were not sworn in last year took their oaths administered by a former Clerk of Edo Assembly, Tom Efezokhae.

Following the inaugural sitting, Edoror announced that plenary will resume on Friday, 7th August 2020.

When contacted for reaction, the Clerk of Edo Assembly, Mr. CY Omogbai said; “I don’t talk to press, meet my PRO please.”

Recall that Speaker of Edo Assembly, Frank Okiye, had raised the alarm over planned hijack of the Assembly complex at the Ring Road.

Federal Police take over Edo House of Assembly

Men of the Nigerian police were spotted at the Edo state House of Assembly complex today, a day after minority members impeached the Deputy Speaker, Yekini Idiaye.

Dozens of the security officials were said to have stormed the complex while patrol vehicles were stationed there.

Also reports from Channels Television gathered that the police took the action following a reported threat of an attack on the facility.

The police officers were led to the Assembly by a Deputy Commissioner of Police (Operations), Ayoola Ajala from Abuja.

The motive of the police was not clear, as this is a developing story.

Idiaye was impeached on Wednesday during a plenary session of just 10 members of the Assembly out of the elected 24.

The speaker, Frank Okiye was elected by the 10 members, in an inauguration that took place at night last year, and endorsed by Governor Godwin Obaseki.

The excluded 14 members have not been part of the assembly since then and the minority members had even gone further to declare their seats vacant.

But matters came to a head on Wednesday, when Idiaye was impeached.

The lawmaker representing Akoko-Edo Constituency I and four other members of the Assembly on Monday pledged their support to the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu.

Those who joined Idiaye are Hon. Emmanuel Agbaje, Akoko-Edo Constituency II; Hon. Nosayaba Okunbor, Orhiomwon East Constituency; Hon. Dumez Ugiagbe, Member-elect, Ovia North East Constituency I; and Mr. Hon. Vincent Uwadiae, Member-elect, Ovia North East Constituency II.

*This is a developing story

The Simple Agenda Recipe For Fire Disaster And Housing

By Don Osehobo Ofure

My mailbox is full with many questions from eager Edo people, who want to know the specific plan the APC candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s Manifesto the Simple Agenda for fire disaster. There are others who want to know about his plans for low cost houses.

Let me start with the Fire Service. I am aware because I have read about it as item (C) under the second letter of the Simple Agenda which is ‘Infrastructure Development and Urban Renewal’, that the incoming APC governor of Edo state has a Fire service policy.

Very recently, Pastor Ize-Iyamu commended the Federal Government for donating a very sturdy Fire Service vehicle to Edo state. The donation was the high point of the disaster and embarrassment, the Edo State Fire Service has become under the present government.

The very bad situation was summed up by the Nigerian Conference of Fire Service Directors who lamented the ugly state of the Edo fire service at its recent conference when it said, fire-fighters and equipments for quick response to disasters, are absent in Edo.

The body called on the State government to expedite action in approving the urgent recruitment of more fire fighters as those in the state fire service have become old hands as well as provide it with adequate funding for training and purchase of new state-of-the-art fire fighting equipments.

Pastor Ize-Iyamu is, “… seriously concerned about the Edo Fire Service responses to critical fire incidences, particularly within our major cities. The Uwelu Spare Parts market, Oliha market, Santana market, Osa market, and the Urhokpota fire disasters all within eight months have exposed the terrible state of our fire service and the government’s disdain for the common man hinged on her failure to respond and prepare for future incidences”.

As a result the Simple Agenda has a plan to ” modernize, scale up and enhance the capacity of Edo State Fire Service to respond effectively to critical fire incidents within 30 minutes in our cities”.

Also, “Every major market in the state will be reformed to accommodate a fire service unit. These units will serve as a branch of the state fire service”. This will be in addition to his government setting up, “dedicated water reservoirs in some areas of the state for the refill of water tanks of fire service trucks”.

On the subject of Housing, it is also a critical part of the Infrastructure development and Urban Renewal plan of Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s Simple Agenda, and is labelled (D). But let me digress a little.

The housing deficit in our country is put at over 20 million units. It is also estimated that more than 60% of Edolites live in substandard housing. Nigeria’s National Housing Policy (NHP) came on stream in 2006 as a solution to a growing and recurring problem of housing shortage.

It was in 2013, that the Federal government commissioned the Nigerian Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC), a private sector-driven mortgage refinancing company with the public purpose of promoting home ownership for Nigerians while deepening the primary and secondary mortgage markets.

The Simple Agenda plans to addressing housing by encouraging, ” the Public-Private-Partnership initiative in the provision of decent housing units for people in the state”. To do this, the, “Government will supply quality housing through a policy for social housing for the poor and the vulnerable, and develop affordable houses for workers in the state”, as well as allow the public, ” access to affordable mortgages at single-digit interest rates”.

New Government Reservation Areas (GRA) are also planned and this the Simple Agenda hopes to actualize, ” by allocating land, providing infrastructure (including road networks) and inviting reputable developers to take over such areas at reasonable cost to government and the affected communities”.

The beauty of the policies and plans for the Fire Service and Housing in Edo state by the incoming government of Pastor Ize-Iyamu is that, they, ” would lead to the creation of additional jobs in the economy”.

I will inaugurate Edo Assembly after I’m sworn in as Edo Governor – Ize-Iyamu

The APC candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu has promised to inaugurate the House of Assembly as soon as he is sworn in as Edo State Governor, after his victory in the September elections in the state.

Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu made the promise while addressing former PDP and SDP leaders and members who decamped to the APC from the various wards that make up the Local government area along with leaders of the APC who paid him a solidarity visit on Monday.

He said, ” I want to assure you, if these people don’t enter office before the election, once we are sworn in, their inauguration will be a priority because you cannot have the Edo House of Assembly sitting without Ovia Northeast”.

Pastor Ize-Iyamu also said that denying the Ovia Northeast people and over half of Edo state, a well deserved representation by refusing to properly inaugurate the Edo Assembly, Governor Obaseki does not deserve a single vote.

“Just like the way Obaseki was elected to be governor, you elected Vincent Uwadiae for Constituency 1 and Dumez Ugiagbe for Constitiency 2 to go and represent you at the House of Assembly. You elected them but the Governor refused to allow them to sit for one year”.

The APC candidate who presented the people with copies of his Simple Agenda manifesto, called on them to reject the PDP and Governor Godwin Obaseki in the Edo state governorship elections, by voting the APC to punish the outgoing government for neglecting the area in the last four years.

He lamented the insecurity in the area which led to the kidnapping and killing of a former State Civil Commissioner and the refusal of the governor to pay protesting Staff of College of Education, Ekiadolor their entitlements and assured them that change was coming to Edo with the APC government he will head.

He concluded by saying that, “We don’t play politics for fun. We have a reason, we have an objective and that objective is that our people, through government must progress. We ourselves must progress and my prayer is that the incoming government will be better for you than the past government”.

Cultists unleash mayhem, kill 5 in Cross River

Suspected cultists numbering over 50, armed with axes, shotguns and machetes have destroyed properties worth ten million naira after killing five persons in Akpabuyo LGA of Cross River State. The incident happened on Sunday in the Forestry area of the council.

Nocturnal groups whose identities were given as Skylo and Scorpion operating in the area are reported to be responsible for the mayhem. A witness said both groups reportedly exchanged gunfire at the forestry checkpoint in Akpabuyo.

Presently, the area remains deserted as petty businesses have since closed shops as a result of the development. It was alleged that members of the Scorpion gang ignited the friction that led to the face-off with Skylo group.

“Five persons were reportedly gunned down during the clash while properties worth ten million naira were destroyed. Both groups are suspected to have butchered five of their members”, the witness said. He said it was also suspected that remnants of the dreaded Bakassi Strike Force have stepped into the face-off after directing both groups to a ceasefire without success.

“After the ultimatum given by the former militants expired, some armed men suspected to be militants invaded the area with a view to clearing the suspected cult groups and clean the local government area of cultists”, the witness further said.

The Security Adviser to Governor Ben Ayade (South), Ani Esin said “We have some cult-related clashes in Akpabuyo Local Government Area of the State which degenerated into communal differences and we are trying to see what we can do to curtail it. We will handle the cult issue first, and then go into communal differences”.

The Permanent Secretary, Governor’s Office, in charge of Security, Dr Alfred Mboto also lamented the situation saying “Yesterday, when I got distress calls, I immediately called the Commissioner of Police and the Brigade Commander. They sent security personnel to the area to maintain law and order.”

2023: Edo should produce president after Buhari – Edo Indigenes

The umbrella body of Edo indigenes, Edo Indigenous Movement(EIM) /Edo Progressive Indigenes Association (EPIA) has said that the next president of Nigeria should be an Edo person.

EPIA in its argument, wondered why there is so much hullabaloo over Nigeria’s presidency when the Edo people, despite their contributions to national development, have never been considered for the position.

Chief Bishop J.O.E Edokpolo who is the Edo Indigenous leader and president, in a message to journalists at the weekend, said its the turn of Edo State to produce a president.

“In all fairness, Nigeria should be led by a president of Edo extraction in 2023. Given its historical role in Nigeria and as a kingdom that has been seen as one of the most historically civilized class of people in Africa, we feel very marginalized for not having a president from Edo Kingdom. It is our turn and not our fault, Edo is able and capable”, he stated.

Ize-Iyamu family member says they will back Obaseki to win Edo election

A member of the Ize-Iyamu family has said that his family will not be supporting their son, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu in the forthcoming gubernatorial elections in Edo State.

Osazee on Saturday, August 1, 2020, said the family has thrown its full backing behind incumbent Governor Godwin Obaseki to win a second term at the polls.

Osazee Ize-Iyamu, who spoke on behalf of the family according to a report by Daily Trust, said Ize-Iyamu has too much baggage that compromises his candidacy.

“The family is not sentimental about their decision.

“We are unanimous about this and Obaseki is our preferred candidate at this time.

“Ize-Iyamu, compared to the technocrat governor, is no match, by any standards,” he said.

Governor Godwin Obaseki believes he’ll easily get a second term in office by beating his main opponent Ize-Iyamu a second consecutive time.

Osazee credited Obaseki with fixing roads and improving public schools in the state, as well as taking care of workers.

He said, “Members of the Ize-Iyamu family who are retirees have been receiving their monthly pension without stress under Obaseki.

“These are things we did not enjoy when Osagie Ize-Iyamu was chief of staff and secretary to the state government.”

Some members of Obaseki’s family had also recently met with Ize-Iyamu to declare support for him over the governor.

A total of 14 candidates will contest in the election.